Continued 1998 Tasting Notes

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Ravenswood  Zinfandel, Mendocino, Lalanne, 1996, $15  VG+

An outstanding Zinfandel, with classic Zin fruit and spice in the nose, incredible smoothness on the palate, and a lovely finish. I only noticed this had 15.5% alcohol after it was gone, which speaks to the balance in this wine. definitely a food wine, though [11/13].


Georges Duboeuf  Beaujolais Nouveau, Beaujolais, 1998, $8  G

Light, grapey [11/21].


Beringer  Nouveau, California?, 1998, $6  G+

Light, with surprisingly dark fruit flavors [11/21].


Louis Jadot  Red Beaujolais, Beaujolais, 1997, $6  G

Earthy, with some richness [11/21].


Georges Duboeuf  Red Beaujolais, Beaujolais-Villages, 1997, $6  G

A dead-ringer for the Jadot; Earthy [11/21].


Georges Duboeuf  Red Beaujolais, Fleurie, 1997, $9.50  G+

Earthy, has some concentration [11/21].


Georges Duboeuf  Red Beaujolais, Moulin-a-Vent, 1997, $9  VG-

Modestly rich fruit and earth in a nice balance [11/21].


Chateau St. Michelle  Gewurztraminer, Columbia Va., 1997, $6  VG

Sweet, pure orange flavors. A lot fun [11/21].


Gentil  White Alsace, Alsace, ``Hugel'', 1997, $7.50  G

Dry and earthy [11/21].


Weltevrede  Muscat de Hambourg, Roberston, South Africa, 1996, $8  VG

Thick, sweet, dark orange flavors with a very complex finish [11/21].


Jade Mountain  Les Jumeaux, California, 1995, $19  VG+

This Bordeaux/Rhone-style blend packs complex fruit and spice into a balanced package. The tannins clashed with the duck and sausage gumbo we were eating, but the wine drank great on its own despite the imposing structure [11/25].


Domaine Carneros  Pinot Noir, Carneros, 1997, $19  VG+

One of the softest reds I've ever had, jammy with a touch of spice. Perfect with Thanksgiving dinner, but I wouldn't have minded a little more structure [11/26].


Sonora  Zinfandel, Amador, 1995, $13  VG

Dark Zin fruit with a little spice, a little restrained [11/28].


Murphy-Goode  Zinfandel, Sonoma, 1996, $13  VG+

Not a powerhouse, but exploding with bright Zin flavors filled out by a little spice. Reminds me of the Ravenswood Lodi and the Young's. Fun, fun, fun [11/28].


King Estate  Pinot Noir, Oregon, 1995,   G

Not a match for the '94, showing tobacco and smoke flavors with insubstantial fruit. Very light in color. I think this wasn't a top year for Oregon Pinots [12/5].


Weinert  Cabernet Sauvignon, Mendoza, Argentina, 1992,   G

Rich, but a bleu cheese flavor prevails [12/10].


Weinert  Merlot, Mendoza, Argentina, 1992,   VG-

Smooth, fruity, with a touch of earth [12/10].


Weinert  Meritage, Mendoza, Argentina, 1992,   G+

Consisting of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Malbec, this has some of the guts of their Cab and the smoothness of their Merlot in a nicely balanced package. If it weren't for the inferiority of the Cab, this would be a winner. See also the 1985 Weinert drank earlier this year [12/10].


Trapiche  Chardonnay, Argentina, 1997,   VG-

Surprisingly complex, showing French-like Burgandy fruit, California oak, and a bit of sweetness. Reduce the oak and sweetness a tad and this would be a winner [12/10].


Bannister  Zinfandel, Dry Creek, 1996, $15  VG


Swanson  Merlot, Napa, 1996, $18  VG+

Rich and deep with marvelous varietal character. One of the best Merlot's I've ever had [12/12].


Swanson  Sangiovese, Napa, 1996, $17  VG

A fine effort, but maybe a little over-priced [12/12].


Fess Parker  Syrah, Santa Barbara, 1996, $14  VG

Bright fruit, but not as rich or complex as some of the pricier Syrahs [12/12].


Dry Creek  Cabernet Sauvignon, Dry Creek, 1996, $13  VG+

Bright and spicey. Should be dynamite with food [12/12].


Clos Pegase  Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa, 1995?, $20  VG+

Dark, deep, and restrained, with lots of potential [12/12].


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