This past weekend we went to Cape Cod where my kids were competing in a skating competition.  I took enough wine for myself, but ended up short when I started doling it out to other parents who were there.  I decided to stop at the local liquor store and pick something up.  I was intrigued by the Valle Do Bonfim from 2006.  It was only $10.95- I couldn’t go wrong, could I?

It was delicious.  Still sporting some decent tannins, lovely fruit and that Portuguese terroir that I love.  I did not take notes, instead I sat back and enjoyed what surely is an everyday drinking wine that has survived nine years of sitting on a store shelf in suboptimal conditions and has had the stuffing and structure to provide me with great pleasure.  I would give this wine 89-90 points and 5 stars for sure.  I hope to visit the same store next year, I’ll buy every bottle they have left!

The second bottle I bought is an old standby.  You can’t go wrong with Chateau Ste. Michelle, ever.  Good quality, highly distributed and reasonably priced.  When in doubt or in a rush, this is a go-to wine.  My notes-

Solid, reliable and reasonable. Hard to get a nose from a paper cup but the palate shows dark fruits, mild tannins and a balance of acidity. Dark plum and spices came around on another sip with a mid palate hint of plum torte and ginger which leads to a nice dry finish. 88 points and at $16 it is a good value with 3 stars from me. Salut….

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