Domaine du Chapitre No. 7

Eh, I guess this blog has pretty much died. Oh, well. When the mood strikes maybe I can still recommend some items.  This is a $12 Cotes Du Rhone that has the freshness and likability that is missing from so many wines. Ridiculous value. GSM blend. Bought from Drink slightly cool. 91.

photo (16)

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2012 Bedrock Old Vine Zinfandel

bedrockIt took me forever to get turned on to Bedrock wines, but I’m slowly rectifying that oversight.

This is actually the first (non-Shebang division) I’ve popped and it’s “just” the 2012 OV Zin.
And daggone, it’s kind of aggressively delicious.

I think we’ve all had the experience of opening a much-hyped wine and asking, “Is That It?”
Not the case here. This strikes me as both “muscular” and “pretty,” to use two words that don’t really mean much outside of the context of the taster.

Regardless, I like it a lot, and look forward to my 2013s hitting my door in a couple of months. It’s raspberry jam without being jammy. Brambly and perfumed. Rich but not fat. None of the “coconut” that I associate with so many zins, which I guess comes from American oak.
I opened a perfectly respectable NZ pinot simultaneously (don’t ask me why) and the Bedrock promptly knocked down the pinot and took all its lunch money.

Great value.


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2013 Rubus Prieto Picudo Rose

1311Rubus is the private label of importer Fran Kysela, who brings in some ridiculous value wines when he’s importing other people’s stuff. Without a middle man, some of these Rubus wines are high value indeed.

This is the best value I’ve had, though.

This is simply excellent rose. A dark red color like many Spanish rosados, this is a deep, rich wine that tastes like fresh strawberries and a bit of citrus and would complement just about any food in the world, from steak to fruit. I would almost call it hearty.

Find someone who doesn’t like this wine. It’s impossible. And it’s $11.

92 points.

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Macarico Aglianico del Vulture 2007

370922This is maybe the only aglianico I own. It’s a variety I haven’t had much of, and what I’ve had has been cheap.
This particular bottle is one of those bottles that they promote at a very steep discount. So I probably paid something like $18 for a bottle that was allegedly released at more than double that.
At sub $20, this is a great deal. This is a big, tannic wine that tastes like cherries and earth. A nice long finish.
Great with almost any kind of heavier food–I had with burgers.
This wine was continuing to open up as the evening went on, and I imagine this 8-year-old bottle could go another decade or so easy.
Really nice wine.
90 points.

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Two Bargain California Whites

California is not where you go looking for quality under $15. Nevertheless, every once in awhile you get lucky, and every once in a once in awhile, you get lucky twice. I opened two very nice, relatively cheap bottles of California white wine today. They were:

  • 2012 Bailiwick Vermentino
  • 2013 Dry Creek Vineyards Fume Blanc (I’m not sure why they call it Fume Blanc, it’s actually just sauvignon blanc.)

dcvThese are nice wines! And cheap. The DCV bottling is widely available for less than $15, and I got the Bailiwick for roughly the same. The DCV tastes like a uniquely Californian SB, herbal and grassy but with big tropical fruit that screams new world. Very, very pleasant to drink.

The Bailiwick is a little cleaner and subdued. A prettier wine with good acid, lemon, honey and rocks. I prefer the DCV most nights of the week, but would happily drink either. Great job, California. Every once in awhile you get it right.

Dry Creek Valley Fume Blanc: 89 points

Bailiwick Vermentno: 88 points.

vermentino beauty 256

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2009 Covey Run Riesling

W0939-2Nothing boutique here. A giant winery owned by a giant wine conglomerate. Still, if you can find this for $5 a bottle, as I did recently, it represents off the charts QPR.

This tastes like very good cheap riesling. It’s off-dry with a bit of petrol and heavy on the lemon peel.

Nothing complex, but very easy, very enjoyable Washington State drinking. And, again, $5. Perfect spicy stir-fry wine. Perfect wedding party wine.

In a pinch, I’d pay the typical retail price of $9 or so and not regret it.

87 points.

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2012 Tessellae Carignan

tesselaeI was excited to try a 100% carignan, especially one that cost a mere $12 a came with a lot of positive press.

Alas, it’s pretty boring.

The sweet fruit is pushed to 110%, and it might as well be any grape from anywhere.

It’s fine. I’m not complaining about the wine at the price point, but I’m glad I didn’t buy more than two bottles of this, which is lulling me to sleep with its indistinct fruitiness as I drink it.

85 points.

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