September wines: 15 bottles from $7 to $25
CLEVELAND, Ohio – In September, we tasted 15 different wines from seven countries.
They range from $7 to $25 and cover four different vintages. They come from seven countries.
Note: Our monthly reviews focus on wines $25 and under, and all should be available on local store shelves. We list the flavors we detect and offer our favorite at the end.
Here is what we tasted:
Be the Light Love Corkscrew
Corkscrew Love, Buellton, Calif.; Sauvignon Blanc, 2019, $15.99
This wine comes from Chrishon Lampley – a self-proclaimed “badass black woman from Chicago”. We appreciate the advertising truth on the label: Pear, exotic fruits, Meyer lemon, grapefruit and citrus notes. Our tasting panel detected pear, lime and a nice touch of creaminess that drew attention to the whole picture.
Viña Maquis / Sociedad Agricola Los Maquis, Colchagua Valley, Chile; Cabernet Sauvignon, 2018, $20
We detected smoke, cherry, baking spices and definitely a mellow herbaceous flavor. It went well with steak skewers, tomatoes and mushrooms.
BeroniaSpain, Rosé, 2021, $12.99
Light rose petal aroma, mixed berries, some cranberry and a very dry finish.
Raeburn Pinot Noir
Raeburn Vineyard, American Canyon, Calif.; 2020, $25
Soft pine on the nose. Some expected and enjoyable flavors here for a California pinot, including cherry-cola, but overall a flavorful and smooth example of the varietal. Light notes of morello cherries on a dry finish.
Concha and ToroChili, Cabernet Sauvignon, NV, $6.99
You would think that a wine at this price could have unpleasant flavors. Fortunately, this common shelf wine is very good value for money. Simple, with cherry and some red licorice, red raspberry and a hint of grassy and vegetal (green pepper) notes on the finish. For seven dollars? Host a party, buy this. But note: finish it shortly after opening it. Some wines last up to a day or two or more if properly corked. A day later this one, and he was well past his prime.
Usiglian del VescovoItaly, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, 2020, $24.99
This mix had a nice mix of cedar and baking spices and went well with burgers, potatoes and snow peas. Dry finish. Reasonable price.
Cannonball WinesCalifornia, Chardonnay, 2020, $16.99
Flavors of creme brulee with a hint of orange on the finish and some lime. Little butter. Did wonderfully well with grilled chicken, but would work well as a standalone sipper. (The winery’s tasting notes say “a kiss of peach cobbler crust and vanilla puff pastry on the finish.”) Nice effort from winemaker Ondine Chattan, who cut her teeth at several California vineyards.
Golden Reserve of Trivento
Trivento, Mendoza, Argentina; Malbec, 2019, $19.99
Smells stronger than it tastes. Predominance of black fruits. Ripe, smoky, with a bit of dryness and a slight blueberry flavor. Good dry wine, but nothing out of the box.
Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir
Cameron HughesCalifornia, Pinot Noir, 2018, $16
The blind tasting was a fun comparison. Both are $16 and more, our taste panel found. Note: Online seller only.
Lot 704, Carneros, Napa Valley: darker, spicier, more black licorice.
Lot 729: Russian River Valley, Sonoma County: Strawberry, slight flavor, cranberry, more acidic, slightly lighter weight.
Brilliant Pure Yellow Tail
Casella family brandsAustralia, Sauvignon Blanc, 2020, $7
Tangerine on the nose (a tasting buddy enjoyed the aroma; I wasn’t impressed). Very light with strong lime flavors, acidic finish. Sip summer best, perhaps with a light salad. Billed as having 80 calories per serving and only 8.5% alcohol. I can’t beat the price.
Miguel TorresChili, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2018, $20
Slight herbaceous/vegetal notes. Better body than many Chilean taxis. Delicious wine, goes perfectly with beef stew, green beans and couscous.
Bogle VineyardsCalifornia, Chardonnay, 2020, $11
Notes of crème brûlée, woody and buttery. Very good sipper on its own or with food (went great with baked chicken dish). Common menu find and well worth the price. Very hard to find a decent tank at this price; incredible deal.
Fat BastardFrance, Pinot Noir, 2020, $13
We have had good luck over the years with Fat Bastard wines. This one is sweet and harmless with flavors of cherry and a bit of raspberry. Sip. No funk, some tannins. Worth the price for sure.
Domaine Bousquet, Mendoza, Argentina; Sauvignon Blanc, 2021, $13
Made from organic grapes, this wine has a bit of lime with saline and mineral notes. Goes great with a fresh vegetable salad. Not too acidic. Interesting wine – less acidic than say an Australian or New Zealand wine, but more than a Californian version of Sauv Blanc. Not my cup of wine but others will like it.
Filmed wine: The 2012 documentary “Somm” takes viewers through the process of being an aspiring sommelier. It is available for rental or purchase on line.
Do you like wine? Options vary for purchasing wine. Online retailers provide the ability to choose what you want, manage cases, and find discounts. Here is a selection to consider:
brightcellars.com: The monthly club puts you in touch with wines after having answered a “quiz on the palate”.
caveswineclub.com: Allows you to choose the number of bottles required.
vinexotique.club.com: Offers subscription wine boxes from wineries located in less accessible markets.
splashwines.com: Choose an organized case or create your own.
winc.com: Four wines adapted to your tastes are sent monthly. Has a review component.
wine.com: A large online seller often offers discounts to new customers.
wineawesomeness.com: Organized shipments of three and six bottles.
wineenthusiast.com: Complete site of accessories – shelves, glasses, door openers, storage, gifts.
wineonsale.com: Allows you to select by grape variety or region.
zachys.com: Includes a variety of ways to search/buy, as well as auction information.
Wine reviews 2022
Wines of the month of August: 13 foreign wines
Wines for July: A Dozen American-Made Wines
Wines for June: 9 wines to taste from Sicily to Spain
Wines of May: 11 different wines from 5 countries – $25 and under
Wines of the Month for April: 11 to consider sipping from Indiana (yes) to Italy
Wines for March: 10 wines for $10 to $25
Wines for February: A dozen different wines from 4 countries
January wines: 9 different wines from $9 to $22
I am on cleveland.comfrom the Life and Culture team and covers topics related to food, beer, wine and sport. If you want to see my stories, here is a directory on cleveland.com. On Air: WTAM-1100’s Bill Wills and I talk food and drink usually at 8:20 a.m. Thursday mornings. Twitter: @mbona30.
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