The second wine at Virtual Tasting #29 was this Napa Cabernet. It has a deep ruby color and smells ‘yummy’ according to the group! Menthol was the first thing I noticed on the nose followed by dark chocolate, tobacco, green pepper, black cherry, blackcurrant and Kirsch. Medicinal notes along with a dusty component were commented on. Dry with medium acidity and medium intensity tannins that were very well melded made for a really nice mouthfeel. Medium to full bodied this Cabernet had flavors of black pepper, green pepper, tart cherry, tobacco, cranberry, pencil shavings and graphite. The group really felt it was red-fruit dominant and had started developing tertiary flavors. The finish was short-medium in length. This $28 wine gets 91 points from me making it a 5 star effort to drink till 2028. I would pair it with braised beef cheeks or a plate full of Osso Bucco. Salut….
From the South of France comes this blend of Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre and Carignan that is deep ruby colored and seriously opaque. The thick, blobby legs warn of the incoming 15.2% ABV, watch out. The nose, once the alcohol blows off, gives me aromas of ripe blackberry, tons of vanilla, blackcurrant pastis, black licorice, clove and ripe blueberry. The palate is dry with medium acidity, medium tannins, full body and heady flavors of black and blue fruit, lots of oak nuance and a somewhat astringent mid palate streak. A short finish closes it out. The impression I get is that this wine has some ripe fruit quality along with lashings of oak yet they allowed the green stems to unbalance the wine with that bitterness. A shame, because it started out on a high note for me. 88 points for this $28 wine makes it a 3 star effort to drink with grilled Lamb chops. Drink till 2028. Salut….
Pale to medium ruby colored with thick, droopy legs. The nose has aromas of steeped cherry, rose, baking spice, white raspberry, coconut, cherry cola and vanilla bean. The palate is dry with high acidity and medium tannins. Medium (+) bodied I get delicious flavors of cherry, vanilla, coconut, raspberry and spice. It finishes long with a tart cherry note and some lingering, integrated tannins. This is a delicious and mature Sangiovese from the heart of Tuscany. It will cellar well into 2028 and pair beautifully with pasta (duh!) and perhaps a ribeye with Roquefort sauce. It is very pinpoint btw. 93 points from me for this $28 effort makes it a 5 star wine. Salut….
Medium ruby colored with a bit of cloudiness in the glass. The nose of this Sangiovese is medium intensity with aromas of crushed rose petals, tomato stem, red cherry, dusty earth, dried leather, vanilla and baking spice. The palate is dry and tart with high acidity and medium tannins. Fruit-wise I get tart cherry, roses and that green tomato stem note followed by secondary flavors of earth, leather, vanilla and spice box. The wine runs 14% ABV giving it a medium (+) body. The finish is long and sour with the cherry component that lingers. I would pair this with a fatty cut of meat, think lamb or ribeye steaks. It needs something to offset the acidity and tame the tannins. It has good structure to cellar till 2030. 91 points from me for this $28 effort makes it a 4 star wine. Salut….
Medium ruby colored this Sangiovese has pretty thick legs running down the glass that would concur with the 14% ABV. The nose gives me coconut, red cherry, rose, cedar and coffee. The palate is a dry and tart affair with fine grained tannins that are medium intensity and well integrated. The high acidity really takes center stage on the initial attack. Flavors of red cherry, coconut, rose, rhubarb and cranberry fill my mouth with a red fruit cocktail laced with tart, almost underripe cherry at the core. It’s an interesting wine that feels a bit out of balance yet I keep wanting to take another sip. The finish is medium length and really jaw watering. The tannins are fighting the acidity. This wine will pair beautifully with a pasta of sautéed veggies and olives in thin spaghetti. I would even put it up against Osso Bucco or Veal parmigiana. I’m going 91 points, slightly lower than the pros but at $28 it is a respectable 4 star wine to drink till 2030. Salut….
This dessert style Bordeaux wine is pale gold in the glass- a stunning shade imho. The nose is chock full of Botrytis-driven goodness. Dried apricots, honey, marzipan, orange marmalade, candied ginger. The palate is sweet, luscious and silky- yet full bodied. It’s hard to tell that there is much acidity, but if it lacked that key component this wine would be out of balance, which it’s not. Unctuous flavors of apricot, honey, marmalade and candied ginger caress my palate so beautifully. The worst part of the finish on this wine is the the fact that it ends, after a decently long time lingering on my palate. Still young, this blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc will further evolve and be delicious until 2033. 92 points from me for this $ $28 stunner makes it a 5 star effort. Salut….
We started our 23rd Virtual Wine Tasting with this Furmint, a varietal I have never had before. Tasted chilled and then at room temperature, it was a completely different wine. Medium lemon color the chilled version had pear, apple, apricot, lemon and a brie-like note. The palate also included honeysuckle and lemon pith. Medium body and medium acidity led to a decent finish.
The room temperature serving was skunky on the nose- that Brie note really taking the pole position. Spices, honeysuckle, nuts, brioche and a greenness with hints of Malolactic fermentation. The palate was ‘yucky’ and flabby for me. Buttery, pithy and bitter- the lemon was evident to a degree but the wine was just too funky. I scored it a 7.5 on my VWTC scoresheet. Overall this $25 bottle got 89 points making it a 3 star wine. Drink well chilled until 2025 with seafood, Alfredo or even a grilled chilled salad. Salut….
We enjoyed this classic Sauternes dessert wine whilst watching 48 hours, a classic wine paired with a classic movie. I have drunk the 2006 on several occasions, this later vintage is just as scrumptious. Detailed notes were not taken, just a brief impression. Pale gold. Pronounced nose of peach, apricot, honey, orange marmalade and candied citrus peel. Sweet, luscious and viscous with honeyed orange peel, stone fruits and almonds on the palate. Simply delicious. Medium acidity and loads of body make for a gorgeous mouthfeel. This wine is young and will develop nicely till 2040. A stunner that runs $ 28- 93 points and 5 stars for a treat! Lovely at youth, it will age gracefully. Salut….
This blend of Cab Sav, Shiraz and Malbec is particularly dark and brooding in the glass. On the nose I get black currant, rose water and spice. The palate is much more focused on darker fruits, mainly blackberry with anise and coffee bean. The mid palate continues the theme with more black licorice poking through. There’s a gentle dose of tannins that give the wine structure but are not obtrusive. The finish is decent in length and tasty with more of the same. The balance in this wine is good and the fruit lingers along with the acidity and tannins. I am enjoying it for what it is- not overly complex but extremely drinkable with nice flavors, good backbone and medium term cellaring potential. Drink till 2025. 88 points and 3 stars for this $28 effort. Salut….
A slightly murky purple in the glass, which I find normal for this winery and their older vintages. The nose is interesting, if not a touch gamy. Ripe plums, violets, blackberry ganache and bacon fat. On the palate it’s much more ‘normal’. Mature purple fruits, black cherry kirsch, oak and stewed plum. I also get some smoky wood notes that carry me into the mid palate where I’m greeted by some tame tannins that just add a nice touch of dryness to the gums. More black fruits and tobacco. The finish is quite dry but not astringent. The fruit fades quickly and the wine does show a balance of acidity. It’s all black tea, dry gums and some blackberries. Overall it’s tasty but lacks technical merit. At 10 years of aging it should be showing stronger, perhaps this vintage peaked early. I’m a huge fan of this winery, this being the first Merlot I have tried from them. It’s a bit of a disappoint but still gets 90 points from me. I was hoping for a showstopper. Drink till 2025. $28 and 3 stars. Salut….