2013 Burgess Mountaineer Estate Vineyards, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$119.97USD

This is a blend of 45% Syrah, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Petite Verdot and it is delicious.  Drinking very well right now, it will change over time as different varietals take more of a lead.  Right now, the Syrah is dominant.  Purple in color, opaque and bright.  The nose has black raspberries, roasted meats, blueberries and char.  On the palate, this is a big wine and full of fruit.  It also has plenty of depth and complexity.  Juicy texture.  Great balance.  Long finish.  This wine has great acidity that will work well with roasted meats.  Indian dishes should match quite well.  

2015 Finca Decero The Owl & The Dust Devil Remolinos Vineyard, Argentina, Mendoza, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

An Argentina blend that is 39% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Malbec, 19% Petit Verdot and 10% Tannat.  Purple/ruby in color.  This took some time to open and though not necessarily better on Day 2, it was different.  The nose is dust with cherries, plums and an herbal note (tarragon?).  On day 2, it went more to black and blue fruits.  The palate has black cherries and plums with underlying dry earth and baking spice.  On Day 2, again it picks up more plums but also blueberries.  Tannins really come out on Day 2.  This win should match well with grilled and roasted meats and other hearty foods. 

2010 Joseph Phelps Insignia Proprietary Red Wine, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2010
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

This is made from 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot and the rest Merlot and Malbec.  Insignia is one of the First Growth wines of California.  Its great just about every vintage and has been for decades.  This one is no exception.  Inky purple.  The nose has cassis, graphite, blueberries, leather and cigar box.  On the palate, this is still young.  Medium tannins.  Great balance.  Lots of cassis and some blueberries with underlying damp forest floor.  Long finish.  Delicious.  Will work great with heartier foods and certainly with meat dishes.  The price on these is up to around $250

2011 Au Sommet Cabernet Sauvignon, USA, California, Napa, Atlas Peak, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+

This is a blend of 97.5% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2.5% Petit Verdot from Heidi Barrett.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cassis, slight smoke, bell pepper and tobacco.  On the palate, this is nice and everything is in proportion.  Not a lot of depth.  Tannins mostly resolved.  Worked well with vegetarian stuffed mushrooms.  A fine wine but its price tag on release was $250.  Granted 2011 was a difficult vintage, but that is a lot of money for this wine. 

2014 Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon Estate, USA, California, Napa, St. Helena, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Do not open this bottle now without a long 8+ hours of decanting.  This is tight as a drum.  86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Petit Verdot.  Bright purple in color.  The nose has cedar and cassis.  With air, blueberries, chocolate and spice emerge.  On the palate, this has an almost seamless texture.  Shut down completely at first though and showing no fruit.  With air the cassis emerges along with a wall of tannins.  It seems like all the pieces parts are there, but in a four hour tasting, it never really opened.  Based on prior history with this winery and how it did sho

2014 Lobo Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Wulff Vineyards, USA, California, Atlas Peak, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Not to be confused with the wine of the same name from the Valley floor in Oak Knoll, this is from Atlas Peak and is mountain fruit.  This is a step up in quality and price.  Inky purple in color.  Very concentrated.  The nose has cassis, dark chocolate graphite and char.  On the palate, this is tannic.  Concentrated cassis flavors.  Fine tannins.  It opens in the glass but could use some time/decanting.  Nice balance.  Good finish.  A polished wine that should improve for the next five years.  Will work on the dinner table or on its own.  $85 retail.  

2012 Alexander Valley Vineyards Cyrus, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, 3% Petite Verdot, 2% Malbec.  Purple in color, slight ruby at the rim.  The nose is dusty and warm with cassis and spice.  Soft texture.  Good acidity.  Nice cassis fruit with an underlying earthiness.  Some plums on the finish.  Nicely layered, it unwinds in the glass.  It seems open but then keeps on opening more.  Still some upside here.  

2014 B Wise Vineyards Wisdom, USA, California, Sonoma, Moon Mountain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
84
Grade: 
B-

Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is dusty with slight aquarium notes.  Also some cherries and black cherries.  On the palate, there is a lot of heat and it seems disjointed.  Tart cherries but brown sugar.  Alcohol on the finish.  Again, this appears to be a poorly stored bottled, but how to know for sure or where the issue is.  Drinkable for sure, but doesn't work with food at this point.  Hopefully, this bottle was not representative.  

2009 Cuvelier Los Andes Grand Vin, Argentina, Valle de Uco, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-

70% Malbec, 13% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Syrah, 5% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot.  From the family that owns Leoville Poyferre in Bordeaux.  Purple/ruby in color.  The nose is warm and slightly musty (not in an off way).  Also has some cassis and plums.  On the palate, this drinks like a Bordeaux; fruit, tobacco and earth.  Black raspberries and plums.  Slight tannins.  It has a nice depth and seems to be closing in on maturity.  A bit soft but within reason.  Would work with roasted or grilled meats quite well.  No hurry, but won't get better and probably should be drunk in the next five years.  

2013 Mulderbosch Faithful Hound, South Africa, Stellenbosch, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-

39% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Cabernet Franc, 16% Merlot, 14% Malbec and 9% Petit Verdot.  This is a Bordeaux styled wine from South Africa.  It sells for under $20 making it a very nice buy.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is very nice; dusty and complex with cassis, tobacco, some bell pepper.  On the palate, this has a chewy texture.  Nice complexity.  Cassis, dark cherries with enough acid.  Good finish.  Drinking well now and won't get better but should hold for another five years at least.  

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