It’s a pretty shade of purple in the glass with a 98 point sticker on the bottle….. hmmm. The nose is thin but offers up strawberry coulis and cherry juice. On the palate it has much more presence. A rich mouthful of dark cherry, strawberry extract and cola hit me square on. Tannins introduce themselves right away and are not holding back. This is a hefty wine, with structure to boot. The mid palate has more of that extracted cherry that is almost overwhelmed by the tannic grip. Wow, this wine is built. The finish is very astringent yet tasty. Red fruits swirl alongside black tea and jaw drying tannins. It’s certainly an interesting wine that I am really enjoying, yet wondering what the cellaring potential is as there is very little acidity. The tannins and fruit are certainly present, I am just a little concerned about the long term structure. Let’s see in a few years. For now, enjoy this Merlot/Sangiovese blend with pasta, steaks or moussaka. It gets a realistic 91 points from me and 5 stars for the $14 price I paid. Drink till 2027 at the least. Salut….
Medium shade of gold in the glass. The nose has definitely got butter. Marzipan, banana and lemon peel also feature. On the palate it is very round, tasty and full bodied. That marzipan comes back at me with lemon, beeswax and oak staves. The mid palate shows some citrus and floral components that move on to the finish. I get almost a tannic bite right at the end- interesting. Very easy to drink without a huge dose of acidity. It’s a nice aperitif and will pair well with my grilled hens and bacon draped Brussel sprouts. 89 points and 5 stars if you like this style of oaky Chard that sells for $14. Drink now. Salut….$14
In the glass this wine is textbook Pinot Noir- bright red, see-through with lithe legs. On the nose I get cherry cola, strawberry and faint wood. On the palate it screams New World Pinot with strawberry coulis, bing cherry and delightful tannins that ease into a full blown black tea extravaganza that leave my gums puckered and my teeth thoroughly dry. The mid palate turns a little blue on me with berries and tar. The finish is back to the original strawberry/cherry combo that I love. The finish is long with nice balanced acidity offsetting the tannins. 91 points for this $20 wine makes it a 5 star effort IMHO. Drink now till 2027. I am pairing it with roasted Cornish Hens, baked Sweet Potatoes with Feta and sautéed Zucchini. Salut….
Darker and more opaque than most Pinot Noirs. The nose has a strawberry candy note plus blueberry paste and a fig component. Sounds strange- I know. On the palate it delivers on that fig thing, surprisingly. I also get blueberry and some oak. The tannins are crispy, appearing on the midpalate and carrying us through to the finish which has blueberry and charcoal. Very tasty indeed. The tannins are long lived, drying out my gums for well over a minute. This will will age nicely methinks . 90 points and 5 stars for this $11 wine. Salut….
Quite dark but lacking much opacity in the glass. On the nose it reeks of New World Pinot goodness. Cherry cobbler, vanilla and strawberry coulis all hit me on the nose. The palate has a gorgeous initial streak of bing cherry, blueberry (yup), cedar and spice box. There is a fruitcake note on the midpalate that tempers some acidity. The wine finishes with a slightly green note- capsicum comes to mind, but it’s quite nice. The vegetal twist alongside the red fruit works well here. There is an underlying astringency from the very feint tannins. This is a delicious wine for immediate consumption or a few years in the cellar. 90 points and 5 stars for this $19 effort. Pair with roast chicken, grilled salmon or Veal chops. You can read my previous reviews of the Saint Clair lineup to see I am a huge fan, for good reason. Salut….
A quick note from a party…. Unbelievable nose- black fruits galore, chai tea, olives and blueberry jam. On the palate I get gorgeous blue fruit ganache, really tight knit tannins – crunchy acidity. Sublime wine that is full bodied and long. It shows off bright Napa sunshine in the fruit which I think will evolve nicely in the next 10-15 years. Drink till 2030. 93 points if not 94 for this bold $45 effort. 5 Stars. Salut….
This is the second wine of Chryseia, it is a beautiful dark purple in the glass. The nose gives off rose petals, perfume, black currant and cedar slate. On the palate it is big- loads of Ribena, oregano, red licorice and a hint of wood. The mid palate is seamless with the introduction of some very lithe tannins. The mouthfeel is generous and warm in this wine. It is relatively easy drinking with the mild tannins, barely perceptible acidity and warm fruit. The finish is all black currant, decent in length and not overly dry. 92 points and 5 stars for this $25 effort. Delicious. Drink this blend of Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Roriz till 2030. Salut….
Opaque, murky and dark purple in the glass. I always think of Pinotage as a very black grape, with medicinal notes, herbs, creosote and violets. Let’s see what this $12 offering gives
On the nose I get telltale tar, kerosene and purple fruits. On the initial it is textbook- charcoal, violets, that earthy creosote and plums. Loads of plums. Spices add to the tannins in the mid-palate, namely cinnamon. This is a tasty wine folks. The finale is very restrained, tannins are present but not overpowering. Acidity is lithe and the plummy notes are in force. 89 points and 5 stars. Drink till 2022 with wild game, roasted chicken or moussaka. Salut….
Dark purple and showing some legs in the glass. The nose is vibrant with black currants, licorice and oak. On the palate this is delicious folks. Ribena, blackberry jam and toasty oak hit me all at once. There is a cherry stream that appears on the midpalate alongside vanilla bean. Tannins are in check, melded and balanced with the acidity. The finish is warm, almost alcoholic but at 14% I must be imagining things. There is a charred oak note in the finish that is perfect for the dark berry fruit notes. This wine is drinking beautifully and will do so till 2025. I wish I had some Osso Bucco laying around , or even shepherds pie. Look for this rare varietal- Crespiello, it is an interesting one for sure. 92 points and 5 stars for its $25 price tag. Salut….
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….