Great value! Founder Andrew Murray’s Vineyards is a 200-acre site, about 1,500 feet above Foxen Canyon Rd, inland portion of the Santa Ynez Valley, making the vineyard the highest in the county. A blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre, "Tous les Jours" means “every day,” shows dark red with black fruit aromas and complex spice notes. On the palate, blueberry and black cherry with spicy cedar notes and some oak, Soft tannins, long finish. Very nice, did I say great value! — 16 days ago
Now this is one of those “Robert Parker Darlings”. Still ripe, rich, chewy... but definitely one note. Ten years old... almost sweet, very little acidity...and frankly, boring. Glad I’ve only got one of these... and Monday Red sauce pasta...just shows that buying by critics numbers is a slippery slope. — 14 days ago
Ripe blackberry, cherry, sweet tobacco, cola, smoke and hints of vanilla, all waft up from the 2015 Ampelos Syrah Gamma. It's soft on the palate, mixing minerals with ripe dark berries as zesty acids tug at the cheeks and hints of savory herbs resonated toward the close. The finish is long, yet this is no blockbuster, instead wonderfully pleasant and poised, still showing blue and black fruit with gentle tannins and a hint of tart citrus. Don't overt think it, just enjoy. — 14 hours ago
From one of the King’s of Rhône, JL Chave, and from the great ‘03 vintage. A real pleasant surprise how well this showed. A true representation of terroir and it’s region. Still alive and well and maybe not even peaked. Animalistic, powerful and intense. Black fruits, camphor, dried herbs and spices. Really impressive depth and complexity. Finishes with excellent length as well. Thrilling. — 5 days ago
Dark purple in color with a wide purplish rim.
Light nose of cherries, black plums, currants, light spices, earth, licorice, light oak, vanilla and black pepper.
Medium plus in body with medium acidity and long legs.
Dry on the palate with plums, currants, oak, tobacco leaf, earth, bitter herbs, spices, black tea, coffee, light vegetables and peppercorn.
Nice spicy finish with fine grained tannins and tangy raspberries.
This is a very enjoyable GSM blend from Chalk Hill, Sonoma County. Nicely balanced and spicy with mild complexity.
Easy drinking with a light mouthfeel, albeit the high alcohol, which is not noticeable.
Needs an hour to open up properly.
A good quality wine that I would like to revisit in 3 years to see how it evolved.
This Californian Rhône blend is a good wine to pair with food. I paired it with cheeses and olives, but it was really nice with the Parmesan cheese.
A blend of 65% Syrah, 25% Grenache and 10% Mourvédre. Aged in 30% new French oak barrels. A small production of only 120 cases.
14.5% alcohol by volume.
$50. — 14 hours ago
Toca Madera Winery Toca Madera Vineyard Syrah/ Grenache/ Mourvedre/ Viognier 2015, California
Reddish in color with light intensity.
Pronounced and fruity nose of black currants, cherries, sweet raspberries, tobacco, spices, light oak, earth, leather, tobacco, peppercorn, herbs and light chocolates.
Medium plus in body and smooth, with medium acidity and long legs.
Dry on the palate with currants, plums, cooked cherries, raspberries, licorice, oak, earth, chocolates, peppercorn, tobacco, herbs, spices, coffee and pencil lead.
Medium plus on the finish with fine grained tannins and tangy raspberries.
This is a very tasty GSM blend from California. Well balanced with nice complexity. Showing a great mouthfeel. Soft, spicy and elegant.
Good right out of the bottle, but better with some air (30 minutes).
This Single Vineyard GSM is peaking now, and will be good in the next few years.
This is an easy drinking red blend. I always enjoy these new world GSMs. Feels like the Viognier is a nice addition.
I paired it with a cheese plate with dry fruits, crackers and fresh berries.
A blend of 55% Syrah, 17% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre, 13% Viognier. Unﬁned and Unﬁltered.
14.2% alcohol by volume.
$32. — 19 days ago
Wow. Super perfume right away. In the first 10 minutes it’s changed five times. Now it’s really tingly in the nose. There are none of the super black austere fruits I’m accustomed to with the northern Rhône. Really rich and fragrant raspberries and black raspberries and purple florals. It’s like candied but without sugar. There is a feral edge, like great sweet charcuterie. The finish is really long and clean and mineral with good full tannins. Really in a class by itself (For me). Wow. — 2 days ago
What a nose. Gorgeous leather, flowers, beef blood, smoked meats, gamey, floral like crazy, so so aromatic. Superb aromas. 9.5 on the nose. So clean, layered and pure. Just a stunning nose. Truly a thing of beauty. Palate is silky, deep, substantial and gamey. Velvety tannins and terrific freshness. Long finish and super pure fruit on the palate. Significant tannins. So so elegant. What a wine. Terrific inner mouth aromas and so pretty. Inner mouth florals mixed with meats. Commentated and exquisite fruit. Totally whack wine. Best 14 CR I’ve had. — 6 days ago
With BBQ Chicken & Roasted, Rosemary Potatoes on opening night of the D&S Lounge.
John Alban’s wines remind me most of all the California producers/versions of North Rhone or Côte-Rôtie wines. Côte-Rôtie translates into for us as “Roasted Slope.” I assume that’s why his craft was dubbed as the “Original Rhône Ranger.”
Although this has the roasted characterizations of those wines, this certainly has more ripe, ruby style fruits. Also, more purple & blue fruits.
John’s higher end wines, Reva & Pondora remind me of the a French producer, Rostaing. Those two vineyard productions more closely mimic the Rostaing style.
The Patrina is a good intro into Alban wines. You can tell it is a direct descendant but, for far less money. The others are better but, this carries the best wine value in their line up.
The nose reveals; roasted & candied fruits of; blackberries, dark cherries, poached strawberries, black raspberries, black plum, black cherries, creamy raspberries & blue fruits. Used, French expresso roast grounds, anise to black licorice, purple fruit cola, coarse, ground, black pepper, dark spices, fresh tobacco leaf, cigar smoke, dry stems, dry crushed rocks, limestone & volcanic minerals, bay leaf, some sage, black tea, black olives, bandaid notes, saddle-wood to cedar, graphite notes with dark, fresh & withering, red, blue & purple candied florals, violets framed in a field of candied lavender.
The body is; lush, ruby, big and like velvet. The tannins are round but, still pack, chewy, tarry, meaty tannins that are 45-50% resolved. The structure, tension, length and balance are in a good place but, will hit a peak in five to seven years. The 2010 Patrina still has room for improvement and will last another 10-15 years. It is simply wine candy. Roasted & candied fruits of; blackberries, dark cherries, poached strawberries, black raspberries, black plum, black cherries, creamy raspberries & blue fruits. Used, French expresso roast grounds, anise to black licorice, purple fruit cola, coarse, ground, black pepper, dark spices with just the right amount of palate heat, grilled meats, chestnuts, fresh tobacco leaf, cigar smoke, dry stems, dry crushed rocks, moist clay, limestone & gritty volcanic minerals, dry stone, bay leaf, some sage, black tea, black olives, Steeped black tea, bandaid notes, saddle-wood to cedar, graphite notes with dark, fresh & withering, red, blue & purple candied florals, violets framed in a field of candied lavender. The acidity is phat & round. It holds the slightly elevated alcohol level nicely. The finish is excellent & consistent wire to wire. It’s long, ruby, candied fruits with just the right balance of earth that persists endlessly.
Just misses 9.4.
Photos of; the best room in our house for 6+ months of the year, our backyard. Aka, the D&S Lounge on Memorial Day Weekend 2020. — 9 days ago
Okay, some explanation is in order. First of all, the wine is off-scale awesome. Absolutely beautiful fruit on the nose, balance throughout a lingering, elegant finish. Fantastic. The cork, on the other hand, was a disaster. This wine was stored on its side at 55 F upon receipt from the winery. I am absolutely certain that Justin does his due diligence in selecting corks, but something clearly was amiss with at least this cork from the 2007 Heartstone. This is just a word of caution: if you have this in your cellar, the wine is awesome. Just be careful with the cork! — 7 days ago