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San Felice Vigorello Toscana IGT is made from Pugnitello 35%, Merlot 30%, Cabernet Sauvignon 30%, Petit Verdot 5%.
It’s 1968, and an important time at San Felice: the first Super Tuscan ever produced in Chianti Classico, Vigorello, is born as a 100% Sangiovese.
Its birth represents both a breaking point with traditional production rules and the beginning of a period of appreciation and development of the entire region and its most prized variety.
THE EVOLUTION: 1968-2018
Since then, Vigorello has continued to evolve in a compelling and continuous way, along the path to date: in 1979, the wine becomes a blend of Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon; in 2001, the inclusion of Merlot into the blend, which in 2006 will entirely replace Sangiovese; in 2011 the turning point, with the introduction of Pugnitello, a native vine rediscovered through studies in the Vitiarium, which since then has marked its uniqueness and the return to its most authentic Tuscan roots, blended with Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot.
Still marked by vanilla and new oak, but this has loads of blackberry, black cherry and plum fruit. It's rich without overextraction, boasting dense tannins, superb balance and a long finish. Pugnitello, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. To be released in 2022 for Vigorello's 50th anniversary. —San Felice Vigorello Non-blind Retrospective (April 2021). Best from 2025 through 2050. 3,333 cases made, 500 cases imported. — BS
Wine Spectator 94 Points
Agricola San Felice is recognised as an innovative estate, partly because of its ability to spot trends before they develop and partly because of its intense research and experimentation. At the same time, however, its production style accentuates the uniqueness and typical character of its territory by retaining a close attachment to tradition.
The estate’s history confirms this status, as witness the creation of Vigorello in the late 1960s, which marked a new approach to winemaking and was the forerunner of the famous Supertuscans. This was followed in the 1970s by the creation of Poggio Rosso, a first, and at the time rare, example of a Chianti Classico ‘cru’.
But it was perhaps the estate’s early research into indigenous grape varieties in the late 1980s, that brought the San Felice production philosophy to full fruition. Unlike the majority of producers, who were shifting towards international varieties at the time, San Felice identified a number of forgotten, indigenous grape varieties in its experimental vineyard, the Vitiarium, and embarked on a programme of blending them with Sangiovese.
Many years of work went into this, driven by a sincere commitment to improvement, and the awareness that the most important discoveries are always rooted in tradition.
Cazaux Gigondas Tour Sarrasine is made from 75% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre. 45 year old vines on average.
Intense, persistent red and dark fruit aromas. Raspberry, pepper and spice flavors. Silky tannins.
Enjoy with game meat or strong cheeses.
"The 2020 Gigondas La Tour Sarrasine follows suit and is also loaded with charm and character. Lots of up-front red and black fruits, classic, spicy aromatics, moderate acidity, and medium to full-bodied richness all characterize this 2020 barrel sample. A blend of 70% Grenache and 15% Each of Syrah and Mourvèdre, it has all the right components, and my money is on it being an outstanding bottle of wine."
- Jeb Dunnuck (January 2022), 91-93 pts
K Vintners The Boy Grenache is made from 100 percent Syrah.
A bouquet of uncontainable layers. Black raspberry, Alpine strawberry, licorice stick, white pepper and dark cherry. An inviting, satiny palate: forest floor, fireplace ash, hung game, summer rain and finesse. That makes me a total believer. The best Boy ever.
A lovely grenache with ripe strawberry, white pepper and hints of hazelnut on both the nose and palate. Medium to full body, fine tannins and a spicy finish. 100% whole cluster. No new oak. So yummy. Drink now or hold.
- James Suckling 96 Points
Gorgeous framboise and ripe strawberry fruits as well as spice, herbes de Provence, and wildflower notes emerge from the 2018 Grenache The Boy Powerline Vineyard, and it's medium to full-bodied, with a seamless, elegant texture and outstanding length. This is another thrilling Grenache from this team that does everything right. It's hard to resist today yet should keep for 10-12 years in cold cellars.
-Jeb Dunnuck 96 Points
B Leighton Petit Verdot is made from 100 percent Petit Verdot.
Dark and brooding. Vibrant, beautiful and tantalizes the senses with violets, black cassis, pipe tobacco and forest floor. Elegant, fresh, deep and refined. It continues with black raspberry, ocean breeze, orange zest and a touch of fresh herbs. Need I say more? Drink up, buttercup.
A spicy red, showing blackcurrant and walnut character with some new wood. It’s full-to medium-bodied with chewy fruit and a nutty finish. Drink now.
James Suckling 91 Points
Monteagrelo Cabernet Franc has beautiful ruby red with purple highlights.
It displays aromas of ripe red berries with a nice wood smoke complexity, thanks to the aging in French oak barrels. The wine has a very good structure, but the tannins are still quite round and integrated.
Aged in French and American oak barrels for 15 months. No filtration and no fining.
The finish is very long and will allow the wine to be consumed with food, such as grilled meat or cheese.
"From the Uco Valley, the 2019 Cabernet Franc Monteagrelo was aged in French vats for 10 months. A light purple in hue, the precise, expressive nose presents notes of green pepper, blackcurrant and ash with hints of jalapeño. Smooth with a broad palate, the flow is corseted a little by the mild freshness, as is the bold finish. A delicate red of a kind you rarely see in a Cabernet Franc. - Joaquín Hidalgo"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2021), 92 pts
Bernardins Beaumes de Venise Rouge Cru Cotes du Rhone is made from 65% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 5% Mourvedre and 5% Grenache Blanc.
Bright ruby color with cherry tinges. Complex black fruit aromas on the nose enhanced by spicy notes. Rounded palate with good length.
The wine is drinking well right now and can be kept for another 10 years.
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.
On a poor sandy, hungry and arid soil consisting of tender limestone and gritty zones of sandy mollasse.
In the vineyard
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.
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.
We prepare the soil by using good old-fashioned ploughing. Organic compost is made from grape marc (the discarded stalks and skins).
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.
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.
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
Serve with a meal especially red meat, game and cheese.
"A distinctly elegant style of Beaumes de Venise; gently aromatic, but with a good upswell of tannin and a persistent finish. Well-tailored, with peppery herbs on the finish. Also contains 6% Marsanne and 4% Grenache Blanc. Always a good value option."
- Decanter (October 2021), 91 pts
Capezzana Ghiaie Della Furbia Toscana IGT is made from Cabernet Sauvignon 40%, Syrah 35%, Merlot 25%.
In 1979 Ugo Conti Bonacossi created Ghiaie della Furba from vineyards planted among the pebble (Ghiaie) rich soils of the Furba stream. Originally planted with clippings from the famed Chateau Lafite estate in Bordeaux, the wine was made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot until the blend was changed in 1998 with the addition of Syrah. The inclusion of Cabernet Franc was slowly discontinued and today the blend includes Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah and is made only in the best vintages
This is rich, yet densely structured, which is a foil for black cherry, blackberry, earth and rosemary flavors. Long, if a bit gruff on the finish. Feels balanced and should develop well. Sangiovese and Cabernet Sauvignon. Best from 2024 through 2038. 5,530 cases made, 1,000 cases imported.
-Wine Spectator 91 Points
Avignonesi Desiderio Merlot Toscana IGT is made from Merlot.
Avignonesi Desiderio Merlot has an explosive olfactory impact. The wide aromatic bouquet ranges from cherry and plum jam to notes of black tea, rhubarb and graphite, with small final notes of fermented tobacco. The entrance is bursting. The palate is invested by the imposing and typical structure of Tuscan Merlot, enveloping and warm. Tastefully in symbiosis with the olfactory notes, the dense and linear tannin accompanies hints of coconut and black pepper in retrolfaction.
James Suckling 94 Points
When the founding fathers of the Napa Valley carved out new sub-AVAs (American Viticultural Areas) in the 1980s, Soda Canyon Ranch was not yet on anyone’s map. The vineyard is neighbored to the northwest and west by the winegrowing districts of Stags Leap District and Oak Knoll District, respectively, which were among the early pioneers of California Cabernet Sauvignon to attain global fame. To the northeast and southeast—and further off the beaten path—were Atlas Peak and Coombsville, thought to be the next frontiers for the emerging wine-producing region.
With richness and depth of flavor, the 2018 Timeless Napa Valley is the embodiment of patience and attention to detail. Decades of experience at Soda Canyon Ranch allow winemaker Nate Weis and team to highlight the individual merits of each block. Combining the strongest lots from each resulted in a refined and harmonious bottling.
In 2018, the diurnal shift at Soda Canyon Ranch produced a darker, lusher fruit profile of Cabernet Sauvignon. Simultaneously, the overnight recovery periods resulted in expressive and refined Merlot, giving the wine a pleasant profile of bright, red fruit. With an extended harvest window, the signature, plush density and structure of Petit Verdot is also prevalent in the final blend. Cabernet Franc thrived in 2018 with its predilection for the cooler soils and the climate of blocks 5, 6, 16, 20 and 21—areas we call the Transition Zone and Hardpan Alley. The variety’s floral and tobacco-like aromatics are accentuated, and its more aggressive nature for back-end tannins tamed.
Once blended, the 2018 vintage rested in French oak barrels for 16 months, developing flavors of vanilla and baking spice. Velvety tannins dance across the palate of bright and lingering cassis. With a smooth finish, this is a comforting wine of elegance and depth—a sophisticated expression of the sedate summer.
This is a little old-school and shows lots of dark berry, chocolate and dried fruit. It’s full, dense and layered with fleshly sensibility. Velvety texture.
-James Suckling 93 Points
Lambrusco Amabile Bruscus San Valentino Red is 100% Lambrusco from grapes grown in the province of Modena and Reggio Emilia.
Traditional vinification methods combined with modern technology to produce wines of guaranteed quality. After the grapes are pressed, they are transferred to fermentation tanks where the must is racked off in an average of 70 hours. The wine then completes its first rapid fermentation process and passes to the slower fermentation phase, during which time it is racked off several times to improve its clarity. The wine is placed in an autoclave at strictly controlled temperatures wherein it undergoes a second fermentation. This is known as the Charmat Method. The temperature is controlled for full development of the bouquet and for the lively and natural sparkle so characteristic of this wine.
Deep ruby red with violet reflections and a fine perlage.
Intense vinous bouquet with hints of ripe red fruits.
Lively, fresh, sweet and inviting with bright fruit and a delightful sparkle.
Excellent by itself or with desserts of dark chocolate, gorgonzola, cheesecakes.
Brize Loire Renaissance Anjou Blanc is made from 100% Chenin Blanc.
Anjou Blanc Renaissance was entirely fermented and aged in French oak barrels. The wine is dry and powerful with an intense bouquet of apricot, vanilla and honey.
Excellent when paired with lobster or white fish with a creamy sauce.
Reverdy Jean Sancerre Rouge is mader from 100% Pinot Noir
The wine is spicy and juicy with cherry aromas, and proves the point that power is not necessary for a fine wine.
Decanter 90 Points
Orin Swift Cellars Mercury Head Cabernet is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot.
Dark violet with a ruby crown, the wine exhibits classic Napa Cabernet aromatics with our style: black fruits—plum and cherry—dark chocolate, leather and Rutherford Dust coalesce from the glass. The entry is elegant and begins to flood the palate with notes of cassis, blackberry, blueberry, caramel and a touch of brown sugar and cinnamon: rich and bold. Seamless and focused, the wine closes with lingering dusty tannins and a touch of baking chocolate.
Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Mercury Head (aged for 15 months in oak, 51% new) delivers classic notes of warm cassis, plum preserves and mulberries with hints of cigar box, dried bay leaves, pencil lead and truffles. The full-bodied, densely packed, full-throttle palate has a solid structure of firm tannins and oodles for freshness supporting the muscular black fruits, finishing long and savory.
Wine Advocate 93+ Points
Made from 60 years old Cabernet Sauvignon vines in organic farming conversion, the cuvee Big Boss is also a tribute to all the winegrowers who are dedicated with love and passion to their wines and terroirs. This is a very charming wine with notes of red fruits and blackcurrant.