Binny's Spring California Night

Binny's Highland Park, highland park IL
Tasted Friday, March 20, 2009 by KeithAkers with 858 views

Introduction

This was much more loose then previous tastings as the tables were spread out through the wine department as opposed to being concentrated in one section. It was nice as it made for more room to move around and taste

Flight 1 - Cabs and cab blends (15 Notes)

  • 2005 Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County 86 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County

    nose: good tones of black licorice, cedar, bits of herbs and some dark red cherries. Not a lot of depth on the nose, but pretty good tones

    taste: a bit thin and light with nice tones of cranberries, cedar and some dark red cherries

    overall: a really good under 15 cabernet. Good flavors and aromas with a more classic spin on it

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  • 2005 The Seventy Five Wine Company Cabernet Sauvignon Amber Knolls Vineyard 88 Points

    USA, California, North Coast, Red Hills Lake County

    nose: real elegant nose filled with spices, herbs, red currants, red cherries with a touch of cedar and anise tones. Excellent nose with nice depth

    taste: good rich medium/full feel with balanced tones of spices, red currants, red cherries and a bit of anise

    overall: a real quality cabernet, especially at the price. Good depth with well balanced aromas and flavors along with a touch of elegance.

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  • 2005 Davis Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 90 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: good expressive nose that takes a bit to open up with tones of cedar, dark red cherries, red currants, herbs, and bits of small berry tones

    taste: full bodied with some big tannins. Good expressive tones of cedar, dark red cherries, red currants, small berries and hints of cassis

    overall: very young and needs some time to come out of its shell. The nose was pretty tight at first, but then start to open up a bit with a slight bit of air. Has some good upside, but is a bit unforgiving right now

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  • 2004 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 88 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: heavily oaked on the nose as one would expect with some red currants, cranberries and dark red cherries. Fairly standard nose that is right up the alley of what one would expect of this wine

    taste: good medium/full polished feel with good tannins. Big tones of oak, cranberries, dark red cherries and bits of red and black currants

    overall: while a well made wine in a sense, as one would expect with silver oak, its dominated by oak. Would be a really solid $30-35 cab, but its not. I'm just always glad that I taste these wines at tastings as opposed to wasting my money on them

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  • 2006 Darioush Cabernet Sauvignon 91 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: big and rich nose filled with dark red cherries, cranberries, black and red currants with a slight hint of oak to round it off. Not what one would call a balanced cab on the nose, but it reigns in some of the over the top aspects that have bothered me in the past

    taste: Big, rich, and powerful full bodied feel with chewy tannins that provide good tones of dark red cherries, chocolate tones, cranberries, black currants, and a bit of oak

    overall: Very polished on the palate and holds back the overt jammyness that has bothered me in the past. A fruit forward cab for those that are a fan of the style and brings a good amount to the table for those that want more fruit on their cabernets

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  • 2005 Donati Family Vineyard Sorelle Per Sempre Paicines 88 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Paicines

    nose: excellent and well balanced nose of dark red fruits, black cherries, oak, and cranberry tones with a hint of anise. Good aromatics with a good richness to it and with medium depth

    taste: good medium/full feel with well medium tannins and tones of black cherries, black currants, oak, and cranberries

    overall: a quality wine. Well balanced and good feel with excellent aromatics

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  • 2005 Donati Family Vineyard Claret Paicines 89 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Paicines

    nose: real nice nose filled with mixed berries, blueberries, red currants, red cherries and a bit of cedar tones. Good medium depth and balance to compliment the fruit

    taste: good medium feel with nice medium tannins that provide rich tones of blueberries, red currants, red cherries and some cedar tones

    overall: a real nice wine. Good balance with a nice richness to it with balanced aromatics and good tones on the palate

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  • 2006 Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley 88 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Alexander Valley

    nose: very good balanced tones of cedar, red cherries, berries, along with a touch of herbs and black licorice tones. Nice depth and expression on the nose

    taste: good medium/full feel with excellent tones of cedar, red cherries, dark red fruits and bits of berries

    overall: a real quality cab. Good classic tones with good depth and balance to it. Doesn't really do any one thing great, but the sum of the whole is very good and enjoyable

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  • 2005 Kathryn Kennedy Lateral 90 Points

    USA, California

    nose: very well balanced with excellent tones of black cherries, mixed berries, anise, cedar, bits of herbs and a touch of root vegetables. Excellent aromatics with good balanced fruit

    taste: Medium+ tannins with a good smooth medium feel of dark cranberries, black cherries, mixed berries, cedar and bits of root vegetables

    overall: a excellent young right bank blend. Good smooth and silky feel with excellent aromatics and flavors. Needs a bit of time and there is a nice upside on the wine as it should round out as the tannins pull back

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  • 2005 Rudd Cabernet Sauvignon Crossroads 89 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley, Oakville

    nose: heavily oaked on the nose with some rich tones of black cherries, cranberries, cassis and red currants. The oak was rather over powering and was hard not to notice

    taste: full bodied with chewy and rich tannins. A lot of oak on both the attack and mid palate with black cherries, cranberries, and cassis rounding out the rest. A bit too much oak here again, but what is also there is excellent

    overall: this needed the oak dialed back. The feel is great and the tones besides teh oak have good depth and richness to them. This much oak won't blow off with age, but if it is dialed back a bit, it could come into much better balance with everything else

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  • 2006 Chappellet Mountain Cuvée 89 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: nice pure fruit on the nose with tones of red fruits, red cherries, mixed berries, spice tones and bits of anise. nice cool and laid back nose that is very inviting

    taste: excellent medium/fullish feel with silky and pure tones of red fruits, red cherries, bits of spices and mixed berries. Good tannins support the wine

    overall: a real elegant and pretty blend at this young stage. Could benefit from a year or two of downtime, but is well balanced now and has excellent aromatics

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  • 2005 Stags' Leap Winery Cabernet Sauvignon 92 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: great rich nose filled with red cherries, cassis, bits of herbs and spices, red currants and a touch of cedar. Very expressive nose with great polish and depth, its a rather sumptuous nose that is showing well even now at this young stage

    taste: very expressive medium/full feel with rich tones of red cherries, cassis, some spice tones and red currants

    overall: this can certainly age, but it'd be hard not to keep your hands off of it. This is what I enjoy from cali cabs, that expressive fruit with good richness behind it.

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  • 2005 Dominus Napanook Red 89 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: fairly forward nose with good tones of red licorice, red cherries, and some ripe berry tones. Good fruit, but not much depth behind it and not much expression

    taste: nice plush feel with good fruited tones of red currants, red cherries and bits of cedar

    overall: almost there, but lacks depth to really send it forward. Nice feel and fruit, but there is a lack of tannins and with the forward nature of this, it probably won't improve too much as there isn't the depth there to let it improve

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  • 2005 Clos Pegase Cabernet Sauvignon 85 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: ripe nose with red currants and red cherries dominating with some anise and oak tones behind. Not very exciting and pretty standard nose

    taste: nice medium/full feel with oak, red currants and red cherry tones

    overall: Rather straight forward, but done well. Not all that inspiring and is very solid, but the feel is good and the tones are nice and is fairly well made

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  • 2005 Silverado Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 87 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: interesting nose with some bell pepper tones, cedar, black currants, dark red cherries and cranberries. Fairly bordeaux-esque, but lacking a bit of depth

    taste: good full body with firm tannins and tones of bell peppers, cedar, dark red cherries and cranberry tones with some bits of leather

    overall: a good cabernet done in a bordeaux style. Not for more fruit forward fans, this is lacking a bit of depth and expression that would really drive the wine. Comes more across as a sonoma cabernet then a napa cab, but in the end, while very good, there is a bit of wanting that this doesn't seem to provide

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Flight 2 - Other reds (11 Notes)

  • 2006 Demetria Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills 87 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Sta. Rita Hills

    nose: nice soft nose with red fruits, bits of cherries, candy, and hints of cola. Nice nose with easy tones but lacks a bit of depth and expression

    taste: good medium/light feel with medium/low acidity with easy tones of red fruits, cherries, bits of cola and some spice tones

    overall: Very easy drinking and a nice pinot, but lacks depth and expression

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  • 2006 Paige 23 Pinot Noir 83 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Barbara County

    nose: nice nose with round tones of spices, red fruits, and bits of cherries. Not much depth, but a good straight forwardness to it

    taste: rather non-descript tones with light tones of spices and cherries. There is a shrillness with the acidity that makes it seems acidified

    overall: a non-descript and a forgettable wine overall, and there seems to be some acidification on it which detracts even more. Decent, but if it wasn't for me writing down this note, I would've forgot that I even tasted it

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  • 2006 Vinum Cellars Petite Sirah PETS 78 Points

    USA, California, Central Valley, Clarksburg

    nose: very simple tones of bright red cherries, black licorice and some vicks cough syrup tones

    taste: simple tones with a medium feel of bright red cherries, red currants and some black licorice

    overall: decent and very uninspiring. There isn't much to this and its decent enough, but ridiculously average

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  • 2006 Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast 84 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Coast

    nose: very one-dimensional on the nose with red fruits. What it has, it does relatively well as they are easy aromatics, but without a lot of depth

    taste: a bit more complexity on the palate with red fruits, hints of spice and slight hints of cherries

    overall: a nice and easy pinot with a decent feel. Solid, but uninspiring

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  • 2005 Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery Merlot Alexander Valley 84 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County, Alexander Valley

    nose: straight forward nose with decent balance. Nice tones of berries, cedar, red cherries, and a bit of pyrazines

    taste: nice medium feel with good tones of cedar, red cherries, bits of mixed berries and a touch of pyrazines

    overall: Not very complex or deep, but nice and easy. A good wine, but this is why so many dislike merlot in a way as it is very run of the mill and extremely under whelming

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  • 2007 Melville Pinot Noir Estate 88 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Sta. Rita Hills

    nose: very spice driven nose with red fruits, red currants, some red cherries and bits of cola. While the tones are good, they are slightly disjointed

    taste: definitely a bigger styled pinot. good tones of spices, red fruits, red currants and some red cherries with some heat on the back end

    overall: much better on the palate then on the nose as its more together on the palate. Could use a bit of time to hopefully let the heat calm down a bit

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  • 2006 Shafer Merlot 90 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: nice elegant and polished nose with red cherries, blueberries, fresh picked berries, some red licorice and hints of root vegetables. Good polish, but not as deep as the 05, but still has a nice class to it

    taste: good silky medium feel with polished tones of red cherries, blueberries, red licorice and some bits of root vegetables

    overall: I do love how shafer does merlot. While there isn't as much depth as some previous vintages, there is a whole lot of class and elegance to this with some lovely flavors and aromatics

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  • 2006 Andrew Murray Syrah Tous les Jours 87 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Ynez Valley

    nose: big and jammy nose with red cherries, red currants, red fruits and bits of pepper. While on the jammy side it isn't over the top and has good definiition

    taste: rich and jammy medium/full feel with red cherries, red currants, and red fruits. Good fruit and accessible, though the finish is clipped a bit

    overall: relatively balanced and not over the top while still being very fruit forward. A very good syrah and a good intro syrah at the price

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  • 2007 Flowers Perennial 86 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County

    nose: light nose with little depth with tones of red licorice, red fruits and bits of spices. Light and easy, but not really intriguing

    taste: nice soft feel on the palate with medium acidity. Lighter tones of red cherries, red licorice, and red fruits.

    overall: a nice wine with nice tones and aromas, but not much more. It has a nice softness to it, but has a slight bit of simplicity to it

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  • 2006 Tablas Creek Côtes de Tablas 88 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Paso Robles

    nose: good and intriguing nose filled with anise, black fruits, black cherries and spice tones. Good depth and nice cali/rhone cross expression

    taste: excellent medium feel with medium acidity. Well balanced tones of anise, black fruits, and spices

    overall: a quality wine that is a good cross between california and southern rhone. A bit hollow on the mid palate which detracts a bit from it, but this is a fun wine and very good

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  • 2006 Roar Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands 89 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Lucia Highlands

    nose: in the bigger pinot camp with bold tones of dark red fruits, spices, red currants and some smokey tones. While on the bigger side, there is good balance to it

    taste: excellent feel with rich tones of dark red fruits, spices, red currants, bits of strawberries and some candy tones too

    overall: the feel is a bit lighter then the nose would indicate. Nice balance and tones, its just lacking a bit of extra punch to really set it apart

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Flight 3 - Whites (5 Notes)

  • 2007 John Anthony Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc 88 Points

    USA, California, Napa Valley

    nose: very well balanced nose of melons, tropical fruits, wet stones, and tangy citrus tones. Very pungent and tart that fills up in the glass right away

    taste: Excellent crisp feel with medium+ acidity and tones of melons, tropical fruits, and various tangy citrus tones

    overall: an attractive sauvignon blanc. Good tart aromatics and light feel that is very balanced with good acidity to compliment it

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  • 2007 Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery Chardonnay Sonoma County 79 Points

    USA, California, Sonoma County

    nose: decent nose with butter, bits of tropical fruits and a hint of citrus tones. Fairly standard, but with a bit too much butter

    taste: straight forward tones of butter and citrus. Not very complex or with much depth, but that shouldn't be expected from a $10 chard

    overall: it is what it is, not much more and not much less

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  • 2007 Cartlidge & Browne Chardonnay 82 Points

    USA, California

    nose: light nose with tropical fruits, bits of lemons and some citrus tones. No discernable depth

    taste: pleasant and crisp tones of tropical fruits and citrus tones. Light and easy feel accompanies it

    overall: a nice wine. Fairly good for what it is and has a non-offensive air about it. I wouldn't neccessarily buy it, but I wouldn't turn it away if offered a glass

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  • 2005 Talbott Chardonnay Sleepy Hollow Vineyard Santa Lucia Highlands 86 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Santa Lucia Highlands

    nose: very smokey nose with a good amount of char tones. Some good tones of roasted nuts, mangoes and bits of tropical citrus lie behind the heavily smoked nose. A good amount of charring on this nose compared to the other two that I've tried

    taste: a bit more balanced with some nice mango and citrus tones, but still a good amount of smokey tones present themselves

    overall: this bottle probably needed more air to balance out the charred aspect on it

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  • 2006 Talley Vineyards Chardonnay 87 Points

    USA, California, Central Coast, Arroyo Grande Valley

    nose: good airy and lighter nose with citrus tones, orchard fruits, navel oranges, and some oak and buttery tones to round it out. Nice nose, and not too over malo'd or oaked on the nose

    taste: nice medium feel with rich tones of orchard fruits, navel oranges, and some butter and oak

    overall: a good chardonnay and done well, but doesn't posses a lot of depth or definition.

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Closing

A more relaxed night which was nice, but the wines were lacking on the whole. I guess you take the good with the bad

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