November 30, 2021 - Neal Martin

South Africa: 2021 New Releases from the Cape

The Cape continues to provide wine-lovers with a bevy of high quality wines that, without wishing to sound like a broken record, represent astonishing value-for-money. If you have not woken up to the quality in South Africa, then now is the time....

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November 23, 2021 - Antonio Galloni

Champagne: 2021 New Releases

After a brutal year in 2020 in which sales slumped dramatically, Champagne has come back with a vengeance. Demand and enthusiasm are high, no doubt buoyed by a return to more or less ‘normal’ conditions, whatever that means these days. Readers will find an extraordinary range of Champagnes in the market that span the entire stylistic spectrum ranging from the glitziest grande marque new releases to small-production artisan bottlings.

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November 22, 2021 - Antonio Galloni

Breaking News: Justin Willett Acquires Iconic Fiddlestix Vineyard

Justin Willett’s acquisition of the iconic Fiddlestix Vineyard is sure to make waves for many reasons. For over a decade Willett's superb wines at Tyler have placed him in the upper echelon of Santa Barbara producers. With this investment Willett sends a strong message that the future of Tyler is very much as an estate winery in the Sta. Rita Hills and makes him one of the biggest advocates of the appellation. At Fiddlestix, Willett leads a team with partners Erik Mallea and Todd Gray of Willett-Mallea Farming and entrepreneur/wine lover William Borgers.

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November 18, 2021 - Joaquín Hidalgo

Argentina on the Couch: Malbec, Terroir and Other Trends

In this extensive report, I take a look at the current state of the wine scene in Argentina, a country where creativity is necessary for survival. Malbecs have grown increasingly diverse and reflect the range of terroirs, while a number of new trends are developing. From Cabernet Franc to Pinot Noir, high altitude vineyards are lending real energy and quality to a host of different reds.

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November 16, 2021 - Rebecca Gibb MW

Muscadet: A Region in Crus Control

Life has not been kind to Muscadet producers in recent decades, but with the advent of a cru system, focusing on local terroir and extensive lees ageing, there are reasons for optimism. In my report, I ask if this is the rocket fuel this under-appreciated region needs to revive its fortunes or is it a case of Mission Impossible?

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November 11, 2021 - Neal Martin

Don’t Rain on My Parade: Mâconnais 2019/2020

Mâconnais has experienced highs this year with its first Premier Crus and lows in terms of devastating frost and hail. Although I could not author a full write-up during my two days there in June, this report covers 2019s and 2020s from some of the region’s finest producers.

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November 9, 2021 - Neal Martin

Chablis’ Satellites: Irancy & Saint-Bris

Irancy and Saint-Bris are both located within close ambit of Chablis. Rather than lump them in with Chablis, I chose to author a separate report, since the wines are fundamentally different and moreover, well-deserving of focus.

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Antonio Galloni
Stephen Tanzer
Neal Martin
Josh Raynolds
Eric Guido
David Schildknecht
Rebecca Gibb MW
Joaquín Hidalgo

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October 29, 2021 - Antonio Galloni

Vinous Table: TORC, Napa, USA

This recent Saturday lunch at TORC was a nice break from my tastings in Napa Valley. It was great to see an old friend and get back to a more normal rhythm of actually being able spend time with people again.

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October 8, 2021 - Neal Martin

Vinous Table: The River Café, London, UK

How long must a restaurant exist before it becomes an institution? The River Café is the paradigmatic restaurant institution. People know it even if they have never eaten there nor ever will.

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September 24, 2021 - Neal Martin

Vinous Table: Chizuru Tei, Edinburgh, Scotland

Chizuru Tei has one raison d’être: to serve the best Japanese food possible. I cannot return soon enough.

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90 points ($18)

2019 Fundamental Wines by Joey Tensley Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon is inky and voluptuous. It hits the palate with blackberry jam, chocolate, licorice and spice. I can't think of a California Cabernet that delivers this much quality for the money. Black cherry fruit, tobacco and cedar abound. (AG)

90 points ($22)

2020 G.D. Vajra Barbera d'Alba

Vajra's 2020 Barbera d'Alba is juicy, vibrant and absolutely delicious. Racy red/purplish berry fruit, spice, rose petal and mint are all kicked up in a tasty, impeccable Barbera that delivers the goods, big time. (AG)

91 points ($25)

2013 I Favati Cretarossa Irpinia Campi Taurasini

Dark and smoky, the 2013 Cretarossa shows ashen stone, blackberries, sage, underbrush and a spritz of tangerine. It’s silky in texture yet lifted and elegant, with a wave of black fruits coasting along a saline core of acids and minerals. Energy remains high throughout the grippy tannins. (EG)

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November 29, 2021 - Antonio Galloni

Cellar Favorite: 1970 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo

A door to another time in Piedmont opens with the 1970 Barolo, a wine made by Battista Rinaldi long before his son, Beppe, ran the winery and well before his granddaughters, Marta and Carlotta, were even born.

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November 22, 2021 - Antonio Galloni

Cellar Favorite: 1989 Gaja Barbaresco

It is still one of the greatest tastings I have ever done. One chilly, late fall afternoon about a dozen years ago, Angelo and Gaia Gaja opened all of their 1989s and 1990s for an article I was working on, Piedmont’s Glorious 1989 and 1990 Vintages Revisited.

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November 8, 2021 - Neal Martin

Cellar Favorite: 1995 Haut-Brion

The 1995 Bordeaux vintage is one that I would like to revisit more often. It has not been forgotten about. After all, it was one of the most celebrated vintages of the decade, but it has been side-lined by subsequent growing seasons.

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Champagne: 2021 New Releases
By Antonio Galloni
Washington: New Releases
By Stephen Tanzer
Napa's 2018s & 2019s: New Releases
By Antonio Galloni
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