It’s pasta for a quick pre-ballet dinner with my daughter so I needed a quick and easy Italian wine. This one rolled in the other day at $10 so I figured it was worth a shot. The glass shows off a decent color palette of purple that is somewhat see-through. The nose offers red berries, raspberry and some clove. The Sangiovese in the blend gives me some cherry notes on the palate while the Merlot component brings out some plum while adding a bit of backbone to the wine. On the mid palate is where I get a nuttiness, almonds and a touch of oak. The wine has some very dry tannins that kick in on the finish and add a bite to the gums. Acidity is nice and the wine is balanced. I’m not sure I would go as high as the pros with 92, more like 89 points for me. Still a good value IMHO and worthy of 4 stars. Perfect for the midweek pasta dish or perhaps a thin crust wood oven pizza. Drink till 2020. Salut….
It’s a pasta/Italian kinda night here at the chateau so I decided to open a Chianti Rufina to keep with the theme. In the glass, it shows off a reddish hue but not opaque. The nose is somewhat muted but gives off whiffs of plum, some oregano and a dried bark component. The initial taste is an acidic attack with some dark cherry, dried herbs and a touch of oak. The fruit is somewhat cloaked I’m afraid. The mid palate is mostly a tannic affair with some faint fruit notes from the initial attack. The finish is long, with some nice acidity balancing the tannins as well as a dose of Kirsch. I paid $18 for this 89 pointer and give it 3 stars, it’s kinda boring in my opinion- perhaps it’s in a dumb phase. Sangiovese is the main player here folks. Ps. I’m serving grilled Squid, Tortellini and some Zucchini pasta with pine nuts. Salut….
I have said it before, Sangiovese reminds me of Pinot Noir. It looks like Pinot, smells like Pinot and in many cases tastes like Pinot. This particular wine starts off a little different. It is dark, opaque and and brooding.
On the nose, I am confused. Tar, dark fruits and a leather component would make me guess Tempranillo, for sure. The initial tastes confirm what my nose suspected. This wine acts like it came straight from Rioja. Earth, gaminess, dark plums and bramble along with the creosote. It all points to an extraction and aging issue. This wine has been made in a different style that had me fooled. It is delicious, no doubt, but atypical. The mid palate is bursting with blueberry and dark plums along with the earthiness. The finish is more blue than black fruits. Tannins are very lithe, acidity is very mellow and the alcohol level is a mild 12.5%. 89 points from me and 5 stars because you can pick it up for $9! Enjoy alone or with pasta, charcuterie or even veal parmesan. Drink now till 2020. Salut….
Very see-through purple, almost Pinot like. Nose of cherries Jubilee with licorice and mocha. On the palate I get a really nice, smooth intro to some cherry kirsch, a strawberry note and some more exotic spices. The acidity is on pointe here, creating just the right amount of tartness yet leaving room for the lithe tannins to make an appearance. On the mid palate I get more of the same, but with the addition of some mushrooms and a bit of gaminess. It is bizarre. The finish wraps up with the tannins taking control and leaving the mouth pleasantly dry, to the gums. I am really enjoying this rather light, refreshing wine that has some serious complexity. I must go with 90 points and recommend it for a nice summer evening with charcuterie, perhaps some olive tapenade on crusty baguette. For $14 you can’t go wrong. 5 stars and drink till 2024. Salut….
It’s pasta night and I need a Sangiovese. This one happens to be ready to go on my daily drinking shelf and I am excited.
In the glass, the color is a pale, see through reddish purple- reminiscent of Pinot Noir. On the nose, strawberry and cherry, just like Pinot. The palate introduces me to delicious strawberry and capsicum flavors, but I get a dose of heat right away. A quick glance reveals a 14.5% lurker here.
The wine transitions on the mid palate to more strawberries and a red raspberry jam. The alcohol still permeates though and I am not sensing much in the way of tannins, until the very end. The finish is where they appear, very well integrated but lacking a good dose of acidity, just more heat. The wine is delicious, yet unbalanced and I fear it will not hold out well in the cellar, which is a shame as I would love to revisit this one in 10 years. 88 points, the structure and excessive alcohol being detractors. I really do enjoy the flavors though. For $28 it is a 2 star wine for me. Salut….
I just saw the 95 point sticker on the label, it must be good or this particular critic is dead to me…
Dark purple color, from the 50% Cabernet Sauvignon. Lets see what the 50% Sangiovese brings. Olives, plum jam and seaweed hit the nose. On the palate I get a very intriguing flavor. I can’t quite put my finger on it…Black plums, dark, dark stone fruits and perhaps black tea leaves. I am getting a very one dimensional hit of tannins as well. The mid palate is all black tea and tannins. The finish is bitter, with faint notes of black plum and oversteeped tea. I don’t get it. This wine was hyped by a pro, written up by the seller as soft and supple, with gentle tannins. Quite the opposite for me, and bottle variation doesn’t count here. This wine is barely 86 points in my book and for $20 I think I will look elsewhere. 2 stars. Salut….
I bought two bottles from this producer for a grand total of $8. One was a Nero D’Avola and this one being a Sangiovese. I was not expecting much, but really enjoyed the Nero poolside watching my daughter splash around at a hotel we just stayed in. I took no notes but decided I should do so with this bottle now that I am home and not reeking of chlorine.
A pale purple color shows typicity of the varietal as does the nose of faint cherries and cinnamon. I’m not expecting complexity or depth here but am pleasantly surprised so far as the wine comes across very smoothly on the intro and gives some cherry notes along with a cola thing. The wine has more acidity than tannins and lacks any semblance of wood. The finish is decent in length and leaves me with a slightly drying sensation, hinting at some minuscule level of tannins being offered up. Like I said- this is a basic wine. It drinks easily and is a serious contender for a backyard BBQ, a poolside quaff or even a light pizza partner. For $4 or even $6 this wine rocks it and I am giving it 84 points and 4 stars. (I have had far worse wine in the First Class sections of many airlines). Salut….
I’m in Japan and wanted to enjoy something red in my hotel room. I found this bottle at what looked like an Import Gourmet shop. I paid 1280 Japanese Yen for it, but it can be found for $8 USD. The notes: See-through pale purple that gives away the extraction of this wine. On the nose- subdued hints of dark cherry fruit and a touch of leather. Very hard to discern from a straight glass (no wine glasses in the hotel room!). On the palate I’m getting some black fruit and telltale Sangiovese notes. The wine has a refreshing acidity and a slight dryness from the well camouflaged tannins. The finish is short but decent, leaving behind some tannic components that grip the gums. This wine is relatively light in extraction, easy to quaff and a decent sundowner. 84 points make this a 2 star wine. Would I buy it again? Negative. Salut….
I don’t get it…. This wine got huge scores, from 91 to a 96 from the man himself. I must have had an off bottle, or the wine is in a dumb stage. For me it was a disjointed mess, unbalanced and unsure. On the nose it was very enticing, with earthy blueberry and a mineral streak. On the first taste, black cherry and tar were the primary drivers. The balance was all wrong though with the acidity and the tannins hitting on the front, rather than the mid and back palate. The wine has potential if given time to sort itself out. The flavors are interesting, if somewhat subdued. I hate it when an expensive bottle turns out to be a dud, I so wanted this wine to rock. I am going to have to give this a preliminary 2 stars based on its $60 price and my 87 points. I will reserve final judgement for at least two more years and cellar the other bottle in hopes of a better re-taste. Salut….
A Vino Nobile di Montepulciano made from the Sangiovese grape. I have been sitting on this one for a while waiting for the right time and the right meal. Tonight my stars aligned. Moxie went nuts and cooked the mother of all Paleo meals- a Ribeye, Bang Bang Shrimp, sauteed mushrooms, roasted Yam fries and a Kale/Brussell sprout salad with homemade French country dressing.
The wine was superb. I just love Sangiovese and this one was so typical of the grape. Cherries and a delicious use of oak. This wine is 12 years old and is just now coming to life. A great tannic profile with racy acidity have given this wine an iron-clad structure. It still shows purple/red in the glass with no bricking. It’s nose is dark cherry and strawberry. Secondary flavors of earth, capsicum and leather really excite me. I am getting a long finish and the tannins are mouth puckering, yet smooth. Alcohol on this wine is 13.5% which is about where my threshold lies. This wine started out at over $60, can be found today for about $42 and will not let you down with a big steak, pasta or rack of Lamb. A serious wine that gave me much enjoyment, 92 points and a 4 banger. Salut….