Monday, March 28, 2011

Starborough Sauvignon Blanc, Vintage 2009

This is one of those wines that screams "GORGEOUS SUMMER DAY!" and you can literally drink with almost anything (or nothing, as I'm want to do these days!). I absolutely love the mildness and crisp nature of this simple New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc - and the name is so cute! Starborough from Marlborough! 

Verdict: The nose on this wine is very fragrant with heavy citrus and white floral (honeysuckle) notes. The palate is very fruity, with hints of melon, passion fruit and peach as well as a crisp citrus undertone (grapefruit?) and a significant acidity level, perfect for sauce pairings. It's refreshing just to inhale the scents of this juicy beverage, and like I said above, a glass of it just screams "summer". If you like complex wines, this is probably not for you, but it's really a treat for someone who's looking for an easy glass to drink while unwinding on the porch or at the beach. Just thinking about this wine makes me crave a vacation (but what, nowadays, doesn't?)! Side note: This wine reminds me of a slightly less interesting, but equally cheap and refreshing New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Ponga. If you can't find Starborough, the flavor profile in Ponga is very similar and it would be a suitable substitute.

Pairing: Classic Sauv Blanc pairings are lighter seafood, pork and chicken, dishes but this wine is so easy and smooth, you could enjoy it with vegetarian meals or even pastas with creamy sauce (in moderation, though, because too much fat in foods makes the wine and the food taste sour or "off"). I pretty much just enjoyed the bottle as a glass (or two...or three....) of wine after a hard day. 

Wine: Starborough Sauvignon Blanc, Vintage 2009
Price: $10.99
Purchased: Giant, Arlington VA & Target, Alexandria, VA

Friday, March 25, 2011

Root: 1 Cabernet Sauvignon, Vintage 2008

I really love California Cabernet Sauvignons (as you know!), but in my never-ending quest to find "interesting" and "unique" buys that us pobrecitos can afford, I snagged this Chilean Cab from the grocery store by Chris' house for a dinner I made for him - one that I have to say was pretty delicious!

Verdict: This Cab is pretty classic, although I will say it's not anything super special. It's got a heavy red fruit aroma with a hint of a woody smell (maybe cedar chips? knowing what I know about Chile's winemaking techniques, that's likely). The palate is heavy on the darker red fruits (particularly blackcurrant and blackberries) and the tannins are smooth and integrated, although the alcohol is a little high for my taste (leading to a little heat on the back palate) 

Pairing: I made a lasagna and garlic bread to go with this wine - while a Cab sometimes can be too mild for red sauce, it went nicely with this meal because of its relatively high acidity and tannic nature. A full bodied wine, Cabs traditionally go well with steaks and lamb, but pair nicely with rich sauces like alfredo. While they don't pack as much punch as a Zin, Cabs are still hearty wines meant to be enjoyed with hearty meals - you'll find you get the most of your wine when you pair it appropriately.

Wine: Root: 1 Cabernet Sauvignon, Vintage 2008
Price: $11.99
Purchased: Harris Teeter, Arlington VA

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Return of the Cheap Drunk!

A great "blog" I used to read is now being revamped through (one of my favorite non-pretentious wine sites) and you can read now about a few good deals selected by the always entertaining Gregory Piaz...

"Return of the Cheap Drunk!"