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Saturday February 6, 2016 - Vintages Release Report

02 Feb 2016

 

Key to the 5-star rating system:
5 = Outstanding … 4.5 = Excellent … 4 = Very Good … 3.5 = Good

Wine colour indicators - Red, Whites, etc.

The Foci … South Africa (SA), Southern France (SF) and Valentine’s Day (VAL)
The Skinny … Very little to get excited about in the Valentine’s Day release, Southern France has some promise and the South Africans step up to the table with some really good bottles.  The Australian bottles are consistent in quality this time out and there’s a bottle of Aglianico (Italy) you just gotta put your hands on.

Argentina …
Crios 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon ($14.95 - #640979) – flavourful with lots of simple dark fruit.  (*** ½)

Australia …
Gemtree 2012 Uncut Shiraz ($24.95 - #627844) – pretty all the way through, layers of mineral/chalky, licorice, cedar, dark chocolate along with spiced  raspberry and elegant peppery goodness.  (****+)
Pepperjack 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon ($24.95 - #433003) – dark berries, eucalyptus, cinnamon and spice.   (*** ½+)
Sister’s Run 2013 Cavalry Hill Shiraz ($15.95 - #222018) – value and taste go hand in hand here; plum, cocoa, blackberry, blueberry and spice.  (*** ½+)
The Black Chook 2014 Shiraz/Viognier ($17.95 - #66738) – floral, black cherry and spice with a softer edge.  (*** ½+)

Canada (British Columbia) …
Burrowing Owl 2012 Merlot ($39.95 - #585737) – very silky across the tongue: chocolate, black cherry, nice oak integration, vibrant tannins with a nice savoury note and hint of blueberry on the finish.  (****+)
Canada (Ontario) … click on wine name for full review
Creekside 2013 Merlot ($24.95 - #444752) … *** ½+
Fielding 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon ($29.95 - #444661) … ****
Fielding 2012 Red Conception ($18.95 - #189183) … *** ½+

Chile …
Emiliana 2015 Natura Unoaked Chardonnay ($15.95 - #439398) – for an unoaked Chard this has really lovely depth and freshness.  (*** ½+)
Vina Chocalan 2014 Reserva Syrah ($14.95 - #38513) – minty, meaty and raspberry.  (*** ½)

France (Beaujolais) …
Chateau des Jacques 2013 Morgon ($24.95 - #653584) – delightful fruit driven Gamay with dark cherry, earthy and white pepper on the finish.  (*** ½+)
France (Burgundy) …
Herve Azo 2014 Chablis ($24.95 - #185736) – mineral, floral, citrus and tart green apple.  (*** ½+)
France (Midi) …
Chateau Pech Redon 2012 L’Epervier La Clape ($24.95 - #129965) – savoury and sweet fruited with lovely cherry, licorice and spice.  (*** ½+) … SF
Hecht & Bannier 2013 Minervois ($19.95 - #17764) – cherry, plum, white pepper with nice finish.  (*** ½) … SF
Secret de Schistes 2011 ($41.95 - #440669) – herbal, mocha, mineral, meaty, cassis and big tannins; grippy, gritty, interesting and ageable. Neat suede-like label.  (****+) … SF
France (Rhone) …
Domaine de la Colline 2012 St. Jean Vacqueyras ($24.95 - #38661) – nicely layered with earthy, blackberry, cassis, vanilla, smoky, cherry and supple tannins.  (****)
France (Southwest) …
Chateau Peyros 2010 Madiran Tannat/Cabernet ($15.95 - #208249) – great value in an ageable red; chewy-chunky, grippy with leather, smoke and toasted plum.  (*** ½+)

Greece …
Boutari 2013 Naoussa Xinomavro ($13.95 - #23218) – hints of raspberry with earthy flavours and good acidity.  (*** ½+)

Italy (Basilicata) …
Pipoli 2013 Aglianico del Vulture ($15.95 - #320507) – there’s a real chocolate, cherry note that runs all the way through with blackberry, cassis, mineral and spice; very good value.  (****+)
Italy (Tuscany) …
Castelli del Grevepesa 2010 Clemente VII Chianti Classico Riserva ($20.95 - #643205) – spicy and currant-laden, quite chewy.  (*** ½+)
San Giacomo 2010 Brunello di Montalcino ($49.95 - #434548) – sweet dried cherry with nice smoky-tannins.  (****)
Italy (Umbria) …
Monte Tondo 2014 Soave Classico ($16.95 - #311597) – grapefruit pith and pulp with a mineral seam.  (*** ½+)
Italy (Veneto) …
Masi 2011 Grandarella Appaxximento ($28.95 - #606921) – really chewy licorice, nicely smoky and savoury as anything.  (*** ½+)
Monte del Fra 2013 Lena di Mezzo Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore ($19.95 - #165662) – touched by cherry sweetness amongst the red berries and white pepper.  (*** ½+)

Portugal …
Barao de Vilar Maynard’s 2011 Vintage Port ($45.95 - #432914) – ample cherry flavours with spicy notes balanced by acidity, still very young.  (*** ½+)
Tiago Cabaco 2014 .COM Premium White ($14.95 - #429316) – fresh, lively, pear and citrus.  (*** ½)

South Africa …
Avondale 2014 Jonty’s Ducks Pekin White ($14.95 - #439554) – fresh, floral, apple, pear and melon rind.  (*** ½+) … SA
Ken Forrester 2015 Old Vine Reserve Chenin Blanc ($17.95 - #231282) – hints of melon rind, citrus zest and cantaloupe on the finish.  (*** ½+) … SA
Nederburg 2013 Manor House Shiraz ($16.95 - #68775) – decent amount of spice, tannins and a meaty-smokiness.  (*** ½+) … SA
Rupert & Rothchild 2012 Classique ($22.95 - #434787) – well-structured, herbal, strawberry, blackberry, spice and pepper with good tannins.  (****) … SA
Rustenberg 2013 NM Nicholson ($19.95 - #278390) – silky palate with red and dark fruit.  (*** ½) … SA

Spain …
Rotllan 2010 Torra ($19.95 - #267989) – coffee, licorice, blackberry, black cherry, vanilla, herbal with a smoky finish.  (*** ½+)

United States (California) …
Chateau St. Jean 2012 Chardonnay ($29.95 - #441071) – nice depth of flavour with spicy, buttery and vanilla notes.  (*** ½+)
Domaine Carneros 2011 Brut Cuvee Sparkling ($38.95 - #301655) – Taittinger’s property in California, plenty of bready, biscuity and Champagne-like notes.  (****)
Esser 2013 Merlot ($22.95 - #439042) – not your typical Merlot: silky yet with some meaty notes; blueberry, cherry, and raspberry all with surprising depth and character.  (****)
Joel Gott 2013 815 Cabernet Sauvignon ($24.95 - #444059) – lots of raspberry, cherry and blackberry.  (*** ½+)
Madison’s Ranch 2013 Chardonnay ($19.95 - #441113) – vanilla, pineapple, candied apple and sweet oak; for them who like ‘em on the “sweet” side with a toffee-caramel finish.  (*** ½)
Paul Hobbs 2012 Crossbarn Cabernet Sauvignon ($49.95 - #438986) - 20 months in French and American oak, 14% new, there's a nice sweet raspberry and cherry smell; palate is rich and succulent with blackberry, red and black cherry, mocha, spice; slight chalky intensity to the finish.  (****+)  
United States (Oregon) …
Sokol Blosser 2012 Pinot Noir ($35.95 - #748434) – earthy-mineral with red and black currant.  (*** ½+)
United States (Washington) …
Columbia Crest 2012 H3 Les Cheveux Red Blend ($19.95 - #287425) – pleasant and pretty with an easy-drinking-ness to it: chocolate, blueberry, white smoke and decent tannins.  (*** ½+)
________________________________________

In-Store Discoveries:  wines that appear on the shelves of your local Vintages outlet …
Foncalieu la Lumiere 2012 ($37.95 - #438044) – France (****)
Gruet Blanc de Noirs Methode Champenoise Sparkling ($28.95 - #433037) – New Mexico, USA (*** ½)
Pierre Sparr 2011 Schoenenbourg Riesling ($22.95 - #664995) – Alsace, France (*** ½)

If You Can Afford It:  wines worth their high price …
Belle Glos 2014 Clark & Telephone Vineyard Pinot Noir ($69.95 - #652883) California, USA (****)
La Jota 2012 Howell Mountain Estate Cabernet Sauvignon ($94.95 - #659755) – California, USA (****)
Segla 2006 ($55.95 - #359810) – Bordeaux, France (*** ½+)
Taittinger 2008 Brut Champagne ($97.95 - #989905) – Champagne, France (****) … VAL

What I’ll Be Lining Up For:  February 6, 2016 …
Pipoli 2013 Aglianico del Vulture ($15.95 - #320507) – Italy

Happy Shopping

 

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