Showing 793–804 of 853 results

  • Heresztyn-Mazzini Clos-Saint-Denis Grand Cru 2013


    “The 2013 Clos Saint Denis Grand Cru contains about 40% whole-bunch fruit and matured in close to 50% new wood. It has a perfumed bouquet, floral and refined, with hints of black cherries and dark plum. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp, slightly chalky tannins. There is great purity to this Clos Saint Denis, and a thrilling sense of tension toward the finish that I hope remains in situ once in bottle. Look out for this gem. Drink: 2018-2030. 91-93 points

    If you are traveling the main thoroughfare of Gevrey village, avert your eyes opposite the best little retro coffee shop in Burgundy (“La Jeanette” if you need the name), you will see a brand spanking new sign for Domaine Heresztyn-Mazzini. I like to think I played my own little part. Upon visiting for the first time last year and asked if I approved on their “snazzy” redesigned label, I answered that I did, but perhaps they ought to consider “snazzy” new signage out front. The one rusting outside was unbefitting a domaine that is successfully reinventing itself. Sure enough, a few weeks later, Florence Heresztyn sent me a message with a picture of the new sign. Returning to the domaine, I was interested to see how both her and her husband Simon Mazzini had coped with what was perhaps a more challenging growing season than 2012…

    “We worked a lot more to reduce the quantity of the grapes during the growing season,” she told me. “I wanted to get the concentration because a lot of people were saying the vintage was not good, so we decided we wanted a low yield. The grapes were cool when they came into the reception and we maintained a low fermentation temperature at under 30 degrees, in order to capture the fruit and not tannins. The Harvest began in Chambolle-Musigny on September 26, stopping on the Saturday because of the bad weather and started in Gevrey again on September 28, finishing five days later. Some vintages underwent less pigeage and more remontage and the malolactics finished very late, starting after Christmas and finishing around July.”

    Florence and Simon did a good job in 2013, and while their wines do not quite match their 2012s, I suspect that they are in a different league than what would have been produced only a decade ago. Just up the lower end, did I feel that the limitations of the growing season compromised the quality of the wine. But when closer to home, especially within the Gevrey ambit, their efforts paid off with a clutch of pure and harmonious, terroir-expressive wines. Florence’s deft use of whole-bunch fruit worked well, lending the wines freshness and perhaps just shaving off a little of the high acidity. I cannot wait to taste their promising 2014s next year.”

    Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (216)

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  • I Vigneri Vigna di Milo Carricante 2017


    Review to follow

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  • I Vigneri Vinudilice 2017


    Review to follow

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  • Idda Etna Bianco 2019


    “What stands out most in the Idda 2019 Sicilia Bianco is the authentically Sicilian nature of its joyous bouquet. This Carricante-based white opens to cedar, citrus, orange peel and cherries like the kind you would find in a sfincia di San Giuseppe with fried dough, ricotta and candied Sicilian fruit. The fruit is never heavy, offering elegant aromatic intensity instead, followed by pistachio and maybe a hint of wild fennel. The wine’s volcanic identity is fully on display with ashy and salty mineral overtones. The 2019 vintage is identified by its creamy texture, length and more substantial fruit weight. Drink: 2021-2026. 91 points”

    Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (07/21)

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  • Idda Etna Rosso 2017


    “The 2017 Etna Rosso is almost all Nerello Mascalese with a small 10% part of Nerello Cappuccio that makes for an ideal blending partner. This was a scorching-hot vintage, but Gaia Gaja and Alberto Graci tell me that compact basalt rocky soils make for a unique situation in which vine root systems can find ample humidity underground despite dry and sun-drenched soil at the top level. Dig just under the surface, Gaia Gaja tells me, and the soils are cool and moist. This expression is powerful and bold, with dark fruit and dried cherry followed by crushed white pepper (a result of the Nerello Cappuccio) and lots of resiny spice. The tannins are soft and yielding, and there are subtle waves of hot-vintage aromas that appear mostly as scorched earth and black volcanic stone. Drink: 2021-2027. 91 points”

    Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (07/21)

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  • J.J. Prum Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 2018


    “In a striking and delightful contrast to its superb Badstube counterpart, this Himmelreich Kabinett offers a cooling and overtly citric personality. Lemon and grapefruit are suffused with green herbal essences, accompanied by yeast and wet stone on the nose and an adjunct of juicy ripe honeydew on the polished, delicate, sorbet-like palate. Piquancy of citrus zest and seeds is restrained but invigoratingly efficacious, and the generously juicy finish is admirably transparent to underlying wet stone. Drink: 2019-2038. 92 points

    Starting the harvest just past mid-September 2018 was record-early at this estate, as at so many others. Also like many others, the Prüms reported a remarkably leisurely pace, since clement weather left them unfazed. They only finished up on October 20, with ample opportunity to make selections for nobly sweet elixirs right up to TBA, though precisely what would be declared “above” long gold capsule Auslese remained to be determined when I tasted in late November, and such wines are only released some years after bottling. Also as at so many estates, fears that the heat and drought of 2018 would result in wines resembling 2003s in their conspicuously low acidity and baked- or dried-fruit character proved unfounded. Instead, while analytically modest acidity as well as sheer ripeness conduced to a slightly stronger sense of sweetness than in some other recent vintages, even where the Prüm 2018 collection reveals a confectionary cast, this is balanced by freshness and nuanced piquancy, despite the relatively late finishing date for harvest. Relatively low acidity no doubt also contributed to the alluringly creamy textures that so many of the wines display. Moreover, in complete contrast 2003 – or, for that matter, 2005 – there is an abundance of Kabinett, and the personalities of each site tend to come through especially clearly. “We really made a changeover [Umstellung] after 2005,” observed Manfred Prüm. “Accepted wisdom was always to wait so as to harvest with maximum ripeness, but at that point we realized it isn’t always best to wait,” a realization never more applicable than in 2018. One aspect of these 2018s that is reminiscent of 2003, though, is that even at the level of gold capsule Auslese, the extreme ripeness and impressive concentration were achieved, the Prüms insisted, virtually without botrytis, which they report only came seriously into play with long gold capsule Auslese and beyond.”

    David Schildknecht, Vinous (08/20)

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  • Jacquesson Ay Vauzelle Terme 2009


    “The 2009 Extra-Brut Aÿ Vauzelle Terme, 100% Pinot Noir from a south-facing slope, is surprisingly ethereal in its first impression, before the natural power of the vintage makes itself felt. Mirabelle, crushed flowers, spice, mint and sweet dried cherry add pretty shades of nuance. The personality of Pinot from Aÿ comes through loud and clear. Disgorged May 2019 and bottled with no dosage. Drinking window: 2020-2029. 95 points”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (08/20)

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  • Kelley Fox Mirabai Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019


    Review to follow

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  • Ken Forrester The FMC Chenin Blanc 2019


    “The 2019 FMC, which comes from pure Chenin Blanc bush vines planted in 1974, has a subtle, precise bouquet of white flowers, peach skin, kumquat and light apricot scents, very pretty and charming. The palate is well balanced with a fine bead of acidity. This builds in the mouth, fanning out wonderfully on the finish without losing an ounce of precision. Superb. Drinking window: 2022-2038. 94 points

    Since leaving Johannesburg in 1994 with his wife Teresa, Ken Forrester has built up a hugely successful business, even if, as he told me during our Zoom catch-up, he has never been motivated by financial gain but simply a passion for winemaking. Forrester’s portfolio straddles both the entry level with his “Petit” varietal range and a cluster of top-end cuvées that appeal to connoisseurs. For this report, I have focused on the latter; I plan to include the former in my follow-up report later this year, not least because they represent some of the best values in the $10–$15.00 range. I quite like his enigmatic titles, like “The Gypsy,” “Three Halves” and “Dirty Little Secret,” a multi-vintage Chenin blend. These are all well worth seeking out, my favorite being Forrester’s celebrated FMC. He recalled selling the first vintage, the 2000, for 160 Rands, the same price it fetched at the CWG auction, which prompted a fellow winemaker to quip that he hoped Forrester had a return ticket to Johannesburg if he expected to sell Chenin Blanc at that premium price. Twenty years later, it sells at around 600 Rands per bottle. The only cuvée that I could not get my head around is the aptly titled Misfits Cinsault, which had quite an unorthodox birth and came across a bit like a stalky Beaujolais. Forrester recommended drinking it with Hungarian goulash, which was unavailable during my tasting.”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (04/21)

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  • La Spinetta Barbaresco Vigneto Bordini 2017


    “The 2017 Barbaresco Vigneto Bordini is a supple, easygoing wine to drink now and over the next handful of years. Sweet raspberry fruit, crushed rose petal, sweet spice and a kick of new French oak give this mid-weight Barbaresco tons of sheer allure. In 2017, the Bordini is terrific. Drinking window: 2022-2032. 92 points”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (10/20)

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  • La Spinetta Barbaresco Vigneto Starderi 2015


    “The 2015 Barbaresco Vigneto Starderi rounds out this series of Barbarescos from La Spinetta in grand style. I don’t think the Starderi has ever been so elegant or refined as it is in 2015. Medium in body and translucent, the 2015 possesses remarkable purity and nuance in its red-toned fruit and floral aromatics. The oak needs time to fully integrate, but readers should not be planning on opening bottles anytime soon, as the youthful tannins are also imposing. Bright citrus and floral notes add the closing flourishes. Drinking window: 2020-2035. 95 points

    These are some of the very best wines I have ever tasted from La Spinetta. Proprietor Giorgio Rivetti and longtime winemaker Stephano Mazzetta have turned out a superb set of wines. The 2015 Barbarescos are racy and intense – as they always are – but the wines are also increasingly translucent and finessed.”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (10/18)

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  • La Spinetta Lidia Chardonnay 2017


    “La Spinetta’s 2017 Piemonte Chardonnay Lidia is an oak-aged wine that sees its fruit sourced from a hillside vineyard in the area of Mango at a high 500 meters above sea level with loose, sandy soils. These conditions add to the freshness of the wine that comes through clearly, even in a hot vintage like this. This wine shows some pointed acidity or sharpness, followed by stone fruit, tropical tones and green papaya. The oak is played well, adding mild notes of tasted spice and hazelnut. Production is small, with just 2,500 bottles made. Drink: 2020-2026. 92 points”

    Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (07/20)

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