Thursday, November 06, 2008

Five Stars

Where to start? The Treana, Paso Robles, 2004 has an explosive nose of violets and stewed plums. Full bodied, rich and opulent style. Oaked plums backed by smooth tannins and a touch of licorice. Wow. Treana usually sells for just over $40 in Canada.
Completely opposite is the old world Travaglini, Gattinara, 2003 from northern Italy. This got a "91" in Wine Spectator but we initially wondered why...this old style nebbiolo is see-through in the glass and initially smelt of an old wooden barrel, but became perfumed with lots of time in a decanter. Elegant style but still surprisingly chewy. Can't quite place the fruit. This really evolves and intrigues with a few hours of decanting. Wow? maybe in 5 years or so.... This retails for $30.
The Bodega Monteviejo, Lindaflor, Petite Fleur, Mendoza, 2004 is classic malbec. Full bodied, pomegranates, racy. Chalky. Good stuff, not quite a wow. $26.
One step up is the Altavista, Alto, 2003 which is also from Argentina. Very floral nose. Full bodied but classy with pomegranates and red berries. Smooooth. The flavours change subtly as you swirl it in your mouth. Wow, but make sure you decant it and WAIT. A tad pricy at $60.
Last but certainly not least is a real bruiser - the Tait, Basket Pressed Shiraz, 2001 from the Barossa valley in Australia. Black in the glass with the most aromatic nose of the 5 wines tasted here, it is a rich full bodied wine full of cooked berries, dark plums, tar and licorice. Well integrated tannins. This is from the winery that makes a wine called the "Ballbuster" - this one is certainly in that league. Wow. I don't know the retail of this particular wine, but a quick google yields starting price of $30 in the USA (which means at least $50 in Canada).
Cheers, and I hope you all have a wine night like this soon!!


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