menu
Login
About PAWineTalk Contribute Privacy Policy Terms of Service
Wines Sorted Alphabetically Wines Sorted by Region Wines Sorted by Variety
All Ratings Recent Ratings My Ratings
Articles PAWineTalk Daily e-mail My List Store Map Wine Availability Map
Logo line

User jlburd has rated the following wines:

DeLille Cellars D2 Red Columbia Valley 2013
Rated by jlburd on October 29, 2017

Rating 44+

The plus is for its potential. Picked up a couple bottles on J2K recommendation but hadn't tried yet. Opened 6 hours before drinking and was glad I did. Tasted at 2 hours and pretty rough around the edges. Didn't notice the alcohol so much but thought the tannins were still holding a grip. Great dark fruit, nice vanilla from the oak, not as earthy as a Bdx but nice balance for so young. Going to scrape up another 6 or so from around the state and give it 3-5 years.

Comments (0)

Cantina Tudernum Montefalco Sagrantino 2008
Rated by jlburd on August 7, 2016

Rating 44

Not an experienced Sagrantino drinker but this could change that. Nice fruit. Well-balanced. Nice finish, if not particularly long. Great QPR

Comments (0)

Henry's Drive Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon Padthaway 2010
Rated by jlburd on July 10, 2016

Rating 33+

Big & bold with lots of the signature characteristics of both varietals. Meaty & hot to start, much more balanced after air time. Don't think it's going to change much with more time but for fans of big red wines this is great right now.

Comments (0)

Carini Captain Fantasy Red California NV
Rated by jlburd on June 12, 2016

Rating 33-

Not my cup of tea but pretty interesting. Spicy, a little smoky/flinty from the Cab Franc. Maybe a little hot but only had one glass to judge. For the drinker who likes big Cal juice this is a good value.

Comments (1)

Louis Latour Gevrey Chambertin 2012
Rated by jlburd on June 11, 2016

Rating 44-

Loved the nose but I didn't get much earthiness there or the palate. Pretty elegant now for a wine so young. Perhaps there will be more complexity over time. Great finish too. Not in the market for a case but at $32 I might have to pick some up for the Burghounds who visit.

Comments (0)

Collevite Falerio Pecorino 2014
Rated by jlburd on March 26, 2016

Rating 44

Delicious crisp white. Melon, a little sweet (not much) & some celery. This could be a pleaser on the deck or with seafood for company. Good trebiano.

Comments (1)

Husic Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2006
Rated by jlburd on December 20, 2015

Rating 44+

It's great to get a good wine at 375ml for school nights and I didn't buy any of the 750 ml versions. Glad I got what I did though. One whiff & you know it's Cal Cab. The mouthfeel and flavor profile are different from what I recall about this wine from 4-5 years ago. This was brighter, with cherry cola finish and acidity that is different from the caramel & cocoa I recalled. Still plenty of tannins left if you want to see what it's like in 2017 or 2018 but drinking great now.

Comments (0)

Landmark Vineyards Chardonnay Overlook 2012
Rated by jlburd on September 11, 2015

Rating 33+

Not necessarily my cup of wine but well made. A little sweet, peppery, some salinity that I liked, some celery flavor? in the finish. Mrs. jlburd really like.

Comments (0)

Vin du Lac of Chelan Pinot Gris Grisant Columbia Valley 2011
Rated by jlburd on September 1, 2015

Rating 44-

This went over big with me & the white wine drinker in the house. Citrus, great acidity, clean & fruity. Bought at the same time as the Bergerac to see which bargain wine we'd stock up on & this one wins.

Comments (0)

Chateau Laulerie Blanc Bergerac 2014
Rated by jlburd on August 28, 2015

Rating 33+

OK so the first thing I have to admit was that as I was tasting I kept thinking that this really tastes like a Sauvignon Blanc. Then I looked at the varietals involved. Obviously I'm not versed in the Bergerac appellation. This is a nice crisp Sauv Blanc. Grapefruit, grassy, some peach in the finish and a long finish at that. At $8 this is a nice bargain.

Comments (0)

Stonestreet Chardonnay Bear Point Vineyard 2012
Rated by jlburd on August 23, 2015

Rating 22+

Agree 100% with j2k & red but that's not a good thing for me. Long finish that has lot of pepper stood out to me. If you are a fan of big Cali Chards this is all that.

Comments (0)

Pierre Legras Champagne Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Brut NV
Rated by jlburd on July 15, 2015

Rating 44

Agree with acorelli's comments. None of the metallic aftertaste that some of the all Chard Champagnes seem to have. This is one of the better finds of 2015 at $23.

Comments (0)

Von Strasser Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Mountain District 2011
Rated by jlburd on July 9, 2015

Rating 44

Picked up a few of these in my quest to find some winners in the 2011 vintage. Unlike the Clos du Val, this had no underripe green pepper, just an understated good Cal Cab. Enough structure to get it to 10 years. Ah science!

Comments (0)

Clos du Val Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District 2011
Rated by jlburd on June 17, 2015

Rating 33-

Bought some of this because of past experience, good price & interest in testing the long-term value of the uneven 2011 Napa vintage. Strong tannin & long finish but dominated by the green pepper & under ripe qualities. If you have the patience to wait until 2020 to see if this becomes an elegant wine I'd recommend. If you're looking for a Cal Cab to drink now I'd pass, although it might go well with stuffed peppers

Comments (0)

Les Cretes Chardonnay Valle d'Aosta 2011
Rated by jlburd on June 2, 2015

Rating 44-

Really wavered back & forth on the rating. Mineral (metallic) on the nose & finish but much sweeter than I expected on the palate. Dry but almost an apricot sweet quality. Still a very tasty wine. That said the QPR is lower than the rating for me. Will pick up more for Mrs. B but not many more.

Comments (0)

Carpineto Farnito Camponibbio 2005
Rated by jlburd on February 15, 2015

Rating 33

Perfectly average. Not complex. Not Old World. Not bad tasting or bad QPR. Just a good but unremarkable Super Tuscan. To be fair I had it after Veuve Cliquot & a 2010 Poggio alla Guardia that was better...

Comments (0)

Bodega Vega Sauco Adoremus Reserva 1999
Rated by jlburd on January 27, 2015

Rating 44

Me likee. Loved the nose when opened. Lots of cedar, cranberry. Probably correct that it's past its prime but still plenty of raisin, tart cherry, cedar, tobacco. Reminds me of the Los Ninos but a bit more tart. A nice buy at $17 but now the problem is whether I get more of this bottle or some of the bottle that bigred had.

Comments (2)

Dalliance Chardonnay Unoaked 2013
Rated by jlburd on December 14, 2014

Rating 33-

Disappointed in this, although the QPR was about right. I've developed a fondness for unoaked Chard but this didn't have much of the minerality or acidity I like. A touch flabby even without the oak. Not bad, not good.

Comments (0)

B.R. Cohn Cabernet Sauvignon Olive Hill Estate Vineyards 2010
Rated by jlburd on December 14, 2014

Rating 33+

Too early to tell. Still needs time to integrate. Had the '09 earlier this year & it seemed to be more resolved than 1 more year of aging. Lots of cab flavor & structure. Keeping the rest in the cellar for a few years.

Comments (0)

Vineyards Found Cabernet Sauvignon 2011
Rated by jlburd on December 14, 2014

Rating 33+

Agree with acorelli's unyielding remark but didn't get much chance to see it unfold as others lapped this up pretty quickly. Better than average but I won't buy more (no shortage of average to better-than-average Cabs).

Comments (0)

Cultivate The Feast 2010
Rated by jlburd on December 6, 2014

Rating 33

Pnp-Some blueberry & cotton candy on the nose. Pretty sweet & fruity, with few Merlot characteristics. After half-hour got the more savory/green hints. Enjoying it less after an hour. After 24 hours this was more integrated and much better but not exactly my cup of wine. I think admin’s Merlot detector would be going off, even with the blending grapes. I bought a handful and will keep them but I’m not loading up.

Comments (0)

Tiefenbrunner Pinot Grigio 2013
Rated by jlburd on November 29, 2014

Rating 44

For those who think PG tastes like what Cavit makes I recommend this wine as a counterpoint. Crisp, citrusy with surprising complexity. The flavor profile was closer to a Pinot/Chard Champagne than anything else. I will load up on this.

Comments (0)

Flora Springs Chardonnay 2012
Rated by jlburd on November 17, 2014

Rating 22+

I bought after ecola's post but was disappointed. Good value from a good winery but too much of the sweetness & blue cheese in the finish that I don't like about some US Chard. There was plenty of complexity but not the kind I favor. Won't mind putting this out for the Xmas party crowd.

Comments (0)

Antonin Rodet Givry 1er Cru 2011
Rated by jlburd on November 7, 2014

Rating 33

After a couple hours decant there was no nose and palate was very tart. 24 hours later it was still tart but a surprising earthiness emerged. I don't think I'll buy more but the QPR went way up on day 2. I'm going to lay the 2nd bottle I have down for a while - like maybe 5 years.

Comments (0)

Casa Lapostolle Syrah Cuvee Alexandre Las Kuras Vineyard 2009
Rated by jlburd on July 23, 2014

Rating 44-

Big & strong without being hot. Not terribly complex but more balanced & complex than I expected. The price makes this really irresistible. Picked up more.

Comments (0)

Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc Icon 2012
Rated by jlburd on April 20, 2014

Rating 22

I can't completely agree with J2K's description (I don't know what flabby tastes like) but the rating is dead on. There's a peach/citrus nose that really comes back in the finish (the best part of the wine) but there's a grassy, almost metallic flavor that puts me off. I drank it at an Ecola-like temperature so maybe it improves as it cools off. Bought it as part of the sale as an experiment. No need for further experimentation.

Comments (0)

Bodega Matarromera Gran Reserva 2001
Rated by jlburd on March 23, 2014

Rating 44+

Definitely my style of wine. Old world nose of cedar, dry cherry, leather. Soft, balanced, tannins very integrated but fruit still showing. A tad pricey to start filling up the cellar but glad I made the impulse buy.

Comments (0)

Heitz Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon Trailside Vineyard 2001
Rated by jlburd on March 9, 2014

Rating 44

Complex & smooth. Mature flavors of dark fruit, anise, earth & raisins. Would have added the plus if it had more oak showing. Not sure it's that high on the QPR but I did buy more for the chance to have something from the PLCB stores at the right age.

Comments (0)

Vall Llach Idus Priorat 2004
Rated by jlburd on January 20, 2014

Rating 44+

Cellared for 5 yrs. after buying to bring to the E2 tasting & it showed well. Plenty of backbone left. Right now it has plenty of fruit, big flavors, a bit of licorice with the berries. Will cellar the rest for some years to see if it resolves & gets more 'old world' at age 15. For those who like bigger wines the Idus is drinking well now.

Comments (2)

Vineyards Found Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2007
Rated by jlburd on November 22, 2013

Rating 44

Liked the nose at opening, almost cherry sweet. Decanted 4+ hours before drinking. In spite of all the BS with the notes this is a pretty good wine. It was more integrated than I would expect for Cal Cab from '07. Not big or hot & there was still some tannin bite on the finish. Probably priced about right. Probably will get some more but not stocking the cellar. My guess is that if I tasted blind I might be making more of a fuss about it.

Comments (0)

Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino Annata 2000
Rated by jlburd on October 26, 2013

Rating 33+

Old World nose of tart cherry, licorice upon opening. After 3-hour decant the aroma was more like sherry. Clear & red with some browning at the edge (that actually diminished over time). Taste was smooth, acidic, well balanced. Still plenty of structure & long finish but I wouldn't expect it to improve much with age. Saving the rest for dinner & expect will improve with food. Three hours later - turns out I was wrong about the food. Probably wouldn't buy more at $25.

Comments (0)

Vidal Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2004
Rated by jlburd on May 25, 2013

Rating 44

The first 4 raters here are all fans of the Cali big-ness but Radus threw in the Mika note so I was drawn in & glad to be here. Feels like a wine about 90% of the way there. Great Cab nose. Cherry, mint, very well-integrated oak. Didn't pick up the anise yet but it seems like a wine that will be really good after a couple more years. At this price I have to break the moratorium on buying. Real interested to see what the '05 is like.

Comments (1)

Jean Perrier et Fils Savoie Apremont Cuvee Gastronomie 2011
Rated by jlburd on March 30, 2013

Rating 44-

Clean, crisp, lemon, cotton candy & floral nose. Citrus & mineral on the tongue. Reminds me of Pinot Gris or even Champagne with the yeasty finish. Great QPR

Comments (0)

Dubakella Six and Eleven NV
Rated by jlburd on February 23, 2013

Rating 33-

I give them credit for trying something different. PNP this was very Pinot-centric, acidity with crisp sour cherry & not much of the Grenache (certainly nothing remotely like CdP). 18 hours later had morphed into something closer to light port w/really long finish. More complex than I expected but not exactly my cup of tea.

Comments (0)

Montechiara Sagrantino di Montefalco 2005
Rated by jlburd on January 12, 2013

Rating 33-

Decanted 3 hours. I could have smelled this all night & been happy. The nose was Cal Cab straight up, as was the opening salvo. Dark cherry, some graphite, some violet & then gone. The wine disappeared mid-palate & was a little bitter to boot. Very strange sensation & shared by 2 others tasting it. Maybe it needs more time but not in my cellar.

Comments (0)

Marchesi di Barolo Millennium 1990
Rated by jlburd on November 2, 2012

Rating 33-

What a difference in tasting this away from the PAW tasting #30, where I thought it held up OK. Nose & palate are tired, one dimensional. Still a nice Old World sensibility about it, lots of sour cherry & acidity galore but the mouthfeel is gone. Much better with the pizza at dinner. Glad to have a whack at it for $25 but also glad I didn't get more.

Comments (0)

San Polo Brunello di Montalcino 2006
Rated by jlburd on November 2, 2012

Rating 44+

Really solid Brunello. Fruit & acidity in good balance. Still plenty of structure for years of drinking. I've got a decent amount of '06 Brunello & this seemed on par.

Comments (0)

Bernardus Marinus Red Blend Carmel Valley 2006
Rated by jlburd on September 14, 2012

Rating 33+

Needs a little air to come together & still probably a few years young. Not as Old World as I recall earlier vintages but still pretty balanced. Cab nose with some earth. Cherry, oak, cigar in the mouth. Tannins are still drying but fine. Would like to have it again in 2015.

Comments (0)

Sodaro Estate Blend 2005
Rated by jlburd on July 27, 2012

Rating 44

Very nice balance between old & new world. Big Cab nose, lots of fruit, tar, oak on the attack. Long finish. After a couple hours it was moe one dimensional, a little diappointing after the start. Not spectacular but good QPR. Will buy more.

Comments (0)

Henry Fessy Pouilly-Fuisse Burgundy 2010
Rated by jlburd on July 18, 2012

Rating 33+

The answer to the cheap Burg question. Clean, crisp, citrus, stone. Nice nose, very easy drinker, moderate finish. Less oak than Pouilly-Fuisse usually has (couldn't be un-oaked French?) & not terribly complex but great QPR. Buying more.

Comments (0)

Clos LaChance Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2007
Rated by jlburd on June 22, 2012

Rating 33+

Big nose, big legs & big fruit when opened. Blackberry, cedar, tar at first. After a couple hours the heat had blown off some but the oak took over. Maybe after a few years this would integrate better but not sure the concentration would ever allow balance. Plenty of sweet tannins there for age though. Big & well made but not my cup of tea.

Comments (0)

Mount Veeder Reserve 2006
Rated by jlburd on May 17, 2012

Rating 44-

PNP. Black fruit & spice box on the nose. Black fruit, oak & then BAM! with the structure. Chalky tannins overwhelm what seems to be an old world flavor profile. Will check back in an hour or two. OK, by hour 3 there is more cherry but this is one for 2015 or later. Long finish, good potential, but not so much QPR for now.

Comments (0)

Feudi Sanniti Taburno Falanghina 2009
Rated by jlburd on April 8, 2012

Rating 33+

Italian whites are certainly more varied than I thought. Didn't get the intense acidity either but didn't have until it was opened a day. Floral, peachy nose. Gorgeous color. The flavors were apple & yeast (even a sensation of stale beer on the finish). Minerality kind of flattened out the finish, although it was long. High QPR at $8.

Comments (0)

Heitz Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon Trailside Vineyard 2000
Rated by jlburd on April 3, 2012

Rating 44+

PNP-still pretty tight but dark, plums, tobacco. After 2 hours picked up a ton more flavor. Still dark fruit, flinty, anise, (maybe even Root Beer?). Not enough cherry & cedar for the Bordeaux vibe. Enough tannin on the finish to suggest it will evolve even more at 2015 or 2020.

Comments (0)

Chateau Grands Bois Bordeaux 2009
Rated by jlburd on March 23, 2012

Rating 33

Nose is musty, floral & young, with some blueberry. Tart at first & dry but softer & longer at the finish. My first impression was that it was a barrel taste of a decent Merlot. Half bottle is a good way to sample something like this.

Comments (1)

Penfolds Shiraz St. Henri 2005
Rated by jlburd on January 9, 2012

Rating 44

Right out of the bottle it was awful oaky & tight. Not a fruit bomb - more aubdued than te ABV would suggest. After an hour there was more dark fruit, spice, meaty flavors. It was great w/Cincinnati chili. The tannins & acidity were still out of balance though. My guess is the balance will be cured by time. I'd say jrad's 5 year estimate is right on

Comments (2)

Dubakella Pinot Gris Rouge 2010
Rated by jlburd on January 6, 2012

Rating 44-

Great nose (although if I close my eyes I smell a little white Zin aroma). Lots of flavor. A whiff & first taste of Champagne, some Pinot characteristics, grapefruit, but then mineral flintiness. The finish is medium but weird. Starts out like a long, coating finish but after about 15 seconds just phhtt - gone.

Comments (1)

Gloria Ferrer Royal Cuvee Vintage Reserve Brut 2002
Rated by jlburd on January 1, 2012

Rating 33

Thought this was so-so, with the almost metallic tinge on the finish that seemed to characterize Cal sparkling wine. Up front it showed promise but the flavors & finish disappointed. $18 is a good number but there are a number of Cal sparkling wines that are better in that range

Comments (0)

Vezer Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Special Reserve Suisun Valley 2007
Rated by jlburd on November 4, 2011

Rating 44+

Tasted when I decanted & very tight & oaky with a Cal Cab cherry smell. After an hour there was more dried cherry, tobacco & anise. After two it was a bit softer but still feels like its several years away. I may be missing this but it seems more Old World than new. At $20 this is worth putting away until 2015 or so to see if it integrates like a Bordeaux or Brunello. Is this a familiar winery to anyone else?

Comments (1)

Clos du Bois Marlstone 2006
Rated by jlburd on October 30, 2011

Rating 33+

Gave it the plus for potential. Decanted for 2 hours. Great nose, dark fruit, vanilla/cedar not so much, finish was long but tight - the flavors were masked by the tannins. Can see this as a 4 or more in a few years but may also just be an example of the best you can do with a so-so vintage

Comments (0)

Coniglio Cabernet Sauvignon Napa 2005
Rated by jlburd on October 30, 2011

Rating 44

Drink this side by side with the Clos du Bois Marlstone. Decanted 2 hours. Thought this was above average QPr & a nice Cab. Very soft feel, great cherry, licorice, oak/vanilla flavors. Nose really evolved during evening. After 5 hours the wine smelled like Old World red & structure still held

Comments (0)

La Czar Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley 2007
Rated by jlburd on October 28, 2011

Rating 33+

Great cherry candy nose that left me disappointed at first with the flavor. Acidic & without much finish at the opening but very different after an hour. Definitely decant this. Surprisingly light in color & body with no sense of the alcohol level in the mouth. More complex as the evening went on. If you like Turley or Rafanelli try this for the contrast of what you can do with Zin

Comments (0)

Montinore Estate Pinot Gris 2009
Rated by jlburd on October 7, 2011

Rating 33+

Grapefruit, grass, lots of acidity but balances out over time. Crisp & clean, didn't strike me as friendly to a wide range of foods. Good pre-dinner wine for sipping

Comments (0)

Merryvale Chardonnay Carneros 2008
Rated by jlburd on September 10, 2011

Rating 44+

Agree on the finish & Burgundy comparison (maybe not $60 but...) Great nose of blanc de blance Champagne, citrus, even cotton candy. The oak takes away some of the crispness but is not overbearing. Less flowery, peachy profile. Better than mid-range wine for mid-range $$

Comments (0)

Terra d'Oro Zinfandel Amador County 2007
Rated by jlburd on August 17, 2011

Rating 33

Good value & easy drinker. It's a nice Cal Zin but pretty typical. Fruit forward, soft, nice finish but not overly complex.

Comments (0)

Sodaro Cabernet Sauvignon Felicity 2005
Rated by jlburd on May 21, 2011

Rating 44

Had this at 2 meals over 24 hours & found 2 different profiles (both good). PNP it was pretty typical Cal Cab profile from a good vintage. Not hot, lots of dark cherry & vanilla. Day 2 the benefits of the blending varietals came thru. More balanced, a bit more oak, not quite Old World but certainly more restrained. I've cellared a number of '05 wines in this price range & it appears to be a good idea so far.

Comments (0)

J. M. Fuentes Gran Clos Priorat 2000
Rated by jlburd on May 14, 2011

Rating 44+

Thumbs up for Old World. Great nose of cherry cola, earthiness. Dried cherry & cedar up front in the mouth then chocolate, maybe some leather. The finish was awesome - minutes not seconds. Even picked up some tart apple after a minute or so. Enough structure left to suggest that it could become even more integrated in a few years but why wait?

Comments (1)

Tandem Peloton California 2006
Rated by jlburd on April 9, 2011

Rating 33+

This is decidedly Pinot Noir in character at first. Light in color, strawberry & tart cherry, with the acidity & mineral qualities of the white varietals surprisingly noted towards the finish. I'm afraid I don't get the roundness or spice of the Zin or Syrah.

Comments (0)

Artesa Pinot Noir Reserve Carneros 2008
Rated by jlburd on April 3, 2011

Rating 33

Just down the middle. It has the expected flavor profile of a Cal Pinot. Light color, strawberry & tart cherry nose & flavor. It gets more tart & mineral tasting, fading pretty quickly at the finish. If the theory is no good Pinot under $30 this will make you think twice at $20, but my $20 would be spent elsewhere

Comments (0)

Joel Gott Cabernet Sauvignon 6 2006
Rated by jlburd on April 3, 2011

Rating 44

Great value. Dark fruit, cedar, earthiness, a bit of Old World restraint compared to many Cal Cabs. Well made, well priced at $25 & probably even better in 2013-2015

Comments (0)

R Wines Chateau Chateau Skulls Australia 2007
Rated by jlburd on March 25, 2011

Rating 33+

With no other info my eyes, nose & mouth say this is a moderately priced Cal Pinot. Light & beautiful color. Strawberry nose, sour cherry on the toungue, cinnamon, & light minerality at the finish. Have had few 100% grenache & no mataro so am very curious as to where the flavor profile comes from

Comments (0)

R Wines Shiraz First Class 2007
Rated by jlburd on March 15, 2011

Rating 33+

Nose & initial attack made me think fruit bomb but it's not nearly so much as many Aussies. Drank with a handful of blackberries after the first taste just to compare & it was a great pairing. Juicy dark fruit, rich mouth feel, peppery, the oak/vanilla takes over in the latter half & big finish. With the price factored in I'd give it a 4+

Comments (0)

Veramonte Primus Red 2006
Rated by jlburd on February 25, 2011

Rating 33+

Big nose, little attack, long finish. Fruity, cedar nose. Velvety mouth feel but initial flavors are missing. Vanilla, dark fruit come back at the end for a long finish. The blend is unusual for Cal drinkers, with Carmenere probably adding the more mysterious taste element

Comments (0)

Mika Winery Meritage Sonoma County 2004
Rated by jlburd on February 18, 2011

Rating 44

I finally decided to try the much-ballyhooed Mika. Agree with Mark's wife on aging. The only negative is the chalky structure. Otherwise a spot-on imitation of Bordeaux style. Dark cherry, cedar, licorice & chocolate. Big flavor & finish. Wish there was some '05 around to compare

Comments (0)

Louis Latour Vire-Clesse Burgundy 2007
Rated by jlburd on February 13, 2011

Rating 33-

Nice nose & half a nice wine. Pineapple, lemony, just a bit of buttery oak but still crisp & then the flavor just disappears into flinty, sour nothing. Not a bad drinking experience but the promise of this doesn't deliver.

Comments (0)

Chateau d'Or et de Gueules Costières de Nimes Cuvee Trassegum 2007
Rated by jlburd on January 15, 2011

Rating 33-

This one disappointed. HAve had great experience with inexpensive Rhones but this was pretty flat. VERY tight. None of the cherry or oak profile, even on day 2. The upside is it's a Rhone from a good vintage & needs more time. Not sure I'll get more to see

Comments (2)

Highflyer Centerline Red 2007
Rated by jlburd on January 10, 2011

Rating 33+

This one surprised me. PNP after finishing off an Anderson's Conn Valley Cab so wasn't expecting much but it's a big, sweet, flavorful bottle of juice. Not a subtle Old World wine but a fun drinker. Wish I would have had a bunch for holiday parties

Comments (0)

Long Boat Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2008
Rated by jlburd on January 1, 2011

Rating 33-

Very grapefruity (the finish tastes like I just had a Fresca). I have maybe a couple Sauv Blancs a year so it's tough to rate comparatively but this was crisp, a bit tart & obviously citrus-y.

Comments (0)

Louis M. Martini Cabernet Sauvignon Monte Rosso Vineyard 2005
Rated by jlburd on December 24, 2010

Rating 33+

Unfortunately my expectations were elevated for this. Had after several others including a '98 Bordeaux so the rating is based more on feel. Oaky not fruity. Long finish. At $40 there are some better wines out there

Comments (0)

Carini Furzivu Munti Sucu Mendocino County 2003
Rated by jlburd on December 24, 2010

Rating 33+

Agree with Mark on the comparison. Not a fan of the Carini 65 so this didn't win me over but it's well made, lots of flavor, fans of big reds should like it

Comments (0)

Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on December 24, 2010

Rating 44+

PNP thru Vinitura. Exceptional Cab. Surprisingly drinkable now. Less oak, more fruit than its more prized cousin. Can't be considered a value at this price but worth the extravagance if you're looking to spend $49

Comments (0)

Anderson's Conn Valley Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2006
Rated by jlburd on December 23, 2010

Rating 44+

Very solid Cal Cab. Soft, supple, complex with the structure that could support aging. drinking well now. Cherries, plums, oak, chocolate, some green pepper at first

Comments (0)

Husic Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2006
Rated by jlburd on December 10, 2010

Rating 55-

This is pretty exceptional wine for the vintage. It's more New World but much less oak influence. Incredibly silky. Cocoa, caramel, dark cherry, licorice after it opened up. Enough structure that it can lay down for a while but drinking great now too

Comments (0)

Ramey Syrah Shanel Vineyard Sonoma Coast 2006
Rated by jlburd on November 24, 2010

Rating 44+

A New World Syrah that Old World fans can like. Blackberry & cherry, oak, cocoa & a great long finish. A little hot at first but that blows off after an hour or so. Paired with a lentil soup & it didn't overwhelm. Tastes like a high-end Syrah but without as much wallet pain

Comments (0)

Antucura Calvulcura Mendoza 2005
Rated by jlburd on November 12, 2010

Rating 33+

PNP thru a Vinituri. At first the flavor profile was typical of a new world Bordeaux. The fruit & earthiness of the Cab was offset by the smoother Merlot but after an hour the alcohol seemed to step forward. Blindfolded I would have guessed Syrah after an hour. Big flavors, long finish. This will be popular if you pour at parties & a good deal at $15. Hope I can save a couple of bottles to try in 2012 & 2015

Comments (0)

Erasmo Maule Valley Chile 2005
Rated by jlburd on November 8, 2010

Rating 33+

Euro style red more than New World. Earthy nose. Dark fruit, tobacco flavors stay a long time. Still alot of structure. Don't think these will last long enough but could tolerate another few years cellaring. PNP at a restaurant. Expect to get more out of it next time by decanting. Excellent value if you can find any more

Comments (0)

Viansa Sempre Avanti Sonoma County 2008
Rated by jlburd on November 7, 2010

Rating 44-

The flavors from the Cab & Syrah come thru more than I expected. cherry, vanilla, plums, cocoa all pass through over the course of the taste. Has the complexity of an older wine - not as tannic either. Good value

Comments (0)

Bacio Divino Pazzo Napa Valley 2006
Rated by jlburd on October 28, 2010

Rating 44

Very good $9 wine & better than average at full price. Clarity of the color surprised me - w/o knowing I'd have guessed a Pinot. Nice cherries & vanilla on the nose. The sangiovese & cab carry the flavor. After an hour the anise & minerals came thru. Glad I bought a bunch

Comments (0)

Flora Springs Chardonnay Barrel Fermented 2007
Rated by jlburd on October 24, 2010

Rating 44-

This seems to have stayed below the white wine drinkers' radar here. Slightly & pleasantly oaked for a bit of vanilla. Crisp & acidic at the same time. Apricots & pineapple flavors. At $9 this has excellent QPR

Comments (0)

Smith & Hook Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Rated by jlburd on October 24, 2010

Rating 33+

Had this after Ramey Larkmead & didn't notice a big dropoff. Dark cherry, cedar, pencil & plum in the mouth. Softer than expected for its age. The finish doesn't predict alot of improvements with age

Comments (0)

Castello di Meleto Rainero Toscana 2004
Rated by jlburd on September 6, 2010

Rating 44+

Very fruity nose of cherries, vanilla. Great mouthful & structure. Dark cherry, tobacco, earthy tones all emerge through the mouth. Tannins are still dusty enough to suggest another couple years to soften & other flavors to emerge. Well made, excellent with salty cheeses, fruit, red sauce

Comments (0)

Geyser Peak Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2006
Rated by jlburd on September 6, 2010

Rating 44-

Dark sweet fruit, vanilla, still a bit young with lots of structure. Thought the profile of this wine would be less recognizable as a Cal Cab if drunk in 2015 or later. Not sure mine will last that long but will try to restrain 1 for scientific purposes

Comments (0)

Wild Oak by St. Francis Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
Rated by jlburd on August 21, 2010

Rating 33+

The nose reminds me why I love Cabs. Prototypical Cal Cab profile. Dark cherry, cedar, vanilla aromas; blueberry & licorice tones on the tongue; silky in the mouth & long finish although still pretty tannic. Slightly better than average Cab but way better value

Comments (0)

Vignerons de Caractere Chemin des Rouvieres Vacqueyras 2007
Rated by jlburd on August 10, 2010

Rating 33+

Lovely nose. Cherry cola flavor, olives, cedar. Very nice wine for the price. Interesting color - dark yet clear

Comments (0)

Heitz Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon Bella Oaks Napa Valley 2001
Rated by jlburd on July 31, 2010

Rating 44-

Much more middle of the road Cali Cab than the '98. Dark fruit, oak, consistent from nose to mouth. Had a long finish with some tannic structure still-could probably sit a few more years but not sure the flavor profile would change much

Comments (0)

Artesa Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Sonoma 2005
Rated by jlburd on July 31, 2010

Rating 33+

Had at the same table as the Heitz '01 & found them surprisingly similar. Dark cherry & plums, oak & leather. Medium but soft finish. Seemed to benefit from the addition of the other varietals. Another example of the '05 vintage making a decent wine better

Comments (0)

Leonhardt Zinfandel Reserve Dry Creek Valley 2006
Rated by jlburd on July 27, 2010

Rating 33+

Great aromas. Dark cherry, well integrated oak, not as much of the peppery/spicy as advertised but the taste evolved nicely over a long finish. Paired very well with tomato-basil-sausage pasta

Comments (0)

Joseph Drouhin Saint-Veran Burgundy 2008
Rated by jlburd on July 24, 2010

Rating 44

Excellent white Burgundy at twice the price. Crisp, citrus & mineral flavors. Agree with Mark about warehousing this at $11.99 - just hope the PLCB bought plenty (no more Mika-ing with stock)

Comments (0)

Peachy Canyon Cirque du Vin Paso Robles 2006
Rated by jlburd on July 18, 2010

Rating 33+

Maybe my favorite value wine from last year & the 2006 was very consistent with the 2005. Great with grilled meat. Soft, fruity, with some vanilla & tobacco mid-mouth. A little hotter than I remember the '05 but after an hour that abated

Comments (0)

Mumm Napa DVX 2001
Rated by jlburd on July 7, 2010

Rating 33+

Better than average Cal sparkling wine but bad QPR. Toasty, apples, very crisp. For another $10 get a solid Champagne & be happier

Comments (0)

Erba Mountainside Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2004
Rated by jlburd on June 19, 2010

Rating 44

Inky purple color. The nose is a good preview of the wine. Big flavors. Cherry, raisins, lots of vanilla. Get the anise of a 'Bordeaux' blend w/o the funk. The overwhelming sense I'm left with is sweet. Maybe that will cool out a bit by 2011 or 2012

Comments (0)

Barone Ricasoli Chianti Classico Castello di Brolio 2001
Rated by jlburd on June 13, 2010

Rating 44-

Beautiful color-deep purple/red with red around the edges. Dark cherries abound in the nose & flavor. Very well balanced. Earthy finish. Decant through screen & cheese cloth or expect the last glass to have some sediment.

Comments (0)

Joseph Drouhin Cote de Beaune Villages 2007
Rated by jlburd on June 2, 2010

Rating 44-

Very pleasant surprise. The more fruit forward nose of a Cal Pinot matched with the restraint of a Burgundy in the mouth. Strawberries & sour cherry. Crisp & soft somehow. After an hour the earthier qualities came through. Matched the flavor of Burgs twice the price

Comments (0)

Martinborough Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc New Zealand 2008
Rated by jlburd on May 26, 2010

Rating 44

Pretty delightful white. Grassy, pineapple nose. Crisp on the tongue at first, citrus flavors then became more buttery with a pina colada hint at the finish. The whites in the house are for my wife but I'll steal a glass of this again

Comments (0)

Highlands Cabernet Sauvignon Beatty Ranch 2003
Rated by jlburd on May 22, 2010

Rating 44-

Nose & palate were pretty consistent. I got nice dark fruit up front & throughout. Found it very well balanced, soft & expect it to still develop for a few more years. Maybe best QPR since the '05 Viansa

Comments (0)

Murrieta's Well Meritage Livermore Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on May 22, 2010

Rating 33

Not sure if I'm being overly critical to compensate for the price but found this to be middle of the road red. I got more of the Cab qualities & none of the Pinot. Better with food than just sipping. Bought six & not disappointed with the prospect of 5 more

Comments (0)

Capafons-Osso Mas de Masos Priorat 2004
Rated by jlburd on May 20, 2010

Rating 44

Way too early for this one but you can tell there will be a party of flavor in about 4-5 years. Cough syrup, plums, definite traces of the high alcohol, even after 24 hours. Very tannic. Even as tight & chalky as it is the finish really lingered.

Comments (0)

Vine Cliff Cabernet Sauvignon Rock Block Napa Valley 2006
Rated by jlburd on April 25, 2010

Rating 44-

Waited until day 2 to rate & it was a good idea. Dark cherry & oak when opened but after aeration the wine softened in the mouth with more plum, chocolate & much better finish. Not a top shelf Cab but not a top shelf price either. Buy it if you can find it

Comments (0)

Ravenswood Syrah Sonoma 2005
Rated by jlburd on April 20, 2010

Rating 33

Nice drinkable uncomplicated red. Juicy with black cherry, plum, some oak. Great QPR. Bought to make sauce but hid a little extra for the cook. Drink it now, should age well until May or June

Comments (0)

Columbia Crest Walter Clore Private Reserve Columbia Valley 2004
Rated by jlburd on April 12, 2010

Rating 33+

Popped & poured thru the Vinturi. Probably would have been a 4 if the drinker had the chance to decant. The blend was all there although not quite balanced yet. Dark fruit, tobacco, earthy on the flavor - less os on the nose. More complex than I remember from other vintages. Long finish. suspect this could cellar a few years

Comments (0)

Clare Luce Abbey Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
Rated by jlburd on April 9, 2010

Rating 44+

This was a real surprise. Very different profile than the '05 but in a good way. Dark fruit, tobacco, oak & lots of structure. Unlike '05 this seems like it will age well.

Comments (0)

William Knuttel Pinot Gris Basor Terrace Vineyard 2007
Rated by jlburd on April 9, 2010

Rating 44

Beautiful color of peaches & straw. Nice nose, citrus, honey & you get the mineral qulaities too. A white wine for people who don't normally drink white wine

Comments (0)

Two Hands Shiraz Ares 2006
Rated by jlburd on February 28, 2010

Rating 44

Berries & cedar on the nose. Smooth but not soft in the mouth. Slightly more alcoholic than I expected - a little like fortified wine. A very good wine but I wouldn't go more than $30 to get more

Comments (0)

Nord Estate Red Wine Cuvee Napa Valley 2003
Rated by jlburd on February 20, 2010

Rating 33+

Opened & poured it was a little syrupy but liked the aromas, more cherry & oak. Hours later more restrained & balanced flavors, better nose, tannins kind of bite off the finish though

Comments (0)

Siduri Pinot Noir Sonatera Vineyard Sonoma County 2007
Rated by jlburd on February 7, 2010

Rating 44

Would love to have had this at tasting #5 to get the full field response. Pretty consistent vintner with a more subdued new world Pinot approach. Fruity, tart, fragrant, smokyon the tongue, long maple-y finish with for a 3 yr old wine. This vintage is supposed to be an excellent one for Cal Pinot & this wine bears that out. Great value

Comments (0)

Carini Cuvee Sixty Five Napa Valley 2003
Rated by jlburd on January 30, 2010

Rating 44

Hot & fruity when opened-cherries, grapes, cedar & spice. 2 hours later a very different wine, almost like sherry. Darker fruit comes through after decanting, more complex but not as food friendly. Thick in the mouth & the finish will be there in the morning! A very different wine experience

Comments (0)

Kuyen Maipo Valley Chile 2006
Rated by jlburd on January 26, 2010

Rating 33-

I got less of the descriptors used by the PLCB & other raters. Nothing bad just unremarkable. Was tight at opening & softened measurably in the mouth after an hour but this didn't get many of the better qualities of the grapes in the blend. There's quite a bit I'd drink first for $18

Comments (0)

Pahlmeyer Proprietary Red Napa Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on December 29, 2009

Rating 55-

This may be my first 5-ish rating. Like advertised this was Bordeaux on steroids. Dark fruit, oak, pencil shavings, the whole ball of wax on the nose. Tannins were very well integrated for its age. I thought this was enjoyable at first pour. Decanted for 2 hours & really enjoyed. I have more for aging but not sure if they will make it. BTW, my label was upside down. Anyone know if I kicked away a million bucks by opening it?

Comments (0)

Luna Vineyards Sangiovese Napa Valley 2007
Rated by jlburd on December 21, 2009

Rating 33-

PNP. Just an OK Sangiovese without the complexity of a Tuscan. These can usually be drunk young but maybe not. Fruity with a bit of anise. Was good with red sauce but may not hold up to meat.

Comments (0)

Robert Stemmler Pinot Noir Nugent Vineyard Russian River Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on December 15, 2009

Rating 33-

Too much Pinot for me. Very fruity & fragrant, almost to the point of not tasting like wine. Those who like big Pinot flavor will love this

Comments (0)

Rosenblum Cellars Zinfandel Snows Lake Vineyard, Lake County 2006
Rated by jlburd on November 29, 2009

Rating 44

Very flavorful although a bit tannic. PNP at the table so that may have abated some over time but it didn't last the meal. Blueberry & vanilla, fruit is there but not overwhelming, same with the high alcohol. I'd love to find more for the holiday parties - this would please a broad spectrum

Comments (0)

Lui di Luiano Rosso Toscana IGT 2003
Rated by jlburd on November 15, 2009

Rating 33+

Very subtle, earthy, long finish. More fruit came thru after an hour or so. Not what I expected from a wine that is 2/3 Cab/Merlot.

Comments (0)

Dovetail Cabernet Sauvignon Ashley Vineyard 2005
Rated by jlburd on November 8, 2009

Rating 44-

Deep red color, aromas express what yopu expect from a good Cal Cab: fermented dark fruit, vanilla, cedar, but not too earthy or chewy. Loooong finish. Chalky tannins foretell a better future for this. Probably worth $30 now but could feel like a bargain in 2015

Comments (0)

Mas Carlot Les Enfants Terribles Costieres de Nimes 2007
Rated by jlburd on November 4, 2009

Rating 33+

Very well blended CdR. Outstanding value. Found it to be softer & more complex than other value Rhones. Soft in the mouth, long finish for 2 years old. This should be on the holiday party list

Comments (0)

Lail Vineyards Blueprint Proprietary Blend 2005
Rated by jlburd on October 25, 2009

Rating 33+

Interesting & probably young blend of Cab/Merlot. Most of the profile is Cab but not as deep red in color or as earthy. I got more vanilla & oak from the nose than dark fruit. Still a little rough in the mouth (think that would pass over next few years). Long finish

Comments (0)

Chateau Coufran Haut-Medoc 2003
Rated by jlburd on October 20, 2009

Rating 33+

PNP. A great approachable Bordeaux. Nice nose, smooth mouthfeel, cherry, anise, vanilla, not nearly as earthy as more complex Bordeaux. Tannins were mostly gone so agree with comments about aging potential. Very good value at $14

Comments (0)

Altair Sideral 2003
Rated by jlburd on October 17, 2009

Rating 44-

Either this was corked or I waited too long to get the great nose. Have another couple bottles & will give it another try (rated 7/28/09) Success on the follow up. The nose was nice but the buildup rated above probably ruined it for me. OVerall a very solid Chilean red. Nice fruit, even a little old world funk in there & hints of more discovery the second day. Glad I didn't pitch after the corked incident.

Comments (0)

L'uvaggio di Giacomo il Ponte Sangiovese, Napa Valley 2002
Rated by jlburd on October 7, 2009

Rating 33+

Better than average nose. Red fruit & cedar flavors. Softened up nicely after 15-20 mins. Show the strength of the vintage & the good flavor of Sangiovese

Comments (0)

Gloria Ferrer Syrah Carneros 2005
Rated by jlburd on September 27, 2009

Rating 33

This was just red wine, nothing that distinguished it as a Syrah or a 2005. I was disappointed in that Ferrer has done some other value prices proud ('02 sparkling wine, the Pinot dedicated to Jose Ferrer) but this was just there. The good news is at $10 it was a fair value. A good wine for a party

Comments (0)

Buil & Gine Priorat Gine Gine 2006
Rated by jlburd on September 27, 2009

Rating 33+

This was a pleasant surprise, especially with food. This was open at the same table with an '03 Silver Oak Napa & intentionally drunk indiscriminately. Much more fruit than the 'savory' Silver Oak & preferred by about half the diners. Will definitely get more in the interest of science & drinking. Gine had much less complexity, fruit & spice of other Priorats & this is a young bottle. Maybe some of that region's output goes to more drinkable cuvees?

Comments (0)

Clare Luce Abbey Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2005
Rated by jlburd on September 21, 2009

Rating 44+

This is a great example of what makes Cal wines special. Very drinkable now but you can see much potential in another 3-5 years. (This is no knock on Old World, just a preference for being able to drink great vintages before my old age!) Black cherries & oak on the nose, soft in the mouth, taste of leather & plums as it finishes. A little chalky at the end but not so much as to detract & it holds the promise of further softening. This probably didn't actually sell for $105 but I've had much worse at $50 than this at $35

Comments (0)

Hangtime Pinot Noir Gallery Vineyard Carneros 2006
Rated by jlburd on September 20, 2009

Rating 33+

Hard to say whether this is the better deal or the Gundy Bundy '05 but this is definitely Pinot worth drinking under $20. More restrained after a couple of hours (or overnight). Strawberries & hop flowers. A little hot at first but not so you couldn't pop 'n pour

Comments (0)

Nicolas Joly Savennieres-Coulee de Serrant Clos de la Coulee de Serrant 2006
Rated by jlburd on September 13, 2009

Rating 44

This is a pretty wild white. More honey/caramel than citrus. Also there was more earthiness than any white I've had. Changed a lot as it got oxygen. Very complex. If whites are too straightforward for you try this.

Comments (0)

Fess Parker Syrah ATR 2005
Rated by jlburd on September 13, 2009

Rating 44

Chocolate and cherries on the nose & toungue. Well rounded but still a little hot for me. Not sure if it's because of New World style or the youth. Best to set a few bottles away for scientific purposes in 2011 or 2012!

Comments (0)

Martin & Weyrich Insieme Red, Paso Robles 2005
Rated by jlburd on September 8, 2009

Rating 33

Tasted this at the 2nd Pgh tasting Sept 4 against some very good wine & it was OK. I was looking to find another Viansa at this price point & while not quite that well done it was certainly a wine I'd be happy to serve to guests who weren't discriminating oenophiles. Would recommend it as a red wine for a party of any size

Comments (0)

Gundlach Bundschu Pinot Noir Rhinefarm Vineyard 2005
Rated by jlburd on August 30, 2009

Rating 44+

This is a steal at $18. Much more restrained than the more fragrant & thick Pinots (like Stemmler), much more like a Burgundy. Strawberries, vanilla, plums on the nose & tongue. Beautiful clear dark red color. Two days after opening & vacuum corking it was just as interesting but with a slightly different profile. I'm buying more.

Comments (0)

Viansa Anatra Rosso Sonoma County 2005
Rated by jlburd on August 9, 2009

Rating 33+

This is a great wine for $10. The wine was bottled to raise funds for Ducks Unlimited (hence the label) & is mostly Cab but with a more rounded flavor from the Primitivo & Aleatico maybe? Plums & cherries in the nose & mouth, nice finish but seems to be at its best now. There's a ton of it locally & I'll buy up

Comments (0)

Stags' Leap Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on August 3, 2009

Rating 44-

Too early for its best but this should stand up over time. Dark fruit, long finish but still tight after a couple of hours open. It's not a reserve but I expected a bit more from a Stag's Leap of this vintage. I'd buy other '05 at way better prices to drink now

Comments (0)

Priest Ranch Zinfandel Napa Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on July 28, 2009

Rating 44-

I thought this was more complex than most popular Zins-definitely worth the price. Fruity but not a bomb, not overly spicey, more Cab-like in profile, especially the hints of vanilla & oak

Comments (0)

Allegrini Palazzo della Torre IGT 2004
Rated by jlburd on July 18, 2009

Rating 44

Thought this was the winner of the 1st PAW Pgh wine tasting! Good dark fruit, long in the mouth, tannins were integrated but enough structure there to hold up another few years or more

Comments (0)

Michael & David Phillips Petite Petit Lodi 2005
Rated by jlburd on July 16, 2009

Rating 44-

This is a fun little wine. I no nothing about Petit Syrah as a grape but this has some of the complexity of a Cab. Not real fruity, seems like it could have another few years in it.

Comments (0)

Chapel Hill Chardonnay Unwooded 2007
Rated by jlburd on July 10, 2009

Rating 33+

Nice little summer white, especially if you're not into buttery chardonnay. Crisp, with citrus & grassy flavors. Complemented a roasted vegetable primavera quite well

Comments (0)

Kilikanoon Cabernet Sauvignon Blocks Road 2005
Rated by jlburd on July 6, 2009

Rating 44+

There's probably none left in the closeout but this is in the steal category at 11.99. Opened & drank at the table so a little hot but not in your face like fruitier Aussies. Smooth, still tannic enough to age a while but drinkable now. Dark cherry at the front, oak was in balance, long finish. If I can ever find another I'd like to decant first

Comments (0)

A to Z Night & Day Oregon 2005
Rated by jlburd on June 29, 2009

Rating 33+

Although bottle says it's a blend of 'big grapes' I thought it was more Old World. Liked it equally before & with dinner. Cherries on the nose & up front, more earthy/woody in the finish

Comments (0)

B Cellars Blend 25 Napa Valley 2005
Rated by jlburd on June 24, 2009

Rating 44

Very drinkable now, this has qualities I'd call elegant. Very Cab forward, dark fruit, structure predicts another few years before a better balance

Comments (0)

Engelbrecht Els Vineyards Proprietor's Blend South Africa 2006
Rated by jlburd on June 16, 2009

Rating 44

Big nose upon opening-like wine candy. A bit of a bomb out of the bottle but plenty going on. Vanilla, oak, dark fruit, chalky tannins. On day 2 the wine cooled out some-same flavors, less in your face

Comments (0)

Joseph Drouhin Beaune-Epenotes 1er Cru 1999
Rated by jlburd on June 4, 2009

Rating 33+

Very interesting contrast to Cal Pinot Noir. Very restrained nose, got all the same qualities of the Pinot but more subtle. More tannic or acidic than I expected

Comments (0)

Peachy Canyon Cirque Du Vin Paso Robles 2006
Rated by jlburd on May 21, 2009

Rating 33+

This was a great little surprise. Bought this because it was cheap & I was adding it to 10 gal of marinara sauce. This probably won't age more than a couple months but there is nice fruit up front, interesting earthier influences mid-palate & a little bit of length in the finish. I thought this was as good a $10 bottle of wine as I've had for years

Comments (0)

Chateau Ste. Michelle Orphelin Red 2005
Rated by jlburd on May 21, 2009

Rating 33+

Like the Peachy Canyon this was a pleasant surprise for $12. Like many WA or OR blends this has a more eclectic blend of grapes (more Rhone-like), but works well. Old World style subtlety rather than big fruit. Tough to find a better buy in the reds

Comments (0)

Collazzi Toscana IGT 2005
Rated by jlburd on May 13, 2009

Rating 44

Wonderful aroma but a little too much 'wood' in this for now. Bright red fruit up front but the cedar tone was strong & lingered. Very drinkable now but the structure is there for aging & will be interested in trying some in 2011 or 2012

Comments (0)

Tenuta Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino 2003
Rated by jlburd on April 29, 2009

Rating 44+

This is one of those that reminds why I like Sangiovese so much. More restrained than so-called Super Tuscans, deep red, very soft feel, great nose, seemed less fruity but had right after a Zin?, long finish, wonderful with filet mignon

Comments (0)

Heitz Cellar Cabernet Sauvignon Bella Oaks Napa Valley 1998
Rated by jlburd on April 12, 2009

Rating 44

Drinkers who don't mind the earthier qualities of wine should like this. The overall character was more port-like, silky mouth, vanilla, dark fruit (although not much fruit comes through), the qualities of the oak have surfaced. Very nice with tenderloin

Comments (0)

Robert Mondavi Cabernet/Merlot Napa Valley Twin Pack 2002
Rated by jlburd on April 9, 2009

Rating 33+

After drinking I had to remind myself not to consider price, so the truth is these are probably just a little better than average 2002 Cal reds. But 2002 was way better than average, and $9.99 is WAY better than average. Fruit is there, complexity, soft finish, the Cab has plenty to offer. Good wine, great value.

Comments (0)

Kenwood Cabernet Sauvignon Jack London Vineyard 2005
Rated by jlburd on March 8, 2009

Rating 33+

Very nice Cab from a great vintage. Black cherries & oak. The wine had structure & subtle flavors but tannins were missing. Good thing for drinking now but probably won't improve with age. Not sure I'll get more though since there wasn't much to distinquish this from most '05 Cabs that are $5-10 less

Comments (0)

Blockheadia Ringnosii Zinfandel Sonoma County 2005
Rated by jlburd on February 27, 2009

Rating 33

Would thought this was Aussie or South African for all the flavor. Not as fruity as the Dry Creek Sonoma Zins I like. Big aroma, some unusual tones (gorgonzola cheese?), maybe past its prime

Comments (0)

Louis Latour Meursault-Blagny Chateau de Blagny 1er Cru 2004
Rated by jlburd on February 15, 2009

Rating 44-

This was really nice with Fontina cheese. Aroma of vanilla. Very long finish with more mineral than the '03 Mersault. Clean, crisp, apples, complex

Comments (0)

Torres Gran Muralles Conca de Barberà Spain 1999
Rated by jlburd on February 15, 2009

Rating 44+

A little restrained at first-especially for a 10-year old bottle. Great example of the difference between New World & Old World. Very complex, great mouth feel, enough fruit to satisfy me but also lots of earthy & tannic tones to stretch it out. Had most of it before dinner but was equally nice with tomato-based pasta & roasted chicken. At $30 this is a really good buy

Comments (0)

Louis Latour Meursault 2003
Rated by jlburd on February 10, 2009

Rating 44+

This is what I think of when I think of white Burgundy. I'm not good at the descriptives but this is buttery, complex, even better closer to room temp. Very little acidity. There's a small pile of this at a store near home-at $16.99 I'm stocking up

Comments (0)

Kaiken Cabernet Sauvignon Ultra 2006
Rated by jlburd on February 3, 2009

Rating 44

Great bargain! Ordinary nose but really grows on the tongue. Dark cherries, chocolate, much longer finish than I expected. Impressively complex for an '06 but maybe won't improve much with age. I'll buy more

Comments (0)

Cims de Porrera Classic 2000
Rated by jlburd on February 3, 2009

Rating 44+

Out of the bottle it was tight & sharp but it opened up within 20 minutes & was wonderful with lamb. Our dinner companion liked it with spicy mahi mahi. Really nice mouthfeel, long & soft, plums, tannins had melded nicely.

Comments (0)

Te Awa Winery The Boundary, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand 2002
Rated by jlburd on January 19, 2009

Rating 33+

This was a second-time-around tasting & impressed me more than the first. Had it with a tenderloin of beef with big sauce & this held up well. TeAwa was opened after Rizzi '00 Barbaresco & Rafanelli '05 Cab but it didn't fall off the way I expected. For St. Emilion fans this is a good value susbstitute

Comments (0)

EOS Chardonnay 2006
Rated by jlburd on December 23, 2008

Rating 22

Very little chardonnay quality in this one. Would suspect it was corked but it wasn't so much spoiled as just weird. The nose & taste is hard to place, most like fermented beer wort before bottle conditioning. Have another in the cellar & will be interested to see if it's the same.

Comments (0)

Newton Merlot Unfiltered Napa Valley 2002
Rated by jlburd on December 21, 2008

Rating 44+

Decanted for an hour & pleased witht the result. Softer mouth than the 2001, don't know if anything else is blended into the '02 but more like a St. Emilion than a standard Cal merlot. Handled a varied appetizer table very well

Comments (0)

Castle Rock Pinot Noir Napa County 2007
Rated by jlburd on December 21, 2008

Rating 33-

Most Pinot characteristics seemed underdeveloped in this, but didn't seem like they would improve with age. I got it as a gift & wouldn't buy, even at $11.99

Comments (0)

Fetzer Coro Red Blend Mendocino 2004
Rated by jlburd on December 21, 2008

Rating 44

Agree with the aging comment. This is a blend that I've not seen elsewhere (Zin + Petite Syrah?) & I thought there was a lot going on but not necessarily in balance yet

Comments (0)

Trinchero Cabernet Sauvignon Stagecoach Vineyard 2005
Rated by jlburd on October 30, 2008

Rating 33+

This was a better than average Cab but I wouldn't go $30 for it again (I swear I just saw it at $19.99). It's more restrained than most Cal Cabs & most '05 Cal reds I've had. The nose was more complex than the wine, especially at the finish. Nice red fruit, cherries, a little bit of leather in the middle & then a disappearing act instead of a finish. Maybe better to cellar until 2010.

Comments (0)

Souverain Cabernet Sauvignon Winemaker's Reserve Alexander Valley 2004
Rated by jlburd on October 23, 2008

Rating 33+

I'm rating this in hopes of getting a response from the really good raters! I found it very restrained compared to other Cal '04, and especially the '05. Tight nose until decanted a while, and I thought astringent for a Cab. Could this be tannic structure leading to improvement with age? Probably wouldn't pick up any more to drink now unless another 20% off

Comments (0)

Oriel L'Exception Saint-Emilion 2002
Rated by jlburd on October 21, 2008

Rating 33

Underwhelming. I suppose it was more subtle & balanced than New World, and therefore disappointing but the inclusion in the Sommelier Collection suckered me in

Comments (0)

Vina Cobos Bramare Malbec Marchiori Vineyard Mendoza Argentina 2004
Rated by jlburd on October 6, 2008

Rating 44

This was one of only 2 things left when I hit the Sommelier sale but am glad I got it. Definitely changed my mind about Malbec as a lead grape. Fruity & dry. Exceptional nose right out of the bottle. An hour later there was much more mid-palate. Long & smooth finish.

Comments (0)

Bernardus Marinus Red Blend Carmel Valley 2001
Rated by jlburd on September 2, 2008

Rating 33-

I was disappointed given how the vintage has been for other CA regions. Felt this swung too far in the opposite direction of the New World fruit bombs. Wasn't so much balanced as thin. Little fruit, little complexity

Comments (0)

Vinedos de Murcia Sierra Carche Jumilla Spain 2005
Rated by jlburd on August 25, 2008

Rating 44

This was a great wine to remind that the Spanish know what they are doing too. Much more balance than 'new world' reds. Very subtle flavors throughout, more complexity than my palate could identify, still had enough tannin to suggest a couple of years would improve it

Comments (0)

Gloria Ferrer Jose S. Ferrer Pinot Noir Carneros 2003
Rated by jlburd on August 2, 2008

Rating 44-

Really nice nose. Went well with grilled chicken & vegetables. Fruity, floral, with alot of varied flavors in the mouth. If this shows up as a close-out later in the year it's worth picking up

Comments (0)

Parson's Flat Shiraz Cabernet 2004
Rated by jlburd on July 20, 2008

Rating 44

Nose really invites you in. Floral, darl fuit, oak. Didn't get much lof the Cab coming through except for a hint of the licorice mid-palate. found it a little hot at the finish. Liked it better before dinner than with pasta & tomato/basil/sausage sauce

Comments (0)

Vines on the Marycrest Satin Doll 2005
Rated by jlburd on July 14, 2008

Rating 44+

Shows complexity, great fruit, much longer finish than expected for so young. Enough tannins to sit in the cellar for a while. Very drinkable now but should improve

Comments (0)

Kenwood Zinfandel Jack London Vineyard 2005
Rated by jlburd on June 11, 2008

Rating 44

Interesting nose of dark fruit, flowers, some mineral? qualities. Really nice with steak. Has enough tannin to age a few years

Comments (0)

Mas de l'Abundancia Fluminis 2004
Rated by jlburd on June 3, 2008

Rating 33+

Excellent value. More complex flavors than most $20 wines. Nose has red fruit of a Cab. Not as soft as a Bordeaux blend but the fruit & tannins are well-balanced. Medium finish. Would expect some more earthy flavors after a couple more years

Comments (0)

Rolf Binder Heinrich Shiraz-Grenache-Mataro 2005
Rated by jlburd on May 28, 2008

Rating 44

Opened up very quickly and drank too soon to see how it was after a couple of hours. Great nose, dark berries, long finish. Not at all a 'big Shiraz' like are so popular, more complexity. This wine speaks well for the Barossa Valley in '05

Comments (0)

Andrew Will Sorella 2005
Rated by jlburd on May 19, 2008

Rating 44

Great example of why blending wines leads to more consistent wines. Wonderful nose, nice balance of fruit, very approachable for 2005. I didn't get much tannic structure for a sense of aging. Probably should drink it up by 2009 or 2010. One caveat is the price. If you regularly pay $50 for wine this will be OK with you, but if that's a price point you (like me) reserve for special opportunities you might want to consider the Mas del Abundancia Fluminis or Newton Claret at half the price or less

Comments (0)

Robert Stemmler Pinot Noir Nugent Vineyard Russian River Valley 2004
Rated by jlburd on May 13, 2008

Rating 44-

On sale now for $22. This is a very interesting Pinot. My personal taste would have this a 3.5 but I'm finding the variety in Pinot's doesn't suit my taste, and that this is a well-made wine. Strong nose of flowers. Actually get the fragrance of hops (not quite Cascades but close) lingers at the start. The second half of the taste improves the experience. I liked the finish. If you like the varied experience of Pinot Noir this will please.

Comments (0)

Napa Wine Company Cabernet Sauvignon, Oakville Estate 2003
Rated by jlburd on February 15, 2008

Rating 33+

I forgot to rate this in the fall when dwinfield discovered it. Had another recently & it was a little better than I remembered. At $14.99 this is a really good value. The fact that it's less remarkable may owe to the vintage. I'll be interested to see if the '04 is up a notch.

Comments (0)

Pezzi King Cabernet Sauvignon-Syrah, Sonoma County 2002
Rated by jlburd on January 23, 2008

Rating 44

Really good value. Hard to describe but for some reason 'candy' comes to mind, even though nothing sweet about it. Thought it was soft not tannic, especially in the second hour. Had it paired with spicy pasta and beef bourguignon and it added to both meals

Comments (0)

Columbia Crest Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2003
Rated by jlburd on January 14, 2008

Rating 44

Can't quite get to a '5' on this but it's still very good. Thanks to 'timo' for the previous rating and tip. This may be the best $18.99 wine I've ever had. My previous experience with WA reds has never been great but this one was more complex than any I tasted before. Nice fruit up front and earthiness or tobacco? at the finish.

Comments (0)

Luna Vineyards Merlot, Napa Valley 2003
Rated by jlburd on January 8, 2008

Rating 33

Just OK. Not in the same class as the lower priced Canto

Comments (0)

Hastae Quorum Barbera d'Asti 2001
Rated by jlburd on January 7, 2008

Rating 44

I don't often spend $50+ for wine (and didn't on this-it was a gift) but might consider for this one. Very complex and probably would have come across better paired with food other than appetizers (it didn't last until dinner).

Comments (0)

Flora Springs Trilogy 2003
Rated by jlburd on December 10, 2007

Rating 33

Just had this for the 2nd time & liked it better. May have had too high expectations after the 2001 & 2002, and I think I'd like it better at $20

Comments (0)

Artesa Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Napa Valley 2004
Rated by jlburd on September 24, 2007

Rating 44

Very nice. Berry & vanilla up front, soft tannins at the finish. Don't get much of the leather, earthy flavors (but not a fan of those). This is the second 2004 Cal Cab I've had recently that was very soft at the finish. Nice wine at $19.99

Comments (0)

Luna Vineyards Canto, Napa Valley 2003
Rated by jlburd on September 10, 2007

Rating 44

This is a very good buy. Nice berry & vanilla to start. Opened at the table & it didn't last long enough to see how it opened up with time! Will decant next time for sake of science. This might be interesting to drink after a few years more in the bottle.

Comments (0)

Miner Family Oracle Napa Valley 2003
Rated by jlburd on September 10, 2007

Rating 55

Very good California 'Bordeaux' blend. Interesting from the nose through the finish. Good fruit up front, peppery, very soft in the mouth. Not a bargain price but worth the occasional splurge

Comments (0)

Burgess Cellars Zinfandel Lake County 2002
Rated by jlburd on May 17, 2007

Rating 44

This was a nice surprise! Bought it because of price to include in a sauce, figuring how bad can an '02 Zin be? Turns out very drinkable and soft. The best Zinfandel qualities come through, but its not a big Zin. Bad sinuses kept me from getting much on the finish but at $9.99 this is an exceptional buy.

Comments (0)

Vine Cliff Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1999
Rated by jlburd on April 2, 2007

Rating 33

Had this with Irish food, which may have been a bad match. Had good flavor but not as soft as I would have expected. Would have like better at $19.99!

Comments (0)

Giovanni Viberti Barolo Riserva San Pietro 1999
Rated by jlburd on April 2, 2007

Rating 44

Great color and clarity. Not much fruit, picked up more of the earthy tastes and complexity. Held up very well to aged cheeses and pork with garlic and fennel.

Comments (0)

Newton Merlot Unfiltered Napa Valley 2001
Rated by jlburd on April 2, 2007

Rating 44

Even for 'Sideways' afficionados who don't drink Merlot this was tasty. At $17.99 a very good dinner wine. Soft and fruity. On the same table as a '99 Barolo and '02 Cab Reserve and guests reached for this one just as fast.

Comments (0)