Disclaimer: Reading this article might induce drooling and an uncontrollable urge for a glass of wine. Proceed with caution, with a glass of your preferred juice and an open mind.
Stacole Holiday Show, perhaps the largest and most attended portfolio tasting in CFL. Where once a year (around fall), Restaurateurs, Master Sommeliers, Wine Educators, local Wine Shops, Sommeliers, Restaurant Staff, and Geeks like me flock under one roof with the sole purpose of experiencing the dazzling array of Stacole Fine Wine domestic and imported brands (now under the umbrella of) The Winebow Group.
It is impossible not to be wine-struck (star-struck) at this illustrious event captivated with amazing wines, epic producers, independent spirits, and quality sake.
Wine, an intellectual beverage where time comes to a stand still, brainstorming what’s in the glass even before the first sip. Its excites me, refreshes me, makes me taste history, and the favorite ones are those that truly catch you off guard and sweep you in with their depth, complexity, and elegance.
From the terroir-driven fine wines of France, dizzing variety of Italian wines, revered Tempranillo from Spain, shimmering whites of Germany, expressive wines of New Zealand, fascinating berry flavored Australian wines, upcoming South African wines, concentrated wines from Argentina & Chile to the avante-garde wines of United States, Stacole Holiday Show encompasses all with their impeccably selected portfolio. Are you drooling yet?
Like choosing a favorite child, picking wines from Stacole’s Holiday Show could be easily considered sacrilege. That said, here are my personal stand outs for the 2015 portfolio tasting (in random order).
Damien Laureau Savenniere Bel Ouvrage 2012 on Jon-David Headricks Selections table. One of the newer and intriguing players in the tiny world of dry Chenin Blancs, exhibited wild, whirlwind of tropical fruits, honey, cream, finishing with piercing acidity. Francoise Bedel Entre Ciel et Terre NV Brut & Dosnon & Lepage Recolte Noire N/V provided much needed respite from some serious tannins dancing in the room.
Indigenous Selections – Rivetti La Spinetta Barberesco “Gallina” 2011. One of my preferred Piedmont producers, the 2011 demonstrated everything I relish in Nebbiollo – vibrant bouquet of truffle, earth, spice, sweet red fruit, anise, and power.
The wines on Leonardo LoCascio Selections table spanning the entire breadth and length of Italy, certainly drew in the crowds with their Italian gems. Super Tuscan I Sodi di San Niccolò Toscana IGT 2010 & Castello Di Bossi Corbaia 2009 (Sangiovese & Malvasia Nera) were both superb expressions of Tuscany. The Ceretto Barolo Brunate 2009 should age with grace. If you can get hold of some older vintages of Mastroberardino Taurasi, jump on it. There is something about Italy and Italian wines which tugs at my soul in and literally haunts me.
Niigata Saka Selections – Colorless to cloudy, floral, tropical to earthy, sweet to savory, the snowy-terroir driven Sakes of Niigata are hard to ignore. Incredibly food friendly, they make Sake COOL! Niigata Sake Selections works directly with small breweries to bring their best sakes to market in the United States.
Always a pleasure chatting and tasting with Ms. Vajra of G.D Vajra family. One of the most budget friendly Barolos in the market.
Mr. Nicola Raia of Banville Wine Merchants for enlightening me regarding agebility of Terlano Wines & sharing some seriously good sparkling – Ca’ Del Bosco Cuvee Prestige.
The wine icon himself Mr. Bartholomew Broadbent with Broadbent Selections – exclusive US national importer for some of the worlds most sought after family wineries…
Merry Edwards was another crowd pleaser. Tasted the exciting new project between Pahlmeyer Cabernet Sauvingon & New Wayfarer Winery. Commanding unrealistic high prices -2012 Paul Hobbs “Nathan Coombs Estate” Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Family Vineyards representing California – Turnbull Wine Cellars, Barnett Vineyards, Benovia, Elyse, Failla, Miner Family, Robert Keenan, Siduri, Stewart Cellars, Stolpman, and more.
Washington Stars present were MS. Harrington with Gramercy Cellars, Leonetti, L Ecole No 41, Figgins, and more.
Spain was represented by Bodegas Emilio Moro Mall Valderram, Eric Solomon-European Cellars, Jorge Ordonez Wines, and MundoVino. Even Mexico – Fidencio.
South America was prominently featured – Gouguenheim, MundoVino, O. Fournier, Paul Hobbs Imports, San Francisco Wine Exchange, Vino Del Sol, and Vine Connections.
One has to build serious stamina not to mention tolerance if you wish to taste even quarter of the wines. My recommendation – try something old and try something new. Sip on some champagne or sparkling water to keep your palate fresh and alive.
Grazie mille (thousand thanks) to the dynamic group of Stacole/Orlando reps who made this event, yet again, one of the most anticipated and memorable trade event of the year – Carter Nixon, Kris Soto, Thomas Hemmings, Chuck Jones, Chadwick Doss & rest of the gang.
Until next time, have a delicious day and may your glass always remain half full!