Wineserver news!

Hello,

 

Summer and holidays are almost over.

(Well I’ll be on holiday next week travelling to Mallorca, hopefully getting to visit some wineries there.)

 

But I guess this is a good time to let all you know what is happening and what has been planned for the fall.

 

First of all, the web page has a brand new look: http://www.wineserver.fi/ and there is a link to English pages as well.

 

I have contacted some wine importing companies and there seems to be a lot of interest for our wine club. They get to present us their wine selection and we provide them feedback by giving our evaluations about the wines. We will also focus on learning more about the wines and how to taste and evaluate them to find our common words to describe them. And our wine tasting club also gets invitations to other wine events 🙂 So September and October will be very busy time for us. I will put information and pictues of these events to Facebook and blog.  So don’t forget to follow them!

 

 

Our upcoming events at the moment:

 

31.08.2010

Wine Club’s Wine Tasting Dinner in Mange Sud restaurant.

 

15-16.09.2010

Wennerco organizes Mikä Viini event in restaurant Pörssi, to which all our club memebers are welcome.

 

20.09.2010

Wine Club tasting with Norex.

 

29.09.2010

Wine Club tasting with winemaker Javier Solari from Canepa Wineries, Chile.

 

06.10.2010

Birthday party. Wines and food available.

 

21.10.2010

Wine Club’s Gallo tasting.

 

28-31.10.2010

Wine, Food & Good living fair in Helsinki Fair Center, we will order group tickets to this.

 

 So put these in your calendar!

 

Information is updated to wep-page: http://www.wineserver.fi/index_en.php?sivu=current_events.html

 

There was also discussion before holidays that we could have a tasting of wines that everybody has brought from their summer trips. So if you have some wines to share or just want to participate, let me know, and I’ll try to set a date for it.

 

 Feel free to pass this information to let your colleagues and friends know about this wine club!

 

Best regards,

Tomi Naarvala

 

www.wineserver.fi

tomi.naarvala@wineserver.fi

Riedel Tasting 14.6.2010 English version

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Maximilian Riedel came to Finland to present his Riedel Vinum XL wine glass series to Finnish wine lovers. I have been in a couple of  Riedel tastings before, in wine fair and in one I organized for my wine club, but  could not resist to participate because of the fact that the designer himself was here. And, of course, at the same time I got to replenish my Riedel collection. The glasses used in the tasting were ours to keep. A couple of hundred wine enthusiasts participated the event and this was the biggest seated tasting of the year (or was it all-time) in Finland.

 

According to Riedel in wine, as in life, it is about balance. And glasses are designed so that the aromas and mouth-feel are in balance. Glass size and shape have a major impact in aromas and the design of the mouth of the glass, wide or narrow, affects the mouth-feel.

 

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We started with XL Vinum Sauvignon Blanc glass and Jackson Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2009 wine from New Zealand. The glass is designed for high acidity, unoaked and low-alcohol Sauvignon Blanc wine. The narrow mouth of the glass makes the wine contact the tip of your tongue and the center of your tongue first. Sauvignon Blanc is a very acidic variety and people perceive acidity at the edges of their tongues, while the tip of the tongue perceives sweetness. Although the wine in the mouth flows all around, the first impression is crucial and dominates the taste throughout. Sauvignon Blanc tastes very pleasant and well balanced when the sweetness is highlighted and the acidity held back. When we tasted the same wine from a disposable plastic cup, I could taste very high acidity and also the alcohol. The aromas also disappeared completely, but returned again when the wine was poured back to the correct glass.

 

The next wine was the 2005 Marimar Torres Chardonnay from Russian River Valley, California. It has a bouquet of tropical fruit, honey, fruits, flowers and a little vanilla and oak in the background. From the wide mouth of the Chardonnay glass the wine pours to the side and the middle of the tongue first. The wine tasted soft and silky. The same wine from the Sauvignon Blanc glass tasted dry and had green, raw grape, aromas.  From the plastic cup the wine tasted dry and bitter, and really short.

 

Droughin Oregon 2006 Pinot Noir has oak, raspberry, spices, red berries, roses, and orange peel on the nose. From Pinot Noir wine glass, the wine contacts just the tip of your tongue, the tongue even touches the edge of the glass. The taste is silky smooth and pleasant. From the Chardonnay glass the oak flavor dominated and berries disappeared. The taste was dry, green, bitter, tannic and acidic. When tasted form the plastic cup the wine did not have any flavor and was dry and bitter, no smooth silky texture or red berries. Pinot Noir glass is reportedly also a really good glass for champagne, especially if it is made of Pinot Noir. I will try this sometime.

 

Chateau Carsin Cuvée 2005 from Bordeaux smells of herbs, leather, dark berries and a little bit of oak. The flavor is still tight and tannic, but balanced and likely to improve with age. The Pinot Noir glass highlighted the alcohol and the fruitiness was reduced. The taste was green, tight, tannic and short. In the Chardonnay glass the aroma was highlighted by alcohol, oak, vanilla and minerals, leaving bitterness and tannins in the mouth.

 

My old appreciation of Riedel glasses still remain. And if you enjoy a particular type of wine, it may be worth it to invest in a suitable glass. I enjoy drinking different kinds of wines and therefore have a fair collection of Riedel glasses already. Though my previous glasses are normal size Vinum series and now I got some XL glasses to go with them. Either I have to offer guests a different wine or a smaller amount from the smaller glass, which is not necessarily such a bad thing after all. Of course, if someone wants to give up their XL glasses, this can be negotiated.

 

Perhaps the only downside of the evening was the demonstration of the decanter. I absolutely have to get the decanter that looks like a boa, or is it a cobra. And of course it has to cost around € 400. When decanting the wine swirls around the edge of the glass and certainly appears efficient giving the wine some air. And when poured into a glass, you can get one serving of wine at a time. Perhaps this video or pictures tell more:

 

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The larger glass size, XL series, Maximilian Riedel justified by modern wines that tend to have higher alcohol content and concentration, these call for a bigger glass. Someday I will compare how the same wine, for example Sauvignon Blanc wine, tastes from Vinum XL and smaller Vinum Sauvignon Blanc glass.

 

I was really pleased with this event. At least from the second row the presentation was really enjoyable to follow. I don’t know how it was at the back. The glasses played a leading role in this, and when drank from the correct glasses, the wines tasted really good too.

 

 

 
   facebook97x30

Wineserver pages can also be found in Facebook, and I recommend joining to get information about our upcoming events and benefits.

If you do not use Facebook, you can register to our mailing list by filling out the form with the comment that you want to be in the mailing list. Of course other feedback is welcome as well. We might have a new Riedel tasting coming with them, because there clearly seems to be demand for it, and I consider myself a sort of Riedel glass ambassador. And in the meantime, I can recommend learning the wine aromas using the Aromaster kit available from me. It comes with 80 wine aromas, practical flavor wheels and a board game. I already have one set of Aromaster and will be ordering more. You can preorder them from me now and you can see it and try it in our events or by separate agreement. And for international orders, I am happy to send you a discount code for the Aromaster web store. Just contact me.

 

Note: This post was first written in Finnish but I decided to translate this for all international Riedel fans. The Google Translator version didn’t really capture the moment, so hopefully I did better with this. There should be more postings coming in English as well. So feel free to come back to this blog. The English posts can be found under English category.

Aromaster

Wineserver early events

Here is a short description of our past events and best picks from them.

 

Viiniagentit.com

11.03.2010. Tero Kakko from Viiniagentit.com came to present us his selection of Spanish wines.

We did also have South African Sauvigon Blanc and Italian reds as well as sweet sparkling dessert wine and Grappa. We started with some organically grown Cava and Rosé Cava from Pinot Noir, both different in styles but really good. Then continued with white wines: Verdejo, Albariño and Sauvignon Blanc. Again very different styles as you can see already in the colors. But good quality wines for different uses.

 

Our main topic was Spanish red wines and we tasted five of them as well as two Italian red wines. It was difficult to choose which wine is best because all were high quality wines carefully selected and around the same price range.

Viiniagentit tasting Viiniagentit tasting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After hours of hard work and winetasting we finally reached our dessert sparkling wine. After full-flavored and full-bodied red wines this was a nice finish. You can find all our evaluations here. Well we did also have some high quality Grappa from Unica de Ponte in the end. But I have not included evaluation for that. In short it is very high quality and available in some restaurants. Not to forget we also tasted some high quality olive oil as well.

 

Arvid Nordquist

Arvid Nordquist tasting

24.02.2010. Despite of meters of snow and freezing weather, Teemu Laaksonen from Arvid Nordquist decided to have wines for spring as our topic. So we were tasting sparkling wines and rosés, which was actually quite nice. I can picture myself on a terrace or having picnic on the beach with some sparkling rosé and strawberries.

We also had some new wines from their selection: Steininger Riesling from Austria and red Coma Vella from Spain. These also received our highest points.

 

 

Viinitkotiin.com

Viinitkotiin tasting

14.01.2010. Sirpa, Petra and Violetta from Viinitkotiin.com came to present us their selection of wines. The tasting was divided in three parts. First we tasted wines from Portugal. Then compared two Chardonnay and two Shiraz wines, and finished with Semi Dec Champagne and some cake.

Viinitkotiin.com is a new internet portal for quality wines, champagnes, and other alcoholic products that are not available in Alko. The company is based in Estonia and their webshop in Finland opened in December 2009. They offer secure payment methods and all taxes and custom duties are taken care of by seller.

Our best evaluations of white wines received Anna Delaroche Chablis and of red wines Quanta Terra and Excelcior Paddock Shiraz. Also the combination of cake with demi sec champagne was very well liked. All Viinitkotiin.com wine evaluations can be found here. Viinitkotiin wines


 

Guess

Guess store10.11.2009. Wine Tasting Club had a private shopping night at Guess Outlet store. Guess offered us Italian sparkling wine and cheeses to make our shopping experience more pleasant, as if our 20% discount for all purchases was not enough. We will go there again next spring to be ready for summer.

 

 

 

Hennessy

Hennessy Cognacs28.10.2009. This night we forgot about wine for a while and concentreated on cognacs. Timo Koivunen and his Spanish colleague Xavier from Möet Hennessy presented us their range of Hennessy cognacs. Hennessy has been the world leader in cognacs for over 300 years now. The group also owns and imports whiskys to Finland so naturally we started the night with some Glenmorangie and Ardbeg whiskys. We learned how whisky and cognac are made and what are their differences. Well it turns out cognac is made out of wine so we are back in line with our wine tasting club. We started with Hennessy V.S (very special) and continued with V.S.O.P (very special old pale), X.O (extra old) and Paradis. As if this night was not perfect already, Timo insisted that we try also 200 years old Richard Hennessy. This tasting left me with very satisfied but also empty feeling. Like you have reached your lifetime goal and do not know what to do next. Now I have tasted world’s greatest cognacs so where to go next. Well I know very little about whiskys and cognacs so I went to buy Riedel’s Hennessy glasses and a book about whiskys to learn more about them. And I will of course continue to enjoy and learn more about wines, and look for the same feeling over and over again.

 

Wine, Food & Good living

22-25.10.2009. We ordered group tickets to go to Wine, Food and Good living fair. At the same time there was also Book and Music fairs, but I did not have time to attend those. I concentrated more on wines and food. I attended three lectures there: Rhone wines, Cheese and Wine, and Chocolate and Wine. The rest of the time I circled around the area tasting some more wines, cheeses and chocolates. And of course I made some new contacts with whom we can organise wine tastings later. Longer description of my visit can be read in Finnsih from my blog.

Pernod Ricard Finland

07.10.2009. Laura Plet from Pernod Ricard Finland talked about combining food with wine and we tasted different wines from all over the world. We tasted three red wines, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir, suitable for meat dishes or with cheese. From white wines we tasted Thandi Chardonnay and Gisselbrecht Gewurztraminer. The first one was fresh and fruity and the second one sweet and rich. They were wery different wines but were both liked very much and recommended by us.

KWV

KWV wines16.09.2009. Teemu Laaksonen from wine importing company Arvid Nordquist presented us South African Pinotage wines, Chardonnays, and Roodeberg white and red wines, all produced by KWV. Cathedral Cellar Chardonnay was the best of the white wines with its golden yellow color, buttery, oaky, but very fresh taste with a hint of bubbles. Pinotage grape really showed its potential and the variety of wines that can be produced from it. Café Culture Pinotage received our highest points with its pleasant coffee aroma and fruity taste. The wine is produced in barrels that are thinner than normal and they are roasted from both sides giving the wine its unique style. This wine goes well with spicy foods as well as with chocolate desserts. If you love coffee and chocolate this wine is definitely worth trying. We also tasted a really good dessert wine made of Pinotage

 

Veuve Clicquot

Veuve Clicquot09.09.2009. Timo Koivunen from wine importing company Möet Hennessy Finland presented us champagnes in Classic Wine Cellars downtown Helsinki. We tasted Veuve Clicquot Brut, Sec, Brut Rosé and Vintage Reserve 1998 champagnes. We learned how champagne is made, how these tasted champagnes differ from each other, and also heard many interesting stories involving champagne. Veuve Cliquot Ponsardin Vintage Reserve 1998, with its soft full bodied taste with coffee and ripe exotic fruit aromas, received the highest points. But these were all very good champagnes and suitable for different occasions.

 

 

 

Laroche

Laroche bottles Laroche lecture
25.8.2009. Esa Salminen from wine importing company Norex came to present us their selection of wines produced by Laroche. We were able to taste wines from all their production areas: Chablis and Languedoc in France, Chile, and South Africa. We learned how different the wines from different areas taste like, even if they are made from the same grape, and what wine making techniques can be used in these areas. Their fine and elegant Laroche Chablis La Jouchare received the highest points. Their L’Avenir, Cabernet Sauvignon from South Africa, was best liked out of the red wines.

Servaali

4.6.2009. Wine importing company Servaali came to introduce us their selection of wines suitable for summer and grilled foods. We also had the priviledge to taste two new wines that are not yet available in Alko, but surely will be recommended by us once they do. Flagstone Dragon Tree 2006, red wine from South Africa, was one of the newcomers and received the highest points. Also Taltarni Brut Tache 2007 from Australia was a very nice sparkling wine.

Taltarni  Flagstone Dragon Tree

 

 

 

 

 

 

Riedel Glass tasting

14.5.2009. In this event we were not evaluating wines, but instead learning how our senses work. We tasted and smelled the same wine from different shaped glasses and were amazed how big difference there can be in the aromas and how the wine tastes. Riedel offers glasses of different sizes and shapes optimized to certain grape varietal. The shape and size of the glass is designed to maximize the aromas we smell in the wine, and the mouth of the glass is designed to minimize the shortcomings of the wine’s taste. For example acidity is tasted on the sides of the tongue. There is already high acidity in Sauvignon Blanc, so the wine is poured to the center of the mouth to balance the wine better. So for Sauvignon Blanc you need a glass that has a narrow mouth. For sweeter Chardonnay you need a glass with wider mouth to pour the wine to the sides of your tongue to bring more acidity to the taste. Althoug the wine does cover all areas of your mouth the first expression is dominant throughout the whole time. A great session and now I have a gift list ready for all my birthdays to come.

New wines in Alko

6.5.2009. One of the most interesting topics for me is to try out the new wine selection. And to be able to recommend them to others as well. For most club members these are wines that they have not tasted before and therefore we are all in the same starting point. All the wines were really nice and got good evaluations. To mention only one wine, it would be Leyda Garuma Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc. But keep in mind I am a big fan on Sauvignon Blanc.

Champagne and Sparkling Wine

23.4.2009. The 1st of May, Vappu, is a big celebration day for the Finns and champagne and sparkling wine bottles are opened then. To know what to buy, we tasted sparkling wines from different continents and two champagnes. The biggest positive surprise was one of the cheapest champagnes available in Alko: Blondel Brut Carte d’Or. Luxury isn’t always expensive.

 

Gloria’s Best Wines of ther Year 2009

24.3.2009. Gloria food and wine magazine had selected their 10 best wines for year 2009. There were some interesting wines for our price range and we also tasted one South African Pinotage outside of this list. Although we had one faulty bottle we managed to taste really good wines and it’s impossible to pick any winners. Espiritu de Chile especially was a bargain

French wines from Bordeaux and Bourgogne

4.3.2009 and 17.3.2009. To know wine, you have to know French wine. And to know French wine, you have to know Bordeaux and Bourgogne. So the wery first wine tasting event took us to the home of wine, Bordeaux and Bourgogne. Pekka Suorsa, wine critic and the author of Viiniopas books, explained us how the tasting process goes and how wines are evaluated. So our expectations were getting really high and in the end Chateau Senilhac 2003 from Bordeaux was able to meet them the best.

Wineserver pages are now open

Wineserver is the link between Finnish customer and the wine importer. Wineserver organizes wine tasting events for its members and provides evaluations and information about wines. New information is updated as the events are organized.

Wineserver is a new company operating in the capital area of Finland. These pages are very much under construction at the moment. There will be more pages coming and more information. There will also be improvements in the visual side. The goal is to have these pages ready and working after this summer. I have downloaded a couple of pages just to see how these work as a test.

These are my first web pages and for some reason I decided to do it the hard way and code everything myself using xhtml and css to start with, without any background knowledge of how computer coding actually works. So these pages will have new functionalities as I learn more, and I will add more pictures from our events. If parts of these pages are not functioning properly, please let me know. And of course all ideas and feedback about these events and web pages are welcome. For blog and discussion forum I decided to use ready pages and formats. And it might be that the other pages will be created using some tool if I am not able to finish the pages on time or have too many technical difficulties. This is an interesting learning experience for me. In these first two weeks I have already learned a lot.

Wineserver offers a cost friendly and easy way to learn about wines in a fun relaxed way. To attend a wine tasting event it is possible to join our Wine Tasting Club, or to organize our own event for your group of people. We are also offering our help to plan and organize parties. If you are interested in joining our Wine wasting Club or organizing a wine tasting in your company or for your friends, don’t hesitate to contact me.

For wine importers and companies I offer a chance to come to our club events to present their wines. It is also possible to hire me to sales promotion activities to e.g. wine fairs and other events as an addition to your sales team. We also offer wine books and products to our members. All contacts and event ideas from companies are also very velcome.

Br,
Tomi

info(at)wineserver.fi