#3 | Zaca Mesa Winery - Santa Ynez Valley Syrah, 2014.

Overview: Zaca Mesa - Santa Ynez Valley Syrah, 2014. Drank during the summer of 2018, Paired with dinner, enjoyed with my fiancée.

 

Producer: Zaca Mesa Winery
Country: USA
Region: Santa Ynez Valley, CA
Varietal Composition: 100% Syrah
Vintage: 2014
Avg. Cost: $19.99

 

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

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Look: Upon inspection, the wine had a very dark purple hue, with softer maroon tones on the edges. Dark hues, no opacity. Medium viscosity.

 

Smell: Heavy scents of peppercorn and black fruits on the nose.  Slightly musky smell at first, which disappeared after running it through an aerator.

 

Taste: Peppery taste at first, followed by subtle notes of blackberry and jammy/plum tastes. Medium-light grip on tongue. Acidity balanced well, not too dry, not sweet. Well structured. 

 

Conclusion: Pretty kickin' Cali Syrah for $20. California isn't known for its Syrahs...yet. Still would have reached for the Australian Syrah had I not been cash-strapped...but all in all, not a bad way to spend $20. Nothing to write home about, but nothing to complain about either.

 

Occasion: Drank on a summer night in June while having dinner with my fiancée, paired with kimchi and grilled skirt steak and jalapenos. 

#2 | Mas de Daumas Gassac- Moulin de Gassac Guilhem Rosé, 2017.

Overview: Mas de Daumas Gassac - Moulin de Gassac Guilhem Rosé, 2017. Drank in 2018 in the backyard on a Friday evening while Bri drank Gose beer.

Producer: Mas de Daumas Gassac
Country: France
Region: Languedoc-Roussillon
Varietal: 50% Syrah, 50% Carignan
Vintage: 2017
Avg. Cost: $9.99

Rating: 3.3 out of 5

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Look: Upon inspection, the wine was light salmon color, very opaque hue. The wine has more peach/pink tones on the edges, and shifted into a a light golden color, similar to what you'd see in a classic white wine in the middle. Ultra low viscosity.

 

Smell: Heavy scents of peach and apricot on the nose. Cherry scents on the back end after the bottle had been opened for 30+ minutes.

 

Taste: All in all, not a bad little budget rosé. Packs a decent punch for the price point. I'd be probably only roll the dice on this low of a priced Rosé from the Languedoc-Roussillon or Provence regions of France. Super fruity, dry, and acidic. Not many layers. Had a decent grip on the palette after the second glass, mediums tannins on tongue. First prominent taste was blackberry, subtle strawberry and grapefruit, followed later in the tasting by light cherry flavor. 

 

Conclusion: N/A

 

Occasion: Drank on a perfect summer night in June while having drinks outside on a Friday night with my fiancée, after receiving a small raise at my job.

#1 | Domaine Specht - Vin D’ Alsace Pinot Gris, 2015

Overview: Domaine Specht - Vin D’ Alsace Pinot Gris, 2015. Drank in 2018 w/ Bri, paired with dinner.

Producer: Domaine Specht
Country: France
Region: Alsace
Varietal: Pinot Gris
Vintage: 2015
Avg. Cost: $16.99

Rating: 3.7 out of 5

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Look: Upon inspection, the wine was close to being clear in color, with a soft, light yellow tone that faded to an even more subtle soft green undertone, similar to the color of a pear. Very little visible viscosity (tears).

 

Smell: My sense of smell was plagued while drinking this wine. This wine was to pair with our dinner, specifically Gochujang chicken wings and sweet potato fries. The grease from the chicken baking in the oven caused the whole house to get overwhelmingly smokey. I even spent 30 minutes outside prior to drinking to attempt and reset my sense of smell but to no avail. However, upon uncorking, the cork had a heavy first scent of peach. We finished the bottle around the campfire, so again, more overpowering smokey scents. 

 

Taste: When it came to taste, this wine really delivered and paired perfectly with the dinner. Light, fun, sweet, refreshing, crisp. I tasted fruity notes of peach, and what I believe to be either pear or apple, with light citrus notes, most likely citrus zest - or perhaps faint lemon. Almond like finish, I assume from aging in the oak barrel. 

 

Occasion: Drank on a perfect summer night in June while having dinner outside with my fiancé, in remembrance of Anthony Bourdain, who passed away in Strasbourg, France, 45-minutes from where this wine was produced. Paired with baked Gochujang chicken wings and sweet potato fries.