Saturday, March 23, 2019

Well, it was fun.

Hello, Folks. Looks like the ol' Swiggtator will be shutting down. I am turning my household into an alcohol-free zone. Yes, no more drinking for me- maybe forever. I have really enjoyed looking high and low for all the best deals in wine out there- I have gotten an chance to meet some really great people in the winemaking business and elsewhere. I am sad that I have had to end my blog and my memberships to the two wine clubs that have provided me with some of the best wines of the decade.
I have no regrets about all the wine I have had in my life- It definitely made for some good times over the years. Now I am on a different course and I'll be just a spectator now, no longer a proper Swiggtator. Keep on swiggin' and finding those sub $ 10.00 gems !

Cheers, Paul.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Local zin is a good one

We went to a tasting at Bottle Jack/ Silver Mountain last weekend. Having done the Silver Mountain tasting a few months ago we opted for Bottle Jack this time- it also helped that we had a comped tasting from the owner. Even if it was not free, this place had been on my radar to visit as I had tried a couple of the wines at events and was really impressed. We took home a 2015 zin  -$ 29 at the winery. This is more than I usually spend for a weekend wine, or any wine for that matter but since they had spotted us the tasting ( which included six wines and was excellent ) I figured that buying a couple of bottles was the right thing to do- especially as the wines were top notch.
The zin is not huge but still very flavorful- keeps you wanting more. It is really ready to drink and not in need of cellaring in my opinion. I'll give it 8 1/2 swiggs- go by and do a tasting- you won't be disappointed.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Wild thing

I have not had a Carol Shelton wine I have not liked and this "Wild thing" Mendocino Zin is no exception. It has a very nice balance and is not as heavy handed as a sierra foothills Zin, even though I'm a big fan of Amador and other Zins from that region. At $ 17.99 this is a really good weekend wine - I'll give it 8 swiggs. We had it with some very hot Szechuan food and the wine held up to all the spices and chilis. You can find it a lot of places but this price was from New Leaf markets and it is a bit lower than what I have seen elsewhere.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

$ 2.99 ???

Yes, that is correct- a Paso Robles Rhone blend for $ 2.99 at Trader Joes . Do they have any more ? Doubtful, but worth a look. It turns out that this "Le Grande Cote" is actually Rabbit Ridge. It might be their "allure de Robles" blend or a Syrah. You can see the Rabbit Ridge brand on the cork and the logo on the foil. My guess is that this wine was re-labeled to hide the fact that a large brand was dumping a good amount of 2014 red wine through Trader Joes. I took two bottles home in November not knowing the real origin of the wine. When I drank it I was really impressed with the quality was $ 3.99 then. I went back to Trader Joes a few days later and it was gone.
A few weeks went by and to my surprise, stacks of cases of this wine were at Trader Joes again. I bought three cases as not the price was $ 2.99. Since then I have had a few bottles- it is just as good as the first bottle- hope that you find some. I'll give it 8 swiggs- an outstanding wine at a giveaway price.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Rutherford Lane- a taste of Napa

Trader Joes form time to time has $ 19.99 Napa wines often enough but not many as good as this one. Rutherford is very much the center of high quality Cabernet in Napa Valley. There are other good areas for sure in the valley but this region gets my vote for my favorite Cabernet bottles 90% of the time. This 2015 Rutherford Lane Cabernet truly has the taste of the spot- complex, rich and easy to drink. At nearly $ 20.00 I only have this one every now and then as I'm pretty thrifty and don't want to go broke drinking fine wine. That said, I don't mind being a little more broke after enjoying this particular bottle. While it may not be the typical under $ 10.00 swiggtator deal, it represents a heck of a deal for what it is- a great Napa Cabernet. 9 swiggs.

Tobin James knocks it out of the park again

We are members of this wine club so I'm not sure what this bottle costs - it is worth whatever they are charging. This 2014 James Gang reserve primitivo really is an improvement over the last one I had a year ago. I didn't like the 2013 as I found it overly tart. This one displays non of the tartness and has big rich flavors and complexity. I'm sure that it would be fine if left to age for another 5 years or so. That said, it is sensational now. Be prepared for a huge wine- 9 swiggs.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Very good Spanish red

Got this one at new leaf and had it with paella- perfect match. It might be a 2016 but it is ready to drink- tastes mature and very dry- perfect with food. This Finca Resalso 2016 is mostly Tepranillo and is $ 16.95. I would give it  8 1/2 swiggs easily- an excellent alternative to domestic wines if you are looking for a less alcoholic and over-saturated red.