Wine Reviews

3968439683AustraliaThis is full bodied yet firmly structured, built to enjoy now or age through at least 2025. Ample cedary oak notes frame blueberry fruit and peppery spice. This is tight but still enjoyable, ending in a lengthy crescendo of dusty tannins.Basket Pressed Amery Vineyard9340South AustraliaMcLaren ValeJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzKay Brothers 2012 Basket Pressed Amery Vineyard Shiraz (McLaren Vale)ShirazKay Brothers
3968539684ArgentinaA combination of char, licorice, blackberry and cassis aromas is about as complete and pleasing as it gets for Malbec. This doesn't lose it in the mouth, where things are firm and true, with solid tannins. Charred flavors carry onto the flavor profile along with blackberry and hickory smoke, while the finish is toasty, chocolaty and spicy. Drink through 2021.Gran Reserva9360Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachCicchitti 2012 Gran Reserva Malbec (Mendoza)MalbecCicchitti
3968639685ItalyUnderbrush, mint, rosemary and wild berry aromas lead the nose and follow through to the elegantly structured palate, along with accents of white pepper and orange zest. It's young and beautifully balanced thanks to firm acidity and assertive but fine-grained tannins. A mineral note closes the lingering finish. Drink 2016–2030.9330PiedmontBramaterraKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeColombera & Garella 2010 BramaterraRed BlendColombera & Garella
3968739686USThis wine is aromatically arresting, with notes of honeycomb, candle wax, corn husk, chamomile, almond and stone fruit. The palate has an outrageously textured, detailed, layered feel leading to an extended finish that displays both elegance and richness.Clos Pierre9345OregonColumbia Gorge (OR)Oregon OtherSean P. Sullivan@wawinereportDomaine J. Meuret 2013 Clos Pierre Chardonnay (Columbia Gorge (OR))ChardonnayDomaine J. Meuret
3968839687ItalyDark berry, tobacco, leather and a balsamic note are some of the aromas you'll find on this stunning wine. The firm, full-bodied palate delivers ripe black cherry, black pepper, licorice and chopped mint alongside youthfully assertive but refined tannins that need time to unwind. Drink 2021–2031.Gavarini Chiniera93PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeElio Grasso 2011 Gavarini Chiniera (Barolo)NebbioloElio Grasso
3968939688ItalyThis stunning white opens with aromas that recall white wild flower, orchard fruit and heady scents of eucalyptus and dried herb. The rich palate delivers white peach, ripe pear, wild rosemary, thyme, flinty mineral and ginger. Fresh acidity frames the juicy fruit flavors while an almond note backs up the finish.9347Sicily & SardiniaIsola dei NuraghiKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeCapichera 2013 Vermentino (Isola dei Nuraghi)VermentinoCapichera
3969039689ItalyDark berry, rose petal, tilled soil, aromatic herb, leather and a whiff of game are just some of the aromas you'll find on this intense, full-bodied wine. The palate is still tight, showing wild cherry, crushed raspberry, licorice, baking spice and tobacco alongside firm tannins that need time to unwind. It already has depth but will develop even more complexity over the next decade and more. Drink 2018–2027.Rio Sordo9360PiedmontBarbarescoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeCascina delle Rose 2012 Rio Sordo (Barbaresco)NebbioloCascina delle Rose
3966139660USAcorn has produced one of their best bottlings ever. The wine is drily crisp and tannic, but rich and supple, with cassis, cherry and carob flavors that have an earthy, mushroom and tobacco grounding. The wine contains smaller amounts of at least 10 other varieties, in the manner of an old field blend.Alegria Vineyards Heritage Vines9134CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaAcorn 2005 Alegria Vineyards Heritage Vines Zinfandel (Russian River Valley)ZinfandelAcorn
3966239661USThis vineyard has been the source of a string of rich, complex, classic Zins from Bella, and the '05 is the best yet. It's a big, lusty wine whose volume is pumped up with a dose of Petite Sirah. The flavors run toward blackberries, boysenberries, plums, coffee, carob and Asian spices.Big River Ranch9136CaliforniaAlexander ValleySonomaBella 2005 Big River Ranch Zinfandel (Alexander Valley)ZinfandelBella
3966339662PortugalStructured, complex wine that is only just beginning to hint at considerable depth of powerful, rich flavors. The structure is dry, a little lean, but with dense tannins. The fruit, rich plums and stone fruits is just coming through. Age for 10 years.Quinta do Panascal9150PortRoger Voss@vossrogerFonseca 2005 Quinta do Panascal (Port)PortFonseca
3966439663ChileRich, succulent and exotic, this Syrah captures the appealing spice and leather notes that are capable of accenting any good red wine. Alongside there's immense black fruit flavors and an underbelly of oaky coffee and mocha. A touch narrow and short on the finish.Floresta Alto9145Maipo ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachSanta Rita 2004 Floresta Alto Syrah (Maipo Valley)SyrahSanta Rita
3966539664USAmong all eight of the winery's current Rieslings, this was the least accessible upon opening. With ample breathing time it began to show more aromatics, with flavors of orange and pear in a nicely concentrated, well-balanced package. This is the one to decant!Coast Range Estate9328OregonWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Trisaetum 2014 Coast Range Estate RieslingRieslingTrisaetum
3966639665ItalyRed berry, baking spice and grilled herb aromas lead the nose. The taut palate doles out succulent black cherry, raspberry, licorice and a mint note alongside firm but polished tannins. Give this time to open up and unwind. Drink 2017–2024.Gallina9345PiedmontBarbarescoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeUgo Lequio 2012 Gallina (Barbaresco)NebbioloUgo Lequio
3966739666ItalyMint, menthol, leather and wild berry aromas unfold in the glass, accompanied by a whiff of forest floor. The elegantly structured palate offers sour cherry, crushed raspberry, anise, white pepper and graphite alongside assertive but refined tannins and nervous acidity. Give this time to unwind and come together. Drink 2017–2030.9332PiedmontGattinaraKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeVallana 2005 GattinaraNebbioloVallana
3966839667USBrewer Cris Carter, who works at Golden Road Brewery in Los Angeles, also makes stunning wines, in this case from John Sebastian Vineyard, showing a lush cherry-vanilla nose that's tightened with iron, iodine and earth. It's soft on the palate, with violet and rose petal florals and plum-skin tartness in the midpalate.9335CaliforniaSta. Rita HillsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannWeatherborne 2013 Pinot Noir (Sta. Rita Hills)Pinot NoirWeatherborne
3966939668ArgentinaA lightly charred, foresty nose includes aromas of blackberry, cassis, hard spices, licorice and leather. This is lively but balanced in terms of feel, with richness and raciness playing off each other. Flavors of baked black fruits, peppery spice and licorice finish dark, long and bright, with juicy acidity that will keep this healthy for years to come. Drink through 2024.Los Membrillos93120Mendoza ProvinceLa ConsultaMichael Schachner@wineschachZuccardi 2012 Los Membrillos Cabernet Sauvignon (La Consulta)Cabernet SauvignonZuccardi
3967039669GermanyRich, ripe bramble and berry notes penetrate deeply in this silky, supple Pinot Noir. It's intensely concentrated, but brightened by a shimmering streak of acidity and fresh herbal tones. A complex, impeccably balanced wine, it finishes long with a kiss of delicate tannins.B9342PfalzAnna Lee C. IijimaFriedrich Becker 2011 B Pinot Noir (Pfalz)Pinot NoirFriedrich Becker
3967139670FranceThis rich, rounded wine shows ripe yellow fruits, pineapple flavors and a texture that just hints at minerality. All this rich fruit is so generously balanced with acidity and a juicy, fruity and fresh aftertaste. At the same time, the wine has weight, depth of flavor and a background structure that will allow it to age. Drink from 2018.Bougros Grand Cru93BurgundyChablisRoger Voss@vossrogerJean-Marc Brocard 2013 Bougros Grand Cru (Chablis)ChardonnayJean-Marc Brocard
3967239671USThis top-tier vineyard delivers gorgeous flavors. Big, juicy, rich and round, it piles on the fruit flavors—apples, pears, white peaches and lemons. All are balanced against each other and the supporting, natural acidity, finished with a frame of new-oak toast. Drink 2016 to 2028.Freedom Hill Vineyard9365OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Lange 2014 Freedom Hill Vineyard Chardonnay (Willamette Valley)ChardonnayLange
3967339672ItalyThis classic Barolo opens with aromas of ripe dark berry, forest floor and a balsamic note. On the palate, clove, pepper and licorice back up a core of crushed black cherry and raspberry. It's young but already remarkably well balanced, with tightly knit, refined tannins and nervous acidity. Drink 2019–2029.Parussi9399PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeMassolino 2011 Parussi (Barolo)NebbioloMassolino
3967439673MoroccoAromas of black cherry, espresso bean and white chocolate tease the palate in this Moroccan blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 10% Syrah. Brightness reigns despite powerful tannins, and flavors of black cherry, rhubarb, jalapeño, coriander seed, vanilla and citrus zest are a pleasure on the tongue.Médaillon9318ZenataMike DeSimone@worldwineguysOuled Thaleb 2012 Médaillon Red (Zenata)Red BlendOuled Thaleb
3967539674ItalyMade with wild yeasts, this gorgeous, unfiltered wine delivers intense flavors of ripe pear, juicy green apple, mineral, wild fennel and thyme. Fresh acidity brightens the creamy texture.Stellato Nature93Sicily & SardiniaVermentino di SardegnaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefePala 2014 Stellato Nature (Vermentino di Sardegna)VermentinoPala
3967639675FranceThis wine is rich, with great fruitiness and a good sense of structure. It has weight, with plenty of full yellow and fresh pear flavors cut by intense acidity. Well balanced, rich and dense, it will age although it can be drunk from the end of 2015.Aux Bouthières93BurgundyPouilly-FuisséRoger Voss@vossrogerPascal Rollet 2013 Aux Bouthières (Pouilly-Fuissé)ChardonnayPascal Rollet
3967739676GermanyA steely edge sharpens this perfumed, blossomy Riesling full of ripe white peach and apricot flavors. Dry in style, it's rich and weighty on the palate with a penetrating, powerful finish. Drinks beautifully now, but likely to improve through at least 2021.Vom Roten Schiefer9339NaheAnna Lee C. IijimaPrinz Salm 2013 Vom Roten Schiefer Riesling (Nahe)RieslingPrinz Salm
3967839677PortugalMade from an old vineyard with schist soil, this fine wine is rich and full. It has style though, the tannins of the Baga restraining the texture and giving a fresh lift at the end. The dusty tannins and the perfumed acidity both speak to aging. Drink from 2018.Vinhas Velhas de Santa Maria9360Beira AtlanticoRoger Voss@vossrogerQuinta de Foz de Arouce 2011 Vinhas Velhas de Santa Maria Baga (Beira Atlantico)BagaQuinta de Foz de Arouce
3967939678FranceAn elegant wine, this is a blend of vines from both the cool and the warm side of the vineyard. It is soft with ripe mango as well as sliced apple freshness. The texture is already well integrated, both tight and mineral on one side and rich on the other. Drink from 2018.Les Preuses Grand Cru93110BurgundyChablisRoger Voss@vossrogerWilliam Fèvre 2013 Les Preuses Grand Cru (Chablis)ChardonnayWilliam Fèvre
3968039679USThis block-designation wine from the tip of the appellation shows an extremely spicy nose of incense and concentrated hibiscus. It proves rather light on the palate, yet bounces with the flavors of rose petals and violets, emerging into black pepper, clove and cinnamon. It's lean yet bountiful with intrigue.Arena Block9344CaliforniaSanta Cruz MountainsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannWrights Station 2012 Arena Block Pinot Noir (Santa Cruz Mountains)Pinot NoirWrights Station
3968139680ItalyAromas of underbrush, scorched earth, game, woodland berry and a balsamic note lead the nose. The youthful, tightly wound palate offers black cherry, crushed raspberry, anise, chopped herb, clove and tobacco alongside firm, noble tannins and bright acidity. Oliver McCrum Wines and Petit Pois.9348PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeAnna Maria Abbona 2011 BaroloNebbioloAnna Maria Abbona
3968239681ItalyDried rose petal, underbrush, leather, and a balsamic note are just some of the scents you'll find on this firm, well-structured red. On the palate, licorice, clove and crushed herb accent the core of crushed black cherry while velvety tannins and fresh acidity provide the framework. Drink 2018–2028.Sorano9360PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeAscheri 2011 Sorano (Barolo)NebbioloAscheri
3968339682ItalyThis boasts alluring aromas of pressed rose, perfumed berry, baking spice and a balsamic note. The elegantly structured palate is still young but already expresses bright red cherry, crushed raspberry, licorice, menthol and chopped herb. Firm, polished tannins and fresh acidity provide the framework.Bricco Fiasco9385PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeAzelia 2011 Bricco Fiasco (Barolo)NebbioloAzelia

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