TASTINGS

  • Great Value Wine
    Great Value Wine

      This week’s choices meet at a particular price point and why not choose that for a reason of featuring them. They are great wines to transition from the dark side of winter to the blessings of spring, also we are trying to ease the squeeze on your budget in this tax month.  Chateau Jouclary Rosé 2013 – There are some signs of spring about, so starting the evening meal with a glass of rosé while cooking is certain to increase your comfort level. Blended from Merlot, Syrah and Grenache this Languedoc wine is classic in terms of flavor profile and finish. And the price is right. $13.99      Shannon Ridge Chardonnay 2012 – This wine has a clean, straw like color and is crisp with full richness and a long smooth finish, with aromas of pear, green apple, and creamy vanilla. The grapes used to produce this wine were picked from several different blocks to help create an elegant multi-layered wine with great complexity at a most reasonable price.$13.99   Shannon Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 -This wine shows a deep, dark ruby color along with aromas of dark berries, vanilla and spice. The flavors include Bing cherry, raspberry and vanilla. It’s a smooth wine with good structure. Deep color and flavors were achieved with gentle handling, controlled fermentation and some extended maceration. Light up the grill. $13.99  

  • Green River Ambrosia
    Green River Ambrosia

    Green River Ambrosia located in Greenfield, Mass, makes a variety of products including meads, cider and ginger beers. These wizards brew up concoctions made from all natural organic ingredients that are healthy, delicious and available for tasting this week.  Ginger Libation - Ginger beer with 8.5% ABV. Gluten and sulfite free. Sweetened with cane sugar, pineapple and citrus juices. Medium bodied. Bold ginger flavor, moderate sweetness, waves of juicy tropical fruit flavors, with fizzy carbonation. On its own it is liquid sunshine, absolutely refreshing. Mix it with dark Rum, Gin, or Bourbon for some next level cocktails that are out of this world.$12.99 25.4 oz. bottle     Local Libation - Ginger Beer with 8.5% ABV. Gluten and sulfite free. Brewed with locally farmed ginger, apple cider, and Schiandraberry. This is a juicy flavor explosion of berries and ginger that is eye-opening in its spicy refreshing character. Grab some of these now, they are from a limited run. Mix with Gin or Rum for Asian inspired cocktails. $13.99 25.4 oz. Bottle         Chamomile Mead - Traditional semi-dry mead infused with organic chamomile. 12% ABV. Gluten and sulfite free. Locally sourced raw Wildflower Honey with organic chamomile. Very aromatic, soothing, mouth coating honey with subtle mint. A very relaxing beverage. Helpful for a sore throat as a natural cough syrup. Keeps in the fridge.  Add a shot of this in a glass of Chamomile Tea to help enjoy a relaxing night’s sleep. $19.99 25.4 oz. Bottle

  • Kilchoman 100% Islay Edition Single Malt
    Kilchoman 100% Islay Edition Single Malt

    Kilchoman is Islay’s youngest distillery, built in 2005 and is also its only farm distillery. Essentially they grow and malt the barley which is then distilled and matured and eventually bottled as a special edition 100% Islay Edition. This2nd Edition has been aged in a combination of refilled Bourbon barrels from Buffalo Trace and Oloroso Sherry Butts from Miquel Martin in Spain. It is un-chill filtered and bottled at 50% capturing all its natural elements perfectly. The spirit is perfectly balanced and complex for its young age. Malty and pear-like nose with a moderate smokiness through the mid palate. Softer on the smoke than most of its Islay neighbors it finishes long and fresh. Reminiscent of the Springbank Local Barley 1966. It  takes you back to a time when all Scotch was made this way.  $99.99

  • Vin français tout le monde!
    Vin français tout le monde!

    Even though the snow piles are melting they are turning uglier by the day, a sure sign that there is a lot of “leftovers” on the streets. So welcome to the transition but it is getting more cheerful. And the wines below will do a major part in cheering you up more. The next newsletter about wine will contain some fascinating medical info about benefits, so stay tuned.    Commanderie de la Bargemone Rosé 2013 – one of the first to appear in the market every year, this is a staff favorite. The delicate choice of the different varieties: Cinsault, Syrah, Grenache or Cabernet Sauvignon gives this wine its specific quality and a remarkable consistency from year to year. Crisp, dry and delicious; a sure sign that spring is just around the corner. $15.99  Les Fleuins Sancerre 2012 –There is nothing more uplifting than a fine Sancerre, chilled and citrus-inspired. Our selection is 100% tank-made, from vineyards that represent a mix of silex (flint) and stony, chalky soils. Vines are older, and low-yielding. This is classic Sancerre, with flinty perfumes, abundant white fruit and citrus flavors, and a clean, brisk finish with touches of sea salt. $19.98    Chateau des Mille Anges 2010-  This bottling is a classic example of a Bordeaux blend consisting of Merlot, Cabernet, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Juicy black and blue fruits with smoky, tobacco notes on the nose open up well in the glass. Made in a big, modern style concentrated savory cassis fruit lifted by subtle floral notes shows up on the palate with well-integrated oak and ripe tannins. Tastes like wines at twice the price. And by the way my  wife used her highest compliment "YUMMY". $18.99

  • Mikkeller Beer
    Mikkeller Beer

    Mikkeller is a microbrewery founded in 2006 in Copenhagen, Denmark  based on the so-called “gypsy brewer" ethos; that is, the company does not operate an official brewery  instead collaborates with other brewers to produce their recipes or experimental one-off brews. The brewery was founded by two home brewers: Mikkel Borg Bjergsø, a high school teacher, and journalist Kristian Klarup Keller. Both sought to introduce their home-brewed beer to the public and to "challenge beer friends with intense new tastes", drawing inspiration from the American breweries that "aren't afraid to play and break all the rules”. Mikkeller also own several beer bars in Denmark and  one even in San Francisco. Welcome to the New Age of Beer.  Mikkeller / Prairie American Style: Ratebeer: 95 Points.  7.5% ABV. American Style is an international collaboration between the godfather of all gypsy brewers, Mikkeller, and one of the new stars of the US tenant brewing scene, Prairie Artisan Ales. Mikkel and Chase Healey journeyed to Flanders to brew this twist on an American-style IPA with Dirk Naudts at De Proef. Predictably, it’s loaded with West Coast hops. What you might not have guessed, though, is that it was fermented exclusively with a special strain of Brettanomyces claussenii that’s light on the funkiness, but really aromatic. It leaves behind an astoundingly well attenuated IPA. A serious amount of West Coast hops are added to the whirlpool and as dry hops to compliment the tropical notes from the Brett. $16.95 25.4 oz Bottle  Mikkeller / Grassroots Wheat is the new hops IPA: Ratebeer: 97 Points.  6.0% ABV.  This collaboration is also brewed at the De Proef brewery. This time it features guest brewer Sean Hill from Hill Farmstead / Grassroots. This is an IPA in style with a wheated grain bill and Brettanomyces added.  Hazy orange with a solid white head. Mild funk in the nose, light barnyard from the brett, lemon zest tart wheat mixed with some fruity hops, orange, apricot and hay, quite interesting. Taste of mildly tart sour wheat, zest, fruity, citrus hops, hay, some candy, white pepper, touch sweet. Very light & easy to drink. $6.95 12 oz. bottle   Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel: Ratebeer: 100 Points.  10.9% ABV.  Brewed by Mikkeller at Nøgne Ø in Norway. An Imperial Oatmeal Stout made with one of the worlds most expensive coffees, Vietnamese ca phe chon coffee. This coffee is considered a delicacy as the beans used to make the coffee pass through the intestines of the Civet cat. A weasel like creature that only selects the best and ripest beans and happily passes them on. Once collected,  they are cleaned, and roasted. Pours black with a foamy brown head leaving a little lacing. Absolutely amazing intense coffee nose, and aroma of roast malt, oats, and fruity hop. Taste is sweetish roasted malt, toffee, dark fruits, hoppy, chocolate & dark coffee, with some lingering earthy bitterness. Smooth mouthfeel, full bodied, soft carbonation, warming, lengthy, and earthy finish. Truly the cat's meaow. $12.25 a 12 oz. bottle

  • New French AOC’s
    New French AOC’s

    Most of the wines produced in France come from areas that are familiar to consumers with names like Macon, Pouilly, St.Emilion etc.Yet there are some fairly unknown regions that have only recently acquired AOC  status and it is our pleasure this week to provide an introduction to three delicious examples.  Domaine les  Grand Crays Viré-Clessé 2012 – You don't often see wines from Vire-Clesse in this country so discovering this one was a pleasant surprise. The AOC was created in 1999 for some of the highest-altitude vineyards in Macon. It's 100% Chardonnay that delivers surprising depth in this vintage. Lovely aromas of golden apple and creamy, chalk, grilled nuts and chervil lead to a surprisingly rich palate with a zip of fine acidity. Golden-toned flavors of creamed corn, grilled pineapple, lavender and butter and a touch of caramelized sugar. Just a terrific effort. $19.99        Chateau Jouclary Cuvee Tradition 2011 –This winery is located in one of France’s newest A.O.C.’s, Cabardes which was established in 1998 and has fewer than 20 estate bottled producers. Its unique climatic situation with influences from both the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea give rise to the appellation’s motto “Vent d’Est, Vent d”Ouest. The vineyards are planted with three of the sanctioned varieties; Syrah, Grenache and Merlot. The Merlot is the largest component and supplies the backbone of the wine, while the old vine grenache and syrah from the stony upper hillside contribute ripe flavors and warmth on the palate. The wine undergoes an extended fermentation process in lined cement vats. It then rests in vats for 12 months and receives a number of rackings before it is bottled. It is the perfect wine for larger gatherings, both in terms of price and quality. $13.99    Terres de Mandarins Syrah 2012 – from the Northern section of the Rhone next to famous appellations like the Cote Rotie this full-bodied Syrah shows a fresh, vibrant hue, with a little darkness at the core, reflecting the variety. The nose has a wonderfully bright, fresh, smoky and crunchy fruit character, with no evident wood influence.There are raspberry and blackberry aromas and flavors too, the palate feeling gently creamed, very bright and defined, lightly grippy, with the succulence of the fruit dominating, although there is also a dark and grainy grip to the finish. It has lovely purity and freshness, without the bite of excessive alcohol, but simply put is a delightful and appealing wine. $16.99

  • Imperial Stouts
    Imperial Stouts

      Imperial Stouts Russian Imperial Stout is a strong dark ale or stout in the style that was brewed in the 18th century by Thrale's brewery in London, for export to the court of Catherine II of Russia. For more on that story read this: http://www.alexanderpalace.org/palace/ImperialStout.html Today Imperial Stout refers to a black colored ale with an ABV ranging from 8 - 12%. This style is very popular with beer collectors because the strength and dark color of these brews enables them to age for years and actually benefit from a bit of cellaring. This week we will show you imperial stouts from three of today's most innovative craft brewers.  Nøgne Ø Imperial Stout: 100 Points 9% ABV Pronounced Nug ne uh this brewery is located in Norway. The brewmasters hand seems to be guided by angels when it comes to crafting stouts creating a pillowy soft and smooth texture. This alone is worth the price tag but accompanying this sensation are waves of flavors from dark chocolates to roasting coffee beans overlapping in bliss. and resulting in a perfectly brewed Imperial Stout. $10.45 16.9 oz. Bottle    Brasserie Dieu Du Ciel Grande Noirceur:  100 Points 9% ABV This Montreal microbrewery and pub brings an innovative spirit of creativity to its beers. This  stout  shows a perfect balance of sensations of coffee, campfire smoke and bittersweet chocolate. Creamy, smooth and rich on the palate, but with a lightly charred dry finish delivering notes of roasted malt, touches of molasses, star anise, dark chocolate, garnache, truffle, leather, and oak. If you're looking for a stout that's adventurous and bold,  give this one a shot. $6.95 12 oz. Bottle  Founders Imperial Stout: 100 Points 10.5% ABV Located in Michigan this brewery cranks out several of the most acclaimed stouts of the craft beer scene. Pure black in color, full bodied and velvety smooth in the mouth. A great beer to cellar and drink in a year or more and recommend serving at cellar temperature. Sit back and enjoy its richness and complexity, you’re about to drink the ultimate winter warmer.$13.99 a 4 Pack Bottles  

  • 2009 Cain Five
    2009 Cain Five

    The 2009 Cain Five has been quietly resting in bottles for two full years, and now, four years after the harvest, it is finally ready to release. Complex on the nose, silky on the palate, it is both restrained and elegant. It’s all about where the fruit grows. Even on Spring Mountain, the Cain Vineyard is unique. Cradled in a bowl on the crest of the Mayacamas Range, vines are planted on exposures toward all points of the compass,at elevations ranging from 2100 feet down to 1400 feet, giving tremendous diversity within the vineyard. The ridges are windswept, although depending on which way the wind is blowing, some of the side-slopes are protected. The soils here are almost all uniformly thin and poor, derived from sandstone, shale, and clay. The vines are small, even scrawny, and the clusters are small and the berries are tiny. The complexity does not end in the vineyard, but continues on in the cellar. The wine is blended early to allow it to come together and to find its balance. Even after the vigorous fermentation of the harvest, the young wine is still alive with yeast and bacteria, still in the process of developing. Where most wineries want to arrest the process at this point, the young Cain Five is left alone with an eye to letting it continue to develop and evolve in the barrel. And so, with the herbal “garrigue” of the Cain Vineyard come truffles, a bit of earthiness, and some lovely floral notes of roses and jasmine. All of these elements come together in the bottle, but it takes time. Open some this year and take your time to sit with it. You’ll see that this is a wine for today, next year, five years, ten years, and longer. This is one of a kind. $99.98

  • Mouthwatering Blends
    Mouthwatering Blends

      Most of the world’s wines consist not of one grape type but usually are a blend of few or many depending on the desired result. Combining flavors and other components is an art form in the right hands and this week we are  offering three wonderful examples of this craft. Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc/Viognier 2013 –Blending Chenin Blanc with Viognier was just an experiment for this winery until they tasted it and realized they had created a masterpiece. Together,these two grapes deliver a unique tapestry of flavors and aromas that are elegant and easy to enjoy.That beautiful fragrance of jasmine, honeyed pears, and chai spice. The succulent flavors of tropical fruit. A crisp, refreshing finish that unleashes provocative notes of white peaches, pineapple, and zesty citrus that marries well with seafood dishes. And the price is right. $12.99  Tierra Divina Reds 2011 – Everyone knows that heritage vines produce deeply fruited and fragrant wines. But some of the other benefits they afford may not be as obvious. For example, where young, exuberant vineyards often crank out more fruit than they can normally ripen, heritage vines, which have over the decades achieved a comfortable balance with their soils, seem to know how to set out, year after year, a modest crop that is fully ripened by summer’s end, before the winter rains. annd they know how to mature a crop without excess sugars which of course translates into lower alcohol and a substantially more food friendly wine. In a world of absurdly alcoholic, simple, and semi-sweet wines, this richly fruited gem stands out as refined and complex. And most importantly, its deep berry juiciness is irresistible! $13.99  Halter Ranch Synthesis 2011 - this wine blends the elegance and complexity of Cabernet Sauvignon with the rich, spicy ripeness of Syrah. A harmonious combination, it offers aromas of red fruits, pepper and spice with flavors of bing cherry and plum. This delicious blend is the perfect red for grilled burgers, marinated lamb kebobs, barbecued chicken, pepperoni pizza and red-sauce pastas. Delightful to drink now, it will age gracefully in bottle for another 8-10 years. $19.99

  • Dark German Beers
    Dark German Beers

      In a market saturated with American Craft beers it becomes easy to overlook imports of “Classic” beer styles which are bound to the traditions and history of local customs. This week we are sharing three of Germany’s dark beer styles which are appropriate for this time of year and are unlike any beer made elsewhere. Andechs Weissbier Dunkel :  90 Points RateBeer  5% ABV.   Andechs Monastery, located on the top of Hope Mountain overlooking Ammer Lake, harbors the oldest pilgrimage church in Bavaria and since 1850 has belonged to the Benedictine monastery, St. Boniface, in Munich. The monks brew a series of beers including this dark wheat ale. Medium bodied with good carbonation. Pours a deep garnet color with dark mahogany hues. Prickly nose of classic Bavarian wheat beer notes of banana and clove. Malty sweet with notes of caramel, raspberry fruitiness, waves of chocolate, and light roasted malts. Hallertau hops are employed for a balanced finish. $4.50 16.9 oz Bottle  Uerige Doppelsticke: 98 Points RateBeer 8.5% ABV. "Sticke" is local vernacular for "secret," which means the brewery does not reveal the recipe.  The brew is full-bodied and well-hopped, with a surprising balance between bitterness and nutty-malty sweetness, overlaid by strong notes of chocolate and roasted, but not acrid, malt. Hailing from Dusseldorf, Germany Uerige is the classic brewer of the style of dark ale known as Altbier. Unique in Germany, a country where Pilsner Lagers dominate, this beer is brewed for the American market as an Imperial Altbier. Similar to the English Barleywine with all German ingredients. Hops: Spalt Spalter, Hallertauer Perle, Spalt Hallertauer; Malts: Pilsner malt, caramel malt, roasted malt. 4 finger beige/mocca-colored head,, In the mouth there are sensations of madeira, raisins, resin, plum, prunes, dates, marzipan and chocolate while the nose shows dates, prunes, a light alcohol-burn, milk-chocolate, resin, raisins, madeira, nuts, malt, caramel, grapefruit, plum and marzipan. Semi-long, semi-bitter ending with a lot of sweetness. $6.25 11.2 oz Bottle  Aecht Schlenkerla Eiche Doppelbock: 99 Points Ratebeer 8% ABV. At the core of this beer is a Double Bock ,a strong dark German Lager beer. Malty sweet and fruity with a dry Hallertau hop charm. The barley used to brew this beer has been dried during germination over burned oak wood thus imparting the malt with an intense smoke character. Oak is a unique choice for this beer separating it from the other beers in the Schlenkerla portfolio which typically employ Beechwood. The end result is a beer that tastes like LIQUID BACON.  Enjoy this one with German fare, sausage, game birds, dark breads, and Spaetzle. $6.95 16.9 oz. Bottle 

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Giles Wine & Spirits is your one stop shop for the finest wine, beer and liquor selection in Arlington, Medford or Woburn, MA. On our website, you can explore our weekly specials, read our beer and wine tastings and explore our three locations. We strive to provide you with the best selection, prices and customer service around. If you haven’t stopped in yet, why not? Join us for one of our many wine, liquor or beer tastings by viewing our calendar.  COMING SOON CUSTOMER DELIVERY.

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