Wine Reviews

86418640FranceMedium-intense scents of ripe blackberry and raspberry unfold on the nose of this wine, with additional accents of garrigue and softly toasted oak in the background. Dark fruit flavors abound on the palate, with a solid sweet-spice flavor that stays through the lasting finish.Vieilles Vignes8935Languedoc-RoussillonCôtes du Roussillon VillagesLauren Buzzeo@laurbuzzDomaine du Clos des Fées 2009 Vieilles Vignes Red (Côtes du Roussillon Villages)Rhône-style Red BlendDomaine du Clos des Fées
86428641SpainBriny, slightly herbal aromas suggest lifted horse hide and leather notes. This is lively on the palate, with herbal, foxy flavors of plum and cassis that finish with toasty oak, licorice and heat. This is a bright, honest introduction to what Priorat wines are about.Negre8922CataloniaPrioratMichael Schachner@wineschachFinca Tobella 2009 Negre Red (Priorat)Red BlendFinca Tobella
86438642FranceThis wine, solid and dense, is full of firm tannins as well as red cherry fruits. It's also fruity, with a great juicy character that permeates right through the wine. For drinking now, but better kept for 2–3 years.Domaine de Lavernée89BeaujolaisChiroublesRoger Voss@vossrogerGeorges Duboeuf 2011 Domaine de Lavernée (Chiroubles)GamayGeorges Duboeuf
86448643USDelicious and soft in raspberries, cherries and the sweet vanilla and the cinnamon toast of new oak, this is a charming Pinot to drink now. It's light and airy in the mouth. Perfect with a simply prepared grilled steak or lamb chop.Sierra Mar Vineyard8960CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastWalt 2011 Sierra Mar Vineyard Pinot Noir (Santa Lucia Highlands)Pinot NoirWalt
86458644PortugalFull, rounded and rich, this wine shows some wood flavors as well as complex tannins and acidity. There's a funky edge to it that suggests a rustic character. At the end, though, the acidity of the vintage dominates.Vintage89PortRoger Voss@vossrogerQuinta Vale Dona Maria 2011 Vintage (Port)PortQuinta Vale Dona Maria
86468645ItalyThis is a straightforward Amarone, with red fruit and spice aromas. The palate delivers cherry and raspberry flavors and a hint of white pepper. It's not as rich as some Amarones, but the lithe tannins and fresh acidity make it very drinkable.Ca' Bertoldi8940VenetoAmarone della Valpolicella ClassicoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeRecchia 2006 Ca' Bertoldi (Amarone della Valpolicella Classico)Red BlendRecchia
86478646USThe Kingpin Cabernet leans into the flavors of savory herb and leaf, with peppery accents to the light strawberry fruit. It's a pleasant, relatively light style that fades into a gentle finish.Kingpin8962WashingtonRed MountainColumbia ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Sparkman 2010 Kingpin Cabernet Sauvignon (Red Mountain)Cabernet SauvignonSparkman
86488647USThis blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, sends up toasty aromatics richly imbued with the scents of new oak. John Bookwalter consistently makes wines in this style, which in a cooler year such as 2010, can seem to mask the fruit. Give it plenty of breathing time and the blackberry and black cherry core will begin to emerge from the toast, mocha and coffee.Foreshadow8945WashingtonColumbia Valley (WA)Columbia ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine J. Bookwalter 2010 Foreshadow Merlot (Columbia Valley (WA))MerlotJ. Bookwalter
86498648FranceMedium sweet in style, this is as much about ripe tropical and pineapple fruits as about spice and richness. It's an opulent, full-bodied wine, showing its spice right up front. At the same time, it is well balanced, hinting at acidity at the end. Drink from 2015.Vieilles Vignes8919AlsaceAlsaceRoger Voss@vossrogerJean-Marc Bernhard 2011 Vieilles Vignes Gewurztraminer (Alsace)GewürztraminerJean-Marc Bernhard
86508649PortugalWhile there is an initial barnyard edge, once that blows off, it reveals a dense and solid wine, packed with ripe black fruit and sweet tannins. The acidity brings out spice and edgy, mineral characters.Vintage89PortRoger Voss@vossrogerKopke 2011 Vintage (Port)PortKopke
86518650ItalyThis leads with pretty fragrances of plum and black cherry, with hints of oak and vanilla. The palate is soft and round, offering dark fruit and chocolate flavors layered with cinnamon and nutmeg.8918VenetoValpolicella Classico Superiore RipassoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeLa Dama 2010 Valpolicella Classico Superiore RipassoRed BlendLa Dama
86528651USA first for Lauren Ashton, this barrel-fermented Sémillon was sourced from the excellent Dineen Vineyard. It's firm and tightly packed with melon, jicama, pineapple and green banana fruit. Highlights of honeysuckle and lemon verbena are also in the mix. The finish is a little short, but more bottle age might well bump up the score.8927WashingtonColumbia Valley (WA)Columbia ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Lauren Ashton Cellars 2012 Sémillon (Columbia Valley (WA))SémillonLauren Ashton Cellars
86538652USIf fruit were the only thing that counted, this Pinot would get a perfect score, with an upfront burst of cherries, strawberries and raspberries. The oak appliqué is rich and balanced, and the tannin-acid structure is just fine. Its powerful fruit notes suggest to give it 6–7 years.8948CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastMansfield-Dunne 2011 Pinot Noir (Santa Lucia Highlands)Pinot NoirMansfield-Dunne
86548653USMade from Chardonnay and Pinot Gris, this bubbly is light in body and elegant, with a cloud-like lightness. The palate is high toned with flavors of oranges, limes, honey and vanilla bean. The bubbles are scoury. Drink up.Blanc de Blancs8938CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaMumm Napa 2008 Blanc de Blancs Sparkling (Napa Valley)Sparkling BlendMumm Napa
86558654ItalyThis has a fragrance of black fruit, vanilla and oak. On the palate, it shows mature blackberry and plum-cake flavors, along with very evident oak and toasted notes. While this is still alluring, the fruit and freshness are starting to fade, so drink soon.Riserva Fondatori8960VenetoAmarone della ValpolicellaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeMusella 2008 Riserva Fondatori (Amarone della Valpolicella)Red BlendMusella
86568655USComplex in Middle Eastern and baking spices, Occasio's Petite Sirah is meant to be a tribute to the Livermore Valley's early days of viticultural promise and it delivers in a modern way. With a juicy mouthfeel of red and black fruit, it retains vibrant acidity and finishes long.Del Arroyo Vineyard8935CaliforniaLivermore ValleyCentral CoastVirginie Boone@vbooneOccasio 2010 Del Arroyo Vineyard Petite Sirah (Livermore Valley)Petite SirahOccasio
86578656FranceGold in color, this is a mature wine interesting for its roasted almond and spice flavors, very ripe and rich. Drink this full-bodied wine now.Cuvée des Comtes d'Eguisheim8843AlsaceAlsaceRoger Voss@vossrogerLeon Beyer 2007 Cuvée des Comtes d'Eguisheim Gewurztraminer (Alsace)GewürztraminerLeon Beyer
86588657FranceThe richness of the vintage is very apparent in this full-bodied wine. With weight, structure and dark black fruits, it is textured and showing some vanilla and spice. Smooth, developing well and ready to drink in 2014.88Southwest FranceBuzetRoger Voss@vossrogerLionel Osmin & Cie 2010 Red (Buzet)Bordeaux-style Red BlendLionel Osmin & Cie
86598658USLots of rich, savory Pinot flavors in this silky wine. It's kind of generic, and not showing much sense of terroir, but it is a properly grown coastal wine whose brisk acidity highlights cola, pomegranate and persimmon flavors. Drink up.8835CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastMacMurray Ranch 2011 Pinot Noir (Santa Lucia Highlands)Pinot NoirMacMurray Ranch
86608659ItalyMade with the Friulano grape—formerly known as Tocai Friulano—this white offers lemon peel and mineral aromas that carry over to the palate. It's long and linear, with a crisp finish.8830Northeastern ItalyCollioKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeMario Schiopetto 2011 Friulano (Collio)FriulanoMario Schiopetto
86618660USThis is a solid Cabernet that shows the promise of the appellation in the central part of Monterey's Salinas Valley. It's dry and medium-bodied, with savory red-cherry candy, cranberry and currant flavors.8812CaliforniaArroyo SecoCentral CoastMuirwood 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon (Arroyo Seco)Cabernet SauvignonMuirwood
86628661USAn unusual blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Grigio and Pinot Meunier, this bubbly is, in a word, delicious. It's ripe with oranges, pineapples, honey and vanilla, with crisp acidity and a Champagne-like sourdough leesiness.Cuvée M8822CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaMumm Napa NV Cuvée M Sparkling (Napa Valley)Sparkling BlendMumm Napa
86638662USDecadent in coffee, toffee and caramel tones, the leathery mouthfeel of this wine is met head-to-head by a juiciness of ripe, dense blackberry fruit. An approachable Petite Sirah that will also please lovers of the variety's chewiness and concentration.Seven Sinners8819CaliforniaLodiCentral ValleyVirginie Boone@vbooneNine North Wine Company 2010 Seven Sinners Petite Sirah (Lodi)Petite SirahNine North Wine Company
86648663ItalyThis savory selection offers a spicy bouquet of black pepper, nutmeg and clove, along with blackberry and cherry notes. It has a refined and vibrant palate, with black cherry, pepper and spice notes framed by silky tannins and refreshing acidity.Vigneto I Cantoni8825VenetoValpolicella Classico SuperioreKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeNovaia 2010 Vigneto I Cantoni (Valpolicella Classico Superiore)Red BlendNovaia
86658664USThe American oak aging (80%) plays a significant role here but not in a bad way. There are notes of toast and Mounds bar with ripe flavors and a cranberry-filled finish.8816WashingtonRattlesnake HillsColumbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportRoza Ridge 2010 Syrah (Rattlesnake Hills)SyrahRoza Ridge
86668665USAll varietal, the aromas juxtapose notes of dark plum and chocolate with generous wood spices. The wood and fruit seem to tussle on the palate, with the wood winning out on the finish.8858WashingtonColumbia Valley (WA)Columbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportTenor 2013 Malbec (Columbia Valley (WA))MalbecTenor
86678666USThe aromas offer light notes of vanilla, plum and clove. The palate is full and generously flavored, with the tannins bringing some grit.8821WashingtonColumbia Valley (WA)Columbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportThree Rivers 2013 Merlot (Columbia Valley (WA))MerlotThree Rivers
86688667USFresh boysenberry aromas and Concord grape scents are lifted by cracked peppercorn on the nose of this bottling. There is a touch of dill to the palate, where black cherry and chocolate flavors also arise on the lighter, simple yet tasty bottling.8838CaliforniaPaso RoblesCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannGraveyard 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon (Paso Robles)Cabernet SauvignonGraveyard
86698668USThe nose on this bottling shows fresh boysenberry and primary grape scents, with lots of sweet rosemary and purple flower nuance. The sip is not overly complicated, with tar at first and then waves of blackberry and boysenberry fruit, lifted by thyme and peppercorns.Graveyard Vineyard Reserve8850CaliforniaPaso RoblesCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannGraveyard 2014 Graveyard Vineyard Reserve Syrah (Paso Robles)SyrahGraveyard
86708669AustriaVery ripe and sumptuous notes of blueberry pie make for an appetizing proposition. This blueberry fruit plays the major role on this medium-bodied but fresh, easy-drinking red. It is full of joy and provides a dense, balance palate of ripeness and ease.8816BurgenlandAnne Krebiehl MW@AnneInVinoGunter Triebaumer 2015 Blaufränkisch (Burgenland)BlaufränkischGunter Triebaumer

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