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….
I am always on the lookout for something new, like this Vranec. It’s a species native to Montenegro known as the Black Wine. It is inky purple and opaque with a nose of chocolate, blackberry and spice box. The palate is very tasty, slightly sour and has a modicum of tannins. Black fruit coupled with pomegranate give it an interesting mix of dark and red fruit profiles. The mid palate has a hint of vanilla and that chocolate note reappears alongside some drying leather. The tannins kick it up a notch towards the back end and my gums are starting to feel the grit. Acidity is nicely balancing and the finish is of decent length with more black fruits. Overall an interesting introduction to a new varietal for me that gets 88 points. I would drink till 2026 with some hearty stews, perhaps even Eggplant Parm. At $20 it is a 3 star effort that deserves a look. Salut….
A dull shade of purple belying the age of this Tempranillo blend. It’s about 75% opaque. The nose is a bit subdued- I’m really having to swirl the glass. I finally get steeped plum, bramble and a hint of oak. The palate is a little thin but I get some blueberry and plum notes alongside anise and that dusty note I like in Riojas. The mid palate is quite acidic and juicy, but I also sense a touch of heat. The finish is rather plain with black and blue fruits, really tart acidity and a token dash of tannins. I’m not overly impressed by this $20 wine, might be in a dumb phase. For now it gets 86 points. 2 stars. Salut….
This Chilean Cab is bright purple and nearly opaque in the glass. The nose is very black raspberry driven, almost over the top. Red licorice and candy notes come into play as well. On the palate it is a dark fruit melange with oak influence and a hint of sweetness. It sounds funny but whilst a touch sweet it also has a good dose of tangy acidity. Greenish tannins go straight for the gums with astringency galore. The mid palate tastes of sour black cherry and blackberry, an interesting take. The juicy finish lets up some on the dry factor, letting the fruit shine through. I am cooking up some Lamb Merguez sausages to pair, I think that will work nicely. Drink this 87 point wine till 2024. At $20 it’s a three pointer. Salut….
It’s been four years since I had a drop of Mothers Milk, I was super excited to see it in my local wine shop. I’m cooking Venison Tenderloins in a mushroom sauce and think this might be the perfect match. It’s about 80% opaque and a medium shade of murky purple. On the nose it is spicy, peppery and has notes of licorice, blackberry and charred oak. On the palate it is really smooth and flavorful. Blackberry, anise and cola flavors shine through alongside some juicy acid. The mid palate is very fruity and has gobs of acidity to go along with lithe tannins. The fruit is working hard at this point to remain center stage. The finish is quite tart from the structural components but I do get more flavors right at the end. Black fruit melange, that licorice note and the acidity go on for ages. This is a very fresh wine that is drinking nicely and will do so till 2025. I’m going with 89 points and for $20 it gets 4 stars. (Ps. one of the pros went as high as 96!). Glad I re-discovered it! Salut….
It’s a semi opaque pale purple wine in the glass. The nose has candied cherries, cinnamon stick, black currants and cedar. On the palate it is really rich and warm. Gobs of black fruits with toasty oak, spice and very lithe tannins all form the first wave. The mid palate has a nice acidic pop alongside the black fruit cocktail. The tannins are present but not obtrusive on the somewhat dry finish that has tons more fruit to offer including black cherry. Nice mouthfeel, it’s an easy Cab to drink right now and will cellar till 2025. I really like it and will be pairing it with Sous Vide Strip steaks. For $20 it’s a great deal ’cause it gets 90 points from me and 5 stars. Salut….
This Pinot hails from the Pays d’Oc region in France. It is light purple and see through. The nose has light red fruit notes, boysenberry and a dusty earth component. On the palate it is richer than expected. Red raspberry, bramble and a cherry reduction with some lithe acidity greet me. The mid palate continues the red fruit theme with just a hint of tannin. The finish is very smooth and nicely balanced. Although not a very complex wine, it has some weight and good fruit flavor to handle many dishes. Roast chicken comes to mind, as does Salmon on the grill. I would drink till 2023. 90 points and for $20 it gets 4 stars. Salut….
Pinotage is an interesting grape to me. I’m excited for this South African wine that is bright purple in the glass and semi opaque. On the nose it has telltale tar and blackberry notes. The palate is rich with sweet blackberries, bramble, earthy dust and that tar component I get so often with this varietal. The mid palate has some cola, sassafras and more black fruit. It’s got lithe tannins that build but never overtake the fruit. There’s a nice acidity but it’s not overly done. The earthiness of this wine is something to behold, it’s got a gamey note to boot. I really like the way it finishes with a flurry of different flavors wrapped in an easy drinking package. The structure encourages short term drinking so get popping. I’m paring it with leftover Kebabs and fried potatoes. 90 points for this $20 gem make it a 5 star wine for me! Salut….
It’s a typical Pinot in the glass- see-through, pale purple. On the nose it gives me loads of strawberry, violets, cherry and cinnamon. The initial palate is rich with warm strawberry pie, baking spices, sweet rhubarb and very fine grained tannins. There’s juicy acidity right off the bat and the wine continues it’s red theme throughout the palate. The baking spice component is an interesting facet to this wine. The flavor profile is neither Old nor New World, somewhere in the middle as far as taste, extraction and weight. It’s nice to drink and has some good structure to endure extended cellaring. The red currant and rhubarb finish is mid length and the tannins are very much evident. There is a hint of Rooibos tea right at the end that I am enjoying. I’m grilling up some Pork tenderloins, tossing some pasta with black olives and calling this a nice pairing. 90 points from me and 5 stars for this $20 effort. Salut….