98 Points - limited
One of Chile's finest wines, the Almaviva is a delicious Cabernet blend.
Almaviva is a joint venture between Concha Y Toro and the Rothschild family, begun in 1998. Like her father before her saw in the Opus One project, Baroness Philippine de Rothschild saw the potential to create a world-class claret from these own-rooted, 37 year old vines on purely alluvial soils high in the “Puente Alto” zone of the Maipo Valley.
98 Points Decanter: "Founded by Baron Philippe de Rothschild and Concha y Toro in Puente Alto, Almaviva excels with its Bordeaux-inflected reds created by Michel Friou. Its 2019 cuveé – 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Carmenere, and the rest made up of Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Merlot – enjoyed an extraordinary year resulting in a fragrant nose of dark fruit, lavender, eucalyptus, blackcurrant and cigar box aromas. The refined palate has a fresh core and velvety feel."
97 Points James Suckling: "The aromas of iodine and blackcurrants with roses and lavender make the wine extremely perfumed. It’s full-bodied with a tight, fine-tannined palate that shows linear flow through the center palate. It’s vertical and integrated, adding depth and serious quality to the wine."
95+ Points Robert Parker: The 2019 Almaviva is a blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Carmenère (from Peumo), 5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot and 1% Merlot, higher in Carmenere and reflecting a warmer and drier vintage when then bottled wine reached 15% alcohol. It fermented with destemmed grapes in stainless steel and matured in French oak barrels, 75% of them new, for 18 months. Here, the Carmenere adds herbal freshness and changes the aromatic profile when compared with the 2019 Epu. 2019 was a good year for Carmenere, which suffers in extremely warm years like 2017, but in moderately warm years like 2019, the variety displays that herbal character and has good density. It's full-bodied and round, with saturated tannins, tasty, spicy and long, with a dry, serious finish. It's balsamic, with notes of camphor and a silky and velvety texture
★ 95 Points
A blockbuster new Cabernet blend from Hestan Vineyards. Usually only available to mailing list members we have a small amount of this tiny production Cabernet while our allocation lasts!
95 Points - limited
CADE is Plumpjack's hot new winery on Howell Mountain. Limited.
95 Points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): "The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is a total knock-out. Winemaker Danielle Cyrot has done a tremendous job taming the Howell Mountain tannins. There is still plenty of power and structure, but all the elements are so well balanced here. Inky dark red fruit, iron, new leather, blood orange, spice, a kiss of new French oak and game build in an opulent, brooding Cabernet loaded with personality."
95+ Points Jeb Dunnuck: "The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate comes all from the estate on Howell Mountain and is 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Malbec, and the balance Merlot and Petit Verdot. More blue fruits, bay leaf, candied violets, orange blossom, and floral notes emerge from this full-bodied beauty, which reveals a rounded, sexy texture, polished tannins, and a great finish. Give bottles just a few years in the cellar and it's going to keep for 15+."
Brix26 Inside Scoop: PlumpJack's new winery, CADE, is up on Napa Valley's Howell Mountain and is turning out some fantastricly rich mountain Cabernets. On your next visit to the Napa Valley we recommend a visit to taste their wines from the stunning views at the winery.
New from Pingus!
Second wine from Dominio de Pingus who make the legendary Pingus Red. Limited.
Harmonious and elegant, this is a beautiful second wine from the renowned Dominio de Pingus. Dark cherry nose with earthy and coffee nuances; pure, concentrated fruit on the palate. Like those other esteemed names, Pingus has a quality that is often lacking in today's "modern" wines-a sense of utter individuality. There is no other wine in the world, let alone Spain, that is quite like Pingus, and that singularity is one of the fundamental requirements for great wine.
96 Points Robert Parker: "The cask sample of 2019 Flor de Pingus is truly impressive and really shows what Sisseck was talking about: ripeness (more blue fruit), finesse and freshness, with super elegant and round tannins. There is great balance, and it feels very complete. They took the risk to harvest when nobody else was harvesting; I think they made the right decision, but it was not without risk. This is a superb interpretation of the conditions of the 2019 vintage. A mini-Pingus at a very different price."
The 2019 Flor de Pingus is a mosaic of different vineyards in the village of La Horra in Burgos, totaling some 35 hectares. As all these are estate vineyards, they were much better controlled than those used for PSI, and the wine shows it in a challenging vintage like this one. It has a slightly different profile from your average Ribera, with better freshness. The wine had only been in bottle for around one month, and the wine is open and expressive. There are some roasted aromas, black cherries, blackberries and plenty of spices with hints of smoke. It’s also a lighter version of Flor, and whether this will be as long-lived as other vintages, it’s still a question mark, as the extra acidity might give it a longer life than expected. In any case, give it some time in bottle to finish integrating the oak and drink over the next four-five years.