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93 points Connoisseurs Guide: "As intense as it is so very varietally precise, this is an exceptional Syrah of considerable scope and authority whose deeply fruited, distinctly peppery aromas quickly draw one in and, if anything, are surpassed in richness and range by the wine’s even deeper, altogether complete flavors. Unabashedly ripe and very full-bodied without intimating heaviness and still on the youthfully sinewy side on the palate, this is one that in no uncertain terms begs for cellar time, and it is guaranteed to reward six to ten years of age ...
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94 points James Halliday: "The youthful colour has the depth to promise abundant black fruits, whole berry fermentation underlining the promise. It has the succulence of Langhorne Creek, but with a raft of flowery/spicy notes not so common in the region. Mocha oak adds another dimension, cuddling up to the plump tannins. Hedonistic? You bet." (05/2017)
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Winemaker's Notes: "Cabernet Sauvignon 76%, Merlot 10%, Petit Verdot 6%, Cabernet Franc 5%, Malbec 3%. A structured entry delivers a complex array of aromas including black cherry and cranberry fruit, baking spices, roasted meat, tobacco leaf, cola and floral notes. The palate is textured, serving up flavors of chocolate, cherries, mocha and spice. In its youth, decant 1-2 hours before service for full enjoyment. Drink 2013 - 2025. The cool and late 2010 growing season gave our red Bordeaux varieties bright and pure varietal character. If history...
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2014 Varner "Hidden Block - Spring Ridge Vineyard" Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir (Previously $45) (Previously $45)
Top Pick!
93 points Vinous: "The 2014 Pinot Noir Hidden Block is the most immediate and dense of the four Pinots in the Varner range. A core of sweet red cherry and plum fruit fills out the wine's mid-weight frame effortlessly. Round, pliant and totally seductive, the 2014 has a lot to offer, including tons of near and medium-term appeal. (AG)" (08/2018) 92 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Mostly destemmed and brought up in 25% new French oak, the medium ruby-colored 2014 Pinot Noir Hidden Block Spring Ridge Vineyard reveals a medium ruby color as well as impressive red and...
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92 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Readers looking for a smoking value in 2017 Cabernet should check out the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley from Emerson Brown. It has textbook Napa chocolatey fruit, herbes de Provence, and spice aromatics as well as medium to full body, ripe sweet tannins, and terrific balance." (01/2020) 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Produced from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley was sourced from sites Emerson Brown has worked with for a number of years, coming primarily from bench and valley floo...
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2017 Ridge Vineyards "Pagani Ranch" Sonoma Valley Zinfandel (Elsewhere $40) (Elsewhere $40)
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94 points Jeb Dunnuck: "A blend of 84% Zinfandel with the balance Petite Sirah, Alicante Bouchet, and Mataró, the 2017 Zinfandel Pagani Ranch reveals a translucent ruby/purple color as well as a beautifully complex bouquet of sandalwood, spice box, new leather, charred earth, and mulled plums and blueberries. Rich, medium to full-bodied, and textured, with sweet tannins, this beautiful Zinfandel knocks it out of the park in this difficult vintage." (11/2019) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The medium ruby colored 2017 Zinfandel Pagani Ranch o...
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This Syrah is grown in a cool climate, and has open, perfumed aromatics with black berry fruit, cassis, and sage on the nose. On the palate it transitions to medium body with fresh acidity, mild tannin and a long follow through. Loads of concentrated blueberry fruit complement the slightly earthy notes that come into play on the close. We highly recommend this with roasted lamb dishes, and smoked game. Winemaker's notes: "Lots of spice and all things nice! Dark chocolate and coffee notes. Perhaps with a hint of bay leaf and clove. These wines have the t...
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2015 A to Z Oregon Pinot Noir
Top Pick!
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Pale to medium ruby-purple in color, the 2015 Oregon Pinot Noir gives a good intensity of warm red berry/red cherry cordial notes with a bit of baking spices and floral notes in the background. The medium-bodied palate is soft and juicy with a slight grip of chewy tannins and a red berry-laced finish. (LPB)" (08/2017) Wine & Spirits: "Classic Oregon scents of strawberries and briary cherry lead in this vinous, assertive pinot noir. The finish is leesy and a bit phenolic; give it a chill and serve with duck sausage." (02/...
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2016 Larkmead Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (Elsewhere $125) (Elsewhere $125)
Top Pick!
98 points Wine Enthusiast: "This stellar, powerhouse wine is perfumed in aromas of pencil, leather and sage that season a core of mineral and crushed rock. The fruit is equally savory in currant and plum, with a dusting of dark chocolate. Enjoy now–2029. *Editors' Choice* (VB)" (11/2019) 92-95 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Moving to the barrel samples, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is a pretty, elegant wine that lacks the richness of the 2015 yet has perfumed notes of red and black currants, spring flowers, and spice. A blend of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Peti...

2016 Seghesio "Defiant" Alexander Valley Red Blend (Elsewhere $30) (Elsewhere $30)
Top Pick!
93 points James Suckling: "This blend of 44% Zinfandel, 29% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Syrah, 10% Petite Sirah and 4% Alicante has aromas of violets, blueberries, dried cherries and leaves and delivers a fleshy, plum-infused palate that has such approachable, silky tannins." (12/2019) 92 points Wine & Spirits: "This is a blend from old bush vines in the Alexander and Dry Creek valleys farmed by the Passalacqua and Saini families. It feels plush and saturated with foresty fruit, even as the wine remains light and easy—a clean, classical Sonoma County red t...
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2016 Rhys "Alesia" Anderson Valley Pinot Noir
Top Pick!
91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2016 Alesia Pinot Noir Anderson Valley is unabashedly delicious, bursting with fragrant aromas of dried flowers, raspberries, wild plums and sweet forest floor. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied, supple and satiny, with a juicy core of succulent, mouthwatering fruit that's framed by melting tannins. This bottling is already expressive, and I'd expect it to drink well for a decade, perhaps more. Note that this vintage hails entirely from Kevin Harvey's Bearwallow Vineyard … beginning with the 2016 vinta...
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2016 Bootleg Napa Valley Red Blend
Top Pick!
94 points Jeb Dunnuck: "The 2016 Red Wine is a Merlot-dominated blend (there are normally small amounts of Petite Sirah, Syrah, and other varieties), and while the Prequel cuvée focuses on Sonoma, this wine comes all from the Napa side of the valley. It reveals a healthy purple color as well as a terrific bouquet of sweet crème de cassis, toasted bread, Asian spices, lavender, and dried herbs. With a fabulous texture, full body, notable purity of fruit, and a rich yet graceful style on the palate, it's one seriously hedonistic yet balanced, complex red t...
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94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon features fragrant florals, cassis, black cherries and blueberries with cigar box and baking spices plus a hint of tree bark. Medium to full-bodied, firm, velvety and spicy in the mouth, it coats the palate with black fruit preserves and finishes long. (LPB)" (10/2019) K&L Notes: Winery Notes: "Blueberry, black current, fresh herbs, talcum and mint are the primary components with lesser notes of iron and violets. Vibrant freshness in the mouth with full, s...
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94 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Plums, blackberries, cedary spice, and peppery herb notes all emerge from the 2015 Zinfandel Old Vine, a straight-up classic expression of this variety. More tobacco and cigar notes develop with time in the glass. It's medium to full-bodied, has plenty of tannins, and is beautifully balanced. It will keep for a decade." (06/2018) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Medium to deep garnet-purple, the 2015 Zinfandel Old Vine offers a beguiling nose of crushed blueberries, Black Forest cake and crème de cassis with hints of dr...
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96 points Bob Campbell: "Very deep red/purple colour. The bouquet is all about concentrated, perfectly-ripened cabernet fruit embellished with stylish oak. Cedar and berries. The wine is very intense and cast in an elegant but full-bodied style, with red berry fruit in abundance on the palate. The tannins are emphatic but fine and restrained, beautifully tailored. A lovely wine indeed - to cellar or enjoy now. (Huon Hooke - The Real Review)" (05/2018) 93 points James Halliday: "Reticent. Firmly structured. Southern Margaret River across its verdant vei...
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2015 San Polino "Helichrysum" Brunello di Montalcino (Pre-Arrival) (Pre-Arrival)
Top Pick!
97 points James Suckling: "Ripe boysenberries, tar, chestnuts, orange peel, dried cherries and tobacco. There’s a beautiful interplay between the more subtle, citrus notes and darker red fruit, and nothing’s out of kilt to the ripeness. Lots of powerful tannins take the full-bodied palate by storm, coating the mouth in layers of intense but fragrant red fruit and steamrolling this Brunello to a long, chewy conclusion. This is a contrastive wine, built on the foundation of an intricate, wild tannin backbone, but framed in a vibrant and transparent package...
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93 points Vinous: "Deep lurid red. A highly perfumed bouquet evokes ripe red berry and cherry preserves, potpourri and exotic spices, and a smoky mineral topnote builds with air. Stains the palate with juicy, densely packed raspberry, cherry cola and rose pastille flavors that are sharpened and lifted by juicy minerality and a spicy snap of white pepper. Delivers a compelling blend of richness and vivacity and closes on a repeating floral note, with superb clarity, harmonious tannins and wonderful persistence. (JR)" (06/2019) 92 points Wine Enthusiast:...
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2016 Arietta "Quartet" Napa Valley Bordeaux Blend
Top Pick!
95 points Wine Enthusiast: "Winemaker Andy Erickson coaxes beautiful fruit and structure from this blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot, many of the grapes from Coombsville and Carneros. Juicy and weighty on the palate in blackberry and blueberry, it offers firm integrated tannin and undeniable elegance, with lovely teases of dried herb, graphite and exotic spice. *Editors’ Choice* (VB) " (10/2019) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2016 Quartet is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 26% Merlot, ...

2017 Harvey & Harriet (Booker) Paso Robles Red Blend (Elsewhere $50) (Elsewhere $50)
Top Pick!
95 points Jeb Dunnuck: "Named after winemaker Eric Jensen's parents, the 2017 Harvey and Harriet is a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Syrah, and the rest Petit Verdot and Malbec. It offers a richer, powerful style as well as Napa Cabernet-like notes of black and blue fruits, scorched earth, crushed rocks, and violets. Rich, full-bodied, beautifully concentrated, and voluptuous on the palate, it's more approachable than the flagship Cabernet Sauvignon, but I wouldn't bet against it aging just as long." (10/2019) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advoc...
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2015 Dierberg Estate "Dierberg Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir (Elsewhere $45) (Elsewhere $45)
Top Pick!
94 points Vinous: "The 2015 Pinot Noir Dierberg Vineyard is a real standout. Plush, dark and expressive, the Dierberg is an explosive wine that shows this Santa Maria site off at its best. Floral and spiced notes wrap around a core of intense inky blue/purplish fruit. Time in the glass brings out a more delicate side. There is just so much to admire in the 2015. (AG)" (09/2018) 94 points Wine Enthusiast: "Baked black-cherry and plum aromas meet with star anise, hot gingerbread and wet slate on the fairly opulent, very delicious nose of this bottling. I...
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From the largest section of the estate vineyard, two blocks of Clone 7 Cab (planted in 1991 and 1997) produce the Harrison’s best grapes. Aged for 22 months in 40% new French and Hungarian oak, this wine is a classic example of Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon. Intense aromas of blackberry and blueberry, with subtler notes of dark chocolate, leather, and fennel pollen. The palate is full-bodied, with dense black cherry flavors and smooth, well-integrated tannins. 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot, 7% Petit Verdot. 534 cases."
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2015 Gran Moraine Yamhill Carlton Pinot Noir (Elsewhere $40+) (Elsewhere $40+)
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91 points James Suckling: "Aromas of exotic spices, raspberries, black pepper and hints of vanilla. Medium to full body, silky tannins and a clear finish." (12/2017) 91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Medium ruby-purple colored, 2015 Pinot Noir Yamhill-Carlton delivers a lot of red berry/raspberry expression with underlying menthol, dried herbs and tree bark notes. Medium-bodied, the palate offers a great concentration of juicy red fruit flavors with a solid backbone of grainy tannins and great freshness, finishing long. (LPB)" (08/2017) 91 po...
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Composed of the same grapes in the same percentages as the Crianza, the Reserva is a barrel selection of wines that Angel feels can undergo longer aging in barrel and then in bottle. Aged a total of 27 months in barrels, then into concrete for more than a year, the Reserva also sees bottle aging until Angel deems it ready for release. This wine ramps up the intensity of the Crianza, with more pungent fruit as well as a real spicy and wild quality. As with many of the best Riojas, this wine is quite delicious right now if you want to drink some bottles wh...
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94 points Vinous: "Shimmering ruby-red. A highly expressive bouquet evokes candied red and dark berries, cola, smoky minerals and licorice, and a sexy floral note builds as the wine opens up. Sappy, penetrating and pure, offering palate-staining black raspberry, cherry pie, blood orange and lavender pastille flavors that put on weight and turn spicier with air. Delivers a compelling blend of richness and delicacy and finishes spicy, focused and very long, leaving floral and red fruit preserve notes behind. Once again, this bottling is, perhaps, the top '...
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93 points Wine Enthusiast: "This is a stellar wine, especially considering it is simply the family's appellation blend. Aromas of crisp black raspberry, thyme, sagebrush and mint provide tremendous depth on the nose. The palate is lively, elegant and very smooth, showing white pepper, cedar and more black-raspberry flavors. *Editor's Choice* (MK)" (10/2018) 92 points Vinous: "The 2016 Pinot Noir is fabulous. Bright, floral and lifted, with striking fruit presence, the 2016 Pinot delivers serious quality for the money. Bright red and purplish stone frui...
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From the importer: "For Thierry Michon, the gregarious force behind one of the Loire’s best-kept secrets, Domaine Saint Nicolas, it’s all about the soil. Working on schist and silex a stone’s throw away from the Atlantic, Thierry is the prophet of biodynamics in this tiny viticultural area. His vineyards never see a non-organic product. He has slowly purchased buffer zones all around his property to prevent chemical products from other winemakers from seeping into his parcels. For him, biodynamics isn’t a pragmatic consideration, it’s a religion. If you...
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96 points Wine Spectator: "Bright and fresh, with lively red currant, bitter cherry and damson plum fruit streaking through, with lovely floral, chalk and savory details throughout. Long, mouthwatering minerality on the finish adds even more energy. Best from 2022 through 2040. 360 cases made, 45 cases imported. (JM)" (11/2019) 95 points Vinous: "Bright violet. Vibrant, intensely perfumed black and blue fruit aromas are complemented by suggestions of exotic spices, potpourri and smoky minerals. Seamless and precise on the palate, showing intense minera...
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94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Blended of 47% Syrah, 28% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 5% Merlot, 3% Sangiovese and 2% Viognier, the 2014 Todos Proprietary Red Wine reveals a medium to deep garnet-purple color and a pronounced blackberries, blueberry pie and cassis-scented nose with an Indian spices and black pepper-laced undercurrent, plus a waft of lavender. Soft, medium-bodied, perfumed and elegant in the mouth, this finely crafted beauty offers great seamlessness and harmony, finishing long and spicy. (LPB) 94+ "...
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2015 San Polino Brunello di Montalcino (Pre-Arrival) (Pre-Arrival)
Top Pick!
95 points James Suckling: "A wonderfully fresh expression of Brunello with orange rind, citrus and red cherries; but there’s also an overlay of riper, roasted herbs and incense. Medium to full body, ripe but very structured tannins and a very flavorful palate with lots of dried nutmeg and spice undertones. Everything is where it should be, in balance." (10/2019) 92 points Vinous: "Light ruby-red. Delicately spicy red- and blackcurrant aromas are complemented by licorice and smoky minerals. Round and smooth, with medium-weight red fruit flavors showing ...
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Connoisseurs Guide: "Very much in the same camp as its “Sascha Marie” cellarmate insofar as it favors ripeness over subtlety and nuance, this wine is, again, one that is both fairly full and slightly soft in structure and counts overt richness first among its achievements. It, too, would benefit from a little more vigor and vitality and, while an undeniably tasty Pinot Noir, it is likely to show at its best before too many years have passed." (02/2020) Wine Spectator: "This features intense dried cherry and berry flavors that are backed by firm acidity...
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Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Cabernet Franc from Rutherford shows loamy soil and underbrush notes, red and blue fruits, medium body, a slightly compact mouthfeel, a dark ruby color and good overall personality. (RP)" (12/2016)
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2016 Round Pond Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon (Previously $70) (Previously $70)
Top Pick!
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "With small percentages of Petit Verdot, Malbec and Merlot, this is a lush, layered wine that’s bursting in juicy red fruit and dried herb. Firm tannins and supportive oak give it structure and balanced weight. (VB)" (01/2020) 92 points James Suckling: "This blend of 83 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon with Petit Verdot, Malbec and Merlot, has a central offering of ripe blackberries and plums with hints of black truffle and chocolate. It delivers in approachable, fleshy and concentrated style." (10/2018) 92 points Vinous: "Round...
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91 points Wine & Spirits: "Brooks’s 2015 is youthful and brooding, suggesting the flavor of raspberries in its riveting acidity, while coming to rest on a pithy, mineral structure. Duck breast will give that terse back-end something to work with." (04/2017)
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2016 L'Aventure "For Her" Paso Robles Rhône Blend (Previously $150) (Previously $150)
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97 points Jeb Dunnuck: "The 2016 For Her got more than one “Wow” in my notes and boasts a rock star nose of pure blueberry and blackberry fruits, liquid violets, crushed herbs, and ground pepper. A blend of 46% Syrah, 39% Graciano (which they originally thought was Monastrell), and 15% Viognier, this full-bodied effort cuts a straight, focused path on the palate and has good acidity, awesome purity of fruit, and a great, great finish. Give bottles 2-3 years of bottle age and drink over the following decade or more. (JD)" (11/2018) 96 points Robert Park...
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97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Very deep inky-purple colored, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Las Piedras Vineyard La Verdad is scented of freshly crushed black currants, warm blackberries and black cherries with touches of incense, damp earth and cigar boxes plus a waft of anise. Full-bodied and beautifully poised in the mouth, the elegant fruit layers are well framed by very fine, pixelated tannins and seamless freshness, finishing long and layered. Drink through 2037. (LPB) 97+" (10/2017) 96 points Jeb Dunnuck: "The 2015 Cabernet ...
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Winery Notes: "RAMA is a Spanish word that means branch, bough, extension, or part of. In 2005, Mario Bazán naturally stepped into winemaking after 35 years of experience farming grapes in the world famous Napa Valley. Mario Bazán Cellars, a boutique and family run winery, has been operating ever since. Tasting Notes: Exuberant fresh raspberry and blueberry aromas are matched with equal intensity on the palate. This medium bodied offering is tuned firmly to the "here and now." A delicious wine that is perfect to share with friends by the grill or at a fa...
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95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon (100% Cabernet Sauvignon aged 20 months in 80% new French oak) shows not a trace of oak and has wonderfully sweet blueberry and blackberry fruit in the nose, along with some licorice, incense, and charcoal embers. The color is opaque to the rim, and the wine full-bodied, with the blue fruits dominating on the palate. It has a finish of a good 40-45 seconds. Tannins are moderate, but very sweet and well-integrated. It should drink well for 20 years or more. (RP)" (10/2016)
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2016 Robert Mondavi "To Kalon Vineyard Reserve" Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon (Elsewhere $165) (Elsewhere $165)
Top Pick!
96 points Jeb Dunnuck: "The flagship 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve is a more long-term effort yet is loaded with potential. Comming all from Mondavi's To Kalon holdings and seeing an extended maceration and 18 months in new oak, its deep purple color is followed by rocking notes of blackberries, black cherries, smoke tobacco, black licorice, and crushed rocks. With a terrific sense of minerality, subtle background oak, full body, and impecable balance, hide bottle for 4-5 years and this beauty will cruise for 3 decades or so. 96+" (01/2019) 96 points...
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Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: " Good ruby-red. Black raspberry, smoked meat, mocha and brown spices on the nose. Fleshy and sweet but with an enticing juicy quality to the slightly reduced flavors of bitter cherry, dark berries and smoked meat. Finishes round and long, with lingering sweetness. A very successful blend. (ST)" (05/2008) Wine Spectator: "Dark, intense and concentrated, with mineral, currant, dark chocolate, cassis, licorice, strawberry and cherry flavors. Polished and balanced for such a big wine, with a long finish. Tempran...
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98 points Vinous: "The 2013 Sammarco is a stunning wine. Super-expressive aromatics make a strong opening statement in a wine endowed with myriad dimensions of nuance and complexity. The 2013 is deep and fleshy, with generous fruit, beautifully integrated tannins and exceptional finesse. Readers should not plan on opening a bottle of this any time soon, though, as it seems likely to age at a glacial pace. (AG)" (01/2018) 97 points Wine Spectator: "A polished, blackberry- and black currant-infused red, with accents of wild herbs and spice, this is both ...

97 points Jeb Dunnuck: "A mix of clones and brought up in 80% new French oak, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Beckstoffer Vineyard Georges III is straight-up gorgeous, with a deep, dense, concentrated style reminiscent of a great vintage of Léoville-Las-Cases. Blackcurrants, lead pencil shavings, chocolate, tobacco leaf, and ample earthy minerality all give way to a powerful, full-bodied 2016 that has plenty of density, ripe tannins, and a big finish. It's tight and closed at present yet has awesome potential, so the cellar is going to be your friend." (07/2...

95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve exudes notes of creme de cassis, marmite, some dried herbs and meat with a touch of menthol. Full and generous, it has great mid-palate weight supported by a crisp acid line and medium-firm, fine-grained tannins. It finishes long. Drink it now to 2024+. (LPB)" (02/2014) 90 points Wine Enthusiast: "The wine now bears a South Australia appellation because the fruit is coming from Langhorne Creek. This vintage clocks in at 15.5% alcohol, with nutmeg ...
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93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A blend of 46% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 20 Mourvèdre and 4% Cinsault, the 2014 Verbiage was my favorite of these reds from Tercero, wafting from the glass with notes of Provençal herbs, sweet berries, dried cherry, cassis, grilled meat and spice that nod to the Southern Rhône. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied, supple and seamless with a succulent core of fruit, velvety tannins and a long, sapid finish. It's a nicely balanced, characterful and keenly priced red that should drink well for the better part of a d...
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92 points Wine Enthusiast: "This elegant, medium- to full-bodied wine offers flavors of raspberry, black cherry and black tea, while a firm and nicely tart texture provides great balance. Subtle oak spices add complexity from the aroma through the finish. *Editors’ Choice* (JG)" (07/2019)
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2015 Georges Vernay "Maison Rouge" Côte-Rôtie (Elsewhere $150) (Elsewhere $150)
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96 points Jeb Dunnuck: "The 2015 Côte Rôtie Maison Rouge comes from the southern part of Côte Rôtie and is mostly destemmed (there’s 25% stems) and is brought up in 25% new French oak. It’s unquestionably the finest red I’ve tasted from the domaine, boasting awesome notes of black raspberries, blackberries, ground herbs, exotic flowers, and spice. As always, it’s not a powerhouse and offers incredible elegance and finesse in its texture, fine tannins, and great finish. Hide bottles for 2-4 years and it will drink brilliantly over the following 10-15." (1...
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According to winemaker Theo Coles: "It all began in 2002 when I stumbled across an etching of a large gnarly looking ram standing in a field during my travels. He was defiant, a little sauvage, had an old world charm and was very New Zealand. I bought him, had him framed and hung him up in my lounge. 10 years later I happened across Gareth Renowden, the owner of the Limestone Hills vineyard in the Waipara Gorge. Along with a truffiere he had 1000 Pinot Noir vines planted on beautiful active limestone soil. He wanted help to make some wine, after a walk ...
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93 points Vinous: "Dark red cherries, plums, savory herbs, licorice and new leather all take shape in the 2012 Pinot Noir Gioia Vineyard. This is a decidedly powerful, intense Pinot endowed with tons of pure power. Savory notes suggest whole clusters, but the 2012 was made entirely with destemmed fruit. The Gioia is one of the more virile and broad-shouldered wines in the Rivers-Marie range. With time in the glass it firms up just a bit, suggesting a year or two of cellaring will be rewarded. (AG)" (02/2014) 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Win...
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