Pretty dark red and semi opaque with big legs showing in the glass. On the nose it’s an intriguing blend of strawberry syrup, rooibos tea and raspberry. On the palate it gives me red fruits including cherry, strawberry and rhubarb alongside some pretty fresh tannins. The grip of which starts at the onset and builds into a mighty teeth- coating crescendo at the finish. Wow…. this is a wine packed with flavor, structure and is balanced to boot. Very young, it needs cellaring or a run through the Venturi. I’m gonna cellar the three other bottles I have, thinking there will be some nice evolution in addition to a softening of the tannins. For now, 92 points and 5 stars for the $30 price point. Pair this Sangiovese up with some rich stews, hearty pasta or a thick Ribeye. Drink from 2022-2032. Salut….
Opaque, deep purple in the glass with fast disappearing legs. On the nose I get bramble, iodine and blackberry. On the palate it is very appealing with a gorgeous mouthfeel of lush black fruits, lithe, yet integrated tannins and a nice acidity. The iodine note reappears on the midpalate alongside that telltale creosote that I love in Tempranillo. On the back end it is more subdued with black cherry jam and those delightful tannins finishing me off with a nice dry tinge on my gums. Well made but not long in the cellar. Drink now till 2024 with charcuterie. 90 points and 3 stars for this $30 Tempranillo. Salut….
Very typical in the glass for Pinot- seethrough, lighter shade of purple and showing fine-strained legs. On the nose I get strawberry pie, spice box and rooibos tea. On the initial palate it’s more cherry than strawberry but they coexist nicely.
The wine transitions beautifully to the mid palate where I get some ginger and allspice. The back end is where they sneak some lithe tannins in that barely caress my gums- very deftly. There’s a nice acidity alongside violets and that red tea component- delicious. 91 points- drink till 2025 with lighter fare such as Cornish Hens, Filet or even charcuterie. $30 and 5 stars. Salut….
I have drunk tons of the 95 and 96 Garraud vintages and when I saw this I got excited. It is of medium darkness and opacity, with nice legs showing. On the nose I get plum, charcoal and currants. The palate is young and slightly corky, not in the ‘corked’ way, it just tastes like cork. Iodine is also present as are black plums and licorice. The mid palate is really where this wine opens up- black fruits melding with a tannic dryness that builds slowly. The tannins are still a little green, I hope they soften a touch. There is a black olive note and more of that iodine on the finish that make this a brooding wine that I hope will mature like it’s predecessors. With a bit of bottle age this winery has turned out some great Bordeaux beauties that drink well for 10-15 years. I think this one has the stuffing, it comes from a great vintage- I just think it needs cellaring for a while. Drink from 2022 till 2030. Pairings will change as the wine matures, for now- if you pop and pour, stick with red meats and hearty cheeses to pair. I’m going with 89 points for now, with a possible upgrade in the future depending on the tannins and how they assimilate. 3 stars for this $30 Bordeaux wine. Salut….
Wow- 99 points form one critic, I just had to try it! Then I realized the pro in question rates on a different scale. It looks pretty dark in the glass, but there’s an effervescence appearing on the top that concerns me- either a tainted glass or something in the wine. On the nose I’m getting currants, cherry and bramble. The palate is quite sweet, with layered blackberry jam/blackcurrant reduction. This wine is very thick and juicy, loaded with fruit extract. There’s a nice dose of tannins that gently appear on the midpalate, melding with the dark fruits and carrying the wine to a nice, balanced finish of black berries, black currants and black tea leaf. There’s a Ribena note right at the end that I’m enjoying. This is a solid 91 pointer that will drink nicely till 2024. I’m going 4 stars at $30 for this Aglianico. Salut….
Medium purple, somewhat opaque int the glass. On the nose I get bramble, black cherry and bacon. On the palate it has a unique flavor profile. Very meaty with that black cherry note along with licorice. Smoke and tar really hit me on the mid palate alongside black berry and mid level tannins. The finish is black, dark- brooding and tannic. Black fruits dominate with some Lapsang Souchong tea notes. Earthy, smoky and strong. This is a unique wine which is composed of the following grapes: Corvina, Primitivo, Nero d’Avola. The pros went with red fruits, I am sticking with black. This is a non-vintage wine, so there is room for wiggle on style and tastes. It gets 89 points from me- forget the 98 rating it splashes on the bottle, that guy uses a strange rating system. Pair it with steaks, pasta (of course) or a heavy duty stew. It’s tasty, unique and worth a try, but at $30, it’s a bit pricey. 2 Stars. Salut….
This has to be the lightest colored Pinot I have ever come across, the light red color has accents of orange and resembles strawberry juice. The nose is totally different- packed with flavors it belies the visual assumptions. Strawberry, kirsch, cinnamon and a touch of oregano all hit the nose. The palate is slippery smooth, very elegant yet has a surging power waiting to release. Strawberries, cherry torte, vanilla and rhubarb all appear on the palate. Extremely fine grained tannins are present, as is some lithe acidity that really hits on the mid – to finish. Speaking of which- I get sour cherries on the backend that I’m really enjoying. Toasty oak is prominent throughout but not obnoxious. I’m serving this up with grilled monkfish and boiled potatoes. A perfect match. 92 points and 4 stars for the $30 price point. I am really enjoying it! Drink till 2023. Salut….
I can’t remember the exact details of when or where I bought this 3 Liter Double Magnum but it has been many years. This is a really nice Bordeaux wine which hailed from the amazing 2000 vintage. I have saved it for the right moment and hoped it had matured nicely and was not over the hill or premature. My first concern was the crumbling cork. I ended up with it inside the bottle and my shirt getting the first tastes before my Thanksgiving guests arrived. I was pleasantly surprised and thankful for my patience.
Still beautifully purple with no signs of bricking. The nose is sublime. Leather, plums, tobacco. The initial taste is very smooth, refined and balanced. More creamy purple fruits and leather show up as the wine works its way along. The tannins show up on the mid palate in a very subdued way. The finish has vanilla, plum torte and cassis berries. The tannins really kick in after a while and are gripping on the finish. 91 points and drinking nicely till 2023 at the least. I found it online for $30 but it got terrible ratings from the pros. I disagree but maybe that is because mine was in a large format bottle. I love aged Bordeaux and this one hit it on all cylinders for me. 5 stars if you are looking for a good deal on something that offers freshness with old world charm and some secondary flavors of maturity starting to emerge. Salut….
I wrote about La Mitre three years ago and recommended giving it a 2-3 year cellaring. I opened one up the other night and here is what I had to say about this offering that is now selling for $30.
A lighter purple that is somewhat opaque. Interesting nose of game, plum, rhubarb and an earthiness. On the palate it reveals some astringent tannins that are prominent yet dissipate to reveal cherry, garrigue and cola. There’s a certain imbalance between the tannins, fruit and acidity that I can’t my head around. This wine is 6 years old and needs a little more time. 88 points from me and 3 stars. I plan on re-tasting in a year or two. Salut….
From Argentina comes this beauty. A nose of black damson/dark plums, possibly a hint of sagebrush. Nice dark purple color with long legs in the glass, not something I comment on normally. Full on attack of black and blue fruits with ample tannins up front. Mouth watering acidity set this wine up for a long cellar potential. Mid palate hints of violet and plum offset by the edgy tannins. There is a longish finish that indicates the level of alcohol. 14.5% is hard to hide, but it is done rather well in this offering, with just some back end heat showing up. The wine is a little closed right now but will open up in 2017-2018 and cellar well for another 7-8 years. 90 points from me and 3 stars for this decent $30 offering from Mendoza, the capital of Malbec. I reckon it will rock a steak and do justice to some BBQ ribs. The structure is perfect for something sweet and spicy or marbled like a ribeye. Salut….