Red Wine Review:
Casa Lapostolle Merlot Cuvee Alexandre
Dirty nose belies the rich ripe red and black berry fruits in the mouth. Donâ€™t get me wrong, this wine is definitely earthy, but has equal amounts of sweet fruit to balance out. More complex than I expected, but then I didnâ€™t look closely enough at the label. I have long been a big fan of Casa Lapostolleâ€™s Merlot â€œCuvee Alexandreâ€ labeled as being simply from â€œRapel Valleyâ€, and never paid more than maybe twelve bucks for it. This bottle was right around that price but I’m sure it was mislabeled, as Iâ€™ve seen it elsewhere for twice as much. Thatâ€™s fine â€¦ as a ten dollar wine, it is an outstanding value, and at around $22-25, it is appropriately priced for the quality inside the bottle.
The first day I opened this wine, the aroma was fairly closed, showing only a lot of earth â€“ as in dirt. I drank about a glass and a half and re-corked it, leaving it at room temperature. The next evening, I poured it again and the aroma really opened up, showing deep, rich, ripe black fruits — cassis, black raspberry, black cherry — integrated with the bitter earthy notes, leather, black pepper, green bell pepper, dark chocolate, and a hint of tobacco. This wine is very complex both on the nose and the palate — the flavors are similar to the aromas: black fruits, earthy tones, hints of sweet tobacco, black licorice, vanilla spice. The tannins are rather aggressive, but not to the point of killing the fruit, and the acidity is also medium to medium-high. It is a fine wine for food matching, particularly for beefy, cheesy, and fatty dishes. On its own it is enjoyable but maybe a bit too aggressive; if you must drink it away from the dinner table I suggest you at least have a hunk of cheese to go with it. Complex, enjoyable, and worthy of cellaring for 2-4 years.
a-8 t-8 b-8 fc-8 v-7 ~ 89 points
Imported by Schieffelin-Somerset