The demands I make of wines are simple, is it worth the money? I do not care whether the wine is cheap or expensive. But I do want the quality of the best five wines to be that good that I feel it is not only a wine worth the money I paid for but it´s even better than I expected and is better than the price it is sold for. Also the wine has to have that little „extra“, that makes it stand up in a crowd.
It could be that the wine comes from an area I never expected to make good wine, or the grape is grown in a area I never expected the grape variety to stand out in, or it´s just plain tastier than I expected. I also thought about how it would keep and develop, is it good now and will it improve through ageing or is it ready now and will not develop any more? In the end it all comes down to, will I remember this wine the next time I think about having a glass with my next meal?
And now lets go through my top five.
No. 5: This wine is beyond a doubt one of the best reservas from Rioja I have tasted. The first time I tried it was a couple of years ago and have always bought a few bottles every year since. I have to admit I don´t know why I have never written about this wine until this year.
Marqués de Murrieta, Reserva 2016 from Rioja Spain has a very open aroma with lots of vanilla, epresso coffee and a little bit of raisins to it. The palate is strong and rich with vanilla, ceder, coconut, dark chocolate, paprika, raisins and black cherries to it. The aftertaste is long and has a lot of alcohol in it. Do not bother keeping this wine, even though is can develop more with time, it´s so good now that it does not need to develop more. A good steak wine. The price is more than fair at 4.250 kr.
No. 4: Syrah grape in the heat of Moracco by one of the best wine makers in Rhone France?? A strange combination by all means, and yet it works out perfect!
Syrocco Syrah 2018, reminds me of a good Rhone rather than a new world wine. The aroma is open with leather, plums and jam in it. The palate is dry with lots of tannin, plums, forest fruits and pepper. the wine has a good balance and has a medium length aftertaste. I would say it´s a good wine with all kinds of lamb courses. I have to admit I am not sure how long you can keep it in storage, but I think it´s ready to drink now and could keep for 2-3 more years. The price is 4.650 kr.
No. 3 Probably the most under appreciated growing area for red wines in Europe is the Douro area in Portugal. They are making great long lasting and heavy wines for laughably cheap prices. The Douro wines are the best kept secret on the Icelandic market in my humble opinion. No. 3 on the list is a prime example of high qaulity for a low price.
Bulas Douro Reserva Tinto 2016, is a heavy and rich wine like most of the Bulas line, with the main grape being the Touriga Nacional which in my opinion gives the wine it´s headiness. The aroma is very open with blackberries, nutmeg, vanilla and alcohol to it. The palate is rich with lots of vanilla, blackcurrant, black cherry jam, raisin, coffee, oak and nutmeg to it. The aftertaste is long and heady with lots of tannin and alcohol. A great wine now that can develop for at least another five years. This is a steak or grill lover’s wine for sure! The price is really good at only 3.975 kr.
No. 2 I really have a good laugh when I hear or read about wine „experts“ who keep trying to tell everyone that the only good Pinot Noir comes from Burgundy. I hope they keep talking like that, then the people with more open minds can keep drinking this wine in peace.
Calera Mills vineyard 2016 Pinot Noir has a very open aroma, with lots of redcurrant, plums, brioche bread and oaky notes. The palate is just as open and has lots of redcurrant, toast, oak, coffee and milk chocolate with hints of alcohol and oak in the background. The finsh is long and good. This is not a cheap wine at 8.448 kr., but worth the price and worth buying for a special occasion. The wine is a 2016 vintage and can be drunk now or can be kept to develop for five more years at least. I usually drink heavy wines with my beef and lamb but I can recommend this wine any time with both beef and lamb and of course fowl!
No.1 The best wine I tasted this year has three things I look for. It´s made from a grape variety that I did not expect at ALL in the area it´s made in, you can drink it now, but should develop well over the next few years, and last but not least it is worth every krona and more!! The only thing that needs fixing is name, I would really like it, if it had a more pronounceble name! Congratulations Poggioargentiera Poggioraso!!
Poggioargentiera Poggioraso Cabernet Franc 2018, Toskana, Ítalía.
The aroma is open and has a strong oak, coffee and black cherries. The palate is dry and rich with tannins giving a ripe black cherry, vanilla, coffee and dark chocolate taste first and foremost. Back peppers and alcohol dominate the heavy and long after taste. It´s possible to drink the wine now, but I would suggest decanting it and let it breath for at least an hour before drinking. Definetly a wine for heavy and filling meat courses with beef or lamb. This price is 4.989 kr.