Italy: Piedmont, featured
Drinking top-notch, artisan Piedmont wines doesn’t have to cost a fortune. While prices for Barolos and Barbarescos continue to escalate, the best Dolcettos, Barberas and Langhe Nebbiolos deliver tons of Piedmont character and pedigree at far more accessible prices. That is especially true of entry-level wines at the region’s best addresses.
Cellar Favorites, United States: California
Colgin’s 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon Tychson Hill is simply extraordinary. The aromatics alone are dazzling. Sweet tobacco, graphite, mocha, black cherry and spice give the 2006 its exotic, alluring personality.
Italy: Piedmont, featured
In 2013, a cool growing season and late harvest produced gorgeous Barolos with striking aromatics, silky tannins, sculpted, vibrant fruit and mid-weight structures. Readers will find a number of thrilling, utterly captivating wines that speak to the pedigree and class that are the signatures of the best Barolo vintages.
Cellar Favorites, France: Burgundy
Roumier’ 1990 Bonnes-Mares is the embodiment of everything a truly great wine should be at this stage in its life.
France: Bordeaux, featured
Two thousand fourteen was one of the most dramatic growing seasons ever witnessed in Bordeaux. It may be hard to believe today, but well into August, 2014 was shaping up to be a repeat of 2013, a vintage most would like to forget. Then something remarkable happened. Freakishly warm, dry conditions arrived with a vengeance in September and saved the harvest.
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.