Wanted to celebrate today’s Realm Release, but my inventory is just dwindling thanks to Coronalcoholism, so went with next best thing. This is such a great go-to wine. Full-bodied, great mouthfeel. Could drink this all the time. @Benoit Touquette is a sexy Mfer. — 3 years ago
Curiosity got the best of me. Steve Mnuchin and Jared Kushner bro’d out over a bottle of this 2015 Arbalest on Sunday. Apparently it’s newsworthy when a wealthy politician brings a ‘cheap’ ($22) bottle of wine to a bro out. I wonder what price gets the ‘politician drinks expensive bottle’ story (see Paul Ryan at Bistro Bis in 2011). No matter, it’s brilliant product placement — I’m surprised Trump didn’t tweet about it... “Did everyone see Poor Stevie’s wine? So Sad. My 2015 Meritage is So Much Better.”
The wine is made by Benoit Touquette. Here’s his background courtesy of critic Jeb Dunnuck, “Born in Lyon France and gaining his education from the University of Bordeaux, Benoit worked at numerous French wineries before getting a job (with the help of his friend and mentor Michel Rolland) in Napa Valley with Andy Erickson. He consulted for the likes of Screaming Eagle, Ovid and Arietta. Today, Benoit is the winemaker for Realm Cellars, Hartwell, and Kata, as well as numerous other labels, including his own project Fait-Main.” Who wouldn’t want to try a $22 bottle of wine from a winemaker with that kind of resume??
Dunnuck also scored the wine 91 points, calling it “Full-bodied, ripe and rounded, with a sexy, opulent style, lots of mid-palate depth, and a great finish, it's well worth your time and money and is a smoking deal at 20 bucks.”
The blend is 82% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% Petit Verdot. It needed about an hour to fully open up... one of my fellow tasters called it soapy... which I think was because of its noticeable herbaceousness. Focused black cherry, pipe tobacco, clove. Juicy, but dry, with lots of grip. I’m not doing backflips over it, but you could do much worse at $22. 90+ — 6 years ago
Rich and smooth with nice balance at this age. Not worth it at $40, but stellar sub $20 on a close out. Well made oaked Sauv. Blanc. — 3 years ago
2010. Tasting with the 2014 Hartwell. This one is more herbaceous. Minerally backbone. Flavor is more complex but not as smooth and round. 9.2+ — 3 years ago
The 2nd go round for this vintage and I would say it got better. It was shared in a side by side comparison to an ‘11 Hartwell and delivered a big nose, with the equal burst of flavors that just kept evolving throughout the night. — 4 years ago