Tenuta di Arceno Strada al Sasso Chianti Classico Gran Selezione.
Strada al Sasso is our flagship Sangiovese and is sourced exclusively from the La Porta vineyard block of our Tuscan estate. This is the most intense, brooding, concentrated and complex of our DOCG wines. While this wine drinks well in its youth, it is built to evolve and improve over the next decade or more. This red wine shows aromas of dark-toned fruit, roasted coffee and violets. On the palate are dried red fruits, baking spice and tobacco. The lingering finish shows minerality, and balanced tannins. This Wine has a Cork closure. Alcohol Content: 14.5% Pair with antipasti, margherita or pepperoni pizza, spaghetti bolognese, and eggplant or chicken parmigiana.
The Strada al Sasso is 100% Sangiovese and comes from a single windswept vineyard block within our prized La Porta vineyard. This exceptional micro-cru features high-density spacing, careful matching of rootstocks and clones to the soils, and low yields. The soils are 38% sandstone, 32% limestone, 30% loam, and galestro. La Porta means “the door” or “the opening.”
The vineyard sits directly in the front of the walled town of San Gusmè, offering the most spectacular view as you drive up to town. The vines were replanted at an altitude of 420-450 meters (1400-1450 feet) above sea level between 1998 and 2001 with nine different clones of Sangiovese, including some Sangiovese Grosso (Brunello) on five different rootstocks. The grapes are hand-picked and cold soaked for four days and fermented on skins for 16-20 days, depending on year and fruit ripeness, then drained directly into barrel for malolactic fermentation.
No fining or additives of any kind are used. Pierre Seillan works closely with winemaker Lawrence Cronin and his Italian team, believing his job is to respect tradition, but also enhance the future.
The sensory quality imposes a deep and rich matrix of identity in the mixed floral and fruity scents of lavender, violet, agapanthus, magnolia, orange blossom, blue plums, pressed blueberries and warm white stone. Full body, silky tannins, enveloping but not ruffling, it relaxes in a very pleasant bite that from the center of the palate onwards creates length and persistence. What a phenomenon. Impossible to resist it but better from
-WinesCritic.com 97 Points
Inglenook Rubicon is made from 93% Cabernet Sauvignon 7% Cabernet Franc.
Since its inaugural vintage in 1978, Rubicon has been the Estate's premier red wine, reflecting the soul of the property and expressing Francis Coppola's wish to create a Bordeaux-styled grand wine, that is, "a wine that can please contemporary taste, but with a historical aspect [that defines] our vineyards at their zenith."
Rubicon was named after the small river crossed by Julius Caesar in 49 B.C., declaring his intention to gain control of Rome, thereby launching a civil war among opposing factions. Over time the phrase "crossing the Rubicon" has come to signify any irreversible action with revolutionary intent or the outcome of which holds great risk. True to its uncommon depth, Inglenook's Rubicon continues to be a testament to the finely tuned rendering of a risk well-taken.
After four years of drought, a winter with average rainfall was welcome, as it provided ample soil moisture for a strong start to the 2016 growing season. Average late-spring temperatures and limited precipitation minimized the risk of frost during mid-May bloom, ensuring average yields. June closed with a heat spell, slowing vine canopy growth at the ideal time. Harvest of the blocks contributing to the 2016 Inglenook Rubicon blend occurred under optimum conditions from September 6th through September 27th.
Ideal harvest conditions endowed the 2016 Rubicon with the three elements associated with a truly great wine from the Rutherford appellation: complexity, balance, and elegance. The aromas are intense and focused with top notes of creamy, sweet vanilla, and black licorice wound around a core of exquisitely ripe black cherry and crème de cassis. This refinement extends directly to the palate, where the wine is both broad and deep with sensuous, silky tannins. Supremely balanced in terms of both opulence and complexity, ripe black fruits and an ultra-smooth texture provide an impressive crescendo to a very long finish.
The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Rubicon is a wine of total precision and class. Translucent and energetic, with distinctly mid-weight structure, the 2016 is a wine of reserve, tension and breeding. Shy at first, the 2016 has a lot to offer, but it needs a number of years in bottle to be at its most expressive. Cedar, tobacco, licorice and wild cherry add the closing nuances.
- Antonio Galloni 97 Points
Tenuta di Arceno Arcanum is made from 74% Cabernet Franc, 10% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot.
The dark and intense fruit aromas jump out of the glass with ripe plums, blackberries on the vine, and tones of sweet mint. The mouthfeel is full, balanced by gentle acids and rich tannins. Flavors are reminiscent of dark chocolate covered cherries and spicy black pepper. The long finish shows cigar box and cedar spice. A vintage that will age well into the next decade.
It would be impossible to exaggerate the grandeur and majesty of the overachieving 2015 Arcanum. The blend is 74% Cabernet Franc, 10% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Petit Verdot. This full-bodied wine is mostly defined by its texture that is exceedingly rich and smooth with significant infusions of blackberry, plum, spice, tobacco and cured leather. The wine achieves beautiful balance, yet it remains intense and powerful all the while.
-Wine Advocate 97 Points
Biondi Santi Tenuta Greppo Annata Brunello di Montalcino is made from 100 percent Sangiovese.
The Biondi-Santi flagship wine, the Brunello di Montalcino embodies the spirit of Tenuta Greppo and the signature style of our winemakers, forged over 150 years of history with its balanced combination of fresh elegance, depth and aristocratic personality.
The Biondi-Santi 2015 Brunello di Montalcino exudes dark, velvety fruit and concentration while maintaining the signature elegance, suppleness and lithe personalty that distinguishes the iconic Il Greppo estate. I found this new release to be quite distinctive and exquisitely beautiful, setting it apart from many of the past vintages we are most familiar with. This 2015 edition is dark, exuberant and bold, but precise, focused and sharp as well. It will live for years in your cellar, but tasted now in its infancy, the wine shows blackberry, dried cherry, plum and dark cassis. Those dark fruit tones segue to a rich presentation of tar, spice, earth, tobacco and sweet balsam herb. The bouquet offers seamless and smooth transitions. This warm and sunny growing season favored richness and phenolic weight. Wines from Biondi-Santi are made for the long haul, and the fresh acidity that characterizes this estate is the principle reason why. However, I'd argue that this wine from 2015 will evolve over the years not only thanks to the freshness but more so thanks to the important structure of this solid and profound wine.
-Wine Advocate 97+ Points
The 2015 Brunello is highly complex, with pine resin, clove, blood orange, and rose-hip. It offers a grounding richness and warmth from the vintage while maintaining transparency and lift. Structured and with a long finish, this bottle showed no sign of demise over several days. Cellar 1-5 years and enjoy over the next 20 years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points
Biondi Santi Tenuta Greppo Riserva is made from 100% Sangiovese Grosso.
A rare wine, renowned for its extraordinary ability to age, the Biondi-Santi Riserva is produced only in the best vintages. From 1888 until today, only 41 vintages have been released.
A majestic vintage where structure, elegance and freshness combine to form something special. 2015 was a hot and dry year with constant warm temperatures from May through August which permitted the production of perfectly ripe, concentrated grapes. At the beginning of September the “tramontana” a wind coming from the north, refreshed and restored the plants before the final phase of maturation, which was characterized by significant day-night temperature, typical of our high-altitude vineyards.
The 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is a truly majestic wine. The bouquet is packed with intense fruity notes of black berries, pomegranate and plums, intertwined with scents of Mediterranean herbs such as thyme, rosemary and sage, rising from a carpet of forest floor. On the palate, the wine seduces with exuberant charm and caressing sweetness. The youthful tannins reveal its immense structure and contribute to creating a distinctive sensation of freshness which leads us towards a long-lingering, savory finish.
The Biondi-Santi 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is initially a reticent wine and one that does not immediately subscribe to the overstated abundance and exuberance of the vintage. Give it time. I wrote this review after several tastings over several days so I could ensure a more accurate account of the wine's elegant reveal. Contemplative and exceedingly nuanced in personality, with wild berry, underbrush, ferrous earth and candied orange peel, this has everything to look forward to in terms of its future evolution in the bottle. It displays a pretty ruby color that borders on garnet and polished copper. A silky, mid-weight palate is accented by beautifully managed and silky tannins (this aspect of the mouthfeel is extraordinary), bright freshness and long-lasting fruit momentum. The alcohol is a bit more powerful in this release (at 14.5%), but the effect is supple and smooth nonetheless. I tasted bottle number 256. Tenuta Biondi Santi does not usually release bottle production numbers, but I can confirm that 2,000 bottles of the 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva are earmarked for the United States market.
-Wine Advocate 98+ Points
Gaja Ca'Marcanda 'Camarcanda' Bolgheri is made from 70% Cabernet Sauvignon & 30% Cabernet Franc .
Color : Deep garnet.Aroma : Initial aromas evoke violet, cassis, dark licorice and a spicy note of black pepper, leading to undertones of aromatic herbs, incense, dried rose petals, clove and cedar.Taste : Sleek and intense on entry with elegant herbal, light black pepper and cassis flavors on the mid palate.
After Bolgheri’s torrid and parched 2017 growing season, more moder-ate conditions in 2018 brought the vines and their wines shimmering to life. All of the wines at Ca’Marcanda fermented spontaneously in 2018, which Gaia Gaja attributes to the balance in the musts. This wine, a blend of cabernets sauvignon and franc, is taut and energetic, its flavors of crunchy plum and blackberry laced with notes of licorice, tobacco and graphite.
-Wine & Spirits 96 Points
The Ca' Marcanda estate does not make a Bolgheri Superiore, although this bottle would qualify as such. The 2018 Bolgheri Rosso Camarcanda is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, and you definitely feel those full-throttle varietal aromas with big intensity and clarity. Spicy greenness comes forward as grilled rosemary and lavender essence, but the wine boasts nice depth and dimension, and enough textual richness to smooth it all out. This was a slightly cooler vintage with some sporadic rain showers throughout the summer. These conditions might explain the sharper side of those Cabernet aromas. As the wine moves over the palate, it reveals more substantial aromas of black fruit, spice and baker's chocolate. This vintage is slightly thinner than the hot 2017 expression before it and the classic 2016. However, this wine should certainly play forward positively in terms of its aging potential.
-Wine Advocate 95 Points
Dense and fluid at once, this red delivers plum, black cherry, licorice, olive, bay leaf and spice flavors. Ripe and balanced, with a lingering, spicy, tobacco-tinged aftertaste. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2023 through 2033. 1,500 cases made, 225 cases imported. — BS
-Wine Spectator 95 Points
Tasca d'Almerita Tenuta Tascante 'Contrada Sciaranuova' Etna Rosso is made from 100% Nerello Mascalese.
Mt Etna, Europe's largest active volcano, is situated on the eastern side of Sicily and is home of some of Italy's most dramatic wine landscapes. The Etna DOC is divided into 132 Contrade, or wine districts, that are distinguished by different volcanic soil formations. The Tasca family works in four Contrade all located on the north side of Mt. Etna. Contrada Sciaranuova is located between Montelaguardia and Passopisciaro and is home to 12 acres of vineyards, planted in 2008, and more than 17 acres of chestnut groves. It is marked by its steep grade of 8.5% with volcanic formations with origins between 4,000 and 40,000 years ago. Tenuta Tascante Contrada Sciaranuova is 100% Nerello Mascalese fermented in stainless steel and aged partly in large Slavonian oak cask and part in French oak barrique.
Red flowers, red plums and cherries are the main aromas of this wine. Ground almonds and coffee beans are the secondary notes that enrich the matrix. Extremely silky on the palate thanks to the ripe and sweet tannins, it shows a solid and compact center of the palate and a wide and long finish. Delicious will now be in its best shape from 2020 to 2025 and beyond.
-Winecritics.com 97 Points
Sicily’s star is ascendant in the wine community, and it seems that when anyone looks at Sicily these days, their eyes are immediately drawn to the island’s most prominent topographic feature, the great volcano Mount Etna. Etna wines are almost as hot as the lava inside that peak, metaphorically speaking. Sicily has been well known as a major source of Italian wine forever, but until relatively recently it was viewed as a producer of bulk wines for export or cheap everyday wines. With the revolution in quality that has taken place on the island in the past decade, though, that reputation has been turned on its head, and Sicilian wines are being sought out by wine buyers and consumers—none more so than the wines of Etna.
The Tasca d'Almerita family, one of Sicily's oldest and most esteemed wine families, is now led by seventh generation Alberto Tasca. The family, who has been making wine across Sicily for over 200 years, is a leading producer of Etna wines at its Tenuta Tascante estate (the name is a portmanteau of Tasca and Etna). The estate was founded in 2007 with the purchase of two vineyards in the communes of Castiglione di Sicilia and Randazzo on the north face of the volcano. The northern exposure is a cool-climate area, due to the combination of elevation and less direct sun, which helps to retain acidity in the wines.
The Tasca family currently owns four parcels, located in the contrade of Pianodario and Sciaranova in Randazzo, and Rampante and Grasà in Castiglione. (A contrada is a small subdivision of a commune, based on various defining criteria such as elevation, cultural/historical significance, or the age of past lava flows.) The vineyards are mostly at elevations of 2,450 to 2,600 feet (750–800 meters) on the 11,000-foot mountain. All are certified as sustainable under SOStain, a Sicilian-based program that rates wineries and vineyards based on their impact on the environment, in conjunction with the Italian Ministry of the Environment’s VIVA indicators of sustainability.
For the first several years, Tascante wines were unable to print "Etna DOC" on the wine labels, even though that was the source of all the grapes, because denomination rules require that wines be vinified and bottled within the DOC—and Tasca did not have a facility on the volcano. Thus, the early vintages were labeled simply "Sicilia." However, that issue was rectified in 2016 with the acquisition of an existing winery in Castiglione, so going forward, Tascante’s wines can be properly identified as products of Mount Etna.
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.
The 2020 Viognier The Age of Grace has a subtle, well-defined bouquet of detailed lemon sherbet, lemon thyme and crushed pebble scents, poised and, yes, graceful. The palate is well balanced with a fine bead of acidity, and linear and quite steely toward the almost Chenin-like finish. This is not a flamboyant, Rhône-like Viognier – it’s is far more tensile and racy. It should age extremely well in bottle. - Neal Martin"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2021), 94 pts
B Leighton Olsen Bros Syrah is made from 100 percent Syrah.
Inviting, Intriguing, brooding and vivacious. Black cherry, wet earth, grilled meats, fireplace ash and black pepper take you there and then beautiful notes of seaweed, camphor and black tar finish it off in time for another sip and more exploration of this wonderful wine.
Lots of smoky and grilled-meat character to the ripe-berry highlights. It’s full-bodied with round, juicy tannins and lots of flavor and intensity. Yet, it remains fresh and vivid at the end. Vanilla touches make it even more interesting. Drink or hold.
-James Suckling 94 Points
Alejandro Bulgheroni Lithology Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 99% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Cabernet Franc.
Here the Cabernet comes to us typically flawless, and the wines are as such. There is blue fruit, blueberries, black plums, blackberries, and cassis to the aromas, as well as stones, mineral, chocolate, fresh tobacco, and subtle herbs. It is incredibly full-bodied, but at the same time effortlessly drinkable, with ultra-smooth tannins and a positive, long, upturned finish. 70-75% new French oak is the norm for us with Dr. Crane, and those flavors are absorbed to become a vanillin complexity, sweetness, and length. An unbelievable wine.
You don’t see many Cabernet Franc-dominated wines from this site, but the 2019 Cabernet Franc Lithology Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard is certainly impressive. Offering more herbal, chocolate, gravelly earth, and espresso aromas and flavors, it has full-bodied richness and, as expected, is a powerful, opulent expression of this noble variety. The blend is 83% Cabernet Franc and 17% Cabernet Sauvignon, aged 20 months in 80% new French oak. It will benefit from short-term bottle age and drink nicely for 20 years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points