Friday, February 22, 2013

Hugh Hamilton Chez Nous, 2011(?) With 1996 PERRIN Reserve dry red Cotes Du Rhone... Wonderful Times, Wonderful Wine!

This was a great serendipitous week for me with friend and owner Hugh Hamilton a year or more ago when he popped into Cleveland Park Wines & Spirits unannounced! It was great to see you Hugh! I think that I was typing the store email on the Tuesday morning that you dropped by?!? Yes, I think that that is correct.
These are pictures from the two in-store / wine-tastings that you did of your wines that week : as well as pictures from the lovely evening that we spent later at our house and shared a bottle that I had guarded forever since 2000 of the Reserve Cotes Du Rhone 2006 PERRIN French red that owner Jacques ( is that right? , one of the two brothers ? ) had signed when I met him briefly at MacArthur Beverages in late 1999 was it? I believe so.
Anyway, the 2006 PERRIN Reserve Cotes Du Rhone red was still delicious and Hugh, my wife and I spoke of many things that night like the indigenous red grape variety that he now plants and makes small batches of : Saperavi, a grape from Georgia! Who would have ever thunk ?!? Cheers Hugh, great to have seen and been with you : you are always welcome anytime! TONY
Enjoy these photos, I will write more if I get time, TONY

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Franceen Kahng Of Vias Imports Tastes ARGIANO Brunello , Tuscan Red Gem / Tastes @ CP Wines Fri. 2/22/13 5-8PM, Join Us! No Charge!!

ARGIANO is tried-and-true : having paid it's dues and stood the test of time and fads and shifts in tastes and what is available. ARGIANO will always have it's place in the wine world and there will always be those that turn to it when they want a fine Italian wine experience : authentic, no bullshit, the real thing, flaws-strengths and all : open and available, there for the whole world to see, taste, observe, serve, critique and ultimately enjoy as ARGIANO fills the glass, the room and the space, both inside and outside those tasting it with family and friends and a meal I hope. ARGIANO is best when combined with food. It was made and designed for a meal and that is where it will always show best and ultimately shine and share the event / moment in time with the food and everyone there. Franceen is very much like ARGIANO : she has been excellent at her job and getting the wines like ARGIANO before the likes of me that adore and celebrate wine and are thrilled to have it by our sides, as we are Franceen. Thanks Franceen! You have added a lot to my wine world over the years and I appreciate that. Bravo to ARGIANO and Bravo to you.
I realize that I have many of these pictures already stored in a " draft " form and that I have not posted them yet. This is upsetting as the pictures speak largely for themselves. The ARGIANO wines are also largely superb and do not need much explanation : just pictures like these and others telling you to buy and try and enjoy them thoroughly. They will work their magic : they are persuasive in that with true , original character and personality. They do need to be offered and recommended, of course today as there is so much compeptition in the wine world today.
ARGIANO Brunello from Tuscany, Italy : some of the very best, the very finest : enjoy it whenever you can and give us a call at Cleveland Park Wines & Spirits ( 3423 Connecticut Avenue N.W. Washington D.C. 20008 , tel 202-363-4265 ) or come by anytime and chat with me about it.

Thanks again Franceen! It sure has been great all these years in the Washington D.C. business going along on our parallel paths that often touch. Cheers, see you this Friday for our Vias wine-tasting at Cleveland Park Wines & Spirits from 5-8PM. Cheers, TONY

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

BOSCATO Vinhos Finos Of Nova Padua With Owner Clovis Boscato In Late June 2012

This was quite the visit. I was blown away and it was with both owner Clovis Boscato and his really fine Brazilian wines that he makes in the small and beautiful town called Nova Padua. I visited there this past June, 2012 deep in Brazil's winter months which I found really pleasing and very agreeable and most welcoming, too. It was such a treat for me to return having not been there since a young child of eight back in 1964 or 1965? It's been so long now that it is hard to remember exactly when I left with my family with my father working for the American Embassy when Brazilia became the capitol of Brazil. What a homecoming it was for me : ten glorious days in Brazil deep in it's wine country. I visited BOSCATO Vinhos Finos twice in late June, 2012 and loved both visits. Both made strong impacts on me and left me with a wealth of memories and extraordinary experiences that I am just about to begin sharing with you all. I came away with a really strong sense of Clovis Boscato the owner himself as with one of his wife, Ines, too. I also came away with a very strong connection to his wines and their fruit-forward, lush, ripe and unctuous wines. I also gained a love for this region of Nova Padua and the beauty of it's rolling, undulating and welcoming terrain that reminded me so very much of the one time I was in Tuscany back in 2009 was it with my daughter? Wow, I have books and separate long chapters to write on all of these fascinating points! I just do not have enough time to do it all. Oh well, I can still try, can't I?!? I like to start by saying that I first discovered the BOSCATO Vinhos Finos wines the night of our arrival in the wine town of Bento Goncalves at the Hotel Vittoria Dall'Onder when Milton Sebbem recommended that we enjoy it with our first meal in Brazil!

Monday, February 18, 2013

$1.99 WONDER WINE $1.99 WONDER WINE May 1985 Mayflower Wines And Spirits Monthly Mail-Out Newsletter / Before Computers & Internet!

This is a great blast from the past in one of Sidney Moore's old monthly newsletters for the Mayflower Wines & Spirits store located at 2115 M Street, N.W. Washington D.C. 20037 Phone : ( 202 ) 463-7950. $1.99 WONDER WINE $1.99 WONDER WINE " This wine had two defects , it's price - $1.99 and it's name - " le Black Wines ". The people who should taste it think it couldn't possibly be good. It took Tony weeks to get me to even try ' le Black Wine ". But what a pleasant surprise1 From Cahors, in the southwest of France, an area well known for robust reds, this little gem will be a pleasant surprise. I won't go on and on about the region or the grapes - just say that it would have a good taste for money ratio at $2.99. Well worth a try. " Le Black Wine, VIN DE TABLE, 1983 $1.99/BOTTLE $21.49/CASE OF 12 Just thought you might all like to read this as it's a great story and the wine was, in fact very good and a great deal. Please add any comments that you might have. Cheers, Anthony ( TONY ) Quinn Yes, I was the Tony she was speaking of above. We worked well together for many years at the Mayflower Wines & Spirits. Back then I was responsible for buying the domestic wines for the store. Cheers on this very nice Monday, February 18th, 2013 at 11:55PM on Presidents' Day. Just got to squeak that in. Take care, happy Tuesday ... TONY

The Town Of Bento Goncalves In The Vale Dos Vinhedos In Southern Brasil Where Very Few Americans Seem To Venture?

Brasil is so wide and open and green and verdant and thick and dense, steep and wide , narrow and with such open skies and miles to see in certain directions and in others feelings of being swallowed up by the jungle. In the case of Bento Goncalves it's steep and narrow and narrow streets and some tall buildings and impatient drivers that will tail you , honk, walkers really focused on where they are going, dogs leading their owners and perhaps the most striking thing : almost everyone is beautiful and thin and well-dressed and clearly in great shape from having to navigate walking up and down the streets in a clean and beautiful town that is on a steep mountain. The houses and building structures for the most part are fenced in as there seems to be some crime in Brasil? The town also seems to be the host to two very large industries : furniture and wine and it also seems like English is the last language spoken with Portuguese being heard and spoken 99% of the time? Is that right? Even in the hotel the people at the desk volunteered no English even if they were learning and practicing it already. That's great when someone visiting wants to learn Portuguese quickly. I certainly did not mind and really got into the hang of listening carefully and pulling out my dusty Spanish and dusting it off and using it where it seemed to fit? It was all a grand adventure and  still is even though I have returned from a delightfully refreshing winter stay there and a hot and horrid summer here in the Washington D.C. metropolitan region.

The restaurants seem to be primarily Italian ( lots of pizza places like the CANTA MARIA - and one great churrascaria meat house like the famous Fogo de Choa here called CHURRASCARIA IPIRANGA  : the region seems to be primarily Italian. Perhaps that's where all the beautiful people come from ,too? With the mostly Italian immigrant settlers now well into their 5th generation that may be were the beauty and the shapely and well-fit bodies mostly all come from? I was struck by this and it has inspired me, once and for all to get rid of my unsightly wine belly. So far so good : I will keep at it till I succeed and when I start to falter in this important quest of mine I will think of all the slim and beautiful residents of the southern Brazilian town of Bento Goncalves. Bravo to them all.

Even in the winter there it is beautiful and many flowers and fruits were in bloom from orange trees sprinkled everywhere, a lot of Papaya brown plants that looked quite scraggly and unsightly, too. Who would know? Who would guess : that the delicious Papayas grew from these dead and brown and weedy looking plants? I ate fresh slices of Papayas and Mangoes for the whole time I was in Bento Goncalves each and every morning. I must say, too that it was always the highlight of each breakfast.