Bird Wines of Alcatraz or The Bird Brain Wine & Dine

Judith's House
Tasted Saturday, March 10, 2012 by rocknroller with 837 views


This event was centered around a bird theme, which some might argue is a bird brained idea to begin with, but hey, sometimes a little bird has to go out on a limb. One of our avid wine geeks is also a bird freak. It has been a long time dream of hers (ok, that may be a bit of an exaggeration) to host an event where every wine has some sort of connection to our fine feathered friends. I was pretty impressed that we got some decent wines since nobody was forking out for a Screaming Eagle. FYI, the Prum made it in for the two "Jays" in J.J. The evening featured some wonderful food, including some spectacular chicken wings from "D" Spot and a feature film showing of "The Big Year" starring Steve Martin, Owen Wilson, and Jack Black seeking to break the world record for seeing the most species of birds in a single "Big Year". Our resident birder impressed us with her knowledge and assured us that these people really do exist. At least we know what you do now when you're galavanting all over the globe Judith!

Flight 1 - White Birds (3 Notes)

Flight 2 - Red Birds (7 Notes)

  • 2006 Raptor Ridge Pinot Noir Reserve 86 Points

    USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley

    Dark red color. This bottle had been opened and corked the night before around 10pm, then decanted for 2 hours prior to drinking. This bottle was very disjoint again, a disturbing trend. Lots of alcohol up front (15.2%) on the nose, the fruit comes off somewhat stewy with cherry, raisin, vanilla, spice. The palate was very similar, stewy fruit, cherry, cherry cough syrup, , spicy alcohol finish. This got a little better over another 1 -2 hours, but not not alot. It never came close to previous bottles. This may have some heat damage, or it may simply be a fading wine with high alcohol. If I had any around, i would highly recommend checking in on them to see their status.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2007 Auntsfield Pinot Noir Hawk Hill 89 Points

    New Zealand, South Island, Marlborough

    Dark red color. Aerated into glasses. Nose shows oak, spices, subtle damp earth, briary, cherry. The palate is round, with medium body, raspberry, cherry, spice, underbrush, soft tannins, medium finish. Pretty solid.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2007 Mockingbird Hill Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Napa Valley 92 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    Very dark red color. Decanted for 2 hours. Really nicely perfumed nose with florals, blueberry, mulberry, light oak, spices. The palate is velvety, full bodied, black fruits, spice, oak, fine grained integrated tannins, long finish. Very good. My WOTN, 92pts.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2007 Peterson Winery Syrah Gravity Flow Block Bradford Mountain Vineyard 90 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Dry Creek Valley

    Very dark red purple color. Aerated into glasses. Nice nose with blackberry, blueberry, earthy. The palate is dense, chewy, blackberry liqueur, earth, mineral, very peppery on the finish, though not overly. Just a bit of heat shows on the finiish, not really detracting. Medium plus finish. 90+pts.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2005 Eaglepoint Ranch Winery Petite Sirah 87 Points

    USA, California, North Coast, Mendocino

    Very dark red/purple color. Nose had blackberry, lots of glycerin, spicy, woody, sweet ripe dark fruits. Palate has good weight, nice black fruit flavors, simple, woody, a bit herbal, average finish.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2007 Trinchero Cabernet Sauvignon Chicken Ranch Vineyard 87 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Rutherford

    Very dark red color. Decanted for 45 minutes. Nose shows cassis, lots of wood, pepper, a little green, cinnamon. The palate is very dry grippy tannins, a bit stemmy, black fruits, woody, spicy, tart. This was disappointing. May benefit from a significant decant or some additional cellar time, but I am am concerned though about the green edges and this may not come around.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue

  • 2009 Robert Biale Zinfandel Black Chicken 91 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oak Knoll District

    Very dark ruby red color. decanted for 2 hours. Drank 1 glass on consecutive days. Lush nose with beautiful black fruits of blackberry, cassis, black raspberry, black cherry, dried herbs, and spices. The palate is deeply concentrated, fully body, consistent and fairly massive black fruits, lots of pepper, glycerin, and soft tannins, long finish. A big style, but well balanced with little heat showing. 90pts day1 and 91pts day 2.

    Post a Comment / 1 person found this helpful, do you? Yes - No / Report Issue

Flight 3 - Bonus Wine (1 Note)

  • 2006 King Estate Pinot Gris Vin Glacé 93 Points

    USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley

    Brought this as a treat to finish the evening and it did not disappoint. Consistent with previous bottles. Just a great bottle, and so easy to drink. Very full and complex. Quite the crowd pleaser. I didn't include this for consideration as my WOTN, would have been.

    Post a Comment / Do you find this review helpful? Yes - No / Report Issue


Everyone had a great time and the wines faired pretty well overall. My themed WOTN was the 2007 Mockingbird Hill Reserve Cab, followed by the Biale Zin, and Prum Riesling. If not for the bird theme, The WOTN would have been the bonus 2006 King Estate Vin Glace.