I completely forgot my anniversary! Well, not exactly. My sixth year of Under The Grape Tree came and went, as I felt that stroking my overexaggerated ego for the sake of stroking was a bit too gratuitous. Yeah, I’ve been at this for six years, whatever “this” is.
Recently, in an unintentional preparation for said anniversary, I was driving with my mom past our old house in Beavercreek, and I had the wildest hair to storm the homestead, run to the backyard and see if the venerable Grape Tree still stood vigil over the neighborhood kids’ imaginations.
It was a rather bleak day, and I chose not to push the envelope too much, retreating before peaking, yet the excursion hasn’t left my mind for one minute. I think about that beautiful, gnarly Grape Tree every day I go to work. It’s so funny how a big, mushrooming grape vine in my backyard fed me its grapes and fed my imagination, so that one day, I would be peddling the juices of its long-lost brethren here at The Party Source.
Guess the Good Lord had a plan after all.
Recently, Kymber Tymber dropped by with samplage from Winebow, including a host of Portuguese and Spanish wine:
Duorum Tons de Duorum White Douro 2012. Grade=Very Good. A blend of Viosinho, Rabigato, Verdelho, Arinto and Moscatel, this tasty white wine yields pretty tropical fruit notes, hints of mineral, dill and white flowers.
Foz de Arouce Tinto 2010. Grade=Outstanding. Baga and Touriga Nacional. Pretty red flowers, cherry fruit and wet stones comprise the palate of this light-to-medium-bodied red wine.
Joao Portugal Ramos Riserva Alentejo 2012. Grade=Outstanding. Trincadeira, Aragones and Syrah. Gorgeous red, with juicy cherry and red raspberry notes, juniper, licorice and spice box.
Joao Portugal Ramos Vila Santa Loios Vinho Red 2012. Grade=Outstanding. Aragones, Trincadeira and Castelao. Vibrant red fruits, exotic spices, a bit of herbaceousness and undertones of red plum skin, rosemary and baked earth.
Quinta do Passadouro Passa Tinto Douro 2011. Grade=Outstanding. Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz and Touriga Nacional. Bold, voluptuous red, giving you notes of black cherry, plum and red raspberry, along with mesquite, cigar box and crushed red flowers.
Wine & Soul Quinta da Manoella Red Douro 2010. Grade=Outstanding. Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz and Tinta Francisca. Storm the spice box as this splatters you with black cherry, black currant and dark plum notes. Clove cigarette smoke gets in there with a bit of roasted vanilla bean and espresso roast coffee.
Anima Negra AN/2 Mallorca 2010. Grade=Outstanding. Getting our nerd on with a blend of Callet, Mantonegre-Fogoneu and Syrah, this Mallorcan blend is intensely aromatic, radiating crushed violets, wild cherries, cigar smoke and dusty earth. Spicy hints of black pepper wander back and forth between blasts of creamy rich tannins and blackberry compote.
Enrique Mendoza La Tremenda Alicante 2010. Grade=Outstanding. 100% Monastrell (Mourvedre). Robust and full-bodied with its smoky blue fruits, clove tobacco and hints of roasted vanilla bean and cocoa. Smooth from beginning to end.
Marques de Grinon Caliza Pago Dominio de Valdepusa 2010. Grade=Amazing. I have been a huge fan of Grinon for some time, and this badass blend of Syrah and Petit Verdot does not disappoint. Sanguinesque with hints of rusted mineral, roasted game and blackberry fruits.
Castello di Neive Barbaresco Santo Stefano Albesani DOCG 2010. Grade=Outstanding. Beautifully done Nebbiolo, in all its glory. Full-bodied, with dark cherry fruit, dried herbs and hints of pepper and truffle.
Tenuta di Fessina Laeneo Sicilia IGT 2012. Grade=Outstanding. 100% Nerello Cappuccio. I’ve mentioned the Nerello Mascalese before, now here is its caffeinated sibling. Loads of red apple skin, black cherry, pomegranate, white pepper and dried herbs. Gorgeous stuff.
Roberto Voerzio Langhe Nebbiolo DOC 2010. Grade=CORKED!