This is definitely "to-go" season at Wine & Cheese! Our platters are making it to far more Christmas parties than any of us. We make them up on very nice re-usable catering trays so you just unwrap them and they are good to go. A couple bottles of bubbly from the Wine Cellar next door and no one will notice that tacky sweater from Aunt Beatrice.
Wine & Cheese and the Wine Cellar will be open on Christmas Eve till 2pm. We will be closed Christmas Day and OPEN on New Year's Day. Regular hours will be observed on New Year's Eve. We hope everyone has a safe and wonderful holiday season!
We finally got our order of Sweet Sunset Chocolate Infused Merlot in today! As usual we bought every bottle that came into the state and are unpacking it right now. These 20 cases might last through Christmas but who knows?
First phone call of the day was a phone order for 3 bottles and a half pound of Walnut Gourmandise!
We loved the Kings of Italy Flight and I guess everyone else did too because they are all gone! We do have a couple bottles left in the Wine Cellar for retail sale but its now time for another premium flight - The "Holiday in Napa" flight.
We're showcasing some beautiful Napa reds starting with The Volunteer, crafted by volunteer firefighter Tony Leonardini. Tony squeaked his harvest in before the monster October rain of '09 and has crafted a powerful Cabernet (touch of Merlot and Cab Franc) that shows rich cherry, hints of cranberry wrapped up in toasted vanilla notes from French oak.
The second red is the 2006 Smith-Madrone Cabernet Sauvignon from the Spring Mountain District in Napa. The Romans knew about the benefits of planting on hillsides and the Smiths agree with these vines growing on slopes up to 35% at almost 2000 ft elevation. Somewhat subtler than the others in the flight, this 85% Cab, 6% Merlot and 9% Cab Franc blend is elegant with warm flavors of dark cherry, cassis and cedar. Twenty-two months in American oak adds some tannic depth and character as well.
Following on the heels of the Big Red Flight, we've gone a bit crazy now. I mean really, who offers an 8 year old Barolo BY THE GLASS AND FLIGHT? I guess we do now!
The "Kings of Italy" flight is just a couple days old and its a hit already. The first King is the 2007 Piancornello Brunello di Montalcino which shows the capability of Sangiovese to go big and rich beyond the ubiquitous Chianti. Montalcino is south of Chianti Classico and warmer allowing the Sangiovese to get a bit riper and richer. Ten months in French oak barrels and a couple years in casks before bottling can only be supported by intense quality fruit and this Brunello shows wonderful dark red cherry and tobacco notes.
Also here is a "baby" Amarone, the Valpolicella Ripasso. Here Valpolicella is not the grape, which are Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara but the place in the Italy's Veneto region. Valpolicellas tend to be light and very easy drinking until you give them the "Ripasso" treatment. Ripasso involves drying the grapes after harvest and/or even adding skins from a previous Amarone production to intensify and concentrate the flavors. The 2009 Villa Fulvia Valpolicella Classico Superiore Ripasso delivers that intensity.
And quietly kicking butt in the trio (in my humble opinion) is the Roagna 2004 Barolo. While Barolos are often crafted to age up to 50 years, this one is already soft and very approachable after just 8 years. Nebbiolo is used throughout NW Italy in Barbaresco, Roero, Alba, Asti but its apex is certainly found in Barolo. This one is macerated for nearly three months and spends 4-6 years in oak before more years in the bottle.
We are excited to be able to offer this flight for $22 while supplies last. Glass and bottle are also available.