Red Bordeaux

Chateau Cap de Faugeres, 2005 Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux

This estate continues to turn out wines of exceptional value. The ’05 displays pretty perfumed aromas of ripe black cherry and spices. This luscious red is rich and fleshy, kind of like Donald Trump without the bad hair. There’s ample fruit that greets your tongue in the attack, fills out the mid-palate and then lingers on the finish. Subtle dark cocoa nuances mingle nicely with the fruit adding dimension. Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon. $35.

Rating: 4 Stars (4 / 5)

Clos des Jacobins, 2005 Saint Emilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux

The nose is a funky mix of earthy barnyard and wet leather (reminiscent of an X-rated Dukes of Hazard). It’s medium to full-bodied with fruit flavors that favor earthy berries, bordering on cranberry or pomegranate. Subdued oak spice flavors linger in the finish.

Rating: 4.5 Stars (4.5 / 5)

Chateau Haut-Chaigneau, 2009 Lalande de Pomerol, Bordeaux

This is a full-bodied blend of 70% Merlot and the rest equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Scents of black raspberry combine with aromas of wet clay in the nose, while the dark, spicy fruits are held in check by oaky barrel notes and firm tannins that gain grip in the finish and linger on like that friend who never knows when it’s time to go home. $30.

Rating: 3.5 Stars (3.5 / 5)

La Petit Haut Lafitte, 2010 Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux

This blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon and 45% Merlot displays rich floral scents with subtle hints of pepper. In the mouth, silky tannins support a core of sweet, ripe red cherry flavors with slightly smoky accents. In a room full of hard wines, La Petit Haut Lafitte was surprisingly easy drinking. There’s great concentration and a finish that goes on longer than an airport check-in line, but thankfully doesn’t end with a body cavity search. $45. Rating: 4 Stars (4 / 5)

Chateau Les Carregades, 2010 Medoc, Bordeaux

This wine has everything you expect in a Medoc wine except an exorbitant price tag. It displays aromas of dark, dried cherry along with nuances of forest floor. It’s a medium-bodied red with a soft, approachable mouth feel, dark fruit flavors and an old fashioned Bordeaux finish brimming with earthy minerals and tobacco. $15. Good value. Rating: 3 Stars (3 / 5)

Chateau Roylland, 2008 Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Classe, Bordeaux

This is a smooth, medium-bodied blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Sweet oak nuances are evident in the nose and palate, reminding me of Grandma’s kitchen when she made cookies with vanilla, white chocolate and dark berries. Also like Grandma’s kitchen there’s a hint of tobacco smoke to complete the analogy. Not very complex but neither was Grandma and I still loved her. $27. Rating: 3 Stars (3 / 5)

Chateau St. Colombe, 2006 Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux

This affordable Bordeaux is as soft as Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t. Flavors of ultra-ripe cherry float on a silky texture that also shows interesting nuances of leather. An elegant and fully mature Bordeaux at a remarkable price. $15. Good value. Rating: 3 Stars (3 / 5)