Wolfgang Puck Wines raises the bar

November 20, 2013 

According to Wolfgang Puck, who is one of the most well-known superstar chefs -- "Wine is an essential element to a truly great dining experience." So it is no coincidence that the year 2011 marked the debut of Wolfgang Puck Wines. When we think of chefs of Wolfgang Puck's caliber, we often envision expensive menu prices, but if you taste any of the Wolfgang Puck Wines you will be pleasantly surprised at the price points.

Just like family is important in the kitchen, it also plays a large part in Wolfgang Puck Wines, with a portion of the proceeds going to the Keep Memory Alive Foundation (KMA), in honor of Wolfgang's mother, Maria, lost to Alzheimer's in 2004. KMA was founded in 1996 by Larry Ruvo whose father passed away from Alzheimer's, and since then over $100 million has been raised and donated to funding research for brain-related diseases.

The 2011 Wolfgang Puck Red Blend Master Lot Reserve is produced using merlot, cabernet sauvignon, zinfandel, syrah, and petite sirah grapes causing this Red Blend to be packed with a number of flavors, most notably black currants, black cherry and blackberries but also hints of licorice, oak and minerality. The 2011 Red Blend will truly complement a thick-grilled New York Strip.

The 2011 Wolfgang Puck Master Lot Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is dark red in color and contains a significant amount of dark fruits such as black currant and blackberry on both the nose and in the mouth. This cabernet sauvignon is made to drink young and is quite smooth with a fairly long finish that has hints of

vanilla and chocolate. If you plan on making braised short ribs anytime soon, you will enjoy pairing that dish with this wine.

Being partial to sauvignon blanc, it was hard to pass up the 2011 Wolfgang Puck Sauvignon Blanc that began with extremely fresh grapefruit and citrus flavors in a wine that has such vibrant acidity. This sauvignon blanc is the perfect match to grilled shrimp that have been glazed with a spicy hoisin sauce.

While the different Wolfgang Puck restaurants range from very affordable casual dining to much more expensive fine dining, the wines that carry his name on the label typically retail in the $12 to $14 range and are just as tasty as the menu items at any of his restaurants.

Jim Rawe, a family attorney in Bradenton, is an avid collector of fine wines. He can be reached at jimrawe@gmail.com.

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