2004 Rosenblum Rockpile Zinfandel

This is an awesome $25 wine. Unfortunately, they are charging $40 for the thing. I blame the big wine magazine for rating last year’s vintage so high. Talk about ruining a good thing.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Kent Rosunblum’s wine. I just hate paying more than they are worth.

This wine has an awesome deep purple color.

The aromas are dark cherry, black pepper, mocha and a little vanilla.

Tastes include dark chocolate, dark cherry, blackberry, vanilla, charcoal. Lots of fruit and leather on the finish.

This is a great zinfandel but you are going to pay…go ahead and get one bottle, you’ll not be disappointed…

2001 Delheim Vera Cruz Estate Stellenbosch Shiraz

I think that I bought this one last Christmas time in Wyoming of all places. It was wrapped in a very attractive tissue paper thus assuring that I wouldn’t feel bad paying for it.

Appearance – very dark purple, I figure that there is no way that a wine that looks like this can be anything but outstanding.

Nose – intensely sweet blackberry, a ton of smoke and a little black pepper.

In the mouth – a lot of oak, probably American oak, but not as intense as most wines stored in American oak. This wine probably needs another 5 to 10 years on the shelf, but looking at the cork, I’m not sure it would last that long. The stains on the cork were between 1/3 and 1/2 the length. It might make it another 5 years. I’m not sure that I want to push it that long though.

Anyway, the flavors include tobacco, blackberry, cigar box, dark chocolate and a little black pepper.

The finish is nice and smooth but not as powerful as I had hoped. Don’t get me wrong on that last comment; it does not wimp out on the finish.

I think I paid $40 for this one. If you can get it for $35 or less, it is a bargain. If it costs $45 or more, skip it.