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Alain Jaume Tavel Rose Le Cretace 2016

Alain Jaume Tavel Rose Le Cretace is made from 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 10% Mourvedre

Rosé de saignée (bleed technique) with a vibrant ruby color, complex and elegant, notes of crushed strawberries and rose petals.

 

Bastgen Paulinshofberg Grosses Riesling Kabinett 2015

Bastgen Kestener Paulinshofberg Riesling Kabinett is 100 percent Riesling.

Yellow color with green highlights.
Beautiful peach aromas on the nose, rich and ripe fruits on the mouth with a refreshing acidity and honey notes. A very pleasing wine.

They meticulously tend 4.5 ha (11.11 acres) of which 80% is Riesling. The soil is made of slate. Their vineyards are located in Kesten and Brauneberg, on a steep terrace, and planted to 50-year old vines. Fortunately for Bastgen, they own part of the famous Brauneberger Juffer Sonnenuhr. The vines produce very small, ripe berries that are very tasty.


Bernardins Beaumes de Venise Rouge Cru Cotes Du Rhone 2015

\r\n Bernardins Beaumes de Venise Rouge Cru Cotes du Rhone is made from 65% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 5% Mourvedre and 5% Grenache Blanc.

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\r\n Bright ruby color with cherry tinges. Complex black fruit aromas on the nose enhanced by spicy notes. Rounded palate with good length.

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\r\n The wine is drinking well right now and can be kept for another 10 years.

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\r\n Situation
\r\n Spreads out over the south-east side of the Dentelles de Montmirail hills, in Beaumes de Venise in the southern part of the Rhone valley.

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\r\n Terroir
\r\n On a poor sandy, hungry and arid soil consisting of tender limestone and gritty zones of sandy mollasse.

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\r\n In the vineyard
\r\n The vineyards and their terroir are the essence of our wines. This is where everything starts and where we focus our efforts throughout the year. You can’t make great wine without great grapes.

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\r\n The viticulture is essentially done by hand. Five people work full-time in the vineyards. They are supplemented by seasonal employees who work during bunch thinning and the harvest in order to bring out the very best in our vines. Working by hand and the attention each vine gets are fundamental. Pruning, de-budding, trellising, leaf removal and picking are thus carried out by hand with the utmost care.

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\r\n We prepare the soil by using good old-fashioned ploughing. Organic compost is made from grape marc (the discarded stalks and skins).

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\r\n As a way of protecting the plants, we only use phytosanitary products when necessary and within strict guidelines by staggering the treatments appropriately, to minimise the amount of chemicals used. We prefer to use as much as possible manual and organic techniques . Leaving natural grass cover, removing buds and leaves from the vines, preserving biodiversity around the vineyard: olive, almond and cypress trees, wild rosemary and capers.

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\r\n Winemaking
\r\n We make two red wines at the estate. Terroir wines shaped by the two classic Côtes du Rhône varieties: Grenache and Syrah. We don’t follow any winemaking recipe but are constantly searching for the perfect expression of terroir and each vintage’s particular characteristics. We don’t go for overripe grapes and over-extraction, as we think the wine has to stay refreshing and balanced.

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\r\n Leaving the wine for 15 days in concrete vats, we try to gently extract the tannins and anthocyanins essential for the wine’s structure and colour. The wine doesn’t come into any contact with wood during ageing. This way the characteristics of our terroir can fully express

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\r\n Serve with a meal especially red meat, game and cheese.

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Betz Family Clos de Betz 2014

Betz Family Clos de Betz is 67 % Merlot, 27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot

Washington southern Rhone varieties continue their winning streak, proving to excel in cool and hot vintages. Fans of thisSouthern Rhone-inspired wine will note that there’s no Counoise in the 2012 blend as there has been in recent vintages; that variety ripened fine, but they lacked the penetrating character needed to complement the final wine. The Mourvedre fraction (15%) stepped through in the wine, making the 2012 deeper, more structured yet finely layered. Grenache (50%) still dominates the blend, with its creamy black raspberry, wild dried strawberry, dried herbs and floral notes. Cinsault (20%) fills in with its dusty blue notes, and Yakima Valley Syrah (15%) provides more backbone. This is a Bésoleil for the cellar, dense and full, and a few years of aging will expand its Chateauneuf-like appeal.



Review:

Bright, dark red-ruby. Alluring floral lift to the aromas of blackberry, cassis, Bing cherry, sweet spices and anise. Sweet, plush wine with great sex appeal to its intense, pliant flavors of amarena cherry, flint and spicy oak. Really remarkable--and not at all stewed--for Merlot from a hot year; Betz noted that he picked these vines early, "with tension and vitality." Finishes very long and smooth, with suave, perfectly supported tannins dusting the front teeth. A great, velvety Merlot-based wine from Washington. Betz adds some Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot to wine "to provide more structure, nuance and color."


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 94
Betz Family Pere de Famille 2014

 Betz Family Pere de Famille is 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6 % Merlot 4% Petit Verdot

This initial question raised by this vintage of Pere de Famille is how this wine, with such a depth of color, aromatic complexity and balance of the Old World. The answer isn’t precise, but is a reflection of a remarkable Columbia Valley vintage, plus small changes in maturation and the varietal concentration of the final blend. Its inky purple color, muscular structure and plush texture all point to its New World origins. But the aromas of pure, layered black fruits, graphite, crushed rock and lavender (think St. Julien?) lead me back to the Old World. The 2012 Père de Famille has the highest level (90%) of Cabernet Sauvignon that we’ve ever used in this wine. Add to that the high concentration of Red Mountain grapes (84%), deep and structured, and it yields a wine as generous as any Cabernet we’ve made. It showed such density in barrel that we added three months barrel aging to resolve the tannins and body. It’s weighty and yet balanced, fleshy yet fine grained, powerful yet polished. And unabashedly Cabernet Sauvignon, with its black currants, anise/thyme, savory mouth feel and dusty finish. Its dimension and precision indicate long aging ability, but you might be tempted far earlier.

Review:

(bottled in June): Bright ruby-red. Discreet, very pure aromas of cassis and black cherry complicated by mineral, spice and floral nuances. Highly concentrated and savory, conveying a 3-D texture as well as terrific definition to its flavors of black cherry, saline minerality and dried herbs. Wonderfully elegant, energetic, flavorful wine with real éclat. Really saturates the palate with flavor without leaving any impression of weight. Finishes with substantial dusty but fine-grained tannins and outstanding lingering fruit. This will need time in bottle to unwind.


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 95 Wine Advocate: 97
Boxwood Estate Rose 2016

An attractive pale salmon color, complex nose of very agreeable aromas predominantly white flowers and white pepper with underlying notes of apricot. The body is medium with a rounded palate of flavors including honeydew and lychees with refreshing acidity that is balanced and lingering. It has a medium long finish leaving an impression of aromatic vivacity.

Boxwood Estate Rose is made from 41% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc, 12% Malbec, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Petit Verdot.

This rosé wine is a blend of one-third whole cluster pressed Malbec, Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes and two-thirds saignée from Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. The whole cluster portion was harvested in early September when the grapes were ripe enough to lend good fruit character and bright acidity to the wine without adding too dark a color. The saignée portion developed as the various red grapes were harvested throughout the season from mid-September to mid-October. All grapes were hand harvested in bright sunshine. Juice was clarified, then cool fermented using specific cultured yeasts. It was blended in early January.

Winemaker: Zane Katsikis


Boxwood Estate Trellis 2015

Boxwood Estate Trellis is made from 73% Merlot, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot.

The  Trellis has a bright cherry color. The nose is expressive with aromas of red cherry, raspberry, tobacco, and dried herbs. The pallet is balanced with medium acidity and a medium body. There is prominent raspberry and pomegranate on the pallet. Light dusty tannins fill out the finish of the wine.

Hand harvested, triple sorted, destemmed, gravity fed into open-top stainless steel fermenters
20% bleed, whole berry fermentation separate by varietal
Pump over, 100% manual punch down, 21 day total maceration
Pumped into barrel, free run separated from press wine (1st press only)
Malolactic fermentation in barrel

Aging in French oak barrels for 12 months, 12% new, 44% one year and 44% two year


Chakana Estate Red Mendoza 2015

Chakana Estate Red Mendoza is made from 70% Malbec, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc

Deep red color with violet hints. Dark fruits and exotic spices with tobacco and mocha hints. Elegant, well balanced, harmonious, long persistence with chocolate flavors.


 

Reviews

"A 60/40 blend of malbec and cabernet sauvignon, this wine's fruit gains its freshness and floral notes from a high-altitude, cool-climate site. Texturally round, it had a lovely, creamy texture, with spices all over the palate. A charming flowery finish adds complexity. Think of grilled pork tenderloin to go with it." 
- Wine & Spirits Magazine (February 2017), 92 pts

 92 Points
Chateau des Arnauds Bordeaux Rouge 2015

Chateau des Arnauds Bordeaux Rouge is made from 100% Merlot.

The wine shows a deep red purple color and intense aromas of black fruits (blackcurrant, black cherry) with hints of liquorice. Very fruity and well-balanced. It is powerful and well structured in the mouth with round and silky tannins, ripe flavors of black fruits. Strong and a slightly spicy finish.

Grapes are coming from 30 year old vines planted on gravelly soils. 

The land benefits from sun exposure, warmth and humidity that are strong assets for the vine culture.

The wine pairs well with game meat and beef on the grill.

Chateau Hallet Sauternes 2015 (half-bottle)

Hallet Sauternes (half bottle) is made from 100% Sémillon.
With delicate aromas of honey, citrus, crystallized fruit and acacia, it makes a good match not only for desserts, but also for foie gras, roasted meats and blue cheeses. It makes a delicious aperitif when served chilled.

Chateau Hallet Sauternes 2015 (half-bottle)

Hallet Sauternes (half bottle) is made from 100% Sémillon.
With delicate aromas of honey, citrus, crystallized fruit and acacia, it makes a good match not only for desserts, but also for foie gras, roasted meats and blue cheeses. It makes a delicious aperitif when served chilled.

Chateau Hourbanon Medoc 2010

Appellation: Medoc

Chateau Hourbanon Medoc  is made from 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc

Aging: Aged 1 year on French oak

Tasting Notes: Straight attack in the mouth with supple, silky and harmonious tannins.

Very mature, Almost jammy fruits aromas with a touch of spicy notes.

Avg Age of Vines: 38 years

Colline Saint Jean Vacqueyras Vieilles Vignes 2015

Colline Saint Jean Vacqueyras Vieilles Vignes is made from 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah.

This wine has a deep purple color, with an intense nose of ripe black fruits, plum, brandied cherries, and chocolate. In the mouth, the wine has rich flavors of black fruits. It is meaty, well-structured, and the tannins are round and elegant.

The juice is aged in concrete tanks for 18 months. The lack of oak helps to frame in the bright and defined dark berry flavors of the old vine grapes. I can not recall another red wine that displays this depth yet displays on the palate with such refreshing acidity.

Vieilles Vignes means old vines.For this specific wine, the age of the vines are comprised between 85 and 110 years old.

Traditional method. Manually picked. Harvest carefully sorted and 100% destemed. Maceration with skins during 20 days in cement vats. Large work of pump over to push the cap.

Red meat, game, white meat, poultry, dishes in sauce, cheese, chocolate dessert.

 

Cortenova Sangiovese 2015

Cortenova Sangiovese is made from 100% Sangiovese
Intense, ruby red color. Strawberry, cherry fruit aromas. Fruity flavors, great body, supple tannins and a long finish. Food friendly style of wine.
Excellent with rich pasta dishes and grilled red meat.

Dr. Leimbrock  Brauneberger Juffer Riesling Spatlese 2015

A late harvest Riesling with fruity sweetness and great aging potential, aromatic bouquet of honey, melon, ripe fruits. Grapes come from Brauneberger Juffer and Juffer-Sonnenuhr - one of the most prestigious vineyards in the Mosel winegrowing region. The vineyard faces south and provides the best conditions for growing Riesling.

Pairs well with pâté, Asian cuisine.

Dr. Leimbrock Brauneberger Juffer Riesling Auslese 2015

Delicious Riesling, exotic and mineral, concentrated aromas and flavors of pear, pineapple and honey.
Grapes come from Brauneberger Juffer and Juffer-Sonnenuhr - one of the most prestigious vineyards in the Mosel winegrowing region. The vineyard faces south and provides the best conditions for growing Riesling.

The grapes were planted in 1990.
Aging for 6 months in large oak barrels.
Filtration.

Pairs well with dessert and cheese.


Dr. Leimbrock Estate Riesling 2015

Typical Riesling, fresh and fruity, easy drinking. Grapes come from Brauneberger Juffer and Juffer-Sonnenuhr - one of the most prestigious vineyards in the Mosel winegrowing region. The vineyard faces south and provides the best conditions for growing Riesling.

Pairs well with barbecue meats, pasta dishes.

Dr. Leimbrock Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett (feinherb) 2015

Harmonious fruity taste, full-bodied with exotic flavors. The Graacher Himmelreich vineyard benefits from an excellent southwestern exposure. The cultivation of the vine is done by the classic single pile education.

The grapes were planted in 1965.
Aging in large oak barrels for 6 months.
Filtration.

Pairs well with Asian cuisine.


El Cortijillo Blanco La Mancha 2016

El Cortijillo Blanco La Mancha is made from 100% Verdejo

Pale straw-green, with greenish: very bright. Fine floral notes (acacia) and shades reminiscent of anise and fennel. Cheerful and palate pleasing bitter finish that drives its flavor.

 

 
El Cortijillo Tempranillo La Mancha 2016

Up front aromas of raspberry and cherry fruit, medium to light weight, Rhône wine in character, cherry fruit flavors, followed by bright acidity. Reminds of a mythical cross between a Pinot Noir and a Côtes-du-Rhône. Pleasant and fun, bistro red.

Made from 30 year old vine.

Grand Veneur Cotes du Rhone Blanc Reserve 2016

Grand Veneur Cotes Du Rhone Blanc Reserve is made from 50% Roussanne, 40% Viognier, 10% Clairette 

Pale yellow colour, brilliant with a gold tinge. Primary aroma of flowers and stone fruit. On the palate, the fruit is immediately present with touches of almond and white peach. A slight liveliness appears in the finish, which creates a perfect balance for the natural generosity of this wine.

To consume young in order to preserve the fruitness typicity. Could age 2-3 years

Direct press, fermentation in temperature controlled stainless-steel vats. Early bottling 6 months after harvest.

Excellent with fish, seafood.


 
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Siegel San Elias Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Fresh and delicate cassis tones, a great structure. Draw the cork half an hour before serving and serve at room temperature.

Smooth and fruity on the palate, the wine goes well with pasta, salads.