Sunday, October 6, 2013

Newport, Rhode Island-Wines (but not from RI)

Last week we were in Rhode Island for a paper conference and as usual I chose some different wines to try and share with you in case you were wanting something new in your cellar! Goodness knows that our cellar needs replenishing, so we must get busy with that task. 
We ate at several very good seafood restaurants right on the wharf in Newport and Watch Hill (thank you SOOOOO much Ted and Tom-I'll never forget the Ocean House!)

The first night we were in Newport, Ted and Tom (brothers by the way) took us to a place on the coast called 22 Bowen.

There we had a 2011 Spottswoode Sauvignon Blanc ($38) from St. Helena, CA. Click on the name for the tasting notes. It was a very good Sauvignon Blanc and I would have it again.

We also had a 2010 Duckhorn Cabernet Sauvignon ($95) at 22 Bowen which was out of this world. 

The next wine we had was at Hotel Viking on Bellevue Avenue, the street that leads to all the historical mansions that were built during the Gilded Age. 

During the conference dinners at night, we had to drink what was offered, which at times wasn't all that bad. One bottle we had was a 2008 Hawk Crest Chardonnay ($8) from Monterey, CA. I don't think it's currently available online, but just so you know, it's a "house wine" from Stag's Leap in Napa.
 The next wine they served us at dinner, which was a cabernet, is a blur to me. Partly because once they poured it and then brought out a bottle of 2011 Justin Cabernet Sauvignon from Paso Robles, I wouldn't drink anything else. In fact, our waiter, put three bottles on the table just for us (no one else had it on their table) and kept putting full bottles rotating during the evening even if we weren't finished with the other bottles. Needless to say that guy made a handsome tip that night!

During the day, all the wives of the AIPPM men toured the mansions of Newport, shopped, and visited the spa in the hotel. On Friday afternoon we all went sailing in the harbor bay-what fun that was! Food and drinks were provided by the crew on board the Adirondack II.

I tried a Portuguese wine, 2012 Aveleda Vinho Verde ($8). This is a fresh, fruity light wine with apple and lemon flavors that are just right and totally drinkable now. With its low alcohol and light fizz, it was a good choice for a sailboat! It's won lots of awards.

Our last night in Rhode Island took us to Watch Hill where Taylor Swift's Atlantic home is located. 

Yes, she paid $18 million cash for that! It was right beside our hotel, Ocean House, ranked #11 of America's coastal hotels and #10 of top resorts in the US. (thank you Ted and Tom)!

After checking in (our amazing room had total view of the ocean) and strolling along the beach on the Atlantic, we quickly got ready and waited for Ted and Tom and their wives to join us for cocktails and dinner at this fabulous hotel.

The three remaining wines we had that evening were:

2010 Snowden Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon "The Ranch" ($40). Very nice-Robert Parker gives it a 92 points. Drinkable upon opening.

After dinner, we sat in the lobby, which was like a formal living room, and listened to an old guy play the baby grand piano like there was no tomorrow. He was awesome and has been around the area for years.

While listening to him, Ted ordered the following two wines:

Feudi Di San Gregorio 2003 Serpico ($90) which was delicious! A great wine with a lot of character and depth. This vintage is not available anymore.

Then we moved on to a 2009 Kobalt Cabernet Sauvignon ($92) from Napa Valley. Rated in the low 90's by Stephen Tanzer and the Wine Advocate, this wine is a very sweet, youthful wine that coats the teeth with dusty tannins. It needs to decant for 2+ hours, but we had it immediately and it was superb!

That's it for Rhode Island! Enjoy! On to California next week for more wine adventures in Sonoma!