Let Dad WINE on Father’s Day

He was the one that taught me how to throw a football and try to outrun my friends to score a touchdown. “You have a lower center of gravity” he’d tell me at five years old. I had no idea what that meant, only that he said it was a good thing.

I grew up during a time where an “allowance” was not a word heard in my home.
If you wanted money to buy comic books or candy or a toy that your best friend got with their “allowance”, he’d say “You want to come to work with me tomorrow? You need to learn the value of a dollar.” Therefore from about 10 years old, until I was 14, and could get “working papers”, I would work with him at his warehouse, working on the incredible window display backgrounds that he created for many stores in the NY and NJ area.

I learned the value of a dollar from him. Like many of us from this generation, our fathers worked many hours and were not always around, but they knew what was going on in our lives from our Moms. I also learned respect for my elders, how to always put in a hard days work, and how to complete a job.

As much as I am thankful for my mom’s encouragement in my early childhood, my dad although not as present, had instilled the best values. I believe I got my love of laughter, and making people laugh from my dad’s sense of humor.

To honor our dads on Father’s Day, let’s give him the gift of good wine. In this article, I share my suggestions for the dads out there who truly appreciate wine.
Oddly enough, my dad is someone who would drink wine but used to say that most red wine tastes like what he imagined “gasoline might taste like”.

He really only recently, in his late 70s and now in his early 80s, started appreciating wine. This is due to my years of having him and my mother try di‘erent wines
that I would bring over to their house in Delray Beach. My mom enjoys Pinot Grigio, and my dad is more of a Cabernet drinker.

So, these are the wines I believe, at varying price points, and from various wine regions, are nice choices for Dads who are real wine enthusiasts. First up, from Stellenbosch, South Africa:

DE TOREN Z 2015
This is a left bank Bordeaux
style red blend.
BLEND : 51% Merlot, 18%
Cabernet Franc, 14% Malbec,
12% Cabernet Sauvignon,
5% Petit Verdot
AVERAGE PRICE: $40

MY NOTES: Since I am a Bordeaux fan, and especially one of wines using the grape varietals of Bordeaux, this wine resonates with my palate. It has great balance of fruit and terroir. An aromatic nose of cocoa, licorice, herbal notes and allspice. The entry, mid palate and finish are equal in their expression of its dark fruit, plum and blackberry, as well as cardamom and mocha. Streamlined tannins are in tune with its finish — a great offering for a Dad who traditionally likes French left bank wine, merlot, or blends of any kind.

Next up, also from the same producer:

DE TOREN FUSION V
This is conversely, a right bank
Bordeaux style red blend
BLEND: 51% Cabernet Sauvignon,
19% Cabernet Franc,
13% Malbec, 10% Merlot, 7%
Petit Verdot
AVERAGE PRICE: $50

MY NOTES: Again being a Bordeaux fan, this wine does not disappoint. It is well-crafted with red fruit aromas of raspberry and cranberry on the nose. It also has
notes of anise and chocolate. The palate follows though with some of the red fruit notes but also expresses muted cherry and some dark plum. Light hints of spice show up towards the end and it has a lingering, pleasant Œnish. Very silky tannins with a light grip. Great offering to a Dad who traditionally likes French right bank wine, cabernet, cab franc, blends or big bold wines. Let’s go surfing now …everybody’s learning how…Ok that was my subtle reference to the region of our next few wines from California.

Here is a lesser known wine producer in Napa Valley, Provenance Vineyards:

2014 RUTHERFORD
CABERNET SAUVIGNON
93% Cabernet, 3% Cabernet
Franc, 3% Malbec and
1% Petit Verdot
AVERAGE PRICE: $45

SIDE NOTE: California cabs have always been a favorite varietal, and Napa Valley a favorite region for me. I visited Napa Valley for the first time in 2007, and it left such an amazing impression on me as a wine producing region. The community supports each other and tends to work as a unit, even though everyone tries to do their own thing. There’s a lot of good will and good words amongst all producers about each other — something you don’t see in many industries outside of wine.

MY NOTES: Now onto my thoughts on this wine: Big and bold can like Napa does best. The nose is of blackberry, strawberry, blueberry, currants, vanilla, and cinnamon. Heavy concentration of red and dark fruits on the palate; blackberries and cherries with hints of espresso, chocolate and cassis finish with smooth luscious tannins. This is a great one for dads who love California fruit forward, easy sipping wines. In keeping with California but going to the Carneros AVA, here is a well established, and award winning Pinot Noir producer,

Etude:

2015 HEIRLOOM
ESTATE GROWN
PINOT NOIR
This is 100% Pinot Noir
AVERAGE PRICE: $95

MY NOTES: So their are more expensive Pinot Noirs from California, but I’m not convinced any of them are capable of the combination of quality and consistency of vintage from year to year this bottle delivers. The nose presents aromas of graham cracker spice and muted cherry. The palate expresses good integration of cranberry, a bit of cherry, and red fruits. Silky tannic structure. A finish that stays within you. This could actually be cellared for 7-10 years and benefit. Great for the dad who likes Pinot Noirs, red burgundies, gamay, or any medium bodied reds.

Last but not least, for the dads that enjoy a nice white wine:

2016 STAGS LEAP
NAPA VALLEY
CHARDONNAY
100% Chardonnay
AVERAGE PRICE: $30

MY NOTES: Aromas of lemon peel jump from the glass, along with some star fruit, and hints of hazelnut or almond. The palate picks up citrus and fresh lemon meringue with a heavy, weighty texture. Oak notes, some nutty underscoring, and a crisp, well balanced finish. This wine maintains good acidity.

Look for future wine articles from me
in upcoming editions of Simply The Best,
Proof Magazine online, and if you travel
and visit the UK, look for my articles in
Glass of Bubbly magazine.
As a judge for The American Fine Wine
Invitational, you can meet me at various
charity events throughout the year. Find
the schedule at americanfinewinecompetition.org.
Follow me on Twitter @stuthewineguru
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Email me at stuthewineguru@me.com

As I always say “If it’s time to pour the wine, it’s time for Stu The Wine Guru. Drink up!”