Saturday February 16, 2019 - Vintages Release Report

14 Feb 2019

 

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 … Brand New to Vintages (BNV) & Cool Australia (CA)
The Skinny … This time out there are a number of wines in the focus worth checking out: 4 from Australia and at least 5 Brand News; the one wine I was most excited for was not at the tasting and is slated for “late arrival” (Tasmanian Pinot Noir – if you are a Pinot fan check it out, they are usually quite good) … Plenty of good other wines to choose from and the value highlights are some strange and unexpected wines indeed – see those at the very bottom. Happy Shopping.

Australia …
Domaine Naturaliste 2014 Discovery Syrah ($24.95 - #632596) – spicy, meaty, cassis and herbal.  (*** ½+) … CA
Domaine Naturaliste 2015 Rebus Cabernet Sauvignon ($33.95 - #632604) – less intense than usual Aussie Cab, with more acidity, chalky tannins and delicate red fruit; unexpected Australian.  (****) … CA
Quartier 2016 Pinot Noir ($28.95 - #632554) – cranberry, floral, subtle cherry and really good acidity to clean the palate.  (*** ½+) … CA

Canada (Ontario) … click on wine name for full review
Featherstone 2017 Red Tail Merlot ($19.95 - #131540) … *** ½+
G. Marquis 2016 The Silver Line Pinot Noir ($19.95 - #258673) … ****
Henry of Pelham 2017 Estate Riesling ($19.95 - #557165) … *** ½
Leaning Post 2016 The Fifty Chardonnay ($22.95 - #578864) … ****+
Thirty Bench 2016 Winemaker’s Blend Double Noir ($22.95 - #493973) … *** ½

Chile …
Santa Alicia 2017 Gran Reserva de Los Andes Chardonnay ($16.95 - #406991) – pleasant vanilla and oak with melon, apple and peach fruit.  (****)
Santa Carolina 2013 Specialties Dry Framing Carignan ($18.95 - #213520) – I have recommended this wine twice before and I’ll do it again – the bottle at this pre-tasting was corked but I know the wine to be good otherwise.  (****)
Tarapaca 2017 Gran Reserva Sauvignon Blanc ($17.95 - #632349) – oily with some lime pith and gooseberry notes.  (*** ½)
Vina Leyda 2015 Canelo Single Vineyard Syrah ($19.95 - #632703) – blackberry, mocha, cherry and mineral with spice and hints of umami.  (****) … BNW

France (Beaujolais) …
Domaine Baron de L’Ecluse 2017 Vieilles Vignes ($20.95 - #637306) – pretty floral, cherry, and blueberry; ripe and delicious.  (****) … BNW
France (Bordeaux) …
Pierre Lurton 2016 Bordeaux ($19.95 - #632984) – silky smooth with lovely dark fruit, mocha-cherry, floral and a pretty smoked-pepper finish; great value Bordeaux red ready to go.  (****)
France (Loire) …
Jean-Max Roger 2017 Cuvee Genese Sancerre ($29.95 - #189126) – sweaty with herbal and citrus; quite refreshing.  (*** ½)
France (Rhone) …
Camille Cayran 2017 La Reserve Plan de Dieu ($17.95 - #644286) – good value red with straight up raspberry and cherry fruit and a hint of savoury, nice acidity and a long plummy finish.  (*** ½+) … BNW
Domaine Alary 2015 La Jean de Verde Cairanne ($28.95 - #639914) – cigar, cherry, mineral, blackberry, cassis and wood smoke with a spicy finish.  (****) … BNW
Patrick Lesec 2016 Cairanne ($19.95 - #636217) – raspberry, cherry and smoke with a peppery finish.  (****)

Italy (Lugana) …
Monte del Fra 2017 Lugana ($21.95 - #631051) – this is what you’d call a pretty wine with its floral, green apple, grapefruit zest, acidity and fun hit of spice.  (****)
Italy (Puglia) …
Masserie Pisari 2017 Primitivo ($13.95 - #270306) – black cherry and plum with hints of coffee and spice.  (*** ½)
Italy (Sicily) …
Piano Dei Diani 2015 ($26.95 - #589242) – plum and black cherry with smoke and leather.  (*** ½)
Italy (Tuscany) …
Castello di Ama 2015 Ama Chianti Classico ($34.95 - #515759) – need to have some renewed interest in Chianti, this one can do it: fruit forward, smoked meat notes with black cherry and blueberry taking center stage.  (****+)
La Torre Guinzano 2015 San Gimignano Rosso ($17.95 - #480665) – soft and supple with good acidity on the finish, pleasing herbal and spice on the finish.  (*** ½)
Italy (Veneto) …
Valpantena 2015 Amarone della Valpolicella ($38.95 - #981316) – chocolate, mocha, plum and cherry, well-concentrated, full-bodied and rich in flavour, nice delicate spice on the finish.  (****)

New Zealand …
Awatere River 2017 By Louis Vavasour Sauvignon Blanc ($21.95 - #492272) – mineral, green pepper and herbal with a touch of a sweaty note, but really that’s ok.  (*** ½)

Portugal …
Herdade Peso Trinca Bolotas Tinto 2016 ($16.95 - #431064) – nice plum and red berry, very easy drinking. (*** ½)

South Africa …
Clos Malverne 2015 Le Café Pinotage ($16.95 - #666776) – totally coffee oriented, call it light latte, if this is your style of wine, then pick some up.  (***+)
Plaisir de Merle 2016 Petit Plaisir ($16.95 - #631556) – it translates to light pleasure and it certainly is: spiced mocha, cherry, earthy and smoked-plums.  (****)

United States (California) …
Au Contraire 2014 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($39.95 - #639864) – delicate yet fruit forward with strawberry, spice and hints of vanilla.  (****) … BNW
Cambria 2014 Tepusquet Vineyard Syrah ($29.95 - #660415) – delicate spice, blue and black berries with hints of mocha.  (*** ½)
Presqu’ile Winery 2014 Chardonnay ($32.95 - #632851) – lots of oak but there is a nice layering of apple and peach cobbler.  (*** ½)
Rutherford Ranch 2013 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($49.95 - #060525) – dark berries, blueberries, black plum and spice.  (*** ½+)
________________________________________

In-Store Discoveries:  wines that appear at selected Vintages outlets …
Bouchard Pere et Fils 2016 Les Clous Meursault, Burgundy ($68.95 - #661322) … *** ½+
Chateau Caillou 2015, Bordeaux ($37.95 - #636241) … *** ½
Chateau Paradis 2015, Provence ($24.95 - #415984) … ***+
Domaine Naturaliste Floris 2015 Chardonnay, Australia ($33.95 - #609339) … *** ½  
Girard 2014 Petite Sirah, California ($44.95 - #521542) … *** ½
Il Palazzino 2012 Stagi, Tuscany ($37.95 - #629212) … *** ½+
L’Aventure 2015 Optimus, California ($81.95 - #683409) … *** ½+
Mount Peak Sentinel 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, California ($79.95 - #635136) … ****+
Pintas 2015 Character, Portugal ($49.95 - #292599) … *** ½+
Post Scriptum de Chryseia 2016, Portugal ($38.95 - #067538) … ****
Voche 2014 Seleccion Graciano, Spain ($34.95 - #628933) … ***+

If You Can Afford It:  wines worth their high price …
Deutz Brut Rosé Champagne, France ($79.95 - #092833) … ****
Three By Wade 2015, California ($57.95 - #631788) … ****

Other Stuff That’s Fine, But It’s Not Wine …
Arran Port Cask Finish Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Scotland ($84.95 - #328815) … *** ½+
Iwai Mars Whisky, Japan ($59.95 - #634527) … ****

Best Values in this Release - (February 16, 2019) …
Patrick Lesec 2016 Cairanne ($19.95 - #636217) – France
Pierre Lurton 2016 Bordeaux ($19.95 - #632984) – France
Plaisir de Merle 2016 Petit Plaisir ($16.95 - #631556) – South Africa
Santa Alicia 2017 Gran Reserva de Los Andes Chardonnay ($16.95 - #406991) – Chile

© MichaelPinkusWineReview.com 2019. All rights reserved. You may use the content of this newsletter by including full credit to Michael Pinkus, Grape Guy and a link to www.michaelpinktuwinereview.com

 

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