Wine Reviews

4410144100GreeceA pleasant, lemon-and-lime white, best with light fish dishes. Unlike most of its brethren, which are ready to go from the moment they're opened, this one has some burnt-matchstick aromas that need time and aeration to dissipate. Try decanting.8412NaoussaJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzProvenza 2001 White (Naoussa)White BlendProvenza
4410244101ChileFull in the nose, with leather and muted red and black fruit. The palate is big and oaky, with flavors of black plum and milk chocolate, and the finish is of modest length, with size and some tannins. This wine has all the typical Merlot characteristics, but in short order.35 South Land of Passion and Fantasy848Lontué ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachSan Pedro 2002 35 South Land of Passion and Fantasy Merlot (Lontué Valley)MerlotSan Pedro
4410344102ItalyIf you enjoy picking apart a wine--finding all of its tiny nuances and eccentricities--you'll find plenty here. From its smoky, beeswax-like and menthol aromas to its flavors of melon and citrus, there's plenty of interest, yet the wine delivers more intellectual excitement than hedonism.8415Northeastern ItalyCollioJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzMarega 1998 Malvasia Istriana (Collio)Malvasia IstrianaMarega
4410444103ItalyRich, even a bit heavy, in the mouth, with canned corn, citrus and melon aromas and flavors that offer plenty of substance but less style.Ritratti8413Northeastern ItalyTrentinoJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzLa Vis 2000 Ritratti Chardonnay (Trentino)ChardonnayLa Vis
4410544104USWeird name, simple wine, but not a bad one. It's awfully hard to get distinction in Pinot Noir at this price. The wine is dry, and there are some berry flavors wrapped in silky tannins.Free Range848CaliforniaCentral CoastCentral CoastHRM Rex Goliath 2001 Free Range Pinot Noir (Central Coast)Pinot NoirHRM Rex Goliath
4410644105ItalyMusky pear aromas start things off, but the flavors are in sharper focus—a blend of pears and green herbs, finishing with a touch of anise. A bit sweet-tasting, so serve well-chilled as an apéritif. Best Buy.846VenetoVenetoJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzLa Francesca 2001 Pinot Grigio (Veneto)Pinot GrigioLa Francesca
4410744106ItalyGrassy and grapefruity, with sour, close to vegetal, flavors and a touch of sweetness on the finish.8420Northeastern ItalyCollioJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzAttems 2001 Sauvignon Blanc (Collio)Sauvignon BlancAttems
4410844107ChileThis weighty Malbec is more rough than refined, but what's here is decent. The nose is round and full of plum and berry aromas, while there's a full blast of berry fruit along with detectable oak on the palate. The finish is basic and clean, with some buttery oak on the very back.Estate Bottled Reserve8412Colchagua ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachChâteau La Joya 2001 Estate Bottled Reserve Malbec (Colchagua Valley)MalbecChâteau La Joya
4410944108ItalyLight. Light in color, light in body, light on flavor. What's there is pretty—featuring hints of peaches, mint and lime—so this is best as an apéritif. It runs the risk of being overpowered by food.8412Northeastern ItalyDelle VenezieJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzTorre di Luna 2001 Pinot Grigio (Delle Venezie)Pinot GrigioTorre di Luna
4411044109USA Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon blend with crisp acidity, a smooth, clean finish and citrus and fig flavors.Alluvium Blanc8416CaliforniaKnights ValleySonomaBeringer 2001 Alluvium Blanc Semillon-Sauvignon Blanc (Knights Valley)Semillon-Sauvignon BlancBeringer
4411144110ChileRough at first, with leathery aromas and hints of bitter chocolate. Which all goes to say: Where's the snappy cherry fruit? It just doesn't seem to be here. What you do get is light raspberry and tea notes, and then some oak and herbal character on the finish.Reserva8412Maipo ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachUndurraga 2001 Reserva Pinot Noir (Maipo Valley)Pinot NoirUndurraga
4411244111ChileAt first the tight nose is a bit like tar and industrial cleaner, but once it fans out some black fruit emerges. The palate is tight and tannic, but fresh and ripe. And the finish is healthy but also rather tannic. Good with barbecued meats and the like.8411Rapel ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachViña Casas del Bosque 2001 Cabernet Sauvignon (Rapel Valley)Cabernet SauvignonViña Casas del Bosque
4411344112ChileSimple but clean in the nose, with just a hint of cheesy pungency. The palate veers toward tangerine and pineapple. The finish is sharp and acidic. Best Buy.Estate Bottled846Maule ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachCarta Vieja 2001 Estate Bottled Chardonnay (Maule Valley)ChardonnayCarta Vieja
4411444113ItalyA reasonably full-bodied Soave, with delicate aromas of acacia blossoms and limes giving way to sturdy pear flavors. The lemony finish will seem shrill to some, pleasantly cleansing to others.Tufaie848VenetoSoave Classico SuperioreJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzBolla 2000 Tufaie (Soave Classico Superiore)White BlendBolla
4411544114ChilePungent aromas of pine needles and saw mill start it off. Next comes a juicy palate with flavors of orange and pineapple. The finish is fine, but it's kind of dull. The is a basic wine that veers toward flatness. But for now it's hanging in there.8410Casablanca ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachDallas Conté 2002 Chardonnay (Casablanca Valley)ChardonnayDallas Conté
4411644115ChileThis old-school winery sticks to tradition, so if this new-release Merlot seems older than it is, that's by intention. The color is light, and the wine already carries fading edges. The nose is earthy and the flavors are spicy.849Maipo ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachCousiño-Macul 2001 Merlot (Maipo Valley)MerlotCousiño-Macul
4411744116ChileHere's yet another wine bearing the signature of winemaker Ignacio Recabarren, and it's a touch thinner and disjointed than one might expect. The nose features blanched raspberry and a strong note of pine or fern frond. The mouth is chunky and plummy, and it evolves with air. But it is also a touch vegetal and never really hits stride.8415Maipo ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachPeñalolen 1999 Cabernet Sauvignon (Maipo Valley)Cabernet SauvignonPeñalolen
4411844117USDrinks rather earthy and simple, and also short on fruit. There's some cherry and raspberry flavor but it's thin. Instead, oaky flavors are meant to substitute.Garnet8417CaliforniaCarnerosNapa-SonomaSaintsbury 2001 Garnet Pinot Noir (Carneros)Pinot NoirSaintsbury
4411944118ItalyIt opens with fragrances of stone fruit, Granny Smith apple and white almonds. The succulent palate delivers juicy pear, white peach, nutmeg, white almond and mineral alongside crisp acidity. It's nicely balanced with great length and finesse.Mandolara9125LombardyLuganaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeLe Morette 2013 Mandolara (Lugana)TurbianaLe Morette
4412044119FranceThere is nothing bashful about this wine. It's big, bold and structured. It holds the potential of great fruitiness as well, a solid core that is surrounded by ripe black berries, just a touch of chocolate and wood. Drink from 2017.Heart of Darkness91Southwest FranceMadiranRoger Voss@vossrogerLionel Osmin & Cie 2011 Heart of Darkness Tannat (Madiran)TannatLionel Osmin & Cie
4412144120PortugalThis is a beautifully ripe, smooth wine. The wood aging adds a touch of vanilla to what is rich blend of Aragonez, Trincadeira and Touriga Nacional. Black berry fruits, rich tannins and just the right amount of acidity make a wine that will be ready to drink in the medium-term. Drink from 2016.Rapariga da Quinta Colheita Seleccionada9016AlentejanoRoger Voss@vossrogerLuis Duarte 2012 Rapariga da Quinta Colheita Seleccionada Red (Alentejano)Portuguese RedLuis Duarte
4412244121USThe Attaché brings appealing and lively cherry fruit, framed with citrusy acidity. The power in this wine is all forward and fruit-driven. It's quite good, but more for immediate drinking than cellaring.The Attaché9040OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Maison L'Envoyé 2012 The Attaché Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirMaison L'Envoyé
4412344122USA field blend of Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Roussanne and Viognier, this delightfully floral wine exudes spring flowers and fresh, just-ripe peach. The wine is dry, although the finish has a subtle suggestion of honey. A delicious wine for spring and summer sipping.GMRV Field Blend9019CaliforniaYolo CountyCentral ValleyVirginie Boone@vbooneMidsummer Cellars 2013 GMRV Field Blend White (Yolo County)Rhône-style White BlendMidsummer Cellars
4412444123USSomething about this blush makes you think of warm spring and summer nights, sitting outside with friends. It's dry, crisp and clean, with strawberry, orange rind, vanilla and white pepper flavors.Pinot Noir9014CaliforniaSonoma CountySonomaPinot Patch 2013 Pinot Noir Rosé (Sonoma County)RoséPinot Patch
4412544124PortugalAn elegant Alvarinho from the north of the Vinho Verde region. It has some wood aging, rounding out the acidity of the fruit and introducing a spiced orange and lime character, full-bodied and ripe. It could age until 2015, but is ready to drink.9019Vinho VerdeRoger Voss@vossrogerQuinta de Santiago 2012 Alvarinho (Vinho Verde)AlvarinhoQuinta de Santiago
4412644125ItalyJuicy flavors of white peach, green apple, pear and exotic fruit team with hints of mineral and white almond. The creamy palate is energized by crisp, quenching acidity that leaves a clean finish.Limne9019LombardyLuganaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeTenuta Roveglia 2012 Limne (Lugana)TurbianaTenuta Roveglia
4412744126USThis powerful Pinot, from one of the three distinct blocks within Black Kite's estate vineyard, offers earthy plum compote and blueberry with a lingering background note of vanilla. Bright, grippy and layered, the finish offers toasty oak.Stony Terrace9055CaliforniaAnderson ValleyVirginie Boone@vbooneBlack Kite 2011 Stony Terrace Pinot Noir (Anderson Valley)Pinot NoirBlack Kite
4412844127USBone dry, tart in acidity and seemingly simple, this is the most expensive of Calera's five new Pinot Noirs. It's not showing well now, with tight, mouthwatering cranberry, rosehip tea and tobacco flavors. It feels elegant and silky in the mouth. Give until 2020 in the cellar.Jensen Vineyard9080CaliforniaMt. HarlanCentral CoastCalera 2011 Jensen Vineyard Pinot Noir (Mt. Harlan)Pinot NoirCalera
4412944128PortugalThis rich, wood-aged wine abounds with spice and ripe pear, peach and mango fruits. The dense texture comes from aging on the lees for four months, adding to the richness and spicy character. Drink this wine now, but it will be better in 2015.Reserva9013TejoRoger Voss@vossrogerCasal da Coelheira 2012 Reserva White (Tejo)Portuguese WhiteCasal da Coelheira
4413044129ItalyBright and delicious, this starts with aromas of blue flower, red berries, mint and thyme together with a whiff of leather. The juicy palate offers wild cherry and strawberry accented with cinnamon-spice alongside fresh acidity and firm but fine tannins. Drink now through 2016 to capture the fresh, crunchy berry character.9016TuscanyChianti ClassicoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeCastellinuzza e Piuca 2011 Chianti ClassicoRed BlendCastellinuzza e Piuca

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