Wine Reviews


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85628561AustriaGorgeously lifted rich notes of orange zest fill the nose of this beautiful “orange” wine. Fermented on skins, it has all the elegance of white wine, combined with the tannic structure and backbone of red. Made from pink Pinot Gris grapes, this lends itself beautifully to this treatment and leaves us with an intriguing, concentrated, fresh and whistle-clean wine of great expression. Savor its salty orange-scented length.Graupert Natural9329BurgenlandAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoMeinklang 2015 Graupert Natural Pinot Gris (Burgenland)Pinot GrisMeinklang
85638562USPlump tangerine, pink grapefruit and warmer tones of Gala apples show on the nose of this bottling from a vineyard that's slightly northwest of the Sta. Rita Hills appellation. Rounder nectarine and apple flavors show on the sip that fattens up in the midpalate with poached Asian pear and popcorn, deftly leveled throughout with a zesty lemon-wedge touch.Duvarita Vineyard9328CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannParker 2014 Duvarita Vineyard Chardonnay (Santa Barbara County)ChardonnayParker
85648563USDecadent yet finessed, this intensely ripe, concentrated wine brims with fleshy flavors of black plum and cassis. Tart cranberry acidity and complexities of olive, savory spice and granite push the palate into greater depths. The finish is long, marked by fine firm tannins. It's lovely already, but should meld beautifully from 2020–2030 and further.Assemblage9350New YorkNorth Fork of Long IslandLong IslandAnna Lee C. IijimaPaumanok 2013 Assemblage Red (North Fork of Long Island)Bordeaux-style Red BlendPaumanok
85658564AustriaRich notes of yeast on the nose promise a rounded wine, while on the palate they become even more pronounced and deliver a big hit of lasting umami flavors. Here and there white pepper pokes through with its freshness supported by leavening citrus notes. This is powerful stuff: Handle with care and pair with food that is both subtle and robust—just like the wine.Bürsting9327NiederösterreichAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoEbner-Ebenauer 2015 Bürsting Grüner Veltliner (Niederösterreich)Grüner VeltlinerEbner-Ebenauer
85668565ItalyMade entirely with organically farmed Sangiovese, this opens with aromas mature black-skinned fruit, French oak, exotic spice and a whiff of blue flower. The vibrant palate is both elegant and structured, delivering juicy black cherry, pomegranate, mocha, licorice and a potpourri of cooking spice. It's well balanced, with bright acidity and fine-grained tannins. It already dazzles, but hold for even more complexity. Drink 2018–2028.Flaccianello della Pieve93120TuscanyColli della Toscana CentraleKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeFontodi 2013 Flaccianello della Pieve Sangiovese (Colli della Toscana Centrale)SangioveseFontodi
85678566USViolets, bacon fat and caramel sauce are drizzled across blueberry and olallieberry fruits on the nose of this bottling from Billy Wathen and Dick Dore. The palate is expertly integrated and deep with flavors of blackberry, pepper dust, tart black-plum skins, cocoa powder and roasted pork. It conveys classic Syrah flavors, done with grace.Tinaquaic Vineyard9348CaliforniaSanta Maria ValleyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannFoxen 2014 Tinaquaic Vineyard Syrah (Santa Maria Valley)SyrahFoxen
85688567USDark boysenberry, dried lilac and the slightest touch of tar show on the nose of this bottling, one of the first that Foxen has labeled with the new Los Olivos District appellation. Tart plum skins and elderberry show on the sip that is structured by solidly dry tannins accented by flavors of lavender and thyme.Williamson-Dore Vineyard9346CaliforniaCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannFoxen 2014 Williamson-Dore Vineyard SyrahSyrahFoxen
85698568USThis small-production, single-vineyard white hails from a site at the southern end of the appellation, close to Carneros. It shines in golden apple, honey graham cracker and a rich texture that impresses from start to finish. A floral element persists and intrigues, a mix of wildflower and fennel.Ruhl Vineyard9338CaliforniaMount VeederNapaVirginie Boone@vbooneGrow Wines 2014 Ruhl Vineyard Chardonnay (Mount Veeder)ChardonnayGrow Wines
85518550USGolden Delicious apple, stone fruit and honey star in this vineyard-designate, a showcase for baked apple seasoned in nutmeg. Gravelly texture supports full-bodied flavor and a strength of toasted oak lightly suggestive in vanilla.Green Acres Hill Vineyard9364CaliforniaCarnerosNapa-SonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneRam's Gate 2014 Green Acres Hill Vineyard Chardonnay (Carneros)ChardonnayRam's Gate
85528551AustriaA whiff of passion fruit on the nose immediately hints at ripeness. The palate fulfils that promise not only with generosity but counters it with gorgeous grapefruit freshness and a lovely zesty texture that makes this very appetizing. The flavors are zingy, clean, ripe and very, very long. It is the grapefruit spice that gets you in the end.Lindberg Reserve9351KremstalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoSalomon-Undhof 2015 Lindberg Reserve Grüner Veltliner (Kremstal)Grüner VeltlinerSalomon-Undhof
85538552USThough this is their appellation blend, Mikey Giugni and Michael Brughelli don't hold back, offering elegant aromas of rose petals, purple flowers, rich pomegranate fruit, rusty strawberries and light vanilla on the nose. The palate begins with a light cranberry-raspberry flavor that deepens into tart mulberry before showing dried rose petals, uncrushed clove and a lava-rock minerality.Seven Leagues9346CaliforniaSanta Maria ValleyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannScar of the Sea 2014 Seven Leagues Pinot Noir (Santa Maria Valley)Pinot NoirScar of the Sea
85548553USLight, bright and citrusy, this lovely wine is integrated in terms of oak and ripeness, letting its crispness of lemon and tangerine speak loudest. A complex, structured wine, it becomes more interesting as it opens, allowing room for specks of stone and nutmeg to peek through.Estate Grown9355CaliforniaSonoma CoastSonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneSmall Vines 2014 Estate Grown Chardonnay (Sonoma Coast)ChardonnaySmall Vines
85558554FranceProduced from old vines in the Côte du Py on the slopes of an extinct volcano, this cru wine is structured with generous black fruits and a series of ripe tannins and balanced acidity. It has the structure and density to age while also having a light touch of black cherry fruit. Drink from 2019.Côte du Py Vieilles Vignes9324BeaujolaisMorgonRoger Voss@vossrogerStéphane Aviron 2015 Côte du Py Vieilles Vignes (Morgon)GamayStéphane Aviron
85568555AustriaThe nose merely reveals the slightest shimmer of ripe lemon zest. The palate comes in with beautifully spicy mirabelle flavors, tempered by tangy citrus. There is lovely citrus concentration that has a zesty textural element in the streamlined body. This is wonderfully bracing, ripe and refreshing. A total joy.Silberbichl Reserve9342KremstalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoStift Göttweig 2015 Silberbichl Reserve Riesling (Kremstal)RieslingStift Göttweig
85708569ItalyMade with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and a drop of Petit Verdot, this polished linear red has aromas of black-skinned fruit, bell pepper, coconut and toasted oak. The vibrant, elegantly structured palate offers black currant, chopped herb, clove and licorice alongside fine-grained tannins.93125TuscanyBolgheri SuperioreKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeGuado al Tasso 2013 Bolgheri SuperioreRed BlendGuado al Tasso
85718570AustriaThe nose just gives a gentle hint of ripe apricot. The palate, on the other hand, speaks freely of zesty citrus: ripe lemon and fresh Seville orange, full of tart zestiness and refreshing zing. This is slender and linear, taut but chock-full of fruit. There is drive and energy and total refreshment.Gaisberg Reserve9365KamptalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoHirsch 2015 Gaisberg Reserve Riesling (Kamptal)RieslingHirsch
85728571AustriaThere is something that makes me think about a summer forest: Is it the fresh moss, the fresh green foliage, the implied ease and freshness of light green foliage on a warm day? The palate stuns with white pepper and purity and combines fruit ripeness with ballerina-like poise. Wonderful texture. Prepare to be moved.Pankraz Reserve9347NiederösterreichAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoIngrid Groiss 2015 Pankraz Reserve Grüner Veltliner (Niederösterreich)Grüner VeltlinerIngrid Groiss
85738572USMeant to showcase the producer's classic style, this is made from 74% Pinot Noir and 26% Chardonnay, the lots chosen for their fruit forwardness. Succulent peach speaks quietly around bright floral aromas, while a richer undertone of hazelnut biscotti comes into play on the smooth palate.Classic Vintage Brut Estate Bottled9342CaliforniaGreen ValleySonomaVirginie Boone@vbooneIron Horse 2011 Classic Vintage Brut Estate Bottled Sparkling (Green Valley)Sparkling BlendIron Horse
85748573USThis new project from the heights of Atlas Peak involves Steve Matthiasson as both viticulturist and winemaker, having had to take over the reins from the late Denis Malbec. It shines in bristling acidity, dusty tannin and a beautiful floral aroma of violet. Notes of chocolate, fig and cigar sit atop a pillowy, complex structure, while vanilla lingers on the finish.Mountainside9360CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaVirginie Boone@vbooneAcumen 2013 Mountainside Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonAcumen
85758574USGreat fruit concentration and depth give power to this full-bodied wine from Cakebread, better known for its Napa-grown Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. Not tricked up with too much oak, it tastes energized, deep and layered. Black cherry, rhubarb and cedar fan out across the palate, lingering a long time on the finish. Best from 2018.Two Creeks Vineyards9342CaliforniaAnderson ValleyJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsCakebread 2014 Two Creeks Vineyards Pinot Noir (Anderson Valley)Pinot NoirCakebread
85768575ChileDense, baked and mulled blackberry and cassis aromas include bold but classy oak notes. This feels seamless except for raring tough tannins, while flavors of toast, graphite and spiced blackberry finish smooth and chewy, with a sense of lushness despite lasting residual tannins. Drink through 2025.20 Barrels9335Maipo ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachCono Sur 2013 20 Barrels Cabernet Sauvignon (Maipo Valley)Cabernet SauvignonCono Sur
85778576USThis bottling of the classic Italian variety hits the right notes, with cherry, rose and tar on the nose, along with hints of sandalwood and incense. It's smooth on the palate, with dried cherry flavor and touches of chocolate, dried mint and caramel on the finish. It's still young and the firm tannins ensure a long life. Drink 2018–2029.Estate9370CaliforniaSanta Cruz MountainsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannSoulmate 2009 Estate Nebbiolo (Santa Cruz Mountains)NebbioloSoulmate
85788577ItalyThere's a fun, spicy layer in the foreground of this wine that helps shape a modern, luscious and intense Chianti Classico with noticeable sophistication and dimension. It offers a lot of consistency and flavor and carries those elements forward over its long finish. Only 250 cases were made.89TuscanyChianti ClassicoMontecalvi 2006 Chianti ClassicoSangioveseMontecalvi
85798578ChileThere's a lot of good about this small-production blend. The nose and color are nice, with asphalt and charcoal mixing with black-fruit sweetness. The palate has a nice, healthy texture housing slightly herbal plum and berry flavors. Finishing notes of burnt toast, coconut and mint announce a serious barrel regimen. Drink now–2009.Aliara8935Central ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachOdfjell 2005 Aliara Red (Central Valley)Red BlendOdfjell
85808579PortugalVery dark in color, this is an impressive wine with power and dense tannins. The fruit is solid, packed with blackberry and dark plum flavors, and wild, almost savage, ripeness.Reserva8925DouroRoger Voss@vossrogerCalços do Tanha 2005 Reserva Red (Douro)Portuguese RedCalços do Tanha
85578556USWarm tones of marzipan, roasted almond, yellow peach, pineapple and a touch of coconut are reminiscent of a piña colada on the nose of this bottling from a vineyard just behind the coastal town of Cambria. Gala apples and poached pears show on the sip along with lemon curd, chalk and meringue flavors, all tightly woven into a fresh expression of the grape.Estate9326CaliforniaSan Luis Obispo CountyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannStolo 2014 Estate Chardonnay (San Luis Obispo County)ChardonnayStolo
85588557USBright and ready-to-burst flavors of raspberry and just-ripe cranberry show on the nose of this bottling that also features tartness and graphite minerality alongside vanilla and baking spice. More of an underripe character shows on the forest-floor palate, where thyme and marjoram mix with tangy red fruit, pine needle and juniper.Dijon Clones Selection9329CaliforniaEdna ValleyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannWolff 2013 Dijon Clones Selection Pinot Noir (Edna Valley)Pinot NoirWolff
85598558FranceAlthough he is based in the Terres Dorées (golden earth) region of southern Beaujolais, this producer has an enviable palate of vineyards in the crus to the north. This wine comes from one. It has structure, density and a a solid core of both tannins and rich fruit. Drink from 2018.Terres Dorées Grille-Midi9332BeaujolaisFleurieRoger Voss@vossrogerJean-Paul Brun 2015 Terres Dorées Grille-Midi (Fleurie)GamayJean-Paul Brun
85608559AustriaA very slight citrus lift, edged with ripe pineapple, on the nose announces a precise palate of lusciously ripe flavors: sun-ripened yellow mirabelle plums nestle alongside ripe oranges and clementimes. A straight, linear but ripe acidity at the very core keeps all of this fruit in check and provides direction and precision. Delicious and long.Heiligenstein Reserve9334KamptalAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoJurtschitsch 2015 Heiligenstein Reserve Riesling (Kamptal)RieslingJurtschitsch
85618560USDeep aromas of hibiscus, rose buds, dark red berries and sugar plums are spiced up by cola, crushed pencils and lots of garrigue on this bottling. The palate is clean and crisp, with snappy raspberry, light cranberry and lots more chaparral-like herbs, including wild thyme, bay laurel, lavender and fennel pollen.Stone Corral Vineyard9348CaliforniaEdna ValleyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannKynsi 2013 Stone Corral Vineyard Pinot Noir (Edna Valley)Pinot NoirKynsi

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