Wine Reviews

1145511454USThere's a honeyed, mead-like character on the nose of this Steve Clifton wine. It also shows buttered brioche, lemon curds and an underlying white rock minerality. Ruby-red grapefruit flesh and ripe nectarine flavors arrive once sipped, and a chalky grip ensues, making for a very dynamic and intriguing wine.9120CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannPalmina 2013 Pinot Grigio (Santa Barbara County)Pinot GrigioPalmina
1145611455USThis smells as vivid as fresh-picked and crushed grapes, combining cranberry, raspberry, cinnamon and other spices. Flavors suggest black cherry, blackberry, and attractive spicy oak. It is full bodied, smooth but a bit tight in texture due to great, firm tannins and lively acidity. A nice touch of sweet-seeming oak marks the lingering finish.Trois Filles9142CaliforniaMarin CountyNorth CoastJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsPey-Marin 2013 Trois Filles Pinot Noir (Marin County)Pinot NoirPey-Marin
1145711456FranceThis wine has a bright, crisp character that is reminiscent of Chablis. It has refreshing lemon and apple flavors, and it's ready to drink.Château de Mercey8723BurgundyBourgogne Hautes Côtes de BeauneRoger Voss@vossrogerAntonin Rodet 2010 Château de Mercey (Bourgogne Hautes Côtes de Beaune)ChardonnayAntonin Rodet
1145811457USYeasty, sweet pastry notes are enticing on the nose of this intense, juicy, off-dry Riesling. It has a delicate structure and a creamy texture, and it balances brisk, lemony acids with ripe yellow-peach and grapefruit flavors.Estate Vineyards8716New YorkFinger LakesFinger LakesAnna Lee C. IijimaAtwater 2010 Estate Vineyards Riesling (Finger Lakes)RieslingAtwater
1145911458USFlavors of sweet, smoky oak; ripe, forward tropical fruit; and creamy lees mark this Chardonnay. It's made in the modern, voluptuous style.8756CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaBacigalupi 2011 Chardonnay (Russian River Valley)ChardonnayBacigalupi
1146011459USA full-bodied Pinot Noir, this bears ripe cherry, red plum and tart cranberry flavors. The considerable acidity gives it a mouth-watering bite. Drink soon, and decant it.8712CaliforniaCentral CoastCentral CoastBallard Lane 2010 Pinot Noir (Central Coast)Pinot NoirBallard Lane
1143111430SpainOaky, inky aromas of blackberry and vanilla are pushy and potent. This blend of 50% Tempranillo and 50% Syrah is rubbery and pinched on the palate, while toasty, rooty flavors of black fruits blend with herbal berry and coffee notes. A narrow finish is herbal in flavor and weighty. Drink through 2020.Selección Especial9160Northern SpainVino de la Tierra de Castilla y LeónMichael Schachner@wineschachVizar 2009 Selección Especial Red (Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y León)Red BlendVizar
1143211431USThis bold and full-bodied wine has fragrant fruit aromas and oodles of berry flavor, plus a firm texture created by ample fine-grained tannins and supportive acidity. What makes it special is how the grippy texture wraps around the opulent blackberry and boysenberry flavors for great balance and a sense that it will age well through 2022.Grandpère9140CaliforniaAmador CountySierra FoothillsJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsRenwood 2012 Grandpère Zinfandel (Amador County)ZinfandelRenwood
1143311432USThe Roserock cuvée is notably dark and concentrated, with loads of ripe black cherry fruit. The nose is spicy, and flavors are saturated with luscious mocha. This is a fine example of the vintage, ready to enjoy immediately.Roserock Vineyard9155OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Rex Hill 2012 Roserock Vineyard Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirRex Hill
1143411433SpainThis full, ripe, balanced Priorat is a touch oaky and creamy up front, with schisty berry scents resting below the surface. Medium but nice on the palate, this offers cherry, currant, plum, coconut and marzipan flavors prior to an oaky, rooty tasting finish with ripe berry flavors. Drink now through 2021.Cartoixa91100CataloniaPrioratMichael Schachner@wineschachScala Dei 2010 Cartoixa Red (Priorat)Red BlendScala Dei
1143511434ItalyThis fresh, savory blend of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Sangiovese offers a bouquet of blue flowers, cedar, wild berry and light cooking spices. The vibrant, focused palate doles out juicy wild cherry, ripe red currants and white pepper alongside silky smooth tannins and bright acidity. Drink through 2020.Le Difese9135TuscanyToscanaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeTenuta San Guido 2013 Le Difese Red (Toscana)Red BlendTenuta San Guido
1143611435ChileHerbal blackberry, raspberry and leather aromas are solid and inviting on the nose. The palate is juicy and lithe, with a springy, bouncy mouthfeel and lightly herbal, earthy flavors of cassis and raspberry. Drink through 2019.T.H. Terroir Hunter9124Maipo ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachUndurraga 2012 T.H. Terroir Hunter Cabernet Sauvignon (Maipo Valley)Cabernet SauvignonUndurraga
1143711436SpainRooty berry aromas vie for attention with molasses, graphite and earth notes. This Toro is stout and creamy in feel, with bracing acidity and firm tannins. Baking spice, roasted black-fruit and molasses flavors are typically ripe, while the finish is hot, with punchy acidity. Drink through 2020.Paciencia9126Northern SpainToroMichael Schachner@wineschachBernard Magrez 2011 Paciencia (Toro)Tinta de ToroBernard Magrez
1143811437USThis has a vibrant yellow-gold color and aromas like fresh herbs and sliced celery. Almost electric acidity pulses in the crisp grapefruit, lime and melon flavors that lead to a lingering finish. The vivid freshness and tangy texture sets it apart from the crowd, and it will work wonderfully with foods from raw oysters to roast chicken.The Victor's Spoils9118CaliforniaNorth CoastNorth CoastJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsBodkin 2014 The Victor's Spoils Sauvignon Blanc (North Coast)Sauvignon BlancBodkin
1143911438USFirm and flavorful, this brings well-ripened raspberry and black cherry fruit into focus. The wine spent 17 months in 60% new French oak, wrapping the fruit in layers of coffee, maple syrup and brown sugar. It's tasty and substantial, best now through 2020.9150OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Carden 2012 Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirCarden
1144011439ItalyMade from 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot and 25% other varieties, this offers aromas of dark fruit, blue flowers, sweet spice, pipe tobacco and cedar. The mature palate shows raisin, licorice, mint, menthol, grilled herb and dark chocolate alongside smooth, polished tannins. While it's already accessible, this should hold well for another four or five years. Drink through 2020.9189TuscanyToscanaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeCastello del Terriccio 2008 Red (Toscana)Red BlendCastello del Terriccio
1144111440FranceComing from high terraces above the River Lot, this wood-aged wine is cool, collected and stylish. It has ripe blackberry and currant fruits along with just the right amount of firm tannins. Acidity keeps everything fresh and fruity while guarding the structure. Drink from 2017.Château Chevaliers Lagrézette9130Southwest FranceCahorsRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Lagrézette 2012 Château Chevaliers Lagrézette Malbec (Cahors)MalbecChâteau Lagrézette
1144211441FranceFrom a leading small domaine, this blend of 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah is sure to make virtually any lover of Rhône wines smile. Crushed thyme accents ripe cherry fruit in this full-bodied, moderately rich wine that ends with a dusting of velvety tannins. Drink now–2018.Tradition9115Rhône ValleyCôtes du RhôneJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzChâteau Saint Esteve d'Uchaux 2012 Tradition Grenache-Syrah (Côtes du Rhône)Grenache-SyrahChâteau Saint Esteve d'Uchaux
1144311442FranceOne of a series of wines made from individual parcels, this ripe, lightly wood-aged wine is both perfumed and spicy. While rich, it is not overwhelming, having freshness as well as ripe tropical fruit flavors. Drink this wine now.Parcelle Jeanneton No ZB1009127Southwest FranceBergerac SecRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Tour des Gendres 2013 Parcelle Jeanneton No ZB100 Muscadelle (Bergerac Sec)MuscadelleChâteau Tour des Gendres
1144411443FranceThis is a very pale rosé from a relatively high elevation site, so it shows ample crispness and elegance. Delicate aromas of herbs and citrus lead into flavors of peach and lime, with a bit of wet stone on the long, refreshing finish. This is well balanced and long, not a simple fruity rosé.Grenache-Syrah-Cinsault9134Rhône ValleyVentouxJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzChêne Bleu 2013 Grenache-Syrah-Cinsault Rosé (Ventoux)RoséChêne Bleu
1144511444USHoney-roasted almonds, seared lemon vinaigrette and honeydew melon show on the delicious nose of this off-dry wine from an extreme coastal vineyard above Cambria. Though slightly sweet, it remains rich and intriguing, with lots of citrus peel, grapefruit pith, squeezed oranges and touches of petrol.Riven Rock Vineyard9128CaliforniaSan Luis Obispo CountyCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannCutruzzola 2012 Riven Rock Vineyard Riesling (San Luis Obispo County)RieslingCutruzzola
1144611445USGrapes from three vineyards (estate, Hyland and Durant) and seven different clones are blended here, then aged for 14 months in 40% new French oak. At first sniff it's more steely than oaky, with chunky flavors of red fruits firmly underscored with highlights of earth and stem. There's a vein of black licorice also, and the wine leaves the impression that waiting until 2016–2017 will help bring out its best.Pas de Trois9134OregonOregonOregon OtherPaul Gregutt@paulgwine DanCin 2012 Pas de Trois Pinot Noir (Oregon)Pinot NoirDanCin
1144711446FranceLightly honeyed, this off-dry wine is complex while also fruity. Intense flavor fills the mouth with spice, yellow fruits, pineapple and a touch of mango. The fruits are balanced by the more nuanced honey and spice character that is finished with acidity. Gros Manseng, a native grape of this region, is worth getting to know. Drink this delicious wine from 2016.Premières Grives9117Southwest FranceCôtes de GascogneRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine du Tariquet 2014 Premières Grives Gros Manseng (Côtes de Gascogne)Gros MansengDomaine du Tariquet
1144811447GermanySucculent yellow plums and cherries burst from each sip of this gloriously honeyed Riesling. Semisweet in style, it juxtaposes a densely packed core of stone fruit against dazzling lemon-lime freshness. Layers of mineral, earth and pollen lend nuance to a long, ambling finish. Drink now, but also hold a few bottles back to mature through 2025.Bernkasteler Graben Spätlese9128MoselAnna Lee C. IijimaDr. H. Thanisch (Erben Müller-Burggraef) 2013 Bernkasteler Graben Spätlese Riesling (Mosel)RieslingDr. H. Thanisch (Erben Müller-Burggraef)
1144911448GermanyBracing lemon and lime flavors are offset by streaks of luscious white peach and wildflower honey in this mouthwatering kabinett. While off dry and racy in style, it finishes long, enriched by creamy, lingering touches of hazelnut and cashew. Drinks gorgeously now, but has enough complexity and structure to evolve well through 2020.Kabinett9132MoselAnna Lee C. IijimaDr. H. Thanisch (Erben Thanisch) 2013 Kabinett Riesling (Mosel)RieslingDr. H. Thanisch (Erben Thanisch)
1145011449USNot too deep in color or overly effusive in aroma, this nevertheless full-bodied wine has fresh red cherry and plum flavors backed by firm acidity and tannins. Its relative restraint and balance will make a great accompaniment to grilled quail or chicken or even roast venison.Charles Vineyard Zero9138CaliforniaAnderson ValleyJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsFoursight 2012 Charles Vineyard Zero Pinot Noir (Anderson Valley)Pinot NoirFoursight
1145111450ItalyOak, toast, menthol and a whiff of purple flowers lead the nose on this blend of Sangiovese and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. The concentrated palate delivers dried black cherry, chocolate, vanilla and dried sage alongside tightly-packed tannins. A clove note signals the finish.9159TuscanyToscanaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeGagliole 2011 Red (Toscana)Red BlendGagliole
1145211451USVery yeasty and slightly clouded in the glass, this wine by regional bubbly pioneer Norm Yost shows buttered plums, rising sourdough bread and freshly picked scarlet red rose petals on the nose. The mouthfeel is noticeably creamy, with more bready yeast, citrus peels and hints of hibiscus and jasmine.Clos Pepe Vineyard Blanc de Noir9160CaliforniaSta. Rita HillsCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannGoat Bubbles 2012 Clos Pepe Vineyard Blanc de Noir Pinot Noir (Sta. Rita Hills)Pinot NoirGoat Bubbles
1145311452SpainToasty, warm, charred aromas accent earthy, enticing plum and prune scents. This ripe, round, well-structured Rioja is moderately deep on the palate but also bouncy and elegant. Earthy baked-plum flavors come with leathery accents and savory oak, while the finish is lasting and balanced. Drink through 2018.Crianza9116Northern SpainRiojaMichael Schachner@wineschachViña Olabarri 2011 Crianza (Rioja)TempranilloViña Olabarri
1145411453SpainTermes always delivers a full taste of Toro at an affordable price. This vintage smells deep, cool and full of cola, rooty blackberry and fine herbs. A flush mouthfeel is tannic but manageable, while ripe, baked flavors of blackberry are savory on the backside and finish lush and deep, with lasting hard tannins. Drink through 2020.Termes9120Northern SpainToroMichael Schachner@wineschachNumanthia 2011 Termes (Toro)Tinta de ToroNumanthia

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