Wine Reviews

1335113350ItalyThis is a dense, thickly extracted Vino Nobile with aromas that recall new fruit—fresh, red cherry and ripe blueberry—and new wood, such as vanilla and carpentry shavings. It tastes very new, almost too new for a 2005, and lacks the deep penetrating complexity you should otherwise expect from this beautiful part of Tuscany. It's easy and very fruity in the mouth.8527TuscanyVino Nobile di MontepulcianoAvignonesi 2005 Vino Nobile di MontepulcianoPrugnolo GentileAvignonesi
1335213351FranceThere's good density here. This wine shows plenty of ripe Merlot fruit flavors, jammy, lifted with dried fruits and blackberries. It's a rounded, ripe wine, but shot through with a curious, unbalanced, very dry wood element.Mouton Cadet Réserve8517BordeauxSaint-ÉmilionRoger Voss@vossrogerBaron Philippe de Rothschild 2005 Mouton Cadet Réserve (Saint-Émilion)Bordeaux-style Red BlendBaron Philippe de Rothschild
1335613355USKeefer has not been Loring's most successful bottling. The '06 is pleasant, and in its own way delicious, with upfront raspberry, cherry, cola and smoky vanilla flavors balanced with crisp acidity. But it has a candied one-dimensionality, and doesn't seem likely to age.Keefer Ranch Vineyard8550CaliforniaGreen ValleySonomaLoring Wine Company 2006 Keefer Ranch Vineyard Pinot Noir (Green Valley)Pinot NoirLoring Wine Company
1335313352SpainAdmittedly it's a bit late to be reviewing this 2005 Verdejo, but it's still fairly vital as it shows waxy citrus aromas in front of plump but anonymous white fruit. Still hanging in there with some persistence and mouthfeel, but get at it right away.Doña Beatriz8512Northern SpainRuedaMichael Schachner@wineschachBodegas Cerrosol 2005 Doña Beatriz Verdejo (Rueda)VerdejoBodegas Cerrosol
1335713356USA delicious Cab, polished and supple, with ripe black and red currant, raspberry, violet, cedar and mocha flavors. Feels soft and velvety in the mouth. Drink now.8520CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaMartin Ray 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonMartin Ray
1335413353USWith cherry, black raspberry, red currant and licorice flavors wrapped into an elegantly light body, this Merlot may appeal to consumers who find Cabernet Sauvignon too heavy. It's an easy commercial wine to drink now.8523CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaHunter Ashby 2005 Merlot (Napa Valley)MerlotHunter Ashby
1335813357USSoftly forward and tasty, this Merlot-based wine, which is a blend of all 5 Bordeaux varieties, is an easy-drinking wine. The cherry, blackberry, cola, mocha and oaky spice and vanilla flavors offer immediate pleasure.Meritage8533CaliforniaPaso RoblesCentral CoastMartin & Weyrich 2005 Meritage Red (Paso Robles)Bordeaux-style Red BlendMartin & Weyrich
1335513354South AfricaFrom one of South Africa's top Chenin Blanc producers, this Chenin is pretty and accessible, with waves of lemon, orange and citrus on the nose and fresh fruit flavors of pineapple and apple on the palate. Clean but balanced, it's both elegant and embraceable.8523StellenboschSusan Kostrzewa@suskostrzewaRaats Family 2006 Chenin Blanc (Stellenbosch)Chenin BlancRaats Family
1335913358FranceJuicy cherry fruit flavors with some fine tannins, pepper, spice and dry wood edges. This is a friendly, easy Bordeaux with plenty of fruit.8522BordeauxBordeaux SupérieurRoger Voss@vossrogerPezat 2005 Bordeaux SupérieurBordeaux-style Red BlendPezat
1336013359USRipe and oaky, this Napa-grown Chardonnay has upfront flavors of pineapples, peaches and vanilla. The charred smokiness on the barrels stands out.Reserve8520CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaRaymond 2006 Reserve Chardonnay (Napa Valley)ChardonnayRaymond
1336113360ItalyThis Sangiovese-Syrah blend is the wine equivalent of a teenager that boasts youthful appeal. It has a solid core of fresh red fruit, especially cherries and blueberries. It lacks the sophistication of age and its aromas are so immediate; it's remotely reminiscent of a Beaujolais Nouveau. The mouthfeel is simple, fruity and fresh.8513TuscanyToscanaPoggio al Casone 2004 Red (Toscana)Red BlendPoggio al Casone
1336213361USFrom the warm Chiles Valley portion of Napa, this Zin is solidly in the New World, cult Cab style of softness and extreme ripeness. The flavors of milk chocolate flood the mouth, with fruit notes of cherries, currants and plums, as well as a mélange of spices in the finish.Dalraddy Vineyard8527CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaTin Barn 2005 Dalraddy Vineyard Zinfandel (Napa Valley)ZinfandelTin Barn
1336313362SpainMore sharp and jumpy than many over-$20 wines from the region, but if you like a more racy, acidic style it may be up your alley. The wine offers blackberry flavors, spice and some herbal notes, while the finish thickens with mushroom and chocolate. A good but sketchy wine with a few loose ends.Crianza8521Northern SpainRibera del DueroMichael Schachner@wineschachConde de Siruela 2004 Crianza (Ribera del Duero)TempranilloConde de Siruela
1336413363PortugalThis is a powerful wine, although it wears its density easily. There is a streak of acidity that gives the wine its juicy, attractive character. Black fruits and firm tannins are equally to the fore along with a powerful, concentrated texture. The wine is still aging and will be ready to drink from 2018.Gáudio Clássico Reserva9239AlentejanoRoger Voss@vossrogerRibafreixo 2012 Gáudio Clássico Reserva Red (Alentejano)Portuguese RedRibafreixo
1336513364ArgentinaTight, rooty, spicy aromas of cherry and cassis include notes of raw minerals and crushed rocks. This is a bit gritty and tannic, but it's not fierce or unyielding. Reedy, spicy plum, berry, coffee and cocoa flavors finish dry, with lasting notes of chocolate and baking spices. Drink through 2021.Gran9236Mendoza ProvinceTupungatoMichael Schachner@wineschachRiglos 2013 Gran Cabernet Sauvignon (Tupungato)Cabernet SauvignonRiglos
1336613365ItalyGrilled herb, underbrush toasted hazelnut and stewed prune aromas meld together along with a floral note. The juicy, structured palate presents fleshy Morello cherry, raspberry, star anise, clove and a hint of orange zest alongside firm, polished tannins that give this a smooth mouthfeel.Cè Vanin9241PiedmontBarbarescoKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeRivetto 2012 Cè Vanin (Barbaresco)NebbioloRivetto
1336713366ArgentinaRipe, loamy blackberry, prune and cassis aromas lead to a structured palate that boasts big, firm tannins. This offers dark, ripe flavors of wild berry, black plum and chocolate prior to a toasty finish that's largely subtle and smooth. Drink through 2021.Numina Spirit Vineyard Estate Bottled9241Mendoza ProvinceValle de UcoMichael Schachner@wineschachSalentein 2013 Numina Spirit Vineyard Estate Bottled Malbec (Valle de Uco)MalbecSalentein
1336813367USZenith is the winery's estate vineyard, and represents a particularly fine value in a splendid lineup. The ripe, plummy fruit is swathed in rich brown spices, a sweet streak of molasses, and notes of tobacco and black tea. Decant and enjoy immediately, or cellar for another couple of years to let the flavors continue melding.Zenith Vineyard9242OregonEola-Amity HillsWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine St. Innocent 2014 Zenith Vineyard Pinot Noir (Eola-Amity Hills)Pinot NoirSt. Innocent
1336913368USFrom a vineyard in the hills overlooking the Santa Clara Valley, this bottling shows baked strawberry, cinnamon cream, Red Hots and black-plum juice, proving quite pretty if a tad candied on the nose. A light cinnamon-clove meringue flavor proves very inviting on the palate, where lush black cherry is leveled by a tart plum-skin grip.9226CaliforniaCentral CoastCentral CoastMatt Kettmann@mattkettmannStorrs 2012 Grenache (Central Coast)GrenacheStorrs
1337013369ArgentinaRubbery, slightly gritty aromas of olive and balsamic berry fruits are solid and introduce a well-balanced palate. Loamy berry and baked plum flavors are ripe and solid. Overall, this delivers an authentic taste of modern Argentina while not veering away from what's familiar; drink through 2020.Premium Blend9232Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachSur de los Andes 2012 Premium Blend Malbec-Cabernet Sauvignon (Mendoza)Malbec-Cabernet SauvignonSur de los Andes
1337113370ItalyAlluring scents of ripe berry, dark spice, toast, grilled herb and a balsamic note set the tone for this youthful Barolo. The full-bodied, tightly wound palate offers red cherry, white pepper cinnamon and sage alongside assertive tannins and fresh acidity. A licorice note caps the finish. Drink after 2019.Bussia9275PiedmontBaroloKerin O’Keefe@kerinokeefeTenuta Rocca 2012 Bussia (Barolo)NebbioloTenuta Rocca
1337213371FranceIt seems odd to produce a 100% Cabernet Franc wine in Bandol. However, the result is impressive and somehow seems to have a flavor of Provence, with its spice and herbal edge. The wine is rich, full and powerful, with good tannins and black fruits. Drink from 2020.Secret d'Azur9275France OtherVin de FranceRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau d'Azur 2014 Secret d'Azur Cabernet Franc (Vin de France)Cabernet FrancChâteau d'Azur
1337313372FranceNamed after the red soil of the vineyard, this wine is rich and full of generous red fruits. They are cut with the acidity of the vintage to give a crisp edge to this full-bodied wine. Spice and hedgerow fruits finish a wine that still needs to develop. Drink from 2020.Montée Rouge Premier Cru9250BurgundyBeauneRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau de Santenay 2014 Montée Rouge Premier Cru (Beaune)Pinot NoirChâteau de Santenay
1337413373FranceThis warm, ripe wine offers good acidity, but its main thrust is rich yellow fruits and spice. It is drinkable now, but will develop well over the next few months to give a rounded, generous character. Drink from 2017.Clos de la Côte9230BurgundySaint-VéranRoger Voss@vossrogerChristophe Cordier 2014 Clos de la Côte (Saint-Véran)ChardonnayChristophe Cordier
1337513374PortugalPowerful and spicy, this is a concentrated wine. It has a firm and rich structure of solid tannins. That contrasts with the black plum and juicy berry fruits. Together, they make a wine that is impressive, dark and only just ready to drink. Best wait until 2017.Incógnito92110AlentejanoRoger Voss@vossrogerCortes de Cima 2012 Incógnito Syrah (Alentejano)SyrahCortes de Cima
1337613375USMade with a minimal-intervention mind-set, this marries classic French winemaking to tight, almost steely Willamette Valley fruit. It's a taut, tense wine, focused on raspberry/cherry fruit, with firm, chocolate-tinged tannins. Highlights of malted milk and tobacco sneak into the extended finish.9228OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Domaine Divio 2014 Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirDomaine Divio
1337713376FranceOwned by the Fourrey family of Domaine Fourrey, the vines come from two parcels in the premier cru. The wine is rich and smooth with good acidity that balances the ripe apple and crisp pear flavors. A strong line of minerality cuts through this still-young wine. Drink from early 2017.Domaine des Miles Vaillons Premier Cru9233BurgundyChablisRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine Fourrey 2014 Domaine des Miles Vaillons Premier Cru (Chablis)ChardonnayDomaine Fourrey
1337813377FranceA family operation, now run by Jean-Pierre and Philippe, Guillernot's flagship wine is generous and ripe. It has plenty of warm structure, while the red fruits are juicy and perfumed. This is developing into a full, rich wine that will be full of fruit. Drink from 2019 (this wine may age well beyond).Aux Serpentières Premier Cru9250BurgundySavigny-lès-BeauneRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine Pierre Guillemot 2014 Aux Serpentières Premier Cru (Savigny-lès-Beaune)Pinot NoirDomaine Pierre Guillemot
1337913378ArgentinaRipe plum and berry aromas are wrapped in a bed of creamy, spicy, cheesy oak and related vanilla and tobacco scents. This is full and generous on the palate, but also a touch acidic. Plum, boysenberry and cherry flavors finish with spice, toast and blackened notes. Drink through 2021.El Alto Parcel92100Mendoza ProvinceLuján de CuyoMichael Schachner@wineschachDoña Paula 2011 El Alto Parcel Malbec (Luján de Cuyo)MalbecDoña Paula
1338013379ArgentinaComposed, mossy aromas of fern, black fruits and cedar are more subtle than the palate, which is intense and a bit grating. Dark flavors of chocolate, wild berry and mocha finish with depth, integrated tannins and chocolaty richness. Drink this blend of three vineyards through 2021.Terroir Selection9229Mendoza ProvinceMendozaMichael Schachner@wineschachAlta Vista 2012 Terroir Selection Malbec (Mendoza)MalbecAlta Vista

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