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October 2005

October 7, 2005

D'Argenzio — 2002 Pinot Noir

D’Argenzio Winery is a true family winery. Created in honor of the D’Argenzio’s long history of artisanship and run by three generations of the family, the winery is dedicated to producing small batch wines using Old World methods, such as using a 100-year-old hand-operated press and French oak barrels. This Pinot Noir is just one of the many results of their dedication to artisan wines. Characterized by delicate textures, this soft red wine carries hints of cherry and spice. Currently, the 2002 vintage is only available at the D’Argenzio Enoteca tasting room in Burbank, Calif., but the winery has recently released the 2003 Pinot Noir, available online.

Rating: 14/20
Price: $32

Other Pinor Noirs we've tasted
Check out our guide to California
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October 14, 2005

Adriano Ramos Pinto — 2003 Adriano Red

For more than 100 years, the House of Ramos-Pinto has prided itself on its estate-grown table wines made from traditional Portuguese red wine grapes. This particular blend has four from the Douro River Valley in Portugal: Touriga Francesa, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Barroc and Touriga Nacional. The grapes give the wine a distinct ruby color and intense tannins. Slightly acidic, this wine carries aromas of spicy blackberry and plum and has slight flavors of fruit, caramel and butterscotch on the palate. The finish is fresh and long. We recommend the wine with many entrees, including barbecue and tomato-based pasta dishes, and at $15, it is a great value selection for any small family dinner.

Rating: 13.5/20
Price: $15

Other red blends we've tasted
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October 21, 2005

Ross Estate — 2002 Estate Shiraz

It is likely that you have not heard of Ross Estate from Barossa Valley, Australia, but we would not want you to miss out on it. Winemaker Rod Chapman, a Penfolds’ alum (think Grange and Bin Series), now crafts his own stuff, like this robust but enjoyable Shiraz. It is dark on the approach as you might expect from a Shiraz, and its nose is slightly fruity with dominant flavors of pepper and spice. Just the right of amount of tannins, coupled with flavors of blackberry, black currant and cocoa, lead to a progressive finish. A great pick for any occasion, but dark meat will be its best ally.

Rating: 14.5/20
Price: $35

Other Shiraz we've tasted
Check out our guide to Australia
For more information, visit

October 28 , 2005

Duval-Leroy — Rosé de Saignée

Carol Duval-Leroy took the bull by the horns when her husband Jean died back in 1991. Since then, she has single-handedly directed the company she loves and is becoming another famous Madame Veuve. The result of all this hard work and dedication is excellent Champagne at a great price. In fact, any bottling in their lineup offers great value and pleasant taste. This week we wanted to feature the Rosé, which is manufactured by a traditional rosé-making method called saignée using 100 percent Pinot Noir from Vertus. In the glass you will find a wine with an attractive color and fragrant fruity nose. In the mouth you will find a good body, richness in layers and enough structure to hold against food. This is a versatile wine that can pair with an array of food, from Sushi to lighter meats and sweet dishes like clafoutis.

Rating: 14/20
Price: $50

Other Champagnes we've tasted
Check out our guide to France

For more information, visit



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