First off, I have to thank everyone who participated in this month's Wine Blogging Wednesday. It was a very challenging theme, I know, and I am fully impressed that 29 of you found a bottle that qualified.
Even more impressive, more than a handful of you scored "Bonus Points" for selecting a wine from a winery with fewer than 1,000 cases annual production. Bravo!
Before I start the wrap-up, I just want to mention that Jens suggested a wine-swap between the participants. Corkdork thought regional tastings might be more manageable. If you're interested in either of these options, let me know, and I'll hook you up with others who express interest.
Edited: I really wanted to get everything done in one post, but it was not to be. The final dozen or so posts will be up tomorrow night. Thanks for your patience!
- Beau of Basic Juice found himself a gorgeous-sounding bottle of Silvio Grasso 'Pi Vigne' Barolo 2000 ($54). Though he's not sure his food pairing was quite right for this wine, he gave the wine a 4.5 (out of 5).
- Brett at In Praise of Sardines wrote a great post about why he didn't drink the $36 bottle of Samsara Verna's Vineyard Syrah. For what it's worth, I expect that Brett is right on the money about this wine being a rockstar in 5 or 10 years.
- Confabulist followed the Syrah trail to sample a Santa Ynez brooder, Margerum Purisima Mountain ($32). He tells us that he wishes there was "a little acid, or some soft tannins, or just a little something something to give the tasting experience more of a profile".
- From Alder at Vinography comes yet another Syrah (I guess now we know that Syrah yields aren't huge, huh?) -- Baldassari Family, Bennett Valley ($30). Considering that this is the inaugural release of a brand new winery, the high score Alder gives it is quite impressive.
- Derrick at Obsession with Food wrote a review, but his site seems to be down at the time this round-up was written, so I'll have to update later.
- Darla, whose blog has one of the best names ever (Messy Cucina) found a local Iowan wine, The Village Vintner Grape Wine ($6.50). Impressive. Pears, grapes & residual sugar abound in this wine, and Darla says she'd buy it again.
- Over at WineCast, Humanitas L'Huile de Garagiste ($30) took center stage. This Super-Tuscan-style wine piqued Tim's interest so much that he interviewed the vintner for a podcast. It's available at the link above.
- Another Super-Tuscan style blend comes to us from William at Wine Geek. Spann Vineyards Mo Jo ($30) has a bit of everything but the kitchen sink -- Sangiovese, Cab. Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Petite Sirah. Tim says it's "super".
- Lenn, our fearless WBW leader, trumps nearly everyone with his itty bitty submission -- Waters Crest Winery Meritage. This winery's total production (186 cases) was WELL under the single-wine limit!
- Dr. Vino picks a cool "wine geek's wine": Luddite Vineyards Abouriou ($19). Total production on this wine was probably under 50 cases, and definitely under 100. An interesting and unique bottling which I, personally, am fascinated by and dying to try!
- Ian from Home Winery found Scotch Block's Divine Gooseberry ($13 Canadian). He highly recommends this with a spicy curry, which sounds about perfect on this chilly San Francisco evening.
- Jathan over at Wine Expression really summed up my thoughts on this theme beautifully. He writes, "These smaller producers are in touch with their vineyards and make the best possible wine given their production restrictions." For his wine, he chose Herb Lamb Vineyards EII, a Bordeaux-style blend. This one sounds like a great foil for rich cheeses.
- Andy at Spittoon missed the 250 case mark, but it certainly wasn't for lack of trying. He brings us a Bodegas Contino Vina del Oliva Reserva (£45). He gives it a 92/100 score.
- Joe & Lori at A Girl, A Guy & A Bottle participate in their first WBW this month -- welcome! They sample several wines from Pelican Ranch Winery. Their favorite, the Viognier ($25) was their favorite, with its intense aromas. Hurry, though, only 46 cases made!
- Cam gives us an amazing tasting write-up, centered around a Chris Ringland Shiraz (formerly known as "Three Rivers"). Cam says it's a stellar wine (96/100), and expresses dismay at the Parker reviews which have driven the prices of this wine through the roof.
- Ryan at Catavino tasted a unique and lively-sounding Reserva y Cata, Crianza, Lindes Del rio Molina. This 100% Garnacha (aka Grenache) scored 3.5/5 on Ryan's scale.
- And back we go to Syrahs -- this time Olson Ogden Unti Vineyard Syrah ($35.99), brought to us by Serge the Concierge. New Jersey residents can get a 5% discount at Amanti Vino by mentioning WBW.
- My lovely friend Laura (Cucina Testarossa) brings us a precious view of Burgundy with Domaine de l'Arlot Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru "Clos des Forets St. Georges". She reminds us to give "good ol' Burgundy a bread" with an "elegant, earthy pinot noir".