Airport Wine Bars?

VVsacramento.jpgAirport wine bar – it just sounds so desperate. Hardly. The help was knowledgeable and the wines were carefully, intelligently selected, and I could construct my own flight cherry picking from the ten flights offered. And the price was right. If I did not want a flight I could pick my wines and pour size from the well represented list. In short, they pretty much covered all the bases.
Next time you are in the Sacramento airport check out Vino Volo, a wine bar….in the airport. This brilliant idea belongs to Doug Tomlinson, a financial guy who enjoys wine and apparently spent a lot of time in airports wishing he could be tasting wine instead of poring over paperbacks or looking at boring golf shirts in the PGA store. He was also thinking up clever corporate names like Taste Inc. which is the parent company of VV. Voila Vino Volo which translates (cleverly) from Italian to English as wine flight. Currently, in addition to Sacramento, there are airport Vino Volos grounded in Seattle, Oakland, Detroit, San Antonio, Newark, JFK NYC, Philly, and DC.
Now, tBoW would not be touting this project unless the basic tBoW rules were being observed, to reiterate…interesting selection, good wines, fair prices. The prices on the list are high end retail, about 50% to 100% higher what you might pay for a bottle if you looked for it. I suppose that is the cost of doing business in the expensive retail space of an airport. However, the pours are fairly priced. Most importantly, we are not simply looking at Napa cabs…and remember I am in the Napa airport. Here is what we tried.
argermartucci08.gif2008 Arger-Martucci VIneyards Viognier Santa Barbara “Iliad” $33: A central coast blend of mostly Viognier (at least 75% required to put the grape on the label) along with quite a few other varietals, e.g., Gewurztraminer, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscat. Color is gold. Sweet, salty, melon flavors. Some tannic bite, middle weight which is heavy for a white wine. Not tBoW’s style – too tropical – but still has appeal because it has bold flavors. Should be pretty good with oily foods. A good start for the Thanksgiving meal suggests the hostess. And she would be correct. 14.2%
CargasPN06.jpg2006 Cargassachi Pinot Noir $48 (wine list price): A nice contrast to recent earlier vintages from one of Santa Rita Hills two or three most coveted vineyards, made by the grower himself. As long standing as Peter is a grower (and it isn’t that long) he is that much less as a winemaker. But he is getting better. This vintage shows a better made and more interesting wine than the 2004 or 2005, both reviewed elsewhere and earlier on this blog. There are smoky bacon whiffs on the nose. Color is light cherry red. Weight is gentle. Still a young wine. Very tasty with good pinot flavors and a lighter than usual for SRH alcohol level. Kind of pricey! 14.3%
2007 Il Matane Primitivo
$29 (wine list): I am becoming more aware of Italian red wines on the nose! Like the flavors one often encounters a profound acidic backbone. Sometimes it is sharp; usually it is bracing, firm. This wine is dank and even sweaty on the nose. Some would say this is a sign of bret. Not in this case. No sweaty socks. Sweeter. Ripe raisin flavors. Dark flavors, chocolate (but not dark chocolate), spicy like chili! Vineyards are on the Adriatic coast, the Manduria appellation. It is a “finished” wine. Compact. A bomb but not a ripe one. The most interesting of the flight. 14%
Why didn’t you think of this?

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