It’s a pasta/Italian kinda night here at the chateau so I decided to open a Chianti Rufina to keep with the theme. In the glass, it shows off a reddish hue but not opaque. The nose is somewhat muted but gives off whiffs of plum, some oregano and a dried bark component. The initial taste is an acidic attack with some dark cherry, dried herbs and a touch of oak. The fruit is somewhat cloaked I’m afraid. The mid palate is mostly a tannic affair with some faint fruit notes from the initial attack. The finish is long, with some nice acidity balancing the tannins as well as a dose of Kirsch. I paid $18 for this 89 pointer and give it 3 stars, it’s kinda boring in my opinion- perhaps it’s in a dumb phase. Sangiovese is the main player here folks. Ps. I’m serving grilled Squid, Tortellini and some Zucchini pasta with pine nuts. Salut….
Dark purple, neatly black- which is appropriate for the region. Cherry, tar, blackberry and bramble notes on the nose. The palate is a touch thin but has black fruits, creosote and hints of lavender. It has a nice acidity with some very gentle tannins. Mid palate has some good juiciness made up of plums and blackberry. The tail end is short and sweet, as in enjoyable. Plums, earth and violets round it out. 88 points and for $12 this is a good value that gets 3 stars from me. 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….
I don’t exactly recall buying this wine, but I think it was a last minute grab at the wine store. It looked interesting with its blend of 49% Viognier, 26% Sauvignon Blanc, 19% Grenache Blanc and 6% Princess (Never heard of her).
A golden yellow color in the glass. The nose is what I was expecting, very similar to Conundrum White, another blend of similar grapes. Melon, grapefruit, and a touch of lemon are the key components. On the palate I am tasting raw almond, citrus and kiwi fruit. The acidity is very mild and the wine has a nice mouthfeel. There is a certain butteriness that hits on the mid palate. The finish is rather short, but leaves a trail of acidity that carries on for a while. I am really enjoying this wine, it was made for sipping, summer and cold cuts with an olive tray. I will go 88 points on this $15 wine which makes it a 3 star wine in my books. Drink now till 2019. Salut….
Very pale purple and completely see-through. Why is this important? Pinot Noir has several unique traits- it is a seductive grape that does not need extraction. It treats tannins completely different to other varietals in my opinion. It’s charm and elegance come from it’s fragility on the vine, a very difficult grape to cultivate well. It takes on one of two personalities: Old World with funk, earthiness and mainly cherry, whereas New World styles give more strawberry, a fruit forward style that appeals to many yet doesn’t quite allow for tertiary development. I like both styles but prefer Old World.
This one is a New World child with fresh strawberries, some bing cherry and cinnamon? Not sure, but it is intriguing. The initial taste confirms my New World suspicions. Strawberry shortcake, vanilla bean and red currants. A touch of acidity tidy the package up nicely and let the tannins introduce themselves on the mid palate. If you have followed me for a while you will know that I had a hard time discerning tannic structure in Pinots. I’m learning and getting better. Thanks for asking.
This wine has a gorgeous mouthfeel, the dryness of the tannins is very gentle and the acidity is very mild, not cutting but definitely present. The finish is mid-length and continues the strawberry theme with some acai berry notes. The 14.5% alcohol is very well disguised but will bode well for this wine in the cellar. I believe it has some potential and will drink well until 2025. I would pair it with roast cornish hens, perhaps a grilled pork chop with apple stuffing. 90 points and 3 stars for this $27 bottle. Salut….
A lighter purple color which kinda surprised me. I get fig, black cherry and dates on the nose, a strange combination but I write ’em as I see ’em. The initial taste consists of a lighter set fruits, mostly blueberry, with some currants. Gentle tannins and mild acidity give this a nice easy mouthfeel while the mid palate shows off black berries and spice. The wine stays true to form on the finish with more blackberry and some very slight tannins. Not a blockbuster, but certainly an easy going wine to pull out at parties, barbecues or just a lazy evening. It will pair with many summer dishes and I would even use it for Coq au Vin. I think it merits 87 points and for $11 will be a repeat purchase worthy of 3 stars. Salut….
Reddish purple but nearly see through in the glass. The nose is of strawberry and rhubarb. On the palate it is strawberry pie meets cherry with a noticeable up front acidity. The mid palate is where it’s at with this wine- much rounder mouthfeel with flavors of red berries, more rhubarb and some tannins that are ever so gently caressing my gums. The finish is really smooth, long and reminiscent of more strawberry notes. Roasted chicken with garlic comes to mind. 89 points and 3 stars for this $56 effort. Salut….
Really dark purple, almost opaque in the glass. The nose is an interesting compilation of Cherry and Iodine meets blue fruits. On the palate it’s a different story. Much more focused on blueberry and some black berries plus a touch of oak. The acidity is present from the get go and the tannins ramp up gently, closing out the finish with a nice dryness. The mid palate exhibits blue and black berries as well as some nutmeg. This is a decent wine that gets 89 points from me and will do well with Osso Bucco or perhaps a mixed grill on the barbie. I paid $18 for it and give it 3 stars. Salut….
My folks are in town for JJ’s Ballet performance. Mum likes the whites and I figured some Pinot Grigio/Gris would work well for a warmish weekend. This one was a very pale yellow- which is a good thing for this varietal. Nose of lemons, pomelo and green apples. The initial taste is rather surprising- more body than I imagined with hints of wax, lemons, bergamot. The mid palate exhibits a citrusy component that I’m enjoying. The acidity is very mild and doesn’t really hit the palate until the finish. Speaking of which, it is mid length and laden with more citrus in the form of lemon peel and a hint of lanolin. 89 points and a great opener to a Friday night! $17 buys this charmer all day long and it gets 3 stars from me, I’m buying more! Salut….
This is a Port wine made from Zinfandel grapes in California. Rich, dark purple in the glass. The nose is stewed plum and vanilla cola. The initial taste is rather abrupt- plum compote, raisins and a balsamic note. Acidic without a bite, but a touch of tannin keep this dessert wine balanced. The finish is decent in length but the flavor is rather medicinal. Its 19% alcohol is well hidden. This wine is delightful and interesting, certainly not what I was expecting. 90 points from me. I paid $22 for it which makes it a 3 star effort. Salut….