Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Recession Has Hit Texas Midterm Political Functions and my wine recommedations....

All of these are good basic Pinot Noir... at Recession Prices.

Bicycle Pinot Noir 2009

Dressed in fresh purple red colour, this is a voluptuous Pinot Noir with rich fruit notes of cherry, raspberry, plum and strawberry – a red fruit party! – enhanced by subtle smoked hints. In mouth sweet fruit notes stand out, and its fine tannins give it a great texture and a mouth filling structure. Balanced and New World styled, this is a wine of personality and elegance.
100% Pinot Noir, pure and simple, it’s a young and refreshing.

Here is a review of the 2008 Vinetage....

I’ve got my comeuppance for slagging off Mark Hughes. Man City announced that the UEFA Cup quarter final home leg would be a “reward for the fans” and tickets were priced at only £5 so “ordinary fans” could come and watch. I am obviously not an ordinary fan since, despite numerous calls to the ticket office (engaged tone) the match is sold out and I have to watch on some backwater internet channel. Shame – I am in Manchester on 16 April when the town turns into a Hamburger for a night.

So perhaps I should be more complimentary about people I have never met.

Everyone knows that it is impossible to mass produce and mass market a decent wine – especially a Pinot Noir. Trouble is, nobody told Alfred Hurtado. His Chilean Cono Sur brand is taking over the world and rightly so.

A review of the 2007 Vinetage found on this blog....

A couple months ago I hosted a Wine Blogging Wednesday about red wines from Chile and wine bloggers all over the world wrote about different Chilean wines. One that caught my eye was an organic Pinot Noir from Cono Sur (Kevin, at Under the Grape Tree wrote that review). Cono Sur made a number of reviews that day, and with good reason since they are one of the best producers from Chile when it comes to quality to price ratio. And they are an innovative winery, producing a huge portfolio of different wines.

Cono Sur was established in 1993 and is part of the Concha y Toro wine group—a giant in Chilean wine. Cono Sur is based in Colchagua Valley, but produces wine from all regions in Chile.

Occasionally when I mention Chilean wine to those who aren’t very familiar with it they say that they avoid it because of all the chemicals used in producing grapes in Chile. I’m not sure where this perception comes from. I’m not aware of any excessive use of agricultural chemicals in Chilean winemaking. Regardless, I’m glad to see producers like Cono Sur bringing organically produced wines to the market as it helps change that perception of Chilean wine. I’m sure that the fact that Wine Spectator gave a Chilean wine its top honors in 2008 also helps elevate the perception of Chilean wine.

Although this wine is part of the Cono Sur organic line, it’s not technically 100% organic—yet. It is made from grapes in “conversion to organic” agriculture, as certified by BCS Oeko Garantie GmBH. This is a designation given for a period of time when organic practices are first employed on land that was previously farmed with non-organic techniques.

I should note that if you go looking for this wine, look closely. Cono Sur has at least five different Pinot Noir labels that they sell. I haven’t tried the others yet, but I can tell you that this one is good.

Earth and fruit blend together to provide a dynamic nose to this wine. On the earthy side there are notes of barnyard, moss and leather. The fruit brings cherry, strawberry and raspberry. There’s a rather floral aroma as well. Obviously, there’s quite a bit going on here. The palate is slightly off balance to the acid side, but I’d rather have too much acid than not enough… and it’s not excessively over acidic. Flavor-wise it has lots of cherry, plus some cranberry and raspberry. There’s quite a bit of heat on the finish. This wine could use some refinement, but it’s not bad at all for the price.

Wine: Cono Sur – Organic
Varietal: Pinot Noir
Vintage: 2007
Alcohol: 13%
Rating: 87
Price: $9.49

And it lead me to a great blog on wine for you to read as well:

I am slightly dissapointed that my first wine blog post is for an inexpensive, mass-produced vintage, but it's what I'm drinking, and I would guess a lot of other people are drinking it too.

I first learned about the Rex-Goliath Vin De Pays D'Oc Pinot Noir from my wife's aunt. She is studying to be a sommelier, currently works in a wine shop, and hopes to run a travel service that conducts tours of the Italian wine country. In other words, she has an appreciation for wines and a more refined palate than mine. She described a memorable experience for her. She and her husband picked up the Rex-Goliath Pinot Noir for it's normal $7. They took it home and found it was not the same as past bottles. They couldn't sort out what the difference was at first, but then they discovered that they had picked up the Rex-Goliath California Pinot Noir. In their experience, the Rex-Goliath California Pinot was not very good, but that the Vin De Pays D'Oc Pinot was excellent at the price point.

My wife and I are not wine experts and do not have a large cellar of wine. Even so, we enjoy drinking a good wine with dinner and we've been helped along in appreciating wine by my in-laws, particularly my father-in-law, who has developed a real penchant for fermented grape juice. We tended to lean toward Zinfandel (the red kind) or Cabernet Savignon over a Pinot Noir when choosing a red.

For whatever reason, as time has passed, I've learned to really enjoy a good Pinot Noir. Admittedly, the Rex-Goliath is not the best wine I have ever tasted, but for the price it is quite good. Regarding price, if you can find it on sale, you can buy a 750 ml bottle for as little as five dollars. A more typical price is between 7 and 9 dollars retail.

This Vin de Pays is not sweet, not dry. It's not overly fruity, but has a good balanced flavor. Try it.

The Lindemans Bin Series wines are made with the modern lifestyle in mind, produced in an easy-drinking, contemporary style that offers wine lovers outstanding quality, substance and consistency at an everyday price. The generous flavours of these wines combine easily with food and most social occasions delivering maximum enjoyment from the first glass to the last. .

Tasting notes
Colour: Vibrant, ripe, cherry red.
Nose: Inviting aromas of sweet raspberry, dark cherry and bramble leaf on the nose.

Palate: A delicate soft layer of sweet, red berry fruits overlays a subtle savoury layer of olives and bramble leaf. On the palate, this wine is medium weight with soft tannins and balanced acidity. The finish is of medium length with a clean, rich fruit finish. A great tasting Pinot!

Wine maker notes
Vineyard Region: A multi-regional blend, primarily from Adelaide Hills with significant proportions from Padthaway and Partalunga.
Vintage Conditions: The very cool spring and summer conditions were relieved to an extent by the long Indian summer, but there is no doubt the vintage was a challenge in cool-climate regions such as the Adelaide Hills. The low yielding, well maintained company vineyards ripened perfectly and produced a crop that whilst reduced in size was of excellent quality.

Grape Variety: Pinot Noir

Serving and Cellaring Suggestions: Drink Now to 2005. Ideally suited to Asian, pasta and vegetarian dishes.

Wine Analysis: Alc/Vol: 14.0%

Other text
2002 Lindemans Bin 99 Pinot Noir Lindemans wines promise more than the partnering of quality grapes and craftsmanship. Every wine also contains the spirit and passion of our founder – Dr Henry J Lindeman. The Lindemans Bin Series wines are made with fruit sourced from key grape growing regions in Australia. This ability of Lindemans to source and blend wines from different regions produces wine of a consistently outstanding quality regardless of varying vintage conditions. The generous flavours and contemporary, easy-drinking style of Lindemans Bin 99 Pinot Noir combines easily with food and most social occasions to deliver maximum enjoyment from the first glass to the last.