From the category archives:

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USA, Pinot Gris, Left Coast, The Orchard, Willamette Valley, Oregon, 2016

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N/ Salt and sunshine. Hay. Spice and light smoke. Seaspray. Grapefruit zest. Chamomile and more chamomile. Basil and oregano. River rocks. The spice/herbal notes were a pleasant surprise. T/ Medium full mouthfeel. Chamomile tea. Pear, grapefruit, and honeysuckle. Malt, spice, and flint finish. http://leftcoastcellars.com/ Price = $18 N = A T = A- I = […]

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Italy, Location Wines

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C/ If I had to guess this wine by color I would have a tough time placing her in Italy. It is extremely dark with New World syrah-type hues. N/ Deeply organic, rich soil smeared upon crushed black cherries and plums. Wonderful sage wafts. As I’m smelling and tasting this wine it appears to be […]

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France, Rosé, Red Blend, “Les Vignes” Rosé, Domaine de Bila-Haut, Michel Chapoutier, Rousillion, 2016

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Red blend of 78% grenache, 14% cinsault and 8% syrah. N/ Freshly crushed oyster shells, light wafts of strawberry Jolly Rancher candy, fresh hay, and sun bleached granite. Screaming for oysters, sushi, or ceviche. T/ Light mouthfeel. Wonderful acid work with light citrus tones, light strawberry flavors, a faint cranberry pucker, and multiple layers of […]

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Chile, Chardonnay, Unoaked, Natura, Emiliana, Valle del Bio Bio, 2016

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N/ Yellow grasses, chamomile tea, citrus, yellow apples, oyster shells, and honeysuckle. Light spice. Inviting. T/ Medium full mouthfeel. Citrus, honeysuckle, and crisp apples notes with a nice amount of mineral notes. http://www.naturawines.com/ Winemaker = Emilio Contreras Price = $9-$10 N = A T = A- I = A- Overall = A- This wine was […]

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USA, Syrah, Acorn, Axiom, Alegria Vineyard, Russian River Valley, Sonoma, California, 2013

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98% syrah and 2% viognier. N/ Delicious barrel room wafts, wild herbs, ripe plum skins smeared over warm river rocks, taffy, crushed granite, black and purple fruits. The smell of a wild field of sage and prairie bushes. Absolutely lovely and complex. T/ Medium full mouthfeel. Taste mirrors her nose and while she is full […]

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Italy, Vermentino, La Mora, Checci, Maremma Toscana, Toscana, 2014

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N/ Fresh rain, spring creek, yellow grasses, oyster shell, light chlorine, and marine wafts. Refreshing. Made for seafood or light fare. T/ Light mouthfeel. Citrus, crushed rocks, honeysuckle, and chamomile tea. Very nice acid close makes her perfect to pair with a wide variety of foods. http://www.cecchi.net/en/la-mora-vermentino-/43 Price = $20 N = A T = […]

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Argentina, Malbec, Trivento, Amado Sur, Mendoza, 2014

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A malbec with 11% bonarda and 10% syrah. N/ Clean aromas of black cherry, plum skins, wild herbs, rich oak and crushed granite. T/ Medium mouthfeel. Black cherry, plum compote, blueberries, and layers of oak. Price = $15 http://www.excelsiorwines.com/wine/amado-sur-malbec-blend/ N = A- T = B I = B Overall = B This wine was a […]

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Spain, Albariño, Bodegas As Laxas, Laxas, Rias Baixas, 2015

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N/ Yellow grasses, oyster shells, honeysuckle, sunbleached rocks, and green apples. Delightful and scream scream screaming for shellfish! T/ Light mouthfeel. Clean flavors of chamomile, ripe honeysuckle, citrus, crisp spring water, and tart green apples. Paired very nicely with pan seared shrimp with a garlic butter and tarragon dipping sauce and a side of steamed […]

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Italy, Nero d’Avola, Cusumano, Terre Siciliane IGT, 2015

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N/ A subtle but inviting nose of Earth, dried herbs, red fruits, wet organic soil and cracked stone. T/ Light to medium mouthfeel. Lovely acid that makes this a great food wine. Nice Earth flavors and herbal notes with tobacco and Stone. Black cherry and red fruits add complexity. She closes with tobacco and cedar […]

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New Zealand, Pinot Noir, Loveblock, Central Otago, 2013

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N/ Spicy oak. Dusty black cherry. Pepper. Flowers. Light game notes. T/ Medium mouthfeel. Berries, red fruits, and cherries. Multiple wood flavors. http://terlatowines.com/new-wines/new-zealand/loveblock/pinot-noir Alcohol 14% Price = $35ish N = A- T = B I = B Overall = B / B+ This wine was a media sample generously provided by the winery. From the […]

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USA, Syrah, Acorn, Axiom, Alegria Vineyard, Russian River Valley, Sonoma, California, 2013

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N/ Deep, sweet oak and barrel room wafts. Sage and wild herbs do play. Plum skin reduction sauce. Amazing. Crushed granite. Wet black soil. T/ Plum, plum skins, complex earth and organic notes, and Maduro tobacco leaf notes. Another complex and fulfilling wine from the “field blend masters” at Acorn. 321 cases made 14.2% booze […]

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Chile, Cabernet Sauvignon, Marques de Casa Concha, Concha y Toro, Puente Alto, Maipo Valley, 2014

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N/ Purple and red fruits. Smoked game. Brick dust. Paprika. Cedar / cigar box. Forest floor. Bell peppers. T/ Medium full mouth feel. Loaded with red, blue, and black fruit flavors. These are well-balanced with wood and Earth notes. Only detraction is a light bell pepper note that will likely resolve with more bottle rest […]

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Spain, Albariño, Morgadio, Rías Baixas, 2015

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N/ Hay, salt, and the smell of the ocean. Cracked granite, citrus, chamomile, and light herbs. T/ Medium mouthfeel. Lime juice squeezed into chamomile tea. Truly. Refreshing. Pairing: shellfish, fish, or veggie dishes. http://www.riasbaixaswines.com/ Price = $13 – $16 N = A- T = B+ I = B+ Overall = B+ This wine was a […]

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New Zealand, Pinot Gris, villa Maria, East Coast, Private Bin, 2015

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N/ Green apples, steamed hay, sun bleached river rocks, beach sand, fresh rain, wet cement. T/ Light to medium mouthfeel. Tart honeysuckle and crisp apple flavors dominate but light citrus, pear, and gooseberry flavors do play. Quite an unexpected complexity in the fruit profile compared with typical pinot gris. Soft mineral notes and another bite […]

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USA, Pinot Noir, Thomas George Estates, Russian River Valley, Sonoma, California, 2012

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N/ Pure cherry, black cherry, black tea, bacon, game, sage, taffy, crushed flint, and forest floor notes. Lovely. T/ Medium mouthfeel. Cherry, black cherry, and game notes are framed by medium acidity. Clean mineral and organic Earth flavors. Delivers a well-made Russian River Valley pinot noir at a lower price point than most. Only detraction […]

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France, Champagne, Sparkling Wine, Bruno Paillard, Première Cuvée, Reims

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N/ Salted green apple slices Crushed granite. Chalk. Delicate marine wafts. Quite inviting. T/ Light to medium mouthfeel. Crisp green and yellow apples. Clean lines of mineral, flint and granite. Elegant. Price = $50 http://www.champagnebrunopaillard.com/en/champagnes/premiere-cuvee/ N = A- T = A I = A Overall = A This wine was a media sample kindly provided […]

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USA, Oregon, Pinot Noir, Left Coast Cellars, Cali’s Cuvee, Willamette Valley, 2014

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N/ Blackberry jam, lime zest, freshly crushed flint, and cigar box. T/ Medium mouthfeel. Blackberries and raspberry notes with a nice bouncing acidity. Wet organic soil notes and an extended earthy finish. Price = $24 http://leftcoastcellars.com/ N = B+ T = B+ I = B+ Overall = B+ This wine was a media sample kindly […]

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Germany, Riesling, Urban Riesling, Nik Weis Selection, Mosel, 2015

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N/ The vaseline/petrol power is just right – lets you know what grape you are quaffing and tickles the nose. Flower power here. Citrus, chamomile, and crushed granite. Very nice smoky notes also telling you that there is a Mosel riesling in your glass. T/ Medium full mouthfeel. Citrus, tart green apples, and a hint […]

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France, Chenin Blanc, Saget La Perrière, Château de la Mulonnière, Loire Valley, 2015

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N/ Sun bleached rocks, spring water, honeysuckle, light citrus, light chlorine, and chamomile tea. T/ Medium full mouthfeel. Lovely dancing acid, limes, really ripe apples, and white peaches. About one degree too sweet for me, but this will be a huge crowd pleaser at parties. Absolutely delicious. Winemakers: Benoit Dufour and Laurent Saget Alcohol = […]

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Italy, Pinot Noir, Pinot Nero, Rollhuett, Rolhut, Peter Zemmer, Alto Adige, Sudtirol, 2015

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N/ Red berries, gorgeous crushed rose petals, granite, cherries, wet cement, and spice. Lovely. T/ Light mouthfeel. Elegant weight for the price point. Berries, red fruits, and clean mineral and earth notes. A bit of a tannic cranberry pucker which mellows with breathing time. Well integrated oak notes. Clean, restrained juiciness, and nice rock notes […]

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