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Raise your glass: New Year New Beginnings

Published:Thursday | January 14, 2016 | 1:00 AM
Seven Deadly Zins
Kim Crawford Pinot Noir
Marques de Casa Conche Cabernet Sauvignon.
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It's the start of a new year, and by now, we have all got over the glut of Christmas and are fully back into the grind of things.

Reflecting on the death of 2015 and the birth of 2016, a few things stand out from my travels.

There are five teachings which stand out that I think we can all embrace.

1 Act with loving-kindness to all your fellow winos.

2 Be open-hearted and generous and share a bottle with friends.

3 Practise stillness, simplicity and contentment, and enjoy life.

4 Speak with truth, clarity and peace with the best truth serum - vino!

5 Live with mindfulness of the suffering of others who have not caught on to the trend.

There are a few wines that really stuck with me, and I certainly look forward to enjoying more of them in 2016.

SEVEN DEADLY ZINS

At my last wine club, the good doctor was kind to share something new, and I was extremely surprised. At first, the playful name was what caught me, then it hit me like a brick why it was called SEVEN deadly Zins.

1. Nose - fruit friendly.

2. Great body, not the coca-cola bottle kind of body, but great mouth feel and texture.

3. Smooth.

4. Great finish.

5. Vibrant ruby colour.

6. Blend of Zinfandel, Petit Syrah and Petit Verdot.

7. YUMMMMMMY! This is a great sipping wine but goes well with meat, and is a worthwhile addition to the wine rack.

PRISONER

I mentioned this wine some time ago partly for the interesting story that it has, but having it again brought back fond memories.

An extremely aromatic wine that is very food-oriented, what's nice about this wine is that it has a story which is always a great conversation starter, particularly when entertaining friends or family.

KIM CRAWFORD PINOT NOIR

As I have voiced on a number of occasions, the Sauvignon Blanc to this brand is my mistress because it is so aromatic, like perfume. The Pinot Noir is a far more food-friendly, holiday-friendly wine, especially if you are entertaining earlier rather than later.

It has classic notes of black cherry yet earthy, and not like the typical Pinot Noirs that are extremely light. This one has some meat on it. Not too much, but the right amount that makes this a worthwhile addition. If lamb is on the menu, so should this.

MARQUES DE CASA CONCHE CABERNET SAUVIGNON

This prize winner year after year is big, bold and present. It's certainly something you can't miss. I was introduced to this one by the Chilean Embassy here, and boy, was I grateful for the introduction. I like big, bold-flavoured wines. Wine spectators describe it as "Dense, rich and full of dark fruit and spice flavours, supported by muscular tannins and acidity." If you like full-bodied, this is certainly one worth having.

Not to forget the white lovers, particularly for the sweeter ones. My mother is not much of a wine drinker, but she does enjoy sweeter wines. Moscatos are becoming more and more popular, and there are quite a few on the market.

Hard to really pick one because of the subtle complexity between them beyond being sweet. Some are more floral, some more fruity, but what is typically at my house is the Sperone Moscato. It's sweet with peach hints and will most certainly be served with my fruitcake after dinner. What's nice about this is that it is a spumante, which means that it has a light fizz. That makes for a great mouth feel.

Cheers to new beginnings and new wine experiences.

n I am not an expert, merely a wine enthusiast sharing my thoughts and experiences. Feel free to share your own

experiences at wineenthusiastja@gmail.com