Tasting Notes for Armando B

(837 notes on 581 wines)

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Red
9/18/2021 - Armando B wrote:
93 points
Excellent. Mature red and dark fruit. Garrigue and smoky notes. Silky. Great balance. Wonderful wine.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
9/13/2021 - Armando B wrote:
85 points
My first D&R wine. And probably my last. Light-to-medium body. Very faint red fruit. The remaining elements (including the mouthfeel) were reminiscent of a bottle of old bdx that did not survive the journey. Not in any way recognizable as Mourvedre of the Bandol or even of the Calif versions that I like a lot (e.g., Terre Rouge). Not good QPR for about $50, IMO.
Red
9/5/2021 - Armando B wrote:
87 points
Big dark fruit (blackberry) with some bramble notes. Hint of pepper, but not as much I might like. Full-bodied. Bit sweet for my tastes. All seems in the general wheelhouse of what to expect from a Zin. Note, however, that I don't drink a lot of Zin.
Red
9/2/2021 - Armando B wrote:
89 points
Pontifax's note below is spot on. I suggest taking his/her advice and waiting a couple of years for this wine.
Red
8/30/2021 - Armando B wrote:
This bottle was not what I expected and not in line with other folks' notes so far.

Somewhat mature dark (not red) fruit with quite a lot of earthiness. Medium-bodied. A little bit flabby. Not sure what I would have guessed blind. Would probably be a good match for a mushroom-based dish. Weird wine (or at least a weird bottle). I have another and will plan to open it within the next year or two to see whether it is different or similar.
Red
2010 Castello di Monsanto Chianti Classico Riserva Chianti Classico DOCG Sangiovese Blend, Sangiovese (view label images)
8/27/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
Excellent bottle. Bob H's 6-24-21 note sums up this bottle for me. For me, last and best of bottle of the 2010 vintage of this wine.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
8/25/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
Lean, focused, and angular style pinot. Light-bodied, good acid, bright red fruit. Savory with nice minerality. Definitely tracks my (admittedly limited) experience with Mount Eden SCM pinots. Definitely closer akin to burg than to RRV. NOT what to open if you are looking for a plush, big fruited pinot.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
8/22/2021 - Armando B wrote:
89 points
Alright, here we go. This bottle showed more like a typical (at least in my experience) SK pinot. Lean with a good minerality. Light-to-medium bodied. Good balance. I think my burg-loving friends would have really like this bottle. Nice.
Red
8/17/2021 - Armando B wrote:
92 points
My last bottle and probably the best so far. This wine has contiued to improve over time. I am not sure it gets any better, but the improvement scale has been continuously up, so who knows.

Cranberry fruit and some mineral elements. Medium minus body. Great balance. Great bottle.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
8/12/2021 - Armando B wrote:
84 points
Not a fan of this bottle. Seems like a field blend. Not sure what is in there, but it results in a soft, pretty big, sorta hot, red fruited wine without much of a point of view that I can discern.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2010 Château Lanessan Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
7/31/2021 - Armando B wrote:
James Kim's 3-19-2021 note is spot on.

I am not sure, however, that this vintage of this wine will have as long a life as earlier vintages.

Regardless, textbook example of a traditional left bank wine at a reasonable price.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
7/13/2021 - Armando B wrote:
Flawed. Cork came out a bit loosely and the wine was a bit oxidized from the get to. It seemed likely that there was very good wine there, but I think the corking foiled me.
Red
6/18/2021 - Armando B wrote:
This was a gift. From someone who apparently does not like me very much. Really no pleasure to be derived from this. Thin fruited but somehow still flabby. I would rather drink water.

I suspect that with the "California" designation pinot fruit used to make this wine, it would have taken Wedding Feast at Cana-level winemaking to produce something decent.
Red
6/18/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
My last and best by far bottle of a set of 4. The others bottles had been pretty pedestrian and a bit disappointing. This one was not. Red and dark fruits, notes of leather and earth, enough acid from the sangio to keep it vibrant, medium-to-full bodied. Exactly the kind of wine that works with a group that includes enthusiasts and non-enthusiasts. Drinking great now. But I do not expect it will/can get better.
Red
6/13/2021 - Armando B wrote:
89 points
Good wine that is still improving. Bottle showed best on 3d (last) day. Typical southern rhone profile of red fruit, herbs, game/cured meat note. Medium-to-full bodied. Not particularly tannic and medium acid. Was really just a pleasant but non-descript CDR-type wine on 1st day, but grew into something more.
Red
6/11/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
Darker fruited for a pinot. Some earth. Some funk. Seems to be in the drinking window, but not near the end. Good wine, but I did not like as much as I have liked Lutum pinots from other vineyards.
Red
6/8/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
If tasted blind, pretty sure I would have said Burgundy. Restrained red fruit, mineral and woody notes. A bit of balsamic at the end. Good balance. Interesting. But not a wine for folks who only really like big cabs. Drink soon-ish.
Red
5/30/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
Very nice bottle. Red fruit, with leather and earthy notes. Medium-bodied. Very nice balance. Great accompaniment to LGB birthday dinner with friends. Certainly in the drinking window.
Red
2010 Achával-Ferrer Quimera Lujan de Cuyo Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
5/18/2021 - Armando B wrote:
Same experience as my Feb. bottle. Very nice and great QPR for the $26 price.
Red
5/6/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
My last bottle. Very good QPR for $15. Like previous bottles, very restrained, lean style syrah. Heavy on the pepper. Very interesting. Not for everyone. A AFWE wine, for sure.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/1/2021 - Armando B wrote:
Too soon, I think. Strange combo of SK burg-like restraint and minerality with some incongrous fruit-forwardness. Not bad, but not yet on par with even the basic SK pinot. Hoping this wine will show differently after a bit more time.
Red
4/16/2021 - Armando B wrote:
Solid cab with dark and red fruits. Medium to full bodied. Decent acid. Not very tannic. Maybe a bit simple, but tasty and delivers what I expected. I don't think this is a long ager, but it is nice now and should be fine for 2-3 more years at least.
Red
4/12/2021 - Armando B wrote:
92 points
Excellent bottle of modern take on Rioja that has certainly aged well. Dark fruit and a bit of earth. Medium to full bodied. The only drawback to this wine is that, blind, I probably would have guessed it to be a 2000 bdx. Which is certainly high praise, but might not be exactly what you have in mind when you pull the cork on a Rioja.
Red
4/7/2021 - Armando B wrote:
87 points
Sorta strange bottle. Seemed to have elements of both new world (darker fruit for a pinot) and old (acid and an angular nature). Usually these in-between pinots are very much in my wheelhouse, but this bottle was just awkward.

My first experience with this wine, but not with ABC (which I am a fan of).
Red
3/24/2021 - Armando B wrote:
Fished this out of a closeout bin a couple of years ago for $22. In short, very classic cab fruit with intensity in an under 14% abv package that really enhanced it. The problem--way overoaked. It is possible this my be a great wine in 10 years, but my guess is that the oak will never integrate while the fruit is still alive. Dial back the oak by 50% (or more) and this is an outstanding wine. YMMV.
Red
3/13/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
Drinking well. Blue and red fruits. Garrigue. Medium-to-full bodied (closer to full). Alcohol in check. I cannot imagine that anyone who likes southern Rhone wines would not enjoy this.
Red
3/10/2021 - Armando B wrote:
86 points
Day 1--Disappointed. Muddled red fruit and flabby.

Days 2 and 3--Somewhat better. But still nothing notable. Fruit seems more in focus and a bit of acid seems to show up.

I have no idea where this wine is going.
Red
2010 Antinori Chianti Classico Villa Antinori Riserva Chianti Classico DOCG Sangiovese Blend, Sangiovese (view label images)
3/3/2021 - Armando B wrote:
88 points
Solid chianti, but nothing more. Red fruit with a bit of earth and leather. Balanced. Does the job but nothing to differentiate it from dozens of other good chiantis that are $10 less.
1 person found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
2005 Château Lanessan Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
2/27/2021 - Armando B wrote:
88 points
Typical Lanessan showing. Dark fruit and earth. Restrained style. Good balance. Good bdx but nothing beyond that. Was hoping for more given vintage, but maybe that was not a reasonable expectation.
Red
2/24/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
Very enjoyable. On the fuller bodied, darker-fruited end of the pinot spectrum. But well balanced with enjoyable spice notes. Seems to me to be in a prime drinking window. No reason not to drink this wine in the next year or two.
Red
2/21/2021 - Armando B wrote:
88 points
All about the cherry fruit, which is nice. Not much else going on on the palate. Certainly full bodied and large scaled, but not overripe. or flabby. A little bit of tannic bite. Enough acid to keep it from being flabby. Crowd pleaser sort of wine.
Red
2/15/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
Similar to my prior bottle. Dark fruit with some earth and a slight grapefruit note. Good balance. Very nice texture. Full-bodied. Alcohol in check. Solid effort.
Red
2/11/2021 - Armando B wrote:
87 points
Dark fruit. Very ripe. A lot of kirsch. A bit of heat. Good, but that is all. A bit disappointing, but probably exactly what should be expected of the vintage.
Red
2/7/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
Had low expectations for this wine that I bought for $10 in a closeout bin. Far exceeded them. Dark fruit (blackberry). Surprisingly silky texture. Small hints of charcuterie. Good balance. Drinking well, but did not provide reason to think that it will be long-lived. If someone has more experience with this line, please post a note; I would like to learn more.
Red
2/4/2021 - Armando B wrote:
89 points
Drinking fine. Cool weather year reflected by the wine. Lean and focused with cranberry fruit and forest floor notes. Good acid. Light-to-medium bodied. AFWE will like this wine a lot. Big RRV pinot fans less so.
Red
2010 Achával-Ferrer Quimera Lujan de Cuyo Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
2/2/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
Very enjoyable wine. In the style of a slightly modern bdx. Dark and red fruits with some notes of earth/clay. Medium acid. Medium-to-full body. Nice balance. Drinking well.
Red
1/31/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
Large scale red fruit (cranberry) and a variety of other complimentary funky notes. Medium-bodied. Definitely not burg-like. Very nice version of this style pinot from a vineyard that I consistently enjoy. I am going to miss MacPhail. Their wines have always brought me pleasure (and my couple of visits to their tasting room in Sebastopol were great fun).
Red
1/26/2021 - Armando B wrote:
91 points
Very enjoyable wine. Dark (blackberry fruit) with a lot of savory (cured meat) notes and a little bit of minerality. A bit of band aid on the nose, but that dissipated after the first day. Tannins resolved. At/close to peak. I would suggest drinking now.
Red
1/25/2021 - Armando B wrote:
88 points
On the bigger side of big RRV pinot. Some cola notes. Decent version of this sub-category of pinot.
Red
1/17/2021 - Armando B wrote:
90 points
Bold, not at all restrained, style pinot. Full bodied, with dark-for-pinot fruit playing the central role. Bit of a cola note. Low-to-medium acid. My guess is that the 2020-2024 consensus drinking window is about right. Will be a big hit with folks who are fans of this style pinot.
Red
12/24/2020 - Armando B wrote:
88 points
Weird wine. Mature, but still very much alive. Very dark fruited and full bodied for a pinot, but not not just about the fruit. If tasted blind, I might have guessed a restrained style Syrah.
Red
11/25/2020 - Armando B wrote:
Light-bodied grenache. Pleasant, simple wine with more minerality than I would expect. Would not be reasonable to expect more for $7.
Red
11/20/2020 - Armando B wrote:
87 points
Consistent with my Oct. 2019 note. Not sure I really understand this wine on the pinot spectrum. It is very different, IMO.
Red
11/15/2020 - Armando B wrote:
Medium bodied. Medium acid. Dark and red fruit. a bit bdx-like. Not over oaked. Very good QPR for $20. Drank over 3 nights; fading a bit on the 3d night (as most wines I drink do).
Red
10/29/2020 - Armando B wrote:
87 points
Fine. Nothing wrong. But boring. Very boring.
Red
10/25/2020 - Armando B wrote:
92 points
Drank to celebrate 15th wedding anniversary of great friends. Mature wine with a very smooth texture, particularly for a CDP. Fruit is on the darker side. Good does of garrigue. Very enjoyable.
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2010 Jonata Winery Todos Santa Ynez Valley Syrah Blend, Syrah (view label images)
10/25/2020 - Armando B wrote:
Very tasty. Dark fruit, with blackberry dominant. Bit of smoke. Definitely on the mature side, probably should be drunk in the next couple of years.
Red
10/23/2020 - Armando B wrote:
88 points
Dark fruits. Touch of smoke. Enjoyable. Does everything that could reasonably be expected well.
Red
10/17/2020 - Armando B wrote:
Very consistent with my notes on bottles of this wine in 2016 and 2018. Blind, I would confidently (and worngly) guess it a Burg every time. Note to self--open last bottle for a Burg-o-phile.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
10/15/2020 - Armando B wrote:
86 points
Dominant cedar note. Very dark fruited. Probably too young. Not what I expected.
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