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Around the Wine World For Under $20: Australia’s Sweetheart of a Tawny

I admit it, I’ve been in a rather foul mood as of late. Too much studying, packing, working, and cleaning makes your Corked Cowgirl more of a surly She-Devil. Just a few days before I take a big wine exam and I’m stressing. So what do the stressed do to soothe their frazzled nerves and placate their out of control emotions?

They turn to dessert!

And that is EXACTLY what I’ve done this evening with a sweetheart of a dessert wine from down under. I found a HECK of a deal on a rather unorthodox Tawny port-styled wine from Rutherglen in Victoria, which is one of the southernmost areas of Australia. I figured, “Under $17 for a Tawny? I spend more than that when I take the kids to Dairy Queen. Momma needs her sweetness!” So, I picked it up and decided to pour.

Tonight’s value is RL Buller’s Victoria Tawny, a blend of Carina, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, and Shiraz, made into a fortified wine with a whopping 18% alcohol (yes my friends, I took no chances tonight with my mood…I plan on knocking out the nasties with this one).

In the glass, it’s a bright garnet color with a few orange tints to it. It certainly LOOKS like happiness in the glass to me. But my temperament cannot be placated with mere happy appearances. Nice smell to it as well…cherry, raspberry, and hints of what smells like…Grandma’s gingersnap cookies! Also smells like toffee. Okay, this is starting to get good. I could sniff this one all day. Makes me imagine Gram and Willy Wonka concocting the stuff of my childhood dreams right there in her kitchen.

I know, I know…what does it taste like?

Sweet, delicious goodness! Not what I would expect out of a TRADITIONAL Port, but then again, this isn’t a traditional Port. This has the bright cherry flavors, along with strawberry flavors. It still pulls off some of the tastes you’d expect out of a Tawny…toffee, maybe some fig on the finish. It’s berries and bread pudding all in one. You could pair it up with dark chocolate, chocolate mousse, fresh berries, and mild cheeses…the usual fare. OR…you could be daring and pair it up with pecan pie (which would be incredible together).

Me personally? I went off the deep end and decided to try it with my Kemp’s Blackberry Chocolate Ripple ice cream.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I introduce you to PURE BLISS! It matches PERFECTLY. Forget Calgon bubble bath, let the decadent flavors take you away in the most seductive dance your tongue will ever partake in.

Yes, you CAN buy happiness. It comes in a bottle of RL Buller Victoria Tawny…and you can get it for under $20.

What are you waiting for? Run to your happiness!

…I’m going to saunter off to the freezer to get seconds and pour another glass.

~CC

 
 

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The Sweet Taste of Summer: Zinfandel Port Under $20

Success is mine! My children are officially back in school, the house is my own again, I can hear my own thoughts without the constant barrage of Pokemon and teen angst. I have accomplished more in 3 days of studying for my Certified Specialist of Wine exam than I have in the 3 months of summer vacation.

Tonight, I celebrate my victory…and oh, how sweet this victory is.

My eyes look longingly at the bottle of Montevino Terra d’Oro Zinfandel in my hands. Hello my dear friend…oh I have missed you so! The beautiful garnet color, the smell of raisins and dark chocolate (LOVE that smell of dark chocolate), and toffee…yes, toffee (another dear friend of mine), as well as a hint of orange peel.

But mostly I’ve missed the fact that you dance on my tongue and make me sigh. Big jammy, blackberry and cassis flavors, the chocolate…ahhhh…the chocolate and even coffee flavors, the sharp sweetness with a touch of orange on the finish.

My taste buds are in sensory overload.

Nothing can take away this pleasure. No, not even my 8 year old daughter who is CERTAIN she will be swept into a portal for another dimension IF she goes to bed on time. Not the 16 year old daughter, the sensitive artist, who lives a life of torture because she is so deep and no one could possibly understand her. No, nothing could make this simple delight any sweeter (literally or figuratively)…except maybe the price. This little slice of heaven is under $20, which means it qualifies for designation in my Summer Cheap Wine Tour. Yes, that DEFINITELY makes it that much sweeter!

And this piece of dark chocolate I’m nibbling with it…did I mention this goes sooooooo unbelievably well with chocolate? Oh, it goes well with a strong cheese like the Dutch Bleu I was nibbling on earlier.

Yeah, I’m pretty sure this is better than date night ever could be…cheaper too, and no chance for disappointment.

Montevina Terra d’Oro Port is a fortified Port style wine made from the Zinfandel Grape in Amador County, California. High alcohol content (19%) but an amazing balance of sweetness and acidity.

Make your life a little sweeter. Pour yourself some today! Cheers!~CC

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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