Because life is short and wine is best shared with good friends over fine food, I have decided to share the wealth, the wine, and the fun as well as the responsibilities of taking notes and helping me write Wine Predator posts with three good friends.
Annie, Dave, and Kathy have all joined me on numerous treks to Los Angeles for industry wine tasting as well as twitter tastings I’ve hosted here at the house on various occasions. These friends not only have a great appreciation of wine, but they are funny, witty, and have a flair for coming up with great descriptors for wines.
We celebrated our new venture last night by tasting five very different wines: NZ pinot noir, a French bordeaux, and three tawny ports–a 40, a 20, and a NV. As we tasted, we merely took notes; in the future we will also tweet as Art Predator and possibly do some youtubes for the Art Predator channel. We thought doing the videos in lingerie might get people more interested, but maybe someone is already doing that?
–2009 Crossings Pinot Noir from Awatere Valley, Marlborough, New Zealand: a violet tinted and scented, light bodied, earthy wine, flavors of peach skin and black pepper, not a lot of the typical strawberry, more astringent fruit like black plum, white stone fruit like nectarine, or even citrus, all evident on the somewhat sharp finish. If you like a very minerally, more savoury almost masculine expression of Pinot Noir, this is it.We tried it with ham and various cheeses as well as dried fruit; we thought it would be best paired with salmon, chicken or cornish game hens. I received this wine as a sample for review; I think it retails under $15.
–2009 Chateau de Bel Bordeaux Superior Rouge 95% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc: The color of this wine reminded us of Dorothy’s “ruby slippers”–just beautiful and we could imagine sipping it by a fire, relaxing. At first the wine was very closed–it didn’t do anything with the ham or the cheeses, but within 15 minutes it had opened up nicely and then we were all very enthusiastic about this wine, especially for $15 retail. We liked the earthy, spicy, cigar box quality; as it opened, there was more menthol and dark stone fruits. It was ok with the ham but I’d rather see it with a red meat or a stew; it went well with the dried fruit. It was a bit astringent with a barky, seedy finish. I’m curious to see how it tastes tonight.
I received this wine as a sample from Planet Bordeaux for a December Twitter tasting; unfortunately it went to the wrong address so I opened up samples of Chardonnay, Merlot, and Zinfandel from Napa Cellars and we tweeted about them instead! (We LOVED the Napa Cellars zinfandel! More on that tasting to come, as well as notes on the Napa Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon).
A post about the Ports titled “Vertical Heaven” will follow on Friday, Jan. 27, 2012 which is Port Day!
Please welcome to Wine Predator Kathy aka Ima Zinner, Dave aka Bacchus Schmacchus, my husband Marshall Moneybags, and Annie Any-Day.
Ima Zinner is a long time Zinfandel fan. Her favorite game is “Spin the Bottle” especially if it points towards a zinfandel.
Married to Wine Predator, Marshall Moneybags finds himself finding, funding, and drinking wine beyond his means. He likes his with lettuce and tomato.
Bacchus Schmacchus likes his wine like his women: full bodied, rosy, and with a lot of character. He favors pinot noir and petite sirah.
Like her moniker, Annie Any-Day says any day is a good day for fine wine and good times. A redhead, she also likes reds best.
Thanks to Annie, Kathy, Dave and Marshall for your help keeping Wine Predator going with more regular posts in 2012!
And if you can’t join us in person, you can join us by subscribing! I’ve having a birthday subscription drive until the end of the month! Please subscribe in the box in the upper right hand corner! It’s easy to get Wine Predator in your inbox and join in the Wine Predator fun! I’ve got big plans for 2012 and I hope you will be along for the adventure!