Dead Soldiers: Avalon Cabernet 2005, Faust Cabernet 2005, Monte Antico 2006, San Simeon Chardonnay 2006

March 8, 2010 Daily DrinkersHigh End ValuesSpecial OccasionsWines under $10  No comments

Tonight I start my weekly dead soldiers post.  Sundays or Mondays I will be summarizing the prior week in wine with my "dead soliders" post.  I've already blogged about a couple of these wines, and the other two are likely to show up in later posts so we will leave it at this:  3 under $10 wines (Avalon, Monte Antico and San Simeon) and a $50 wine (Faust).

It's not every week that I drink a $50 wine, but wow- this is a great one.  If you can still find the 2005 Faust Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley at under $50, get a few bottles.  It's made by Quintessa and shows as such.  Avalon Cabernet is a great go-to wine that is widely available at groceries and wine stores.  And the other two have already been reviewed.

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Great White Deal- San Simeon Chardonnay for $9

March 6, 2010 Daily DrinkersWines under $10  One comment

Tonight I made the mistake of not decanting my red (Faust Cabernet 2005- coming in a later post), so I had a glass of my wife's Chardonnay while the red opens up.  What a great surprise!  The San Simeon Chardonnay is from Monterey, and comes entirely from the Riboli family estate vineyards in the Arroyo Seco appellation.  This is a Chardonnay worthy of medium term aging and shows much better than it's price point.  I just got back from a trip to Santa Barbara county where they make a ton of great chards and this stands up to the best of them.

A bit of citrus and mineral on the nose is followed by a buttery mouthfeel and a nice touch of oak and smoke on the finish.  My wife also notes a floral quality in the wine which I totally agree with.

Bottom line: This Chardonnay stands up with

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Monte Antico Rosso Toscana 2006- 90WS under $10

March 5, 2010 Daily DrinkersWines under $10  2 comments

One of my favorite daily drinkers is Monte Antico 2006.  As you can see from the picture of tonight's dinner, it's great with pizza, but it really shows much better than your average Tuscan pizza wine.  At 85% Sangiovese (with the rest Cabernet and Merlot), it's very dry but has nice fruit once it opens up.

One of my favorite wine retailers, LA Wine Company, is currently selling this great wine value- which ranked #61 on the 2009 Wine Spectator Top 100- for only $8.99.  At that price, I would (or should I say did), pick up a case or two.  This is a very solid wine value.

2009 Wine Spectator Top 100: #61

"Bright plum, dried cherry and flowers on the nose. Full-bodied, with fine tannins and refined berry and cherry flavors. Drink now." (WS)

Monte Antico Rossa

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2006 BV Tapestry- RP93 for under $25

March 3, 2010 Cellar WorthyHigh End ValuesSpecial Occasions  One comment

For my first post I want to bring to my loyal readers' attention a great deal for a major Napa producer.  I brought this wine to Chapeau! in San Francisco ($20 corkage) and although it's very young now, it shows great potential.  It's complexity is currently hidden by strong tannins right, but give it three or four years and it's going to be very good.  It's dense, big and fruity.

BV Tapestry sells for $45+ at the grocery but right now, CityWineCellar.com has it for $24.99.  That's a crazy price.  Pick up a few bottles, put it away for a while, and you will be rewarded.


2006 BV Tapestry- City Wine Cellars $24.99 + shipping


93 Points - Robert Parker


"The 2006 Proprietary

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