Wine Reviews


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56415640SpainRipe, sweet and stylish, with blackberry, root beer and herb aromas. Bulky yet balanced, with black cherry fruit that comes at you in jammy style. Black tea, ground spices, coffee and raw oak work the finish. A dark and handsome wine, but one that isn't overly complex and is ready to drink now through 2011.Real De Asúa90145Northern SpainRiojaMichael Schachner@wineschachCVNE 2001 Real De Asúa (Rioja)TempranilloCVNE
56425641ItalyCampania's celebrated Feudi di San Gregorio recently unveiled a new, revamped style for its white wines. This debut vintage delivers gorgeous tones of peachy cream and sophisticated mineral tones. It's an oak-fermented expression of Greco di Tufo from 15-year-old vines.Cutizzi9033Southern ItalyGreco di TufoFeudi di San Gregorio 2006 Cutizzi (Greco di Tufo)GrecoFeudi di San Gregorio
56435642USHere's an elegant Pinot Noir that restaurateurs should buy for its food companionability. The mouthfeel has a lighter style than some Pinots. But it's packed with flavor, and is bone dry and crisp, making it ideal for steaks and chops or even Asian fusion. The flavors suggest cherries, black raspberries, root beer, tangerine zest, cloves, pepper and cinnamon.Estate9028CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaFoppiano 2006 Estate Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley)Pinot NoirFoppiano
56515650ItalyMade entirely with Sangiovese, this opens with aromas of mature dark-skinned berry, violet and a whiff of baking spice. On the bright silky palate, notes of pipe tobacco, chopped herb and a hint of game add depth to the red-berry core.Perlato del Bosco9028TuscanyToscanaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeTua Rita 2013 Perlato del Bosco Sangiovese (Toscana)SangioveseTua Rita
56445643ItalyBlackberry syrup, slate roof, natural rubber, exotic spice, resin and root beer describe this thickly extracted Taurasi Riserva. The wine offers power, concentration and blockbuster tannins. It would pair well with marinated beef and barbecue sauces. Drink after 2010.Riserva90Southern ItalyTaurasiGMG Vinicola 2001 Riserva (Taurasi)AglianicoGMG Vinicola
56455644AustriaV.T.S. stands for Vintage Top Select, the prestige cuvee from Hans Moser. It's an eclectic blend of every grape imaginable, from Cabernet Sauvignon to Syrah, by way of Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch. What you get is a superrich wine that's beginning to mature, with dark plum jelly and sweet black fruit flavors. It is ripe and concentrated, just finishing with some firmness.V.T.S.90BurgenlandRoger Voss@vossrogerHans Moser 2004 V.T.S. Red (Burgenland)Red BlendHans Moser
56465645SpainFresh, ripe, inviting and 180° opposite of this producer's white cavas, which seem bubbly and fizzy compared to this balanced, subtle, even smoky offering. In the mouth, it's tasty and dry, with cherry nuances going stride for stride with pink grapefruit and raspberry. A refined rosé Cava that's sure to light your fire.Brut Rosé9021CataloniaCavaMichael Schachner@wineschachOriol Rossell NV Brut Rosé Sparkling (Cava)Sparkling BlendOriol Rossell
56525651AustriaThe inviting notion of gently sun-ripened yellow plums on the nose draws you in. The palate follows this with gentle, juicy but balanced ripeness, featuring mirabelle plum and pear. There is a welcome grapefruit zestiness to the body and finish that makes this refreshing and moreish.Kremser Sandgrube Reserve9021KremstalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoTürk 2015 Kremser Sandgrube Reserve Grüner Veltliner (Kremstal)Grüner VeltlinerTürk
56475646USRetour relies on fruit sourced from so-called “old vine” Pinot vineyards. It's full, fleshy, round and brightly fruity, with plenty of spicy chocolate from extended barrel aging. Some whole cluster fermentation and native yeasts contribute to the complexity. A very fine debut.9065OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Retour 2006 Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirRetour
56535652AustriaThe lemony nose promises freshness. Tangy citrus fruits are abundant on the flowing palate, which wraps you up in its easy freshness. This is balanced, fruity and very refreshing.Kremser Wachtberg Reserve90KremstalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoTürk 2015 Kremser Wachtberg Reserve Riesling (Kremstal)RieslingTürk
56485647FranceMeursault can manage big and bold, and this wine definitely lives up to that reputation. The spice and wood are perhaps too much at this stage. I would certainly like to see more of the ripe white fruits that are there in the background. A wine to return to in a year.Clos des Poruzots Premier Cru90BurgundyMeursaultRoger Voss@vossrogerRoux Père et Fils 2006 Clos des Poruzots Premier Cru (Meursault)ChardonnayRoux Père et Fils
56495648AustriaThe nose does not want to give a lot away. The palate, however, shows spicy hints of nettle and a fresh bouncy zesty backbone of lemon and grapefruit, which makes it all the more appetizing.Kittmannsberg Reserve9035KamptalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoSteininger 2015 Kittmannsberg Reserve Grüner Veltliner (Kamptal)Grüner VeltlinerSteininger
56505649ItalySpicy and supple, this has aromas of cured meat, white pepper, toast and dark plum that follow the warm robust palate along with dried black cherry, coffee and licorice. Round tannins provide the supple framework. Drink through 2020.Per Sempre90300TuscanyToscanaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeTua Rita 2013 Per Sempre Syrah (Toscana)SyrahTua Rita
56545653USThis wine has that wonderful but hard-to-pin-down Zinfandel essence that's extremely fruity but also uniquely spicy and brambly. It blends together ripe raspberry, creamy vanilla and red cherry on a smooth, nicely viscous and very full-bodied frame that helps the finish linger.Big Wood Zin9032CaliforniaLivermore ValleyCentral CoastJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsWood Family Vineyards 2014 Big Wood Zin Zinfandel (Livermore Valley)ZinfandelWood Family Vineyards
56555654USHigh-toned aromas of cocoa, barrel spice, vanilla and dark fruit lead to plentiful, focused fruit and barrel flavors. The flavors linger on the finish.Reserve9030WashingtonYakima ValleyColumbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportAirfield Estates 2014 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (Yakima Valley)Cabernet SauvignonAirfield Estates
56565655USComprised of 75% Cabernet Franc and 25% Merlot, this is a juicy, savory and lengthy wine, with herbaceous elements of cedar, brush and peppercorn. A lush, full-bodied complement of baked plum and cherry ride out a lengthy finish.Reserve Series Alcaeus Berger Vineyard9075CaliforniaSonoma MountainSonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneAncient Oak Cellars 2012 Reserve Series Alcaeus Berger Vineyard Red (Sonoma Mountain)Bordeaux-style Red BlendAncient Oak Cellars
56575656USThere is tons of potential for this varietal in the hot eastern reaches of Paso Robles. Light peach and Pink Lady apple aromas start off the easy-to-enjoy nose. The palate shows more layers, starting with ripe peach and then firming up on citrus pith, sour apple and tangy pear. A gravelly minerality and rising texture on the finish complete the picture.9024CaliforniaPaso RoblesCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannBroken Earth 2015 Verdelho (Paso Robles)VerdelhoBroken Earth
56585657CanadaSourced from a single vineyard on Oliver's North Bench, this was fermented and aged in one-quarter new French oak barrels. The time in oak has somewhat muted the snappy vitality of the fruit (some tasters might argue it has simply rounded it off). Grassy hints of fresh asparagus remain, and with peppery herb, juicy gooseberry and citrus peel.Blue Terrace Vineyard Reserve9023British ColumbiaOkanagan ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Township 7 2015 Blue Terrace Vineyard Reserve Sauvignon Blanc (Okanagan Valley)Sauvignon BlancTownship 7
56595658USLight in color and body, this is a cool-climate-influenced wine full of spice and life. It offers a mixture of rhubarb, strawberry and black tea, dusted in cardamom. The wine's spicy tones carry through to the medium-length finish.Sexton Hill Vineyard Estate Grown Estate Bottled9042CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneBalletto 2014 Sexton Hill Vineyard Estate Grown Estate Bottled Pinot Noir (Russian River Valley)Pinot NoirBalletto
56605659FranceRichly structured this wine, from well-exposed vines (hence the land of light in the name) is fruity with black cherry and some firm tannins. It is going to develop into a serious, complex wine. Drink from 2018.Cuvée Terre de Lumière9024BeaujolaisMoulin-à-VentRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau de Chatelard 2015 Cuvée Terre de Lumière (Moulin-à-Vent)GamayChâteau de Chatelard
56615660USFinding new varietals is always fun, and this take on an ancient grape from Campania, Italy, offers promise in warm Temecula. Crisp Anjou and Asian pears show on the nose, along with salt, Gala apple, white flowers and gravel. Sharp citrus appears on the palate, with lime pith, pink-grapefruit juice and a chalky, seashell component.9028CaliforniaTemecula ValleySouth CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannCougar 2015 Falanghina (Temecula Valley)FalanghinaCougar
56625661ItalyMade with 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot and 5% Cabernet Franc, this bold wine opens with aromas of black currant, cedar and exotic spice. The concentrated palate delivers blueberry jam, graphite, anise and clove alongside assertive tannins that leave a firm finish.Millepassi9058TuscanyBolgheriKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeDonna Olimpia 1898 2013 Millepassi (Bolgheri)Red BlendDonna Olimpia 1898
56635662USAromas of vanilla, baking spice, wood spice and pitch-black fruit are followed by power-packed fruit and barrel flavors. The oak is primary at present. Give it time to integrate. Best after 2021.9042WashingtonWahluke SlopeColumbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportDusted Valley 2013 Petite Sirah (Wahluke Slope)Petite SirahDusted Valley
56645663USFrom entirely estate-grown fruit and blended with 5% Cabernet Franc, this is a soft, full and well-structured wine, sanguine in currant, cassis and a dusting of brambly raspberry. Inviting, it finishes in a pleasing note of mocha.9055CaliforniaSt. HelenaNapaVirginie Boone@vbooneEhlers Estate 2013 Merlot (St. Helena)MerlotEhlers Estate
56655664USThe winery's annual stainless-steel bottling, this is showy rather than reserved, with ripe Asian pear, tropical flowers, sweet apple blossoms, pineapple and a bit of vanilla on the nose. Nicely fresh, it's bright on the palate, with a sizzle of acidity and grippy chalkiness that frame the poached-pear palate.Steel9030CaliforniaSta. Rita HillsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannFoley 2014 Steel Chardonnay (Sta. Rita Hills)ChardonnayFoley
56665665FranceFrom an small estate that also has vines in Chénas and Saint-Amour, this is a firmly tannic wine that also has attractive juicy red-berry fruits. The wine, still young, will repay aging allowing it to broaden out with rich fruit and a soft texture. Drink this cru from late 2017.Domaine de Roche Noire9024BeaujolaisMoulin-à-VentRoger Voss@vossrogerGeorges Duboeuf 2015 Domaine de Roche Noire (Moulin-à-Vent)GamayGeorges Duboeuf
56675666AustriaAn initial hit of reduction blows off to reveal rich vanilla backed by gentle lemon purity. This clearly needs some time in bottle to find its middle but all the basics are there: freshness, clean fruit, texture and poise. Drink 2028–2025.9030LeithabergAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoGernot and Heike Heinrich 2014 Chardonnay (Leithaberg)ChardonnayGernot and Heike Heinrich
56685667FranceA surprising 30% of this wine is Clairette, a white grape variety. Perhaps that accounts for the wine's apparent freshness. Hints of crushed stone mark the nose, while the ripe flavors suggest peaches and berries, tailing away slowly on the finish. Drink this mouthfilling rosé over the rest of 2017.Cuvée de Lys9018Rhône ValleyTavelJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzChateau de Manissy 2015 Cuvée de Lys (Tavel)RoséChateau de Manissy
56695668USFresh aromas, vivid citrus flavors, elegance and poise make this an attractive wine. It has a balance that is easy to enjoy and keeps calling for more sips, with pleasant notes of citrus and green fruit throughout.The Fumé9014CaliforniaNorth CoastNorth CoastJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsMurphy-Goode 2015 The Fumé Sauvignon Blanc (North Coast)Sauvignon BlancMurphy-Goode
56705669USDeep color and lots of concentration make this full-bodied wine stand out. It has smoky, black-peppery aromas along with ripe but not sweet blackberry and black-cherry flavors. Firm tannins add texture. This boldness needs rich food for a pairing.Reserve9037CaliforniaSierra FoothillsSierra FoothillsJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsNaggiar 2014 Reserve Barbera (Sierra Foothills)BarberaNaggiar

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