September 2014 - US - Red Bordeaux Varietals

This month's Wine feature is US - Red Bordeaux Varietals Wines
US - Red Bordeaux Varietals Reviews
207367
Ledson
2011 Cabernet Franc
Brick red color. Inviting aromas of cherry, plum, blackberry, and dried herbs with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry, plum, boysenberry, and vanilla finish with light oak. Combines juicy plum and berry-cherry fruit with savory herb notes, generous, but not over-the-top fruit and a jammy, soft finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207135
deLorimier
2010 Warm Springs Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet black color. Inviting aromas of dried berries, chocolate orange peels, dried flowers, and vanilla with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, long, baking spices, cedar, and earth finish with firm tannins. A bold, flavor packed cabernet.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207369
Ledson
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Violet opaque color. Lively aromas of cherry, black currant, boysenberry, and vanilla with a tannic, full body and a warming, very complex, long, black currant, blackberry, dark soil, and cigar box finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Hits all the classic Howell Mountain Cabernet notes with balance and finesse.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207447
Grande River Vineyards
2011 Cabernet Franc
Ruby color. Bright aromas of tomato and pepper jelly, cranberry sauce, pickled beets, and vanilla cream with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, complex, medium length, honeyed nuts, earth, bubblegum spice, and flowers finish with light oak. A zesty and savory cabernet franc that will be fantastic with spicy meat dishes.
93 points $17.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207172
Jana
2010 "Cathedral" Cabernet Sauvignon
Ruby color. Bright aromas of cherry, licorice, eucalyptus, and raspberry with a silky, medium-full body and a smooth, complex, medium-long, cherry, raspberry jam, licorice, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Delicious on its own, a real treat to sip and swirl as its intriguing aromas and notes of exotic eucalyptus are captivating, but are followed by such an elegant, balanced body that is confident enough to not overdo its oak or alcohol, leaving a well balanced and highly tailored finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207312
Easley
2012 Cabernet Franc
Ruby color. Bright aromas of vanilla toffee, citrus blossoms, and berry danish with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long, pickled beets, pomegranate, and herbs finish with medium tannins and light oak. A great spicy, herbal expression of cabernet franc that will sing at the table.
92 points $14.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207503
Rutherford Vintners
2010 Merlot
Brick red color. Spicy aromas of cherry, blackberry, pepperoni, and dried herbs with a soft, body and a peppery, complex, medium-long, black cherry, fennel, cured meat, and crushed boysenberry finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Explosive juicy fruit and meaty flavors, full and robust, balanced by supple tannins and a peppery edge.
92 points $19.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207289
Elk Run
2012 Cold Friday Vineyard Cabernet Franc
Brick red bronze color. Rich aromas of waxy honeycomb, prunes, vanilla bean, and craisins with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, marinated beets and tomatoes, toffee, and cedar finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. A robust, earthy and savory expression of cabernet franc. Drink now.
92 points $26.61
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207229
Biltmore Estate
2012 Vanderbilt Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet black color. Aromas of boysenberry pie a la mode, pistachio nougat, and banana blossoms with a silky, fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, long, mocha creme brulee, blackberry gelato, spiced apple, and earth finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A big, delicious cab that was made to please.
92 points $26.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207182
Maryhill
2011 Proprietor's Reserve, "Serendipity" Columbia Valley
Garnet black color. Bright aromas of black peppercorn, boysenberry tart, and cherry pipe tobacco with a velvety, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long, vanilla custard and baking spices finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A supple and delicious red blend for all occasions.
92 points $29.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207132
deLorimier
Smith Orchard Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet black color. Lively aromas of blossoms, cassis, and olive with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, medium-long, dried berry, spice, and sandalwood finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A delicious, zesty cabernet that is sure to please.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207131
deLorimier
2010 "Mosaic", Meritage Alexander Valley
Brick red color. Bold aromas of black currant, black cherry, blackberry, and vanilla spice with a velvety, dry medium-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, black currant, cigar box, vanilla, and crushed berries finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Go ahead and treat yourself, you deserve the layers of dark fruit, spice, vanilla and cigar box all wrapped up in a silky, juicy package.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207179
Maryhill
2011 Reserve, Alder Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque ruby color. Rich aromas of black raspberry, black currant, roasted strawberry, and vanilla bean with a tannic, dry full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, black currant, smoked cherry, black plum, and bittersweet chocolate finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. Bold and brooding with classic black currant and chewy plum flavors framed by toothsome tannins and dense bitter chocolate notes through the long finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207256
Anemoi
2012 "Zephyrus" Grand Valley
Violet black color. Mellow aromas of bacon, mulberry tart, and chocolate S’mores with a silky, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, complex, medium length, toffee, craisin, earth, and vanilla cream finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A supper and attractive red blend that is sure to please.
92 points $44.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207133
deLorimier
2010 Crazy Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Rich aromas of black currant, black raspberry, cherry, and cigar box with a lightly tannic, dry medium-full body and a complex, long, black currant, crushed black cherry, blackberry, and toasty vanilla finish with medium tannins and heavy oak. Dense and concentrated black currant, black cherry and blackberry flavors are intertwined with toasty vanilla, roast beef and cigar box all in balance with well-integrated, toothsome tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207308
City Winery
2010 Bettinelli Vineyard, Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque ruby color. Inviting aromas of black currant, black raspberry, vanilla, and licorice with a velvety, medium-full body and a smooth, medium-long, blackberry, red licorice, currants, and cherry cobbler finish with medium tannins. Juicy, generous and dense with firm enough tannins to balance and sing with food, but enough complexity and stuffing to enjoy on its own.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207228
Biltmore Estate
2012 Limited Release Malbec
Garnet violet color. Attractive aromas of spicy cherry tart, honeycomb, and pickling spices with a silky, fruity body and a smooth, interesting, long, dried berries, nutskins, and mineral finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A delicious and zesty red for all occasions.
91 points $19.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207326
French Valley Vineyard
NV "Jubilee" Michigan
Brick red color. Fruity aromas of Montmorency cherry cider and honeyed scone with a silky, fruity body and a smooth, interesting, medium length finish with fruit tannins and light oak. A great fruity sipper or bbq wine with fantastically pure cherry flavor.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207317
Westport
2013 "Mermaid" Columbia Valley
Dark garnet color. Oaky aromas of roasted coffee and nuts, chocolate toffee, and berry pie with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a interesting, medium length, mineral, vanilla, and pickled beet finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A lively and lush red blend that is sure to please.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207734
White Oak
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque color. Typical aromas of black cherry, blackberry, plum, and currants with a lightly tannic, dry medium-full body and a warming, complex, long, plum skin, blackberry, currants, and baking spice finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A cabernet that is not afraid to be a cabernet with classic cassis and dark chocolate-vanilla-cherry flavors and firm, toothsome tannins, ready for a dry aged cheese or well-marbled steak.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207116
Yorkville
2012 Rennie Vineyard Carmenere
Opaque garnet violet black color. Aromas of berries in cream and sour cherry pie with a silky, fruity medium-to-full body and a interesting, medium length, pickled beet and cedar finish with medium tannins and light oak. A zesty red that will be great with spicy Asian or Latin meat and vegetable dishes.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207178
Maryhill
2011 Reserve, Les Collines Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet color. Bold aromas of black currant, black cherry, vanilla, and baking spice with a tannic, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium length, black currant, black cherry, toasty oak, and blackberry finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. Big and tight with dark fruit and firm tannins that will benefit from aging or pairing with a juicy steak.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207238
Thorn Hill
2009 Red Rock Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet garnet color. Rich aromas of black currant, black raspberry, grilled plum, and vanilla-spice with a lightly tannic, medium-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, black currant, cherry skin, blackberry, and pomegranate finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. Rich and juicy layers of currants, cherry and dark berries are wrapped with toothsome tannins, vanilla, baking spice, licorice and inky rich earth.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207309
City Winery
2011 Alder Springs Vineyard, Reserve Cabernet Franc
Ruby garnet color. Mellow aromas of melted toffee, herbs, and honeycomb with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long, blackberry cobbler, nuts, slate, and blood orange finish with medium tannins and light oak. A well structured, smooth and appetizing cabernet franc that will shine at the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207267
Castoro Cellars
2011 Estate Grown Merlot
Brick red color. Lively aromas of cherry, boysenberry, blackberry, and baking spice with a silky, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, complex, medium length, black currant, dried cherry, plum skin, and vanilla finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. This is a Merlot that is not afraid to show its serious side, with chewy, well-integrated tannins that provide excellent structure to the cherry and plum core from start to the well-balanced and satisfying finish.
90 points $16 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207422
Hosmer
2012 Cabernet Franc
Ruby color. Mellow aromas of cocoa, pomegranate, and pickled peppers with a silky, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, breezy, creme brulee, beets, and tomato finish with soft tannins and light oak. A stylish, nicely balanced cab franc.
90 points $18 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207327
Pedroncelli
2012 Three Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet black color. Aromas of spiced plums, nut brittle, clay, and dried blueberries with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, breezy, vanilla yogurt, cedar, and leafy earth finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A lively table friendly cabernet.
90 points $18 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207429
Coda Rossa
2012 Coeur d'est Outer Coastal Plain
Dark garnet color. Aromas of honeycomb, wild berries, and tomatoes on the vine with a supple, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, pomegranate, clay, and beet finish with medium tannins and light oak. A nuanced, savory red that will shine at the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207174
Maryhill
2011 Proprietor's Reserve Cabernet Franc
Brick red color. Lively aromas of red cherry, plum, wild strawberry, and baking spice with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long, blackberry, cherry skin, rhubarb-plum, and dried herbs finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Pretty notes of cherry and berry throughout are well complimented with a hint of dried herbs, understated oak and firm, but well-integrated tannic structure.
90 points $24.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207329
Pedroncelli
2012 Block 007 Estate Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet violet black color. Aromas of spiced berries, lilac, nougat, and honeycomb with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, peppery spice, cedar, and earth finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. An elegantly styled cabernet for sipping or the table.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207050
Treleaven
2012 Meritage Finger Lakes
Ruby color. Bright aromas of plum, raspberry, peppercorns, and aged cheese with a soft, medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry, plum, plum tomato, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak.
90 points $27.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207253
Canyon Wind
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark ruby black color. Mild aromas of honeyed raisin toast, caramelized bacon, berry pie crust, and grilled pepper with a velvety, dry-yet-fruity body and a smooth, complex, medium length, pencil shavings, pomegranate ice, earth, and vanilla finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A well structured and intricately flavorful cabernet with firm, but integrated tannins.
90 points $29.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207347
Falkner
2010 Special Selection, Meritage Temecula Valley
Brick red color. Bold aromas of black currant, damson plum, black pepper, and crushed berries with a dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, medium length, dried cherry, blackberry, vanilla, and pomegranate finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Bold and sure of itself.
90 points $39.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207177
Maryhill
2011 Reserve, Clifton Hills Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet color. Rich aromas of black cherry, currant, dried strawberry, and vanilla with a lightly tannic, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, black currant, cherry skin, vanilla-tinged bacon fat, and crushed black plum finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. Dense and fat dark fruits with toothsome tannins that are unafraid of being a Cabernet with a density to the balance that will unfold into more complexity with proper cellaring.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207169
Lobo
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Ruby violet color. Bold aromas of black cherry, cocoa, blackberry, and tar with a creamy, medium-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, black currant, crushed blackberry, mocha java, and tart cherry finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Bold and zesty with a touch of roasted tomato within the generous dark fruit and mocha palate and enough acid and tannin to balance all that is going on.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207187
Maryhill
2012 "Winemaker's Red" Columbia Valley
Dark garnet violet color. Lively aromas of boysenberry, apricot, chocolate nuts, and floral spices with a supple, medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, vanilla cream, roasted nuts, and citrus finish with soft tannins and light oak. A delicious and zesty everyday red.
89 points $11.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207265
Bordeleau
NV Malbec
Ruby black color. Aromas of tomatoes on the vine, chocolate graham crackers, wild berries, and honeycomb with a silky, dryish medium body and a smooth, medium length, mulberries, beets, and gravel finish with soft tannins and light oak. A distinctive, earthy red that will be good with game meats.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207448
Grande River Vineyards
2011 Malbec
Garnet black color. Bright aromas of raisins, cherry pie, and beeswax with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, butter roasted nuts, roasted root vegetables, and baked apple finish with soft tannins and light oak. A round, juicy red with a savory earthy quality that will work well at the table.
89 points $19.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207425
Alexander Valley Vineyards
2012 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Aromas of black currant, cherry, blackberry, and vanilla with a supple, dry medium body and a interesting, medium length, black cherry, plum, blackberry, and baking spice finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Juicy blackberry, cherry and currants unfold with well balanced vanilla-spiced oak and smooth, well-integrated tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207180
Maryhill
2011 Proprietor's Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque ruby color. Lively aromas of cherry, boysenberry, blackberry, and vanilla with a lightly tannic, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, pencil lead and currant finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Deep, dark fruit, a touch of complexity and healthy tannins take an everyday Cabernet and elevate it to the next level.
89 points $24.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207234
Cliff Creek
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet black color. Mellow aromas of dried flowers, chocolate orange peels, and cranberry chutney with a supple, dryish medium body and a tingling, interesting, breezy, blackberry sauce, cedar, and earth finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A zesty, table tuned cabernet that will do well with spicy meat dishes.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207230
Biltmore Estate
2012 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Lively aromas of cherry, black currant, plum, and garden soil with a lightly tannic, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, black currant, blackberry, cherry, and vanilla-baking spice finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Densely packed with chewy blackberry, cherry and currant flavors that are framed by vanilla, baking spice and and toast all within aromas of dark, rich, freshly turned garden soil.
89 points $26.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207258
Renteria
2011 Cabernet Sauvingon
Garnet color. Rich aromas of black raspberry, cherry, boysenberry, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium length, blackberry, black pepper, dried strawberry, and vanilla finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Classic Napa cabernet that although not over the top gives you the dark fruit, vanilla and a touch of dark cocoa to satisfy what you are craving from this legendary appellation.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207052
Treleaven
2012 Reserve Cabernet Franc
Ruby black color. Aromas of dark roasted nuts, toffee, and baked berries with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, cranberries, blood orange, and earth finish with firm tannins and light oak. A lively, structured cabernet franc for the table.
89 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207176
Maryhill
2011 Reserve, Les Collines Merlot
Opaque ruby color. Attractive aromas of toasty pie crust, creme brulee, and chocolate nuts with a supple, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, simple, breezy, craisin, cedar, and beets finish with hard tannins and moderate oak. A nicely structured merlot for meat dishes the table. Give this a bit of time.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207165
Robert Hall Winery
2012 Meritage Paso Robles
Ruby color. Attractive aromas of cherry, red plum, strawberry, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry, boysenberry, plum, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Straightforward and correct, a safe Meritage with all that you expect.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207310
City Winery
2012 Petit Verdot
Opaque violet color. Rich aromas of black cherry, wild raspberry, violets, and vanilla smoked plums with a lightly tannic, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, complex, medium-long, dried cranberry, crushed black cherry, fig jam, and vanilla spice finish with medium tannins and light oak. Spicy and floral with deep, dark fruits and generous, but well-balanced oak aging.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207366
Ledson
2010 "Bellisimo" Knights Valley
Garnet black color. Mild aromas of clay, raisins, dried tomatoes and cherries, and vanilla nuts with a silky, fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium length, blackberry, cedar, and spice finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A rich and sturdy red blend for that table that will be even better in a few years.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207440
Grgich Hills
2011 Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet ruby color. Oaky aromas of blackberry, black cherry, black currants, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, medium length, cherry, boysenberry, vanilla, and chocolate finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Dark and brooding with notes of crushed blackberries and dark chocolate, but with silky smooth tannins that yield sipping along or enjoying with simple, classic dishes.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207201
Barefoot
NV Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet black color. Bright aromas of berry pie a la mode, cherry custard, and chocolate orange peel with a silky, fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, toffee, buttercream, and sweet spices finish with soft tannins and light oak. A tasty, fruity everyday cabernet.
88 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207484
Cedar Brook
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Mild aromas of cherry tart and vanilla flan with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, medium length, cedar and sweet spice finish with soft tannins and light oak. A nicely made, everyday wine that will cover many bases.
88 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207255
Canyon Wind
2013 47-Ten Red Grand Valley
Garnet color. Inviting aromas of caramelized bacon, chocolate orange peels, and pomegranate jam on toast with a silky, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, medium length, cranberry, praline, earth, and cedar finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A zesty, rock solid red for sipping or the table.
88 points $12.95 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207328
Pedroncelli
2012 Bench Vineyards Merlot
Brick red color. Bold aromas of black cherry, red currant, grilled toast, and baking spice with a velvety, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, boysenberry, cherry, blackberry, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Soft and well-balanced with a long core of cherry and blackberry carried from the nose to the body to the finish with a complement of vanilla-tinged toasty oak.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207186
Maryhill
2011 Malbec
Violet color. Bold aromas of black raspberry, plum, black pepper, and vanilla with a soft, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-long, black plum, blackberry, dried cherry, and spice finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Juicy and full with intriguing notes of black pepper and toothsome, well-integrated tannins frames a solid dark fruit core that leads to a moderately long and satisfying finish.
88 points $16.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207181
Maryhill
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Bold aromas of black raspberry, black currant, cherry, and vanilla with a lightly tannic, dry medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-long, lingonberry, baking spice, and pomegranate finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Bold and full-bodied Cabernet with a solid stuffing of ripe fruit all framed with vanilla and spice accented oak and a firm, satisfying finish.
88 points $16.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207319
Cedar Creek
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet color. Interesting aromas of toasty nut brittle, blackberry tart, mocha, and grilled pepper with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, vanilla cream and dried tomato finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A nicely styled cabernet that will show well with food.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207499
Picket Fence
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet opaque color. Oaky aromas of cherry, currant, lingonberry, and vanilla with a supple, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry, boysenberry, plum, and vanilla finish with soft tannins. Well balanced and classic, approachable for every day, but well made enough for an occasion with its textured fruit and well-integrated tannins.
88 points $17.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207252
Canyon Wind
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Aromas of berry frosting, olive tapenade, and honeyed toast with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, simple, breezy, red currant, flan, and cedar finish with medium tannins and light oak. A appetizing merlot with nice acidity and balance.
88 points $19.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207221
Chacewater
2012 Malbec
Opaque violet color. Bold aromas of black plum, raspberry, boysenberry, and toasty oak with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium length, black currant, black plum, peppercorns, and cherry skin finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. This is a dark, full-throttle California Malbec.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207235
Cliff Creek
2008 Claret Southern Oregon
Garnet color. Mild aromas of baked berries, dried flowers, and spiced cake with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, medium length, currant, blood orange, earth, and cedar finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A hearty red that will show best at the table or in a few years.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207318
Westport
2010 "Skookumchuck" Washington
Bright ruby color. Lively aromas of cranberry chutney, pencil shavings, and olive tapenade with a fruity sweet light-to-medium body and a smooth, interesting, breezy, mixed berries, honey, and spiced pear finish with fruit tannins and no oak. A lively, not-too-sweet dessert wine that will pair well with cheeses.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207505
Three Knights
2011 Cabernet Franc
Garnet ruby color. Inviting aromas of smoky, cherry, plum, and brisket with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, complex, medium-long, cherry, plum, barbecue, and dried fig finish with soft tannins and light oak. Layers of smoky, savory flavor unfold amidst silky smooth berry, plum and cherry fruit that continue through the long and complex finish.
88 points $25.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
208029
Sunstone
2011 Merlot
Opaque ruby color. Rich aromas of cherry, plum, black raspberry, and vanilla-baking spice with a supple, dry medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-long, black cherry, crushed plum, currant, and toasty vanilla finish with well-integrated tannins and moderate oak. Rich and layered cherry, currant and dark berry fruit is interwoven by generous toasty, vanilla-packed oak, but with plenty of stuffing so all is in balance through to the full supple finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207290
Elk Run
2012 Cold Friday Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark brick red color. Fruity aromas of dried peach, prune chutney, chocolate raisins, and tomato vine with a lightly tannic, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium length, green pepper, herbs, bark, and honeyed cherries finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. An interesting rustic red that has a lot of mature Amarone-like oxidized notes and will be interesting to pair with.
88 points $26.61
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207482
Antares
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Ruby violet color. Floral aromas of cherry, currant, licorice, and plum with a soft, dryish medium body and a smooth, breezy, cherry, dried strawberry, boysenberry, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Dry and full of dark, dried fruit that will pair nicely with a roast or grilled meat.
88 points $29.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207375
Spangler
2012 Petit Verdot
Opaque violet color. Rich aromas of black raspberry, plum, lingonberry, and roses with a tannic, medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, blackberry, black currant, brown spice, and violet finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Complex layers of dark fruit, berries and spice with notes of red and purple flowers and taught, satisfying tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207231
Antler Hill
2009 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque color. Bold aromas of black raspberry, black currant, lingonberry, and black licorice with a lightly tannic, dryish medium-full body and a warming, interesting, breezy, black cherry, boysenberry, vanilla, and plum finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Rich, full and opulent.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207483
Cedar Brook
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet black color. Aromas of vanilla buttercream, nut brittle, cherry bread, and olive with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, breezy, cedar, roasted nuts, and earth finish with medium tannins and light oak. A nice chewy cab for everyday sipping or burgers.
87 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207492
Foxhollow
2012 Cabernet Sauvingon
Ruby color. Bright aromas of cherry, currant, plum, and vanilla with a supple, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, currant, cherry, boysenberry, and baking spice finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Juicy currant and cherry fruit is well framed with toothsome tannins, well-balanced acidity and strong core of fruit that carries through to the finish.
87 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207493
Foxhollow
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Mild aromas of roasted pistachio and berry tart with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, cedar, beets, and parchment finish with light oak. A sturdy sipper or table wine.
87 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207495
J.W. Morris
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet ruby color. Bright aromas of cherry, plum, currant, and vanilla with a supple, medium body and a warming, interesting, medium length, currant, blackberry, baking spice, and black cherry finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Classic and well-structured with black currant-blackberry flavors that balance with fine tannins, a touch of vanilla and just enough spicy oak.
87 points $7.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207205
Redwood Creek
NV Cabernet Sauvignon
Ruby black color. Aromas of roasted berries and tomatoes, nougat, and charcoal with a soft, fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, breezy, cherries, vanilla fudge, baking spices, and cedar finish with soft tannins and light oak. A nice fruity everyday sipper or pizza wine.
87 points $8 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207491
Forest Glen
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Mild aromas of berry pie, dark roasted nuts, and vanilla with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, cedar, vanilla taffy, and borscht finish with firm tannins and light oak. A solid sipper or burger wine.
87 points $10.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207173
Casa Larga
2013 Dry Rosé Finger Lakes
Salmon copper color. Attractive aromas of strawberry, cherry, red plum, and cantaloupe with a supple, petillant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, strawberry, cherry, cran-apple, and red apple finish with no tannins and no oak. Dry and refreshing with crisp red apple brightness, maintaining a fruity yet dry balance with a cherry and berry fruit core and a round supple finish.
87 points $11.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207489
Fat Cat
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Aromas of berry custard and roasted nuts with a silky, fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, cherry jam, cedar, and pear finish with medium tannins and light oak. A flavorful, easy drinking red.
87 points $11.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207339
Old Soul
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque ruby color. Bold aromas of black currant, cherry, plum, and spicy vanilla with a velvety, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, black raspberry, cherry, plum, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Vibrant and juicy style, packed with black raspberry, ripe currant cherry and vanilla, all wrapped around supple tannins, vanilla and a generous finish.
87 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207226
Biltmore Estate
NV Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark ruby black color. Mellow aromas of blackberries, dried flowers, olive, and pickling spices with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium length, cedar, earth, and cocoa finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A sturdy, structured cabernet for the table.
87 points $14.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207333
Silk Oak
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Bold aromas of black cherry, black currant, smoked brisket, and grilled plum with a velvety, dry medium-full body and a warming, complex, medium-long, smoky, black plum, beef jerky, and pomegranate finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Dark and smoky with layers of black plum, wild berries and meaty aromas woven into the dense, robust and zesty fruit.
87 points $14.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207321
French Valley Vineyard
2005 Merlot
Ruby color. Inviting aromas of blackberry, dried herbs, dried cherry, and vintage books with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, medium-long, cherry, boysenberry, vanilla, and crushed plum finish with soft tannins and light oak. Juicy, soft and silky with plenty of fruit and berries through the core and well-balanced, integrated tannins to tie it all together.
87 points $15 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207314
Concannon
2012 "Conservancy" Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque violet color. Bold aromas of black plum, blackberry, pomegranate, and black cherry with a creamy, medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-long, blackberry, currant, cherry skin, and vanilla-spice finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Dark chewy fruit and toothsome tannins are balanced throughout with a touch baking spice on the finish.
87 points $15.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207184
Maryhill
2011 Merlot
Dark garnet color. Mellow aromas of baked berries and olives with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, cedar and earth finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A nicely balanced merlot that will be versatile at the table.
87 points $16.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207500
Picket Fence
2012 Malbec
Dark violet color. Rich aromas of black plum, cherry, black raspberry, and vanilla with a dryish medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, red and black plum, raspberry, cherry, and boysenberry finish with soft tannins and light oak. A fruit driven style with supple tannins and oak aging that let’s the fruit shine through.
87 points $17.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207264
Clos La Chance
2012 Cabernet Sauvingon
Opaque ruby color. Inviting aromas of cherry, currant, blackberry, and vanilla with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, crushed plum, cherry, blackberry, and currants finish with moderate oak. Black currant and cherry flavors are intertwined by toothsome tannins and a touch of vanilla.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207164
Robert Hall Winery
2012 Merlot
Opaque garnet color. Aromas of blackberry, black plum, baking spice, and vanilla with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, blackberry, plum, red currant, and dried raspberry finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A wine to drink for its bold, dark fruit flavors and taught, but integrated tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207185
Maryhill
2011 Proprietor's Reserve Malbec
Opaque violet color. Peppery aromas of black plum, blackberry, cracked pepper, and roast brisket with a soft, medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, black plum, blackberry, aged cheddar, and currants finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. The peppery, savory notes in this bold red may make you want to simply sip it as a meal on its own, but bring on some rich foods and you’ll have a robust and satisfying pairing.
87 points $24.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207506
Three Knights
2012 Malbec
Opaque violet color. Fruity aromas of cherry, plum, currant, and fresh tilled garden with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, breezy, plum, cherry, boysenberry, and dried strawberry finish with soft tannins and light oak. Smooth and juicy, grounded with well-integrated supple tannins and plenty of fruit from nose to finish.
87 points $25.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207112
Yorkville
2012 Rennie Vineyard Merlot
Ruby color. Lively aromas of cherry, raspberry, boysenberry, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry cider, raspberry jam, plum pudding, and blackberry finish with soft tannins and light oak. Pretty notes of cherry and berry, medium body and an effortless finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207114
Yorkville
2012 Rennie Vineyard Petit Verdot
Garnet violet color. Aromas of cherry, plum, blackberry, and garden soil with a lightly tannic, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long, black cherry, dried plum, wild strawberry, and violet finish with medium tannins and light oak. Juicy berry and cherry flavors are framed with toothsome tannins, dark floral notes and a lingering finish that reinforces all themes in this wine.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207348
Paradise Ridge
2011 Rockpile Vineyard, "Elevation" Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet opaque color. Bold aromas of smoked cherry, blackberry, currant, and black licorice with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, blackberry, vanilla, cherry, and boysenberry finish with moderate oak. Juicy and dry with taught food-loving tannins, plenty of dark fruit flavors and rich aromatics to take on a nicely marbled steak.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207134
deLorimier
2010 Reserve, Crazy Creek Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Rich aromas of black currant, black raspberry, crushed plum, and brown sugar-vanilla with a lightly tannic, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, black plum, cherry, currant, and vanilla finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Juicy cherry and berry aromatics lead to rich notes of blackberry, plum and vanilla, finishing with smooth, sweet, full tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207335
Maggio
2011 Merlot
Opaque ruby color. Bold aromas of black raspberry, black cherry, currants, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium-full body and a warming, interesting, medium length, boysenberry, mocha, blackberry, and baking spice finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Bold and unabridged with notes of blackberry, espresso, chocolate and currants are firing on multi-cylinders, not perfectly tuned, but nonetheless enjoyable.
86 points $8.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207502
Red Truck
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Oaky aromas of toasty praline and berry pie crust with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, breezy, cedar and gravel finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A nice everyday red.
86 points $11.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207227
Biltmore Estate
NV Merlot
Ruby black color. Bright aromas of berry danish and olive with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, simple, breezy, cranberry, grassy earth, and cedar finish with firm tannins and light oak. A nice dry, zippy merlot that will go well with Italian dishes.
86 points $12.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207498
Masked Rider
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet violet color. Aromas of clay, berry yogurt, and cranberry bread with a silky, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, breezy, cedar, beets, and spice finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. A sturdy sipper or table wine.
86 points $12.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207336
3 Girls
2011 Merlot
Opaque ruby color. Fruity aromas of lingonberry, crushed cherry, black raspberry, and baking spice with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, black raspberry, crushed plum, vanilla, and boysenberry finish with soft tannins and light oak. Ripe fruit and silky smooth is the name of the game here with a hint of spice on the nose and a warm kiss of vanilla on the finish.
86 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207337
3 Girls
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Rich aromas of black currant, black raspberry, cherry, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, black raspberry, boysenberry, plum, and vanilla bean finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Juicy vanilla-tinged cherry and ripe berry fruit come across as quite opulent given the wine’s fruity core, sweet oak and supple finish.
86 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207175
Maryhill
2011 Cabernet Franc
Brick red color. Bright aromas of cherry, black raspberry, plum, and vanilla with a velvety, medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry skin, crushed plum, blackberry, and dried herbs finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. Toothsome fruit tannins with notes of herbs and vanilla are framed by juicy, dark, generous black raspberry, cherries and plum.
86 points $16.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207497
Laurier
2011 Merlot
Brick red ruby color. Bold aromas of blackberry, black cherry, dried plum, and smoked brisket with a silky, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, cherry, boysenberry, blackberry, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and light oak. A touch of smoky cherrywood on the nose opens into soft, berry-filled flavors that are effortless to enjoy on their own or with picnic fare in the backyard.
86 points $17.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207338
Lodi Estate
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Violet opaque color. Rich aromas of black currant, blackberry, smoke, and black cherry with a lightly tannic, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium length, blackberry, black currant, dried strawberry, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Juicy and plump with fleshy oak notes of smoke and vanilla that finish in a jammy, soft finish.
86 points $22.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207324
French Valley Vineyard
2010 Merlot
Ruby color. Mild aromas of cherry, blackberry, baking spice, and dried strawberry with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long, cherry, blackberry, dried strawberries, and savory herbs finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Autumnal flavors of savory herbs and soft, ripe fruit blend seamlessly for a highly approachable, but interesting Merlot.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207325
French Valley Vineyard
2011 Merlot
Ruby color. Inviting aromas of black cherry, boysenberry, autumn leaves, and baking spice with a soft, dry light-to-medium body and a warming, interesting, medium length, cherry, blueberry, baking spice, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and moderate oak.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207254
Canyon Wind
2012 Petit Verdot
Opaque violet color. Bold aromas of blackberry, boysenberry, black cherry, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, blackberry, smoky vanilla, currants, and plum finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Bold and juicy crushed blackberry meets cherry and currants with a hint of spice, violets and smoke leading to finish nicely framed with toothsome tannins.
86 points $29.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207109
Yorkville
2012 Rennie Vineyard Cabernet Franc
Brick red color. Herbal aromas of cherry, dried strawberry, roses, and dried thyme with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, plum, cherry, raspberry pulp, and violets finish with soft tannins and light oak. Lovely accents of an old world Cabernet Franc couple beautifully with plenty of juicy red new world fruit.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207111
Yorkville
2012 Rennie Vineyard Malbec
Opaque violet color. Bold aromas of black raspberry, lingonberry, crushed plum, and vanilla with a soft, dry light-to-medium body and a smooth, simple, breezy, blackberry, plum skin, cherry, and currant finish with medium tannins and light oak. Dark fruit aromas and nearly opaque juice open into a soft, surprisingly light bodied Malbec with just a touch of oak and grape tannin to frame the pleasing finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207368
Ledson
2010 "Louise's Vineyard" Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Rich aromas of cherry, black currant, plum, and vanilla with a supple, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, black currant, cherry, blackberry, and baking spice finish with medium tannins and light oak. Classic black currant and cherry-centric Cabernet with well balanced vanilla and spice notes from oak aging, finishing with round tannin structure.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207401
Sunstone
2011 Reserve, Estate Bottled Merlot
Brick red color. Interesting aromas of black cherry, blackberry, plum, and vintage books with a velvety, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, damson plum, crushed cherry, wild raspberry, and pomegranate finish with soft tannins and light oak. Smooth and polished from the manicured oak to the silky plum and raspberry notes thru to the near tannin-free finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207202
Barefoot
NV Merlot
Garnet color. Fruity aromas of blackberry jam and plum pie with a soft, fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, cedar and earth finish with medium tannins and light oak. A nice everyday sipper or burger wine.
85 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207293
CK Mondavi
2012 Wildcreek Caonyon, "Scarlet Five" California
Garnet color. Mellow aromas of sour cherry, honeycomb, and mocha with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, currant tart and cedar finish with soft tannins and light oak.
85 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207487
Crane Lake
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Ruby color. Bright aromas of cherry, currant, plum, and baking spice with a lightly tannic, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, currant, cherry, blackberry, and toasty vanilla finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Classic currant and cherry flavors with plenty of toasty oak and ready-to-drink, supple tannins.
85 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207486
Coastal Ridge
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Aromas of berry chutney, spiced nuts, and herbs with a soft, dry-yet-fruity body and a smooth, breezy, crisp apple and edible flower finish with medium tannins and light oak. A solid wine for carefree sipping or the table.
85 points $8.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207334
Maggio
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque ruby color. Bold aromas of black cherry, currant, blackberry, and vanilla with a velvety, dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, boysenberry, cherry, cola, and black raspberry finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Fruit and vanilla forward style with supple tannins and plenty of cherry-boysenberry stuffing. finishing with soft, friendly tannins.
85 points $8.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207494
Harlow Ridge
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet color. Spicy aromas of black currant, red bell pepper, cherry, and cranberry with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, breezy, black currant, cherry skin, boysenberry, and plum finish with soft tannins and light oak. Juicy and straightforward in style, goes down smooth and easy thanks to the ripe tannins and restrained oak aging.
85 points $10.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207488
Fat Cat
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet black color. Muted aromas of berries and nutshells with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a brisk, cedar, dusty beet, and herbs finish with medium tannins and light oak. A solid sipper or everyday dinner wine.
85 points $11.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207204
Mirassou Sun
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet violet black color. Fruity aromas of blackberry custard and praline with a silky, fruity medium body and a vanilla nuts and cedar finish with soft tannins and light oak. A pleasant, easy going sipper.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207322
French Valley Vineyard
2006 Merlot
Red color. Fruity aromas of cherry, wild strawberry, dried raspberry, and boysenberry with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, sour cherry, crushed blackberry, dried herbs, and baking spice finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. Fill your home with the aromas of slow roasted aromatic vegetables and your favorite roast meat, then crack open a bottle of this moderately light, soft, herbal red with its balance of herbs, spice, fruit and refreshing Sangiovese-like acidity.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207266
Castoro Cellars
2012 Estate Grown Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque garnet color. Bright aromas of cherry, currant, blackberry, and spice with a soft, dry medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, blackberry, currant, plum, and crushed cherry finish with medium tannins and moderate oak. Classic black currant and cherry fruit are intertwined with crushed berries, a touch of oak and moderate tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207220
Chacewater
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet color. Inviting aromas of cherry, boysenberry, plum, and baking spice with a lightly tannic, medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, pomegranate, cranberry, cherry, and vanilla finish with soft tannins and light oak. Medium bodied Cabernet with bright red fruits, a note of red apple crispness and soft tannins.
85 points $19.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207183
Maryhill
2011 Proprietor's Reserve Merlot
Opaque garnet color. Muted aromas of cranberry scone, plums, and herbs with a supple, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, simple, breezy, vanilla custard, cedar, and earth finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A sturdy merlot for the table that will be better with age.
85 points $24.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207373
Spangler
2011 Cabernet Franc
Pale garnet color. Attractive aromas of cherry, strawberry, boysenberry, and herbs de Provence with a supple, dry body and a smooth, breezy, cherry, plum, herbs, and strawberry finish with soft tannins and light oak. Light and quaffable with pretty cherry and berry flavors, a touch of herbal typicity and silky tannins.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207115
Yorkville
2012 Rennie Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Opaque ruby color. Lively aromas of raspberry, plum, cherry, and vanilla with a lightly tannic, medium body and a smooth, interesting, lingonberry, cranberry, plum, and licorice finish with medium tannins and light oak. Bright and juicy with taught acidity and tannins that will stand up beautifully at the dinner table with meats, zesty tomato dishes and bold sandwiches.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207291
CK Mondavi
2012 Wildcreek Canyon Merlot
Ruby color. Bright aromas of chocolate graham cracker, baked berries, and cedar with a supple, light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, nuts, pear skin, and spiced plum finish with soft tannins and light oak. A solid sipper or pizza wine.
84 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207496
J.W. Morris
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Aromas of roasted nuts, chocolate, and berry danish with a soft, fruity medium body and a smooth, brisk, cedar, earth, and vanilla cream finish with medium tannins and light oak. A solid everyday sipper or table wine.
84 points $7.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207207
The Naked Grape
NV Cabernet Sauvignon
Ruby black color. Aromas of cherry tart, nougat, and smoked pepper with a soft, fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, cedar pencil shavings and earth finish with medium tannins and light oak. A pleasant, easy-going red.
84 points $7.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207206
Redwood Creek
NV Merlot
Garnet color. Mild aromas of spiced plums and peppery spice with a soft, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, cedar and potting soil finish with firm tannins and light oak. A reliable quaffer.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207490
Forest Glen
2012 Cabernet Sauvingon
Dark ruby black color. Mild aromas of honeycomb and cherries with a supple, body and a smooth, brisk, smoked nuts, cedar, and pickled beets finish with firm tannins and light oak. A straightforward everyday red.
84 points $10.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207504
Silver Ridge
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Garnet black color. Mellow aromas of berry tart, olives, and herbs with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy, currant jam, pomegranate, and cedar finish with hard tannins and moderate oak.
84 points $11.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207313
Easley
2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark ruby color. Mellow aromas of chocolate cherries, berry pie, and macadamia gelato with a supple, light-to-medium body and a tingling, breezy, cedar and nutskin finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A nice lively, table friendly cabernet.
84 points $14.95
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207268
Johnson Estate
2012 Freelings Creek Reserve Merlot
Ruby color. Aromas of salty roasted nuts, fresh marjoram, cranberry bread, and pencil lead with a soft, light-to-medium body and a smooth, simple, brisk, slate and pomegranate finish with firm tannins and light oak. A sturdy, dry table wine.
84 points $15.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207323
French Valley Vineyard
2008 Merlot
Garnet color. Rich aromas of black raspberry, licorice, cherry jam, and vanilla bean with a dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium length, stewed cherries, plum jam, strawberry compote, and vanilla bean finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. An over-the-top style with uber ripe fruit that is bold, forward and unabashed, ready for an eager palate or indulgent foods.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207292
CK Mondavi
2012 Wildcreek Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet color. Mild aromas of mulberries and praline with a supple, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brisk, apple, cherry pit, and toast finish with soft tannins and light oak.
83 points $6.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207485
Coastal Ridge
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet black color. Mellow aromas of charred nuts, tobacco, and toffee with a supple, bright, light-to-medium body and a brief cherry pit and parchment finish. A nice simple quaffer.
83 points $8.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207501
Red Truck
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark garnet violet black color. Mellow aromas of roasted nuts and berry pie crust with a supple, dryish light-to-medium body and a tingling, short, cherry pit and nutskin finish with firm tannins and moderate oak. A reliable everyday table wine.
83 points $11.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207374
Spangler
2011 Malbec
Brick red color. Fruity aromas of cherry, plum, lingonberry, and plum tomato with a soft, dryish light-to-medium body and a tingling, short, cherry, plum, and strawberry finish with soft tannins and light oak. A unique cool climate Malbec brings a quaffable everyday Bordeaux style to the new world with light berry and plum flavors and notes of spicy cherry.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207320
French Valley Vineyard
2004 Merlot
Bronze color. Herbal aromas of cherry, black currant, autumn leaves, and brown spice with a silky, dry medium body and a smooth, medium length, dried herbs, cherry, dried strawberry, and red pepper finish with light oak. Soft and supple with mature flavors of cherry and strawberry, coupled with dried herbs and a hint of bell pepper, giving an old world wine drinking experience.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207517
Cunningham Vineyards
2012 Dry Red Chambourcin
Dark garnet black color. Bright aromas of tomato leaf, wild berries, pepper, and pencil with a supple, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, raw cranberry, sandalwood, and grassy earth finish with soft tannins and light oak. A rustic red that needs food, especially game.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207203
Gallo Family Vineyards
NV Merlot
Ruby color. Mellow aromas of berry yogurt and jam and vanilla cream with a soft, fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, short finish with hard tannins and light oak. A well priced quaffer.
81 points $4.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
207051
Treleaven
2012 Merlot
Ruby color. Aromas of chocolate, berry pastry, and roasted nuts with a soft, dryish light-to-medium body and a simple, brisk, plum skin, gravel, and leaves finish with medium tannins and light oak. A very dry, structured table wine.
81 points $16.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
Shortcut: http://www.tastings.com/Calendar-Wine/Review-2014-09-03-US-Red-Bordeaux-Varietals.aspx