There have been many wines I have tasted over the last few months, so in one sense there is a lot I could be writing about. 
However, few were very special or memorable.   I don’t see the point of just “cataloging” wines- there are more than enough wine writers who do that.
Hence my delay until I find the right Raison d'être.   Unless I am interested in READING what I WRITE, why bother?
Still I have several months of writing back log which I will release starting with my much delayed May issue. Once I am done with June & July I hope to relaunch a new WEINGARTEN in the Fall
One addition I have started TWITTER@tafund for occasional quickies on the stock market, astrology and wine.
I wish everyone a good Summer holiday- I am on mine.
3. WINE 101
1. Stacked Wines
The Rise of Destination Wineries?
Cannabis wine catching on in California
HW: I always wondered why some people would pay so much for certain CA wines which while good, were neither great or better than wines half their price-
2. Top 10 vineyard investments
3.  Top 5 Wine Myths That Won't Die
4. September 21, 22 WINE RIOT
5.  World Malbec Day at the Guggenheim was a perfect lovely wine event with delicious wines, first class tango dancing and a fine tango orchestra. Wow!  As part of future Malbec promotions, they are doing a tango/wine world tour, if it comes to a city near you- I would highly recommend it 
One wine especially struck my fancy: Tamari Reserva only $14.99  FYI  In Huarpe, the indigenous language of the people in Mendoza TAMARI means “To Be Passionate” YES! 
April 16 A wonderful Chianti seminar emphasizing food and wine combinations. 
Key take away: It was pointed out that to American tastes Italian wine tastes bitter. The reason is they are NOT meant to be drunk alone but rather in combination with food which changes everything..
April 17 Spanish Wine cellar Somewhat disappointing due to woeful state of the Spanish economy that there were few food presentations.  However there were tasty morsels from La Rioja Restaurants in Astoria- I plan to make a visit! Favorite wines there:
Bodegas De Frutos Marin Malparte 2008  Tempranillo and Javier Sanz Viticltor SL Coleccion V1863 2010. The latter with 150 year old vines- Anyone who says age does not matter is NOT a wine drinker! 
If I were a distributor: La Vieja Licoreria Range of liquors and Vintes Torre Oria Reserva 2007  a very drinkable house wine for 1.10 ex cellar.
April 18  Instituto Cervantes  OLE Portfolio Tasting
Tasted Several new varieties e.g. Monastrell 2010  Vinos Sin-Ley  $17 and Finca Morenillo 2009  $98  Both “ Different” 
Gran Reserva 1985  Bodegas Vina Magana  (Merlot/Cab Blend) lovely and the show best at $233.
At the end I learned of a wine that was aged by submerging it in seawater. Unfortunately too late- not only was it already gone but I also had palate fatigue. I look forward to tasting it next year. We know the Romans used to cut their wines with seawater, so maybe they were onto to something. Furthermore, oenophiles that have tasted wines salvaged from shipwrecks say it improves the taste: Stay tuned for more.
6. Finally this finishes my backlog of reporting on older wine tastings! 
Beyond the big four traditional grapes: Assyrtiko, Moschofilero, Agiorgitiko, and Xinomavro, we also tasted Kotsifali, Mandilari, Roditis and Vilana.
However outside of another Greek wine tasting, these minor grapes are unlikely to be retasted by me anytime soon.
FOOD NOTE: Kellari Taverna  provided delicious Greek tidbits It is one of our favorite NYC Greek restaurants and always recommended by us when in a “Greek” mood.
At the Tempranillo Al Mundo  7th Edition we dropped our computer twice, which put me out of commission for wine writing last year for several months. Here over 400 entries from Spain and 12 other countries were blindly judged rigorously for Visual, Nose and above all Taste e.g. genuineness, intensity, persistence and quality.
Bodegas Ramon Bilbao Mirto de Ramon Bilbao  DOC Rioja 2006 was awarded a Great Gold Tempranillo (T)  (96-100) Kevin Zraly rated it 100. I respectfully disagreed.  While it was excellent (great nose), to me, to be rated 100 a wine must transport me – this one kept me in NY (but smiling and happy);
It also screamed “feed me” as the majority of European wines demand a food accompaniment for their greatest enjoyment.
I enjoyed equally gold T winners: Vina Turzaballa 2001  Bodegas Rajmon Bilboa  DOC Rioja and  Fortia Prima Bodegas Portia 2009 DO Ribera Del Duero.
I was pleasantly surprised to find one American entry VIVA YO  Bodegas Paso Robles –from Central Coast California 2006 was almost the equal of the above three wines, amazing! 
Best:  Duckhorn Vineyards (USA)   Howell Mountain Napa Valley Red Wine 2005 $75
Here was the first time I tasted Indian Wine.  The Good Earth Winery had 3 offerings: 
 “Aarohi” Sauvignon Blanc 2010 $14.99 which matches well with coconut curries, their “Brio” Reserve Shiraz 2009 $21 matches spicy Vindaloo and chicken Tikka. However I found their Cab Sauvignon unappealing.
Bottom line: Being a traditionalist, I plan to stick with Indian Beer and Lassi to accompany my India meals.
I personally prefer the 500ml size containers to ½ bottles. Therefore I was inclined to like the CaliNaturale tetra-pak 500.  Given they also use organic grapes along with their good environmental footprint. I wish them success. This makes good sense for everyday wines and picnics.  However, the quality of the wines that they package will be key IMHO to any widespread market acceptance.
ROBERTS WINEWARE- super taster wine glasses- Here a textured rim stimulates the salivary flow. How much was suggestion and the tasting procedure (“slow down, taste”) and how much science I am unsure. They claim the Cali- Cab boys proclaim “Soon, any wine glass that does not have this technology will be like black and white TV compared to this High-Def experience”
Note: I love to watch old TCM black and white pictures e.g. Film Noir classics.  While I suspect it is a gimmick, still, anything that enhances the pleasure of wine drinking I am for!
7.  Wine Quiz | Learn Wine | Wine Spectator
10 Top international wine destinations
Astrology and wine - zodiac signs and grape varieties
Champagne and food pairings
Q: Who would be your ideal dinner party guests and what wines would you serve them?
A: I’d invite six Jewish men who marked the history of humanity: Abraham (everything is God), Moses (everything is law), Jesus ( everything is love), Karl Marx (everything is money), Sigmund Freud (everything is sex) and Albert Einstein (everything is relative). On pour would be Bollinger 1964, Chapoutier Ermitage de l’Oree Blanc 2011 and Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Grands-Echezeaux 1999.
Michel Chapoutier owns and runs Maison M. Chapoutier in Tain-l’Hermitage in the Rhône.
9. READER: I am puzzled by that 350-year-old vine at the foot of the castle (in Montalcino?).  Their page has this:  "in a large Renaissance castle known as Castel Katzenzungen (Süd Tyrol) Caroline managed the family property for several years, and amongst her charges at the property was an enormous, six hundred year-old grape vine that is the oldest and largest existing grapevine in all of Europe." Someone is abridging history and moving it around!
HW: Well you know like some women, perhaps on some days the vines did not wish to reveal their true age! J
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Henry Weingarten
wine@afund.com  Twitter@tafund
Voted in the top 10 blogs (#8 out of 958) on Local Wine Events


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