Wine Reviews


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3250632505USReally smooth textured. Quite elegant as well, with sleek, complex layers of black currant, blackberry, plum, black cherry, herb, chocolate, coffee, spice, toast and a beguiling hint of tar. The wine is incredibly complex and inviting, framed beautifully in velvety tannins. Long and lush on the finish, it's blended from grapes grown on Mt. Veeder, Atlas Peak and the Napa Valley floor.Signature9464CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaDarioush 2000 Signature Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonDarioush
3250732506FranceThis Moueix-owned premier grand cru classé property quietly goes about producing great wines. The 2000 is a complete success, with its aromas of red berry fruits and sweet wood, its flavors cedar and truffles alongside the fine, elegant tannins. It will age slowly and reveal layers of complexity over the years.9387BordeauxSaint-ÉmilionRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Magdelaine 2000 Saint-ÉmilionBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Magdelaine
3250832507FranceThis is a solid, huge wine, with rich but very dry tannins. With its dense, almost black color, and its sense of brooding power, it promises long aging. It will never be in the opulent Bordeaux camp, despite its prominent new wood flavors, but will probably outlive all but a handful top wines.9390BordeauxSaint-EstèpheRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Calon Ségur 2000 Saint-EstèpheBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Calon Ségur
3250932508FranceThis is the flagship wine from the mini-empire (now comprising five properties) that is controlled by Comte Stephan von Niepperg. He has made a modern, wood dominated wine, with rich, concentrated black fruits. It is powerful, perhaps too powerful, lacking a sense of the usual grace of this estate, although the ripeness of the wine does compensate.9350BordeauxSaint-ÉmilionRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Canon la Gaffelière 2000 Saint-ÉmilionBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Canon la Gaffelière
3251032509FranceIn 2000, this was still the property of Lily Lacoste, who also owned Pétrus. Latour à Pomerol was sold in 2001 to a Catholic charity. The management, then and now, is with the Moueix family who make the most of the fabulous vineyard. The 2000 is a hugely opulent, velvet textured wine, but it retains hints of the elegance that is the hallmark of this property.9375BordeauxPomerolRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Latour à Pomerol 2000 PomerolBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Latour à Pomerol
3251132510FranceUnder the regime of Gérard Perse, Pavie seems to have become more opulent, more extracted, and, dare I say it, more simplistic. The richness of the 2000 vintage lends itself to this technique. While it is a wonderful, immediately appealing wine, with its intense dark fruits, it seem to lack the complexity of other wines of similar status.93250BordeauxSaint-ÉmilionRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Pavie 2000 Saint-ÉmilionBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Pavie
3251232511AustraliaJust about the best white wine out of Australia this year, this Roussanne isn't a fleshy wine, but it has beauty, power and structure in its corner. Full-bodied with powdery tannins, it has flavors of honeydew, peach fuzz and mineral, and an herbal-peppery finish that lingers on the tongue. Nose is a tantalizing mix of marzipan, jasmine and clover. Just excellent.Aeolia9375VictoriaVictoriaGiaconda 2001 Aeolia Roussanne (Victoria)RoussanneGiaconda
3249132490SpainIntriguing aromas of boysenberry and blueberry come with smoky notes of hickory and aged cheese. This is showing a firm grip on the palate along with ripe, intense flavors of black fruits and prune. On the finish, it's tannic and loaded with licorice and toasty accents. Drink through 2019.Venta la Ossa TNT9227Central SpainVino de la Tierra de CastillaMichael Schachner@wineschachMano A Mano 2010 Venta la Ossa TNT Red (Vino de la Tierra de Castilla)Red BlendMano A Mano
3251332512USSuper-delicious, a mouthful of Chardonnay perfection. Really notable for the pure concentration of its flavors, such as fresh ripe white peach, mango, and spicy fig. Elaborately oaked, but not too much to support the huge fruit. The rich and creamy texture is a delight.Vanumanutagi Vineyard9230CaliforniaSanta Cruz MountainsCentral CoastClos La Chance 2001 Vanumanutagi Vineyard Chardonnay (Santa Cruz Mountains)ChardonnayClos La Chance
3249232491FranceWhile displaying strong herbaceous Sauvignon Blanc flavors, the wine is also rich with fruitiness, offering a delicious series of green fruits followed by pineapple and tropical flavors. It's a wine that's right up front, crisp and bright at the end.92BordeauxPessac-LéognanRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau la Garde 2012 Pessac-LéognanBordeaux-style White BlendChâteau la Garde
3249332492ItalyThis displays primary aromas of black fruit along with whiffs of roasted herbs and espresso. The palate offers black plum, prune and Morello cherry accented by black pepper, coffee, toast and vanilla. Youthfully aggressive and tightly packed, this needs time to fully develop. Drink after 2022.Meriame9280PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefePaolo Manzone 2010 Meriame (Barolo)NebbioloPaolo Manzone
3249432493ItalyThis opens with a classic Nebbiolo fragrance of Morello cherry, dried rose petal, mint and thyme. The ripe palate offers up crushed black cherry, prune, black pepper, cake spices and licorice alongside brooding tannins and uplifting acidity. It's already well balanced but will be even better in another few years.Muncagota Riserva9265PiedmontBarbarescoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeProduttori del Barbaresco 2009 Muncagota Riserva (Barbaresco)NebbioloProduttori del Barbaresco
3249532494USThis is an extremely smooth Syrah, another reminder of how well the Rhône grape does when planted in California's cooler Pinot Noir climates. Licorice and boysenberry characterize the nose, with the combination of rich fruit and peppery spice framing the palate. The lingering vanilla finish kicks it up even one more notch.Tondre Grapefield9232CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannJoyce 2012 Tondre Grapefield Syrah (Santa Lucia Highlands)SyrahJoyce
3251432513USThe wine starts of with intriguing bacon and earth tones that are followed up by rich, ripe raspberry, black cherry, spice, licorice, herb and toast flavors. It's beautifully balanced, with supple tannins and a flashy, robust character that remains enticing and long at the end. Look for more of this varietal from Darioush as its Shiraz vineyards mature.9264CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaDarioush 2000 Shiraz (Napa Valley)ShirazDarioush
3249632495USUpfront aromas of buttered dinner rolls—which take on a caramel quality with long sniff—contrast nicely with lime edges. The wine is expansive on the palate, but subtle in flavorings, with toasted coconut, balanced acidity and, on the finish, toasted marcona almonds.Rita's Crown9250CaliforniaSta. Rita HillsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannLongoria 2012 Rita's Crown Chardonnay (Sta. Rita Hills)ChardonnayLongoria
3251532514GreeceFresh lemon and lime and a spray of minerals and sea salt gives this wine a slightly lean, austere character. Clean and bright and not overly complicated, it will pair well with shellfish and grilled seafood.Estate8432SantoriniSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaArgyros 2007 Estate Assyrtico (Santorini)AssyrticoArgyros
3249732496FranceHere is a huge ripe and luxurious wine, with great power. The texture is solid, filled with firm tannins, the flavors are black and ripe. Along with the power, though, is much of the elegance and poise that characterizes great Saint-Julien.9540BordeauxSaint-JulienRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Branaire-Ducru 2000 Saint-JulienBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Branaire-Ducru
3251632515SpainOpens with decent dusty apple and peach aromas, but they don't really hold together for long. And the palate is similar in that it offers adequate opening flavors of green apple and citrus but no improvement after that. Drink right away; it won't age well.Blanco849Central SpainLa ManchaMichael Schachner@wineschachBasico 2008 Blanco Sauvignon Blanc (La Mancha)Sauvignon BlancBasico
3249832497AustraliaClassic Aussie Shiraz from the vineyard that borders the backbone vineyard of Penfold's Grange. This one's made by ex-Grange winemaker Daryl Groom, who now lives in California's Sonoma County but owns his own Australia vineyard. Lush, deep, rich and ripe, the wine fans out to reveal complex layers of black cherry, plum, licorice, spice, chocolate, blackberry, tar, vanilla, coconut and herbs. Smooth and plush textured, with a finish that doesn't quit.9440South AustraliaBarossa ValleyGroom 2001 Shiraz (Barossa Valley)ShirazGroom
3251732516USFirst taste was excellent, as the wine entered the mouth with round, ripe red fruit and a hint of spice. But it has something off in the finish, and as it sits in the mouth it loses its freshness and leaves a rather sour, gluey impression.8420OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Duck Pond 2008 Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirDuck Pond
3249932498FranceThis is a wonderful, dense wine, very concentrated, very intensely flavored. At this stage of its development, it is the opulence which is most evident, but there are already hints that it will show pure fruit alongside sweet tannins, and will develop complexity.9475BordeauxPomerolRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau la Fleur-Pétrus 2000 PomerolBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau la Fleur-Pétrus
3251832517GreeceThis refreshing red starts with aromas of allspice, clove, mint and red berries, followed by flavors of tobacco, clove and cherry on the palate. A wine with some elbows, it could age for 3-5 more years. Pair with grilled meats.Argilos8414NemeaSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaHarlaftis 2007 Argilos Agiorgitiko (Nemea)AgiorgitikoHarlaftis
3250032499FranceSometimes it seems as if La Mission is as good as Haut-Brion - that was certainly the case in 2001. But in 2000, La Mission fitted more comfortably into its usual good neighbor slot. That is not to suggest it is not a great wine - the score indicates that. At the moment, it is closed, solid and chunky, but all the right hints are there, and it will develop slowly and in a sustained way over many years.Pessac-L�ognan94350BordeauxBordeauxRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau La Mission Haut-Brion 2000 Pessac-L�ognan (Bordeaux)Bordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau La Mission Haut-Brion
3250132500FranceAt first taste, this wine seems more new world than Bordeaux. But then the subtle, perfumed aromas and structured fruit show through, along with the clean acidity and black tannic fruits. Give this wine at least 12 years before opening.9480BordeauxMargauxRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Rauzan-Ségla 2000 MargauxBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Rauzan-Ségla
3251932518GreeceDark chocolate, cassis, violets and red berry start this red from Greece. On the palate, like flavors with a touch of bitter cocoa and smoke are earthy and exotic. Pair with grilled meats and hearty stews.Kanenas Maronia Vineyards8422IsmarikosSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaTsantali 2006 Kanenas Maronia Vineyards Red (Ismarikos)Red BlendTsantali
3250232501USOnly eight barrels of this totally wonderful stuff were produced. This young, immature Syrah is massive and splendid. Huge in fruit, pepper, smoke, and earthy flavors, swaddled in rich tannins and smart oak. Great now, but will improve over the next 4 years.Ascent9475CaliforniaSierra FoothillsSierra FoothillsDomaine de la Terre Rouge 2000 Ascent Syrah (Sierra Foothills)SyrahDomaine de la Terre Rouge
3252032519ItalyThis bottle has much of the history of Italian winemaking inside. You remember the hay-wrapped flasks at the local trattoria? This is a modern interpretation with simple aromas of cherry, wild berry and wet earth. It would pair beautifully with pizza or pasta thanks to the fresh acidity and lean mouthfeel.8410TuscanyChiantiRuffino 2008 ChiantiSangioveseRuffino
3250332502FranceAt this stage, this is very closed, very tight, giving little. But it is possible to discern that this is going to be a beautiful wine. There are flavors of sweet raisins and the fruit has a new world richness, but the structure of dry tannins is always present. It looks as though it has a good, long life.94120BordeauxMargauxRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Palmer 2000 MargauxBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Palmer
3250432503FranceThe renaissance of Kirwan, with the consultancy of Michel Rolland, continues with this ripe, forward, concentrated wine. The tannins are sweet and soft, with a solid, chunky structure that promises a long life. The finish displays balanced new wood flavors and a smooth polish.9455BordeauxMargauxRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Kirwan 2000 MargauxBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Kirwan
3250532504FranceIt is the power that is so evident in this wine - a full, up-front expression of Merlot at its most powerful. It is somewhat closed up at this stage, but it is going to continue its development as an enormous wine which still manages to keep its power under firm control.94179BordeauxPomerolRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Hosanna 2000 PomerolBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Hosanna

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