Friday, July 24, 2009

Black Opal Cabernet Merlot - Friday July 24th

Tonight is, *gasp*, a glass of wine. I occasionally enjoy a glass (or 8) of wine when my parents manage to buy more wine than they know what to do with and, subsequently, turn to me to get rid of it. Apparently I'm like the alcohol garbage disposal in the family as my mom tries to pawn off everything she doesn't like on me. Including absinthe. Yech. Tonight, however, was a perfectly serviceable bottle of Black Opal "Cabernet Merlot", a blend of about 2/3rds Cabernet Sauvignon and 1/3rd Merlot. Now...I love Cabernet. I had probably the best wine I've ever had in France. It came from a grocery store, it was some sort of Cabernet table wine, and it was bitchin. Like, it was seriously the tits. The cat's pajamas. I managed to smuggle back several bottles in my luggage (even though I was under 21) and drink it at home. It was a sad-ass day when that last bottle's contents fell into my gaping maw. Regardless, I felt like some red wine and the liquor cabinet was getting full, so I popped this.

To start, its a screw-top. I immediately had low expectations. A healthy glug into one of our never-used wine glasses and I crammed my nose in there. Now, I'm no wine expert, but here's my finds. It smelled like Welch's grape juice with strawberries. Slightly pungent and not in the greatest way. Very ripe fruit, almost too ripe. And it smelled like black pepper. I was less than amused. Since I've seen Sideways, I did what Paul Giamatti did (I sometimes make decisions on the WWPGD line). I put my hand over it and swirled it vigorously, lifted the hand, and inhaled. Much better. Very ripe fruit but the moldy/mustiness was gone. The pepper was gone, replaced by a more fiery, "I think I'll have jalapenos on my taco" kinda smell. I love jalapenos, so this was a significant step up. The taste followed the smell. Not too try for my tastes, it was a rich grape flavor (hurf durf) with raspberry and slight black peppery-ness. Honestly, not too bad. Now it all depends on how much it costs per bottle. Went well with pizza margherita though.

Edit: It's, like, $8 a bottle. Hot diggity damn. Might be a new pizza wine, although I dunno if I could drop the old family favorite: Ruffino Chianti. For poor Italians only.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Elijah Craig (Informal) - Saturday July 18th

Since it was a nice day, the gods of nicotine and alcohol beckoned me to the deck. A nice cigar, a healthy pour of bourbon, and a magazine rendered me useless for a few hours. The bourbon of choice tonight was a Elijah Craig 12 year. A decent bourbon neat, with a no-frills bourbon taste of vanilla and oak. However, over ice or with a little water it opens up into this super buttery, butterscotch bomb that makes me a happy panda. Really, I was impressed. I had a sip neat and decided that it was too hot and I just didn't feel like slamming down a rocks glass of 80 degree bourbon along with a cigar. Thus, a few ice cubes were added, despite my general insistence on neat beverages. It was quite cracking, I have to admit. Probably the best bourbon I've had over ice, it suited it well. And the Don Lino Africa I had didn't hurt it either. Yum.

In other news, about two weeks until my next surgery, then its no-holds barred, baby!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sam Adams Boston Ale - Monday, July 6th

Up for tonight is a Sam Adams Boston Ale, compliments of the summer sampler pack I got at Sam's Club. Notes are as follows:

Pours the color of an old penny, with a two finger creamy white head. Completely translucent. Really, a beautiful looking beer. Very deep rich bronze color.

Smells clean and fresh, with notable floral hops and good, slightly earthy malts. Kind of like a bakery next to a flower shop. Really, very clean, with no cloying or overwhelming notes, but not really a whole lot to stand out.

Taste is crisp, with a little bit more balance towards the hops. Strong malt front that follows the nose, with a nice aftertaste of hops. Not too bitter, but rather pleasant.

Mouthfeel is just right. Not lacking in body, nor watery, but not like used motor oil either.

Easy drinking and it pairs well with the sandwich and chips I nommed on later. Really, I could see this replacing the Lager for me. The lager, personally, is a bit too weak and lacking on the body. This tastes more robust, looks better, smells a touch better, and pairs with that sandwich as if God himself came down and created both for each other. Also, as they say, hunger is the best spice so it may be a bit of the "I haven't had a beer in a month" kinda thing. I'll check it out again and make sure I'm not talking out my now hydrated ass.

Monday, July 6, 2009

First beer in a month

Well, what a better way to ring in the anniversary of our independence than by drinking and smoking cigars? I had my first beer in almost a month, a Sam Adams Pale Ale. Straight from the bottle, marginally was delicious. Followed it up by a Sam Adams Summer Ale (bless the Summer Sampler). I don't consider it an objective review by any means (I drank it like a pirate drinks rum) so I won't post any notes up here, but I'll do a legit review in a bit, once I can get my hands on more as we ended up pounding them all during a rather toasty fourth of July celebration on my deck. But, regardless...back in the game!