Category: Wine Reviews




Haven’t opened a cellar wine in a while and simply felt the urge this evening. Went into this one with reasonably high expectations given how remarkably well Montiverde’s 1998 Vigneto Cipressone Chinati Classico showed a few months back.

Appearance: black-cored brick with terra cotta edges

Aroma: faint black cherry, tomato leaf, anise, and saddle leather

Palate: opens fruit-light and dominated by incredibly lively acidity, baking spices and leather. But, after an hour-plus, evolves into light black cherry liqueur; and overt tanginess

Finish: clove/leather sueded tannins

Certainly still alive and not over-the-hill, but a bit off-balance. Acid shows plenty of life but overwhelms the understated fruit. Overall, pleasant but a good bit of fruit shy of a success. Paired well with lentil loaf.


Gold juice.

My goal was to dress up a meal of diner-style open-faced roast turkey breast sandwich with mashed potatoes and gravy. That’s easy. Pairing is trickier than it seems because you want to avoid overt fruitiness and neutralize the saltiness of the dish while provding enough body richness to stand up to the full, earthy flavors. Fair roll of the dice, here.

  • Aroma: deep golden hay
  • Nose: beeswax, Bosc pear, lemon, delicate apricot
  • Taste: muted apricot and lemon pulp coated with (not-sweet) honey essence
  • Mouthfeel: viscous with a bit of mineral prickle cutting through a delicate waxiness
This is a classic Saint-Péray blend of of 50% Marsanne/50% Roussanne and all the requisite flavors and textures are here. On it’s own, many consumers might find this a bit too subtle fruit-wise and that is Marsanne doing its thing, providing the prevalent beeswax muting Roussanne’s fruity components. Paired against some salty food, though, the fruit pops beautifully while the wine retains its richness.
This is a lovely wine made from underrecognized varieties from an uner-the-radar Rhône region. Can be found in Maryland for $25-$30.
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