I take my WSET Level 3 exam tomorrow night so I thought I would get a sparkler in before the deadline. This one is pale lemon in color and has medium bubbles/mousse. The nose is of medium intensity with aromas of green apple, lemon, bread, biscuit and herbs. The palate is dry (A Brut can have 0-12 g/l of residual sugar). Medium (+) acidity, medium alcohol, medium body, delicate mousse and medium intensity flavors of biscuit, lemon, green apple and those herbs, it’s actually quite simple. The finish is medium in length and certainly tangy from the acid. If you like dry (ie. not a touch of sweetness) sparkling wine made in the Method Trtaditionelle which imparts the bread/yeast/brioche/dough flavors then this charming $20 wine is right up your alley. 88 points from me make it a 3 star effort. I’m thinking oysters. Drink now. Salut….
This blend of Touriga Nacional, Alicante Bouschet and Sousāo is pale ruby in the glass. It’s listed as 13.5% ABV which shows in the watery legs. The nose has nice, if somewhat muted aromas of cranberry, red cherry, dried herbs, blackberry and floral notes. The palate is very soft, with juicy acidity and mild tannins. The blackberry and red cherry flavors are present alongside some cedar and the dried herbs I sensed on the nose. The acidity is really intense on the back end where there is a shortish finish of bright red and black fruit. I like this medium bodied wine, it is fresh and primary fruit driven. The pro’s went with 90, I’m thinking 88 with a drink by 2025 window. At under $10 per bottle it gets 4 stars. I’m pairing it with grilled lamb kebabs and sautéed Kale. Salut….
Inky, with big legs in the glass showing off the 14.5% alcohol. On the nose I get red plum, raspberry, strawberry and cedar- not at all what I was expecting. The palate is super smooth and inviting- gentle tannins, red fruits galore and crispy acidity on the back end. Coffee shows up on the mid palate and I sense a tar component on the finish. Lovely mouthfeel on this one folks. It’s built to drink now and might take to a few years of cellaring but why wait. 88 points from me. Serve with strip steaks! For $20, it gets 4 stars. Salut….
I’m looking forward to this wine, to be paired with grilled Tri-Tip. For a Napa Cab, it shows a little lighter in the glass, with medium ruby color and thin legs. On the nose I have to battle the alcohol first, swirling like mad and blowing the fumes away. Once there I get blackberry, blackcurrant, black plum, cloves, smoke and yet more alcohol. On the palate this wine is dry with medium acidity, medium tannins which are softened by the addition of Merlot, Cab Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. It has a good body and the flavors are really juicy- more of the black fruits, the oak influence and I also get a black tea component. The alcohol is making it fuller on the mouthfeel but I can feel it on the back end, definitely present in this one. The finish is pretty decent in length with the tea outlasting the fruit. I think this is a decent wine, but not something to rave about. It will drink well till 2026 and pair great with steaks. 88 points from me and for $ 22 it gets 3 stars. Salut….
A medium lemon-green in the glass with watery legs. The nose of this indigenous Georgian wine is very crisp and refreshing with lemon, lime, apricot and a floral component. On the palate it is dry and tart, with crisp flavors of citrus, sour green apple and elderflower. The acidity is medium but the palate is definitely tart. I get a medium finish that is very refreshing, perfect for a hot evening. I am pairing mine with grilled shrimp on a bed of salad. It will go well with a charcuterie board, tapas or just by itself poolside. Delicious and reasonable at $13 it gets 88 points from me making it a 4 star wine. Drink soon. Salut….
We kicked off the 19th Virtual Wine Tasting with this French rosé, served at room temp and chilled for comparison. The wine is a lovely pale orange in the glass. The tasters found aromas and flavors of apricot, almond, tangerine, strawberry, citrus, marzipan and pink grapefruit. The chilled version was more intense with peach, quince, citrus, honeysuckle and green pear on the nose and peach, rhubarb (?), orange and crab apples on the palate. We felt the wine was a touch sour with a bitter aftertaste. The room temp version had medium acidity whilst the chilled one was more acidic. Overall I give the wine 88 points. Drink now with smoked salmon, shrimp cocktail or a salad Nicoise. At $20 per, it gets 3 stars from me. Salut….
I was looking for a steely Chardonnay to pair with Pork Tomahawk ribs, this Chablis happened to be on sale so I thought I was on to a winner….. It was tasty, sure, but not exactly what I was hoping for. It runs a pale gold in the glass with big legs. On the nose it is not very pronounced. I get lemon, quince, green apple, pineapple, passion fruit and iodine. The palate is slightly more intense, dry and quite acidic. I was looking forward to that part- the cut. Unfortunately the wine was actually a bit too big-bodied for my needs. It lacked the flinty minerality and only offered a touch of saline. The alcohol was evident BTW. If you want an un-oaked Chardy that is actually very tasty, this one can be had for $25. It gets 88 points from me with a drink now rec. 3 stars. Salut….
I have never tried this grape variety (Saperavi) and in my research found out that it is a red skinned grape that also has red juice. This is not typical as most red grapes have clear juice. This bottle hails from Georgia, the birthplace of wine so they tell me. It is paler than I thought it would be but a lovely shade of ruby in the glass. At 12.5% ABV I was not expecting much in the legs department either. The nose is bright and airy with cherry, raspberry, rhubarb and believe it or not- a touch of alcohol. The palate is off-dry, with just a hint of sweetness. I like it- goes with the light and fruity nose. It is very lithe yet has a nice acidic crunch. Cherry, cedar and sour strawberry all lead me to think this could be a cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault. It’s unique and delightful. The tannins are very gentle and caressing, with a decent length finish. I am really enjoying this wine which I picked to pair with Pork Tenderloin. I think it’s delicacy will go well with the mild white meat. 88 points from me for this $13 find that gets 4 stars. Try it if you can find it, it’s gonna be a great summer sundowner. Salut….
I have a story about Georgian wine, I won’t bore you with the details but suffice to say it involved AK47’s, Playboy magazines, a gallon of Georgian wine, some local fruit and of course- a 4-engined jet. Those of you who know me will have to bring a bottle of really good stuff over, I will regale you with the juicy bits.
So- when I saw this white blend of 80% Rkatsiteli and 20% Mtsvane I had to give it a try, it was only $14. It is pale lemon colored and has a very unique nose of tropical fruits, like passion fruit and pineapple. Lemon zest and green apple complement the primary flavors. The palate is off-dry with medium acidity and low alcohol. Flavors of the tropics are very present- pineapple, passion fruit and kiwi. The citrus and apple notes fading whilst some floral tones appear. It’s a very interesting profile. The acidity is not cutting yet the wine is not flabby- just right in balance with great mouthfeel. It’s got an ever so slight hint of green almond on the back end that gives it a touch of bitterness but overall, a very tasty drop. I’m grilling chicken breast with wild rice, thinking the pairing will work very well. I’m excited about this new find and will look forward to the next two bottles of Georgian wine I have on the ‘bench’, a red and white. Until then, expand your own palates and explore the world’s regions. 88 points and 4 stars. Salut….
Clear, medium garnet in the glass, this Sangiovese has a funky nose. Sour cherry, sauerkraut and compost all come to mind. #Concerned.
The palate allays my worries- cherry, blackcurrants, straw and rhubarb are present alongside lithe tannins. Juicy acidity keeps my jaws watering for an eternity whilst the finish lasts a medium amount of time. The wine is of light to medium body and lithe. It drinks well and will go nicely with my Lamb Kofta, which are very fatty and need some acidity to curb the grease. I’m ambivalent about this wine right now- I think it has potential but the nose is very off-putting. I will give it 88 points initially. On sale for $27, it gets 3 stars from me. Drink till 2028 with meaty tapas, Duck breast or Lamb stew. Salut….