Aug 04 2010


Published by at 8:39 AM under News and Trends

Lollapalooza returns to Chicago this Friday, and while wine might not be the first thing you think of when it comes to the annual three-day outdoor music festival in Grant Park, there are a few connections—most notably, last year’s headliner Tool, and frontman Maynard James Keenan’s well-publicized second career as a winemaker and full-time wine enthusiast.

While this year’s artists aren’t producing any Soundgarden Shiraz or Lady Gaga Grenache, that’s OK, because there are plenty of “rock stars” in the actual wine world to get excited about. It’s a year-round “Oeno-Palooza” here at Just Grapes, so stop by and put some of our “hitmakers” into heavy rotation on your palate:

Charles Smith:

2008 Velvet Devil Merlot, Columbia Valley Washington [$11.19]
If velvet had a flavor this would be it. Bittersweet chocolate, dark Italian cherries. Sweet rose petals with a firm, satiny finish. Pure Washington Merlot.

Paul Hobbs:

2007 Pulenta Estate Chardonnay, Agrelo, Mendoza, Argentina [$14.39]
This Chardonnay shows a brilliant greenish-yellow in the glass and offers aromas of citrus and tropical fruits protected by the controlled temperature fermentation, with light vanilla notes from the oak ageing. Once in the mouth, the wine is intense, fresh and complex with a balanced acidity and a long, delicate finish.

Chris Ringland:

2007 Chris Ringland “CR” Shiraz, Barossa Valley, South Australia [$17.59]

93 pts – Robert Parker

The 2007 CR Shiraz displays a deep red-black with a scarlet orange rim in the glass. The aroma explodes with sweet red berry perfume, white florals, liquorice and aniseed and laced with a sweet vanillin back note. The rich mouth filling attack of red berries and milk chocolate follows through with vanilla on the finish.

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