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2017 Justin Vineyards & Winery Justification, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$60.00USD

This is a "right bank" Bordeaux blend from Paso Robles.  It is 65% Cabernet Franc and 35% Merlot and sees 44% new French oak for 20 months..  Ruby/purple in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose is nice with black cherries, dusty, baking spices, slight tobacco and cedar.  On the palate, this has thick tannins at this stage.  Lots of cherries, red currants, spice and slight earthiness.  It is very tight right now but opened up nicely on day 2.  If drinking now, give it a good decant.  This should improve a bit over the next few years and be good for seven to ten years after that.  It has

2012 Landmark Vineyards Pinot Noir Rodgers Creek, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+

Nice to be able to try this with a bit of age on it.  Deeper cherry red in color, clear and bright.  The nose has cherry lozenges, slight mushrooms and dust.  On the palate, this has a full bodied, juicy texture.  Cherry candies/lozenges.  The bottle lists 14.6% abv but it seems higher both in texture and warmth on the finish.  That said, this is enjoyable and probably better as a cocktail than at the dinner table.  It could probably hold up with a grilled steak.  It probably should be drunk in the next few years.  

2017 Landmark Pinot Noir Hop Kiln Estate, USA, California, Sonoma, Russian River Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

This is a pretty classic RRV Pinot Noir.  It skirts the line between elegance and brawn nicely.  A nice value for a Pinot Noir of this quality.  Ruby in color, clear and bright.  The nose has sour cherries, slight root beer, and baking spices.  Really a great texture.  Creamy but with some cut to it.  It dances on the palate which has plenty of cherry fruit and sunshine.  Slight char note underlying the fruit.  Nice finish.  This is young and needs some cellaring or air.  It unwinds a bit in the glass but gives the impression of more to come.  It should be cellared for three to five more ye

2018 Landmark Vineyards Pinot Noir Overlook, USA, California, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$27.00USD

This is the base Pinot from Landmark.  It sources grapes from Monterey, Santa Barbara and Sonoma Counties.  The wine is fermented in stainless steel and then spends 10 months in 25% new French oak.  Stylistically it is middle of the road with more elegance but still lots of sunshine.  Cherry red in color, clear and bright.  The nose is nice with a bit of smoke and cherries at first but lightens with air to show some pretty strawberries.  Medium bodied.  On the palate, the strawberries come thru.  Nice acidity.  Turning more to tart black cherries on the finish.  There is some depth.  This i

2018 Landmark Vineyards Chardonnay Overlook, USA, California, Sonoma, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$20.00USD

Interesting Trivia bit - The original owners of Lanmark were descendants of John Deere of Tractor fame.  Overlook was the name of John Deere's home in Illinois.  The wine is sourced from various locations around Sonoma County.  This is an outstanding value in Chardonnay.  They produce quite a bit of it yet manage to be very consistent from vintage to vintage and bottle to bottle.  It barrel fermented and spends 25% in new French oak.  The lees are stirred every two weeks as it goes thru full malolactic fermentation.  It is green/gold in color.  The nose is very nice with vanilla and peaches

2013 Adir Ben Zimra Plot Ninety Eight, Israel, Galilee, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$53.00USD

This is a "Port" styled wine made in Israel from 50% Cabernet Sauvignon and 50% Shiraz.  Made more in a tawny style but not quite.  It is very interesting an certainly good.  Deep brick red in color, clear and bright.  The nose has toffee, slight cassis and a bit nutty.  Full bodied and viscous.  On the palate, this is sweet but not overt.  Toffee, chocolate and raspberries.  Slight warmth on the finish.  This is Kosher.  It is hard to say how long this will last.  My guess is that it should be consumed over the next five years, but it might last much longer.  It went very well with pecan r

2016 Liquid Farm Chardonnay La Hermana, USA, California, Santa Maria, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

I have had a fair amount of wine from this producer over the years with various results for my tastes.  Sometimes, the wines carry too much oak and others they are amazing.  No doubt, some of the difference is due to the fruit and some the vintage.  And tastes vary.  This one straddles the line for me and goes right up to the edge but doesn't cross that line.  For those who have issues with obvious oak this might cross that line.  Medium golden in color.  The nose has vanilla, lemon, fresh cut lumber and spice.  On the palate, the vanilla and lumber come thru along with a delightful sour le

2018 The Withers Winery Chardonnay Peters Vineyard, USA, California, Sonoma Coast, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

This is a new winery for me to try.  Golden in color.  The nose shows vanilla with peaches.  On the palate, this is medium bodied.  Some peach and grapefruit.  Good acidity.  Nice finish.  Overall, a very pleasant Chardonnay.  It drinks well on its own now and will work with lighter fare.  Drink this over the next five to seven years.  

2017 Shafer Chardonnay Red Shoulder Ranch, USA, California, Napa, Carneros, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$48.00USD

Shafer is one of the stalwarts of the Napa valley and this wine seems like it has been one of the top Chards forever as well.  It has always had a fair amount of oak showing and this one seemed no exception.  In the past, many had way more oak, but now, this tends to show more oak than most as time have changed.  Whether this is good or bad is different for every taster/drinker.  Copper/gold in color.  The nose has vanilla, baking spices, orange peel and slight lemon.  On the palate, this has a nice oily texture.  Plenty of depth.  Notes of ginger with a bit or lemon peel and spice.  With a

2017 Quilt Chardonnay, USA, California, Napa, Rutherford, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

Copper/golden in color.  The nose shows a fair amount of grapefruit but also some spice/oak.  On the palate, this has a very nice texture.  Notes of lemon peel and slight peach.  Good finish.  Tasted blind, it was easy to guess Napa Chardonnay.  This is drinking well now and should be for the next five to seven years.  Nice on its own or with some cheeses it may over power lighter foods but will work with heavier fish dishes or pasta with a cream sauce.  

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