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California North Coast: Eyes Wide Open

United States: California, featured

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2022

As is our custom, we present our reviews of new releases from Sonoma County and neighboring North Coast appellations in a series of installments over the coming weeks. This report focuses on the 2020s and the 2019s, which I first covered in last year’s article. There’s a lot to talk about, so grab a glass and settle in. This might take a while.

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Back to Burgfest: 2017 Reds – Blind

France: Burgundy, featured

Neal Martin, Jan 2022

Following last year’s examination of the 2017 Burgundy whites, how did the reds fare under the same peer group blind tasting conditions? As usual, there were a few surprises along the way.

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Everyday Piedmont, Parts 1 & 2

Italy: Piedmont, featured

Antonio Galloni, Sep 2021

Piedmont has so much to offer the curious wine lover. Barolo and Barbaresco are now firmly established among the world’s greatest reds. Alto Piemonte has made huge strides in recent years. But there is so much more to Piedmont beyond those famous appellations and wines. In the hands of the best growers, Dolcetto, Barbera, Langhe Nebbiolo and Piedmont’s other reds and whites deliver the same qualities that have made the region’s top bottlings so coveted. These are artisan wines from family-run domaines that convey a sense of place.

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Looking Back to Look Forward: Back Vintage Brunello

Italy: Tuscany, featured

Eric Guido, Jan 2022

We buy Brunello for the cellar, to watch it mature into glorious wines befitting of the region’s reputation. However, we seldom talk about these mature beauties in the same manner as we do the wines of Bordeaux or Barolo, which is a shame, because the best of Brunello can and does stand the test of time.

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The 2019 Napa Valley Cabernets: A Deep Dive

United States: California, featured

Antonio Galloni, Jan 2022

My annual report on Napa Valley is jam-packed. The 2019 Cabernets are big, bold wines that show the extroverted side of Napa Valley. There are plenty of fabulous wines at all levels, but 2019 does not have the across the board consistency of a truly great vintage, so readers will have to be selective.

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Wines from Italy’s Volcanic Arc: Campania

Italy: Center & South, featured

Eric Guido, Jan 2022

If one region in Italy has the potential to keep pace with the best that Piedmont and Tuscany have to offer, it is Campania. With each passing year, new releases show a glimmer of their best possible selves, while some are transcending to the next level. Although the number of world-class wines continues to increase, there are still a number of hurdles that Campania must overcome. At the other end of the spectrum, Campania is full of values, readers just need to know where to look.

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Ten Albums That Changed My Life

Beyond Wine, featured

Antonio Galloni, Dec 2021

Last year, in the middle of lockdown, several readers asked me to do the popular “Ten Albums in Ten Days” challenge on social media. I am nowhere near organized enough to do that, but those messages planted a seed. So, in between major reports, I put together this list, with some context, written in the same vein as my article Ten Wines that Changed my Life from a few years ago. Every now and then writing about something other than wine is cathartic. I hope this article might provide something different to read over the holidays.

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2021 - The Year In Review

General Interest, featured

Antonio Galloni, Dec 2021

As 2021 draws to a close, it's time to reflect on the year behind and take a look at what lies ahead. There were certainly plenty of ups and downs, but as I write this I am incredibly energized about the future.

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My 2021

General Interest, featured

Joaquín Hidalgo, Dec 2021

For me, 2021 had its ups and downs: I suffered through a severe case of COVID, discovered a treasure trove of wine and fell in love with the fish of the Paraná River. And in the meantime, I was able to taste almost 3,000 bottles from Argentina and Chile and got a sneak peek into what’s in store for us in 2022.

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Italy’s Sparkling Wine Paradox

Italy, featured

Eric Guido, Dec 2021

You just walked into your favorite wine shop to grab a bottle of sparkling wine for the holidays, but what do you buy? Should you look at that same bottle of gift-boxed Champagne everyone else is buying, or do you want something more, something unique, something that might change your perspective on Italian sparkling wines? If you do, read on.