O Cellars Meritage from Burntshirt Vineyards.

Our wine tonight in celebration of #OTBN #NCWine is the Meritage from Burntshirt Vineyards.

Vintage 2016.

Bordeaux blend of estate grown Cabernet Sauvignon 48%, Petit Verdot 19%, Cabernet Franc 16%, Merlot 9%, Malbec 8%.

Crest of the Blue Ridge Henderson County AVA

Keep in mind, Meritage rhymes with heritage, not garage. Click link above to learn more about Meritage.

Meritage is an American term, not French, originating out of California, which signifies a wineries best blend of Bordeaux noble varietals. A winery must license the right to label a blend “Meritage.”

Aged in French oak.

We aerated for 60 minutes.

Dark burgundy in color showing long sleek legs.

Nose of blackberries, think hot blackberry cobbler just out of the oven, black currants, rum (black) cherries, vanilla, tobacco, and cocoa.

Dry on the palate with expressive notes of bramble berry jam, dark chocolate, blackberries, vanilla, sage, and pipe tobacco, finishing with cedar, spice, and dried herbs.

14% ABV

$30 a bottle.

This vintage of Meritage accumulated an impressive collection of medals.

Double Gold. – International East Meets West Double Gold – China Wine and Spirits. Gold – Asheville Food and Wine. Gold – New York International. Gold – North Carolina State Fair. Silver – Finger Lakes International Competition. Silver – Grand Harvest Competition

#NCWineNight #Meritage #Burntshirt

Please visit our other blog at WineryEscapades.Com

This wine is very special to us as this vintage was the toast wine at our wedding! So from us to all of you, Cheers to local wine 🍷 🍷

Bearly Sweet Red – Serenity Cellars

Our wine tonight is the Bearly Sweet Red from Serenity Cellers in Cleveland, Georgia.

Red White blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, and Traminette.

The Cabernet Sauvignon and the Sangiovese are Estate grown. The Traminette is local to North Georgia.

Non-vintage, but this is a young wine. We aerated but did not decant. Served very slightly chilled.

Labeled as Georgia table wine, no ABV is listed. We estimate the alcohol level at about 11-12%.

Bright ruby in color. Medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate tannins.

Expressive fruit forward nose and balanced bouquet. Sweet on the tongue, more so than barely yet not cloyingly sweet. Flavor profile of ripe dark fruits, with prominent notes of blueberries and black plums. Lingering finish with peppery and subtle nutty tones.

$20 a bottle.

Owner and winemaker Joe Smith is an icon in the North Georgia wine region. He’s the guy everyone turns to for assistance and Joe is currently mentoring other upcoming winemakers in the region.

The winemakers descriptor suggest this wine pears well with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. We’ll just take his word for that.

Granda – Baker Buffalo Creek Vineyard.

Our wine tonight is the Granda from Baker Buffalo Creek Vineyard.

Red blend of estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and Chambourcin.

Fermented in French Oak Barrels.

Burgundy in color.

Intensely fruit forward on the nose, off dry with mild tannins. Flavor notes of black cherries, red plums, blackberries, and red licorice. Finishing long with subtle earthy and nutty tones.

A really nice easy drinking red blend.

12.5% ABV

Baker Buffalo Creek Vineyard is rooted on a 100 plus year old dairy farm. The soil is fertile and rich in nutrients and not over farmed. Originally planted in 2003, much of those original vines remain.

Adama – Kaya Vineyards and Winery

Our wine tonight is the 2016 Adama from Kaya Vineyards and Winery

Vintage 2016.

Estate grown blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Touriga National.

Full bodied, silky, and perfectly balanced.

Color of deep purple.

Shows long consistent cascading legs.

Nose of blackberries, black currants, toasted marshmallows, charcoal, and nutmeg.

Medium-plus tannins.

14.5 months aged in new French oak.

Bold flavor notes of blackberry jam, red plums, blueberries, cocoa, chocolate mint, oak, smoke, vanilla bean extract, and pipe tobacco.

13.2 % ABV.

$39 a bottle.

Ships most states via VinoShipper. Click Here.

Aerated and decanted for 30 minutes. May benefit from additional decanting.

AVA: Dahlonega Plateau (only AVA within the state of Georgia).

Winemaker KJ Bell gifted us this bottle and we fell in love with this bold blend.

2016 Estate Grown Red Blend

Loco Lulu – Parker-Binns Vineyard

Our wine tonight is the Loco Lulu from Parker-Binns Vineyard in the Tryon Foothills wine region of Western North Carolina.

Loco Lulu – Soft Red Blend

Non-vintage on the bottle, though we believe this to be of the 2018 harvest.

Classic Bordeaux blend of estate grown Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.

Dark purple in color with a bright garnet rim.

Nose expressive of fresh Bing cherries, think of a freshly baked hot out of the oven cherry pie, cocoa, soft florals, cinnamon, vanilla, and smoke.

We aerated for 60 minutes.

Medium bodied, medium tannins, with beautiful cascading long legs.

Flavor notes of black currants, blackberries, cherries, red plums, and spice, finishing toward more subtle notes of cedar, vanilla, black pepper, and pipe tobacco.

$12.8% ABV

Winemaker: Justin Taylor

$20 a bottle.

Lulu’s paw of approval is stamped on the cork.

Ships most states via VinoShipper. Check the website for ordering.

Named for Lulu the winery rescue dog. $1 from every bottle sold is donated to her favorite local pet adoption organization.

Lulu

Parker-Binns Vineyard is close to our home and therefore we visit often. We hope to see you visiting one day soon!

From the Tasting Room looking out over the vineyard

Twenty-Fifteen BDX – Mountain Brook Vineyards

Our wine tonight is the Twenty-Fifteen BDX from Mountain Brook Vineyards in the Tryon Foothills of North Carolina.

Vintage 2015

Bordeaux blend of North Carolina grown fruit.

We aerated for 90 minutes.

Aged in a combination of French and American oak.

Dark ruby in color with a bright ruby rim.

Consistent uniform cascading full legs.

Expressive bouquet of blackberries, plums, prunes, fig preserves and dark chocolate.

Dry, medium-full bodied with medium tannins.

Black currant is forefront on the tongue, with subtle hints of blackberries, raisins, black licorice, and graphite, finishing with lingering notes of pipe tobacco and oak.

13.5% ABV

$38 a bottle.

Ships most states via VinoShipper.

Mountain Brook Vineyards is a beautiful venue should you ever be in Western North Carolina.

Below are a few iPhone shots from a recent visit.

#NCWine. #TryonFoothills #MountainBrook

Cheers!

Check out our other blog at WineryEscapades .Com

Winter Wonder – B & C Winery

Our wine tonight is the Winter Wonderland from B & C Winery in Maggie Valley, North Carolina.

Vintage 2019 Red blend.

Serve slightly chilled.

Nose of red plums, bing cherries, vanilla bean extract, cocoa, and apricots.

Dark purple in color with a bright garnet rim.

Semi-sweet, chewy, with substantial tannins.

Complex flavor notes of chocolate covered cherries, caramel apples, vanilla rum, dehydrated fruits, spices, and fig preserves lingering on the finish.

Heavy 14.5% ABV.

We judge this one as follows:

Appearance 3: Aroma 3: Taste 5 Finish 2.5. Impression. 2.5

Total Score 16 – Silver Medal

WineryEscapades.Com

Bordeaux Blend Tasting

Our wine tonight was a Bordeaux Blend tasting at our favorite local wine bar, Bond Street Wines in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

First was 2016 Margaux from Château Mongravey.

65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc.

Average age of the vines 25 years!

Aged 14 months in French Oak.

13% ABV.

Red berries on the nose, Earthy on the tongue with notes of charred oak and black licorice.

Rated 92 points by James Suckling.

$40 a bottle.

Second was 2016 Pessac-Leognan from Château Picque,

50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 50% Merlot.

13.5% ABV

Fruit forward nose with flavor notes of black currants, oak, and smoke.

My favorite of the three Bordeaux blends tasted tonight.

$40 a bottle.

92 points.

Final of the night was the 2011 Saint-Estèphe from La Chapelle de Meyney.

Tannic woodsy nose with flavor notes of leather, black licorice, and peppery spice.

Cabernet Sauvignon is dominate in this blend with Merlot.

13.5% ABV.

$40 a bottle.

90 Points.

Cheers!

Check out our other blog @ WineryEscapades.Com

Wines of 2019

While scrolling back through our pictures of 2019, found some really interesting wines which we never wrote about. Our goal remains to promote locally produced, yet certainly that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy other wines from around the world. In fact, we feel tasting other wines from around the globe helps us to understand, judge, and appreciate locally produced wines.

We go regularly to our local wine bar, Bond Street Wines in Spartanburg, South Carolina where proprietor Jeff House shares and teaches about unique wines from around the word. Jeff is one of the most knowledgeable wine people we have encountered. He has a penchant for sharing unique, small batch, affordable and amazing wines with interesting back stories.A tasting at the wine bar generally consist of whites and reds which normally share a general characteristic, such region, varietal, or wine maker.

This one, vinhas Atlas, while a nice fruit forward flavor, was crystal clear, not sure that’s a good thing though….it’s wine not water.

This mead we tried at Savannah Bee Company in Myrtle Beach. Our niece gifted us this rosé in a lighthouse shaped bottle.

The tastings often include Whites and Rosé

Yet Big Bold Reds are Prevalent!

Pinot Nero

Pinot Nero is Jenni’s “regular” at our favorite local Italian restaurant, Renato’s downtown Spartanburg. Pinot Noir fermented without skin contact to produce a full bodied white!

A nicely aged bold red likewise makes us smile!

Wine is such a great field to study. There exist so many different varietals and different wine regions along with different wine making techniques. There is really only one way to learn, and that is to drink it! Cheers!

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