Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Chateau De Beauregard-DuCourt 2005 wine review by (PB)

For $11 you should be trying any and all 05 Bordeaux you find; many of them will be bargains.

This one is a pretty plum purple with a wowing bouquet of sweet fruit that if I was blind folded I would say it was a rose with sweet fruity strawberry and cherry aromas.

Palate has some structure with forthright tannins and skimpy fruit that is a bit hollow with charcoals notes. This is just light bodied, easy to drink but is weird since it is 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet yet tastes like a Beaujolais Cru. It is an easy drinking wine but very weird for Bordeaux.
Let this one pass.

Dona Paula Las Cardos Malbec 2006 wine review by (PB)

This is a pretty purple Argentinian wine with cranberry bouquet and black cherry notes.

Palate is solid strawberries with slight white pepper and solid structure. I am not a big fan of Malbec but this one was decent. I believe the price point is the usual $10 range. Raise a glass.

Casa LaPastolle "Cuvee Alexandre" Cabernet Sauvignon 2005 wine review by (PB)

This multiply reviewed wine is always a super value and a great quaff. It has an intense deep black cherry color with vegetal aromas with rich dark berries.

Palate is a rich, big, juicy Cab. that is a blockbuster wine with big dark fruit that's bready and delicious finishing with subtle chocolate. What a bargain at $15

KJ Riesling 2005 wine review by (PB)

This California Riesling is pale straw with shallow mixed fruit, melon and kiwi along iwth a fruit I just can't identify.

In the mouth it has a sweet touch of lemon peel at the rear with apricot note; is nicely made with a lingering finish but the bouquet has a fruit aroma that is elusive and nice. I paid $11 for this wine which was fair but if you want Riesling, try Washington state or Germany and raise a glass.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Baltos Bierzo 2005 Wine review by (PB)

Dominio De Tares from Mencia Spain this wine has a purple hue with a unique bouquet that reminds me a great deal of Pinot Noir with stinky aromas over sour cherry.

In the mouth it is tasty and again unique mouth feel with tangy fruit that is bright. The finish is quick but all in all a unique and tasty wine. At the $17 price point it is an average value. Raise a glass.

Chateau D'Aiguilhe 2004 real time review by (PB)

Intense color of opaque cherry w/scant remnants of purple youth.
Bouquet has prominent tart raspberry aromas with plum and cocoa highlights with a bit of spice in the nose.

White pepper is first impression with steely mid-palate with really chewy tannins that are dry as dust. Needs to breathe and relax.

This wine is from Bordeaux (Cotes De Castillon). With an hour of breathing it reveals some wild tastes of cedar and pine and while the tannins relax a bit they are still quite chewy. Wine Spectator's barrel tasting of this wine and subsequent tastings show something quite different. (Interesting)

Finally--after three hours of decanting, this wine reveals its true colors; refined tannins, distinctive flavors described above and a respectable finish. (This is a fine example of why some wines need to be breathed!)

At any rate, in the $20 price point, this is a lot of wine and interesting so raise a glass and don't forget those 2005 Bordeaux! Grab em while you can.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Rocca Delle Macie Reserva Chianti Classico 2004 wine review by (PB)

This previously reviewed wine is always excellent. It is changing over time and for the better; Intense black cherry color with great aromas of fresh wild cherries with hints of wildness and spice and with some air a lovely caraway (rye bread) emerges. This is different than the last time I reviewed this wine.

Palate is delicious, fully integrated, drinking great with a hint of chocolate with a nice fruity finish.

Just a great value at the $15 price point. If you find it, buy it up and drink it up! Raise a glass.

Hyatt Cabernet Sauvignon (NV) wine review by (PB)

If there is a vintage on this wine I could not find it. Very strange but this Yakima wine was bought on a closeout for $7. It has loads of nice cola in the bouquet with dark fruit and dark berries with ripe cherry notes as well.

In the mouth there is wood, fruit, some more wood and a decent structure. It finishes pretty well and all in all was a pretty good quaff for the price. Raise a glass.
(Note the label is for Merlot but it is the same except for the name)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Schrader Double Diamond Mayacamas Range Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 Wine Review (NW)

Tasting notes:

Dark berries, currant, and cassis on the nose

Firmly structured, solid and rich on the palate

Blackberry and cedar finish

I recently had the pleasure of enjoying a magnum of this wine at a business dinner. The sommelier decanted the wine in a beautiful, tall decanter which added to the experience. Did it need it? Well, it probably didn't hurt give that it's a young, dense wine.

The dark, rich flavors give the wine a seriousness and intensity, and the firm structure and tannins provide a backbone. It's not as soft and chewy as others from 2004, rather I'd call it Bordeaux-like.

The magnum was $195 at a New York steakhouse. It was well worth it, enhancing the meal like wine should. It was also a treat because this wine is such a limited production, especially in the 1.5L format. Raise a glass!

Lolonis Redwood Valley Merlot 2004 Wine Review (NW)

Tasting notes:

Rich nose of red berries and cream
Full-bodied and velvety on palate
Nice finish of plum, berries, and a touch of milk chocolate

I've enjoyed this wine in the past, and the 2004 is very nice. When I find it on sale, it's a real bargain. Recently, I paid $13 and bought a few bottles.

The flavors are full and rich and the texture is smooth and velvety. Pair this wine with hearty food and you'll have a match! Raise a glass!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Man Sauvignon Blanc 2005 wine review by (PB)

I had a Man Chenin a year or so ago and was impressed. this S. African winery tends to produce decent value wines. So I grabbed this one which was on closeout for $6. What a bargain!
Nice light golden wine with grassy aromas with guava paste notes.

Palate is solid, slightly tart and very tasty. This is a sturdy S. Blanc very typical of the variety and and at the price pretty nice. Raise a glass!

Crucillon 2005 wine review by (PB)

This is a 100% Spanish Macabeo that is pale golden with odd, fuel oil scents over summer fruit. Agh! Palate is a bit sour with shallow flavor and grapey on the finish. I have no experience with this grape at all so have no point of reference. If this is what it is supposed to taste like--YUCK.

Altos De LaHoya 2005 wine review by (PB)

This Jumilla Monastrell is a nice deep garnet hue with stingy aromas but a strange latex paint aroma is present.

It has a sweetness i the mouth and thin on fruit but big on flavor. A rather weird wine with light pepper notes, gentle strawberry with an alcoholic background. Not a lot there and worth passing up even at $7 on sale.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Torbreck 2006 "Woodcutter's Shiraz" wine review by (PB)

(NW) hauled this out for one of our comestible conquests in Boston; This Barossa is heavily pigmented with black cherry and cranberry rim. Bouquet is full of ripe plums with heavy aromas of cream and English pudding.

Palate--Sweet with rich fruit that is "real" being neither jammy nor a fruit bomb. It has some character and even finesse on the finish. At the $20 price point, this wine is a wood cut above the myriad of Aussie Shiraz's in the $15 and under category. Spend the extra few bucks; its worth it! Raise a glass to good Shiraz.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Comenda Grande Tinto 2004 Wine Review by Billy

Nose:Asparagus, loamy earth, milk, mushrooms, soft dark jammy berries
Palate: pleasantly tannic at first but soft with rounded feel. Not big in the mouth but even and subtle.
Finish: cocoa, tapering finish that ends quickly with a tough of green.

Overall: there is no way to describe the excellence with which a wine received as a gift imparts when you open and drink it. This Comenda Grande 2004, a red wine from the Alentejano region of Portugal, was given to me as a gift from a dear friend from Portugal. I was in Lisbon on a business trip and my friend and I got to talking about wine. He gifted me this bottle and another from his own collection. As I drink this wine, I am flooded with pleasant memories of Lisbon, the evening spent watching football at a local eatery, and the friendliness of the Portuguese people.

The wine is a nice table red. A blend of Portuguese varietals Trincadeira, Aragones (aka tempranillo) and Alicante Bouschet, this deep red is flavored predominantly by the Trincadeira and smoothed and rounded by the Aragones.

Raise a Glass!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Menage a Trois 2006 Wine Review by Billy

(2003 pictured, 2006 reviewed)
Nose: Big and Fruity with Black, Blue, And Red Raspberry smells. Some cinnamon and cedar give it character.
Palate: good balance, big feel in the mouth. not flabby, not over done.
Finish: blackberry jam finish with some pepper.

Overall, this is a decent red-sauced pasta accompanying red table wine. It delivers easy drinkability and simple, fruity tastes and smells. Structurally it is unsophisticated but not poor. A good every-day value wine. This bottle was part of a meal gift from friends but I've seen it go for anywhere from $9 to $15 dollars locally.

Raise a Glass

Chateau De Macard 2005 wine review by (PB)

Another Bordeaux from the famed 05 vintage is 30% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, 50% Cabernet Franc and a great price of $10. It has a young purple hue with chocolate raspberry and red fruit on the nose.

The palate is a little feisty with tight fruit flavors and smoke. Given some time to breath--important with this vintage--the chocolate minimizes and the fruit opens to dry cherries and wood. Can't lose at this price and I suggest buying more and laying it down for another year or two! Raise a glass.

Angove's Red Belly Black Shiraz 2004 wine review by (PB)

Black cherry hue with pronounced ripe fruit with black raspberry, plum, slight chocolate touch, quite nice!

In the mouth this S. Aussie wine has some character with a sweetish palate of ripe plum, chocolate cherry hints that is easy to drink and tasty.

At this price point $10, this wine stands out better than the ubiquitous Aussie Shiraz's that all taste the same. Raise a glass to a decent Shiraz at this price.

Bernkasteler Kurfurstlay Auslese wine review by (PB)

Josef Friederich gives us this lightly golden German sweet wine that has wonderful spicy vanilla cream aromas.

For review--in their order of increasing sweetness, German wines are labeled with their "title" or "pradikat." They are: Kabinett, Spatlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Trochenbeerenauslese. As a rule of thumb, their price increases from left to right as well.

Palate is sweet (of course) though lacking body and structure (Hence the price). Slight grapefruit notes with sweet spice; pleasant and for the closeout price of $7 this was a nice buy. Put a greater chill on such whites and they will carry better. Raise a glass.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Clarendelle 2003 wine review by (PB)

Nice garnet hue with a nice bouquet of fruity raspberry and cigar box aromas.

It has a gentle tartness and a very slight pepper note that fades.

It is quite thin but pleasant with tones of fresh fruit, though finishes and fades quickly.

It's okay but for the $16 I paid for it, and that was on sale from $20, you can do better especially with the 05's! Raise a glass to Bordeaux.

Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon 2000 wine review by (PB)

This premium Chilean is an opaque garnet hue with a mature looking rim. Chocolate emerges on opening even as I am pouring my first taste. There are loads of pure fruit.
In the mouth this wine is fully mature, integrated with lovely texture yet a tad thin but this is right on opening--the finish lingers.

After breathing the wine for several hours waiting for (NW) to arrive, the bouquet opens up to a complex world of chocolate, leather, wood, light cedar, cigar box; a premium bouquet to be sure.
Raspberry and delicious dark fruit all over with smoke on the rear palate and some charcoal. I swear the color changed from a mature looking hue to a younger red with a touch of purple still. weird--and wonderful.

Now the story behind this wine:

Three or four years ago (NW) and I were together for Thanksgiving at his digs in Jacksonville. He opened a 2000 Don Melchor among an array of other wines we had that glorious holiday weekend. (17 different wines we had that weekend I believe)

The wine was so unique it was hard to figure out; It was so huge and so "out there" that you couldn't really figure out what to serve it with and what it was all about. We attributed all of this to it's immaturity.

Now after cellaring this wine for several years, it is a totally different wine as described above. I made a turkey dinner with all the trimmings just like at Thanksgiving and it was an excellent pairing. I paid $35 for this wine about 5 years ago and the patient waiting paid off.
Raise a glass to Good Cab and Turkey!