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“For every beauty there is an eye somewhere to see it.
For every truth there is an ear somewhere to hear it. For every love there is a
heart somewhere to receive it.” ~Ivan Panin
Pinot Noir is known to many, as a grape of great depth
and balance. For many producers especially in the new world, it’s known as the
heart-break grape. In Burgundy its ancestral home, it has the well renowned
[and may I say well-deserved] reputation for producing some of the very best
wines in world and has been doing so for longer than any of us have been alive.
For me, these wines do have great beauty, they speak truth in every sip, slurp
and even the eventual gulp and with each bottle I confirm my love for this
Just before harvest, weighing heavy upon the vine,
you’ll find clusters of Pinot Noir grapes, blue to violet and still some
sporting indigo colors and for me that builds the anticipation of the good
things to come down the road.
Furthering that excitement, seeing Bien Nacido
Vineyards on the label nine times out of ten, I’m getting the style of Pinot,
which I know will make me and Mrs. Cuvee very happy, which is the reason why I
purchased this wine, without a moment’s hesitation. I’ve never purchased a
bottle of wine from this producer before, but knowing this vineyards
reputation, I was confident that I was coming home with a winner.
Many vino-sapiens know this grape has a reputation for
breaking hearts and not just those producers, but also for the consumer who
hopes they can beat the odds and save a few coins by purchasing Pinot Noir’s
under the sacred $10 threshold, only to find out later the good ones under that
price point are the extreme exception and nowhere near the rule.
Now to that point the wine in today’s spotlight set me
back $24, not a king’s ransom by any stretch. But I know for many this price
point not going to be a Tuesday evening wine. I get that, but that said this
wine would normally sell for upwards of $40 to grab it from their tasting room
or website. In a restaurant forget about a wine like this, will sell for
upwards of $70 or more. So getting a wine of this caliber for the price point I
did, to me be is quite the bargain, one you should consider grabbing, if you
have the opportunity. It’s well worth the price of admission, a wine I scored
91 points, a bit less generous than my pals over at WE who have ad-space to
Wondering about how it taste? Right after popping the
cork, whoa an explosion of aromas pops me in the nose; juicy, young
cherry-pie-like fruit its main motif. After I get this wine in the glass wow a
deep cranberry colored red core. Once in the glass finely tuned smoky red and
dark berries give my nose another slap.
After I go in for the first slurp, a bit sappy and
gently sweet, offering broad raspberry and cherry-pie crust flavors, notes of
smoked meat, wet earth play quietly in the background, with just the right pop
of acidity to carry the abundant low hanging fruit.
You will find this supple; a nicely knit-together pinot
sporting supple well integrated tannin, which finishes with good clarity and
lift on the back-end. It would make an excellent wine for the upcoming holiday
activities, including Thanksgiving, as it has many generous properties which
lend its self to easy pairing options. Over the next few days, I will be reviewing
3 more outstanding Pinot Noir’s I’ve recently sampled, so stay tuned. Until
next folks sip long and prosper cheers!
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wines…are known to enjoy mingling with oxygen after having been corked up! But newly
freed vino thus unfurls its charms by being poured from one container to the
next for an invigorating rendezvous with aeration." ~ Andrea Immer Robinson
Many thirsty vino-sapiens
out thereon the purple paved highways and byways ask the age-old question do
you really need to ‘decant’? For many it’s an easy answer and still for others
if they must, then they would prefer a short-cut, after all we live in an “App”
oriented culture today, which is just the fancy way to say it's a shortcut. Face it we live in a culture today that wants fast cars and fast foods, one that wants everything in a microwaved minute. Soit should not be anysurprise that alternatives to traditional 'decanting' have come on the scene.
First let’s examine the
basic well known purpose or reason behind the supposed need to decant wines. The
simple reasoning behind pouring wine from the bottle into a larger vessel is
done for the purpose of allowing the wine to “breathe”.
But what does that mean; it’s
a way to bring out the wines rich aromas and hopefully mellowing tannins, to
hopefully create a smoother finish and a better experience. This is said to be accomplished,
the wine to have more room to interact with oxygen, far more than just by
uncorking the bottle.
Now the claim by Vinturi the
[short-cut] wine aerator, is that it supposedly achieves the ideal mix
of wine and oxygen with each pour, no fuss and no muss. Just pour the red wine ofyour choicethrough the
device from the bottle into your hopefully clean and lint free stem and you're ready to go.
Vinturi does offer separate
models for red and one for white wine and now even one for spirits oh-my. Claiming it’s for the purposes of optimal
aeration for every sip, slurp and maybe even the eventual gulp. While testing
this product over the last 60 days on many different bottles of red-wine I
really didn’t see a measured result that would make me think ‘wow’ this is the
product I’ve been waiting for, my days of decanting are over, woo-hoo.
But on the other hand I
did see a small, but appreciable difference between the wine that had been through the
Vinturi and wine that had not gonethrough it at all, so there is something to it. Even Mrs. Cuvee gave it her “good” rating. Speaking
of good, it’s well to remember, when holding the Vinturi, try not to put your
fingers over the holes, otherwise it just defeats the purpose. Second, don’t
let it fall into your stem or you’ll be picking up a lot of glass later.
While I won’t be tossing
my decanter aside anytime soon, I will still be using the Vinturi for some of
the simpler reds which I think could still benefit from a bit of “instant
aeration”. But that said, I think big red wines likegrand, aged Barolo for example, may need to be opened the night before and poured into a traditional decanter. The reason being; so that the wine can be decanted several hours before it's even close to being ready or risk a wine that's just too tight to want to come out and meet you.
Other places and or moments
where I think this product [I'm sure there are more] would come-in very handy would be on picnics,
backpacking and even those impromptu entertaining moments which many of us call
What comes in each
package, the Vinturi Aerator I received as a sample comes with a convenient
stand to store in between uses [but don’t forget to clean the well out often].
It also comes with a screen to grab any sediment which may attempt to make its
way to your glass, a good thing unless you like crunchy wines.
This product cleans up
easy and is easily transported. They also offer it in a smaller size for the
savvy vino-sapiens [ladies] who’d like to keep one in their purse. The prices for
this product can be widely different; I’ve seen it for as much as $60 all the
way down to $30. If you can find one in the lower price range, I’d recommend
grabbing one for the arsenal of otherwine gadgets you may already have. Until next time folks remember to
sip long and prosper cheers!
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