Tuesday, November 3, 2009

An Unassuming Vintage With Hints Of Tobacco, Old Baseball Glove, and Dry Toast

We had a little party at our place after the kids went trick-or-treating in Nebušice on October 31.

It turned into an impromptu wine tasting.

I recently discovered a fantastic wine shop in the village of Horoměřice, just up the road from our home here in the metropolis of Černý Vůl, west of Prague. The shop is called The Wine Depot, and it's right on the main intersection in Horoměřice.

Frankly, it's an unlikely place for a wine shop, but who's complaining? We don't have much to choose from out here, restaurantwise or shopwise. To have a decent wine shop within a five-minute drive is a revelation.

Sadly, I only recently decided to go in and check it out. I thought it was some sort of wholesaler or something, but I was wrong. They even have quite a selection of wines to taste, and they'll give you a modest discount if you sign up for a Wine Depot membership card.

You can check out The Wine Depot's website here.

Anyway, I've started to stop by the shop and take home what I hope will be an interesting selection of wines -- one bottle each (all reds) from a variety of countries and terroirs. It's fun, and I've found some excellent bargains this way.

So, the other night, on Halloween, the adults had a few treats, as well.

We opened and drained:

-- a 2007 Luis Felipe Edwards Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva (Chile)
-- a 2007 Fine Beltran Duo Cabernet Sauvignon (Argentina)
-- a 2008 Farnese Sangiovese (Italy)
-- a 2007 Tcherga blend (Bulgaria)
-- a 2004 Palacio de la Vega Cabernet Sauvignon-Tempranillo Navarra Crianza (Spain)
-- a Concho y Toro Frontera Cabernet Sauvignon (Chile)

My good friends Momchil and Tanya brought the Bulgarian, direct from Sofia, while my good friends Stewart and Kathleen contributed the Frontera.

The other four wines, which I bought myself at The Wine Depot, were all under $10 a bottle.

We had a great time tasting and comparing.

From what I remember (things got a little hazy toward the end there), I think the overall conclusion was that we liked the Luis Felipe Edwards the best. That confirmed my own conclusion. I had recently pronounced it my new favorite wine after pairing it superbly with a homemade cheddar cheeseburger with homegrown tomatoes a few weeks ago (right). I was blown away by this beefy varietal, considering its price ($10).

We also really liked the Farnese Sangiovese, which is, perhaps, my newest most favorite wine, considering its price (around $7 a bottle). It's not quite the man that the Luis Felipe Edwards is, but it's smooth and medium-bodied and went really well with the takeout pizzas we were eating.

I hope we can do this sort of tasting again.

Next time, I'll make it a blind tasting, and throw in some drinkable $5 bottles I've found around Prague and see what comes out on top.


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