A Washington state Cabernet that is nearly opaque with a deep ruby color and thick legs (14.8% ABV). The nose has rich aromas of vanilla bean, ripe black plum, blackberry, black cherry, green pepper and boysenberry. The palate is dry with medium (+) tannins and medium acidity. Medium to full bodied, I get flavors of dark fruit, lots of oak influence and that green pepper note. I lose the vanilla somewhat but gain charred wood instead. The finish is a dry affair and medium in length. This wine drinks nicely now- if you like them a bit dry and tannic. Cellaring potential till 2028, I would serve this with hearty red meat dishes, rich pasta and stews. 90 points and for $40 it gets 4 stars. Salut….
It’s mid-June and I need a refreshing drink. This one is labelled as a Brut, meaning it can have up to 12 g/l of sugar. After a bit of digging I found it runs 6.3 g/l, just slightly into the Brut category. It shows 11.5% ABV, which is normal for a traditional method sparkling wine. The color is medium lemon and the mousse is quite fine. On the nose I get aromas of brioche, Meyer lemon zest, cinnamon, toast, biscuit, Mandarin orange and vanilla lollipop. The palate is actually quite dry with delightfully fine bubbles that tickle ever so slightly. Medium acidity creates a defining cut to the wine and the autolytic flavors I got on the nose are all present with the citrusy notes focusing more on a lemon and Meyer lemon profile with a touch of green apple. I don’t get any vanilla or cinnamon at this stage. The finish is medium in length and the wine is very balanced. I have to say, this $12 sparkling wine is a stunning value that gets 89 points from me. This 5 star effort is one to buy by the case to have handy, you never know! I’m pairing mine with clams and pasta. Drink now. Salut….
Deep ruby colored, this Merlot shows off its 15% ABV with thick legs in the glass. The nose has rich aromas of ripe raspberry, black cherry, vanilla, caramel and red licorice. The palate is dry with slightly green tannins, medium acidity and medium intensity flavors. The body is medium (+) on this juicy wine. The mid palate is a touch astringent that also shows some charcoal notes. The finish is dry and somewhat tart, reminiscent of sour cherries and black tea. It’s a decent drop that gets 89 points from me. I would imagine this will drink till 2025 and pair well with grilled meats and charcuterie. $22 makes this a 3 star wine in my books. Salut….
This Cab is an opaque purple in the glass with no legs showing- strange considering it sports 14.2% ABV. The nose is reminiscent of a purple fruit medley. Blackcurrants, plums, blackberry and blueberry all mixed up. A spicy note like bakers spices hits me as well as some minty earthiness. The palate is delicious- the fruit compote with spice, oak nuances and very nicely integrated tannins make for a delicious flavor profile that has a great mouthfeel. The acidity is present, balanced and not overly tart. The wine has medium to full body and it lasts a decent amount on the finish. I’m liking it, a lot. 90 points for this $20 gem makes it a 5 star wine. I’m giving some Strip steaks a cast iron treatment alongside sweet potato fries and sautéed spinach. Should work a treat, drink till 2027. Salut….
I think the label is cool, very cool. I don’t normally buy based on graphics but this one had to be done. It is a bit murky in the glass but shows youth still with a deep ruby color. On the nose I get black plum, black currants, blackberry, blueberry compote, cedar plank, vanilla and coconut. The palate is very tasty- black and blue fruits, toasty oak nuances and well integrated tannins. Low to medium acidity makes for a nice mouthfeel that is medium bodied. Th finish is shortish but chock full of fruit. Shame it doesn’t last very long. I like this $20 wine that will drink nicely till 2025 and pair well with Osso Bucco, lamb stew or Steak au Poivre. I am going with 90 points which aligns with the pros, making it a 5 star effort. Salut….
I’m an old fan of this winery, having been a tasting room member at one point. This Cabernet hails from Columbia Valley. It is a touch murky with medium shades of purple in the glass. The nose has steeped plums, charcoal and blackberry pie. The palate is really yummy- if not at peak, it’s close. Ripe plums, cedar, black berry and espresso. The mid palate is very refined with very well integrated tannins and good acidity. The dark, mature fruit theme continues but what impresses me the most is the mouthfeel. It is really full, rounded and balanced. The finish is very juicy, the acidity really gripping at this point. The prune and blackberry flavors fade after a decent amount of time but the tannins hang on to my gums for an eternity. Lovely stuff that gets 89 points from me. It should be drunk sooner rather than later and for $17, it gets 4 stars. Salut….
A medium shade of yellow in the glass with hints of lemon and pear on the nose. The palate is light, refreshing and pretty mild on the pH scale. Lemon drop and yellow pear dominate thew flavor profile but I get a hint of pineapple which is quite intriguing. The tartness starts to show up on the mid palate, where this light-bodied wine gives off more of the pineapple notes. The finish is relatively short and introduces a hint of lanolin, but the main components are the lemon and pineapple. It’s a nice, easygoing drop of un/barely oaked chardonnay that is not flabby or buttery. It reflects the grapes and minimalist intervention. For $15, it get 3 stars as I am going with 86 points. Drink till 2024 with shrimp scampi, salad nicoise, or even a chicken pie. Salut….
I love Cab Franc as a standalone varietal. It offers up so much sophistication, is svelte and has great structure. Found mainly in blends, it does really well on its own in my book. This one is bright purple and semi opaque in the glass. The nose is exploding as it just sits there, I can smell it a mile away. Black pepper, violets, spice box and black raspberry all greet me. The palate is very muscular and fruity. Rich purple fruit notes alongside the spiciness make for an interesting taste. Very nice tannins are present from the get go, but not over powering. Oak nuances are present as is a fair dose of acidity. The mid palate is a touch less dry, with the flavors turning a little darker. Black currants take over alongside some tea notes. The finish is quite dry and decent in length. I am enjoying this rather full bodied wine, it’s not as perfumed and lithe as I was expecting but it will rock my Goat stew for dinner. Other pairings would include grilled Hanger steak with Frites or even Lamb Chops with mint sauce. 90 points for this $12 stunner make it a 5 star effort. Drink till 2025. Salut….
This Washington State Cab Sav is a murky, dark shade of purple and totally opaque. On the nose I get a whiff of alcohol followed by plums, black currants and cedar shake. The palate starts off with a healthy dose of tannins and black fruit salad. When I say healthy, I mean teeth coating astringency- wow. The fruit flavors are having a hella time trying to get center stage here. The mid palate has black currants and tea notes that are vying for space with the grip of tannins. On the finish it is a very dry affair that is short lived from the fruit. I need to get the Vinturi out and re-try. I picked the right wine for tonight’s pairing- Picanha steaks, which have a thick edge of fat in need of some hefty tannins. This wine has tremendous structure and will cellar nicely for a few years but if you need it now, aerate it or you will be lost in a sea of mouth searing tannins. Overall I think this wine will end up really nice and considering the aging capacity I am going with 90 points. It retails for $23 and gets 5 stars from me. Drink from 2023 till 2027. Salut….
Very rich purple and about 80% opaque. This Washington state Cab Sav has notes of black cherry, black berries and oak nuances on the nose. The palate it is very interesting- sweet black fruit salad with iodine and Kirsch. The tannins are very much present but not obtrusive. The mid palate carries on the black fruit theme, primarily black berry but there is something else…. fruitcake? The finish is quite tasty with baking spices, black cherry and loads of tannins. The acidity is present but the wine is very dry at this stage of it’s youth. I like it and am looking forward to the Flank Steak and roasted asparagus that will pair tonight. 91 points from me and 5 stars for this $29 charmer. Drink till 2026. Salut….