Medium garnet colored, this Tempranillo has trademark aromas of leather, earthy dust, ripe blackberry, rich plum, vanilla, black cherry jam and charred wood. The palate is dry with medium acidity and grippy tannins that coat my mouth. The fruit is ripe and the wine is full bodied. Black fruit flavors wrapped in a cloak of oak nuance with some signs of tertiary development make for a delicious wine. I paid $19 for this stunning 92 pointer that gets 5 stars. I would pair it with grilled Hangar steak and sweet potato fries. I think this balanced and structured wine will drink well until 2030 at the least. Salut….
There’s dessert wines and then there is Chateau d’Yquem. Head and shoulders above the rest it is the only Supérieur Premier Cru in the region. This botrytised wine was still very young but we got exactly what we wanted out of it-
Deep gold colored. Honey, apricot, lemon marmalade, orange preserves, white blossom, nuts, super sweet with medium (+) acidity. Full bodied. Youthful, long finish. 96 points
A pretty basic write up, but when you are sipping this stunner with chocolate lava cake it’s hard to divert too much attention to making assessments. An amazing wine to savor with friends for the next 30 years or so. I have to agree with the pros, this is at least a 96 point wine that gets 5 stars. Salut….
An iconic Napa Cabernet that we drank with monster Tomahawk steaks. This inky colored wine is beautiful to look at and even better to drink. Aromas and flavors of Iodine, black fruit (blackcurrant, blackberry, plum, bramble), dust, menthol, eucalyptus. Seriously complex and intriguing. The palate is smooth- medium acidity, fine grained tannins that are fully integrated, full bodied with great mouthfeel and a long finish. What a stunning wine that is en pointe and will continue to develop for several more years. 93 points for this $130 effort makes it 5 star worthy. Salut….
I have been following the progress of this Sangiovese for a few years now and really enjoyed it alongside charcuterie prior to dinner. I didn’t take notes, only mental observations. It is now mature, with high acidity and melded tannins. The red fruit is joined by leather, rose, cigar box and maduro. Medium bodied, it drinks nicely to a medium finish. You can read about my last tasting here. I’m sticking with the 93 points previously given. It runs $50 now which is still a good deal for well made Brunello. 5 stars. Drink till 2030. Salut….
We are moving next month and wanted to have a special dinner with close friends- this was the opener. My last sampling of the 2000 Lynch Bages was 4 years ago. It has developed further and is fully mature now. Moxie said it was the best wine she has ever tasted. A Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
A very light bricking on the rim gives clues to this wine’s age. The nose is a complex melding of tertiary notes alongside some fruit and oak nuance. Leather, tobacco, cassis, cedar box, cooked blackberry, prunes, fig and a touch of caramel. On the palate this wine is so smooth- medium (+) acidity has kept it in fine shape alongside very fine grained tannins that are fully integrated at this point. Medium bodied, the flavors have a medium intensity- it’s about finesse with this wine. A long finish shows off its pedigree. Simply stunning and a pleasure to drink after so long in the cellar. It’s average price hovers around $450 now, jaw dropping I know. I’m sticking with my original 96 point score. It’s only fair to give this wine 5 stars. Drink till 2027. Salut….
This blend of Tempranillo and Cab Sav is nearly opaque with a bright purple color. On the nose I get rich black plum, dusty earth, blackberry, vanilla, baking spices, menthol, some farmyard funk and bramble. The palate is dry, quite tannic and high in acidity. I love Spanish Tempranillo- it has such an earthy, dusty, brambly component and they throw a good bit of oak at this level (Reserva) which adds dimension, complexity and flavors/aromas of vanilla, baking spices and toast. The black fruit is ripe and juicy- the Cabernet adding richness and grip. The body is full and the finish is medium to long in length. Structurally- this wine is a baby and needs some cellaring unless you like them searingly dry and astringent. There is plenty of fruit to last a while and the whole package should drink beautifully until 2032 at the least. I am going with 93 points and for $40 this is a 5 star effort. Salut….
It’s been nine years since I last tasted the 2001 Valduero, which I opened by accident. Today’s bottle is intentional- Mothers Day Sunday roast. It is deep garnet colored with definite signs of aging. The nose smells divine- leather, earth, blackberry jam, cassis, mint, coffee bean, vanilla, baked blueberry and a medicinal note. The palate is dry with medium (+) acidity and melded tannins which caress my gums. This 100% Tempranillo is full bodied and I get flavors of stewed/cooked black and blue fruits, earth, leather, oak influence (coffee, vanilla and the medicinal note) and a tart black cherry note on the long finish. The tannins start to grip on the back end and cover my teeth and gums with a ‘hairy’ feeling. This 21 year old wine is still showing youth in structure and some fruit, amazing. It will go beautifully with our dinner and could potentially cellar some more with a drinking window out to 2027. I paid $60 back in the day for this 95 point wine which I would award 5 stars to. Salut….
The more Grenache I drink, the more I like it. This older bottle from near Adelaide has turned the color corner- medium garnet in the glass. The nose has vivid aromas of ripe raspberry, black cherry, sarsaparilla, cedar, charcoal, red plum, a hint of vanilla and some coffee. The palate is… wowsa. Dry yet sweet from ripe fruit. Rich raspberry, dark cherry, oak nuance, coffee, black cherry, red plum and sweet vanilla. Medium acidity and very integrated tannins make for a lovely mouthfeel. The body is quite full and the finish is nearing 30 seconds. I like this wine, a lot. It is very easy to drink but makes me give pause to consider what else I am experiencing in its complexity and depth. It gets 93 points from me and for $45 it’s a 5 star wine. I love this winery BTW. Drink till 2027. Salut….
The red wine theme for our 27th VWTC tasting was Cabernet Franc. We kicked it off with this classic Chinon from the Loire valley. As I opened the bottle and took a sniff I was very worried about the wine’s acceptance into our group. It was very, very funky with loads of herbaceous aromas- not everyones cup of tea mind you. This wine is deep purple colored with pronounced aromas of green pepper, dried herbs and earth. We also got funk, cave moss, overripe blackberry, sea salt, lavender, violet, plastic band aid, overripe cherry and sarsaparilla. There was definitely some minerality in this very complex wine. The palate was dry with medium (+) tannins, medium (+) acidity and was full bodied. In addition to the herbaceous notes we also got flavors of tart cherry on the plate, especially towards the back end. Oak was present by way of svelte cinnamon and nutmeg flavors and the wine finished to a medium length. I was pleasantly surprised how this $38 monster developed in the glass and became one of the group’s favorite wines. Some just love the funk! I gave it 91 points and would drink this over a 10 year window with hearty steaks, venison or rich stews. It gets 5 stars from me, just beware of the herbaceous quality of this varietal- times 10. Salut….
Our second wine of the 27th VWTC event was this dry Riesling that was served at room temperature first and then chilled. The group thought this pale straw wine had aromas and flavors of citrus, white geranium florals, caramel, honeysuckle, tangerine, pear skin and almonds. The tangerine was very prominent on the dry palate which had medium (+) acidity, a medium body and a slightly mineral edge to it. The finish was medium length and this wine was enjoyed by most.
Served chilled it was far more focused with greater citrus thrust, higher perceived acidity, some white peach in there as well as some unique additions of cotton candy and bananas in addition to the citrus (tangerine) and floral components. I was hoping for a crisp wine- this 89 pointer delivered. (One pro went as high as 96 points!). For $16- it’s a great value that gets 5 stars from me. Drink till 2026 with fresh seafood or baked chicken with green beans Almandine. Salut….