Friday, September 11, 2009

King of the Hill

The Vina Cobos, Bramare, Lujan de Cuyo, Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 sets the record for me - it states 14.9% alcohol on the front label but there's an added on sticker on the back that states "16.7% alcohol by volume". This has been plastered on by the LCBO, which tests each of the wines it sells for content (to make sure no-one is posioning the good(?) citizens of Ontario with turpentine or Polonium or something else). Wow. That's high for a wine. King of the Hill. So high the winery doesn't want to advertise it, so they go with "14.9"...kinda like the 99 cent theory.
Yea, but what does it taste like? Pretty darn good it turns out. This is my kind of stuff. Full bodied palate wacker. Rich almost port-like (no kidding!!) in intensity but dry. Cedar, tar, bitter chocolate, prunes, caribbean fruit cake. Long finish. WOW. $39 but you know what, try and find French wine this good for this price.

Right, and now for something completely different. Remo Farina's Montecorna, Valpolicella Ripasso, 2004. Sour cherry nose, medium bodied and very spicy, almost tart. Great acidity for cutting through fatty smoky ribs. Cranberry and Dr. Pepper flavour profile. Good wine. Can't remember, but I think it cost about $20. BTW, Ripasso is a technique where the Venetians take the lees from an Amarone fermentation and referment simpler Valpolicella with this crap, this strengthens the flavour and boosts the alcohol content of the final product. Why not? it's like recycling. for a real treat. You gotta love having a cellar (even if it is a garage). I bought this baby for $19.99 back in 1989 in Philadelphia. You can't find it retail anymore. The Burmester, Vintage Port, 1985 has turned maroon translucent. Slight toffee nose. Syrupy, warm mouth coating texture, very supple and hedonistic feeling. The tannins have smoothed right out (this stuff would have been fire water back in '89). Far from cloying, it is luciously sweet with figs and raisin flavours. Just sit back and slowly devour it....Wow. So, all you lurkers out there, go buy some vintage port from a recent vintage and sit on it for 20 years. You won't be disappointed.
Now here's a rarity - wine from Brazil. I thank Eric for finding this and bringing it to try. The Miolo, Quinta do Seival, Castas Portuguesas, 2005 is more than a novelty. Nice dark purple colour. Not much on the nose. Very old world taste - stewed plums with some earthy portobello mushroom undertones. Medium bodied, some meaty tannins. This is close to being good...a little overpriced at $21 can buy similar wine from the former Brazilian colonialist overlords (ie. Portugal) for cheaper.

Cheers from the last grasshoppers of the summer!!


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