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Tasting Notes for Wine Gopher

(328 notes on 311 wines)

1 - 50 of 328 Sort order
Red
3/11/2022 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
The aromas leap from the glass. A dark fruit note, smoke, pepper, wet stone and a bit of funk. Tastes start with the dark fruit and then evolve to charcuterie, a red fruit note, and pepper. Medium finish with acidic backbone.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
1/8/2022 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
I really like this vintage. Still primary. Bright red cherry, vanilla, slight floral note, crushed rocks. As always, nice acidity. Medium-plus finish. Good now but I feel like it will age well.
Red
8/1/2021 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
This is a very good vintage of Stonessence. It has that rocks funk but it’s not over the top and has an elegance to it. There is still some fruit on the front (mix of dark (blackberry) and red (cherry) and I like that combination with the briny olive.
Red
2008 Dalla Valle Maya Oakville Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
4/11/2021 - Wine Gopher wrote:
96 points
Very expressive nose. You can smell it from a foot away. Red fruited with an herbal (anise) and pencil lead smell to it. Mouth confirms the nose and it stands out that this is a super concentrated wall of flavor and yet remains light on its feet because of the acidity. Four corner cabernet with fruit (cassis), herbal (anise), earth (graphite), and barrel notes (vanilla). Even at 13 years past vintage it is still more toward the primary fruit side. Very fine grain tannins that just disappear in your mouth and a long lingering finish. This is really good now but still felt young.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/21/2021 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
Notes from memory a few hours later. Crunchy red fruit followed by graphite on the mid-palate and then a medium-plus finish with nice acidity. I really liked this.
White
1/20/2021 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
This feels like it is going for a Mersault style. It at least feels in that vein but from a warmer climate that gave it a bit fatter body. It’s a good representation of US Chardonnay. Because of the weight, I enjoyed it more toward 48-50 degrees whereas I usually drink my Chardonnay at 50-55.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1/14/2021 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Very fleshy with a ripe fruit profile and not the meatiness you expect from Mourvèdre but it is really delicious. Dark fruited with a hint of thyme and star anise. Medium-plus acidity.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1/9/2021 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Crunchy red fruit. The nose is a mix of charcuterie and flowers. Red fruited with a green note, pepper and a tingly spine of tannins that provide a crunchy mouth feel. Above average acidity and medium finish.
Red
12/25/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
Enjoyed from magnum over Christmas Eve Prime Rib dinner. No formal notes or score but this was in a good spot with plenty of life left. Some bottle age notes but mostly still primary.
Red
12/19/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
I had this with Coq au Vin. Opened a couple hours early and then poured in to a decanter about an hour before dinner. No formal notes but this was in a very good spot. Still mostly primary with cranberry and cherry with a hint of mushroom.
Red
11/27/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
93 points
I love the combination of smoked meat, mineral and acid that you get from Forgotten Hills. This vintage has more of a graphite note I typically associate with Cabernet Sauvignon. There is a nice salinity and white pepper. There is so much complexity to take in and it kept evolving over 3 hours of drinking after an hour decant.
Red
7/7/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
93 points
Deep magenta color. White pepper and charcuterie followed by blackberry in the background and then washed down with racy acidity that leaves a prickle on your tongue. Medium-minus body and tannins--like Pinot Noir--which makes the concentration of flavors all the more impressive. I'm really enjoying the 2016 vintage in Walla Walla and I can't understand whey it isn't scored higher. Maybe it's personal preference but I like this much more than the far more heralded 2012 vintage.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
6/18/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
This was really excellent. It’s a blend of savory, umami and fruit with loads of acid that makes it hard to put down. You can tell it’s from the rocks but it’s just a small element instead of overpowering.
Red
2010 Continuum Novicium Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
5/23/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
93 points
Magenta color that is light in color on the edge. No bricking yet. Red fruit dominant aromas; currant, Wild cherry and a hint of graphite. Medium-to slightly plus body that is very smooth and polished. Red currant, cherry, pencil lead and sage. Long finish.
White
5/22/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
90 points
Pale straw, almost translucent color.
Aromas of citrus, lemon, peach, stonefruit, slight floral to herbal.
Flavors of peach, wet stones, grass, there is a (pleasant) bitterness, medium body, medium acid, medium bone-dry finish.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/9/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
In a good spot. Red cherry, star anise, forest floor, mushroom. Medium body that still has a slight bit of tannic astringency. Very good with mushroom risotto.
Red
4/30/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Aromas of red fruit and pepper. It shows a great blend of (restrained) new world fruit and savory with pepper and very subtle roast meat. Acid driven. Very nice complexity for the price point.
Red
4/25/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
I opened this yesterday and drank 3/4. Vacu-vinned the portion that I'm recording today.

Strong aromas of red fruit (Strawberry) with meat, pepper further in the background. Medium-plus body with a very smooth texture. Flavors of strawberry, pepper, and anise. Medium finish. Medium acidity.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
4/25/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Coravined - decanted for 5 hours

Medium-plus aromas of roast meat and pepper. Flavors of ham hock and wet slate with a general swampiness. Very savory. Medium finish. Medium body. Medium-low acidity.

Plenty of time left on it.
Red
4/25/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
Coravined - decanted for 5 hours

Very aromatic with slate, wet rocks, cured meat and violets. Flavors of cured meat, soy sauce, wet rocks and black pepper. The finish lasted about 8-10 seconds. Medium body. Medium-light acidity. No noticeable tannins.

This was my favorite of the 3 2013 Horsepower wines in this tasting. It was good now with a long decant and felt like it should last for years.
Red
4/25/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
90 points
Coravined - decanted for 5 hours.

Medium aromas - Mud, swamp, strawberry. Flavors of meat and strawberry which was muted or in the background. Much more savory than fruity. Medium finish. Medium - low acidity

It still felt like a young wine with many years ahead.
Red
4/23/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Decanted 4 hours. Dark magenta color. Aromas of blueberry pie, blackberries and raspberry. Flavors match the fruit aromas and also expand in to pepper, cured meat and black licorice. Full bodied with smooth texture but then a tannic spine on the finish.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2014 Result of a Crush Red Wine Walla Walla Valley Syrah Blend, Syrah (view label images)
4/20/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
90 points
The aromatics hit you in the face. Pepper, roast meat, iodine and flowers but mostly pepper. The flavor packs a punch too with the pepper up front followed by an umami meatiness and dark berries. The flavor intensity exceeds what you would expect from a medium-light body. Long finish with ample acidity that leaves a tingle on your tongue.

I gave it an hour decant. It was very good now and will last for years. Well worth the price I paid.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
4/18/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Decanted 2 hours and paired with brisket.

The strongest aroma is pepper followed by blackberry, roast meat, crushed rock and violets. Flavors of blackberries, bacon fat and then black pepper further in the background. Medium body. Mouth watering acid that cut through the brisket.

This is drinking well now but with the acidic backbone it should have years to go.
Red
4/15/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
Aromas of cherry, violets, baking spice. Flavors of sour cherry, raspberry, blackberry, cinnamon and vanilla. I recall the 2012s being a bigger wine (warm vintage) than I generally prefer but it feels like it is in a good spot now; eight years past vintage and the fruit is still very primary. This is good now but has years to go. Medium body, nice acidic backbone on the long finish with a hint of tannin and a slight bit of heat/alcohol every so often.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
4/11/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
93 points
It was tight as I opened it but that receded during a 2 hour decant. Paired with prime rib. I'm assuming this is what people are referring to when they talk about 70s-style Napa cabs; there is an herbal green note (menthol and maybe sage) and olive tapenade that feels more BDX than Napa. Ready to drink now but I'm sure it will continue to evolve as the tertiary notes are just beginning to emerge.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
4/10/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
I Coravined a glass at 3:30 to drink at 5:00 with Matt’s Instagramlive Tasting. Parenting happened and 5:00 became 7:30 so this got 4 hours of air.

Very aromatic. High-tone florals of the viognier along with blackberry, smoked meat and pepper. The body is the light side of medium. Flavors of blackberries, pepper, thyme and green olive. Nice acidic backbone on the long finish. I usually start to drink these at 5-6 years but now I’m reconsidering that because this was very good now.
3 people found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
4/4/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
88 points
I used a Coravin and let it sit in a glass for 2+ hours. Bright purple. Strong aromas of cherry and vanilla. Very fruit forward at this point. Cherry, vanilla, cranberry that makes you pucker a bit on the finish. I notice a hint of pepper. Soft tannic edge for structure. For my palate, this needs time and with that I will likely score it higher at that time.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
4/4/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Decanted 2 hours. Crimson red. Slight bricking on the edges. Cherry-vanilla is the predominant aroma. Bright red cherries, bramble, cranberry, slight bit of vanilla. This is in a very good spot. The fruit is still primary but certainly compared to 2018 it is fading a little bit, which I quite enjoy.
Red
3/27/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Decanted 45 minutes. Very expessive nose with darker fruit flavors, coffee, a hint of baking spices and floral notes. A little bigger and riper than usual for Le Cadeau. Flavors of black raspberry, cocoa, espresso and black tea. Medium-plus body. Some tannins on the finish. Stylistically (and pairing) if this was Bourgogne it would be Gevrey-Chambertin.
Red
3/19/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
95 points
This is fantastic. Somewhat muted nose with cherry, flowers and earthiness of bottle bouquet. On the palate, it still has fruit (red cherries), herbs (thyme) but tends more toward earth (mushrooms) and mineral. Very smooth body with acid on the long finish.
Red
3/15/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
90 points
Way too young. I opened on Friday and decanted 2 hours. It was tannic and closed so I audibled to a different wine for dinner and funneled this back in to the bottle and vacu-vinned. Checked in on Saturday and it hadn't evolved from Friday. Opened again on Sunday and it was still closed. Decanted for an hour and ate with a steak. Scoring off of Sunday.

After long wait it was ready to drink. Muted nose, red fruited, hint of pepper. Medium body. Very smooth at this point. Medium finish.
7 people found this helpful Comments (4)
Red
2/16/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
I decanted for an hour. It got better after about another 30-60 minutes. It started with an abundant funk and then moved more in to a slightly more funky than Cayuse range. Heavy on umami with iodine, meat, blood but also a hint of metallic taste. It is a strange flavor profile. I feel like this was better than 2011 and 2012.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1/17/2020 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
I opened a 2013 Horsepower Grenache and this tonight. This is less than 1/3rd the price but it was so much more in-line with what I expect from Grenache and frankly better. Raspberry, strawberry, slight funk but dialed back, very smooth with no noticeable tannins and nice acidity. I would like a little more complexity with more earth or pepper but it is very good for what it is and at this price point. I'd call it a Pinot drinkers GSM blend and it reminds me of Domaine St. Prefert as a reference point.
1 person found this helpful Comments (2)
Red
2011 Continuum Proprietary Red Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
12/27/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
95 points
Decanted 2 hours. Shared amongst friends with toddlers running around so I don't have detailed notes but it was extremely smooth and delicious tending more toward red fruits, pencil lead and herbs. Long finish.
Red
12/18/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
This is drinking really well right now. Crunchy red fruit with a hint of thyme and pepper that faded quickly. Medium-bodied and very smooth on the mid-palate followed by soft grain tannins on the finish that just gives a little more feel to the body. Nice acidity. It feels like it has range to go from pairing with red meat to ham or marinated (kalbi, teriyaki) pork tenderloin.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2012 Bryant Family Vineyard DB4 Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
9/27/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
There are hints of bottle bouquet but it is still very primary while being more savory than fruity. Eucalyptus, sage, thyme, black licorice, pencil lead, cedar shavings. Very good now but will still develop.
Red
9/13/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
I think this the best Chappellet Signature CS I’ve had. It has taken age well and is beautiful right now. The fruit has receded which has made the earthy notes and slight bottle bouquet more prominent. Pencil lead, cigar box, leather, tobacco and despite less fruit flavor it still has power and vibrancy of a young wine.
Red
8/13/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
93 points
Medium nose with berries. Soft and supple on entry with medium-plus body; fruit forward leaning toward red fruits (strawberry?) with a hint of darker berry, star anise, espresso and pencil lead. Medium length finish that is very smooth. Just a hint of heat/alcohol that reminds you it is Napa but it’s not overdone. This is good now but still quite young. The iron fist with a velvet glove cliche would be fitting.
Rosé
7/19/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
83 points
Grapefruit, salinity, medium acid but a hint of alcohol on the finish made it less refreshing.
Red
6/25/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Popped and poured. Aromas of balsamic, mushroom, forest floor and star anise. Flavors of sour cherry, dried mushrooms, balsamic and black licorice. Very smooth. Medium finish.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
6/11/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
90 points
Popped and poured from cellar. Reticent at first but after 30 minutes of air (and warming to a better drinking temp) it opened up. Aromas of violets, dark berries, Asian five spice with a hint of funk. Flavors are similar to the aromas and lean to the savory side. Light to medium body with a supple mouthfeel and notable acidity. This is an absolute steal at this price point and it is a great cellar defender.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/31/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
I was reluctant to open this but I needed to make space and they said it would open earlier than other wines from this vintage. After opening it, my only regret is that this was my only bottle. I popped and poured one glass and decanted the rest for an hour. The first glass was very savory with salinity, herbs, meatiness and a hint of crunchy red fruit. After that, the glasses from the decanter have been very smooth and while still savory they show slightly more fruit (strawberry, raspberry) than the first glass and I’m starting to get a hint of white pepper. It has the acidity to last a while so there is no hurry but it’s delicious now.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/20/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
97 points
Medium nose, red fruited. Luscious entry. Very feminine. This is like drinking flowers. Red fruit, violets, long finish...30 seconds plus. With the acidic backbone this will age well but is absolutely delicious right now.
Red
5/20/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
Strong aromatics of flowers and red fruit. Cherry, flowers and graphite on the palate. Strong tannins that are very drying at this time. Long finish with nice acidity. Well made wine that I would give it 3+ years before opening.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2010 Upland Estates Malbec Yakima Valley Snipes Mountain (view label images)
4/30/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
91 points
Popped and poured at cellar temp. It took about 15-20 minutes but once this opened up it was really nice. Dark fruit, dust, spice, hint pepper. Medium finish. It is drinking well now with about 15 minutes of air.
Red
4/16/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
Popped and poured, pulled from 55 degree cellar. It was a little tight upon opening but drank much better with 30 minutes of air and a better temperature. Black cherry, mushroom, forest floor with tea-like tannins and acid holding a strong structure 11 years after vintage. It is very good now and feels like it will hold for a few more years.
Red
4/2/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
This was really good. Very vibrant fruit with almost no sign of bottle age. Bright cherry and spice notes, smooth tannins, nice acidity. I should have taken better notes while drinking it but I was very impressed with the quality.
Red
2/24/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
92 points
M. Chapoutier: Tour of the Rhone (SOBE Wine & Food Festival - Miami Beach): Raspberry and garrigue on the nose. The taste matches the nose with the addition of tobacco and cedar. The flavors are more concentrated than you expect based on the medium weight of the wine. It is very mouth coating and yet relatively light. Long finish. This wine has its best years ahead of it.
Red
2/24/2019 - Wine Gopher wrote:
94 points
M. Chapoutier: Tour of the Rhone (SOBE Wine & Food Festival - Miami Beach): Slightest hint of bricking. Light aromas of berries, violet and bacon. Flavors of berry, bacon, tobacco and herbs. There is a complexity to the wine as the layers unfold. Medium body. Medium-plush finish. This was my favorite of the tasting. It is in a good spot now but feels like it will continue to develop.
1 person found this helpful Comment
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