It’s a pretty shade of purple in the glass with a 98 point sticker on the bottle….. hmmm. The nose is thin but offers up strawberry coulis and cherry juice. On the palate it has much more presence. A rich mouthful of dark cherry, strawberry extract and cola hit me square on. Tannins introduce themselves right away and are not holding back. This is a hefty wine, with structure to boot. The mid palate has more of that extracted cherry that is almost overwhelmed by the tannic grip. Wow, this wine is built. The finish is very astringent yet tasty. Red fruits swirl alongside black tea and jaw drying tannins. It’s certainly an interesting wine that I am really enjoying, yet wondering what the cellaring potential is as there is very little acidity. The tannins and fruit are certainly present, I am just a little concerned about the long term structure. Let’s see in a few years. For now, enjoy this Merlot/Sangiovese blend with pasta, steaks or moussaka. It gets a realistic 91 points from me and 5 stars for the $14 price I paid. Drink till 2027 at the least. Salut….
Medium purple, somewhat opaque int the glass. On the nose I get bramble, black cherry and bacon. On the palate it has a unique flavor profile. Very meaty with that black cherry note along with licorice. Smoke and tar really hit me on the mid palate alongside black berry and mid level tannins. The finish is black, dark- brooding and tannic. Black fruits dominate with some Lapsang Souchong tea notes. Earthy, smoky and strong. This is a unique wine which is composed of the following grapes: Corvina, Primitivo, Nero d’Avola. The pros went with red fruits, I am sticking with black. This is a non-vintage wine, so there is room for wiggle on style and tastes. It gets 89 points from me- forget the 98 rating it splashes on the bottle, that guy uses a strange rating system. Pair it with steaks, pasta (of course) or a heavy duty stew. It’s tasty, unique and worth a try, but at $30, it’s a bit pricey. 2 Stars. Salut….
Really pale, straw yellow in the glass. On the nose it is very citrusy with melon and bartlett pear notes as well as a touch of rose water. On the palate it is much meatier with a creaminess that I was not expecting. Hazelnuts hit me alongside green apple and lemon zest. The acidity is of medium intensity with a nice long finish of lemon. 89 points and 4 stars for this $14 effort. Drink till 2022 with seafood, baked chicken or even Fettucine Alfredo. Salut….
Very purple/black in the glass. Brush, black cherry, blackberries and tar on the nose. On the palate it is round, soft and full of fruit. Black fruits galore, cedar shake, olives and that creosote all hit me across the front. The midpalate offers more blackberries and gentle, yet fine grained tannins. The black cherry reappears on the finale with a touch of dryness on the gums that adds to the mouthfeel. 89 points for this $20 Corvina/Rondinella blend and 3 stars. Pair with Pasta, Veal and grilled Tuna from now till 2023. Salut….
I’m excited to try the 2014 version of Zenato’s Ripassa. I reviewed the 2012 version previously. In the glass it is as expected- dark, opaque, thick. On the nose- somewhat fresh, with blackberries, raisins, chocolate ganache and sandalwood. On the palate it is lush, filled with black fruits, purple licorice and mouth coating tannins. It does however leave me feeling a little short changed. I remember this wine as being richer, with mouthfuls of fruit, much more upfront and reduced. This version seems a little more subdued, more mainstream. It’s plenty flavorful, with good balance between acidity and tannic structure- don’t get me wrong. Perhaps they have changed styles into a more refined approach.
The mid palate and finish pretty much carry on from the initial palate and let the tannins crescendo at the end. There is however a slight astringency that hits me on the back end. I cannot quite pinpoint it. Serve with charcuterie or grilled steak from now till 2025. 89 points and 3 stars for this $24 effort. Salut….
See through purple in the glass, which makes sense for a Sangiovese. The nose has a pretty floral note to it alongside red licorice, cedar and raspberry. On the palate it is more subdued, less flowery, with crisp flavors of red cherry juice, rhubarb and a dose of black tea. Tannins are rampant, from the get-go, they are quite present throughout the palate and are quite astringent. There is a greeness to the mid palate that is bothersome, but it gives way to more sour cherry on the finish that keeps this wine lively and fresh. Overall there is a slight unbalance between the fruit and the tannins, with the acidity being a touch heavy. This wine is for near term drinking and I would pair with BBQ, perhaps pizza and for sure Moussakka. 87 points from me and 3 stars for this $15 effort. Drink till 2021. Salut….
Medium opacity purple, with a nice sheen in the glass. The nose offers up bacon, plum paste, raisins and …… On the palate I get nice round blackberry cobbler notes, bright acidity and very fine grained tannins. If you know how Ripasso is made you would expect a bit more weight, extra flavor and a heavier mouthfeel. This wine is a touch more refined, somewhat lighter and a bit fresher. The mid palate has a nice cherry meets plum characteristic that feeds into the decent length finish. The tannins taper off leaving a somewhat astringent mouthfeel right at the end. It’s certainly interesting. 89 points and 3 stars for this $15 blend of Corvina, Corvinone and Rondinella. Drink till 2026. Salut….
It pours out as expected, reddish purple, see through and intriguing. On the nose I get strawberry, rhubarb and sour cherry juice. On the palate this wine is very young with copious tannins immediately attacking the gums- finally giving way to lush cherry, cinnamon, cedar box, leather and tobacco flavors. This wine is chock full of everything- flavors, dryness, acidity…. you name it. Very interesting mouthfeel to boot. It really needs a pour through the Vinturi, but I can’t help myself with these tannins, they are so intriguing and mouth puckering that I will have to sit here and suffer a little longer before I soften them up. The mid palate is all sour cherry, not in a bad way. The finish is much of the same… cherry, leather, mushrooms, acidity, mouth puckering tannins but it eases off nicely. This is going to be an awesome wine one day when it has grown up, shed the flab, softened the tannins and developed secondary flavors. For now I am going with 92 points and 4 stars. This Nebbiolo lists at $80 and should be cellared until 2024 then drunk till 2034. Salut….
I bough this wine on its pedigree for $24. Medium opacity purple in the glass with visible legs. The nose has kirsch, raspberry and bing cherry by the boatload. On the palate it is brimming with red fruits, bright acidity and delightful tannins. Young and vibrant- it needs a little time to settle down. It is slightly one-dimensional at this time. I hope it evolves and gains tertiary flavors. The mid palate is more or less the same. The finish is of medium length with more cherry extract and a dose of rhubarb as well as lingonberry. The tartness of which shows up at the end. Overall- a decent wine that gets 89 points from me and 3 stars. Cab, Merlot and Sangiovese make up this Tuscan red. Drink from 2022 till 2027. Salut….
Bright purple in the glass. Black cherry and sassafras come to mind on the nose. The palate is very tasty, brimming with Black cherry, cola, and dark chocolate. Very fine grained tannins introduce themselves right off the bat and help to coat the gums very gently all the way through the mid palate and onto the finish. Speaking of the mid-palate, there’s more cola than fruit here along with some licorice. It’s quite nice! The finish is medium length and continues the theme. A very satisfying wine that I am enjoying with pasta and meatballs. 90 points, drink till 2025 with anything Italian! For the $13 price tag, you need some of this 5 star wine. Salut….