Tag Archives: christmas

Our Holiday Picks

Out of the thousands of wines and spirits our team tastes over the course of a year, here are the bottles that we think are worthy of serving and giving to our nearest and dearest – and to ourselves – this holiday season. We’re sure you’ll find something for everyone on your gift list, as well as a treat or two for yourself. Go ahead. You. Deserve. It.
Alex
Borsci San Marzano Liqueur
This is Jagermeister’s cool older-sister and is only a couple bucks more. The Borsci truly smells like Christmas to me – it’s all bittersweet cocoa, cloves, allspice and peppercorns. After working long holiday hours all I want to do is curl up with my dogs and sip this warming spirit! Isn’t there someone on your list who’d do the same?
$24.99, 750ml
St. Reginald Parish ‘The Marigny’ Pinot Gris, Oregon
Funky, off-the-beaten-path wines like this one have been blowing up for us recently. By ‘us’ I not only mean Bottles, but also my group of friends. Each bottle is a fun surprise, and this Willamette Pinot Gris is no exception. The French term ‘Marigny’ translates to ‘the neighborhood’ so it’s perfect for gifting to friends, family and whoever else decides to stop by for the holidays.
$29.99
Dan
Old Forester ‘Bottles Selection’ Single Barrel
This holiday season I will be gifting my bourbon-loving friends the Old Forester “Bottles Private Barrel.” This is a totally unique whiskey that was hand-picked by our team during their trip to Kentucky in early 2017. With notes of caramel, vanilla, and oak, it hits every flavor that I love in a classic bourbon. I can only hope I get to enjoy some of the bottles that I’m gifting away!
$44.99, 750ml
Turasan Red Blend, Selda, Turkey
For every holiday dinner, I like to bring my family a bottle of wine that they won’t be very familiar with – I think it makes the dinner more special. This year it will be the Turasan red blend from Turkey. It’s full of blackberry and thyme notes at the beginning, and refreshing fruit flavors follow at the finish. This wine will pair beautifully with your dinner, and will absolutely impress your family and friends.
$12.99
Glorie
Kings County Chocolate Whiskey
Kings County makes their Chocolate Whiskey by steeping artisan cacao husks sourced from Mast Brothers Chocolate Factory into their award-winning Moonshine Corn Whiskey. The mellow sweetness of the un-aged whiskey harmonizes beautifully with the rich, bitter chocolate giving way to a remarkably smooth finish. ‘Fancify’ your espresso martini or, you know, stick a straw in it and call it a day. It’s a great gift for the gourmand on your list!
$39.99, 375ml
Meinklang Juhfark “J13,” Hungary
Certified biodynamic, this wine makes the perfect gift for that friend who geeks out over “natural wine.” Somló, a tiny wine region in Hungary, is home to an extinct volcano that provides unique mineral-rich soil ideal for growing grapes. Juhfark is a rare grape variety exclusive to this region, which produces savory wines that are remarkably aromatic and unlike anything else. Meinklang’s expression undoubtedly lives up to that name.
$31.99
Josh
Prichard’s Rye
My personal quest in whiskey has been to find the best value for the dollar, especially when it’s my own dollar!  Prichard’s has become my house-pour-favorite for just that reason.  It’s not overly aggressive, and at just 86 proof it is incredibly pleasant to drink just on the rocks.  It’s also not so dauntingly expensive that I cringe if someone wants to mix it (gasp!) it in a Manhattan. The only downside is there just isn’t a ton of it to go around. Get ’em while we have ’em! It deserves a place on your home bar this holiday season!
$54.99, 750ml
Steininger Sparkling Rosé Sekt, Austria
This is one of the all-time great holiday wines. It’s an off-the-beaten-path soft sparkler that is just a touch sweet with beautiful structure. It’s an unreal accompaniment to roasts and also works great as a starter to get the evening rolling. Though it’s not outrageously priced for what it is, it is indeed worth every penny.
$34.99
Kate
Germain-Robin XO Brandy
This domestic brandy is a lovely treat to share with your guests during the holidays.  Definitely not your Grandpa Joe’s harsh brandy, this is a whole different animal with a round, warm finish of toasty oak and butterscotch toffee.  Enjoy this with pecan pie, Hamantaschen or your best stinky cheese platter! 
$59.99. 375ml (note: the bottle Kate is holding is the size we are offering at this price)
Mastrojanni Rosso di Montalcino, Italy
What a great gift for the Italian Wine Lover! It’s perfect for all Italian holiday fare, but shows especially well with lasagna and braciole. It has elegant tannins and fruity aromas of ripe Bing cherries and red currants robed in flavors of cedar, balsamic, fresh tobacco leaf, bitter orange peel, and hints of bay leaf. Yes please!
$33.99
 
Melissa
The Real McCoy 12-Year-Old Madeira Cask Rum
This is a bourbon drinker’s rum! 90% of it spends 12 years aging in a bourbon barrel, while the remaining 10% sleeps nicely in a Madeira cask. It’s smooth and soft with a nose that hints to the Madeira, and finishes with a sweet bourbon vanilla mouthfeel. It’s a wonderful gift for the bourbon drinker in your life who has everything; it’s a terrific substitution for bourbon in a Manhattan!
$49.99, 750ml

2015 Occhipinti Il Frappato, Sicily
The 2015 is the second vintage of famed wine-maker Arianna Occipinti’s wines to see fermentation in concrete versus stainless steel; as a result, the wines are showing depth and a velvety finish that is not typical of Frappato. This one in particular is brilliant in color and finishes with finesse and delicate fruit. It’s a very special wine, worthy of a celebratory meal or an extra-special person on your gift list this year.
$39.99
  

Michael
Compass Box Flaming Heart, 2015 Edition
This edition of Compass Box’s Flaming Heart is the fourth in its line-up of unique, limited release blended Scotch whiskies – and is totally worth the splurge. It’s a mix of selections aged in French oak, bourbon, and sherry casks, which makes for a  wonderful peaty, fruity, spicy blend. A sip of this treat is full of the baking spices, dried fruits, and smokiness that any cozy Christmas night by the fire should include. It’s a great, great gift.
$89.99, 750ml
Chappellet Cabernet Franc, California
Need an impressive gift? Look no further. This Chappellet offering, grown on the distinctive Pritchard Hill in Napa Valley, is aged in French oak for a thoughtful finish to an American-grown Bordeaux-style blend. With cedar, spice, and plum on the palate, the wine is complex and satisfying all the way through its velvety, earthy finish. It may just be my gift to myself this year.
$89.99 
Neil
Town Branch Rye 
This is a great gift for a whiskey drinker looking to try something new. Fans of bourbon, Highland scotch, and even Irish whiskey find something new to love in rye. Light pepper spice and heat quickly soften to a rich, earthy vanilla flavor—a unique duality that made me want it with dessert, or maybe as a dessert replacement, instead.
$54.99, 750ml 
Conte Guicciardini ‘Gui’ Rosso di Toscana, Italy
This is my go-to dinner wine for the cold months, and it is an absolute standout for this season. Medium-dry, with flavors of soft cherries and sweet spice, this is ideal for hearty meats and vegetarian dishes alike. My family often plans things last-minute, myself included, but it looks like I know what I’m doing when I put a bottle (or two – look at that price!) of this on the table.
$14.99  (note: wine photo not available)
Tom
Balcones Texas Single Malt
Balcones Distilling is located not too far from where I was born in Texas, and it makes me happy to have a little piece of home here in New England. This overproof grain whiskey is truly unique: It’s a bit like Scotch on the nose, but with an identifiably American flavor profile. It’s a perfect gift for the serious, adventurous whiskey fan on your list.
$69.99, 750ml
COS “Nero di Lupo,” Sicily

“The Black Wolf” is 100% Nero D’Avola, fermented in cement with wild, indigenous yeast. It’s the exact kind of zesty, bright, herbaceous wine I want on my holiday table this (or any other) year, and makes a terrific gift for the choosy, hard-to-please wine-lover on your list: COS is arguably Italy’s top “cult” winery of the moment, and with good reason.
$34.99

Happy Holidays from all of us at Bottles!

prices subject to change

 

Top Holiday Wines for 2016

There’s a lot of eating that will be done over the next 30 days, what with the festive observances of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve and Day, and myriad other wonderful winter celebrations. And if you’re reading this blog, stakes are that you’ll be drinking wine with those feasts. Here are our picks for the bottles that pair beautifully with holiday menus of all tastes and styles.

table2

Domaine de Grisy Bourgogne Rouge (Pinot Noir), Burgundy, France
What a great value for a red Burgundy, full of the traditional tart cherry, mushroom, and forest floor aromas and flavors. It’s a superb option for your holiday cocktail party, and is also incredibly winter-food friendly. $21.99

Gracciano, Rosso di Montepulciano, Italy
An elegant Rosso with cherry, raspberry and eucalyptus notes, balanced by earthy tannins. It wants to be on the table during your traditional Italian feasts. Mangia! Mangia! $16.99

The Fableist Merlot, Paso Robles, CA
A big, ripe merlot that’s ready to party. It’s silky with notes of black tea, blueberries and a saturated minerality, and has hints of sweet plums, warm cedar planks, and freshly ground spices. We’ll be opening bottles of this to enjoy while eating pizza, stringing popcorn and watching Die Hard. Do the same! $24.99

table4

Penya (Grenache, Carignan and Syrah blend), Cote Catalanes, France
You say you’re making a roast? Welcome to your new best friend. It’s a rustic country wine, loaded with herbal, spice and blackberry flavors that go terrifically well with roasts of all stripes, from pork to lamb, to vegetables. $13.99

Justin Cabernet Sauvignon, Paso Robles, CA
An overflowing glass-full of black cherry & currant, blackberry jam, violets and herbs. Serving a big steak with bordelaise or hearty beef stew? Need an impressive gift? Justin’s your guy. And, it’s on-sale! $24.99 (compare to $34.99)

Ampeleia ‘Unlitro,’ Costa Toscana, Italy
A newcomer to our shelves and one that we can’t stop drinking. It has notes of cherry, roses and juniper, and a bright, “alive” quality that makes it refreshing and extremely pleasant to drink, especially when paired with roast chicken. It’s uniqueness means it’s a great gift for the hard-to-please wine lover, too. $19.99 (1L)

tabel23

Domaine de Bel Air, Pouilly Fume, Loire Valley, France
Need an impressive gift for the boss, or a special wine for a crowd? This stunning French white is incredibly expressive with white peach and lilac aromas, and citrus/herbal flavors. It’s a rounder and very elegant expression of Sauvignon Blanc.  $22.99

Saint Peyre Viognier, Languedoc, France
We love this soft, full-bodied white for its floral, peachy and tropical notes, and for its versatility. It’s special enough for fancy holiday occasions, and low-priced enough to drink on a weeknight, say, while you’re wrapping gifts.  $12.99

Oyster Bay Chardonnay, Marlborough, New Zealand
A beauty from down-under that’s best enjoyed under a down blanket in front of a warm fire with a big bowl of popcorn. It’s lush with ripe apple fruit flavor, and rich with a creamy body. That hallmark Kiwi “crispness” can be found in the finish. $14.99

A toast to you and yours from all of us at Bottles!

###

Top 9 Holiday Wines!

holiday-vert1 The Holidays are busy times for all of us, with numerous family gatherings, parties, and special dinners to attend or even host. The wine experts at Bottles are here to take the stress out of the Holidays by helping you select great wines for any occasion. Need a handsome hostess gift? Having a few people over to your home? Choose from our top 9 Holiday wine picks – they are sure fire bets to please any wine lover, novice or expert.

laetitia

Laetitia Chardonnay, California – Mouth filling and spirited fruit flavors of Bosc pear, pineapple and ripe lemon.  Great to sip on as an aperitif or with warm appetizers.

sonoma-cutterSonoma Cutrer Sonoma Coast Chardonnay, California – One of the most iconic wines from California!  Great balance between lively acidity and rich flavors of Golden Delicious apple, white peach, a hint of vanilla and a touch of butter.

Cheveau Pouilly-Fuisse ‘Les Vieilles Vignes’, France Made from 50 to 70 year old vines!  A powerful wine of great depth and length.  Only 1200 bottles of this elite cuvée are imported into the U.S.

gruetGruet Brut, New Mexico – Brilliant with ultra fine bubbles.  A wonderful, fine aroma dominated by green apple and grapefruit flavors.  A true classic!

perrierPerrier-Jouët Grand Brut, France Delicate, elegant and balanced with striking freshness of the floral and fruity fragrances of lemon and bergamot orange coupled with richer notes of butter, vanilla sugar and hazelnuts.

ruinart

Ruinart Blanc de Blancs, France  From one of Champagne’s oldest houses and is bottled in the traditional bottle shape from the 1800s.  Impressive power and elegance with exotic ground spice, orange zest, anise and jasmine flavors and aromas.  An invigorating finish and an excellent gift for anyone, including yourself!

chateau-vaisinerieChâteau Vaisinerie St Emilion, Bordeaux, France – Smooth, lush and voluptuous wine – a really special treat for yourself or any wine lover.  Mostly Merlot with a little Cabernet Franc blended in for an expressive nose and flavors of ripe bramble fruit, wet crushed stones, cedar and graphite.  Excellent with prime rib, roast lamb, or rib eye steaks.

chateau-mathelineChâteau La Matheline Bordeaux Superieur, France Impressive wine at an unbelievable price!  From a great vintage and from just outside the famous St Emilion region.  Big, ripe flavors of dark red currant, cherry and raspberry fruits coupled with cedar, tobacco and dark chocolate.  Great with lamb or roast beef.

chateau-blaignanChâteau Blaignan Medoc, Bordeaux, France A new top pick for staff and customers alike.  Almost half and half Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with a little Cabernet Franc for added perfume and complexity.  Pronounced notes of blackcurrant, black cherries and a hint of spice with a rich, smooth body and velvety tannins.

holiday-horizontal2

Happy Holiday! (Good luck….)

Cheers, 

The Bottles Team

Pecan Pie Recipe & Wine Pairing

Pecan Pie recipe and dessert wine pairing idea
Photo: David Dadekian
‘Tis the season for pie: apple, pumpkin, pecan, & custard galore! Pecan pie is a traditionally Southern recipe that Edible Rhody Magazine has added a Rhode Island twist to, with the addition of Sons of Liberty Pumpkin Spiced Whiskey. We’ve paired this Thanksgiving recipe with one of our favorite dessert wines, Viu Manent Noble Semillon, a naturally sweet wine from Chile.

The word pie has been used in terms of food since the 1300’s and over those centuries, the plethora of pies has increased with all different types. Pecan Pie is one of those and is said that to be created by the French shortly after settling in New Orleans and being introduced to the Pecan, but no one knows for sure. Typically associated with the South, Pecan pie is usually eaten at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Viu Manent Noble Semillon Thanksgiving Dessert Wine Pairing
With its home in Bordeaux since 1960, the Semillon grape is naturally sweet and vulnerable to Botrytis or Noble Rot. This concentrates the sugars of late harvest wines, making it a perfect candidate for sweet white wine such as the Sauternes from Bordeaux, and the Viu Manent Noble Semillon from Santiago de Chile. When vinified, it takes on flavors of stone-fruits such as apricots, peach, & mangos with back flavor of citrus, nuts & honey with a silken texture. Perfect for Pecan Pie, this wine will bring out that roasted, nutty sweetness of the pecans, the creamy caramelized custard, and the buttery flaky crust.
Pecan Pie
Pastry Team, Easy Entertaining Inc., Providence
4 tablespoons (½ stick) Rhody Fresh butter, melted and cooled
1½ cups corn syrup
½ cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon Sons of Liberty Pumpkin Spice whiskey*
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch salt
3 large fresh farm eggs, slightly beaten
1 pie shell, unbaked*
1¾ cups pecan pieces
Cream cheese frosting* (optional)
Preheat oven to 425°. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together melted butter with corn syrup, sugar, whiskey, vanilla and salt. Add eggs and mix well. Spread pecans evenly in 10-inch unbaked pie shell (in pie dish or tart pan) and pour egg mixture over pecans. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350° and bake an additional 20–30 minutes or until set but still loose in center. Remove from oven. Allow to cool. Serve slices with a dollop of cream cheese frosting. Makes 1 pie or tart. * This seasonal release can be substituted with Uprising, another whiskey made by local distiller Sons of Liberty, or your favorite bourbon.
* Pie Dough
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
8 tablespoons (1 stick) very cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
½ cup ice water with ½ teaspoon salt added
3 tablespoons sugar
In a large bowl, mix together flour and sugar. With a large fork or pastry cutter (or by pulsing with a food processor) cut the butter into the flour until the butter resembles small peas. Slowly add water until a dough forms, kneading and working dough as little as possible but enough to form a workable dough.
Pressing dough, form a 6-inch disk. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and let rest in the refrigerator for 1 hour or overnight. Using a rolling pin on a floured surface, roll dough to form a 12-inch circle. Place in pie dish (or tart pan); crimp edges and proceed with recipe.
* Cream Cheese Frosting
8 tablespoons Rhody Fresh butter, softened
1 cup (8 ounces) Narragansett Creamery Angelito cream cheese
3 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
In a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream together butter and cream cheese, scraping sides of bowl. Add sugar and beat until fluffy. (If too thick, add a scant teaspoon of water at a time until desired consistency is reached.)
 
 
edible rhody, ediblerhody, brussels sprouts, seasonal ri

Visit Bottles Fine Wine to get this wine.