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Favorite Wines from the Porch

Scroll through the images to find your favorite with details below.

These are my “go to” favorite wines

(in alphabetical order)

Descriptions will appear below once the wine has been reviewed on the blog.  All reviewed wines may not appear on this list.

Cote Mas Red, White and Rosé Table Wines.  This is a perfect party wine that will please a broad range of palate preferences.  These wines are from southern France and are sold online as well as in local stores.  In Charleston, you can purchase the red and the white at The Wine Shop of Charleston.  In Mount Pleasant, you can get all three varieties at Bottles Beverage Superstore.  Or message: Paul Mas Wines for distribution in your area.

Cline Cashmere Exquisite Red Blend 2014  They called it Cashmere Exquisite Red Blend, and I guess it is because of the way this wine feels in your mouth. We picked up for $14.99 which is about what the national average is for this wine.  You can find this wine at a grocery store that has a nice wine section.  Look for it on the top or second shelf in the red blend section.  You will also find it at most wine superstores like Total Wine, Bottles, Binny’s, etc.  You can also pick it up for $15.99  on wine.com.  Wine like this that is consistently good if not great in some years is what I call… an old friend – reliable and always available when you want.

Domaine Houchart Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016. This wine has been a favorite over the past few years.  While the 2015 vintage was not our “go to” everyday rosé last year, it is back on top with the 2016 vintage.  Salmon pink in color, this wine is perfectly balanced and refreshing.  The nose is of white peaches and dry strawberries.  It is easy on the tongue with a really nice body that holds up well with food.    When tossing it around in the mouth, we tasted watermelon and berries.  This lively well-rounded rosé is by all measures a really lovely wine.  We found it for $13.99 at our local shop.  I have not yet found the 2016 vintage online as of yet, so you may want to reach out to the winemaker to see if they have distribution in your state.  You will not want to miss this wine.

Domaine Paul Thomas * Sancerre – Chavignol Rosé 2016  When selecting the additional wines for this tasting, our sales person suggested that if we were looking at $20+ bottles, we should seriously consider Domaine Paul Thomas Sancerre Chavignol Rosé 2016.  Always up for something new and with his strong recommendation, I added it to the cart.  When I brought it home, Gary’s response was, “Paul Thomas makes great wine, this should be good.”  Now I have to admit when I think of Sancerre I think white wine.  I had no idea that 25% of the grapes now grown in the region are Pinot Noir nor did I know that Sancerre in the 19th century and earlier was primarily a red wine region.  While white wines have been the focus of many Sancerre winemakers, there has been a refocusing of attention on Pinot Noir production and making some incredible red and rosé wines. And this Paul Thomas is an exceptional wine for sure.  There were three of us tasting this wine, and when we each took our first sip, we all said a variation of “Wow!, that is superb.”  And it is.  Beautifully balanced, smooth and clean with round edges.  It does not sit on your tongue. There are definitive stone fruit flavors that dance on your palate and then quickly disappear causing you to take another sip wanting more.  This wine sells for $23.75 and is worth every penny.  Upper Loire Valley * Sancerre AOC, Pinot Noir. This wine sells for approx. $23.75 and is worth every penny.  It is so good that on my next trip downtown I picked up another four bottles. (Purchased at The Wine Shop 2 Lockwood Ave.)

The Federalist Honest Red Blend 2014 is easy to drink. It is a dark red in color.  I would describe it as jammy (lots of fruit but not sweet).  Bing cherry and other dark red fruits are present with a hint of chocolate in the finish.  For me, his is a cocktail wine not a dinner wine.  I enjoy this wine but Gary is not a fan of jammy wines so he is a pass on this one.  Fortunately, I did not buy it for him.

Moulin De Gassac, Guilhem Rosé 2016 Crisp, and fresh for sure but that’s where Gary and I parted with this wine.  We may have different favorites this year because he is really liking this one to a much greater degree than me.  Pale salmon in color, the word that comes to my mind with my first sip is citrus – blood orange more specifically.  Gary says this wine has “medium acid”.  I call it tart making the edges of my tongue salivate.  The finish is a bit like early, not quite ripe strawberries.  I like a bit more ripe berry than this one has.  But Gary is in love, so if you like tart or medium acid citrusy wines, this may be your wine.

Rosé Frizant 2016   GRAPE VARIETIES: 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Mourvèdre, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon, Petit Manseng and Muscat   From the winemaker: A genuine rosé wine – it could almost be a fruit juice – delights the palate with lively fine bubbles, smooth fruity aromas, very fresh thanks to its low (11.5%) alcohol content!  We sat down to taste this wine on a warm Sunday afternoon.  We have been sitting on it since late February waiting for the perfect time to crack open the first bottle.  It has a very bright, clean start with perfect effervescence.  The tiny bubbles tickle your tongue while a fresh tartness causes the sides of the tongue to salivate.  Unlike the 2015 vintage that had intense ripe strawberry fruit, this year’s vintage is more subtle with a dry, early, not quite ripe berry finish.  This wine will be a perfect cocktail wine but will also hold up to food. Thus, it is also a perfect wine for brunch.  Sit back, relax and enjoy. Yep, it’s “easy like Sunday morning.”  We have shared this wine with many friends.  Everyone has loved it.  Seriously!  Where to buy  Local: If you are in Charleston you can pick up this wine at The Wine Shop at 3 Lockwood Drive, Second Floor.  (843) 577-3881.  It sells for approx. $28 a bottle. (her anniversary sale is coming up on Memorial Day weekend when everything is 20% off)  Online: When I could no longer get the 2015 vintage here in town, I ordered from this company… twice.  Prompt service and excellent prices.   Go to Winedeals.com.  If you buy six bottles at $23 each, you get it shipped for free.  Or buy 12 at $21 each and also get free shipping.  Note: If you read the 5-star review on their page, note the review is for the 2015 vintage.  2016 is nothing like strawberry soda!  Or if you want to find a local distributor, please contact the winemaker in France to see if your state has distribution.

Seis de Luberri 2012 This red wine from the Rioja region of Spain is one of my favorite Spanish wines that I have come back to time and time again.  It is made from the popular tempranillo grape and is a wonderfully rich, delicious wine.  I find it very well balanced with plenty of fruit primarily ripe cherries with a spicy, earthy finish.  I can drink it anytime with or without food but it would go great with lamb or beef.  This wine is widely distributed so you should find in your area.  Locally, I found it at The Wine Shop on Lockwood for roughly $16.00 a bottle and you can go to wine.com for those that buy online for $19.00 a bottle.

Vignerons de Caractère * Les Pierres du Vallat * Gigondas 2012  When we all first took our first sip of this Gigondas we all moaned.  Then words like “special”, “smooth”, “balanced”, “love it”, “velvet” and more flowed from our mouths.  This is a wine that we were all going to enjoy.  We could just tell we were in for a treat. It is very welcoming and can be enjoyed with or without food.  There is great balance with soft tannins and hints of berries.  This wine would also be great when eating dark chocolate.   You can get this wine online from Winedeals.com for $19.99 per bottle and if you get 6 bottles (mix or match) it ships for free.  Locally, we found this wine at The Wine Shop on Lockwood.  The winemaker says:  A powerful and complex nose dominated by dense notes of black fruits and spices. A great flexibility in the mouth expressing material and roundness. It is a subtle and intense Gigondas.  85% Grenache, 15% Syrah  Gigondas AOC in Southern Rhone  My Bottom Line: Buy this wine!

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