WineontheWay

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Orlando, FL
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October 2009
 
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unique, 90 poinsts and over, only the best
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Review a new wine!
  2007 - Cuvaison Chardonnay Estate
 Nov 03, 2010

1 star 1 star 1 star 1 star 1 star

 On first look, the Cuvaison seemed to have certain lightness to it for a Chard. Often a Chardonnay will have a deeper, more golden color to it and maybe it was the sunlight in the yard, but it had a nice bright sunny color. For me, the nose spoke of honey. Other tasting notes call for more of a crème brûlée, custard, vanilla, caramel, crème fraiche or buttered apple aromas, so there is a definite creamy, rich sweetness there.  Tasting itself, the forward feel is that buttery sweeter goodness, but then the Cuvaison is surprisingly bright and crisp. It was very refreshing and not at all too heavy at all.  I found that the creaminess gave way to a pleasant citrus, mostly lemon, maybe a bit of grapefruit? It most certainly had a forward citrus fruit, though other tasting notes for this Chardonnay call for crisp apple, melon, caramel, Meyer lemon custard, pineapple. Bottom line: it's got a nice light fruit feel to it with that buttery creamy balance. After the fruit, the finish held on, but not too to long. Some oak as expected, but not at all too rough. It was much smoother than expected and very balanced.  It was all too pleasant, sitting in the crisp fall sun, drinking this bright and crisp wine with friends and talking about the sensations that were happening as we sipped.  If I had planned better, a tray of fruit, cheese and crackers would have made it complete, though a nice clam bake would have done just as well too! All and all, one of the best Chardonnays I have had in a while and I am looking forward to drinking it again. 


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  2007 - Ste Michelle, Chateau Eroica Riesling
 Nov 03, 2010

1 star 1 star 1 star 1 star 1 star

 Blind and in Bed; Eroica Wine Lives Up to its Name I like to drink my wines blind. In other words, I don' t often read into the tasting notes or even the labels before going in and judging a wine based on what it tells me. Chateau Ste. Michelle's Eroica Riesling was to be no exception. After a bit in the fridge, I reached up to retrieve a wine glass from the cupboard and dug in the silverware drawer for the corkscrew. It amazed me that after years in the food service industry, I actually had to spend time looking for a wine key, but it was true and the task took longer than I would have liked. Finally, I managed to expel the cork. A Healthy Splash of the Chateau Ste. Michelle's in my Wine Glass. This is where I went black out blind. I knew I had brought home a white, but completely forgot that it was a Riesling and so, as I held the glass up to the light in my kitchen, I found the light clear color was surprising while pleasing at the same time. As I realized that I was indeed clueless as to what I was about to drink, I checked out the bottle and reminded myself that this bottle of wine was the fruit of a winemaking collaboration between Chateau Ste. Michelle's Bob Bertheau and famed Mosel winemaker Ernst Loosen. It was all coming back to me. Eroica, Erotica, Europa? It's from Washington State?? The nose was very fresh and clear to me; void of sweet coyness, no honeys, but a cool mineral earthiness. With a Riesling, I expected the sweeter, but the ideal of the dry Riesling came to my mind. Like the color, the first mouthful caught me by surprise. It also was light and fresh, when I had thought to expect a thicker heavier feel. A bright hint of zest and spice exploded and was immediately followed by the cooling sweetness of Eroica. True to its nature, no one really could say it was a dry wine; it could only be a Dry Riesling and I was pleased that I opened it after dinner as the Sheppard's Pie I made tonight would not have been spicy enough. Still, though, the Chateau Ste. Michelle held its own with a real drinkable delicious flavor. Eroica does not have a Wine Advocate Rating of 91 just based on a great sexy name. Dinner was late tonight, so I carried my glass upstairs while putting the kids to bed. The glass lost some of the chill and the immediate reaction of spice on first sip faded with the fourth and fifth. More open now, yet still not a tease; Eroica continues to be honest and forthright with no apologies. It is said that a Riesling is so much more complicated than other wine varieties because it has both horizontal and vertical dimensions. Plus, it's a variety that can be made in many different styles, from bone dry with high alcohol to moderately sweet with light alcohol, to lusciously sweet with very low alcohol. Eroica is pretty close to perfection. A long dark narrow bottle. An attention grabbing name. A collaboration between two great winemakers; as I continued to taste this wine it all made sense. Is Eroica a Wine for a Happy Ending Dessert? While the say the wine was named for Beethoven's Third Symphony, it's still very close to a play on words I thought and laughed to myself. I imagined a non wine drinker enjoying the sweetness until it went to her head; would the wine live up to its name after a hot date? I Laid in Bed and Drank Eroica It was fitting. After dinner, a sophisticated wine that was tasty enough to keep drinking. I craved some chocolate cake; specifically a thick flourless chocolate torte with a dollop of thick crème fresh, but post Halloween, made due with Reese's peanut butter cup. Cutting through the uber sweetness of the candy, post bite the wine still held up. It was a risky endeavor since one would think the Riesling go flat after all that sugar, but it didn't happen at all. Press on the wine claims that when crafting, the fruit goes direct to press after harvest, and then the juice is cool fermented to capture freshness and minerality. Those flavors come through strong. I could feel the citrus from the Mandarin and lime aromas and then the subtle mineral and slate flavors of the soil. Still delightful, to the finish which was now fruitful, leaving me with finally visions of perfectly crisp Granny Smith apples. I gave a distinguished nod to Chateau Ste. Michelle for their dedication to the classic European wine varietals and fully enjoyed my Eroica even though my dear husband was now sound asleep and snoring next to me. The wine was to be my only happy ending that night. 


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