We've shed some tears over the fact that we cannot have wine shipped to us directly in the state where we currently reside. So, we were pleasantly surprised to find a real wine shop disguised as an everyday liquor store recently. Since we've been reading Sniffing the Cork by Judy Beardsall, we keep an eye out for good wine-retailer indicators such as the temperature of the store, how the bottles are stored and displayed, and how much dust has collected. This place passed the test. Not only that, but they had the biggest selection of high-end wines that we've seen since we've moved here. We don't actually buy those $75 bottles of wine but, it is fun to look at them.
We were interested in sampling a particular vineyard from St. Helena in Napa, so we set about looking for something that fit the bill. In the process, we discovered that you don't find many single vineyard bottlings under $35. We finally settled on a 2003 Cabernet Sauvignon from Burgess for $29.99. This is the first bottle of wine (outside of a restaurant) that we've ever paid more than $20 for. (Oh boy, this hobby could get expensive!)
We finally got to open it the other night and we agreed it was worth it. I didn't take very good tasting notes but, here's what I have:
Burgess Cabernet Sauvignon
AVA: St. Helena (alas, no vineyard designation)
Color: Dark ruby red
Aromas: Plum, oak, leather, banana
Flavors: Cherry, spice, leather
Taste: Moderate to low acidity with medium suede tannins
Summary: This was a well crafted wine I thought. It had an almost milky feeling in the mouth, and the only criticism I would give is that they might have let the malolactic ferment go a smidge too long. It reminded me of sweet blackberry. Overall, a nice balanced wine.
Other thoughts: I'm already noticing a trend here. I seem to smell ripe banana in everything. Hmmm...