Verticals & Retrospectives, Italy: Tuscany
David Bouley’s Test Kitchen was the setting for this remarkable retrospective featuring Ornellaia and Masseto across eight iconic vintages. All of the wines were served from magnum for what turned out to be a truly unforgettable evening.
United States: California, featured
Napa Valley delivered another exceptional vintage in 2014. The wines are bright, energetic and focused, with tons of character and pedigree. Even better, the 2014s will be easier to drink young than the 2013s that preceded them. This article focuses on the bottled 2014s, although I tasted many 2015s and some 2016s as well.
France: Champagne, featured
Readers will find a bevy of compelling, delicious Champagnes in the market this fall. Many of the current non-vintage releases are based on 2013, a year that, while inconsistent, yielded wines with healthy sugars and terrific balance at a number of top-performing houses. At the upper end, a number of houses have new tête de cuvées that are or will soon be in the market. As always, the stylistic breadth that Champagne offers makes it one of the most versatile and fascinating of all wines.
Italy: Tuscany, featured
Tuscany is one of Italy’s richest and most diverse regions. While Brunello di Montalcino, Chianti Classico, and, to a lesser extent, Maremma, get most of the attention, Tuscany’s smaller appellations are very much worth taking the time to discover. This article covers new releases from Maremma, Montepulciano, Carmignano and several other smaller districts.
featured, Italy: Piedmont, Verticals & Retrospectives
This retrospective tasting of 18 vintages of Bartolo Mascarello Barolos provided a great opportunity to revisit a number of historic vintages and also check in on some of the recent releases that have helped catapult this small, family-run estate into Piedmont’s upper echelon.
Italy: Piedmont, featured
This article covers the late-released 2012 Barolos. I continue to believe that 2012 is a vintage to buy selectively. There are some very pleasant surprises, but, as a whole, the vintage is characterized by highs and lows. Although quality is irregular, the best 2012 Barolos are very much worth seeking out, especially considering that there is not a lot of upward pressure on prices for the vintage at the moment.
Cellar Favorites, Italy: Piedmont
Pertinace’s 1982 Barbaresco Marcarini from one of the all time great Piedmont vintages is a revelation.
Italy: Tuscany, Verticals & Retrospectives, featured
Gianfranco Soldera remains one of Italy’s most iconic producers. Our recent vertical tasting in London provided an extraordinary opportunity to check in on a number of Soldera Brunellos back to 1981. In particular, I was struck by how well wines from the less renowned vintages showed.
Cellar Favorites, France: Champagne
Krug’s 1971 Vintage, tasted from magnum, is truly spectacular.
Verticals & Retrospectives, Italy: Tuscany, featured
This stunning collection of Brunellos from Gianfranco Soldera spanned twenty-four vintages and three decades going all the way back to 1981, including all of the reference point wines in that time frame as well as a number of wines from less heralded vintages.