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2016 Domaine des Pierres Seches St. Joseph Sainte-Epine, France, Rhone, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$47.00USD

This is a relatively newer producer in the Rhone whose wines should be on your radar.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, white pepper, roasted herbs and a slight violet note.  On the palate, this is full bodied.  Delicious.  Black raspberry fruit over smoke and nice minerality.  Long finish.  This will go great with roasts and casserole but also Indian and more robust Thai food.  It still will continue to improve for the next five to seven years and should be good for ten to fifteen, at least, after that.  

2013 Château Coutet, France, Bordeaux, Sauternes, Barsac, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

This is one of the better houses making sweet dessert wines in Barsac.  This one was no exception. Light copper/orange in color.  Perhaps a bit darker than expected but not an issue.  On the nose, there is tropical fruit, slight each and a slight kindling smoke note.  On the palate, this is rich.  Plenty of Botrytis but good acidity to offset the sweetness.  Honey and tropical fruit on the palate.  Clean.  Long finish.  This is great on its own or with a more savory dessert (no chocolate).  It should easily last another fifteen to twenty years.  

2016 Fattoria di Fèlsina Berardenga Chianti Classico Riserva Rancia, Italy, Tuscany, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$45.00USD

This is one of my favorite Chianti's.  Normally, I let the Rancia's rest a bit while I drink the "lesser" Felsina wines.  But, I had been hearing such great things about this wine, that I wanted to try one young.  Good move.  While this should improve, this was wonderful.  One of the top Chianti's I have ever had.  And, while this is not inexpensive for Chianti, it is for a wine of this quality.  Deep ruby in color, a bit lighter at the rim.  The nose has cherries, black cherries, some anise, and some tea leaves.  On the palate, this has juicy acidity.  Big cherry fruit over a forest floor

2013 Donelan Pinot Noir Two Brothers, USA, California, Sonoma County, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$50.00USD

This is a blend of grapes from Steiner Ranch, Devoto Vineyard, Walker Vine Hill and Perli Vineyard.  It is middle of the road on a California Pinot Noir scale.  Ruby in color with some purple swirls.  On the nose, this has nice cherries with some raspberries along with some nutmeg.  Medium to full bodied.  Nice texture.  The raspberries are more prevalent on the nose and even some boysenberries.  A bit of tea leaves underneath.  Good finish.  An interesting Pinot with some level of complexity.  It probably won't get better but should last another ten to fifteen years at it mature and trades

2018 Santo Wines Assyrtiko Santorini, Greece, Wine Review

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

Although summer has passed for this year, my wine of the summer was Assyrtiko from Santorini.  There are many different producers and I didn't have a bad one.  Very pale silvery gold in color.  Light bodied.  A slightly oily texture.  This has a bit of lemon/lime citrus but its really more about the smoke and minerality.  Good acidity.  Long finish.  This has some depth to it.  I have no idea if these can age or not, but the energy and brightness are not likely to last, so I would drink in the next year or two. This will go well with sea food and salads and even lighter fowl dishes.  

2017 Martín Códax Albariño Rías Baixas Burgáns, Spain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2017
Score: 
89
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$12.00USD

This wine, made by a large Co-Op is always a great value in refreshing, crisp white wines.  It is from the northwest corner of Spain.  Light, pale yellow gold in color.  The nose has seashells, salinity and also a nice crisp green apple note.  Light bodied.  On the palate, this has a nice bite.  Lots of energy.  The apple notes come thru as well.  Moderate finish.  This goes well with sea food and salads.  it also drinks well on its own, especially outdoors on a warm evening.  It should be consumed in the next year.  And, then buy the next vintage.

NV Louis Roederer Champagne Brut Premier

Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$35.00USD

This is a blend of 40% Pinot noir, 40% Chardonnay, and 20% Pinot Meunier.  This is drinking very nicely.  Light golden in color.  The nose has red apples, brioche and slight toast.  On the palate, this is easy, crisp and very enjoyable.  The apples come thru with an underlying minerality.  Good acidity.  Nice finish.  This should be consumed in the next few years.  It is quite food friendly and will go with almost any food.  

2016 Ruffino Chianti Superiore, Italy, Tuscany, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2016
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$10.00USD

Chianti doesn't get enough credit.  The better producers consistently make wines that are great values especially in the great vintages.  And, 2016 is a great vintage.  Deep ruby in color.  The nose has nice cherries, with wet tea leaves and dust.  On the palate, nice cherry fruit layered with some forest floor qualities.  Great acidity.  Long finish.  This is a perfect wine to pair with pizza or pasta.  It should be drunk in the next five to seven years, but it will probably still make good drinking in ten years.  A great value at around $10!

2015 Sineann Merlot Champoux Vineyard, USA, Washington, Columbia Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$35.00USD

This is made by an Oregon producer using Washington fruit.  Screw capped.  Champoux Vineyard is one of Washington's finest.  This Merlot is quite good and certainly better than many California Merlots at similar pricing.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has black cherries, chocolate,  and spice.  On the palate, this is medium bodied.  Some depth.  Light tannins.  This is still youthful and may improve a bit over the next three to five years.  It should be good for another five to seven after that.  It will work well with roasts and casseroles.  

2002 Domaine Huet Vouvray Demi-Sec Le Haut-Lieu, France, Loire Valley, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2002
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

This was a sound bottle.  Many of the Huet 2002's are subject to premature oxidation.  This bottle was excellent.  Chenin Blanc, especially with some residual sugar left, can last for decades.  Golden in color, clear and bright and slightly deep.  On the nose this has orange peel, crushed shells, salinity and a touch of canned peaches.  Medium bodied.  Slightly sweet on the palate.  Complex.  Nice minerality layered with a bit of peach and slight honey.  Nice acidic backbone.  This worked great with a peach cobbler dessert.  Good bottles of this can be enjoyed at any point over the next cou

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