Posts Tagged ‘Wine tasting’
If you watch the ABC sitcom Cougar Town, then you know exactly “who” I’m talking about…HILARIOUS!!
Do you love wine? Do you love it by the gallons? If you answered yes to either one of these questions, then you might want to consider packing up ‘Big Joe’ or ‘Big Carl’ along with a few of your favorite wine drinking buds and head to the Big Apple for the 4th Annual New York Wine Expo. It’s a 2-day wine event that’s open to the public on February 25th and the 26th at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.
Drinkers Tasters will be treated to more than 600 wines from over 150 winemakers from around the globe. Who knows, maybe you’ll have a chance to taste some cool Brazilian wines, possibly the mysterious Greek white known as Moschofilero, or some other less familiar gems like we did at this very event last year.
If you’d like to find out more about this great wine event, check out the website; and be sure to use promo code WINELIFE at the checkout line. It’s good for $10 off your admission price on Friday or Saturday, but it expires on 2/18.
My wife and I will be going again this year, so if you see us – be sure to say hello!
By the way, my wife has a word of advice for the ladies: keep your high heels or whatever other form of footwear that you deem as being “cute” at home because they don’t look particularly fabulous when they’re filled up with wet, sloppy, gray slush (if it snows again)…not to mention, you will be on your feet all day!
Warm, sunny, beautiful autumn weather along with great wine, food, and entertainment for the entire family are in store for folks that make their way this weekend to the charming beach town of Cape May, New Jersey.
The annual Cape May Wine Festival will be taking place on October 10th and 11th, from 12-5 p.m. at the Cape May-Lewes Ferry Terminal, overlooking the Cape May Canal and Delaware Bay.
More than 20 New Jersey wineries will be on hand to offer guests some of the finest locally produced Chardonnay, Chambourcin, Syrah, Marechal Foch, Viognier, Traminette, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. There will also be a large array of fruit wines such as raspberry, cherry, and blueberry to satisfy sweet wine lovers.
In addition to wine sampling, festival goers will be treated to live music, various types of vendors, and a “Kids Zone” for those who are bringing the whole family. Festival attendees can also take advantage of “Victorian Week” which will be running through the end of Sunday.
Anyone interested in learning more about this particular festival can call The Garden State Wine Growers Association at 609-588-0085 or visit their website.
With the weather in the Northeast being nearly perfect, this should be a truly relaxing and enjoyable event.
New Jersey’s largest wine festival, Jazz It Up, will be held this Saturday and Sunday Sept. 5th and 6th, from noon to 5 p.m. at Allaire State Park in Farmingdale, New Jersey.
This year’s festival will feature over 200 different New Jersey produced wines as well as great live jazz entertainment that will include Jazz in Pastel and the Gambone Project. Guests will also have the opportunity to explore the grounds of Allaire State Park which was once home in the early 19th Century to an industrial iron producing community.
Among the New Jersey wineries participating in this year’s event will be the 2009 winners of the New Jersey Wine Competition including Winery of the Year Award winner, Alba Vineyard, Tomasello Winery, which won the Governor’s Cup and the award for Best Dessert Wine, Heritage Vineyards, which took the Governor’s Cup for Grape Wine with its 2005 Chambourcin and Plagido’s Winery, which garnered the award for Best American Wine with its Antonio Rosso Fredonia, along with many other outstanding New Jersey wineries.
This weekend’s live entertainment will showcase, The Gambone Project featuring Vel Johnson on saxophone, performing on Saturday from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. This quartet offers a full range of jazz, including traditional and smooth jazz and rhythm and blues. In addition to Vel Johnson, the group features Gregg Gambone on piano, Jonathan Sims on drums and Kevin Sanders on vibes.
On Sunday, Sept. 6th from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. the jazz quartet Jazz in Pastel, led by Buzz Saylor, a premier jazz drummer who has worked with such legendary jazz musicians as Wynton Marsalis, Tony Levin, Steve Rodby and John Helliwell to name a few will be taking the stage and showcasing their classic jazz improvisation style that crosses over both jazz and rock.
This is a family-friendly event as there will be activities for the kids, including arts & crafts, face painting, and games. In addition to this, the onsite Howell Works Company Store Museum and Gift Shop and the Howell Works Bakery will also be open.
If you are interested in finding out more about the festival, you can either call The Garden State Wine Growers Association at 609-588-0085 or go the association website at www.newjerseywines.com. Tickets for the festival are $20 a person at the gate. Advance tickets can be purchased only at the association web site for $18 per person. A discount price of $16 per person is available for bus groups and group sales of 15 or more.
Additional information can be found on The Historic Village at Allaire website.
One of the best ways to judge your local wine merchant is by finding out if they hold free in-store wine tastings. An in-store wine tasting certainly helps a merchant attract customers, but it’s also a great way for customers to sample wines that they may have never noticed or tried otherwise. Wine tastings are also a great way to learn more about the particular wines that you’ll be tasting and the wineries that produce them, because the wines are usually being poured by a representative that is very familiar with the winery and the wines that they’re serving up. Another great thing about free in-store wine tastings is that you’ll often times run into some really nice people that love to drink wine just as much as you do. So it’s a great way to meet new friends!
Such was the case on a recent Saturday afternoon when I decided to take a trip to one of my favorite local wine shops. Free wine tastings have been a regular occurrence every Saturday afternoon at Kreston Wine & Spirits located in Wilmington, Delaware for as long as I can remember. Kreston Wine & Spirits has been a landmark for fine wine and spirits in Wilmington, Delaware since opening its doors in 1933. This exceptional Delaware wine shop is operated by a third generation of the Kreston Family. Robert Kreston and his staff are some of the most knowledgeable and nicest folks in the business.
So on this particularly Saturday afternoon, I took a “taste drive” of several different wines produced by the Frei Brothers Winery, which is located in the heart of Napa Valley, California and is owned by the E & J Gallo Winery. Jeff Loebs from Tastings.com was on hand to serve as the “Wine-MC” for the afternoon and to offer some further insight about the wines that were on the tasting table.
First up in the tasting was the 2006 Frei Brothers Russian River Reserve Chardonnay. This wine retails for $19.99. The winemaker’s notes indicate that this chardonnay consists of 85% Russian River Valley sourced chardonnay grapes. As far as tasting notes go, the folks at Frei Brothers say that their chardonnay exhibits,
“Flavors of orange zest and green apple, which are complemented by buttery and toasty notes”.
What I liked most about this chardonnay was that it wasn’t heavy-handed on the oak. As far as the other flavors – I didn’t pick up on the orange zest, but I did get a mouthful of green apple. All in all, this is a well-made California Chardonnay. However, at $19.99 a bottle, the price tag seemed a tad high to me.
Second in the tasting was the 2006 Frei Brothers Russian River Reserve Pinot Noir. This wine retails for $30.99. As to how it tastes, Frei Brothers say that their Pinot Noir has,
“A mid-palate of red cherry overlaid with hints of black fruit, typical of the region from which the grapes originate”.
I would agree with the tasting notes. This Pinot Noir did deliver a very good jolt of red fruit to my taste buds, but I thought that the finish could have been better. I found the finish to be on the short side and I was expecting this wine to really give my taste buds a workout at $31 a bottle. I was somewhat disappointed.
Next up was the 2006 Frei Brothers Dry Creek Valley Merlot. This wine retails for $19.99 a bottle. This merlot consists of 90% Merlot, 6% Petite Sirah, and 4% Zinfandel. The Frei Brothers tasting notes indicate that it is
“A medium-bodied wine that exhibits intense flavors of blackberry and cherry from the vineyard with hints of complementary barrel spices.”
In my opinion, this was the sleeper of the bunch. The splash of the other two red grapes really gives this wine some punch that is not often found in a lot of Merlots costing less than $20. This merlot was packed with black fruit and had just the right touch of spices and oak to make me take notice of it.
The last wine in the tasting was the Frei Brothers Dry River Valley Zinfandel. This wine retails for $19.99. However, for the day of the tasting it was being discounted to $16.99. The 2007 Frei Brothers Reserve Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel is comprised of 92% Zinfandel and 8% Petite Sirah. 85% of the grapes come from Dry Creek with the remaining 15% coming from Russian River. There were no tasting notes from Frei Brothers for this bottle.
I have to tell you, this red Zin was a steal at this price point. It was packed (And I mean packed!) with fruit, and the oak was kept under control. I personally loved this wine and would consider drinking it any day of the week – especially at this price level.
On a final note, I’d like to give a special shout-out to Ruth, Ed, Jeff and Jim for a great afternoon of wine tasting. Like I mentioned earlier, wine tastings are a great way to meet other wine lovers just like you. We were having such a good time talking and sampling the Frei Brothers wines that Jim (one of Kreston’s outstanding wine associates) offered us all a glass of a dynamite Napa Valley cab from the Stags Leap District, called Angels Landing (2007). Now that my friends was the perfect cap to a great afternoon of tasting!