2023 Bodegas Cerro Chapeu Castel Pujol Folklore Tinto, Uruguay, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2023
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$23.00USD

This is a blend of 80% Tannat and 20% Petit Menseng from Uruguay.  The Tannat grapes are destemmed and then macerated with the petite Mennseng on the skins.  The result is a lighter more approachable Tannat.  Ruby/blue in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose is dusty with black cherries.  Medium bodied.  Silky texture.  Medium tannins.  On the palate, black cherries and gravel.  Good acidity.  Long finish.  This is nice on its own and will work well with food.  This is a great choice for mid-week pizza or pasta.  Drink over the next five to seven years.  

2020 Bodega Experimental Vino Progreso Revolution Tannat, Uruguay, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2020
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$18.00USD

Ruby/blue in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has plums and raspberries.  Soft texture but firm tannins.  On the palate, black raspberries fruit and seeds (slight bitter note in a good way) along with some char.  Good finish with that same "bitter" quality.  This is a very nice wine that needs some time/air for the tannins to integrate.  This would work well with venison but also with pasta bolognaise.  Drink over the next ten years.  Great value.

2019 Barboursville Vineyards Paxxito, USA, Virginia, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

This dessert wine is a 50/50 blend of Moscato and Vidal Blanc from Virginia.  Deep golden/amber in color, clear and bright.  The nose is honeyed with peach.  Viscous texture.  Nice acidity.  Sweet but not cloying.  On the palate, canned peaches with a touch of honey.  A bit of sour citrus candy on the finish which is nice.  A little goes a long way.  This is a very nice dessert wine that is great on its own and would work with a not too sweet cookie, perhaps short bread.  Drink over the next ten years.  It comes in a 375ml bottle.  

2019 King Family Vineyards Meritage, USA, Virginia, Monticello, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$38.00USD

This is a Bordeaux blend of 48% Merlot, 28% Petit Verdot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Malbec from Virginia.  It is a winner of the 2024 Virginia Governor's Cup award.  By the way, the word Meritage means a blend and rhymes with the word heritage.  Garnet/purple in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is yeasty (in a good way) with black cherries and spice.  Full bodied.  Medium tannins.  Good acidity.  On the palate, black cherries with some char.  Some mint notes on the long finish.  This is still developing but has a classic right bank profile.  It will show better with food.  Roaste

2019 Hark Vineyards Spark, Virginia, Monticello, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$48.00USD

This is a Bordeaux blend of 46% Cabernet Franc, 30%Merlot, and 24% Petit Verdot from Virginia.  Garnet in color, mostly opaque and bright.  The nose is dusty, a slight aquarium note which blew off after about twenty minutes, boysenberry, and graphite.  Medium to full bodied.  Firm tannins.  Well balanced.  On the palate, black cherries, fresh tobacco with a slight green bell pepper note especially on the finish.  Good finish.  This drinks like a classic cooler vintage Bordeaux.  It is nice on its own but better with food.  It would be great with stuffed peppers.  Dirnk over the next five to

2019 Afton Mountain Vineyards T, Virginia, Monticello, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2024
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$55.00USD

This is a Bodeaux blend from Virginia which is 42% Merlot, 29% Petit Verdot, and 29% Cabernet Sauvignon.  Garnet in color with some purple swirls, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has dusty attic with sour cherries, char and gravel.  Medium to full bodied.  Medium tannins.  Nicely balanced.  On the palate, cherries, slight bitter cherry pit, and a fresh herb note.  Long finish.  This is has some complexity.  Certainly ripe but not over ripe.  It is nice on its own but better with food.  Anything that would work with classic Bordeaux would work.  Lamb chops would be great.  Drink over the

Flying Goat 2023 Pinot Gris, Shoestring Vineyard

Vintage: 
2023
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$28.00USD

Flying Goat has been making wine in Santa Barbara for nearly 25 years. Best known for his various expressions of Pinot Noir, winemaker Norm Yost also produces sparkling wine and Pinot Gris. This is the first time Norm has used Gris fruit from the Shoestring Vineyard and the result is a bright, expressive, tasty Pinot Gris that will make you rethink just how good Pinot Gris can be. This has it all: citrus fruit, proper acidity, smooth on the palate and a wonderful finish.

Flying Goat Cellars

2022 Mountain & Vine Chardonnay, Virginia, Monticello, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2022
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$34.00USD

12.5% abv.  A 2024 Governor's Cup winner.  Pale silvery/gold in color, clear and bright.  The nose is flinty with some oak/spice.  With air a bit of citrus shows.  Medium bodied.  Slightly viscous/creamy texture.  On the palate, lemons with some minerality.  The midpalate had green apples.  An interesting menthol note on the finish that turns chalky.  Overall, a slightly oaked, crisp Chardonnay that is nice on its own and even better with food.  It would work well with broiled or grilled scallops.  Drink over the next five to eight years.  

Lucas and Lewellen 2021 Pinot Noir

Vintage: 
2021
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$25.00USD

Santa Barbara is Pinot Noir country, and the range of expressions in this county are varied. One of the stalwarts, having first started in 1975, is Lucas & Lewellen. For an inexpensive Pinot Noir, L&L does an admirable job of crafting a tightly wound Pinot with excellent fruit, good acidity, and oak influence (a mere 10 months in oak, only a small portion of which was new French) which doesn’t break the bank.

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