Though some people think wine is the gift certificate of presents, you can send us a bottle any time you like.
To assist with such an act, we reached out to Tim Baldwin, wine director at The Broadmoor and an advanced sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers, for a few relatively affordable recommendations. None of these should be too hard to find, but in a pinch it couldn't hurt to turn to the experts at our Best Of Colorado Springs winners: Cheers Liquor Mart (1105 N. Circle Drive, cheersliquormart.com), Coaltrain Wine & Spirits (330 W. Uintah St., coaltrainwine.com) or Queen Liquor (1744 W. Uintah St., 475-1744).
Find the winery, the kind of wine, its originating area and average price below. The words are Baldwin's, edited for style and length.
Bethel Heights Vineyard; Pinot Noir, 2009; Eola-Amity Hills, Ore.; $19. Everyone loves Pinot Noir — it's the most food-friendly red wine made — and Oregon is the home of some of the best in the world. Bethel Heights is a pretty wine with flavors of raspberries and strawberries, finishing with hints of mushrooms.
Beaujolais Nouveau, 2011; Beaujolais, France; $9 to $12. It's the season for this special wine. Released on the third Thursday of November by several vintners, this Beaujolais is super-light and fresh; it's almost like strawberry gum. I like Maison Joseph Drouhin's, but there are many to choose from.
Vietti; Barbera d'Asti, 2009; Piedmont, Italy; $12. Barbera is a wonderful little Italian grape that produces medium- to lighter-bodied wines. This one showcases bold red fruits like strawberry and rhubarb.
Ravenswood Winery; Old Vine Zinfandel, 2008; Sonoma County, Calif.; $9. Fun fact: We used to think Zinfandel was a grape indigenous to America; too bad it's actually Croatian. Still, we adopted it and do it better than anyone else. Ravenswood is one of those top-notch producers, with a rich wine tasting of cooked blackberries and spice.
The Infinite Monkey Theorem; Sauvignon Blanc, 2010; Grand Valley; $16. Everyone knows Sauvignon Blanc — it's one of the workhorse whites. Sauvignon Blanc from Colorado, however, is pretty impressive. Ben Parsons at IMT is making some of the coolest wine in Colorado, with its flavors of lemon, lime and grapefruit, and hints of green pepper.
Jean-Luc Colombo; La Redonne, 2009; Côtes du Rhône, France; $17. Jean-Luc is a rock star in the Rhône Valley in France. Viognier is a perfect holiday wine, rich in body to match the powerfully flavored dishes of the season. The wine is floral and pretty, while wildflowers and ripe pear dominate the nose.
Bodega Viña Nora; Albariño, 2009; Rías Baixas, Spain; $11. The queen of Spanish white wine: Albariño. It's known for its crisp taste, and a nose dominated by white flowers and peach.
Paraiso Vineyards; Chardonnay, 2008; Santa Lucia Highlands, Calif.; $12. American Chardonnay at its finest, big and strong. Paraiso is full bodied and creamy, featuring flavors of red apple, cantaloupe and vanilla.
Mionetto USA; Prosecco di Valdobbiadene; Veneto, Italy; $12. Prosecco is a light, fresh style of sparkling wine that is value-orientated. Mionetto produces a style that's easy to drink and refreshing, highlighted by honeydew and lemon zest.
Champagne Gosset; Brut Excellence; Champagne, France; $40. If you are going to drink Champagne, then why not do it from the oldest Champagne house in existence, founded in 1584? This is the drink at its finest — rich and round, while caramel apples and fresh dough dominate the nose.
Royal Tokaji; Tokaji Aszú, 2005; Tokaj-Hegyalja, Hungary; $30. While the honeyed wines of Tokaji aren't the cheapest, they are truly special and unique. You know it's good stuff when the leaders of Russia, Austria-Hungary and Poland all sought the wine. And during the holidays, are we not supposed to eat like kings?
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