Accolades

Ratings & Reviews

Caro 2013

94

points

BEST CABERNET BLEND

This is one of the best vintages of Caro, the joint venture between the Catena family of Mendoza and Lafite from Bordeaux. Half of the wine is cabernet sauvignon from Altamira, in the heights of Uco Valley, providing a firm structure, the other half is malbec from old vines in Las Campuertas, adding all the notes of violets and sour cherries that one can find in the best Luján de Cuyo malbec. The red fruit and floral notes outline the contours of a wine that seems athletic and tight rather than fat. Cellar this for five years or more; it will continue to gain in complexity. -P.T. June 2016

LA PETITE PERRIÈRE PINOT NOIR 2015

88

points

TOP VALUE OF 2016
Pretty cherry and blood orange fruit flavors are lined with subtle cinnamon, briar and incense notes, ending with an elegant, silky feel. Drink now through 2017. -JM November 30, 2016

RÉSERVE RIESLING 2015

90

points

Apple on the nose and palate also becomes apparent on the texture, balanced palate of this wine that aligns citric freshness with more mellow and sonorous tones of ripeness. The finish is dry and whistle-clean. - A.K. November 2016

MÉDOC 2013

87

points

Damson plum and blood orange notes form the core, with light savory and cedar details providing the frame. Shows good flesh for the vintage and a fresh, tangy edge to the finish. - J.M. October 15, 2016

DOMAINE DE LA PERRIÈRE SANCERRE 2015

92

points

This is showing a real harmony between smoky notes and a white peach character. It could have greater complexity, but there is an invigorating citrus and plum fruit vein. -J.B,A.H,C.K. September 2016

CUVÉE BALTHAZAR PINOT BLANC 2015

89

points

Hints of woodruff and green pear play on the nose and lead to a fresh, crisp, slender palate. This is an easy-drinking, soft but fresh summer wine. -A.K. August 1, 2016

Caro 2013

96

points

Extremely beautiful aromas of dried flower, currant, fresh leather and some tar. Full body with silky tannins that give a beautiful texture that leads to ripe currant, orange peel and incense. Complex and complete. 50% malbec from Argrelo and 50% cabernet sauvignon from Valle de Uco. So beautiful now but will age gracefully. -J.S May 2016

ESTATE PINOT NOIR 2012

90

points

This is a complex and introverted vineyard-designate. Sour cherry, pomegranate and rhubarb surround a wildness of anise and medium-weighted tannin. Earthy and varietal, it should pair well with pork-driven fare. -V.B April 1, 2016

ESTATE CHARDONNAY 2012

91

points

Lemony and light on entry, this tropically kissed, textured white develops body and weight over time, finding a balance and elegance that's hard to ignore. A touch of white peach wraps up the finish. - V.B. February 1, 2016

ROSÉ 2015

90

points

A beautiful cabernet-based rosé with strawberry, cherry and cranberry aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, yet fresh and fruity. Crisp finish. Screw cap. Drink now. - J.S. October 2015

Rosé

91

points

Firm and minerally, with chalk and smoke notes underscoring white raspberry, candied lemon zest, smoked walnut and honey flavors riding the delicate, lacy texture. Drink now through 2018. -A.N. October 2015

TAVEL 2015

92

points

While this is lighter in hue than many Tavel wines,
it’s also more refined, with lemony acidity tracing
an elegant line through the ripe strawberry flavors.
Those flavors feel grounded, an earthy richness
giving them breadth and length. - T.T. August 2016

SAUVIGNON BLANC 2015

90

points

A bright and vivid white with sliced lemon, lime and peach skin aromas and flavors. Meduim body, lovely core of fruit and a crisp finish. A sauvignon blanc for everyone. Screw cap. Drink now. - J.S. November 2015

SAUVIGNON BLANC 2015

95

points

The lifted and intense gooseberry characters here are very appealing. Certainly very concentrated and perfumed on the finish. This is a very serious classic example wonderful balance and finesse. All told, a generous punchy style, textbook Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc with superb acidity and length. Bravo! - B.C. DWWA 2016

ROUGE 2012

91

points

Juicy and lively, with good energy coursing through the core of plum, anise, blackberry and fruitcake flavors, while sweet spice and juniper hints fill the finish. Offers a chewy feel withoug being heavy. - J.M. September 2015

POUILLY-FUMÉ 2013

92

points

Still young, this has fine potential. As it matures, the ripe gooseberry and apple fruit notes will open up to yield a rich, complex and mineral wine. It will always have a tight texture along with vibrant acidity to finish. -R.V. June 2015

Octavius 2009

94

points

A rich, powerful Amarone, with a seamless knit and fine balance imparting grace. Flavors of baked currant and cherry glide over the dense tannins and tarry minerality, riding the silky palate alongside dried mint and eucalyptus, spice box and fig cake notes. Drink now through 2034. -A.N. January 2016

LES GRANIÈRES DE LA NERTHE 2013

91

points

Shows great energy, with brambly tannins and warm tar notes driving the core of steeped plum, blackberry and boysenberry fruit along. Thefi nish is lined with details of ganache and dark licorice. Approachable now, but features ample stuffing. - J.M. November 2015

LE DIX DE LOS VASCOS 2012

96

points

The depth of fruit in this barrel sample is impressive with layers of round tannins, roses and currants. Full body, savory fruit and a long and intense finish. Structured with length and beautiful depth. 85% cabernet sauvignon, 10% carmenère and 5% syrah. Spent 18 months in barrel, mostly new oak. - J.S. August 2014

La Côte Blanche Chardonnay 2014

89

points

Fruity, offering peach, white flowers and lemon curd notes. Fresh and elegant, with a lingering citrus finish and a hint of stone.

GRANDE RÉSERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2013

92

points

A balanced and refined red with medium to full body, fine tannins and a crisp finish. Shows structure and depth. Plenty of currant, spice and walnut. Light coffee bean. 85% cabernet sauvignon, 5% syrah, 5% cabernet franc and 5% carmenere. Drink or hold. J.S. May 2016

CUVÉE DES CADETTES 2012

93

points

Rather ripe, with alluring warmed raspberry coulis, plum sauce and blackberry paste avors, threaded with a licorice snap note and backed by warm ganache and Turkish coffee accents. Not shy in style, but has the freshness to stay balanced. - J.M. July 2015

CRÉMANT D’ALSACE BRUT ROSÉ

90

points

Tart red currant, rhubarb and strawberry come together in a very refreshing, rounded and appetizing fashion. The frothy, foaming mousse is exuberant and highlights these strawberry shortcake flavors brilliantly, while a totally dry palate makes sure that this stays classy. This is very satisfying, fun and fruit-driven, with a serious core and a bright, lemony finish. - A.K. December 2015

CRÉMANT D’ALSACE BRUT

92

points

Clean, light but aromatic nose - lemon, grapefruit, with a slight yeasty character. Vigorous ripe fruit flavors mingle within a gently creamy texture, balanced by crisp acidity and fine bubbles on the long, citrusy finish. -T.M. DWWA 2016

CLOS DE BEAUVENIR 2012

95

points

The top white of the estate, and coming from the Clos de Beauvenir lieu-dit, which lies just to the south of the estate, the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc Clos de Beauvenir is the best vintage of this cuvee I’ve tasted. Comprised of 58% Roussanne, 32% Clairette, 8% Grenache Blanc and a splash of Bourboulenc, fermented and aged almost all in barrel (one-third new), it sports drop-dead gorgeous aromas of melon, buttered citrus, white owers, almond paste and hints of honey to go with a full-bodied, incredibly fresh and focused profile on the palate. While this cuvee always delivers uncommon richness, it’s the purity and focus here that sets it above other vintages. Again, it will age (although typically, I think of the traditional cuvee as being more age-worthy), yet I’d still pair it up with a classy meal over the coming 3-4 years. Drink now-2018. - J.D. October 2013

CHÂTEAU RIEUSSEC 2011

97

points

This shows incredible freshness and power, with dried pineapples, mangoes and papayas. Full body, medium-sweet with electrifying acidity. Vibrates your palate. - J.S. 2/14

CHÂTEAU LAFLEUR 2006

95

points

The 2006 Lafleur, which I had not tasted from bottle prior to this visit, merits 95 points. One of the vintate’s most brilliant wines, this blend of 61% Merlot and 39% Cabernet Franc is neither as dense nor complete as the 2008, but it is structured, closed, and austere (as are many 2006s at present). It reveals a plum/purple color along with a beautifully sweet nose of black and red fruits intermixed with incense as well as a steely/iron-like smell. More open on the palate than the 2008, with more obvious spice and earthy undertones, this powerful Lafleur should be drinkable in 5-7 years, and will last for three decades. -R.P. April 2015

CHÂTEAU LAFITE ROTHSCHILD 2011

96

points

The wine shoes the power typical of a Lafite but within the context of the fruity 2011 vintage.  The immensely dense tannic structure gives the wine a solid feel that is lifted by so much ripe black currant and berry fruits.  At the back, the wine has a more brooding, dark character that suggests great aging potential.  Drink this wine from 2019.   -R.V. May 2014

Château L’Evangile 2011

93

points

Lots of mineral, black chocolate and crushed raspberry character. Full-bodied, yet tight and reserved with pretty mineral, chalk, and light salty character that turns to spices and blackberries. Better in 2019 but already gorgeous. Always like this. -J.S. February 2015

Château Duhart-Milon 2011

92

points

Duhart-Milon continues to get better and more sophisticated. This 2011 vintage shows that trend well with its elegant spice, black currant fruits and firm tannins. The fruitiness is well focused, with typical Cabernet acidity bringing out the fresher side of the wine. Drink from 2017.
-R.V. May, 2014

CHÂTEAU D’AUSSIÈRES 2013

93

points

Run by the team at Lafite, Domaine d'Aussières has turned out an incredibly classy, elegant 2013 Corbieres that checks in with the top wines of the appellation. Based off 60% Syrah, 25% Grenache and the rest Mourvèdre, aged 40% in older Lafite barrels and 60% in vats, it offers ample cassis, toasted spice, graphite and peppery herbs in a concentrated, medium to full-bodied, perfectly balanced style. The tannin shows with more time in the glass, yet are ripe, polished and integrated. It’s a great drink today, yet will have a decade of longevity. J.D. 4/16

CHARDONNAY 2015

92

points

Gorgeous aromas of dried apricot, lemon cream and hints of butter. Full body. Very fresh with lots of dried fruit and a long and flavorful finish. No wood. 60% Casablanca and 40% Colchagua. Screw cap. Drink now. J.S. May 2016

CARRUADES DE LAFITE 2011

91

points

Firm and closed this is a dark and tannic wine,although black currant flavors are also very present.  It feels austere with a mineral texture and concentrated final acidity.  Drink Lafite’s second wine from 2017.   -R.V. May 2014

CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015

92

points

An attractive and delicate cabernet sauvignon with very fine tannins and bright fruit. Medium body. Black currant, walnut and wet earth. Delicious Chilean cabernet. Fantastic value. One of best ever from here. Drink now. J.S. May 2016

Brut Prosecco DOC

85

points

Best Buy & Year's Best Summer Sparklers

Lightly fizzy, with flavors of yellow pear edged in salinity, this wine leaves a soft impression that needs a good chill. Pair it with a summer salad. - S.J. August 2016

Brut

92

points

Rich and smoky, this creamy Champagne features firm acidity framing the flavors of almond financier, strawberry puree, coffee and crystalized honey. Offers a focused finish, with spice and citrus peel accents. Drink now through 2018. -A.N. October 2015

BORDEAUX ROUGE 2014

90

points

Dark plum in color, this offers a very sweetly fruited, inviting nose, some toasted oak, caramel and woodsmoke. The palate has both sweet and slightly savory, violet-perfumed fruit, flirtatious and lively with a lovely ripe tannic finish. - J.L. DWWA 2016

Blason de L’Evangile 2011

90

points

This is a delightful perfumed wine, the second wine of Château L’Evangile. Smooth with ripe Merlot flavors, it’s full and dense, conveying the sense that it will mature quickly. Drink from 2016. -R.V. May, 2014

BLANC DE BLANCS RESERVA BRUT

88

points

Cidery aromas vie with bready notes to give the bouquet complexity.  This feels zesty, juicy and citric, with a lean,racy body.  Apple cider, green herb, lime and scallionflavors finish with lasting taste of lime.            - M.S. August 2015

Blanc de Blancs

91

points

Rich pastry and cream notes are layered with tangy salinity and flavors of marzipan, yellow plum, roasted hazelnut and anise in this firm blanc de blancs, exhibiting a lively bead. Drink now through 2018. -A.N. October 2015

BLANC 2014

93

points

If you could squeeze juice from one of the galets that pave the 225 acres of vines surrounding La Nerthe, it might taste like this: dense and salty, with hints of the grasses and wild owers that pop up here and there. It’s not about fruit, though the sunny characters of the acidity brings lemon to mind; it is, however, pretty and firm, a wine that could age, or take on monkfish in brown butter right now. - T.T. February 2016

Amarone Della Valpolicella DOC 2011

93

points

Resin, fragrant blue flower, baked plum and cake spice are just some of the aromas you’ll find on this densely concentrated wine. The syrupy palate offers blackberry jam, mature raspberry, pipe tobacco, mint and cinnamon while velvety tannins provide the enveloping framework. It closes on a chocolate note. -K.O. Best of Year 12/31/16