20 August 2014

Montes Angels of California

Aurelio Montes is well-known in Chile, where his self-named winery has been a regional powerhouse. Over time he expanded to Argentina, and also to North America with the Angel line.

Operating in both hemispheres provides an interesting challenge and a contrast to the regular operation of a winery that ticks along according to the seasons. When you're running both north and south of the equator, you're always working. February is pretty quiet north of the equator but south of the equator, that's when harvest begins.

2008 Star Angel Red Wine
Paso Robles, California
100% Syrah
$20, 15% abv.

Plum and spice notes with medium tannins, tasty and great for a pizza in the middle of the week. This wine has an interesting marketing line--though it is pure Syrah, they choose to market it as "red wine" in order to attract the market looking for just a red for the evening.

2011 Star Angel Pinot Noir
Santa Rita Hills, California
100% Pinot Noir
$34, 14.5% abv.

The wine shows bright ripe wild strawberry aromas and flavors with a tart edge and a bold body. Quite young, should be milder in a few years.

2008 Napa Angel Cabernet Sauvignon
Napa Valley, California
$34, 14.9% abv.

I don't know the exact grape makeup, but this likely Bordeaux blend opens up with a rich nose of cassis and a touch of chocolate. Well-aged with medium tannins and a gentle finish. Highly recommended and one that is expected to improve over the next 3-5 years.

Note: These wines were provided as samples for review.

1 comment:

Mark said...

Probably only a matter of time before we see this happening more and more. Anyone with distribution networks as wide as theirs, is going to try and capitalize on them. Interesting notes on Syrah simply being called a "Red wine". Evidently selling Syrah on site, still proves rather difficult!