Deep purple-ruby colored in the glass. The nose has aromas of bell pepper, cassis, blackberry, black plum, spices, coffee, caramel and vanilla. The palate is dry with medium acidity and super fine medium tannins. Intense flavors of black fruit, especially cassis along with vanilla and spices combine with the coffee and caramel notes I got on the nose. It’s a full-bodied delight that has a long finish that tends towards blueberry and plum and has a persistent tannic grip, albeit very fine-grained. This is a delicious blend of 46% Carmenere, 40% Cab Sav, 13% Syrah and a touch of Merlot. I would drink this wine till 2030 with rich meat dishes, like my slow cooked beef short ribs. 94 points for this $100 offering that gets 5 stars. Salut….
It’s my birthday so this treat got pulled to go along with char-grilled New York Strip steaks. At 10 years of age it is still deep ruby colored with no signs of bricking. The nose is intense with gorgeous aromas of ripe raspberry, red licorice, violets, red plums, vanilla, garigue, coffee and black cherry- it is amazingly complex and the smells are making my mouth water. The palate is dry, slightly tannic and delicious. Super smooth and full bodied, this blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Mourvèdre and Syrah presents a mouthful of flavors and great structure from the medium firm tannins that are integrating nicely along with medium (+) acidity. The finish is quite long and tends toward red and sour cherry with raspberry supporting. The tannins are fine grained on the back end and caress my gums ever so. A beautiful wine that is in youth right now and will drink well till 2030 at the least. 94 points for this silky smooth $100 offering makes it a 5 star wine to be opened at special occasions. Salut….
It’s Sunday Roast and I’m cooking a rather lean cut of meat today- Eye of Round. It needs a fruit driven, medium tannin wine to complement the texture and lack of fat in the meat. I would normally depend on an aged Bordeaux for this type of meal but today it’s a younger Napa Cab.
Inky purple in the glass the thin legs don’t hint at the whopping 15.6% ABV. Wow. The nose is exactly what I was hoping for- deep rich black fruit, oak nuance, steely minerality. I get aromas of blackberry coulis, blackcurrant cassis, sweet coconut, baking spices and mint. The palate is loaded with ripe fruit, medium tannins (perfect for my beef choice), juicy acidity, full body and a long finish. The black fruit, oak influence and varietal hint (mint) are all present alongside some charred wood and a gritty graphite streak. The mineral note hits on the mid palate. This wine is still young and will drink beautifully for many years, maturing along the way and hopefully developing tertiary notes. I would hold on to some till 2027 at the least and pair with steaks, roasts or a tray full of cold cuts and cheese. This complex and layered wine gets 94 points from me and for the princely sum of one C-note you too can drink this 5-star elixir. Salut….
My friend Jimbo is in town and I promised him some good wine. Back in 2003 I bought three cases of this stuff and now I am opening bottle #26, having tasted the evolution over the past 15 years or so. This was a spectacular example of perfectly aged Bordeaux. It is at peak right now, showing layers of tertiary fruit, rich cassis, gentle acidity and soft tannins. Balanced perfectly with a sublime mouthfeel. I’m super happy with the results of my patient cellaring. I believe this cost me $59 back in the day, now it will run over $100. A good deal if you ask me that gets 92 points and 5 stars. Probably need to think about the rest of the case as I don’t think there is much left in the tank with this claret. Here are my class notes. Salut….
Chateau Lynch Bages 2001, Pauillac, France 13.0% ABV
- Appearance- Deep garnet
- Pronounced nose of dried blackberry (Cassis), leather, earth, tobacco, cedar, forest floor. Fully developed.
- Palate- dry, medium (-) acidity, medium (-) tannins, medium alcohol, medium body, pronounced flavors of dried blackberry (cassis), tobacco, leather, forest floor and charred wood. Long finish.
- Conclusion- outstanding quality, drink now: not suitable for aging or further aging.
My last tasting note was in the format used for my wine course. By the time we got to this bottle the group was deep into a card game so I reverted to my old style and jotted a few notes on this super yummy wine.
Inky AF. This is one dark purple, brooding beast. Rich blackberry, ripe plums, cedar, Iodine and black cherry. Stunning. The palate is super duper Napa Valley. Sunshine galore gives rich black fruits, silky tannins and medium acidity. This is one stunner at 93 points. I believe newer vintages are running a Benji. 5 stars. Drink till 2025. Ps. If this was a blind tasting, I would have guessed Napa all day long, but incorrectly identifying it as a Cab Sav. Very similar taste profile, but way less tannins in this varietal. Salut….
I took two of my boys out for a delayed Father’s Day feast at the local Brazilian steak house. Seeing as it was a Monday they had South American wines half off. I could not resist ordering this somewhat young vintage of Don Melchor- an elixir that opened my eyes to fine wine many moons ago. I took abbreviated notes but suffice to say, this wine has consistently garnered high scores for its depth of flavor, structure and silky smooth approach. I just finished a twenty year tasting of three cases of the 2020, the last few years were sublime. This 2016, at barely 5 years of age is still primal, yet the pieces are all there for it to evolve gracefully.
Nearly inky in the glass this wine has thick legs and a big nose. I get telltale mint, blackberry, plum, iodine, grippy tannins, medium acidity and a long finish. Soft mouthfeel. Very balanced. 92 points and for a retail price of $100 it’s a big purchase, but worth it for the patient drinker who can lay it down for a few more years and enjoy it in a mature phase. I can guarantee that it will morph with tertiary flavors emerging, they always do with this wine. 5 stars, because I’m biased. The steak house offerings were the perfect pairing btw. Salut….
I love my neighbors Arty and Keef…. you see, they have a nice collection of Napa Cabs in their cellar and I get the chance to taste alongside quite often. When this text arrived, I made sure to head over tout suite.
Wow- black beauty. Opaque AF and showing long legs in the glass. The nose is magnificent. A dusty take on blackberry jam, cassis, toasty oak and a hint of eucalyptus. On the palate this wine is super focused with very defined blueberries, blackberries alongside some Lapsang Souchong tea notes. Very integrated tannins and really lithe acidity help bring out the California sunshine in this wine- it’s definitely fruit forward and open for business. Delicious- 93 points and 5 stars for this $100 stunner. Drink till 2025 with Filet or other less fatty meals. Salut….
I love this winery, they make very Old World style Syrah in Australia that is very rich, extracted but not jammy. This one happens to be a younger version of the 2006 Syrah.
It’s very inky and opaque in the glass. The nose is brooding, and the 14.5% alcohol is evident. Black plums, dark fruit melange and spicy oak are all present. With a good deal more swirling I get violets, Boysenberry and a charred note. On the palate it is very juicy right off the bat. Figs, blackberry and espresso hit my palate alongside some slightly green tannins and a nice acidic cut. The mid palate is quite focused on that tartness alongside a blueberry meets plum note. Tannins take a step back while the acidity plays lead. The finish is long, mouthwatering and modestly dry. Black fruits dominate the back end with some Mocha, licorice and that burnt wood note. I think I preferred the 2006, but this is a very tasty wine that I feel is acid dominated and slightly off balance. Drink till 2026. For $100, it’s quite pricy which gets 92 points and 4 stars from me. Salut….
The nose is all-singing and dancing Napa Cab. You can smell the sunshine. Wow….. Ripe, lush blackberries. Vanilla, coconut and several other oaky traits are evident without being obnoxious. On the palate there’s a ton of vanilla alongside black fruits, jammy currants and a dose of the wood. The mid palate is very smooth, full bodied. Juicy and jammy with gobs of black fruit, lithe tannins and some deft oak. The finish is very smooth, loaded with those wood nuances and providing me with a beautiful mouthfeel. 93 points. For $100 it’s quite pricy, but then again Napa Cabs are not cheap. 5 stars. Drink till 2027. Salut….
A bright shade of red and see through. The nose rings of pomegranate, sweet cherry and clove. The palate is very smooth and soft- the fruit is vibrant and the acidity is very gentle. It’s all primary flavors for now, loads of red fruit and some backend tannins. The midpalate is tart, with more pomegranate and some rhubarb. The finish is very sleek and easy going- more lingering flavors from the midpalate and a nice spike in the very fine-grained tannins. This wine is young and has many years to go. I’m thinking it will be very nice as a mature Burgundy. 91 points for this very lithe Pinot Noir. Drink till 2033, but cellar if you like some secondary flavors. At over $100 it’s a pricy addition to the cellar, but then again- Burgundy is never cheap. 3 stars. Salut….