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Tasting Notes for Carol Lynn

(165 notes on 152 wines)

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White - Off-dry
9/18/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
90 points
Nova FL Riesling ’20 5Y FAV
August 2021
YUM.
Opened last night...will review in a couple days

OK - getting around to reviewing - in mid-September.
First eveninig, paired with: caprese drizzled with Key Lime balsamic - smooth, off-dry, moderately tart :-) ; crab cake (a bit spicy) - slightly sweet over the spicy-heat; corn on the cob - soft, smooth, lightly dry with sweetness seeping through.

Second evening: alone and cold - grapefruit tartness; with caprese drizzled with fig balsamic - a little more off-dry than previously with key lime balsamic; grilled salmon - softer, no tartness; TJ's multigrain sourdough - grapefruit tart sweetness (like a pink grapefruit???)

Third night: Doing a side-by-side with the Reserve: Alone, cold - off-dry, lemony;
with the Kale-Squash soup - softer, faint lemon

Finished off bottle with a white chocolate macadamia nut cookie - DELICIOUS!!!!

Thank you, Nova! <3
White
9/3/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
Nova Cadamatre FL Reserve 2020 4 Y
September 2021
One of our brand new winemakers creating our FIRST!!!! NEW YORK STATE FINGER LAKES wines! So glad NW & Nova introduced themselves - we've been waiting a long time for the left coast to recognize that the right coast has excellent AVAs, too!

Nova's Reserve Riesling is significantly drier than her un-Reserve.

I seem to have made very scant notes on pairings. The first evening, I only noted that alone - and COLD - it was definitely a dry Riesling. The next evening, I managed to sip, eat and take notes. Again, COLD: dry, grapefruity. As it became less cold, it remained quite tart. I paired it with a hearty "stewp" (officially 'soup' but mine are always very thick) of kale, butternut squash, tomatoes, farro, and chicken broth. (on a subsequent evening, I added some cider to liquify it a bit - DELICIOUS!!!) With this soup, the wine was less tart and softer. Very tasty pairing.

I ordered the "pre-order" case of three each of Nova's two Finger Lakes Rieslings, so I will try to make notes with further pairings and share in an update.

Thank you, Nova, for creating two wonderful examples of NYS Rieslings! I must admit I'm looking forward to your 2022 addition of a sweeter one, but these two will surely be a very popular introduction.
White
8/25/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
Miriam California Riesling 2020 4-Y

August 2021

As the description says, this is not a sweet Riesling. And many of you know I do like swee! Well - I DO like Alex's dry Riesling!

Straight out of the fridge, lemony, soft, dry.
A short while later, paired with: salmon patty - dry; zucchini - lemony-tart; broccoli - softer, less tart, off-dry; brown rice - drier, but less tart, consistent lemon. Tasty pairings.

Second pairing: avocado toast with TJ's Chile-Lime seasoning - slightly lemony-tart; "loaded" omelet - again, slight lemon tartness. Very tasty with both!

Third time: salad (Romaine, dark cherries, feta, tomato, raw peas) dressed with key lime balsamic - citrusy-dry, very tasty. Dessert was a pecan bar - not at all tasty! I generally assume that a drier wine will not pair well with a sweet dessert, but I keep trying - so I can advise others! And because...maybe one will?

Thank you, Alex, for creating a tasty dry (maybe off-dry?) Riesling for us!
White
8/25/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
FD Moon Mountain Viognier 2020 4.5 Y
August 2021

Shared this with a friend the first evening, first with dinner, then during James Strater's Wine Tasting 101 featuring Viognier - a varietal that several were not familiar with!

With dinner: seared scallops and zoodles (thank you, Carol Palkki-Sarna) - VERY tasty pairing! Lightly dry, slight fruity acidity. Enel (friend) had never heard of Viognier - she enjoyed it.

During the wine tasting, we sipped it alone at first - dry, slightly metallic. Then with a cheese (we used TJ's White Stilton with Mango & Ginger) - soft, more fruit - YUMMM. Then with chocolate - very tart. Lastly, with dark cherries - softer and fruitier

Yup - we finished off the bottle. Again, Franc, I thoroughly enjoy your Viognier. I'm so glad you're one of "my" winemakers so I had to try it all those years ago! Can you believe I've been pestering you for seven years now?
Red
8/30/2021 - Carol Lynn wrote:
83 points
Rabbit & Spagh Shiraz ’18 3.5 Y
August 2021

I live in a senior community in which I have ten (or more - I chose the minimum because I like to cook) dinners a month. About a year ago, I fell in love with a NW Syrah, so I've been ordering the house Shiraz (no Syrah) frequently. That led me to include this bottle with a recent order.

As I usually do, I opened this bottle and allowed it to breathe for about an hour. The first evening, I paired it with: a salad dressed with honey-ginger balsamic - very tart and dry; hmm, that must have been a big salad - no notes for anything else. About two hours later, I sipped another glass and found dark fruit, alcohol heat (nice!) - then I made the mistake of nibbling a piece of fudge with it. This wine does NOT have a sweet-tooth!

Second evening, paired with: summer squash - dark fruit and alcohol heat; rice pilaf - more heat, less fruit; lamb - metallic, more heat than fruit. Later, alone - still some heat, but much more pleasant than with my pairings so far.

Third evening: chicken parmigiana - dry, soft, dark fruit - nice!!; broccoli - sharp, slightly metallic. OK - so it likes Italian - I'll remember that next time!

Thank you for creating this Shiraz for us!
Red - Fortified
8/31/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
Ana Diogo-Draper D+F 18 Y 4.5

August 2021
This bottle has been open for several months and sipped sparingly with no noticeable negative results. Kept in shipping box, as cool as possible.

My only notes seem to be from early May (bottle was open at that time), when I enjoyed a glass with a lemon bar. This combo created a smooth, dark fruit heat.

In early July, I read Oscar's post about his port and strawberry slushy and used the remainder of the bottle for that most tasty-sounding concoction. I accompanied my first glass of that with a snickerdoodle - yummmm

Thank you, Ana, for creating your Doce+Forte port-style for us!
White
6/28/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
May 2021

First sip (COLD) - bitey - but minutes later, not at all - smooth, crisp, dry
With chicken caprese - pleasant, crisp, dry; fiddleheads - a little bite; wild rice - slightly sweet.

Next evening: COLD/alone - dry, metallic; perhaps 15 minutes later, with lightly spiced crab cake - some heat; asparagus - dry, tart; garlic toast - fruit with light heat on top

We can always depend on Stephen to create a variety of tasty wines for us! Thank you, Stephen!
Red
5/14/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
May 2021

As usual with reds, I allowed Meghan & Stephen's Syrah about an hour of air prior to sipping. Alone, before dinner, I found it to by moderately dry, no tannins, sour cherry, a little alcohol heat, smooth..
Dinner: chicken thigh - a little heat, smooth; roast cauliflower - no heat, smooth, dark fruit but not as sour as alone; Spanish rice - very tart, dry, light acidity

Second dinner about three days later: alone before dinner - dry, tart with slosh, less dry without slosh; beef - dry, dark fruit, pleasant; rice - a bit sharper; asparagus & fiddleheads - less sharp than with rice.

Syrah (and its sister, Shiraz) has become my favorite red varietal. Thank you, Meghan & Stephen, for creating this tasty wine for us!
White
5/5/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
June 2021

I'd 'buy again' pretty much anything Franc creates!

This dry Riesling paired tastily with homemade pasta and meatballs. (no - I did not make the pasta) Came across more demi-sec than it was when I sipped it alone. With accompanying grilled asparagus, it was lightly dry and citrusy.

Alone this first evening, as it warmed the lightly acidic citrus held - very pleasant.

Second evening, with salad (grilled chicken, pineapple, feta, pecans, tomato, dressed with a splash of Greek olive oil and drizzled with Sicilian Lemon balsamic) - delicious. The salad seemed to pull some sweetness from the wine.

Thank you, Franc, for creating your crisp, citrusy Riesling for us.
White
3/13/2021 - Carol Lynn wrote:
95 points
DISCLAIMER: My rating is mine alone - reflecting how much I like this wine. It has no relationship to RP or any other wine connoisseur's scale.

You BET I'd buy it again - too bad there so many others got to it first!

My first pairing: homemade Irish soda bread (the dense, dark kind) topped with mayo & avocado, sprinkled with TJ's Chile Lime seasoning - wine was moderately sweet with a light tartness; slightly spicy lump crab cake - spice enhanced by the wine's sweetness; grilled carrots - wine was soft, sweet, no tartness.

Second pairing was with chicken & dumplings - delicious! :-)

For the sweet wine lover, Dave's Gewurtztraminer may not send off rockets, but it is a lovely fairly sweet wine.

Please, sir, I'd like some more?????
White
3/8/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
86 points
March 2021

This is the first of Patrice's wines I've had. I first sipped it alone, cold - and found it dry, crisp, acidic.
I then sipped it with dinner: chicken thigh with my favorite Pineapple/Coconut/Mango/Tequila sauce, broccoli and brown rice - lightly acidic, crisp :-)

The second evening, it paired with seared scallops and zoodles - very chilled at first - crisp, tart/lemon; softer and slightly sweeter (lemonade?) as the wine warmed.

Thank you, Patrice, for creating this tasty Chenin Blanc for us!
Red
2/10/2021 - Carol Lynn wrote:
82 points
February 2021 - a bit late in reviewing (May)

I opened and served this to a friend who enjoyed it. No notes on whether we paired it with anything...probably.

A few days later, I paired it with dinner: an egg roll - an odd combo, slightly sweet with moderate alcohol heat; with steak and wild rice - dark fruit, considerable heat.

My '3' rating is based on Pinot Noir in general being a varietal I'm not fond of. It does not reflect the quality of Sharon's wine. As I said, a friend enjoyed it (and she has received her first case of NW!!! - but hasn't decided to become an Angel/investor yet).

Thank you, Sharon, for creating such a variety of wines for us! And for sharing so much information with us.
Red
2/7/2021 - Carol Lynn wrote:
82 points
As usual with reds, I gave this blend some air (about 2 hours) prior to serving.
Paired with salad, dressed with Fig Balsamic - ash, wood, dry; with grilled tuna - less sharp, some fruit under the prevalent woody flavor; with potato pancake - smoother, but with some alcohol heat. I sipped a bit more about 2 hours later - very dry, light heat

A couple days later, after another hour+ air: with steak - very dry, fruit, smooth; green beans - softer. Later - tannins and alcohol heat.

So - obviously, I enjoyed it more with a meal than alone, which doesn't surprise me, since I'm not a fan of drier wines.

Thank you, Luis, for creating several wines for us - I appreciate your craft!
Red
12/20/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
90 points
January 2021 UPGRADED from 3.5 to 4 hearts
This is at least the third bottle that I have consumed - I've given two to friends. Thank goodness I have one more of this wonderful wine that helped to provide assistance to victims of the dreadful fire in 2017.

First couple sips, alone at room temp: dry, low tannins
First pairing: black beans & rice with sausage - soft, some fruit - very tasty pairing!

A couple evenings later with leftovers of above - light to medium tannins, some alcohol heat (how strange that I didn't taste these the first evening), dark fruit, smooth

Third evening leftovers from New Year's dinner: prime rib - light alcohol heat, dark fruits; brussel sprouts - silky smooth with some heat, fruit; twice-baked potato - dry, tart-sour (not unpleasant, not citrus-y)

Still thank our genius crew for 'selling' the idea of creating this Cru to help our (NW) neighbors in their time of great need!

Review of previous bottle (perhaps in 2018)
SO ANNOYED - had just about completed review - bounced out - 'Do you want to finish?' - I clicked FINISH - and it went back to the wines page. NOT to my unfinished review.

Two evenings, I paired with Thai Goong Pad Pak - mild shrimp and veggies. Didn't get much air the first evening and wine was a bit sharp. Second night, a bit softer. Still - so young. Tonight, paired with salmon, broccoli and baked potato - softer and smoother. It liked the broccoli and salmon better than the potato (and better than the lemon cupcake for dessert).
Aroma: a little spice, a little plum, a little woodsy
Taste: all of the above - smoother and softer each evening.
I will update - review, and (I'm guessing) hearts - in a few months, when I open the next bottle.
Thank you, Cellar Cru, for creating this lovely wine for such an amazing cause!
White - Sweet/Dessert
3/11/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
89 points
March 2021

Many of you are well aware that I lean toward sweeter wines. Over the 7 (SEVEN????) years I've been an Angel/investor in NW, my sweet-meter and palate have become more tolerant of the semi-sweet and off-dry wines that are more readily available here. Some folks who are far more cultured than I seem to group sweet wines with dessert wines (late-harvest or ice-wines - even ports or sherries). To me, they are very different - you don't drink 5-6-8-+ ounces of dessert wines if you wish to stay upright.

All that said...David's Sugar Cube Blanc is a tasty, semi-sweet white. (I'd describe his Sugar Cube Rouge as off-dry)

I sipped a little before dinner - quite chilled from refrigerator - and found it very tasty.

I seem to have only made comments about one pairing: lump crab cake and tortilla chips with homemade guacamole - VERY tasty, but inching toward off-dry with these foods.

I have more in my basket, and am hoping that "out of stock" means just that and it will be back IN stock when I have sufficient room for another 6-pack. I really need to consume more of my stash - I was spoiled in my house with a spare fridge and a good 'storage' cellar. I refuse to decorate my one-bedroom apartment in cardboard box, even though our winged boxes are ever-so-attractive!

Thank you, David, for creating a couple of sweeter wines for those of us who yearn for them!
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White
3/11/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
March 2021

The first evening, I did a side-by-side tasting with Kruger Family's Unoaked Chardonnay, which I'd opened a couple days before.
Pairing was: chicken thigh with Robert Rothschild's Pineapple, Coconut, Mango & Tequila sauce - slight heat and some sweetness with the chicken; greenie beanies and mozzarella sticks - no heat, very slight buttery feel, delicious.

Several evenings later, I paired with leftovers: lobster tail - oaky, soft; grilled asparagus - a slight 'bite'; freshly baked Irish soda bread (the real, farm style - dark and dense) - slight heat, oak.

I enjoyed both versions of the Krugers' Chardonnay - and had fun doing the side-by-side tasting. Thank you for creating both for us - and releasing together!
White
3/11/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
Disclaimer: My rating has absolutely no relation to RP or any other oenologist/sommelier's scale - it is a reflection of how much I liked the wine, loosely based on the above rating scale 'help'.

March 2021

I sipped this Unoaked Chardonnay over three evenings.

First pairing: leftovers of pork tenderloin with broccoli and wild rice - very pleasant, smooth, soft

Two evenings later: chicken thigh with Robert Rothschild's Pineapple, Coconut, Mango & Tequila sauce - crisp, tasty, a little alcohol heat; green beans and mozzarella sticks - no heat, crisp, delicious. This evening, I opened Kruger Family's Oaked Chardonnay 2020 to do a side-by-side tasting. Found slight heat and some sweetness with the chicken and very little difference with beans and mozz sticks.

Back to Unoaked - sipped alone, before dinner, quite chilled - slight heat; after dinner (cool) - a little dry, pleasant

Thank you, Krugers, for creating two versions of your Chardonnay for us - I enjoy comparing.
White
12/10/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
December 2020

First pairing: seared scallops and zoodles (Carol Sarna - I'm addicted to this!!!) - soft, dry, fruity - very tasty!

Second evening: COLD before dinner - metallic, dry, acidic. With rainbow trout and roast cauliflower (wine a bit less chilled) - soft, fruity, smooth.

Third evening: alone, quite chilled - slightly sour, but not unpleasant; with lump crab cake and grilled asparagus - less tart.

Dominic's Terra Bianca is definitely a drier wine than I prefer, but I found it quite tasty. Thank you, Dominic, for creating it for us!
White - Sparkling
11/30/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
92 points
November 25. 2020
Celebrating house closing - $$$ deposited in my account :-)

I only commented on this one meal, but I can't get enough of Wayne's sublime Eponina Lush!

Paired with salad (dark chocolate balsamic), rainbow trout with Cabela's Salmon/Trout seasoning, and sourdough toast - exactly as the name implies - this bubbly is slightly dry.
And simply delicious! Slightly drier with pecan pie.

Wayne's Eponina Lush consistently gets my "just gimme a straw" rating, although I would suggest NOT sipping it through a straw ;-)
Rosé - Sparkling
11/10/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
November 7, 2020
Celebrating that buyer of my house received her mortgage confirmation!

Paired with wild mushroom ravioli and sweet sausage: crisp, tangy, dry (yeah - no surprise there)
Three nights later, with fish, purple potato chips topped with avocado and corn salsa - again, delicious crisp, tangy. And still bubbly! (love my champagne cork! - I've had bubblies last for up to a week)

Thank you, Penelope, for creating this breathlessly tasty bubbly Rose for us!
Red
2/15/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
November 2020

As is my usual practice, I gave this young red about two hours air.
Sipping alone before dinner, I found it dry, moderate tannins, ash-y.
First evening, paired with pizza (my go-to is pepperoni, sausage, shrooms, xtra cheese, spinach (or broccoli) ) - moderate alcohol heat, dark fruit underneath.
Guest waited to sip until after dinner - soft, no bite, bouquet of flowers, fruity "incredible!"

Second evening - with steak, I only noted 'softer, fruity'
Thank you, Karen, for creating this tasty Malbec for us!
Rosé
11/5/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
November 2020
Out of fridge cold - dry, crisp, tart fruit, tangy - nice!
First pairing: (still chilled, but less COLD) seared tuna - softer, fruity; grilled carrots - quite tart (grilling seems to bring out the sweetness in carrots); purple potato slices with garlic sea salt - slightly sweet. A tasty contrast-y pairing.
Second & third evenings: pizza - soft, fruity but on the dry side, rhubarb-tart.

For those who newer to wines who think of 'Rose' as sweet, this will broaden your horizons but be sure your mouth is prepared for "not really sweet". :-)

Thank you, Cru crew, for creating yet another taste-treat for us!
White
11/20/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
January 2021

Alone, cool/room temp - dry, fruit, tangy
Back-to-back nights, same pairing: Crab cake - very tasty, a bit 'hot' reflecting the Old Bay crab seasoning; broccoli cheddar fritter - softer. The second night, I again sipped before dinner. The wine was cold and seemed quite dry and very citrusy-tart.
Third evening, with salmon - softer, light citrus; broccoli fritter - touch of sweetness.

A lovely crisp white, Meaghan and Stephen! When will we see more of your collaborations?
Red
10/30/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
October 2020 - second bottle
Gave it 3 hours air.
First pairing: Figured a "Birthday" wine should be a good one to choose for my birthday :-) steak and cauliflower pancakes - EXCELLENT! dark fruit, oak, slightly tannins
Second pairing: rolled steak (spinach and Swiss cheese) - very nice, smooth, dark fruit; cauliflower pancakes again - a bit metallic under the tongue, dark fruit, a little heat on top of tongue.
Alone, after dinner, first sips - some tannins, drier, a bit of pucker-power; later sips - less tannin, no sharpness
Third pairing: more steak - a little tannin but soft, smooth, fruity; spinach - less tannin; mozzarella sticks - a bit sharp.

I have one more bottle!

FIRST BOTTLE
February 2019
Unexpected guest - likes full-bodied reds. David says "open and enjoy". So I did - giving it a bit of air by playing dump-dump five or six times.
Aroma - sweet dark fruit - YUMMMMM
First sip out of bottle - hmmmmm :-) :-)
Served with venison stew. Guest sipped - face lit up - "Oh MY - this is excellent!" Tasted pine - said he's never had that happen before. I tasted - "WOW!!!!" I just tasted 'delicious' - dark fruits, definitely, some sweet baking spice - overall, had a sense of sweetness. Absolutely NO tannin, no 'heat'. It was tempting to just keep sipping until it was all gone, but settled for just one glass each. (guest had to drive home)
I was so overwhelmed I forgot to put the cork back in, so bottle sat open all night. Don't know if that affected my next impressions.
Second (next) evening - first sip alone - some tannins, a bit of 'heat'.
Paired with leek/shroom/sweet sausage soup and sourdough bread. Interestingly, smoother with sourdough than with the soup. No tannins, but lacked the sweetness of the first evening.
So glad there's more - going to give a couple bottles a few months+, then try again.

Thank you, David, for creating this stunning Cab birthday gift - yummm!
Red
2/4/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
January 2021 - Second bottle

First glass alone at room temp - dark fruit, semi-dry?
Paired with Lox appetizer - soft, fruit, not sweet; pork schnitzel: fruit; asparagus - fruit there, but dry*; BLT salad - more fruit.
I described it as 'dry' and starred it because I don't know what else to call it - opposite of 'sweet' is 'dry', right? It's not DRY, but if someone wants to give me a better word, I'll be grateful!

About a week later: paired with steak - slight alcohol heat, slight dark fruit sweetness; salad - fruit, metallic; baked potato - some sweetness, slightly more heat than with steak.

I do like this wine - maybe more like 3.75-4 - but feel the name is misleading for those of us who enjoy truly sweet wines. Not talking about sticky, cloying sweet and not dessert wines - just sweet sipping wines.

Thank you, David, for creating such a great variety of wines for us!

REVIEW OF FIRST BOTTLE: November 2020

Well, many of you know I lean toward truly sweet wines and can anticipate that I lit up like a Christmas tree when I saw this one released. In fact, some of you called my attention to it!

I sipped my first glass without food and cool/chilly. Also - I poured and sipped immediately, rather than giving it any air. Surprised - barely nudged my sweet-meter.
Then I paired with a pork chop - light alcohol heat which faded fast; and salad - pleasant, fruity.

Second evening (a week later), paired with Bœuf bourguignon - fruity before first bite, mild and fruity with beef, spicy sipped after.

No tannins, not dry - but not close to a "Sugar Cube" IMO.
Red
12/11/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
November 2020

Well, many of you know I lean toward truly sweet wines and can anticipate that I lit up like a Christmas tree when I saw this one released. In fact, some of you called my attention to it!

I sipped my first glass without food and cool/chilly. Also - I poured and sipped immediately, rather than giving it any air. Surprised - barely nudged my sweet-meter.
Then I paired with a pork chop - light alcohol heat which faded fast; and salad - pleasant, fruity.

Second evening (a week later), paired with Bœuf bourguignon - fruity before first bite, mild and fruity with beef, spicy sipped after.

No tannins, not dry - but not close to a "Sugar Cube" IMO.

I am adding my notes for second bottle - and will duplicate on 'real' second bottle.

January: Second bottle - first glass alone at room temp - dark fruit, semi-dry? Paired with Lox appetizer - soft, fruit, not sweet; pork schnitzel: fruit; asparagus - fruit there, but dry*; BLT salad - more fruit.

I described it as 'dry' and starred it because I don't know what else to call it - opposite of 'sweet' is 'dry', right? It's not DRY, but if someone wants to give me a better word, I'll be grateful!

Thank you, David, for creating such a great variety of wines for us!
Red
1/29/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
86 points
So far behind - sorry :-(
September 2020

First sips before food - dry, dark fruit, light tannins
First pairing: steak - smooth, fruity, spicy; eggplant slices (grilled with mayo and cheese) - immediately after a bite, some alcohol heat and spice, then softer, dry, light spice
Second pairing: pizza - significant alcohol heat (not a great pairing); more eggplant circles - a bit sharp, then smoother
Alone after the meal, tannins, dark fruit, light metallic
Third pairing: ham loaf - made no notes, but the ham loaf wasn't great (wasn't made with Dietrich's meat)

Thank you, Franc, for making a variety of tasty wines for us.
Red
1/29/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
I am SO behind. Sipped this in August 2020 Aired for 1.25 hrs

First sip out of bottle: dry, no discernible tannins
Paired twice with burgers. First night - a little alcohol heat, dry, fruit, spicy; with corn, a little less heat, softer
Second night (probably not consecutive), gave it about an hour more air. Sipped alone, before food, some tannins. With burger, a little softer than first evening, still some alcohol heat which faded as I continued to eat. With tortilla with tomato, avocado and cheddar - very tart and more alcohol heat.

I have another bottle in my wine fridge. Looking forward to a 'second opinion'.
Thank you for making this (and so many other) wine for us, Scott!
Red
1/29/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
November 2020 - and January 2021

My sole note from November is that I paired with turkey and it was good (the wine was chilled). Later, as it came to room temp and I sipped some without food, it was very tasty. I have several more bottles of this vintage!

I was better in mid-January :-)
First pairing: roast lamb - fruity, a bit dry; with Brussels sauteed with craisins and pecans - soft, fruity, a bit of alcohol heat.
A couple nights later with cauliflower crust pepperoni pizza - VERY tasty!
And the next evening: leftover beef - fruit, a bit of earth; asparagus - fruity, slightly sweet
Finished off alone - sweetish, dark fruit

Thank you, Tom, for making a variety of tasty wines for us!
White
1/29/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
90 points
Rating is my opinion and bears no semblance to any sommelier's

January 2021
Once again, I LOVE this wine, Stephen! PLEASE don't let anyone convince you to dry it out in future releases!

I opened the bottle on Jan 6 and paired with shrimp salad (mine) and a broccoli, walnut & pear salad from a local store - I enjoyed the wine so much I made no notes.

Second evening, paired with cauliflower crust pepperoni pizza (from same store) - only note was a huge smiley-face.

Stay strong, Stephen - don't mess with this success <3 <3 <3 <3 <3
White
1/29/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
80 points
January 2021

I was so excited when I saw this release - SO looking forward to another truly sweet wine. Disappointed that my palate thinks it's demi-sec/off-dry - especially when cold.

Paired with grilled tuna and broccoli/walnut/pear salad - pleasant, lightly crisp. SLIGHTLY sweet as it warmed toward room temp.
Second evening with shrimp salad - demi-sec even when cool, not cold; slightly less dry with celery and peanut butter.

This is a pleasant off-dry (demi-sec) wine to my palate. Thank you, Stephen, for creating another tasty wine for us. May I ask why "Orange"? Is Orange Muscat a varietal?
White
1/29/2021 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
October 2020
Alone before dinner: semi-dry, crisp, limey-tart

All three dinners were homemade chicken stewp (my soups are always somewhere between soup & stew, therefore "stewp"). First and third evenings also included grilled cheese sandwiches. Very good pairings; limey/grapefruit acidity, crisp. Second evening, wine seemed a bit softer (wine was cool as opposed to cold), lighter acidity.

Alone, COLD, wine was acidic, metallic; COOL, less so.

I've consistently enjoyed this wine of yours, Stephen - thank you!
White
10/28/2020 - Carol Lynn wrote:
88 points
A bit overdue :-(
October 2020
CHILLLED and paired with salad topped with sauteed chicken: seems slightly drier than previous vintages, but pleasant; with tortilla with melted cheddar and TJ's corn salsa - a bit sour. A little later and closer to room temp, alone - softer, no sourness, semi-sweet? off-dry??

Second evening: squash stuffed with ginger and scallion chicken sausage - wine cold at first - crisp, off-dry; as it 'warmed' - delightfully grapefruit-tart.

Third night: salmon, sauteed kale, potato - pleasant pairing. After dinner - crisp, dry

I felt this vintage was a bit drier than previous ones; I feel that way about many - not only yours, Stephen. I yearn for the sweeter options of yore. That said, thank you for creating so many options for us!
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
12/28/2020 - Carol Lynn Does not like this wine:
85 points
December 2020

Alone, after an hour + of air and at room temp - dry, alcohol heat, significant tannins.
Christmas Eve (leftovers): golumpki - dark fruit, alcohol heat; cauliflower and broccoli - smoother, some fruit; brown rice with Feta - less heat than with golumpki, some fruit underneath.

Boxing Day (leftovers from Christmas dinner): lamb - smooth, but with some alcohol heat; scalloped potatoes - significant tannins and heat, charcoal; salad - ash, heat, dark fruit.

A couple nights later: black beans and rice with Italian sausage - dark fruit, charcoal, and noticeable alcohol heat.

Thank you again, Franc, for creating such a variety of wines for us!
Red - Fortified
12/27/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
Very tasty spiced wine - equally good hot or chilled
Rosé
12/26/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
93 points
DISCLAIMER: My rating reflects how much I like this wine. Please do not confuse it with RP or other knowledgeable sommeliers' reasons.

December 2020

Second bottle rated in early August - No change.

This bottle paired once with cod, patty-pan squash grilled and topped with asiago; second pairing was Carol Sarna's recipe for Seared Scallops and Zoodles - both were rated "Just gimme a straw!"

Tom, please-Please-PLEASE don't allow yourself to be talked into 'drying this up' in future vintages!
Red - Fortified
12/26/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
December 2020

I believe I still have some of this bottle left, but it's time I got these R&Rs checked off! Obviously, the amount consumed of Ana's D+F port-style dessert wine is different than my generous glasses of wine that accompanies dinners.

I sipped a couple times end of August/early September - first alone, second time with cashews. I must have refrigerated the bottle after opening in August, because my note in early Sept was "cold - STRONG". As it became just 'cool', this lovely port-style wine was softer and very pleasant with the cashews - some of which were honey-roasted, others salted.

My most recent sipping was end of November, with peppermint ice cream - a very tasty combo!

Thank you, Ana, for continuing to create this delicious port-style wine for us.
Red
8/31/2020 - Carol Lynn wrote:
85 points
SECOND BOTTLE - I liked the first better
August 2020 - second bottle
I didn't love this bottle as much. It may have been my pairings; it may have just been me. It's been a tough year all around.

First sip after opening - sharp tannins. Gave it an hour and a few dump-dumps - but first sip (after air) - dry, tannins but less sharp.

First pairing: with calzone: softer, some alcohol heat, but less as I sipped and ate
Second pairing a couple days later: with smoked pork chop: dry, slightly peppery; with cheese torte and brussels - some alcohol heat, again, less toward the end of the meal.
Third pairing: with Italian sausage - softer, dark fruit, ashes, woody; with grilled carrots - soft, more fruit, a hint of sweet

OK - either this bottle had a lot more wine in it than others or I was being very sparing with my pours, because there was enough left for me and a friend to finish it off a week later. Friend drinks very little (maybe 3-4 oz).
Paired with pizza: Friend: brisk, smoky; me: dry, some fruit, metallic (I think I forgot to sip while eating, so my impressions were after dinner)

Thank you, Yian, for creating your wines for us!
Red
8/31/2020 - Carol Lynn wrote:
85 points
August 2020 - yup, a bit late getting R&Rs done
As usual, I gave this red some air - 2 hours and a few dump-dumps worth
First sip - straight out of bottle when I uncorked: quite dry, significant tannins

First pairing: with steak - dark but not sweet fruit, some alcohol heat; cauliflower pancaked - fewer tannins, some fruit and spice; mozzarella strips - alcohol heat

Second pairing (didn't note date - I don't usually sip back to back nights): with calzone - some alcohol heat, spicy

Alone: mild alcohol heat, spicy, fruit hiding underneath, smooth

Thank you, Yian, for creating another vintage of Pinot Noir for us!
Rosé
6/24/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
95 points
First bottle opened in June (yeah, I'm a bit behind the 8-ball)
His 2018 rated my "just gimme a straw!" - and this one is right there with its older brother!

Alone before dinner - pleasantly crisp
With shrimp cocktail - off-dry, very tasty - edging toward semi-sweet as it lost its CHILL from the fridge. With cauliflower pancakes - sweeter, delicious, nectarine (peach with a bit of a tang?)

About a week later, after dinner - COLD, tart. Softer, less tart as it warmed.

Love it, Tom! Have a few more bottles, thank goodness.
White
8/14/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
89 points
Tasted July 2020; reviewed October 2020 (from notes :-) )

Several vintages ago, this was the first Viognier I'd tried and the varietal (especially David's version) has grown on me. I've had a few others that were way more dry than I could appreciate. David's is on the drier side (for those who don't know me, I lean toward sweeter) but I'm definitely enjoying it!

First pairing: steamed clams, cod, and corn on the cob - crisp, lightly tart
Second (next day): pizza (pepperoni, sausage, shrooms, broccoli, extra cheese) - crisp, tart - very tasty!
A week later: alone, before dinner, COLD - citrus rind, faintly metallic;
with chicken salad and TJ's Greek cheese pie - very nice!, crisp, lightly metallic

Thank you, David, for continuing to create so many delicious wines for us! Hope all is well with you and family, and that you're all safe.
Red
2015 Jim Olsen Chateau Routon Sierra Rouge Fair Play Syrah Blend, Syrah
10/14/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
95 points
Rating is how much I LOVE this wine - not based on RP's or any other sommelier's scale.

Very few reds earn my "just gimme a straw" - but I sure wish I'd bought all he had left instead of just nine.

First bottle/review January 2019 - no change <3
RIP, Jim - I miss you.
Rosé
8/1/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
88 points
first sip - COLD, quite dry, pleasant

First & third pairings (5 days apart) with shrimp & rice salad (first: sour but not unpleasantly so; and tortilla with avocado and melted swiss cheese, sprinkled with TJ's Chile Lime seasoning - tart, not sour; second : semi-tart, crisp, fruit - raspberries?) Liked it better the third evening/second of this pairing.
{two nights separated the 'second' pairings for each of these meals}
Second & fourth pairings (5 days apart) with Thanksgiving leftovers - they'd been in the freezer!!! - turkey, stuffing, fresh grilled carrots. (first evening: a bit softer and slightly less tart with this meal, dry, pleasant; even softer and less tart with carrots - it had also warmed a bit; second evening: not as dry, crisp, semi-tart)
The last glass paired with my last-ever TJ's Chicken Balti pie (I'm really angry at TJ's for discontinuing my favorite prepared meal!!!) - the wine was a bit warmer this evening (probably 90F helped) - less tart, a bit metallic, crisp & tasty.

Alone and COLD - serious pucker power, quite metallic, tart
I definitely preferred it with food and chilled not COLD, and the longer the bottle was open (total of 10 days), it seemed to soften a bit.

This wine is the most gorgeous pinkish amber.----
Thank you, Ben, for creating such a beautiful and dry but tasty Rose' for us!
Red
9/2/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
August 2020
This is the SECOND RELEASE - I wish NW would indicate that somehow, as future releases seem (logically) to be different from original releases.

An hour + of air
First evening - first sip/alone - significant tannins, tart
Paired with steak & shrooms (some alcohol heat, dry, fruit underlying); grilled carrots (a little less tart, more fruit) Alone again, after dinner, at first seemed same as 'before'; then not (less tannin, fruit) - interesting! An hour more air?

Second pairing almost a week later - pizza - DELICIOUS!!! Dry, lighter tannins, dark fruit

A few nights later, with ham loaf (meat from local butcher - not the same as when I get it from Dietrich's in Lenhartsville, PA, but 6 hours' drive??? not that desperate yet!) - tart, metallic, very dry; with peas - alcohol heat; with TJ's mozzarella cheese sticks - smoother, light alcohol heat at back.

Thank you, Franc, Jorge & crew for creating your 'Crus' for us. I did like the first release better ;-) - not as dry....
White
8/2/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
87 points
August 2020 - second bottle
First evening: caprese (crisp,medium tart, minerally); shrimp and rice salad dressed with a spicy French dressing (crisp, pleasantly tart)
Second (a couple nights later) - same pairing - this evening, a bit softer, still slightly tart
About a week later, with Seared Scallops and Zoodles (I'm addicted, Carol Sarna!!!) - dry, quite tart, although as wine warmed, it became a bit was less tart, while maintaining crispness.
Thank you, Yian - guess I should order a bottle of 2019 to compare - I thought I had!
White
2018 Quevedo Family Altitude Vinho Regional Duriense White Blend (view label images)
May 2020
Well, I'm a bit behind on my reviews, since it's now July. Sorry, Oscar!

Alone, first sips - COLD - crisp, very tart, grapefruit; less tart, still prominent grapefruit as it became less cold.

First pairing with shrimp and squash curls, accompanied by tortilla with melted cheddar: quite tart, softer as it warmed.
Second dinner with seared scallops and squash curls: less tart, less acidic with scallops - a delicious pairing.

Even after it had been open a couple days, this wine is drier and more acidic than I prefer, but an interesting and tasty change.

Thank you, Oscar and Claudia, for creating this nice white for us!
White
7/16/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
June 2019
Sauvignon Blanc is a drier wine than my preference, but it's good to try different varietals and styles - and I love supporting Justin & Katy (ALL our winemakers, really)!

First evening, I paired it with salad (shrimp, avocado, pineapple, feta (with a drizzle of Greek olive oil and a generous splash of one of Saratoga (NY) balsamics). Wine was well-chilled - citrus tart and quite dry.

Second pairing: chicken/mushroom tortellini (minerally, lime rind) and cauliflower pancake, seasoned with TJ's Chile Lime seasoning (limey, but slightly less tart, tastier with spice). Alone after dinner, very dry, but less tart as it warmed.

About two weeks later, I did a side-by-side comparison tasting with the Darnault & Easthope SB - paired with baked chicken breast and (slightly sweet) stuffing that my neighbor had brought over for me and guacamole and TJ's lime & salt tortilla chips..
COLD: Michaud: acidic, limey, metallic D&E: sour lemon
COOL: Michaud: less acidic, softer, tasty D&E: citrus tart but not sour

Thank you, Katy & Justin, for creating so many different taste-treats for us!
White
7/16/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
85 points
July 2020
Sauvignon Blanc is a drier wine than my preference, but one of the funnest things about Naked Wines is the opportunity to try so many different varietals and styles!

Alone and COLD, I found this wine to be acidic and metallic - but tasty.

First evening, I paired it with smoked Cornish hen and squash chips. With food, it was dry and crisp, slightly limey and very tasty. As the wine warmed toward room temp, I found it to be less acidic/metallic.

Second pairing, I used the smoked hen in a salad (slightly sweet dressing) and found the wine to be very tart and dry immediately after a bite of salad; with some 'breathing room' between salad and wine, it was a bit softer.

Third evening (not consecutive), I paired with red snapper (found a recipe for a lemon ginger sauce, but ground ginger isn't the same as grated fresh!). The wine was softer, less tart than previous evenings' pairings. Grilled baby carrots with a drizzle of the same sauce created pucker power which quickly moderated. Purple potato chips with melted cheese and guacamole - not the pucker power of the carrots, but sour (not unpleasantly).

I had a short glass of this SB and about the same of Justin & Katy Michaud's, so I did a side-by-side comparison tasting paired with baked chicken breast and (slightly sweet) stuffing that my neighbor had brought over for me and guacamole and more purple potato chips.
COLD: Michaud: acidic, limey, metallic D&E: sour lemon
COOL: Michaud: less acidic, softer, tasty D&E: citrus tart but not sour

Thank you, Ben and Ron, for teaming up to create this interesting Sauvignon Blanc for us!
1 person found this helpful Comment
White
7/12/2020 - Carol Lynn Likes this wine:
86 points
July 2020

Don't believe I'd ever heard of this varietal before. Fun thing about NW!
First sip - alone, COLD - grapefruit rind.

First pairing: seared scallops and zoodles (seasoned with Robert Rothschild's Pineapple Coconut Mango Tequila sauce): limey tart - very tasty!

Second evening: COLD, alone - lime rind, very tart; as wine went from COLD to cool, just nicely tart. With quacamole, not as tart. With caprese, quite acidic (feeds off the acid in tomatoes?). And with leftover scallops & zoodles - less tart, a bit limey - very tasty!

Sipped the last bit alone a few nights later - dry, but softer than previously.

Thank you, Matt, for creating this for us. I do wish you'd bring back your deliciously sweet Moscato or Riesling - or BOTH!!!
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