Wow…. super dark and brooding. I get nice, rich blackberry notes with coffee bean and vanilla extract on the nose. The initial palate is thick with black fruit preserves, finely integrated tannins, chocolate powder and an oak hint. The mid palate continues the theme but the tannins start to build. By the finish my mouth is coated with caressing dryness and a blackberry meets tar note. Intriguing. I think this wine will open up with decanting and develop somewhat in the glass. It is young and the potential for it to gain tertiary flavors is definitely there. I would cellar for another 2-3 years and pair it with roast lamb all day long. Delicious, powerful, well made and worthy of 92 points. For $36 it is not an everyday wine, but it gets 5 stars from me. Salut….
Very purple in the glass with a nose of Ribena, sweet oak, white pepper and blackberry jam. On the palate it is smooth, supple and has tons of blackberry, silky tannins, cedar slate, vanilla bean and ripe acidity. The mid palate stresses the vanilla component and allows the tannins to really shine. The finish focuses on dark fruits and the astringency of the tannins. The wine is decent, full bodied and quite tasty. 89 points and 4 stars for this $11 wine. Salut….
I have written about the Mollydooker Two Left Feet 2012 vintage before. I sat on this bottle for an eternity and since we are moving house, it’s time to drink up. I have not read my old review so as not to taint this one.
I must say, all Mollydooker red wines appear dark and very purply in the glass. This one is no exception. Extraction is the key to their success methinks. It has a nose of plums, sarsaparilla, fig. I already performed the Mollydooker Shake in case you were wondering. The palate gives up super smooth flavors of blue fruits. Blueberry, plum, currant jam, that root beer thing again and some super ingrained tannins. Like, so smooth and barely detectable. The astringency hits on the finish, but the wine drinks beautifully with nice, if somewhat restrained acidity. The mouthfeel on this wine is sublime, extracted, rich and smooth. The finish shows a faint trace of the well hidden, monstrous 16% alcohol. Beware…
I am pairing it with pan seared Flat-Iron steak that I coated with Santa Maria rub, plus some sautéed mushrooms, a tomato salad and edamame to boot. 91 points from me for this $25 offering. 5 stars for this blend of 69% Shiraz, 16% Cabernet, 15% Merlot. Salut….
Somewhat opaque but dark purple. The nose gives up candies, plum, oak, cherry pie, vanilla bean. The palate is super spicy, loaded with fruit and very smooth. Plum ganache, mocha, cafe au lait and blackberry preserve round out the initial palate. The transition to mid palate shows off some very integrated tannins, a red berry note and some cedar plank. The finish is mid length and coats the mouth in plum sauce, coffee and chocolate dust. 92 points from me for this $32 effort, which contradicts the pro’s 89, oh well. I liked it and will buy again for a juicy Sunday roast companion. 5 stars for this Shiraz/Grenache/Viognier blend. Salut….
You know you’re in for a bombastic treat when the label says Shiraz and the wine comes out inky in color and very dense. The nose is delightful- full of plum, espresso, cedar plank, elderberry syrup and a vanilla hint. On the palate it is more restrained than I was expecting, more silky, smoother, with much more depth. This is indeed a powerful wine, but in a more stately fashion. It shows the dark fruits I mentioned plus a really tight knit tannic structure that couples with the acidity to give an amazing mouthfeel. The elderberry syrup component really kicks in on the mid palate, it is so silky smooth. The finish is long, and full of fruit. The tannins are perfectly in sync and do not overpower the flavors. This is a delicious wine that has aged nicely and will continue to do so for many years. Drink with pretty much any grilled meat or all by itself. Beware the well hidden 15.5% alcohol, it may sneak up! The pros went big on this wine, which was WS #3 wine of the year in 2012, I can see why. 95 points and 5 stars for this treat that comes in at $75, if you can find it. Drink till 2024 at the least. Ps. I originally bought 2 bottles, and then another six afterwards. See my other two posts on Bella’s Garden. Salut….
It’s not often at a restaurant that someone walks past your table, plops a half finished bottle down and says ‘Enjoy’! Well, that’s what happened the other night at a Bay Area steak house where I was having dinner with Moxie and Jet, my number 3 son. I was already well into the 2014 Spellbound, but I took the time out to make a very brief taste test of this Aussie blend of Cabernet and Shiraz.
Gorgeous nose. Blueberry, blackberry and açaí berry. The palate shows off abrupt tannins, nice finish and good structure. 89 points. I researched it and found out it retails for $14, making it a 5 star wine in my books. (Sorry about the abbreviated review, but this one was obviously not planned!). Salut….
Wow, this is one bright purple wine, it almost looks like Ribena. The nose offers up gorgeous aromas of black cherry, blackberry, a hint of oak and some figs. On the palate it is very smooth with blackberry notes, a sour cherry kicker, some tobacco and smoke. The wine reminds me of Lapsang Souchong tea- smoky and earthy yet somehow mild and alluring. An acquired taste for sure. The wine have very integrated tannins and relatively low acidity. I would drink now till 2020 and pair with lighter fare. It begs for Moussaka, roast chicken or even a thick Reuben sandwich. 90 points and 4 stars for this $22 effort. Salut….
After trying the Jacob’s Creek Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon I had to line up their Shiraz and make some comparisons. This Shiraz displays nicely in the glass with medium opacity, purple hues and a definite show of legs. The nose is somewhat muted even after a few big swirls. I finally coax blackberries and eucalyptus out of it. On the palate I get black fruits with a dose of greeness that is very prominent. There is a touch of cedar as the wine transitions to the mid palate. I sense very fine grained tannins approaching along with a dark cherry note. The black fruits continue on the finish but the tannins overwhelm them in the end. The wine has a strong acidity that I can sense on my teeth. The green notes I talked of earlier reappear on the finish. It’s almost like the fruit included some unripe clusters that have given this wine a certain sourness along with the over abundant acidity. 85 points from me and 2 stars for this $12 effort. Salut….
I splurged, $25 a bottle for Jacobs Creek. It’s not just any JC though. In the glass it is dark, brooding and enticing. Rich, ripe plums on the nose with port wine accent. It smells the business. On the palate, it is super smooth and exhibits rich blackberries, plum extract, caramel, vanilla and a nice toast. The midpalate transition is seamless and the wine continues on to a very long finish. I’m astounded at the depth and purity of this wine. The balance is good but there are barely detectable tannins to go up against the slight acidity. That’s what gives this wine a great mouthfeel, yet detracts from its cellaring potential. It is the style of wine that I would use to introduce a novice red-wine drinker to. Easy on the tannins, the dryness and the acidity. This wine drinks beautifully now and will run well for another 5 years, till 2022. I would serve it with a rich stew, grilled lamb chops or perhaps a very well seasoned Cornish Hen. I’m going 91 points and 4 stars. Salut….
This blend is really dark purple. Made up of 60% Petit Verdot, 20% each of Cab Sav and Shiraz. The nose is bursting with currants, juniper, a touch of oak and black cherry. The palate is very interesting and tasty. The Petit Verdot punches through with violets, dark cherry and leather. Tannins are persistent but not overpowering, they leave the gums slightly dry but give the wine a freshness. The mid palate gives me mocha as well as more dark cherries. The finish reveals a vanilla note as well as some wood. The winemaker has done a superb job of balancing the acidity, tannins and the 14% alcohol- which is not noticeable. The mouthfeel is what I would describe as wholesome yet fresh. It is relatively smooth with great potential to mellow out and possibly develop tertiary flavor. 90 points from me, drink till 2025 and pair it with lamb chops and garlic mash. 5 stars because this wine rocks and it runs a mere $9 (But I found it for $6.09 in NJ, you people should be running to that store). Salut….