The Henry Wine Group is a US-based wine importer, wholesaler, and broker. Recently, as a guest of All Corked Up [www.allcorkedup.com], I had the opportunity to attend their TASTE OF THE WORLD 2010 trade-tasting at the Beverly Hills Hotel.
Upon entering, I was handed a 264-page Tasting Book. The event is billed as “a grand tasting of 300 producers worldwide”. While I did not actually count the number of wineries represented, I have no doubt they did not exaggerate. Along with the incredible wines being poured, we were provided with crackers, breads, various cheeses, and other noshes to help keep our palates fresh, along with plenty of water.
It was a great opportunity to taste some terrific wines as well as talk directly with the winemakers.
I did my best to keep up with the pros, although I clearly need to work on my spitting technique.
Some of the wines that really made an impression on me were…
Ancient Peaks: [Paso Robles] 2006 Oyster Ridge – this is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, Syrah and Zinfandel. Not poured at the event, but wines that I am also fond of from this producer are their Petit Verdot and Petite Sirah.
Andrew Murray: [Santa Barbara County] It was nice to meet Andrew Murray in person. We had previously only communicated via email and I have previously written about his terrific customer service. Today, my favorite of his lineup was the 2006 Syrah Watch Hill Vineyard.
Jaffurs: [Santa Barbara County] their entire lineup was superb, but my faves were the 2008 Santa Barbara County Syrah and the 2007 Petite Sirah.
Negociants USA: spent a long time tasting the various wines from Yalumba [ Australia]. Really enjoyed the 2004 ‘The Signature’ Cabernet Shiraz, 2006 Menzies The Cigar [Cabernet Sauvignon], 2006 Hand Picked MGS [great blend of Mourvedre, Grenache and Shiraz], and their Museum Muscat NV.
Seghesio – [Healdsburg]: I really enjoy this producer’s Zinfandels, especially the Cortina, also their Pinot Grigio.
Shafer [Napa Valley]: I am usually not a big Merlot drinker. Nothing to do with Sideways – I am not much of a Pinot Noir drinker either. But the Shafer Merlot was outstanding!
The Australian Premium Wine Co. & World Wine Headquarters: Tasted a lot of wine at this table. My favorites were – Tir na N’og Old Vines Grenache 2006, The Old Faithful “Top of the Hill” Shiraz 2005, Elderton Estate Shiraz 2006, Elderton Command Shiraz 2005, Hewitson Miss Harry GSM 2007, Hewitson Ned & Henry’s Shiraz 2007.
Zaca Mesa – nice to see this old time Santa Barbara County producer is still making nice wine. My favorite was the Zaca Mesa Z Three 2006 [Syrah, Mourvedre, and Grenache].
A really great day and thank you to All Corked Up for allowing me to tag along, as well as to The Henry Wine Group for putting on the event.
Michael Perlis provides outsourced controller services to businesses that do not need a full-time controller. He balances this with his interest in wine: reading and writing about it and, of course, drinking it. He is still trying to figure out how to combine these two pursuits. Feel free to contact him about either at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.