3 2017 is the last vintage for delas freres' aging cellar before their move to tain l'hermitage copy

'16 vs. '15 Northern Rhône: Heads You Win, Tails You Win

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Apr 2018

At first glance, 2016 and 2015 in the Northern Rhône Valley would appear to have yielded wines with utterly disparate personalities. On paper and by reputation the 2016s and 2015s couldn’t be more different. So the received wisdom goes. In reality, though, the closer one looks at these two outstanding vintages, the more similarities start to reveal themselves. My recent extensive tastings of bottled wines from both years, sampled side-by-side at many estates, have only confirmed my impressions of these two superb vintages.

Vines in morgon on june 4  2016  the morning after a violent hailstorm edited

2016 Beaujolais: Hail, Yes

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Mar 2018

Following the often opulent 2015s, the 2016 vintage in Beaujolais marks a return to the classic expression of the region, producing bright, energetic wines that show real charm and early appeal.

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Oregon’s Expanding Palette of Wines

featured, United States: Oregon

Josh Raynolds, Feb 2018

Fueled by steadily increasing production of first-class Rieslings and Chardonnays, Oregon’s wineries are proving that they can do much more than just make great Pinot Noir.

The dundee hills at dawn edited 2

Oregon Pushes the Quality Needle for Pinot

featured, United States: Oregon

Josh Raynolds, Jan 2018

The 2015 vintage for Oregon Pinot Noir is an all-around winner in terms of quality and quantity. The 2015 Pinots, the main focus of this year’s report, are already commanding intense demand in the market and what ‘14s are still out there, including many of the late releases covered here, are also hot commodities.

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2015 Beaujolais: Monumental But Often Atypical

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Dec 2017

The 2015 vintage in Beaujolais has attracted more attention from both consumers and the trade than any vintage in my experience. While I tasted a higher percentage of outstanding wines from 2015 than ever before, many of them aren’t exactly what I would call classic renditions of the region.

1 a view down from the steep incline that leads to the famed pisoni vineyard cover

Santa Lucia Highlands 2015: The Grapes of a Wrathful Vintage

featured, United States: California

Josh Raynolds, Nov 2017

The relatively small Santa Lucia Highlands region is the source of some of California’s finest Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. While quality has been on the upswing in recent years, drought conditions and strange weather have had a severe impact on production.

Epoch's paderewski vineyard  in peachy canyon  produces some of paso robles' most prized fruit

Paso Robles Copes, Adapts and Evolves

featured, United States: California

Josh Raynolds, Nov 2017

Readers who follow the Paso Robles wine scene hardly need to be reminded that the region, which is historically dry in the first place, suffered through a long-term drought that drastically curtailed production in 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012. That has not stopped quality from surging to new highs.

Henschke's famed hill of grace vineyard  the source of one os australia's most iconic wines

Australia Brings the Brawn and the Beauty

featured, Australia

Josh Raynolds, Oct 2017

Australia produces as wide a range of high-quality wines as any country in the world, from almost all imaginable varieties and in all styles, while quality has never been higher than it is today. Consumers who view these wines as all red, all big, all the time are missing out.

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2014 Gigondas Charms While 2015 Stuns

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Sep 2017

Fans of elegant, accessible southern Rhône wines will find plenty to like from the 2014 Gigondas’ while 2015 produced a plethora of outstanding, attention-grabbing and cellar-worthy wines.

Vacqueyras meffre 2 cover

2014 and 2015 Vacqueyras: Quality and Value

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Aug 2017

The wines of Vacqueyras don’t command the attention - or prices - of those from neighboring Gigondas and Châteauneuf-du-Pape, which makes the appellation’s top bottlings excellent buys for value-conscious Rhône wine lovers.