By The Glass
Wines make great gifts over holidays
YES, the holiday season is here and there's shopping to be done. (Think wine.) There are many parties to go to. (Take a bottle of wine.)
Which wine? Here are a few thoughts on what to select and why.
This category comprises the high-scoring, "got to have," often rare wines.
Some people call them by other names ... "collectibles," "cult," "crème de la crème." They are mostly given because they are chic and for their supreme reputation for quality. Ideal for the boss, an important client and/or someone you really want to impress.
Recommendations: 2001 Kongsgaard Chardonnay ($85), 2002 Joseph Phelps Insignia ($153), Billecart Salmon Rose ($100), 2001 JL Chave Hermitage ($205), 2001 Bond "Melbury" ($225), 1998 Chateau La Conseillante ($150), 2002 Shirvington Shiraz ($75), 2001 Arietta Red Table Wine ($85), 1997 Dal Forno Nettare ($132/ 375 ml).
Hot new wines
Here is your opportunity to give the latest, hottest, new label as a present. It really is kind of a fashion statement, isn't it?
Recommendations: 2004 Whitcraft Pinot Noir "Morning Dew" ($50), 2004 Brewer Clifton Pinot Noir "Clos Pepe" ($53), 2001 Larkmead Cabernet Sauvignon ($49), 2001 Flor de Pingus ($53), 2002 Meo Camuzet Nuits Georges ($100), Domaine Grange des Peres ($82), 2002 Betts & Scholl Grenache ($27), 2002 Trevor Jones Shiraz "Wild Witch" ($75).
Terrific, tasty wine at a great price. Why spend more when you don't have to?
Recommendations: 2003 Altos de la Hoya Monastrell ($10), 2003 CF Euro-Asian Riesling Medium Dry ($11), Domaine de la Janasse Cotes du Rhone ($12), L'Uvaggio di Giacomo Barbera ($12), 2003 Le Casenove "La Garrigue" ($13).
Many of my wine friends judge the quality of a wine not for its impact, showiness, heaviness or by how profound it is. What they look for is deliciousness. And when you really look into it, delicious wines are not as common as one would think. So when you find the right one, be sure to take it to a dinner or cocktail party. It will add gaiety and make the food taste even better.
Recommendations: 2005 Domaine Dupeuble Beaujolais Nouveau ($17), Ruggeri Prosecco "Gold Label" ($16), 2002 Costa de Oro Pinot Noir ($20), 2004 Robert Mueller Chardonnay ($30), CF Eurasia ($17), 2004 Terlano Pinot Bianco ($18), Josef Leitz Riesling "Dragonstone" ($18).
Have a happy and SAFE holiday season.
Chuck Furuya is a master sommelier and a partner in the Sansei restaurants. This column is a weekly lesson in wine pairing written by a rotating panel of wine professionals.
This column is a weekly lesson in wine pairing written by a rotating panel of wine professionals. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org