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Showing posts with the label 2018

2018 Enkidu Wines Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

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  Enkidu Wines of Sonoma, California is a new addition to the Drink The Bottles  wine tribe.  It is no secret that we taste and share a lot of Napa wines and when we partner up with a (new-to-us) producer from Sonoma, we're always excited to see the outcome.  We had the privilege of tasting the 2018 Enkidu Wines Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley) and this was a great introduction for us to this producer.  When we popped the cork and saw the wine imprint, we suspected that we were in for a treat with some high quality, dense fruit. Medium to dark scarlet color solid in the glass from center to edge.  Aromas of fresh out-of-the-oven strawberry rhubarb pie, damp earth and spices carry over to similar flavors.  This is a potpourri of sweet fragrance with intense, medium bodied raspberry jam and hints of vanilla.  The acid in this wine is solid but in check, leading the taster to a path of a lingering finish that goes on for moments.  We didn't decant this wine but rather gave it so

2018 Lagana Cellars Eritage Vineyard Chardonnay

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  Fans of crisp, bright Chardonnay are sure to love the 2018 Lagana Cellars Eritage Vineyard Chardonnay .  This Walla Walla Valley selection isn't heavy and would be a perfect selection for sushi or a lighter baked fish dish.  Pale color yellow in the glass with stone fruits dominating the nose.  Wet river rock also makes an appearance.  In the mouth is a delightful and welcoming combination of more stone fruits, apple tart filling and hard pineapple candy.  This wine combines the right amount of sweetness and acidity, leading to a solid finish.  Best over the next 10 years.  This one is a reliable choice if you're looking for some Chardonnay to keep in your cellar. ABV:  13.4% Walla Walla Valley, WA Suggested retail price:  $22.00 Drink The Bottles score:  89/100

2018 Knights Bridge Estate Chardonnay Knights Valley

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  The 2018 Knights Bridge Estate Chardonnay (Knights Valley) is a welcoming and affordable wine that can be presented as an every day sipper or for a lighter food wine.  While this particular vintage is no longer available from the winery's website, you can still find it readily available at many retailers.  In the glass is a medium golden apple color with crisp aromas of stone fruits, baked bread and vanilla.  In the mouth you easily embrace flavors of pear, vanilla bean, apple tart and lemon curd, leading to a solid and refreshing finish.  This wine is not overly oaked and should be drank in the next 2 years for optimum enjoyment. ABV:  14.5% Sonoma County, CA Suggested retail price:  $39.99 Drink The Bottles score:  88/100

Rodney Strong Wine Estates REJUVENATION Virtual Wine Tasting

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  It was a great day for a wine tasting.  But then again, isn't  any  day perfect to gather for some vino?   Our group of six gathered at our home (aka DrinkTheBottles  HQ) for a virtual wine tasting provided by our friends at Rodney Strong Wine Estates .  This tasting was promoted as a media tasting and we invited our friends to enjoy some new wines.  Whenever we have a virtual tasting we always try to include others.  It would be a shame to "waste" six bottles of wine on two people. The folks at Rodney Strong Wine Estates have been going through a makeover, or a REJUVENATION as they call it, for the last 3 years.  They have touched every part of the business from the estate, the vineyards, the tasting room, the personnel and, as you may notice, the logo/label! The lineup consisted of six unique and flavorful wines.  The winery proves that you don't have to be expensive to enjoy quality wines.   We tasted these wines in order: 2020 Rodney Strong Rose of Pinot Noir, R

2018 Patland Vineyards Select Barrel Reserve Malbec

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  We have recently had the opportunity to taste several Malbec and admittedly, in the past, this has not been our favorite varietal.  Mostly it is because many of the Malbec we have tasted have been "good" but not great.  That certainly isn't the case with the 2018 Patland Vineyards Select Barrel Reserve Malbec .  Before we get into our thoughts, we will make a bold statement that this is probably the best Malbec we have EVER tasted!  Read that again.  It is absolutely stunning on all fronts - visual, aroma and taste!   In the glass is a concentrated, nearly opaque, incredibly dark colored wine.  It's gorgeous.  On the nose are lifted aromas of plum, mocha, chocolate bits, blackberry preserves and spring flowers.  This is one of those wines that fills the soul and while you can't wait to taste it, the aromas just want to make you swirl this glass over and over and really appreciate the goodness.  In the mouth is a gushing collection of dark berries, chocolate bar,

2018 Flora Springs Trilogy

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  We have been fortunate enough to taste this delightful selection over the years both on this blog on our previous one.  This wine always puts a smile on our faces and never disappoints!  The 2018 Flora Springs Trilogy is an exceptional example of marrying three amazing varietals flawlessly, resulting in silkiness, body, incredible flavors and wonderful memories.  I kick myself for not getting a picture of this in the glass.  I guess it's incredibly easy to get excited and become lost in this wine.  I would love to show you the wonderful crimson colors and beautiful, ripe tannins but that will have to wait until next time.  The wine introduces itself with dark red and black fruits, cocoa beans, a wisp of book leather and roasted coffee.  These aromas make the mouth water and make way to ripe blackberries, juicy plum, mocha and dark toast on the palate.  The wine flows effortlessly that would pair well with an delicious prime rib, but we tasted this solo.  For us, it's the bes

2018 Flora Springs Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

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  To me, this wine screams, "I am a perfect daily drinker and something that most everyone can afford."  This wine won't break the bank but it will allow you to experience a classic tasting Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.  It's one of those that will be a great gift as well.  The 2018 Flora Springs Winery Cabernet Sauvignon is exactly what I've learn to expect from this producer over the years.  You get a wine with forward, mouth-watering aromas of blackberry, seared oak, baking spices and vanilla.  It's a beautiful burgundy color with tiny tannin and a ton of flavor.  While a young wine, you can really taste the dark fruit, bold coffee bean and vanilla, followed up with hints of juicy, ripe plum.  This wine is a solid pleaser. ABV:  14.2% Napa Valley, CA Suggested retail price:  $50.00 Drink The Bottles score:  90/100

2018 Patland Estate Vineyards Select Barrel Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

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  What really impressed us by this Cabernet Sauvignon is the huge structure, sustainability and tasting profile that went along with this young wine.   The  2018 Patland Estate Vineyards Select Barrel Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is the eleventh year for this limited edition wine and you'll have to jump on this quickly if you want to secure yours.  At only 3,540 bottles, the allocation surely runs out quickly, and for good reason!  Medium to dark garnet color with pomegranate, leather, black cherry and mint on the nose.  In the mouth is a medium-tannin, polished wine with dark red fruits, leather, vanilla and droplets of soy sauce towards the finish.  For such a young wine it drinks effortlessly and is as sexy as it can be for the greatest grape varietal in the world!  If you are lucky enough to acquire this wine, get as many as you can.  Drink one now and age the others for 5, 10, 15, 20 years.  Enjoy! ABV:  14.8% Napa Valley, CA 295 cases produced Suggested retail price:  $200.00

2018 Baldacci Family Vineyards Fraternity

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If you are looking for a wine that pairs with just about anything in your pantry or freezer, you have found it in the 2018 Baldacci Family Vineyards Fraternity blend.   Don't roll your eyes and scoff about red blends....certainly not this  one!  The picture above should really be all that you need to know about how much we enjoyed this wine.   The bottle is empty!  This blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (45%), Merlot (36%), Cabernet Franc (10%), Syrah (7%) and Petit Verdot(2%) is exceptionally balanced and a real palate masseuse!  This wine opens with grandma's homemade preserves, dried spices and some incredible hints of earthiness.  It is absolutely full of fruit flavors like juicy bing cherries, ripe plum and multi-berry cobbler, including the taste of spice racks flavors in the crust.  It is always incredible to sip a wine like this, sit back and just laugh at how wonderful it is at this price point.  This wine is young but it drinks like it has been bottled for 10 years.  The co

2018 Calculated Risk Sonoma County Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

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Full disclosure here.   I purchased a few different cases of "close out" wines from an online discounter just to have some cheaper, every day drinking wine.  One of the purchases was this 2018 Calculated Risk Sonoma County Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon .  I bought 4 bottles and for the price (and free shipping), I thought it was worth the..................wait for it...............calculated risk.  (Insert laughter here).  I digress. This wine really didn't disappoint.  Of the wines that I purchased from the discount vendor, this one was one that I preferred over many that were less than spectacular.  There was a very distinct Cabernet nose and medium red color.  Sometimes you can open a cheap Cabernet only to find that you struggle to identify the aromas that typically accompany these grapes.  This was not the case here.  Dried fruit with dark chocolate yielded to dark, ripe cherries and a faint dusty book taste.  The finish wasn't incredibly long but it was pleasant an

Yes, You CAN Find a Good Wine for Under $10

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Have you ever picked up a cheap bottle of wine ($20 or under) and found that it nearly blew your socks off?  No, it wasn't the 18% alcohol or high octane fuel smell coming from the cork....er, make that bottle cap....but an actual LOVE for a bargain bottle of vino?  A couple of months ago while we were all hunkered down during the Coronavirus pandemic, we received a bottle of this 2018 King Rabbit Rosé as a gift.  I'm not normally a rosé wine fan, but I immediately fell in love with the cantaloupe-colored juice and gorgeous package.   While we had planned to save this bottle for Easter dinner, it didn't work out that way and we popped this open on a whim one late afternoon.  This bottle had been in the refrigerator chilling (the best way to drink a rosé in my opinion) so we filled up a couple of glasses and headed to the back deck.   The nose presented with lemon, lime and stone fruits with some flowery undertones.  This wasn't an intense aroma, but pleasing and yes, I

Drink The Bottles 2018 Wine of the Year!

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It's really very difficult to pick a singular wine that sums up the best of the best for an entire year.  In some ways, it just doesn't seem fair to show your cards, point and say "This.  This is the one", but scores of folks clamor each year for every wine publication, including bloggers, to tell them "what a good wine is" that they would like.   That question always hurts my head.   Let me start by echoing my own sentiment and one that I always say.... Every wine listed on Drink The Bottles is worth your attention.   They are all worth your hard-earned money and they would not be here if I did not think you and your tribe would enjoy them.  It's that easy.  I taste hundreds of wines each year.   The ones on this blog are the ones that make it.  Some don't.  And that's ok.  You might still love those and hopefully you've fallen in love with a producer or varietal that is your jam.   Before I get to "the" wine of the year,