Category Archives: Wine Reviews

Daou 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Review

A wine from Paso Robles we picked this up at our local wine store for around $15. Recommend decanting it or letting it breath for around 30 minutes if you have the time.

A very full bodied wine with a wide spectrum of tastes. Has a hint of leather with a little smoke. Best with Italian food, probably not so good with meat.

The XPRT wine review rating 88 out of 100.



2009 Yalumba Shiraz Viognier Eden Valley Wine Review

Pass on thins one. One of the worst bottles I have had in a while. Dry in a bad way and strong after taste.

The XPRT wine review rating 65 out of 100.


2008 Longboard Merlot from Dakine Vineyard

Truth up front, bought this wine cause the label looked cool and the local wine reviewer had given it over 90 points.

Great label, great wine. Let it breath for a while, 20 mins or so and it makes a good difference. For an ’08 merlot bottled from the Russian River Valley this was a great wine all the way around.

The label says “wine waves and soul” and this wine has each of those. A great balance, smooth taste and great finish. Paired it with a creamy pasta dish and it was perfect. At well under $20 definitely worth a try.

The XPRT wine review rating 90 out of 100.



2011 Dark Hundred Red Wine Review

One word, wow, this wine was fantastic the minute we pulled the cork and only got better as it breathed. Very smooth with a great clean finish. This is one of those wines that would go well with just about any food.

Vinted and bottled in Sonoma County and well under $20 at retail you should stock up on this the first chance you get.

The XPRT wine review rating 93 out of 100.



2009 Canblau Red Wine from Spain Wine Review

This is a great blend of 40% Mazuelo, 40% Syrah and 20% Garnacha from Spain. The winery, Cellars Can Blau has several vineyards in the hills of Montsant. This wine has a great depth with unbelievable fruit flavors and a great long complex finish. At under $17 at retail you have to pick this up.

The XPRT wine review rating 92 out of 100.



2009 Villa Antinori Toscana Wine Review

Wanted to try a new Italian wine and this one was it. This 2009 Toscana was great out of the first glass. Letting it breathe made it even better.

Very smooth with a very solid red wine taste with a hint of cherry. The wine is produced with autochthon and international grapes traditionally grown in Tuscany in this vineyard. At under $20 this is a must have.

The XPRT wine review rating 90 out of 100.



2011 La Pincoya Cabernet Sauvignon

Picked this Chilean wine up at our local wine store and very glad we did.

La Pincoya is southern Chile’s goddess of the sea. Those that have seen her say she is a beautiful young woman with long red hair. She usually appears wearing sea algae and walking or dancing by the seashore. She comes to sailors to guide them when they get lost or stranded.

This was a great wine the minute we pulled the cork. We didn’t let it breath long before drinking, but it can only continue to improve if you give it the chance. Very typical deep red color with black cherry and a hint of eucalyptus. This is definitely one you should pick up when you see it and under $20.

The XPRT wine review rating 92 out of 100.



2010 Gen5 Merlot Wine Review

Wanted to try something new, and decided on the 2010 Gen5 Merlot from Clarksburg and glad we did. Twist cap and great right out of the bottle. Cherry and plum flavors and a light smooth finish. Let it breath 15-20 mins and it will make a difference. For under $20 this is a very good wine.

The XPRT wine review rating 90 out of 100.



2011 Ranch 32 Cooper’s Blend Wine Review

Wanted to try this label since first seeing it and glad we did. At under $15 this is definitely a great deal. It is a blend of 5 varietals and very smooth. With hints of blackberry and plum it has a great finish.

TheXPRT wine review rating 91 out of 100.

2011 Line Shack Cabernet Sauvignon

Purchased this bottle at our local wines and more. Wanted to try something new from Paso Robles. The words “line shacks” were created to provide shelter, food and rest. While we left this bottle open for almost an hour before pouring, it left a lot to be desired. It had a very musty smell when opening leaving a lot to be desired on the pallet. While I am always about the local vintner, you should pass on this one.

The XPRT wine review rating 80 out of 100.



2009 Vino Nobile di Montepilciano

Bought this at the local Total Wines and More on a hunch and wanted to try some more wines from Italy. It was under $20 and is 90% Sangiovese and 10% Canaiolo.

First off, open it and let it breath although that won’t help a lot it did help. Consider this a very basic red wine at an ok price. Pass on it if you see it.

The XPRT wine review rating 80 out of 100.



2010 Ancient Peaks Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Review

Purchased this bottle at our local wine store on a hunch. I knew 2010 was a great year in Paso Robles and the reds were fantastic.

This is farmed from the Margarita Vineyard on Santa Margarita Ranch.

Layered flavors of blackberry and black currant with supple tannins make this a great wine as soon as it is opened. At under $20 this is a must have.

Smooth, clean with a great finish.

The XPRT wine review rating 91 out of 100.



2007 Vina Eguia Reserva Rioja Wine Review

Bought this at Costco today. From the Spanish vineyard Bodegas Egula. Bought it based on the sign indicating 90 pts from wine spectator. Be sure and open it and let it breath a good 20-30 mins. Aged in French and American oak barrels with bright red cherry color. You can definitely taste the licorice and a bit of spice.

The XPRT wine review rating 87 out of 100.



2010 Radius Washington State Merlot Wine Review

Came across something new at our local wine store. While I am not a regular of Washington State wines, this one is actually very good. Produced and bottled by Radius Wines in Walla Walla, WA.

It is definitely a little sweeter than your typical merlot and does not need a whole lot of time to breath.

With its sweet cherries, plum and vanilla aroma it is definitely worth a try. We paid under $15 for it.

TheXPRT wine review rating 87 out of 100.




2011 Red Knot Signature Shiraz McLaren Valley Australia Wine Review

Purchased this bottle this past weekend on a chance that we have always had good luck with McLaren Valley. This one did not disappoint.

Let it breath for a while but not for a long time. This wine is very smooth and subtle. The distinct strawberry and blackberry fruit is evident from the first poor.

Be sure to try this one out for under $15 at your local wine store.

The XPRT wine review rating 86 out of 100.



Kirkland Signature Series 2009 Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Review

We continue to be pleased with the Kirkland Signature Series line of wines. This was new in our local Costco store this past week and was under $15 for the bottle. As in most of our recent purchases this was a very good bottle of wine. This is definitely a heavy cab with distinct notes of black cherries. There is that hint of spice, vanilla and cedar. Be sure and let it breath for a good 20-30 minutes or drink it the minute you open it, either way you won’t be disappointed.

The XPRT wine review rating 90 out of 100.



Kirkland Signature Series Napa Valley 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Wine Review

We continue to purchase and try good quality wines from Costco under the Kirkland Signature label. This new Cabernet is no exception to the quality. This was made available a few weeks ago in our local Costco. It is a really deep Cabernet with intense fruit flavors. The black fruit with chocolate, spice and a hint of vanilla were evident from the first taste. Open this bottle and let it breath for a good 20-30 mins or more if you can, it will make a big difference before drinking. This definitely has a long finish like the bottle indicates.

The XPRT wine review rating 90 out of 100.




2005 Marques de Casa Concha Chilean Merlot Wine Review

This was the last bottle in local wine store in Newport Beach. Retail was $19.99 so thought we would take it to an Italian restaurant. First and foremost, let it breath. This one had been setting for a while and 20 mins open made a huge difference.

You can definitely taste the hint of chocolate and vanilla which are both extremely strong when first opened but balanced out well after breathing for about 20 minutes. From the Rapel Valley in Chile this limited production Merlot should have been a lot more.
Pass on this one of you see it.

TheXPRT wine review rating 82 out of 100.



2009 Kirkland Signature Series Amador County Grandmere Old Vine Zinfandel Wine Review

The Kirkland Signature Series of wines have definitely been some of our favorites, but this new one from Amador County will not be one of the top on our list.

While we are big fans of Zinfandels in our household and this wine boasts of being produced from vines over 50 years old it left quite a bit to be desired.

From the time we opened it and poured the first glass you could definitely taste the raspberry, cherry and chocolate in the wine.

Probably will pass on this one the next time we are in Costco.

The XPRT wine review rating 85 out of 100.



2009 Manzanita Creek Three Vines Zinfandel Wine Review

This one caught our attention at Costco. The sell sheet on the table indicated it scored 98 points! Wow, $12.99 a bottle and 98 points, gotta try this!?! Glad we did.

When you first open the bottle the peppery, plum aromas definitely come out, in fact I wondered how this could score a 98. We decanted it about 30-45 mins and it made a big difference. This cuvée from Sonoma County Zinfandels will not disappoint. While it would be hard pressed to score a 98 in my book it is a strong thexprt 92.

For $12.99 a bottle we will definitely be buying more than a few more bottles.

The XPRT wine review rating 92 out of 100.



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