BRUNELLO’S NOSE KNOWS….
Save it for later- or drink it now?
In the shadow of last week’s hurricane, we here at Ed’s have been hearing stories of who was drinking what during and after Hurricane Irma. We made sure our generators were up and running to keep our fine wine collections at a consistent temperature. Many customers shared with us that they have home wine refrigerators, and with impending disaster, many of you broke into them to enjoy what you’ve been saving. Some found wines they should have consumed 2 or more years ago, others regretted drinking a fine wine they had hoped to share for a special event. The most special event was that our area survived Irma, with much less damage than was once expected. Our hearts go out to those still suffering loss, and dealing with damage and insurance adjusters. As the happy pup with four paws and lots of love for wine, I’d like to dedicate this blog to rebuilding your “cellar” so to speak.
The last blog was about the varietal Chardonnay and there will be a continuing series on popular varietals, their history, and diversity. But right now, as we recover together, let’s look at some wines to drink now- and maybe to hold.
The aforementioned Chardonnays are whites that are mostly for drinking now. If you have a couple of older French Chablis, Bouchard or perhaps a Ramey Russian River, or Chateau Montelena from Napa in your collection, those wines will last several years. When we are “saving” wines, hoping for improvement and an increase in value down the road, we generally look at the red varietals. Let’s start with California, Cabernet and red blends.
Alexander Valley Vineyards Cyrus This is a blend made by the son of the family that has been farming the same land for over fifty years. Hank Wetzel takes all five of the famous Bordeaux varietals and blends them to make this wine, named for Cyrus Alexander, the original founder of Alexander Valley in the heart of Sonoma. The wine is generally Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot based, but Hank blends Malbec, Petite Verdot and Cabernet Franc in, making a true “Meritage”. Their other stellar offering for the “cellar” would be Alexander Valley Vineyards “School house” Cabernet Sauvignon named for the original school house on the property. This is a wine that is well structured that should improve with age, or can be enjoyed now.
Fisher Vineyards Mountain Estate Cabernet Sauvignon This juicy Cab is made by another family winery that owns property in both Napa and Sonoma. Today, three of the Fisher children, Cameron, Whitney and Robert are running the winery. We have some back vintages of the Cameron red blend as well as the Cab. These wines are mostly Sonoma County, big and jammy, with loads of fruit like black cherry and plum and chocolate flavors.
We are still stocked with some great beauties from Napa, wines like Pine Ridge Groth, Ramey Vineyards Cabernet from the Napa Valley floor, Rombauer Diamond Mt Cab, Hess Collection, Owen Roe, just to name a few.
Michael David Winery is one of our favorites here at Ed’s. The collection of sins, Sloth, Rage, Rapture and Lust are all in our wine room waiting for you. Or enjoy a bottle of their “everyday value wines” the Inkblot series or Earthquake series, not to mention the Freakshow and Petite Petit.
Our wine room French and Italians are growing in age and value, with wines from Burgundy- Mommesin Moulin Vosnee Romanee, and Girardin Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru. A wine from the Rhone that is beautiful for a collection; Chateau Beaucastel Chateuneuf du Pape. We also stock some great value wine from this region, Familie Perrin and Guigal. The Italian Brunello’s (my namesake wines!) and Super Tuscans are holding well in our fine wine room. Wines from Luce, Bruno Giacosa , Ornellaia, and then the Castello D’Albola Riserva and Rocca de Montemassi from Tuscany are great to replace some of those pizza wines we all drank with our take out last week.
My Dad, Ed, or Uncle Perry, or Danny or Theron are all here to help you re-stock and refill. Cheers to building a new collection, enhancing the current one, or just enjoying the good life, we made it through Irma!
By Brunello Giancola as told to CRBrown