Brancaia Ilatraia

Being a Cabernet lover I have always been partial to Super Tuscans, especially those from Bolhgeri and Maremma Toscana.

The 2013 Brancaia Ilatraia from Maremma checks all of the boxes.

Lively dark fruit and blackberries are supported by soft tannins with hints of clove and floral undertones on the finish.

Brancaia Ilatraia is a blend of 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Petit Verdot and 20% Cabernet Franc.  The wine was aged 18 months in French barriques – half of them new – and then matured for 12 months in the bottle, prior to release.

With a retail price of $55, this wine is a must add to any Cab lover’s cellar.

Le Macchiole Paleo

The 2013 Le Macchiole Paleo is a charismatic and enchanting wine made entirely of Cabernet Franc.

This complex wine evolves continuously in the glass.  At first the wine captivates you with lush blackberries with a hint of spice.  The second sample is loaded with rose petals and mocha followed by creamy toasted oak and nuts which then give way to a velvety plum and berry finish.

This is a must try for all Italian wine lovers or anyone who has not tried a wine made from Cabernet Franc.

The retail price for Paleo is about $95, but I was able to secure this for $69 at one of my favorite wine stores, Sokolin,  in Bridgehampton NY. 

 

 

Jarvis Lake William

The 2003 Jarvis Lake William Napa Valley is still a very charming wine.

This Bordeaux style blend is comprised of 39% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Cabernet Franc, 22% Merlot with the balanced split between Petit Verdot and Malbec.

The color is still a violet opaque purple, while the nose provides light fruit aromas which is a pretext of what is about to come on the 1st sip.  After decanting for an hour the tart fruit softened and the wine opened nicely. The palate was now elegant as soft juicy dark fruit and blackberry flavors were followed by leather, mushroom and earthy velvet tannins that lingered effortlessly for 3+ seconds.

The back label recommends that the wine should be consumed within 7 years, but I disagree as the additional years in the cellar has this wine living up to its Bordeaux blend pedigree as it drinks more like an aged wine from the Pauillac region in Bordeaux.

The 2003 Lake William is hard to find now, but it priced for $70 when release back in 2005.  Today it retails for about $125, while newer vintages retail for about $150.

On a separate note, in my opinion, Jarvis has the best underground cave tours in all of Napa Valley.  So the next time you are in the Valley, schedule a tour and tasting in their caves.

You will not be disappointed!