What I Drank Last Night – Elena Walch Dazzling Whites from Alto Adige.

My favorite: the lightly floral, bone dry Gewurz Kastelaz, brilliant with the smoked trout and horseradish crema at The Marrow, NYC.

Your Thoughts

What I Drank Last Night – A Classy CA Chard

Cuvaison’s Carneros Chardonnay 2012, with its lovely glowing fruit nicely balanced by a healthy dose of citrus acidity is a deliciously harmonious, quaffable wine.

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What I Drank Last Night – A Perfectly Mature Oregon Pinot

The Domaine Drouhin Pinot Noir, Laurène 2002 works out as the  perfect compromise between Burgundian austerity – read thin, watery and acidic in poor vintages – and Californian excess.

Delicate and ethereal while definitely not short on substance, it glows with succulent, perfectly ripe red berry flavors dancing on solid foundation redolent of mushrooms and wet leaves.

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Food, Wine & Heaven

Sometimes a food and wine pairing is so wondrous it soars above mere perfection to the heights of the sublime. Such was my experience last night at a small dinner to showcase the fascinating wines of Donnachiara from Campania.

The food half of this symmetry was two thin slivers of rich foie gras on a small slice of grilled Italian bread. Its viniferous counterpart was the quite extraordinary Donnachiara Ostinato Campania Greco 2001.

On first sight one might think this a dessert wine, what with its golden hue in a clear glass, 500 cl bottle, and it certainly has the heft and intensity of a great dessert wine. But it was bone dry, or almost so – just 8 grams per liter of residual sugar.

It was this mineral-infused intensity and bright acidity moderated by a touch of honey that made it so perfect with the foie gras.

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What I Drank Last Night – Craggy Range Pinot Noir, Calvert Vineyard 2006

What I Drank Last Night – Craggy Range Pinot Noir, Calvert Vineyard 2006 has the full-bodied ripeness of a California Pinot, but fine balance and even a suggestion of elegance, No one would mistake this for a Burgundy, but a high-class Oregon Pinot? That would have been my guess. And it was delish with duck breast à l’orange.

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Irish Whiskey Resurgent!

Sales rise 50% in one year! Read my take on the hottest trend in spirits since Tequila, in the March edition of USAirways Magazine.

Cheers!

Nick

 

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What I Drank Last Night — Glenrothes Limited Release 1975

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Has Glenrothes’ smooth, succulent, Speyside creaminess but this limited edition departs form that norm with the addition of a dry spiciness hinting of cloves and cinnamon. Oh, what exotic barrels nurtured this unusual whiskey?

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What I Drank Last Night – Cote-de-Brouilly, Dom a la Voute des Crozes, Nicole Chanderon 2009.

Packed with succulent ripe, red-berry fruit – how can you go wrong with the 2009 vintage even in Beaujolais? Especially in Beaujolais? — but with just enough bright acidic kick on the finish to keep it from falling over the edge and becoming a New World cola-wine. Just delightful, especially with roast chicken.

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Not Feeling Too Fresh This Morning.

Well, after 18 wines, 18 seriously good wines, and four courses of Toqueville’s delectable food, at Frederick Wildman’s annual Burgundy dinner, the fuzziness and general feeling of not being quite plugged in, is not entirely surprising.

You see, this was no dry, tasting seminar – these are good Burgundians, people who know a thing or two about eating, drinking and having a good time. So, yes, a good time was had as we drank our way from Christian Moreau’s radiant Le Clos Chablis 2011 through Cru Beaujolais and Montrachets in variation, to la crème of the Côte de Nuits, a whole range of 1er and Grand Crus from Gevrey-Chambertin, Vougeot and Vosne-Romanée.

Roasted guinea hen with shaved Burgundy truffles.

My notes seem surprisingly legible so look for a full report on NickOnWine within the next day or two.

And many thanks to those congenial Burgundians and their enticing wines.

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Six Seductive Rosé Champagnes to Woo Your Valentine!

No California sparklers, no Italian fizz, just six winning real Champagnes that transcend the hype and the hoopla, and actually deliver in the bottle. Your Valentine will love them!

Bollinger La Grande Anneé Rose 2004 || $200

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68% Pinot Noir, 32% Chardonnay

Big, rich, bone-dry with hints of toasted almonds and freshly baked bread this is the epitome of a power Champagne.

Champagne Pascal Doquet Rosé Premier Cru Brut NV  || $65

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85% Chardonnay & 15% Pinot Noir

Glows a golden copper color, bone dry, robust and meaty, this is definitely a food Champagne. Particularly good with pork ribs.

 

Henriot Rosé Brut NV || $60

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Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier

Pale, elegant and evocative of fraises du bois, this is sophistication in bubbles.

 

Pol Roger Brut Rosé 2004 || $110

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65% Pinot Noir, 35% Chardonnay

Medium bodied, elegantly poised and redolent of bright, fresh red berry fruit.

 

Ruinart Brut Rosé NV || $75

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55% Pinot Noir & 45% Chardonnay

A beguiling combination of rose-petal intensity and fresh, effervescent vitality.

 

Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Rosé 2005 || $240

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70% Pinot Noir 30% Chardonnay

One hundred percent Grand Cru grapes, the high proportion of Pinot Noir and 7-8 years sur lees aging account for the wine’s powerful, commanding presence. Enjoy it with rack of lamb. 

 

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