We’re in Cincinnati for a wedding this weekend and they served the Black Box Cabernet at the welcome party last night. We’ve seen the write ups in Wine Spectator as a best buy and the advertisements in the liquor store, so we had to try it. I don’t think you’ll see it on the restaurant menu in the near future; can you imagine the sommelier coming over with the boxed wine and tearing the cardboard in lieu of the art of the cork removal and presentation?
That said, the pomp and circumstance of the bottle aside, the wine itself, the juice if you will was enjoyable. I think the yellowtails of the world and college kids enjoying them (and others too) should be very concerned. The wine was lush red berry fruit with a silky texture, smooth, nicely rounded and approachable.
If you’re a single person who wants a glass of wine each night and is concerned about spoilage, this could be a good solution for you.
This is one of the first Pennsylvania Red wines that I’ve had in a long time. A friend brought it to dinner last night and we all had some. I found it light and fruity, with a touch of strawberry. An easy drinking wine without the backbone of a Napa style meritage, this Vintner’s Select Red is more reminiscent of a red table wine with the versatility to compliment many lighter fares.
Last night, we were out with friends and opened one of the true treasures from our last Napa trip: the 2007 ZD Rosa Less Petite Sirah. This is one of those bottles that you can only get by visiting the vineyard and for $30 is a great purchase. It was a great wine to start the night with as it had a nice upfront berry, almost sweetness and a roll-off-your-tongue finish. I wish we bought a few of these rather than just one.
We were at a friend’s house last night who took the step that many wine lovers want to (but are afraid to do) – they made their own wine. It was really enjoyable. I’m not sure what was cooler, having wine with the actual people that made it or seeing the barrel that they pulled it out of just an hour before we arrived. Apparently, the hardest thing to do is to let the wine age in the barrel when the barrel is just steps from the kitchen and you can thieve the wine at any time. Winemakers should make a timed lock that only allows home wine folks to take a certain amount at any given time; this would force patience when you really just want a glass of your own wine. Either way, it was an easy drinking red that will benefit from some more time in the barrel and you can really taste the potential.
I had the pleasure of dining with some colleagues at Fish last night (1708 Lombard St, Phila, PA). This place is so serious about its seafood offering that if you want chicken or steak, you need to give them 24 hours notice.
So, that wasn’t a problem for me. Dinner was well executed end-to-end. Our waitress thoroughly explained everything and her detailed menu descriptions were informative, but made the menu decisions that much more challenging. While I didn’t eat very much of it, the goats milk butter was really enjoyable: think goat cheese meets creamery butter.
I started with the Lobster (oyster mushroom, salsify, duck fat bearnaise) which was a decent sized Lobster portion for an appetizer, though there never seems to be enough Lobster for me. This bearnaise may have ruined me on bearnaise for a while; it was rich, yet used judiciously, so as not to overwhelm the well prepared Lobster. For dinner, I enjoyed the Skate Wing (truffled spaetzle, parmesan broth, melted leeks) which admittedly, I had read about before going to the restaurant. I understand it’s a mainstay at their sister restaurant, Little Fish and I really enjoyed it. The most puzzling before it arrived was the parmesan broth and I can’t think of another way to describe it. Think very light dairy infused with a very sharp parmesan. The skate was perfectly cooked and the spaetzle was perfect to soak up any remaining broth.
We enjoyed a bottle of Borgo Moncalvo, Dolcetto d’Asti, Piedmont, Italy, 2006 with dinner. This was a classic Dolcetto as it was light without too much fruit and had a medium tannin finish. It was a good compliment to our dinners.
Petit Verdot is often used as a blending grape, so finding a Napa vineyard that produces a 100% Petit Verdot is a bit unusual. This 2006 Trinchero Petit Verdot was an enjoyable start to the evening. It’s a somewhat lighter, full bodied wine that I think worked really nicely with our Greek appetizers. For people that don’t live the dry reds, this works well, but certainly isn’t a ‘fruit bomb’, so it’s versatile enough to go with many foods. Not to use one of the typical wine terms, but I think there was a slight cedar-y finish to it: nice and crisp.
We enjoyed this when we dined at 24K on Saturday night for a private dinner with the chefs (next post will be about dinner). This was a special occasion and the wine matched the company. It took a few minutes to open up, but this was a true spring mountain cabernet with berry and medium licorice tones and proved easily consumed for all. If you’re a PA resident, this is one of the Chairman’s selections in the store.
Review on Snooth: http://www.snooth.com/wine/schweiger-vineyards-cabernet-sauvignon-2003/