Sunday, July 18, 2010

Willow Springs Winery 2003 Vidal

Found July 2010

Lazy (and hot) Sunday afternoon ... the call for lunch is a tuna sandwich ... now I have to find a white wine (too heavy for red with all this heat, besides dinner is a steak so red is already forecasted for later).  I find this Vidal in one of my wine fridges, for all I remember it may have been there since 2003.  Nose is slightly honeyed with some peach and apple puree.  Teeth-chillingly cold, so for now it is okay, it tastes like booze in white wine; we'll have to give it some time to warm up and develop some flavours.

20 minutes have passed and now we are starting to see what was under that cold exterior ... and in truth this is not bad at all.  There is some slightly oxidized apple here, with a hint of pear, a drop of lemon and enough acidity left to hold it all together.  It's a wine I keep sipping on wondering when the other shoe is going to drop and I won't want to drink it anymore, but I keep on sipping away.  There's even a nice mid-length finish of apple peel.  I can't complain too much about this wine, it is doing its job on a hot July afternoon, plus it has me taking more and more sips trying to figure it out - what more can I want.  I am prepare to make the call on this Willow Springs 2003 Vidal.  Lost & Found Rating:  Treasure

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Crown Bench Estates 2002 Beamsville Bench Summertime Merlot

Found July 2010

One bad wine deserves another.  This is my second wine tonight, as I am trying a few wines from the '02 vintage, that strike me as 'need to try now'.  I guess I have to admit I have not picked the best wines to give this a go with, but I have to open each and every bottle in its turn (and as i am packing up there are certain wines that strike me as either drink now or ditch wines).  Tonight this bottle had its turn and in truth I wish I had left it lost.  This wine had sweet fruit at some point in its life, though I am not sure whether it was designed as an off-dry red or just a juicy sweet thing - the name suggests an off-dry red to chill and enjoy in the summertime, like maybe the summer of 2003. This wine is now 8 years from vintage date and the smell is faintly sweet, yet with oxidative notes.  The cork was like a sponge, the corkscrew sunk deep and quick and actually pushed the cork deeper into the bottle.  Once in, the cork did not take any effort to come out, it slipped out without the use of the lever on the corkscrew, just a simple pull up and out.  This wine tasted like a Manechevitz sacramental wine that had gone bad - odd and unappealing.  Lost & Found Rating:  Trash


Cilento 2002 Pinot Noir Gamay

Found July 2010

I admit that right from the get go I had little hope that this wine survived all these years gone by - the grape varieties alone told me I might be dealing with an over the hill wine here.  Unwrap the capsule and there's a plastic cork staring back at me, strike two.  And if those two didn't give me pause, the colour should have, it made me wince as I saw it hit the glass as I saw dirty brown cascade my crystal vessel of choice.  But here is where I have to do my job, I dedicated myself to bring you the good, the bad and the ugly in this column, and by gone it I'm gonna do it, after all I had bought this wine at some point in my life, I must have liked it at some point.  I even had the wherewithal to slip it into my wine cellar ... where I obviously forgot about it, until today.  The smell was as unappealing as the colour and the taste, well let's just say I would have been better off using this one for salad dressing.  The wine was prunish and oxidized, there were hints of some old fruit here but those hints were few and far between.  What's more, I could not bring myself to swallow a full sip - the little I choked down was enough.  This wine is, was and always shall be from this day forward DOA ... In truth, I should have popped the cork a week after I bought it.  I will be apologizing to myself and my taste buds later.   Lost & Found Rating:  Trash.