The Front Porch Wine Tasters hit the road this past week for a long weekend in the mountains. I was really looking forward to taking time to relax with friends & family.
We had a blast!
I’m grateful that I survived the trip up the mountain. Steve gets a little distracted by lakes and streams that are alongside the road. He lets the car get a kinda sweevy as he looks too long while deciding if… “Yep! There’s fish in there!” at Every. Body. of water we pass.
He also gets irritated by me:
- Reminding him that he is driving
- Clutching the door handle/bracing for impact
- Telling him I don’t want a close up view of the water from the car as it falls off the road
Needless to say, he was excited to be going fishing.
We all had a great time fishing, hiking and playing all kinds of games and, as always, we had a lot of laughs.
Some of us may have even sang and/or danced (there is video).
Boys will be Boys (great wine glass balancing skills!)
Full Contact Croquet
So, on Winesday, we gathered on the Front Porch to debrief while we tasted some new wines that Steve has brought in just in time for Father’s Day!
Hillersden Sauv Blanc ~ Anthony Koster Chard
Chillhouse Zin ~ Parlay Red Blend ~ Old Mill Petite Sirah
2014 Hillersden Sauvignon Blanc
Marlmorough, New Zeland
$3.99 at Manteca Grocery Outlet ~ $14.99 elsewhere
Kerri tasted fruity undertones, she doesn’t usually care for a Sauvignon Blanc but she liked this one. She seemed surprised at herself as she said again that she liked it. Becky thought in the glass it looked more like a chardonnay, she tasted tobacco. Joe agreed. Scott called it nice, not sweet and Steve found it fruity. Larry thought it was good right out of the bottle as he downed the last drop. Keepin it classy.
3.7/5 stars from Vivino.com: Clean @ crisp with a bit of fruit. I loved it. Easy drinking and a great summer wine. I was able to find it way under retail (probably @ Grocery Outlet) and might get a case
2016 Anthony Koster Family Estates Chardonnay
$5.99 at Manteca Grocery Outlet ~ $18.99 elsewhere
On first taste, Connie said: “mmmmm, ew la la”. Larry said it was creamy. Becky thought it was more like a sauvignon blanc, and she tasted guava. She also tasted oak and said it was really good. Joe tasted peach or apricot, he couldn’t decide at first. After a couple sips he confirmed, peach. Scott found this Chardonnay to be smoky.
no on-line reviews found 😦 ~ this’ll be the first 🙂
2010 Parlay the Bookmaker Red Blend
Central Coast, Ca
$4.99 at Manteca Grocery Outlet ~ $19.99 elsewhere
Take a gamble on the blend, it always pays off! I heard Terry quietly say, “Oh! This is REALLY good, tastes like grape juice.” (I think she didn’t want me to hear). Kerri commented on the great aroma and Connie agreed with Terry – Tastes like mature grape juice. Becky tasted tobacco and Joe said he liked the dryness. Rudy agreed and Scott named this his favorite of the night.
88.4 points from Cellartracker.com: Mellow with dried fruit and earth flavors. For the price ($21 for me), it is a nice Wednesday night wine. I wouldn’t crack it open for special occasions but this would be really good with some BBQ ribs or grilled meats.
From the bottle: Rich aromas and sumptuous flavors of boysenberry & ripe black cherry form the backbone of this delicious wine made from premiere grapes grown at a combination of central coast vineyards in California.
2012 Peachy Canyon Chill House Zinfandel
~ Silver Medal Winner ~
$5.99 at Manteca Grocery Outlet ~ $17.99 elsewhere
Kerri started us out with this Paso Zin, she tasted cherries. Connie said this wine was like having dessert. Terry agreed, she found it sweet. Connie added that this Chill House Zin really lights a fire, (she would have said her fire, but didn’t think she should) Smokin’ Hot Chill House. Becky thought it smelled like an old vine zin and Joe agreed. She added that she tasted Cuban cigar. She said she likes this one a lot, it stays with you – lingers. She said, “Let it sit on your tongue and it starts to tingle”. Yeah baby!
88 points from Tastings.com: Deep purple color. Mild aromas of baked berries, cocoa, and pickling spices with a soft, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a seamless, breezy dried berries and raisins, chocolate orange peels, and nuts finish with chewy tannins and light oak. A nice and easy, everyday zin.
2014 The Old Mill Petite Sirah – Classic Nightfall Series
Amador County, Ca
$6.99 at Manteca Grocery Outlet ~ $ elsewhere
Right off the bat, I knew I would like this one! Joe agreed from his first sniff. He said, “Oh man that is really good – what is it (referring to the aroma) it is deep… Becky thought this Petite Syrah would pair nicely with a rack of lamb. Joe added that the description on the label is spot on and he commented on the ‘nice stems’. Rudy tasted oak and fruit. Kerri smelled pipe tobacco and Becky agreed. Joe tasted licorice. Becky closed with, “this is really good”.
From the bottle: When Nightfall comes at The Old Mill, take the time to unwind and pour yourself a glass of this bold Petite Sirah. The rich, oak accented dark fruit flavors and aromas create intense color and soft structure.