The Year in Wine at CellarTracker. Check out CellarTracker Insights >

Tasting Notes for Crunge

(317 notes on 250 wines)

1 - 50 of 317 Sort order
Red - Fortified
2/7/2023 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
On the nose, hints of black walnut and caramel. Plenty of raisin on the palate and an undercurrent of nuttiness. Still youthful in appearance and flavor.
Red
1/27/2023 - Crunge wrote:
93 points
AGElvis' notes are quite similar to my experience. The two main flavors I got were cocoa and black cherries, but there's more going on. The most surprising part was a touch of pepper that both my wife and I noted. Pepper isn't something I expect in a cab but it worked well here and hey, Relic doesn't make shy wines. My wife and I both enjoyed this tremendously.
Red
1/7/2023 - Crunge wrote:
Had one glass the first night and the rest tonight after storing it under vacuvin overnight. Typical Pegau funk and some nice fruit/earth, but flavors aren't close to integrated yet. Continue to hold.
4 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2016 Keplinger Sumo Amador County Petite Sirah (view label images)
1/7/2023 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
A couple of years since my last note. Still dark fruits (primarily blackberry) but I'm not getting the earth I tasted a couple of years ago. I did, however, get a hint of cocoa.

In the middle of the PS style. It paired well with my wife's chili, but I wouldn't pair it with spicy foods like curries.
Red
12/31/2022 - Crunge wrote:
Agree with Coach Ron. Tons of fruit in your face, and no pepper or other spices at this time. Not bad at all but needs age. Plum and black raspberry flavors dominate.
Red
12/26/2022 - Crunge wrote:
93 points
Two and a half years since my last note and this wine shows no sign of aging. Still inky black in the glass and smells wonderful: chocolate, raspberry, and alcohol. Fruit-driven with plum, blackberry, and sour cherry, with pepper on the finish. This has many years ahead.
Red
12/24/2022 - Crunge wrote:
93 points
Two-hour decant and consumed over the next hour. Medium-bodied with earthy flavors (soil, garrigue) and mild black fruits. While more Syrah-like than the bottle from March 2021, this is still rather restrained but both my wife and I enjoyed it. Definitely changed since the last bottle, so I'll continue to age the remaining bottles.
5 people found this helpful Comment
Red
No rating because this bottle was nothing like what others described. All three of us said "sweet" in our notes. No one mentioned pepper, which I was hoping to find. A bit jammy on the finish. Dark fruits are there but the sweetness is unexpected and unwelcome, and I got none of the herbs others mention; no herbs, garrigue, slate, or any other earthiness.

Add in the nose being dominated by metal and I would not buy this again. My wife said she likes it, just that it is nothing like a zin.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
11/20/2022 - Crunge wrote:
93 points
Unlike my April bottle, this one did not have the tart finish. A bit of metal on the nose, but not bad. Flavors of dark fruits, pepper, and according to my wife, dark chocolate. Nice acidity and tannins. Enjoyable and ready to drink.
Red
10/8/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Same basic notes as before: soft, feminine style, but excellent flavors. Plums and raspberries on the palate, with still no cocoa or tea. The last sip had a bit of sediment and there was the slightest hint of some earth in that sip. I like this wine but suggest drinking sooner, as it doesn't appear to be built for long-term aging.
Red
9/9/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
96 points
A stunner. Some blackberry preserves on the nose, along with menthol that became more prominent as it warmed up to room temperature. On the palate, silky smooth, with no bite of tannins or alcohol. Blackberries, cocoa, and some coffee, all in balance. This may last another 5-10 years but I have a hard time imagining it improving over where it is now.
Red
9/1/2022 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
Changed quite a bit during the evening.

On a pnp at cellar temp, it was slightly bitter. Over time this evolved with dark fruits, a little earth, and the finish had noticeable, but in balance, oak. During this period, it was delicious. A couple of hours later, the wine had softened too much and there was tea in the background.

I liked this but felt it fell apart quickly and I would not decant a long time; thirty minutes would be fine, and then consume over the next hour.
1 person found this helpful Comments (3)
Red
2018 Keplinger Basilisk Russian River Valley Grenache (view label images)
8/13/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
94 points
I've seen Grenache listed as everything from Pinot-like to being a super heavyweight. Helen definitely gets the super heavyweight aspect out of her Grenache. Year in and year out, the Basilisk is a full-bodied, luscious wine.

The 2018 smells like cherries and candied apples. The palate is deep, rich cherry and plenty of slate. Unlike some previous vintages, there's no pepper that makes me swear there's Syrah in it. This one is pure Grenache with some earth. Absolutely delicious. The only knock is that it needs some more age as the tannins are a bit rough today.
2 people found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
2017 Torrin The Banshee Paso Robles Willow Creek District Red Rhone Blend (view label images)
8/12/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
92 points
Two years since my last bottle and this had aged well. Pop and pour. Cherries, tobacco, and alcohol on the nose. Tea and black cherries on the palate with a touch of pepper. The edges are still a little rough. Given the change from two years ago, this should continue to integrate and mellow a bit.
Red
8/5/2022 - Crunge wrote:
91 points
Nose of cherries (bordering on Luden's cough drops), slate, and a lot of alcohol.

Flavors are cherries, plum, and a finish of just a little pepper and slate.

Decent wine and no hard edges despite being a pop and pour. Consumed over ninety minutes and softened just the slightest bit. There is nothing wrong with this wine, but nothing terribly compelling either. I ended up with six bottles at about only 60% of the current price. At the current price the QPR is nearing the questionable range.
Red
Undrinkable for me. Completely overoaked and, in a first for me, some pine/fir notes. There were some cola notes lurking in the background but I didn't even finish one glass.
Red
7/23/2022 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
One-hour decant. Minerality is present to mingle with cherries and raspberries. Improved over an hour but lacked the garrigue I enjoy in other CdPs.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2015 Torrin The Banshee Paso Robles Willow Creek District Red Rhone Blend (view label images)
7/2/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Nose of blackberry, beef blood, and menthol.

Black fruits on the palate. My wife finds it smoky and jammy, and I find it full of blackberries, plum, and currants, with a hint of black pepper. Unlike my bottle last year, I didn't get cherry from the Grenache this time. Full-bodied and no harsh edges; delicious.

I have more left but having had three bottles in three years, I find this changing some but neither improving nor declining. Fine to drink now or continue to hold.
Red
6/19/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Inky appearance, and the flavors are a mix of blackberries, plum, and a touch of earth. The tannins are present but not distracting. This is a full-bodied wine that pairs well with rich or spicy foods. Still no signs of aging in the past 15 months, so it's safe to hold, but delicious now.
Red - Sweet/Dessert
6/5/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Starting to fade. More brown than red now in the glass, and while the nose is still one of the best I've ever smelled on a wine, the fruit is starting to recede. Still great, but I liked it better 6-7 years ago.
Red
5/31/2022 - Crunge wrote:
85 points
Bummer. Nose is muted earth and no fruit. Despite the inky black appearance, the palate is too much oak, no spice, smooth... No spice. Where's the spice? Petite Sirah is supposed to be spicy and in your face. This is a third-generation Xerox of a PS. Blind, I would have guessed a Merlot, which is perhaps the biggest indictment of a PS I can imagine.
Red
2019 Girard Artistry Napa Valley Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
5/31/2022 - Crunge wrote:
89 points
Nose has metal and red fruit. Very dry on the palate, with decent structure and tannins that scream for a year or more of aging. The oak is actually pretty balanced. Decent complexity. Better with food.
Red
5/31/2022 - Crunge wrote:
87 points
Nose of spice and a touch of earth. Palate had cocoa, weak red fruits, and a touch of oak. WHERE'S THE PEPPER? Given that this also has 5% Petite Sirah, the lack of pepper is disappointing. My wife used one word: bland.
Red
5/31/2022 - Crunge wrote:
89 points
Nose of red fruits, cocoa, and oak. Palate is light to medium, acidic, and oaky, with muted raspberries. Medium tannins. Too much oak, not enough fruit.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
4/24/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
92 points
Incredibly smooth, feminine style wine on a pop and pour. Not a hard edge on this. Dark fruits with no cocoa, slate, or other earth, but not a fruit bomb at all. Paired with a bone-in rib eye but would have preferred it without food.
Red
4/22/2022 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
A year since the last bottles. PnP at cellar temp. Nose of cherries and just a hint of earth. Cherries and blackberry compete on the palate. Tannins are smooth and the aftertaste lasts a good thirty+ seconds and there is no bitterness.

Overall a modern CdP with no earth or funk, but good Grenache flavors. No increase in score despite some changes. Next bottle in another year.
Red
2014 Keplinger Sumo Amador County Petite Sirah (view label images)
4/11/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Jimaronson is correct: no need to wait on this. PnP at room temp, this is full of black fruit and a hint of raspberry. Tannins are present without being harsh, and the finish has a bit of black pepper to it. All is in balance. Paired with curry panang and this is a perfect compliment.
Red
4/9/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
The nose leads with vanilla and alcohol, with blackberries playing a backup role. On the palate, the oak is slightly overdone for me, which means it's in balance for most people. The primary flavor is vanilla but the dark fruits are close behind. It's medium-bodied and has no rough edges. The score here is split between my wife and me. I'll give my other bottle more time in the cellar.
Red
4/3/2022 - Crunge wrote:
90 points
Typical Syrah flavors of dark fruits and pepper, but it suffered from a tart finish on day one. Sealed with a vacu vin and on day two, it was less tart but the flavors had faded a bit. Will try the next bottle at cellar temp.
Red
3/25/2022 - Crunge wrote:
90 points
Waited nearly two years since the previous bottle and this wasn't as good. P&P at cellar temp. Had the black fruits and spice you want in a Syrah, but tart; tart enough to hurt the score. I had the first glass by itself and the next two with bison rib eye. It definitely needed the food as that tamed the tartness a bit, but not enough to let the fruit shine through.
Red
3/24/2022 - Crunge wrote:
86 points
Shared this with two friends and we were all a bit disappointed. A slight hint of metal and some underlying flatness marred the black and blue fruit flavors. Lighter in the glass than a typical Rhone GSM. The metal blew off with time but the fruit never overcame the flatness.
Red
2/26/2022 - Crunge wrote:
89 points
Waited over a year and it's still nothing like a Syrah. My wife had it blind and guessed a Zin. Not a bad wine but just lacks the Syrah characteristics; no pepper and no earth. Not a fruit bomb, either. Rather boring, nondescript wine. I'll wait another year before the next one.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2/17/2022 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
Nose of earth and spice, with little fruit. Not a negative, just that this is an earthy wine.

Earth and dried herbs dominate the palate, with black fruits playing backup. Young but tasty already. Slightly improved over nearly a year ago.
Red
2/17/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
95 points
Blackberry, raspberry, cola, tea, and a touch of earth all in balance and showing well. Rounded tannins and just the right amount of acid to hold it all together. Long finish.
Red
2/13/2022 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
Quintessential CdP. Cherries, earth, a touch of pepper. If someone asked me what a CdP tasted like, this is a good choice. Not overboard in any area, but a reference for the terrior of Chateauneuf. The only thing holding back the score is that it is the reference and doesn't distinguish itself.
Red
2/12/2022 - Crunge Does not like this wine:
70 points
I have determined that my tastes simply do not align with Bevan. Having never had any Bevan before, I bought the 2016 Ontogeny and this wine. I thought the Ontogeny tasted like a wine that used massive quantities of oak to cover up bad fruit, a la 19 Crimes or Caymus (yes, I said it.)

Tonight I opened this inky black monster. I took a sip at open and it was quite astringent, but I was planning on a long decant so no worries. I decanted for four hours and it was consumed over the following 90 minutes.

So let's see... It's impenetrable to light. It is completely flabby with no tannic structure at all. And the dominant flavor? Wet cardboard. First glass was alone, second small glass was with a ribeye. Gave up after that.

I appreciate that many of you enjoy this wine, including tasters I respect and with whom my tastes normally align. I, however, find nothing appealing about this wine and wonder what Bevan does that so offends my palate.

(For the record, when I reviewed the Ontogeny, someone asked if I'd had any decent Napa cabs for comparison. Yes.)
Red
1/30/2022 - Crunge wrote:
93 points
Just over 10 months since the last bottle. Welch's grape juice has moved to cherry. Cherry isn't something I normally get in Syrah, but it was the first thing my wife mentioned as well. Some blackberry and a hint of pepper on the finish. Enjoyable but could use more time as it's still evolving and headed in the right direction.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1/2/2022 - Crunge Likes this wine:
95 points
Nearly five years since my last bottle and this has come along well. Modern style; totally clean with no earth. Cherries (as expected) but also with cocoa, which is something I've never had in a Grenache before (that's a Cab Sav flavor for me.)

Full-bodied, dense, and with a long finish. Delicious.
Red
12/31/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
91 points
Six years since my last note. Lighter than the typical Pegau and starting to show a bit of age. It has all the Pegau hallmarks: funk, cherries, blood, and barnyard, just in smaller amounts than the great vintages. A touch of sourness mars the finish.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
12/28/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Delicious black fruit flavors and more spice than the previous night's wine (2015 Keplinger Cab.) A bit rustic with some baking spice/tar but they balance beautifully with blackberries and black raspberries. I got into Relic for their Petite Sirah and have grown to appreciate their cabs.
Red
12/27/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
94 points
PnP and consumed over a couple of hours. Already well integrated and delicious. Dark fruits with a hint of cocoa and silky tannins. WOTN for all four of us.
3 people found this helpful Comments (3)
Red
12/29/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
91 points
Similar to the April bottle but with less menthol on the nose. Blackberries, dark cherries, and blueberries in this full-bodied wine, and with enough earth to match the fruit. Tannins are more noticeable in this bottle than the previous one. Recommend a decant or hold for now.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
12/24/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
93 points
Tried a sip on open at cellar temp and found it a bit muted, but it showed promise. Decanted for an hour and consumed over the next hour. Some dark cherries and plenty of pepper and earth in this full-bodied wine.

Even though it's young, this seemed well integrated and was enjoyable. I will let remaining bottles age a bit as I suspect it will improve.
Red
2018 Marietta Cellars Christo North Coast Syrah Blend, Syrah (view label images)
12/20/2021 - Crunge wrote:
90 points
Decent for the price. Full-bodied and the tannins are currently a bit harsh. Dark fruits and some pepper but the alcohol is noticeable as well.
Red
2017 Torrin The Maven Paso Robles Willow Creek District Grenache (view label images)
12/20/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
92 points
A year since the last bottle. On a PnP, the metallic aroma I experienced with the previous bottle was barely detectable in this one so it has faded nicely in the past year. The wine has also picked up significant weight since last year. Blackberry, slate, and alcohol are the dominate flavors. The tannins are still prominent so additional aging or a decant will serve this wine well.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
12/19/2021 - Crunge wrote:
I was excited to try this based on Yankeerobio's notes, and I've had several vintages of this wine and always enjoyed it. Unfortunately, this bottle disappointed and will not be scored as it was not a typical Keplinger. The first glass was a PNP at cellar temp and the wine was cloying. I let it sit for an hour and after it had warmed up and breathed, it gained some spice and lost some (but not enough) of the sweetness. I've had corked wine and cooked wine; is there a flaw that can cause excessive sweetness?
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
12/10/2021 - Crunge wrote:
92 points
First glass was a PnP at cellar temp, while the rest was consumed over two hours. The first glass was the best, showing cocoa, dark fruits, oak, and just a touch of minerality. Unfortunately, as it either warmed up, got air, or both, the oak/vanilla came to the front. While drinking our last glass, my wife and I both commented on how prevalent the oak had become.

I wish I knew that aging for several more years would tame the oak, but given that it came to the fore over the two hours instead of fading, I am unsure that aging will help. A good wine but given the price, the QPR certainly isn't there today.
Red
12/4/2021 - Crunge Does not like this wine:
82 points
After the disaster that was the previous bottle, this one showed me that there is at least a wine in this bottle. Not a good one, but at least it was made with grapes. Still not sure about that previous bottle...

Consumed one glass on a PnP, second glass on day three after being sealed under vacuvin. This had the cherries you'd expect with Grenache, but it has an odd, medicinal flavor to it and finishes with a flat, artificial note. While drinkable (barely) it has one of the worst QPRs of any wine I've had; this should be a $7 bottle of wine. How WA gave it 94-96 is beyond comprehension.
Red
11/27/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
94 points
PnP at cellar temp and consumed over a couple of hours. Such a great Pegau. The fruit and funk are in perfect harmony; some of that old wood, manure, and garrigue combines with cherries and raspberries. It's an earthy wine that offers many layers of complexity. Aging well and many years ahead.

The 2003 Pegau was my first ever CdP and turned me into a huge fan. This bottle reinforces that love of Southern Rhone wines, and Pegau in particular.
8 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2013 Keplinger Mars Moon Mountain District Red Rhone Blend (view label images)
11/23/2021 - Crunge Likes this wine:
92 points
Unlike the 2013 Sumo from the previous night, this one is starting to show its age just a bit. The color is tinged with brown.

The nose and palate lead with cherries and other red fruit. The fruit has faded a touch from my last bottle 3.5 years ago. More slate and earth is coming through now. Still in a good place and enjoyable, but I will drink my remaining bottles in the next two years.
1 - 50 of 317
More results
  • Tasting Notes: 317 notes on 250 wines
© 2003-23 CellarTracker! LLC.

Report a Problem

Close