Inky, with big legs in the glass showing off the 14.5% alcohol. On the nose I get red plum, raspberry, strawberry and cedar- not at all what I was expecting. The palate is super smooth and inviting- gentle tannins, red fruits galore and crispy acidity on the back end. Coffee shows up on the mid palate and I sense a tar component on the finish. Lovely mouthfeel on this one folks. It’s built to drink now and might take to a few years of cellaring but why wait. 88 points from me. Serve with strip steaks! For $20, it gets 4 stars. Salut….
This Pinot is pretty opaque for the varietal. A lovely shade of ruby with watery legs that give clue to the low 13% ABV. On the nose I get spice box, red cherry, pomegranate and cranberry. On the palate this wine is a touch tart and lacks any discernible tannins- not that I am complaining. I like Pinot with a touch of sourness and no dryness, makes for a crisp mouthfeel. The red fruit flavors are quite pronounced and balanced but I also get blueberry on the mid palate. I like the weight but the finish is a touch short. This bottle has what I really like in Pinot Noir- elegance and lightness with freshness and not too much oak influence. It is seductive and lithe, maybe not very complex but it delivers lots of fruit flavors. I would drink this one till 2025, perhaps pairing with Duck or Strip steak. 89 points from me and at $20 it’s a good deal that gets 4 stars. Salut….
We kicked off the 19th Virtual Wine Tasting with this French rosé, served at room temp and chilled for comparison. The wine is a lovely pale orange in the glass. The tasters found aromas and flavors of apricot, almond, tangerine, strawberry, citrus, marzipan and pink grapefruit. The chilled version was more intense with peach, quince, citrus, honeysuckle and green pear on the nose and peach, rhubarb (?), orange and crab apples on the palate. We felt the wine was a touch sour with a bitter aftertaste. The room temp version had medium acidity whilst the chilled one was more acidic. Overall I give the wine 88 points. Drink now with smoked salmon, shrimp cocktail or a salad Nicoise. At $20 per, it gets 3 stars from me. Salut….
This week’s tasting assignment for school is a wine from Italy or Spain. I’ll end up doing both but here is the Tuscan one that I paid $20 for. It gets 91 points from me and is a brooding baby. This one needs a good aeration or several years in the cellar. 5 stars. Salut….
- Appearance- Medium garnet with thin legs.
- Nose- Medium (+) intensity with aromas of red cherry, red plum, cranberry, coffee, earth. Developing.
- Palate- dry, medium (+) acidity, high tannins, medium alcohol, medium body, medium (+) flavor intensity of red cherry, cranberry, tobacco, earth and coffee with medium (+) finish.
- Conclusion- very good quality wine that can be drunk now, but has potential for aging.
Delicious but young Sangiovese, paired with dry-aged T-bone steak and baked potatoes.
I did not care for the last Carmenère I had, realizing that the varietal as a whole was too gamy and earthy for me with some exceptions. When I saw this bottle at the shop I figured I would give it another go, recognizing the winery name and hoping for a better result. It starts off quite inky in the glass. I can smell the earthiness from a few feet away. On the nose it is quite interesting, if not a touch green and herbal. Capsicum, violets, black currants and blueberry all hit me. The palate is quite sharp right off the bat, piquant acidity and a touch of tannic bite are the first tastes/sensations I get. Once past that part I get some black currants, licorice, coffee and a hint of game to go along with the bell peppers. It’s not my favorite flavor profile, but at least it’s not unpleasant. Th wine has a decent structure but it tends to lean towards the tart side of the scale and the green flavors are really prominent on the mid palate. The finish is sour, yet it lacks acidity per se. The tannins are medium in intensity and slightly underripe. Overall this wine is drinkable and forgettable. At least I am not gagging on it. 82 points from me and at $20, it’s a 1 star effort. This varietal is quickly losing my interest. Salut….
Just for something different I am tasting two Rieslings from the same vintage and producer that are made in different styles- side by side. The first thing I noticed (not a huge deal BTW) was that the Dry bottle had a real cork, whereas the Semi-Dry one sported a composite cork closure. The Dry weighs in at 12% ABV versus 11% ABV for the Semi-Dry. They both look the same in the glass, a bright tone of lemon. On the nose the Dry (Call it #1) has interesting lemon, pineapple and green apple on the nose whilst #2 was more waxy with a subdued citrus bouquet and some passion fruit notes.
On the palate #1 has a light flavor profile that has a distinct honeysuckle flavor to go along with the aforementioned notes of citrus, pineapple and green apple. Good acidity makes for a rounded mouthfeel with a decent finish. Wine #2 packs a sweetness that was expected with more of a tropical fruit profile, delicious to say the least and not overly tart. The acidity is more in check with this version. Mango is a strong flavor on the mid palate alongside some melon, ripe clementines and that passion fruit note.
I like both of these wines, for different reasons and would pair each one completely differently. The Dry will go well on a hot afternoon with a shrimp cocktail, whilst the Semi Dry one gets to pair with my seasoned grilled chicken drumsticks. I think the spice rub and char will take to the medium acidity and richer tropical flavors quite nicely. I would give both 90 points and for the $20 price point they get 5 stars. Salut….
This Oregonian Pinot is see-through and medium ruby. The nose is quite intense with red cherry and strawberry. Cloves also come to mind but I can smell a whiff of the 13.5% alcohol. The palate is rounded and gives me ripe, squishy strawberry and some spice box alongside the cherry and now raspberry flavors. The wine is quite acidic and I get fine grained tannins on the mid palate. The red fruit theme continues to a mid length finish where the fruit overtakes any secondary flavors I previously got. It is New World with restraint in style, something I appreciate. The tannins really grip on the back end and the acidity does a nice job of balancing it out. Medium body and generally very pleasant- it gets 90 points from me and at $20 it’s worthy of 5 stars. Yummy stuff to drink till 2026. Salut….
In our wine tasting group (virtual), there are many of us who enjoy Pinot. I ventured to New Zealand for this tasting of the varietal. New World without a doubt, this wine was 70% opaque and dark purple in the glass. On the nose, the tasters got rich strawberry, deli meat, tobacco, black tea, straw and some subtle barnyard notes. On the palate we tasted cherry, oak, funk, black pepper and Macha Green tea. Overall I thought it was a little too extracted for my taste but others really enjoyed it. 89 points from me and at $20 it gets 4 stars. The pros went 92 on this steal for Pinot. If you like the style, go for it! Drink till 2030 as this baby packs some well integrated tannins, balanced by some decent acidity. Salut….
This Kiwi Sav Blanc is a really pretty shade of pale gold. The nose just blew me away. Passion fruit, peach, lime verbena and a hint of you know what. The palate is well formed with loads of flavor from those fruits minus the cat pee. I do also get gooseberries- that somewhat sweet-yet-sour at the same time fruit. Delicious. The acidity is en pointe, not cutting- it sharpens the flavors and lets them be the focus. The wine finishes with a decent length tail of citrus and pineapple that lasts a good long while. I picked this wine tonight as I am in an arm cast and it’s my son’s turn to cook. He is blackening some Sous Vide Chicken with Cajun spices which should work well with this 93 pointer. The pros went 94/95 on this $20 monster. I will be stocking up for sure, it will pair with pretty much any seafood, chicken dishes, salads and cheese boards. 5 stars, if only I could give 6. Stunner to drink till 2025. Salut….
Turns out his was the Wine of the Night at tasting #15. It is inky purple and opaque AF. Initially the members noted a dusty smell- which led on to black pepper, herbs, tobacco, dried fruits, cigar, prunes, blackberry jam and was considered ‘leathery’. On the palate it was very rich and full bodied with prunes, blackberry compote, cracked black pepper, dark chocolate, coffee beans, raisins and tobacco. I thought it was delicious and worthy of a juicy Filet. It was not very tannic at all, inconsistent with the varietal, but I was not complaining. It gets 92 points from me and 5 stars for sure at it only runs $20. Buy it by the case and drink till 2026. Salut….