- Publish Date: Sep 29, 2010
Our favorite wines we drank last month.
It's official: Summer is over. And as the weather started to cool, Team Daily Sip began the slow but steady process of switching from our steady diet of crisp whites and rosés to a variety of other grapes and styles. That'll only continue as we trade our shorts for scarves and gloves.
Amidst that change, we tried some outstanding wines; below is a list of our favorites we tasted throughout September. Each is a perfect bottle for your final summer sendoff and, for the first time, not a single bottle on our monthly top-picks list costs more than $25. So if you're trying to save money before the holiday shopping season kicks in, rest assured that none of these bottles will burn a hole in your bank account.
J Vineyards Cuvée 20 Brut NV, Russian River Valley ($22. This is a super-quaffable sparkling wine. I enjoyed it alongside a quiche filled with red pepper and shallots, as well as a spinach salad followed by peach cobbler. Tasty! Find it here.
Clavo Cellars Legacy Zinfandel 2006, Paso Robles ($25). I tasted this wine in Clavo's tasting room on a recent trip to Paso Robles--it was one of my favorites. This is a classic Paso Zin, loaded with bold cherry, blackberry and plum flavors--but it's also nicely balanced. This is no fruit bomb. I loved the full mouth feel and soft tannins. The wine would go nicely with some grilled red meat, especially a burger. Find the wine here.
Kumeu River Estate Chardonnay 2007, New Zealand ($21). This was a real surprise since I usually don't drink Chardonnay--especially not North Island Chardonnay. Very Chablis-like, this has great minerality and a very smooth texture, and it's light and refreshing with plenty of fruit character. Chardonnay purists and ABCers can drink this together, happily, all day long. Find it here.
Stinger Zinfandel 2007, Paso Robles ($10). I tasted this wine at a dinner party and was very impressed--not only by the unique flavor but the price tag. The wine is very deep in color, and the nose jumps out with African violets, cinnamon, cardamom and hints of pomegranates. The mouth feel is dense, big and rich, followed by spicy red fruit characters and five-spice powder. Find the wine here.
Luis Alegre Crianza 2004, Spain ($18). This wine is medium-bodied and super smooth, with a nice amount of spice on the finish. Flavors of plum and caramel make it a well-rounded, versatile red. Pop it open with your next pork chop. Find the wine here.
Elizabeth Rose Sauvignon Blanc Napa Valley 2009 ($12). This is a mouth-filling yet soft Sauvignon Blanc for year-round enjoyment. It has a crisp vibrancy, with hints of tropical fruit and honeydew. Lovely. It's certified organic and a great value. Find the wine here.
La Maison Cremant de Bourgogne Rose NV, France ($19). I picked this bottle up to kick off a friend's birthday celebration last Saturday. It was a beautiful, crisp sparkler with lots of ripe red raspberry on the nose. It's a very affordable alternative to Champagne, perfect for sipping on its own--but it's absolutely outstanding with salty snacks. Find it here.
Tried any of these wines? Tell us what you think about them below.