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Metro Wines Asheville, NC

Almost FREE Friday 2/7

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Mondavi Chardonnay

Say what you want about Mondavi but it was Robert Mondavi who broke ground in Napa blending the best of modern and traditonal wine making methods from France revolutionizing California winemaking. Mondavi has maintained a consistent quality for decades. Just because Mondavi is BIG, and he is, does not mean the wines are bad.  Many years ago, yours truly met Michael Mondavi at a lunch in Baltimore. Besdies his striking good looks and charm, he was clearly passionate about winemaking and the family name. Read: we won't put "Mondavi" on just any bottle. On the lighter side, he also said that being a Mondavi is the best of all celebrity worlds. No one knows him on sight on the street but call for a restaurant reservation under the name Mondavi, well, you get the point. Gina

Kendal says this about this Chardonnay: Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Chardonnay is grown in the cool climate of the southern Napa Valley. It delights the palate with fresh pear and ferment in barrel as well as in stainless steel to maintain brightness. French oak-barrel-gaing, including sur lie aging, creates a memorable creamy texture. 

Bright, enticing fruity aromas-Juicy Honeycrisp apple, citrus-laced Asian pear, ripe melon and fresh quince- are intermingles with vanilla scented creme brulee, subtle minterality, and traces of warm hazelnut and clove. These elements segue seamlessly to the palate, offering a lush creamy mouth feel impeccably balanced by crisp, mouthwatering acidity.

Over $20 elsewhere in town, we offer this bottle of Napa Valley Chardonnay from Mondavi at $10 on Almost FREE Friday. THIS is Mondavi!!! Say what you want about Mondavi but say it with respect.

 

 

 

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Noble Hill Winery Bloem White 2013

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From the Western Cape of South Africa, this wine is an engaging blend of 65% Chenin Blanc, 24% Viognier and 11% Sauvignon Blanc. The Winemaker says: The South African Winelands lie at the heart of the Cape Floral Kingdom, the smallest, most biodiverse of the world's six floral kingdoms. Bloem, which is derived from the Dutch word for "flower," captures the essence of this unique and dynamic ecosystem with crisp, refreshing fruit aromas and clean, creamy flavors.

If you recall from last week's epidisode, we discussed how it is often that 10% of a varietal blended in  that makes all the difference. And so it is here. The 11% Sauvigonon Blanc blended into Bloem offers just the right herbal touch. I know. I know. Even at just 11%, Sauvignon Blanc must be approached with skepticism. It can take over! But not here. Here, it served up just a hint of chamomile that made this blend sing. The Chenin Blanc is the backbone here providing the body and structure and the Viognier gives us the floral quality of which the name speaks. Crisp and clean, this dry white wine presents apple, spice, and chamomile on the palate.  Nice. Just nothing to dislike here including the price at $11.99. Served at Asheville's hottest new restaurant, LEX18!!

 

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Educated Guess 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

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"Educated Guess" 2011 is 100% Napa with 90% of the grapes grown in Rutherford and St. Helena. the blend is 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6 % Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot. The label is meant to suggest the thought process that goes into making wine and selecting wine.

From the winery Roots Run Deep with some commentary by us.

Why "Educated Guess?"  Have you ever found yourself in a wine shop or restaurant persuing the wines and owndering...how do I shoose the best wine for the money? (Two things here: First, shop Metro Wines and our knowledgable staff will give you all the information you need to make an informed decision. But in the case where you are off campus and must "guess," we suggest that you choose a wine from a winery or an importer that you like. Chances are if you like a wine imported by Kermit Lynch, you will probably like other wines in his porfolio and if you like red wines from ZOLO, there is a good chance you will like the white wines.) You may admire a label or regonize a name, or recall a great review...in essence you're making an "Educated Guess." That is exactly what goes in on the vineyards and wineries around the world. When should we pick the grapes? should we barrel age in French Oak?  Will our customers like the package? We use our knowledge, intuition and years of experience to make the best decisions; however, at the end of the day, it still remains an "Educated Guess." At Roots Run Deep Winery, we have done the Guesswork for you. (Ditto: At Metro Wines, we have done the Educated Guesswork in stocking our shelves and can be further specific for your particular interests.) This Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is the richest, ripest and most complex Cabernet you can buy for the money. So, don't settle for less, buy the "Educated Guess."  (Smartly built, serious, with ripe black fruit and a bit of sweet oak with an easy finish all made to be food friendly, we agree. And that is NOT a guess!)

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Lonely Grape Day

Thursday as we all know is Lonely Grape Day! Today we will be pouring Zolo Signature Red from Mendoza, Argentina and Robert Mondavi Napa Chardonnay.

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Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Chardonnay is grown in the cool climate of the southern Napa Valley. It delights the palate with fresh pear and ferment in barrel as well as in stainless steel to maintain brightness. French oak-barrel-gaing, including sur lie aging, creates a memorable creamy texture. 

Bright, enticing fruity aromas-Juicy Honeycrisp apple, citrus-laced Asian pear, ripe melon and fresh quince- are intermingles with vanilla scented creme brulee, subtle minterality, and traces of warm hazelnut and clove. These elements segue seamlessly to the palate, offering a lush creamy mouth feel impeccably balanced by crisp, mouthwatering acidity. Over $20 at Ingles, $15 here! This is an excellent wine worth the second chance! Give Robert Mondavi a second look!  And THIS JUST IN...Robert is lonely here so today, get the his Chardonnay for $13!!!!!!

 

ZOLO Signature Red 2012

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Estate grown, sustainably farmed in Mendoza, Argentina at the foothills of The Andes.  ZOLO calls upon different grapes to create more complex and interesting wines.  "Signature Red" blends Cabernet Sauvignon, Bonarda, Merlot and Malbec. Red fruit on the nose; long, lush mouthfeel on the palate. 

We call this signature red our Bordeaux Blend NOT from the Bordeaux region. It is a wine shop favorite, made from a female winemaker! 

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Riedel Wine Glass Presentation

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RIEDEL GLASS PRESENTATION AND WINE TASTING

“The Rolls Royce of Stemware”

Wednesday, February 26th 6:30-8:00 @Metro Wines, $15

 “The finest glasses for both technical and hedonistic purposes are those made by Riedel. The effect of these glasses on fine wine is profound. I cannot emphasize enough what a difference they make.” 

Robert M. Parker, Jr. The Wine Advocate

Can the shape of glassware truly enhance your enjoyment of fine wines? Yes, there is a big difference in glassware and how much better your wine experience will be with the correct glass. The Riedel family is the world’s leader in forward thinking beverage glassware, not only in terms of form but function.

On Wednesday, February 26th we will taste wine from Riedel’s Champagne Flutes, Syrah, Cabernet, and Chardonnay glasses. 

Come see and TASTE the difference! 

$15 in advance by Tuesday, February 25th or $20 at the door on Wednesday. 

To pay and RSVP call the shop at: 828.575.9525 

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Game Day Wines and Recipes

Three great GameDay Wines that will pair with most football food fests! And just because we can, we thought it would be great to add a beer in there too! And if you don't already have your GameDay Reicpes, page down for a few from the Asheville Citizen Times.

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Woop Woop

OK. The name is kind of funny and, in truth, it does reflect a bit of Aussie humor but there is nothing funny about the wine. Woop Woop is serious business. Witness: Stephen Tanzer of International Wine Cellar and Winophilia, saying:

Why should you care? Winemaker Ben Riggs is the man behind literally hundreds of excellent Australian wines made over the last couple of decades. Woop Woop, which is Aussie slang for the middle of nowhere, is a project that Riggs co-owns with his American importer Ben Hammerschlag, and the wines consistently offer superb bang for the buck, especially the shiraz . Riggs’ winemaking style showcases the opulent fruit for which South Australia is known but with a modicum of restraint, and that holds true even for Woop Woop, which would be considered his entry-level line-up.

What does it taste like? Under-$20 bottles of Aussie shiraz usually offer straightforward, easygoing fruit and little else, but the the 2012 Woop Woop Shiraz South Eastern Australia overdelivers big-time. Made from one of the best Australian vintages in recent memory, it displays intense dark berry character, with floral and spice flourishes that remind me of much more expensive wines. Unlike most inexpensive Aussie shiraz bottlings, this wine has the aromatic interest and balance that will make it a winner with all kinds of grilled foods this summer. My rating: 90 points.

Woop Woop is made from grapes carefully selected from the Shiraz vineyards in premium wine regions of Australia. On the technical side, the Shiraz grapes were de-stemmed and crushed prior to parcels undergoing primary fermentation. This 100% Shiraz wine is aged 9 to 10 months in tank with 10% aged in a blend of French and American Oak. Great grapes made wine by this style of winemaking offers us the essence of ripe grapes in the bottle. 

Ben Briggs, winemaker, sought to make a full-bodied, deep hued, richly aromatic wine with a long palate. The Metro Wines Tasting Panel, along with the respected critics noted above, is of the opinion that Ben Briggs has hit his target, again. This wine presents blackberry, blueberry and licorice on the palate. Dense in a delightful way, the full flavors are accompanied by a lush mouthfeel. The bottom line is that Woop Woop is fruity but not an Australian fruit bomb, taste of jam but not Australian jammy, and goes great with chocolate. The 2012 can go at least another 3 years in the bottle.  

Oh yeah, about the name. The winery says that "Woop Woop" is a much uttered colloquialism that refers to somewhere in the middle of nowhere. Woop Woop, they say, is "quintessentially Australian for out there." At $13.49, this wine is a lot of bang for your wine buck.

Ben Briggs, winemaker, says "cheers!" and so do we.

 

Pillar Box Red

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From the Padthaway region of Australia “The 2010 Pillar Box Red has Brooding, blackberry fruit and dried mint aromas intermingle with dark chocolate, licorice spice, hints of pepper and cedary oak on the nose. The palate exhibits flavors of fresh black and blueberry fruit, toasted dark spice and hints of spearmint. A seamless wine; displaying balance and a fine, long tannin structure.”

This wine is matured for a period of 12 months, 30% of the volume with oak using 90% French & 10% American Oak. Ideally served at room temperature, it matches well with a variety of full flavored dishes - it is a great everyday wine. Wine spectator says “Velvety and ripe, offering dark berry and licorice flavors that glide smoothly through the finish. Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2015.”

And got 89 points from Wine Advocate! 

AND NOW FOR METRO WINES FUN FACT OF THE DAY!!

Pillar Box Red is named after the 19th-century mail coach service that ran through the pastoral property in Padthaway on which the large vineyard is situated.

 

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Station 10 Zinfandel

A blend of 71% Zinfandel, 18% Petite Sirah, 10% Carignane and 2% Alicante Bouschet, Station 10 was harvested between October 8th and 22nd of 2008 and released in to the waiting wine world in the summer of 2012. The vines which gave us Station 10 are nearly 100 years old thriving in the morning fog that blankets the vineyard just west of Santa Rosa. The goal with Station 10 was to blend a wine that would be bold, as all Hook&Ladder wines are, well structured and would"pair with a wide range of dishes." To accomplish this mission, grapes were selected from the oldest Zinfandel vines and a small selection from old vine Carignane and Alicante Bouschet from the same vineyard. Combined with Petite Sirah from the Los Amigos Vineyard, the berry and spice profile takes root.

Now, to the essential element, the taste, the experience. Dark violet in color, Station 10 gives you deep a deep nose of black currants, dark berry and strawberries with just a hint of cedar. Bringing the black fruit forward onto the palate, add spice, cinnamon-cherry, bramble and stone fruit. It is this collection of flavors that makes Station 10 so amazingly versatile.  The winemaker says pair it with everything from grilled red meats to tomato sauce. We, The Metro Wines Tasting Panel, say the winery accomplished its mission in the quest for a wine to "pair with a wide range of dishes." Station 10 has already earned a place on our list of "go to" wines when a customer needs a bottle for a potluck, that is to say, when the customer is headed to dinner with no idea what will be on the table! You can go in confidence with Station 10.

Greenman ESB

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And to be on the safe side we chose to add a beer on our Super Bowl List. We decided to include Greenman ESB because this beer is a local FAVORITE and you cannot find anywhere, except for here at Metro Wines and Fresh Market. 

A malty amber ale boasting rich toasted and caramel flavors, Green Man ESB is one of our award-winning signature brews. Our blend of authentic British malts and hops creates a nutty aroma, full body, and a sweet finish. Prepare yourself for a truly exceptional interpretation of a traditional English style

Asheville Citizen Times Recipes 

BEST GUACAMOLE RECIPE EVER: Courtesy of the California Avocado Council.4 ripe Haas avocados seeded and peeled 
3 limes, juice only 
2 medium tomatoes, chopped 
1 medium white onion, chopped fine 
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced 
1/8 teaspoon cumin 
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
Pinch sugar 
1 serrano chile, chopped fine 
1 bunch cilantro, chopped. Place avocados in a bowl and mash with a fork. Immediately mix in remaining ingredients; serve immediately.

SWEET AND SPICY GRILLING SAUCE: A sweet sauce for chicken wings, beef skewers or pork ribs. Makes 1 3/4 cups. 2 tablespoons peanut oil (or vegetable oil) 
2 small shallots, peeled and minced (about 3 tablespoons) 
4 cloves fresh garlic, minced 
1/4 cup grated fresh ginger root 
1 cup dry sherry 
2/3 cup buckwheat honey 
1/2 cup soy sauce 
2 tablespoon water 
2 tablespoon cornstarch 
2 tablespoon hoisin sauce. Heat oil in a medium saucepan; add shallots and garlic; cook over low heat for 5 minutes, until softened. Add ginger and cook for 1 minute more, stirring frequently. Add honey and sherry and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 3 minutes. Combine the soy, water and cornstarch in a small bowl; add to pan with hoisin sauce. Cook and stir for several minutes more until slightly thickened. Remove half of the sauce to a small bowl and set aside. Brush remaining sauce over pork ribs, beef skewers or chicken during last 5 minutes of grilling. Place reserved bowl of sauce on the table to drizzle over the cooked meat.

GAME-DAY RIBS: 1/2 cup salt 
1/4 cup paprika 
2 tablespoons black pepper 
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
2 tablespoons white pepper 
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated or powdered onion 
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated or powdered garlic 
2 tablespoons brown sugar (optional) 
4 full racks of baby back or spareribs 
Barbecue sauce (recipe at right). Combine all ingredients except ribs in mixing bowl. Rub ribs with mixture of all other ingredients generously and place in refrigerator overnight. In a preheated, 300-degree oven, cook seasoned ribs in a tightly covered baking pan for 2 1/2 or until you can poke your finger through the meat. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Cut ribs into individual portions and place in refrigerator until it's time to cook. Makes 12 servings. At game time, coat ribs with Game-Day Barbecue Sauce (recipe follows) and place on hot grill to reheat and caramelize sauce. Source: Joe Cahn, the Commissioner of Tailgating, and www.footballtownusa.com.

BARBECUE SAUCE: 1 1/2 cups ketchup 
1 cup Coca-Cola Classic 
1/4 pound butter (1 stick) 
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed 
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce 
Salt, pepper, seasoning salt, cayenne pepper and garlic to taste 
Combine all ingredients in saucepan; simmer over low heat for 20 to 30 minutes. Use immediately or store in a jar and refrigerate for next time. Can be served with beef, chicken, pork or just about any other kind of meat. It also works well as a dipping sauce for bread. Source: Joe Cahn, the Commissioner of Tailgating, and www.footballtownusa.com.

LUELLA'S PIMENTO CHEESE SPREAD: 1 pound grated Hoop Cheddar cheese 
1 1/4 cup Duke's mayonnaise 
1/4 cup roasted red pepper diced, or 3-ounce jar pimento 
1 teaspoon Texas Pete hot sauce 
Pinch Salt 
Mix all ingredients and refrigerate for several hours before serving. This recipe can adapted for a hot dip by whipping 6 ounces cream cheese together with chilled pimento cheese. Heat in a shallow baking dish. Stir well before serving.

MOE'S BROCCOLI CASSEROLE: 5 eggs 
2 pounds fresh broccoli florets (or one 2-pound bag of frozen) 
1 small onion, batonette cut (thick matchstick) 
1 can cream of mushroom soup 
3 cups blended cheese 
1 tablespoon spoon kosher salt 
1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Beat eggs in large mixing bowl. Add cream of mushroom soup, salt and pepper. Whisk thoroughly. Cut broccoli into 1/2 inch pieces. Add broccoli, onions, and cheese into mixture. Place mixture into greased pan. Press broccoli into mixture until wet ingredients rise to the top of the broccoli. Cover with foil. Bake at 400 until casserole sets up. Remove foil, and top with 1 cups of cheese and cook an additional 15 minutes until cheese melts.

 

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Almost FREE Friday January 31st

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This wine, at $10.49 and 12.5% alcohol, can sit on your table everyday. Cetamura is 90% Sangiovese and 10% Canaiolo. Sometimes, it is that 10% Merlot that makes Cabernet Sauvignon sing, or that 10% Syrah that makes Grenache sing or 10% Marsanne that makes Viognier sing, or...you get the point. And in this case, it is the 10% Canaiolo that sets this Sangiovese apart.  But just what is Canaiolo? Credit to wine-searcher.com for this discussion:

Canaiolo is a black-skinned Tuscan grape variety that was the main constituent of the Chianti blend up until the late 19th Century. It is still grown today throughout central Italy, and used as a blending grape in a wide range of Sangiovese-based wines. Just a handful of varietal Canaiolo wines are produced, although interest in the largely-forgotten variety is increasing.

Canaiolo was once extensively planted in Tuscany, LazioMarche and Sardinia, and it still exists, to a limited extent, in these regions. Canaiolo’s downfall was largely due to its resistance to grafting to American rootstock, so it was not commonly replanted after Tuscany’s vines were decimated by the phylloxera epidemic in the 19th Century.

Canaiolo
Canaiolo Grapes
© MIPAAF

However, Canaiolo has been of considerable importance historically inChianti. In the days before electricity and temperature-controlled fermentation, winemakers were much more vulnerable to inclement weather; if external temperatures plummeted during the crucial fermentation phase then the winemaker risked losing the entire production of wine.

One of Canaiolo’s great strengths is its ability to dry without rotting, and winemakers in Chianti soon learned that a ferment that had been prematurely arrested by cold weather could be reinvigorated by adding a portion of semi-dried grapes to the tank. The extra sugar of the semi-dried Canaiolo grapes would kick-start the ferment again and save the harvest. Some even argue that Canaiolo is the grape responsible for the development of Chianti wine.

Canaiolo makes for soft and mellow wine with elegant aromatics and gentle tannins. It blends exceptionally well with Sangiovese and can accent herbaceous flavors found in the Chianti blend.

A white wine sub-variety called Canaiolo Bianco is grown in Umbria, where it is known as Drupeggio and used in the Orvieto blend.

Winemaker's Notes:

Cetamura is the name of an Etruscan settlement on the Badia a Coltibuono property. This wine was conceived with the intention of creating a young, pleasant wine, perfect for every day. With this objective in mind, we select the best Sangiovese and Canaiolo grapes from various sub-zones of Chianti to express the typical freshness and accessibility of these varieties.

The wine is a bright, intense red color with the essence of cherries and ripe wild berries in the nose. A soft, balanced, full-flavored wine with good structure. Well-balanced acidity accompanied by a long clean finish.

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From the winery:

Made from grapes grown in some of California's finest cool-climate vineyards, Monevina Chardonnay is rich, golden hued wine with seductive aormas of tart apples and figs. Crisp flavors of tropical fruit and ripe pear are layered with hints of vanilla bean and toasted almonds for added dimension. Bright acidity balances the rich flavors and makes our Chardonnay food friendly.

You will find an intense nose or, as the winery says, "seductive," of apples and citrus with oak and melon on the palate. But mostly, you will be taken in by the creaminess that give the wine a depth and come hither quality. Add a taste of vanilla bean and toasted almonds and you have an exceptional bottle for $10.99.

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A Beer Tasting in a Wine store??

Metro Wines has decided to switch things up a little bit and do a BEER tasting to recognize that Asheville is Beer City USA. On Friday, January 31st from 5-7pm We are hosting a Canadian Beer Tasting.  FREE OF CHARGE!! After extensive research and talking with my father, a UNCA Beer College Graduate, Metro Wines has narrowed it down to four beers from the Parallel 49 Brewery in Vancouver, British Columbia and Howe Sound Brewery in Squamish, British Columbia.

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From Parallel 49 we will taste the Salty Scot Salted Caramel Scotch Ale.  I know Kilwins has a delicious and top selling salted caramel ice cream, but we are glad Parallel 49 has decided to take this great taste and put it in their beer. It has a rich caramel taste that is complimented by sea salt for a complex, intense flavor. Building upon a Scottish “Wee Heavy,” this unique beer was developed to provide a strong caramel malt flavor with enough salt to give it a bite. It won 88 points from Beer Advocate and 91 points for their style.

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Next up is a 2013 Gold Medal winner from the 11th Annual Canadian Brewing Awards. It is called Vow of Silence Belgian Strong Ale. This was a request from Gina, our Belgian beer fan. Though a clever name, this beer is a Belgian strong ale rich in history and flavor.  Historically brewed by trappist Monks, this brew starts with malty sweetness and finishes medium dry with a touch of piety.

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From the Howe Sound Brewery we will taste a silver medal winner from the 11th Annual Canadian Brewing Awards. This is the Diamond Head Oatmeal Stout. A traditional oatmeal stout with intense roast barley flavors and mildly hopped using Willamette and Nugget hops. The robust flavor is balanced with a smooth creamy finish. It is named for the razor's edge ridge that comes off the south flank of Mount Garibaldi's Atwell Peak. The dark roastiness of this ale makes a great pairing with hearty foods such as BBQ meats, shepherd’s pie, and stews.

 

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Lastly is a beer with my favorite name. It’s called Total Eclipse of the Hop Imperial IPA. A high gravity India Pale Ale brewed with 100% barley, six varieties of hops, water and yeast. Produced as part of the John Mitchell Series. “Turn around bright eyes!”  As a strong malty ale, this beer goes will with meat, stews and hearty dinner favorites like casserole. It can also match the flavors of spicy shellfish and Mexican food. The noticeable hop profile in this ale allows it to stand up to spicier foods as well, such as curry and tacos.

 

One thing you will notice about Howe Sound’s beer are their bottles. They have re-closable bottles, known as a “pot-stopper” that were widely used in Europe prior to the 1950’s.  This new cap is an innovative design that allows closure by both crown and swing caps. It can be re-used and meets Canada’s green packaging objectives. Way cool!

 

Join us Friday, January 31st from 5-7pm and try some tasty Canadian beers eh? Free of Charge. Comedy Night will follow at 7pm!! Check out our headliners here!

http://www.disclaimercomedy.com/~discom/metro-wines-fri-jan-31/

CHEERS.

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Masciarelli Trebbiano d'Abruzzo 2012

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This wine, like the Montepulciano, is so very Italian, so real, so high quality, you can almost hear Pavarotti.  From Abruzzo east of Rome, this most drinkable, dry white Trebbiano presents the characteristics of the varietal on both the nose and palate: stone fruits and flowers. In the glass, the wine is a straw yellow with a greenish cast. The aroma is intense and enveloping offering apple, apricot and iris. Some of you may be thinking that Trebbiano is dull, bland, nothing to write home about. And, in all honesty, some could be so described. But this is Masciarelli!  Fermented and aged in controlled stainless steel casks, this Trebbiano is crisp, cool and worthy. Popular in London and throughout Europe and sold only by the case at many online retailers, this wine is a steal at $11.99. Buy a case! Hurry! the British are coming!

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The Whole Story from Masciarelli:

"Et però credo che molta felicità sia agli uomini che nascono dove si trovano i vini buoni." Leonardo Da Vinci.

 

The Azienda Agricola Masciarelli is estabilished in San Martino in 1978 by Gianni Masciarelli and starts producing wines in 1981. Today the Masciarelli winery is active in producing Wine, Extravirgin Olive Oil and it is also dedicated to Wine_Tourism tanks to the purchase and careful restauration of the Masciarelli Palace “Castello di Semivicoli”.

Gianni Masciarelli inherited from is grandfather Giovanni the passion for the vineyards and for wine. In the old cellar of his grandfather, who was producing small quantities of wine for his passion, Gianni Masciarelli started creating his wines. 

In 1987 Gianni met Marina Cvetic. From that meeting a personal and professional bond was born, and Marina by being side by side to Gianni soon impressed her personality to the winery, also participating to the creation of one of the most representative lines of Masciarelli, dedicate to her: the Marina Cvetic line, which today is part of the 4 wine lines, for total 14 labels: Masciarelli Classico (Montepulciano, Rosato, Trebbiano), Villa Gemma (Montepulciano, Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo, Bianco), Marina Cvetić (Montepulciano, Trebbiano, Chardonnay, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon), Castello di Semivicoli (Trebbiano, Rosso Terre Aquilane) and Iskra (Montepulciano d’Abruzzo), for a total yearly production of more than 2 million bottles. 

Marina Cvetic is today the main representative of the winery. From the marriage of Gianni and Marina Miriam, Chiara e Riccardo were born. 

From the 2.5 initial hectares, today the Masciarelli winery owns around 320 hectares, all cultivated with wineyards, scattered in 14 different towns in the 4 Abruzzo provinces: Chieti, Teramo, Pescara e L’Aquila. They are wineyards with very specific characteristic, rich in minerals, set at different altitudes (from 200 to 500 meters), grown either with the traditional ‘pergola abruzzese’ cultivation system, and the guyot raws; they are vineyards exposed to the different weather conditions and with different soils (chalky, clayey, sandy, rock layers, pebbly, etc.) which therefore are producing specific and different expressions of the wine varieties and exalting their specific features. 

The heart of the winery is San Martino sulla Marrucina, a small village in Chieti province, located at 420 meters altitude, 20 kilometer distant from the Adriatic see and 20 kilometers distant from the peaks of the Majella mountain.

The village of San Martino is also known to be the ‘gun powder makers’ town. Its proud inhabitants were holding for generations the secret recipe of gun powder (made from sulphur, saltpetre and remains of vine stocks), thanks to which at the end of 1700 they were able to resist the assault from the Napoleon troups, who were trying to conquer the village.

Since the very beginning, Masciarelli was focusing on the potentials of the native wine varieties speaking the language of his people: Montepulciano and Trebbiano. In Masciarelli productive philosophy a great importance is given to the land and to its wine culture and tradition. The main passion of Gianni is Abruzzo, an extraordinary region, with intense flavours, tastes and scents that you can find in all its typical products: from pasta to wine, from extra-virgin olive oil to cheese, from meat to saffron, from truffles to pastries, to ventricina salami, to confetti. A land of artists and poets, (D’Annunzio, Tosti, Michetti, Cascella, Flaiano, Palizzi), in which the modern industrial area is coexisting with craftmanship and old traditions, still untouched.

- See more at: http://www.masciarelli.it/en/chisiamo/chisiamo.html?PHPSESSID=f49m59sbojqbvq7o8o6aq5mle6#sthash.qrrd8gxB.dpuf

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Masciarelli Montepulciano 2011

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Masciarelli Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2011

This wine will take you to Italy. This is about food, friends and family. This is what you might find in a pitcher on a blue and white checked table cloth in a small and warm trattoria with stone exposed walls off the beaten path. This is what should be on your table! While a new world wine, there is a bit of old world earthiness, bold color but soft flavor and gentle tannins. This medium bodied Montepulciano presents cherries and a smoky aroma that speaks of black tea. The palate blends concentrated flavors of ripe raspberry, strawberry, a little dark fruit and chocolate buried way down deep. This is a simple wine and simply Italian! 

The estate was founded in 1981 by Gianni Masciarelli, a pioneer wine producer in his native region of Abruzzo who raised the quality and reputation of the local grape varieties -the red Montepulciano d'Abruzzo and the white Trebbiano d'Abruzzo. Masciarelli's wines, hich have earned numerous Gambero Rosso awards, appeal to expert and novice alike. The wines are worthy of the memory of Gianni, who worked tirelessly to secure his legacy as one of the true innovators in the Italian wine industry before his untimely passing in summer of 2008. Today, Masciarelli is the largest organically farmed estate in Italy.

 

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Scarpetta 2012 Barbera del Monferrato

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This ain't no disco! Don't let the, let's face it, adorable, label fool you. This is serious business. Scarpetta Winery is owned and operated by Bobby Stuckly, M.S. and Chef Lachan Patterson who are also the owners and creators of Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder, Colorado. Stuckly was the sommelier and Patterson the chef at the highly rated, internationally known, very difficult to get a reservation at, delicioso, Napa Valley French Laundry. The two teamed up and headed to Boulder to start their own place. Frasca is a restaurant inspired by the culture and cuisine of Friuli Venezia-Giulia, Italy. Read all the above to say:  Stuckly and Patterson know their wine and food stuff!

Stuckly and Patterson worked with acclaimed winemaker Fabrizio Luli in Monferrato, Piedmonte to  give life to this Barbera which balance beam perfectly blends fruit, earth and acidity. Some of the best wines for the price come to us from the northwestern part of Italy, The Piedmont.  This Monferrato zone is well known and well regarded for Barbera, in fact, the grape may have its origin there. References to Barbera date back to the 13th century.  Style wise, compared to a Barbera from Asti or Alba, Monferrato Barbera is more aromatic and fruit-forward.

The grapes are fermented in stainless steel and then aged 12 months in neutral oak. Stuckly and Patterson say, and we agree, that this process results "in a wine that shows fruit and earth without bieng marked by wood." Bright plum red in color, the nose is crushed berries and plums with a hint of earth and, get this, porcini mushrooms. On the palate, expect black cherry with discenible stone and clay leading into a lingering finish.  Medium bodied with low tannins and bright acidity, Scarpetta Barbera is all about food from a thick pasta sauce to beef but also cuddling up to pork and duck very nicely. 

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Dolcetto D'Asti and Domaine de Montrabech for Almost Free Friday

And now here is the line up and Headliner for Almost Free Friday and Comedy Night!

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Dolcetto d' Asti is a “Superiore” wine. This wine is part of the Sant’Evasio Collezione. Dolcetto has a good address in the high rent district in south Asti. Dolcetto is a dark purple, almost black grape grown in the Piedmont region of northwest Italy.  While the name, Dolcetto, translates to "little sweet one," it is not a reference to the characteristics of the grape, which almost always offers up a dry, including this bottle, wine. It is a fresh wine that does not require much aging. In the glass, it is a deep ruby red color with garnet-red gradations. You will notice an aroma with soft spicy notes and hints of blackberry and violet. On the palate you taste a strong, warm, and harmonic wine with the right acidity and structure. Due to the naturally limited acidity of the grapes, Dolcetto is drinkable now. Strong fruit, rounded edges, and easy to drink, what more could you want? Serve with pasta, risotto, meat dishes, and medium-aged cheeses.  All the way from Italy, for $10.99.

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Even at $8.79, this is not your grocery store white! A blend of Grenache Blanc, Muscat Petits Grains, this wine is a DRY white wine. I put that in caps because I know what you were thinking when you heard "muscat." Come on. You know you were. The nose is floral and with some scents of the tropics and herbaceous notes on the palate.  The blend is blended well, no grape dominates. Read Muscat does not dominate. Does not. All harmonious and vibrant. This is what you would expect from a classic White Rhone. Still not quite sure what to make of this bottle? Let me put it this way, if you enjoy a French Viognier or a Torrontes from Argentina then, as they say at Amazon, shoppers who bought those wines also bought this one. It's almost FREE. But in truth, this wine is an amazing value. Try it. Great aperitif for the holidays. And with the right cheese, magnifique! At 11.5% alcohol, you know, it's a "bottle for dinner”

And our headliner for Comedy Night is Kristine Kinsey. Enjoy two great wines and Kristine's hilarious company!

Don't miss out! 7-8pm

"Kristine Kinsey is domestically challenged, romantically depraved, & maternally inept.  She manages to find humor in her incompetence, & has brought her twisted observations to comedy clubs across the Southeast.  She has also performed in The World Series of Comedy and the North Carolina Comedy Arts Festival. She is a regular weekend deejay on 105.3 fm in Knoxville, a college student, a massage therapist, a mom, and an unrepentant smartass.  Apologies in advance." 

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Kofererhof Pinot Grigio, Eric Asimov and Me, Again

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Kofererhof Alto Adige Valle isarco Pinot Grigio 2012: LIMITED SUPPLY!!

Bone to pick with you Eric Asimov! Eric writes in The Pour, his NYT column this week, that "...pinot grigio, the best selling imported white, according to Nielsen, is barely tolerated by many of those whose job it is to sell it." OUCH. True, as we learned from previous postings here, pinot grigio was made popular through a mass marketing campaign which resulted in snuffing Soave as the best selling and most appreciated Italian White Wine in this country. But, that does not in and of itself make pinot grigio bad wine. Any grape can be mass produced. That said, at the end of the day, quality is about production. On the postive side, and might we say 'fair shake" side, Eric does like one of our top shelf pinot grigio wines, Kofererhof. Eric finds the wine has ripe, round fruit flavors with deep presence.

Just south of Germany at the northernmost point of Italy, the wine is made in South Tyrol.  Entirely located in The Alps, the area is mountainous. Very, very mountainous.  Kofererhof Pinot Grigio is farmed at 700 meters above sea level.  Here, in the Alto Adige, the blend of soils and climate is quite perfect for wine.  The Alpine continental climate is relatively mild and hosts over 300 days of sun each year.  The Alps to the north offer protection to the Alto Adige vineyards from the cold winds. To the south, the land is open allowing the warm air currents from Lake Garda and the Meditteranean to work their wine magic on the vineyards. Large temperature differentials between day and night, an average temperature of 64° during the growing phase, and sufficient precipitation additionally create the ideal conditions for high quality grapes...... And then the quality Kofererhof produciton kicks in.

The broad spectrum of soils in Alto Adige ranges from volcanic porphyry in Merano, Bolzano, and Kaltern to weathered primitive rock soils composed of quartz and mica in the Isarco Valley where Kofererhof Pinot Grigio is grown, to limestone and dolomite in the Bassa Atesina, to sandy marl south of Kurtatsch, offering just the right underlayer to each grape variety. Bravo.

The wine is fruit driven with a huge amount of minerality. With perfect acidity, Kofererhof is well balanced and incredibly complex. Reflecting its native cool climate, the wine is itself cool and crisp yet warm by virtue of its full body and intense fruit. To be honest, some of the Metro Wines Tasting Panel questioned the $27 price, questioned why people demand this wine. At least one of us thought the allure was about prestige or even a cult kind of calling! But that was then and this is now, a tasted it, recognized the extraordinary balance of it, contemplated it now. 

Winemaker's Notes:

Color: Straw yellow with green hints
Nose: Very intense and persistent, fruity, flowery, banana, citrus, acacia flowers, mineral notes
Flavor: Dry, fresh, full-bodied, quite intense, persistent, very long and fruity finish

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Beer tasting in a wine shop?

Metro Wines has decided to switch things up a little bit and do a BEER tasting to recognize that Asheville is Beer City USA. On Friday, January 31st from 5-7pm We are hosting a Canadian Beer Tasting.  FREE OF CHARGE!! After extensive research and talking with my father who is a UNCA Beer College Graduate, Metro Wines has narrowed it down to four wines from the Parallel 49 Brewery in Vancouver, British Columbia and Howe Sound Brewery in Squamish, British Columbia.

Salty Scot Caramel Scotch Ale

From Parallel 49 we will taste the Salty Scot Salted Caramel Scotch Ale. I know Kilwins has a delicious and top selling salted caramel ice cream, but we are glad Parallel 49 has decided to take this great taste and put it in their beer. It has a rich caramel taste that is complimented by sea salt for a complex, intense flavor. Building upon a Scottish “Wee Heavy,” this unique beer was developed to provide a strong caramel malt flavor with enough salt to give it a bite. It won 88 points from Beer Advocate and 91 points for their style.

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 Vow Of Silence Belgian Strong Ale

Next up is a 2013 Gold Medal winner from the 11th Annual Canadian Brewing Awards. It is called Vow of Silence Belgian Strong Ale. This was a request from Gina, our Belgian beer fan. Though a clever name, this beer is a Belgian strong ale rich in history and flavor.  Historically brewed by trappist Monks, this brew starts with malty sweetness and finishes medium dry with a touch of piety.

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Diamond Head Oatmeal Stout

From the Howe Sound Brewery we will taste a silver medal winner from the 11th Annual Canadian Brewing Awards. This is the Diamond Head Oatmeal Stout. A traditional oatmeal stout with intense roast barley flavors and mildly hopped using Willamette and Nugget hops. The robust flavor is balanced with a smooth creamy finish. It is named for the razor's edge ridge that comes off the south flank of Mount Garibaldi's Atwell Peak. The dark roastiness of this ale makes a great pairing with hearty foods such as BBQ meats, shepherd’s pie, and stews.

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 Total Eclipse of the Hop Imperial IPA

Lastly is a beer with my favorite name. It’s called Total Eclipse of the Hop Imperial IPA. A high gravity India Pale Ale brewed with 100% barley, six varieties of hops, water and yeast. Produced as part of the John Mitchell Series. “Turn around bright eyes!”  As a strong malty ale, this beer goes will with meat, stews and hearty dinner favorites like casserole. It can also match the flavors of spicy shellfish and Mexican food. The noticeable hop profile in this ale allows it to stand up to spicier foods as well, such as curry and tacos.

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One thing you will notice about Howe Sound’s beer are their bottles. They have re-closable bottles, known as a “pot-stopper” that were widely used in Europe prior to the 1950’s.  This new cap is an innovative design that allows closure by both crown and swing caps. It can be re-used and meets Canada’s green packaging objectives. Way cool!

So come on by January 31st from 5-7 and taste some good ol' Canadian Beer Eh?! Free of Charge, Comedy Night starts right after at 7!  

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Merlot is a Lonely Grape

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Letter to the Editor, Wine Blog, Metro Wines,

Dear Editor:

What happened to me? I am from Bordeaux. I am Merlot. Hear me roar! Because of my flexibility, my softness, my fleshiness,  amiable personality, I have always been a bit of a blender, perhaps more often than I might have liked, but I was also always a powerful varietal performing solo all over the world. I am a runway model, a beautiful inky purple color living glamorously and stunningly beautifully amidst a chaise lounge of leaves. Even my name is gorgeous. According to many, "Merlot" is a derivative "merle," French for blackbird. And yes, I know what you are thinking, Cabernet Sauvignon always had more star power, more clout than me. I accept that. I know who I am. I was happy to stand back and let Cabernet go through the door first, take credit. I could do that because I always knew who was really in charge. I am the most widely grown grape in France!  And in Bordeaux, Cabernet is nobody, nowhere without me. I am Merlot. Hear me roar!

So, life was good. In fact, very good. Until that day in 2004. I just didn't see it coming. Who would have thought that a movie, an indie movie at that, could derail an extraordinary, centuries old career? How could a simple movie with an unknown lead actor turn me into a has been overnight?  Damn you "Sideways!" You sent me swirling through space like Sandra Bullock in "Gravity."  I lost my status, my name on the A-list, my name at the top of the A-list!, lost ground, lost my own gravity. Not so much in sales, I maintained my audienece but I lost prestige. You know it and I know it. But no more. Tis a new day. I am the the Joan d' Arc, the Harriet Tubman, the Susan B. Anthony, the Audrey Hepburn, the Sacajawea, the Serena Williams, Wonder Woman! of the wine world. I am Merlot. And I am back. Hear me roar! 

Merlot

(Credit to Kendal Klein for selecting Merlot as the Lonely Grape. Credit to Andy Hale for his thoughts on "Sideways." Writing on behalf of Merlot, Gina Trippi)

THIS JUST IN: USA Today: October 7, 2014

"Sideways at 10: Anybody for a nice glass of merlot?"

The article discusses the line that stirred controersy and many say, shot a hole in the merlot market. Movie wine snob, Miles, played by Paul Giamatti responded to to the offer of a glass of merlot: "If anyone orders merlot, I'm leaving. I am not drinking any xxxx merlot!" So we visit the issue again. And today we offer a twist on merlot, a bottle of the varietal from Spain with a touch of petite verdot. USA Today article here: 

http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/movies/2014/10/06/sideways-killed-merlot/15901489/

Our Merlot Standard Bearer today is Hyatt:

 

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Hyatt Vineyards Merlot 2010 $12.75

 

Rattlesnake Hills is located in the northern part of the Yakima Valley in Washington State. All estate grown, this blend of 95% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon opens with cherry, chocolate and cinnamon on the nose with a richly balanced mouthfeel, medium tannins and flavors of caramel, cedar oak and spice. 


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Cuvee Elisabeth, Il Padrone delle Vigne, and Robert Burns

 On the day we celebrate the poet Robert Burns, we speak of love. No wine says it better than the smooth, red, French Cuvee Elisabeth and the Italian ruby red Il Padrone delle Vigne. And much like a great date, both of these knockouts can go from picnic to party. Tasting Cuvee Elisabeth and Il Padrone on Saturday, January, 25th. So where does wine of love really come from?? France or Italy? You choose. 

From Philippe Bourgeois: Costieres de Nimes Cuvee Elisabeth

Made from a carfeul selection of 20 years old vines growing on chalky and clay soil with round pebbles ("galets") . This wine is aged for 8 months on stainless steel tanks. Parker notes: While this Syrah-Grenache blend from Patrick Bech does not represent one of the more remarkable among so many values of its appellation, the Domaine Bahourat Costieres de Nimes certainly more than justifies its small price, with scents of rhubarb, cherry and scrubby herbs, a faintly tart and bitter but well-concentrated and sappy palate, and a resin-tinged, faintly warm finish. Enjoy it with grilled meats and other hearty fare. 80% Syrah and 20% Grenache

 

Posted by Wine Mule: Domaine Bahourat Cuvée Elisabeth 2009: With its 80/20 syrah/grenache blend and gamey, herbal nose, this is definitely Rhone-like. I got a hint of blueberry and black tea, as well. In the mouth, this is very soft and round, with pretty black fruit, mild tannins, good acidity, and a little jolt of black pepper at the finish. Like many of its counterparts, it will benefit from 10-15 minutes in the fridge. We had it with grilled steak (recommended by the importer, Bourgeois Family Selections) but I think it really wants pork ribs or grilled lamb to really show itself off. 

 

Il Padrone Delle Vigne

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Il Padrone Delle Vigne from Montefalco, Italy is a Sangiovese blend, with small quantities of Sagrantino, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. The grapes grown from muddy and clay soil with great density. There is soaking on the skins for over a month and then one month aging in French oak and three months in stainless steel. The winemaker describes Il Padrone dell Vigne as a “ruby red wine with purple tinges has a fresh bouquet that recalls the small fruits of the forest. Soft, balanced and with a lasting flavour, it is both easy to drink and incredibly pleasant on the palate.” This red wine goes great with foods with elaborate sauces, medium cheeses, and meats such as salami.

Robert Burns:

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Robert Burns (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796) (also known as Robbie Burns,[1] Rabbie Burns, Scotland's favourite son, the Ploughman Poet, Robden of Solway Firth, the Bard of Ayrshire and in Scotland as The Bard)[2][3] was a Scottish poet and lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is also in English and a light Scots dialect, accessible to an audience beyond Scotland. He also wrote in standard English, and in these his political or civil commentary is often at its bluntest.

He is regarded as a pioneer of the Romantic movement, and after his death he became a great source of inspiration to the founders of both liberalism and socialism, and a cultural icon in Scotland and among the Scottish Diaspora around the world. Celebration of his life and work became almost a national charismatic cult during the 19th and 20th centuries, and his influence has long been strong on Scottish literature. In 2009 he was chosen as the greatest Scot by the Scottish public in a vote run by Scottish television channel STV.

As well as making original compositions, Burns also collected folk songs from across Scotland, often revising or adapting them. His poem (and song) "Auld Lang Syne" is often sung at Hogmanay (the last day of the year), and "Scots Wha Hae" served for a long time as an unofficial national anthem of the country. Other poems and songs of Burns that remain well known across the world today include "A Red, Red Rose"; "A Man's a Man for A' That"; "To a Louse"; "To a Mouse"; "The Battle of Sherramuir"; "Tam o' Shanter"; and "Ae Fond Kiss".

 

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Did you Know that Sunday is Australia Day?!

On Sunday, January 26th we will be celebrating Australia Day. “Australia Day is the official national day of Australia. Celebrated annually on January 26th, which marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British Ships at Sydney Cove, New South Wales, and raising of the Flag of Great Britain. In contemporary Australia, celebrations reflect the diverse society and landscape of the nation, and are marked by community and family events, reflections on Australian history, official community awards, and citizenship ceremonies welcoming new immigrants into the Australian community.” So you may be asking yourself, why are we at Metro Wines celebrating Australia Day? Simple, to celebrate and taste two of our great wines from Australia, of course! 

Frisk Prickly Riesling:

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Frisk Prickly Riesling is a “good for any situation” wine from the Alpine Valleys, Victoria, Australia. It is 89% Riesling and 11% Muscat Gordo. The winemaker describes this refreshing Riesling as “It’s a mouth-revving, lively Riesling that’s light on its feet. You may detect notes of lemon sorbet, bath salts and white lilies layered with spices from your favorite childhood pie shop... guess that depends on your childhood. But you can’t deny its raciness and versatility, sidling up suggestively to food that’s both sweet and spicy. Its intensity will slap you in the face, the oodles of length will have you scrambling for more.” Great wine for a great price at $11.99

 

 

Pillar Box Red

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From the Padthaway region of Australia “The 2010 Pillar Box Red has Brooding, blackberry fruit and dried mint aromas intermingle with dark chocolate, licorice spice, hints of pepper and cedary oak on the nose. The palate exhibits flavors of fresh black and blueberry fruit, toasted dark spice and hints of spearmint. A seamless wine; displaying balance and a fine, long tannin structure.”

 

This wine is matured for a period of 12 months, 30% of the volume with oak using 90% French & 10% American Oak. Ideally served at room temperature, it matches well with a variety of full flavored dishes - it is a great everyday wine. Wine spectator says “Velvety and ripe, offering dark berry and licorice flavors that glide smoothly through the finish. Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2015.”

 

And got 89 points from Wine Advocate! 

 

AND NOW FOR METRO WINES FUN FACT OF THE DAY!!

Pillar Box Red is named after the 19th-century mail coach service that ran through the pastoral property in Padthaway on which the large vineyard is situated. 

 

 

 

 

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Happy Chinese New Year!

January 31st is the Chinese New Year! Happy New Year to all those Horses out there!! We will be pouring wines ALL DAY on the 31st that will pair great with Asian Food.

First on the list is a staff favorite:

Kung Fu Girl Reisling from Washington State.

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"Land to hand. Vineyard to Bottle." So sayeth the winemaker. Vinted and bottled by Charles Smith, this is a fruit driven Riesling but do not fear the sweet. This 100% Riesling from the Evergreen Vineyard in the Columbia Valley is a pure and fresh version of this light skinned German grape. Taste Lychee Nut, peach, citrus flavors and all jazzed up with minerality. It is not enough to say that this wine is good with spicy food, it is more appropriate to say that spicy food demanded this wine. Red Curry calling KungFu Girl Riesling! $13

90 points from Wine Spectator Wine Spectator

Best Value in 2009, 2010 and 2011

Named #51 in the Wine Spectator Top 100 Wines of 2013

 

Next is Burgans Albarino

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Oak? NOT.  In order to highlight the tropical fruit characteristics of the grape, the use of wood is just not on the winemaking table at Bodega Martin Codax for Burgans Albarino 2011. Founded in 1986 by 50 vinticulturalists, the winemaking at Bodega Martin Codax is overseen by Luciano Almoedo.

This wine is made from grapes grown pursuant to sustainable farming practices on hillside vineyards called "Burgans." The grapes are sourced from 1400 closely monitored parcels and harvested by hand. Fermented and aged in stainless steel, the wine is bottled after the spring harvest. Many say that Luciano Almoedo essentially brought Albarino into the world. Burgans 2011 Albarino is made from the oldest vines on the estate and is blended by Eric Solomon "in concert," he says, "with the property." 

We say this wine is ALIVE! Almost like a tropical fruit bowl. There is just a hint of sweetness.  All wine facts and flavors considered, this wine would be perfect with curry!

 

Next up is Joesph Cattin Pinot Noir

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In the traditional Alsatian bottle; this Pinot Noir is rich color. Medium bodied, the wine is appropriately cloaked in oak offering plentiful fruit on the palate. This wine is, to say the very least, VERSATILE. And well structured, Joseph Cattin Pinot Noir has aging potential.

The Cattin family emigrated from Switzerland to Alsace in 1720. In the 1850s, Antoine Cattin focused entirely on wine-growing, and the rest, as they say, is history. This wine is a very attractive ruby colour in the glass. The nose offers earth and red berry tones. The palate echoes the nose and is beautifully structured and balanced. Excellent value. An elegant wine to suit more delicate flavours.

 Last but not least a personal favorite Valle dell’Acate Il Frappato

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Another Gaetana Jacono Wine! Valle dell'Acate Il Frappato is a beautiful new red wine gem from Sicily made from 100% Frappato.  Best Value at $19 !! says Eric Asimov of The New York Times. $16.49 @MetroWines. Eric describes the wine this way: "Bright, floral and harmonious, with an attractive tension between bitter and sweet flavors." Tasting Notes: Valle dell'Acate Il Frappato is light-medium in body. It is light ruby in color with a fragrant, exuberant bouquet of intense blueberry, blackberry and raspberry notes. Its flavors are bright and fresh, with strawberries lingering on the palate. The wine was fermented in stainless steel to retain this varietal's lively red-fruited, highly-aromatic and floral profile, then aged for 6 months in steel tanks followed by 3 months in bottle. It is rich and smooth with a long, polished finish. Suggested retail is $19 and we sell it for $16.49! 

 

Also, be sure to come by on Friday, January 31st to check out our own special Wine Chinese New Years Display!

 

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The Pepper Pot, Stellenbosch, South Africa

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"Five robust components - imaginatively blended to create one gutsy wine. The Pepper Pot. Inspired by the unique culinary traditions of our rainbow nation to bring you a heady yet harmonious blend of plucky pepper, piquant spice and radiant red berry flavors. Proving that in wine, as it is in life, the whole is far greater than the sum of parts. Sealed under a screw cap to insure quality." $14.99

Metro Wines Kendal, says: "Really easy drinking with any type of meat or all by itself. If you like Black Slate, you will enjoy this wine." Her beer loving Dad liked it too!

And critical acclaim from our favorite reviewer89 Points - International Wine Cellar, May/June 2013  "Bright ruby. Slightly reduced aromas of black raspberry, smoke and game are lifted by a peppery quality. Fat, sweet and rich, but with sound acidity giving shape and verve to the concentrated black fruit and gunflint flavors. Finishes with a solid tannic spine. This makes the 2011 seem a bit dry by comparison. An excellent value." -Stephen Tanzer

Tasting notes from wine.co South Africa:

 

type Red style Dry

taste Herbaceous body Medium

producer Edgebaston winemaker David Finlayson

wine of origin Western Capepage1image5424

tasting notes

Made from grown grapes in the Stellenbosch, Paarl and Elgin regions, this wine is created to show the fresh, fruity and spice driven flavours of these Rhone varietals. The colour is youthful and purple/red. The nose is one of crushed black pepper, dark mulberry and mixed berry coulis. 

blend information

72% Syrah, 7% Mourvèdre, 7% Cinsaut, 7% Grenache, 7% Tannat

food suggestions

Pure, clean dark red berry flavours flow onto a smooth palate with sufficient structure to warrant enjoyment with food such as Gourmet Pizza with Carpaccio and rocket salad.

in the vineyard

Origin: Stellenbosch, Paarl and Elgin regions Soil type: Malmesbury Shale on deep red clay

about the harvest

All grapes were hand picked between February - March 2012.

in the cellar

All grapes were fermented in stainless steel tanks. Soft pressed to allow fruit dominant characteristics.

Wood Elevation:
2nd and 3nd Fill French and American oak barrels for 10 months as well as 6500 litre vats. 

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TURNBULL Old Bull 2010, Napa Valley

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We want to be straight up here with you. About 5 years ago, I saw an exhibition of work by women photographers about women at TURNBULL. At the time, and perhaps I was being a little harsh but, based on the wines being poured that day, it seemed like the photographs might be the best product they had to offer. But TURNBULL has turned a corner and stepped on the gas hard. This bottle of Old Bull 2010 represents what they can do. True, this is California so this is big fruit but here, the fruit is well balanced and the wine presents itself like a much more expensive bottle. So TURNBULL today is much more than a host for exhibitions BUT if anyone finds the photograph of Charlotte Rampling that was on display, call me!!!!

 

Winemaker's Notes: The 2010 Old Bull blends the power and richness of Cabernet Sauvignon (51%), with the bold fruit of Syrah (26%) and Petite Sirah (12%), highlighted with the enticing spice of Cabernet Franc (11%). This artful blend achieves amazing complexity and decadent richness while detailing the great vineyard sites and viticultural work that is at the core of all Turnbull wines. Rich with aromas of plums, berries, dried cherries and a touch of mocha, in the glass the dense dark flavors of black cherry and cola dominate.

Blend: 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Syrah, 12% Petite Syrah, 11% Cabernet Franc

Ahhh yes, the name. From the label:  The TURNBULL name goes back to the early 1300s when a gamekeeper of Robert the Bruce saved the king's life by turning away a ferocious bull which had threatened to gore the king. The grateful king knighted his subject "Turnbull" and awarded him a crest featuring a bull's head twisted back that has adorned our wines grown in the Napa Valley since 1979.

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