It’s not often I see a Sicilian Nero D’avola so I picked this up on spec. It pours a semi opaque ruby in the glass with very watery legs. The nose has pretty florals and red currant, red plum, sage and believe it or not- red chili. There is a sweet candy note that strikes fear into me as I hate that smell/taste in a wine- let’s see if it shows up on the palate. Yum, this is very smooth and gently tannic. Juicy acidity and a medium body weight give it a balanced mouthfeel. The finish is a touch short but the acidity goes on for a while making me want to drink another sip. The flavors are all there plus black cherry. Listed at $23 it gets 89 points from me and 3 stars. Drink soon with pasta, sausages with peppers or spaghetti bolognese. Salut….
Tonight I am preparing stuffed shells on a bed of Kale with meatballs on the side- the classic Italian dish that this varietal was made for. It’s a bit murky in the glass and semi opaque. The nose is brimming with red fruit, rose, violets, walnut and cedar. There might be a hint of tea in there as well. The palate is dry, acidic and carries some medium tannins. The red currants, red cherry, raspberry and pomegranate notes are all there along with the florals and oak notes. It’s quite tart on the back end but that’s what I was hoping for. It’s labelled Reserva, which means nothing officially but it’s a way the producer tries to identify a superior product in this region. I did a bit of research following my tasting- it’s interesting that three different pros described three different fruit profiles. One said red fruit, one said blue and the last stated black. Either way, it got decent scores and I would agree with the 91 pointer. For $25, it’s a good Friday-with-Pasta wine that gets 5 stars from me. Drink till 2028. Salut….
I had to buy this funky bottle, it is gold. As in they sprayed the bottle, there is no looking through the glass. With a bit of age on it, there may be some hope of tertiary development in this Reserva. It’s pretty dark in the glass, a lovely shade of ruby. On the nose I get red cherry, cooked red cherry, earth, mushroom, pomegranate and oak. The palate is very delicious, smooth and not biting. I am really enjoying lush flavors of dark cherry, earth, game and cooked red cherry. The tannins are really well integrated and meet up on the back end with some vibrant acidity. The body is decent, heavier than I was expecting and certainly welcome, the mouthfeel is balanced and smooth. I am thoroughly enjoying this Sangiovese, and feeling that most people would not buy it due to the strange packaging- I’m off to get the remnants, it’s that yummy for the barebones price of $15. A veritable steal that gets 91 points and 5 stars. Drink till 2025 with pasta, duh! Salut….
The third wine at tasting #19 was this 100% Sangiovese. Medium purple, it was more opaque than I was expecting from this varietal. The tasters got aromas of raspberry, flowers, iodine, chocolate, black cherry and a medicinal note (Oak influence?). On the palate it was very smooth with grippy tannins and medium plus acidity. Flavors of black cherry, coffee, iodine, licorice and black tea were accompanied by that medicinal note which someone stated was akin to cherry cough syrup. It is a tasty, bold wine with lots of aging capacity. It will drink well now if you like them tannic, or mellow out in a cellar and be more approachable in 2025 till 2030. 91 points from me for this $33 effort makes it a 4 star wine. Salut….
This week’s tasting assignment for school is a wine from Italy or Spain. I’ll end up doing both but here is the Tuscan one that I paid $20 for. It gets 91 points from me and is a brooding baby. This one needs a good aeration or several years in the cellar. 5 stars. Salut….
- Appearance- Medium garnet with thin legs.
- Nose- Medium (+) intensity with aromas of red cherry, red plum, cranberry, coffee, earth. Developing.
- Palate- dry, medium (+) acidity, high tannins, medium alcohol, medium body, medium (+) flavor intensity of red cherry, cranberry, tobacco, earth and coffee with medium (+) finish.
- Conclusion- very good quality wine that can be drunk now, but has potential for aging.
Delicious but young Sangiovese, paired with dry-aged T-bone steak and baked potatoes.
It’s pizza night- an Italian wine is in order. This Tuscan blend of Sangiovese, Cab Sav and Merlot is pale purple in the glass. The nose is of medium (+) intensity with strawberry, rhubarb, cherry cola, blackberry and woodsy spice. On the palate it is off-dry, brimming with those red/black fruit notes and medium (+) tannins that caress the gums. The wine has a nice acidity that is just enough to balance out the structure. I am enjoying the primary fruit flavors of this drop and it’s mid weight body. The mouthfeel, albeit a touch tannic, is really nice and refreshing. It’s going to rock my pepperoni pie. The finish is of decent length and leaves a good impression. This wine is drinking nicely now and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. At $15, I got a great deal and I’m going with 90 points. 5 stars in my book. Salut….
Clear, medium garnet in the glass, this Sangiovese has a funky nose. Sour cherry, sauerkraut and compost all come to mind. #Concerned.
The palate allays my worries- cherry, blackcurrants, straw and rhubarb are present alongside lithe tannins. Juicy acidity keeps my jaws watering for an eternity whilst the finish lasts a medium amount of time. The wine is of light to medium body and lithe. It drinks well and will go nicely with my Lamb Kofta, which are very fatty and need some acidity to curb the grease. I’m ambivalent about this wine right now- I think it has potential but the nose is very off-putting. I will give it 88 points initially. On sale for $27, it gets 3 stars from me. Drink till 2028 with meaty tapas, Duck breast or Lamb stew. Salut….
I wanted to introduce the Dolcetto grape to my group of virtual tasters. This bottle was only $15 and got decent reviews and a 90 point rating. Unfortunately it was not a huge hit with the crowd. I noted it was 75% opaque and had a nice shade of purple in the glass. The nose came with cherry, raspberry, rhubarb, blackberry and pepper. The group got flavors of cherry, almond, strawberry, a touch of smoke and some meatiness on the palate. I wrote down- medium tannins and very juicy acidity. I think the acid component and somewhat lighter body was the detractor for most. We have been tasting some pretty heavy duty bottles in our group and the finesse and lighter style of the Dolcetto may have been overlooked in expectation of another big, brooding wine that is so imposing in the glass- quite the opposite of a young Brunello. I am close to the pros on the rating, giving it an 89 points. For the price- this s a decent Tuesday night drop that won’t break the bank, just pair it with some pasta and you’ll be fine. 3 stars for me. Drink now. Salut….
One of my course requirements this week is to taste a Prosecco. I had previously bought some very reasonably priced bottles at Costco so I thought I would rate one. I enjoyed the wine- it’s rather basic but fresh and light. We are ordering some spicy Thai dishes tonight, this has to be one of the best pairing options. At $ 7, it’s a steal that gets 88 points from me. Stock up and enjoy chilled in the summer- 5 star stuff. Salut….
Kirkland Asolo Prosecco DOCG NV, Italy. 11% ABV
- Intensity : Pale
- Color : Lemon
- Intensity : Medium
- Aroma characteristics : Primary notes of Green Apple, Grapefruit and lemon
- Sweetness : Off-Dry
- Acidity : High
- Alcohol : Low
- Body : Light
- Flavor intensity : Medium with Primary notes of pear, lemon and grapefruit.
- Finish : short
Conclusions : Quality is Acceptable
The Nebbiolo grape is very deceiving. In the glass it is see-through and pale garnet in color yet I know what to expect when we first taste this one. The nose gives me gobs of red cherry, cranberry, strawberry, spice and some caramel. On the palate it’s exactly what I was expecting and hoping for. Richly tannic, mouthwateringly acidic and delicious with red fruits galore. Cherries, strawberries, mouth searing tannins, and enough acidity to melt nuts and bolts. The mid palate allows the fruit to shine whilst the tannins and acid step aside momentarily. The finish is a really dry affair but I still get red fruits- the tannins are searing. This young wine needs a bunch of time in the cellar or a good aerating. It will last a long time if cellared correctly and will hopefully gain some tertiary flavors as we have already seen with a touch of Caramel on the nose,( which did not translate onto the palate). 93 points for me make this a big wine. At $40, it’s at the lower end for most good Barolos and gets 5 stars from me. Drink from 2025 to 2035. Salut….