Monday, June 29, 2009

My wife's birthday

Last Friday we went to the Palace restaurant in the Cincinnatian for my wife's birthday. They have a Prix fixe menu with two savory items from the menu and one sweet for $44.00. We both ordered appetizers and I had a chicken dish and my wife had a salmon dish. The food was exceptional. We chose a Verdicchio to have with our meal. This is a wine comes from the Marche region of central Italy on the Adriatic. More specifically it comes from the zone Castelli di Jesi. This particular example comes from a wine maker named Maurizio Marchetti. This is a vibrant white wine light enough to pair well with fish and chicken, yet it has enough body to hold up well with rich sauces. We both very much enjoyed this wine and finished it in the room with out accompaniment and it was just as good without food. This is a nice change of pace for a summer sipper. The restaurant price was $35 and I think it perhaps could be had for as little as $10 to $12 dollars retail. For those with a bit of adventure give it a try.

Our New Venture

After getting the short of the end of the stick on an attempt to purchase an existing wine store in Cincinnati, my wife and I decided to look for a building and open a wine store and tasting room from scratch. We have found a building in Mt Washington and will close on it within several weeks. We have purchased a liquor license, that we are in the process of transferring to our business. We have begun jumping through all of the other hoops to get to our opening day. It is our hope to be open with our store by mid September or early October. I have established a Facebook fan page "Water Tower Fine Wines and Tasting Room" and a Twitter acct. "wtfinewines". Both sites will have updates with progress and the twitter acct will have information on what wines I am opening each day, that can be sampled for a small fee. Please visit and follow these pages for updates and We will look forward to seeing you once we are open.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Great Value

Last Friday I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to join #TTL or twitter taste live. The featured winery was Clos LaChance and we were trying several of their entry level or Hummingbird series wines. Included were an unoaked Chardonnay Glittering- Throated Emerald 2008 Monterey Co., Cabernet Sauvignon Ruby - Throated 2006 Central Coast and finally Meritage Crimson Topaz 2007 Central Coast. First as a blogger, I was privileged enough to get these gratis. That said, I have no issues with pointing out if I do not like a wine, because what I may find a flaw may be desirable to others. First we tried the Chardonnay, which if tried blind all of those assembled would have sworn was a New Zealand Sauv Blanc. The wine had loads of citrus with hints of other tropical fruit, which to me was largely overridden by the grapefruit. I am not a fan of citrus/grassy sauv blancs, however this wine was very refreshing and would have been perfectly suited for a hot evening on the deck. Next we tried the Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine was great,particularly for the money (under $20). There was rich black raspberry flavors that coated my tongue. This wine outshone it's price point and left me wondering what their more expensive wines are like. Finally we dug into the Meritage. This also was a treat, with traces of red, black and blue fruit all melded into a harmonious blend of flavors that also lingered nicely in my mouth. I was really impressed with these wines which priced out from mid teens to mid twenties.
To me good values and though the chardonnay tasted more like a sauv blanc to me that should not be an issue for those who appreciate grapefruit and grass in their white wines. If you come across these wines or any others from Clos LaChance, I would not hesitate to try them as long as the price is right for you.