This semi opaque Merlot is a light shade of purple in the glass. The nose gives me red berries, cherry and anise- it’s very enticing. On the palate it has a juicy intro with currants, more of that licorice note and some really integrated oak. There is a modicum of tannic bite, but it is very lithe. The mid palate has cocoa powder to go around the currants and some strawberry. Nicely balanced acidity leads to a smooth mouthfeel that is super easy to drink. The finish has a touch of dryness, a hint of acidity and loads of red fruits. This wine has matured nicely for what it is and I am thoroughly enjoying it. It drinks well by itself but I would also put it up against Filet, roast Game Hen or even Lasagna. 89 points from me makes this $25 wine a 3 star effort. Really yummy. Drink till 2024. Salut….
It’s a rich shade of purple with thick legs and an opaque hue. The nose is fresh, briny and full of purple fruits. On the palate I get primal black berries, dark cherry and iodine laced oak. The mid palate is fruity, juicy and shows off a slight tannic bite. The dark fruits are well at play and overshadow the structural components. The finish has a nice crunchy set of tannins that interplay with the fruit and acidity. This wine is a touch green but I am enjoying it’s youth and basic fruitiness. It has some structure for the short to medium term cellaring but I feel it won’t evolve too much. This is a very decent everyday drinker that will serve well against burgers, ribs, pasta and pizza. It gets 87 points from me and for $9 it’s a 3 star wine. Drink till 2022. Salut…
It’s a very dark shade of purple in the glass, very inviting. On the nose I get sweet blackberries, plum extract and cherry cola. The palate is interesting- ripe black fruit, capsicum greeness, some cherry and dried fruit. The mid palate is very fruit forward and I get tons more of that dark cherry cola note alongside some slightly green tannins that are a touch bitter. The back end is very dry from the structure and there is a modicum of acidity. If you like ’em dry, this one’s for you. The finish is decent in length and continues the theme. I like this wine but think it may have some ripeness issues. 88 points from me and drink till 2024. For $18 this Charbono, also known as Bonarda, is a 3 star wine. If you have never had this varietal, give it a try! Salut….
I don’t recall ever having a pure Graciano, it’s normally used as a blending grape. In the glass it is a pale shade of purple and is fully opaque. On the nose I get charred plums, black berries and a stewed fruit note. The palate is interesting with brooding dark fruits, oak and a vanilla bean note. The tannic structure is very well ingrained in this 9 year old bottle. They are present but not foreboding. The black fruits show up on the mid palate with a touch of bitterness, there is a green note too. On the finish is where I get some nice acidity to go with the oaky fruit compote. There is a nice dryness on the back end from the tannins. The wine is a pleasure to drink but that midpalate greeness has me concerned. This will drink well till 2025 and pair nicely with pasta, roasted chicken and certainly grilled steak. I’m going 89 points and 3 stars for the $12 price point. Salut….
A pretty shade of purple and nearly opaque. On the nose it’s brimming with red fruit, some oak and a red licorice note. The palate is easy going- red berries, chocolate nibs, some oak and a touch of acidity. The mid palate is very smooth with a smidge of tannin and more red fruit melange. The finish is simple, decent in length and features the addition of cranberries with their inherent tartness. This is a very basic wine that will feature well at a burgers and brats barbecue. The tannins are very slight and the structure is not intended for much cellaring. It’s a pop’n pour weekday quaffer that gets 86 points from me and at $15- 3 stars. Drink now. Salut….
Pretty dark and broody in the glass. The nose gives me leather, smoke and a touch of oak alongside dark plums. The palate is a bit obscure, the fruit is battling with a volatility that’s throwing me off. I do get Charcoal, blackberries, more plum and that smoky leathery component. It’s a rather interesting combo that really takes off on the mid palate, where the wine finally comes together. Medium grade tannins don’t punish the gums but give the wine a nice structure. They caress over the decent length finish that has a long, dry presence to go with the black berry and charcoal notes I tasted. Overall this wine was much better on night 2, after the Virtual tasting #6. I’m going 89 points and for $29 it gets 3 stars. Drink till 2024. Salut….
Pale shade of yellow, this Austrian native kicked off the Virtual Wine Tasting Company’s 6th event. We drank it at room temp as well as chilled. I did not think it performed well at the tasting and am now re-tasting the following night indoors. The nose exhibits tons of citrus, some lanolin and green apple. The palate has minerality and a nice acidic cut. Lemon/lime like a 7-Up alongside an austere green streak that make this a very sharp wine. It cuts in the right places and refreshes as it goes. I did not care for it initially, but I now think it fits the billing for a decent, inexpensive Gruner. The finish is very refreshing and would pair well with seafood, perhaps a spicy Arrabiata but it will shine poolside on a hot day. 88 points and 3 stars for this $15 white. Salut….
I tasted this wine previously and liked it enough to order some for the virtual tasting #5. I think I preferred it the first time around, this bottle seemed a little tired and over the plateau. The wine showed secondary flavors of tobacco, leather, horse whip but lacked much core fruit and tannic structure. Overall it scored 88 points from me with a drink now recommendation. $24 is not over the top, but I would not order more. We decanted 6 hours prior, that may have made the difference. 3 stars. Salut….
The second wine of our virtual tasting was this Lodi blend of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot and Cab Sav. The nose was magnificent- lush, jammy blackberry, cocoa, dark plums. The palate was a different matter. We all immediately sensed a certain sweetness that we were not expecting. The wine is very fruity and concentrated with loads of black fruits. Tannins are apparent but not overbearing and there is a decent level of acidity to make for a nice mouthfeel. The cloying fruit however was a detractor for many in the group. Funnily enough, it was voted the best wine by a third of the attendees. I guess that sweetness appeals to some but not all. Each to his own. For me it was an 86 point wine that I feel was a little too manufactured and lacked finesse relying heavily on gobs of jammy fruit. Drink now. For $14 it gets 3 stars. Salut….
This Rosé started our third virtual wine tasting with friends. I had everyone reserve half the bottle in another container at room temperature and the remainder in the fridge to be served chilled. It was a gorgeous evening and all parties were on their respective patios with cheese and crackers at the ready. We started off with the chilled version which I found to have a nice pinkish hue, good nose of strawberry, rhubarb and a touch of citrus. The palate was very refreshing, lithe with some nice acidity exhibiting strawberry and red berry notes. The room temperature version had a much fuller nose but was very flabby on the palate. I enjoyed the chilled one more and would forgo some of the nose in return for that crisper body and more succinct flavor profile. It’s an interesting experiment to try with whites and Rosès. Overall I thought it was a nice drop which gets 87 points from me. For $13 it’s a nice summer wine to have on hand, 3 stars. Drink now. Salut….