Friday, June 23, 2017

2010 Collemattoni Bruenello di Montalcino

Norm's Tasting Notes
by: Norm Bentley

The North Georgia Wine Advisor
 2010 Collemattoni Brunello di Montalcino 

A good friend gave me a bottle of wine he had purchased in Tuscany on a recent trip.  It was excellent, but I don't believe that it is currently available for purchase in the United States, so I am giving you my opinion, and those of other noted wine writers on this wonderful bottle of wine from Tuscany. I am also including a portion of another article I wrote a few months ago about a Tuscan wine which I gave the same score to, which I believe is available in the US.

This Brunello is 100% Sangiovese, and 100% delightful!  It opens with a nose full of cherries and spice, which lead to abundant flavors of cherry, currant, plum, and a bit of dark chocolate.  The finish is long and colorful with just the right mix of fruit and tannins.  The alcohol content is 14.5% and Norm's score is 94.

93 points Wine Spectator
 Menthol and eucalyptus notes shade the core of black cherry and plum in this broad, densely textured red. Balanced, in a powerful style, with dusty, mouthcoating tannins on the lingering finish. Needs grilled beef. Best from 2019 through 2032. (BS)  (5/2015)
92 points James Suckling
 Lots of dried citrus, meat and earthy aromas follow through to a full body, round tannins and a tangy fruit and juicy finish. A slightly dusty and austere texture but a generous and decadent Brunello. Better in 2015. (12/2014)
92 points Wine Enthusiast
 Aromas of ripe berry, cooking spice, tilled soil, truffle, leather and a balsamic note all come together in the glass. The concentrated palate shows stewed plum, lightly toasted oak, mocha and espresso alongside tightly wound, teeth-coating tannins. Give this time to come together. Drink 2018–2025. (KO) (5/2015)

Score:  94.

Price: $43 - $48

This from a previous Norm's Tasting Notes:
Friday, March 3, 2017 (Norm's Tasting Notes)
2013 Ruffino Modus Toscana IGT

The Tuscan Blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon has taken the wine world by storm over the last few decades, and has created a category, called Super Tuscans, which often demand prices equaling those from the prestigious vines in Bordeaux.  The Ruffino Modus gives you all the prestige and elegance at a far more desirable price than some of the other offerings from Tuscany.  This is an intense and complex wine with a multitude of flavors, which is also smooth and mellow.

The aroma attacks your senses with an array of scents straight from a big basket of fresh black and red berries, with a few cherries mixed in.  The flavors abound with the strong presence of cherry and blueberry with a little plum, and an underlying current of vanilla, with a slight hint of tobacco.  The finish is strong and lingering with smooth tannins and an ending kiss of rich, mature fruit. This one should stand up well for several more years.     Norm's score is 94. 

price : $19- $25
score:  94
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WINE – God’s Proof of his Love for Humanity

Friday, June 16, 2017

2014 Simi Russian River Reserve Chardonnay

Norm's Tasting Notes
by: Norm Bentley

The North Georgia Wine Advisor

2014 Simi Russian River Reserve Chardonnay

I promised last week that I would write about white wine this week, and so we chose a really good Chardonnay.  Good friends came to visit with a big slab of fresh caught salmon, which we cooked to perfection on the grill, and uncorked a bottle of Russian River Chardonnay from the folks at Simi in Sonoma County.  What a taste treat sensation!

The Simi Russian River opens with a heady nose of buttery tropical fruit, which lead down a taste sensation pathway full of swirling flavors of apple, pear, a little pineapple, and a wonderful mouth-feel of buttery tones highlighted by a rich creamy texture.  The finish is long and clean with notes of vanilla and mild tannins trailing away from the rich fruit, which sails off into the night.  This is a big, well-rounded Chardonnay with abundant fruit which defines what a really good Chardonnay should taste like.  If you don't like this one, then you really don't like Chardonnay.  The alcohol content is 13.5%, and Norm's score is 91.

This is a great wine to serve with salmon, and would pair well with almost any seafood or fowl dish you can think of, especially something like Lobster or Shrimp Scampi. 

price : $24 - $29
score:  91

Friday, June 9, 2017

2014 Z. Alexander Brown North Coast Cabernet Sauvignon

Norm's Tasting Notes
by: Norm Bentley 

The North Georgia Wine Advisor

2014 Z. Alexander Brown Cabernet Sauvignon

I guess that I am in somewhat of a rut, since I am once again writing about steak and Cabernet Sauvignon.  However, the beef is great, the wine is excellent, the grill is ready, and the weather says go outside and cook.  So once again here we go with a "Slab and a Cab", and also with the promise that next week's article will be about white wine!

This 2014 North Coast Cab is from Z. Alexander Brown, also known as Zac Brown, a three time Grammy Award winner, who teamed up with the folks at Delicato to produce this delightful Cabernet Sauvignon.  The wine opens with a fragrant nose suggesting a basket full of ripe dark berries, which leads to powerful flavors of blackberry, black cherry, currant, and a dusting of cocoa in the background.  The blackberry flavor is so intense that, for a moment. I thought I was drinking a Merlot, but it is 100% Cabernet.  The finish is strong with toasty tannins and a pleasant lingering aftertaste, which begs for another sip.  The alcohol content is 13.5%, and Norm's score is 91.

What can I say?  It was great with steak.  When it comes to late spring, we ain't inside "chillin", we are outside "grillin".  Get the grill hot, throw on a slab and uncork a cab! 

price : $15 - $19
score:  91