Montes Alpha 2001 Colchagua Valley Apalto Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon ($20.99)
Dark ruby, with reddish-orange glints. Blackcurrant and black-cherry aromas present a "fruit-forward" aromatic melody over an appetizing bass line of dark chocolate. Full and ripe, juicy fruit flavors follow the nose, luscious "sweet" fruit overrides gentle acidity; soft tannins are present but almost lost beheath the fruit. High in alcohol at 14 percent, and showing the spicy accents of time spent in French oak. A crowd-pleasing style that's full and lush and easy to like; I expect it consistently does well in Wine Spectator ratings. Softens a bit and loses some structure after an hour in the glass, suggesting that it's not an ager. US Importer: T.G.I.C. Importers Inc., Woodland Hills, Calif. (Jul 17, 2003)

FOOD MATCH: Fine with dry-aged ribeye steak, simply grilled medium-rare over charcoal.



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