November 2013 - 2013 World Eco-Friendly Challenge

This month's Wine feature is 2013 World Eco-Friendly Challenge Wines
2013 World Eco-Friendly Challenge Reviews
204292
Hawk and Horse Vineyards
2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet violet color. Aromas of honeyed cassis, dried cherries, and toffee with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a long, chewy mouthwatering spicy baked apple, earth, and silty tannin finish. An impressively rich and balanced cabernet that will be great at the table with hearty meat and game.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204122
Handley
2010 Estate Reserve Pinot Noir
garnet color. Rich aromas of honeyed, dried cherries and marinated beets with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a crisp, blood orange, praline, and mineral accented finish. A lovely, multilayered pinot that will delight at the table or on its own.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204191
Castoro Cellars
2011 Reserve, Estate Grown Tempranillo
Garnet black color. Complex aromas of spicy boysenberry custard tart, honeyed cherries, and mango sorbet with a supple, fruity-yet-dry medium-to-full body and a tangy, lingonberry, beet, pencil shaving, and earth accented finish. A robust sipper or table wine to pair with spicy Latin or Asian meat dishes.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204192
Castoro Cellars
2012 Reserve, Estate Grown Pinot Grigio
Pale gold with a faint amber cast. Bright aromas of spiced apple and peaches and nut brittle with a fruity light-to-medium body and a tangy, clementine and melon accented finish. Very tasty and nice structure for anything.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204291
Hawk and Horse Vineyards
2009 "Latigo" Lake County
Deep garnet black color. Reserved aromas of dried berries, leather, and peppered nuts with a supple fruity sweet medium-to-full body and a long, concentrated cassis jam, honeyed dried cherry, peach sorbet, cedar, and dusty mineral finish. An elegant red dessert wine that will be fantastic with cheeses.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204193
Castoro Cellars
2011 Reserve, Estate Grown Primitivo
Ruby color. Aromas and flavors of mocha and toasty berry pie crust with a silky, fruity medium body and a tangy green apple, peach, and citrus accented finish with nice chewy tannins. A delicious, fruity and well balanced sipper or table wine.
91 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204123
Handley
2012 Estate Chardonnay
Pale golden color. Sensuous aromas of caramel apples, vanilla, and spicy pineapple cake with a silky, fruity medium body and a crisp, ripe Meyer lemon, kiwi, and green apple finish. A delicious zesty chardonnay that lets the fruit shine through.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204339
Dolium
2010 Eco-Estate, Reserva Malbec
Lovely nose of resonant black currant, mushrooms and a hint of toffee. Juicy berry and leathery full-bodied flavors follow with a grippy tannic finish. Nice style and structure.
91 points $27.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204290
Hawk and Horse Vineyards
2009 "Block Three" Red Hills
Garnet black color. Aromas of black currants, suede, cocoa, and craisin with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tangy, vanilla cream and dusty tannin finish. A really nice table wine that will get better with time.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204336
Dominio de Laertes
2012 Organic Crianza Rioja
Textbook old world Rioja, tobacco leaf notes lead and with swirling mazzard dark cherry scents come on. Earthy flavors lead, fruit flavors follow. Ample fine tannins and a bit of toasty oak compliment the fruit.
90 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204194
Castoro Cellars
2012 Reserve, Estate Grown Sauvignon Blanc
Golden silver color. Aromas of honeyed apples, peaches, straw, delicate spice with a supple, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a a citrus citrus, melon, and cream accented finish. Very tasty, balanced, and satisfying.
90 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204340
Dolium
2011 Eco-State, "Malbon" Mendoza
Deep garnet with a star bright blue-violet rim. Resonant nose of black currants, river water, and red berry candy. Earthy accents come through on the palate. Nice supple texture, good length and a youthful, fine tannin laden finish.
90 points $16.59 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204369
Koo Loo Loo
2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
Deep garnet color. Concentrated aromas and flavors of dried berries, coconut, pomegranate and spices with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a long, mouthwatering sour cherry, honey, and mossy earth accented finish with broad, chewy tannins. Nice now, but better in the future.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204639
Live a Little
NV "Really Ravishing Red" Shiraz
Penetrating scents of smoked meats, black currants, a hint of rubber, blue flowers and scents reminiscent of "Wheaties cereal". All in all a very complex nose. Big flavors follow with a titch of white pepper in the finish.
89 points $8.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204642
Stellar Organics
2013 Merlot
Deep ruby with a blue violet cast and big tears. Scents of the forest lead: dried leaves and oak. Spiced black plums flavors with an easy, softly textured approachable finish.
89 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204642
Stellar Organics
2013 Merlot
Deep ruby with a blue violet cast and big tears. Scents of the forest lead: dried leaves and oak. Spiced black plums flavors with an easy, softly textured approachable finish.
89 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204121
Handley
2012 Estate Gewurztraminer
Pale golden color. Bright aromas and flavors of peach, lychee and rose with silky, fruity-yet-dry light-to-medium body and a piquant praline and pepper accented finish. Nice structured and elegant.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204370
Koo Loo Loo
2012 Chardonnay
Golden yellow color. Aromas of pineapple yogurt, spiced apple, overripe coconut and durian with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tangy, tropical citrus, melon, nut and earth accented finish. An exotic chardonnay that will pair well with Asian cuisine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204643
Stellar Organics
2013 Shiraz
Rounded soft scents of mulberries, black currants, and a hint of wood smoke. An easy drink, well balanced soft flavors with a lightly peppered finish. An excellent sipper or table wine.
88 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204640
Stellar Organics
2013 Pinotage
Interesting nose of caramel, autumnal prairie grass, and a hint of red cherries. Moderate tannins frame out the predominately cherry flavors with a hint of earthy spice in the finish.
88 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204381
Clos LaChance
2012 Chardonnay
Golden silver color. Aromas of buttery nut brittle, honeycomb, and lemons on the tree with a crisp, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a zesty pineapple, nectarine skin, and green apple driven finish. A nice racy chardonnay that will cover a lot of bases.
88 points $11 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204221
Backsberg
2010 Kosher Pinotage
Scents of a wine cellar is the first impression. Ripe spiced cherries, smoked herbs and a bit of potters clay. Balanced easy flavors, refreshing acidity and a hint of subtle tar. Ample, fine tannins are clustered in the finish.
88 points $14.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204300
Claar
2012 Riesling
Light straw color. Bright aromas of orange, lemon curd, and apple with a crisp, fruity light-to-medium body and a tangy, mouthwatering spiced apple, melon, and mineral accented finish with gripping fruit tannins. A very nice seafood wine.
88 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204382
Clos LaChance
2010 Estate Zinfandel
ruby color. Aromas of toasty cedar, toffee, mocha, and dried cherries with a supple dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tangy chocolate raspberry, vanilla nut, and earth driven finish. A rock solid zin.
88 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204384
Cottonwood Creek
2012 White Table Wine California
Pale golden yellow color. Aromas of nectarine, baked citrus, and toasted balsa with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a delicate apple and honeyed, clementine finish. A nice gentle sipper.
87 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204645
Stellar Organics
2013 100% Organic White Wine Western Cape
Funky barnyard notes overlay refreshing lemon-lime scents. Nice mouth feel and good length of flavors. Nice bread toast flavor with a grippy citrus accented finish.
87 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204342
TreeHugger
NV Bianco Italy
Deep straw yellow robe. Slightly sour lambic like scents lead. Lemon notes follow good length of flavors and a taut gravely very dry finish. In spite of the tartness this is nicely balanced
87 points $9.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204637
Zeroincondotta
2012 Spumante Extra Dry Italy
Aromas of gravel, lemon-zested apples and a hint of nutty toffee. A crisp, yet slightly creamy, fruity-driven mid-palate with a refreshing, citrus marmalade and buttered toast finish. Very pleasant.
87 points $11.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204389
Green Truck
2009 Zinfandel
Ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of dried raspberries and blueberries, pepper, and sour cherries with a tangy medium-to-full body and a firm, chewy tannin and earth driven finish. A solid table zin; pair with spicy flank steaks.
87 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204297
Claar
2012 Barrel Fermented Chardonnay
Aromas of spicy apple custard pie, passionfruit, and mango gelato with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tangy pineapple, toasty praline and starfruit accented finish with drying wood tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204638
Perlage
2012 "PerlApp" Extra Dry Sparkling Wine Italy
Aromas of ripe stone fruits, dried white blossoms, and apricot pits. Crisp, fruity with taut, almost phosphate-like minerality. Refreshing soft citrus and green apple skin finish with a titch of earth. A nice relaxing sipper.
86 points $12.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204387
Green Truck
2011 Petite Sirah
Garnet black color. Aromas of dried blackberries, currants, pencil shavings, and green peppercorn with a crisp, fruity-yet-dry medium body and a tart berry, peach skin, and citrus driven finish with dusty tannins. A tangy table wine that will be good with pot stickers
86 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204391
Naked Earth
2011 Rouge Vin de Pays d'Oc
Funky toasted yeast, baked straw, and earth scents dominate the nose. Rustic easy flavors follow reminiscent of roasted root vegetables. Later just a whisper of dried plums. Nice bit of spice and pepper in the lightly grippy finish.
86 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204393
Primosole Organic Vineyards
2012 Sangiovese
Rubbery aromas lead with cherry scents coming in later with a hint of chestnuts. Rustic easy flavors follow with a simple lifted finish. Nice innate acidity for the table.
86 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204222
Backsberg
2011 Kosher Chardonnay
Golden straw color. Smoky aromas and flavors of roasted nuts, dried meat, and grilled pineapple with a supple, dryish medium body and a flinty earth accented finish. A nice earthy, dry chardonnay to serve with grilled fish.
86 points $14.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204341
Dolium
2011 Eco-State, "Torso" Mendoza
Straw color. Nice restrained spiced white floral aromas. Tart entry, light-to-medium bodied mid-palate and a nice earth tinged finish.
86 points $15.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204299
Claar
2012 Late Harvest Riesling
Silvery straw yellow color. Lightly musky aromas of spiced peaches, leather, and golden raisins with a soft, fruity sweet light-to-medium body and an apple-pear cider and orange sorbet accented finish. A pleasant, understated dessert wine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204641
Live a Little
NV "Wildly Wicked White" Western Cape
Lemon "PEZ" candy scents are prominent. Later a hint of creamy lemon meringue. Ripe earthy citrus flavors follow. Nice lengthy finish. Needs food; try with scampi.
85 points $8.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204383
Cottonwood Creek
2010 Red Table Wine California
Deep garnet color. Aromas and flavors of dried citrus, cherry, and black raspberry with a fruity medium body and a tangy, mango, peach, cocoa, and delicate spice accented finish. A tasty carefree sipper.
85 points $9.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204644
Stellar Organics
2013 Cabernet Sauvignon
Lovely unique nose of smoky black currants and spiced berries. Flavors are a bit shy as parchment and phenolic notes somewhat mask the fruit. Youthful.
85 points $9.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204343
TreeHugger
NV Rosso Italy
Funky, dank scents lead with a bit of tree bark, ripe dark fruits, and a hint of black cherries. Heavy flavors follow and are lightened by lively acidity.
85 points $9.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204386
Green Truck
2011 Chardonnay
Pale golden straw color. Very mild aromas of apple skin and dried lemon with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a waxy honeycomb, kiwi, and grassy earth finish. A crisp, tangy table wine.
85 points $13.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204392
Primosole Organic Vineyards
2012 Pinot Grigio
Pale straw with light gun metal gray cast. Match stick notes initially - did blow off a bit with swirling. Under ripe stone fruit and a soft lemony foundation. Nicely balanced and restrained flavors.
85 points $13.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204298
Claar
2012 Pinot Grigio
Pale silvery straw color. Aromas and flavors of spiced praline, kiwi, and lime curd with a tart, light-to-medium body and a dried lemon and melon rind accented finish. A nice dry, tart shellfish wine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204344
TreeHugger
NV Brut Italy
Straw gold color. Earthy, honeyed apple, pear, and citrus aromas and flavors with a crisp, fruity-yet-dry light body and a tangy, grippy, nutty finish.
84 points $12.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204388
Green Truck
2011 Sauvignon Blanc
Golden yellow color. Mild aromas of yellow pepper, starfruit, wax, and spiced peaches with a soft, dryish light body and a crisp, kiwi, grass, and baked apple finish.
84 points $13.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204385
Green Truck
2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
Aromas of cherries, plum, pepper and beeswax candle with a soft, dryish medium body and a tangy cranberry, cocoa, cedar, and dusty mineral finish.
84 points $13.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204390
Naked Earth
2011 Blanc Vin de Pays d'Oc
Golden straw color. Ripe apple aromas. Lightly spiced apple sauce flavors with funky yeasty notes on the easy entry but a very quick flavor fade.
83 points $13.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204295
Claar
2012 Sauvignon Blanc
Silvery straw color. Aromas of grapefruit, green pepper, and guava with a dryish light-to-medium body and a tart lemon water and chalk eraser accented finish. Palate does not deliver the promise of the nose.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
204296
Claar
2012 Unoaked Chardonnay
Pale golden silver color. Aromas dried limes and lemons, leaves, and pineapple husk with a soft, dry light body and a lemon rind, twig, and moss finish. A lean, dry, earthy chardonnay for the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
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