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Month in Wines – November 2015

December 7, 2015 5 comments

November 2015 was an interesting month. On one side, I traveled intensely throughout the month, which definitely affected memorable wine encounters. At the same time, this month brought some very unique highlights, such as Chinese wine and a full range of Beaujolais Nouveau wines (never before I tasted 5 Beaujolais Nouveau in the row). And I can’t help myself – I really love the labels on some of the Beaujolais Nouveau wines – festive and uplifting:

Here is what was “wine-interesting” in November 2015:

1421 Gold Chardonnay Xinjiang China – sorry, no idea about ABV or a price – very nice and classic in its Chardonnay profile, good apple and lemon notes, well rounded. 8-

2010 Tolaini Al Passo Toscana IGT (13.5% ABV, $20? – don’t know Costco price, Merlot/Sangiovese blend) – nicely restrained, unmistakably Italian,  good taste profile, soft tannins, good acidity, good structure. 8-

2012 Penfolds Kalimna Shiraz Bin 28 South Australia (14.5% ABV, $28) – tar and tobacco on the nose, dark fruit, dark chocolate. Tobacco and pencil shavings on the palate, good fruit, good acidity, perfect balance. 8-

2011 Turley Estate Zinfandel Napa Valley (15.6% ABV, $38) – delicious nose of ripe raspberries with a touch of tobacco, a classic Zin. Soft and delicious on the palate, perfect balance, fresh fruit, dark chocolate, hint of smoke, perfect balance. An excellent wine. 8

Changyu Red Wine Blend Ningxia, China (ABV?, about $33 at a restaurant) – definitely a highlight – spot on Bordeaux taste profile, round and balanced. 8/8+

2005 Bernard Magrez Temperancia Toro, Spain (15% ABV, $11.99 WTSO price) – I got this wine earlier in the year from the Wine Til Sold Out (WTSO). It has a delicious dense core, with dark fruit and espresso. Full bodied and perfectly well integrated. 8-

2012 Casey Flat Ranch Open Range Proprietary Red, California (14.8% ABV, $9.99, Blend: 52% Syrah, 33% Petite Sirah, 8% Merlot, 5% Mourvedre, 2% Cabernet Franc) – concentrated dark fruit, plums, dark chocolate, touch of cinnamon and a touch of tar. Scrumptiously together. 8-

2006 Monasterio De Las Viñas Reserva Cariñena DO ($15?, Garnacha 70%, Tempranillo 20%, Cariñena 10%) – out of all places, had it at hotel in Korea, and it was outstanding – firm, well structured, medium to full bodied, lavender and plums on the palate, perfect balance. 8

Beaujolais Nouveau wines

2015 Georges Dubœuf Beaujolais Nouveau (13% ABV, $10.99) – exceeding expectations. A new height for Beaujolais Nouveau. 8-
2015 Joseph Drouhin Beaujolais Nouveau (13% ABV, $11.99)  – a solid effort. 7/7+
2015 Domaine Dupeuble Beaujolais Nouveau (13% ABV, $13.99)  – rivaling Dubœuf with may be even slight edge up. Would never identify as Beaujolais Nouveau in a blind tasting. 8-/8
2015 Mommessin Beaujolais Nouveau (11%–14% ABV, $10.99) – Classic Beaujolais Nouveau. Enough said. 7+
2015 Bouchard Beaujolais Nouveau (11%–14% ABV, $9.99) – see above. 7+

And we are done here. Did you have any of the wines I’m talking about here? What were your recent wine highlights? Cheers!

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