Wine Reviews

84888487ItalyBixio offers a tight, compact expression of Amarone that seems bursting at the seams with fresh fruit, cherry and berry aromas. The wine is syrupy and thick in the mouth with a refreshing touch of acidity at the close.88VenetoAmarone della Valpolicella ClassicoBixio 2008 Amarone della Valpolicella ClassicoCorvina, Rondinella, MolinaraBixio
84898488USThis wine requires decanting, as it seems to have entered a dumb phase. But there is clearly a good core of blackberry and black cherry fruit, lightly dusted with fresh herb.Janus8835OregonEola-Amity HillsWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Brooks 2008 Janus Pinot Noir (Eola-Amity Hills)Pinot NoirBrooks
84908489USSomewhat soft and jammy. While it's certainly delicious, this 100% Cabernet needs greater structure and complexity to add value to the sweet blackberries, cherries and chocolate.8635CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaStepping Stone by Cornerstone 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonStepping Stone by Cornerstone
84618460USRich doesn't begin to describe the layers of flavor and texture. This wine is massive, with notes of tropical fruit and apricot, with a slightly botrytized character that Sleepy Hollow Chardonnays often display. The oak is lavish and buttery, but perfectly matched to the wine's volume. It also has classic Monterey acidity—as pert as a squeeze of lime. Delicious, full bodied and exotic, it defines its vineyard and appellation.Sleepy Hollow Vineyard9232CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastPessagno 2010 Sleepy Hollow Vineyard Chardonnay (Santa Lucia Highlands)ChardonnayPessagno
84628461USFragrant with floral notes, lemony fruit and hints of apricot, this is a tangy, textural take on Pinot Gris. Fermented in stainless steel and released young, it retains a bright and stylish profile right through a lingering finish, with a touch of sweetness.9217OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Ponzi 2011 Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley)Pinot GrisPonzi
84638462SpainThis has a pretty light color, with dry raspberry and citrus scents. The palate is pure and elegant, with tangerine, grapefruit and nectarine flavors. This finishes longer than most, with poise and Nit9226CataloniaCavaMichael Schachner@wineschachRaventós I Blanc 2009 de Nit Sparkling (Cava)Sparkling BlendRaventós I Blanc
84648463USFogarty continues its streak of great, Chablis-style Chardonnays with this single-vineyard bottling. True afficionados will love the dryness, acidity and minerality, which give it such great structure. The severity is relieved by flavors of citrus zest and white peach, and the creamy sourdough richness imparted by lees aging. Try aging it for at least six years.Langley Hill Vineyard Estate Grown9250CaliforniaSanta Cruz MountainsCentral CoastThomas Fogarty 2009 Langley Hill Vineyard Estate Grown Chardonnay (Santa Cruz Mountains)ChardonnayThomas Fogarty
84658464FranceThis full-bodied, creamy Crozes-Hermitage far outpaces expectations for the appellation, combining cherry-berry fruit with cracked pepper, mocha and licorice. Then it finishes long, anchored by a marriage of fruit and spice. It's ready to drink now, but should evolve positively through at least 2017.9236Rhône ValleyCrozes-HermitageJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzMaison Nicolas Perrin 2009 Crozes-HermitageSyrahMaison Nicolas Perrin
84668465ItalyWhat sets this wine apart is its gorgeous, creamy intensity on the finish. Made from Trebbiano, this expression shows the qualitative heights this variety can achieve. Notes of vanilla cream, peach cobbler, dried sage and pineapple appear on the bouquet. The finish is long and full. Try aging this for five years or longer.Castello di Semivicoli9250Central ItalyTrebbiano d'AbruzzoMasciarelli 2008 Castello di Semivicoli (Trebbiano d'Abruzzo)TrebbianoMasciarelli
84678466USLovely, crisp acidity marks this dry, complex Pinot Noir. It's not an ager, but very elegant, with delicate sour-cherry candy, cola and mushroom flavors. A great wine to serve with mushroom-based entrées.Reserve9245CaliforniaCarnerosNapa-SonomaBeaulieu Vineyard 2010 Reserve Pinot Noir (Carneros)Pinot NoirBeaulieu Vineyard
84688467ChileCrisp green aromas suggest lime and then passion fruit. It's lively and spritzy in the mouth, with high acidity yielding green flavors that transition to pithy and heavy. Lemon-lime mixed with celery notes come up on the finish.EQ8820San AntonioMichael Schachner@wineschachMatetic 2010 EQ Sauvignon Blanc (San Antonio)Sauvignon BlancMatetic
84698468ItalySmoky, dark and rich, this oak-aged Ripasso is packed tight with savory aromas of barbecue smoke, bresaola, licorice and sun-dried fruit. There's a sweet note on the close followed by smooth, soft tannins.8825VenetoValpolicella Superiore RipassoMontezovo 2009 Valpolicella Superiore RipassoCorvina, Rondinella, MolinaraMontezovo
84708469ChileToasty, minty and sweet smelling. The palate is dark, full and choppy feeling, with cola, coconut, mint, blackberry and cassis flavors. There's good power and depth to this Malbec; a bit rough and herbal at the finish line.Orzada8820Lontué ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachOdfjell 2009 Orzada Malbec (Lontué Valley)MalbecOdfjell
84718470USAromas of cedar and damp soil lend a clean, foresty air to this beautifully ripe yet restrained Bordeaux blend. Black fruit flavors are intensely concentrated yet brisk with acidity, strident grape tannins and a lingering granite finish.Reserve8870New YorkNorth Fork of Long IslandLong IslandAnna Lee C. IijimaPellegrini Vineyards 2005 Reserve Red (North Fork of Long Island)Bordeaux-style Red BlendPellegrini Vineyards
84728471GermanyThis medium-bodied Riesling shows some already-evolving notes of honey, truffle and petrol wrapped around its core of apple and citrus. Seems a little on the sweeter side of the trocken spectrum.Wallhausen Johannisberg GG Trocken8867NaheJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzPrinz Salm 2009 Wallhausen Johannisberg GG Trocken Riesling (Nahe)RieslingPrinz Salm
84738472ChileEarthy, warm and generously oaked, with berry aromas that bring leather and smoke. The palate is healthy and tight, with spiky tannins and herbal black fruit flavors. Grippy on the finish, with olive and spice. Very much a good-quality, typically styled Chilean Cabernet.Alpha8824Colchagua ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachMontes 2009 Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon (Colchagua Valley)Cabernet SauvignonMontes
84748473ChileShines with a nice purple lustre then opens with big blackberry and spiced plum flavors that are earthy and wild. The palate is round, ripe and feels good, and the flavors are centered on herbal blackberry and toast. Very good for the price range.Reserva8812Colchagua ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachMontGras 2010 Reserva Carmenère (Colchagua Valley)CarmenèreMontGras
84758474GermanyA largely unfruity wine, defined by mineral notes of struck flint and crushed stone. Yet at the same time, it's ripe in weight and mouthcoating in its intensity, hinting at orange oil on the long finish.Landgeflecht Trocken8855RheingauJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzPeter Jakob Kühn 2009 Landgeflecht Trocken Riesling (Rheingau)RieslingPeter Jakob Kühn
84768475USA lightly golden Viognier very floral in jasmine and white peach. It's sweet at first but minerally in the finish and subtle for what can be an overbearing variety at times.Nelson Ranch8819CaliforniaMendocinoVirginie Boone@vboonePhilo Ridge 2009 Nelson Ranch Viognier (Mendocino)ViognierPhilo Ridge
84778476USA beautifully drinkable rosé sparkling wine for opening now. It's soft and honeyed, with fine bubbles framing slightly sweet flavors of raspberries, cherries, brioche, vanilla and toast.Mirabelle Brut Rosé8827CaliforniaNorth CoastNorth CoastSchramsberg NV Mirabelle Brut Rosé Sparkling (North Coast)Sparkling BlendSchramsberg
84788477USPretty much a near replica of the winery's previous vintage, a sound, clean and dry Cabernet for drinking soon. It's rich in tannins, with varietally proper flavors of blackberries, black currants, plums and cedar. Give it a good decant before pouring.8840CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaTitus 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonTitus
84798478FranceAn intensely rich wine from vines planted on chalk soil. There is a spicy, smooth texture, with a bitter almond and cinnamon edge. The alcohol does leave a burning sensation, which detracts from the overall feel.Calcaire8840AlsaceAlsaceRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine Zind-Humbrecht 2009 Calcaire Pinot Gris (Alsace)Pinot GrisDomaine Zind-Humbrecht
84808479FranceCertainly rich, but this wine is also about purity of spicy fruit, bringing out the fresher side of the variety as well as the intensity.8828AlsaceAlsaceRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine Zind-Humbrecht 2009 Gewürztraminer (Alsace)GewürztraminerDomaine Zind-Humbrecht
84818480GermanyIt's labeled dry, but this wine comes across as just slightly off dry, with ripe melons and pears taking the lead and never looking back. It's plump on the palate, finishing with a teasing sense of sugar. Drink now.Red Slate Dry8816MoselJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzDr. Loosen 2009 Red Slate Dry Riesling (Mosel)RieslingDr. Loosen
84828481ChileLeather and woody/smoky aromas blend well with core cassis and berry scents. The palate feels fresh and healthy, with cassis, raspberry, herb and olive flavors. Tones it down on the finish, which is dry and tastes of carob and minty green herbs.Family Reserva8818Curicó ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachEcheverria 2009 Family Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon (Curicó Valley)Cabernet SauvignonEcheverria
84838482GermanyIf there's any quibble with this wine, it's that the aromas and flavors remain in a very narrow range, from struck flint to citrus. Otherwise, it's a lovely dry Riesling, slightly plump and custardy on the palate yet crisp and sharply focused on the finish. Drink it over the next several years.Dürkheimer Rittergarten Kabinett Trocken8822PfalzJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzFitz-Ritter 2009 Dürkheimer Rittergarten Kabinett Trocken Riesling (Pfalz)RieslingFitz-Ritter
84848483ItalyNo doubt, this is a big, bold wine that hits the palate like a ton of bricks. Aromas include maple syrup, brown sugar, molasses, dark fruit and plum, spice and leather. Not surprisingly, it delivers loads of sticky chewiness as well.Corte del Pozzo8875VenetoAmarone della ValpolicellaGino Fasoli 2006 Corte del Pozzo (Amarone della Valpolicella)Corvina, Rondinella, MolinaraGino Fasoli
84858484ItalyThere's a distinctive touch of dark cola and licorice here that frames a solid core of blackberry and cherry liqueur. The wine is darkly concentrated with firm tannins and a soft, sweet endnote of mature fruit and cinnamon spice.88VenetoAmarone della Valpolicella ClassicoViviani 2007 Amarone della Valpolicella ClassicoCorvina, Rondinella, MolinaraViviani
84868485GermanyComes across as rather round and lush on the palate, with tropical fruit flavors of guava and pineapple. It's easy to drink and enjoy for its fruity immediacy and mouthwatering finish.Gimmeldinger Biengarten Trocken8840PfalzJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzA. Christmann 2009 Gimmeldinger Biengarten Trocken Riesling (Pfalz)RieslingA. Christmann
84878486USAn individualistic, some would say eccentric wine, made from grapes grown all over the valley. Your first impression is of jammy sweetness: blackberries, cherries, raspberries, oak. Then the tannins kick in, bringing needed dryness. Shows the ripeness of Napa Valley Cabernet, but doesn't seem like an ager. Drink now–2014.8870CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaAltvs 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonAltvs

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