Saturday July 8, 2017 - Vintages Release Report

06 Jul 2017

 

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 … Spain 2.0 (S2) and Cool Climate Chardonnay (CCC)
The Skinny … The two focus releases have some good wines in them – which I find a rarity, but a welcome one; there’s also some really good value wines in this release, especially the New Zealand Chardonnay from Invivo, at under $18 it’s worthy of a half-case purchase at least.

Argentina …
Kaiken 2015 Las Rocas Ultra Malbec ($19.95 - #050849) – blackberry, chocolate and toasty.  (*** ½+)

Australia …
Claymore 2014 Bittersweet Symphony Cabernet Sauvignon ($24.95 - #489971) – big, robust black fruit entry, but the palate shows some elegance of oak, cocoa and coffee.  (****)
Sister’s Run 2014 Calvary Hill Shiraz ($18.95 - #222018) – pretty wine with an intensity of dark fruit, mocha, licorice and spice.  (****)
Tahbilk 2014 Grenache/Shiraz/Mourvedre ($24.95 - #489922) – nice intensity of dark berry fruit, spice, vanilla and licorice.  (*** ½+)

Canada (Ontario) … click on wine name for full review
Bachelder 2013 Wismer Vineyard, Foxcroft Block Chardonnay ($44.95 - #512178) – **** - CCC
Dark Horse 2013 Pinot Noir, One Horse Town ($24.95 - #499558) - *** ½
Foreign Affair 2013 Apologetic Red ($159.95 / 1500ml - #514653) - ****+
Southbrook 2015 Triomphe Chardonnay ($24.95 - #172338) - **** - CCC
Stratus 2015 Merlot, Wildass ($16.95 - #376822) - ****

Chile …
Santa Carolina 2014 Reserva de Familia Carmenere ($18.95 - #034942) – minty blackberry, cassis and cocoa powder.  (*** ½+)

France (Beaujolais) …
Laurent Perrachon 2015 Roche Bleue Julienas ($19.95 - #487165) – there’s a spicy component with black cherry and smoky notes with hints of blueberry on the finish.  (****)
France (Burgundy) …
Domaine Laroche 2014 Les Vaudevey Chablis 1er Cru ($38.95 - #416057) – soft and plush, silky with apple puree, peach and vanilla.  (*** ½+) – CCC
France (Midi) …
Cave de Roquebrun 2015 La Grange des Combes Saint-Chinian-Roquebrun ($18.95 - #155804) – pleansantly juicy and plummy with ripe raspberry-cherry-vanilla and wood with a hit of licorice.  (****)
France (Rhone) …
Demazet 2015 Reserve des Armoiries Tradition Cotes du Rhone ($13.95 - #494690) – mocha-cherry and blackberry; great value.  (*** ½+)
Famille Perrin 2016 Tavel ($19.95 - #680801) – cherry core with some weight.  (*** ½)
Chateau Lamartine 2012 Cuvee Particuliere Cahors ($24.95 - #441238) – bridges the old spicy-robust Cahors with the fruit forward Argentine version; plenty of blue and black fruit.  (*** ½+)

Germany …
Dr. Pauly Bergweiler 2016 Riesling Feinherb ($17.95 - #496554) – mineral, talc, pear and peach.  (*** ½+)

Italy (Piedmont) …
FontanaFredda 2015 Raimonda Barbera D’Alba ($16.95 - #023135) – simple with fruit driven sour spiced-cherry.  (*** ½+)
Italy (Tuscany) …
Abbadia Ardenga 2011 Brunello di Montalcino ($49.95 - #672337) – spicy dried fruit element with dried raspberry, cherry and oaky/toasty notes.  (****)
Italy (Veneto) …
Farina 2015 Valpolicella ($14.95 - #492561) – sweet cherry, soft blackberry and plum.  (*** ½)
Monte del Fra 2014 Lena di Mezzo Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore ($21.95 - #165662) – plum, chocolate, cherry and vanilla.  (*** ½+)
Zenato 2011 Cormi Corvina/Merlot ($21.95 - #108282) – coffee, mocha, blackberry, cassis and smoke.  (*** ½+)

New Zealand …
Invivo 2016 Gisborne Chardonnay ($16.95 - #499855) – peach, melon, vanilla, buttery and delicate spice; a great value Chardonnay to be bought by the case.  (****) – CCC

Spain …
Baron de Ley 2016 Rosé ($14.95 - #117283) – sweet fruit but leans dry: raspberry, cherry with a strawberry finish; nice summer sip.  (*** ½)
Conde Valdemar 2012 Crianza Tempranillo ($16.95 - #356089) – simple yet tasty with vanilla, plum and cherry.  (*** ½) – S2
Descendientes de Palacios 2015 Petalos ($24.95 - #446484) – blue and black berry with a spicy elegant finish.  (*** ½+) – S2
Finca Villacreces 2015 Pruno ($21.95 - #312140) – chocolate, cherry, blackberry with an herbal nuance.  (*** ½+) – S2
Lan 2008 Gran Reserva ($34.95 - #928622) – olive, mocha, currant and tobacco with a nice spice; this is a nicely layered wine.  (****) – S2
Lustau East India Solera Sherry ($23.95 /  500ml - #342931) – super nutty, intense and rich with burnt caramel, smoke and fig; perfect with goat cheese.  (****) – S2
Torres 2014 Salmos ($31.95 - #450734) – pretty wine with a juicy core; red fruit with herbal and spicy character and a firm finish.  (****) – S2

United States (California) …
Four Vines 2012 Biker Zinfandel ($21.95 - #513176) – not your usual Zin, there’s tea leaf, cherry, vanilla with sweet bacon and cola notes.  (****)
Gnarly Head 2015 1924 Double Black Red Blend ($19.95 - #498881) – juicy plum, chocolate, vanilla, cherry-cola and a sweet mid-palate to finish.  (*** ½+)
J. Lohr 2014 South Ridge Syrah ($23.95 - #948240) – plum, blackberry, strawberry-balsamic and white pepper.  (*** ½+)
Noble Vines 2014 667 Pinot Noir ($19.95 - #342808) – soft and supple, lots of berry fruit, both red and black with a cherry / smoky finish.  (*** ½+)
Paul Hobbs 2016 Crossbarn Chardonnay ($34.95 - #235945) – peach and vanilla with apple puree; it’s juicy and zesty.  (*** ½+)
Raymond 2013 Reserve Selection Cabernet Sauvignon ($43.95 - #715979) – lots going on here with ripe cherry, red licorice, anise, vanilla, blueberry and smoky-spices.  (****+)
Ridge 2014 Three Valleys ($44.95 - #652875) – baking spice, blackberry, blueberry, violet and spice.  (*** ½+)
Rodney Strong 2014 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($29.95 - #465724) – super creamy with buttery vanilla and peach puree.  (*** ½+) – CCC
United States (Oregon) …
Acrobat 2015 Pinot Gris ($20.95 - #420729) – juicy, peachy, pear with lemon drop.  (*** ½+)
Planet Oregon 2015 Pinot Noir ($29.95 - #333245) – gentle spice, black cherry with hints of cocoa.  (*** ½+)
United States (Washington) …
Chateau Ste. Michelle 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon ($20.95 - #269357) – mellow and supple with blue and black fruit.  (*** ½+)
________________________________________

In-Store Discoveries:  wines that appear on the shelves of your local Vintages outlet …
Intrinsic 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington ($39.95 - #493379) … ****
Michel Gassier 2014 Nostre Pais White, France ($22.95 - #485664) … *** ½


What I’ll Be Lining Up For (July 8, 2017) …
Cave de Roquebrun 2015 La Grange des Combes Saint-Chinian-Roquebrun ($18.95 - #155804) – France
Demazet 2015 Reserve des Armoiries Tradition Cotes du Rhone ($13.95 - #494690) – France
Invivo 2016 Gisborne Chardonnay ($16.95 - #499855) – New Zealand
Sister’s Run 2014 Calvary Hill Shiraz ($18.95 - #222018) – Australia
Stratus 2015 Merlot, WildAss ($16.95 - #376822) - Ontario

Happy Shopping

 

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