Col Solare 2005 Red Wine

Another WAwineman classic, 1st posted on July 7, 2010:

I don’t understand wine bloggers. They go to some cult convention in Onion Town, USA, to drink some leftover Jonestown Flavor-Aid wine, then whoever was still standing got sent on a mission to get into my odd-news segment in an attempt to infiltrate the thick green ooze that is WAwineman’s world. Read on and you’ll understand. A 29 year-old Georgia man was arrested for allegedly holding his mother hostage for failing to iron his clothes. A 25 year-old Florida woman was arrested after stealing $78 from a man’s checkbook while he tried to renege on paying for sex. The guy apparently had a change of heart (and penis size) after seeing her full smile of bad teeth. A Memphis woman dressed in a brown apron and blue shirt and sporting a wig was almost arrested for bank robbery…until the cops figured out that woman owns a business making funnel cakes and cotton candy. A similarly attired woman had robbed the bank just minutes prior to her stepping in. That must have been one heck of a convention…

Fifty-six years ago today (July 7, 1954) was the day music forever changed the landscape of all wanton and conforming teenagers in America (and the world). What? You don’t know? Was it Socrates, Ein Stein or Ben Stein who said it best, “Those who forget history are condemned to repeat it” or something or other.

The answer is: at Memphis radio station, WHBQ, disc jockey Dewey Phillps became the first human ever to spin an Elvis Presley record over the air as part of Phillips’ “Red, Hot and Blue” program shortly after 9:30pm. Later that night, Elvis gave his first media interview on that same program. Trivial? Excuse me? What the heck did you listen to in high school? Rock and roll’s taproot can be traced back to 1953 with Bill Haley and His Comets’ “Crazy, Man, Crazy”, but Elvis is everyone’s “1st rock and roller.”

Admittedly, I don’t know jack about Col Solare anymore than Joe WAwinedrinker, other than the winery is a joint venture between “Washington’s founding winery” in Chateau Ste. Michelle and 26th-generation Italian winery, Marchesi Antinori. Italian for “shining hill,” Col Solare’s home office, opened April 12, 2007, stands high over most of Red Mountain’s 700+ vineyard acres. However, their collaboration can be traced back to the 1995 vintage of Col Solare’s wines. The architecture was designed to showcase the winery as “the sun,” with rays extending out into the vineyards. My view from Sunset Road confirmed they succeeded. Their “tasting room” is open only by appointment. While the estate vineyards mature, both the Col Solare and Shining Hill wines are made from Columbia Valley grapes. Think of Shining Hill as a “2nd label,” made from declassified Col Solare lots. Marcus Notaro is the resident winemaker, under guidance from Renzo Cotarella and Doug Gore. Admittedly, when I first laid eyes on Col Solare’s site, the first picture that came to my mind was that cornfield scene (9th minute) from the first “X-Files” movie. A little creepy. But, I digress.

71% cab sau, 25% merlot, 4% cab franc. New oak: 75% French, 25% US. Alcohol: 14.5%. TA 0.59%. pH 3.68. 7000 cases!   Columbia Valley AVA. Nose: mild aromas of black cherry and blackberries with a bouquet of cocoa and a snuff of oak. Mouthfeel: featherweight; perhaps lost some bulk with age. Tail trail: 6 seconds. Flavors: cocoa, spice, black cherry, blackberry, tannins, burnt toast, a tickle of tart. Quite smooth. Rated: 89. Retail: $75 (2006 vintage is $52.79 at Costco). Value: $30. Music pairing: “That’s All Right” by Elvis Presley, the 1st Elvis song played on radio. This is WAwineman…uncorked, uneducated but not uncouth.

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