Red Wines    Merlot    Napa Valley    California   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Swanson Oakville Merlot 2008
Swanson Oakville Merlot 2008
(search item no. 114362)

PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $32.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points
2006 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 92 points
2005 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 94 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2008 Swanson Oakville Merlot is a charming wine, reminiscent more of the Right Bank of Bordeaux than Napa Valley. The nose offers black cherry, plum, and dried red cherry with notes of well-integrated sweet oak and mocha. Firm, ripe tannins characteristic of our Oakville Estate vineyard fill the palate nicely. In the mouth look for raspberry, black cherry, and red licorice. The Petite Verdot contributes a graceful top note of verve and spice. Velvet-smooth and long on the finish. Should continue to improve in the bottle with the optimum drinkability continuing through 2017.
My Notes:

Additional wines from Swanson:

About Swanson:

Founded by W. Clarke Swanson, Jr. in 1985, Swanson Vineyards consists of 140 acres of estate vineyards in the Oakville area of Napa Valley. The winery produces Merlot, Syrah, Sangiovese, Pinot Grigio, a late harvest Semillon, plus their flagship proprietary blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, called "Alexis."


Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Chile    South America   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Primus The Blend 2004
Primus The Blend 2004
(search item no. 87133)
Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $12.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 James Suckling rating: 93 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 91 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
1998 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Number 5 on the Wine.com 100 of 2007!

Primus is a racy blend of Carmenère, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon made from the highest quality grapes at the Veramonte Estate. It showcases the rare Carmenère variety, a distinctive grape that has found its home in Chile.

Well structured with mature, ripe fruit that exhibits an evolved complexity with a seamless blending of the three varietals. Velvety, with a medium body and smooth, yet powerful tannins.

Chile claims the lost Bordeaux grape
Once a widely planted variety in Bordeaux, Carmenère was all but forgotten after the phylloxera outbreak in the 1880s virtually wiped it off the European wine map. The happy news is that someone carried the vine (also known as Grande Vidure and Grande Carmenet) to Chile in the 1850s. At that time, Chile was welcoming a wine renaissance. The aristocracy was moving to the countryside with the vision of creating a wine industry to rival Europe's.

They planted the noble vines from France and for over a century, thought that the high-vigor vine with pinkish leaves was a special clone of Merlot or Cabernet Franc.

After masquerading as Merlot for over a century in Chile, it wasn't until the 1990s that Chilean winegrowers determined the mystery vines are not Merlot but the lost Bordeaux grape Carmenère. Since then, Chile has become synonymous with the lush and exotic wines made from Carmenère and is the only country producing Carmenère based wines. Salud!

"Unusually ripe for a Casablanca red, this blend of merlot, cabernet sauvignon and carmenère has the texture of melted chocolate and ripe flavors of fig and blueberry. A powerful acidity keeps a refreshing tension."
-Wines & Spirits

"The proprietary red wine, the 2004 Primus, is a blend of 47% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 23% Carmenere. It delivers an attractive perfume of pain grille, black cherry and blueberry. This is followed by a supple, ripe wine with no hard edges in a racy style. Drink this tasty, lively red over the next five years."
-Wine Advocate

My Notes:

Additional wines from Primus:

About Primus:

Primus wines are produced by the Veramonte winery. Veramonte represents a return to Agustin Huneeus' Chilean roots. When he spearheaded development of the Veramonte Estate in 1990, there were less than 100 acres of grapevines planted in the Casablanca Valley.

The coastal mountain ranges surrounding the Casablanca estate create a unique terroir with a diversity of microclimates. The valley floor's cool climate is reminiscent of Carneros and ideal for growing premium Chardonnay. The foothills are warmer, akin to the more Northern reaches of the Napa Valley. Here, the climate is more suited to varieties like Carmenëre, the lost Bordeaux grape that has become Chile's citizen and the basis of Primus, our racy, exotic Chilean blend.

Using the latest viticultural technology developed in California, rootstock has been matched to each vineyard block and clone. Vertical trellising and dense vine spacing balance growth and fruit production. Veramonte's Casablanca vineyard produces significantly lower yields than other grape growing regions in Chile, resulting in grapes with more intensity and concentration.

Recognizing that the region also had potential as a tourist destination for its proximity to Santiago, Huneeus began to plant the estate and in 1995, constructed the first Napa Valley style hospitality center in Chile. The first wines were released in 1996.



Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Columbia Valley    Washington   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Chateau Ste. Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Chateau Ste. Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
(search item no. 107549)
Wine & Spirits rating: 93 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $12.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2003 Wine & Spirits rating: 89 points
2001 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
1998 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
1998 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
1998 The Wine Advocate rating: 87 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Sourced from Columbia Valley vineyards in eastern Washington including our Cold Creek, Canoe Ridge Estate and Indian Wells vineyards.

Our goal with the Columbia Valley Cabernet is to highlight concentrated Washington red fruit in an accessible style. This is our inviting Cab with plenty of complexity and structure with silky tannins. It's also very versatile with food-try it with beef, pork or pasta.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Chateau Ste. Michelle:

About Chateau Ste. Michelle:

Founded in 1934, Chateau Ste. Michelle is the oldest winery in Washington with some of the most mature vineyards in the Columbia Valley. The winery combines Old World winemaking with New World innovation and is best known for its award-winning Riesling, Chardonnay, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Chateau Ste. Michelle receives some of the highest accolades in the industry, including "American Winery of the Year" by Wine Enthusiast for 2004 and "2005 Winery of the Year" by Restaurant Wine. In addition, the winery's Eroica Riesling, crafted from a partnership with German winemaker Ernst Loosen, has been named to Wine Spectator's prestigious "Top 100" wines list for five consecutive years.

Chateau Ste. Michelle is one of the few premium wineries in the world with two state-of-the-art wineries, one devoted to whites and another to reds. This dedicated approach to winemaking allows winemaker Bob Bertheau to build winemaking programs to the unique specifications of red and white wines. While all of Chateau Ste. Michelle's vineyards are located on the east side of the Cascade Mountains where the climate is dry and sunny, Bob Bertheau makes the award winning white wines in Woodinville, 15 miles northeast of Seattle. The winery's expansive, 87-acre estate hosts more than 250,000 visitors annually for tours, tastings, dinners and outdoor summer concerts.



Red Wines    Merlot    Napa Valley    California   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Swanson Oakville Merlot 2007
Swanson Oakville Merlot 2007
(search item no. 108476)
Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $29.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2006 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 92 points
2005 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 94 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2007 Swanson Oakville Merlot is a very tightly-focused ode to the wines of the Right Bank of Bordeaux. The nose offers mocha and black cherry. Firm, sweet, silky tannins give away the fact that this wine is from Oakville. Raspberry, black cherry and red licorice contribute to the complex flavors. Should age very nicely through at least 2015.
My Notes:

About Swanson:

Founded by W. Clarke Swanson, Jr. in 1985, Swanson Vineyards consists of 140 acres of estate vineyards in the Oakville area of Napa Valley. The winery produces Merlot, Syrah, Sangiovese, Pinot Grigio, a late harvest Semillon, plus their flagship proprietary blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, called "Alexis."


Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Chile    South America   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Primus The Blend 2007
Primus The Blend 2007
(search item no. 99604)
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $17.49

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 James Suckling rating: 93 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 91 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
1998 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2007 growing season was characterized by its great fruit concentration, a mild summer slowed the ripening process and reduced the yields naturally, which resulted in greater concentration, with slowly ripenening and delicate fruit, healthy grapes and elegant yet powerful tannins.

The Winemaking Team
Primus wines are crafted by a team of expert viticulturists and winemakers led by winemaker, Cristian Aliaga, who has over 10 years' experience at Veramonte. Alvaro Espinoza, one of the world's most respected winemakers, widely known as an innovator and champion of some of Chile's best red wines, joined the team to craft the Primus wines. Alvaro works closely with the team to continually refine vineyard and winery practices that deliver rich ripe fruit with complexity, intensity and distinctiveness.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Primus:

About Primus:

Primus wines are produced by the Veramonte winery. Veramonte represents a return to Agustin Huneeus' Chilean roots. When he spearheaded development of the Veramonte Estate in 1990, there were less than 100 acres of grapevines planted in the Casablanca Valley.

The coastal mountain ranges surrounding the Casablanca estate create a unique terroir with a diversity of microclimates. The valley floor's cool climate is reminiscent of Carneros and ideal for growing premium Chardonnay. The foothills are warmer, akin to the more Northern reaches of the Napa Valley. Here, the climate is more suited to varieties like Carmenëre, the lost Bordeaux grape that has become Chile's citizen and the basis of Primus, our racy, exotic Chilean blend.

Using the latest viticultural technology developed in California, rootstock has been matched to each vineyard block and clone. Vertical trellising and dense vine spacing balance growth and fruit production. Veramonte's Casablanca vineyard produces significantly lower yields than other grape growing regions in Chile, resulting in grapes with more intensity and concentration.

Recognizing that the region also had potential as a tourist destination for its proximity to Santiago, Huneeus began to plant the estate and in 1995, constructed the first Napa Valley style hospitality center in Chile. The first wines were released in 1996.



Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Tuscany    Italy   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Argiano Non Confunditur 2009
Argiano Non Confunditur 2009
(search item no. 113270)
Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $21.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2011 James Suckling rating: 93 points
2010 James Suckling rating: 93 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#46 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2011

Non Confunditur is a wine that shows definite character, it is full-bodied with soft-tannins and has a long lasting finish. This blend made of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Sangiovese shows exciting power, with the inherent sweetness of the Merlot acting as a bridge between the firm earthiness of the Sangiovese grape, the spicy blackcurrant of the Cabernet and the warm red fruit of the Syrah. The result is a generous, round red wine for early to mid-term drinking with nice aromas of currant and generous fruit flavors, which are versatile enough to develop more depth over several months in bottle.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Tenuta di Argiano:

About Tenuta di Argiano:

After this estate was acquired by Countess Noemi Marone Cinzano, the philosophy changed whereby quality and personality became the dominant priorities. In order to achieve these goals, Sebastiano Rosa was appointed as General Manager of the Estate. Having spent six years at the University of California at Davis, a two year tenure at Chateau Lafite Rothschild and three years at Sassacaia, he brings a strong mix of experience. In addition, Dr. Giacomo Tachis, probably the most well known winemaker in Italy today, became the oenologist. His legacy includes Sassacaia, Tignanello and Solaia, to name a few. Argiano's vineyards are located in the Montalicino area where a perfect microclimate assures a super ecological system. Varietals such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Sangiovese are planted. These grapes have not traditionally been part of the Montalcino area.


Red Wines    Rhone Red Blends    Chateauneuf-du-Pape    France - Rhone   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Domaine La Milliere Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes (half-bottle) 2009
Domaine La Milliere Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes (half-bottle) 2009
(search item no. 110933)
boutique wine
green wine

The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $29.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 94 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 93 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2005 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2004 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2003 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

A dynamic, savory and stunningly pure wine that captures all the saturated richness of the 2009 vintage without the excess; it may be better than the estate's stunning 2007 and will certainly reward a hundredfold in a cool cellar. Precise, peppery aromas and the complexity of Moroccan spices show on the expressive nose; the mouth delivers cherries, licorice and colorful peppercorns yet retains a purity and balance that seems almost magical considering its flavorful concentration. The estate's stony terroir (the classic Châteauneuf "galets roules") are present in the nose and finish, a mineral edge that keeps every sip lively and well-defined. A heady blend of 70% Grenache, 8% Mourvèdre, 8% Syrah, 8% Cinsault and 6% Counoise, aged completely in the family's older foudre.
My Notes:

About Domaine La Milliere:

All of Arnaud's Châteauneuf vines are located in Cabrières, just below Mont Redon. This region is blessed with the best soils of Châteauneuf—round galet stones the size of fists, well-draining sand, and mineral-rich limestone. Vines that have seen close to a century of life in Châteauneuf sit north/west on Arnaud’s vineyard slopes.

Ancient too are the vines Arnaud sources for his "smaller" crus. Some of Arnaud's oldest Grenache vines grow in his vineyards just below Mont Redon. These 100+ year old vines produce incredibly dense fruit that make up his finest Côtes du Rhône and Côtes du Rhône-Villages wines.

Millière’s Merlot vineyards sit right next to his Côtes du Rhône plots. These younger vines grow on sandy, clay-based soils. This region, just north of Cabrières near Orange, is very good for vin de pays. The mistral sweeps through, keeping humidity low, while sandy soils provide good drainage. A "joli terroir de Merlot," says Millière.

Arnaud’s life philosophy is organic—in the fields and in his kitchen, too.



Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Chile    South America   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Antiyal Kuyen 2009
Antiyal Kuyen 2009
(search item no. 114422)
green wine
boutique wine

International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $24.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2008 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Kuyen, which means "moon" in the Chilean native language Mapuche, is a 40% Syrah, 37% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Carmenere, and 2% Petit Verdot blend made with grapes from the Maipo Valley. This vintage shows deep color with intense aromas of dark fruit, spice and minerals. The palate has good texture with volume, body and a long finish.
My Notes:

Additional wines from Antiyal:

About Antiyal:

Álvaro Espinoza is one of the finest winemakers in South America today, as well as one of the foremost biodynamic winemakers in the world. His celebrated wine Antiyal is often referred to as Chile's first "garage wine." Antiyal produces fewer than 400 cases of wine a year in the sleepy Maipo Valley town of Alta Jahuel.


Red Wines    Merlot    McLaren Vale    Australia   
Wine.com - Buy wines, wine clubs, gift baskets and more
My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 8/28/2014
Clarendon Hills Brookman Merlot 2004
Clarendon Hills Brookman Merlot 2004
(search item no. 90124)
boutique wine
collectible wine

The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
PRICE ON 8/28/2014: $34.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 94 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2002 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
1998 Wine & Spirits rating: 89 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2004 Brookman Merlot highlights the quality of the fruit that is produced from forty-six year old vines, planted on deep clay soils. This intense Merlot is dark ruby in color and offers aromas of herbs, rich blueberries, blackberries and hints of coffee bean. On the palate the wine reveals intense dark chocolate, plums, mocha and earth spices. It is a powerful Merlot with wonderful layered precision and elegance.
My Notes:

Additional wines from Clarendon Hills:

About Clarendon Hills:

Clarendon Hills is a small family-run winery based in Clarendon, South Australia. The company was founded by biochemist, Roman Bratasiuk, in 1990. The story of Clarendon Hills is one of passion, dedication and commitment to exception wine. It all began when this biochemist and wine lover decided to produce his own wine. Though he'd never trained as a winemaker, Roman let himself be guided by his refined palate and scientific knowledge. Following his favorite producers and preferred styles, Roman sought to make a version of the wines he loved.