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Monday, May 21, 2012

Some Nice California Wines

It was a busy weekend in Virginia for my sister’s graduation ceremony from Georgetown’s Masters Degree program but I still managed to write up some tasting notes from a few wines that I hadn’t tasted before.  For the celebration dinner after the graduation ceremony, we went to Fyve Restaurant at the Ritz Carlton in Arlington, Virginia.  Since the menu appeared to reflect mostly American flavors, I decided to select American wines.
With seafood appetizers, I chose a somewhat inexpensive wine that I felt would pair nicely and it did.  It was the 2009 Miner “Simpson Vineyard” California Viognier, and it was delicious.  Pale gold in color, it shows characteristics of mostly orchard fruit and tropical fruit including ripe peach and papaya, as well as the floral notes we’d expect from a Viognier.  The wine has is a bit round and very smooth with nice underlying acidity and a very clean feel.

With beef tenderloin, I chose the 2006 Grgich Hills Napa Zinfandel and asked for it to be decanted, as I didn’t want the aromas leaping wildly from the glass and I wanted to be sure that after several years in the bottle, any sediment the wine may have accumulated would remain in the bottle.  The wine was lovely and softened more than I had anticipated. It’s a dark red color and shows characteristics of mostly dark stewed fruits, dark wild berry, plum, bold spices, oak, and some earthiness.  It’s a big wine but it’s softening, it’s nicely balanced, and it’s delicious.

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