Wine Reviews

1176111760USThis Chardonnay has brisk, crisp acidity and flavors of pineapple, orange and mango. There are dominating notes of buttered toast and sweet butterscotch.Appellation Series8430CaliforniaSanta Lucia HighlandsCentral CoastCru 2011 Appellation Series Chardonnay (Santa Lucia Highlands)ChardonnayCru
1176211761USGive this Merlot some time to breathe before serving. Right out of the bottle, it's tough, gritty and tannic. It will never be a mellow wine, but it does have nice black-cherry and licorice flavors.8425CaliforniaPaicinesCentral CoastDonati 2010 Merlot (Paicines)MerlotDonati
1176311762USMade from Syrah, Petite Sirah and Grenache, this robust, tannic blend has sweet-tasting jam and cola flavors, plus a note of peppery spice. It's a little hot due to the high alcohol, and it has a touch of green vegetable on the midpalate. Drink up.The Big Easy8435CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastFess Parker 2010 The Big Easy Red (Santa Barbara County)Rhône-style Red BlendFess Parker
1176411763USThis wine has the weight and silkiness of a Pinot Noir, but it has Merlot's cherry, currant and anise flavors.Lot 68410CaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia OtherGrayson 2011 Lot 6 Merlot (California)MerlotGrayson
1176511764GreeceThis red is a hunting lodge in a glass, with aromas of leather, game, cigar and cedar on the nose, followed by flavors of blueberry, cigar box and vanilla on the palate. Pair this with earthy fare, such as steak, grilled duck or dried sausage.Aamackhnoc8425NaoussaSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaVaeni 2006 Aamackhnoc Xinomavro (Naoussa)XinomavroVaeni
1176611765USStrong flavors of raspberry, cherry and oak dominate, with a hint of mushroom in the background. It will appeal to those who like a light, lean style of Pinot Noir. It's ready to drink now.Reserve8436CaliforniaCentral CoastCentral CoastPeacock Cellars 2011 Reserve Pinot Noir (Central Coast)Pinot NoirPeacock Cellars
1176711766USSeemingly sweet and simple, this has flavors of candied orange, peach and tropical fruit. A brisk hit of acidity provides much-needed balance.8416CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaPicket Fence 2011 Chardonnay (Russian River Valley)ChardonnayPicket Fence
1176811767USThis Cabernet gets the job done with its blackberry, cherry and oak flavors. It's nice and dry, and it will wash down a hamburger.8414CaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia OtherR8 2011 Red (California)Red BlendR8
1176911768ItalyA 40-30-30 blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Syrah, this shows a touch of cola-like fizz that tickles the tongue. Its aromas include cherry, blueberry and a touch of natural rubber.The Drunken Goose8411TuscanyToscanaL'Oca Ciuca 2009 The Drunken Goose Red (Toscana)Red BlendL'Oca Ciuca
1177011769USMade in the Mazzocco style of high alcohol and superripeness, this Zinfandel, which contains a splash of Petite Sirah, tastes like Port. The flavors of raisins and currants dominate, and it bears glycerine sweetness and jalapeño-like heat.Seaton8432CaliforniaDry Creek ValleySonomaMazzocco 2010 Seaton Zinfandel (Dry Creek Valley)ZinfandelMazzocco
1177111770USSoft and simple, this bears cola, cherry pie, red currant and pepper flavors that finish sweet-tasting. This is a fine choice to drink with pizza and Mexican food.8432CaliforniaPaso RoblesCentral CoastPeacock Cellars 2010 Barbera (Paso Robles)BarberaPeacock Cellars
1177211771USOverripe and Port-like, this has chocolate, raisin and blackberry jam flavors. It's rich, and it has a prickly heat that comes from the high alcohol.Artefact8475CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaRelic 2009 Artefact Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonRelic
1177311772USThis is dry, tannic and sharp in acidity. It has a significant core of black cherry fruit, but it seems overripe, as it develops a prune flavor. Drink now.The Palindrome8430CaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia OtherRock Wall 2010 The Palindrome Tannat (California)TannatRock Wall
1177411773GreeceSweet and tart notes—think maraschino cherry and citrus—start this opulent sip. Sweet-tasting cherry and strawberry flavors follow. Not overly complex, but a fun summer wine.Zoë8412PeloponneseSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaSkouras 2011 Zoë Rosé (Peloponnese)RoséSkouras
1177511774USAlthough new oak accounts for only 10% of the barrels used, the oak influence dominates. Flavors of buttered toast, butterscotch and vanilla ride over the note of pineapple-orange jam. The best thing about the wine is its brisk, clean acidity.Vineyard Montage8423CaliforniaMonterey CountyCentral CoastCru 2011 Vineyard Montage Chardonnay (Monterey County)ChardonnayCru
1177611775USThis has flavors of oranges, Meyer lemons and tropical fruits, and there's a good burst of acidity that lends balance. The finish tastes a bit sweet. Pair this selection with Vietnamese, Chinese, Thai, Indian or Ethiopian dishes.8410CaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia OtherInsomnia 2011 White (California)White BlendInsomnia
1177711776ItalyThere's some volatility to the strawberry and raspberry notes, followed by cherry and white almond accents. The palate feels thin, and the wine presents simple, clean lines.Pettirosso8422TuscanyToscanaFonterenza 2011 Pettirosso Sangiovese (Toscana)SangioveseFonterenza
1177811777IsraelLight and accessible now, this single-vineyard Pinot offers delicate notes of red currant and strawberry hull on the nose and in the mouth. Soft, with low tannins and an easygoing structure.Yiron Vineyard8419Upper GalileeLauren Buzzeo@laurbuzzGalil Mountain 2010 Yiron Vineyard Pinot Noir (Upper Galilee)Pinot NoirGalil Mountain
1177911778PortugalThere is a curious petrol aroma to this wine. Even so, the red berry flavor is attractive and fresh, and the acidity is lean.Colheita Seleccionada8415TejoRoger Voss@vossrogerHerdade dos Templários 2010 Colheita Seleccionada Red (Tejo)Portuguese RedHerdade dos Templários
1178011779USHigh alcohol makes this Grenache seem hot and sweet in glycerine. It tastes candied, with cherry pie and red licorice flavors.Estate Vineyard8425CaliforniaSonoma ValleySonomaWellington 2009 Estate Vineyard Grenache (Sonoma Valley)GrenacheWellington
1178111780USThis light-bodied Pinot has some good raspberry and cherry pie flavors, as well as bright acidity. Decant to let it breathe, and drink now.8424CaliforniaCentral CoastCentral CoastPeacock Cellars 2011 Pinot Noir (Central Coast)Pinot NoirPeacock Cellars
1178211781USAlbariño is very sensitive to the slightest usage of oak. Although this wine has only a touch of neutral oak, the wood still sticks out. The barrel influence gives it a buttered toast and caramel heaviness. Try this as an alternative to Chardonnay.Jesperson Ranch8427CaliforniaEdna ValleyCentral CoastPeloton 2011 Jesperson Ranch Albariño (Edna Valley)AlbariñoPeloton
1178311782New ZealandFrom one of the region's pioneering producers, this is an entry-level bottling that manages to provide a glimpse into the Martinborough style. It favors leafy, savory elements over overt fruitiness, offering hints of sun-baked brick, bracken and cracked pepper that are layered over modest cherry fruit. Although silky in texture, it lacks length. Drink now.Russian Jack8424MartinboroughJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzMartinborough Vineyard 2011 Russian Jack Pinot Noir (Martinborough)Pinot NoirMartinborough Vineyard
1178411783USSharp and minty, this wine has some underripe notes, yet the flavor of peppery black cherry tastes jammy. The alcohol is high and somewhat unbalanced, which gives the wine a heavy mouthfeel.Inocencio8444CaliforniaSanta Barbara CountyCentral CoastToretti's 2010 Inocencio Pinot Noir (Santa Barbara County)Pinot NoirToretti's
1178511784GreeceFlavors of rose petal, cherry and a touch of spice characterize this rosé. A backbone of lively spice carries the sweet-tasting cherry flavors on the palate. Pair this with fruit salads or creamy cheeses.Driopi Agiorgitiko8415PeloponneseSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaTselepos 2011 Driopi Agiorgitiko Rosé (Peloponnese)RoséTselepos
1178611785USThis fresh, spicy Merlot is easy to drink, and it deals jammy berry, cola and fruit punch flavors. It's a great wine to serve at parties.8421CaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia OtherBota Box 2011 Merlot (California)MerlotBota Box
1178711786ItalyBlue flowers, dark berry and allspice aromas unfold in the glass. The palate offers black currant, black cherry, peppercorn and espresso alongside drying, angular tannins.8718TuscanyCortonaKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeIl Fitto 2013 Sangiovese (Cortona)SangioveseIl Fitto
1178811787USThis offers strong oak and smoke aromas, plus ripe black cherry, chocolate and plum flavors. Full body and firm tannins make it assertive. Not a cocktail wine, this needs to pair with some heavy meat.8158718CaliforniaCaliforniaCalifornia OtherJim Gordon@gordone_cellarsJoel Gott 2012 815 Cabernet Sauvignon (California)Cabernet SauvignonJoel Gott
1178911788ChileCherry, violet and herbal aromas introduce a tangy, angular palate with sharp acidity. Quick-hitting, fresh flavors of pie cherry, red currant and raspberry finish grabby, with scouring acidity. Drink through 2020.Lucero8720Casablanca ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachKingston Family 2013 Lucero Syrah (Casablanca Valley)SyrahKingston Family
1179011789USThis bottling utilizes fruit from the winery's original 1975 plantings. Aromas of jasmine, flowers and lime lead to off dry, lightly spritzy stone-fruit flavors that linger.Estate Bottled8715WashingtonRed MountainColumbia ValleySean P. Sullivan@wawinereportKiona 2014 Estate Bottled Riesling (Red Mountain)RieslingKiona

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