wine tasting, 2.25.16


name – dom michel thomas

variety – pinot noir sancerre rose

region – loire valley

country – france

year – 2013

price – $32

critic review – bright orange-pink.  lively, mineral-tinged aromas of fresh red berries, orange peel, and honeysuckle, with a hint of anise building in the glass.  dry and nervy on the mouth, offering vibrant strawberry and orange pith flavors and a suggestion of rose pastille.  the floral element comes back on the finish, which lingers with very good spicy persistence.

my review – this wine smelled of orange peel and strawberries, with an obvious floral bouquet.  its taste was much more difficult to describe, but was bitter and lingering.



name – riebeek cellars

variety – viognier

region – swartland

country – south africa

year – 2015

price – $12

critic review – this is a luscious viognier, featuring a deep yellow color, that explodes with juicy peach and honeysuckle flavors.  viognier can easily become flabby, but this one manages to keep its figure within bounds.  i recommend this for immediate, lip-smacking enjoyment.

my review – this wine smelled of rose petals and honeydew.  it had a strong alcohol taste, with a smooth finish that did not linger in the mouth.



name – tonnino

variety – syrah

region – sicily

country – italy

year – 2013

price – $14

critic review – an intense red color.  aromas of violet and black currant enriched by hints of licorice and black pepper.  in the mouth, it is full, round, slightly tannic, and with a spicy note on the finish.

my review – this wine smelled of dark cherries, tobacco, and oak.  it tasted of raspberry, licorice, and black pepper.  loved this one and bought a bottle!



name – vina galana

variety – alicante bouchet

region – n/a

country – spain

year – 2012

price – $15

critic review – from the rare alicante bouchet, one of the few grapes in the world with red flesh, this wine has a plush texture carrying flavors of brandied cherry and chocolate ganache in this round red.  light tannins and gentle acidity impart a lovely, balanced structure.

my review – this wine smelled of peanut butter, berries, and chocolate.  its taste was much less to my liking, with strong suggestions of tobacco and cigarette smoke.  i would not suggest this wine to anyone.



name – crane lake

variety – white zinfandel

region – california

country – america

year – 2013

price – $6

critic review – light pink wine with floral and tropical aromas: flavors of strawberry, peach, and raspberry with a touch of sweetness.  this wine is an easy sipping wine that also pairs well with a wide variety of foods ranging from crab cakes or pate to spicy asian dishes, glazed ham, and grilled sea bass.

my review – this wine smelled of honeysuckle, honeydew, melon, and raspberry – very pleasant!  it tasted sweet, reminiscent of peaches and strawberries.