Also recommended: 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon Langhorne Creek & Limestone Coast (86). (Epicurean Wines, Seattle, WA)
($12; 45% semillon, 35% chardonnay and 20% verdelho) Green-tinged straw. Waxy pear and deep floral honey aromas. Fresh and nervy, offering an interesting blend of tangy citrus and richer pit fruit flavors. The zesty qualities gain the upper hand on the brisk finish, which features a strong citrus pith element. Serve this with fresh shellfish or as an aperitif.
($17; a 78/22 blend) Light gold. Spicy pear and apple on the nose, with complicating mineral and jasmine nuances. Lively citrus and mint flavors deepen with air, picking up peach and melon notes. The wine's brightness gives way to ripeness on the close, leaving an impression of peach skin and honeydew. I'd drink this on the young side.
($12; 44% cabernet sauvignon, 29% shiraz and 27% grenache) Ruby-red. Redcurrant, bitter cherry and chocolate aromas are sharply focused, even a bit pinched. Tangy red fruit flavors on a light framework, with firm tannins adding structure. Loosens up with air, taking on a darker fruit character and finishing on a juicy note.
($17) Deep ruby. Vibrant, smoky raspberry and cherry preserve aromas offer excellent clarity and are complemented by suave mineral and floral notes. Focused red berry flavors possess impressive energy and take on pepper and spice notes with air. The spice notes build on the lightly tannic finish, giving the sweet raspberry and cherry flavors a lively quality. Outstanding value here.
($30) Bright purple. Exotic, floral-accented blackberry and creme de cassis on the nose, with sexy mocha and violet notes adding complexity; this smells like a Peter Sisseck wine. Pure dark berry flavors explode on the palate, which displays an impressively silky texture and slowly mounting vanilla and coffee notes. Sweet, vibrant and persistent on the expansive finish, with lingering blackcurrant and mocha clinging tenaciously. Really seductive and an outrageous bargain. Ben Glaetzer is the winemaker here.