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Krutz Santa Lucia Soberanes Pinot Noir 2011

What this vineyard captures, more so than any other Pinot Noir site that I have tasted, is both power and elegance. Bright and forceful Bing cherries and dark berries along with the slightest hue of roasted coffee bean on the nose. Immediate and broad textured tannins cover the palate as flavors of black raspberries, licorice and black tea leaves unravel. Oak-inspired overtones of crispy charred marshmellows and fall spice with balance acids elongate a finish that reverbs for hours.

What this vineyard captures, more so than any other Pinot Noir site that I have tasted, is both power and elegance. Bright and forceful Bing cherries and dark berries along with the slightest hue of roasted coffee bean on the nose. Immediate and broad textured tannins cover the palate as flavors of black raspberries, licorice and black tea leaves unravel. Oak-inspired overtones of crispy charred marshmellows and fall spice with balance acids elongate a finish that reverbs for hours.

The Soberanes Vineyard is the latest exciting joint venture between the Pisoni and Franscioni Families. The site features tightly spaced vines and is planted to 33 acres of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Syrah and sits on the Santa Lucia Highlands Bench adjacent to the Garys' Vineyard. The clonal material planted in the loamy, rocky soil is very diverse and features over a dozen of the most renowned heritage selections from California and Burgundy in pursuit of the finest wine quality.

 


Review:

The vineyard is famous for producing ripe, luscious Pinots stuffed with massive fruit. Many wineries have dipped into it over the years. Krutz’s rendition is dry, balanced and full-bodied, with relatively high alcohol framing raspberry, cherry, cola, red plum, exotic spice and sandalwood flavors. It should age well through 2020–2022.

- Wine Enthusiast 92 Points

 Wine Enthusiast: 92
Reverdy Jean Sancerre Rouge 2011

Reverdy Jean Sancerre Rouge 2011 is 100% Pinot Noir.


Made from 100% Pinot Noir. 20% aged in oak barrels. The wine is spicy and juicy with cherry aromas, and proves the point that power is not necessary for a fine wine. Pairs well with rabbit, roasted poultry and ham.

Xavier Vignon Vacqueyras 2011

Tasting Notes:   Purple and ruby notes. Fine and silky nose with subtle notes of raspberry, liquorice and vanilla. Great structure, flexible and round tannins, pleasant smooth, long finish.


Review:

The 2011 Vacqueyras is a blend of 60% Syrah, 30% Grenache and 10% Mourvedre that was aged in one-third each new, 1-year-old and 2-year-old barrels for 12-18 months. It boasts up-front, decadently aromas of roasted meats and herbs, licorice, chocolate and black fruits that flow to a rounded, supple and richly texture palate. A big, chewy and hedonistic wine, enjoy it over the coming 5-7 years. Drink now-2020. - Wine Advocate 91 Points

 Wine Advocate: 91
Guido Porro Barolo Vigna Santa Caterina 2011

Mint, pine, anise, tangerine peel and sweet red stone fruits hover from the glass in the 2011 Barolo Vigna S. Caterina. Deceptive in its mid-weight structure, the 2011 captures the best qualities of the year in its pliant, expressive personality. Today the tannins are soft and silky. -  Antonio Galloni 90-92 Points

Busi Chianti Rufina 2011 (half-bottle)

Busi Chianti Rufina 2011 (half-bottle) is made from 100 percent 100% Sangiovese.

Production area: amidst the hills of Pelago in the Chianti Rufina D.O.C.G. area, with a soil composition of marly, calcareous clay as typically found in the Arno valley east of Florence.
Aspect: south-facing.
Altitude: 200/350 m above sea level.
Grape variety: Sangiovese.
Cultivation method: spurred cordon.
Harvest period: from the 20th of September until the middle of October.
Vinification: the grapes are fermented in stainless steel tanks at a controlled temperature (26/28°C) for 10 days before racking and malolactic fermentation in stainless steel. After fermentation the wine is put into wooden barrels.
Maturation: six months in wood and six months in stainless steel.
Ageing potential: 10/15 years.

Sensory characteristics
Appearance: ruby-red in color.
Aroma: clean, floral notes.
Flavor: well structured and harmonic on the palate; easy drinking with a soft and lingering finish.
Accompaniments: adapts well to both light and more substantial dishes.
Serving temperature: 18/19°C.

Fresh, fruity, with classic tart cherry.   The wine is grown right off the Sieve River on a hillside, which is the site of an old Etruscan Village.
Fermentation in stainless steel at controlled temperatures for 7 to 8 days, with an additional 3 to 4 days on the skins. The wine is then racked and goes through malolactic. It is then racked again and stays another 7 months in stainless steel.

Marcassin Sonoma Coast Chardonnay 2011

 The 2011 is a great Chardonnay Marcassin Vineyard from a much-maligned and sometimes excessively criticized vintage. 2011 has its low points, but there are many producers who got it right, and survived the challenging growing and harvest conditions. This wine has phenomenal intensity, with plenty of crushed rock, pineapple, honeysuckle, orange and tangerine blossom in an elegant, medium to full-bodied style, with terrific intensity, good acidity and freshness. This is more evolved than either the 2009 or 2010, and probably will be a candidate for 7-8 years of aging, rather than 10 or more.



There is no doubt that Marcassin is the most difficult appointment for people to schedule, to sit down and taste wine with owners Helen Turley and John Wetlaufer. The legacy they have created in California wine is immense. They are in their early seventies, and have decided to completely dedicate themselves to their own vineyard on the Sonoma Coast. I saw them recently, and tasted through these current and upcoming releases of both the Estate Chardonnay and Estate Pinot Noir. The Chardonnay, of course, comes from very low-yielding old Wente clones of Chardonnay planted on the slopes of the Sonoma coastline hillsides. This clone is believed to have been brought over from Burgundy’s grand cru vineyard, Corton-Charlemagne, decades ago.

Marcassin Chardonnay
Here are the notes on the bottled 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and barrel samples of the 2013 and 2014. As readers know, this is probably one of the most Burgundian-styled Chardonnays ever made in California, and it has attracted many imitators. It goes through full malolactic fermentation, and sees a good dosage of new oak, but the tiny yields and meticulous winemaking are brilliant, and the wines, by and large, have aged very well, with the first Estate Chardonnays from 1996, 1997 and 1998 still going strong. The same can be said for some of Helen Turleys first Chardonnays from purchased fruit, particularly from the Lorenzo Vineyard, Hudson Vineyard and Gauer Vineyard/Upper Barn (now owned by the Jackson family, and known as their Alexander Valley Mountain Estate).

-Robert Parker Wine Advocate. 

 Wine Advocate: 97
Paradigm Cabernet Sauvignon  2011 (Magnum)

"Our 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of Cab Sauv, Merlot, and Cab Franc from our Oakville estate. Deep ruby red color with aromas of plum and black cherry, some spiciness, and hints of cedar and a light touch of French oak. Across the palate this wine is smooth as silk and ready to drink at this early age. Medium body and weight make for an easy to approach Cabernet. Flavors match the aromas, balance is refined, and the finish is soft and lush. Tasty now and over the next 10-12 years, but no need to wait."

Tamarack Ciel de Cheval Vineyard Reserve 2011

Dark and chocolatey, spiced with pretty notes of allspice and clove, this wine is round and rich, bursting with ripe berries, combined with an earthy complexity and a velvety finish.

made from 42% Cabernet Sauvignon,  29% Merlot,  29% Cabernet Franc 

The wine spent 22 months on 75% new French oak with the remaining 25% second vintage French oak. Select barrels from the best forests of Taransaud, Boutes, Quintessance, and Vicard cooperages.

 


Review:

Looking even more impressive, with loads of potential, the 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Reserve has classic Ciel du Cheval floral undertones to go with notions of creme de cassis, graphite and spice on the nose. Deep, pure and layered, with medium to full-bodied richness, firm tannin and impressive length on the finish, it should most likely benefit from short-term cellaring and have 10-12 years of prime drinking. Drink now-2023. 

Located in Walla Walla and founded in 1998 by Ron and Jamie Colman, with the wines now made by Danny Gordon, this first-rate estate fashions classic, age-worthy wines that over deliver for the price. While I tasted the majority of the bottled wines in Colorado, all of the reserve efforts were tasted from barrel during my visit to the winery. This is an estate to watch and I came away more than a little impressed. - Wine Advocate 92-94 Points

 

 Wine Advocate: 94
Travignoli Chianti Rufina 2011

Travignoli Chianti Rufina 2011 is made from 100% Sangiovese.
Fermentation in stainless steel at controlled temperatures for 7 to 8 days with an additional 3 to 4 days on the skins. The wine is then racked and goes through malolactic. It is then racked again and stays another 7 months in stainless steel.
A ruby red color with garnet reflections.
An intense, vinous bouquet with hints of leather and ripe cherry fruit. The flavor is full of mature fruit with nuances of leather and liquorice. The finish is persistent and rich.
Pairs well with salamis, pastas, grilled or roasted meats, dishes flavored with mushrooms, or rosemary. Excellent with polenta dishes.

Le Sang des Cailloux Vacqueyras Cuvee Doucinello 2014

Le Sang des Cailloux Vacqueyras Cuvee Doucinello is made from 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre & Cinsault

The name of the Vacqueyras rouge changes each year, and is named after the daughters’ of Serge Férigoule: Floureto, Doucinello, and Azalaïs


All grapes harvested by hand
Grapes are de-stemmed
Fermentation is natural, in cement cuves with daily pumpovers
Wine is raised for a minimum of 6 months in foudre
Wine is unfined and unfiltered

Le Sang des Cailloux Vacqueyras Cuvee Lopy 2014

One of the best properties in the appellation of Vacqueyras, and certainly the bestnamed, Le Sang des Cailloux is located on the limestone escarpment which divides the villages of Vacqueyras and Sarrians. The idiosyncrasy betrayed by Serge Férigoule handle-bar moustache reveals an approach to winemaking which is as individual as it is successful.  

Morada Sangria (litre)

Morada Sangria is a traditional Spanish drink made with red wine and citrus extracts. Garnet color and fresh on the palate.
Pasteurization preserves the color, aromas and flavors. 7% Alc.
It is a very refreshing Sangria with around 85 grams of sugar. Sangria is now one of the hottest items in the beverage industry and it's growing exponentially year to year.
Serve well chilled, on its own or with lemonade and slices of fruit like peach, banana or apple.

Plaisance Bordeaux Superieur 2014

Plaisance Bordeaux Superieur is made from 70 % Merlot, 20 % Cabernet Sauvignon,10 % Petit Verdot. 

A deep purple color, powerful and elegant wine with a rich nose, fruit aromas. Well-balanced, powerful yet refined on the palate with present but mellow woody tannins, fruit flavors.  Decant for an hour or two before serving so the wine can express its full flavor.

 

Abeja Merlot Columbia Valley 2011

Abeja Merlot Columbia Valley 2011 is made from 100% Merlot
Aged for 16 months in 95% French, medium toast; 5% Hungarian, 50% new, 50% one year old.
The 2010 vintage has been much talked about because of its substantially cooler than average cumulation of heat units. I feel Merlot, which reaches flavor maturity a bit quicker than the other Bordeaux varieties, really shines in cooler years. We looked forward to the challenge of a vintage that was much more like the vintages of the early ‘90s, when we first started working with the great fruit of Washington State, and 2010 delivered. We also welcomed the achievement of flavor maturity at lower sugar levels. This is the first of at least two vintages in a row that will show amazing structure with lower than the normal alcohol levels.

We worked very hard with the outstanding vineyard crew at Sagemoor’s Bacchus and Dionysus, to manage the crop very carefully by opening the canopies and dropping clusters that were not exposed to the sun, or weren’t at the same maturity level. In the winery, we had the luxury to extend the maceration after dryness, which softened the tannins giving this wine a beautiful, fine, silky texture. We then aged it in barrel a bit longer than is usual for our Merlot, but it really benefited from the added time to mature.

This one-hundred-percent Merlot has really nice, bright red fruit, rose petals, and a richness on the nose. Flavors of plum, mountain strawberry and mocha come together with a balanced mouth feel and a long finish. Though it was a cooler vintage, I feel we have still captured the powerfully elegant style for which we are known.


"This is toasty, dense and inviting from the first sniff to the last swallow. It’s an authoritative, tightly woven and complex wine that offers a core of plum and cassis flavors, annotated by streaks of coffee, licorice and iron. The tannins are textural and gripping. Delicious now, this can also be cellared for a decade. — P.G."
- Wine Enthusiast (April 1st 2013), 94 pts + Cellar Selection

 Wine Enthusiast: 94
Accordini Recioto Valpolicella "Le Viole" Late Harvest 2011 (500ml)

Accordini Recioto Valpolicella "Le Viole" Late Harvest 2011 is made from 65% Corvina , 20% Rondinella , 15% Corvinoni
Intense and fruity aromas with concentrated brew of chocolate and cherries. The palate is flavorful with a harmonious finish.
Ideal as a dessert wine or to enjoy by itself with friends.

 

Review:

Sweetly fragrant, the Recioto displays linzer torte and black cherry with notes of loam and bitter chocolate. It’s viscous and very densely flavored, finishing on a rich, sweet note.-International Wine Review 90 Points

 International Wine Review: 90
Amaren Fermentado en Barrica Rioja Blanco 2011

Amaren Rioja Blanco 2011  is made from 85% Viura and 15% Malvasia

Color: Straw-yellow in color.
Nose: High aromatic intensity, blended nuances of syrup fruit and cake.
Palate: In the mouth it is smooth and round, with a high complexity of citric flavors (lemon peel), hints of pineapple, pipe tobacco and aromatic plants with a mineral and extremely elegant finish.
Food Pairings: Pasta, rice dishes, white meats with light sauces, roasted or grilled fish, seafood, roasted vegetables, foie-gras.

 


Reviews:

"The 2011 Barrel Fermented White is fermented and aged for eight months in oak barrels and has a clean and precise nose with notes of pear, chamomile, pollen and fennel. The medium to full-bodied palate shows ripe flavors but plenty of acidity, in a wine that is both big and delicate. It should age well. Drink 2014-2017. - Luis Gutierrez"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #210, December 2013), 91 pts

The 2011 Rioja Blanco Fermentado en Barrica is a. blend of 85% Viura and 15% Malvasia. Fermented and aged in oak for eight months, it is subtly fragrant with orchard fruit, flowers, ginger and oak. It is soft on the attack and well balanced with fresh and savory fruit flavors on the palate, good acidity, and a very nice finish. Bodegas Amarén is owned by Bodegas Luis Cañas.- International Wine Review 90 pts

(85% viura and 15% malvasia):  Light yellow.  Waxy pear and orange pith aromas show very good power, with a bright mineral overlay adding energy.  Incisive and uncompromisingly dry on the palate, showing broad but nicely focused flavors of citrus fruits, pear skin and honeysuckle.  Finishes silky and quite long, leaving candied ginger and honey flavors in its wake.Stephen Tanzer 91 Points

 

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Advocate: 91 International Wine Review: 90
AP Vin Rancho Ontiveros Pinot Noir 2011

New Pinot Release from A P Vin one of Pinot s hottest up and coming labels and sourced from the Rancho Ontiveros vineyard in the Central Coast Very Limited Only 50 cases were made
 

Bressia Profundo 2011

Bressia Profundo 2011  is made from 50% Malbec, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot and 10% Syrah

Intense red color with purple tones. Delicate strawberry, blackberry aromas intertwined with chocolate, tobacco, dulce de leche and vanilla nuances. Harmonious and elegant in the mouth, and a long finish.

Buty Rediviva of the Stones 2011

Buty Rediviva of the Stones 2011 is a blend of syrah and cabernet sauvignon is grown in the ancestral riverbed of the Walla Walla River. Dominated by syrah, the exact blend with cabernet sauvignon reflects the vintage balance. It is aged entirely in French cooperage without new oak. Rediviva of the Stones is delicate, sensuous, and of the earth with lovely floral notes.

Buty Wildebeest Red Blend 2011

Buty Wildebeest Red Blend 2011 is made from  77% Syrah,  14% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Cabernet Franc

BEAST is the alter ego of Buty. The mercurial nature of our BEAST wines allows us the freedom to explore new varietals, new vineyards and new blends beyond the classic Buty portfolio. Made with a clear vision and voice, these wines have developed their own faithful following. Our Wildebeest is available nationally in fine restaurants and wine shops.

Lair of the BEAST: A denizen of the Columbia Valley, the 2011 Wildebeest roams far and wide. This vintage was predominantly raised in the Horse Heaven Hills on the slopes of Phinny Hill Vineyard and nearby Champoux Vineyard. It was also reared at River Rock Vineyard and our own Rockgarden Estate in the Walla Walla Valley.

Season of the BEAST: Though the 2011 growing season started with a cool, damp spring, this presented no significant issues in the vineyards, other than to delay budbreak and flowering. A cool summer with no heat events afforded abundant hangtime, and allowed the grapes to ripen slowly and evenly, while retaining excellent acidity. In 2010, these factors combined to create BEASTs of noble stature and noteworthy complexity.

Winemaking: Our 2011 Wildebeest was blended from 77% Syrah, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon and 9% Cabernet Franc, with each lot fermented and aged separately in the finest French oak for 20 months. In order to allow the Wildebeest to display its native fruit and spice character, the barrels were generally older (from two to five years). However, approximately 25% was aged in larger-format puncheons, with one puncheon being new. Overall, the new oak is 7%. The alcohol content is 14%.

Notes Upon Encountering the Wildebeest: Our 2011 Wildebeest displays purity and power, with firm tannins, enticing aromatics and a creamy texture. Even though they are not the majority of the blend, the Bordeaux varieties shine through, with the Cabernet Sauvignon providing beautiful structure, acidity and a dark berry core, and the Cabernet Franc contributing ethereal blue fruit notes and hints of exotic spice and mint. Throughout, the Syrah adds lush layers of black cherry, raspberry and licorice, making this a rich and compelling BEAST.

Cape Barren Old Vine Shiraz 2011

Color: Vibrant and deep; vivid crimson-purple
Aroma: Pungent mix of ripe black fruits, spice, licorice and anise enhanced by superbly integrated French oak nuances.
Palate: Full bodied and silky smooth, the highlights are lifted black currant and licorice, combined with mocha and swirls of five-spice characters. The elegant yet rich flavours are persistent, balanced with harmonious French oak and supple tannins leading to a lasting luscious finish.

Fermentation of each parcel of fruit occurred separately in upright static fermenters at around 25-27°C, and remained on skins for about 10 days. The wines were pumped over skins twice per day, and pressed at around 2 degrees Baume. One-third of each wine was added to new French oak hogsheads to complete fermentation, and the balance was added to older oak when dry. The wines were finally blended a month prior to bottling.


Vine Age: 85 (60%) -120 years (40%)
Alcohol: 14.6%
Residual Sugar: 0.8g/L
Total Acidity: 6.9g/L
pH: 3.45 


Reviews:

Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2011 Old Vine Shiraz Reserve Release is intensely scented of spiced blackberries, black cherry tart and mulberries with underlying Chinese five spice, incense, Szechuan pepper and star anise hints. Full-bodied and loaded with muscular, blackberry and exotic spice flavors, it displays a good backbone of medium to firm, rounded tannins and lively acid before finishing long and layered. Approachable now, it should drink to 2024+. -Robert Parker 93+ Points

 Wine Advocate: 93


 
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Riebeek Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Riebeek Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 85% Cabernet Sauvignon,15 % Shiraz.

An exciting new world style wine with upfront blackcurrant flavors. The black fruit is well-balanced with subtle French oak for a complex nose and an elegant and lingering follow-through. An exceptional example of a lighter style Cabernet Sauvignon that can be enjoyed young. Excellent with red meat dishes or veal.