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A Couple of Good Reds

Here are a couple of more reds to consider at different price points.  I’ll take the suspense out of it and let you know we recommend them both.  One is under $10 and the other probably around $20, but they both present good value, although I have to say the $9 wine is probably the best value.  Either way these are both good!

CIMG2174Wine:     2009 Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon         Winery Location:   Napa

Tasted By:   Neil & Cheri                                                             Date:     November 2013

Tasting Notes:      We’ve had many vintages of Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon, and for our money it is one the most consistently good and fairly priced wines from an area that produces a lot of very expensive juice.  This vintage is no exception, and presents a complex nose of dark fruit with herbal and leather undertones.  The aromas are not in your face, but a little reserved, which might just be an evolutionary dip in the profile.  On the palate there are nice cabernet flavors of currant and blackberry which really carry through the mid palate all the way to the end.  Tannins are well integrated and this is drinking very well right now.  It will also last.  We’re still opening some 2006 Atlas Peak Cab and it is showing wonderfully and still seems youthful.

Price Point –    Around $20 on sale.

Would We Buy It?    Yes.  We generally have a vintage or two of Atlas Peak in the cellar.  It is a consistent go to wine for an excellent bottle of California Cabernet Sauvignon.  Definitely recommended and a great value in the $10 – $20 range if you can find it.

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CIMG2196Wine:    2010 Ugarte Cosecha Rioja                            Winery Location:   Rioja, Spain

Tasted By:  Neil & Cheri                                  Date:    December 2013 

Tasting Notes:      We love Rioja, and it is certainly one of our favorite areas for wine.  Top shelf Rioja is wonderfully complex and seamless. There’s always some in our cellar, and usually a bit of Gran Reserva, some Reserva and then some Crianza.  Crianza spends less time in wood than Reserva, which spends less time aging than Gran Reserva.  Then there is just the basic Rioja, which spends typically less than a year aging in oak barrels  It can still be excellent, as this is.  These lower end Riojas can carry much of that elegant and complex nature or they can be wonderfully fruity and juicy.  This one is fruity and juicy, but with some complexity to the profile and some structure which lead you to believe it is a more expensive wine.  On the nose there is lots of bright fruit, with some subtle wood and a savory quality.  On the palate the fruit shines, although the wood is still there and nice.  Some stiff tannins hold up the back but they are not unpleasant.  This wine has a long life ahead of it.  It finishes long as well.  Overall this is good stuff, and a great value under $10.

Price Point –    We paid $9.

Would We Buy It?    We bought a case.  This is a great value.  We suggest you try it.  It’s a more straightforward Rioja and makes a good everyday wine.  It’s sort of like finding a great Cru Bourgeois Bordeaux.

Two wines, both good and both good values.  We recommend them.

A votre sante!

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