I had to buy this funky bottle, it is gold. As in they sprayed the bottle, there is no looking through the glass. With a bit of age on it, there may be some hope of tertiary development in this Reserva. It’s pretty dark in the glass, a lovely shade of ruby. On the nose I get red cherry, cooked red cherry, earth, mushroom, pomegranate and oak. The palate is very delicious, smooth and not biting. I am really enjoying lush flavors of dark cherry, earth, game and cooked red cherry. The tannins are really well integrated and meet up on the back end with some vibrant acidity. The body is decent, heavier than I was expecting and certainly welcome, the mouthfeel is balanced and smooth. I am thoroughly enjoying this Sangiovese, and feeling that most people would not buy it due to the strange packaging- I’m off to get the remnants, it’s that yummy for the barebones price of $15. A veritable steal that gets 91 points and 5 stars. Drink till 2025 with pasta, duh! Salut….
I picked up a few bottles of this summer stunner from Costco for $15 each. Served well chilled on a hot afternoon it was delicious, light and fruity. It is medium salmon colored and has a delightful nose of orange peel, nectarine, lemon and peach. On the palate I also sensed acacia. Medium acidity and a medium body lead to a refreshing mouthfeel. The finish of this dry blend of Grenache and Cinsault was relatively short and crisp. I really enjoyed it and for the price, this 89 point wine gets 4 stars. Drink this summer! Salut….
It’s pizza night- an Italian wine is in order. This Tuscan blend of Sangiovese, Cab Sav and Merlot is pale purple in the glass. The nose is of medium (+) intensity with strawberry, rhubarb, cherry cola, blackberry and woodsy spice. On the palate it is off-dry, brimming with those red/black fruit notes and medium (+) tannins that caress the gums. The wine has a nice acidity that is just enough to balance out the structure. I am enjoying the primary fruit flavors of this drop and it’s mid weight body. The mouthfeel, albeit a touch tannic, is really nice and refreshing. It’s going to rock my pepperoni pie. The finish is of decent length and leaves a good impression. This wine is drinking nicely now and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. At $15, I got a great deal and I’m going with 90 points. 5 stars in my book. Salut….
I wanted to introduce the Dolcetto grape to my group of virtual tasters. This bottle was only $15 and got decent reviews and a 90 point rating. Unfortunately it was not a huge hit with the crowd. I noted it was 75% opaque and had a nice shade of purple in the glass. The nose came with cherry, raspberry, rhubarb, blackberry and pepper. The group got flavors of cherry, almond, strawberry, a touch of smoke and some meatiness on the palate. I wrote down- medium tannins and very juicy acidity. I think the acid component and somewhat lighter body was the detractor for most. We have been tasting some pretty heavy duty bottles in our group and the finesse and lighter style of the Dolcetto may have been overlooked in expectation of another big, brooding wine that is so imposing in the glass- quite the opposite of a young Brunello. I am close to the pros on the rating, giving it an 89 points. For the price- this s a decent Tuesday night drop that won’t break the bank, just pair it with some pasta and you’ll be fine. 3 stars for me. Drink now. Salut….
This 100% Tempranillo is a pretty shade of purple and semi opaque in the glass. The noise gives me rich blueberry, cherry and telltale Spanish earth. The palate has got a nice jab of licorice to go with the dark blue flavor profile. Judicious oak is evident here, which I kinda like and expect from the region. Tannins are well integrated in this 6 year old wine but the acidity is mouth watering. The mid palate is all about it and the finish is as well. The fruit flavors get darker as I transition to the mid length finish. The body is medium and the mouthfeel is quite tart. I find it a touch out of balance, lacking tannins to overcome the acidity, or at least more fruit to give it flavor. It got a decent score from the pros but I am going with 88 points. I picked it up for $15, worth a try but it garners 3 stars from me. Drink till 2025. Salut….
In Cahors, Malbec is known as the Black wine. This particular example has 20% Merlot added, so it is not as inky as I imagined. Still, it’s a rich purple and nearly opaque. The 14.5% ABV shows off its legs in the glass. On the nose I get primal fruit flavors of plum, blackberry and oak. The palate is quite dry and tannic. Dark fruits galore with black coffee and coconut flavors are coated with searing tannins and gobs-full of acidity. The mid palate is very much fruit driven with a smidge of black tea. The finish is mouth puckering from the structural components. This wine is precisely what I wanted for the bone-in Ribeyes I am searing on the charcoal. Juicy, tannic and full of bold fruit flavors- that’s typical for the region and this grape. I now know why they tried to soften it a bit with some Merlot. It would have been a beast all on its own. I like the style, it’s kind of rugged. The mouthfeel a bit raw and primal. Overall a decent drop worthy of 91 points from me with a drinking window of 2023-2028. Open now if you like ’em young and tannic. For $15 it’s a steal that gets 5 stars. Salut….
This Spanish wine as a blend of 70% Grenache, 20% Sirah and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s quite murky in the glass, almost fully opaque and a dark shade of purple. On the nose I get rich raspberry, black cherry and some blackberries. On the palate it is a little bit tart from some pomegranate and red fruits- lithe tannins and juicy acidity help keep it fresh. There is a hint of oak but it is not obtrusive. I sense a tiny bit of coconut from the wood and can feel the 14.5% alcohol not only from the weight of the wine but there is a little bit of heat on the mid palate. On the finish the fruit profile turns a little darker with blackberries and black cherry, the tannins not getting in the way of the fruit flavors. At six years of age I was hoping for some tertiary flavors but alas this wine is somewhat basic in nature but serves it’s purpose. It’s tasty, at peak and looking for a nice juicy steak. I’m giving it 89 points. For $15, it’s an easy buy that gets 4 stars. Salut….
A medium shade of yellow in the glass with hints of lemon and pear on the nose. The palate is light, refreshing and pretty mild on the pH scale. Lemon drop and yellow pear dominate thew flavor profile but I get a hint of pineapple which is quite intriguing. The tartness starts to show up on the mid palate, where this light-bodied wine gives off more of the pineapple notes. The finish is relatively short and introduces a hint of lanolin, but the main components are the lemon and pineapple. It’s a nice, easygoing drop of un/barely oaked chardonnay that is not flabby or buttery. It reflects the grapes and minimalist intervention. For $15, it get 3 stars as I am going with 86 points. Drink till 2024 with shrimp scampi, salad nicoise, or even a chicken pie. Salut….
In the glass this Cabernet is bright purple and 50% opaque. The nose gives me blackcurrant and coffee bean. On the palate it is quite rich with blackberry coulis, spice box and cedar. The mid palate has nice rich fruit, a touch of acidity and some lithe tannins. The black fruit theme continues as does the coffee. The finish is really tasty, a touch dry with a hint of acidity. Th mouthfeel is really wonderful, not cloying, dry or tart. Rich, warm fruit with some underlying structure make for a decent medium term drinking window. I like it and am going with 89 points. For $15, it’s a good deal and gets 4 stars from me. Drink till 2025 with grilled meats. Salut….
This blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc is a mid shade of gold in the glass. On the nose I get citrus, melon, lychee and ginger. On the palate it offers bright and juicy lemons, pineapple, lychee and some good minerality. The acidity is very well appointed, not too sharp but enough to keep it crisp. The flavors continue to a decent length finish. I am really impressed with the complexity of this wine’s nose. For $15 this is a great summer sipper that will also pair really well with grilled Salmon, Cobb salad or chicken on the charcoal. 89 points from me make it a 5 star effort to stock up on- really yummy stuff. Drink till 2024. Salut….