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….
I have written about the Mollydooker Two Left Feet 2012 vintage before. I sat on this bottle for an eternity and since we are moving house, it’s time to drink up. I have not read my old review so as not to taint this one.
I must say, all Mollydooker red wines appear dark and very purply in the glass. This one is no exception. Extraction is the key to their success methinks. It has a nose of plums, sarsaparilla, fig. I already performed the Mollydooker Shake in case you were wondering. The palate gives up super smooth flavors of blue fruits. Blueberry, plum, currant jam, that root beer thing again and some super ingrained tannins. Like, so smooth and barely detectable. The astringency hits on the finish, but the wine drinks beautifully with nice, if somewhat restrained acidity. The mouthfeel on this wine is sublime, extracted, rich and smooth. The finish shows a faint trace of the well hidden, monstrous 16% alcohol. Beware…
I am pairing it with pan seared Flat-Iron steak that I coated with Santa Maria rub, plus some sautéed mushrooms, a tomato salad and edamame to boot. 91 points from me for this $25 offering. 5 stars for this blend of 69% Shiraz, 16% Cabernet, 15% Merlot. Salut….
I’m a fan of this winery as can be seen in my two tastings of their Pinot Noir. I came across this wine at the local store near my hotel and it was priced as a deal for two, I could not resist.
Medium to dark purple. Nose of minerals, plum and sasparilla. On the initial attack I get really smooth plums, with some red chili pepper hints- intriguing, sans the heat! On the midpalate the plums continue but I start to appreciate some oak use and the intro to black fruits. I’m thinking of Ribena on the finish along with some vanilla. Very smooth all throughout with very melded tannins and a balanced acidity. This is my first Merlot/Cabernet from the famed Gimblett Gravels, I’m digging the minerality and think this wine is a 90 point effort. I think they normally retail at $18, which makes this a solid 4 star wine. Availability in the States may be limited, but keep a lookout for this winery on your travels. This wine would pair nicely with Beef short ribs or a hearty stew. I’m getting more! Salut….
Yes, you read the vintage correctly. I will explain- it was my friend’s bottle and we were celebrating his birthday, in Napa Valley. His is name is…. Doctor J. He is just finishing up his PHD in some abstract field of Finance to do with mortgages and some other crap I can’t understand. He has locked himself in for the past 10 months and only had a few drinks since then. He needed a nice afternoon out and a big steak. We headed up to the valley in the early afternoon and arrived at Cosentino winery in time for our 4 pm member’s private tasting. It was just the two of us and several stunning reserve wines, paired with slivers of cheese. We finished up in the main tasting room with some of the more regular offerings. I have written about this winery before. If you get to Napa, they are a must visit. Super nice people, unpretentious settings and good wine priced right. I digress…
We went to dinner after our tasting where we had the Beringer decanted. At 19 years of age I was shocked. Below are my tableside notes after numerous other tastings that afternoon.
Youthful and tannic with fruits that still pop. A nose of plum compote, blackberry torte.
Fresh and lively after 19 years in bottle. Amazing bottle. 93 points easily.
Cassis, plum and leather come out on the initial attack. Mid palate shows a slight hollowness but this is overcome by a longish finish that exhibits crushed stone, black stone fruit and a dryness that begs for a juicy steak. The tannins are still evident as is the fruit and acidity. This wine has plenty of cellaring potential yet but is delicious right now. I think you can still find it online for $100. 4 stars all day long, bordering on 5 stars. Salut….
A South African wine from Stellenbosch with huge credentials. It’s a joint venture between Bruno Prats (formerly of Cos D’Estournel), Hubert de Bouard (Chateau Angelus) and Lowell Jooste of Klein Constantia. Each of these men’s wineries are world renowned and highly respected. I got the offer by e-mail to pick up a few bottles from my local distributor so I jumped in, each priced at about $40.
A vibrant purple greeted me along with a nose of hoisin and plums. Some cassis became apparent after a swirl which really excited me. Straight out of the blocks- this is a young wine with some cellaring potential still to go. Primal fruit flavors of plum, blueberry and rooibos tea came through behind the veil of youngish tannins and acidity. Coffee notes and some oak were apparent after some time in the glass. The wine reminds me so much of Meerlust Rubicon, perhaps the terroir plays a role. The blend is 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Shiraz and 5% Merlot- an interesting combo if I might say so. The bottle says it has a drinking window between 2014-2016. I am gonna go a step further and say it will last another 5 years at least (2019). I think it is worthy of 91 points versus the pro’s at 89. Pricy for an everyday drinker it will do well with a Sunday roast as the weather cools down. A big Ribeye would also complement the tannic structure to a T if you’re in a grilling mood. 4 stars from me. Salut….
A Bordeaux Superier from a modest vintage that did not break the bank. $12 buys an everyday Cab/Merlot blend with tasty red fruits and some cassis. The tannins seemed a little unripe to me, almost like they had let some green stems stay in the must a little too long. The result was a slightly angular back end finish. I would buy it again and pair it with a cheese platter and some cold cuts. Nothing special here yet appealing for some reason or another. 85 points and 3 stars. Salut….
This is the third varietal in the Red Label series that I have tried from Wolf Blass. Cabernet and Merlot blended together are one of my go-to combos. This wine rolled in at $20 for two 1 liter bottles, do the math. It’s a very reasonably priced wine that everyone enjoyed. Easy to drink with raspberry and red currants on the palate and a red fruity nose. Built for pop-n-pour, it offers no complexity and no associated stuffiness. The tannins are slight and the acidity very gentle making it very versatile for pairing. I think this would be an awesome party wine and believe it is widely available. 86 points and 4 stars for this one. Salut….
One of my favorite things in life is to drink aged Cabs that have taken on secondary flavors and evolved out of adolescence.
This is a relatively young Sonoma Mountain wine to have accomplished that task and it really shines for me. It shows off a bright purple hue in the glass and presents itself with black plum and blackberry on the nose. The initial attack comprises blackberry and tobacco with oak and cassis. The mid palate came across with smooth tannins and an earthy component. This wine is super smooth and fruity with a delightful balance of secondary flavors and a delectable dryness. I am totally digging this one and glad to have a few in the cellar. Pricey at $55, i believe it offers some serious value and give it a 91 point rating with 4 stars. We had it with roasted Tenderloin and Yorkshire pudding with horseradish and mushroom gravy. A perfect match. Salut….
Along with the 2012 Shiraz Grenache from Wolf Blass, I also bought this blend at the same time. Priced at $10 each or in my case $14 for both. Cabernet does better with Merlot, and Shiraz is a natural with Grenache and Mourvedre. I thought this would be an interesting blend. Red berry with some cassis came up and the wine was very smooth. Easy to drink as it is made in a very fruit forward quaffing style. I think I preferred the Grenache blend as it was more balanced. The Cabernet seemed to be fighting with the Shiraz for top honors. Still, a decent wine for the price that would be great for a BBQ or a picnic of roast beef sandwiches and potato salad. For me, an 85 pointer with 3 stars. Salut….
For about $8 you cannot go wrong with this wine. Very basic Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile with red currants and a touch of oak. Relatively smooth, with very tame tannins and a decent finish. If you are entertaining, this is a must-have. It drinks easily and could also pair with pasta, burgers and grilled meats. A 4 star effort worthy of 86 points that wont break the bank.