Wines from the August meeting of Fayetteville Wine Society - Printable Version

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- wondersofwine - 08-28-2007

For $15 a person we had good rolls and bread and a nice selection of cheeses, dried fruits and seedless grapes and five different varieties of wine to taste.

BTW, the founders of the Fayetteville Wine Society are working towards having our organization become a chapter of the American Wine Society. I applaud this idea.

The emphasis at this meeting was on educating newbies on how to taste wine, and we were given a couple handouts to reinforce the lesson including a list of smells and tastes associated with different grapes--for example, gooseberry, citrus, newly cut grass, cat's pee, etc. with Sauvignon Blanc.

Now to the wines.
2006 ELENA WALCH PINOT GRIGIO, Alto Adige, Italy. DOC Family of winemakers. The wine is not found everywhere but is a favorite Pinot Grigio of the sommelier who helps run the FWS.
13% alcohol
Clear pale to medium straw color.
Pungent pear nose laced with lemon. Crisp, refreshing taste. Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris has never been one of my favorite varities but this did go nicely with some of the cheeses--the bleu cheese and goat cheese, for example. Others at my table liked it better than the second wine while I favored the Sauvignon Blanc.

2006 COOPERS CREEK SAUVIGNON BLANC, Marlborough, New Zealand
I have enjoyed Coopers Creek wines in the past and purchased two bottles of this last night at the club price of $13.49 each.
Delicate cat pee scent along with fresh grass and grapefruit. Crisp and inviting. The SHARP cheddar cheese tasted more mild when nibbling with the Sauvignon Blanc. Also good with bleu cheese and creamy goat cheese.

The third white wine was 2005 MONTES ALPHA CHARDONNAY, Casablanca Valley, Chile. Pale gold color (darker than the previous two wines). It sees some oak aging. Tingly sensation on the tongue. I was getting apple; others were getting melon, pepper, and even caramel. Richer, more full-bodied texture than either the Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc. Not bad for a New World Chardonnay but not one I would go purchase.

Finally some reds.
14.1% alcohol (Drew and Dananne have reviewed previous vintages with variant reports.)
For me this was a definite winner although I can see where it wouldn't be everyone's cup of tea (or Pinot). From Santa Maria district of Santa Barbara.
Dark garnet to burgundy color.
Distinctive aroma that first sugggested to me smoky raspberries (funny image) and then bacon fat or smoked meat. The taste was more berry-like than meaty. Somewhat Old World style with New World fruit. A wineshop owner and others commented on it being somewhat Burgundian but I think only in that it has that bacon fat element. I was willing to buy three bottles to be picked up later at under $38 each. I see has the 2004 for $36 to $43 a bottle and the 2005 for about $36 to $40.
I found this to be a wonderful wine but again, it won't be to everyone's liking. I could see it with rabbit or duck (with cherries or cranberry sauce). The sommelier suggested with pasta with tomato sauce or duck. I believe I heard her say that she sold a lot of this wine when serving as sommelier at a fancy restaurant in Virginia.

Final wine of the tasting:
14.5% alcohol
Darker crimson color. From a single vineyard. Smoke on the nose and palate--some evidence of oak aging. My first impression was that it was not very tannic for such a young C.S. but when I held the wine in my mouth a little longer, the tannins were very much in evidence and caused quite a pucker. Good flavor and shows potential for future development. I thought it was very reasonably priced under $18 a bottle and while I didn't purchase any, others did. has it listed at about $19 to $25 a bottle and it doesn't appear to be currently available from the winery.

[This message has been edited by wondersofwine (edited 08-28-2007).]