FRIDAY’S THIRTEEN…

A boatload of wine

A boatload of wine

In a weeks time, I taste a boatload of wine (seriously). I lot of my friends think I’m lucky. Well, they’re right, and I wouldn’t give this job up for the world. The only thing that makes my job hard, is my feeling of responsibility to taste the samples given to me as quickly as possible and to put my reviews either in my Moleskine, on my Youtube channel (Stan The Wine Man TV), or right here on Stanthewineman.com. Here for your reading pleasure, are thirteen wines that I have reviewed in my Moleskine (good or bad), this past week.

2014 Sean Minor Pinot Noir (Central Coast, CA)… $13.

Aromas of earth, cola and cherries with a hit of licorice, Root Beer and slight tobacco. Solid fruit on the palate with notes of currants and dark cherries surrounded by notes of Root Beer, dried bark and a hit of cola. There is a red flower hit on the mid-palate with a pinch of licorice. Nicely integrated with good balance of acidity and fruit front to finish. A solid California Pinot Noir that is not trying to go north or to Burgundy. (B/B+)

2013 Cantele Salice Salentino 100% Negroamaro (Salice Salentino, Italy)… $12.

BBQ spices on the nose, joined by notes of black currants, licorice, rose petal, wet stone and forest floor. This baby smacks your mouth with high acid making you take a quick look around for Mr. Hendricks. Notes of tart red cherries, citrus and tobacco that carry on brightly front to back with citrus and tobacco notes lingering. Don’t get me wrong, this wine is well made, but begs for some food. Hook it up with some fatty steaks, ribs or a pasta dish with red sauce and you will find its full potential. (B-)

2014 Whidbey Island Winery Pinot Noir Coltus Bay Vineyard (Puget Sound, WA)… $25.

Aromas of leather, cherries, cola and an undertow of black pepper and licorice. Bark, licorice and black tea notes with cherries underneath front to finish. Very earthy and savory on the palate but also quite thin. Light acidity does not give this wine any punch and leaves you wondering why you paid twenty-five bones. I am a huge fan of this winery as a lot of you know, but not huge fan of this Puget Sound Pinot. (C-)

2016 Domaine Le Clos des Lumieres Cotes-du-Rhone Blanc (Rhone Valley, France)… $9.

Very expressive on the nose with notes of white flowers, peaches and apricots with underlying apple, melon and grass notes. Melon and peach notes all day on the palate with an underscore of minerals and cut grass. Citrus notes come through on the mid-palate into a mineral driven, grassy finish. Good balance and very clean on the palate. Shellfish anyone? 40% Grenache Blanc, 40% Viognier, 20% Bourboulenc (C+/B-)

2016 Domaine Le Close de Lumieres Cotes-du-Rhone Rose`(Rhone Valley, France)… $9.

Aromas of cherries, strawberries, minerals and hits of watermelon. Fairly intense cherry and strawberry notes on the palate with a nice beam of acidity front to finish. Hits of watermelon rind show up on the mid-palate into the finish with crushed rock joining the party on a fresh, dry finish. Solid, balanced, dry Rose`. 40% Cinsault, 30% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 10% Mourvedre. (B)

2015 Chateau Moulin de Ferrand Blanc (Entre-Deux-Mers, France)… $9.

Petrol and wet stone on the nose with a burnt grass and melon component coming through. Apricot, melon and white flower notes hit on the palate on a bed of wet stone. A pinch of citrus joins up on the mid-palate into a very dry, delicious, lingering finish. Nicely balanced and a great value from an area of Bordeaux that is oft ignored. 60% Sauvignon Blanc, 40% Semillon (B-/B)

2014 Michael Pozzan Annabella Pinot Noir (Carneros, CA)… $16.

Cherries and Root Beer all day on the nose with underlying licorice, spice and black tea notes. Notes of dark cherries dominate on the palate with underlying Root Beer and black tea notes. Solid acidity keeps the fruit in balance. Bark notes hit on the mid-palate into the finish where white pepper joins that palate party on the back-end. (B/B+)

2014 Michael Pozzan Annabella Red (California)… $15.

Loads of blackberry notes on the nose with a little red currant and red plum coming through with a kiss of licorice. Blackberry notes all day front to finish with a little veggie action on the mid-palate. Slight licorice and spice notes come through on the end of the finish. This is close to a one-dimensional wine (very simple) with strong delicious factor. (C)

2015 Domaine Le Clos de Lumieres Cote-du-Rhone (Rhone Valley, France)… $9.

Meaty on the nose with notes of violets, boysenberries, hits of char, plum and tobacco. Nicely integrated notes of roasted meats, crushed rock, violets, strawberries and plums with a nice tobacco hit on the fresh, mineral driven finish where violet notes linger. Excellent food wine at a stupid price. (B/B+)

2016 Weoh Carignan (Maule Valley, Chile)… $14.

Big time smoke on the nose joined by notes of plums, cherries, tobacco and raspberry. Tart raspberry and cranberry notes driven by high-tone acidity. Beet notes join up on the mid-palate with tobacco notes joining up on the finish. Tannins are there but very approachable. Interesting wine for a limited amount of palates. (C+)

2015 Frey Vineyards Field Blend (Mendocino, CA)… $15.

A little Vics Vapo-Rub on the nose, joined by notes of blackberries, licorice and a hit of oatmeal. Blackberry and red berry notes dance together on the palate mingled with fresh acidity and blackberry notes trying to cut in. Polished, structured tannins support the dance showing just a little attitude. Ball bearing notes lie underneath front to finish giving the wine a nice vibrancy with tobacco notes showing up on the back-end. Biodynamic and Organically grown fruit. 40% Merlot, 40% Syrah, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon (B/B+)

2014 Frey Vineyards Agriculturist Red (Mendocino, CA)… $12.

Blackberry cola with a splash of tobacco on the nose. Blackberry notes dominate the palate with a hint of currants underneath. Light, but the fruit notes are laser sharp resting on sweet tannins. This red has a zing to it that will keep you interested. Organically grown fruit (B-)

2014 Frey Vineyards Zinfandel (Mendocino, CA)… $15.

Aromas of raspberry and strawberry jam with a pinch of cherries. Nice jammy edge on the palate with a fresh backbone. Hits of white pepper join ripe cherry notes front to back. Good balance and intensity of fruit. Blackberry and currant notes sneak into the party on the mid-palate into the finish. This one surprised me, as sometimes the organic designation can prejudice the mind. This is a zin lovers zin at a killer price. (B/B+)

Cheers!
Stan The Wine Man

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FRIDAY’S THIRTEEN…

A boatload of wine

A boatload of wine

In a weeks time, I taste a boatload of wine (seriously). I lot of my friends think I’m lucky. Well, they’re right, and I wouldn’t give this job up for the world. The only thing that makes my job hard, is my feeling of responsibility to taste the samples given to me as quickly as possible and to put my reviews either in my Moleskine, on my Youtube channel (Stan The Wine Man TV), or right here on Stanthewineman.com. Here for your reading pleasure, are thirteen wines that I have reviewed in my Moleskine (good or bad), this past week.

2016 Vaulted Wines Sauvignon Blanc (Oregon)… $25.

Aromas of grape seed (go figure), grapefruit, melon and white flowers. Nice balance of acidity and fruit on the palate. Both white and pink grapefruit notes come through front to finish with grapefruit pith notes lingering for some time. Clean, crisp and delicious, especially if you like grapefruit. (B)

2015 Vaulted Wines Chardonnay (Oregon)… $26.

Butterscotch and pears on the nose with a nice hit of baking spices. Baking spices and butterscotch on the palate complimented by notes of apples and pears with a nice intensity and good balance beginning to end. There is a touch of sweetness on the mid-palate into the finish, but it stays in check. (B/B+)

2015 Vaulted Wines Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley, OR)… $35.

Tart cranberries and cherries on the nose, joined by notes of black tea, earth and red flowers. This baby starts off on the tart side with notes of under-ripe cherries and cranberries. On the mid-palate it goes to the dark side with notes of dark cherries, earth, black tea and cola notes that linger on the finish. A tale of two pinots with the dark side winning out. Light bodied with good intensity on the finish. (B+/A-)

2013 Vaulted Wines “Elevage” Red (Oregon)… $29.

Aromas of sweet raspberries and dark cherries backed by tobacco and bark notes. Fresh on the palate with ripe currant notes dominating, joined by notes of bark, tobacco and hits of forest floor. Nice core of acidity that backs the fruit front to finish with tobacco notes lingering. This baby is drinking good now and has aging potential. A blend of Tempranillo, Grenache and Trincadiero (B/B+)

2014 Vaulted Wines Syrah (Rogue Valley, OR)… $37.

Classic Syrah aromas of blueberries and boysenberries with a touch of bacon fat and violets. Nice core of acidity melds nicely on the palate with notes of tar, currants, bacon fat and blueberries with a little smoked meat thrown in. Good balance with a tar, smoked meat and tobacco finish that lingers. Excellent structure tells me this will improve over the next 8-10 years. (B+/A-)

2014 Argiano NC Rosso Toscano (Tuscany, Italy)… $17.

Leather, earth and cherries on the nose with a slight hit of mushrooms. Balanced acidity underscores notes of leather, cherries, chocolate and forest floor. Nice intensity up front with a good flow across the palate. Earth notes lie underneath front to finish. Tannins are approachable but have an edginess to them. An old world wine that I believe new world fans will appreciate. (B+)

2015 Bieler Pere & Fils “Sabine” Rose` Coteaux d’ Aix-En-Povence (France)… $12.

Strawberries and cherries on the nose with hits of watermelon. Loads of cherries on the palate, layered on a bed of watermelon and apples with a little bubblegum action. Finishes with a nice mineral edge and a kiss of citrus. (C+/B-)

2015 Poggio La Noce Pinko Pallino Rose` (Tuscany, Italy) $23.

Watermelon and strawberries on the nose with a touch of peach and wet stone. Excellent minerality and mouth-watering acidity back notes of peach, watermelon and strawberries. There is a nice citrus zing underneath front to a mineral driven finish. I’m thinking shellfish here my friends. (B+/A-)

2015 Poggio La Noce “Baja” Falanghina (Falanghina, Italy)… $22.

A little saline action on the nose along with notes of melon, cut grass, wet stone and a touch of nuttiness. Bright on the palate with an interesting oily element that sneaks in. Citrus and mineral notes linger together with an underbelly of stainless steel and apples. Finishes earthy, bright and pithy with notes of grass, wet stone, mushroom and a touch of smoke. A bad-ass, interesting white. (B+/A-)-)

2013 Poggio La Noce “Gigino” Sangiovese (Tuscany, Italy)… $30.

Aromas of meat marinade, tobacco and strawberries with a splash of herbs and cherries. Good intensity on the palate but light on its feet. Tobacco and red cherry notes come through with a little blackberry and earth thrown in. The tannins are serious yet approachable. Bright underneath finishing with notes of leather, minerals and blackberry lingering. Nice balance of acidity, fruit and savory, of course leaning towards the savory side. A pasta with red sauce buddy. (B+/A-)

2012 Poggio La Noce “Gigio” Sangiovese-Colorino Del Valdarno (Tuscany, Italy)… $50.

Candied licorice and dark cherries on the nose with hits of BBQ spices, violets and tobacco. Solid acidity and complex structure support bright berry notes on the palate, joined by notes of red flowers, tobacco and citrus with a pinch of leather. Citrus notes linger on the finish. This is quite tight right now, but has great potential. Give it 5-10 years and watch out. (B+/A-)

2015 Sean Minor 4 Bears Sauvignon Blanc (California)… $12.

Melon, apple and citrus on the nose with hits of grapefruit. Grapefruit and melon notes combine on the palate to give it a fuller mouth-feel with good acidity keeping everything from going flabby. A touch sugary underneath but enough citrus to balance it out. Citrus notes dominate on the finish. Nice, simple porch pounder. (B-)

2015 Sean Minor 4 Bears Chardonnay (Central Coast, CA)… $12.

Oak comes through on the nose joined by notes of pears and banana. Buttery pear notes on the palate with an underscore of butterscotch and apples. Oak notes hit a little harder on the back of the mid-palate into the finish where they linger with a little butter action. There is a little make-up on this Chardonnay, but it scores in the delicious category. (C+/B-)

Cheers!
Stan The Wine Man

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FRIDAY’S THIRTEEN…

A boatload of wine

A boatload of wine

In a weeks time, I taste a boatload of wine (seriously). I lot of my friends think I’m lucky. Well, they’re right, and I wouldn’t give this job up for the world. The only thing that makes my job hard, is my feeling of responsibility to taste the samples given to me as quickly as possible and to put my reviews either in my Moleskine, on my Youtube channel (Stan The Wine Man TV), or right here on Stanthewineman.com. Here for your reading pleasure, are thirteen wines that I have reviewed in my Moleskine (good or bad), this past week.

Non-Vintage Aromar Tempranillo Grenache 3 liter Box (Castilla La Mancha, Spain)… $15.

Bark, currants and plums on the nose. Smooth tannins support notes of currants and plums with a hit of Bing Cherries coming through. There is just a touch of green tobacco on the finish. This is a simple, easy to drink red for a prayer, and may be my first ever box wine review. Not bad for $3.75 a bottle. (C+)

2015 Conti Di Buscareto Verdicchio Dei Castelli Di Jesi (Marche, Italy)… $13.

Aromas of wet stone, orange, lemon and white flowers with a hint of honey. Minerals all day on the palate with an oily component that comes through front to finish. A touch of stainless steel hits on the mid-palate leading into a wet stone lemon driven finish. Nice, seamless flow across the palate with good complexity. (B+/A-)

2015 Brick House Vineyards Gamay Noir (Ribbon Ridge, OR)… $32.

Bright cherries on the nose with hints of roasted marshmallows, candied cranberries and raspberries. Wants to go all acidic on the palate but holds back. Raspberries and cranberries all day that are on the tart side but in control. There is a hint of minerality and a cranberry driven finish. If you like a little acidic and tart in your wine (a little Burgundy thing going on here), then you will love this baby. (B)

2014 Conti Di Buscareto Lacrima Di Morro D’Alba (Marche, Italy)… $17.

Aromas of toasty currants, bark, red flowers and carnations with a hint of roasted meats. Dirty on the palate (yes, I said dirt), with a bed of red flowers, cranberries and citrus. It starts dirty, and finishes dirty with enough side dishes to keep it interesting. Pinch of carnation sneaks in on the finish. (C+/B-)

2013 J.Scott Cellars Syrah (Rogue Valley, OR)… $22.

Smokey currants on the nose with hits of blueberries, bacon fat and violets with a very slight bubblegum element coming through. Ripe, plush tannins support notes of meaty blueberries and currants. There is a nice core of acidity that gives this a little Cote-Rotie action on the palate. Smoke lies underneath front to back. Finishes with a meaty edge and blueberries lingering. (B+/A-)

Non-Vintage Laluca Prosecco Rose` (Valdobbiadene, Italy)… $12.

Slight cherry notes on the nose. Cherries and strawberries on a clean crisp mouth-feel. Fresh fruit notes on fine bubbles. Nothing complex, just a very nice quaffer. (B-)

2015 Chateau LaCroix Du Duc Bordeaux Rouge (Bordeaux, France)… $10.

Aromas of smokey currants with underlying black raspberry, bark and tobacco. Solid, silky tannins support notes of blueberries and currants. Notes of leather and tobacco sneak in with a nice spine of fresh acidity. Tobacco notes linger. Nice complexity and structure for a wine at this price. (B)

2013 Misfit Wine Co. Cycle Buff Beauty Shiraz-Malbec (South Australia)… $17.

Black tea and currants on the nose with a backdrop of rhubarb and licorice. A solid core of acidity backs notes of cherries and red currants. Good structure with the tannins showing a little attitude. Tobacco notes sneak in and linger on the finish. This is somewhat restrained for a red from this part of Australia. A serious wine with a not-so-serious label. (B-/B)

2015 M-100 Red (Columbia Valley, WA)… $15.

Aromas of currants and chocolate with a hit of tobacco. Solid currant notes on the palate with underlying dark cherries. The fruit notes are big but kept in check by the sturdy, polished tannins. Notes of tobacco and bittersweet chocolate sneak in on the back-end. A snappy little red at a great price. (B+)

2013 Latta “Latta Latta” GSM (Columbia Valley, WA)… $35.

Blueberry notes “Pop” on the nose with underlying dark cherries, black licorice and tobacco. A little heat comes through. Polished tannins support deep cherry and plum notes that surround a core of black licorice with an edge of white pepper. Just a pinch of blueberry sneaks in on the back-end. There is a liqueur component that hits on the mid-palate into the finish. This baby is light and powerful at the same time. The Pac-Man of wine. 58% Grenache, 23% Syrah, 19% Mourvedre (B-/B)

2013 Ded Reckoning “Flintlock” Merlot (Yakima Valley, WA)… $22.

Aromas of red plums and cherries with hits of chalk, leather and licorice. Loads of licorice in the mouth blended nicely with notes of currants and a kiss of white pepper. Tobacco notes show up on the mid-palate into the finish joined by notes of currants that linger. Easy tannins make this light on its feet, but packs a powerful punch to the palate. (B/B+)

2014 FontanaFredda “Briccotondo” Barbera (Piemonte, Italy)… ?

Earth, tobacco and cherries on the nose with a touch of rust and blackberries. Medium weight on the palate with chalky tannins that are on the soft side. Notes of cherries, rust and earth with a nice little red flower component coming through on the mid-palate into the finish. Solid structure and good balance with a rusty finish that lingers. True Barbera Baby! (B)

2012 Ravenswood Single Vineyard “Teldeschi” Zinfandel (Dry Creek, CA)… $54.

Aromas of ripe black currants and black licorice with dark cherries, chocolate and black raspberries joining the aroma party. Intense and smooth on the palate with notes of ripe dark cherries, black currants and an underscore of chocolate and tobacco. Fresh acidity lies under the fruit notes giving them a little lift in the mouth. Tobacco and currant notes hang around for quite a while. Awesome balance and complexity. (A/A+)

Cheers!
Stan The Wine Man

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BITS & BOBS…

I love March Madness! Every year I tell myself I am not going to fill out a bracket, and yet here I find myself in the midst of despair once again as Duke pooped all over my attempt to win some money. Of course, it’s not the Blue Devils fault, I know it’s mine. First of all, although I love most sports, I have never been one of those guys who keeps track of players and stats. For instance, I love the Seahawks, but would be hard pressed to name all the players on either side of the ball, it’s just not the way I’m wired. My son is a walking encyclopedia when it comes to sports and sports figures. I have learned not to argue with him about sports related things because he is almost always correct. Maybe it’s because I think a bracket is fun and makes watching a little more exciting. I do like excitement, and watching this years NCAA basketball playoffs has been an emotional roller coaster. Kansas is still left for me to prove that I at least know a little about the sport. Just don’t ask me the names of the players on the team please.

Why do I write about wine? I ask myself that question daily. Like March Madness, I get excited about the subject, and unlike sports, I know a few things about the wine world. I also like to teach, that is fulfilling for me and brings me a lot of satisfaction. I have a wine group that I have been associated with for quite a few years. Some of the individuals who came into the fold knew very little about wine in the beginning. Today they are what newbies might consider wine experts! I am sure they would disagree, but the point is that I have had the satisfaction of helping each individual in my group to become a more experienced and informed wine drinker. They have learned how to understand their own palate and this has helped them in choosing wines that they will enjoy. It has also helped them to expand their palate horizons, try new things, and to become more adventurous in their wine drinking pleasure. Now that my friends is a very cool thing to be involved in.

ABC. What do those three letters stand for in relation to wine? ANYTHING BUT CHARDONNAY. Believe it or not, I still run across this term from time to time. Actually if you are in this group, please rethink. I believe it is mostly a guy thing, but I could be wrong. The #1 selling wine in the United States is, believe it or not, Chardonnay. It beats out Cab and Pinot Noir. Chard has come a long way since the seventies and eighties. It no longer packs enough lumber to build a dog house. There are still some out there, but they are few and far between. Today, you will find more and more wineries trying to emulate what comes out of Burgundy. This is a good thing, because although we can’t possibly do what Burgundy does with Chardonnay, we can get close. What you get, is a lot of Chard with good balance, more acidity and at times minerality. I love the baking spice component I find in a lot of Chardonnay from California and Washington. Chardonnay has many faces, so don’t judge it by the old school, oak driven examples of the twentieth century. If you are not at least trying Chardonnay, you are missing out on a very cool side of the wine world.

Cheers!
Stan The Wine Man

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