Back to earth: Hearty Reds

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I visited Bin 36 with some friends last Thursday where I tried a “Down to Earth Reds” flight – I was very impressed with the selection. At $14 for a flight of 4 wines, it was not only good value for money, it was also one of the more thoughtful selections I’ve seen put together in a long while. All four glasses of wine offered their own unique aromas and body; fascinating and interesting. I’ll not hesitate to buy any of these wines in a heartbeat; perfect to bring to a party – and my next climbing trip!

Words in italics are tasting notes from Bin 36.

2006 (Grenache / Syrah / Mourvedre), Cotes-du-Rhone, Domaine Montirius, Rhone Valley, France $14: “This complex little wine manages to exhibit plush texture with chewy, dark minerals and fruit.”
-> I thought the nose was somewhat similar to an Oregon Pinot Noir – some damp earth, but softer and also a little sourish, some cherry. Definitely chewy. Hot finish.

2005 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, Quattro Mani, Abruzzi, Italy $11: “Elegant and restrainted with earthy currants and hints of cedar.”
-> I LOVED the nose – interesting blend of spices and sweets. Whiff of strawberries.

2005 (Cabernet / Carmenere / Cab Franc) Vina Maquis, Calcu, Colchagua, Chile $13: “This one is all grown up with sophisticated flavors and a mineral driven profile, with dark fruit and dark chocolate.”
-> Lots of oak in the nose; tannic mouthfeel; deep red fruit – blackberries. Sweet fruit with a minerally finish.

2004: (Cabernet Sauvignon / Grenache / Syrah / Mourvedre / Carignan), Mas de Gourgonnier, Les Baux de Provence, Provence, France $19: “Smooth texture, earthy ripe and dark berriers, cassis and a plummy, mineral core.”
-> Loved the nose, though it was slightly maddening because I just couldn’t place the particular scent of spiciness. Thyme, sandalwood, cuimin, liqourice, Chinese herbal shop?!?! I need to pick up a bottle to more intensely sniff it out. Strong tannins in the mouth.

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