Tasting Notes for alpha_ori

(583 notes on 538 wines)

1 - 50 of 583 Sort order
Red
10/13/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
90 points
Rose petals on the nose, with just a touch of pomegranate. The rose continues on the palate, with a light bitterness. This wine is medium-bodied, loosely knit, and softly textured but for a bit of fine tannin.

My rating suffers for the floral nose and taste, which is personally not my favorite aspect of wine flavors; you might like it more if that's not true for you. Obviously (from the rating) I still find it generally likeable.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
9/28/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
I bought two bottles of this back in 2011. I was a bit disappointed in the first, and so I forgot about the second for quite some time. Finally decided to crack it open while waiting for dinner to cook, and...you know what, this is still quite drinkable.

My tasting notes are pretty consistent, even seven years apart. The wine still isn't particularly complex. I suspect this was a wine that was trading mainly on a couple of luxurious elements: lush fruit, probably, a smooth texture, viscosity, and well-integrated oak.

The fruit was already ebbing by 2012 when I first tasted the wine, and it is almost completely gone now. The wine is still a luxurious textural experience alongside some minor secondary development. Despite maturing early, the tasting experience was fairly consistent between years 13 and 20 in the wine's lifespan. You have to admire that.
Red
9/28/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Mouth-puckering acid, licked-stone minerals, savory, sanguineous secondary flavors...this is everything I want in a 16-year-old aglianico.

I've had 3 of these over the past 7 years, and they've been fairly consistent, but this has been the best of the three. These wines are lively and, for my money, in their prime. For me that means the the fruit has ebbed enough to reveal their true nature. If that doesn't make sense to you, this may not be the wine for you. For the rest, though, this is something special at this price for sure.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Rosé
9/21/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Intense gemlike fruit, like watermelon candy, but balanced by a wash of acid.
Red
9/14/2019 - alpha_ori wrote:
87 points
Pure red grenache fruit, a syrupy texture, alcohol overtones. I'm sure at some point in time this wine was intensely delicious, and probably the fruit balanced the alcohol, but that was not this day. The huge rating this wine has is definitely trading on the memory of another time.
Red
9/14/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
89 points
This is going to sound familiar, as I have said this before about several sub-$25 natural wines I've had lately, but: I like the flavors -- in this case, dark red cherries, blood and iron -- but I want just a little more intensity from it.
Red
9/14/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
88 points
I like the flavors, which Whits' tasting note spell out quite well. I just want a little more intensity from it, and maybe a little more zestiness.
Red
9/13/2019 - alpha_ori Does not like this wine:
85 points
I'm a fan of natural wine, a fan of Cab Franc, a fan of Bourgueil, but I'm just not into this.
Red
8/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
The nose starts off alcoholic, with weird overripe notes. But in the fashion of many great, mid-aged Chateauneufs, the palate is very different and quite delicious. It tastes of blood and dirt, with a touch of dried plum that isn't overmuch, still interesting. I love Chateauneufs at around this age.
Red
8/4/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Dark, serious berry core. Ripe but not overripe. Savory flavors, almost saline. A spike of heat and fine but firm tannin on the finish still. Delicious, but I'd still give it some time. Potential to improve a point or so. Don't know if these wines will go long term with this level of ripeness, but I'm certain they are good for at *least* four or five more.
Red
8/3/2019 - alpha_ori wrote:
87 points
Good flavors but no intensity.
Red
2017 Frank Cornelissen Susucaru Sicilia Nerello Blend, Nerello Mascalese (view label images)
8/2/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
94 points
Smells like crushed juniper! With a bit of rosemary. Lithe on the palate.
Tastes like cranberries, with great acid and a fine tannic finish. Big fan.
Red
7/14/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Smells like chalk and minerals and maybe a little bit of fertilizer. Tastes like blood and stone and maybe a little like berries. Fascinating.
White
7/13/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Delicious lemon acidity with a touch of salinity. Great QPR at $26; just OK at the online price I found of $36.
Red
6/16/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Don't know if there's substantial bottle variation, but my experience was very different than some of the previous posters. Rich strawberry fruit, to be sure, but no stewiness or portiness. And the richness is somehow all frontloaded; the snappy finish leaves only a light memory of strawberries. Delicious.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
6/14/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
This wine is in a great place. By turns tart, chewy, fruity, and oaky, intensely but all in balance, I'm very much into it. It might not be what you expect from a Petite -- for instance expressing red fruit instead of black -- but that's fine with me. This is drinking quite well at year 10. I'm sad that this is my last bottle. Cheers! Here's to you, Will.
Red
2011 McPrice Myers Lil Man Central Coast Syrah Blend, Syrah (view label images)
6/8/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
At first I thought there was perhaps still too much oak clinging to this wine. And while it is a significant presence still, with a lot of sweet oak on the nose in particular, it's not so much as to ruin this wine for me. The intense, oily Syrah fruit with just enough balancing acid and a touch of bitter at the end of the palate is quite pleasing. It's ultimately a bit softly textured and a little "sweeter" than I would prefer, but it is a very tasty beverage.
White - Sparkling
6/8/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
We've had four bottles of this over the past 10 years. This one might be my favorite.
White
6/7/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
94 points
I consistently love this wine.
Red
5/31/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
Great tension and balance. You can drink now, but no need to hurry.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/27/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
So lean, but definitely for real. I do think wines like this get short shrift in ratings simply because people are expecting a different style of wine, rather than judging this wine on its own merits.
Red
5/27/2019 - alpha_ori wrote:
85 points
I find the Flors to be very inconsistent vintage to vintage. The 2011 has been my least favorite to date. By turns overripe, hollow, and weird, this doesn't stand up to the 08 or 09, and bears little resemblance to my distane memories (and more proximal ratings) of the 07.
Red
4/26/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Exactly what I want on the nose. Funky, brambly, but friendly. The palate is nice, with exactly that sort of carbonic spike that I'm looking for, and a gently acetic palate that mellows out pretty quickly. Enjoying it, but wishing for just a bit more backpalate.
Red
4/13/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
95 points
Perhaps my favorite wine of all time in this price range (that is, in the price range I originally acquired it at, which was around $60). This vintage continues to drink amazingly well.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
4/12/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Darker and riper and less acidic than what I remember from my favorite Evangehos, but this is nonetheless delicious.
Red
2010 Pax James Berry Vineyard Paso Robles Grenache Blend, Grenache (view label images)
4/12/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
I think this wine is delicious. The James Berry fruit sings, but mysteriously, through the particulate in this unfiltered wine. I only bought one bottle of this, but I could drink another six and be very happy with them.
White
2000 i Clivi Galea Colli Orientali del Friuli Friulano, Sauvignonasse (view label images)
3/23/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
In great condition for a 19-year-old white wine. Delicious.
Red
3/11/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
90 points
Soft, dark fruit; medium-grained tannin throughout the palate.
Red
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
Definitely Syrah on the nose -- smells like oil and flowers. Mostly smooth, but interesting variation in texture. Quite drinkable despite the huge alcohol numbers (15.8%!)
Red
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Vinuous intensity without the thick, reduced texture that you sometimes get in Paso. Touch of candied flavor, but this is balanced by acid. Wears its 15.3% well, even if there is a bit of warmth.
Rosé
2018 Levo DREAMCRXSHER ROSÉ Santa Barbara County Red Rhone Blend (view label images)
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
90 points
Melon-ish fruit, clean, well-executed.
Rosé
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Mostly direct-pressed Grenache. The cab is sagnee, but there's a lot less of it. So the wine is quite pale.

Very drinkable. Nice tart juice up front, with just a touch of sweetness coming at the end to balance.
White
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Unusual blend between Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Chardonnay is grown in sandy soils and is tart and austere; to balance, the sauvignon blanc is allowed to ripen. No malo, but 25% new oak.

The wine combines citrus and melon in a very unfamiliar way. I didn't buy any, but now that I'm looking back on it, I wish I did pick up some -- I'm kind of jonesing for it.
1 person found this helpful Comments (3)
Red
2016 Benom Wines Origin Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon (view label images)
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
94 points
Ah, beautiful. This is a kind of wine that is very rare to find in Paso Robles -- and I say this as a fan of the region. These are wines of intent and precision.

There is still fruit in this wine, but it's balanced by secondary flavors and spice. This is a very appealing wine. I wish I could buy it without joining the wine club!
Red
3/10/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Definitely fruit on the nose, but its exact nature is intriguing and difficult to pin down. The palate delivers elegant red fruit in a balanced, mid-bodied style.
Red
3/11/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
94 points
Very lively. Lifted body with a complex, shifting mid-palate. A bit of graphite adds a nice touch. Far and away my favorite of the lineup.
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Bright, tart, red cherry, with a touch of savory in the backpalate, like a pack of red vines with a couple of sticks of black licorice stuck in there by a prankster.

Young and raw. Score could definitely improve over time.
1 person found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Chocolate-covered bing cherry. Very distinct from the Estate cab from the same year.
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Clearly this is the same wine as the 2013 that I had previously, just earlier in its lifecycle. This wine is definitely fruitier, even if that fruit is just as smoothly presented. Also, you can smell the wood in the empty glass, although it is not oppressive when drinking the wine.

Still, I'd hold for a few years for the fruit and wood to recede and th emore interesting secondary flavors to emerge. My score on this is likely to improve as that happens.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
The nose is of quiet, brooding dark fruit. There are several unobvious Syrah markers in it that I can't quite name. On the palate, the Syrah seems to contribute an appealing tautness, and right now the Bordeaux varietals add mystery, depth and support. Tannins are still resolving.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Boysenberry syrup nose. Bright berry palate, softly and smoothly textured, though tannin is definitely still present. Quite good, but not necessarily a wine (for me) to seek out at this price.
Red
2014 Dilecta The Tiller Santa Barbara County Red Rhone Blend (view label images)
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
94 points
Palate is juicy in texture, singing with blueberry and blackberry juices. The mid palate swells with acid, and alcohol, body enough to take seriously. The end is a beautiful, slightly bitter (and maybe a touch saline?) juice note.

Somehow this wine is more than the sum of its parts. The initial impression is something juicy and easily drinkable, but the mid palate and the finish are definitely thought-provoking. And it has that just-one-more-glass quality that keeps me coming back to it.
Red
3/11/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
93 points
Olive and savory herbs on the nose. The palate is tart and focused, balanced, and mid-bodied. Very much on the Northern Rhone end of the Syrah spectrum.
White
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Soft, lemon custard, with just enough citrus-peel persistence to carry it. This wine is mild in some ways, but it is precise and thought-provoking.
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
89 points
If the 2013 smelled like candied fruit and the 2014 like juice, the 2015 is more like liqueur. On the palate, though, it is more muted than either.
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
92 points
Darker fruit than the 2013. Nose (and palate) is more juice and less candy. My favorite of the 2013-2015 vintages right now. Very drinkable at the present time.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/9/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
Candied red fruit on the nose. The palate is very balanced, though. Straightforward but tasty.
Red
3/11/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
91 points
My favorite of the 2012-2014 vintages. Dark berry fruit is more focused, and balanced by various savory flavors.
Red
3/11/2019 - alpha_ori Likes this wine:
90 points
Immediately more vigorous on the nose than the 2012. Stemmier, and the fruit is more present. Also, the tannins are still resolving (though this wine is quite drinkable).
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  • Tasting Notes: 583 notes on 538 wines
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