I drink a lot of great wine and every now and then am truly blown away by a bottle or two. This week, maybe because it was Valentine's I was gifted two seriously delicious wines -- a red and a white that are so deserving of my praise.
The red is called Apothic Red and has a gorgeous label as well. The vineyard is owned by Gallo but you won't see the imprint on the label. You can learn all about it at http://www.apothic.com/. It's a rich combination of Zinfandel, Syrah and Merlot and serves up layers of cherries, vanilla and mocha. My dad would have loved this wine. His favorite dessert was anything chocolate with a great glass of Zin. This wine tastes like dessert in a glass. Price point is even better at 13.99 a bottle and can be purchased online. Robert Parker has some great things to say about the wine as well so my palate is spot on with this wine.
The second bottle is a lovely lemony-straw colored Chardonnay from the Burrell School vineyard located in the Santa Cruz mountains. It's called "Teacher's Pet" Chardonnay. The name comes from the Burrell School bell tower circa 1890 that overlooks the vineyard. In the glass, the wine opens up to a nose of toast and lemon custard, pears and pineapple. This is a zesty Chardonnay with juicy flavors of grapefruit, almonds, Honey tangelo and golden delicious apple. The lively acidity begs to be enjoyed with equally lively fare. We drank a 2006 that is sold out -- production was limited to 790 cases. The wines are fermented and aged for a year in French Oak barrels. Bottles from 2007 are available for around $30 and worth every penny. 690 cases were produced so check it out: http://www.burrellschool.com/. The company's tagline is equally engaging: I promise to sip my wine... words to live by that I more often than not forget entirely.