Wine and beer reviews in Eagle County |

Wine and beer reviews in Eagle County

Daily Staff ReportVail CO, Colorado
Special to the DailyVigneti Sant Helena Tocai Friulano is a "crisp and racy" Italian white wine.

While searching for a new white wine, Dan Mahan, wine guy at Beaver Liquors, pointed me toward an Italian vintage Vigneti Sant Helena Tocai Friulano. All it took to get my attention were the words crisp and racy usually my kind of wine. After the first sip, I was sold; Ill definitely be sampling more of this grape in the future. Mahan told me that he had a firm red only rule until he was in Rome a few years ago in a small restaurant and a friend poured him a glass of white wine. He told his friend, You know I dont like white wines. Shut up and drink it, he said his friend replied. Mahan said he was hooked. I have to say I cant blame him. The grape is known to produce a dry, aromatic white wine characterized by its pale straw color. The best part are the pear and floral flavors. The varietal, while not a big name in the U.S., is widely planted and consumed in the Friulia region. The wine is best when enjoyed young and is a good complement to sushi, clams and grilled shrimp, but avoid pairing it with cheese.Jessica Slosberg, Daily Staff Writer

This cab is big with a capital B. The deep ruby-red vintage smells of blackberry and dark cherry, and theres a touch of cocoa and coffee in the mouth. The secret is likely in the soil the vineyard is in the foothills of Mount St. Helena in the Knights Valley of rural Sonoma County. The vines struggle in the challenging climate, which leads to intensely flavored berries. This is a big, chewy, give-me-a-steak wine, said Mickey Werner, wine guy at Alpine Wine & Spirits in West Vail. It has soft tannins and big, rich blackberry flavor. Its a nice bottle.Werner suggested pairing this bottle with steak or even lamb, but it went quite nicely with a pancetta, tomato and shallot linguine. While I really liked this wine, I generally expect to be blown away by $80 bottles; I think Id be more excited about it if it were to fall in the $50 to $60 range. Caramie Schnell, High Life Editor

First things first Ive never had beer from a bottle thats been sealed with wax. And really though it distinguishes the bottle from other bomber-size brews at the liquor store in my opinion it doesnt do anything for the beer except make it harder to get to. At first pour this recently released Deschutes Brewery offering looks more like coffee thats been brewing for six months than beer, except, of course, for the tan-colored foam floating on top. The imperial stout is indeed aged for nearly 10 months in French-oak and bourbon barrels. The result is an almost chewy beer thats thick with coffee, chocolate, molasses and licorice flavors. At 11 percent alcohol by volume, this beers no slouch when it comes to bang for your buck, either.The Abyss has developed somewhat of a cult following, said Deschutes Brewerys Jason Randles. In fact, weve had reports from some bottle shops where six or seven cases have already been reserved through single-bottle orders.Caramie Schnell, High Life Editor

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