It’s time for another wine round up column filled with some of my favorite samples. This time I tried 46 wines from six countries with 24 making the cut today.
NV Ferrari Rose Sparking – I’ve had the amazing opportunity of visiting Ferrari back in April. To read more, click here. Ferrari Trento was awarded the title of “Sparkling Wine Producer of the Year” in this year’s edition of The Champagne & Sparkling Wine World Championships, the second time it has won this title. I tasted wild strawberries, cassis, floral notes and fresh baked bread.
NV Gloria Ferrer Brut Rose — I had to chance to try this back in June at a lunch with Steven Urberg, the winemaker. My notes at the time – stone fruit, apple, honey, vanilla, crème brulee and black cherry. Still held true. Here’s the conversation from that day here.
NV Torresella Prosecco DOC – very drinkable with notes of pear, apple, almond and almost a honey baked bread.
2016 Terrunyo Sauvignon Blanc – this is a tasty sauvignon blanc with lots of minerality, lime, grapefruit and herbal notes.
2015 Amici Sauvignon Blanc – zesty is a great way to describe this wine. There was a burst of passion fruit, pear, flowers and lemongrass. It also had a nice minerality.
2016 Hess Select Sauvignon Blanc – Hess is always dependable choice for Sauvignon Blanc. Notes of lemons, lime, green apple, grapefruit and white pepper.
2015 Jon Nathaniel Lavender Hill Vineyard Chardonnay – this was one of the top chardonnays that I have tried all year. I tasted a balanced wine with honey, vanilla, pear, apple, graham cracker and spice. You got a little creaminess, you got a little oak, but most importantly, you received a great balance in this wine.
2016 Flora Springs Chardonnay – this was a very easy drinking chardonnay with notes of crème brulee, stone fruit, citrus, green apple, lemon, spice and vanilla.
2015 Feudo Zirtari Inzolia Chardonnay – this was a value-oriented chardonnay that had a nice balance of fruit and flowers with some nuttiness.
2016 Tenuta Sassoregale Vermentino Maremma Toscana DOC – very easy drinking with lots of citrus, lemon, lime, yellow apple and lots of fruit. A nice austerity.
2015 Kettmeir Pinot Bianco – green apple, pear, minerality and floral notes.
NV Locations by Dave Phinney CA-4 – this first white California blend features Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, and Roussanne grapes from Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino. Lots of stone fruit with tropical, citrus and oak notes. I could spot California instantly from my first sip.
NV Locations by Dave Phinney Corse – this 100 percent Vermentino was delicious and one of my favorite Locations wines to date. I tasted Meyer lemon, pear, lime, a nuttiness, herbal notes and almost a honey texture. This also had a nice minerality and I couldn’t stop sipping it.
2012 Chateau Moulin De La Roquille Bourdeaux – this was definitely a value Bordeaux and it needed a little time to open in the glass. I tasted red currant, cherry, cassis, Asian spice, cedar plank and dried flowers.
2015 Rombauer Merlot (Carneros) – very juicy with blueberry, plum, cedar, cherry and fig newton. It’s a big merlot, but it’s a Rombauer.
2014 Amici Cabernet Sauvignon – each year I smile when my Amici samples come in because they are consistently good. I tasted blackberry, currant, chocolate, violets, herbs and licorice.
2013 Rombauer Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Selection – Rombauer is known for its very big wines, which defines its wine making style. This wine, however, I could only define as an elegant grab yourself a “chaise lounge, recline and take a sip” kinda of wine. As I raised the inky black glass I tasted blackberry, cassis, licorice, cherries, blueberries, chocolate, vanilla, dried flowers and mocha. Give this time in your cellar and it will reward you.
2015 Z Alexander Brown Uncaged Cabernet Sauvignon – this wine comes from Zac Brown, the musician. I tasted blackberry, plum, Asian spice, cherry, pepper and it had a nice balance.
2015 Diora La Petite Grace Pinot Noir – I had not had many Monterrey Pinot Noirs, but if Diora was any indication, I’ve been missing out. This was an elegant and soft pinot that had earthy notes of dark cherry, mocha, spice and chocolate.
2014 Troon Vineyard Estate Tannat – this is an example of why tannat can stand on its own and Troon does it well. I tasted notes of blueberry, blackberry, graphite, pepper, herbs and a nice earthiness.
2014 Smith Hook Proprietary Red Blend – blackberry, blueberry, cassis, cherry, oak, smoke and vanilla.
2014 Trivento Amado Sur – black fruit, strawberries, cherries and a nice spice makes this an easy drinking red right in time for football season.
2014 Finca San Blas Lomalta Crianza – red fruit, balsamic and a little spice. This is a well priced wine worth seeking out and a region in Spain worthy of attention.
2015 Messina Hof Sangiovese “Artist Series” – paired well with food. I tasted black and red fruit, leather and spice.
Six Grapes is one of Graham’s Original Port blends. This Reserve Porto is dessert in a glass with plum and chocolate covered cherries.