This blend of Touriga Nacional, Alicante Bouschet and Sousāo is pale ruby in the glass. It’s listed as 13.5% ABV which shows in the watery legs. The nose has nice, if somewhat muted aromas of cranberry, red cherry, dried herbs, blackberry and floral notes. The palate is very soft, with juicy acidity and mild tannins. The blackberry and red cherry flavors are present alongside some cedar and the dried herbs I sensed on the nose. The acidity is really intense on the back end where there is a shortish finish of bright red and black fruit. I like this medium bodied wine, it is fresh and primary fruit driven. The pro’s went with 90, I’m thinking 88 with a drink by 2025 window. At under $10 per bottle it gets 4 stars. I’m pairing it with grilled lamb kebabs and sautéed Kale. Salut….
The fourth wine to taste this week for my course is this fortified Portuguese. I love Port btw so this was not a hard task. It is a deep shade of purple and opaque, as can be expected. The nose is of medium intensity with notes of raisins and stewed plum. Secondary notes of dark chocolate, and tertiary notes of walnut were present. On the palate there were pronounced flavors of raisin and prune. Secondary notes of dark chocolate and espresso with tertiary hints of walnut in a tannic cloak with medium acidity. This wine was off-dry to me and had a decent mid length finish. Moxie tasted as well and we both caught on to the 20% alcohol right on the first whiff yet I did not sense it on the palate except to say this wine is full bodied as a result. I am looking forward to some blue cheese and crackers to go with this beauty. Like I said, I love me some Port and this one is good. It gets 89 points from me. At $24, it’s a decent bottle to have around if you like the style- 4 stars. Salut….
This blend of Tempranillo and Trincadeira took three days for me to rate. We opened it at the 13th Virtual Wine Tasting and the panel felt it had cardboard box, pepper, black cherry, dark chocolate and earthy notes. It was tannic right off the bat but we coaxed black licorice, dark cherry, sun dried tomato and a hoppy note out of it. I recall writing that this semi opaque wine of medium purple color was quite rich, if not a tad young and rushed. On night 1 it got 12/20 on my rating scale and a technical score of 91 points. I tried it again on night 2 and found it had a muted nose with some red currants and orange peel. The palate was slightly sour with blackberry, licorice and rhubarb. It was still earthy and tannic as heck. Night 3 is when this wine finally opened up for me. Black pepper, jammy blackberry and licorice on the nose gave way to a much smoother palate of iodine, blackberry, bramble and that earthiness. Oak is now evident but restrained making this wine quite complex. It has a smooth finish with well integrated tannins now and is in balance. I’m glad I got to witness a three day evolution of this highly rated $14 wine. It finished out at 92 points from me and gets a massive 5 stars for the QPR it brings. Drink till 2027. I would pair with a hearty steak if opening right now, or decant the heck out of it to soften the tannins. Salut….
Number 2 wine at our 11th Virtual Wine tasting was this Portuguese steal that came in at $14. An equal blend of Touriga Nacional, Alfrocheiro and Tinta Roriz (Tempranillo). The tasters had the following to say:
Semi opaque, dark red. Nice legs but only 13%. Cigar box, earthy, fig, dried fruit, jammy. Black pepper? Dusty bramble. Sour cherry, earthy, fine grained tannins that hit on the finish. Light to medium bodied. Black tea, dry finish.
I enjoyed this wine but did not love it. One of the pros went huge with 96 points, I’m thinking 89. It was enjoyed by many at the tasting and bang for the buck- it was a hit. 5 stars. Drink till 2024. Salut….
Black. Opaque. Thick. On the nose it’s very lush- burnt damson, plum extract and raisin compote. The palate is thick, rich and exactly what I wanted/expected. It’s delicious. Midpalate -wise it gets tannic, more dark fruits and some great mouthfeel. This is truly a delicious dessert wine. Rich, full-on and multi-dimensional, it ticks many boxes. The finish is a grainy, tannic event that features some nice purple fruits with walnut notes and some raisin jam. Delicious. 90 points and for $14, its a 5 star drinker. Salut….
I was at the world’s largest wine retailer the other day and saw their house brand Port. They have a good reputation for picking decent items, so I thought I would give it a try for the $20 entrance fee. It’s tawny all right. It’s almost orange-purple and very see-through in the glass. The nose offers up raisins, plum paste, Christmas cake and figs. On the palate it is quite young and a touch thin. There is a certain nuttiness that I’m enjoying. There’s a warm toffee meets hazelnut note on the midpalate that I’m liking and the heat of the 20% alcohol is a welcome addition to the mix. Dried figs come out on the finish alongside some very deep grained tannins. A great mouthfeel. I didn’t love this wine off the bat but it has grown on me. 90 points and 5 stars. Salut….
Quite dense and opaque purple in the glass. The nose has blueberry, iodine and espresso. On the palate it is quite sweet with creme de cassis, vanilla and butter. There is a hidden astringency from the very fine grained tannins. The midpalate glides along with the blue fruit theme and finishes with a short burst of tannic thrust that leaves the gums a little quenched. 88 points, drink till 2021 with lighter fare. For $9 it’s a pretty decent buy and gets 3 stars from me. Salut….
Good rich purple color with a faint showing of legs in the glass. On the nose- blackberry cassis, charcoal and cedar. On the palate I get dark fruit compote, coffee bean and a touch of tannin. The mid palate is all Ribena alongside the very slight tannins. The finish has a more blueberry note to it, with toasty wood and the last vestiges of the tannic component. A very nice, easy drinking wine that gets 89 points from me. Drink till 2024 with grilled meats. 3 stars for this $15 blend. Pairing with grilled Tri-Tip roast and patty-pan squash. Salut….
This is the second wine of Chryseia, it is a beautiful dark purple in the glass. The nose gives off rose petals, perfume, black currant and cedar slate. On the palate it is big- loads of Ribena, oregano, red licorice and a hint of wood. The mid palate is seamless with the introduction of some very lithe tannins. The mouthfeel is generous and warm in this wine. It is relatively easy drinking with the mild tannins, barely perceptible acidity and warm fruit. The finish is all black currant, decent in length and not overly dry. 92 points and 5 stars for this $25 effort. Delicious. Drink this blend of Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Roriz till 2030. Salut….
Bright purple in the glass. Plums and black berry come off on the palate with some earthiness that I love in Portuguese wines. There’s a dusty component reminiscent of desert air that pops up as well. On the palate it has telltale Tinto Roriz and Touriga Nacional notes. There’s a tar component alongside spice box and blackberry. The tannins are very integrated, of medium intensity and not astringent. I like the mouthfeel and the balance is great. The mid palate and finish are both steeped in black fruits and that spiciness. The dry, dusty notes I mentioned earlier slip back in right at the end. This is a tasty wine that gets 91 points from me. The $40 price point makes it a 4 star effort. Salut….