March 29, 2014 |
This is why Rioja is one of the best values in red wine right now. Where else could you find such a distinguished red from the 2001 vintage for less than $35? This isn't something a shrewd wine merchant put away for a few years but the estate's current release. And what a mature beauty it is - aromas of dried cherry and rose petals, flavors of dark berries and tobacco, ripe tannins and a long, inviting finish. A seamless package. It will go well with just about anything, but I'm thinking lamb - a roast or chops.
February 19, 2014 |
From the legendary Quintarelli estate in Valpolicella, here's a lovely and surprising white wine scented with white peaches and lime. With its minerality and bright acidity, this could be the Veneto's analogue to Grüner Veltliner. Perfect for impressing a wine geek. It's terrific with oysters and chilled shrimp, and a great choice with a frittata or omelet. It works with asparagus too. And, of course, it would be ideal with sushi and Thai food. Region: Valpolicella, Veneto, Italy Price: $38 to $40 Style: Crisp and minerally What it goes with: Chilled shellfish, omelet and frittata, sushi, Thai food Where to find it: John and Pete's Fine Wines & Spirits in West Hollywood, (310)
February 7, 2014 |
If you're one of the impatient ones, and have to have a bottle of Brangelina's latest rosé from Provence right now, you'll have to jet over to London or France. That's right. The first bottles of 2013 Château Miraval Côtes de Provence rosé will be sold first in France and England. There's been a waiting list for the wine since last year and the people on it were notified by email that they could sign on Thursday and buy one case of six bottles each. Just in time for Valentine's Day. Go to the website and you'll be informed very politely, in French, that the reservation list for the first bottles of the 2013 vintage is now closed.
December 14, 2013 |
An easygoing Piemontese red from the underappreciated Dolcetto grape, which is sort of the younger cousin of Nebbiolo. Bright and polished, the 2012 Elio Grasso Dolcetto d'Alba tastes like sweet fresh cherries and plums. It's a really pretty wine, with a minerality that gives it depth. Delicious with a salumi and cheese plate, or with crostini topped with chicken livers or beans. I love it with grilled sausages too, and pasta with meat sauce. Region: Piedmont Price: $15 to $19 Style: Bright and polished What it goes with: Salumi, cheese, crostini, grilled sausages, pasta with meat sauce Where to find it: Hi-Time Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa, (949)
October 26, 2013 |
If you think you don't like off-dry Riesling, open up a bottle of this lovely floral Riesling from a Mösel estate that goes back to 1177 and has been owned by the same family since 1804. The 2011 Mönchhof Riesling's honeyed sweetness is balanced by a racy acidity and an earthy minerality. A touch of bitterness pulls it all into focus. The more you keep drinking, the more you'll find in the glass: white peaches, honeysuckle. And this Mösel Riesling is a great value. Open a bottle to accompany a fiery chicken or beef larb . It goes with Thai or any spicy Asian cuisine too. I'd try it with lobster or grilled prawns, and with Chinese noodle dishes.
August 3, 2013
The Chianti region is large, and while the wines from the Classico region are the best known, for price and quality, look to the lesser-known Chianti Rufina, a small area in the northeastern corner of Chianti proper. Selvapiana is one of the best estates in Rufina, turning out first-rate Sangiovese-based reds. I've been buying its Chianti for years, keeping it on hand for pasta nights and grilled skirt steak or chops. A deep ruby in color, the 2010 Selvapiana tastes of bright cherries and plums, but a touch of earth gives it some weight.