February 2022 - South America

February 2022 - South America
This month's Wine feature is South American Wines

South America Reviews

Salentein 2018 Numina Gran Corte Red Blend Malbec
93 points
$40
Dark ruby-garnet color. Aromas and flavors of red cassis, plum, and incense with a satiny, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and an effortless, complex, medium-long finish with touches of figs, dates, sun dried tomato, and spiced chocolate with moderate oak flavor. A bold, complex and mysterious red packed with exciting flavors.
Killka 2020 Museum Series Malbec
92 points
$14
Best Buy
Dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate fondue with blueberries and cake, dark roasted nuts, espresso, and eucalyptus leaf with a supple, bright, fruity medium body and a polished, engaging, medium-long finish with accents of black raspberry cobbler, creme anglaise, and spiced craisins with silky tannins and moderate oak flavor. A juicy, jammy, appetizing malbec for effortless enjoyment and pairings.
92 points $14 Best Buy
La Playa 2021 Estate Series Viognier
90 points
$9
Best Buy
Golden straw color. Fruity, floral aromas and flavors of apricot chutney, peony and bee pollen, and tangerine with a supple, tangy, fruity medium body and a graceful, interesting, long finish conveying accents of peach and clementine, almond skin, and yellow apple with no oak flavor. A very fruity and mouthwatering viognier that is sure to please.
90 points $9 Best Buy
Intipalka 2021 Valle Del Sol Syrah
90 points
$13
Best Buy
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of ripe plum, fragrant white flowers, and blackberry pie with a slightly chewy, vibrant, dry medium body and a captivating, medium-long finish with elements of hints of caramel pastry. Juicy, firm and showcasing great varietal character.
90 points $13 Best Buy
Portillo 2020  Sauvignon Blanc
89 points
$10
Best Buy
Silvery emerald straw color. Tropical aromas and flavors of white grapefruit and guava relish, gooseberry jam on brioche, coconut water, and bell pepper with a silky, bright, light-to-medium body and a smooth, delightful, long finish that shows notes of tropical fruit salad and green apple with no oak flavor. A delicious and satisfying sauvignon blanc that will be great sipping on its own or with lighter fare.
89 points $10 Best Buy
Intipalka 2021 Valle Del Sol Malbec
89 points
$13
Best Buy
Violet color. Aromas of brazil nut, chocolate graham cracker, spiced plums, and pine with a lightly tannic, vibrant, dryish medium-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-long dried herbs, peppercorns, and aniseed finish with grippy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A rich, concentrated Malbec with serious power; pair with bold grilled meats.
89 points $13 Best Buy
Axel 2019 Red Blend Maule Valley
89 points
$17
Black ruby color. Aromas and flavors of plum pie, hints of peony blossom, coconut cream, and chicory with a satiny, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a silky, appealing, medium-length finish with touches of hints of hibicus and dark chocolate with moderate oak flavor. A juicy, highly quaffable Chilean red with floral nuance and contemporary style.
Salentein 2021 Reserve Chardonnay
89 points
$18
Golden straw color. Aromas and flavors of roasted nuts, dried herbs, honey-drizzled apple, and lemon balm with a supple, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light body and a seamless, fast finish with moderate oak flavor. A juicy and pleasing, Chablis-style Chardonnay for the table and beyond.
La Playa 2021 Reserva Sauvignon Blanc
88 points
$13
Best Buy
Straw color. Aromas and flavors of melon and pineapple rind, meyer lemon, cut grass, and tarragon and cactus with a soft, bright, fruity light-to-medium body and a seamless, interesting, medium-long finish revealing impressions of kiwi and honeyed pomelo with fine, fruit tannins and no oak flavor. A tasty and easy drinking sauvignon blanc that is sure to please.
88 points $13 Best Buy
Axel 2018  Carmenere
88 points
$17
Garnet black color. Smoky aromas and flavors of grilled tomato, watermelon, cherry jam, and paprika with a satiny, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length finish with impressions of chocolate-covered cherries, raisins, candied citrus peels, and green tomato with light oak flavor. A smoky, earthy Chilean red for the table.
Intipalka 2019 Gran Reserva No.1 Ica Valley
88 points
$49
Brick red color. Aromas and flavors of paprika, pickled plums, blackberry jam, and creme anglaise with a slightly chewy, vibrant, dry medium-to-full body and a warming, amusing, medium-length finish evoking notes of graphite and coffee bean with moderate oak flavor. A firm, juicy red blend with a dry and table friendly style; peppery and pairable.
La Playa 2019 Estate Series Red Blend Colchagua Valley
87 points
$9
Best Buy
Deep purple color. Aromas of blackberry jam and peppercorns with a lightly tannic, crisp, dryish medium body and an effortless, medium-length balsamic reduction, pomegranate, and hibiscus tea finish with moderate oak flavor. A solid choice for weeknight dinner pairings.
87 points $9 Best Buy
Portillo 2020  Cabernet Sauvignon
87 points
$10
Best Buy
Black violet color. Aromas of licorice, plum sauce, and hints of sesame with a lightly tannic, crisp, dry medium-to-full body and an even, brisk toast, carob, and black tea finish with moderate oak flavor. A tight dry red with bold tannins; let this aerate prior to serving.
87 points $10 Best Buy
La Playa 2019 Reserva Claret Red Blend Colchagua Valley
87 points
$13
Best Buy
Garnet black color. Smoky aromas and flavors of smoked meats, roasted red pepper, and pomegranate glaze with a satiny, crisp, fruity light body and a warming, medium finish with moderate oak flavor. An earthy Chilean red with savory vibes.
87 points $13 Best Buy
La Playa 2019 Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon
87 points
$13
Best Buy
Ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate mint, cranberry and sweet potato chutney, eucalyptus honey and shito, and hint of rose water with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a sleek, interesting, medium-length finish displaying accents of dark berries and nuts with fine tannins. A rock solid South American cabernet that will be very versatile.
87 points $13 Best Buy
Intipalka 2020 Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon-Syrah
87 points
$17
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of bay leaf, cured meats, clove, and black tea with a lightly tannic, vibrant, dry medium-full body and a warming, captivating, medium-length finish that shows accents of baked plums and tobacco. A chewy, pairable red for the table.
Paradise Hills Vineyard NV Riomonte Malbec
87 points
$37
Ruby black color. Aromas of flame-grilled red pepper, earth, and cured meats with a satiny, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an even, compelling, medium-length red cassis, cedar, black tea, and bay finish with moderate oak flavor. An earthy, highly pairable Chilean Red that offers stylish herbal notes with bright, tangy fruit.
Salentein 2020 Numina Malbec
87 points
$40
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate coconut macaroon, crusty berry tart, and parmesan herb biscuit with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, captivating, medium-long finish with notes of toffee, cappuccino, and cedar bark with moderate oak flavor. A poised, well-made reserve-style malbec with lots of versatility and promise.
Salentein 2015 Single Vineyard El Tomillo Estate Malbec
87 points
$57
Garnet black color. Aromas of dried berries, toasted coconut with brown butter, olive and ajvar with paprika, and hint of vinaigrette with a supple, fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long pickled beets, morello cherry and pepepr copmpote, roasted nuts, and granite and wet earth finish with dusty, firm tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. A rather serious and reserved Malbec built for the cellar; give this some time.
Portillo 2020  Malbec
86 points
$10
Best Buy
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of boysenberry compote, spiced brazil nuts, chocolate mint, and mossy earth with a supple, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a graceful, medium-length finish that presents shades of huckleberry jam on toast, chocolate craisins, and raspberry tea with crunchy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A tangy and toothsome malbec with bright fruit and acidity.
86 points $10 Best Buy
Intipalka 2021 Valle Del Sol Tannat
86 points
$13
Best Buy
Black garnet color. Aromas and flavors of licorice, dried berries, and marasca cherries with a tannic, crisp, dry full body and a peppery, medium-length finish. A bold, chewy red for rich pairings.
86 points $13 Best Buy
Intipalka 2020 Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon-Petit Verdot
86 points
$17
Deep purple color. Aromas of tobacco, graphite, and plum skins with a slightly chewy, vibrant, dry medium-full body and an interesting, medium-long juicy cherry, cedar, and peppercorns finish with moderate oak flavor. A firm, dry Bordeaux Varietal Red for steak
La Playa 2021 Estate Series Rose Maule Valley
85 points
$9
Khaki orange color. Fruity aromas and flavors of strawberry jelly on buttered wheat toast, tamarind, and nut brittle with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium body and an even, compelling, medium-long finish displaying accents of watermelon granita, almond meal, and fresh herbs with no oak flavor. A very attractive and uncomplicated rose with pure and rather irresistible strawberry flavors.
La Playa 2021 Estate Series Un-Oaked Chardonnay
85 points
$9
Straw green color. Aromas and flavors of green apple and fresh pressed cider with a supple, tangy, dryish light body and a tingling, rapid finish with accents of cinnamon rolls and tangy lemons with moderate oak flavor. A juicy, zippy everyday Chardonnay.
La Playa 2019 Reserva Carmenere
85 points
$13
Garnet black color. Earthy aromas and flavors of toasted nuts and coconut, dried berries and peppers, and aloe with a soft, dryish light body and a tingling, quirky, short finish with touches of mulch with light oak flavor. A wild and wooly red for the hunter’s table.
Salentein 2020 Reserve Malbec
85 points
$18
Garnet black color. Aromas and flavors of dusty gravel road, mulberry tree, pickled root vegetables, and raspberry with cajeta with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a sleek, brisk finish with accents of goji berry, persimmon, parchment, and incense ash with dusty, barky tannins and light oak flavor. A dry and earthy malbec for the table.
Bodegas Belgrano NV  Malbec
84 points
Dusty ruby color. Aromas of raspberry coulis on vanilla gelato with a round, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a polished, delightful, medium-length black cassis and blackberry leaf tea finish with moderate oak flavor. Notes of plump berries and creamy vanilla mingle in this easy-to-drink Mendoza Malbec.
Portillo 2020  Pinot Noir
84 points
$10
Dark garnet color. Aromas and flavors of white chocolate maple nut fudge, beeswax, and mushroom with a supple, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy finish that shows accents of cocoa-dusted orange, morello cherries, and pumace with dusty tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. A dry, sturdy pinot that will work nicely at the table.
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