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Drouhin’s Beaune Clos des Mouches Blanc: 1979-2016

France: Burgundy, France, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Feb 2019

Joseph Drouhin’s Beaune Clos des Mouches Blanc is an oxymoron of a Burgundy: an insider’s wine that’s normally made in generous quantities. While some wine oenophiles may turn up their noses at the very idea of white wine from Beaune—not to mention the appellation in particular, as it possesses no Grand Crus, red or white—this Premier Cru is way more interesting, and serious, than it has any right to be.

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Vertical Tasting of Louis Jadot’s Corton Pougets

Verticals & Retrospectives, France: Burgundy, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Feb 2019

Jadot’s perfumed, distinctly feminine Corton Grand Cru—a red wine from white wine soil—has established a long track record for graceful evolution in bottle.

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Château de la Tour Clos-Vougeot Vieilles Vignes 1985-2016

Verticals & Retrospectives, France: Burgundy, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Jun 2019

The largest single owner of land in Clos de Vougeot is making some of its best wines today. Director François Labet’s special bottling from vines planted in 1910 has been an essence of this legendary grand cru in recent years.

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2019 Burgundy Verticals

France: Burgundy

Stephen Tanzer, Jan 2019

All of the producers I visited in December presented their wines in the same way: from youngest to oldest, with the bottles uncorked shortly before the tasting and not decanted. Beginning with the youngest vintage and working backward has always been my preferred approach to vertical tastings, for the simple reason that this order allows me to understand how wines develop with bottle age.

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Focus on Washington: The New Normal

United States: Washington, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Nov 2018

Washington has experienced an unbroken succession of six very warm to hot years, but by now the state’s most serious growers and winemakers have proven that they can stand the heat. While there are underperformers in Washington, at the level of the better wineries quality has never been higher than it is today.

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2016 White Burgundy: Excellent, But Complicated

France: Burgundy, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Sep 2018

Two thousand sixteen is a potentially classic white Burgundy vintage marked by a devastating frost event that sharply reduced overall production and dramatically complicated the lives of growers. Now long-time Burgundy collectors must navigate their own set of challenges to find the best bottles.

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2017 White Burgundy: Quantity, Quality and Great Charm

France: Burgundy, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Sep 2018

The largest white Burgundy crop since 2009 has yielded pliant, elegant, pure wines with considerable aromatic appeal and early accessibility, along with the balance and stuffing for at least mid-term aging.

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Double Vertical of Ridge's Geyserville and Lytton Springs

Verticals & Retrospectives, United States: California, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Aug 2018

Ridge Vineyards was one of the earliest champions of single-vineyard Zinfandels from ancient vines. Their top two estate bottlings have admirably withstood the test of time.

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Dunn Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain: 1979–2014

Verticals & Retrospectives, United States: California, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Aug 2018

From the outset, Randy Dunn’s flagship Cabernet has been one of Napa Valley’s slowest agers and most consistently outstanding wines. This retrospective going back to the inaugural 1979 vintage showed the Howell Mountain Cabernet to be a wine of great intensity and staying power but also of restraint and class.

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Argentina’s Wines Enter the World Stage

Argentina, featured

Stephen Tanzer, Jul 2018

Against a backdrop of some recent tricky growing seasons and the constant economic challenge of doing business in Argentina, the country’s best producers are making more refined, aromatically complex and vibrant wines than ever before – bottles that should satisfy even hard-core fans of classic European wines.