Nearly black and opaque in the glass. On the nose I get gorgeous blackberries and fruitcake with a touch of mint. On the palate it is fresh, young, fruity and chock full of black fruits, cedar, scrumptious tannins and a slight hint of cassis. Tobacco and leather are evident on the mid palate which totally excites me and hints at long term evolution in line with traditional Bordeaux. The tannic structure is amazing, very lithe at the beginning with a steady rise to a crescendo of black tea dryness. 92 points and 4 stars for this $50 Fifth Growth. Drink till 2030. Salut….
Dark purple with nice legs. On the nose it’s quite bland. Black currants, blueberry pie and rubber mat finally come out of the glass. On the palate I’m getting a subdued dose of blueberry pie, cedar, breakfast tea and warm blackberry cobbler. The tannins are of medium intensity and the finish has some dark fruits and tannins. I think this wine is closed right now but it has potential. I’m gonna go with 90 points for now. The pro’s ranged greatly- from 91 to 95 points. I’m not seeing it at this point in time, hopefully it will awaken from slumber as a real powerhouse 3rd Growth Margaux. Drink from 2022/2030. Available for around $50, making it a 3 star wine. Salut….
Very dark purple, nearly black in the glass. On the nose I get fresh blackberries, cedar, vanilla and coffee bean. On the palate this wine is delicious- chock full of black fruits, a beautiful oak integration, medium grained tannins that caress at the right time and some very gentle acidity. Aussie wines can sometimes get too jammy, especially with Shiraz- but this Cab Sav has ripeness and body without going over the edge. The mid palate just continues the black fruit theme and the finish is long, dry and adds cinnamon and licorice to the back end. Delightful. 91 points and 5 stars for this $20 bottle. Drink till 2028 with steaks. Salut….
Dark purple in the glass with long legs. 93% cab, 5% Malbec and 2% Petit Verdot. On the nose I get rich plum, blackberry, cocoa and cedar. On the palate I am surprised yet delighted by the rich cherry flavor that hits initially. The wine offers up the more traditional plums and black fruit later, alongside very lithe tannins that sneak up. Balance is great in this wine, just a touch of acidity to keep the dryness in check and allow the fruit to shine. There’s a certain warmth that closes out the midlength finish that I’m enjoying. This wine is drinking nicely now and will improve with age. Drink till 2026 with steaks! 92 points and 4 stars for this $62 wine. Salut….
Bright purple with nice legs in the glass. Sweet blackberries on the nose with a vanilla bean twist. On the palate it is crisp, dry and delicious. Black cherry jam with blackberries topped with some espresso beans. The mid is more blueberries and plum, the tannins smoothing out. The finish has black fruits, tea, olive and a good whack of tannic grip. There’s a lot going on here folks, very intricate. 92 points and 4 stars for this $48 Napa beauty. Drink till 2030. Salut….
Dark shades of purple in the glass. The nose is overflowing with blackberries. There’s a slight oak tint as well as blueberry torte once the blackberry subsided. On the palate it is a touch astringent right up front but good fruit structure rolls in as well as some gripping tannins. Black stone fruits are the main focus, with violets and cranberries- for their tartness- seem to coexist. The tannins are relentless. Aerating would be key here unless you have a fatty, juicy steak. Nice finish with blackberry and dry tea. Astringent as heck but mouth watering and tasty. 90 points and 4 stars for this $40 effort. Drink till 2025. Salut….
I have previously drunk two or three bottles of this stuff without taking notes. I figure it’s time as this is the last bottle I have. It has a medium purple complexion and is mostly see-through. On the nose I get black berries, Ribena and tar. On the palate it is very straightforward Cabernet. Dark fruits, good tannic backbone and some juicy acidity. There is a plum tart component that hits me on the mid palate which is quite nice. The tannins really grip on the back end and give me that dry gum sensation. A decent drop for quaffing that is rather limited in dimension yet is approachable and drinkable right away with some cellaring potential. Pair with burgers, steaks and pasta. Not bad for $15. 88 points makes it a solid 3 star wine. Salut….
Beautiful dark, nearly black in the glass. The nose gives off blackcurrants, loads of them, and with a good swirl I also get eucalyptus as well as pine needle. On the palate it is slightly sweet with those blackcurrants really out front. Very gentle tannins are evident from the onset, but they quickly disappear. There is a hint of oak, barely perceptible that adds to this somewhat one-dimensional wine. Don’t get me wrong, it’s very tasty and easy to drink. It transitions to the finish on the same notes I got initially, without much acidity, which troubles me. This is a nice everyday, easygoing quaffer that you could pop-n-pour every night of the week. Party wine for sure. At $13 it’s not a steep price to pay for this 87 point wine that gets 3 stars from me. Drink now with most light fair. Salut….
For my birthday celebration, I pulled out two magnums, one of which was the ’96 Musar, I hand carried it from the winery many years ago. I have two bottles of the ’98 waiting but in the meantime….Super pale red- see through, reminiscent of Pinot which it’s not with a touch of orange bricking. On the nose it’s stupendous, like aged Bordeaux. Leather, tobacco, plum and cassis- all my favorites. On the palate it is so smooth, with hints of cassis, cedar box, more tobacco and forest floor. There’s so much going on it’s amazing. Towards the mid palate I get cherry, faint tannins and a perfectly balanced acidity. The finish is awesome. So sleek with cherry juice reduction and a slightly biting rhubarb component. 93 points and 4 stars for this $75 wine. It’s not for everyone, the style is different but for this boy- it hits the right notes. Drink till 2030. Salut….
A slightly dull purple in the glass, gives me concern. On the nose however- violets, black currants, a touch of oak. On the palate it is much darker- blackberry, cherry extract, graphite and singed oak. There is a leather component too, it just comes along later, towards the mid palate. The wine transitions very nicely with good tannic structure that is not obtrusive and acidic enough to balance. This is the third wine of Brane Cantenac, a Second Growth Margaux. They use the young plots for source fruit, giving us an approachable young wine that drinks very nicely with good mouthfeel and medium term cellaring potential. 90 points from me for this $29 effort that gets 3 stars. Drink now till 2024. Salut….