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1988 Zind-Humbrecht Gewurztraminer Rangen de Thann Clos St. Urbain Vendange Tardive, France, Alsace, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1988
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

The evening wasn't quite done and this fit the bill for a little something sweet to finish the night.  From a 375ml bottle.  Deep golden/orange in color.  The nose is pretty with lychees, oranges and slight simple syrup.  Also a nice underlying minerality.  On the palate, this is slightly viscous.  Much fresher than a bottle a couple of years ago.  Lychees, apricots with a bit of sweetness.  A nice bit of acidity to balance things out.  Long finish that was clean and without bitterness.  Just delicious and interesting to sip on its own, it would work with a slightly sweet dessert.  

2011 Saxum Terry Hoage Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$125.00USD

The 2011 Saxums are drinking beautifully right now.  It was a difficult vintage but Justin Smith and Saxum excelled.  The wines are a bit more ready than most vintages, but that's fine.  Pop and pour. 51% Grenache and 49% Syrah.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, dark chocolate, black pepper and roasted herbs.  With air more chocolate comes out along with a bit or roasted meats.  On the palate, this has a lovely juicy yet muscular texture.  Lots of black raspberry fruit, some char and a bit of earthiness and black pepper.  Nice finish.  This is a big wine and will need

2010 Domaine de la Janasse Châteauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$200.00USD

This is still quite young and patience will be rewarded.  That said, if you have a few or like them young, then this is great now too.  This bottle was decanted for four hours prior to drinking.  Inky purple in color.  The nose is black raspberries, charred wood, pepper, spice but also a lovely little lavender.  On the palate, this is big.  Brooding but still shows black raspberries, blueberries, black pepper and slight charred earth.  Medium tannins.  A nice streak of acidity.  Long finish.  This wine begs for food.  Cassoulet, steak or roasted vegetables would be great.  Probably another

2006 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select, USA, California, Napa, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2006
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$200.00USD

Shafer Hillside Select is one of the great wines in Napa and the world.  It is priced accordingly, but every once in a while, it is worth splurging on a bottle with friends.  This bottle was decanted for sediment (there was very little) and allowed to breathe in the cellar for four hours prior to consuming.  A magnificent showing for this wine from admittedly, not one of their best vintages.  Purple in color with some ruby hues to it.  The nose is wonderful with cassis, slight pencil lead, a bit of coffee grounds and a slight salinity.  On the palate, lots of cassis.  Deep with layers of gr

2010 Domaine William Fèvre Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos, France, Burgundy, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2010
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$145.00USD

A stunning wine if still a bit young.  In a day when Grand Cru Burgs are priced crazily, this is about the best one that is almost affordable.  It certainly is not your typical Chablis in profile either.  Golden in color.  Not dark but not light either.  No noticeable oxidation.  The nose has peaches, slight chalk and a bit of pepper/spice.  On the palate, the peaches carry thru over a concentrated minerality.  Great round texture.  Good acidity but not bracing.  Nice finish.  In general, this is a big round wine that is just delicious.  Went well with St.

2008 Dom Pérignon Champagne Legacy Edition Label, France, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$180.00USD

2008 is a great vintage for Champagne.  This is the first Dom I have tasted from that vintage.  Outstanding and also a bit unique.  Light golden in color with a very nice mousse of tiny bubbles.  On the nose, this has a a nice meyer lemon note along with an ever so slight nuttiness and a bit of smoke.  It opens slowly with air and never is a big nose at this point but does show bit of ginger root.  On the palate, this is excellent if still young.  Apple cider, fresh green apples, slight toast all mix together.  But what is really fun is the tension in the wine.  This is one of the liveliest

2016 Le Vieux Donjon Châteauneuf-du-Pape, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$65.00USD

2016 is a stellar year in Chateauneuf du Pape and the southern Rhone Valley.  While this wine has years left in it, it was wonderful to drink now.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose is great.  Clean with black cherries, dust, spice and slight lavender notes.  On the palate, this has a wonderful texture.  Juicy black cherry fruit.  An underlying minerality.  Lots of depth.  Good finish.  It is a big wine at the moment, but will no doubt mellow and gain in complexity as it loses some of that youthful fruit.  This easily has a decade and more left to it, but it really is worth drinki

2017 Sandlands Chenin Blanc Amador County, California, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

Sandlands is one of the best sources for Chenin Blanc in the United States.  They make a lot of other interesting wines but these might be the best.  And, their wines are all great values.  These come from vines planted back in the 1970's.  Golden in color.  A lovely nose of honey, almond milk and Calvados.  On the palate, it is much the same but less alcohol; let's say pears not Calvados.  Also an underlying minerality.  OK acidity.  Nice finish.  This will work with Salads, fish, or sushi very well.  Chenin Blanc ages very well and while I have not had this old, it seems likely that this

2015 Bodega Maranones Vinos de Madrid 30,000 Maravedíes, Spain, Gredos, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$20.00USD

Brought back from a visit a couple of years ago.  This is 90% Garnacha and 10 percent Morate.  The wines of Gredos posit a unique take on Grenache and this is no exception.  This is a great value and can be found under $20 and closer to $15 at times.  Deep ruby in color.  The nose has nice cherries with some salinity and a bit of minerality.  Clean.  On the palate, bright cherries over minerals with some salinity.  Medium bodied.  Some depth.  Nice finish.  A bit of acidity but enough.  This will work with lighter foods and fowl.  Great with stews.  It is drinking well but probably has anot

1997 Tommaso Bussola Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Tb, Italy, Veneto, Wine Review

Vintage: 
1997
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+
Current Price: 
$180.00USD

Bussola is one of the top producers in Amarone and the top producer I can still afford (after Quintarelli and Dal Forno).  This was an older bottle that was just singing.  It had been stood up for a week and then decanted just prior to serving.  It continued to open up for the next couple of hours.  Really a gorgeous wine.  Purple in color with ruby swirls.  The nose is great.  Dusty at first, that gave way to slight craisins, cherries with some underlying smoke and even a bit of dried flowers.  With more air, a chocolate/caramel note comes out; almost sweet.  On the palate, this is still l

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