France: Burgundy, featured
This fabulous charity dinner, held to benefit children’s oncology at The Mount Sinai Hospital, featured a breathtaking range of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti’s Montrachet spanning 22 vintages back to 1978. It was a truly magical night of wine, food and conversation, all for a great cause.
featured, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite, United States: California
I still remember the first time I tasted the Abreu 2009s. It was fall of 2011, the year Robert Parker asked me to take over Napa Valley coverage at The Wine Advocate. Those 2009s were so showy and unbelievably alluring when they were young. Needless to say, I was deeply intrigued to revisit them at nearly ten years of age.
France: Burgundy, featured
“Am I going too fast?” Lalou Bize-Leroy asks as she takes me through her bottled 2016s. Not a chance. One of the first things I observed when I started visiting the domaine years ago was Lalou’s intense pace, which remains pretty much the same today. “I like to taste quickly,” she adds. “With wines its either ‘yes’ or ‘no’. There is no middle ground. Just like people.” That insight is one of many that emerge over the course of this remarkable survey of the 2016s.
France: Champagne, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite
The 2014 Brut Nature Les Hautes Blanches Vignes is the first wine I have tasted from Christophe Baron’s new project in Champagne, and it is magnificent.
featured, Italy: Piedmont
Although Barolo, Barbaresco, and, more recently, Alto Piemonte get the lion’s share of attention, Piedmont has so much to offer beyond those highly-regarded appellations. Dolcetto, Barbera, Freisa, Timorasso and a host of other indigenous varieties give consumers myriad options for discovering the breadth of diversity that makes Piedmont one of the world’s most dynamic regions.
Austria, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite
Pichler’s 2006 Riesling Smaragd Unendlich (the name translates to ‘unending’) is one of the most remarkable wines – white or red – I have tasted in a long time.
featured, United States: California
Readers will find a breathtaking array of wines from Sonoma, Anderson Valley and beyond in this report. The 2017s have turned out to be a big surprise given the challenges of a growing season punctuated by three significant heat events. Pinot Noirs and Syrahs are the most consistent varieties, but there are peaks of brilliance in Zinfandel-based reds and Chardonnay as well. As always, the sheer diversity of Sonoma County and its neighboring appellations is truly remarkable.
featured, France: Bordeaux
Two thousand eighteen was one of the most dramatic growing seasons in recent memory. Hail, persistent rain and blistering summertime temperatures tested the resilience of vineyard managers and winemakers throughout the entire year. Perhaps most importantly, though, 2018 comes at a significant inflection point in Bordeaux’s history. So, how did the wines turn out?
France: Bordeaux, Cellar Favorites, cellar favorite
These are the new releases from Château Latour, which since 2012 has released their wines only when they are deemed ready to drink rather than following the typical Bordeaux schedule for bottled wines. The exception is the 2008 Grand Vin, which is essentially being re-released this year, whereas the 2014 Pauillac and 2013 Forts de Latour have not been available previously. I tasted these wines during a visit to the property in April 2019.
featured, Italy: Tuscany
In a brilliant career that spanned five decades, Gianfranco Soldera established himself as one of the world’s most inspired and iconic winemakers. His untimely passing in an accident last February leaves an immeasurable void. Soldera’s wines remain an enduring legacy of his remarkable life and complex, rich personality.