Recently Tasted Wines
Some recently tasted wines, roughly in order of preference:
—Capezzana 2011 Barco Reale di Carmignano, Carmignano, Italy, $15. This blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Canaiolo has cherry and cedar aromas. On the palate are blackberry, dark cherry and herbal flavors with a touch of smoke. A bit tannic, long finish. Very good.
—Mezzacorona 2014 Rosato, Dolomiti, Italy, $10. This rose, made from 100 percent Legrein grapes, has strawberry and cherry aromas in the nose, and tart cherry on the palate. Nice, clean finish. Well-balanced. Very good.
—Sister Moon 2011 Toscana, Italy, $56. This red blend from the Italian estate of musician Sting blends sangiovese, cabernet sauvignon and merlot. It has aromas of cherry, herbs and forest. The fleshy palate offers soft plum and cherry fruit, along with smoke and spice. Long finish. Very good.
—Dona Paula 2012 Estate Malbec, Mendoza, Arg., $15. This sustainably grown red has black cherry, smoke and earth on the nose. The palate has a pleasant gaminess, ripe blackberry and plum fruit, and a bit of tar, licorice and vanilla. Medium tannins in this rich, mouth-filling wine. Good.
—Maison Roche de Bellene 2012 Bourgogne Pinot Noir, France, $23. Classic cherry and pencil aromas. Bright cherry in the mouth, along with violets and spice. Medium body, plenty of acidity. Not terribly complex, but an enjoyable wine. Good.
—Milbrandt 2014 Rose, Columbia Valley, Wa., $13. This rose, made from sangiovese and syrah, has cherry aromas, and cherry and pepper on the palate. It’s fruit forward, with a dry finish. Good.
—SIMI 2014 Dry Rose, Sonoma County, Ca., $14. Strawberry and raspberry on the nose. Ripe strawberry and mineral on the palate. Lingering finish, good balance, fruity but dry. Good.
—Barkan Classic 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Galil, Israel, $12. Pretty good for a $12 cab, with ripe blackberry and earthy aromas, bright fruit on the palate along with some spice. Dry finish. Kosher.
—Noble Hill 2013 Mourvedre Rose, South Africa, $17. Dark fruit and spice on the nose, floral and herbal notes on the palate with a touch of orange zest. Very crispy, dry finish. Good.
—Steelhead Vineyards 2014 Pinot Noir, Sonoma County, Ca., $15. Slight earthiness and some spice on the nose. Cherry and spice on the palate. Dry finish, medium tannins. Enjoyable, food-friendly.
—Biltmore Estate Vanderbilt Reserve 2012 Cabernet Franc, Dry Creek Valley, Ca., $27. Smoky aromas with dark fruit. On the palate, smoke, pepper, dark cherries and vanilla. Restrained fruit, but nice wine.
—Biltmore Estate 2012 Vanderbilt Reserve Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley, Ca., $27. Cherry and pencil on the nose. Cherry, spice and vanilla on the palate. A bit tart, but OK.
—CK Mondavi 2014 Pinot Grigio, Ca., $7. Tropical aromas. Peach and pineapple flavors. Crisp finish. Fruity but dry. Good for the price.
—Fizz56 Spumante, Piedmont, Italy, $21. Strawberry aromas in this sparkling wine. More strawberry plus cranberry in the mouth. Sweet, fruity, low-alcohol at 7 percent. A good summer patio wine, but a bit pricey for what you get.
—Baron Herzog 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Paso Robles, Ca., $15. This sustainably grown, kosher red wine has blackberry and cedar aromas. More cedar and blackberry on the palate, along with herbal and earthy flavors. A bit of vanilla on the finish. Approachable, easygoing, decent effort.
—Tom Gore 2013 Chardonnay, Ca., $15. Toasty oak and vanilla on the nose. Apple, coconut, butter and vanilla on the palate. Balanced oaked chard — a little bit crisp, a little bit oaky. Decent.
—XYZin 2013 Old Vine Zinfandel, Ca.,, $18. Ripe fruit on the nose. Cherry, plum, spice and vanilla on the palate. A bit jammy and cooked. OK.
—The Federalist 2013 Zinfandel, Lodi, Ca., $22. This is a bit hot on the nose, but has nice brambly, jammy fruit. Fruit mixes with a bit of vanilla on the palate. A bit unbalanced, but not unenjoyable. OK.
—Baron Herzog 2014 Chardonnay, Clarksburg, Ca., $13. This kosher white has fresh apple and pear aromas. On the palate are more apple and tropical fruit, along with toasty oak and vanilla. A bit sweet on the finish. OK.