Archive for November, 2007


Far Niente 2004 Estate Bottled Cabernet Sauvignon, Oakville

While leisurely dining with a favorite Lush on delicious Greek cuisine, Risqué was again feeling juicy for something delectable to accompany his grilled salmon with smoked artichoke and caper lemon cream sauce and perusing the wine list spied a care free amore!. Far Niente… Italian for “without a care”… perfect for an alfresco evening.

Far Niente 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa ValleyThe long purple stained cork yielded to the force of the screw and released a shimmering liquid, inky purple to the rim. The viscous liquid thick with complex and delightful aromas… surged with dark fruit, rich concentrated cassis and blackberries swirling with old fashioned licorice, chocolate, vanilla, tobacco and earth. After lingering for quite some time over the sensuous nose, Risqué anxiously laid the fine glass rim to his lips and carefully, almost sacredly partook of the divine contents. The opulent silky texture of this treasure is coated with layers of succulent wild blackberries and ripe black cherries, black currant and spicy oak. The luxuriously rich fruit, balanced against perfectly structured tannins, succumbs to a lengthy afterglow again plump with black cherries and spice.

Careful tendered by winemaker Stephanie Putnam for this cuvee of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon and similar remaining parts of Petit Verdot, Cabernet Franc and Merlot, all caressed in French oak barrels for 17 months, has borne a rare and stellar Cabernet Sauvignon with only 9200 cases produced. Although drinking delicious now (with about an hour open)… this opulent treasure will only layer with complex sophistication over the next decade.

Risqué’s evening had become perfect… nothing more could have been more complete. The evening slipped away into glowing moonlight, cool breezes, delicious company, an incredible repast and two bottles of liquid decadence… can ones life be more care free?

Dolce Far Niente!

14.5% Alcohol ($120)


Posted: November 30th, 2007
at 6:43pm by Risqué

Categories: Wine

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Risqué stands stunned… holding a glass of 2005 Au Bon Climat Pinot Noir “La Bauge Au Dessus” as he hears the words “Chain Restaurant”. How can one feel so a gasp and delighted at the same time you ask? Although, Risqué’s not fond of Corporate Chains, SEASONS 52 inOrlando was a surprising but pleasing shock! Owned by the worlds largest Restaurant Company, Darden Restaurants (if Risqué must… Red Lobster, Olive Garden, etc.). Executive Chef, Clifford Pleau and Master Sommelier, George Millotes have delivered a wonderful concept. Every menu item is beckoningly delicious and under 500 calories… and more than 140 well chosen and diverse wines and 70 of them by the glass… AMAZING! Not to get ahead of Risqué, but the evening began with our Host, the every so friendly and adorable and oh so OUT, Victor, who made us feel incredibly welcomed the moment we stepped to the podium. Standing there, besides amply surveying Victor (who was dark and mysterious and would be a perfect addition to the house boi staff!), Risqué took in the Frank Lloyd Wright inspired stucco and stone monolith of a building with luscious warm Madera colored wood beams and tongue-n-grove and stacked flat stone walls of the Dining Room and Bar with a very warm, leathery casual environ. Through the dining room, Risqué could see an expansive outdoor terrace dining area as well.

Au Bon Climat 2005 Pinot NoirDining with dear and adorable friends…they had the luxury of having to be nowhere and the time to just revel in each others company. Risq adores the precious opportunities to linger over an elegant repast of conversation, cuisine and some inspiring vino. In this case, two delicious bottles of 2005 Au Bon Climat, “La Bauge Au Dessus”Santa Maria Valley .

“La Bauge Au Dessus” translates to the decadent party up above… how appropriate for a wine that paired perfectly with our MIXED choices for the evening. It’s light smoky bacon and spice in the nose was perfect to carry the grilled Sockeye Salmon, the acidity and fruit balanced the decadent Tomato, Asparagus and Cheese Stack Salad. Soft but persistent plum fruit slides along gracefully on the palate with marked acidity. Add a nice touch of framboise and wet stone in the finish and this becomes a quite quaffable yet complex Pinot.

The “Party up above” certainly delivered however Risqué was a little disappointed that the evening didn’t end with Victor and some “real” chains!

13.5% Alcohol

Restaurant Price: $70 Retail: $25


Posted: November 29th, 2007
at 9:08pm by Risqué

Categories: Cuisine,Wine

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“What contemptible scoundrel stole the cork from my lunch?”

— Larson E. Whipsnade (W.C. Fields)

You Can’t Cheat an Honest Man (1939)


Posted: November 28th, 2007
at 6:52pm by Risqué

Categories: Quaffable Quips

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Carpe Diem Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, Napa Valley

Roman Poet, Homosexual and Epicurean Philosopher Virgil (70-19 BC) besides being credited for the phrase… “Carpe Diem”, wrote also of “Love’s pleasing cares, and wine’s unbounded joys” and that is certainly a modern commentary on Carpe Diem’s 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon.

Carpe Diem Cabernet Sauvignon 2005Christian Moueix’s pleasing care of the estate controlled vineyards has produced an EXCELLENT! NapaValley Cabernet Sauvignon. Its varietal blend and twelve careful months in oak have rendered aromas of luscious wild strawberries, aged tobacco and saddle leather. It’s “unbound joys” explode on the palate through it’s deep and rich texture stratified with smoky cassis, black raspberry, exotic spice and more leather. The complex Napa soul of this wine showcases the character and balance of this fine libation. Dinking wonderfully right now, this beauty’s subtle tannins should improve with time over the next five years, if you can wait!

Only 3000 cases of this delectable treat were bottled. Risqué concludes…agreeing with Virgil… “Carpe Carpe Diem”!!!

14.1% Alcohol



Posted: November 28th, 2007
at 6:25pm by Risqué

Categories: Wine

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After enjoying a wickedly good afternoon of theatre, Risqué and beloved lush were sitting on the upstairs stone balustrade balcony (not to be confused with the downstairs bistro!) of Morels, a charming “faux decorated” French Restaurant at LA’s Grove… with lovely ruby red leather booths and antique’esque mirrored walls with crisp white table cloths and a wonderful Belgian Sommelier named Philippe. Risqué was lusting for something like a Burgundy or a Pinot Noir… Philippe recommended a delicious Merry Edwards 2005 Pinot Noir from Sonoma’s Coast.

Merry Edwards 2005 Pinot NoirThis succulent juice was a beautiful clear Rosy Purple color like one of Risqué’s favorite anatomical parts… the lips of his favorite Lush. The first waft from the nose was clearly #2 Pencil followed with ample Pinot Fruit, Raspberries with florals of rose petals and violets. The silky textured palate was luscious (also like his lips) with Raspberry preserves and Tart dried Montmorency cherries softening into lusher sweet cherry and more raspberries on the finish with all of the tartness dissipating about halfway through the bottle.

Morel’s preparations are quite pleasing… Risqué adored his fillet Mignon with Bordelaise Sauce and crispy garlic frites and especially the Gruyere Fondue with Kirsch… Ask for Cornichon pickles with the fondue…. Delicious!

An excellent Pinot Noir, like a lusted for kiss must linger on the memory… and if truly excellent… only improves with contemplation.

14.7% Alcohol



Posted: November 27th, 2007
at 9:53pm by Risqué

Categories: Wine

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Risqué just got a tip on a new exhibition of ANTHONY GAYTON’s “THE FALL” opening TONIGHT! (November 27th) In Barcelona, Spain at the MiTO Galeria d Art (Rosselló 193) and running through January 26th, 2008.  The Gallery’s hours are Tues-Fri 10am-2pm / 5-8.30pm and Sat 10am-2pm.  Stop by if your in the Gayborhood and let them know Risqué sent you!!


Posted: November 27th, 2007
at 9:36am by Risqué

Categories: Arté,Risqué Communiqué

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Anthony Gayton, Photographer

Risqué is deeply moved by “The Death of Abel”. The disturbing photo exhibits a beautiful young lifeless Abel, lying partially on his back with a fleshy drape spilling from between his legs on to the ground as if it were his life force. His arms are drawn back in a relaxed fashion of death while his face shows no expression… only as if asleep. Anthony Gayton does like to “Challenge perceptions of the real and invent truths by telling convincing lies” and certainly leads the viewer down this path making you believe that this is actually Abel. And, one can see that the subject in the photograph is of more contemporary nature than would have been at the mythos of the beginning of mankind, being Adam and (St)Eve’s child.


After a tear fell into his wine glass, Risqué thought “Who could possibly slay such beauty acceptable to God (and Risqué). Of course…it was Cain…or not!”

Risqué wonders… “Where Abel got the fleshy drape?”

One can see more of Anthony Gayton’s fabulous photos by going to


Posted: November 26th, 2007
at 8:26pm by Risqué

Categories: Arté

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Bear’s Lair 2005 Voignier, California and Bear’s Lair 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon, California

Risqué had seen this label repeatedly at a well known specialty Grocery Chain with very low priced wine brands in the two buck range! Largely, being a believer in “You get what you pay for!” he was hesitant… Always approach a bear with caution are Risqué’s thoughts… right? Well these are both welcomed unexpected surprises!

Bear’s Lair 2005 Voignier, California

Bear’s Lair 2005 ViognierThis little bear filled Risqué’s glass with a light bodied pale yellow sparkling liquid hinting at green. The nose is loaded with just what bears like… delicious “honey”-suckle, musk and grapefruit. The first sip is tangy with fresh lime squeezed on honeydew melon, juicy Mandarin orange slices, and ruby grapefruit supremes garnished with gorgeous citrus blossoms. The medium length finish is off dry with hints of toffee.

Viognier, with it’s often cloying sweetness and low balancing acidy can often disappoint, but this little bear left Risqué licking his lips for another and another and another! …especially at the price!

12.5% Alcohol ($5)


Bear’s Lair 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon, California

Bears' Lair 2004 Cabernet-SauvignonOut of the bottle this was another suprise… The Medium bodied ruby red was lighter, more a Rhone” style wine verses the typical California Cabernet Sauvignon. This little bear shares a bold fruity nose, heavy with dark berries, black Pekoe tea, pink pepper, tobacco and toffee. On the palate, juicy tart cherry dominates through the whole experience into a lingering, slightly off dry, fairly balanced, toasty oak and toffee finish.

This is one Bear’s Lair Risqué could stick his nose in… repeatedly!

12.5% Alcohol ($5)

Risqué won’t hesitate in the future… to cuddle up with a pair of lovely Bear’s like these.


Posted: November 23rd, 2007
at 10:26am by Risqué

Categories: Wine

Comments: 2 comments

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