Sunday, April 27, 2008

Mexican wines from Copia event

By Jessica Yadegaran

As promised in today’s column on Mexican wines, here’s a selection of the best Baja wines I tasted at the Copia event last weekend. Check each winery’s Web site to locate a distributor (most are in Los Angeles) and find out if and when they will be available in the Bay Area. Some are headed into our stores as early as spring. As you’ll see, I was particularly taken with their blends.

Not to be a downer, but I do have to warn you about something that’s come to my attention. There has been a significant rise in the kidnappings of American tourists in Baja this past year. Seems our respective federal governments are too busy working on other security issues to shed light on this problem. So please be informed before you visit.

On to the wines:
Monte Xanic: 50,000 cases produced annually.

2004 Chenin Colombard: Well-balanced and bursting with tropical fruits and acidity.
2004 Gran Ricardo: A velvet-cedar-raspberry blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot that is aged for 18 months in French oak.

Casa de Piedro: 3,000 cases produced annually.

2005 Vino de Piedra Tinto: An elegant blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Tempranillo that has become quite the trend in Baja blends. This one showed tart berries, light grilled meats and vanilla on the finish. It was gorgeous.

2005 Parallelo Ensemble Arsena: a medium bodied blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Sirah and Barbera from the hillsides of San Antonio de las Minas. This wine is very balanced with dark fruits, leather and smoke. Very impressive.

Chateau Camou:

2004 Gran Vino Tinto Merlot: Beautiful ruby color with good, structured tannins and a floral finish. What Merlot should be.

2004 Gran Vino Tinto: A traditional Bordeaux Blend where the Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc are aged separately in stainless steel tanks and then in new French oak for 13 months. Blending occurs just before bottling and the result is cassis, coffee and spice.

L.A. Cetto: 600,000 cases produced annually with 14 different labels.

Vinicola Cabernet of Rose: I was blown away by the crisp, sherbert acidity of this dry rose made from Cabernet Sauvignon. Have it with sushi and be dazzled. And here’s the kicker: it costs $6.50 and is widely available in the U.S.

Reservas Privada Nebbiolo: This is L.A. Cetto’s premium label. This wine is tar-kissed with rose petals and violets on the nose. It’s got great tannins and impeccable finish. Here’s to the new Piedmont.


Monday, April 14, 2008

Looking for Mexican wine of Casa Madero in the USA


We had a very good bottle of wine while in Cancun last week, from Casa Madera, and are interested in purchasing some. We had a chardonnay that we really enjoyed, and would like to try the Semillon. How can we find some that can be shipped to the USA?

Thank you, Miff

Question about wine grapes

Dear Senors:

I undestand that the 2007 census of agriculture has been published. I am looking specifically for the section on grapes. Do you happen to know how I can obtain this? Thank you.


Patrick W Fegan, Director
1942 S Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60608