I’ve been on a big Grenache kick lately and bought several different offerings from this producer whom I’ve tried before. This one is medium ruby colored and has some nice red fruit and meaty aromas. Raspberry, black cherry, bacon, lavender, red plum, red licorice and sweet cedar. The palate is dry and tannic upfront. Great acidity balances the well integrated tannic component and the flavors are delicious. Red fruit, Ceylon tea, game, florals and oak nuance all mingle together. The mid palate has a slight astringency akin to tea meets charred oak and mineral slate. The finish is quite long for this full bodied wine that needs a bit of time to flesh out methinks. I think it will be a great wine in a few years but right now it turned a bit angular on me. I’m going with 90 points for now on this $32 blend that has some Mourvedre in it. 4 stars with a drink between 2024-2030 window. Salut….
This bottle was assigned to my WSET tasting group- an interesting one as this producer is big in Cali, not so well known for Oregon Pinot. It shows a pale ruby in the glass and has medium intensity aromas of red cherry, red currant, red plum, cinnamon and coconut- it was considered youthful. The palate was dry with medium (+) acidity, medium tannins, medium alcohol and medium (-) body. We matched the flavors with the aromas and thought they were slightly less intense, leading to a medium (-) finish. At $32, this is what we considered an acceptable wine with a drink now window. Overall I would rate it 88 points and 3 stars if that. Think chilled Salmon on a bed of Boston bib or perhaps a thin sirloin flash grilled. Salut….
Pale ruby, this see-through Pinot has beautiful color and watery legs in the glass. The nose is stunning- pronounced aromas of strawberry cobbler, red cherry, cherry cola, dusty wood, raspberry and red licorice. The palate is very smooth with a great expression of strawberry, cherry, raspberry, red cola and licorice with that sawdust-like earthiness. Very lithe tannins balance a medium acidity making for a mid weight mouthfeel that goes on and on. The finish is a touch tart and juicy but has great length. The thing I like so much about this varietal is it’s ease of drinking when young yet it has great aging capacity if made properly. This one is only 4 years old but will go on until 2030 at the least, pairing with roast pork, grilled Cornish hens, eggplant parmigiana or even a peppercorn filet mignon. It is seductive and lithe yet complex and mysterious. Delicious expression of the grape that gets 92 points from me and 5 stars for its $32 price point. Salut…..
I am experimenting tonight with sous vide Salmon. Never cooked it this way before and I’m finishing it with a cilantro and garlic butter so I needed a full bodied, rich white. Orin Swift makes delicious reds which are powerful, extracted and definitely high on the alcohol side of things so I figured I would give their white a try. It is a deep gold color in the glass and shows a watery sheen on the sides which does not indicate a thing about the monster 15% ABV which I noticed on the label. The nose has pronounced lemon and lime aromas alongside hazelnuts, green apple, cut grass (strange aroma for this varietal), a touch of toast and butter. The palate is classic west coast Chard. Buttery, rich, full bodied, citrusy with a hint of that chardonnay yeastiness aka bakers spice. The acidity is on the lower end of the spectrum but the wine is definitely bold, with big fruit flavors and plenty of mouthfeel. The finish is decent in length and the malolactic notes (toast, butter, brioche) really feature on the back end. This wine is 5 years old and is drinking nicely now but will potentially cellar till 2027. I think the pairing will work nicely as would roast game hens, Paella or Gumbo. $32 gets you a bottle of this 91 point wine. 5 stars but beware the well hidden alcohol, it will sneak up! Salut….
This Bordeaux blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc is beautiful in the glass- deep golden colored it shows off its age appropriately. There is just a sheen of legs, which made me check the ABV- 12.5%. Perfect. I’m getting a little tired of getting tipsy too soon. The nose is quite pronounced with aromas of gooseberry, lemon zest, green apple, honeysuckle, biscuit and persimmon. A very interesting combination! The palate is very soft and smooth with gentle acidity, full body and good length. The flavors are more secondary and tertiary driven. Citrus and apple give way to buttery components alongside toast and biscuit. I did a bit of research after the fact. This wine is technically a “drink now”, up to 2019. Whoops. It certainly shows some age but I think it will go swimmingly well with our grilled Salmon and sautéed spinach tonight. If you have any, pop soon. 89 points from me for this $32 wine make it a 3 star effort. Salut…..
My wine course is finishing up with sparkling wines and fortified wines. This particular bottle was brought over by our friends Arty and Keef. It’s been sitting in the fridge, waiting for the right occasion. Dinner with my cousin and Aunt after a nearly two year COVID hiatus is a good time to pop this bottle.
It’s a medium lemon shade in the glass with nice mousse. The nose has a good intensity of pink grapefruit, lemon, bananas, bread dough and almonds. The palate is dry with juicy acidity, is medium bodied with pronounced flavors of green pear, grapefruit, lemon, brioche and almonds. The finish is decent in length and the wine is very good. I am giving this Chardonnay based sparkler 91 points and for $32 it’s a great deal that gets 5 stars from me. Thanks guys at the 204! Drink till 2030. Salut….
As you may have read in my last post- the assignment for the wine course I am taking has a comparison between a dry Aussie Riesling with a sweeter German Auslese. Here is the official review that I submitted:
Dr. H. Thanisch Berncasteler Ley Riesling Auslese 2017. Mosel, Germany. 8.5% ABV
- Intensity : Pale
- Color : Gold
- Intensity : Light
- Aroma characteristics : Primary notes of Mango, Passion Fruit and Apricot. Secondary aromas of Gingerbread.
- Sweetness : Medium
- Acidity : Medium
- Alcohol : Low
- Body : Medium
- Flavor intensity : Pronounced Primary flavors of Peach and Apricot. Tertiary flavors of Honey and Marmalade.
- Finish : Medium
Conclusions : Very good quality, unctuous but not overly sweet.
Moxie was tasting with me but she thought this wine was too sweet for her. It’s a good quality drop if you are in the market but it runs $32 right now, getting 92 points makes it a 5 star sweetie. This one will last a good while, till 2035. Salut….
I’m tasting this one in the dark, literally. We lost power earlier today and I have rigged up the generator but it only runs certain things, like the dishwasher😳.
From what I can see via flashlight this is a semi opaque, dark purple looking wine. The nose is somewhat subdued, but I managed to coax blackberries and vanilla bean. The palate is sweet- oh my. A very, very interesting assemblage of flavors. Coconut, blackberry pie, mint, the list goes on. It’s one of the most intriguing, surprising and tasty wines I have come across. The mid palate continues the swirling bouquet of differing flavors but introduces some very nice, medium intensity tannins. I really dig this wine. It’s finish is a nice dry affair that allows those dark fruits, coconut and vanilla flavors to once again take turns in caressing my gums. This is an amazing display of very unique flavors, well done. 93 points. Drink till 2030 with beef stew, steaks or just by itself. $32 makes this a 5 star wine to stock up on. Salut….
Medium opacity, certainly not a light Pinot. Explosive nose of cherry, rhubarb and violets. On the palate, that old world nose gave way to new world juiciness, freshness and very integrated tannins. Flavors of cherry, bramble, pie crust and cinnamon hit me at the onset. Towards the mid palate it ramps up with a great acidity with some strawberry marching in. The finish is long, with Kirsch and plenty of pH, alongside some oaky nuances. I like this wine, a lot. 91 points and 4 stars- you can find it for $32 which places it in the 4 star category. Cellar some and drink till 2026. Salut….
Somewhat opaque but dark purple. The nose gives up candies, plum, oak, cherry pie, vanilla bean. The palate is super spicy, loaded with fruit and very smooth. Plum ganache, mocha, cafe au lait and blackberry preserve round out the initial palate. The transition to mid palate shows off some very integrated tannins, a red berry note and some cedar plank. The finish is mid length and coats the mouth in plum sauce, coffee and chocolate dust. 92 points from me for this $32 effort, which contradicts the pro’s 89, oh well. I liked it and will buy again for a juicy Sunday roast companion. 5 stars for this Shiraz/Grenache/Viognier blend. Salut….