Whenever I am at a wine tasting, I always look forward to the last two wines, as I hope to find something interesting. Sitting at the wine bar at D. Vine Fine Wines with my Bride all eager as well. She was quite animated and having a wonderful time. She was just enjoying herself and in fact after the tasting, she remarked about how much fun she had, which can be a questionable answer when there is wine that is potentially for sale, but fun she was having and she was quite gregarious that evening as well. I think that by now, she is quite used to seeing me trying to stage a little photography setting, now if only I could improve at that skill.
The penultimate wine of the evening was an Argentine wine and immediately I think of Malbec, but then I go for the easy guesses. Of course, this time I was right. Casarena Bodega y Venedos Sinergy Red Blend 2013 hit all the right notes for me. Here was a blend of 70% Malbec, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petite Verdot from there four different vineyards in the Lujan de Cuyo district of Mendoza. The different juices were all aged in New French Oak and from the first smell of the nose, I knew this wine was a keeper, and the lovely deep ruby red with a purple edge just made the glass all that more enticing. It was easy to drink immediately and I felt that some years in the cellar would even make it more enjoyable. Another keeper for the evening and I felt the wallet getting lighter.
As for the last wine, from the moment it was poured into the glass, my Bride was in love, and I hadn’t even photographed the bottle and the glass yet, and she was raving about it. Now I make no bones about the fact that I am not a jock, and that I really dislike watching professional sports, but on occasion I will try to play most sports. The only two sports that I won’t even play as I don’t understand the games is Basketball and Soccer, because they just appear to be organized chaos to my mind’s eye, but I can appreciate the quality efforts of any true athlete. Now just because I don’t follow sports, there are still some athletes that one automatically hears about when they are good, and one basketball player was Yao Ming who stood 7’6” and was actually well coordinated and a star, in fact he retired from sports in July 2011 and began a new career as a winemaker in November 2011, barely enough time to realize that he had retired. Yao Family Wines owns no vineyards in Napa Valley, but they do have a tasting room in St. Helena, with contracts with vineyards in Coombsville, Atlas Peak, Oak Knoll District and St. Helena, but the wines carry the Napa Valley AVA. The Yao Ming Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 was the perfect wine to end the evening with. The wine was almost entirely Cabernet Sauvignon, but there was 5% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot, and of the Cabernet Sauvignon there were three different clones and each was vinified separately before the blending. Here was a wine that was aged for eighteen months in French Oak, of which 65% was new, and they had created a wonderful drinking wine even with a high 14.3 Proof, and I was telling my Bride that this wine would age wonderfully, and then almost after I said it, it was stated that the winery feels that ten to fifteen years of cellaring would be easy for this wine. There were twenty-eight-thousand cases produced of this wine and I think that I heard that it was sold out at the winery. That animated young lady next to me originally thought she wanted six, but decide one case would be better, so who am I to argue with her logic?