Yes, this sounds like the name for a fraternity or sorority, but, in fact Alpha Omega is a serious winery in the heart of the Napa Valley. This is a Cab with some complexity and it’s delicious to boot. I think that once it opened up, this wine had some black tea up front followed by the typical dark berry fruit and a refreshing mint finish. Cheers.
My wife made the above statement ”These People Know What They Are Doing” and she’s not kidding. I’ve had great experiences visiting Sawyer Cellars and, moreover, buying their wine. It’s always as good as when we bought it and tonight, we enjoyed the 2005 Cab Sauv. Sawyer tends to barrel age their wines longer than their neighbors, so we’re generally drinking their vintages a bit older than others, but this ’05 stood the test of time and is really a wonderfully balanced wine. This has the smoothness of vanilla and the simple fruit of ripe berries. It’s really a phenomenal wine that showcases the care that went into its production. I’m really looking forward to seeing the great folks at Sawyer in the near future.
I went on an exhaustive search a couple years ago when this wine was awarded No. 1 Wine in the World for 2009 by Wine Spectator.
I located and secured the last 8 bottles in the state of Pennsylvania and kept 4 for myself (initial post here) and shared the others with some friends. While it was hard, we let this one lay down for a couple years in hopes that we’d enjoy it with a hint of “age” on it.
I’ve found that we’re generally happy with the way Washington and California wines are drinking when they are bottled rather than after they have been “laid down” for a few years. So, maybe that means I’m not the extreme oenophile or just that I like a less restrained wine than those that are completely rested.
Either way, this Columbia Crest Reserve Cab stood up nicely to its hibernation in my wine frig. If I had to give it one flavor combination, I’d go with one of my favorite sodas: Cherry Cola. This wine was just phenomenal. I’d like to start buying a few of each vintage to see how they stand up and how they change year to year. This is a great value for the quality delivered and extremely consistent.
I used to joke that the Gallo of Sonoma was my house wine. What could be wrong with that decision and who doesn’t need their own house wine?
It’s a consistent performer, available for ~$12 and it’s nice to have something reliable. Well, that was 10 years ago and I’ve branched out quite a bit since then, but it’s nice to come back to things from the past and the PA Chairman, within the much maligned PLCB made that happen. For $8.99, this could be a powerhouse of a cabernet sauvignon – - had you paid $25, you might feel otherwise, but for the price, this is great. It’s a fruit forward, smooth cab without much pretense or complexity. We enjoyed this earlier in the week with a grassfed sirloin from white oak pastures which on a side note was perfect! The wine matched well and provided exactly what we wanted. Cheers!
We bought the Schweiger Dedication on a visit to Napa a few years ago. We knew when we tasted it in their cellar that it was very special and we’d need a good excuse to open it up at home. Well, after many years of sitting around and waiting for “something special”, we decided that a saturday night at home with braised short ribs, mashed celery root and a happy puppy was perfect.
So, the wine was great. It’s big indeed – lots of spring mountain fruit comes through, but not in an ‘in your face’ jammy-ness where one berry note comes through loud and clear. No, over the years, this has mellowed into a truly balanced, and very powerful deep red wine. I thought it went perfectly with our dinner and didn’t overpower the food, which can sometimes happen with big Napa reds. I’ll now need to revisit Schweiger and create a new occasion to dedicate…
It’s Vanilla Licorice, plain and simple…
With a name like Chateau Chevalier, you’d think this wine was from Bordeaux or perhaps the Rhone, but that assumption would be incorrect. In fact, this is a Napa Valley wine from one of my favorite areas: Spring Mountain. Spring Mountain is probably best known for its Merlot production with great spots like Pride and Paloma, but they have some serious Cabernet Sauvignon too. This is a “value” Cab Sauv which I picked up at Total Wine for less than $20. It’s a smooth, food friendly wine that has that big Napa fruit up front, but not a huge tannic backbone on the finish. The value is in quotes as there are many sub $20 cab sauv’s…just not that many from Napa.
Last night, we ordered delivery from Poppi’s Pizza and opened up this Oak Ridge Zinfandel. It’s been a crazy couple weeks since we picked up our puppy on 12/31. We’ve been so busy with her that we haven’t had the chance to enjoy our wine or look for pizza in our new area. This all changed on Saturday as we really enjoyed the thin crust pizza from Poppi’s and this Zin too. The pizza crust reminds me of Slice which was our favorite spot when we lived in center city. At Poppi’s the dough isn’t quite as crisp, but the crust is. Also, on the plain pizza, the sauce to cheese ratio is just right. Their salads are a cut above the regular pizza place salads too with a spring mix of lettuce and pitted olives. You’d think everyone would serve their olives in salads pitted, but my molars can tell you differently.
On a side note, if you’d like to see my puppy, I’ve created a blog for her too – her name is Macie and she’s a bernedoodle.
This wine is a chill zin – - I don’t mean that it’s a good wine when you are chilling out, which it is, but that it’s not an in-your-face bold, spicy wine. Rather, it’s jammy, like mixed berry jelly and just a bit of oak to balance it out. If you find some zins to be too powerful for you, I think you might like this. Cheers.
We picked up the ’06 Cab while on a visit through Napa a couple years ago. We love the people and wine from Whitehall Lane; it’s a consistent stop for us whenever we’re in the area. The 2006 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is made up exclusively of Napa fruit and isn’t the typical Napa Cab in that it doesn’t have that long smooth finish, but to me, almost finishes like a syrah with some spicy notes that follow the cherry I get right up front. It’s very enjoyable, and was a preview of the wonderful 2007 cab vintage to follow.
For those of you living in PA, you can benefit from the Chairman this month. My issues with the PA LCB aside, they do get some great deals that are worth taking advantage of. In this case, the 2007 Clos La Chance Central Coast Cabernet Sauvignon is a great deal. This is a legitimate $18 bottle of wine available is for $8 and is like a little sister to a Napa Cab. Rather than the big vanilla oak, it’s more of a subtle cedar and reminiscent of that jammy berry-ness, has more of a plum like mid-palate. The finish is fast and doesn’t linger much, but for $8, this is a steal. Maybe some people from NJ and DE will come to PA for this…