Wining Wife®

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Taste the Gold!

A glass of sauvignon blanc wine from unknown o...

A glass of sauvignon blanc wine from unknown origin. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


This week’s tasting at Creekside Cellars focused on Gold and Double Gold winners from the 2012 California State Fair. We tried all 10 wines this week, and there wasn’t one that we thought was bad out of the lot.


NV Korbel Brut Rosé, California ($14) – We’re not big champagne or sparkling wine drinkers, so it is difficult to be partial when writing about sparkling wine. This one was pretty good as a champagne, and if we were looking for something for a New Years Eve toast, we might consider it.


2011 Estancia Sauvignon Blanc, Pinnacles Ranches, Monterrey County ($17) – This was very nice. The nose was filled with the bouquet of Douglas Fir Trees. The wine had notes of apricots and pluot. It wasn’t too filled with citrus. It also was much warmer than most sauvignon blancs. This is one of those wines you want to try if you’re not sure you enjoy the traditional Sauvignon Blanc that has a lot of citrus in it.


2011 Brassfield Estate Winery “Serenity” White Wine, Blend of Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Gewurztraminer, High Valley, California ($17) – This wine had notes of Granny Smith or Fuji apples, and strawberries. This wine was very approachable and easy drinking. It would be a great wine to serve at a book club night.


2010 Landmark Vineyards “Overlook” Chardonnay, Sonoma County ($30) – This wine was big and buttery but still light with hints of cloves. It would go very well with an Easter ham, and it is an outstanding choice for those looking for a chardonnay. It was a lovely balance of cream and oak, without being over the top like many of the California chardonnays are.


2010 Forefront (by Pine Ridge) Pinot Noir ($23) – This wine would pair well with anything, and was definitely a wonderful choice for the menu. It had a balance between fruit and tobacco, as well as paprika. It was phenomenal with the salami that was served on the cheese plate.


2010 Red Rock Winery Winemakers’ Blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah, California ($13) – I was surprised to find out the price of some of the wines on the list this week, and this one was no exception. It was fruity and had notes of blackberries, creme de casis, dark fruit, and sun dried tomatoes. It would pair well with a bold marinara sauce.


Sonoma County Grapes

Sonoma County Grapes (Photo credit: J. Stephen Conn)


2009 Vino Noceto “Dos Oakies” Sangiovese, Shenandoah Valley, California ($30) – This wine was just beautiful. It had notes of almonds, vanilla, and raspberries. The wine had a heavy, full body and was quite creamy. It would pair well with pizza and would be phenomenal with Mexican food.

2008 Carol Shelton “Karma” Zinfandel, Sonoma Valley ($33) This wine had roses, coffee, and milk chocolate on the nose. It was creamy and had notes of red fruit and black pepper. It was a very good wine, and would cellar very well.

2009 Doe Mill Vineyards Smokey Ridge Red Blend of Zinfandel Petite Sirah, and Cabernet Sauvignon, Sierra Foothills, California ($24) – This wine was absolutely amazing, and was the star of the night’s tastings. It would pair perfectly with  filet mignon. It was absolutely amazing and rich and bold.

2009 Napa Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley This wine was full bodied, creamy, and had notes of dark chocolate and espresso It would be lovely paired with creme brulee.



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  1. What’s your favorite movie that talks about wine-making? Mine is French Kiss starring Meg Ryan, Kevin Kline and Timothy Hutton.

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