Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Trivento Malbec 2011 (Mendoza)

Tasted 25/06/12, 14% ABV, screw cap closure. (Asda Extra Special, £5.00. I think this is the ubiquitous Trivento Outra Vida by another name).
Trivento is a quality driven winery (part of Chile's Concha y Toro group) and this wine represents crazy value for money. 
Cherry red colour, very youthful, full berry fruits on the nose. Toasty oak. Boiled sweets with forward fruit in the mouth but mouth-puckering acidity. Soft tannins. No doubt this wine, barely a year old, is made for early (easy?) drinking but I'd still give it longer. Not as rounded and elegant as some (slightly) more expensive malbecs, this just about represents as low as you can go in price for an everyday wine but it's not bad at all. Good food wine. From 2013, 13.5/20

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Quinta do Crasto 2010 (Douro)

Tasted 20/06/12, 14% ABV, cork closure. A ludicrous £7.99 sold under the Sainsburys Taste the Difference label (normal price about £10). The 2010's from Douro are receiving many plaudits and this wine scored highly in a recent Decanter tasting. It's a classic Douro blend of Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz and Touriga Franca.
Beautiful deep purple colour, dark fruits on the nose, plummy on the palate, elegant and well rounded. The wine has firm tannins in the mouth with a long finish of dried fruit with a hint of spice. A stellar wine from a great prodcuer masquerading as a budget wine. From 2013, 17.5/20

Gamekeepers Reserve 2008 (St. Hallett, Barossa Valley)

Tasted 20/06/2012, 14% ABV, screwcap closure, about £8 UK retail. This wine illustrates two points: 1. many wines, even commercial ones, benefit from a year or two of age, and 2. paying a few pounds more for an 'everyday' wine reaps rewards.
St. Hallett is a very well regarded producer, make lovely wines under their own label at all price points and also do a lot of badged wines for retailers - e.g Waitrose or M&S in the UK.
This wine is excellent vfm. Blend of shirz, grenache and the Portuguese grape Touriga (a hybrid in Aus, I believe). Deep purple colour, 4 years old now and just right. Lovely pimento, oregano and coffee on the nose, dark fruits and toffee on the palate. Drink now, 16/20

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Yali Cabernet Sauvignon 2008 (Colchagua, Chile)

Tasted 24/06/12, 14% ABV, screw cap closure. Great little Bordeaux blend from a quality-driven, up-and-coming winery. Widely available in the UK for about £8. I didn't realise I had this tucked away for a couple of years, so it's now 4 years old and just right. Young vines, but great cab sauv character of ripe berry fruits in the mouth and cassis and pencil box on the nose, balanced by some firm tannins. Great value 'luncheon wine'. Excellent with strongly flavoured Portuguese salted cod! 15.5 / 20, drink now.