Greek Merlot red wines

29 07 2016

Greece is one of the most popular destination for Finnish holiday travellers in the summer time.

However, Greek wines are under valued and difficult to buy in Finland. Only 4 red and 4 white wines available in Alkos as shelf products and 4 more wines which you can pre-order. Greek restaurants, few in Helsinki, offer also some other Greek wines, which they import by themselves.

During our visit to Crete in July 2016, tasted few young, good and ok red wines. Focus was on Merlot grape, which is actually quite popular, but not as popular as local grapes like Agiorgitiko, Asyrtiko, Mavrodafni and Xinomavro. Sometimes Merlot is additional grape as in few wines tasted.

Chateau Julia Merlot 2011

Winery Domaine Costa Lazaridi with distinctive title “Chateau Julia”, was founded in Adriani, Drama in 1992. The first bottles were marketed also in 1992. Amethystos white, Amethystos Rose and Amethystos Red. Today the Estate produces five families of wines, Amethystos, Chateau Julia, Domaine Costa Lazaridi, Oenodea and Oenotria Land. Today company exports wines even to Sweden but not to Finland, yet.

Chateau Julia Merlot 2011 was facinating or even surprising wine. Unfortunately wine was served too warm, but did not want to use cooler although waitress asked it. Complex aromas of forest fruit, mint and eucalyptus; rare bouquet for Merlot wine. Taste was warm, full-bodied and due to aroma, a bit complex too. Requires food with spices, pairs well with gyros, for instance.


Chateau Julia


Karipidis Merlot 2012

The Karipidi Winery is a family business in Vounaina Thessaly in central Greece that manages 30 hectares of privately owned vineyards. The vineyards, which are registered in a institution for inspection and certification of biological products, are being cultivated exclusively with methods of biological agriculture.

Karipidis Merlot 2012 is organic wine and has aromatic bouquet with hints of plum, currant, chocolate and vanilla. Mouth-feel of high density flavor, rich structure and robust body.

Pairs well with shellfish and seafood pasta and vegan foods too.




Biblia Chora Red 2014

Domaine Biblia Chora was established in 1998 by Vangelis Gerovassilou and Vassilis Tsaktsarlis being one of the newest wineries. In June 2001, the construction of this modern Domain began. In the same year, the first wine was made. Today, the Estate has a private vineyard of 350 acres, which surround the winery, and in which Greek and foreign varieties are cultivated in accordance with the biological standards of viticulture.

Biblia Chora Red 2014 is produced from two grapes; Cabernet Sauvignon 50% and Merlot 50%. It has pure and complex bouquet of ripe red fruit, chocolate and some spicy notes on the finish. Intense flavour with a full body, good structure and a high tannin content, which provides a lasting aftertaste

Pairs with quite variety of foods because of Cabernet Sauvignon, which smoothens the taste.


Red wine


Melios Red Dry Wine

Domaine Brintziki cultivates vineyards owned 120 acres applying faithfully and with love of the principles of organic agriculture for many years planted with local varieties of Greek. Winery uses also the Avgoustiatis, which belongs to a group of very rare Greek varieties, grown in small size, few producers, but with remarkably high quality results. It is a red wine variety, which gives mostly red dry wines, leading the exploration of the world’s vineyard at the edges. Products product at winery are Tinaktorogos, Augoustiatis, Sign, Melios and Enipeas.

Melios Red Dry Wine is produced from Merlot 80% and Mavrodaphne 20% grapes. Wine has dark red color, intense aroma of red fruits, vanilla and cherry. Full mouth with soft tannins.

Pairs with meat, vegetables and pasta.

Unfortunately winery’s web-pages did not work properly.





Idisma Drios Merlot 2013

Wine Art Estate was created by Yannis Papadopoulos and Yannis Kalaitzidis 1993. 26 hectares of vineyards at a location known since ancient times for the cultivation of the vine and the production of wines, as indicated by the ruins of a Sanctuary of Dionysus. Wine Art aims to present how well certain Greek and cosmopolitan varieties are adapted to the microclimate of Drama. Towards this direction, a new wine, Chardonnay Idisma Drios was put to market in 1999. This was the first of a new range of products, Idisma Drios (“sweetly oaked”), to be followed by Assyrtiko, Merlot and Syrah.

Idisma Drios Merlot 2013 has deep purple colour. Quite complex bouquet of spices and dark berries.
Wine is balanced and has noble tannins. It is mature, full-bodied, with a long aftertaste.

Pairs with meat, cheeses and even with asian flavors.


Idisma Drios Merlot


As said earlier, Greek wines are undervalued. Many of the wineries produce organic tasty wines, but production amounts are so small, that many times only Greeks can enjoy of these wines.

Visited Agreco Farm which is partly tourist attraction but also produces organic wines. Wines are sold from their own shops and via some hotel chains and restaurants but production quantity does not allow export these wines.

Maybe some day there are more quality Greek wines available in Finland. But travellers should first choose better wines (not the best ones) instead of grape juice (house wines in caraffes).


Wine review: Baron de Ley Reserva 2010

14 05 2015
Baron De Ley is a relatively new producer in Rioja. Started in 1985 by Rioja wine professional eager to create a chateau inspired winery with state-of the-art winemaking. They converted an ancient monastery into a magnificent estate and have been producing Rioja wines that reflect a modern style, expressive of the terroir and the Tempranillo grape. 
Baron de Ley -
Tasted wine was Baron de Ley Reserva 2010. Red wine is produced 100% of Tempranillo grapes. After 20 months ageing in new American-oak casks, a further 24 months rounding off in the bottle has brought it to its moment of plenitude.


Ruby-red colour, typical better Spanish red wine


Powerful fruity character mingling with reminders of its ageing, nice bouquet


First impression is soft, but volume gradually extends across the palate to end with a long finish. Included tannins but disturbingly


Alcohol: 13,5%
Extract: 27 g/l
Acidity: 5 g/l
Energy: 90 kcal/100 ml (360 kJ/100 ml)
Closure: natural cork

“Gran reserva = matured for a long time, more than 3 years and in addition to a couple of years in the bottle. Reserva = aged 2-3 years and in addition to one year in the bottle


Baron de Ley Reserva 2010 -

Enjoyed wine first as such and then with 1st of May food. Paired extremely well with chicken and spiced lamb sausages. Suits definately with red meats as there is enough taste.


Barón de Ley. A Rioja wine cellar in an old monastery.


Wine review: Dominio de Tares Cepas Viejas Mencía 2011

1 02 2015

I have been lazy that I have not been written about wines tasted and enjoyed. This will change 2015!

Cepas Viejas -

I was planning to purchase Spanish red wine for lamb and original intention was to buy Aalto wine. Nearby Alko did not had it, so decided to try full-bodied Dominio de Tares Cepas Viejas Mencía 2011. Wine is produced from Mencia grapes at Dominio de Tares bodega. Actually all that info is in the name of wine :). I can not remember that I have tasted before wine produced from Mencia, but I can be wrong. Mencia is not so common as many other Spanish grapes like Tempranillo.

Dominio de Tares is located in the region of El Bierzo (León) and settled in an exceptional area surrounded by high quality vineyards. Also main area for Mencia. The vineyard, with indigenous varieties mencía and godello, has been selected after an exahustive search of the best pagos under de D.O. Bierzo, by looking for the most interesting soils and settlements.

Cepas Viejas -


Cherry red colour with violet tones on the rim. WIne is darker than Pinot Noir which is usually benchmark for Mencia when it comes to color.


Powerful nose of intense fruity aromas of raspberries and cherries, as well as flowery hints of violets in perfect combination with oak spices and fragrances of liquorice.


Nuanced and developed. Boysen berries, spicy and warm. The tannins are firm, but well integrated, the acidity is lively. Amount of alcohol can be just regognized.

Cepas Viejas -


Alcohol: 14,5%
Extract: 32 g/l
Acidity: 5 g/l
Energy: 90 kcal/100 ml (390 kJ/100 ml)

Wine is excellent and especially paired perfectly well with overcooked lamb shank. Wine can be found from upper shelf in Alko due to price, but it is worth of it.



Home – Dominio de Tares.

Tasting of 6 Fair Trade wines

26 10 2014

Fair Trade wines -

Yearly Wine, food and good living expo was again at Messukeskus (Helsinki Fair Center) on the 23-26.10.2014. There are several wine tastings arranged during the event. We were able to make pre-booking for one of them and participated in tasting of South-African and Argentinean Fair Trade wines. Restaurant Savoy sommelier Antti Uusitalo was in charge to lead us to the secrets of less often noticed wines.

Sommelier Antti Uusitalo -

Wine tasting -

Thandi Sauvignon Blanc

First tasted wine came from South-African Thandi Wines, which was established in 1995. It was the first winery in the world to receive Fair Trade certificate.

Sauvignon Blanc is not out favourite, so the expectations were quite low. However, wine was really light and first it was difficult to find any black currant bouquet or taste. After 1/2 hour typical Sauvigon Blanc was easier to recognize. Suits for shellfish and chicken. (3/5)

El Condor Torrontes Chardonnay

Next wine came from from Argentinean La Riojana wine house, which was established on 1940. Grapes used in production are local Torrentes and Chadonnay. Torrentes rolled over Chardonnay and typical butter and oak taste was not found. Easy wine to be enjoyed well chilled for aperitf and slighlty spiced foods. (3+/5)

Thandi Shiraz Rosé

Next wine was again from Thandi Wines

Grapes used are in Thandi Shiraz Rose is produced from Shiraz-grapes (85 %) and Pinotage-grapes (15  %). Amount of shiraz makes the wine quite red. Wine is really dry for rose, a littke bit spicy and fruity. Suits for aperitif and with lightly spiced food but would also try with Asian flavors, though (3,5/5)

Bundustar Merlot 2013

Then tasting moved to red wines, first one came from Home of Origin Wine, South-Africa. Wine house is quite young, it was establlished in 2002. Name of wine comes from word ubuntu (community)

Typical Merlot, spicy and lots of tannins. Suits with red meats and spcicy food (3,5/5)

Café Culture Pinotage Coffee Mocha Pinotage 2013

Next wine was produced by KWV, established in 1918, which is the biggest wine exporter in South-Africa.

Is this wine? Really interesting (odd) experience! Wine tasted like old smoky cigar butt. There was coffee to be found in bouquet and taste. Would not buy ever! (1/5)

Tilimuqui Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Bonarda

 Second wine from La Riojana and last wine tasted.

Nice bouquet from Cabernet Sauvignon which was supplemented with Bonarda grapes. Best of all tasted Fair Trade wines. Would buy to home as taste is well balanced and full of dark berries (4+/5)

I have not picked wines based on ethical or sustainable reasons but tasting of these wine definately raises these topics when visiting next time wine shelfs. Maybe even will buy last wine tasted Tilimuqui Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Bonarda, which was positive surprise and price only 9,98€ at Alko.

In next post will write brifly about the Champagnes tasted during Expo.

Champagnes -


Wine review: S.Giorgio Amarone della Valpolicella DOC Classico 2009

17 10 2014

S.Giorgio Amarone della Valpolicella DOC Classico -

S.Giorgio Amarone della Valpolicella DOC Classico is produced by Azienda Agricola Boscaini Carlo. Winery produces also particular white wine GARGANEGA an rosè wine MOLINARA but also Grappa and Olive oils. San Giorgio di Valpolicella, or Ingannapoltron, is part of the territory of Sant’Ambrogio, one of the five towns that constitute the Valpolicella Classica wine producing region, at the foot of Mount Solane. It is situated on the top of a rocky outcrop, built around its church, of the same limestone on which it lies.

Then to the topic;  Amarone della Valpolicella, usually known as Amarone, is a typically rich Italian dry red wine made from the partially dried grapes. For this wine grapes used in production are Corvina 50%, Corvinone 35%, Rondinella 10% Croatina & Dindarella 5%.The final result is a very ripe, raisiny, full-bodied wine with very little acid with over 15% alcohol content.

Tasted wine as aperitf and then with fillet steak. Excellent match, wine became even sweeter with salty meat and peppers. Suits definately with all meats, cheeses and even with Asian food.

Steak -


Dark red with some hints of brown color


Warm, cherry like generous bouquet


Rich and well balanced, almost sweet as Amarones usually are

Amarone -

Excellent red wine especially for fans of Amarone. Winery produces only 3500 bottles per year of this wine which makes this wine rarity. Do not be scared about alcohol content, it is only 15.5%.


Amarone, Amarone Wine, Valpolicella Winery, wine tasting amarone, online sales, visit to cellars in valpolicella, wine tasting in valpolicella, Amarone and Recioto, Boscaini Carlo, Valpolicella

Wine review: Verrocchio Valpolicella Superiore Ripasso 2012 – wrong vintage

18 07 2014

Valpolicella Ripasso -

If you want to buy wines in Finland you have to go to Alko, which is monopoly company owned by Finnish government. Nowadays you can utilize web shops, if you pay Finnish alcohol tax for your purchases.

When visiting Alko I usually read carefully what is written on the labels explaining if the wine is dry, full-bodied and so on. I chose Italian red wine Verrocchio Valpolicella Superiore Ripasso 2012 partly based on the information of it’s label on wine cabinet. This visit was about 2 months ago.

The label said that wine should have medium tannins. I am not a fan of wines which include too much tannins because they are just too “hard” to be enjoyed. But information on the label was based on vintage 2011 and purchased wine had changed to 2012. On the label there was nothing about vintage. Because of amount of tannins had to check what Alko said on their web Pages about the wine. Same story from year 2011!

When checking again few days ago, vintage had been changed to 2012 at Alko web page. But still story about medium tannins…..

Wine is made from grapes Corvina and Rondinella. Typical Ripasso grapes.


Dark red, some hints of brown color.


Ripasso type, but you can already notice the tannins.


For me, lot’s of tannins, full-bodied, dark berries, warm.

Valpolicella Ripasso-


Alcohol:      13,50 %
Extract:      36 g/l
Acidity:       5,3 g/l
Sugar:         6 g/l
Energy:       90 kcal / 100 ml (370 kJ / 100 ml)

Ripasso, the younger brother or sister of Amarone, is excellent wine for every ocation. Suits for all meats and of course with Italian food.

Unfortunately misleading (old) information did not make this tasting as pleasant as it could be. Therefore only 3,5. Would like to try vintage 2011 to see if the label at Alko was right about year older Ripasso.


Wine review: Matua Marlborough Pinot Noir 2012

19 01 2014

Matua Pinot Noir -

I am not sure if THE NOSE lied but when wine was poured in to the glass it smelled first like butterscotch. After rotating the wine in the glass the scent changed totally! Any similar experiences with this wine?

Matua was the first wineyard in New Zealand to plant Sauvignon Blanc in 1969.  Their produced first bottle in 1974. However, this is not about Sauvignon Blancs, which is not our favourite grape. First wine review (not first wine enjoyed) 2014 concerns Pinot Noir.

Tested wine was Matua Marlborough Pinot Noir 2012. Wineyard claims that wine is it’s best Pinot so far.


First of all the color of the label is different than usually on wine bottles, turquoise. Maybe that was the reason it caught my eye at Alko.

Wine itself is light red, close to mature cherry.


This was surprising! Usually when tasting wines I do not smell the aroma of wine so carefully before rotating it. This time did and was surprised by the smell of butterscotch. The bouquet I did not expect to find from Pinot Noir. But it made the wine really fascinating and forced to focus on THE NOSE more specifically than ever.

After rotating the wine in the glass strongly, aroma changed significantly. Now we found cherry, more typical pinot noir characters and some tannins.


Maybe tannins dominated, as acidity was quite low, because wine tasted a little bit acrid. Not that it hindered but that was the first feeling. Anyway, this wine was the most savory pinot noir ever tasted. As they are usually quite tawdry, Matua Marlborough Pinot Noir 2012 is not.

Facts and Figures:

Alcohol: 13,50 %
Extract : 30 g/l
Acidity: 5,4 g/l
Energy : 90 kcal / 100 ml (380 kJ / 100 ml)
Closure: metal screw cap

Tasted wine with asian food and match was perfect. Mixed flavors of strong spices and sweet seasonings are difficult combination for wines. Also paired well with pizza which was spiced with tabasco and jalopenos. Conclusion: wine suits better with spicy foods than avarage pinot noirs, mostly because of tannins.


Wine review: Hewitson Baby Bush Mourvèdre 2011

16 12 2013

Baby Bush -
Baby Bush vines are thrived in the cool vintage of 2011 that saw a slow and even ripening period. The later maturing nature of Mourvèdre grapes meant ripening occurred in sunny and warm conditions compared to the cool and rain of earlier in the vintage.
After hand picking and fermentation on skins, the wine completed its maturation for 16 months in the very same barrels used, when new, for Old Garden Mourvèdre. During this period the barrels experienced batonnage, where wine was mixed the fermentation lees with the new wine by rotating barrels on little wheels built into the racks.

As title tells, Hewitson Baby Bush is made 100% from Mourvèdre grape. Mourvèdre is not so common grape, at least for me, which made the tasting really fascinating.


Typical Hewitson label, white background and certain color of letters.

Wine itself is ruby red, some brownish although vintage is quite young 2011.

Hewitson -

Red wine glasses -


Depending on glass, even liquorice-chocolate, but blackberry and boysen berry raised from both glasses. As wine is almost as strong as Amarones’s aroma of alcohol felt more strongly in bigger glass.


Full-bodied a little bit spicy but tender taste. When wine opens up, flavor becomes even better.

Facts and figures:

Alcohol: 14,50 %
Extract: 29 g/l
Acidity: 4,6 g/l
Energy: 90 kcal / 100 ml (370 kJ / 100 ml)
Closure: metal screw cap

Wine is excellent, well balanced and tannins do not interfere too much. Suits perfeclty with red meats but also with spicy foods as it has some character. I would not forget it either on cold winter days although we have not seen them yet in Helsinki.


Red wine glasses – does the size matter? (Part II)

27 11 2013

Red wine glasses -

In part I we tasted Faustino VII with one result we did not write about. Right glass improved both aroma and taste of this affordable red wine. In Part II we tasted Châteauneuf-du-Pape Domaine du Vieux Lazaret 2010, which should be full-bodied with tannins, dark berries, cherry, spicy, hint of oak, nuanced regarding to Alko. Grapes in the wine are Grenache Noir, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Cinsault which is challenging combination.

Red wines -

We used the same glasses as in Part I with tasting results below:

Glass 1: Sommeliers Bordeaux GC (Riedel, Austria)

Huge 27 cm high glass with capacity of 0,86 litre. Could take the whole bottle! Glass maker Riedel recommends it to be used with following wines/grapes: Bordeaux (red), Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chablis, Fronsac, Graves rouge, Listrac, Margaux, Médoc, Merlot, Moulis, Pauillac, Pessac Leognan (Rouge), Pomerol, St. Emilion, St. Estèphe, St. Julien

TASTING NOTES: Glass is still too big for tasting because spinning the glass is quite clumsy. Huge size makes you careful which does not help in the tasting. However, practice makes you master and this time wine spinned more easily. Both results of NOSE and TASTE tests were in balance. Wine opened nicely and aroma was pleasant despite of tannins. WINNER OF THE TEST!

Glass 2: Vinum Bordeaux (Riedel, Austria)

Typical 22,5 cm high red wine glass with capacity of 0,61 litre. Recommended by Riedel to use with following wines/grapes: Bordeaux (red), Carmenère, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zweigelt

TASTING NOTES: Part I winner was not so impressive as it was in previous test. Somehow sniffing the bouquet made you cough. However, result of THE TASTE was as good as it was with the winning glass.

Glass 3: Essence (Iittala, Finland)

23 cm high with capacity of 0,45 litre and designed by Alfredo Häberli for Iittala in 2001. No recommendations for wines or grapes. In Finnish Iittala web -site also classified as beer glass.

TASTING NOTES: Shame on Iittala! Again LOSER OF THE TEST! Same problems with the NOSE, alcohol and with THE TASTE, tacky and lackluster.

Glass 4: Basic tasting glass

These glasses are usually used in basic wine tastings. This glass was brought on from Barcelona Estacio Enologica 100-year celebration but glass type has also been used in Finnish Wine Fairs several years ago.

TASTING NOTES: The bouquet for the THE NOSE was tender but THE TASTE was a little bit tacky and acid. Part I and Part II tests proved that basic tasting glass is excellent for the THE NOSE part of tests.

Glasses -


Size matters, at least when it comes to Châteauneuf-du-Pape Domaine du Vieux Lazaret 2010! Although none of the grapes of this wine are not mentioned by Riedel for preferred ones for Sommeliers Bordeaux GC glass, glass won the test. Wine with tannins need to get ogygen in order to open. Glass itself is like decanter which improves the experience.

But as written in the beginnng of the post, cheap and lackluster wines improve more in the right shaped glass. Best example are cognacs, do not use traditional glasses for them because you get blind due to the alcohol vapor. Buy cheaper cognac and enjoy it from flute-shaped aroma glass.

Wine review: Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages Nouveau

22 11 2013

Beaujolais Nouveau -

Beaujolais Nouveau is a red wine made from Gamay grapes produced in the Beaujolais region of France. It is released for sale on the third Thursday of November. This “Beaujolais Nouveau Day” used to see heavy marketing, with races to get the first bottles to different markets around the globe.

The current release practice is to ship the wine ahead of the third Thursday of November, and release it to the local markets at 12:01 am local time. Of course not in Finland as there is only one monopoly company selling wines and alcohol (Alko) and it opens at 09.00 EET and they offer only one choice Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages Nouveau. Neither restaurants promoted opportunity to taste it right after midnight.

It is important to enjoy the wine enough chilled, proof below :). It must be served between 12 – 14C degrees.

Beaujolais Nouveau -


Label is colorful as always, flowers mirror the freshness of wine.

Wine itself is almost violet, blue-reddish like young wines always are. More dark than last year.


Fruity, even sweet aroma especially when using tasting glass. Rasberry, vanilla and fruit candy scent came in to the nose.


Young fruity wine, light and fresh. Berries dominate but on the other hand quite skinny taste.

Facts and figures:

Alcohol: 12,00 %
Extract : 27 g/l
Acidity: 5,4 g/l
Energy : 80 kcal / 100 ml (320 kJ / 100 ml)
Closure: metal screw cap

This years only available Beaujolais Nouveau from Georges Duboeuf is eligible wine. Easy to taste, easy to enjoy.


Beaujolais Nouveau -

Last years modest review:

Red wine glasses – does the size matter? (Part I)

16 11 2013

Wine glasses -

There is lots of fuss about the importance of glass on the taste of wines. Some thoughts around the topic in two posts.

Compared two totally different red wines, Faustino VII 2011 and Châteauneuf-du-Pape Domaine du Vieux Lazaret 2010. Part I covers tasting of most modest Faustino, Faustino VII, which should be full-bodied Spanish tempranill0 with medium tannins and delicately spicy regarding to Alko notes.

Red wines -

Tested both wines in four different red wine glasses:

Glass 1: Sommeliers Bordeaux GC (Riedel, Austria)

Huge 27 cm high glass with capacity of 0,86 litre. Could take the whole bottle! Glass maker Riedel recommends it to be used with following wines/grapes: Bordeaux (red), Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chablis, Fronsac, Graves rouge, Listrac, Margaux, Médoc, Merlot, Moulis, Pauillac, Pessac Leognan (Rouge), Pomerol, St. Emilion, St. Estèphe, St. Julien

TASTING NOTES: Glass is too big for tasting because spinning the glass is quite clumsy. Huge size makes you too careful which does not help in the tasting. Mixed opinions compared to Vinum glass; actually it was a difficult task to rank these glasses with similar shapes. With affordable Faustino VII, glass did not provide any extra amazing experience; so we have to wait for how better French wine manages.

Glass 2: Vinum Bordeaux (Riedel, Austria)

Typical 22,5 cm high red wine glass with capacity of 0,61 litre. Recommended by Riedel to use with following wines/grapes: Bordeaux (red), Carmenère, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zweigelt

TASTING NOTES: Maybe easiest shape and size to taste Faustino VII. THE NOSE and THE TASTE were in balance. Vinum Bordeaux glass was the WINNER OF THE TEST! 

Glass 3: Essence (Iittala, Finland)

23 cm high with capacity of 0,45 litre and designed by Alfredo Häberli for Iittala in 2001. No recommendations for wines or grapes. In Finnish Iittala web -site also classified as beer glass.

TASTING NOTES: With Faustino VII Essence glass did not impress. It managed worst in THE NOSE and THE TASTE tests. Alcohol covered bouquet of tempranillo and flavor of the wine was bitter. LOSER OF THE TEST!

Glass 4: Basic tasting glass

These glasses are usually used in basic wine tastings. This glass was brought on from Barcelona Estacio Enologica 100-year celebration but glass type has also been used in Finnish Wine Fairs several years ago.

TASTING NOTES: Bouquet of tempranillo was most pleasant and easily identified, but taste of wine was as bitter as it was with Iittala Essence glass. Too much tannins and spices.

Glasses - reijosfood.comWine glasses -


Size does not matter but the shape really matters. It is important to choose right glass for different type of red wines. Maybe Spanish tempranillo is not the best wine for Riedel glasses, because it was not recommended by glass maker. One option might be that Riedel ignores certain countries/regions/grapes. However, tasted wine was quite modest and immature. None of the glasses did not improve taste significantly.

In Part II we analyze Châteauneuf-du-Pape Domaine du Vieux Lazaret 2010 which was tasted by using the same glasses.

Wine review: Pago del Vicario 50/50

10 02 2013

Pago del Vicario 50/50 is Spanish wine. It comes from one of the La Mancha bodegas, Pago del Vicario, which is located at a distance of nine kilometres from Ciudad Real. Bodega sells its wines under the appellation of Vino de la Tierra de Castilla. There are also a hotel and restaurant carrying same name.

Grapes and share of them used are, as you might guess from the name, TEMPRANILLO (50 %), CABERNET SAUVIGNON (50 %).
Tempranillo is a variety of black grape widely grown to make full-bodied but soft red wines in its native Spain. Cabernet Savignon brings the body to this wine.


Pago del Vicario

Vintage 2008 is deep red with brown tinge. Maybe wine had already got some depth. When wine flows along the surface of glass after spinnng it, wine does it slowly bringing out vintage and wine posture.


Strong aroma partly because fo tannins. Almost can scent alcohol which is unusual observation.


Fills mouth with quite strong taste. Tannins can be found clearly but not disruptively. Some bramble; taste is balanced.

Facts and figures:

Alcohol: 14,5% by volume
Extract: 31 g/l
Acidity: 5,9 g/l
Energy: 90 kcal/100 ml (390 kJ/100 ml)
Closure: natural cork

Pago del Vicario IIPaco del Vicario III

The design of the bottle is cool. Black glass bottle and black label make a solemn effect. On the other hand shape of the bottle which thickens toward the neck of the bottle gives the impression of luxury wine. Wine tasting is ensemble of different phases and observations; this wine gives opportunity to use all senses, even artistic ones.

As taste is quite strong and wine includes tannis recommend to enjoy Pago del Vicario 50/50 with red meats and spiced foods. Actually suited really well with the pasta we prepared same day, picture and preparing instructions on the page “Dining at home”.


Website has been under construction at least for two days

Wine review: Nugan Estate Durif

10 11 2012

This is the first Wine review blog at Because Restaurant reviews would become too long if wine reviews included, decided to write about the wines separately.

Attracted to Nugan Estate Durif during game dinner at restaurant Blue Peter. Durif as a grape is really unknown to me but match with the game food was excellent. Therefore decided to review it separately. Compared to red wines sold in Alko, this one is at the higher price level but not so expensive as Grand Cru French red wines or for instance Amarone.

Reviewed following areas:

Appearance – Dark red, also when glass is almost empty (this is not goal anyway)

Aroma – Almost like Tempranillo (could bet for Tempranillo), boysen berries but not the sweetest ones

Sensation/Taste – Well balanced, some acidity and spices but does not dry mouth afterwards

Facts and figures:

Alcohol: 14,5% by volume
Extract: 36 g/l
Acidity: 6,6 g/l
Energy: 90 kcal/100 ml (390 kJ/100 ml)
Closure: natural cork


Be careful of cream of tartar, best to use wine decanter in order to avoid uncomfortable feeling in the mouth after last sip.

Confirmed that quite suitable wine for meats and especially for game food. Australian wineyards produce quality wines in overall.

More info about Nugan Estate

and grape

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