Wine Reviews

4194141940ItalyThis opens with aromas of toast, oak-driven spice and roasted coffee bean. The ripe palate doles out baked apple, candied citrus zest and crystallized ginger before bitter walnut closes the finish.Riserva8733TuscanyVernaccia di San GimignanoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeLa Lastra 2012 Riserva (Vernaccia di San Gimignano)VernacciaLa Lastra
4194241941ItalyPretty aromas of crushed blue flower and red berry lead the nose on this easygoing red. The fresh palate offers up juicy black cherry and savory herb alongside supple tannins and bright acidity.I Perazzi8710TuscanyMorellino di ScansanoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeLa Mozza 2013 I Perazzi (Morellino di Scansano)Red BlendLa Mozza
4194341942ItalyThis opens with earthy aromas of leather, overripe black fruit, meat juice and a whiff of barnyard. The palate delivers mature plum, black cherry, loam and game alongside astringent tannins.Le Masse di Greve Gran Selezione8770TuscanyChianti ClassicoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeLanciola 2011 Le Masse di Greve Gran Selezione (Chianti Classico)SangioveseLanciola
4194441943USA blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, with smaller dollops of Petite Sirah, Merlot and Malbec, this is a dark, inky wine, brawny in leather, clove and meat. Big-bodied and oaky, it finishes in a sea of brambly blackberry and wild game.Tytanium Caton Vineyard8780CaliforniaSonoma ValleySonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneTy Caton 2012 Tytanium Caton Vineyard Red (Sonoma Valley)Red BlendTy Caton
4194541944New ZealandNelson is an underappreciated source for New Zealand wines, but this Pinot Noir shows ample cherry and beetroot notes, with hints of smoke and earth. Medium in weight on the midpalate, the finish is crisp and lithe. Drink now–2018.87NelsonJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzWaimea 2013 Pinot Noir (Nelson)Pinot NoirWaimea
4194641945ArgentinaSaucy and intense up front, this offers cheesy, grainy oak aromas along with stalky cassis and plum scents. Raw, choppy and fairly high in acidity, this tastes briny, herbal and woody, but also like raspberry and plum. Oak and herbal flavors carry the finish.Emma8740Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachZuccardi 2013 Emma Bonarda (Mendoza)BonardaZuccardi
4194741946ItalyA blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Bianco, this has a delicate fragrance of white flower and orchard fruit. The vibrant palate offers yellow apple, citrus and a touch of mineral while crisp acidity provides the framework.8720TuscanyPominoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeMarchesi de' Frescobaldi 2013 White (Pomino)White BlendMarchesi de' Frescobaldi
4194841947USA blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, this wine brings reserved notes of cherry and blackberry cordial, medicine cabinet, black licorice, dried herbs and smoke. The fruit flavors are lighter in style, backed by firm tannins. It finishes tart.Portside8734WashingtonColumbia Valley (WA)Columbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportMosquito Fleet 2011 Portside Meritage (Columbia Valley (WA))MeritageMosquito Fleet
4194941948AustriaLemon zest on nose and palate signal a very zippy, citrus-scented white with a rather neutral aromatic expression—as befits unoaked Chardonnay from a cool year. It is light bodied and cannot be beaten for freshness.8719CarnuntumAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoNetzl 2014 Chardonnay (Carnuntum)ChardonnayNetzl
4195041949USStarting quite reductive, this wine opens to reveal aromas of straw, toast, cream and spice. The flavors are lighter in style yet creamy in feel with lees notes running throughout.Conner Lee Vineyard8730WashingtonColumbia Valley (WA)Columbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereport:Nota Bene 2013 Conner Lee Vineyard Chardonnay (Columbia Valley (WA))Chardonnay:Nota Bene
4195141950South AfricaHerbal notes of black currant leaf and bramble lend depth to the black plum and cherry center of this wine. The palate boasts ripe dark-fruit flavors, with medium tannins and ample acidity that lends freshness to the finish. Drink now.The Den8713Coastal RegionLauren Buzzeo@laurbuzzPainted Wolf 2012 The Den Pinotage (Coastal Region)PinotagePainted Wolf
4195241951USThis blend of 50% Nebbiolo, 25% Barbera and 25% Syrah offers aromas of fudge, blackberry and plum that are somehow both lean and rich. It's thick and full on the palate, with pepper spice, leather, tobacco and violets, yet the acidity is quite powerful. Serve with hearty pasta.Savoia8765CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannPalmina 2010 Savoia Red (Santa Barbara County)Red BlendPalmina
4195341952USButtery cream is on the nose of this vineyard-designate, a relatively affordable offering from an esteemed producer in the heart of the Napa Valley. Oaky on the palate, the medium-weighted wine is nicely offset by a searingly crisp bite of lemon that peaks on the finish.Persephone Vineyard8728CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaVirginie Boone@vboonePeju 2013 Persephone Vineyard Chardonnay (Napa Valley)ChardonnayPeju
4195441953ItalyThis full-bodied wine conveys aromas of spiced plum, chocolate, toast and incense. The robust palate offers dried black cherry, exotic spice, licorice, white pepper and espresso but not much fruit richness. Astringent tannins leave a tongue-drying finish.Rita Riserva87TuscanyMontecuccoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefePerazzeta 2009 Rita Riserva (Montecucco)SangiovesePerazzeta
4195541954USThis wine from the pioneering producer deep in the Santa Maria Valley shows sweet cedar, chopped herbs, mocha, licorice, cherry and red berry juice on the nose. The flavors cling to dried cherries and espresso, proving quite pleasant thought not extremely dynamic.Flood Family Vineyards8720CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannRancho Sisquoc 2012 Flood Family Vineyards Merlot (Santa Barbara County)MerlotRancho Sisquoc
4195641955FranceA rustic wine, with definite barnyard flavors. The fruit has some smoky extract, but the tannins and old wood tastes intrude too much.Prestige9219BordeauxFronsacRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau les Tonnelles 2005 Prestige (Fronsac)Bordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau les Tonnelles
4195741956ItalyHere's a complex and sophisticated sparkler with beautiful aromas of stone fruit, freshly baked bread, pressed flowers and crushed white pepper. The wine tastes rich and thick in the mouth and ends with piquant effervescence.Gran Cuvée Pas Operé Extra Brut92LombardyFranciacortaBellavista 2003 Gran Cuvée Pas Operé Extra Brut Sparkling (Franciacorta)Sparkling BlendBellavista
4195841957USA beautiful Zin, dry and spicy. Shows lush, intricate flavors of blackberries, black raspberries, anise, pepper, cola and cedar. A very fine interpretation of a dusty Sonoma Zinfandel.Branham Rockpile Vineyard9230CaliforniaRockpileSonomaHobo 2008 Branham Rockpile Vineyard Zinfandel (Rockpile)ZinfandelHobo
4195941958USStill quite young, but showing real depth and layering, the McCrone vineyard designate offers pomegranate and raspberry fruit, dusted with baking spices, and finished with a tasty vein of mocha. This is a wine to enjoy in the full bloom of its youth.McCrone Vineyard9250OregonWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Ken Wright 2008 McCrone Vineyard Pinot NoirPinot NoirKen Wright
4196041959ItalyFlavio Riserva Talento is a beautiful expression of northern Italy with fragrant aromas of yellow fruit, toast, roasted nuts and lingering toast. 2003 was a hot and steamy year, but this sparkling wine offers the fresh aromas you should expect from a cool-climate wine zone.Flavio Riserva Brut Talento9142Northeastern ItalyTrentoRotari 2003 Flavio Riserva Brut Talento Chardonnay (Trento)ChardonnayRotari
4196141960USThe vineyard name is a combination of the two prevalent soil types, Nekia and WillaKenzie. Along with sweet cherry fruit comes a defining minerality—a streak of iron running through the heart of the wine. Balanced nicely, with gentle acidity and sculpted tannins. In the finish you pick up an elegant streak of green tea.Willakia Vineyard9135OregonEola-Amity HillsWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Soléna 2006 Willakia Vineyard Pinot Noir (Eola-Amity Hills)Pinot NoirSoléna
4196241961New ZealandA terrific Pinot Noir value, Stonecrop's 2008 exhibits smoky, cedary aromas, but balances the oak with a solid foundation of cherry fruit and savory, mushroomy complexity. It's full bodied yet elegant, with a meaty finish. Drink now–2013.9124MartinboroughJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzStonecrop 2008 Pinot Noir (Martinborough)Pinot NoirStonecrop
4196341962ItalyVittorio Moretti Extra Brut is an elegant sparkler with aromas of apricot, stone fruit and yellow candy. The wine is creamy and tight in the mouth with long-lasting flavors of butterscotch and toasted nuts. Pair it with elegant fish recipes like buttered sole with garden potatoes.Vittorio Moretti Extra Brut91LombardyFranciacortaBellavista 2002 Vittorio Moretti Extra Brut Sparkling (Franciacorta)Sparkling BlendBellavista
4196441963USThis opens with a very pretty nose—scents of clay, mineral, blueberry, cassis and a whiff of rather high-toned volatility. In the mouth the barrel flavors bring dusty cocoa and chocolate. A full-bodied wine, still young, sharp and edgy. Best to give it a few more years in the cellar, to smooth out some of the rawness.Jerusalem Hill9175OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Domaine Serene 2006 Jerusalem Hill Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirDomaine Serene
4196541964New ZealandDry River's 2007 Pinot Noir reveals a slight herbal tinge to its dark fruit aromas and flavors, but it's a nuance that adds complexity and should develop into hints of tea and spice with additional bottle age. As always, it's not overly big or richly textured, but it is concentrated and intense. Drink 2012–2020.9190MartinboroughJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzDry River 2007 Pinot Noir (Martinborough)Pinot NoirDry River
4196641965ItalyFerrari's Brut Perlé (made with 100% Chardonnay) offers soft, foamy perlage that enhances a sense of softness and fullness on the palate. Crisp and tonic, it drinks very well but it leaves enough body and persistency to fuel a long finish.Brut Perlé9132Northeastern ItalyTrentoFerrari 2004 Brut Perlé Chardonnay (Trento)ChardonnayFerrari
4196741966USMade from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot, this is a good, smooth wine that shows its Napa origins in the ripeness of fruit and classy tannins. Floods the mouth with blackberries and oak. There's a certain sharpness that cuts through the richness and lasts through the finish, which may limit ageability, so drink soon.Trilogy9165CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaFlora Springs 2007 Trilogy Red (Napa Valley)Bordeaux-style Red BlendFlora Springs
4196841967SpainRich, dense and syrupy, but also showing touches of mint and leather on the nose. Quite sticky in the mouth, but with lovely toffee and mocha flavors that set up a finish that runs on and on. Impressive depth of flavor, nice overall balance and a mix of complexity and flat-out richness make this PX a winner.Nectar Dulce9118AndaluciaJerezMichael Schachner@wineschachGonzález Byass NV Nectar Dulce Pedro Ximénez (Jerez)Pedro XiménezGonzález Byass
4196941968USThough it seems quite light on first impression, that is a bit deceptive. The biodynamic grapes show a muted earthiness, while over time the cranberry and raspberry flavors gain focus and concentration in the mouth. A graceful, nicely proportioned wine, with some stem and grip to the tannins.Momtazi Vineyard9140OregonMcMinnvilleWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Kelley Fox 2007 Momtazi Vineyard Pinot Noir (McMinnville)Pinot NoirKelley Fox
4197041969ItalyThis wine is a result of careful winemaking in which both oak barrel and aging on the lees is used to render a rounder, creamier feel in the mouth. The excellent 2004 vintage adds fresh notes of apricot and stone fruit to the overall complexity of the nose.Satèn Millesimato Brut9136LombardyFranciacortaLa Valle 2004 Satèn Millesimato Brut Chardonnay (Franciacorta)ChardonnayLa Valle

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