(This column will appear in an upcoming issue of Dan's Papers)
Winning Wines for the Season
Wolffer Estates Fall Releases
By Lenn Thompson
As a wine lover, I often say "I love it all." California Cabernet Sauvignon, Australian Shiraz, Argentinean Malbec, Alsatian Gewürztraminer…the list is seemingly unending. I can always find something to love about most any varietal and wine region.
But, as summer's warmth fades and autumn takes hold, two wines always grab and keep my attention -- Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir.
The just-released Wolffer 2002 Cabernet Franc ($40) is a thing of beauty in the glass -- deep, almost garnet red and it almost seems alive when swirled. On the nose, it is chock full of raspberry with just a little warm spice along the lines of nutmeg or allspice. Take a sip and the lush raspberries are joined by layers of delicious cherry fruit, toasty oak and extremely smooth tannins.
What sets this wine apart, though, is its complex finish -- which is nothing short of spectacular. It remains perfectly balanced as its cherries and a hint of cocoa linger on the palate. This is an extremely sophisticated, exquisite wine that is terrific now and will probably age well too.
Another fall release, the Wolffer 2002 Pinot Noir ($60), may be the ultimate in wine for pairing with fall foods. A shimmering, vibrant ruby in the glass, its light color belies the complexity and richness that await your mouth.
It is overflowing with aromas of raspberries and cherries with just the slightest hint of vanilla cream. On the palate, this Burgundy-style Pinot is velvety, rich and features nice tannins and the perfect amount of acidity for pairing with food. With a little time, the cherry character swells and the vanilla aroma and flavors become even more pronounced.
Its finish, much like the Cab Franc, is complex and long, with cherry-vanilla richness. This is truly an elegant wine deserving of praise and attention.
Both wines, with their fruity character and well balanced oak and tannins, are perfect for serving with hearty, earthy fall foods. Each will complement, not overpower, foods like winter squash, wild mushrooms, roasted meats, or even salmon.
While maybe a little pricey to be an every day wine, both (he Pinot Noir in particular) would be a great addition to your Thanksgiving table. Both are worth the splurge for the holiday season.
To buy these and other Wolffer wines, call visit www.wolffer.com or call 631-537-5106.