Tasting Notes

Wine Reviews

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2007 Freeman Akiko’s Cuvee Pinot Noir, Sonoma

Elegant and sophisticated, this wine takes a bit of coaxing to open up. Patience rewards with a nose of luscious ripe plums and dark berries with a sassafras twist. The color is a vivid shade of red. Supple on the palate, warm musk complements the deep fruit, with a tingle of cola on the end. Hints of rose petals taper to a lingering finish. A more detailed review about this wine and the winery is available here on Another Wine Blog.
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2007 Freeman Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Bright garnet in color, the nose reminds us of freshly fallen autumn leaves, dark cherry and a hint of cola. On the palate, we tasted more cherry, red raspberry and earthy mushroom with toasty oak. Pleasant minerality with a medium finish, this is a very nice young wine that possesses plenty of structure for aging. A more detailed review about this wine and the winery is available here on Another Wine Blog.
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2006 Andrew Rich Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley

Lots of red fruit, overripe strawberry and black cherry, with some sage, fennel and wax, on the nose. The palate matches the nose, plus a bit of allspice. It also has a certain savoriness, a silky umami, that makes the overall impression far more than the sum of the individual flavors.
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2007 Donnafugata Ben Ryé Passito di Pantelleria DOC

When people who don't love sweet wines ask for more, you know this is a particularly great vintage – and I’ve had this wine several times before. A floral hint wafts up at first. Early sips are orange, apricot and raisin, deepening to raisin and fig as it opens in the glass. Acidity and sugars are beautifully balanced. The apricot finish is just long enough.
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2006 Deerfield Ranch Old Vine Zinfandel, Buchignani/Garcia Vineyard, Dry Creek Valley

The nose is a load of blueberries, chocolate, tobacco - and fresh pecan pie, straight from the oven. All of a sudden, it was autumn, and I was diving into a moist pile of leaves in my front yard. That sweet, bold earth scent filled my mouth, and the finish had a plum and cherry chutney element that reminded me of a holiday in Chicago - trees lit up, walking the Miracle Mile and stopping for a hot apple cider.
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2005 Earthquake Petite Sirah, Lodi

This big fruit bomb delivers powerful blackberry and spice with an alcohol punch at 15.5 percent. They have too much fun with the name "it will rock your world, etc." but it's big wine. Fruit bomb has become a derisive term used by lots of wine writers. This is definitely a fruit bomb, but what's wrong with that? Wouldn't it be boring if they were all the same! If you like big wine, its hard not to like Earthquake. Read Howard’s full review on his blog Grape Sense.
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Westons English Cider, Herefordshire England

Made by H. Weston and Sons, a cidery established in Hereforshire since 1880, still owned by the Weston family, this lovely sparkling dry cider was aged in oak vats, which probably explains its smooth, full-bodied character. Pleasantly and moderately effervescent, it shows aromas of fresh, well-ripened apples, reminiscent of "cooking" apples like Cortland or Braeburn. Acidity seems lower than in, say, a Blackthorn or a Strongbow, giving the Stowford Press a smoother overall feel, and a rounder profile, overall. A mellow and pleasant winter sipper, although a crisper style may be more pleasant on a hot summer day. You can read more tasting notes by Rémy Charest on The Wine Case.
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2008 Cowhorn Vineyard Spiral 36, Applegate Valley

Blend of Viognier 35%, Marsanne 30%, Roussanne 35% grapes. This wine is made at the certified biodynamic Cowhorn winery with natural yeasts and no malolactic fermentation. Light golden color with great clarity. Apple and pear flavors with some delicious honeysuckle on the nose. Refreshing acids make it a solid choice for roast chicken.