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Wine Advisor Express:
Where Goats Do Roam

It may not seem immediately apparent that today's wine report follows in the pattern of the various red wines we've visited this week, but consider this: Once again we examine a hearty dry red distinguished by earthy hints of the soil, made largely from grapes other than the popular "usual suspects" ... including the Grenache (Garnacha) and Mourvedre (Monastrell) that featured prominently in the Spanish wines we talked about Tuesday and yesterday.

This one's from the Fairview winery in the Paarl Valley of South Africa, and it is made from a blend of seven red grapes. One third of it is Pinotage, a cross between Pinot Noir and the French Cinsaut that's grown primarily in South Africa. Another 22 percent is Shiraz (which, it should be noted, picks up this Australian name in South Africa rather than the French "Syrah"). The rest is a mix of Grenache (13%), Cinsaut (13%), Carignan (10%), Mourvedre (4%) and, of all things, the Gamay of Beaujolais (5%). It's quite a blend - and it results in appealing complexity in the wine.

The wine's yellow label features a rather medieval-looking drawing of a goat - you can view it in the archived edition of this newsletter at http://www.wineloverspage.com/wineadvisor/wax011206.shtml. The picture, and the quirky name of the wine, are explained on the back label: "One afternoon at harvest time, my mischievious son Jason and his friend Justin let the goats out of their tower and sent them for a walkabout amongst the vines. As in the legend of the Yemeni goat herd - whose roaming flock first discovered the joys of coffee beans - they picked out the best and tastiest fruit." (The label doesn't mention it, but the groanworthy pun on "Cotes du Rhone" is too obvious to be a coincidence.)

Goats do Roam Fairview 2000 Goats Do Roam Western Cape Red Table Wine ($8.99)
Dark ruby with an orange glint. Earth and leather and ripe red fruit on the nose and palate. Ripe and earthy, with a crisp lemon-squirt of acidity to give it structure. Interesting and balanced wine, and a very good bargain at this price. U.S. importer: Vineyard Brands Inc., Birmingham, Ala. (Dec. 5, 2001)

FOOD MATCH: Veal roasted at high heat on a bed of fennel, turnip and potatoes.

WEB LINK: The winery Website, featuring a stunning photo of the property's mountainous setting, is at http://www.fairview.co.za/. The importer's site is at http://www.vineyardbrands.com, with a fact sheet about the Fairview winery at http://www.vineyardbrands.com/brandsheets/fairview.html.

Wine Toon Calendar 2002:
A year of wine and laughter

Here's a way to please yourself and friends with a wine-related holiday "stocking stuffer" and support WineLoversPage.com at the same time: You can't go wrong with our new Wine Toon Calendar! This monthly wall calendar, exclusive from WineLoversPage.com, contains a chuckle-worthy collection of cartoonist Chuck Stoudt's zany wine 'toons ... plus dozens of favorite wine quotes for every season, AND more than 100 highlighted Wine Web Links, two every week!

Buy one for your wine cellar and another for your office ... and they make great gifts!

While supplies last, order the Wine Toon Calendar at http://www.wineloverspage.com/calendar/2002toon.shtml. It's only $11.99 (plus $2 shipping and handling for U.S. shipments, $4 for all other countries). Buy one for yourself, and more for your wine-loving friends, and you'll be all set for holiday giving.

And don't forget: Your purchase helps support WineLoversPage.com and The 30 Second Wine Advisor!

Administrivia
This is Wine Advisor Express, daily edition of The 30 Second Wine Advisor, distributed Tuesdays through Fridays. For archives of previous articles, and to read more about wine, visit Wine Lovers' Page, http://www.wineloverspage.com.

To subscribe, change your E-mail address, switch from daily to the weekly (Mondays only) distribution, or for any other administrative matters, E-mail wine@wineloverspage.com. In the unhappy event that you must leave us, please take a moment to let us know how we could have served you better. In all administrative communications, please be sure to include the exact E-mail address that you used when you subscribed, so we can find your record.

Thursday, Dec. 6, 2001
Copyright 2001 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.

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