Tasting notes from Two Wines in Stock!

On Sunday, a few of the Oxford Liquor Shoppe crew got together and tasted two great wines that we currently have in stock. We decided to open the Spanish wine first. Juan Gil is a wine that we have carried for quite a while and consistently gets 90 points from both Wine Advocate and Wine Spectator.  On this day we had the 2006 vintage. Made up of 100% Monastrell (also known as Mouvedre), it is from an estate vineyard with 45 years of age.  The wine had medium body and a nose of wood, licorice and chocolate. It opened up nicely over an hour. On the palate, the wine had flavors of dark fruits, licorice, tobacco and smoke.  A very nice value at $16.99.

The second wine was from one of our favorite producers, The Colonial Estate from Australia.  The wine, the 2005 Alexander Laing Old Vines, was made from vines over 100 years old.  We opened the wine and decanted it for one hour (see pic) while we drank the Juan Gil.  The aromas from the wine were kind of wild, showing tart red fruit, orange peel and vanilla.  The wine was very dark and when you took a sip it would coat your whole mouth. It exhibited strong flavors of espresso, smoked herbs, Cassis, and pepper. It also had a great finish as well that went on and on. In stock at the shoppe for $69.99. Great for a special occasion.

New Winery Pictures Posted on Facebook Page

We have added a new folder to our Facebook page that will have pictures from all of our wine endeavors across the United States and Europe. We here at Oxford Liquor Shoppe are dedicated to learning all we can about wine to best serve our customers. There is no better experience than visiting the place where a wine is made and after all, we love wine too! The first set of pictures we posted was from a trip to Bordeaux.  We have some great shots of Chateau Haut-Brion, Chateau Smith-Haut-Lafitte, Chateau Lynch-Bages, Chateau Pontet-Canet, Chateau Lafite Rothschild and Chateau Mouton Rothschild.  We are going to try to update this over the next several weeks to share the places we have been with all of our customers.

In Store Tasting: 3/27 2006 Viticcio Chianti Classico Reserva

Today we are tasting an Italian Chianti by Viticcio that was #35 on Wine Spectator’s Top 100 of 2009. The wine exhibits aromas of tobacco, earth and dried cherries. As the wine opened up the aromas really evolved with the tobacco aroma coming in and out.  On the palate the wine has flavors of cherry, earth and a game flavor.  The silky tannins lead to a nice long lingering finish. Was $32 but now $24.99!

Wine Spectator 93 Points.

In Store Tasting 3/20: Grayson Cellars

Today we are tasting Grayson Cellars 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Lot 10. Robert Parker gave it 89 Points saying “aged in 100% French oak, boasts a dark ruby/purple color as well as a big, rich nose of blackberries, medium body, supple tannins, and surprising intensity and length. Just amazing!” Having tasted it today, we have to agree with his assessment. Grayson Cellars is known for its extraordinary values and this is one of them. Price $10.99.

Update: Thanks to everyone who came in and tried the wine.  We actually sold out of it because it was so popular! Don’t worry though, we will have more on Tuesday!

Notes on 5 Wines with Pepe’s Pizza

Last night the Oxford Liquor Shoppe crew got together for a special occasion. We decided to break out some of our better wines and get pizza from Pepe’s in New Haven.  Before I get into the notes, just a word on the pizza.  I have been getting Pepe’s Pizza since I was a little kid with my parents and the last few times I had Pepe’s I was disappointed.  I was beginning to think that due to their recent expansions, the quality of the pizza had fallen by the wayside.  Last nights pies totally redeemed them.  The white clam was excellent and I don’t think anyone makes one better.  The cheese, mainly the let down the last few times, was also excellent.  So they are now back in my good graces. Onto the wines!

The first wine is probably considered one of the top three chardonnay producers out of California right now.  The wine was the 2007 Aubert Ritchie Vineyard.  The nose was dominated by a stoney minerality but had a touch of lemon as well. The thing that wowed us all was that it started like a traditional California chardonnay on the palate, with a creamy mouth feel.  It had some nice notes of melon and hazelnut but after the attack, it showed a really nice steely minerality.  It also had a nice creme brulee note at the end.  Reminded me a grand cru white burgundy. We all found this quite interesting and more than lived up to its lofty reputation.

The next wine was a 1996 Rolly Gassmann Kappelweg de Rorschwihr Riesling from Alsace. They say with older Riesling that some of them develop the smell of petrol. I have had a few older Riesling but I have never experienced this smell.  There’s a first time for everything though and this Rolly Gassmann had that aroma! I was kind of shocked by it.  I kind of thought that smell would be off putting but it really wasn’t harsh at all. The Riesling had flavors of apple and pear with a nice minerality to it.  Overall, I very delicious Riesling.

At this point we started in on the pizza.

We originally planned to have a red wine with the red pie but the whites were so good we decided to stick to them and ignore conventional wisdom.

The third wine we opened was a white Bordeaux from 2000 by Domaine de Chevalier. White Bordeaux might actually be my favorite white wine. We have had the 2000 together a few times before and it is quite nice although we have seen some bottle variation.  The wine gives aromas of wet stones and citrus, although you can tell that has faded into the background with age. On the palate, the wine has a nice creaminess to go along with an apple and a mineral note.  Classic white Bordeaux.

The fourth wine, which we do carry at the store, was the 2008 Cakebread chardonnay.  Cakebread has a good reputation for producing high quality classic California chardonnay’s and they did not disappoint.  The wine, opposed to the Aubert, was all the way California. A big chard with a good amount of oak, this was creamy and buttery with nice notes of apple and marshmallow.  I think a little more time in the bottle would do this some good but delicious now none the less.

The final wine of the night was a 2007 Standing Stone Riesling from the Finger Lakes. The wine had some really nice apple, melon and fig flavors. On the sweeter side of things, it was a nice way to end off the night.

In Store Tasting 3/13 Chasing Lions

Just in this week is a Bordeaux blend from Napa Valley. Made up of 55% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, 7% Syrah and 3% Petit Verdot, the wine exhibits aromas of black currant, cedar, and spice box.  It has flavors of mocha, cherry and toasty oak. Medium bodied, this is a great red wine that showcases why some of the best wines in the world come from Napa Valley and is only $11.99!  Coming from the same folks that make Twenty Bench, another Oxford Liquor favorite.

In Store Tasting 3/6 Borsao

Today we are trying 2008 Borsao Red Wine. Made up 75% Garnacha and 25% Tempranillo, this wine exhibits aromas of raspberry and black current with earth, cherry, pomegranate, and raspberry on the palate.  Wine Spectator gave this 89 points and Wine Advocate gave it 88 points. A truly delicious wine and a steal for only $6.99!