Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Boston Wine Expo -- A Wine Tradition of Mine

Saturday and Sunday, February 14th & 15th
Are the dates set for the annual Boston Wine Expo
Held at the Seaport Hotel & World Trade Center in Boston

In our dining room above our 5-foot wine rack there is a poster in a silver frame. It commemorates one of the first wine events my wife and I ever attended: The 1993 Boston Wine Expo. We've tried to attend every year since, and I've only missed two: once because we were in London on vacation, and the other when we had both caught a bad cold. The event provides us with a welcome event at the height of winter, and is a real feast for the wine enthusiast. The expansive space in Boston's World Trade Center is pretty much filled with booths that let you taste hundreds of wines, and dozens of specialty food items. The crowds can get intense--though polite--so be prepared. 

If You Happen to Be Agoraphobic, Perhaps This is Not for You.

I have discovered many new wines and gotten more familiar with entire wine regions and new wine producing countries at the Boston Wine Expo. It is not an exaggeration to say that this event is partly responsible for my having made a major career move like I did. My wife and I will be attending again this year, looking for that new wine experience. We've never been disappointed. 

I'll write a few more thoughts in the coming weeks.

See you there!


Marc Soucy   FWS CSW
Wine Consultant, Educator, Blogger

Monday, January 26, 2015

Marc's Tasting Notes: 2013 Marchesi di Barolo "Maraia" Barbera del Monferrato

A few shorter posts here...Tasting notes only.
2013  Marchesi di Barolo  Barbera del Monferrato

Cantine dei Marchesi di Barolo, Monferrato DOC, Piedmont, Italy

   Grapes:  100% Barbera     13.0% ABV

Marc's Tasting Notes:

Dark purple in appearance, the wine gives off scents of blackberries, flowers, earth, and licorice. A taste brings a fruit driven and very pleasantly mouth filling experience, featuring layered cherry fruit, black currants, and notes of vanilla and toasted oak. The char from the toasting of the oak even peaks out on occasion, adding some complexity to what could appear to be a monochromatic wine in some ways. Excellent for the Italian table, especially anything with red sauce, which is of course its reputation. 

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW

Marc Wine Blog

Friday, January 23, 2015

Marc's Wine Reviews: 2010 Château de Villeneuve Saumur Champigny

2010 Château de Villeneuve  Saumur Champigny

Domaine de Villeneuve, Saumur Champigny AOP, Loire Valley, France  

Grapes:  100% Cabernet Franc     13.0% ABV

East of the Muscadet wine region and just west of Chinon lies Saumur Champigny, dominated by red wines made from Cabernet Franc. The Château de Villeneuve was built in 1577, and two centuries later was to be left to a young nobleman who was killed in the U.S. while serving under General Lafayette in the Battle of Yorktown during the American Revolution. His younger brother inherited the property and the family name Villeneuve remained, although another two centuries later in 1969 the chateau was bought by the Chevallier family and restored. Today wine production continues, with modern techniques producing increasingly seductive Cab Franc wines intended for a growing market. Still, appreciation of red wines from the Loire is still in its infancy, yet the wine curious can find remarkable value and ground for exploration in these quality reds.

Marc's Tasting Notes:

The wine shows a pretty nose of wild strawberries and black cherry. Less underbrush and tree bark than some pure Cabernet Francs, it is definitely on the fruitier end of this spectrum. The palate is dominated by tart cherry, bright herbs, and finally a few hints of tree bark, just enough to be reassuring about the varietal content. It finishes very dry and puckery. A wine with these characteristics would accompany barbecue and fatty grilled meats extremely well. The tannins are there but the acidity is the star of the show. Nice wine to continue your exploration of the Loire!

French Wineries Don't ALL Look Like This, Ya Know.

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW

Marc Wine Blog

Tuesday, January 20, 2015's Third Anniversary is TODAY!

Marc Soucy's Wine Blog is Three Years Old Today

Thanks to all my readers from all over the world for keeping me going.
At this moment, there have been 48,350 visitors so far!

I hope to continue providing you with new perspectives on how to enjoy wine more! 

Meanwhile, another fun mention in the press for yours truly:

"Wine tastings are a regular happening at Brookline Liquor Mart as are visits from many wine connoisseurs such as Marc Soucy. Scheduled classes are regularly offered to consumers so they can learn all they can about the fundamentals of wine." -- from an article at prweb published Jan 13 2015, found here:  article

I am getting ready to to begin the next phase of my career in the world of wine. Stay tuned, and please come back to read my next wine review and ongoing mini series, like Wine in a Restaurant, and Learn Wine Tasting. 

Until Next Time!

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW
Marc Wine Blog

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Marc's Wine Reviews: 2013 La Caplana Gavi di Gavi

I'm focussing on wines of the Loire and Piedmont these days.
 Yes I know, life is hard.
2013   La Caplana  Gavi di Gavi

La Caplana / Guido Natalino, Gavi DOCG, Piedmont, Italy 
Grapes:  100% Cortese     12.0% ABV

The perhaps perplexing name “Gavi di Gavi” refers to the traditional name of the regional wine made from the Cortese grape, but as the wine gained in popularity, Cortese grapes grown outside the traditional area--Gavi--began to be used to make similar wines, which they continued to call Gavi. Therefore, it became the common practice recently to specify that this wine is in fact Gavi made in the original zone named Gavi. Therefore: “Gavi di Gavi”.  Discuss…..

Marc's Tasting Notes:

Appearing a rich gold in the glass, the wine gives off aromas of pear and lemon zest. A taste brings a lively acidity and flavors of crisp apple and citrus, with hints of fennel and melon. The wine is medium bodied and attractive for those wanting something richer than the more typical sleek Italian white.

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW

Marc Wine Blog

Monday, January 5, 2015

Marc's Wine Review: NV Baumard Cremant de Loire

I wrote about another of Baumard's wines this past June, their Savenières. 
Experiencing this Crémant after that truly shows their depth as a winery.

NV  Baumard "Carte Turquoise"  Crémant de Loire
Domaine des Baumard, Crémant de Loire AOP, Loire Valley, France  

Grapes:  60% Cabernet Franc - 40% Chenin Blanc  (approx)     12.5% ABV

Crémant is what the French call their own regional sparkling wines that meet the stringent production practices of Champagne, their most prestigious sparkler. Crémants are an excellent choice for anyone wanting to drink authentic French sparkling wine, but also wanting to pay less for that experience. In the Loire Valley, this designation goes to Crémant de Loire, an AOP in its own right. Domaine des Baumard is renowned producer with a broad portfolio of Loire specialties, and their “Carte Turquoise” represents among the finest examples of this Crémant style.  Note the use of the so “non-Champagne” grapes, Cabernet Franc and Chenin Blanc.

Marc's Tasting Notes:

Pretty silver wine with a slight reddish glimmer. Faint aromas of citrus and tart cherry lead to a more pronounced palate of quince, lemon, lime, and sour cherry. Nice smooth acidity and frothy bubbles make this an attractive sparkling experience. The contribution of the Cab Franc provides for a drier and more tannic profile than most Crémants outside of the Loire. The Chenin Blanc provides richness and smoothness.

Another shot of the domaine's facade (previous one in my June post)

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW
Marc Wine Blog

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Excerpts from Marc Soucy's "Stress Free Wine": Ordering Wine in a Restaurant Part 1

This is part of a series of quotes from a booklet I wrote a few years ago entitled 
"Stress Free Wine".  
I've grown since then but many of the ideas are still relevant, and I hope useful for you.   

Ordering Wine in a Restaurant  Part 1

When you order wine in a restaurant--especially by the bottle--the server brings the bottle over and asks you to confirm that it is the correct one that you ordered. Pay attention when you order the wine, so that you can correctly identify it or not. That is the last chance you will have to turn it down. If the server opens the bottle, you have accepted responsibility for your choice. From that point, your only escape path (with some decorum anyway), is if the bottle is flawed somehow. True, some establishments will accommodate you to a degree. It is usually best to try to avoid putting them and yourself in that situation though.

So how should you behave during this situation? Without getting too strict about it, it is worthwhile to know a few of the expected behaviors. It will enhance your relationship with wine, and the enjoyment of your meals. You're paying a big premium on that bottle. You may as well have the best possible experience, right?

More Next Time in this mini series about wine in restaurants.

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW

Marc Wine Blog

Monday, December 29, 2014

Happy New Year from Marc Soucy and

Happy New Year
from Marc Soucy and

I took a break from blogging during the holidays, and will resume soon. A series of wine reviews is on its way with my own tasting notes, and I thought I would republish a few wine tips and little ditties from my previous blog that I worked on from 2009 to 2011 called Stress Free Wine (, no longer in existence)  I think it shows some useful wine information and ways to approach wine from someone who was say, less educated and yet idealistic and excited about my new mission in life back then.

I hope you will continue to visit and read them as well as my new material I am working on.

My mission continues to be to help people better appreciate wine through understanding the role it can play in your life, the role it has played in history and society, and the heightened sensory awareness that it facilitates...  ...if only you give it a chance. It really can make your life better, and I thoroughly enjoy helping you do that. 

Happy New Year.

With Kindest Regards,

 -- Marc Soucy, FWS CSW

Marc Wine Blog
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