Medium opacity, good color. Nose is full of espresso, black berry and lush plums. The palate is very smooth, slightly acidic and starts off with black currants, charred oak and olives. The mid palate has more black fruit with the tannins starting to grip. I like the deft use of oak here and it smooths the wine nicely. The finish is medium in length, brimming with black cherry with the tannins receding nicely. 88 points and 5 stars for this $11 wine. Great value from Chile. Salut….
Yesterday was a little bit of a let down with the basic Los Vascos Cab. This property is a well respected Rothschild winery in Chile. As such, I opted to go back and try their Grand Reserve offering, in hopes of a better showing that suits my particular taste desires, and has higher technical components than the basic wine.
First thing I noticed was today’s Reserve wine has a real cork, versus synthetic. A good start. The wine is not overly dark, but a pleasant purple in the glass. On the nose- a whole different story. Black berries, rich mocha, fig on the nose. The palate is more plum-like but the black fruits are still evident. There’s a slightly obscure, astringent quality that hits right up front. Once over that I’m settling in to the gentle mouthfeel, moderate tannins and tangy acidity. The mid and finish are a little darker with coffee bean, black cherry and an oak tinge. Overall, much better. 89 points and 4 stars for this $15 effort. Grilled meat, Moussaka or even hearty pasta would pair nicely. Drink now till 2020. 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….
Recently added to the local shop- I’m excited to try this Carmenere from Koyle. I love their Syrah and Cabernet. It’s nearly black in the glass and very opaque. The nose gives off nice warm blueberry pie, oregano and violet notes. It has a very extracted quality. On the palate it is a touch austere with plums, blueberry and acidity that has a nice bite. The midpalate is more juicy, the blue fruits turning red. The acidity is countered on the back end with some greenish tannins. As you might tell this wine is a bit disjointed, slightly green and probably needing some food. I’m going 87 points and 2 stars for this $25 effort. Drink now if you have any. Salut….
Pretty purple color with a nose of raspberry, mint, violets. The palate is fresh, with bright plum and red berry flavors, hazelnut, juicy tannins and a crisp acidity. The ph of this wine is substantial yet balanced with the well integrated tannins. More mint notes come through on the finish along with some oak and raspberry. The wine leaves my mouth very dry, I kinda like it! Pairing it with super thick Strip steaks, Chorizo, roasted Brussel Sprouts and chargrilled baby onions. 89 points and 4 stars for this $13 wine- drink till 2020. Salut….
A non-vintage wine as far as I can see that I purchased for $9. The name and label sold me. It is see-through as expected from a Pinot Noir. The nose drums up strawberry, cinnamon and a baked pastry note that I find really interesting. The palate is very warm, with flavors of red berries, strawberry and cherry extract. The wine has a juicy acidity to it and the tannins are ever so faint. The mid palate shows off a touch of heat, even though this wine only clocks 12.5%. The medium length finish rounds out with red currants and a chalky component. More cherry hits right at the end. I have to state that it’s a delicious wine that gets 90 points from me and for the price- it deserves 5 stars. An exceptional bargain in the world of Pinot Noir. Well done! Buy it by the bucketful. Salut…
PS. Turns out there is a French wine of the same exact name and label. The Chilean one is what I tasted.
Dark yet opaque purple in the glass. The nose is lush with blueberry, coffee, cedar. The palate is delicious- meaty, with blue fruits, crunchy tannins and a cutting acidity. The midpalate incorporates some black currant and smoke with the blueberries. The tannins, omnipresent are really gripping at this point. They don’t surrender, dominating the finish which has remnants of blue fruits and a charred oak note. I like it. 90 points and 5 stars for this $20 effort. Salut….
Dark purple. Nice nose of dark currant, mint and oak slivers. On the palate it is a pleasing wine with freshness, good dry tannins and flavors of Ribena, plum, bitter chocolate as well as a meaty note. The tannins really kick in on the mid palate and the finish. The wine is full bodied, full flavored and not shy about its structure. It is somewhat tilted toward the tannic end with hardly discernible acidity at this time. I think this wine needs some cellaring for a year or two to mellow out just a touch. I’m going to be pessimistic and go with 90 points but I think it may improve. If you must drink it now pair with Lamb Shanks and Couscous or maybe a seasoned T-bone on the charcoal. I paid $12.80 each for two bottles on sale. Regularly $21. 4 stars. Salut….
A very opaque and delicate looking Pinot Noir from Chile. The nose is a combination of Old and New World. I get cherry, strawberry and funk. Mushrooms and game also take a turn on my senses. On the palate, I get a fresh cherry attack with some cola and a touch of the gaminess I sensed earlier. The mid palate exposes a very lively acidity that keeps me on my toes. The flavors are decidedly New World from here on in. Strawberry and cherry on the mid translate to a nice red berry finish with just a touch of tannic dryness. The acidity is the dominant force but is not overwhelming. A nice wine with good mouthfeel and balance in my opinion. Serve with roasted chicken in garlic marinade or perhaps Filet Mignon with Bearnaise and roasted asparagus. 89+ points, and for $13 it’s a steal worthy of 5 stars. Salut….
If you read my previous post on the 2015 Cono Sur Cab, you will recall that I ended up with two different vintages from the store. The 2016 is much darker purple, more extracted with heavier oak on the nose which disappoints me. I don’t like too much of the stuff.
On the palate, a much different story. Rich, thick plums alongside blackberry jam and oak shavings. The midpalate offers up black fruits and a tapenade note. The finish is short, with some black fruits and gentle tannins. This version is not as balanced and smooth as the 2015. It’s still a good deal though and should be on everyone’s party stocking list. I’m thinking dry rubbed ribs, burgers or even shish kebabs would pair nicely here. 88 points form me and for $9, 4 stars all day long. No picture taken BTW. Salut….