Some nice lounge wines: Zarate, Terre Nerre, Zuccardi Concreto et al


Airport lounge wines are normally disappointing. But here in Los Angeles in the American Airlines lounge at Terminal 4 I found some wines I actually really wanted to drink.

Zarate Albariño 2018 Rias Baixas, Spain
Benchmark Albariño with a slightly smoky edge to the sweet citrus and apricot fruit, with some generosity but also keen acidity keeping things fresh. This is really tangy and bright with some citrus peel notes and a bit of fleshiness. Really refined with good concentration. 90/100

Talley Chardonnay 2016 Arroyo Grande, California
A rich, bold, mealy Chardonnay, but not overblown, with sweet ripe pear and peach fruit and a hint of caramel and vanilla in the background, with fresh fruit dominating. Has a nice spicy framing. Plenty of volume here, but with good enough balance, in a classic California style. 90/100

Tenute de Terre Nerre Etna Rosso 2017 Sicily, Italy
There’s a tiny bit of fading on the rim here, with what seems like a bit of early development. But it’s actually fresh and delicious, with a savoury, stony, mineral edge to the slightly stewed red cherry and berry fruits. Has a hint of mint and cedar, too. Finishes with some grip. 89/100

Zuccardi Concreto Malbec 2017 Altamira, Mendoza, Argentina
Whole cluster ferment and aged in concrete eggs. Intense, vivid colour with a bright, floral blackcurrant and black cherry nose. The palate shows good concentration and freshness with lovely texture to the black fruits, with a seamless core of ripe fruit but also good structure and acidity. A beautiful primary, fruit-forward wine. 93/100

Emily’s Miner Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 Napa Valley, California
14.2% alcohol. This shows lovely balance. There’s ripe blackcurrant and berry fruit, but also a nice stony, gravelly, chalky structure, with some savoury complexity as well as smooth, sweet fruit. Quite harmonious with good weight and balance. 91/100

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wine journalist and flavour obsessive

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