Wine Spectator and Parker Reviews

As of November 2014
Region Producer Wine Score Date Review Pub Issue # Listed Price
Tuscany Fattorie Scopone Brunello di Montalcino 2008 90 Web Only, 2013 Rich and dense, featuring cherry, raspberry, floral and earthy aromas and flavors. This is vivid and well-supported by refined tannins, presenting a long, fresh finish. Best from 2016 through 2028. 1,300 cases made. –BS WS $49.00
New Zealand Ten Sisters Pinot Noir 2011 91 Web only, 2013 Elegant, smooth and polished, with crisp cherry, raspberry puree and wild strawberry flavors at the core, highlighted by details of nutmeg, white pepper and Earl Grey tea. Drink now through 2022. 200 cases made. WS $23.00
Tuscany Baracchi, Riccardo Toscano Ardito 2010 90 Web  only, 2014 Marked by a sweet sawdust note, this red displays raspberry, currant and loam flavors on a dense carpet of tannins. Finds equilibrium on the persistent finish. Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. Best from 2016 through 2024. 800 cases made. WS $45.00
Washington Browne Family Tribute Red 2011 92 June, 2014 Coffee beans and black berries merge into the fast lane to deliver a ripe-fruited, dry tannin superstar.  Spiced rhubarb, violets, and jammy blackberry add even more depth W & S
Piedmont Rocche Costamagna Barolo Rocche dell’ Annunziata 2010 92 July, 2014 Aged for two years in botte grande, the 2010 Barolo Rocche dell’Annunziata is delightful and bright with savory tones of dried fruit and exotic spice with rosemary oil, dried sage and autumnal leaf. Barolo Rocche dell’Annunziata hails from one of the best and largest single-vineyards in La Morra. The wine also offers great value for this level of quality. The mouthfeel is compact and silky. Drink: 2016-2026. WA 213 $35(45)
Tuscany Castiglion del Bosco Brunello di Montalcino 2009 90 Feb, 2014 The 2009 Brunello di Montalcino is especially evocative of the vintage with evolved notes of dried rose petal, dark cherry spice and cola. The wine is supple and large, but not exaggeratedly so. Ruby highlights emerge from a dark garnet color and earthy endnotes are followed by dried tobacco and leather. It is best suited for near-term consumption and should already come into its own within the next year or two. Drink: 2015-2020. WA $45.00
Friuli Lis Neris Confini 2008 93 Feb, 2011 What a pleasure it is to taste the 2008 Confini, a blend of 60% Gewurztraminer, 30% Pinot Grigio and 10% Riesling. Vivid layers of jasmine, floral honey, passion fruit, mango and lime peel dance on the palate as this sumptuous yet beautifully balanced white caresses the palate. The persistence and definition are both first-rate. The 2008 captures a nearly ideal balance of ripeness, alcohol and residual sugar while avoiding heaviness, no small feat with this bottling. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2018. WA 193 $43.00
Friuli Lis Neris Tal Luc 2007 92 Feb, 2011 The NV (2007) Tal Luc flows with the essence of dried rose petals, cinnamon, cloves and orange peel. The 2007 is a relatively understated vintage for this wine, with less of the explosive texture of the very finest years. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2015. WA 193 $88.00
Spain Miguel Merino Rioja Reserva 2006 90 Dec, 2013 The 2006 Reserva is a great modern traditional Rioja that reminds me of the style of wines like Valenciso, with balsamic aromas of incense, cigar box, leather and tar intermixed with subtle notes of blackberries and blueberries. The palate displays polished tannins, lively fruit and good balance. Drink 2014-2017. WA 210 $35.00
Tuscany Il Borro Polissena 2010 92 August, 2013 The more elaborate 2010 Polissena is pure Sangiovese that is aged in oak for one year. There-s more heft and density here. Cassis and plum drive the elegant finish. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2022. WA $34.00
Tuscany Castello di Bolgheri Varvara 2011 91 Aug, 2013 The 2011 Bolgheri Rosso Varvara is Cabernet Sauvignon (50%), Merlot, Petit Verdot and Syrah. The best aspect here is the balance the wine shows with bright cherry fruit, spice and pencil shavings. Beyond those soft layers are more delicate aromas of herb and black pepper. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2019. WA $25.00
Veneto Begali Amarone Ca’ Bianca 2009 90 12/1/2014 This structured wine opens with aromas of subtle oak, toast, leather, espresso and dried plum. The extracted palate delivers prune, crushed black cherry, soy sauce and grilled herbs framed by bracing tannins that leave a drying finish.  — K.O. WE $78.00
Veneto Begali Amarone Classico 2010 92 12/1/2014 Aromas of blue flowers, blackberries and cake spices lead the nose on this smooth, structured wine. The palate delivers baked plums, prunes marinated in spirits, cinnamon, white pepper and tobacco alongside soft tannins. It has good length and closes on a chocolate note.  — K.O WE $64.00
Tuscany Il Borro Alessandro dal Borro 2011  Magnum only 95 9/19/2014 This breaks the mold for Il Borro. So much dried-meat and berry character. Spices. Hints of toasted oak. Roasted almond. Full body. Powerful and velvety. A truly great syrah from Tuscany. Drink or hold, but better in two or three years. Only 2,445 magnums made. JS NA
Austria Anton Bauer Gruner Veltliner Rosenberg 2013 90 8/1/2014 Freshly cut green pear aromatically leads on to that white pepper spice so often looked for in Grüner. Here it shows in abundance, in duet with ripe but refreshing lemon acidity. WE $25.00
Oregon Elizabeth Chambers Pinot Noir Winemakers Cuvee 2011 92 8/1/2014 An elegant debut for this new Oregon winery, the Winemaker’s Cuvée opens with lovely floral and herbal scents, moving into a detailed, precise and well-configured palate, with pretty raspberry and cherry candy fruit. It’s set in a sturdy frame of acid and tannin, and seems to gain concentration through the long finish. WE $32.00
Austria Netzl Chardonnay 2013 90 8/1/2014 Creamy yellow plum fruit and a flinty edge lead onto a full-fruited, brightly lit palate where all the fruit is pulled into zesty orange and lemon focus. Concentration and friendliness prove great assets here. WE $15.00
Austria Steininger Gruner Veltliner Kamptal 2013 92 8/1/2014 Lifted, pear-scented freshness dominates the nose while the palate is soft but has a pleasing and linear citrus focus. This is poised and offers sophisticated refreshment. WE $17.00
Austria Tegernseerhof Gruner Veltliner T 26 Federspiel 90 8/1/2014 Ripe peach mingles with a mix of phenolics and zestiness on the concentrated midpalate. Structured and spicy, it delivers peppery impact and a prolonged finish. WE $18.00
Washington Browne Family Chardonnay 2012 90 7/1/2014 Aged 11 months in French oak, the roasty-toasty barrel notes are at the fore followed by peach and tropical fruit. What it lacks in subtlety it makes up for with a rich, creamy mouthfeel that draws out to a lingering finish. WE $32.00
New Zealand Ten Sisters Sauvignon Blanc 2013 90 7/1/2014 This medium-bodied wine shows a remarkable evolution on the palate, where it accelerates through tight, reined-in notions of gun flint and vague leafiness to pinwheels of pink grapefruit and tomato leaf by the long finish. WE $18.00
Austria Anton Bauer Gruner Veltliner Grand Reserve 2012 92 5/1/2014 Flint, ripe peaches and golden apricots with the merest hint of vanilla suggest the finest Viennese pastries. This well-judged and super-mellow wine is just rich enough, also giving hints of almond paste and lime peel. There is no heaviness, just velvety mouthfeel and sumptuous length. WE $29.00
Austria Tegernseerhof Gruner Veltliner Bergdistel 2012 91 5/1/2014 Aloe vera, green pear peel and ripe Mirabelle plums charm nose and palate on the soft and ripe palate. Despite the ripeness nothing is overdone and reaches a center of gravity. WE $30.00
Austria Tegernseerhof Zwerithaler 2012 92 5/1/2014 The harmony of this field blend is astonishing: Delicious notes of ripe Amalfi lemons, mixed with some lanolin introduce this streamlined, sleek but concentrated wine, toned slenderness and grace make one almost forget about that central heft of pleasantly bitter phenolics. An athlete in a flowing, flattering and silky summer dress. WE $39.00
Austria Anton Bauer Wagram Reserve Red 2011 93 3/1/2014 The poised, clean and lifted wild black-cherry fruit mixed with notions of cocoa forms the aromatic theme. A very elegant wine, with medium body and alluring depth, it’s currently tight and held firmly by structured, ripe tannins, while the acidity is bright and refreshing. With its youthful primary fruit, this is charming, but even a year or two will make this more pretty than it is right now. WE $25.00
Austria Netzl Anna Christina 2011 90 3/1/2014 Toast and caramel notes mingle with mocha and dark plum flavors, resulting in a sleek wine with soft yet palpable tannins. As it opens up, soft plum and cherry fruit is revealed. The concentrated midpalate also signals that this will age and develop well. WE $55.00
Tuscany Baracchi, Riccardo Sangiovese Cortona 2011 90 2/28/2014 Plenty of strawberry and cherry flavors mark this pure, elegant red. Picks up hints of leather and tobacco, but the beam of intense fruit lingers. Drink now through 2016. 1,100 cases made. –BS WS $30.00
Austria Tegernseerhof Zwerithaler 2011 94 2/1/2014 This wine is sourced from a field blend of old vines grown on steep slopes behind Weissenkirchen. It has a very crisp character that’s tight and mineral in style. Aromatic, spicy, herbal and perfumed, it needs time to open up and is still very young. Drink from 2016. Screwcap. WE $37.00
Friuli Borgo San Daniele Friulano 2012 90+ 12/1/2013 The 2012 Isonzo del Friuli Friulano is a delicately floral and elegant white that would pair next to mildly spicy Southeast Asian cuisine. It shows grace and charm with pretty aromas of crushed rose and summer peach. Some 20% percent of the wine sees oak and there is indeed a distant note of roasted hazelnut at the back. Drink: 2014-2017. WA 210 $30.00
Austria Steindorfer Beerenauslese 2010 93 11/1/2013 This is a honeyed wine, with a strong showing of ginger marmalade and bright acidity. It’s full in the mouth and layered with acidity and lush, unctuous flavors. It shows great aging potential; drink from 2015. WE $34.00
Tuscany Castello di Bolgheri Varvara 2011 90 10/31/2013 Laced with pure cherry and accented by raspberry, cocoa and spice, this red is both fruity and dense. The tannins are firm yet well-integrated, but need time to soften. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Petit Verdot. Best from 2015 through 2024. 5,000 cases made. –BS WS $34.00
Tuscany Castiglion del Bosco Rosso di Montalcino 2011 91 10/31/2013 A mouthful of juicy raspberry, this red also evokes spice and mineral flavors. Harmonious and ready to enjoy, with fine length and hints of licorice and tobacco on the finish. Drink now through 2018. 2,000 cases imported. –BS WS $24.00
Tuscany Il Borro Pian di Nova 2011 90 10/15/2013 Dill and black olive notes accent the black cherry fruit in this muscular red. Balanced on the dry side. Best from 2015 through 2025. 5,833 cases made. –BS WS $24.00
Tuscany I Fabbri Terre di Lamole Chianti Classico 2010 92 10/1/2013 This wine has aromas of underbrush, cherry and leather, with a hint of spices. The palate boasts wild cherry, mint, menthol, and meat juices and shows structure and balance. Give this a few more years to develop complexity. Siena Imports, WE $21.00
Tuscany Capannelle Solare 2006 92 9/30/2013 This presents intense aromas and flavors of cherry, licorice, underbrush and wild herbs. Powerful and sinewy, with aggressive tannins and lively acidity. A balanced wine, but needs time for the tannins to mellow. Sangiovese and Malvasia Nera. Drink now through 2025. 3,300 cases made. WS $45.00
Basilicata I Sassi (D’Angelo) Aglianico del Vulture 2009 90 9/30/2013 A suave version, offering gamy dark cherry and wild berry fruit, fine tannins and fresh acidity, with nuances of incense, tobacco and wild herb gracing the finish. Drink now through 2018. 500 cases imported. WS $20.00
Austria Steininger Gruner Veltliner Grand Gru 2012 91 9/1/2013 A clever play on words, this powerful wine is rich, complex, and a shade off dry from its ripe fruit profile. It has intense juiciness with loads of apple and pear flavor and just a touch of pepper. Full-bodied and worth aging for 2–4 years. WE $30.00
Tuscany Capannelle Chianti Classico Riserva 2007 92 12/31/2012 A beautiful expression of Sangiovese, this shows delicate and elegant characteristics of wild berry and light spice. The finish is silky and crisp, and the wine would stand up nicely to breaded veal or roast chicken. WE $40.00
Friuli Lis Neris Lis Bianco 2007 93 2/1/2012 The 2007 Lis is another fabulous wine from Lis Neris. Layers of fruit flow effortlessly from this textured, dazzling white. The Lis is impeccable from start to finish. The wine continues to blossom on the palate, showing remarkable elegance and finesse. Lis is 50% Pinot Grigio, 30% Chardonnay and 20% Sauvignon Blanc. I can’t remember tasting a vintage in which the blend has been so harmonious. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2016. WA $43.00
Piedmont Lodali Barbaresco Lorens 2008 91 9/1/2011 Sophisticated and bright, this beautiful Barbaresco presents loads of vanilla, dark fruit, spice and toasted nut intensity. There’s structure and longevity here and the wine lasts many long minutes on the palate thanks to its bone-dry tannins. WE
Friuli Lis Neris Tal Luc 2007 95 12/31/2010 Tal Lùc comes in an elegant little bottle that beautifully sets the stage for the fabulous dessert wine to follow. The color is deeply golden and saturated and aromas include toasted almond, dried yellow rose, candied fruit and apricot. The creamy texture would pair with something different than dessert, say a delicate sliver of duck liver pâté. WE $88.00
Tuscany Capannelle Chianti Classico Riserva 2007 91 10/1/2010 Juicy red cherries, flowers, spices, leather and new oak are some of the notes that emerge from Capannelle’s flashy 2007 Chianti Classico Riserva. Soft and luxurious on the palate, the Riserva impresses for its superb balance and long, harmonious finish. The open, seductive personality of the vintage is on full display. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2019. WA 191 $34.00
Tuscany Capannelle 50/50 2005 93 10/1/2010 A rush of jammy dark berries is the first sensation that emerges from the 2005 50 & 50 a blend of Merlot and Sangiovese made in partnership with Avignonesi. The 50 & 50 shows a bit more accessibility and sheer plumpness than the decidedly structured Solare. New leather, spices, chocolate, espresso and toasted French oak add complexity to this juicy, full-throttle red. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2022. WA 191 $200.00
Calabria Odoardi Scavigna Polpicello 2003 90 6/1/2010 The 2003 Scavigna Polpicello is a more important wine and is made from a high-altitude vineyard cropped to low yields. The Polpicello is 40% Gaglioppo, 25% Nocera Nero, 20% Magliocco, 10% Nerello Cappuccio, 3% Cabernet Franc 1% each Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot that spent 18 months in French oak. Sweet, silky tannins frame roses, ripe red cherries, flowers and spices in a rich style that retains considerable freshness and vibrancy. The finish is long, succulent and elegant. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2020. WA 189 $42.00
Odoardi Vigna Garrone 2004 92 “Odoardi’s 2004 Vigna Garrone is fleshy and vibrant in its perfumed violets, black cherries, jammy blackberries, earthiness and sweet toasted oak. It offers superb balance and poise, with elegant, refined tannins that round out the close. Today it comes across as youthful and powerful but it should settle down in another year or two. This blend of 80% Gaglioppo, 10% Nerello Capuccio, 5% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot spent 14 months in French oak. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2019.” WA
Odoardi Vigna Garrone 2004 93 “Inviting from nose to finish, this dense red sports layers of sun-dried wild berry, plum paste and grilled fig notes wound with layers of espresso bean, rosemary and brick dust on the long, rustic finish. Gaglioppo, Nerello Cappuccio, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2020. 400 cases made.” WS
 
As of June 7, 2013
Region Producer Wine Score Date Review WS/RP Issue #
Washington Alder Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, Horse Heaven Hills 93 11/1/12 Young, supple and stylish, this mixes notes of berry, plum and cassis, demonstrating poise and richness. The barrel flavors are smoothly integrated; the finish is rich and dark, with a strong streak of cacao. WE
Oregon Amity Vineyards Crannell Vyd Pinot Noir 2009 87 October, 2011 The 2009 Pinot Noir Crannell Single Vineyard was sourced from a parcel in Eola Hills. Dried herbs, spice box, and red fruit aromas inform the nose of a savory but slightly austere Pinot that could develop more sweetness with another 1-2 years in the bottle. Plan to drink it over the next 5-6 years. WA 197
Oregon Amity Vineyards Crannell Vyd Pinot Noir 2009 90 6/1/12 Dark in color and flavor, the Crannell brings ripe fruit flavors of black cherry and prune. Smooth and full-bodied, with an easy-drinking roundness to the mouthfeel, it finishes softly with all components well integrated. WE
Tuscany Baracchi, Riccardo Merlot Smeriglio 2008 87 web only 2011 Sweet cherry and plum fruit flavors are accented by fresh herbs and vanilla in this red. The tannins are a bit harsh, and this dry on the finish, with an earthy aftertaste. Not imported into the U.S. Best from 2012 through 2020. 1,250 cases made. –BS WS
Tuscany Baracchi, Riccardo Sangiovese Cortona 2010 94 Currants and blueberries with hints of minerals.  Flowers too.  Full body, with walnut, cocoa powder and fruit. Solid wine.  Beautiful pure fruit. JS
Tuscany Baracchi, Riccardo Toscano Ardito 2007 89 Web only, 2011 A meaty, peppery red, with blackberry and plum notes as well as a layer of spicy oak. Concentrated, but astringent in the end, without a coating of sweet fruit to offset it. Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. Best from 2014 through 2024. 800 cases made. –BS WS
Veneto Begali Amarone “Ca Bianca” 2007 93 11/1/12 This shows enormous personality and distinctive aromas of rosemary, bay leaf, sweet cherry, prune, spice, cola and tobacco. Made in a large, bold style, it delivers plush layers of sweetness and softness, with a touch of heat on the finish. WE
Veneto Begali Amarone Classico 2008 92 11/1/12 Begali’s wines really do offer their own unique personality and style. This wine is embellished by slightly green aromas of bay leaf and rosemary oil that add brightness and buoyancy. The flavors are complex, long lasting and include notes of soft spice, ripe fruit and sweet tobacco. WE
Tuscany Capannelle Chardonnay 2008 88 8/1/11 Capannelle’s 2008 Chardonnay is made in a rich, buttery style that showcases the more extroverted qualities of the grape. In 2008 the wine has more minerality than is often the case, which helps maintain freshness. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2014. WA 196
Tuscany Capannelle Chianti Classico Riserva 2007 91 10/1/10 Juicy red cherries, flowers, spices, leather and new oak are some of the notes that emerge from Capannelle’s flashy 2007 Chianti Classico Riserva. Soft and luxurious on the palate, the Riserva impresses for its superb balance and long, harmonious finish. The open, seductive personality of the vintage is on full display. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2019. WA 191
Tuscany Capannelle Solare 2004 91 8/1/09 The 2004 Solare is a powerful, dense offering that bursts from the glass with an array of earthiness, tar, smoke, black cherries and grilled herbs. This rich, sensual wine reveals superb depth and a long, harmonious finish. Solare is 80% Sangiovese and 20% Malvasia Nera that spent 2 years in French oak. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2022. WA 184
Tuscany Capannelle 50/50 2005 93 10/1/10 A rush of jammy dark berries is the first sensation that emerges from the 2005 50 & 50 a blend of Merlot and Sangiovese made in partnership with Avignonesi. The 50 & 50 shows a bit more accessibility and sheer plumpness than the decidedly structured Solare. New leather, spices, chocolate, espresso and toasted French oak add complexity to this juicy, full-throttle red. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2022. WA 191
Tuscany Castello di Bolgheri Varvara 2010 92 4/1/13 A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Petit Verdot, this is generous in terms of its aromatic intensity and persistence. The wine opens with tones of espresso, dark berry, sweet spice and chocolate. The mouthfeel is smooth, rich and opulent. WE
Tuscany Castello di Bolgheri Bolgheri Superiore 2006 90 10/31/09 Cassis bush, chocolate and light vanilla aromas follow through to a full body, with silky tannins and a fresh, caressing finish. Balanced and pretty. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Best after 2011. 2,300 cases made. –JS WS
Tuscany Corte alla Flora Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2009 90 10/31/12 This round red exudes cherry, plum, tobacco and earth flavors combined with a firm, fresh structure. Needs time to shed its assertive tannins. Pair with a good steak or wild boar. Best from 2015 through 2027. 3,500 cases made. WS
Tuscany Fattorie Scopone Rosso di Montalcino 2007 88 8/31/10 A rich, wonderful Rosso, with plenty of generous spice and berry character. Medium- to full-bodied, but finishes a little short. Drink now. 500 cases made. WS
Tuscany Fattorie Scopone Brunello di Montalcino 2007 94 5/1/12 A pleasurable, opulent wine with rich tones of cherry and sweet chocolate backed by dense concentration and extraction. Plush, ripe, modern, soft and dense: a real crowd-pleaser. Soft, thick texture with loads of spice, dark fruit and staying power. Very nice. WE
Tuscany Fattorie Scopone Brunello di Montalcino 2007 89 4/1/12 The 2007 Brunello di Montalcino is a big, fleshy wine loaded with dark red fruit, spices and new leather. Some of the persistence tails off on the mid-palate and finish, which is the only thing missing here. The 2007 Brunello possesses notable weight but the tannins remain hard and unpolished. Early signs of advancement in the bouquet suggest the wine is best enjoyed sooner rather than later. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2024. WA
Tuscany Il Borro Pian di Nova 2010 90 10/15/12 Crisp, bright flavors of raspberry and cherry are accented by dill and olive notes in this fruity red, which stays focused, bright and firm through the finish. Drink now through 2020. 5,833 cases made WS
Tuscany Il Borro Toscano 2009 90 10/15/12 A generous lashing of oak lends vanilla, clove and toast accents to the blackberry, plum and herb flavors. Though fruity and long, this is heavy-handed, with too much oak. For fans of the style. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Petit Verdot. Best from 2013 through 2020. 4,166 cases made. WS
Alto Adige Kellerei Kaltern Chardonnay Wadleith 2011 88 6/1/203 Wadleith offers fullness and generosity with bright aromas of yellow rose and stone fruit followed by touches of almond and cinnamon spice. The wine closes with a smooth, waxy feel and a touch of heat on the close. WE
Alto Adige Kellerei Kaltern Pinot Grigio 2011 90 8/1/12 This gorgeous Pinot Grigio displays the fresh aromatic fragrances associated with cool-climate, mountain winemaking. Layers of jasmine, tangerine, cut grass and white almond appear on the bouquet, giving this wine a delicate and feminine personality.
A spicy touch of acidity drives the clean, bright finish. Best Buy.
WE
Alto Adige Kellerei Kaltern Pinot Bianco Vial 2011 90 6/1/13 If you love Pinot Bianco, you will be delighted by this pretty expression from the mountainous north of Italy. Alpine breezes have shaped a balanced and mildly fragrant white with layers of exotic fruit, pineapple, pear and melon. It shows nice structure and length as well. WE
Friuli Lis Neris Confini 2008 93 Feb, 2011 What a pleasure it is to taste the 2008 Confini, a blend of 60% Gewurztraminer, 30% Pinot Grigio and 10% Riesling. Vivid layers of jasmine, floral honey, passion fruit, mango and lime peel dance on the palate as this sumptuous yet beautifully balanced white caresses the palate. The persistence and definition are both first-rate. The 2008 captures a nearly ideal balance of ripeness, alcohol and residual sugar while avoiding heaviness, no small feat with this bottling. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2018. WA 193
Friuli Lis Neris Gris Pinot Grigio 2009 91 Feb, 2012 The 2009 Pinot Grigio Gris exudes the warmth of the year in its fat, voluptuous fruit. Despite its richness the Gris possesses terrific overall balance, although the style is decidedly big. I would choose to drink the 2009 with fairly rich foods. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2015. WA
Friuli Lis Neris Lis Bianco 2007 93 2/1/12 The 2007 Lis is another fabulous wine from Lis Neris. Layers of fruit flow effortlessly from this textured, dazzling white. The Lis is impeccable from start to finish. The wine continues to blossom on the palate, showing remarkable elegance and finesse. Lis is 50% Pinot Grigio, 30% Chardonnay and 20% Sauvignon Blanc. I can’t remember tasting a vintage in which the blend has been so harmonious. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2016. WA
Friuli Lis Neris Tal Luc 2007 92 Feb, 2011 The NV (2007) Tal Luc flows with the essence of dried rose petals, cinnamon, cloves and orange peel. The 2007 is a relatively understated vintage for this wine, with less of the explosive texture of the very finest years. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2015. WA 193
Friuli Lis Neris Tal Luc 2007 95 12/31/10 Tal Lùc comes in an elegant little bottle that beautifully sets the stage for the fabulous dessert wine to follow. The color is deeply golden and saturated and aromas include toasted almond, dried yellow rose, candied fruit and apricot. The creamy texture would pair with something different than dessert, say a delicate sliver of duck liver pâté. WE
Piedmont Lodali Barbaresco Lorens 2007 90 12/01/201 Winemakers for many long generations, the Lodali family (now with Walter Lodali at the helm) is slowly penetrating the international wine consciousness. The 2007 Lorens Barbaresco offers pronounced aromas of smoke, tobacco, tar and licorice embellished by red rose and violet. The wine is smooth, silky with polished tannins and an elegant finish. WE
Piedmont Lodali Barbaresco Lorens 2008 91 9/1/11 Sophisticated and bright, this beautiful Barbaresco presents loads of vanilla, dark fruit, spice and toasted nut intensity. There’s structure and longevity here and the wine lasts many long minutes on the palate thanks to its bone-dry tannins. WE
Piedmont Lodali Barolo Lorens 2007 92 Web only 2012 This is a savory, spicy red, featuring dried cherry, salty licorice, soy and tobacco flavors, all allied to dense, well-integrated tannins and a vibrant structure. Very harmonious, with a sweet berry finish. Best from 2013 through 2025. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 50 cases imported. WS
Piedmont Lodali Barolo Lorens 2007 91 9/1/11 Barolo Lorens delivers interesting dimension and personality with a complex bouquet comprised of fruit, spice and cola elements. The aromatic intensity is given a natural lift thanks to the wine’s dense pulp and velvety consistency. Sweet cherry flavors fuel a long finish. WE
Spain Miguel Merino Rioja Reserva 2005 89 8/1/12 The 2005 Reserva has a licorice and leather-tinged bouquet with touches of bacon fat and hung game. The palate is medium-bodied with dry, leathery tannins and gamey fruit. It has a pleasing, savory, classic finish with hints of mocha and dark chocolate. Drink now-2018. WA 202
Spain Miguel Merino Rioja Unuum 2008 89 8/1/12 The 2008 Unnum is sourced from Tempranillo vines planted between 1931 and 1946. It has a dense, inky bouquet of dark cherry and cassis fruit with just a touch of black truffle. The palate is medium-bodied with sinewy tannins and it displays impressive depth, with roiling dark, broody, licorice-tinged fruit. The finish is still closed, so I would afford another 12 to 24 months bottle age. Drink 2013-2022. WA 202
Calabria Odoardi Scavigna Polpicello 2003 90 6/1/10 The 2003 Scavigna Polpicello is a more important wine and is made from a high-altitude vineyard cropped to low yields. The Polpicello is 40% Gaglioppo, 25% Nocera Nero, 20% Magliocco, 10% Nerello Cappuccio, 3% Cabernet Franc 1% each Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot that spent 18 months in French oak. Sweet, silky tannins frame roses, ripe red cherries, flowers and spices in a rich style that retains considerable freshness and vibrancy. The finish is long, succulent and elegant. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2020. WA 189
Calabria Odoardi Scavigna Polpicello 2003 88 web only 2012 Game, spice and wild herb notes lead to a tangy palate of dried berries and plum skin, as mature hints of leather and sautéed mushroom show its age. Gaglioppo, Nocero Nero, Magliocco, Nerello Cappuccio, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now. 300 cases made. –NW WS
Calabria Odoardi Vigna Garrone 2004 92 2/1/08 Odoardi’s 2004 Vigna Garrone is fleshy and vibrant in its perfumed violets, black cherries, jammy blackberries, earthiness and sweet toasted oak. It offers superb balance and poise, with elegant, refined tannins that round out the close. Today it comes across as youthful and powerful but it should settle down in another year or two. This blend of 80% Gaglioppo, 10% Nerello Capuccio, 5% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot spent 14 months in French oak. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2019. WA 175
Calabria Odoardi Vigna Garrone 2004 93 9/30/12 Inviting from nose to finish, this dense red sports layers of sun-dried wild berry, plum paste and grilled fig notes wound with layers of espresso bean, rosemary and brick dust on the long, rustic finish. Gaglioppo, Nerello Cappuccio, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2020. 400 cases made. WS
Calabria Odoardi Savuto Rosso 2006 89 June, 2010 Odoardi’s 2006 Savuto is beautiful in this vintage. A blend of 45% Gaglioppo, 15% Greco Nero, 15% Nerello Cappuccio, 15% Magliocco Canino and 10% Sangiovese, this plump, juicy red impresses for the integrity of its fruit. Tobacco, mint, truffles and smoke add further layers of complexity. This is a gorgeous effort from Odoardi. Even better, it is a steal for the money. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2014. WA 189
Calabria Odoardi Savuto Rosso 2006 89 9/30/12 A beefy, herb-tinged red, sporting dense layers of plum sauce, grilled fig and currant paste, stacked with notes of roasted game, rosemary and humus. The finish lingers, despite noticeable tannins. Gaglioppo, Greco Nero, Nerello Cappuccio, Magliocco Canino and Sangiovese. Drink now through 2016. 14,000 cases made. WS
Piedmont Rocche Costamagna Barolo Bricco Francesco 2006 92 12/1/10 Named after the winery’s founder, Francesco Costamagna, Bricco Francesco is a ripe and juicy Barolo with pulpy fruit and intense aromas of cherry, tobacco, strawberry and cola. There’s a bit of vanilla and sweet spice as well and the wine is generously textured with smooth tannins. WE
Piedmont Rocche Costamagna Barolo Bricco Francesco 2006 91 10/31/12 This red is still locked up tight, its cherry, licorice and herb flavors surrounded by a cloak of tannins. The finish is fresh and long, with fine balance overall. Best from 2015 through 2030. 350 cases made. WS
Piedmont Rocche Costamagna Barolo Rocche dell’ Annunziata 2008 92 9/4/12 This is a lovely, feminine release from this famous cru, showing soft fruit that is predominantly red in tone and delicate, nuanced aromas with floral and leafy notes.  Tannins are fine in grain, making for a wine that seems symmetrical in all important respects.–Michael Franz Wine Review on Line
Piedmont Rocche Costamagna Barolo Rocche dell’ Annunziata 2008 93 1/18/13 Soft and silky with fine tannis and a fruity finish.  Very pretty density of fruit to this wine with a solid core of fruit and a polished tannin structure.  Goes on for minutes.  Subtle and rich wine with reserve.  Better in 2015 James Suckling
Idaho Sawtooth Syrah 2011 91 8/1/13 Rich dark fruit, savory spices, earthy undertones with integrated tannins. W & S
Idaho Sawtooth Riesling 2011 90 5/1/13 Spicy and substantial, this authoritative Riesling snaps into tight focus around apple and melon flavors. Hints of clove and ginger add complexity. WE
Idaho Sawtooth Skyline Red 2010 88 5/1/13 Lushly fruited with blueberry, black cherry and plum, this Idaho-sourced red blend is mostly Cabernet Sauvignon, with small amounts of seven other grapes. Smooth and flavorful, it finishes with a dash of cocoa. WE
New Zealand Ten Sisters Sauvignon Blanc 2011 88 web only 2013 Shows terrific balance to the chorus of melon, citrus, pear and apple flavors, with details of honeysuckle and spice complementing the intense, firm acidity. Drink now. 3,795 cases made. WS
New Zealand Ten Sisters Pinot Noir 2010 90 12/31/12 A gunpowder aroma gives way to cherry, raspberry and rhubarb flavors that are fresh, seamless and detailed, with plenty of charm to the spice, tobacco and mineral notes and the soft, elegant tannins. Drink now through 2022. 200 cases made. WS