france-rose-rose-danjou-mulonniere-loire-valley-2015Red blend of: 40% Cabernet Franc, 30% Grolleau, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Gamay

N/ Fresh rain, wet cement, raspberry Jolly Ranchers, crushed granite. In short, exactly the way rose should smell.

T/ Medium to medium full mouth feel which was a surprise. Usually roses are much lighter in the piehole region. What also was a bit of a surprise was the sweetness level here. Very ripe cranberries, raspberries, and confectionery flavors delighted.

The acid level is refreshing as it should be. This is a well-rounded rose that will be a crowd crowd pleaser because of its sweetness.

Winemakers: Benoit Dufour and Laurent Saget

http://pasternakwine.com/product/chateau-de-la-mulonniere-m-de-mulonniere-rose-danjou-2015/

Price = $15

N = A
T = A-
I = A-
Overall = A-

This wine was a media sample kindly provided by the winery.

About: “Château de la Mulonnière became part of the Saget La Perrière family when my father, Jean-Louis Saget, literally fell in love with this historic estate in the Anjou region of the Loire Valley upon seeing the obvious quality potential of its terroirs, and subsequently decided to purchase the estate in 2003.” Bordered by the Layon river on one side and vineyards on the other, Château de la Mulonnière is a perfect illustration of the relaxed charm of the Anjou lifestyle, a region known to produce some of the region’s most prestigious appellations including Savennières and Coteaux du Layon. Sustainable viticulture is used in the vineyard with the aim of rendering a true portrayal of the estate’s magnificent terroirs. Crafted under the guidance of cellar masters Benoit Dufour and Laurent Saget.”

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domaine-du-theron-cuvee-prestigeN/ Wow, lots of Brettomyces here with typical barnyard and bandaid smells. The livestock odors dominate, but one can find some black and blue fruit aromas just past the Brett onslaught, as well as nice dark earth notes.

T/ Once past the Brett flavors she has an elegant mouthfeel with ample blue and black fruits and clean lines of minerals and earth.

A wonderful wine underneath the animal farm.

N = C+
T = B+
I = B
Overall = B-

This wine was a media sample kindly provided by the winery.

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Argentina, Cabernet Sauvignon, Reserve, Trivento, Mendoza, 2013This one best a few, to many, hours after decanting. She really blossoms if you give her enough air. As always, if you don’t have a decanter handy just pour into a clean glass pitcher.

Rated four hours after decanting.

N/ Ripe red and black fruits like black currant and black raspberries. Game, leather, black soil, and crushed flint.

T/ Medium full mouth feel. Massive payload of red and black fruits intertwined with nice woodwork and a surprising level of acidity. Clean mineral notes as well.

This is a well-balanced wine (especially for this price) that screams out for a medium rare steak.

Plus, with the money you saved on this well priced wine you can afford to get a nicer cut of steak.

http://www.triventousa.com/

Price = only $11!

N = A-
T = A
N = A
Overall = A-

This wine was a media sample generously provided by the winery.

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Spain, Albarino, Vionta, Limited Release, Rias Biaxas, 2014N/ Steamed hay, marine/beach/salty wafts, yellow fruits, fresh rain, river rocks, and light chlorine/ozone.

T/ Medium mouthfeel. Round and very easy to drink. Yellow fruits and lean/clean mineral and rock notes. Medium acid levels. Light bitter bite.

River rock close.

Price = $16

Winemaker = Roberto Fuentes

http://www.riasbaixaswines.com/winery/vionta/wine/2759/

N = B+
T = B+
I = B
Overall = B+

This wine was a media sample kindly provided by the winery.

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France, Red Blend, Ferraton Père & Fils, Samorëns, Côtes du Rhône, 2015Blend of grenache (85%), syrah (10%),and cinsault (5%).

N/ Black pepper and earthy spices. Purple and black fruits fruits. Plum skins. Wild herbs and black soil.

T/ Spicy, racy, and quite complex for the price point – this wine delivers wonderful fruit flavors of black cherries and plums with a lean acid backbone that makes it wonderful with food.

She closes with more spice and crushed rock.

http://www.ferraton.fr/wines/cotes-du-rhone-samorens-white-ferraton.html

Price = $14

N = B+
T = A-
I = A
Overall = A-

This wine was kindly provided by the winery as a media sample.

From the winery…

“SOIL

The vineyards are situated on the left bank of the Rhône. Alluvial soil and gravely soil.

VINIFICATION

The grapes are destemmed and the vinification takes place in vats. The extraction is made by punching down to ensure a good extraction of the tannins.The maceration lasts around 15 days. Temperature-controlled vinification.

MATURING

In vats.

TASTING

Colour: Garnet core with ruby reflects.

Nose: Aromas of very ripe red fruits Palate: Nicely structured. Aromas of blackberries, raspberries, blueberries and liquorice. Nice spices and herbs.”

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France, White Blend, Ferraton Père & Fils, Samorëns, Côtes du Rhône, 2015

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Blend of white grenache (60%) and clairette (40%). N/ White and red flowers, honeysuckle, marine wafts, chamomile tea, light citrus, strawberries, and river rocks. T/ Medium mouth feel. Very nice acid. Fresh and light. Citrus and mineral flavors dominate. Yellow grasses, light spice, and chamomile. http://www.ferraton.fr/wines/cotes-du-rhone-samorens-white-ferraton.html Price = $14 N = B T = B […]

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USA, Chardonnay, Artesa, Carneros, Napa Valley, California, 2013

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N/ While she certainly has the deep notes of butter one expects in most ripe and malolactic California chardonnays, she also has lovely aromas of flowers, toast, fresh rain, and pineapple. Delightful. T/ Medium full mouthfeel. Rich flavors of pineapple, passion fruit, and other tropicals. A clean and limey acid cuts through the fruit and […]

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Spain, Tempranillo, Rose, Compañia Vinicola del Norte de España, CVNE, Rosato, Rioja, 2015

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N/ Her nose leads with crushed rocks, then ample red berries and ripe red apples with skins. T/ Light to medium mouth feel. Very nice acid popping flavors of ripe red apples and raspberries. Interestingly, some savory and wild herb flavors as well, which I was not expecting. Note: I would pair this wine with […]

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Argentina, Malbec, Rutini, Encuentro, Mendoza, 2013

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N/ Purple and black fruits, plum skins, paprika, the smell of barbecue, black soil, white pepper, wild herbs. T/ Medium full to full mouthfeel. She starts with an elegant mouth-coating bombardment of purple fruits balanced by robust wood tones and a nice acid presence. I paired this wine with a pan seared porterhouse and it […]

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Spain, Viura, Monopole, Compania Vinicola del Norte de Espana, CVNE, Rioja, 2015

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N/ Fresh rain, spring water, white flowers, citrus, sea spray, and wild grasses. T/ Light mouthfeel. Elevated acidity with great mineral notes leads to subtle flavors of citrus, green apple, and chamomile. http://www.cvne.com/en/ct-vino/monopole/ Price = $13 N = A- T = B I = B Overall = B This wine was a media sample kindly […]

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Turkey, Kalecik Karasi, Reserve, Vinkara, Kalecik, Ankara, 2012

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For best results open bottle 20-30 minutes before enjoying and possibly decant. There are a few reduced aromas that need to waft off. N/ On her nose she has game, crushed slate, forest floor, and brooding black and blue fruits. There is also a cherry scented sweetness. Rich barrel room wafts from the use of […]

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Turkey, Narnice, Vinkara, Kalecik, Ankara, 2013

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N/ Yellow apples, yellow pear, stone fruits like apricot and just ripe peaches. She also has yellow grasses, touches of chalk and minerals, and some buttered notes. The nose seems to be a mix between Old World sauvignon blanc and New World chardonnay. T/ Light to medium mouthfeel. Her flavors are much crisper that her […]

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Chile, Rose of Syrah, Concha y Toro, Casillero del Diablo, Reserva, Valle Central, 2015

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Rose of syrah, cinsault, and carmenere. N/ Light wafts of strawberries, raspberries, dried hay, wild herbs, and wet cement. T/ Light mouthfeel. Appropriately refreshing. Strawberry and red berry flavors with some nicely balanced acidity. Fun, just as it should be. 13% alcohol www.casillerodeldiablo.com Price = $11 N = B+ T = B I = B+ […]

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USA, Chardonnay, Castello di Amorosa, Napa Valley and Bien Nacido Vineyard, 2013

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First off, if you’ve never been to the Castle near Calistoga, you must give it a visit. Here is my earlier write up on it… http://www.brainwines.com/winery-visit-castello-di-amorosa-calistoga-napa-valley-california/. CdA offers a wide selection of wines, and here I want to compare and contrast two of their 2013 chardonnays… Napa Valley 2013 chard… ($29) N/ Fresh rain, river […]

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Argentina, Malbec, Trivento, Golden Reserve, Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza, 2013

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C/ One of the darker malbecs I’ve ever seen – almost black. Upon swirling appears like black neon blood with a beet juice floater. Pro tip: whenever a “floater” is offered with a cocktail, just do it. N/ A lurid tarn from Edgar Allan Poe’s prose. Gobsmacked with deep oak aromas, black musty soil, black […]

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USA, Pinot Noir, Artesa, Estate Reserve, Carneros, Napa Valley, 2013

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N/ Bright cherries, raspberries, and cranberries. Light barbecue smoke and bacon. Forest floor and damp soil. Hints of vegetal, bell pepper, and crushed roses. T/ Medium to medium for the field. Moderate plus acid, cherries, black cherries, and raspberries. Inorganic and organic earth notes. Probably not truly here, but seems almost like residual sugar sweetness. […]

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USA, Cabernet Sauvignon, Montes, NapaAngel, Napa Valley, California, 2008

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Suggest decanting and waiting at least two hours before enjoying this wine. N/ Deep barrel room aromas, black fruits like black currants and black cherry. Bell peppers and the smell of a freshly grilled steak. Black soil, forest floor, pine needles, freshly crushed granite, flint, and gunpowder oh my. T/ Moderate plus tannin and moderate […]

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Chile, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grey, Ventisquero, Glacier, Trinidad Vineyard, Single Block, Maipo Valley, 2013

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N/ The first aroma that hits you is smoldering campfire, this is followed by light vegtable wafts including a little bit of bell pepper. Then come plum skins, black cherry, black soil, earth, oak, and tobacco. With enough aeration the smoke and vegetables recede and she then has a beautiful nose. Definitely decant (at least […]

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Chile, Carménère, Ventisquero, Grey, Glacier, Maipo Valley, Trinidad Vineyard, 2013

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If you have had a few bottles of under $20 carménère in the past and have been put off by either the smoky and/or reduced aromas, you are in luck. This wine has none of those traits and is absolutely delicious, balanced, and elegant. N/ Dusty black fruits, wild herbs, multiple wood aromas, slate, and […]

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Spain, Sparkling, Cava, Brut Rose, Anna de Codorniu, DO Cava

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Made from 70% pinot noir and 30% chardonnay N/ Red apple, strawberry, fresh rain, hint of crushed rocks. T/ Medium mouthfeel. Surprisingly she has very nice ruby grapefruit flavors with some red apple skins as well. A mineral component is there but is a tad gentle. I wished for a little more complexity here but […]

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