This wine rolls in the glass with a shocking pink-panther hue. The nose is fresh sage and wild strawberry (sauvage fraise for all you Francophiles out there). On the palate, it goes towards the one type of orange my wife hates (blood orange, how was I to know?) and a finish of crushed violets. As the bottle warms up, quince and fresh pear contribute to the delight.
I suggest serving with grilled vegetable tossed with olive oil, basil, and some sliced almonds.
Montecillo is a standard in the world of Rioja, and I’ve reviewed their wines on many occasions in the past decade. This bottle offers up scents and flavors of an old farmhouse: firewood, saddle, and dried flowers. The palate is soft and rich, with notes of dark fruit and earth. The finish turns towards espresso and allspice.
Marques de Casa Concha is one of the only brands I trust to work with Carmenere. That is largely due to the varietal fingerprint of this grape. Those notes of tobacco are extreme. They can easily push towards dirty-old-ashtray or wet-cigarette flavors which are a real turn-off. However, cooler high-altitude regions like Peumo –where this Carmenere is sourced from– can push that leafy note towards something closer to mint.
On the nose, a big whomp of dark fruit and smokey eucalyptus. The palate is elegant and muscular, with soft notes of chocolate pushing against velvet tannins and supple cassis. A savage and earthy finish adds some intrigue.
Vine Cliff has a beautiful 20-acre vineyard on the Napa side of Carneros, and it’s a Chardonnay Shangri La. The vines are 20 years old and a healthy array of modern and old-school clones.
Honeysuckle and cream on the nose with a deep ripe pear note. Medium to full-bodied, the butterfat richness is balanced with an undercurrent of fresh acidity that rises to the surface like a caramel apple. The finish moves towards vanilla and cinnamon.
When writing the review of this exceptional wine, I realized every word I used started with a “C”, so here you go:
Cafaggio Chianti Classico has aromas of cherry and cinnamon, with a chewy palate of cardamon and cassis. The finish offers up classic varietal fingerprints and a note of Chamomile. Cheerio!
In the glass, this shows up ruby-red with aromas of wildflowers and quince. A note of burnt leather is layered into a spicey attack that ends with fennel and cherry. The texture is lush despite the delicate freshness and medium-bodied frame. There is a touch of age on this wine, coming out as orange marmalade and toasted almond on the finish—an outstanding Sangiovese.
A nice whiff of tobacco follows the aromas of fig and cigar box. A medium-weight wine with plenty of grip and extraction, green olive and graphite notes show this to be a pitch-perfect Cabernet Sauvignon. Decadent flavors of cherry coulis, bitter chocolate, and eucalyptus put this beauty into the “must drink” category.