Saturday, November 7, 2009

Anakena Carmenere 2008 Rapel Valley - Review

I looked forward to uncorking and tasting this usually great, moderately priced wine. Previous vintages have been a favorite to serve to friends and family.

I was disappointed. This is a very young wine and it failed to meet my expectations.

The bouquet was bland --it did not provide the enticing odors to get the palatte ready for the wine.

The wine was very peppery with hints of tobacco, lacking the usual deep fruitiness of the South American varietals of this wine. There were dark berry hints in the flavor, but the peppery spicy flavors over powered them. And I like peppery, spicy wine--but this just didn't come together for me.

The color, however, was magnificient. Deep purple and enticing.

Recommendation: Even at less than $10 per bottle, I have to give an AVOID to this wine. There are better examples of carmenere out there--Concha Y Toro being one.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

2008 Norton - Wine Review

The 2008 Norton from Keswick Vineyards is a pleasure to drink. I especially enjoy the strong tannins of this young wine--but truly wish I had bought more so I could enjoy it as it ages. This is a Virginia wine and if you thought only really good wines come from places other than Virginia (as I did once) then you need to spend some time visiting wineries in Virginia. These winemakers know how to make wines which are spectacular for the region.

I opened a bottle the other night and remembered why I bought this wine.

It has magnificent color--a rich, dark, full purple which makes the mouth water even before bringing the glass to the nose to enjoy the fragrant bouquet. Understand--this is not a light wine--but a full body wine for people who like a wine that can stand on its own.

The bouquet is inviting especially with the eucalyptus which draws you deeper into the wine. The taste has hints of raspberry and coffee and spices--but the wines youth, right now, is really in the tannins which will really improve the wines complexity as it ages.

I am going to take one of the other bottles I bought and put a note on it--do not uncork until 2014! I loved it the other evening--I can only imagine what it will be in a few years.

Recommendation: Buy this wine, cellar it and enjoy now and enjoy it more in a few years. At $21 per bottle it has the makings of a great wine for the future!