Sergei appeared out of nowhere with a blind tasting test for me. The wine was a perfect velvet mid ruby hue. The nose was stemmy Kraft caramels with lush black currant and blackberry notes.It smelled smoky and floral with subtle coriander spice notes. The attack was fruity and sweet with fine, thin tannins and a light mineral aftertaste. I had nothin’. No clue. My wildest, out of the blue guess was a Canadian Shiraz. I was wrong. No. I was way off… It was a Wine from Georgia (not the state) and it was from the Saperavi and Rkatsiteli grapes. Both new to me. We tasted it beside a much pricier wine I had on the bar from California that had the same sort of big sweet, fruity profile. It stood right up to the ‘big boy’ enough that when I run out of what I have, Sergei’s Alazani Valley 2013 wine. +768805 $ Fun.

The ice was broken. Sergei ran to his car and brought back a bottle of

Tbilvino Saperavi 2013

The big brother of Alazani Valley, this one was a dark bright ruby hue. Nice nose of roasted marshmallow with dark cherry and red currant notes as well as a side of toast with grape jelly. Big dry attack with raw silk tannins, it was long lasting with a solid balance of fruit and acidity. Lovely and fresh, it leaves the mouth watering. +720693 low side of $$ Good. I like it.

It’s always fun to see Sergei. Even more so when he brings crazy, unusual choices that expand my repertoire.

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