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….
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….