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Posts Tagged ‘Tasting Notes and Wine Reviews’

A Spanish pair of Tempranillo

Both of the wines in this post are made from Tempranillo yet one is from Ribera del Duero and the other from Rioja.  The 2015 Alfredo Maestro, Almate, Ribera del Duero is new wine for me and I am pleased to write it is well made and quite tasty.  The 2010 Sierra Cantabria, Rioja Reserva is the more serious of the two yet it is beautiful.  It is clear that 2010 is an excellent vintage  capable of developing for the next several years. These two wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.

2015 Alfredo Maestro, Almate, Ribera del Duero – $15
Imported by Llaurador Wines.  This wine is 100% Tempranillo sourced from vines at 700 and 1,000 meters of elevation that was fermented in stainless steel then aged for four months in neutral French oak.  Alcohol 14%.  Flavors of cool, juicy fruit are carried by watering acidity over a fine structure.  Quite tasty with a dry, graphite finish.  *** Now – 2023.

2010 Sierra Cantabria, Rioja Reserva – $24
Imported by The Country Vintner.  This wine is 100% Tempranillo aged 18 months in French and American oak barrels.  Alcohol 14%.  After a few hours of air this beautiful wine fills the mouth with powdery red and black fruit.  There is some cocoa and only a hint of sweetness to the flavors.  There is fresh acidity, but not out of balance for the flavor, spices, and dry baking spices in the gentle finish.  ***(*) Now – 2028.

Flavorful and elegant: 2015 Faury, Saint-Joseph

The 2015 Lionel Faury, Saint Joseph captures the exuberance of the vintage but does so with finely scented aromas and elegant flavors.  While it shows good complexity now, it will be even better in a year or two.  Grab a bottle from MacArthur Beverages.

2015 Lionel Faury, Saint Joseph – $32
Imported by Kermit Lynch. Alcohol 13%. Finely scented with aromas of pure pepper and fat. Red and mineral with perfumed fruit in the middle this is an elegant wine yet conveys body and some fat. The elegance continues but so do the flavor which takes on evergreen, black pepper, and orange citrus by the finish. ***(*) Now – 2025.

A trio of Cotes du Rhone

Cotes du Rhone upon release is fun but it  also is with a few years of age.  The 2012 Domaine Alary, L’Estevenas, Cairanne  is still bright and lively but there are pleasingly mature flavors to be enjoyed right now.  Pure, grapey, and deep-fruited the 2015 Domaine Charvin, Le Poutet, Cotes du Rhone offers a good level of intensity.   The 2015 Saint-Damien, Vieilles Vignes, Plan de Dieu is another must-try wine.  I have recommended the wines of Plan de Dieu before.  If you still haven’t tried one then grab this bottle!  The Charvin was purchased at MacArthur Beverages.  The Alary and Saint-Damien were purchased at Weygandt-Wines.

2012 Domaine Alary, L’Estevenas, Cairanne – $20
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler. This wine is a blend of Grenache and Syrah.  Alcohol 14%. Black fruit on the nose. This is a bright wine of mulberry flavors which still sports grip. There is watering acidity, a mixture of grip and garrigue, and hints of structure in the end. Notes of maturity do come out but the wine is still lively at the start. *** Now – 2023.

2015 Domaine Charvin, Le Poutet, Cotes du Rhone – $20
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler. This wine is a blend of 81% Grenache, 7% Mourvedre, 7% Syrah, and 5% Carignan.  Alcohol 14%. This is a pure, grapey and deep fruited wine very much in the Charvin style. The middle is perfumed and mineral, eventually take on floral notes. There is just a touch of heat giving away the vintage. *** Now – 2023.

 

2015 Saint-Damien, Vieilles Vignes, Plan de Dieu – $17
Imported by Weygandt-Metzler. This wine is a blend of 80% Grenache and 20% Mourvedre.  Alcohol 14.5%. Kirsch on the nose. There is a bright, clean start which soon builds midpalate depth to the red fruit. There are additional flavors of dense black fruit and minerals by the end. There are tons of flavor to which bramble and red meat add complexity. This enjoyable in this youthful, modestly structured state. *** Now – 2025.

A trio of Vacqueyras

April 16, 2018 1 comment

When I cannot drink Chateauneuf du Pape I will drank Vacqueyras which is the focus of this post. Of the three wines tasted, the 2015 Domaine La Garrigue, Vacqueyras and the 2014 Domaine le Sang des Cailloux, Cuvee Doucinello, Vacqueyras are in need of some age. The La Garrigue is the more closed of the two but some earthy complexity is present. The Cailloux adds garrigue to the earth for good effect.  The 2015 Vignoble Alain Ignace, Sumbiosis, Vacqueyras is a new wine for me.  It has the flavors I have come to love which are delivered in a lively manner making it drink well right now.   The Garrigue and Cailloux are available at MacArthur Beverages.  The Ignace is available at Weygandt Wines.

2015 Domaine La Garrigue, Vacqueyras – $22
An Eric Solomon/European Cellars Selection. This wine is a blend of mostly  Grenache with Syrah, Mourvedre, and Cinsault.  Alcohol 14.5%. A pure wine with focused flavors that only take on a subtle earth note near the end. The structure is not noticeable until the finish where there infinitely fine tannins serve to dry the gums. It does develop bright red berries. Overall a bit closed so sit on it for a year or two. *** 2019-2025.

2015 Vignoble Alain Ignace, Sumbiosis, Vacqueyras – $21
Imported by Wygandt – Metzler. This wine is a blend of 40% Grenache, 40% Mourvedre, 10% Syrah, and 10% Cinsault.  Alcohol 14%. Aromas of bramble fruit and garrigue entice. In the mouth, delicate red berries match a citrus flavor in this medium bodied wine. There is a little rusticity to the start, moderate density, and watering acidity which moves the flavors to the drier finish of baking spices. Lively and light on its feet. *** Now – 2024.

2014 Domaine le Sang des Cailloux, Cuvee Doucinello, Vacqueyras – $25
Imported by Kermit Lynch. This wine is a blend of 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah, and 10% Mourvedre & Cinsault.  Alcohol 14%. Slightly pungent on the nose. A round yet bright entry of red fruit is soon a touch earthy with water acidity and modest, supporting structure. There is garrigue and baking spice notes in the finish which matches the texture. Good now but need some age to open up. ***(*) 2019 – 2028.

New arrivals from Domaine La Boussiere

You will be well-served if you stock up on the latest released from Domaine La Boussiere. They are classically robust wines yet there is plenty of deep fruit and lively acidity which makes them attractive right now. For current and future drinking grab the 2015 Domaine La Boussiere, Vacqueyras. This is a fine value which should drink well throughout its life. The 2015 Domaine La Boussiere, Gigondas is properly the more structured of the two and will benefit the most from age. It is best revisited a few years down the road. You may find both at MacArthur Beverages.

2015 Domaine La Boussiere, Vacqueyras – $27
Imported by Dionysos Imports. This wine is a blend of 50% Syrah, 42% Grenache, and 8% Mourvedre.  Alcohol 14.5%. Quite aromatic with fruit and floral notes. There is youthfully robust fruit which comes across as clean in flavor. The wine is mineral with ripe texture and a fat infused finish which eventually reveals the structure. Plenty of attractive, hard to resist flavor. ***(*) Now – 2028.

2015 Domaine La Boussiere, Gigondas – $30
Imported by Dionysos Imports. This wine is a blend of 70% Grenache, and 30% Syrah sourced from 51 year old vines.  Alcohol 14.5%. A robust wine with blue and red fruit, lively acidity, and a mixture of minerals and baking spices before the finish. The structure is briefly noticeable before returning as it dries the gums throughout the long aftertaste. With air the wine rounds out becoming savory with blue and black fruits. Will reward a few years of age. ***(*) 2020 – 2030.

Another daily bottle for your table: 2015 Stephane Ogier, Les Temps est Venu, CdR

March 25, 2018 1 comment

The 2015 Stephane Ogier, Les Temps est Venu, Cotes du Rhone is more forward than the previous vintage which means it is a great wine to drink for enjoyment midweek.  I recommend you stock up at MacArthur Beverages.

2015 Stephane Ogier, Les Temps est Venu, Cotes du Rhone – $15
A Robert Kacher selection imported by Domaine Select. This wine is a blend of mostly Grenache with Syrah, Mourvedre, and a dollop of Cinsault. The fruit is largely sourced from Plan de Dieu, fermented in concrete vats where it is also aged for 7 months. Alcohol 14%.  This is a forward, rounded wine with minimal structure and hints of minerals in the finish.  Though there is ripe, sweet, grapey fruit with noticeable weight, the wine becomes drier with air which puts it into balance.  Good value.  *** Now – 2020.

The 2016 Hartford Court, Chardonnay, Four Hearts Vnyd is very good!

The 2016 Hartford Court, Chardonnay, Four Hearts Vineyards, Russian River Valley had my attention from the very first sip due to the crisp, textured acidity.  The luxurious fat in the finish sealed the deal for none of this barrel-fermented Chardonnay was left at the end of dinner.  You may pick up this gem at MacArthur Beverages.

2016 Hartford Court, Chardonnay, Four Hearts Vineyards, Russian River Valley – $40
This wine is 100% Chardonnay which was barrel fermented then aged for 10 months in French oak.  Alcohol 14.5%.  Lively yellow fruit sports crisp textured acidity all of which overlays a toast note.  With air the yellow fruit takes on a floral component and becomes infused with fat which lasts through the long finish and aftertaste.  **** Now – 2020.