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Wine and beer reviews in Eagle County

Daily Staff Reports
Vail CO, Colorado
Special to the DailyBarefoot's latest offering is a Moscato, a sweet wine that isn't very complex.
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Sometimes the most obvious statement is the best, and when it comes to the Red Menace Big Amber all I could think was this tastes like good beer. I opened this bottle expecting a hoppy beer with a nice amber color. That is just what I got ” a beer that has good flavor but isn’t too heavy.

“It is good for this time of year because it is big enough to satisfy, but it is still refreshing,” said Clay Williams, assistant manager of Alpine Wine and Spirits.

The beer is made with pale malted barley, caramel and carastan malts with some black malt and 100 percent Centennial hops. There is a slight flower aroma that is followed by a honey-taste. What sets this beer apart is the brewery, which is located in the funky Fremont area of Seattle. The brewery, which was founded by owner and president Mike Hale (the name is not just a cute gimmick) in 1983, uses an English brewing method which uses yeast that’s been specially adapted for the open-topped fermenters, a hallmark of English brewing.

“It is a great beer, has a good balance of hops,” Williams said. He likes the beers made in the Seattle and Portland area because they are made with harder water, which gives them more of a mineral component.

Jessica Slosberg, Daily Staff Writer

There are a heapof things you can buy for less than $7 ” underwear, socks, lipstick, mascara, plastic toys, a book or even iTunes downloads to give you a few ideas. You can also buy a bottle of wine. Barefoot wines’ latest offering is a Moscato that the bottle’s label proclaims to be “deliciously sweet.”

Well, they certainly got the sweet part right. According to the Web site, the drinker should detect delicate flavors of peach and apricot that finishes with lemon. It was hard to get past the fact that it tasted like grape juice. But after a few more sips and more concentration on the flavors, my palate detected more than just grapes. The fun of the wine is that it goes down like the juice of your youth, but drink a bottle of it and there will be decidedly adult consequences.

“It is a good beginner moscasto, a good stepping stone,” said Cary Hogan of Avon Liquor. But she cautioned that it is not true to the varietal.

The winemaker, Jennifer Wall, suggests pairing the sweet wine with spicy Asian dishes (the food won’t dry out the wine), light desserts, fresh fruit and mild cheeses.

If you like sweet wine there is not much to dislike about the offering. Generally, you get what you pay for with wine and this is no different ” you are getting a drinkable wine, but that is about it. But at $7, it could be a decent filler wine for your summer parties ” depending on your friend’s palates, of course.

Jessica Slosberg, Daily Staff Writer

I first tasted this wine at Beano’s Cabin in Beaver Creek last year and I really enjoyed it. Though it was a romantic evening to begin with, the dark red garnet wine only heightened the night’s charm. There are subtle aromas of blackberry and black cherry in this wine. In the mouth, bright fruit flavors stand out. The wine is anything but agressive ” all smooth tannins, soft textures and a creamy finish. In all, this is a very easy-drinking, pleasurable pinot.

“It’s true to big Oregon pinot, it really shows the best of what Oregon has to offer,” said Brian Kruse, co-owner of Avon Liquor.

When it comes to pairing the wine, Kruse said it would be great “with anything.”

“It’s pinot, so it’s soft enough to go with big fish, but stands up to anything red meat wise. It’s not cheap, but it’s very versatile,” he said.

Caramie Schnell, High Life Editor


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