The second wine of the Birthday dinner at Chez Francois. This one was stunning. No notes were taken but I remember thinking that this is what being a wine lover is all about. Near perfection in the bottle. Rich, ripe, sumptuous, balanced, maturing yet showing youth and verve. This wine blends some Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc with the majority Sangiovese. It gets 94 points from me and 5 stars, even with its $125 current price tag. I believe I have one left in storage and will look forward to the next opportunity. Paired beautifully with Lamb Chops. Salut….
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….
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….
Have you ever had Ribena? That is exactly what this blockbuster looks like in the glass. It is a 100% Merlot from Tuscany that got huge marks from some pros. I bought in on the hype and could afford the $20 entry fee.
The nose is rich with blackberry and stone. The initial taste is really delicious, with more black berries and plum mixing it up with gorgeous tannins and acidity. I also get smoky mineral notes. These flavors transcend the mid plate and meet up with dried blueberry on the finish. The tannins are lush in this wine and give off a nice mouthfeel all the way through the finish.
I must be missing something about the 97 points given by an Italian critic, for me this is a solid wine that should get 90. For the price paid it is a really good Merlot that I will be serving with Sunday Roast- 4 stars. 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….
Mixed emotions on this one as I have opened three bottles on different occasions before coming to a conclusion. It was rated very highly when I bought a case of this 50/50 blend of Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon. I would not normally drink such a blend, but with a nice write-up, what the heck. Firstly, this blend does not work for me, secondly- my initial bottle was tremendously disappointing. Thin is the descriptor that comes to mind. This wine had nothing going for it. Sangiovese is well known in Chiantis and is regarded as a light grape. When mixed with the powerhouse Cabernet, neither grape got a chance to shine, merely masking the power of the Cab, and totally drowning out the Sangio. With 6 years of age, there could have been some secondary flavors starting to develop, but I sensed none. The nose lacked any formal fruit, and the tannins were a little screwy. Over a period of three hours, it did develop some Strawberry hints on the mid-palate, thanks to the Sangiovese, but nothing really powerful. Bottle two was a bit better as there was a definite delineation between the two grapes. I could make out some of the nuances of each but still had a hard time with the winemakers choice of blend. Bottle three was by far the best and was actually pretty good. I detected telltale fruit on the nose, the midpalate seemed right and the tannins were present but unobtrusive. Overall this wine is a major letdown and a big pass. 2 Stars, and only because the third bottle came through for me. As for a formal rating, I cannot even dream of what it deserves, perhaps an 80-88 depending on which bottle you get stuck with. Wish me luck on the remaining 9……
I have bought a case of the 2005 Tenuta Dei Sette Ciela Indaco, and I like it. With 6 years of age, it is showing well, despite the amateur rankings I have read. Excellent nose giving way to a typical Tuscan palate with smooth tannins and a relatively long finish give this wine 4 stars in my book.
I like Italian wines but don’t know much about the myriad of regions, classifications and what grape variety is in what. I do know good wine though, and for the price I paid- BARGAIN!
Typically, Sangiovese is the big player in Italian wines, but being a Super Tuscan, it is a blend of Cab Sav amongst other non-approved varietals, thus making it ineligible for a “DOC/G” classification. Not that it matters, this is good stuff that should last until 2016 at the least.