• December Wine Roundup

    by  • December 14, 2011 • All Posts, Wine Roundups • 0 Comments

    As one of the new features of this site, I’m planning on publishing month-end roundups of wines that I’ve tasted over the previous few weeks that, for whatever reason, just didn’t fit into other posts. Think of them less as stragglers or misfits, and more as wines that were just too good to leave out!

    I’m offering up December’s roundup in the middle of the month, in case there are any holiday shoppers out there looking for wines to buy as gifts or to round out their feasting menus. This month’s assortment includes several well-priced and delish Malbecs, along with a standout Chateauneuf, an affordable Chablis, and a lime-intensive Sauvignon Blanc. Cheers!

    WHITES

    Alamos 2010 Torrontes Salta ($13). A nice example of Torrontes at a starter price, offering medium- to full-bodied citrus and peach aromas and flavors with pretty floral accents and a crisp, clean finish. Ready to drink now. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Domaine Saint Martin 2009 Muscadet Sevre et Maine ($13). Tasty and easy to quaff, with a slight mineral/saline tang to the smooth apple and light citrus notes. As always, a nice match for shellfish. Ready to drink now. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Gainey 2009 Sauvignon Blanc Santa Ynez Valley Limited Selection ($19). This California Sauv Blanc is all about up front lime — juicy fruit, lime zest, heady aromas. With delicate layers of smooth melon and stony mineral notes underneath. Pretty and refreshing. Ready to drink now and over the next couple of years. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Roland Lavantureux 2008 Chablis ($24). Nice value for Chablis — with plenty of crisp green apple and bracing, stony mineral and lemon notes that are entirely appealing now, but should also develop nicely over the next 4-5 years. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    REDS

    Casillero del Diablo 2009 Syrah Rapel Valley ($12). Nice complexity for the price, with an appealing smoky, sweet cedar aroma accenting concentrated black currant, roasted meat, and black pepper notes. Ready to drink now. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Clos du Bois 2007 Merlot Alexander Valley Sonoma Reserve ($22). Rich and smooth, with plush toast and spice accents to the black cherry and berry flavors. Supple finish. Ready to drink now. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Colores del Sol 2010 Malbec Mendoza ($12). Well done, for a 12-buck Malbec! Drinkable and food friendly, with medium-bodied plum and blackberry fruit, in a not-too-thick/ripe/rich style, with fresh herbal notes through the finish. Easy to like. Ready to drink now. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Don Miguel Gascon 2010 Malbec Mendoza ($15). Another good Malbec value — slightly tart, with pretty floral notes to the smooth plum and black currant fruit, picking up a touch of chocolate on the finish. Ready to drink now and over the next couple of years. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Lucien & Andre Brunel 2006 Chateauneuf-du-Pape Les Cailloux ($65). This wine revived my somewhat dormant Chateauneuf-du-Pape crush, managing to be lovely and powerful at the same time. With waves of high-toned, focused black and red cherry driving through earthy dried currant, brown spices and tobacco notes. With a long, mineral-laced finish. Ready to drink now and over the next 10 years. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Lunta 2008 Malbec Mendoza ($20). I liked this one for its deep, floral-scented plum notes that were rich but not over-the-top. Picks up berry and spice notes through the finish. Ready to drink now and over the next couple of years. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Paul Dolan 2009 Zinfandel Mendocino County ($25). Concentrated strawberry and cherry aromas and flavors offer a nice, juicy tang and are accented with loads of baking spice and toast notes. Offers enough balance and racy structure to even work with food better than many Zins on the shelf these days. Ready to drink now and over the next couple of years. Locate this wine online or in your area.

    Susana Balbo 2008 Malbec Mendoza Signature ($25). Bright, juicy cherry notes balance an otherwise deep, rich, plummy Malbec. With classic floral notes alongside minty herbal accents, toasty oak and licorice. Ready to drink now. Locate this wine online or in your area.

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