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Sunday 31 July 2011

Wine of the month: Col d'Orcia Rosso di Montalcino DOC

The production area is Montalcino – Siena – S. Angelo in Colle in Italy. Hilly lands of Eocene Origin enjoying a favourable southern exposition and granting the vineyards the blessing of the sun rays the whole day long. Average height 300 mt above sea level.
The Grapes is Sangiovese, locally called "Brunello" (the same vine with which Brunello di Montalcino is produced).
The is aged 12 months in Slavonian oak casks of 50 and 75 hl and in smaller extent in French oak barriques. Refinement in bottle.

Colour: Ruby red with youthful violet hues.

Bouquet: Impressive scent and power of the great Sangiovese varietal fruit.

Flavour: Full and complex. A very fruity body enriched by spicy oak nuances emerges from a background of noble tannins.

Cost in Italy: 10 Euro

Cost in Swedish Systembolaget: 164 SEK

Nr at Swedish Systembolaget: 83454

Monday 18 July 2011

Western Taste presents Whiskey for the summer

Summertime is whisky time! To be honest all seasons equal whisky time but that does not make me previous statement inaccurate.
We would like to recommend four classic whiskies that you can easily find wherever you may find yourself this summer vacation.

Laphroaig 10 Years, Islay, Scottland
Scottish Islay whiskies are very special in their aroma and taste. Comparing them to other single malts would be like comparing apples with pears. Laphroaig, pronounced “La-froyg”, is a Gaelic word meaning “the beautiful hollow by the broad bay”. For the Laphroaig 10 year, the malted barley is dried over a peat fire. Laphroaig only uses peat found on the island of Islay. A dram of Laphroaig haa a very heavy smell of smoke, tar, rubber, and phenolic oils, it is absolutely overwhelming. But don’t think that the whisky tastes like it smells. On the palate, the most chemical or medicinal aromas vanish and give way to a full-bodied smokiness that partially suppresses the sweet notes in the mouth. The peat lingers on for a long time. This whisky needs some time for tasting. The first impression is a little bit harsh, but give it time an sip it slowly.

Caol Ila 12 Years, Islay, Scottland
Caol Ila is a comparatively light-bodied and delicate Islay single malt. This is a very satisfying, well-balanced malt. It offers more rounded flavors than the Laphroaig discussed above which is otherwise similar. The nose has aromas of citrus and almonds. On the palate, the peat influence adds a sweet element on the palate. This whisky opens nicely with the addition of a few drops of water.
Further the nose has an attack of heavy peat, but without the medicinal, seaweedy quality of Laphroaig. You could even call it a BBQ. The Palate is not as peaty as it smells. It has very earthy, rich notes of dark soil and maybe even smoked meats. A bit later an undertone of sweet fruitiness, exotic dark fruits,  and sweet licorice is revealed. The whisky is medium bodied but coats the tongue.

Jameson 12 Years, Ireland
Jameson 12 year old Special Reserve is the favourite whiskey of Dr Barry Walsh, the master blender at Midleton Distillery for many years. This whisky is Very sweet, gentle and beautifully balanced. In other words it is something completely different than Islay malts.
At least 30% of the casks used in the manufacture of this whisky are oloroso sherry, and at least 75% of the blend is made up of pot still whiskey. The youngest whiskeys are 12 years old but it contains whiskeys at least 20 years old.  The nose is sweet and oaky, moderately intense and has some notes of honey, caramel and perhaps maple. Flavour wise the sherry melts into finger licking good milk chocolate.
 The flavours are very pleasant and work well together. This is much more refined than the basic Jameson, and in my judgment a very sippable blended whiskey. Jameson 12 year old is simply a beautiful whiskey.

Glenlivet Nadurra 16 Years, Speyside, Scottland
The Nadurra is the the most powerful in the Glenlivet family.  Gaelic for ‘natural’, ‘Nadurra’ is a non-chill-filtered cask strength whisky that somehow still manages to carry the delicacy of the Speyside charm in its monstrous hands.
The nose has notes of caramel and pineapple comes through too.  It takes some adjustment to get those smells, but once you get past the whiff of alcohol you can smell them pretty easily. The palate delivers that sweetness with a blast of heat.  Those toffee notes literally coats the tongue and you feel hints of chocolate and ginger along for the ride. It also has quite a lot of smoky notes and can benefit from some watering.

Written by: Kristian Kull

Monday 11 July 2011

Restaurant Review: á la Crêpe, Stockholm, Sweden

There are few restaurants in Stockholm, Sweden that can make really good Galette. In French terms, Galette are the main course and main dishes and Crêpes are the dessert. This restaurant is named á la Crêpe, however it is mainly serving Galette (you fallow?). My favourites are the meat Galettes. I would suggest avoiding the Galette with seafood, fish and chicken. Do not get me wrong, they are nice but this restaurants strong side are the cheesy and meaty Galette.

When it comes to beverage, ask for a suggestion from their French cider list. Of course you need to end with a Crêpe dessert and some Cognac.

My restaurant review is 3,5 out of 5 because of there good service, great meat Galette and fine Crêpe desserts. However, since the rest of the menu is not as competitive enough and the flavours lack in taste and dynamics I cannot provide with a higher degree.

GRADE: 3,5 of 5

Name: á la Crêpe
Adress: Katarina Bangata 42, 116 39 Stockholm

Tuesday 5 July 2011

Wine of the month: Leth’s have pink 2009

Made from Blauer Zweigelt and Cabernet Sauvignon. Refreshing, spicy lemon fruit. Pink wine in a modern style; perfect for summer! This wine is one of the best value rose wine for the summer that is available at the Swedish Systembolaget. I really adore this wine with its dynamic character and lovely tones of Cabernet Sauvignon. Leth has always been one of my favourite great value wines and they have done it again with its rose release. Something for everyone and great save for the summer.

Name: Leth’s have pink
Country: Austria
Region: Niederösterreich
Grapes: Zweigelt, Blauburger & Cabernet Sauvignon
Cost at Swedish Systembolaget: 68 SEK
Nr at Swedish Systembolaget: 94236