2013 Domaine Astruc Marsanne (Pays d’Oc, France)…$9.
A little stink on the nose with notes of melon, oregano and dusty rocks. Light pear and mineral notes on the palate with a little wet stone and cut grass thrown in. Herbal notes join the party on the mid-palate into the finish. Nice balance of acid and fruit. This might be one of the better Marsanne I have tasted at a stupid price. (B)
2013 Husch Chardonnay (Mendocino, CA)… $16.
Aromas of spice fig, a touch of butter and light pear notes. True chard fruit, with little oak influence. Light pear and apple notes with a kiss of pineapple and apple skins. A little grilled herbs and pineapple come through on the finish with a pinch of banana skin. (B-/B)
2012 Arnoux & Fils Vacqueyras (Rhone, France)…$19.
Smokey cherries and currants on the nose with a hit of roasted meat, red flowers, baked earth and a touch of iron. Very rusty on the palate with notes of red currants, and red cherries along with a healthy dose of crushed rock. Roasted meat notes come through with a slight herbal component joining in. Violet and black tea notes come through on the finish. This baby will age easily 10-15 years. (A-)
2010 Masciarelli Marina Cvetic (Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Italy)…$30.
Intricate nose of tobacco, tar, bark and wilted violets. Red and black currants join the nose party with hits of bittersweet chocolate and roasted meats. Deep resonate notes of black currants, bark, minerals and tobacco on the palate start to finish. This is a seriously intense wine, tight, but ready to roll. Finishes fresh, with notes of leather, roasted meats and tobacco all day. It’s a little tight, with a load of life in it. Seriously well made. (A/A+)
2012 At Roca Brut Reserve (Penedes, Spain)…$25.
Aromas of wet stone, pears, white flowers and apples. Good acidity and minerality. Notes of apple skins and citrus dominate the palate with a mineral background into the finish. Clean, delicious and dry with lingering apple, peach pit and citrus notes. (B+)
2014 Lumos Pinot Gris Logsdon Ridge Vineyard (Willamette Valley, OR)… $19.
Aromas of ripe apples, peaches, pears, white flowers and an interesting thyme component coming in. Very clean on the palate with creamy apple notes up front joined by thyme and other herbs. Finishes with interesting quince, lime and pear notes that linger. A Pinot Gris with a lot going on. (B+)
2012 Love & Squalor Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley, OR)…?
Black tea and bark notes come through on the palate with a touch of sarsaparilla. Notes of cherries and raspberries come through with a touch of baked earth. Good balance of acid and fruit but just a touch lightweight. Earthy cherry and strawberry notes backed by red flower notes and a hit of Root Beer. The finish falls off just a little too quickly. (C+)
2013 Baron de Funes Garnacha-Syrah (Carinena, Spain)… $12.
Interesting aromas of tequila, rose petals, cherries and violets (seriously, I got tequila on the nose). Very bright front to back with that tequila element sneaking in. Notes of red flowers and tomato stem join the party with notes of under-ripe cherries and a touch of cranberries. Simple, but good. 60% Garnacha, 40% Syrah (C)
2013 Sineann Gruner Veltliner (Columbia Gorge, WA)… $19.
If anyone can do Gruner as well as Austria, it would be the wineries out of the Gorge appellation in Washington State as this ones shows. Aromas of lemon, wet stone, apples, pears and hits of orange blossoms. Honey and wet stone notes hit right up front on the palate. Orange blossom notes sneak in along with hits of apples on the mid-palate, leading into a dry, stony finish with notes of honey and lemon lingering. Nice balance of fruit and acidity with a good core of minerals. That is what Gruner is all about. (B+/A-)
2012 Sineann Red Table Wine (Oregon)… $17.
Aromas of rose petal, violets, crushed rock, cranberries, roasted meats and a touch of bark. Rose petals and violets come through big-time on the palate on a bed of acidity and minerals. Notes of cherries and cranberries sneak in on the back-end with a hit of Root Beer to finish it off. 50% Pinot Noir with a splash of Cab, Zin Syrah and Merlot. (B-)
2013 Sineann Merlot Champoux Vineyard (Columbia Valley, WA)… $39.
Beefy cheery and currant notes on the nose with red flower and cedar notes coming through. Sweet, smooth tannins support polished currant notes with a little chocolate sneaking into the back of the mid-palate. Finishes with a little coffee bean element and a touch of herbaceous. As I’ve said many times, some of the best Merlot in the world comes out of this great wine-producing state. (B+/A-)
2013 Oisly & Thesee Cheverny Blanc (Loire Valley, France)… &10.
Grapefruit, lime zest, wet stone and hits of cut grass and white flowers on the nose. This baby is bone dry with good balance and clean. Lemon and lime zest on the palate with gravel and wet stone coming through. The grapefruit is very slight on the palate as the wine finishes clean and mineral driven. For the money, this is a screaming value and perfect for shellfish. 80% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Chardonnay. (B/B+)
2014 Pedroncelli Sauvignon Blanc (Dry Creek, CA)…$12.
Aromas of melon, orange blossoms and a touch of watermelon and apple skins. Nice roundness in the mouth with slight honey, apple and melon notes coming through. Finishes clean with hits of sweet lemon and cut grass. This is a little low in acidity for me, especially when it comes to Sauvignon Blanc, but I think a lot of you will like it, especially for the money. (C+/B-)
Stan The Wine Man