Some catching up is in order. I recently consumed a couple of “trade sample” wines that were both pretty darn good.

I’ve written before about Clif Family Winery – the energy bar people originally – and have enjoyed almost all of their offerings.

Back in November my wine drinking buddies – Dudes on the Porch – raved about the Clif Sauvignon blanc.

Just the other night I wanted some red wine and went shuffling through my racks and remembered The Climber 2009 red wine from Clif. The Blend: 63 percent Zinfandel, 21 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 12 percent Syrah, 2 percent Merlot and 2 percent Petite Sirah. It’s got a little blueberry going on and some spice. I’d tell a friend it’s tasty red wine with just enough punch to keep you happy but not so much to scare away novice wine drinkers.

To me it was like a straight-forward Zin without huge fruit punch or finish but very drinkable.

Here is a link to something I wrote a little over a year ago about their basic red and white blend.

To me it was like a straight-forward Zin without huge fruit punch or finish but very drinkable.

Riesling any one?

I remember falling in love with Riesling when I first started drinking a lot of wine. I have tried to come back to it lately with mixed results. Imagine my surprise at Christmas when I opened a $10 (srp) bottle of Concannon Riesling and found it much better than some I had tasted lately at a much higher price point!

Concannon is a name in wine that is easy to find and delivers a consistently good product. The grapes are grown in California’s Central Coast region. The wine really has a nice nose with hints of pear and a nice acidity to balance the mild sweetness.

This also was a trade sample – but as I sometimes say when noting the wines were sent to me – I’d buy this one. I recommend you buy it as well!

Send comment or questions to: hewitthoward@gmail.com

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