Santomas Big Red Reserve Antonius Refosk Santomas 2004
I bet you had no idea they make wine in... Slovenia! I was completely unaware of that! But, read this out loud: I came across an old timer here that rocked my world. Truly, we are talking about a straight 91 pointer! Here we go: the wine comes from a small vineyard in Primorje (Trieste – Capodistria) branded by the Glavina family, local wine makers since 1800. It's a 2004 cepage of REFOSK (a local variety) vinified by a French gentleman by the name of Claude Gros from Narbonne. The wine looks and smells like a great Dornfelder with a touch of Shiraz (deep purple with lively ruby edges). Full bodied, 13,6% alc. (needs serious decanting!), Antonius brings up a majestic nose of black berries, marzipan, tobacco, cherries, rosemary and smoked plums against an impressive background of vanilla, truffles, black pepper and dark chocolate. The oak bug (this one is barrelled for 26 months, like a serious Barolo) is present, but not invasive, this wine has one of the most delightful bouquets that I have ever experienced with a single 5 year old cepage. Great attack too (nice, smooth tannins, black cherries, licorice, figs and red currants with a very pleasant earthy note – this is an extractive wine just like the good old Languedocs whose tipicity it resembles to almost confusion). The aftertaste is long and warm, almost like a big time Amarone, but not there yet, come on, it'd've been too much for its more than decent price, quality-wise!