Thursday, May 29, 2008

2004 Alcance CARMENERE (Maule Valley, Chile)

I think that this wine -- which is virtual dead-ringer for a very ripe wine from the Pessac-Leognan region of Bordeaux -- is the reserve bottling of the Calina winery's Carmenere, the 2004 vintage of which I previously reviewed here. This was very rich and interesting, though I'm not sure I liked it any better than the regular bottling.

Eye: Fully saturated plasma-like ruby with violet highlights.

Nose: Almost over-the-top richness: melted baker's chocolate, chalk, moist tobacco-leaf, loamy gravel. Oh yeah, and there's some rich blackberry fruit lurking beneath all that.

Mouth: Rich and earthy, with lots of stony minerals at first, giving way to chocolately, port-like fruit, and long, long finish full of soft tannin. Almost too much on the earthy side as opposed to the fruity side of the flavor spectrum.

Score: 88.

Cellar or drink? Drinking well now, I think this wine could improve over the next 3 years.

Price/store: Got this for $14.99 at Whole Foods on Bellaire.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I got this wine at Gabriel's Specs wholesale liquor outlet -- at Texas chain -- in San Marcos Texas, for four bucks, and I absolutely love it. Had never even heard of Carmenere before. This is definitely one of my all time favorites, though my experience with high-end wines (of which this is not) is admittedly very limited.