The second wine of our virtual tasting was this Lodi blend of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot and Cab Sav. The nose was magnificent- lush, jammy blackberry, cocoa, dark plums. The palate was a different matter. We all immediately sensed a certain sweetness that we were not expecting. The wine is very fruity and concentrated with loads of black fruits. Tannins are apparent but not overbearing and there is a decent level of acidity to make for a nice mouthfeel. The cloying fruit however was a detractor for many in the group. Funnily enough, it was voted the best wine by a third of the attendees. I guess that sweetness appeals to some but not all. Each to his own. For me it was an 86 point wine that I feel was a little too manufactured and lacked finesse relying heavily on gobs of jammy fruit. Drink now. For $14 it gets 3 stars. Salut….
It’s inky, brooding, opaque and shows fine legs in the glass. On the nose I get graphite, plums, oaky vanilla and cedar. On the palate there are black currants, green plums, black tea and dry tannins. The mid palate is very astringent with more tea, strange tannins, some black fruit and not much acidity. I’m not enjoying this wine very much, too off-balance and way too dry without fruit to back it up. The finish is very dark and austere- over-steeped tea, some plums and a woodsy note. The grip of the tannins hold on for a while but the fruit fades quickly. Overall a disappointing wine from a great Bordeaux vintage. 86 points from me, the pros went much higher but I don’t see it. It may mellow out in the near future. Drink till 2025. For $75 it gets 1 star and a pass from yours truly. Salut….
Number 2 from SplashWines is this non-vintage blend that rings the bells at 13.5%. Semi opaque with a reddish tint in the glass. The nose is intriguing- strawberries, by the bucketful. Red currants and sweet pomegranate to boot. Oh…. and Apricots. Yup- Apricots. The palate is very unique, a touch sweet but very red fruit forward. It’s a very interesting flavor profile. The mid palate is very easy going, red Twizzlers and a touch of cherry cola. The acidity is very gentle which makes up for the lack of much tannin. The finish is more cherry and rhubarb with that crispy acidity adding zest. It’s decent in length and tasty. I must say I was a bit biased when I unscrewed this bottle, but I reckon it’s very easy going, fun to drink and will appeal to the novice as well as anyone coming over for a barbecue. This is a $13 party wine and it gets 86 points from me. 3 stars. Drink now. Salut….
It looks very dark and brooding in the glass, the legs barely evident- 13.5% alcohol will do that. On the nose it is spicy with dark cherry, cola and a touch of oak. I also notice a spice box component. On the palate it is a bit abrupt- black cherry, green pepper, iodine and anise all greet me. There’s a frontal wave of tannins that also hit right off the bat, quite dry and relentless. The mid palate is more red cherry meets blackberry, with a nice acidic touch to refresh the palate. The tannins are certainly players here, enveloping my gums and making me pucker. The brooding nature of this wine is evident on the palate now as it finishes with crunchy black berries, that tannic grip and some toasty oak nuances. The finish is quite long. I was not sure what to expect from this wine, it was part of a SplashWine shipment. I did see it for sale at $12 online and it got 83 points from one reviewer. I would guess it’s got some Syrah, Grenache and maybe a touch of Tempranillo. Who knows…. For me it’s decent for everyday, gets 86 points and 3 stars. Drink till 2024 with some Jamon, a steak or pasta. Salut….
Nice shades of purple with medium opacity. Zins tend to have higher alcohol and this one shows off its 15.5% very nicely on the legs. The nose is interesting- honey, blackberry preserves, cinnamon stick and black oak. On the palate it is very approachable right off the bat with blackberries, tea leaf and an intro to the very fine grained tannins. On the midpalate there is a stringy astringency that is putting me out of whack. The fruit subsided very quickly to make way for some bitter tannins unfortunately. Greeness prevails from that point to the finish. I’m trying to coax more of that delightful, jammy goodness but I’m being overpowered. This wine might need some cellaring but the green tannins will always be green unfortunately. 86 points from me and 3 stars for this $13 wine. Drink now. Salut….
Very dark purple in the glass with barely traceable legs. The aromas spilled over when I swirled the glass. On the nose I am sensing that candied licorice that I don’t care for. I also get pine and eucalyptus. On the palate, it is decent for an $8 bottle. I wasn’t expecting much complexity but this one has some nice primal fruit flavors of blackberry alongside anise, cedar and wood smoke. What it lacks in structure it makes up for with fruitiness and verve. A decent drink that has a trace of tannins, a bit of acidity and an easy going quaffability. 86 points would be generous but at this price, it’s good for a BBQ or a day at the picnic site. Drink now. 3 stars. Salut….
Pretty purple in the glass, quite opaque. On the nose it is all blackberry. The initial palate is black cherry, an awkward greenness and tar. The mid palate offers much the same, with more vegetal notes than I care for. This wine rates well with the pros at 90+ but I don’t get it. The finish is sour, green, the tannins are astringent. Not my cup of tea at all. There might be some of you who enjoy austere wines, this one might be up your alley. I’m going 86 points. For $18, it is a pass from me but you may want to give it a try- 2 stars. Drink now. Salut….
Medium purple with a bluish hue. Dammit, that sugary, oaky nose that I really dislike just hit me. Red sweets, twizzlers and cotton candy. On the palate- pretty much the same but with some decent acidity to brighten things up. Very lithe tannins are barely perceptible. This wine is the quintessential bbq drop. Easy to quaff, bright fruit, pleasant enough and capable of pairing with smoked or charred meats and sweet/tangy sauces. It’s not my cup of tea but should appeal to many. Drink this 86 point wine in the near term. $8 all day long make this a 2 star wine. Salut….
My buddy brought this wine, which I was really excited to try. Unfortunately, it was a major let down. Color was right but the nose and flavors were earthy with a tar note. I did not bother to write further as I was really tired and just wanted to relax. Overall, I would have given this wine 86 points and probably a pass for the $60 price tag….until I read some more posts about it on the web. It rated very highly with the pros and sells for its price point, so maybe I got an off bottle. I will reserve further judgement until I get another opportunity. Too bad. Salut….
In my worldly travels I come across great finds, unique deals and then the ones you have to say hmmm.. This bottle was picked up at the local gas station in Tokyo, for about $5. I don’t have much faith except it won Best Spanish Producer of 2014 at the Intl Wine Challenge, Vienna. That was the selling point, plus I trust Tempranillo from Spain far more than other dodgy varietals that were on offer. Here we go.
I am drinking it out of a water glass, so keep that in mind. It appears a medium opacity, with nice purple tones. On the nose- pure Tempranillo with a touch of oak. Notes of Twizzlers and cherry cola come through. On the palate it is a basic, decent drop. Primary flavors roll out with some earthiness. The lack of much tannic structure can be overlooked since this is an easy wine to drink. Cherry and cola come to mind and the wine has a decent acidic component. On the mid palate it gets a little bitter for some reason. The finish is all red fruit driven and I get a certain dryness, not tannic though. Overall a decent drop for what I was looking for and where I was looking. 86 points and for the price I have to give it 3 stars. I bought some ham and cheese sandwiches to go along, they hit the spot. Salut….