If you shop at Spec's downtown Houston location you probably know Bill Coates. Bill is the KING of the sales floor at Spec's and is mighty helpful to everyone who crosses his path or aisle! He just returned from a trip to Argentina and Chile and spent some time meeting the Vine Connections producers...here is a small excerpt from his website and link. Say hello to Bill next time you see him, he has a very honest palate and will always steer you in the right direction!
WINES OF SOUTH AMERICA
After Tasting many wines from loads of wineries, here are some highlights with my ratings. (Bill Coates and Laura Catena pictured on the left)
Ben Marco Malbec 2004-Beautiful purple color with perfumed aromas of ripe red fruits and roasted coffee beans. It is lush, bull-bodied and penetrating on the palate with loads of chewy, currant jam flavors, bright acidity, and a touch of grip on the almost savory finish. 92 rated
Luca Chardonnay 2004-Beautiful pale-gold color with enticing aromas of lemon crÃ¨me, baking spices and lightly grilled brioche. The aromas carry through to the palate, and are joined by hints of tropical fruit, spiced baked pear, and a stony/mineral flavor that creates a stylish wine that seems part New and part Old World. Finishes long with just a kiss of oak. This Chard has a lot of flavor, but manages never to lose its balance. 94 rated
Crios Torrontes 2005-Enticing aromas that are strikingly similar to Viognier, with hints of peach pit, flowers, and orange citrus fruit. On the palate, it has a beautiful structure and acidity along with enticing fruit flavors that keep you coming back for another sip and plenty of body for a wine that shows such delicate aromas and flavors. Fruity, floral and yet still quite dry, this wine has to be tasted to be believed. 91 rated
Tikal Patriota 2004-Aromas of bright berry/cherry fruit and electric-purple color. Like swallowing a whole bowl of mixed ripe berries at once. Big body yet very balanced, with luscious layers of raspberry, cherry, and cocoa flavors. Just a hint of baking spice at the end brings it all together. Pairs well with grilled meats such as beef and pork, smoked ham, and even pizza with meat toppings. Incredibly fun to drink! 93 rated
Tikal Amorio Malbec 2004-Aromas of smoky oak and cherry. Mouthwatering, penetrating flavors of ripe red and black cherries, red berries. Quite rich and velvety on the palate. 95 Rated
LUCA PINOT NOIR 2002-Beautiful medium-red color and aromas of wild strawberries, saddle leather and grilled nuts. A complex Pinot with notes of leather, spice, grilled toast and cherry/raspberry confiture on the palate. Amazing aroma and pure Pinot flavor such a young-vine Pinot. Pairs well with foods such as lamb chops, grilled salmon, roasted duck or chicken, and game birds. Pinot lovers may just go ahead and drink it by itself.
BUDINI MALBEC 2003-Dark red/purple color. Very perfumed with aromas of ripe black cherries. Full and fleshy in the mouth with loads of ripe and spicy red and black fruits. Great structure with loads of ripe, fleshy tannins, and a long, long finish. Wow!
Read more here http://hometown.aol.com/sailor306/myhomepage/index.html Cheers! Ali