Seattle Wine Blog

This blog is dedicated to commentary on all aspects of wine, especially short entries to help you find the best wines without the usual hype and spin. These are my frank, independent opinions, usually based on tasting wine at a public event, off the shelf or at the winery. "All creative acts must arise out of a specific soil and flicker with a spirit of place" -D.H. Lawrence

Friday, August 18, 2006

2001 Hyatt Merlot Yakima Valley

Finally, a useful back label. Here's a wine that's just about to go over the hill - sort of a pre-aged wine, but at $4 who can complain? Certainly, a chance to taste what aging will do to a Washington State wine. The back label says, "... a soft silky wine with aromas of berries, tobacco and spice. Enjoy now, or cellar 2-5 years." Well it's almost five years since the grapes were harvested and the wine is well aged. Even though the fruit is a little raisiny, you can still taste the berries, tobacco and spice. It's hard to know if the wine was ever silky, which it most definitely is not now, but you can easily imagine that it once was. The wine works well with food, but not on its own. Try it with salami! Or any strongly flavored meat dish, pasta, too! At four dollars, this would be a great cooking wine, too, better than the horrors they try to pass off as cooking wine in the supermarket at the same price. This wine won't keep in the bottle after you open it, so drink up or make vinegar with the leftovers! It will not keep in your cellar either. So just buy enough to drink in the next few months. Better yet, buy a bottle and check it out to see if it's to your taste, but don't wait as it is disappearing from the state liquor stores at a rapid rate.

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