Here are some of our favourites. But choosing just one favourite is like choosing a favourite child.
The Prisoner - by Orin Swift
The Prisoner was created and inspired by the drinkable “mixed blacks” first made by the Italian immigrants who originally settled in the Napa Valley. In 2003 The Prisoner was launched and soon became the most recognized innovative and unique Napa Valley Red Wine blend, leading the resurgence of blends by incorporating Zinfandel with the unlikely “mix” of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petite Sirah, and Charbono.
The wine is a blend of Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petite Sirah and Charbono. The wine features enticing aromas of bing cherry, espresso, and roasted fig. Persistent flavors of ripe raspberry, pomegranate and wild berry linger harmoniously for a smooth and luscious finish.
Meiomi Pinot Noir
Deep, rich garnet color. The wine opens up with aromas of ripe berries, fresh cranberry, candy apple and malted vanilla, some of which carries through to the palate. There’s a hint of Granny Smith apple on first sip that beautifully balances out the rich cream soda and cherry cola notes. It is an extremely layered wine, both in structure and flavor, with a slight earthiness and sweet oak on the finish. The wine almost contradicts itself, managing to display freshness and maturity all at the same time, which is achieved through careful blending.
Abstract - by Orin Swift
Opaque and purple to the rim of the glass, an elevated display of aromatics is immediately present. Fragrant dark fruits, spring flowers, violet, and hint of garrigue greet the nose and tempt added review. Extraordinary freshness is present upon entry leading to lush flavors of sweet boysenberries, kirsch, licorice, dark cherries, and exotic floral notes. The palate is thoroughly treated and left with a finish of bright acidity and round tannins, which exist in seamless balance.
Abstract is a blend of Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino Grenache, Petite Sirah, and Syrah primarily from hillside vineyards.
Garnacha Centeneria - Enjoyed at Tantalo in Casco Viejo Panama. Our favourite restaurant and Rooftop Patio.
Grapes from very old Garnacha vineyards planted by the traditional system from single vineyards “Monte Alto” and “La Sarda”. These vineyards are located on very arid slate soils on the slopes of the Iberian Mountain range, close to its highest peak: El Moncayo.
Deep and ruby red of great clarity and brightness. High intensity, fruity and oral aromas. Fine notes to toasted and spices. Smooth start, this wine is wide, fleshy and harmonious and well structured. Rich in nuances, very balanced and ample, long aftertaste.
Glorioso Rioja - Spain
On our first trip to Panama City we found an old restaurant with a great little bar in the back. The little sommelier suggested this wine. So good, we went back on our next trip and got this again!
This is jaw-droppingly good, made by Bodegas Palacio from Tempranillo grapes grown on some of the oldest vines in the vineyard -This was aged for a year in oak barrels, then a further two years in the bottle, resulting in mellow black fruit flavours and a velvet-like texture - Really wonderful wine; a joy with roast lamb or stronger, hard cheeses.
Azuraga Crianza - Enjoyed in Panama City in a little bar at the very back of an old school restaurant in El Cangrejo. Love this place so much and the cute little somellier.
The Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot varieties with which this wine is produced are grown in the oldest area of La Planta estate. They are cultivated at 911 metres of altitude on clayey limestone soil over unbroken bedrock within one meter down the surface. The 2011 Arzuaga Crianza is Tempranillo with 7% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Merlot aged for 16 months in a mixture of French and American oak barriques (50/50). It has an herbal, balsamic touch from the Bordeaux varieties mixed with ripe plums, black cherries and plenty of spices from the oak. The palate feels warm with round, ripe tannins and enough acidity.