Monday, November 30, 2009

Creek of the Week: Jacob's Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Classic 2006

The Jacob's Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Classic is a true value wine. This wine retails at $6-$8 a bottle and never ceases to amaze consumers. This inky red wine has profound eucalyptus notes combined with mint and black cherries and subtle undertones of oak.

Full bodied in the mouth, the eucalyptus and mint follow through with notes of plum in the finish with an almost jammy characteristic. The wine is definitely fruit driven incorporating soft tannins and high acidity for an easily approachable wine, crafted to be drunk young.

This Cabernet Sauvignon would pair well with red sauce and pastas, lightly braised meats and sharp cheeses.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Did you know?... Jacob's Creek Random Fact #1

Did you know Jacob's Creek winery was founded in 1847 by a Bavarian named Johann Gramps? Today his original cellar is still standing as testament for his enduring passion for wine.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Food Pairing and the Creek of the Week

Unfortunately, Chardonnay has gained a bad rap in the past few years because of its vast popularity and, perhaps, inconsistent stylistic differences that lead most consumers to believe all Chardonnays taste like you're sipping on a stick of butter.

Fortunately, there are still those Chardonnays out there that defy this cliche. Let us not forget that one of the most highly respected types of wine in the world, white Burgundy, is made entirely of this elusive grape.

The Reeves Point Chardonnay can also be put in the category or impressive, tasteful Chardonnay and can be a great go-to for pleasing all palates this Thursday (Thanksgiving.)

The Jacob's Creek Reeves Point Chardonnay works great for all aspects a the day from the appetizer to the dessert and the best part is that the foods aren't complicated at all!

For appetizers, try a simple cheese and cracked platter, using mild cheddar cheese and light herb crackers, also consider incorporating smoked salmon. Other great appetizers are crab cakes or mushrooms stuffed with crab meat and herbs.

For the main event, focus on the sides. Green bean casserole and Chardonnay can pair delightfully as well as with baked carrots (especially if they are baked in Chardonnay!)

For dessert, although the table may be littered with heavy cream pies, it's important to remember that not all of your guests are looking to gain a few pounds from one meal. Chardonnay pairs great with fresh fruit options such as pineapple, mango and honeydew melon.

The Jacob's Creek Reeves Point Chardonnay is a special treat for the occasion while simultaneously working as great addition to the meal.

Creek of the Week: Jacob's Creek Reeves Point Chardonnay, 2005

This weeks wine of the week is the Jacob's Creek Reeves Point Chardonnay 2005.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I thought it was appropriate to select from the highest quality of Jacob's Creek wines: the Heritage Collection.

The Jacob's Creek Reeve's Point Chardonnay shows incredible aging potential of up to ten years, which almost makes me want to cellar the wine instead of cracking it open, but alas, SOMEONE has to tell you what it tastes like.

The Reeves Point Chardonnay is from southern Australia and is named after the landing site on Kangaroo Island that Jacob's Creek's founder, Johann Gramp, landed in 1837 when he came from Bavaria.

The Chardonnay was aged in selected one and two year old French Oak barrels which comes through to the nose with a slightly nutty characteristic, but this does not inhibit the fresh, buttery lemon-citrus quality of the grape. Due to the oak, the wine is a deep lemon color that has begun to show some aging, despite it is only four years old.

On the palate, the wine melts in the mouth. The full-body is enhanced by buttery toasted oak characteristics, but still the lemony undertones of the Chardonnay come forth to balance out the wine leading to a tangy finish with impressive length and incredible balance.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Jacob's Creek Riesling Reserve 2008 named #73!

Wine Spectators Top 100 List of 2009 was officially released, in its entirety, today.

Coming in at number 73 is the Jacob's Creek Riesling Reserve 2008 and it's no wonder. If you remember, the Reserve Riesling was last week's creek of the week.

This was the only Australian Riesling to make the list -- and at $12.99/bottle, you simply can't go wrong!

It has refreshing acidity with fresh hints of lime and floral undertones. The wine provides an impressive length across the palate, infused with green apple and lime flavors. To see the official tasting sheet, look here.

As you've probably heard, this Riesling pairs well with oysters, shrimp and salmon as well as soft cheeses such as Brie, cream cheeses and Camembert. I don't know what it's like in every household at Thanksgiving, but our appetizer table is always full of cheese and crackers, shrimp, fresh oysters and sometimes, scallops wrapped in bacon -- I think the Jacob's Creek Reserve Riesling will be a perfect aperitif to match.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Pinot Noir and Ahi Tuna

We've all heard of the perfect pairing of Salmon and Pinot Noir, but what's even better? Ahi Tuna and Pinot Noir.

Something you should learn about me right now is that Ahi Tuna steak is my absolute favorite food. Call me spoiled, but I have Ahi Tuna at least once a week - sometimes two or three if I'm really lucky so it's no wonder I've had a lot of experience with finding a wine to pair with it.

I'm pretty basic in my tastes and thus, my cooking habits. I'm a big fan of natural flavors and often even avoid using salt. To be completely fair, salt is one of my least favorite additives (call it a childhood complex) so I generally bring the flavor in from other outlets such as seeds and nuts, unsalted of course.

My favorite recipe is Rare Yellowfin Tuna Steak encrusted with sesame seeds, which just so happens to have been Sunday night's dinner.

It's pretty simple to make. I just cover my tuna steaks completely with a combination of black and regular sesame seeds and freshly ground black pepper, preheat a skillet to medium heat, and cook each steak on each side for four minutes.

On the side of the steaks, I prepared a simple salad with balsamic vinegar and alfalfa sprouts on top and an orzo salad that consisted of almonds, green peas, artichoke hearts, sun dried tomatoes and crunchy sprouts with a light mustard and balsamic dressing.

If you haven't figured it out by now, I paired this meal with this week's Creek of the Week: the Jacob's Creek Reserve Pinot Noir. I was pleasantly surprised as I thought my cuisine choices may be too light for the Pinot, but alas, it was a great choice.

Don't take my word for it though, try it yourself!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Creek of the Week: Jacob's Creek Reserve Pinot Noir 2007

2007 was a tricky year for Pinot Noir in the Adelaide Hills. Low yields of rainfall and high temperatures resulted in a small, but high quality crop of Pinot Noir grapes. Fortunately, that led to an intensely aromatic, fruit driven and balanced wine.

Medium red in color, the 2007 Pinot Noir has characteristic aromas and flavors of red fruits, particularly cherries, with a hint of herbs. Unlike some Australian Pinot Noir, there is no sign of an overpowering and unappetizing Eucalyptus to inhibit the fresh flavors of strawberry and rhubarb with sweet cherries.

Pinot Noir pairs perfectly with traditional spices of the season: clove, cinnamon, rosemary, thyme and nutmeg and also the earthy flavors of peppercorn, mushroom and coriander. As a result, the Jacob's Creek Reserve Pinot Noir is a great match for this time of year.

So grab a bottle, cozy up by a warm fire with your favorite seasonal comfort food and enjoy!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Spit & Twit at City Winery Recap

Sunday's Spit & Twit held at the City Winery, hosted by Wine Twits, was a great success- great wines, great people, great atmosphere- what better way to spend a Sunday afternoon?
In case you haven't heard Spit & Twit was based upon a unique platform. A special portion of the Twitterverse was set aside for attendees to tweet their thoughts on the given wines tasted that day. Monitors were set up throughout the venue to show the posts and comments participants were tweeting in real time.

Overall the crowd was full of budding wine enthusiasts, most attendees had little to no wine experience at all. A few industry insiders filtrated the crowd, but the majority of the audience was simply there to learn something about wine and have a great time - it's amazing how social media can bring every thing together!.

I was there representing Pernod Ricard wines:

Jacob's Creek of Australia: Reserve Shiraz 2006 and Reserve Riesling 2008

tt Wines of New Zealand: Classic Sauvignon Blanc 2008;

Graffigna Wines
of Argentina: Centenario Malbec 2006

Campo Viejo
: Rioja Reserva 2005

All of the wines received a great response - admittedly, Campo Viejo was a crowd favorite (See photo to the left), many coming to the table with the intention of retasting the wine they so adore!

Jacob's Creek was another crowd pleaser, the dry character of the Riesling was a real treat to tasters and the Shiraz was compared to that of a French Syrah, definite structure, but approachable.

The Graffigna Malbec and the Brancott Wines Sauvignon Blanc stayed true to the characteristics of their varietals and regions, each giving off perfect expression of what one might expect.

Though the Wine Twits do not have any similar events planned as of yet, we look forward to seeing what they'll come up with in the future!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Creek of the Week: Jacob's Creek Reserve Shiraz 2006

This week's Creek of the Week is Jacob's Creek Reserve Shiraz, one of the two Jacob's Creek wines featured at the Spit & Twit yesterday held at City Winery in NYC.

The Reserve Shiraz is similar to that of a French Syrah - approachable, but with significant structure. Light black fruits and peppered spices are enhanced by the full body of this wine, leading to a balanced complexity across the palate with integrated, smooth oak tannins.

The Jacob's Creek Shiraz has won 26 awards internationally and continues to impress consumers year after year.

Enjoy this wine now or allow it to age for up to 10 years. The wine is perfect when paired with game, red meats and cheeses and is also perfect company for stuffing, sweet potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce and of course, Turkey!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Creek of the Week - Jacob's Creek Reserve Riesling

The award-winning Jacob's Creek Reserve Riesling had generous, appealing flavors of floral and citrus with hints of green apple. Perfectly balanced with outstanding length, this wine is the perfect choice for fall gatherings. The vibrant green of the 2008 vintage shows the youth of the wine, but this Riesling is ready to drink now.

If aging is your thing, the screw cap enclosure allows the flavor profile of the wine to develop to show honey and toast characteristics without the affect on color natural cork may have; believe me I've tried some older vintages they are delicious!

As the fall weather takes hold and Thanksgiving approaches, consider the Jacob's Creek Reserve Riesling for your gatherings. Used as an aperitif and paired with appetizers such as crab cakes or soft cheeses.