Archive for February, 2012

Dӧnnhoff Oberhäuser Leistenberg Riesling Kabinett 2009

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Vintage: 2009

Variety: Riesling

Country: Germany

Region: Nahe

Overview: So if you haven’t guessed already this is a German wine, a Riesling to be exact. Kabinett is a style of making Riesling that basically means off-dry and is traditionally as dry as a German Riesling will get though there has been a push for producers to break with tradition and start making a drier style of Riesling as the popularity for sweeter wines has dropped substantially over the past few years. German Rieslings and the Kabinett style in particular ooze balance without the need to go as dry as our Clare Valley of Eden Valley Rieslings; the reason being is the interplay of sugar and acid. Acid is ever present in wine but like sugar it needs to be balanced, for instance you would not sit down and eat an entire lemon, unless you’re into self inflicted flagellation, why? Because it’s far too acidic but you would sit down and eat an orange because here we have a fruit that has sugar to balance the acid. The exact same applies for wine. A lot of people are put off from Germanic Riesling because of the influx of the cheap, sweet wines twenty years ago but believe me Kabinett style Riesling is one of the best styles of Riesling you can drink, especially with food that is a touch spicy.

Tasting Note: A delicate, lemon colour. On the nose there is lanolin and orange blossom. The palate is softly constructed by flavours of citrus, orange sherbet, sandalwood and green apple peel and is supported by a fine, linear acid.

Final say: Don’t let sweet scare you off, some of the best wines in the world are sweet or off dry, just know that there are few producers who seem set on destroying the reputation of good sweet wine. As I said, a chicken stir fry with a bit of chilli is a perfect match for this wine. You can pick this up for around $45 a bottle so treat yourself.

Score: 17.5 Freakin’ Awesome (88 out of 100).

All of the information above has come from my own brain and books; Wikipedia was not, at any stage consulted.

For any questions or feedback feel free to email me on spittingoptional@gmail.com

Also, check you the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Spitting-Optional/314535381931908?sk=wall

Jack Davis

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Prunotto Dolcetto DOC 2009

Posted: February 21, 2012 in Italy
Tags: , , , ,

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Prunotto Dolcetto D’Alba DOC

Vintage: 2009

Country: Italy

Region: Alba, Piemonte

 

Overview:

            In Australia our main interaction with the variety Dolcetto would be the Brown Brother’s wine Dolcetto & Syrah which, if you were looking for a nice thing to say about the wine you could say it was Australia’s take on Valpolicella, a light, sweet style of wine that you can chill made in Italy. That’s if you wanted something nice to say, the truth is it is not a serious wine and thus Dolcetto has a stigma attached that it is light and sweet. I can tell you that it a good Dolcetto is not a light, insipid wine. Dolcetto typically is a medium bodied wine with a soft edge but displays great spice and liquorice characters. It is not widely grown in Australia as it is susceptible to fungus diseases and the Australian humidity promotes fungus like Channel Ten promotes Glee.

The Prunotto Dolcetto displays these typical characteristics at an accessible price.

Tasting note:

            A beautiful ruby colour, (as mentioned before the colour of a wine tells us a lot about it, if the colour was dull or brown we could assume the wine has been oxidised) on the nose there are characters of pepper and blueberry. The palate is medium bodied, with intermingling flavours of cinnamon, pepper, aniseed and cherry with a great acid that keeps the palate cleansed.

 

Final Say:

            This is one of the better Dolcetto I have tasted, the key when buying a Dolcetto is that it comes from the Piemonte region in Italy, one of my favourite regions. The price ranges from $20-$24 so if you’re looking for something different this is definitely one to pick up. Enjoy with lighter red meat meals or game.

Score: 16.5 Well worth a try (83 out of 100).

All of the information above has come from my own brain and books; Wikipedia was not, at any stage consulted.

For any questions or feedback feel free to email me on spittingoptional@gmail.com

Also, check you the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Spitting-Optional/314535381931908?sk=wall

Jack Davis

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First Drop Mere-et-fils Chardonnay 2010

By Spitting: Optional

Variety: Chardonnay

Region: Adelaide Hills, Australia  

          Overview: At the same time as paying a homage to the Chardonnay regions of France (Chablis and Burgundy) it also sticks it’s middle finger up at then and blows raspberries at them. Its label takes inspiration from the understated France labelling system but adds all those confusing terms that the French love to use. For instance in place of the term appellation controllée (which means the wine comes from a controlled region that is known for producing a certain variety eg, a Chardonnay from Chablis would be able to use the term appellation controllée) the clever fellows at First Drop have used the term appellation non controllé (which means the wine comes from a non controlled area for the variety). Unlike France, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Germany, all major countries that have been making wine for far longer than Australia, Australia has no policing of what is produced where, this means that a region that is not known for producing Chardonnay eg. McLaren Vale, can still produce a Chardonnay and sell it as a ‘Premium’ wine. Whereas in France if a region like Rhone Valley produced a Chardonnay they would only be able to release it under the quality status of vin de pays, a table wine of a region that does not normally grow this variety. The back label of this wine is spliced with French and English terms that only people with intimate knowledge of the industry would find humorous.

            Tasting Notes: The colour is what initially impressed me with its vibrant, pale lemon. Yes I am aware that it sounds strange to be getting so excited over a wine’s colour but the colour of the wine can tell you a lot about the wine itself. On the nose the vanillin oak and brioche characters dominate, these characters follow onto the palate and are joined with flavours of peach, minerality, a lovely toastiness, citrus and a balanced acid.

Final Say: This wine is an elegant style of Chardonnay, not over oaked and the fruit balance is perfect. I’ve been told by the supplier that only a small amount of this wine was made and after looking around I only found it at one website for $25 a bottle, I got mine for $18.99 a bottle but most sellers have sold out of it by now so if you have it in your cellar as I do then you are one lucky sucker.

Score: 17.5 Freakin’ awesome (88 out of 100).

For any questions or feedback feel free to email me on spittingoptional@gmail.com

Also, check you the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Spitting-Optional/314535381931908?sk=wall

Jack Davis

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Spitting Optional Newbie Guide

Posted: February 12, 2012 in Misc

Spitting: Optional Newbie Guide

            As requested I have included a guide to reading my wine blog, basically the Overview is my thoughts on the region, the variety and any quirky facts or opinions I have about the wine. The Tasting Note is the more traditional side of tasting where I have put to paper what characters I could taste while assessing the wine. The Final Say is my overall thoughts on the wine and why I decided to include it in the blog. The Score is based on the wine guiding style of tasting which means it is out of 20; I will never publish scores under 15.5. Wines are scored on colour, nose and palate.

I hope this helps in understanding the blog.

For any questions or feedback feel free to email me on spittingoptional@gmail.com

Also, check you the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Spitting-Optional/314535381931908?sk=wall

Jack Davis

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Spitting: Optional

Wine Blog

Overview

Hailing all the way from Jumilla, Spain, a region known for Monastrell (more commonly known as Mourvedre or Mataro). This wine however is a blend of Monastrell (40%), Tempranillo (40%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (20%) and loads of personality. Though this wine has stolen my heart it will never be widely acclaimed by critics and will probably be frowned upon by Australian Wine Show Judges as they contort their faces into to that ‘Mmm no thanks’ face. Let me tell you why. There is a ‘green’ character on the nose and palate, most likely from the Cabernet component of the blend, which sticks out like a gremlin amongst mogwais but the reason why I find this wine interesting and supremely drinkable is that this ‘gremlin’ character integrates itself with the strawberry and tar characters that are the dominate flavours in this wine and make it so flavoursome that the second glass comes faster then expected.

Tasting Note

Strawberry and tar on the nose with an underlying leafy character. The strawberry character is reminiscent of a good Grenache but supported by a tobacco, tar, soft tannins and a linear acid that helps the wine linger in the mouth. A surprisingly good match with nachos, yes I know; strange food match but it was Friday… enough said.

Final Say

You can pick this wine up for anywhere between $17 and $25 so why wouldn’t you? It’s an interesting wine, one that had me enraptured the moment I drew that white cork from the almost black bottle. You’ll be hard pressed to find a wine of this price with as much character as this cheeky number.

Score

17.5 out of 20 (88 of of 100): Freakin’ awesome.

For any questions or feedback feel free to email me on spittingoptional@gmail.com

Also, check you the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Spitting-Optional/314535381931908?sk=wall

Jack Davis

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