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Lismore Estate Reserve Viognier 2017

Lismore Estate Reserve Viognier is made from 100 percent Viognier. 

This a Greyton WO.

Balance is the key to this wine. Viognier is an aromatic and generous varietal, it benefits from barrel maturation and lees contact with a fuller mouth feel and increased texture. This combined with the firm acid backbone and intense fruit will allow this wine to integrate beautifully and gain further complexity over the next 3-5 years.

Rich, lush and decadent. Viognier is a gorgeous variety. Honeysuckle, peaches and dried apricot with a lingering citrus finish. A clean fresh acidity supports the extravagance of the nose and the palate.

Viognier, a traditional Rhone variety is perfectly suited to Lismore’s cool-climate terrior. The vineyard block is on decomposed shale and one of the healthiest and well balanced on the farm. The entire team looks forward to the Viognier harvest and the beautiful amber tinged berries.

The grapes were picked at optimal ripeness and whole bunch pressed, slowly extracting the juice at a rate of 500ltrs per ton. The juice was settled for 48 hours and was racked into burgundian barriques (1st fill) for fermentation and maturation. The wine was left on the lees with regular “batonnage” for 11 months.

 Lighter styles are often paired with curries and the like. This Viognier is different. We recommend medium bodied meals that are intense and complex. For example:

- Sesame encrusted tuna marinated in a blend of orange, lemon and lime juice spiced with sesame oil and balsamic vinegar – seared on a wood fired grill and served with griddled vegetables, or
- Free range duck breast smoked with Darjeeling tea and coriander leaves. Set on a cinnamon poached pear glazed with a gooseberry jus.
In both of these dishes, the fruit and floral aspects of the wine are complimented by the exotic and aromatic elements in the dish which are also highlighted by the spiciness from the oak fermentation; the fresh acidity freshens the palate, and yet the Lismore Viognier has the body to hold up against the weight of the duck or the tuna. It is also gorgeous with a well laid cheese platter.

Review:

"One of two Lismore estate Viogniers reviewed in my 2019 report, this comes from a 0.3-hectare block that was planted 13 years ago. Rich, complex and concentrated, it has pear and apricot fruit, a hint of nectarine and a patina of vanilla and cinnamon spice. 2019-23 Greyton (14%)" - Tim Atkin (South Africa 2019 Special Report), 94 pts

 

 

 94 Points
Lismore Age of Grace Viognier 2018

IMPORTER SALE!


This is a Greyton WO.

Balance is the key to this wine. Viognier is an aromatic and generous varietal, it benefits from barrel maturation and lees contact with a fuller mouth feel and increased texture. This combined with the firm acid backbone and intense fruit will allow this wine to integrate beautifully and gain further complexity over the next 3-5 years.

Rich, lush and decadent. Viognier is a gorgeous variety. Honeysuckle, peaches and dried apricot with a lingering citrus finish. A clean fresh acidity supports the extravagance of the nose and the palate.

Viognier, a traditional Rhone variety is perfectly suited to Lismore’s cool-climate terrior. The vineyard block is on decomposed shale and one of the healthiest and well balanced on the farm. The entire team looks forward to the Viognier harvest and the beautiful amber tinged berries.

The grapes were picked at optimal ripeness and whole bunch pressed, slowly extracting the juice at a rate of 500ltrs per ton. The juice was settled for 48 hours and was racked into burgundian barriques (1st fill) for fermentation and maturation. The wine was left on the lees with regular “batonnage” for 11 months.

Lighter styles are often paired with curries and the like. This Viognier is different. We recommend medium bodied meals that are intense and complex. For example:
- Sesame encrusted tuna marinated in a blend of orange, lemon and lime juice spiced with sesame oil and balsamic vinegar – seared on a wood fired grill and served with griddled vegetables, or
- Free range duck breast smoked with Darjeeling tea and coriander leaves. Set on a cinnamon poached pear glazed with a gooseberry jus.
In both of these dishes, the fruit and floral aspects of the wine are complimented by the exotic and aromatic elements in the dish which are also highlighted by the spiciness from the oak fermentation; the fresh acidity freshens the palate, and yet the Lismore Viognier has the body to hold up against the weight of the duck or the tuna. It is also gorgeous with a well laid cheese platter.

Review:

"The 2018 The Age of Grace Viognier is sourced from Elgin and matured mainly in used barrels with some concrete eggs for 11 months. It has a well-defined bouquet of pressed yellow flowers and crushed stone scents that gain intensity with aeration. The fresh, vibrant palate is poised and harmonious, delivering a fine bead of acidity and a lick of salinity on the finish. Superb! - Neal Martin"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2019), 92 pts


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 92
Lismore Chardonnay 2017

Lismore Chardonnay made from 100 percent Chardonnay.

Intense citrus and soft fruit layered with honey and vanilla carried by a distinct minerality and crisp acidity with a lingering citrus finish.

Fermented and aged in 225-300 liter older French barrels with regular batonnage. 10 % Malolactic Fermentation. Residual Sugar: 2.41

Delightful with warm curries which lift the aromatics or a traditional pairing of smoked salmon highlighting the fresh acidity.


Review:


"The 2017 Chardonnay is matured on the lees for 11 months in 300-liter barrels. It is well defined and quite Burgundian on the nose – think fine Chassagne-Montrachet. The well-balanced palate is linear and focused, offering flavors of citrus lemon, orange pith and quince. The taut finish suggests that it will benefit from a couple of years in bottle, if you can resist its nascent charm. Superb. - Neal Martin" - Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2019), 93 pts

 

 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 93
Lismore Chardonnay Reserve 2017

Lismore Chardonnay Reserve made from 100 percent Chardonnay.

Shows intense citrus and soft fruit layered with honey and vanilla carried by a distinct minerality and crisp acidity with a lingering citrus finish.

Coming from a 13 year old vineyard with decomposed shale oiver clay soils. 
Fermented and aged 11 months in 500 liter French Oak Foudres (40% new). 
Wine was slightly filtered before bottling.

Delightful with warm curries which lift the aromatics or a traditional pairing of smoked salmon highlighting the fresh acidity.


Review:


"The 2017 Estate Reserve Chardonnay was matured in 500-liter barrels using 40% new oak. It has quite a powerful bouquet of crushed stone, yellow stone fruit, jasmine and light walnut aromas that are very well defined, although it clearly needs a couple of years to absorb the oak. The palate is very precise on the entry, displaying notes of orange zest (veering toward blood orange), quince and nectarine. This has wonderful acidity and great build in the mouth toward a very impressive, almost Corton-Charlemagne-like finish. This will be outstanding once it reaches the peak of maturity. - Neal Martin" - Antonio Galloni's Vinous (August 2018), 95 pts 

"On the nose, the 2017 Estate Reserve Chardonnay has elegant, luscious red apples, lemon and pear tart and seductive floral notes of cherry blossom. It has excellent mouthfeel with perfect mid-palate weight and balance and elegant Chardonnay expression. The 35% new oak is harmoniously integrated and not heavy handed or overdone and it finishes long. This is beautiful and complex like Chassagne-Montrachet. Yes, this is tasty and collectible stuff! Stock your cellars now as these bottles won't last long. - Anthony Mueller"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 94 pts



 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 95 Wine Advocate: 94
Lismore Syrah Reserve 2017

Lismore Estate Syrah is made from 100 percent Syrah.


A careful selection of the best of the vintage that exemplifies the extraordinary terroir of Lismore.

An exotic experience which shifts your mind to another place. Cassis, brambles and succulent cherry. White pepper, classic garrigue and the strong floral perfume of crushed violets. Light and elegant, but structured with a fresh acidity. To experience the best this wine has to offer, decanting is suggested.

The grapes were fermented 40% whole bunch in a 5000 litre wooden fermenter with gentle pigeage throughout. The process allowed for a long extraction period which lends to the fruit expression of this wine. The wine was left for a 30 day extended maceration on the skins and then pressed in a traditional baskets press. Matured in 500 litre barrels for 10 months (35% new). Time in the bottle will allow integration, the deepening of layers and full expression of the fruit.


Review:

"The 2017 Estate Reserve Syrah comes entirely from Greyton, 40% whole cluster and aged in 500-liter barrels with 40% new oak. It has a very refined, perfumed bouquet of red cherries, crushed strawberry, broom, iris and a touch of potpourri. The palate is very well balanced, offering fine tannin on the entry, good weight in the mouth and blackberry, blueberry, clove, star anise and light fennel notes toward the finish. There is very good length here, but it needs another year or two in bottle to fully coalesce. Great potential. - Neal Martin"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (August 2018), 93+ pts

Upon smelling the 2017 Estate Reserve Syrah, my first thought was "Wow, this reminds me of a young Côte-Rôtie." The nose of this wine has a glossy polish to it, with black fruit that expresses power and complexity while remaining pristine and elegant. After the impressive fruit aromas, the soft herbal and lavender tones flutter in, bringing with them soft oak tones and a nuance of spice rack. The palate has good mineral tension with the depth and breadth of expression only found in world-class Syrah. The finish is long with grippy tannins and begs me to take another sip. Samantha O'Keefe is clearly doing things right. The Lismore Estate wines are highly collectible and show amazing quality. - Anthony Mueller" - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 93 pts


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 93 Wine Advocate: 93
Lismore Syrah Reserve 2018

Lismore Estate Syrah is made from 100 percent Syrah.

A careful selection of the best of the vintage that exemplifies the extraordinary terroir of Lismore.

An exotic experience which shifts your mind to another place. Cassis, brambles and succulent cherry. White pepper, classic garrigue and the strong floral perfume of crushed violets. Light and elegant, but structured with a fresh acidity. To experience the best this wine has to offer, decanting is suggested.

The grapes were fermented 40% whole bunch in a 5000 litre wooden fermenter with gentle pigeage throughout. The process allowed for a long extraction period which lends to the fruit expression of this wine. The wine was left for a 30 day extended maceration on the skins and then pressed in a traditional baskets press. Matured in 500 litre barrels for 10 months (35% new). Time in the bottle will allow integration, the deepening of layers and full expression of the fruit.


Review:


"This is the best release yet from Lismore, superior even to the impressive 2017. Made from blocks that are now 13 years' old, this is wonderfully, enticingly floral, showcasing all that is best about Syrah: aromatic spices, layered cherry and strawberry fruit, bright acidity, some tannic backbone, subtle whole bunch notes and a long finish. The oak is on point, the alcohol daringly restrained. 2020-30 Greyton (13.2%)"

- Tim Atkin (South Africa 2019 Special Report), 97 pts


"The 2018 Estate Reserve Syrah contains 50% whole-bunch fruit and is aged in 500- and 700-liter barrels, 30% new. It has an extremely pure, slightly floral bouquet of bright blueberry and black currant fruit infused with scents of crushed iris petals and violets, almost Burgundian in style. The palate is extremely well balanced with perfectly pitched acidity and filigreed tannins. There is an unerring sense of weightlessness about this Syrah, which is one of the most precise Lismore reds I have encountered over several years of tasting. Absolutely stunning. - Neal Martin"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2019), 97 pts


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 97 97 Points
Lismore Syrah 2016

Importer Sale

Cassis, blackberry and cherry. White pepper, ground herbs and the strong floral perfume of crushed violets. Light and elegant, but structured with fresh acidity.

40% Whole bunch ferment in small open vats. 60% destemmed and fermented in a 5000 ltr wooden fermenter with gentle pigeage (punch down of the cap) throughout. Pressed in a traditonal wooden basket press and racked into a 3000 litre oak vat for 9 months.

 


Review:

"The 2015 has sold out so quickly that Sam O’Keefe is already on to the 2016, which is every bit as good and less funky. Bloody, rich and stony, this is focused, concentrated and well balanced, showing a lick of new oak, dark, brooding fruit flavours and a twist of white pepper. 2019-26. - Tim Atkin"
- Tim Atkin Master of Wine (SA Special Report 2016), 95 pts+ REDS - WINES OF THE YEAR 2017

 95 Points
Babylons Peak Viognier-Roussanne 2018

Babylons Peak Viognier-Roussanne is made from 60/40 blend of Viognier and Roussanne 

Babylon's Peak winery, situated on the highest weathered granite slopes of the Paardeberg Mountain, is privately owned by the Basson family who has passed down the tradition, passion and art of winemaking over four generations. Predominantly low-yield dryland bushvines are selected to produce these excellent wines with distinctive character.

Complex flavors of flowers, peach, dried pear and apricot with a long, smooth finish on the palate.


Review:

"This 60/40 blend of Viognier and Roussanne offers a perfume of white flowers and a finely focused palate of spice and white stone fruit with just a touch of minerals and white pepper. At the time of tasting, this wine had just been bottled and was for that reasons a bit closed; the 2017 vintage we also tried was richer, more expressive and had a lovely, slippery lanolin mouth feel. - Don Winkler" - i-winereview.com (The Wines of Babylon’s Peak in South Africa’s Swartland, September 30th 2019), 90 pts

 International Wine Review: 90
Keermont White Blend Terrasse 2017

Keermont White Blend is made from 39% Chenin Blanc (34% Riverside parcel - 26% Low Road Parcel and 5% Bobbejaan parcel), 34% Sauvignon Blanc (Uitkyk parcel), 14% Viognier (Cottage Lane parcel) and 13% Chardonnay (Low Road Parcel).


A polished light yellow gold color, this wine has a bouquet of citrus blossom with hazelnut, lemon grass and butterscotch undertones. The wine has a soft sweet entry with a racy linear acidity. Ripe citrus and stone fruit flavours evolve into a lovely lingering dry earthy finish. This is a textured white wine with layers of flavour. 



"The 2017 White Blend Terrasse is a blend of 53% Chenin Blanc, 20% Sauvignon Blanc and 13% Chardonnay, with the balance a blend of Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne. It has a citric nose with a mineral edge that gives aromas of lemon blossoms and white spices. The palate is lively with a rich texture and structured mouthfeel, with a soft, spicy finish that lingers with fresh citrus and good mineral tension. 13,919 bottles were made, which will be released in December of 2019. At this price point, you can purchase a few bottles for your cellar. - Anthony Mueller"

- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 91 pts

 Wine Advocate: 91
Sunset Hills Red 2017

Sunset Hills Red is made from 77% Cabernet Franc, 9% Tannat, 8% Petit Verdot, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon

Notes of brambled blackberry, raspberry, plum, and forest floor. Light in body, leaning on acidity rather than tannins. Youthful and vibrant!

The lighter style that Sunset Red offers widens the scope of the wines here at Sunset Hills Vineyard. Delicate and youthful, the structure of the Sunset Red is carried by its acidity and bright fruit notes, rather than heavy oak or tannins. We want this wine to be enjoyed young—with the fruit notes still bright and vibrant.

Alain Jaume Condrieu La Butte d'Or 2017

Alain Jaume Condrieu La Butte d'Or is made from 100 percent Viognier.

The wine comes from vineyards planted on hillsides and soils that are covered with granite. The east and south-east exposures offer an environment where the Viognier expresses the best of its aromatic potential. La Butte d'Or Condrieu shows a golden yellow color, a complex nose of exotic fruits and hints of apricot. The palate exhibits some brioche notes that mingle with the delicate flavors of white peach and apricot compote. This Condrieu reveals its typical racy character with a long and fine finish.

Manual harvesting of the grapes at moderate maturity to maintain a white wine with intense but balanced and fresh aromas. Fermentation on the lees at 15 ° C for 10 months in fine-grained oak barrels. 10% of new barrels maximum. Stirring of the lees once a week.

Enjoy up to 5 years with fish dishes with sauce, terrine of foie gras, veal with cream, mushrooms, soft cheeses.

Alain Jaume Cotes du Rhone Rouge Haut de Brun 2017

Closeout!

Alain Jaume Cotes Du Rhone Rouge Haut de Brun is made from 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 10% Cinsault

The colour is purple-tinged garnet.The aromatic range of the nose goes from fresh berries (wild raspberry, blackcurrant, blackberry) to spices.The palate is big and full-flavoured, with silky-smooth tannins and aromas of the fruit already mentioned. The finish introduces touches of liquorice and pepper. A Côtes du Rhône with great complexity for an every day drinking.

A classic Rhône to drink between 1 and 4 years. Best poured at 17°C.

Traditional wine making and ageing is performed in vats only. Bottling after 10-12 months.

Ideal throughout the meal, but particularly with poultry and other white meats, as well as mild cheeses.

Review:


"The 2017 Côtes du Rhône Haut de Brun is in the same ballpark as the 2016, with a similar level of concentration, yet it has more dark fruits as well as good minerality. This medium-bodied, concentrated, fresh 2017 will keep for 7-8 years.


There are few better run estates in the world than that of the Jaume Family’s Domaine Grand Veneur. Located in the northern part of Châteauneuf-du-Pape and run today by brothers Christophe and Sebastien Jaume, the estate produces a quasi-modern style of Châteauneuf-du-Pape (their Les Origins and Vieilles Vignes) as well as a growing number of negociant based wines from throughout the Southern Rhône. The 2017s whites are terrific across the board, and this vintage has produced charming, pure wines that are already drinking beautifully. The 2016 reds are some of the finest I’ve tasted from this estate."


- Jeb Dunnuck (August 2018, LE MILLÉSIME… The 2016s from the Southern Rhône - Part 1), 88-90 pts




 90 Points
Alain Jaume Gigondas Terrasses de Montmirail 2017

Alain Jaume Gigondas Terrasses de Montmirail  is made from 90% Grenache, 10% Syrah.
Deep red garnet color. Aromas of ripe and black fruits. On the palate the wine is rich, powerful and harmonious - well balanced with wild berry and pepper dominating.

Soil types
Located in and around the famous area called “Dentelles de Montmirail”, the landscape typicity is made by a rocky bar (between 100 and 600 meters high). Soils are made of clay and sand with limestone. The “Dentelles” appeared thanks to the pressure between the Pyrenees and Alps mountains. This is a land of predilection to produce both powerful and fresh wines. Nights are cooler and the grapes ripeness usually comes in late September.

Winemaking & aging
Traditional wine-making in stainless and concrete vats. Crushed and destemmed grapes. Average of 18 days of vatting with pigeages. Ageing in vats mostly and oak barrels. Bottling after 12 – 14 months.


Reviews:
"Based on 65% Grenache and the rest Mourvèdre and Syrah, the 2017 Gigondas Terrasses De Montmirail is an impressive wine from the Jaume family and has classic ripe cherry and black raspberry fruit as well as notes of white flowers, graphite, and garrigue. Medium to full-bodied, balanced, with sweet tannins, drink it over the coming decade." - Jeb Dunnuck (September 2019, Southern Rhône Part 2: 2017 & 2018 from Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Cairanne, and Rasteau), 91 pts


The full-bodied, rich and velvety 2017 Gigondas Terrasses de Montmirail is another winner from the talented Jaume family. Hints of lavender and garrigue add intrigue to ripe black cherries and stone fruit. While approachable now with a bit of air, it has enough stuffing to cellar for a decade or so. - Wine Advocate 91 Points




 

 Wine Advocate: 91 91 Points
Avennia Arnaut Syrah 2017

Avennia Arnaut Syrah is made of 100% Syrah

For our taste, no one grows finer Syrah in the state than Dick Boushey. We named this wine after the Provencal Troubadour Arnaut Daniel, who invented the Sestina poem form, thus creating a connection between our two flagship efforts.

"Deep, dark Syrah notes on the nose, with dark blackberry, blueberry reduction, grilled meat, crushed olive, black licorice, camphor, pen ink, and cracked black pepper. The palate is super concentrated and dense, tightly focused, and deeply complex. Savory blueberry, pan drippings, a hint of orange essence, and hand-rubbed sage come through on the extremely long and nuanced finish. A compelling wine that will age for a couple decades at least." - Chris Peterson, Winemaker

We make this wine with minimal manipulation, using native yeasts and bottling unfined and unfiltered, to allow the "place" to shine through.

AVA: Yakima Valley
Blend: 100% Boushey Vineyard Syrah
Winemaking: 15% whole cluster, native yeast, 15% new French oak, aged 16 months, bottled unfined & unfiltered.


Review:

The 2017 Syrah Arnaut Boushey Vineyard comes from Dick Boushey’s vineyard in the Yakima Valley and was harvested on October 2nd. Violets, rose petals, and sweet blackberry fruit all emerge from this more medium-bodied, elegant, silky Syrah that’s not a blockbuster but has beautiful purity and elegance. It’s another wine I suspect will gain weight over the course of its élevage. Jeb Dunnuck 92-94 Point

"The 2017 ‘Arnaut’ Syrah is entirely sourced from the Boushey Vineyard in the Yakima Valley AVA and is a simply magical effort from superstar winemaker Chris Peterson. A glass-staining purple, the ‘Arnaut’ needs roughly an hour in the decanter to be fully aroused. Over time, this slowly opens with great aromatic range, from green peppercorns and sagebrush to shades of bacon fat, cigar ash and suggestions of bulls blood with fresh red fruits that round out the impressive bouquet. Soft and generous, with silky tannins and gobs of mouth-watering acidity, the ‘Arnaut’ shows ripe red and dark fruits that mingle with crushed mint, blackberry cobbler, mocha and tar on the palate. While a bit tightly wound in its youth, this beautiful new Syrah will have a long life in the cellar. Drink 2020-2035. - Owen Bargreen"

- Washington Wine Blog, 94 pts


 

 94 Points
Avennia Cabernet Franc Champoux Vineyard 2017

Avennia Cabernet Franc Champoux Vineyard is made from 100% Cabernet Franc.

This very limited bottling shows the compelling potential of Cabernet Franc from a top vineyard. Though it’s often used as a spice in Avennia's Bordeaux blends, this wine, from the legendary Champoux Vineyard, has its own unique character and complexity that convinced them to feature it alone.

“Featuring a dark garnet color, this year’s Cabernet Franc opens with dark red cherry, boysenberry, damp earth, winter mint, and hints of rose petal on the nose. The palate is weighty, full-bodied, and complex, with mulberry, tobacco leaf, earthy notes, and savory herbs, kept lively with bright acidity. One of the standouts of the vintage, this beauty can stay in the cellar another year or two, and be enjoyed over the following decade plus." - Chris Peterson, Winemaker

Review:

"From a cooler site in the Horse Heaven Hills and all varietal, the 2017 Cabernet Franc Champoux Vineyard has brilliant notes of crème de cassis, red plums, chocolate, spice, flowery incense, and cedarwood. Beautifully textured, medium to full-bodied, and balanced on the palate, it shows the elegance and purity of the vintage yet still packs plenty of opulence and texture. It’s one of the finest expressions of this variety I’ve tasted from Washington State. Drink this beauty any time over the coming 10-15 years.”
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2020), 96 pts

 96 Points
Avennia Oliane Sauvignon Blanc 2017

Avennia Oliane Sauvignon Blanc is made from 100 percent Sauvignon Blanc.


We believe Washington State can make Sauvignon Blanc that competes with any in the world. Oliane is barrel fermented in French oak using native yeast and aged on the lees for 7 months. It is bottled unfined to allow for greatest expression and complexity.

A well balanced and elegantly refreshing old world style Sauvignon Blanc.

“Leads with ripe aromas of grapefruit, Meyer lemon, peach, honey, and spring flowers. The palate is quite rich and palate coating, with stone fruits, citrus pith, crushed seashell, and sweet floral elements. A streak of minerally acidity keeps the wine focused and quenching through the finish.” - Chris Peterson, Winemaker

AVA: Yakima Valley
100% Sauvignon Blanc
pH 3.15
TA 6.8 g/L
VA 0.30 g/L
Alcohol 12.5%

Native yeast, barrel-fermentation.
5% new French oak, 10% concrete egg, 85% neutral French oak, aged 7 months on the lees.
Bottled unfined.
Vineyards:
70% Boushey Vineyard
30% Red Willow Vineyard

All Shellfish, grilled summer root vegetables, white fish.


Review:

"A blend of Boushey Vineyard and Red Willow, the 100% varietal 2017 Sauvignon Blanc Oliane offers racy, lively notes of citrus, lime, and crushed rocks. Medium-bodied, fresh, lively, yet textured, with good density, it will benefit from a year of bottle age and keep for a decade.”
- Jeb Dunnuck (April 2018), 91-93 pts

 93 Points
Ayni Vino de Parcella Gravas 2017

Ayni Vino de Parcella Gravas is 100% Malbec

Ayni Gravas was created show the diversity of wine profiles that can be derived from Paraje Altamira’s terroir. The goal with this particular wine is to show a markedly calcareous profile that derives in a more intense black fruit flavor profile and a chalky tannin structure with great age potential, as opposed to the more feminine and elegant style which is typical from Paraje Altamira wines.

Chakana plans to further develop this wine, increasing its accents through vineyard selection and oak aging. Over time, production can potentially increase to 10,000 bottles (maximum).

Ayni Gravas is produced from smaller plots of a 20 hectare vineyard in Paraje Altamira, Valle de Uco, Mendoza. Paraje Altamira is a Geographical Indication (IG) located on the alluvial cone of the Tunuyan River. The Ayni vineyard has been planted on virgin soils on the upper (south western) side of the cone. The vineyard is crossed by numerous smaller river beds that once formed the river delta, and these create a pattern of different soil depths and gravel formations, imparting very different characteristics on the wine. Ayni Gravas is produced only with the sections of the vineyard where the calcium carbonated gravels come to the surface and the vines grow amongst them with no soil. Only a smaller percentage of the vineyard (approximately 20%) features these conditions.

Pairs well with grilled meats and stews.

Review:

"Dark medium ruby. Enticing violet lift to the aromas of boysenberry, blackberry and licorice; wild but not excessively so. Juicy and fine-grained, with penetrating chalky minerality enlivening the flavors of crushed blackberry, flowers and spices. In a very savory, almost salty style, finishing dry and firm, with fresh, fine-grained tannins and lovely energy and length. (just 12.5% alcohol; from the same vineyard as the Ayni Vineyard Paraje Altamira but from a selection of soils) - Stephen Tanzer"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (June 2019), 91 pts

"There is a new 2017 Ayni Parcela Gravas, a selection of Malbec from their Ayni vineyard in Paraje Altamira from very shallow plots with a high content of limestone. The nature of the soils might have resulted in some stress in a warm and dry year like 2017, and the wine felt a bit ripe and with harsher tannins than the regular Ayni. For the rest, the production and élevage remained more or less the same. I look forward to seeing the results in a cooler year. For now, the tannins need a little bit of time in bottle. 3,000 bottles were filled in March 2019. - Luis Gutiérrez"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 91 pts


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 91 Wine Advocate: 91
Babylons Peak Pinotage 2017

Babylons Peak Pinotage is made from 100 percent Pinotage.

Babylon's Peak winery, situated on the highest weathered granite slopes of the Paardeberg Mountain, is privately owned by the Basson family who has passed down the tradition, passion and art of winemaking over four generations. Predominantly low-yield dryland bushvines are selected to produce these excellent wines with distinctive character.

Dark red color, with ripe plums and mocha on the nose. Dark fruit followed by spice on the palate. A well balanced wine with smooth integrated tannins.

The Pinotage is dryland bushvines, planted on the highest south-east facing granite slopes on the farm. Due to its unique terroir, this vineyard ripens slowly over a very long period. This results in very dark color, soft tannins and good flavor compounds. The baboons normally harvest their quantity first and we pick the rest.


The grapes were harvested by hand at 25,6°B.and destalked only. No crushing was done. Cold maceration was done before fermentation started in open fermenters. The grapes fermented between 24-26°C for 5-7 days, after which the wine was taken to barrels where it went through malolactic fermentation. After malolactic fermentation was completed, the wine spent 12 months in 225 liter French oak barrels until bottling.

Pairs with lamb, bobotie and braaied red meat.

Review:

"Semi-opaque. An outstanding value in South African Pinotage, the 2017 vintage shows an effusive nose of dark cherry, chocolate and tobacco. It’s big and rich in the mouth with flavors that evoke black raspberry and dark cocoa powder. Quite ripe in style with a long finish. At 14.5° alcohol, it’s a big wine. - Don Winkler" - i-winereview.com (The Wines of Babylon’s Peak in South Africa’s Swartland, September 30th 2019), 90+ pts

 International Wine Review: 90
Begude Cadet de la Begude Rouge 2017

IMPORTER SALE!


Begude Cadet de la Begude Rouge  is made from 35% Mourvedre, 35% Grenache and 30% Cinsault.

A selection of young vines, with no oak aging. Full fruit with a fresh and provencal character.

The noble terroir of Provence and the signature of the Tari Family raised at Chateau Giscours in Margaux and at the Domaine de la Begude in Bandol - the 7th generation of vignerons - gave birth to this valiant Cadet.
A selection with a fragrance of freedom, respectful of the environment, carried by the Mistral wind and the light of the Mediterranean Sea.


Average age of the vines: 10 years
Planted on clay and limestone soils. 
Double sorting, total destemming, grapes pressuring and maceration in vats.
Aged 2 months on the lees. 
Gentle filtration before bottling.

Grilled lamb, meat cooked with sauce, southern French cuisine and tasty dishes (tajines, couscous, paellas).

Review:

"This young, deep-purple-colored wine is almost the equivalent of a Bordeaux second wine. A blend across the two appellations of Côtes de Provence and Bandol, it has a rich potential, spicy, herbal while also packed with generous black fruits. The tannins will allow it to age, so save for 2019. -R.V."

- Wine Enthusiast (July 1st 2018), 90 PTS


"Roughly one-third each Mourvèdre, Grenache and Cinsault, the 2017 Cadet de la Begude is a new IGP wine meant to introduce the domaine to new audiences. It's an unoaked, medium to full-bodied wine, bold and berry-scented, loaded with plum and raspberry flavors, soft tannins and a lingering finish. - Joe Czerwinski"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Interim end of September, September 2018), 90 pts


As to the reds, the 2017 Cadet de la Begude is close to an even split of Mourvèdre, Grenache, and Cinsault that’s a selection of younger vines aged in tank. It’s a charming, textured, nicely layered Bandol that has good complexity in its spicy dark fruits and peppery aromatics. It’s already drinking nicely yet will keep for 7-8 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (March 27th 2019), 90 pts

 Wine Advocate: 90 Wine Enthusiast: 90 90 Points
Buccella Cuvee Katrina Eileen Napa Valley 2017

Buccella Cuvee Katrina Eileen Napa Valley is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon.

Named after our first-born daughter, Cuvée Katrina Eileen is primarily composed of fruit from a vineyard in the Western Hills of Yountville, where yields are miniscule. The extremely rocky soil of the vineyard produces concentrated clusters of perfectly ripened Cabernet Sauvignon. In German, the name “Katrina” represents purity and fittingly, this wine is made entirely from the Cabernet Sauvignon grape, providing a pure expression of this decadent varietal. It also reflects our daughter’s personality with flavors that are complex, unreserved and expressive.

Always a 100% Cabernet blend, our 2017 Cuvée Katrina Eileen is an opulent and mouth-enriching wine. Captivated by the inky-black color, luscious scents of dark espresso and cinnamon stick leap out, along with powerful elements of graphite and cassis. Remarkably rich and seamless, while boasting flavors of blueberry compote, dark chocolate and black raspberries, this is a compelling and luxurious wine focused upon velvety texture, silky tannins and incredible length. An intentional breadth on the palate and length in the finish are hallmarks of this wine.


Buccella Merlot Napa Valley 2017

Buccella Merlot Napa Valley is made from  94% Merlot and 6% Cabernet Sauvignon.

Our Merlot fruit comes from two blocks atop a knoll in the famed Hyde Vineyard, where harvests typically yield less than two tons per acre. It’s a youthful wine that’s invitingly approachable, while still offering the richness and decadence we love.

Our 2017 Merlot is fresh and vibrant, yet also lavishly textured and elegantly fine-tuned. With a swirl of the glass, you are enticed with aromas of sumptuous ripe plums, warm baking spices and a touch of sweet vanilla. Savory and structured, flavors ooze with raspberry jam, hazelnut spread and concentrated plum. Immersed in lush red fruits, each sip of this voluptuous wine hits pleasantly at the beautiful round mid-palate, then evenly dissipates leaving you yearning for another taste.


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