Following on from yesterday’s tasting of the Montes Alpha Special Cuvee Cab- this bottling is their top offering in the varietal. Super rich, dark purple hues in the glass with very thin, long legs. On the nose there’s a deep blackberry reduction with coconut and graphite. On the palate this wine is very silky: black fruits over a bed of smooth oak and very integrated tannins. The wine is very balanced with some midpalate acidity that mingles with black cherry, blackberry and more iodine. The finish is not overly dry- the tannins very gradually fading over a good 60 second period. The fruit lingers almost as long with a touch of spice, cinnamon? This wine is young but drinkable, maturing till 2035 I think. 93 points for this very tasty, rich offering that I paid $62 for. 5 stars. Salut….
I walked into a wine shop in Hong Kong and was pushed aside by a woman on a mission. Five minutes later she checking out with three First Growth Bordeaux- Lafite, Latour and Mouton. My measly purchase paled in comparison to the thousands she spent. I digress… I have always been a fan of Chilean Cabernet. So, this is the first of two that I bought. It banged a whopping 94 points from one pro, it says so on the label. Let’s see how we get on.
In the glass it is a nice rich deep purple with just a hint of legs showing. On the nose it is very minty and chock full of black fruits, iodine and charcoal. It’s actually not my favorite profile. On the palate it is rich and flavorful. The kind of richness that covers your whole mouth. Lovely plums, blackberry and flint. There is a touch of mint as well as black olive. It’s quite complex and well made. The mid palate shows some very integrated tannins and black fruit compote. The finish is long, dry and very fruit driven. There is an ample amount of tannins but they are not obnoxious, merely present and persistent. The finish is medium length and finishes very dry. This wine is a touch young, but will do well in an aerator or decanter. Drink till 2030 at least. I think it gets a legit 93 points and for the price of $23 it gets 5 stars from me. 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….
I have enjoyed numerous bottles of the 2015 Koyle Syrah, so when I saw the ’16- it had to be done. Very dark and opaque in the glass. Brooding , almost. The nose is fruity, with a touch too much of that jam I dislike. Black berries, raspberry reduction and a touch of wood also hit. On the palate I get sour cherry sauce with very astringent tannins- the wine is somewhat astray. It appears someway disjointed, not quite ready to come out. There is a nice core of dark fruits under that tannic veil, perhaps I will aerate.
Yeah, that’s much better. The nose is still not to my personal tastes but the wine smooths out, the tannins are more in order and the flavors of fruit take front row. More black fruits than red and a touch of oak are now the order of the day. This wine is very young and needs time to meld in order to settle down but should be decent in a year or so…. unless you are like me and have access to an aerator at all times. I am going with 89 points for now but plan to re-visit in a while. If you drink one, pair it with a hearty meal, something fatty. 3 stars for an initial impression of this $23 wine. Salut….
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.