2006 Bodegas Escorihuela Gascón Malbec Don Miguel Gascón

I have trying been to expand my knowledge of the wines of Argentina and Chile. Malbec is one of the varietal that does very well there. The color is a nice deep purple. The nose was a little musty and earthy but gave a hint of mocha and blueberry. The fruit is very forward with blackberry, blueberry, chocolate, and dark cherry all in the mix. This is a simple but enjoyable wine with good QPR at $15.

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Published in: on March 29, 2008 at 9:09 pm  Leave a Comment  
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2005 D.R. Stephens Cabernet Sauvignon DR II Walther Vineyard

40952.jpgNot exactly “straight off the truck” but pretty close. This latest release of the DRII was waiting for me when I returned from a business trip this weekend. For it’s sophomore effort I had high expectations. I was not disappointed. For as young as it is this wine is smooth and very well put together. The winemaker, Celia Masyczek, really knows how to structure Cab blends. The nose doesn’t give much yet but has hints of mocha and spice. The flavors are black currant, spice, and blackberry that are extracted and ultra ripe. The tannins are well integrated and will no doubt soften with just a little bottle age. The finish goes on and on. At the risk of sounding like a shill for the producer, this wine is worth the $60 bucks I paid for this bottle and eleven more just (hopefully) like it. Decant for now. 

Published in: on March 25, 2008 at 11:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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2006 Artesa Chardonnay Reserve Carneros Napa Valley

p_estate_chard.jpgThe nose gives off a pear and citrus mix. Flavors are bright and forward with buttery pear, melon and apple in the mix. The finish is slightly oaky and pleasant ending with a citrus twang. For someone who is not a big white wine drinker or fan this wine works for me. It’s around 18 dollars so the QPR is right on the money as well. Artesa continues to be at the front of mid to value priced white wine producers in the US.

Published in: on March 25, 2008 at 12:24 am  Leave a Comment  
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2004 Shingleback Cabernet Sauvignon

18319.jpgVery deep inky purple color. The nose doesn’t give much away other than a earthy hint of leather. The flavors are dark berry, bramble berry and cassis. The finish is medium to long in length and ends with a lingering black pepper hit. For the money its quite good and fits the style most like from the region.

Published in: on March 24, 2008 at 12:42 am  Leave a Comment  
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2005 Thorn-Clarke Shiraz Terra Barossa

5482.jpgVery dark inky purple in color. Aromas of earthy minerals and black fruit on the nose. As typical of the Barossa Valley style this wine is big with lots of fruit. The flavors are blackberry, currant, licorice, and a slightly grapey finish. The tannins are fine grained and linger nicely on the finish. At $12 this wine has a decent QPR if you like big Aussie Shiraz.

Published in: on March 22, 2008 at 11:33 pm  Comments (2)  
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2005 Casa Lapostolle Cabernet Sauvignon Cuvée Alexandre

2188.jpgDark purple in color. The nose was mostly blackberry with a touch of espresso. The flavors were blackberry, currant and vanilla bean. Tannins were fine grained and lasted on the finish which picked up a tobacco note at the end. Good QPR and easy to drink. This wine is from the Colchagua Valley appellation in Chile’s Central Valley region. It’s easy to find for around $17. It needs a little time in the decanter to fully open.

Published in: on March 18, 2008 at 10:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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2005 Bogle Vineyards Petite Sirah California

49478.jpgDark inky purple color. Not much nose to speak of after an hour in the decanter. Slight mineral notes and a faint hint of blueberry. Flavors were jammy blueberry and a grapey overtone that was not unpleasant but slightly distracting. The tannins were tightly wound. This wine is not very complex but for the price ($9.00) it makes a great everyday drinker. The fruit is forward and very extracted.

Published in: on March 16, 2008 at 1:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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2004 Chappellet Vineyard Merlot Napa Valley

304.jpgElegant on the one hand and extracted with full fruit flavors on the other. This wine has sweet blackberry, cedary oak and spice flavors all the way thought the palate. The finish is medium length with firm tannins. Excellent for the price as well. This producer is very underrated and produces some of the most consistent cabernet and merlot in Napa Valley regardless of price which by the way is around $24.

Published in: on March 15, 2008 at 12:07 am  Comments (1)  
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2005 Gordon Brothers Merlot Columbia Valley

05merlot.jpgI have enjoyed this producers for several vintages now. They are always very consistent and a value. This wine is dark garnet in color. The nose is full of wild berry, vanilla and chocolate covered cherries. The flavors are sweet dark cherry, cedar and mocha. Acidity is nicely balanced and the tannins are a touch wild now but will mellow over time. This is a very good wine for the price.

Published in: on March 14, 2008 at 12:38 am  Leave a Comment  
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2004 Concha y Toro Cabernet Sauvignon Marqués de Casa Concha

15053.jpgStill a bit young at this point. Shows some potential for improvement with bottle age. Nose is very smokey and a fair amount of alcohol. Dark cherry and mocha favors on the palate with a long finish that shows the firm tannins. Will buy more and age for a year or so. At $15.99 it’s a solid value in Cabs from Chile.

Published in: on March 14, 2008 at 12:31 am  Leave a Comment  
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