Friday, March 24, 2017

Provenance Vineyards Napa Valley 2012 Merlot





Provenance Vineyards Napa Valley 2012 Merlot, $17.99-$34.99, 90 points, was a purple/red color with a clear wine ring and moderate legs.
Earthy smells accented with cinnamon, cedar, and a less sustained blackberry aroma were good.
Full-bodied with moderate acidity and firm grainy tannins managed to deliver early palate tangy black cherry, evolving blackberry, plum, and chocolate flavors.
Finished long on intense warm spices, truffle, pomegranate, tobacco, the residual palate, and a potent 14.9% alcohol.
Paired fine with my spiced-rubbed rare Angus rib-eye.
I preferred the early pour over the let-stand and breathe pour.



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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Januik Champoux Vineyard 2014 Muscat Canelli






Januik Champoux Vineyard 2014 Muscat Canelli, $6.79-$19.99, 87 points, poured a light glossy gold color.
Aromatic orange peel, wet cement, whimsical honeysuckle, and stone fruits were lovely, but translated weakly onto the palate with a hint of caramel.
This light-bodied wine with fair acidity walked a thin line between sweet and dry (off dry).
Finished okay on apricot, Kahlúa, caramel, and a comfortable 11.5% alcohol.
Paired fine with my blackberry crumpets and maple syrup.

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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Ménage à Trois 2015 Rosé





Ménage à Trois 2015 Rosé, $8.88-$12.99, 87 points, was an orange/rose color with a violet tint.
Smells of strawberries and peppermint candy-cane were a tad different.
Also a tad different for a Rosé was the flavor of blueberries, but traditional strawberry and floral notes were good.
Light-bodied with fair-plus acidity carried these flavors deep into the long finish marked by ginger notes and a well-balanced 13.5% alcohol.
Varietals were Merlot, Syrah, and an unusual Gewürztraminer.
Paired fine with my chili-mac.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Castell Franken (Trocken) 2015 Silvaner White Wine





Castell Franken (Trocken) 2015 Silvaner White Wine, $19.79-$21.99, 91 points, poured a light glossy gold color clearing at the glass shallows.
Aromatic pome fruit, soft floral notes, and hints of citrus and bacon were superior.
The almost medium-body was dense with flavors of stone fruits and brine; acidity was fair or medium.
Finished long on persistent ginger and the dry 13% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with a Alsatian bacon and onion tarte flambée.
I bought this wine at the Whole Foods of Bedford.
This was the first Silvaner (Sylvaner) white wine I've had the pleasure of tasting, and I was impressed.


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Monday, March 20, 2017

Groth Oakville-Napa Valley 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve





Groth Oakville-Napa Valley 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, $97.74-$114.99, 96+ points, poured the same color, but darker than this purple/red young Cabernet, and with thick slow tearing into the clear wine ring.
The bouquet was outstanding potpourris focused upon flowers, black fruits, cedar, and herbs; to break down this wine's aroma gestalt would just be superfluous.
Full-bodied with mouthwatering acidity and layered fine supportive tannins carried a balanced flavor profile excelling with blackberry liqueur, black currants, cedar, dates, plums, French café, earth notes, and sandalwood.
Finished elegantly on the waning palate, supple subtleties, and a well-integrated 14.9% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my rare spice-rubbed Angus rib-eye.
One of the best Cabernet Sauvignon wines in my short list of Cabs.

Groth Vineyards, why it's a "go to" winery.
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Sunday, March 19, 2017

Castello Del Poggio Delle Venezie NV Moscato (IGT)






Castello Del Poggio Delle Venezie NV Moscato (IGT), $9.99-$11.99, 89 points, opened with a puff of 'smoke' and displayed less effervescence than a frizzante wine, and with as light a brass color 'imaginable' without being water clear.
The aromas of cream soda and orange were excellent.
Light-plus body was sleek and soft exhibiting medium acidity and an expected reigned-in sweetness.
Flavors neatly reflected the aromas with a touch of rock-candy.
Finished long on the trailing palate, hints of citrus, and a nearly unnoticeable 7% alcohol.
A fine aperitif, but paired well with my warm pecan pie, maple-spice cake, and okay with baked fig squares.

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

Trivento Mendoza 2015 Malbec Reserve (Argentina)







Trivento Mendoza 2015 Malbec Reserve (Argentina), $8.49-$11.99, 87 points, poured a deep purple/red color with a broad clear wine ring.
Aromas of blueberry and mulberry were only okay for me.
Medium-bodied with good acidity and round easy tannins carried excellent flavors which mirrored the aromas plus orange pekoe tea.
Finished long on the trailing palate, a tad green, intense warm spices, oak, a seemingly higher than the printed 13.5% alcohol, and persistent tobacco notes.
My take-away on this wine is totally different than the back label.
Paired fine with our Pepper burgers.




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Friday, March 17, 2017

Bernard Magrez Herència del Padrí 2014 Priorat Red Wine D.D.O.C. (Spain)







Bernard Magrez Herència del Padrí 2014 Priorat Red Wine D.D.O.C. (Spain), $16.14-$18.99, 91 points, poured a deep red color with a broad clear wine ring and heavy tears.
The grapy aroma was accented with cedar, toast, and a hint of sandalwood.
Full-bodied with good acidity and fine grainy tannins managed excellent flavors of cherries, plums, truffles, tobacco, and hints of dry cooking herbs.
Finished long on the trailing palate, warm spices, and a potent 15% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my first attempt at Shepard's pie.
Varietals were 60% Grenache, 20% Carignan, and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon.
These last two wines are why I love Priorat and Spanish red wines in general (QPR).

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Scala Dei Garnatxa 2013 Priorat Garnacha Red Wine D.O.Q. Denominació d'Origen Qualificada (Spain)





Scala Dei Garnatxa 2013 Priorat Garnacha Red Wine D.O.Q. Denominació d'Origen Qualificada (Spain), $16.14-$18.88, 91 points, appeared the darkest of these reds with a thin clear wine ring and thinnest of glass sheeting.
The earthy aroma was accented with cinnamon and red raspberry.
Medium bodied with good acidity and solid seamless tannins carried delicious flavors of red fruit, black tea, hints of mulling spices, and citrus.
Finished long on warm spices and the invigorating 14.5% alcohol.
The varietal was 100% Garnacha.
Paired perfectly with my meatloaf and gravy dinner.

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Gérard Bertrand 2016 Cote des Roses (Languedoc)







Gérard Bertrand 2016 Cote des Roses (Languedoc), $13.99-$16.99, 91 points, poured a lovely crystalline peach-textured color.
Aromatic strawberry, pear, peach and a floral component were excellent.

Appropriately light and acidic.
Strawberry and chamomile flavors trailed deep into the long finish of white pepper, watermelon rind, jasmine, and a spot on 12.5% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my Buffalo wings, blue-cheese, and celery.
The bottom of the bottle is supposed to be a rose, but I thought it looked more like lava.
Varietals were Grenache, Cinsault, and Syrah.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Folie à Deux Alexander Valley 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon





Folie à Deux (Madness of Two) Alexander Valley 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, $14.44-$19.99, 88 points, poured opaque grading ruby red toward the clear wine ring and moderately leggy glass bowl.
'Bouquet' was rather prosaic floral, earth, and cedar with a whiff of alcohol.
Near full-bodied, with fair acidity, medium underlayment of tannins, and dominant flavors of plums and mushrooms which chameleon-ed well with our pepperoni pizza, black olive salad, mixed nuts, and chocolates (a yeomen's dinner Cabernet).
Finished with a hint of mint and a warm 14.5% alcohol inspirited spice.

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Rocca delle Macie Single Vineyard (Fizzzano) 2010 Chianti Classico Riserva




Rocca delle Macie Single Vineyard (Fizzano) 2010 Chianti Classico Riserva, $17.99-$29.99, 91 points, poured a deep copper/red/purple color with a clear wine ring and a leggy glass bowl.
Aromatic soft lavender, shy cedar, earth, and cherry notes were pleasant.
Medium-bodied with food friendly acidity and declining still supportive tannins defined this dry red wine.
Flavors of oak, cherries, black tea, and licorice were delicious.
Finished long on the trailing palate, lively warm spices, and a spot-on 13.5% alcohol.
Varietals were 85% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot.
Paired perfectly with our Fileja pasta with a rich beef tomato sauce and toasted Italian garlic bread.

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Sunday, March 12, 2017

Paolo Saracco 2016 Moscato Bianco (d'Asti DOCG)





Paolo Saracco 2016 Moscato Bianco (d'Asti DOCG), $15.99-$18.99, 89 points, poured less effervescent than a frizzante wine, and with a pale brass color.
Aromatic clementine peel, peach, pome blossoms, and a hint of juniper impressed.
The light body carried fair-plus acidity with the wine's inherent sweetness expressed in excellent flavors of orange soda, caramel, and a floral vibe.
Finished long on the trailing palate, a nearly unnoticeable 6% alcohol, whispers of ginger and sweet cinnamon.
I enjoyed this sweet wine as an aperitif and with my pecan pie alamode, but it was almost like drinking candy, and though it complemented my pie, I found the contrasting spicy crabmeat salad pairing more interesting.

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Saturday, March 11, 2017

Achaval Ferrer Mendoza 2012 Malbec (Argentina)





Achaval Ferrer Mendoza 2012 Malbec, $16.14-$22.99, 90 points, poured core black grading purple/red toward the thin crystalline wine ring and moderately draped glass bowl.
Aromatic sweet black raspberries, mulberries, oak, and floral notes were excellent.
Near full-bodied with good acidity, smooth underlayment of tannin, and flavors reflective of the aromas trailing into a long finish of spearmint and a 14.5% alcohol empowered white pepper combined to impress.
Paired perfectly with hamburgers and chips, not to mention our hazelnut chocolate dessert.





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Friday, March 10, 2017

Vercoope Pavão NV Vinho Verde (Portugal)






Vercoope Pavão NV Vinho Verde (Portugal), $7.99-$8.99, 87 points, poured less effervescent than a frizzante wine, and with a light gold color and a faint green tint.
Aromas were shy, but showed pleasant enough floral and citrus notes.
Light-bodied with fair-plus acidity managed straight-forward flavors of lime and ripe grapefruit.
Finished fair on the trailing palate, a hint of ginger, cumquat, and an easy 11% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my baked filet of sole.

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

DeLoach Vineyards Heritage Reserve 2009 Merlot





DeLoach Vineyards Heritage Reserve 2009 Merlot, $8.99-$11.99, 86 points, appeared degrees of copper/red colors a bleeding broad clear wine ring and leggy glass wall.
Aromas needed considerable teasing, but a bit of pomegranate and sour plum were just okay.
Medium-bodied with fair acidity and soft tannins carried flavors reflective of the aromas plus hints of red cherry.
Finished long on intense hot spices, revived tannic influence, trailing palate, and a spot-on 13.5% alcohol.
Paired well with my spicy beef goulash.

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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Dry Creek Vineyard 2013 Merlot






Dry Creek Vineyard 2013 Merlot, $15.99-$18.99, 89 points, poured a deep ruby red grading purple/red at the clear wine ring and glass bowl of sticky sheeting.
Aromatic ripe black fruit, hints of chocolate, and shy floral vibes were excellent.

Near full-bodied with good acidity and firm drying tannins managed plum, ripe mulberry, licorice, and herbal sage flavors.
Finished long on plum, building tannins which were good for me, but others might want to cellar for another two or three years at least, and warm spices inspirited by a bold 14.5% alcohol.
Varietals were 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 5% Cabernet Franc.
This is not a sissified Merlot, and will be too much for those looking for a soft homogenized version of the grape.
Paired great with my baked fig dessert.


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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Château de Bonhoste 2014 Bordeaux Blanc




Château de Bonhoste 2014 Bordeaux Blanc, $12.74-$14.99, 88 points, was a light brass color.
The aroma was a shy lemon grass.
Light-bodied with fair-plus acidity and delicate flavors of lychee, lemon, and soft gooseberry were excellent.
Finished well on the trailing palate and rich ginger notes.
Varietals were 60% Sauvignon Blanc, 30% Sémillon, and 10% Muscadelle with an innocuous 12.5% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my dry sea scallops and Japanese Rangoon.
The warmer weather has me breaking-out last fall's white wines.

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Monday, March 6, 2017

Marqués de Cáceres 2015 Rioja Rosé (Spain)





Marqués de Cáceres 2015 Rioja Rosé (Spain), $8.99-$10.99, 88 points, was a dark peach color graying at the glass edge.
Aromas of strawberry and red raspberry were quite nice.
Light, crisp, appropriately acidic, and straight forward flavors reflective of the aromas with a hint of watermelon rind and hibiscus were good.
Finished well on the trailing palate, a touch of cayenne pepper, and a balanced 13.5% alcohol.
Paired perfectly with my nacho supreme on chipotle chips.
Varietals were 80% Tempranillo and 20% Grenache.




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Sunday, March 5, 2017

Groth Oakville-Napa Valley 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon





Groth Oakville-Napa Valley 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon, $62.99-$67.99, 93 points, poured opaque grading a deep maroon with a clear wine ring at the glass wall of thick legs.
Upon opening, and I've been smelling a lot of Cabernets lately, this one began beautifully with violets, cedar, ripe mulberry, and soft rose perfume.
Full-bodied with food friendly acidity and a supportive underlayment of tannins which carried flavors of leather, plums, violets, and cola along with a complexity of herbs.
Finished long on a bit of Zin-like briar fruit, warm spices, a touch of eucalyptus, and a spot-on 14.5% alcohol (I say that about the alcohol knowing some hate alcohol levels above 13.5%).
Paired fine with our smorgasbord.

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