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Xavier Vignon Chateauneuf du Pape XV Rouge is made from 50% Grenache, 45% Mourvèdre and 5% Syrah. From 100 year old vines.
It shows a bit of toasty oak up front but balances that with ample black cherry fruit and soft, dusty tannins. Long and harmonious on the finish, it should drink well on release in 2019 and for a decade or more after that.
Pairs with beef with mustard sauce - Pork tenderloin with winter vegetables - Roasted duck - Malaysian pork chop and spice tea.
"The second year Vignon has produced this cuvée, the 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape XV is a plush but restrained blend that incorporates more Mourvèdre and less Syrah, with the Grenache and Mourvèdre co-fermented when possible. It shows a bit of toasty oak up front but balances that with ample black cherry fruit and soft, dusty tannins. Long and harmonious on the finish, it should drink well on release in 2019 and for a decade or more after that. - Joe Czerwinski"
- Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate (Issue 239, October 31st 2018), 94 pts
"A blend of equal parts Mourvèdre (from the northern part of the appellation) and Grenache (from the southern part of the appellation), the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée XV offers ripe black cherries, cured meats, lavender, and ground pepper. This beauty is fresh, elegant, and seamless on the palate, with good acidity and a great finish. It's going to be better with 3-4 years of bottle age and keep for 10-15.”
- Jeb Dunnuck (August 28th 2018), 94 pts
For the last 15 years, oenologist Xavier Vignon has become internationally known for being the winemaker of several of the best domaines in Châteauneuf-du-Pape and around (La Nerthe, La Vieille Julienne, Beaurenard, La Mordorée, etc.)
In 2002, some friends (who are wine importers) asked him if he can create his own wine. Choosing amongst the best wines he has made, he creates a blended Rhône with different vintages, and different appellations. His ideal wine, easy to understand, modern, powerful and a great value for money, 100% Xavier was born.
As this outstanding « non vintage table wine » meets a big success Xavier adds a complete range of prestigious Appellations, still selecting and buying the best wines of the greatest domaines he knows perfectly. In 2006, Importers from the UK, Australia, Canada, and Scandinavia order almost 100,000 bottles.
As Xavier Vignon wishes to keep his main work, which is to manage his laboratory, he associates with two partners in 2007, in order to be able to develop his "Xavier wines".
Mordoree Chateauneuf-du-Pape La Reine des Bois is made from 80% Grenache, 10% Mourvèdre, 5% Syrah, 2.5% Vaccarese, 2.5% Counoise.
Aged in 50% oak barrels.
Deep ruby red color, red fruits aromas leading to leather, black truffles and coffee notes. Fat and concentrated on the palate, with liquorice and dark fruit flavors.
Pairs well with game and red meats, cheeses.
60 year-old vines
"The 2018 Chateauneuf du Pape La Reine des Bois (presented as a prospective blend, from tank and barrel) features scents of peppered raspberries. It's full-bodied but lively, with the creamy, lush feel that typifies this bottling, and a lingering finish. Despite all of the work required early in the season, it's turned out beautifully. - Joe Czerwinski"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue 245, October 2019), 93-95 pts
Jada Sawbones is made from Paso Robles 44% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Syrah, 14% Petit Verdot.
A seamless fusion of the best Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah lots from Jada Estate Vineyard. Currants, blackberries, pencil shavings, and clove meet ripe strawberry, chocolate and fresh minerality. Full-bodied with balanced tannin and a persistently fruity finish, the wine is supported by plenty of acidity.
SAWBONES is slang for a surgeon and doctor. Jada's founder and owner, Jack Messina, was a cardiovascular & thoracic surgeon for over 40 years so when Josh and the winemaker at the time were going back and forth about a new wine to showcase their Cab & Syrah programs, Josh decided on this tribute to his father to represent the many years of love and devotion Jack has given to ountless patients and families throughout his long career.
In 2017 they combined multiple small-lot fermentations of Syrah and a co-fermentation of Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. The Cabernet Sauvignon is from clone 337 only, chosen to compliment the Syrah in this blend with dark and aromatic fruit, higher acidity, and deep color. The Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot co-fermentation spent 9 days in tank before pressing to avoid excessive tannin, whereas the Syrah fermentations averaged 16 days. All varieties were triple sorted with multiple green passes in the vineyard, cluster sorting, and a final berry sorting before gravity-filling each tank. Aging for 18 months in 225L Barrels (54% New French Oak, 36% Once Used French Oak).
"The 2017 Sawbones checks in as 44% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Syrah, and 14% Petit Verdot that spent 18 months in 54% new French oak. Its deep purple color is followed by stunning notes of blackcurrants, cassis, lead pencil shavings, chocolate, and crushed rocks. Pure, full-bodied, loaded with sweet fruit, and beautifully balanced, it's one hedonistic yet elegant beauty from this team that knocks it out of the park.”
- Jeb Dunnuck (October 2019), 96 pts
Displays a compelling bouquet of strawberry, summer wildflowers, white rock, cola and the renowned Santa Maria Spice. Tender, lithe flavors of tree ripened cherry, dried herbs and hibiscus tea follow, with a mouthfeel made of pure silk.
The Bien Nacido Vineyard is located in the Santa Maria Valley on the South Central Coast of California, just east of Santa Maria. The topography of the valley features transverse ranges with an east/west orientation, opening up to the Pacific Ocean. The climate is strongly influenced by the ocean providing ideal temperate growing conditions for Pinot Noir. Early spring warming, mild summer temperatures and late arriving cold fall temperatures provide a long growing season for the development of rich color along with concentrated and complex flavors.
An intricately layered nose of sagebrush, blood, pencil lead, soy, beef jerky, lilac, violet, lavender and tight cranberries shows on this stunning wine from the historic vineyard. The palate offers rounded red fruits and cherry tomatoes that tighten around a sagebrush core, bolstered by lots of oregano, black pepper, dried basil and eucalyptus.
-Wine Enthusiast 94 Points
Bernardins Muscat Beaumes Venise VDN 100% Muscat petits grains (75% Blanc, 25% Red)
Copper/rose hue and ripe soft aromas of orange, spice and flowers. The wine is full bodied with the texture of silk and flavors of orange custard, white peach, pear, apricot, toffee and orange peel.
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.
In the spirit of respecting traditional techniques and the best elements of modern technology, cellar manager Andrew Hall and his winemaker son Romain Hall take family traditions very seriously.
When making our wines, the Muscat de Beaumes de Venise plays a central role and requires great care. After picking the grapes by hand, we press them straightaway to ferment the juice without skins. We don’t add any yeasts and keep the alcoholic fermentation in check by temperature control. Vin Doux Naturel winemaking involves stopping fermentation to preserve the grapes’ natural sweetness. During vinification, we watch the vats day and night and add the fortifying spirit just at the right moment. At this stage, the wine’s final balance is at stake. The wine is then aged in stainless steel tanks for 6 months before bottling.
"Pale orange colour. Confit orange, orange blossom, lychee, a touch of brown sugar. On the palate it is exceptionally full-bodied, with acidity a little on the low side. There's firm bitterness on the finish, and it lacks the freshness of some years, if not the depth. Long finish. It really coats the mouth with sweetness and flavour. Handpicked, all pressed immediately and fermented in stainless steel without any skin contact. Wine is aged in stainless steel for six months after adding the fortifying spirit."
- Decanter (October 2019), 91 pts
Xavier Vignon Chateauneuf du Pape Rouge is made from 65% Grenache, 20% Mourvèdre and 15% Syrah.
A clear and very expressive nose with notes of black fruits, spices and licorice. The mouth reveals tanins that are already supple with a great balance.
The finish is long, on black fruits, licorice and a slight salinity.
Xavier Vignon Chateauneuf du Pape Rouge is made from grilled rib of beef, roasted duck with figs, boar stew.
"Mostly Grenache, the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Xavier comes from all the terroirs of the region. Its deep ruby color is followed by a complex, elegant red that has medium to full body, good acidity, and classic notes of garrigue, leather, underbrush, and ripe red and black fruits. It's a beautifully textured, elegant, and balanced effort to drink over the coming decade."
- Jeb Dunnuck (August 28th 2018), 92 pts
The 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape is a full-bodied blend of 60% Grenache, 30% Mourvèdre and 10% Syrah, aged in a mix of concrete and wood vessels. Ripe stone fruit, raspberries and cherries cascade across the palate, framed by creamy-supple tannins and mouthwatering acids. While approachable now, there's enough structure to warrant cellaring for up to a decade. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. - Wine Advocate 92 points
Xavier Vignon Cotes du Rhone Rouge Cuvee Vieilles Vignes Organic is made from 50% Grenache, 40% Mourvèdre, 5% Syrah and 5% Cinsault.
The diversity of terroirs used in this blend allows this wine to combine freshness and balance.
We used Clay and limestone plots located on the hillside where old Grenache naturally express roasted hints. We could obtain in this wine empyreumatical hints without the use of barrels. These plots particular soils and orientation allowed grapes to reach an optimal level of ripeness while conserving a good acidity level.
We also integrated grapes coming from plots located on red rocky clay soils also named “garrigues”. These big red stone are restituting heat coming from the sun at night and bring power and structure to the wine.
Also the blend features vines coming from sandy clays, which are light and rather fresh soils: this allowed the wine to maintain a freshness and vivacity.
Bouquet of cassis, blueberries, lavender, cured meats, and graphite. It's deep, rich, medium to full-bodied, and has a great finish. The Mourvèdre keeps this tight and fresh.
Pairs with grilled beef rib - Veal Columbo - Pork ribs slightly spiced
"A blend of 50% Grenache, 40% Mourvèdre and the rest Cinsault and Syrah, the 2016 Côtes du Rhône Cuvée Vieilles Vignes offers a gorgeous bouquet of cassis, blueberries, lavender, cured meats, and graphite. It's deep, rich, medium to full-bodied, and has a great finish. The Mourvèdre keeps this tight and fresh, and I suspect it will age beautifully."
- Jeb Dunnuck (February 15th 2018), 92+ pts
Xavier Vignon Cotes du Rhone Rouge Vieilles Vignes is made from 70% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre and 15% Syrah
Grenaches are almost hundred years old, Mourvèdres more than 60 years old and Syrahs are 45 years old in average.
There's a spicy, green peppercorn edge to the Cotes du Rhone Vieilles Vignes. It's medium to full-bodied, with svelte, supple tannins and plenty of plummy fruit that exhibits more savory notes and spice on the long finish.
Pairs with grilled lamb ribs - braised beef - spicy pork chops.
"The older vine cuvee of the estate is the 2016 Côtes du Rhône Vieilles Vignes and it is primarily Grenache blended with 15% each of Mourvèdre and Syrah. In this case, the Mourvèdre vines are 60 years in age and the Grenache vines are 45 years in age. Aged 12 months in 80% concrete tanks and 20% in barrel, its vibrant purple color gives way to a concentrated, medium to full-bodied 2016 that’s much more reserved and tight compared to the other Côtes du Rhône releases, yet offers beautiful purity in its blueberry and blackberry fruit, as well as subtle notes of violets, charcoal, and pepper. With integrated acidity and fine, polished tannin, this is a serious Côtes du Rhône that’s going to benefit from a year or two of bottle age and keep for a decade." - Jeb Dunnuck (February 15th 2018), 92+ pts
Xavier Vignon Gigondas Rouge is made from 85% Grenache and 15% Mourvèdre.
A purple color with violet tints. On the nose, the beautiful ripeness offers everything an array of black fruits (cherries, blackberries) and toasted spices.
On the palate, fine and concentrated tannins are balanced by a nice salinity. Delicious peppery notes complete the long finish.
Pairs with grilled lamb - Roasted Quails with raisins -Venison with cranberries - Risotto with mushrooms.
One of the gems in the lineup from Xavier is the 2016 Gigondas which is made from 85% Grenache and 15% Mourvèdre, from a number of terroirs, but mostly from higher elevation, limestone sites. Its deep purple color is followed by terrific notes of ripe blackberries, toasted spice, and dried herbs, with a hint of graphite. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated, with brilliant purity and lots of tannins, it’s killer wine to enjoy over the coming decade or more." - Jeb Dunnuck (October 19th 2017), 93 pts
"This is a very impressive expression with such intense, energetic and vibrant ripe cherries and red berries. The palate has such prowess and precision. Drink or hold." - James Suckling (October 2019), 93 pts
Xavier Vignon Lirac Rouge is made from 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah.
Ripe fruit, ranging from raspberries and cherries to hints of stone fruit. Yet, it's not over the top or simply fruity. This full-bodied wine adds hints of leather, garrigue and licorice along the way, evolving from creamy to velvety on the palate and through the lasting finish.
Pairs with lamb Tagine with dry fruits - Duck breast fillet with green pepper sauce - BBQ Prime rib of beef.
One of Vignon's better efforts, the 2016 Lirac showcases ripe fruit, ranging from raspberries and cherries to hints of stone fruit. Yet, it's not over the top or simply fruity. This full-bodied wine adds hints of leather, garrigue and licorice along the way, evolving from creamy to velvety on the palate and through the lasting finish. -Wine Advocate 92 Points
Xavier Vignon Rasteau Rouge is made from 70% Grenache, 20% Mourvèdre and 10% Syrah.
Almost black color with a deep orange hue, on the nose, the wine develop dark fruits aromas (black cherry), licorice, chocolate and mineral notes. The mouthfeel reveals an outstanding concentration with already silky tannins and a long finish.
Pairs with duck with orange - Tajine of lamb with apricots - Poached and salted duck - strong cheeses
"The 2016 Rasteau (75% Grenache and the balance Syrah and Mourvèdre) is a big, ripe, opulent effort that’s packed with full-bodied notes of blackberries, crushed rock, new leather and lots of minerality. It has sweet tannin, and while already impossible to resist, it will keep for 7-8 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (October 19th 2017), 92 pts
The Nuits-Saint-Georges A.C. wines are produced on land delimited by the parishes of Nuits-Saint-Georges and Premeaux-Prissey.
The grapes bear small little dark red berries. The bunches are destemmed; they macerate in open vats during 4 weeks helping this subtle terroir to reveal itself. After devatting, the wines are aged in oak barrels during 18 months.
Bright cherry, currant and strawberry fruit flavors are backed by a dense matrix of dusty tannins in this compact red. Balanced, lingering with a hint of cumin on the finish. The saturated flavors are intense. Best from 2023 through 2038. 660 cases made, 200 cases imported. — Wine Spectator 93 Points
Livia Fontana Barolo Riserva Bussia is made from 100 percent Nebbiolo.
Organoleptic characteristics: garnet red color. Intense and balanced, harmonious bouquet. Pleasantly dry, full and velvety on the palate. A classic Barolo with a very elegant and persistent finish.
The grapes for this wine are coming from a vineyard that is located in the historical part of Bussia called "Le Munie"
"Truffle, rose, camphor, wild berry and botanical herb are just some of the aromas you'll find on this. Full bodied and youthfully austere, the palate has firm structure and tension, delivering dried cherry, licorice, tobacco and blood orange framed in tightly knit, close-grained tannins. Fresh acidity keeps it balanced. Drink 2023–2033. - Kerin O'KEEFE" - Wine Enthusiast Magazine (December 1st 2019), 93 pts