Recycle Bin, Week of November 18

As the weather turns in much of the country, we're covering some bolder, richer wines to accompany cuisine as it changes with the seasons.  (Note that these are not Thanksiving recommendations - for those see the last post - but winter weather suggestions.) We've got robust chardonnay, luxe cabernet, a couple of legit Israeli wines, among others.  Cheers!

2017 Hess Collection Napa Valley Chardonnay $22
Unexpectedly and blessedly devoid of flab and excess, this clean, well-made chard is rich and round nonetheless. Warming tones of vanilla and oak frame the acidity-outlines fruit core. Plenty of Northern California Chardonnay character here with out any of the baggage. Pretty.

2017 Hess Collection Allomi Cabernet Sauvignon $32
As good as it was to start, it just got better and better. deep purple color wafting with
mocha-cedar aromatics suggest a cashmere sweater awaits. And it does. The open texture of this wine’s fabric allows the big fruit to unfold languorously, though there’s plenty of sturdy oak framing here to keep everything in line. Perfect wine to curl up with in front of the fireplace over the holidays. Mmmmmmm. Very friendly indeed. 

2017 Ferraton Pere & Fils “La Matinière” Crozes-Hermitages $26
Textbook Crozes and absolutely irresistible (especially after 4 hours decanted.) Black olive runs through the savory profile of this clean, youthful Syrah. crunchy deliciousness emerges with air that streams a river of drinking pleasure. Damn!

2018 Silverado Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc Miller Ranch Napa Valley$25
Very balanced and enjoyable, with right down the middle fruit framed by proportional acidity. On the citrus side of the spectrum but still showing hints of fresh grass and Grannysmith.  Subdued by modern standards, which isn’t a bad thing as many sauvignon blancs seem to be striving for so much grapefruit they end up astringent.

2018 Silverado Vineyards Sangiovese Rosato Napa Valley $25
An unusual one, showing real sangiovese character in a bright pink, fuzzy sweater.  

2018 Carmel Collection Shiraz Israel $15
Legit. Warm, exotic aromas give way to a supple texture and a broad spectrum of flavors. Faithful to the variety’s character in its darkness, but edged by bright Mediterranean notes and wrapped in a subtle caramel shawl. These contrasts are cohesively integrated into a pleasurable, balanced wine. Good value, too.

2018 Carmel Collection Cabernet Sauvignon Israel $15
Another terrific value from this winery, the cabernet shares a lot in common with its shiraz sibling: true varietal character detailed by Mediterranean influences (fresh herbs and pretty crushed violets), but it also delivers plenty of easy drinking in a blessedly mid-weight package. Unfolds expansively as it breathes. And, as it turns out, quite a crowd pleaser.