Tonight I am cooking a standing rib roast in my Big Green Egg- something I have never done before. I figured it was a good time to crack this Napa Merlot open and give it a try. It’s got a nice purple hue and is about 70% opaque. Thin legs in the glass hint at the 13.4% alcohol. On the nose I get rich plums, perhaps some blackberry and toasty oak. The initial palate is delicious with plum torte, blackberry coulis, some smoked wood, Tobacco and some fruit cake. The mid palate has exceptionally integrated tannins and really nice acidity. The plum and blackberry flavors are very much present but I’m starting to get a dark cola note. The finish is very rounded with the tannins and acidity in perfect balance. I can almost taste the California sunshine in this wine. Merlot is such a supple, rounded varietal that has been unfairly thrashed of late. I really enjoy this particular profile and am going with 92 points. Drink till 2028 with any grilled meat, rich pasta or even by itself. At $33, it gets 5 stars. Salut….
This Sauvignon Blanc is very pale yellow in the glass. On the nose I get lemons, D’anjou pear, green apple and honeysuckle. The palate is lively and fresh with citrus notes, that green apple hint and some floral interjection. Not overly tart, there is a core of acidity that keeps the wine fresh. The finish moves away from the focused lemon and pear notes- getting a little more body and a hint of minerality. Tasty stuff that will serve well with my baked Salmon and Ahi tuna steaks. I am going with 89 points for this $26 effort which makes it a 3 star effort. Drink chilled till 2025. Salut….
I am closing in on 500 blog posts and wanted to lead up to the big one with some great wines. This one happened to be a gift from a mate so I felt obliged to open it up and let it rip with some juicy Sirloins and grilled corn. For post #497, it seemed the right thing to do and I was not disappointed.
I was amazed at how dark and dense the wine was in my glass, but it made sense when I had the first whiff. A brooding nose of black fruits combined with the dark inky purple color set the stage for this Rutherford Cabernet. Napa style fruit of plums, black berries, chocolate shavings and a touch of heat. Silky tannins and juicy acidity made this an absolute delight to drink. I initially made a 90 point note, but then added that it had a drinking window of 2014-2025 because the wine really opened up and showed off its mouth coating muscles. The grip of these fine tannins was amazing and the finish lasted a good 30 seconds. I upped my score to 92 and did some research. It sells for about $35. That is a steal in my book for top quality Napa Cabernet and I need to stock up on this wine. It rocks a steak and would even sort out a heavy pasta dish or some barbecue. 5 stars from me. Salut….