Les Dauphins, Côtes du Rhône, Villages, 2016

Les Dauphins, Côtes du Rhône, Villages, 2016 is deep garnet red. The 2016 is a blend of 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 5% Mouvedre, 5% Carignan. The nose is hit with rich aromas of raspberry, blueberry and fresh ground black pepper. The palate is greeted with expressive dark berries at the height of ripeness. Tannins are soft and show up on the back end. Crisp tropical fruit acidity leads to a long pleasing finish. Les Dauphins, Côtes du Rhône, Villages, 2016 is made with 100% organic grapes. This wine shows how careful wine making techniques can achieve wonderful results. Les Dauphins, … Continue reading Les Dauphins, Côtes du Rhône, Villages, 2016

Cocktails to warm the Thanksgiving table and beyond

Noggy Root .50 part Drambuie 1 part Glenfiddich 14 Bourbon Cask 1 part Chameleon Caramel Cold Brew Concentrate 2 parts EggnogDear Richard, .50 Root Beer Garnish: Freshly Grated Nutmeg — Hot Honey Butter 2 parts Drambuie 1 Heaping tbsp Natural Apple Butter ½ tbsp Unsalted Butter 6 parts Steamed Whole Milk (Or choice milk-base) 1 small pinch Kosher Salt 1/8 tsp Ground Cinnamon 1/8 tsp Ground Nutmeg Garnish with steamed milk foam and Cinnamon Stick Serve in small mug/teacup Method: Steam milk, apple butter and spices together until hot. Double-strain into cup over butter. Stir in Drambuie. Top with additional … Continue reading Cocktails to warm the Thanksgiving table and beyond

Hardywood, Reserve Series, Virginia Blackberry

, Richmond, VA, 6.8% abv. is a hazy amber color with a thin off white head. The aromas of blackberry are strong up front as expected. Hints of lightly toasted wheat and yeast are in the back of the nose. The palate is greeted with the blackberries with a yeasty finish and slight acidity to cleanse the palate. Make sure you don’t think the Hardywood, Reserve Series, Virginia Blackberry is a fruity beer not to be taken too serious. Hardywood, Reserve Series, Virginia Blackberry is a true Belgian style ale made by serious brewers. Hardywood got its blackberries from AgriBerry … Continue reading Hardywood, Reserve Series, Virginia Blackberry

Michael Shaps, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Viognier, Charlottesville, VA

Michael Shaps, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Viognier, Charlottesville, VA, 2015 has a rich golden yellow hue. Aromas of pear, golden apple, peach and mandarin orange fill the nose. The back of the nose has faint hints of perfume trying to break through. The front of the palate bursts with fresh citrus notes balanced by stone fruits. There is a pleasant tart acidity that has your mouth begging for another sip. As you keep enjoying the wine the fruit on the palate becomes more pronounced.   Now for the good and bad news about the Michael Shaps, Virginia Museum of … Continue reading Michael Shaps, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Viognier, Charlottesville, VA

Famiglia Cotarella, Sodale, Merlot, Lazio, Italy, 2015

is dark garnet red with purple highlights. The nose starts out with blackberry and tart strawberry backed by a flinty minerality. Black cherry is a constant running through the nose. The palate is filled with tart dark fruits that please the mouth. Tannins run from the front to back of the mouth but are smooth. Dry slate is present on the finish with mouth cleaning acidity that lead to a long finish and leave you looking for the next sip.   The Famiglia Cotarella, Sodale, Merlot begs for a rich beef stew with crushed tomatoes and root vegetables. A crusty … Continue reading Famiglia Cotarella, Sodale, Merlot, Lazio, Italy, 2015

Another Pumpkin Beer to look for. Spooky, Blue Mountain Brewing

Spooky, Blue Mountain Brewing, Arrington, VA, 8.2% abv. is brewed with pumpkin and cocoa nibs and aged in Bourbon barrels. The Spooky has a dark amber/ pumpkin hue with a quickly receding tan head. The cocoa nibs hit the nose first backed by dark roasted malt blended with caramel. Slight hints of smoke blend with spiced notes to round out the nose and prepare the palate for what is about to come. The palate is filled with sweet caramel up front with roasted malt. Hints of bourbon follow leading to a long finish with a drying pumpkin taste and effect. … Continue reading Another Pumpkin Beer to look for. Spooky, Blue Mountain Brewing

It’s Pumpkin Beer Season Hardywood, Reserve Series, Farmhouse Pumpkin

Hardywood, Reserve Series, Farmhouse Pumpkin, Richmond, VA 8.5%abv. is dark pumpkin orange color with a light tan head in the glass. The aromas remind one of a crisp fall afternoon, with fresh baked pumpkin pie spiced with cinnamon, clove and allspice. The palate is filled with those baking spices backed with smooth pumpkin running through the palate. There also some nice acidity that leads to a nice long finish.   Hardywood, Reserve Series, Farmhouse Pumpkin would be a great compliment to accompany Thanksgiving dinner. It works with roasted turkey with a rich gravy, sausage spiked stuffing and creamy mashed sweet … Continue reading It’s Pumpkin Beer Season Hardywood, Reserve Series, Farmhouse Pumpkin

Peach season means it is Bellini Time

Peach season is in full swing and that means it is time to make Bellinis.  Invented and made famous by Harry’s Bar in Venice, Italy.  The Bellini is the ultimate romantic drink to sip during the summer.  Seasonal has been the catchphrase for using the best foods of the season, so here is the perfect summer drink to enjoy.  Here is how to prepare the perfect Bellini. 3 each    white or yellow peeled peaches 1/2 cup  simple syrup* 1 bottle  cold Prosecco Combine peeled peaches and simple syrup in a blender and blend until pureed.  Fill a half a … Continue reading Peach season means it is Bellini Time

Chateau Rollan de By, 2011

Chateau, Rollan de By, Medoc, 2011 is dark garnet red. Earthy aromas of wet leaves, tobacco, cedar box and minerals dominate the nose. The Rollan de By opens up more on the palate. Strawberry, tart blackberry, and violets shine on the front of the palate. The earthy flavors on the nose return on the back of the palate. Tannins are present but no over powering and should mellow out nicely as this wine ages. The finish is long with mouth drying acidity to round out and balance the Rollan de By. The Rollan de By still needs time to settle … Continue reading Chateau Rollan de By, 2011

National Rum Day is August 16. Make it Spicy with Sailor Jerry’s Spiced Rum

Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum is a straight-up, no nonsense, old-school rum. Back in the day, sailors used to smooth out their high-proof rum ration with spices, and we follow that same tradition. Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum was created in honor of American tattoo legend and Navy Vet, Norman “Sailor Jerry” Collins. Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum embodies the independent spirit and unapologetic attitude of the rum’s namesake who was noted for saying “My work speaks for itself.”  So whether you enjoy it in your favorite cocktail, or just served up on the rocks, celebrate National Rum Day in the most badass way … Continue reading National Rum Day is August 16. Make it Spicy with Sailor Jerry’s Spiced Rum