This South African Cab is a dark shade of reddish purple and is semi opaque. The nose is steeped in dark fruit compote, a touch of mint perhaps and coffee bean. The initial palate is very smooth with some nice blackberry notes along with espresso and chocolate powder. Very gentle, lithe tannins make it very easy to drink but conversely- it lacks structure for the long haul. The mid palate is more blueberry and plum. The finish is very fruity with nice black and blue berries to go with vanilla. There is a hint of oak influence that I am enjoying. The mouthfeel is really pleasing and I am thoroughly enjoying this wine as an aperitif. It will pair nicely with lighter fare and drink well till 2024. 89 points from me and 4 stars for this $13 effort. Salut….
I have had a few wines from Lodi recently and am becoming a big fan. Zinfandel is one of their signature grapes so this wine is exciting to me.
As I look at it in the glass it’s a nice shade of opaque purple. I can also smell the waft of fruit from a foot away, always a good sign. The nose is very fruit forward with tons of black berry, dark plums and a cinnamon twist. The palate is misleading- when you smell that much fruit you automatically expect a wine with a touch of sweetness, which I do not look forward to in reds. This wine is not at all sweet- it is rich, concentrated with black fruit and very tasty. There is a core of minerality on the mid palate that mixes it up with some oaky char and anise. I usually expect pepper with this varietal but I’m not getting any. The wine has a nice, balanced mouthfeel with very lithe tannins and supporting acidity. The finish is a fruit salad of black cherry, blackcurrants and blackberry jam. It is mouth filling and satisfying if you like a ton of flavor. I’m enjoying it with some Spaghetti Arrabiata with garlic bread. Kudos to the winemaker for this 90 point effort that I paid $13 for. It gets 5 stars and will drink nicely till 2027. Salut….
Pale yellow in the glass. On the nose I get watermelon, lime spritz and melon. On the palate it is fruity and flavorful- quince, pear and a buttery note. The mid palate continues the full bodied mouthfeel and flavor profile. The finish is decent in length and offers up some honey alongside yellow apple and more pear. It’s an interesting and tasty wine for sure, refreshing yet it has some depth and viscosity. The malolactic fermentation has given it a touch of butter and flab, enough to notice but not overdone. This wine will pair well with grilled Salmon, Cobb salad or baked Aubergine in tomatoes. Drink till 2024. For $13, this is a no-brainer to keep on hand. 88 points make it a 4 star effort. Salut….
Very bright purple in the glass. The nose is fruit forward with blackberries, grilled plum and purple licorice. On the palate this wine is very tasty…. delicious in an easy-going way. Blackberry reduction, star anise, ribena and creosote all feature on the opening. The mid palate gives me some charred oak, blackberry reduction and oolong tea. The finish is short to medium length- with dry notes of tea leaf, dusty mocha and that blackberry theme that has been consistent from the get-go. Overall a decent drop that gets 89 points from me as the tannins are present but won’t promote extended cellaring and the acidity is feint at best. Drink till 2023 with stews, a Lamb Tagine or beef moussaka. 4 stars for this $13 charmer. Salut….
This wine is a gorgeous shade of orange/pink. On the nose I get strawberry and lemon zest, pink grapefruit and almonds. On the palate it is a touch sweet, apricots come to mind. The strawberry component reappears on the mid palate with notes of lanolin and lemon. The finish is refreshing, a touch acidic and decent in length. Light red fruit notes carry through to the end. This is a nice, if somewhat sweet, summer sundowner. I would serve it with charcuterie, hard cheeses and some fresh figs. Drink till 2022. 88 points and 4 stars for this $13 Valdiguié, a varietal I have never tried before. Salut….
Darker shade of straw/pink. On the nose it’s very fruity with hints of cranberry, strawberry and pink grapefruit. On the palate it is bright, fresh and medium bodied with the light red fruit theme continuing. There is a trace of acidity to keep it fresh and it drinks very light and bouncy. A perfect summer sipper. I like the whole package for what it is. Drink till 2023 with appetizers, perhaps a charcuterie tray or light, white meats. 88 points and 5 stars for this $13 quaffer. Salut….
This was our opening wine at virtual tasting #5. As before, I had everyone reserve half at room temperature and chill the other half. Mixed results as usual with some enjoying the rounder, fuller nose and palate of the unchilled version whilst others preferred the slight cut and edge of the chilled. I got quince, pineapple and honey. It was not very acidic, nor was it sweet, a trait commonly found in Riesling. Overall a very serviceable white that I will be ordering more of. 87 points this time around, which contrasts with the last time I drank it. My previous notes showed it to be sweeter but I preferred it in this iteration whilst scoring it lower…. hmmm. $13 is a good price btw, 4 stars. Salut….
This Rosé started our third virtual wine tasting with friends. I had everyone reserve half the bottle in another container at room temperature and the remainder in the fridge to be served chilled. It was a gorgeous evening and all parties were on their respective patios with cheese and crackers at the ready. We started off with the chilled version which I found to have a nice pinkish hue, good nose of strawberry, rhubarb and a touch of citrus. The palate was very refreshing, lithe with some nice acidity exhibiting strawberry and red berry notes. The room temperature version had a much fuller nose but was very flabby on the palate. I enjoyed the chilled one more and would forgo some of the nose in return for that crisper body and more succinct flavor profile. It’s an interesting experiment to try with whites and Rosès. Overall I thought it was a nice drop which gets 87 points from me. For $13 it’s a nice summer wine to have on hand, 3 stars. Drink now. Salut….
Number 2 from SplashWines is this non-vintage blend that rings the bells at 13.5%. Semi opaque with a reddish tint in the glass. The nose is intriguing- strawberries, by the bucketful. Red currants and sweet pomegranate to boot. Oh…. and Apricots. Yup- Apricots. The palate is very unique, a touch sweet but very red fruit forward. It’s a very interesting flavor profile. The mid palate is very easy going, red Twizzlers and a touch of cherry cola. The acidity is very gentle which makes up for the lack of much tannin. The finish is more cherry and rhubarb with that crispy acidity adding zest. It’s decent in length and tasty. I must say I was a bit biased when I unscrewed this bottle, but I reckon it’s very easy going, fun to drink and will appeal to the novice as well as anyone coming over for a barbecue. This is a $13 party wine and it gets 86 points from me. 3 stars. Drink now. Salut….
Red wine with fish is a tough one but since I am grilling it, I feel there might be something to work with. This Barbera is from California and has a nice shade of purple in the glass. The nose is very cherry like, with some blue fruits lingering as well. I also get a leafy component, like parsley. Intriguing. On the palate it is somewhat sweet with ripe cherry, cola and cedar. It is juicy but not overly acidic, nor is it very tannic. The mid palate has a nice warm feeling to the red fruit compote. There is a definitive cedar note that runs the length of the wine. It is very fruity and certainly tasty. The finish is medium length and concentrates on those sweet cherries alongside some blackberry jam. Lip smacking stuff. Easy to drink and very approachable for the next 5 years. I hope the pairing works for me! 89 points and 5 stars for this $13 steal. Salut….