By: Jim Barr | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/19/2013 | Send Email
When I started in the wine business 41-plus years ago, a $6.99 price tag on a bottle of wine generally meant it was either a super-second growth (although we never used the term “super-second” then) from the Medoc or a “Reserve” type of bottling of Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley. As this industry, both domestically and internationally, has grown during that time period, a combination of interrelated “things” (inflation, annual award events, domination by a handful of wine critics with their 100 point rating scheme, a rapidly growing public demand, and, most importantly, producers’ egos) have been introduced that has created a way of thinking by the public that price levels are directly related to a wine’s quality. In today’s market, when we see a wine priced at this level, it obviously cannot be very good. Doggie Poop! Produced mostly from Sangiovese (70%) with the balance being Merlot (15%) and Ciliegiolo (10%), this wonderful Tuscan blended Gem is medium-deep ruby in color, the nose is bright and flashy that is red fruit driven, with anise to mild cedary back notes. Soft, silky, and, again, bright, well-integrated fruit dances across your palate with excellent acid structure, opulent, fairly complex flavors, and a long, warm, fleshy finish, that demands that you go back for another glass. I have tasted wines that are priced $50.00 or more that don’t even come close to the brilliant quality of this Gem! And, that is why Rusty has insisted that I come home with cases of this puppy.