Friday, July 31, 2015

Review: *** $$ Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir, Lot 403, Russian River Valley, Sonoma, California, 2012

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir.

Original tasting and review : This is Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir, Lot 403, Russian River Valley, Sonoma, California, 2012, finished at 14.2% alcohol and first sampled 3 years from vintage date, in July, 2015.


In the glass: Deep mahogany plus brick.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows subtle, quiet, just lightly funky fruit. From the aroma, it's tough to judge the anticipated flavors.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are dark veins of purple fruit, bringing a full robe of flavor across your tongue.  Plenty of blackened oak for dark depth.  Those deep elements hold after the sip and define the lengthy finish.  Not a classic pinot noir experience, but an appealing and contemplative one.

In summary: Overall, rates three stars with a plus for its fruit elements on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir.

(c) Copyright 2015 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.



Review: **+ $$ Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir, Lot 405, Central Coast, California, 2012

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Original tasting and review : This is Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir, Lot 405, Central Coast, California, 2012, finished at 14.2% alcohol and first sampled 3 years from vintage date, in July, 2015.

In the glass: Medium brick.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows muddled berries with bright tone in center, not in the classic California pinot noir category.  From the aroma, seems like this will be tangy and perhaps light.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact light in mouthfeel, but bringing a bright red berry and charcoal edge to the palate.  Pomegranates and some red cherry peel away fairly quickly from the sip, leaving a hotter edge of alcohol into the finish.

In summary: Overall, rates two stars with a plus for its fruit elements on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir.

(c) Copyright 2015 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Thursday, July 30, 2015

Review: ****+ $$ Cameron Hughes Chardonnay, Lot 417, Monterey County, California, 2012 = BEST VALUE

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Chardonnay.

Original tasting and review : This is Cameron Hughes Chardonnay, Lot 417, Monterey County, California, 2012, finished at 13.9% alcohol and first sampled 3 years from vintage date, in July, 2015.


In the glass: Lemon color with a hint of orange.

On the nose: Poured at chilled temperature and swirled vigorously, shows deep, buttery fruit with pear.  From the aroma, seems like this will be full, fat and fresh.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact full yet sleek, clean yet somehow sweet, crispy yet luscious.  Soft fresh pear predominates, light hints of oaky depths come through too.

In summary: Overall, rates an easy four stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale, and gains an equally big plus for its balance and pleasantness.  Awesome value!

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Chardonnay.

(c) Copyright 2015 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Review: *** $$ Cameron Hughes Meritage, Lot 406, Red Hen Ranch, Oak Knoll, Napa Valley, California, 2012

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Meritage.

Original tasting and review : This is Cameron Hughes Meritage, Lot 406, Red Hen Ranch, Oak Knoll, Napa Valley, California, 2012, finished at 14.8% alcohol and first sampled 3 years from vintage date, in July, 2015.

In the glass: Deep dark brick, moves to opaque in the center.

On the nose: Poured at room temperature and swirled vigorously, shows bright, bold berries and plums, with sharp dark hints.  From the aroma, seems like this will be potent and perhaps a bit hot with alcohol.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact gritty, bright with fresh plums, plenty of immediate acids that lift the sip up high.  Enough dark berries and graininess to bring plenty of weight.  Finishes with plenty of solid black and red berry tannins and a full dollop of bright acids.

In summary: Overall, rates three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale.  Feels like it may need a bit of decant or more time in bottle to knit together.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Cameron Hughes Meritage.

(c) Copyright 2015 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Sunday, July 26, 2015

Review: ***+ $$ Ty Caton Racchus Red Wine, California, 2008 = GOOD VALUE

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for petite sirah-based red.

By way of background:  I really enjoyed the 2005 vintage of this with five years of age.  Now we are sampling the 2008 vintage with seven years of age.

Original tasting and review : This is Ty Caton Racchus Red Wine, California, 2008, finished at 14.1% alcohol and first sampled 7 years from vintage date, in July, 2015.  It is a blend of 36% Petite Sirah, 23% Syrah, 16% Merlot, 9% Petite Verdot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Cabernet Franc and 3% Malbec

In the glass: Black purple, opaque from a quarter inch of the edge.

On the nose: Poured at cellar temperature and swirled vigorously, shows bright, grape-pop fruit.  From the aroma, seems like this will be simply, sweet and friendly.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact full,deep and aromatic, showing bold plums, solid acids and bold blackberries.  Finish is solid and crisp, relatively brief.

In summary: Overall, rates an easy three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale. just touches a plus for its aromatic complexity.  Good value.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for petite sirah-based red.

(c) Copyright 2015 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.


Saturday, July 25, 2015

Review: *** $$ Domaine de Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem, Codes du Roussillon Villages Latour de France, 2007

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem.

By way of background, opening thoughts:  I just sampled a well-aged Cotes du Roussillon red blend that scored a whopping 4+ stars, so it put me in the mood for another aged specimen from the same region.  Not too many in the cellar, but I extracted this candidate:

Original tasting and review : This is Domaine de Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem, Codes du Roussillon Villages Latour de France, 2007, finished at 14% alcohol and first sampled 8 years from vintage date, in July, 2015.

In the glass: Dark brick, opaque in the center.

On the nose: Poured at cellar temperature and swirled vigorously, shows shy fruit, pretty tired with faint hints of broccoli and vegetable stew.  From the aroma, seems like this may be over-the-hill.

On the palate: The primary elements on the palate are in fact brighter than anticipated, but still soft and round in style.  Brings a full, generous mid-palate of blackberries, with some faint deeper charcoal elements.  Finish is swift and clean.

In summary: Overall, rates an easy three stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale, but it does not want to age for more than its current 8 years.  Drink up if you have it on hand.

Check out today's pricing and retail availability for Bila-Haut Occultum Lapidem.

(c) Copyright 2015 Spirit of Wine, all rights reserved.  If you are a winery, distributor or marketing agent and you would like to see your (or your client's) wine featured at Spirit of Wine, here are two options: 1) Wait, pray and hope - we may find you someday; 2) Submit a wine for review.  No charge.  Particulars are here.   If you are reading this full posting on any site other than Spirit of Wine, chances are it is a copyright violation.