Wine Reviews

1893118930ItalyTenuta Rapitalà steals the scene with this stunning warm-climate Chardonnay. The wine shows huge intensity and persistency, with lingering tones of apricot, vanilla, exotic fruit, pineapple and a touch of toasted almond. It's a sophisticated effort that raises the level of Sicilian winemaking.Grand Cru9230Sicily & SardiniaSiciliaTenuta Rapitalà 2011 Grand Cru Chardonnay (Sicilia)ChardonnayTenuta Rapitalà
1893218931ItalyThis vintage of Deliella represents an enormous jump forward in quality and intensity. Nero d'Avola vines grow in chalky soils, create extremely elegant aromas of dark fruit, chocolate, cured meat, toasted pistachio and barbecue spice. In the mouth, the wine is rich, velvety and long lasting.Deliella9290Sicily & SardiniaSiciliaFeudo Principi di Butera 2008 Deliella Nero d'Avola (Sicilia)Nero d'AvolaFeudo Principi di Butera
1893318932USThis is made in the smooth, oaky and rich style of the modern cult Cabernet. It offers lots of ripe, jammy blackberries, plus notes of sweet, intense black and red currants, dark chocolate tart, black licorice and smoky oak. The tannins are tough but structured, so give it six years in the cellar and see what happens.91125CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaAxios 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon (Napa Valley)Cabernet SauvignonAxios
1893418933ItalyMerlot and Nerello Mascalese make for perfect blending partners, creating a wine with cherry softness and bright fruit intensity, plus volcanic minerality and elegance. Polished and clean on the finish.Sciara9117Sicily & SardiniaSiciliaBarone di Villagrande 2008 Sciara Red (Sicilia)Red BlendBarone di Villagrande
1893518934FranceA dense, dark-colored wine, this reveals the full power of Tannat's tannins. It also has tarry black-fruit and licorice flavors, with a foursquare chunky character. It's drinkable now, but it will be less stark in 4–5 years.Odé d'Aydie9122Southwest FranceMadiranRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau d'Aydie 2009 Odé d'Aydie Tannat (Madiran)TannatChâteau d'Aydie
1893618935FranceOwned by Beaune négociant Louis Jadot, this wine is big, bold and fruity, with black cherry flavor and acidity. It shows the structure and the potential of wood-aged Gamay.91BeaujolaisMoulin-à-VentRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau des Jacques 2011 Moulin-à-VentGamayChâteau des Jacques
1893718936FranceFull, ripe and juicy, this has a flavor of fresh black-currant juice, which is balanced by the dry, firm tannins that promise aging.9120BordeauxMédocRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau des Lattes 2010 MédocBordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau des Lattes
1893818937FranceSolid and perfumed, this expresses all the power of Malbec, with a fruitiness that comes through the firm, dry tannins. Notes of new wood and juicy plum combine well in this concentrated, full-bodied effort, which needs several years to age.9119Southwest FranceCahorsRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Haut-Monplaisir 2009 Malbec (Cahors)MalbecChâteau Haut-Monplaisir
1893918938FranceUsing fruit sourced from vineyards on an eastward extension of the ridge of Castillon and Saint-Emilion in Bordeaux, this finely structured wine shows a judicious amount of oak influence, which supports the ripe blackberry flavor. It's a complex, spicy effort, and its fruit is finely layered with acidity and toast.Comtesse de Ségur9120Southwest FranceMontravelRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau Laulerie 2009 Comtesse de Ségur (Montravel)Bordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau Laulerie
1894018939FranceDespite the high alcohol level, this is classic Bordeaux, with style, elegance and fine balance between tannin and ripe black-currant fruit. It demonstrates the concentration and rich structure of the vintage, yet the finish has a light, bright, fruity touch.Cuvée Prestige9170BordeauxLalande de PomerolRoger Voss@vossrogerChâteau le Manoir 2010 Cuvée Prestige (Lalande de Pomerol)Bordeaux-style Red BlendChâteau le Manoir
1894118940ItalyA new wine from Planeta, this pretty expression of Nerello Mascalese shows an elegant and refined personality. It drinks like a Pinot Noir, with bright berry fruit and background notes of forest berry, almond paste and black volcanic powder.91Sicily & SardiniaSiciliaPlaneta 2010 Nerello Mascalese (Sicilia)Nerello MascalesePlaneta
1894218941FranceConcentrated fruits dominate this ripe, juicy wine. Firm tannins lend structural support to this generous, textured selection. Age it for another year.La Fournaise du Pérou9119BeaujolaisCôte de BrouillyRoger Voss@vossrogerRobert Perroud 2010 La Fournaise du Pérou (Côte de Brouilly)GamayRobert Perroud
1894318942ItalyTascante is a new brand from Tasca d'Almerita that is derived from the words “Tasca” and “Etna” spelled backwards. From the slopes of the mighty Sicilian volcano, this wine is loaded with mineral, dark spice, ginger, forest berry and dried herb. The mouthfeel is tight and lean, with age-worthy tannins.Ghiaia Nera91Sicily & SardiniaSiciliaTascante 2010 Ghiaia Nera Nerello Mascalese (Sicilia)Nerello MascaleseTascante
1894418943USThis bone-dry, full-bodied Syrah has firm tannins and intense concentration. It's a little warm in alcohol, with flavors of dark chocolate, blackberry jam, cassis liqueur, grilled bacon and black pepper, plus a coating of sweet, smoky oak. You might want to give this wine a year or so in the cellar to let everything meld together.Samantha's Vineyard9138CaliforniaRussian River ValleySonomaMacLaren 2010 Samantha's Vineyard Syrah (Russian River Valley)SyrahMacLaren
1894518944ItalySoft and plush, this blend of Montepulciano (80%) and Aglianico has beautiful intensity to its long-lasting aromas of blackberry, maraschino, chocolate, exotic spice and leather. There's a bright touch of mint and licorice on the finish.Ramitello9118Southern ItalyBiferno RossoDi Majo Norante 2010 Ramitello (Biferno Rosso)Red BlendDi Majo Norante
1894618945FranceA blend of Gros Manseng and Camarelet, this fruity effort is packed with flavors of apricot and peach, plus a rich, exotic mango twist. Delicious to drink now.Chante des Vignes9116Southwest FranceJurançon SecRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine Cauhapé 2011 Chante des Vignes (Jurançon Sec)White BlendDomaine Cauhapé
1894718946FranceUsing fruit sourced from 94-year-old vines, this is a powerful and concentrated wine. It has a serious, complex mix of fruit and tannin, with notes of leather and spice that lend power and density. Age this for at least another year.Vignes de 19189117BeaujolaisRégniéRoger Voss@vossrogerDomaine Dupré 2011 Vignes de 1918 (Régnié)GamayDomaine Dupré
1894818947ChileThis is sweet and rich up front, with marzipan, balsam wood, berry and kirsch aromas. Expect a full and creamy mouthfeel, with a mix of herb, spice, olive and dark-fruit flavors. Extra spice notes in the form of clove, nutmeg and wood grace the finish of this Carmenère-Syrah-Cabernet-Petit Verdot blend. Drink now–2017.9149Curicó ValleyMichael Schachner@wineschachEscalera 2008 Red (Curicó Valley)Red BlendEscalera
1894918948USThis barrel-fermented Chardonnay seemingly tastes as sweet as a dessert, although it's technically dry. With its pineapple and tangerine tart, crême brulée and Key lime pie flavors, Chardonnay doesn't get richer than this. Brisk, citrusy acidity gives much needed balance.9124CaliforniaSonoma County-Lake CountyNorth CoastFleuron 2011 Chardonnay (Sonoma County-Lake County)ChardonnayFleuron
1895018949USDelicate and detailed, this balanced Pinot Noir displays a perfect mix of wild berry, mushroom, green tea and a whiff of compost. These threads of flavor, and others associated with them, create a delightful tapestry that continues through the lengthy finish.Winery Block9165OregonChehalem MountainsWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Bergström 2010 Winery Block Pinot Noir (Chehalem Mountains)Pinot NoirBergström
1895118950FranceThe sense of structure that is so evident in 2010 wines is particularly apparent in this perfumed, rich and firmly tannic selection. It shows the hard edges of granite soil, plus juicy red fruit. Concentrated and complex, it needs several years to mature.Côte du Py9124BeaujolaisMorgonRoger Voss@vossrogerTrenel Fils 2010 Côte du Py (Morgon)GamayTrenel Fils
1895218951USThis has Cabernet Sauvignon-driven flavors of ripe summer blackberries, black currants, cassis liqueur and smoky oak. It's dry with smooth tannins, and it shows lots of class. With 8,000 cases produced, it should be relatively easy to find.Sophia's Cuvee9129CaliforniaNapa ValleyNapaWorthy 2008 Sophia's Cuvee Red (Napa Valley)Red BlendWorthy
1895318952USThis new designation from Rex Hill is a bit reticent aromatically, but full on the palate, with plummy fruit and a light hint of barnyard. Good texture and nicely threaded flavors roll onto the smooth, lingering finish.Old School9158OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Rex Hill 2010 Old School Pinot Noir (Willamette Valley)Pinot NoirRex Hill
1895418953FranceThis is a firm and stony wine, with dry tannins that give structure to the intense acidity and the red cherry flavor. It's dense and concentrated, with a solid feel that demands several years of aging.9128BeaujolaisMoulin-à-VentRoger Voss@vossrogerRichard Rottiers 2011 Moulin-à-VentGamayRichard Rottiers
1895518954USCreamy and leesy, with a complex mix of mineral, fresh herb, citrus rind and pungent botanicals, this is an interesting and refreshing style of Pinot Gris. Give it a good chill and watch it open as it warms.9116OregonWillamette ValleyWillamette ValleyPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Spindrift Cellars 2011 Pinot Gris (Willamette Valley)Pinot GrisSpindrift Cellars
1895618955USPicked and vinified expressly for this rosé, the grapes were sourced from the Armada Vineyard. It has a pale, copper-like onion-skin shade, it is aged for a year longer than most rosés, but it has lost none of its freshness. The pretty strawberry note gains complexity and textural interest as it lingers on the palate. Persistent, focused, leesy and long, this elegant rosé looks deceptively light, but offers powerful flavors.Edith9135OregonWalla Walla Valley (OR)Oregon OtherPaul Gregutt@paulgwine Cayuse 2010 Edith Rosé (Walla Walla Valley (OR))RoséCayuse
1895718956AustraliaFor a fortified wine with a light amber hue, this is wonderfully fresh and citrusy, with aromas and flavors of marmalade and bergamot. Honeyed, toffee-like notes add depth, with the richness of the wine brought home by the slightly viscous finish.8919VictoriaRutherglenJoe Czerwinski@JoeCzCampbells NV Tokay (Rutherglen)TokayCampbells
1895818957SpainIt's not easy assessing this blend of Monastrell and Petit Verdot from a warm vintage. It's fiery and almost citric on the nose, while the palate is ripe as can be, with spicecake and blackberry syrup flavors. It's not missing any potency or ripeness, but the longer you work with it the larger and more medicinal it gets. Think big Zinfandel from California when you take this on.Monastrell / Petit Verdot8936LevanteJumillaMichael Schachner@wineschachPico Madama 2003 Monastrell / Petit Verdot Red (Jumilla)Red BlendPico Madama
1895918958ItalyGreat execution and delivery: This lively Brut layers on stone fruit, floral and mineral tones in well-measured doses. The mouthfeel is creamy and soft, gliding over the palate in an attractive and refreshing way.Brut Crede8919VenetoProsecco di ValdobbiadeneBisol NV Brut Crede (Prosecco di Valdobbiadene)ProseccoBisol
1896018959PortugalFreshly aromatic, this is a Portuguese equivalent of a Gewürztraminer. It has all the lychees and spice as well as a thick, almost viscous texture. Good acidity helps the balance. Delicious, as an apéritif or with Asian food.Fernão Pires89EstremaduraRoger Voss@vossrogerCasa Santos Lima 2006 Fernão Pires Fernão Pires (Estremadura)Fernão PiresCasa Santos Lima

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