Wine Reviews

37113710PortugalBeautifully perfumed, this has ripe blackberry flavors and a relatively dry character. The spirit is now well balanced, giving a backbone to the violet aromas and spicy character of this still-young LBV. It is good to drink now for its fruit, but it will improve and show more complex flavors after 2017–2018.RPLBV Late Bottled Vintage9127PortRoger Voss@vossrogerRamos-Pinto 2009 RPLBV Late Bottled Vintage (Port)PortRamos-Pinto
37123711ArgentinaA mixture of coconut, cedar and marzipan scents along with gritty, briary black-fruit aromas precedes a lively palate with weight, power and balance. Flavors of berry, plum and cassis are bold, oaky and chocolaty, while the finish hits hard with mocha, caramel and vanilla notes offset by bright acidity. Drink through 2018.Gran Reserva9125Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachSeptima 2010 Gran Reserva Red (Mendoza)Red BlendSeptima
37133712USThis fun, delicious wine tastes generous in honey, pear, Meyer lemon, orange, nectarine and white flower flavors, which are balanced by zesty acids. The blend is Grenache Blanc, Roussanne and Viognier.Heritage Blanc8820CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastCurtis 2011 Heritage Blanc White (Santa Barbara County)Rhône-style White BlendCurtis
37143713ItalyThis is nicely balanced and easy in terms of its tannins and overall intensity, with enough structure to pair with game meat or succulent red meat. The bouquet is redolent of spice, black fruit and crushed granite.Rubrato8819Southern ItalyIrpiniaFeudi di San Gregorio 2010 Rubrato Aglianico (Irpinia)AglianicoFeudi di San Gregorio
37153714ItalyThis producer has a magic touch with its white wines, and this fresh Greco di Tufo is no exception. Mineral nuances are enhanced by notes of stone fruit, honey and citrus. A dusty touch of talcum powder appears on the close.8820Southern ItalyGreco di TufoFeudi di San Gregorio 2011 Greco di TufoGrecoFeudi di San Gregorio
37163715GermanyThis Pinot Noir stands out in a flight of German reds for its slightly fleshy, concentrated fruit quality. Bristling with acidity and a delicate layer of tannins, it's delicately structured but elegantly fruity, with hints of dried cherry and plum accented by rose and potpourri notes.Neipperger Schlossberg8855WürttembergAnna Lee C. IijimaGrafen Neipperg 2007 Neipperger Schlossberg Spätburgunder (Württemberg)SpätburgunderGrafen Neipperg
37173716GermanyA spray of sour cherry acidity and clean, gravelly minerality lend a tonic feel to this crisp, unabashedly cool-climate Pinot Noir. On the palate, delicate black-cherry and plum flavors are bolstered by layers of smoke and caramel that linger on the finish.Trocken8838BadenAnna Lee C. IijimaHuber 2009 Trocken Pinot Noir (Baden)Pinot NoirHuber
37183717ItalyDon't underestimate this wine. An Aglianico from Irpinia, it opens with pristine notes of black fruit, tobacco and crushed granite. The aromas are measured in intensity, but the wine's natural tannic backbone gives it importance and staying power.8822Southern ItalyIrpiniaCantine di Marzo 2009 Aglianico (Irpinia)AglianicoCantine di Marzo
36913690FranceSoft and full-bodied, this offers bright apple and citrus fruits layered with toast from wood aging. Under the broad exterior, the wine is developing more tangy, zesty fruits and a tight texture. It needs to age to bring everything together. Drink from 2017.Vaillons Premier Cru9135BurgundyChablisRoger Voss@vossrogerLa Chablisienne 2012 Vaillons Premier Cru (Chablis)ChardonnayLa Chablisienne
36923691FranceThis is an austere wine, packed with tannins and tight acidity. The red fruits are right at the back behind the firm structure. A mineral character supports the dusty texture and suggests long-term aging. Drink from 2018.Cent-Vignes Premier Cru9165BurgundyBeauneRoger Voss@vossrogerAlbert Morot 2012 Cent-Vignes Premier Cru (Beaune)Pinot NoirAlbert Morot
36933692SpainOaky, heavily roasted aromas of hickory, baking spices, coconut and exotic black-fruit scents feed into a chunky but easygoing palate with spicy, barrel-rich flavors of hickory and vanilla as well as baked berry and leather. A ripe, slightly rubbery finish is generous. Drink through 2018.Veraton9127Northern SpainCampo de BorjaMichael Schachner@wineschachAlto Moncayo 2010 Veraton Garnacha (Campo de Borja)GarnachaAlto Moncayo
36943693FranceAlready showing some toasty maturity, this blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir is delicate, yeasty and rounded. Coming from northern Burgundy, it has a cool climate feel, textured with orange zest and the crispest acidity. It is ready to drink, although another few years in bottle will improve it even more.Egarade9126BurgundyCrémant de BourgogneRoger Voss@vossrogerBailly-Lapierre 2011 Egarade (Crémant de Bourgogne)Champagne BlendBailly-Lapierre
36953694ItalyMade from 80-year-old Glera vines that have never been doused with herbicides or pesticides, this boasts an enticing floral fragrance of jasmine and honeysuckle. The elegant, reserved palate has a pristine quality, delivering green apple, lemon zest, nectarine, pastry cream, herb and mineral alongside a fine perlage. It finishes crisp and clean.Dosaggio Zero9130VenetoValdobbiadene Prosecco SuperioreKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeCa' dei Zago 2012 Dosaggio Zero (Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore)GleraCa' dei Zago
36963695ItalyFragrant and floral, this blend of 55% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Nero and 15% Pinot Bianco offers aromas of lemon blossom, white flowers and toasted almond. The palate shows an impressive depth of flavors, including yellow apple, lemon cream pie and peach alongside an elegant mousse. The creamy flavors are brightened by lively acidity.Vintage Collection Brut9175LombardyFranciacortaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeCa' del Bosco 2009 Vintage Collection Brut Sparkling (Franciacorta)Sparkling BlendCa' del Bosco
36973696USAn amazingly vivid nose of cherry, eucalyptus and morning dew on wild fennel promises a stunning wine in this clonal combo from Morgan. The flavors aren't quite so mind-blowing, though, as basic fruit-punch elements meet with touches of peppercorn and nutmeg.Twelve Clones9134CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannMorgan 2012 Twelve Clones Pinot Noir (Santa Lucia Highlands)Pinot NoirMorgan
36983697SpainThis is a full, round, woody bottling, with graphite, leather and mild herbal aromas. The palate feel is concentrated but also tannic and grating. Flavors of bold black fruits, herbs and barrel resin finish tight, with residual raw oak in abundance. Drink through 2018.Aurea9152Northern SpainBierzoMichael Schachner@wineschachPittacum 2010 Aurea Mencía (Bierzo)MencíaPittacum
37193718SpainBig and forward on the bouquet, this has loud, fiery black-cherry and berry aromas. Like most Lurton wines of Spanish origin, El Albar is chewy and ripe, with a syrupy feel and flavors of blackberry, stewed plum and spice cake. The finish is chocolaty, beefy and concentrated.El Albar Lurton Barricas8824Northern SpainVino de la Tierra de Castilla y LeónMichael Schachner@wineschachFrançois Lurton 2009 El Albar Lurton Barricas Tempranillo (Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y León)TempranilloFrançois Lurton
37203719USA little one-dimensional but still delicious, this has wave after wave of ripe cherry-pie flavor. Smoky, sweet oak brings an alluring vanilla note, and the mouthfeel is soft and silky. Try pairing this with beef tartare.Estate Grown and Bottled8835CaliforniaSanta Ynez ValleyCentral CoastZaca Mesa 2010 Estate Grown and Bottled Grenache (Santa Ynez Valley)GrenacheZaca Mesa
36993698FranceBlanc de Noirs, white Champagne only from red grapes, produces wines with some weight, as here. It makes for a rich, full-blooded Champagne, packed with red fruits while also cut through with intense acidity. The fruitiness gains shape from a zesty texture.Blanc de Noirs Brut9150ChampagneChampagneRoger Voss@vossrogerTendil & Lombardi NV Blanc de Noirs Brut Pinot Noir (Champagne)Pinot NoirTendil & Lombardi
37003699FranceThis is an elegant Champagne, with a burgeoning sense of maturity as well as fresh acidity. Flavors of ripe pear are cut with a light touch of lemon while the overall texture is soft and on the sweet side of Brut. It could age a few more years, so drink now and until 2019.Memory Brut9190ChampagneChampagneRoger Voss@vossrogerVeuve Doussot 2006 Memory Brut (Champagne)Champagne BlendVeuve Doussot
37013700ItalyTilled earth, blue flower, leather, blueberry and cured meat aromas jump out of the glass of this concentrated wine. The rich palate delivers black berry, licorice, chocolate, clove and black pepper alongside firm, chewy tannins. Drink 2016–2023.Tremenel9165VenetoAmarone della ValpolicellaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeVilla Erbice 2008 Tremenel (Amarone della Valpolicella)Red BlendVilla Erbice
37023701ArgentinaThis Malbec-led blend is quite oaky, thus maple, molasses and chocolate aromas ride high alongside blackberry and mild floral notes. In the mouth, this is quasi-syrupy and very rich. Flavors of baked black fruits and brown sugar finish sticky, with chunky weight. Drink through 2018.Gran Estirpe9145Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachClos de Chacras 2010 Gran Estirpe Red (Mendoza)Bordeaux-style Red BlendClos de Chacras
37033702GermanyScents of honey and freshly pressed apples waft from this delicate sweet Riesling. Bright, sunny peach flavor dominates the palate, but is pierced with a startling vein of lemon acidity. Finishes a savory with lingering notes of pollen and spice.Berncasteler Doctor Auslese9195MoselAnna Lee C. IijimaDr. H. Thanisch (Erben Thanisch) 2012 Berncasteler Doctor Auslese Riesling (Mosel)RieslingDr. H. Thanisch (Erben Thanisch)
37043703ArgentinaRubbery, foxy aromas of blueberry, blackberry, cured meats and spice are packed into an ideal whole. This Cab Franc is rich and flush in feel, with good acidity and balance. An herbal, saucy element accents core berry fruit, while the finish is full of coffee, chocolate, grilled meat and jammy berry flavors. Drink through 2020.9130Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachEl Enemigo 2012 Cabernet Franc (Mendoza)Cabernet FrancEl Enemigo
37053704USWarren Dutton planted the first vineyard block of this Russian River Valley producer, the Pinot a combination of Dijon and Pommard clones. In the hands of new winemaker Jerome Chéry, the wine is exotic in spicy cinnamon and cardamom, earthy and herbal with layers of dark cherry.Estate Bottled9155CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneFog Crest 2012 Estate Bottled Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley)Pinot NoirFog Crest
37063705ItalyMade without adding the customary sweetening dosage, this elegant blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Bianco and Pinot Nero opens with floral aromas of passion fruit, ripe pear and walnut. The subtle palate delivers citrus, Golden Delicious apple and toasted walnut alongside brisk acidity and a fine mousse.Pas Dosé Vintage9145LombardyFranciacortaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeFratelli Berlucchi 2010 Pas Dosé Vintage Sparkling (Franciacorta)Sparkling BlendFratelli Berlucchi
37073706GermanySmoke and crushed mineral notes open this dry, lusciously textured Riesling. It's slightly savory on the palate, with layers of apple and pear struck by zesty lime and lemon acidity. Powerful and structured, it penetrates long and lean on the finish.Brauneberger Juffer Trocken GG9142MoselAnna Lee C. IijimaFritz Haag 2012 Brauneberger Juffer Trocken GG Riesling (Mosel)RieslingFritz Haag
37083707USAlready drinking nicely, this offers generously ripened peach, candied lemon and pineapple fruits. The lush flavors are balanced against fresh, natural acidity, with little or no time in new oak apparent.Seven Springs Vineyard9140OregonEola-Amity HillsWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Evening Land 2012 Seven Springs Vineyard Chardonnay (Eola-Amity Hills)ChardonnayEvening Land
37093708USPerfectly capturing the AVA's signature mix of herb, leaf, wild berry and white pepper in a compelling nose, this rolls into a full midpalate that is flush with tangy pie-cherry fruit. Some tasters may find it pushes a bit too far toward the herbal flavors. The overall balance is lovely.Seven Springs Vineyard9150OregonEola-Amity HillsWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Evening Land 2012 Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot Noir (Eola-Amity Hills)Pinot NoirEvening Land
37103709SpainInitial aromas are oaky and a touch raw, but soon they settle on raspberry and plum. This is a chunky, fruit-forward Mencia with dark berry, raspberry, spice, resiny oak and salty flavors. A full, lively finish is muscular but also fresh and bright. It had only eight months in oak; drink now through 2015.9125Northern SpainBierzoMichael Schachner@wineschachGancedo 2012 Mencía (Bierzo)MencíaGancedo

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