Rocca delle Macie 2008 Ser Gioveto

Posted in Italian Wine Reviews

Super Tuscan Wine Review I often describe Italian wines like this as a conversation between Italian winemakers and wine drinkers in America. We ask for a taste of the old country, and they respond with a bottle like this. While it is thoroughly and completely Italian in style, it is also thoroughly understands the American love of Napa Valley, expensive oak and big bold flavors. It’s a cringe-worthy analogy, but I think comparing this wine to a  muscle car is spot-on....

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Casa Lapostolle 2010 ”Cuvée Alexandre” Merlot

Posted in South American Wine Reviews

This is a delicious wine styled to be  both plush and pretty.  First is the rich ruby color with glass-staining extraction. Then the aromas of red berries and tarragon traced by a whiff of black pepper. The fruit keeps up the action on the palate, with plum and raspberry the most predominate flavors. A savory note of wet clay and rusted farm equipment keeps the wine from going simple. An element of lemon oil and spice moves into the finish. The fruit keeps on coming. There...

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Chateau Moulin de Clotte 2010 Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux

Posted in French Wine Reviews

Hmm. Seems like the chateau owner may be in a financial pickle. First, her bottlings from Chateau Ambe Tour Pourret showed up in the PLCB system at stark discounts. That was some great Bordeaux for the money, and was featured here a while ago. Now, this bottling from another of their properties pops up as a Chairman’s Selection in PA. This type of inventory dumping doesn’t happen unless someone in the distribution chain needs some quick money. I did a bit of...

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Mill Creek 2010 Merlot, Alexander Valley

Posted in American Wine Reviews, Wine Reviews

There is no shame in not knowing Mill Creek Vineyards. It is easy to miss. This is a tiny, family-run operation covering 55 acres in Sonoma County. Its focus is on high quality wines, and has been since its founding in the 1960s. Jeremy Kreck is a third generation winemaker: he and his extended family do it all themselves. This is pretty remarkable when most wineries outsource some (or all) elements of grape growing, winemaking, bottling, or sales. A decadent and lush...

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Chateau Ambe Tour Pourret 2010 Saint Emilion Grand Cru (Bordeaux, France)

Posted in French Wine Reviews, Wine Reviews

A decadent bottle of right bank Bordeaux. This chateau is part of the budding Bordeaux empire of Françoise Lannoye and her husband, Philippe. They purchased their first property, Château Lanbersac, in Puisseguin in 2001. Since then, they have purchased and renovated Château Moulin de Clotte in Côtes de Castillon and Chateau Ambe Tour Pourret in Saint Emilion. The well-regarded winemaker François Despagne oversees all the properties. Starting off with pomegranate and iron,...

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Chateau Leon 2010 “Cuvee Prestige” Cadillac Cotes de Bordeaux

Posted in French Wine Reviews

Back in January 2013, I favorably reviewed the Chateau Carignan 2005 “Prima” Cotes de Bordeaux.  At the time, I had also tasted their regular un-Prima 2009  bottling. Like most wines I try, I opted to not review it: it was good, but not exceptional. Because of that, I didn’t expect anything much from this wine, either. Chateau Leon is the second bottling of Chateau Carignan, and as such should be inferior in quality. 2010 was an excellent vintage in Bordeaux,...

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Petra 2010 “Ebo” Val di Cornia Suvereto

Posted in Italian Wine Reviews

I reviewed the Petra 2008 Ebo a few months ago and came away very impressed.  The Ebo is an underdog in the Super Tuscan category, but outperforms many wines that are twp or three times its price. I needed to see if the 2008 was a fluke. I am happy to report it wasn’t. This vintage of Ebo is mostly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with a splash of Sangiovese in the mix. Smoked currant and espresso on the nose, with a lethally awesome blend of lead and chocolate on the...

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Durigutti 2010 Cabernet Franc Reserva, Mendoza

Posted in South American Wine Reviews

I am very happy to see a bottle of Cabernet Franc coming out of Argentina. This grape varietal is grown in limited quantities in South America,  and it’s mostly used in blends. For those not familiar with Cab Franc, it is one of the least famous of the Bordeaux varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and Merlot having much much name recognition. This bottling is a great place to get acquainted with this varietal.  The aromatics are complex and intriguing. Anise and...

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Piccini 2008 Sasso Al Poggio, Tuscany

Posted in Italian Wine Reviews

This style of  Tuscan wine is turning into the most popular with American wine drinkers looking for good value in Italian wines.  This is something of an irony: It wasn’t too long ago that blends of Sangiovese, Cabernet and Merlot were dubbed “Super Tuscans” and sported high price tags. These blends have remained, but the nickname and the high prices have faded from view. This bottle is a  blend of 60% Sangiovese,  with equal parts Cabernet and Merlot....

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