Saturday May 12, 2018 - Vintages Release Report

10 May 2018

 

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 … Bordeaux (Bor), New Zealand (NZ) and Rosé (Ro)
The Skinny … There are 150+ wines in this release: the Bordeaux selection is weak and so is the New Zealand selection (unless you go with the In-Store Discoveries). The Rosés are a pretty good lot and if you are looking for some great reds there’s a Plan de Dieu (France) and a California Cab that you need to get.

Argentina …
Alamos 2014 Seleccion Malbec ($16.95 - #322800) – spiced-cherry, raspberry and oak.  (*** ½)
Kaiken 2016 Leyenda Ultra Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.95 - #135202) – full on cassis, blackberry, black cherry, mocha and vanilla.  (*** ½+)

Australia …
D’Arenberg 2012 The Laughing Magpie Shiraz/Viognier ($29.95 - #936971) – floral, spiced-peppers, violets and blackberry.  (*** ½)
Elderton 2015 Barossa Shiraz ($24.95 - #713024) – silky smooth with blackberry, plum, chocolate, white pepper and mocha.  (*** ½+)
Margan Family 2017 Hunter Valley Semillon ($19.95 - #493338) – lanolin, citrus pith and orange peel.  (*** ½)
Wakefield 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.95 - #744235) – juicy and approachable with blue and black fruit, floral and a black cherry finish.  (*** ½)

Canada (Ontario) … click on wine name for full review
Cave Spring 2014 Estate Bottled Gewurztraminer ($17.95 - #302059) - *** ½+
Featherstone 2017 Four Feathers ($14.95 - #341586) - ***+
Featherstone 2017 Rosé ($15.95 - #117861) - *** ½+ … Ro
Henry of Pelham 2017 Three of Hearts Rosé ($19.95 - #552562) - **** … Ro
Malivoire 2017 Vivant Rosé ($19.95 - #498535) - **** … Ro
Thirty Bench 2016 Winemaker’s Blend Double Noir ($18.95 - #493973) - *** ½

Chile …
San Pedro 2015 1865 Selected Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.95 - #037911) – minty, herbal and blackberry.  (*** ½+)

France (Bordeaux) …
Chateau Fleur Haut Gaussens 2010 ($18.95 - #445510) – approachable with blueberry, mocha and black cherry.  (*** ½) – Bor
Chateau La Brande 2015 ($19.95 - #550418) – spiced blackberry, cassis and coffee.  (*** ½) – Bor
Chateau La Prade 2015 ($29.95 - #527283) – smoky coffee bean, big tannins and hidden fruit.  (*** ½) – Bor
France (Lauguedoc) …
Abbotts & Delaunay 2015 Corbieres ($17.95 - #537944) – intense black fruit, spiced-plum, mocha and cherry.  (****)
Gerard Bertrand 2015 Syrah/Grenache ($16.95 - #413237) – red fruit forward with a little herbal adding complexity.  (*** ½+)
France (Midi) …
Gerard Bertrand 2017 Cote des Roses Rosé ($18.95 - #373985) – herbal, peach pit and mineral.  (*** ½) – Ro
France (Provence) …
Caves D’Esclans 2017 Whispering Angel Rosé ($29.95 - #325076) – pretty mineral, delicate sour cherry and strawberry.  (*** ½+) – Ro
France (Rhone) …
Marquis D’Aqueria 2017 Tavel Rosé ($19.95 - #556274) – full on strawberry, orange and red cherry.  (*** ½+) – Ro
Olivier et LaFont 2015 Chateauneuf-du-Pape ($47.95 - #539908) – nice chocolate, cherry with mineral, leather, vanilla and herbs, good tannin structure.  (****+)
Remy Ferbras 2015 Terre de Mistral Cotes du Rhone Villages Plan de Dieu ($15.95 - #538009) – lots of red fruit, intense spice, and a mocha finish; best value of the release.  (****)
France (Southwest) …
Chateau Clamens 2017 Julie Rosé ($19.95 - #491910) – orange, peach, lime with a slight tannin nuance.  (*** ½) – Ro
Chateau Lamartine 2014 Cuvee Particuliere Cahors ($27.95 - #441238) – some old school Cahors here with more tannins than fruit but their coming.  (*** ½+)

Italy (Emilia-Romagna) …
Umberto Cesari 2014 Liano Sangiovese/Cabernet Sauvignon ($27.95 - #225086) – mocha, chocolate and spiced cake; fruit will be coming.  (*** ½)
Italy (Piedmont) …
Giacomo Borgogno & Figli 2014 Langhe Freisa ($23.95 - #388660) – drying tannins, wood smoke and dried fruit.  (*** ½+)
Italy (Tuscany) …
Villa Puccini 2012 ($14.95 - #540930) – fruit forward with oak, ripe tannins and a smoky finish.  (*** ½+)
Italy (Veneto) …
Tommasi 2015 Graticcio Appassionato ($15.95 - #338939) – fruit forward with enough herbal and savoury notes to make it interesting.  (*** ½)

New Zealand …
Elephant Hill 2013 Le Phant ($23.95 - #447367) – ballsy, blackberry, cassis and black cherry with a smoky nuance running right through.  (*** ½+) – NZ
Hunter’s 2014 Pinot Noir ($24.95 - #586115) – delicate with beet root, cranberry and sour cherry.  (*** ½+) - NZ
Nautilus 2016 Chardonnay ($27.95 - #331652) – mineral and mushroom with silky mouthfeel, slight butter, smoke and peach cobbler with a spicy finish.  (****) – NZ

Portugal …
Fonseca 2011 Late Bottled Vintage Port ($18.95 - #087551) – smooth and supple with plum, black cherry and chocolate.  (*** ½+)
Graham’s Six Grapes Reserve Port ($23.95 - #28405) – plum, chocolate, blackberry and spice.  (*** ½)
Kelman 2014 Tinto ($17.95 - #549766) – mocha cherry and vanilla, pretty floral note with nice fruitalong with herbal and spice.  (****)

South Africa …
Simonsig 2017 Chenin Blanc ($13.95 - #981167) – melon a la cantaloupe with apple and pear notes.  (*** ½)

Spain …
Camparron 2014 Crianza ($18.95 - #547125) – chocolate cherry, and intense fruit of black and blue berry. (****)
Ercavio Roble 2014 Tempranillo ($17.95 - #067504) – lean, gentle blue fruit and white pepper.  (*** ½)
Monasterio de Las Vinas 2012 Reserva Garnacha/Tempranillo/Carinena ($14.95 - #166579) – nicely aged, smoky black fruit and a vanilla tickle on the finish.  (*** ½+)

United States (California) …
Bogle Vineyards 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon ($22.95 - #904565) – sweet blackberry, black cherry and chocolate.  (*** ½)
Buena Vista 2013 Pinot Noir ($28.95 - #304105) – decent Cali-Pinot with smoky, cherry and strawberry notes.  (*** ½)
Lake Sonoma 2014 Zinfandel ($26.95 - #498766) – sweet cherry, plum and chocolate.  (*** ½)
Surf Swim 2016 Chardonnay ($17.95 - #547943) – vanilla, butterscotch and baked apple.  (*** ½)
Tom Gore 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.95 - #451336) – fruit forward and smoky with black cherry, dark chocolate, and plum with good acidity and spice on the finish; still good value.  (****)
United States (Oregon) …
Kings Ridge 2015 Pinot Noir ($27.95 - #237776) – anise, black cherry and smoke.  (*** ½+)

________________________________________

In-Store Discoveries:  wines that appear at selected Vintages outlets …
Bachelder 2015 Wismer-Foxcroft N.2 Chardonnay, Ontario ($44.95 - #547299) - *** ½+
Chateau La Louviere Blanc 2012, Bordeaux ($47.95 - #552067) - *** ½
Dusted Valley 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington ($40.95 - #070615) - *** ½
Grasshopper Rock 2015 Earnscleugh Vineyard Pinot Noir, New Zealand ($44.95 - #493163) - *** ½+
Greywacke 2014 Wild Sauvignon, New Zealand ($39.95 - #282806) - ****
Mt. Beautiful 2015 Pinot Noir, New Zealand ($37.95 - #552026) - ****
Jose Zuccardi 2013 Malbec, Argentina ($44.95 - #163725) - *** ½+
Ridge Vineyards 2014 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, California ($94.95 - #089284) - ****
Villa Maria 2015 Taylors Pass Single Vineyard Chardonnay, New Zealand ($33.95 - #495010) - *** ½+
Zorzal Eggo 2016 Blanc de Cal Sauvignon Blanc, Argentina ($29.95 - #551846) - *** ½


If You Can Afford It:  wines worth their high price …
Chateau Yon-Figeac 2015, Bordeaux ($64.95 - #550525) … *** ½+
Montes 2015 Purple Angel, Chile ($62.95 - #062364) … **** ½
Silver Oak 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, California ($204.95 - #936039) … ****
Solaia 2014, Tuscany ($257.95 - #987586) … ****+


Best Values in this Release - (May 12, 2018) …
Abbotts & Delaunay 2015 Corbieres ($17.95 - #537944) – France
Kelman 2014 Tinto ($17.95 - #549766) – Portugal
Remy Ferbras 2015 Terre de Mistral Cotes du Rhone Villages Plan de Dieu ($15.95 - #538009) - France
Tom Gore 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.95 - #451336) – California

Happy Shopping

 

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