Showing 889–900 of 980 results

  • DuMOL Ritchie Vineyard Chloe Chardonnay 2017


    “The 2017 Chardonnay Chloe Ritchie Vineyard is beautifully floral and perfumed, with soaring aromatics and racy, layered fruit. There is plenty of depth, but in this range, the Ritchie stands out for its lifted, gracious feel and exceptional balance. Drinking window: 2020-2027. 95 points

    Over the years, I have learned to allow for plenty of time for my tastings at DuMol. I was super-impressed with the wines I tasted on my last visit. Andy Smith continues to grow the range thoughtfully. The Chardonnays and Pinots remain the strong suits, mostly because they form the core of the range and have really been fine tuned over time. The 2017 Chardonnays have turned out just as well as I had hoped they would. The wines are rich, deep and full of character. Today, I favor the 2017s over the 2018s, which come across as lighter. Then again, the Chardonnays see pretty long élevage (by California standards) of 11 months in oak and 6 months in steel (for the vineyard designates) so there is plenty of time for the 2018s to perhaps gain a bit more dimension. The two vintages appear closer in quality for Pinot Noir. Smith opted to handle the 2018s very gently in the cellar, and did half the number of punchdowns than the norm. Both the 2017s and 2018s are vivid and super-expressive. I favor 2018 over 2017 for the Cabernets and Syrahs, as the longer and more benign growing season was clearly more favorable for both varieties.”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (01/20)

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  • Edi Kante Vitovska 2020


    “An expressive blend of dusty peach and minty herbs are complicated by smokey crushed stone as the 2020 Vitovska blossoms in the glass. This is silky and supple on the palate. An almost salty staining of minerality contrasts a core of vividly ripe orchard fruits. The 2020 finishes long with a lingering concentration that adds tension as sour citrus hints slowly fade. There’s a vertical lift to the 2020 that really shines. Drinking window: 2023-2027. 91 points”

    Eric Guido, Vinous (04/23)

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  • Egon Muller Scharzhofberger Riesling Kabinett Alte Reben 2017


    “This year (unlike in 2015 and 2016) only a single fuder from some of Müller’s oldest vines was bottled as “Kabinett Alte Reben” and sold at auction, limitations that the estate expects to perpetuate in future vintages. The contents originated not just (as in past years) with the single-post-trained vines in the Im Breiten Weg Gewann that adjoins the winery, but also with some old vines high up on the Scharzhofberg hillside in a section known as Knipp. On paper, acidity and residual sugar are almost identical to those of the “regular” Kabinett, but the sensory upshot is almost dry. White peach and pear are garlanded in mint and bittersweetly perfumed flowers on the nose, then inform a glossy but buoyant, silken-textured, lusciously juicy palate. As with other Müller 2017s, there is an invigorating bite of cress that, along with suggestions of lime zest and fruit kernels, serves for delightful counterpoint, here reaching a mouth-shaking degree of vibrancy. Yet all the while, there is also a soothingly cooling aspect to the wine’s green herbal inflections and inner-mouth floral perfume. Salts and iodine add intrigue and saliva-inducement to the bell-clear, superbly penetrating and persistent finish. Drinking window: 2019-2036 94 points

    Müller’s losses to frost were largely in the Saarburg vineyards that are the mainstay of his basic Scharzberg Riesling – with the consequence that its production volume did not even equal that of this year’s Scharzhofberger Kabinett. “Any losses we experienced in Wiltingen,” opined Egon Müller’s assistant Veronika Lintner, “simply helped with concentration,” and this year’s wines certainly don’t lack that! Egon Müller indicated not the least displeasure with the rain that fell in September 2017, since it triggered the botrytis he looks for, so that despite this having been (after 2003) his estate’s earliest recorded harvest – commencing on September 25 – he ended up with a glorious collection of nobly sweet wines. “We had beautiful botrytis right from the beginning,” related Lintner, “and we didn’t miss a day doing selection.” By October 15, harvest was over. “It was very warm during midsummer,” noted Lintner, “but not so warm as [in 2018]. We anticipated a collection rather like 2011 – lovely, if perhaps wanting a bit for acidity. But [instead] the cooler weather as harvest approached, especially at night, locked in acids.” When pressed on the matter, she acknowledged that shutdown in the vines during midsummer might also have contributed to the higher-than-anticipated acid levels. “There was one really hot period,” she recollected, “though not as long a one as [in 2018], when there was definitely shutdown.” Lintner perceives 2017’s combination of high ripeness and high extract as having conduced to “relatively muscular, weightier wines than in 2016, when the wines were unusually slim and filigreed.”

    The 2017 collection here includes a Trockenbeerenauslese that Müller elected not to auction but instead (as he has done once or twice before in the recent past) to sell directly to his importers and other agents as an opportunity and token of gratitude. This had for me the unfortunate consequence that I could not taste that wine when I visited as usual in late summer. “We also picked and vinified in anticipation of a Beerenauslese,” explained Lintner, “but there was a very tiny potential volume, and in the end we decided to split it up, part going to the eventual gold capsule Auslese and the other to the Trockenbeerenauslese.” (For much more about this fabled estate and its Le Gallais sister – whose bottlings are treated for purposes of the Vinous database as a subset of Egon Müller Scharzhof – consult the introductions to my accounts of their 2014s, 2015s and 2016s.)”

    David Schildknecht, Vinous (10/19)

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  • Egon Muller Wiltinger Braune Kupp Riesling Auslese 2015


    “The 2015 Wiltinger Braune Kupp Riesling Auslese (AP #6) is very clear and aromatic on the flinty, elegant nose where ripe Riesling, some honey and botrytis flavors are displayed. Mouth-fillingly clear and piquant, this is a lush and generous Auslese that reveals a remarkable finesse and seductive intensity. This is gorgeous! Drinking window: 2017-2055. 95 points

    Egon Müller’s other estate, Le Gallais, has produced one Spätlese and three Auslesen from the Wiltinger Braine Kupp. Of the latter, two have been auctioned. Although the Gold Capsule is already a great Riesling, I feel in love with the pure, highly precise and delicate Auslese Versteigerung, which is Art Deco in bottles. If you ever have the chance to taste it, you shouldn’t miss it.”

    Stephan Reinhardt, Wine Advocate (230)

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  • Egon Muller Wiltinger Braune Kupp Riesling Spatlese 2017


    “The 2017 Wiltinger Braune Kupp Spätlese (AP #4) is coolish, pure and stony on the crunchy and concentrated nose. Lush, sweet and round on the palate, with piquant, racy acidity and pervasive minerality, this is a complex and intense, lush and concentrated Spätlese with lingering salinity and a long, precise finish. A fabulous and promising Spätlese. Tasted in June 2019. Drink: 2030-2060. 94 points

    There are many days per year that start less spectacular. One morning in mid-June this year, I met Veronika Lindner at Egon Müller’s Scharzhof estate to taste the 2018s and what was left in the private wine library from the 2017 vintage that I didn’t manage to taste before. Except for the auctioned Scharzhofberger Kabinett, Veronika lined up the whole series of 2017s and all the 2018s. Only the Grosses Gewächs from the Scharzhofberg, which was not yet ready to taste. “It has not even been decided when or if we are going to bottle it,” she disclosed. “We will release the wine when Mr Müller is totally convinced about the quality.” I asked her if it will be a really dry wine or an off-dry Grosse Lage, and she said, “The wine tasted from the barrel was delicious with 13 to 14 grams of residual sugar, but Mr Müller wants to have a really dry wine—’If I produce a dry Riesling from the Scharzhofberg, it should be a really dry Grosses Gewächs.’ He is really curious and wants to know how it tastes.” I had to smile about this, because I remember a noteworthy sentence Egon Müller once said to Roman Niewdoniczanski about van Volxem’s dry “P” (Pergentsknopp): “It’s a remarkably good wine. However, can you imagine how good your Scharzhofberger could have been if it had at least some grams of unfermented sugar?”

    Back to the wines that do exist, starting with the 2018s (even though I tasted the 2017s before the 2018s). “From today’s perspective, we can say it was important to start the harvest early enough in 2018. We began on September 24, one day earlier than in 2017, and finished on October 19.” The harvest started in the Rosenberg, went on in the Braunfels, then in Saarburg before the harvest team picked alternating in the Wiltinger Kupp and the Scharzhofberg. “The first three days we picked for the Scharzhof QbA,” said Veronika. “The quantity was really excellent: After the first couple of days, we had as many fuders as we had in 2017 in total,” she explained (51 hectoliters per hectare in 2018 versus18 hectoliters per hectare in 2017). “On day five or six, we already started sorting botrytis berries. We didn’t have many botrytis infections, but we had them, and the shriveled berries were perfectly healthy. In the end, we produced two TBAs. The last selection for TBA was on October 13, and after that we only picked for Auslese. The weather was perfectly dry, and the acidity levels remained stable. So, there was no stress and enough time for selections.”

    The result is the estate wine, three Kabinett selections (including one from the Kupp), one Spätlese and one Auslese from the Kupp and the Scharzhofberg, two golden capsuled Auslesen from the Scharzhofberg (one of which will be sold at the auction in September). There is no BA, and neither fo the TBAs are yet in the market. The fortune of the GG candidate was still unsettled. The wines were bottled early, as always: The QbA was bottled in late February, the Kabinett and Spätlese Rieslings in the middle of March and the Auslese selections in April this year.

    The 2017 quantity was very low due to the frost in April, which caused a loss of 30%. The natural reduction had a positive effect during the summer, which was even drier than in 2018, but there was no lack of water. There was quite a lot of botrytis but not as generous as in 1999, 2005 or 2006. The 2017s are firm and concentrated but still relatively closed compared to the charming 2018s. Which vintage gave the greater wines will be decided in years. However, there are fascinating wines from both years, but unfortunately you have to buy the highest predicates to get the finest wines. The excitement only starts with the Auslesen, and the Scharzhof QbA is rather disappointing compared to former vintages.

    Final note: Müller’s long-term cellar master, Stefan Fobian, left the Scharzhof at the end of last year and is followed by Heiner Bollig.”

    Stephan Reinhardt, Wine Advocate (244)

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  • Esk Valley The Terraces 2018


    “Esk Valley’s flagship, the 2018 Heipipi The Terraces Malbec Merlot Cabernet Franc is a blend of 43% Malbec, 38% Merlot and 19% Cabernet Franc. It was all picked on April 20th and fermented in a single concrete tank, then aged 18 months in 50% new French oak prior to assemblage and bottling. Dark in color, it boasts knockout aromas of black cherries, toasted coconut, vanilla and cassis on the nose, while the full-bodied palate is rich and velvety, concentrated and plush, with a long-lingering, fruit-laden finish. It’s one of the top Hawke’s Bay red blends to have crossed this taster’s lips. Drink: 2022-2035. 95 points

    Senior Winemaker Gordon Russell has been leading the Esk Valley team for close to 30 years. His big gun is the Heipipi The Terraces, a Malbec-led blend that has become one of New Zealand’s top collectibles. It comes from a hillside vineyard, is harvested on a single day and co-fermented in an open-top concrete fermenter, then aged in 50% new French barriques. The 2018 is a stupendous effort, capable of aging up to two decades. Don’t overlook the Chenin Blanc here, as it’s one of the few from New Zealand to offer some of that Old World wet-wool or lanolin character.”

    Joe Czerwinski, Wine Advocate (06/21)

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  • Etienne Sauzet Puligny-Montrachet 2021


    “The 2021 Puligny-Montrachet Village has a taut and strict nose, well defined, green apple mixed with subtle petrichor/wet pavement scents. The palate is well balanced with lemon zest, lime and a dab of ginger, gently building towards a nicely composed and delineated finish. This should give 8-10 years’ drinking pleasure. Drinking window: 2024-2034. 89-91 points

    “We had frost in April, and for me, it was the snow that did the real damage,” winemaker Benoît Riffaut explains in the tasting room. “Without this, I think the Premier Crus would have been less impacted, maybe 20%? But in the end, we are 80% down in terms of production, whilst Village and Regional Crus are only 50% down. Afterwards, it was not easy due to the mildew, as the vines were less strong. We had to be careful. We began picking around 22 September, 13 months after 2020. The grapes were healthy with correct ripeness, around 12% to 13.2% potential, and slightly more malic than 2020. During élevage, after August racking, I thought the wines were surprisingly good – I liked the energy, the electricity. That’s purely because of the terroir. The wines have been racked in stainless steel tank and will be bottled next January to March.”

    Riffaut has been on a roll in recent vintages, and I find many of Sauzet’s 2021s exemplary. Best in show? No, not the Montrachet or the Bienvenue-Bâtard-Montrachet. Not the Chevalier-Montrachet that sadly is no more following the frost and, subsequently, the acquisition of Bouchard Père denying them their source (though Riffaut seems to have a replacement lined up). No, it’s the startling Bâtard-Montrachet that is the thrill, surfeit with tension and poise, a livewire with bags of energy. Also, try to grab his Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes, Les Referts or the Folatières En La Richards, though they are in minuscule quantities. Chapeau Benoît!”

    Neal Martin, Vinous (01/23)

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  • Ettore Germano Barolo Cerretta 2019


    “The 2019 Barolo Cerretta marries power and vibrancy to great effect. Pressed dried flowers, iron, white pepper, smoke and blood orange lift a core of bright red-toned fruit. Lively acids and incisive tannins give the wine its overall feel. This is a gorgeous and super promising wine from Sergio Germano. Drinking window: 2024-2034. 94 points

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (09/23)

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  • Ettore Germano Barolo Riserva Lazzarito 2015


    “The 2015 Barolo Riserva Lazzarito (with fruit from Serralunga d’Alba) shows a generous, full-bodied consistency, with dark fruit, spice, baking clove and other dustings of exotic spice, such as cardamom and clove. That spiciness washes through the bouquet, and you can feel it on the palate, where the wine is structured and firm. Some 4,500 bottles were released. Drink: 2024-2040. 94 points

    Ettore Germano has taken ambitious leaps and bounds toward greater quality and consistency in this impressive group of new releases.

    Monica Larner, Wine Advocate (06/21)

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  • Ferdinando Principiano Barolo Boscareto 2016


    “The 2016 Barolo Boscareto is laced with crushed raspberry, cinnamon, orange peel and mint. Medium in body and delicate, the 2016 is enticing. Readers should expect a perfumed, gracious Barolo that shows an ethereal side of Serralunga that is quite unique. Drinking window: 2024-2034. 92 points”

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (02/21)

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  • Fontodi Extra Virgin Olive Oil 2023 (500ml)


    Review to follow

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  • Fontodi Filetta di Lamole Chianti Classico 2020


    “The 2020 Chianti Classico Filetta di Lamole is elegant, delicate and lifted. Fine-grained tannins wrap around a core of bright raspberry fruit, cedar, tobacco and anise. Medium in body and aromatic, the Filetta di Lamole is a super-classic wine from this site. Drinking window: 2023-2032. 90 points

    Proprietor Giovanni Manetti could certainly rest on his laurels. The wines have been benchmarks for some time. In recent years, Manetti’s influence as a leader in Panzano and Chianti Classico has exploded because of his role as the President of the Consorzio del Chianti Classico. Instead, Manetti has continued to acquire vineyards and introduce new wines while also quietly refining his approach with the established labels. The 2020s are a bit reticent, but they have also begun to soften in recent months. An example is the 2020 Vigna del Sorbo, which was brooding when I first tasted it a few months ago but is quite a bit more refined in recent tastings. “Two thousand twenty and 2021 are pretty similar,” Giovanni and Bernardo Manetti recounted at Fontodi. “There were perhaps more extremes weather-wise in 2021, but we also had greater diurnal shifts and a later harvest under cooler conditions.””

    Antonio Galloni, Vinous (08/23)

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