Gregory Dal Piaz

Location: New York, NY

Top Grenache 5/8/12

Rank Wine Rating Price
1 D'Arenberg the Beautiful View Grenache Mclaren Vale (2009)
Comments: This explodes from the glass with fennel seeds, wild herbs, candied red currants, a liquory intensity of fruit, red licorice, tar, pencil lead, and candied apples with a hint of allspice. This is bright and a bit nervous in the mouth with crisp tannins and plenty of bright acids. There’s wonderful inner mouth perfume married to a light, elegant mouth feel. The flavor intensity is a bit less than anticipated but this is almost a Burgundian rendition of Grenache. The long, light finish shows a lovely streak of cranberry. Give this a year for the tannins to soften and it should be even better! 91pts
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2 Conde de Valdemar Old Vines Garnacha (2007)
Comments: Chocolate, cocoa earth, tree bark, a little steel, leather, river stones and cigar ash, mushroom and woodsy red fruit. It’s showing maturity but with appealing complexity. Very smooth on entry, this shows a nice, plummy leading edge with good acidity and some lightly tarry top notes. The fruit is a bit roasted and leans toward the darker side for Grenache, with notes of black cherry, blueberry and tart black plum skin. This is smooth, round and medium- to full-bodied yet it finishes with a certain brightness and elegance due to the acidity and really fine mineral finale. Lovely complexity and freshness here. 90pts
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3 Tolosa Grenache Noir Tolosa Vineyards Edna Valley (2009)
Comments: This is herby and woodsy on the nose with iron and blood notes, along with minty accents that frame the dried blackberry fruit. Very soft on entry, though not lacking in acid. This is rich and pure on the palate with a little beet root earthiness and a gentle underlay of stones propping up the spicy, raspberry fruit. The finish is brisk and shows a hint of vanilla accenting the stony, raspberry flavor. This gains with air revealing compelling teriyaki jerky and herbal aspects. The palate remains a bit tight but the finish continues to gain length. This should improve with time in the bottle. 89pts
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4 Mounts Grenache Dry Creek Valley (2009)
Comments: This is a bit dark and roasty on the nose with notes of dusty earth, green tobacco and cracked pepper accenting the dried strawberry fruit. It also does show a bit of heat. Lighter on the palate than expected with lovely brightness to the strawberry and slightly pomegranate-tinged fruit. This has a nice spicy quality on the back end and tannins that add just a hint of mouth-grab, though they balance the richness and sweetness of fruit on the finish well. The finish adds nice notes of licorice and spice along with a slightly minty top note. 89pts
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5 Bucklin Grenache Sonoma Valley Old Hill Ranch (2009)
Comments: Dark and spicy on the nose with a little peachy edge to the deep, black licorice, cracked pepper, leather and bitter chocolate aromas. This shows some alcohol on the nose and a decidedly black profile. Rich and round on entry, this shows lovely, elegant tannins and juicy acidity supporting fairly bright and slightly exotic black berry fruit. There’s a hint of pomegranate here along with some gentle spice notes, but not a ton of complexity. The balance is deep and really fine, and this finishes with mouth dusting tannins adding a savory note to that exotic fruit. 88pts
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6 Yalumba Grenache Barossa Bush Vine (2010)
Comments: Strawberry tops, herbs, wild grasses and hints of white pepper and faded exotic spices. On the palate this shows good depth of fruit, dark raspberry and strawberry notes with a fine mineral vein that adds fine cut through the richness. This really exhibits fine balance, with solid supporting structure lurking just under the wonderfully transparent yet faceted fruit of the mid-palate. This is nice and tense right through juicy finish. Nice detail here, though this is showing a bit chunkier than the last time I enjoyed it. 88pts
Previously available for $17.99
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