Top Wine (and travel) Picks For Dad
Written by Rick on June 5, 2012
Dad loves wine. You love Dad. Give Dad wine for Father’s Day! Choose from our picks for every type of dad. We added a few of our favorite travel ideas too!
If you know a dad who’s a wine lover, here are some gift ideas for Father’s Day, Sunday, June 17, 2012. Whether he’s bold and daring, politically correct, cost conscious or ready to spend, we have every style of wine to meet his preferences. Maybe he’s in love with a certain wine region like France or Italy. Match his profile and deliver the perfect wine right to his doorstep. Read on to uncover the best wine for the dad in your life using the descriptions in this wine lesson. With this educational “scoop” on each wine – much more than you’d get with a tasting note online – you’re sure to make dad happy.
This dad is a globetrotter who can head off the beaten path at any turn without regret. He isn’t afraid to choose wines from lesser known regions or experiment with new varietals. Bold and unapologetic, he likes his wines the same way.
2010 Pedretti, Salento IGT (ITA686) $16.99
If your dad enjoys Italian fare, this is the right wine for him. Made from the Negro Amaro grape native to the southern section of Apuglia (the heel of the boot), it makes the perfect unique house red – delicious with everything from pasta to pizza. With moderate tannins, its abundant blackcurrants and black cherries are right at home with meaty fish dishes and marry nicely with anything from the grill.
2009 zin-FAN-del, California (CAL923) $16.99
A Zesty Zin will surely satisfy the enterprising, risk-taking dad. Nothing wimpy about this wine. California’s signature grape, Zinfandel, and the spicy Syrah at 6% comprise this vibrant and focused release. Straight from Amador County, an area known for its gutsy reds, it boasts concentrated fruit in a robust, peppery selection with a distinct hint of Dr. Pepper, according to our winemaker!
For really Kool adventure travel ideas with dad our Chief Grape Stomper, Rick Libby recommends an African Safari with Abercrombie and Kent. Join an A&K African safari and experience a world where nature reigns supreme. A&K pioneered the modern African safari in 1962, creating a signature blend of luxury, authenticity and adventure. A&K’s 11 local African offices employ the continent’s finest tour guides and bring you into the heart of the wildlife action with A&K’s unique mobile tented camps, an elegant and eco-friendly successor of the classic African safaris of Roosevelt and Hemingway. Their African Safaris will be your adventure of a lifetime.
Socially Conscious Dad
“Do the right thing” is this dad’s motto. He’s the type to support organizations he cares about and has even been known to hug a tree or two. With these wines he can put his money where his mouth is – literally.
2005 Uva Negra, Cabernet Sauvignon Reserva, Mendoza, Argentina (ARG034) $14.99
Deep in the Mendoza region of the Andes Mountains, we joined forces with a vintner who believes in giving back. Your purchase of our Argentine Cabernet Sauvignon supports Autism research. Now that’s a sip you can feel extra good about. This 100% Cabernet Sauvignon makes the ultimate match with a thick juicy steak. Flavors of cherry, black currant, raspberry and sweet pepper flood the mouth, along with elegant and complex notes of vanilla.
2009 Steeple Street Chardonnay, California (CAL921) $15.99 (Extremely Low Quantity)
Less oak makes this Chardonnay immensely food friendly. A rich core of pineapple-pear with buttery hints of toasty vanilla oak is supported by just the right touch of acidity. And it’s produced in an earth-friendly way too. We bottled this release in ECO Series ™ light- weight glass that requires less energy to produce and transport. Greener packaging reduces the traditional carbon footprint by 25%.
Dad will love our socially conscious travel experience to the Galapagos Islands. The adventure travel company Sobek Mountain Travel will provide you with a socially conscious memory of a lifetime. Sobek customized and operated the first charter for the Sierra Club to the Galapagos.
You can also make a contribution to the cause for Dad at The Children’s Aid Society, the CAS receives the Charity Navigator 4 STAR award consecutively. Founded in 1853, The Society (CAS) works to ensure the physical and emotional well-being of children and families, and to provide each child with the support and opportunities needed to become a happy, healthy and productive adult. CAS fills the gaps between what children deserve and what life has dealt them. The CAS has been serving children for more than 150 years, a longevity that is a testament to their ability to adapt to the always changing needs of today’s youth. Today CAS serves more than 150,000 children and their families at more than 45 sites throughout New York City.
If your dad is a sophisticated wine lover partial to French varietals, we have two blends, a red from a lesser known value region and a white from California, both crafted in the style of the Rhone Valley.
2010 Richebois, Ventoux, Rhone Valley, France (FRA288) $15.99
Here you have another great value from the southern Rhone, a region wine authority, Robert M. Parker Jr. says “smart shoppers” look for wine. Grenache forms the base of this wine at 80% while Syrah fills out the balance delivering expressive cherry and raspberry flavors with a hint of spice and mouthwatering acidity. A versatile pick with a number of dishes, it makes a great choice for a crowd or when you’re serving many different dishes. Perfect with meats like lamb or pork smoked turkey BBQ.
2008 Scotto, Chardonnay Marsanne, California (CAL920) $15.99
This wine may come from California’s Central Valley, but at over 13% Marsanne, it will please anyone partial to Hermitage Blanc from the northern Rhone. Chardonnay delivers flavors of cut green apples while Marsanne provides a refreshing steely character along with spice and pear. Creaminess and citrus fruit make this a beautiful companion to lightly spiced Asian dishes.
Here’s an idea for your francophile dad. How about jumping ship with him and get on over to the real deal? Sail along France’s scenic Saône and Rhône Rivers past some of the most beautiful vistas the French countryside has to offer. During your 8-day journey, explore the famed region of Burgundy and the lavender fields of Provence. Visit Gallo-Roman ruins, walk cobbled streets and visit the historic Papal Palace in Avignon. Learn about the region’s time-honored winemaking traditions, sample Burgundy varietals and try the world-famous regional cuisine in Lyon. We like the Viking River Cruises.
Chile is known for its value wines. These bargain releases from the “Thin Country” deliver more for your dollar than just about another wine region.
2003 Vina Alamosa, Premium Cabernet Sauvignon, Cachapoal Valley, Chile (CHI114) $17.99
For the dad who lives for a deal but doesn’t want to skimp on quality, choose a Cab from the Cachapoal River Valley, an area that’s giving Napa Valley a run for its money. This region in the foothills of the Andes is becoming world-renowned for distinct vintages. In a too-good-to-be-true medal winner, you have a full bodied, age-worthy and affordable selection crafted in an easy-drinking style. Pair with rich foods like red meats, risotto and cheeses.
2009 Kuri, Limari Valley, Sauvignon Blanc, Chile (CHI127) $14.99
The Limarí Valley is being hailed for producing crisp dry whites as good as any from New Zealand or France’s Loire Valley at a fraction of the price. Bright fresh fruit aromas jump out of the glass at a price that will have you jumping too! Our crisp Sauvignon Blanc has received accolades from magazines like Wine & Spirits and Decanter, just to name a few. A classic pairing with fish or dishes that include goat cheese.
Well, with all the money you are going to save on this great wine, how about treat dad to a once in a lifetime tour of the southern hemisphere (well, at least some of it). We love Crystal Cruise Line and their Buenos Aires to Valparaiso itineray for the holidays and it is something we’d love to get as a gift for Fathers day. Valparaíso, the “Vale of Paradise,” has a population of almost 300,000 and is Chile’s principal seaport and home to Chile’s Congress. It climbs a crescent of 45 hills creating a maze of alleys, winding streets, connecting stairs and funicular railways. The port and business center lies at the foot of the hills, in a narrow belt of flatland. Having experienced the rich culture and history of this popular port city, you will realize how ingenuity has transformed this abrupt stretch of coastline into one of the world’s most picturesque and famous port cities.
When it comes to the not-so-frugal dad who simply wants what he wants, give him that “spare-no-expense” single bottle he will truly treasure: a top-notch release for a discerning red wine lover.
2007 Tria, Petrified Forest Road Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Sonoma County, California (SON563) $39.99
How do we spell quality at the Traveling Vineyard? T-R-I-A. Our dense ripe Cabernet Sauvignon is made entirely from Sonoma County grapes. The saturated, extremely dark color of the wine signals immediately that it is something special. Its aromas are equally intense: roasted plums, figs and cherries, filled out with rich notes of bittersweet chocolate, anise, coffee and tobacco. On the palate its power is moderated by a lush texture, smooth oak and generous supple fruit flavors.
Meet Our Wine Director, Francis Sanders
We like to say that Francis was born with “purple feet” he’s been stomping grapes for a long time. Perhaps the best story we can tell you is that he was challenged to identify 16 wines in a blind tasting in Italy. He won. He could tell everyone what it was, where it came from, what grapes were used – the only thing he couldn’t do was tell the price. This is just the kind of Wine Director you want. He puts the right wine at the right price in front of you every time. If you want the essence of quince or the brilliant hint of leather Francis will deliver it every time.
Francis has been overseeing The Traveling Vineyard winemaking and wine sourcing operations for over 15 years.