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Elegance Returns to the Northern Rhône in 2016

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Jun 2018

Following the huge success of the 2015 vintage, which produced deeply concentrated, structured and age-worthy wines, 2016 pivoted almost 180 degrees by issuing an abundance of graceful, elegant reds that showcase balance and freshness over mass and power.

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2016 Northern Rhône Whites: Excellent but Often Scarce

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, May 2018

Hot on the heels of the outstanding 2015 vintage, 2016 produced one of the strongest sets of white wines from the northern Rhône region in recent memory. The only issue will be actually finding them, as production in many cases was pitifully small.

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'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.

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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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Cellar Favorite: 2005 Thierry Allemand Cornas Chaillot

France: Rhône & Beaujolais, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Mar 2018

Thierry Allemand’s 2005 Cornas Chaillot is fabulous. Bold and pungent at the outset, with tons of whole cluster nuance, the 2005s offer striking interplay of bold, racy fruit and more floral/savory layers that are woven into the wine’s fabric.

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Cellar Favorite: 2001 Henri Bonneau Châteauneuf-du-Pape Réserve des Célestins

France: Rhône & Beaujolais, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite

Antonio Galloni, Feb 2018

Bob Parker introduced me to Henri Bonneau’s wines many years ago. Unfortunately, I don’t get a chance to drink Châteauneuf as often as I would like, and had nearly forgotten I had a few bottles of the 2001 Réserve des Célestins squirreled away. A recent Vinous team dinner was the perfect occasion to check in on the 2001.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Northern Rhône: Solid ’14 Reds and Outstanding ’15 Whites

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Josh Raynolds, Jul 2017

The northern Rhône produced a number of excellent red wines in 2014, although yields are down. Happily, 2015 brought an ideal growing season and harvest, with healthy quantities of clean fruit. My early look at the finished white wines indicates that ’15 is a vintage for the ages.