Virginia Wine Month with a 2015 Breaux Vineyards Meritage

Hi wine friends, and Happy Wine Wednesday! October is Virginia Wine Month, so I’m sharing a Virginia wine that was actually part of a larger Virginia Wine Twitter Tasting—the 2015 Breaux Vineyards Meritage.  You can watch my YouTube video to get all my thoughts, as well as background on the wine, or you can keep reading!

Also, in full disclosure, the Twitter tasting was organized by Frank from Drink What YOU Like, it was sponsored by Visit Loudon, and all of the wines, including the Breaux Meritage, were sent as samples.

As the name suggests, the 2015 Breaux Vineyards Meritage has an SRP of $42 and is a red wine blend—50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Petit Verdot, 23% Cabernet Franc, and 2% Malbec.  It’s a small production wine, with only 376 cases produced.  The wine was a nice dark, inky ruby color.  On the nose, there were a lot of blackberries and tobacco with some  green tea and baking spice notes.  There was also a little bit of earthiness, the type of smell that reminded me of walking in a forest right after a little bit of rain.  It was an earthy, dirt smell, but in a very nice way.  In the mouth, there were juicy, ripe blackberries practically hitting me in the face, followed by green tea and tobacco and more subtle notes of nutmeg and cinnamon. The wine had a medium-to-full body with tannins that just clung to my mouth.

2015 Breaux Vineyards Meritage – At $42, this red wine blend from Virginia is too expensive for an every day waine, but is a fantastic option for a fall special occasion or Thanksgiving dinner.  Everything about it screams chilly weather, light sweaters, fall leaves, some football, and chili. Cheers! | AGlassAfterWork.com

2015 Breaux Vineyards Meritage

Overall, the 2015 Breaux Vineyards Meritage is a beautiful wine, although it definitely needs to breathe a little bit before you drink it, which is something I learned during the Twitter tasting because I didn’t.  That said, because it does so nicely with some air, it was still beautiful when I enjoyed a glass the next day.

If you’re ready to start drinking a little more red wine and have been thinking about pulling out some of your heavier clothes, but maybe you’re not ready to dive right in and drink that big juicy California cab yet, this is exactly what I think you should be going for.  It’s the perfect wine for transitioning into fall. It has a little bit of that smokiness and a little bit of that structure that is perfect for the weather getting chilly.  It feels to me like a wine that I want with fall leaves, some football, and chili.

Also, as you’re starting to thinking about the holidays, it’s a wine that would be perfect for Thanksgiving.  It’s a little more on the expensive side, so it’s not one of those wines I’m going to open up every day, but for a special occasion like Thanksgiving where I’m family is coming over and I want to share a bottle or two of something special, this would be a perfect option.  It has the characteristics of a crowd-pleasing wine and it’s festive.

Questions of the Day:

  • I know Breaux Vineyards wine has started making its way outside of Virginia, so have you had a chance to taste any?  If so, which ones and what did you think?

Wine Club: VineOh! Fall 2019 Unboxing

Hi wine friends, and Happy Wine Wednesday! Today, I’m sharing my Fall 2019 VineOh! subscription box, as well as tasting the 2017 Speechless Chardonnay. In case you aren’t familiar with it, VineOh! is a $60 per shipment quarterly box that comes not only with two bottles of wine (your choice of reds, whites, or a mix), but also other lifestyle items, sometimes they are even “wine lifestyle.”  You can watch my YouTube video to get all my thoughts on the wine and discover what was in my box, or you can keep reading!

The 2017 Speechless Chardonnay is $26 and is a California Chardonnay that was bottled specifically for VineOh!. It's not very complicated, but easily drinkable. | AGlassAfterWork.com

2017 Speechless California Chardonnay

The 2017 Speechless Chardonnay is $26 and is a California Chardonnay that was bottled specifically for VineOh!, so you’ll need to head to their website for a bottle. It’s a bright lemon yellow color.  On the nose, there was citrus—mostly grapefruit and a lemon custard.  In the mouth, there was a lot of the lemon custard mixed with grapefruit and a hint of white flowers.  The wine had good acidity and a light-to-medium body.  Overall, it didn’t blow me away, but it was tasty.  It would be a nice wine to enjoy in a bubble bath with a good book, which is exactly what I expect from the VineOh! wine box.

2016 Tines California Cabernet Sauvignon

2016 Tines California Cabernet Sauvignon

The other wine in the box was a 2017 Tines Cabernet Sauvignon, which is a $26 red wine from California.  I didn’t taste the wine in the video, but the notes said it will have dark fruit flavors, toasted oak aromas, and pair well with a steak or braised short ribs.  That sounds to me like a wine meant for fall and football.

The other items in my box included:

  • Spongellé Body Wash Infused Buffer in French Lavender — $16
    The notes say that the sponge is good for 14 washes.  It is supposed to fully cleanse and nourish the skin, while having a lasting lavender scent.

  • Sole du soleil double circle necklace — $49
    The double strand necklace is a polished coin pendant layered with a medallion and some clear-cut stones.  It’s 18k rose gold and has an 18inch chain.  It looks to me like a necklace that could dress-up a T-shirt or sweater, as well as be a fun brunch weekend accessory.

  • Good Morning & Good Night Wine O’Clock Notepad — $15
    The to-do list note pad definitely goes with the wine theme, as it is a list of things to do before wine o’clock.  The company that makes this notepad is small business founded by a married couple in Kansas City.

  • Voesh Collagen Socks — $5
    These single-use socks are essentially a way to give your feet a mask.  There is a removeable piece for toes, so it’s up to the individual as to whether her/his toes are covered.  The socks are infused with collagen and supposedly have soothing properties, instant plumping action, and hydrating benefits that soften calluses.

  • Sebastian Professional Dark Oil Candle — $12
    The candle had a strong smell that was nicely unisex.

  • Lark Fine Foods Salted Rosemary Shortbread — $3
    The cookies are rosemary seasoned and lightly dusted with sea salt.  They were delicious and didn’t last very long!

All in all, most of the items in the box fit nicely together.  Once everything on the “Finish Before Wine O’Clock” to-do list is complete, you can light the candle, jump into the bath with the Spongellé sponge and a glass of the Chardonnay.  When you’re done soaking, you can use the collagen sock mask while drinking a second glass of the Chardonnay and enjoying one of the salted rosemary shortbread cookies.  That sounds like a very relaxing evening!

Questions of the Day:

  • Have you ever heard of VineOh! before? 
  • If so, are you a VineOh! Box subscriber?  Did you get the same wines as I did?
  • If not, what do you think of the idea of a wine and lifestyle subscription box?

2016 Intrinsic Red Blend Wine Review for Washington Wine Month

Hi wine friends and happy Wine Wednesday!  March is actually Washington State wine month, and so I’m sharing one of the Washington wines from my recent Wine.com haul—the 2016 Intrinsic Red blend.   You can watch my YouTube video to get all my thoughts, as well as background on the wine, or you can keep reading!

I bought this wine back in February 2019, but by the time I recorded the March video, it looks like Wine.com is sold out of the 2016 vintage.  However, it’s still available in my local grocery store.

2016 Intrinsic Red Blend

2016 Intrinsic Red Blend

The wine on this wine is absolutely amazing.  It’s actually done by Brooklyn street artist, Zimmer.  I know very little about street art, and the little I know is from Googling, but Zimmer used wild style to create the labels for both the Intrinsic Red Blend and the Intrinsic Cabernet Sauvignon.  The combination of wine and street art was done purposefully to draw attention to the process of using the environment to create art.  Intrinsic wine is trying to bridge the gap between the agriculture side of winemaking, which is where the grapes grow, and the urban side of winemaking, which is where people enjoy drinking of the wine that is made.

The 2016 Intrinsic Red Blend is a red wine from mixed with some licorice, hints of lavender, and a lot of cedar.  In the mouth, there were a lot of blueberries and blackberries with licorice, milk chocolate, and cedar, as well as hints of lavender and mint.  The wine has a medium body, medium acid, and medium-to-high tannins.

Overall, this wine is an easy drinker, but it has a little bit of a kick because of the alcohol level.  You would never know, though, because it’s well integrated.  I wish I had some grilled lamb or Portobello mushrooms to go with the wine.  It will definitely be a nice addition to a cookout, as the weather gets warmer.  This was the perfect wine to open in honor of Washington Wine month!

Questions of the Day:

  1. Have you seen the Intrinsic wines where you are? Have you had one?
  2. What do you think of Washington wines? Do you have a favorite?

Celebrating Open That Bottle Night 2019 with Genium Celler Costers

Hi wine friends, and Happy Wine Wednesday!  The last Saturday in February is Open That Bottle Night (OBTN), so I wanted to share with you the wine I opened to celebrate—a 2005 Genium Celler Costers.  I’ve been holding onto this wine for 10 years, so it seemed like there was no better time to open in than this year’s OTBN.  You can watch my YouTube video to get all my thoughts, as well as background on the wine, or you can keep reading!

 

OBTN was started in 2000 by to Wall Street Journal writers, Dorothy J. Gaiter and John Brecher, and the whole idea is exactly like it sounds.  We all have special bottles of wine that we never open because we’re always saving the wine for a special occasion that never seems to come.  OTBN is the chance to open that bottle!

In honor of Open That Bottle Night, I opened a bottle I've been holding onto for 10 years-- a 2005 Genium Cellers Costers. This is a red wine from Priorat, Spain. Rating 5 out of 5 stars. | AGlassAfterWork.co

2005 Genium Celler Costers Priorat

My special bottle was given to me as a birthday present from my in-laws about 10 years ago, right after I started wine blogging. That year, they bought me several really nice bottles of wine, and it was recommended not to open the bottle until at least 2015, but it could cellar up until 2030.  That seemed like a really long time, and I just don’t have enough patience to wait that long.  If I’m being honest, I’m surprised the bottle lasted as long as it did.  I think the only reason that happened is because I had a chance to taste several vintages over the years, which was enough to satisfy my curiosity and convince me I should hold out a little longer.

The 2005 Genium Celler Costers (winery) is a red wine from Priorat, Spain.  It was a really dark ruby that was starting to transition to garnet, so you can definitely tell that it’s been aging.  The nose was beautiful with dark cherries and dark plums.  The fruit notes were at the back of the nose, with more earthy characteristics happening front.  There was smoke, sweet tobacco, and a hint of new leather that reminded me of a new handbag type.  There was also a touch of rose petals.  In the mouth, the characteristics were similar, although the dark cherry notes were much stronger.  The wine was medium bodied with grippy tannins.  I could feel my gums contracting, which I love.

In honor of Open That Bottle Night, I opened a bottle I've been holding onto for 10 years-- a 2005 Genium Cellers Costers. This is a red wine from Priorat, Spain. Rating 5 out of 5 stars. | AGlassAfterWork.com

2005 Genium Celler Costers

I’m really glad I opened the wine this year, as it was ready to drink now.  I would probably have been disappointed in it if I let it age much longer.  As far as price goes, I couldn’t find any bottles of the 2005 or sale now, but it looks like it was selling for about $60 when it when it was still available.

Overall, Genium Celler continued to impress me.  The 2005 Costers was a really great wine, and the experience of drinking this particular bottles was even better because it was given to me at the beginning of my kind of adventures in wine, and I opened it specifically at a time that is set aside to open special bottles.  This year was the first time I participated in OTBN, but it won’t be the last.  I mean, what’s the point of having the good stuff if I never enjoy it?

Questions of the day:

  1.  Did you participation in Open That Bottle Night (the last Saturday in February?) If so, what did you open?
  2.  What are your thoughts on Priorat?

10 Year Blogiversary: Celebrating with Coppola

*** I received this wine as a sample. ***

Hi wine friends, and Happy #WineWednesday! It’s hard to believe, but yesterday was my 10-year blogiversary.  To celebrate, I opened a Francis Coppola Winery Director’s Chardonnay because my first wine review blog post was a Coppola wine (the 2006 Diamond Collection Cabernet Sauvignon). Cheers!

Other things I mentioned in the video:
🍷 All my Francis Ford Coppola Winery blog posts
🍷A Club for Book & Wine Lovers: The Books & Bottles Book Club

Questions of the Day:

  1. Have you had any wines from Coppola Winery?  What did you think?  Did you have a favorite?
  2. What are your thoughts on Chardonnay?  Do you love it?  Hate it?  Or do you just go with whatever wine is flowing?

Suggested Retail Price: $20
Received as a sample.
Overall: 4 Corks