1) Faustino Gran Reserva 2001, Rioja, Spain ($30)
This highly rated wine is a rare example of a declsious vintage at a reasonable price. A balanced mix of 85% Tempranillo, 10% Grenache, and 5% Mazuelo it is intense cherry in color and complex on the nose. The extra body and complexity lends itself well to late summer foods and those last few BBQs you are sneaking in. More powerful than many wines from Rioja it is truly a favorite of ours and it one that matches to late summer and fall exceptionally!
Our Rating: 9.75/10
2) Antionri Guado al Tasso II Bruciato 2014, Tuscany, Italy ($22)
Similar to the Faustino this is a lovely blend, albeit with different grapes. Predominately Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with a little bit of Syrah it is highly balanced with strong Bordeaux characteristics. Nicely acidic it pairs wonderfully with similar foods to the Faustino and has a similar red fruit characteristic on the nose, especially raspberry and strawberry. Its weight is big enough to tame a big grilled steak as well as a more delicate and fatty pasta dish.
Our Rating: 9.25/10
3) Roger Sabon Chateauneuf-du-Pape Resserve 2015, Rhone, France ($39)
Another blend (seeing a trend here….), this bottle is a mix of 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, and 10% Mourvedre (which is the classic three grapes from the southern Rhone in France). As a whole Chateauneuf-du-Pape are some of our favorite wines in the whole world. Spicy and fruity on the nose the have great complexity from the unique blends of every producer and capture a wonderful old world style. Not a ‘big’ wine, the acidity and florality on the nose and palate is notable as are the berries and tannin on the palate. We love this with lamb, beef, game meats, cheese, as well as roasted chicken.
Our Rating: 9.0/10