This was not a good vintage and its been a long time. This bottle was DOA. Oxidized. Oh well. Certainly representative of most bottles at this time.
This is one of the better houses making sweet dessert wines in Barsac. This one was no exception. Light copper/orange in color. Perhaps a bit darker than expected but not an issue. On the nose, there is tropical fruit, slight each and a slight kindling smoke note. On the palate, this is rich. Plenty of Botrytis but good acidity to offset the sweetness. Honey and tropical fruit on the palate. Clean. Long finish. This is great on its own or with a more savory dessert (no chocolate). It should easily last another fifteen to twenty years.
This took about an hour to open and then was drinking great. It is a blend of 72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot, 4.5% Petit Verdot and 3.5% Cabernet Franc. Purple in color, ruby at the rim. The nose has cassis, cigar box and cherries. On the palate, this is full bodied. Ripe fruit. Lighter tannins. Flavors of Cherries with some cassis, chocolate and clean(er) barnyard. Good finish. This is about at peak now but should be here for at least another five to seven years. It will go well with roasted meats or fowl.
This is the second wine of Domaine Castel. It is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot. Purple in color. The nose has cassis, plums, chocolate and slight black olives. Nice texture. On the palate, sour black cherries, some black raspberries over char and earth. Medium tannins. This needs a couple of years to sort itself out and then should be good for a decade. A nice choice for roasted meats, fowl and veggies.
Impressive showing for this wine. Inky purple in color. The nose has cassis and slight olives. Great texture. On the palate, black raspberries, black cherries. Sweet tannins. Nice finish. This is young and could improve a bit with a few years in the cellar. It will drink well for at least a decade after that. It will go well with brisket, burgers or roasted meats and fowl.
Castel is probably the consistently best top winery in Israel. Although modern Israel wine is a very young industry, so this is always changing. Castel has a proven track record. The Grand Vin is the best wine that they make. This is quite young and just not giving up much right now. After a couple of hours of air, it had improved but its best days are at least five years in the future. Inky purple in color. The nose has nice baking spices along with some cherries. On the palate, firm tannins. Black cherries. Monolithic at present. It is tasty but needs time develop a complexity
This was a new wine for me to try. Of all places, I had it tailgating at the Jets vs. Browns Monday Night game in NY (NJ). Deep ruby in color, a bit lighter at the rim. The nose is nice with cherries and slight dusty cigar box notes. On the palate, this has a nice texture. Medium bodied. Plenty of cherry fruit with some underlying crushed leaves. Some depth and complexity. Good finish. This works well with a wide variety of foods. It seems at or at least close to peak. It should have another five to seven years at this level.
This seems to be a basic negoiant level wine. Deep ruby in color. The nose has cherries and slight bell peppers. A bit of dust. On the palate, the cherries come thru. Not green but not ripe either. No tannins. Easy drinking. Worked well with middle eastern foods. Drink now. No idea on the pricing but if around $10, this is a fine value and probably better in 2015 or 2016.
Purple in color, ruby at the rim. The nose is nice with cherries, dried cherries, dust and spice. There is also a bit of raisin. On the palate, the fruit is more dried cherries but some fresh cherries. The raisin continues thru slightly. Not a lot of complexity. This seems to be on the way down and probably ought to be drunk now. It will still work fine at the dinner table. Stews would be a nice match.
This wine showed quite well considering the vintage and pedigree and age of the wine. Ruby in color, purple at its core, clear and bright. The nose has dried cherries, slight dust, a bit of mint. With air, some fresh cherries. On the palate, fresh and dried cherries above a baseline of tea leaves. Medium bodied. A bit of drying tannins underneath. Nice finish. This is very food friendly and easy to drink. Probably a bit past prime but still enjoyable. Drink up now.