My old college buddy Japes took me to this winery for a tasting. I enjoyed the Merlot the most out of their offerings in red and brought home this $25 non-vintage bottle. It is slightly cloudy in the glass, with nice shades of lighter purple. On the nose- damson, sea salt, iodine and blueberry pie. The palate is very smooth with flavors of blueberry, plum ganache and cedar shake. The tannins grip slightly more than I remember and are a welcome addition to the mid palate. The wine transitions to the back end in a seamless manner, the flavors are consistent throughout. The acidity is very nicely balanced with the structure and gives this wine a 3-5 year drinking window. Since there are no vintages, it’s anyones guess when this bottle was made. The label quotes Cherry as the initial flavor, I somewhat disagree, could be bottle or vintage variation. Anyway, it is tasty and the vineyard is a neat place to visit, especially if they have an event going on. It gets 88 points and 3 stars from me. Salut….
A gift from my cousin (we’ll call him Sharma). Dark purple, very opaque. The nose is intriguing. Plums, charcoal, crushed rock, a certain minerality. The palate is delicious with a toasty oak note opening it up, followed by grilled plum, black olive, bacon and delightful tannins. The flavors carry through to the end where the astringency of the tannins hit. There is a nice mouthfeel throughout and the acidity is very well balanced. The greenness of the back end gives me a check. I’ll get over it, I’m sure. Overall a delicious New Jersey Cabernet worthy of 91 points which gets 4 stars from me for the $25 price tag. It’s getting a pairing of Strip steaks with Balsamic reduction. Drink till 2021. Salut….
Recently added to the local shop- I’m excited to try this Carmenere from Koyle. I love their Syrah and Cabernet. It’s nearly black in the glass and very opaque. The nose gives off nice warm blueberry pie, oregano and violet notes. It has a very extracted quality. On the palate it is a touch austere with plums, blueberry and acidity that has a nice bite. The midpalate is more juicy, the blue fruits turning red. The acidity is countered on the back end with some greenish tannins. As you might tell this wine is a bit disjointed, slightly green and probably needing some food. I’m going 87 points and 2 stars for this $25 effort. Drink now if you have any. Salut….
See-through purple. Nose is enticing with ripe blueberry, cocoa powder, mint and a touch of oak. The palate is very interesting with plum ganache, blueberry pie, cacao and super fine grained tannins. The mouthfeel is delightful, with some pinpoint acidity. The mid palate is ripe and rich, layered with espresso bean, vanilla and more oak. The finish is long, dry with tannins and mouthwatering with blueberry. 91 points and 5 stars for this $25 blend of Syrah (71%), Grenache Noir (15%), Cabernet Sauvignon (8%), Cinsault (5%) and Viognier (1%). It was a gift, but I will be buying more. Delicious stuff for immediate drinking or cellaring till 2023. Salut….
Nearly black, it exudes power. Rich plum puree with some oaky toast and blackcurrant jam greet me on the nose. The palate is very smooth, with more dark berry fruits and toast. It exudes more blueberry/blackberry compote that I am really liking. The mid palate shows off some dry tannins that reach back to the molars and give me a delightful dryness. There is a smoky component which slides in and out that I am really enjoying. It is very faint, but there. The sweetness of the wine is offset by its balancing acidity, the dryness is left in check. Overall, this wine is really good and I would pair it with Manchego, some dried apricots and almonds. Or you can just drink it by itself, delicious. 91 points and for $25 it gets 4 stars from me. Salut….
I have written about the Mollydooker Two Left Feet 2012 vintage before. I sat on this bottle for an eternity and since we are moving house, it’s time to drink up. I have not read my old review so as not to taint this one.
I must say, all Mollydooker red wines appear dark and very purply in the glass. This one is no exception. Extraction is the key to their success methinks. It has a nose of plums, sarsaparilla, fig. I already performed the Mollydooker Shake in case you were wondering. The palate gives up super smooth flavors of blue fruits. Blueberry, plum, currant jam, that root beer thing again and some super ingrained tannins. Like, so smooth and barely detectable. The astringency hits on the finish, but the wine drinks beautifully with nice, if somewhat restrained acidity. The mouthfeel on this wine is sublime, extracted, rich and smooth. The finish shows a faint trace of the well hidden, monstrous 16% alcohol. Beware…
I am pairing it with pan seared Flat-Iron steak that I coated with Santa Maria rub, plus some sautéed mushrooms, a tomato salad and edamame to boot. 91 points from me for this $25 offering. 5 stars for this blend of 69% Shiraz, 16% Cabernet, 15% Merlot. Salut….
Bright purple presentation. The nose is blackberry, sage, eucalyptus and pine needle. The initial palate is vibrant, full of black fruit, bright acidity and Ribena. The mid palate takes a turn. The fruit is dark and brooding, giving way to the clash between the acidity and the tannins. They are balanced mind you, just in the forefront. They taper off on the finish and allow notes of blackberry pie, vanilla bean and blueberries to close it out. This is a bold wine, full of fruit, structure and a solid mouthfeel. It really could use some grilled meats, au gratin and a big salad to tone it down a touch. Impressive if you ask me. 91 points. $25 and 4 stars. Salut….
I splurged, $25 a bottle for Jacobs Creek. It’s not just any JC though. In the glass it is dark, brooding and enticing. Rich, ripe plums on the nose with port wine accent. It smells the business. On the palate, it is super smooth and exhibits rich blackberries, plum extract, caramel, vanilla and a nice toast. The midpalate transition is seamless and the wine continues on to a very long finish. I’m astounded at the depth and purity of this wine. The balance is good but there are barely detectable tannins to go up against the slight acidity. That’s what gives this wine a great mouthfeel, yet detracts from its cellaring potential. It is the style of wine that I would use to introduce a novice red-wine drinker to. Easy on the tannins, the dryness and the acidity. This wine drinks beautifully now and will run well for another 5 years, till 2022. I would serve it with a rich stew, grilled lamb chops or perhaps a very well seasoned Cornish Hen. I’m going 91 points and 4 stars. Salut….
This is an interesting concept. Restaurant/winery that sources grapes worldwide and bottles them under its own label for sale in its own restaurants. Brilliant. Why didn’t I think of that? The food’s not bad either! This particular bottle was given to me by an old College friend. There is no vintage on the bottle, just some basic info, ie. 13.5% alcohol, and that it is a blend of Sangiovese, Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Dark reddish purple in the glass. I’m not sure what to expect from this blend- I get some red berries and cherry on the nose, but only faint. The palate reveals currants, red fruits and some chewy tannins. The wine is obviously young, but has an acidic streak to match the tannins. The mid palate offers sour cherry and chocolate dust. The wine finishes nicely with more cherry and some spice. Not a bad drop- 89 points. $25 make this a 3 star wine that you could pair with Game, Roast Cornish Hens or maybe some Osso Bucco. This wine has no vintage so it is hard to say when to drink, but this particular bottle would have lasted till 2020. Salut….
Dark purple, brooding and opaque. The nose is black cherry, dare I say blackberry as well? The palate is tasty, with the blackberry theme continuing as well as some really fine tannins that are well integrated. Extraction is obvious with this one, but not overdone. The mid palate is refrained compared with the initial taste. I get dark cherry jam and a vegetal note- very interesting. The finish is smooth with more dark fruits and a hint of acidity. I would drink this with a filet and roasted veggies or perhaps marinated flank steak. It needs a lean cut of beef to shine methinks. 90 points and 4 stars for this $25 wine. Salut….