Natalie MacLean - delicious wine picks and pairings
www.nataliemaclean.com

Vintages Release May 28, 2011

Login to see Natalie's scores and notes

Reviewed Wines | All Wines | Group by Wine Type | Group by Country/Region

Increase Font Size | Decrease Font Size


Dessert Wine

Warre's Otima 20-Year-Old Port, D.O.C., Douro, Portugal: I love this tawny port. Year after year, it’s a go-to dessert wine with its almond goodness and toffee layers of satisfaction. Port food pairings: cheesecake, crème brulee. 682716 20% S 500 mL $39.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Top-Rated Dessert Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Red Wine

Sequana Dutton Ranch Pinot Noir 2008, Green Valley, Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California, United States: Full-bodied with mocha and black cherry aromas. Beautifully constructed and deliciously consumed. This is full-on pinot. Drink: 2009 - 2015 220087 14.6% XD 750 mL $47.95 Score: 91/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Pahlmeyer Pinot Noir 2008, Sonoma Coast, California, United States: Vintages Wine Panel: A tremendous cool-climate-like Pinot Noir (in suggests New Zealand’s Central Otago) with aromas of smoky cherry, boysenberry, plum and earth tones. Dry and robust, but in a way that says “Pinot Noir.” Very fine balance between the fruit, acid and oak. Medium-full bodied, layered and very impressive. Hold in the cellar for 1-2 years and then enjoy it over the next decade. It can also work very well now, decanted. My note: Full-bodied with black cherry, beetroot and cranberry. Smooth and long, but over-priced. Pinot Noir food pairings: veal medallions in a red wine sauce. Drink: 2009 - 2016 148536 14.9% D 750 mL $79.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

7 Deadly Zins Old Vine Michael & David Phillips Zinfandel 2008, Lodi, California, United States: Vintages Wine Panel: It took fruit sourced from seven of Lodi’s premium vineyards, specifically chosen for their superior quality, to create this sinfully rich Zinfandel. Loaded with berry fruit, pepper, spice and earth, this wine is a model of consistency. Mitigate the severity of your transgression (or implicate others as you will) and share this considerable, and decadent, treasure with friends at your next barbecue. Enjoy over the next 3-5 years. My vote: I adore this wine: it’s vibrant, juicy, generous and fleshy rich with blueberries, purple plums, black raspberries. It reminds me of Tina Fey: lively and fun, always ready for a joke as you sit around the barbecue. It’s simply delicious. Zinfandel food pairings: sauce-covered barbecued meats, cheeses. Drink: 2009 - 2015 59311 14.5% D 750 mL $24.95 Score: 93/100. May 2011. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Gamble Family Vineyards Paramount Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2005, Napa Valley, California, United States: Full-bodied with big black brooding fruit and smoky oak. This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc with a little Petit Verdot. Great depth and concentration. Drink: 2009 - 2016 221143 14.5% XD 750 mL $59.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Predator Old Vine Zinfandel 2008, Lodi, California, United States: Yum, yum! Big fleshy blueberries and blackberries roll across your tongue. You want more. I’ll top you up. Full-bodied and so supple. It’s ready to go with you are. Bring it on with the barbecue. Zinfandel food pairings: hamburgers, pasta alla carbonara, sausage pizza. Drink: 2009 - 2015 219485 15% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 92/100. May 2011. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon 2002, Napa Valley, California, United States: A solid Napa cabernet that’s best consumed in the next two years. Classic aromas of cassis and blackcurrant with a kiss of oak. Full-bodied and smooth. Drink: 2008 - 2013 238758 14.5% D 750 mL $29.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Fess Parker Rodney's Vineyard Syrah 2007, Santa Barbara County, California, United States: Dark, brooding, savoury and meaty. Good grip in this full-bodied red with aromas of blackberry and cassis. Decant for 1-2 hours. Drink: 2009 - 2016 232546 14.5% XD 750 mL $39.95 Score: 92/100. May 2011. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Southbrook Vineyards Triomphe Syrah 2009, V.Q.A., Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada: Vintages Wine Panel: The 2009 Syrah offers complex notes of blackberry, licorice, lilac and black pepper. The palate is dry, medium bodied with spicy fruit, bright acidity, velvety tannins, a round texture and medium-long, fruit-filled smoky finish. Sing this wine’s praises. My note: Mocha dark chocolate notes with fleshy plums. Round and full-bodied with a velvet texture. Scrumptious! Syrah food pairings: barbecued steak, gourmet sausages. Drink: 2009 - 2014 129809 12% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Aubichon Reserve Pinot Noir 2007, Willamette Valley, Oregon, United States: Vibrant black cherries and raspberries with a silky texture. Full-bodied and supple with a loooooong finish. Drink: 2009 - 2016 220442 14.1% XD 750 mL $49.00 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Layer Cake Malbec 2009, Mendoza, Argentina: Vintages Wine Panel: Layer Cake is, in part, a tribute to winemaker Jayson Woodbridge’s grandfather who said that when it’s properly made, wine “is like a great layer cake.” Granddad would certainly have approved of this complex and layered offering. Coffee, blackberry, plum and spice aromas abound. Dry, with black fruit, spice, mocha and raspberry tones, nicely integrated medium tannins, a creamy mid-palate and good fruit on the medium-long finish. Offer your guests a slice. My note: Mocha dark chocolate melts into plush plums and fleshy blackberries. Some espresso and vanilla smoke on the finish. Malbec food pairings: grilled steak, barbecued back ribs. Drink: 2009 - 2014 219287 14.9% XD 750 mL $21.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Luigi Bosca Reserva Pinot Noir 2008, Mendoza, Argentina: A juicy and soft pinot with lovely cherry fruit and bright, ripe field berries. Very reasonably priced, especially for pinot. Drink: 2009 - 2013 143420 13.7% D 750 mL $17.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Emiliana Winemaker's Selection Syrah 2009, La Quebrada, Casablanca Valley, Chile: Vintages Wine Panel: In 2001 Emiliana Vineyards became the first Chilean winery to adopt the international standards of care and protection of the environment through the ISO 14001. This blend of 88% Syrah, 7% Merlot, and 5% Viognier offers aromas and flavours of black pepper, cherry, smoke and vanilla. This organic wine has free sulphur of only 18 mg/L. My note: Rich and dark with fleshy blackberries and black plums. Full-bodied with smoky, toasty oak core. Syrah food pairings: barbecued ribs coated in a spicy sauce. Drink: 2009 - 2014 212407 14% XD 750 mL $18.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henry's Drive Pillar Box Red Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, Padthaway, South Australia, Australia: A humungously big wine with blackberry liqueur richness. Full-bodied and smooth. Drink: 2008 - 2013 685941 15% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rockbare Shiraz 2008, Mclaren Vale, South Australia, Australia: A big honkin’ blackberry liqueur wine with a rich core of dark hedonism. Full-bodied is an understatement. Rich and luscious. Drink: 2009 - 2014 661991 14.5% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Plunkett Fowles Stone Dwellers Merlot 2008, Strathbogie Ranges, Victoria, Australia: Violets and plums with black cherries rolling across your senses. Lovely and full-bodied and plush. Top me up! Drink: 2008 - 2014 221838 15% XD 750 mL $19.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Wild Rock Cupids Arrow Pinot Noir 2008, Central Otago, South Island, New Zealand: Soft and medium-bodied with juicy generous cherries. What an absolutely delightful sipper and an even better price. Cherry-berry happiness. Drink: 2008 - 2013 61242 13.5% D 750 mL $21.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Château La Croix De Gay Cabernet Sauvignon Blend 2007, A.C., Pomerol, Bordeaux, France: Classic Bordeaux in all its lovely and august dimensions of incredible complexity, depth and length on the finish. Spectacular aromas of cassis, smoky blackberry and toasty oak. Full-bodied. This is Bach not Beethoven (that’s burgundy). Fantastic price for this quality of Bordeaux, especially for one that will age well in the cellar. Drink: 2012 - 2020 102608 13% XD 750 mL $34.00 Score: 92/100. May 2011. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine De Saint Ennemond Vieilles Vignes Moulin-À-Vent Christian Et Marie Bereziat, Vitic. Gamay 2009, A.C., Beaujolais, France: Vintages Wine Panel: A youthful Gamay with aromas of blackberry and black licorice. Dry, fresh and bright with a lovely juicy, fruity finish. A fine red wine. Winner of a Silver Medal at the 2010 International Wine & Spirit Competition in London. My note: A chipper little sipper! Bright, happy cherries dance across your mouth in this light- to medium-bodied smooth red. A terrific sun-dapped quaffer for picnics and decks. Gamay food pairings: fish. Drink: 2009 - 2014 207910 13% D 750 mL $17.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Antonin Rodet Pinot Noir 2008, A.C., Givry, Burgundy, France: Stunning, especially at this price! Lovely aromas of rose petal and raspberry. Medium-bodied and juices delicious not this is no fruit bomb. Nothing heavy or oaky about it. I’m buying a case. Gold Medal at the 2009 Concours des Vins de France in Mâcon. Drink: 2011 - 2016 110395 13% XD 750 mL $22.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Louis Jadot Clos Des Couchereaux 1Er Cru Pinot Noir 2007, A.C., Beaune, Burgundy, France: Sophisticated seduction! Gorgeous cherries and spices with an exotic underlay of violets and truffles to tickle your senses. This is a spectacular pinot noir, worth every penny. Drink: 2008 - 2018 77578 12.5% XD 750 mL $42.95 Score: 91/100. May 2011. Top Rated Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Apollonio Terragnolo Primitivo 2004, I.G.T., Salento Rosso, Puglia, Italy: Vintages Wine Panel: Winner of a Grande Médaille d’Or at the 2010 Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. Lovely notes of tobacco, spice, dried fruit and bumbleberry pie on the nose. Dry, medium-full bodied with a crisp acidity and a touch of fine tannins around a pie-filling fruit core. Delicious from first sip to the end of the lingering, mouth-coating finish. My note: How delightful! Smoky campfire wine with fleshy black fruit. Share a ghost story and pass the bottle, draw the tartan blanket closer around your shoulders. Primitivo food pairings: grilled rare steaks, blackened ribs with BBQ sauce. Drink: 2007 - 2014 211813 14.5% D 750 mL $17.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Renzo Masi Chianti Riserva 2007, D.O.C.G., Tuscany, Italy: Vintages Wine Panel: This is an absolute blockbuster of a Chianti. Intense, wonderful aromas of blueberry pie, black cherry, damson plum, cinnamon rolls, mocha/chocolate and pipe tobacco. The palate handsomely repays these wonderful aromas. Dry, ripe, spicy. Quite lovely and impressive for the price. On the mid-palate, a fine wave of tannins come in to bring a just-right balance. Medium bodied with a very complex and lengthy finish. Enjoy with a fine steak, simply seasoned and grilled. My note: Loving it! A terrific, classic Italian chianti and mama mia, the price, benne! Bring on the lasagna, pizza and pasta. This wine is so ready for it all. Aromas of dark cherries, sun-dried tomatoes and smoke. Chianti Riserva food pairings: T-bone, striploin, sirloin steak. Drink: 2009 - 2014 969469 13.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Antiche Terre Ripasso Valpolicella 2008, D.O.C., Veneto, Italy: A great juicy, full-bodied red with tart cherries and smoke. A wonderful wine for the money, full-bodied and generous. Perfect for Italian night! Drink: 2009 - 2014 178459 13.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Rosés

Kacaba Vineyards Summertime Series Rebecca Cabernet Franc Petite Sirah Rosé 2010, V.Q.A., Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada: Vintages Wine Panel: This rosé blends Cabernet Franc and Petite Sirah, the latter being quite a rare grape in Niagara. The results are fantastic. A very pretty nose of cherry, tulips, watermelon and red delicious apple. Dry, fresh and fruity with lively acidity and a tart and tangy finish. A great sipper. The painting on the label is “Twilight” by Canadian artist Todd La Chance. My note: A pretty, raspberry-fresh rose, with tart, mouth-watering acidity that makes it ideal for many dishes, from salmon to roast chicken. Delightfully alive in the glass! Cabernet Franc Petite Sirah Rosé food pairings: chicken-and-veggie stir-fry, salmon, chicken, seafood appetizers. Drink: 2010 - 2012 227025 12.2% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 87/100. May 2011. Best Value Rose Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Cattail Creek Estate Winery Serendipity Rosé 2010, V.Q.A., Four Mile Creek, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada: Vintages Wine Panel: Cattail Creek Estate Winery officially came into existence in 2006, but the Dyck family have been growing grapes in Niagara since 1957. This candy-apple-red rosé presents a sweet and expressive nose of fresh raspberry, watermelon, strawberry and sweetgrass. Slightly off-dry and medium bodied with lots of sweet red fruit, and crisp acidity providing harmony. A tasty sipper. My note: A deep cranberry-rich rose with fleshy ripe berries. Very pleasant, mindless sipper. Rosé food pairings: turkey sandwiches with cranberry sauce. Drink: 2010 - 2012 118059 11.5% D 750 mL $14.95 Score: 86/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Emiliana Adobe Reserva Syrah 2010, Rapel Valley, Chile: Vintages Wine Panel: The Rapel Valley has a reputation for producing fine Syrah, and from this solid base Emiliana creates a delightful and approachable rosé. Dry, well structured, with plenty of red-fruit aromas and flavours, and a racy acidity. Enjoy as a sipper. There is free sulphur of only 14 mg/l in this wine. My note: This organic rose I full-bodied, fruit-forward and a vibrant New World style. Bursting with rip raspberries and cranberries. Bring it on! Syrah food pairings: cold chicken salads. Drink: 2010 - 2013 229690 14% XD 750 mL $11.95 Score: 87/100. May 2011. Best Value Rose Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Château De Trinquevedel Vign. Demoulin Rosé 2010, A.C., Tavel, Rhône, France: Vintages Wine Panel: The rosés from Tavel are known generally for their remarkable depth of flavour due to the region’s unique microclimate that almost effortlessly produces fully ripened, beautifully generous fruit – a not-unremarkable accomplishment in the wine-growing regions of France. For those history buffs out there, Tavel rosés were a favourite of King Louis XIV as well as the writers Balzac and Mistral. My note: Full-bodied and richly flavoured with raspberry and strawberry. Classic Rhone rose: this is why this style rules the rose world. Drink: 2010 - 2013 729947 13.5% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 93/100. May 2011. Top-Rated Rose Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Kenneth Volk Santa Maria Cuvée Chardonnay 2007, Santa Maria Valley, California, United States: Vintages Wine Panel: Classic rich and full Cali Chardonnay with aromas of ripe apple, hazelnut, smoky oak and lemon-lime. Dry and fruity with the oak well-integrated into the whole package. There is also a distinctive creaminess to the finish. My note: A solid citizen in the wine world. Nice balance and pleasant aromas of green apple, butter and oak. Full-bodied. Chardonnay food pairings: pasta alfredo, grilled chicken breast with a mushroom cream sauce. Drink: 2008 - 2014 233981 14.2% XD 750 mL $19.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Clos Du Bois Sonoma Reserve Chardonnay 2008, Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California, United States: Vintages Wine Panel: Sourced from the Russian River Valley, with its cool and foggy climate, this aromatic Chardonnay offers complex aromas of citrus, pear, and lime with vibrant floral tones. During the eight-month barrel-ageing period, the wine is hand-stirred on the lees resulting in a smooth and creamy texture. Ideal as a sipping wine. My note: Lovely balance in this beautifully constructed California Chardonnay. Peach, pear, green apple, vanillin and baking spices. Yum! Chardonnay food pairings: chicken or seafood prepared in light cream sauces. Drink: 2009 - 2015 479527 13.8% XD 750 mL $22.95 Score: 91/100. May 2011. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Chalk Hill Chardonnay 2006, Chalk Hill, Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, California, United States: White peach and Asian pear wrapped in vanilla smoke. Full-bodied and richly layered. Yes! Drink: 2009 - 2015 706580 14.8% XD 750 mL $37.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Angels Gate Winery Mountainview Chardonnay 2008, V.Q.A., Beamsville Bench, Niagara Peninsula, Ontario, Canada: A wonderful medium-bodied Chardonnay: not wimpy, not heavy. Just right! Terrific aromas of white peach and Asian pear and a whiff of smoke and vanilla spice. I want some! Drink: 2009 - 2014 116384 13.5% D 750 mL $18.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Robert Oatley Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc 2010, Margaret River, Pemberton, Western Australia, Australia: A fresh and zippy style of Aussie Savvy with aromas of grass and grapefruit. Dry, with fine aroma replays on the palate. The flavours linger in a pleasing manner. Enjoy as a sipper. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: pan-fried freshwater fish, brie, mild goat cheese. 186106 12.2% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 87/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Nobilo Icon Sauvignon Blanc 2010, Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand: Mild grass and chive aromas with a zippy refreshment. Lemon and lime on the finish. Terrific craftsmanship and very versatile with many dishes. Drink: 2010 - 2014 912337 14% XD 750 mL $24.95 Score: 90/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Graham Beck Bowed Head Chenin Blanc 2009, W.O., Paarl, South Africa: Get out of your Pinot Grigio rut with South African Chenin Blanc and welcome yourself to a whole new world of pleasure. Lovely notes of white and green melon, white peach and lime. Zippy and refreshing. Drink: 2009 - 2015 231357 13.5% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

The Winery Of Good Hope Bush Vine Chenin Blanc 2009, W.O., Stellenbosch, South Africa: Terrific zest and zing with lemon and lime accents Vibrant and bright, a great aperitif. Drink: 2009 - 2013 158121 13.5% D 750 mL $11.95 Score: 87/100. May 2011. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Ken Forrester Chenin Blanc 2009, W.O., Stellenbosch, South Africa: Lime-zest and mouth-watering with a crisp edge. Terrific aperitif. Drink: 2009 - 2014 231282 14.5% XD 750 mL $17.95 Score: 87/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Joseph Cattin Muscat 2009, A.C., Alsace, France: Vintages Wine Panel: Winner of a Silver Medal at the 2010 Grand Concours des Vins d’Alsace de Colmar. Muscat at its finest is an aromatic treat, perfect as an aperitif or with flavourful dishes early in a meal – and Alsatian versions are among the best and most food-friendly in the world. The 2009 Muscat from Cattin is beautifully fragrant, with notes of Turkish delight, gentle spice, fresh grapes and floral. The palate is dry, deliciously consistent with the nose, balanced and fresh with a crisp acidity. My note: Honeysuckle pretty with white cherry blossoms waving in the summer sun. Deft touch of sweet tree fruit aromas even though this technically is a dry wine. Lovely aperitif or food companion. Drink: 2009 - 2014 224634 12% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Trimbach Réserve Riesling 2008, A.C., Alsace, France: Extremely acidic and mouth-watering Riesling with a bold lemon edge. Very refreshing and zippy and extremely food-friendly. Drink: 2008 - 2015 995316 13.5% XD 750 mL $25.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Domaine Latour-Giraud Les Narvaux Meursault Chardonnay 2008, A.C., Burgundy, France: Classic Chardonnay from Burgundy: it doesn’t get much better from this. Aromas of green apple, peach and vanilla smoke. Luxurious and rich yet elegant. Perfect for a dinner party where you are determined to impress the heck out of your guests. If they don’t notice this wine, don’t invite them back. Drink: 2009 - 2016 12369 13% D 750 mL $44.95 Score: 92/100. May 2011. Top Rated White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Henri Bourgeois Petit Bourgeois Sauvignon Blanc 2009, Vin De Pays Du Loire, France: Vintages Wine Panel: Fans of Bourgeois’ Sancerre (542548) featured in the Vintages Essentials Collection will find this Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire to be an equally satisfying addition to their table. This wine is a great value and ideal for everyday enjoyment. My note: Grassy green with lemon trees and chives growing in a field of mouth-watering pleasure. Zippy and refreshing. A wonderful price. Sauvignon Blanc food pairings: cold cuts, pâté, goat cheese. Drink: 2009 - 2014 672345 12.5% XD 750 mL $14.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Gunderloch Fritz's Riesling 2009, Q.B.A., Rheinhessen, Germany: Vintages Wine Panel: Owner/winemaker Fritz Hasselbach makes this Riesling (named both for him and a character from the comics that is popular in Germany) from an area of prime soil in Rheinhessen known as Roter Hang (red soil). My note: Love it! Lime happiness in a glass. Zesty and zingy with a bright lemon sunset on the finish. Mouth-watering. That’s got to be a typo on the price. Drink: 2008 - 2016 216366 11.7% D 750 mL $13.95 Score: 89/100. May 2011. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Lawson's Dry Hills Dry Hills Sauvignon Blanc 2009, Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand: Grassy and dry with great refreshment. Zippy and mouth-watering. Drink: 2009 - 2013 214460 13% XD 750 mL $16.95 Score: 88/100. May 2011. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


© 2016 Natalie MacLean