places to drink wine

Fleming’s celebrates “Month of Discovery” with 100 wines

 Newport Beach, California, September 2011 – The annual unveiling of the new Fleming’s 100™, the award-winning list of 100 wines by the glass at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, has become a much anticipated event for food and wine lovers.  This year’s “Month of Discovery” and its introduction of the new 2011/2012 list will appeal to both the wine novice and the connoisseur who are in search of the ultimate wine experience.   The month-long celebration in September includes:

The New Fleming’s 100 “Opening Nights” – Opening Nights, a series of wine tastings held Friday evenings in September (2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd, 30th), will provide guests with a rare opportunity to sniff, swirl, and sip their way through Fleming’s wine by the glass list.  Each Opening Night will feature 20 wines from the Fleming’s 100™.  The first four tastings will be wine selections available at all of the 64 Fleming’s nationwide. The final tasting will feature selections by each Fleming’s local Wine Manager and Operating Partner (please click here for wine selections to be served on each Opening Night).  Each of these five Opening Night events provides 20 different wines to try for just $25, and includes a preview tasting of selections from Fleming’s new Small Plates menu. Space for this popular event is limited and reservations must be made by calling your local Fleming’s location.

Small Plates Introduced on September 21 –   Debuting on the menu are seven all-new selections that are meant to be savored and enjoyed anytime — with a quick glass of wine at the bar, multiple plates shared casually among friends, or at the start of a multi-course dining experience.  Conceived as an avenue for enjoying the gracious service, hospitality and ambiance of Fleming’s, but with an emphasis on lighter, healthier and unique menu items, Fleming’s new Small Plates are more substantial than appetizers, but smaller than full steakhouse entrées. They include:  Sliced Filet Mignon, Jumbo Shrimp Scampi Skewers, New Zealand Petite Lamb Chops, Ahi Tuna Skewers, New Bedford Scallops, Filet Mignon Skewers and Fleming’s Lobster Tempura.

Silver Oak Wine Dinner September 13 or 17 – Fleming’s annual national wine dinner is designed to celebrate a single wine producer that has achieved iconic status among its peers. This year, it’s two!  Five superb wines from the “twin sister” wineries of Silver Oak and Twomey Cellars will be showcased. These vintages are exceptionally food friendly and pair wonderfully with the richly-flavored ingredients of our five-course dinner menu. The highlight of our evening will be a remarkable side-by-side vertical tasting of the 2006 and 2007 vintages of the Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Please visit for specific locations and dates.

“Winesdays” at Fleming’s – This is the month to find a new wine favorite at a special price every Wednesday in September. Enjoy 25% off** any bottle from the new Fleming’s 100 when you dine on Wednesday evenings.

Fleming’s “Icon Wine” series” now featuring Silver Oak– The Icon Wine series continues in September with Silver Oak 2007 Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon which is available for $100 per bottle* (normal list price of $150 – $175) until September 30—or until inventory runs out.  The 2007 Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is described by Silver Oak winemaker Daniel Baron as “a profound, fruit-driven wine from a great California vintage. It has a dark ruby color with a purple edge and an inviting nose of ripe black plum, blackberry, baking spices and soy sauce. On the palate, the wine is rich and full, reminiscent of the flavors of a berry cobbler.”

Win a Masterpiece of “Wine Art” – As part of the Month of Discovery, Fleming’s is giving away a signed, limited-edition giclée on canvas by the celebrated fine arts painter Thomas Arvid, who specializes in portraying the wine experience.  Arvid’s masterpieces are showcased on the walls of every Fleming’s restaurant.  To enter to win, please visit†.

* Excluding wine, tax and gratuity.
†† No purchase necessary. Must be 21 to enter. Visit for Official Rules.

About Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar
The nationally acclaimed Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar offers the best in steakhouse dining – Prime meats and chops, fresh fish and poultry, generous salads and side orders — with a unique wine list known as the Fleming’s 100, which features over 100 wines served by the glass.  Fleming’s was launched in Newport Beach, California in 1998 by successful restaurant industry veterans Paul Fleming and Bill Allen.  Today there are 64 restaurants nationwide.  Fleming’s is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including Wine Enthusiast’s annual Award of Distinction and Wine Spectator’s annual Award of Excellence.

Tasting Wine at the historic Wrigley Mansion

The Weekly Wine Journal was lucky enough to be invited to a very special wine tasting last week, held at the historic Wrigley Mansion.  I did a quick bit of research before showing up and found out that the mansion was built between 1929 and 1931 by the same Wrigley fellow who made Wrigley’s Gum.  Tragically he died in 1932 right after completion of his mansion.  My initial impression was that the Wrigley Mansion is some kind of exclusive club.  It is not.  It is a club, but merely as a formality due to zoning restrictions.  It costs $10 a year to be a member and you can sign up when you get there.  They don’t check references as far as I know!  What do you get for 10 bucks?  You get a lot.  Discounts on food and drinks, and a truly unique experience.

The mansion is a 16,000 square foot Spanish colonial style building sitting on a 100ft tall “bump” or hill right in the heart of central Phoenix.

Spectacular view!

This slight elevation allows for spectacular views of the valley, and sunsets and other romantic things like summer monsoon storms!  The mansion has 24 rooms and 12 bathrooms, it has a separate bar and lounge called “Gordie’s” which has really interesting peacock feather lampshades.  Gordie’s has a “pay what you think is fair” pricing structure! No kidding!

Peacock feather lampshade!

I will have to try that out soon.  Then there is the piano room and the front banquet area.  The piano is a 1929 Steinway, that you can play, and it also plays itself!  According to the nice young lady giving us the tour, the piano is priceless.  It costs more to insure the piano than it does to insure the whole rest of the mansion!  I overcame a desire to play chopsticks and headed towards the wine…

Tonight we were tasting Arizona Stronghold’s 4 current offerings:  Tazi, a Sauvignon Blanc/Riesling based blend, Dayden a dry rose, Mangus an Italian styled wine and Nachise a Rhone styled wine.  I found all of the wines to be superb examples of the what Arizona is capable of when it comes to wine.  I especially liked the Nachise.

Complete reviews of  the wines here

Short video of the views