This wine is a blend of Tempranillo and Alicante Bouschet which is a Teinturier grape (flesh is also red). It’s a deep shade of purple in the glass and it stains the walls. On the nose- ripe red plums, black cherry, menthol, vanilla and almond pith. The palate is dry with medium acidity and high tannins (remember the stained walls of the glass?). The flavors are rich and ripe- dark red fruit, charcoal, vanilla, menthol and an espresso strength coffee note right at the end. Full bodied, it finishes with medium length along with some very tannic grip. It is a rather complex wine for $15 that gets 91 points from me and 5 stars. If you like ’em dry, pop-n-pour or else cellar this wine for a few years but drink up by 2030. I am pairing with grilled meat and roasted cauliflower rubbed with Chorizo seasoning. Salut….
Second wine up at the 24th Virtual tasting was a Portuguese blend that had 50% Alicante Bouschet- a new varietal to the group. A deep garnet color, this wine was showing a touch of age. On the nose we got blueberry, tobacco, licorice, loads of black cherry, some funk and oak influence by way of smoke, creosote, vanilla, charcoal, chocolate and cedar- our tasting group is that sensitive!
The palate was super smooth with silky tannins, loads of oak, spice box, rich blueberry, black cherry and tar with a tart finish. Low to medium acidity this mid-weight bodied wine has a long finish and is very balanced- 93 points and my WOTN. At $45 it’s not a daily drinker but value for cash it is a super nice treat wine that gets 5 stars from me. Drink till 2028 with richer meats and stews. 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….
This blend of Zinfandel, Syrah, Petite Sirah and Alicante Bouschet is quite brooding in the glass. Dark purple and completely opaque. On the nose it has a sweet blackberry note alongside earthy herbs and violets. The palate is fruit forward with black cherry, blackberries and steeped plum notes. A dusty earthiness is ever present and some lithe tannins present at the mid palate. I sense the alcohol and just read the content- 14.9%…. careful out there. Black tea and iodine hit me on the back end as the tannic grip envelopes the mouth and melds with the fruit. It’s a tasty one for sure and I like the blend. It’s rich, rewarding and the structure is decent for medium term cellaring. Moxie is cooking up some stuffed Green Peppers, I think it will work nicely. Drink till 2023. 89 points and 3 stars for this $45 wine. Salut….
In my continued quest to to discover Portuguese wines, I have come across this $14 effort that piqued my interest. It is an equal blend of Touriga Nacional, Trincadeira, Syrah and Alicante Bouschet. My first hint is the 14.5% alcohol. The second is the deep, dark purple color in the glass. Both, to me, indicate an extracted, powerful wine that will grab me and not let go. I’m ready for it.
On the nose, I get the telltale Syrah notes- Plum, oak, cocoa. The wine has amazing ‘legs’ indicative of the alcohol content. The initial taste is as predicted, full on, powerful and alluring. The wine starts off with black berry, black currants and a delightful set of tannins that prop the wine up rather than detract from the fruit. The mid palate shows off more dark fruit and some earthiness. Tannic structure is great and they start to peak on the finish where menthol and anise flavors intertwine with berries. I am digging this wine and like the flavor profile. It has the correct structure to age for 2-5 years and is drinking well now if you like them a touch dry. I have to go 90 points and 5 stars for this wine. Salut….