I'm speaking specifically this week about Highflyer Wines from Michael Austin. I first heard about these wines from the always entertaining and usually informative "3 Wine Guys" podcast. They rated the 2007 Highflyer Centerline Red as one of their best buy recommendations of last year. Even though the winery only produced 49 barrels of Centerline, they created a wine which measures up to some of the other popular "cult reds" while managing to keep the price point below $30.00/bottle.
Centerline is a blend of Syrah, Zinfandel, Tempranillo and Grenache sourced primarily from Napa Valley’s Somerston Vineyards. A small amount of Vivio Vineyard's Syrah from the northern end of the Sonoma Valley adds backbone and elements of spice to the wine. With aromas and flavors of blackberry jam, cocoa, strawberries and espresso, the palate is luxurious. Together, these varietals produce an eminently drinkable table wine which is complex and balanced. This wine is great to drink on its own, but it is ridiculously good with spicy, peppery foods including bbq.
Highflyer Wines does have distribution in Memphis, but not in Middle Tennessee yet. (Hint, hint.) Until someone brings this excellent line of wines to our area, they do ship here. I have to admit it's kind of fun to get a visit at work from the "wine fairy" when the Fed Ex guy drops off the package. Just remember that someone over 21 must be present to sign for any alcohol shipments.
To order these or any of the Highflyer Wines, fly over to their website. If you really become a fan of their wines and their clever aviation-based label designs, you can even join their Wine Club to get regular shipments throughout the year. Take a flyer!