Very bright purple in the glass. The nose is very lively, with blackberry and plum notes alongside vanilla. On the palate it is delicious- rich, with caramel, oak and black fruits galore. Very lithe tannins and a touch of acidity make for a very easy drinking red with nice mouthfeel. The mid palate turns a touch astringent, with lapsang souchong tea, blackberry and oak. The finish is mid length with more dark fruit and black tea. A nice drop that will do well with many dishes but is delicious all by itself. 90 Points and 5 starts for this $13 effort. Drink till 2021. Salut….
Bright purple in the glass. Black cherry and sassafras come to mind on the nose. The palate is very tasty, brimming with Black cherry, cola, and dark chocolate. Very fine grained tannins introduce themselves right off the bat and help to coat the gums very gently all the way through the mid palate and onto the finish. Speaking of the mid-palate, there’s more cola than fruit here along with some licorice. It’s quite nice! The finish is medium length and continues the theme. A very satisfying wine that I am enjoying with pasta and meatballs. 90 points, drink till 2025 with anything Italian! For the $13 price tag, you need some of this 5 star wine. Salut….
Medium opacity, great purple color. On the nose creosote, blueberry, charcoal and plum jam. On the palate I get a darker fruit profile- blackberry, ripe plum. The mid palate hits me with cheek quenching tannins, not overly done- just makes me pucker a bit. The acidity also presents at the same moment. Intriguing to have my rear jowls hit by opposing forces. The finish gets me back to that mineral tone of creosote, perhaps some black olives, all tiptoeing around the tannic bite that crescendoed on the finish. An interesting wine that I am enjoying thoroughly. It’s needs meat though, pair it with game, lamb stew or something hearty. 91 points for this blend of 62% Pinotage, 22% Merlot, 12% Cab Sav and 4% Shiraz. Aerate for immediate enjoyment and drink till 2025. 5 stars for this $15 effort. Salut….
Dinner at my cousin’s house. He offered me a crack at his cellar- who am I to refuse a gracious host! Inky purple in the glass- opaque. On the nose I get sweet blackberry, new oak, black olives. The initial taste is intriguing. Tannic at the outset, it gives off black fruit flavors, garrigue, lavender, black tea and a ton of mouth coating tannins. This is a brooding wine- powerful, dry, fruity and built for the long haul. It transitions to the back end with flavors of iodine, that black olive note and definitely more blackberries. Good acidity holds the tannins in check, which are in full force as the wine’s long finish fades away. This wine begs for decanting, aerating or a monster juicy Ribeye. Drink till 2030 at the least. 92 points and 5 stars from me for this $25 wine. If you can find it, buy by the case and cellar. The aging capacity of this cuvee is amazing. See my posts on the 2000 St. Thomas, the 2005, the 2006 and the mighty 2008. Salut….
Really bright, rich purple in the glass. The nose offers up sweet cherry concentrate, with blackberries and dare I say- banana? On the palate the wine is super smooth, polished and oozing blackberry coulis, sage and creosote. The mid palate shows off some delightful dryness from the juicy tannins. The overall mouthfeel is really nice, starting out very smooth, building on a dryness and finishing with a tannic yet acidic bite. Tasty. The dark fruits carry on throughout. You could pair this wine with many dishes or just drink it alone, but the back end grip really calls for Ribeye. Plain and simple. 94 is what it gets from me and the pros. This is a big wine folks. 5 stars only because I can’t give 6 for this amazing $17 bottle. Drink till 2028. Salut….
Really rich hues of purple in the glass. The nose contains a certain funk…. not sure if that blows away. Earthy, plum, iodine and ink all come to mind while swirling. The initial palate is typical for the region. Bold, punchy and full of black fruits. Great balance between the medium tannins and acidity alongside a dollop of blackberry jam. The midpalate is drier, more primal. The dark fruits hold on and overcome the tannic bite, barely. This wine is a seesaw of fruit vs. structure- I’m loving it. The finish is long, dry with heaps of blackberry, oregano and olives. Very much in-your-face. 91 points, drink till 2024 with charcuterie, roasted game, lamb chops or a hearty pasta. This is tasty stuff folks. 5 stars for the $17 price tag. Salut….
Inky purple with medium opaque hues. Nose is crushed blueberries with black berry jam. The palate is lovely, blueberry with açaí berry and fig. The tannins are so sleek, they sneak up on me at the end. The mid palate has a nice body to it and shows off more blue fruits. The finish is of medium length, slightly dry and more of a black fruit tint. 90 points and 5 stars for this $12 wine. Paired with Truffled Ravioli, seared Petit Sirloin and tomato jam. Drink till 2022. Salut….
This is the second bottle of Amalthea that my cousin brought over. Bluish purple with nice legs showing in the glass. The nose has plum, blueberry and filberts. The palate has rich blue fruits, juicy acidity, nice tannins from the outset and a hint of that nuttiness I caught on the nose. The wine transitions nicely to the mid-palate and finish where the tannins really grip. More blueberries, black tea and a mineral note close it out. The wine is very balanced with really well crafted tannins that give a nice level of dryness without astringency. This is a much smoother wine than the Cabernet, which can be expected with the varietals. It paired nicely with my Tri-Tip roast, Yorkshire pudding and roasted potatoes. Drink till 2024. 91 points and 5 stars for this $21 effort. Of note- both wines have had freezing issues which does not harm the wine, only crystalizing some sediment in the glass. Salut….
Medium opacity, good color. Nose is full of espresso, black berry and lush plums. The palate is very smooth, slightly acidic and starts off with black currants, charred oak and olives. The mid palate has more black fruit with the tannins starting to grip. I like the deft use of oak here and it smooths the wine nicely. The finish is medium in length, brimming with black cherry with the tannins receding nicely. 88 points and 5 stars for this $11 wine. Great value from Chile. Salut….
Rich plums and thick oak staves fill the nose on this nearly black wine. On the palate I get delicious black berries, lush dark currants and a tar component. I’m trying hard to pinpoint the missing flavor, could it be coffee? Tannins are present but not obtrusive, with dark fruits and more wood present on the mdi to back end. 90 points and 5 stars for this uniquely labelled Cab that runs about $18. Salut….