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Vintages Release January 19, 2008

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Dessert Wine

Puklus Tokaji Szamorodni Dry 1997, Szentkereszt Dülö, Tokaj-Hegyalja, Hungary: Vintages Wine Panel: Szamorodni means “the way it was grown”. Since the botrytis-affected grapes are not separated from the bunches during the late-autumn harvest, the resulting wine will be either dry or sweet depending on the proportion of Aszú berries. My note: A wonderfully exotic white redolent of orange peel, rose petal and lychee. Puklus Tokaji Szamorodni Dry food pairings: rich seafood dished, herbed chicken, Asian dishes. 48058 12.5% D 500 mL $13.85 Score: 87/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Red Wine

Austins Pinot Noir 2005, Geelong, Victoria, Australia: Vintages Wine Panel: Geelong is one of Australia’s oldest wine regions. A force to be reckoned with in the 19th century, the region lost its footing after being devastated by phylloxera. It eventually rebuilt itself and is now home to dozens of smaller, quality-driven producers like the Austin family. The ocean breezes keep the region cool and pinot noir is a star with intense, vibrant fruit aromas and rich generous flavors. My note: A rich, full-bodied pinot with sweet cherry fruit notes. Closed with a screwcap. 684142 14% XD 750 mL $26.75 Score: 90/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

De Bortoli Wines - Yarra Valley De Bortoli Gulf Station Pinot Noir 2006, Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia: Tart, ripe cherry aromas with a mouth-watering vibrancy in this medium-bodied pinot. Closed with a screwcap. 15511 13% XD 750 mL $19.80 Score: 89/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Reine Didon Pinot Noir Grand Cru 2005, A.O.C. Mornag, Tunisia: Vintages Wine Panel: Winemaking has been ongoing in Tunisia since the time of the Phoenicians. After the French occupation ended in 1956, the wine regions went into decline. With the influx of European investment beginning in the 1990s, wine production is on the upswing again. Tunisia’s AOC is modeled on the French system. This bright, smoky, berry-fruity wine is round and soft. My note: Lovely quality and taste for the money! Bright cherry notes and a smooth texture in this medium-bodied wine. Reine Didon Pinot Noir Grand Cru food pairings: lamb kebabs, lamb chops, salmon, pork. 8946 12% XD 750 mL $13.85 Score: 88/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Château D'Aiguilhe 2004, A.C. Côtes De Castillon, France: Terrific, beautifully concentrated wine with notes of cassis, plum, mocha and oak. Full-bodied. Decant 1-2 hours. Château D'aiguilhe food pairings: steak, stew. Drink: 2008 - 2015 670919 12.5% XD 750 mL $38.70 Score: 90/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Château Belle-Vue 2004, A.C. Haut-Médoc, France: A full-bodied wine of towering stature. Deep, rich layers of flavor and aromas of cassis, mocha, smoke and dried herbs with a long finish. Château Belle-Vue food pairings: lamb, steak, stew. 35592 13% XD 750 mL $31.70 Score: 92/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Château De Gourgazaud Réserve 2004, A.C. Minervois La Livinière, France: Vintages Wine Panel: Château de Gourgazaud has a very simple philosophy summed up best in a quote from owner Roger Piquet: “You wouldn’t eat underripe fruit, why would you drink wine from underripe grapes?” The 70 ha of vineyards, of which 40 ha are under the AC, and the rest, Vin de Pays d’Oc, are some of the most beautiful in the wine world. The plateau where the majority of the AC grapes grow seems to stretch off until it meets the horizon. And true to the philosophy, the wines, especially the reds, are perfectly ripe, but never overripe. My note: A lovely, medium-bodied wine with a supple texture. Notes of cherries and plums. Château De Gourgazaud Réserve food pairings: roast leg of lamb. 986083 13.5% XD 750 mL $16.85 Score: 88/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Les Vignerons Côtes Du Rhône Villages Vieilles Vignes 2003, A.C., France: Vintages Wine Panel: The hot 2003 vintage helped create flavorful, round and ripe wines, especially in the southern Rhône. This grenache-dominated wine is a prime example of that heat. Intense aromas of plum, blackberry and pepper dominate this crowd-pleasing wine. My note: A vibrant, full-bodied wine with notes of tart cherry and cedar. Côtes Du Rhône Villages Vieilles Vignes food pairings: pizza, pasta with herbed tomato sauce. 34116 13.5% D 750 mL $17.80 Score: 88/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Az. Agricola Di Italo Stupino Castello Di Neive Barbaresco 2004, D.O.C.G., Italy: Lovely richness and roundness on the palate with notes of black fruit and mocha. Full-bodied. 674044 13.5% XD 750 mL $21.80 Score: 90/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Taurino Salice Salentino Rosso Riserva 2003, D.O.C., Italy: A medium-bodied and smooth-textured wine. Pleasant drinking with notes of cherry, mocha and spice. 411892 14% XD 750 mL $15.85 Score: 87/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Brogal Vini Antigniano Montefalco Rosso 2004, D.O.C., Italy: A full-bodied wine with a good grip. Notes of black cherries, mocha and oak. Antigniano Montefalco Rosso food pairings: grilled game meats, bison steaks, leg of lamb. 51755 13% XD 750 mL $14.85 Score: 88/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Delibori Valpolicella Classico Superiore Ripasso 2003, D.O.C., Italy: Vintages Wine Panel: Delibori’s Ripasso is a blend of mostly the corvina grapes with about 25% rondinella and the remainder made up of molinara, rossignol and negrara grapes. Primary aromas and flavors include sweet cherry, plum, dried fruit and new leather. My note: A full-bodied, mouth-watering red with notes of cherries and mocha. Delibori Valpolicella Classico Superiore Ripasso food pairings: pizza, lasagna, pork chops with mushroom sauce. 59246 13.5% XD 750 mL $15.85 Score: 87/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Casa Vinicola Gerardo Cesari Due Torri Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico 2003, D.O.C., Italy: Vintages Wine Panel: This wine is produced from a blend of corvina, rondinella and molinara that has been dessicated on specially ventilated drying racks. The result is a full-bodied red with generous, plummy, dried fruit and chocolate notes. My note: A gorgeous, full-bodied to the max wine. Notes of deep black cherry liqueur. Due Torri Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico food pairings: aged cheeses, braised venison, bison steaks. 724740 15% D 750 mL $34.65 Score: 94/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Nath. Johnston & Fils Château Malescot ST. Exupery 2004, Margaux, France: A gorgeous wine redolent of black and red fruit perfectly balanced with subtle spices, oak and dried herbs. Wow! Château Malescot St. Exupery food pairings: lamb, steak. 675868 12.5% XD 750 mL $58.50 Score: 93/100. January 2008. Favorite Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Iris Hill Pinot Noir Reserve, 2005, Oregon, United States: A medium-bodied pinot with lovely cherry notes. Smooth-textured and perfectly balanced. 64808 13.5% D 750 mL $29.70 Score: 90/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Del Fin Del Mundo Newen Pinot Noir 2006, Neuquén, Patagonia, Argentina: An amazing pinot at this price. Aromatic notes of cherries and spice. Del Fin Del Mundo Newen Pinot Noir food pairings: grilled portobello mushrooms, lasagna, salmon, pork, chicken. 55202 14% XD 750 mL $12.85 Score: 87/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Weinert Merlot 2003, Mendoza, Argentina: Vintages Wine Panel: Bodegas Weinert stands apart from many New World wineries in that they prefer to release their wines after they’ve had some time to mature in both barrel and bottle. Aged for two years in French oak casks, this ready-to-drink merlot features ripe plum, black currants, smoke and spice notes. My note: Great value in this full-bodied merlot with notes of blackberry and dark plums. 656371 14% XD 750 mL $14.85 Score: 89/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Terrazas De Los Andes Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, Mendoza, Argentina: Vintages Wine Panel: Famed Champagne house Moët & Chandon was one of the earliest international wine companies to invest heavily in Argentina. In the 1950s, they established Bodegas Chandon Argentina, which specializes in sparkling wines. In 1999, they launched another venture with Terrazas de los Andes to focus on still table wines. This cabernet shows the winery’s commitment to quality with its attractive flavors of dark berry fruit, earth, and spice. There’s lots of personality in this fruit-forward, well-structured, and hearty cabernet. My note: Fantastic red for the money! Full-bodied with delicious aromas of black plums and chocolate. 55251 13% XD 750 mL $13.85 Score: 89/100. January 2008. Best Value Red Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Cursor S.A. Familia Mayol Cuatro Primos 2003, Mendoza, Argentina: Vintages Wine Panel: A tribute to owner Pedro Mayol’s four grandchildren, the Cuatro Primos (‘four cousins’) blends four grape varieties from four different vineyards in Mendoza. Comprised of 55% malbec, 35% syrah, 5% cabernet sauvignon and 5% bonarda, this complex wine displays concentrated aromas and flavors of cassis, ripe plum and blackcurrants that are balanced beautifully by toast notes imparted by the 12-14 months of aging in French oak. My note: Full-bodied with layers of black fruit and chocolate notes. 55434 14.9% XD 750 mL $23.75 Score: 90/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

White Wine

Viu Manent Viu Manent Reserva Chardonnay 2005, Casablanca Valley, Chile: Vintages Wine Panel: This delicious chardonnay won a Gold Medal at the 2006 Concours Catad’Or Grand Hyatt Wine Awards. It displays peach, pear and pineapple aromas and flavors, with tasty ginger spice notes leading to a citrus finish touched by a hint of oak. Another fantastic value from the cool Casablanca Valley region. My note: A great value chardonnay with ample oak and aromas of ripe apples and pears. 48439 14% XD 750 mL $12.95 Score: 87/100. January 2008. Best Value White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Richard Hamilton Almond Grove Chardonnay 2006, Mclaren Vale, South Australia, Australia: A big ole' oaky chardonnay that's warm and comfy. Aromas of ripe pears and apples. Closed with a screwcap. Richard Hamilton Almond Grove Chardonnay food pairings: gougère. 741009 12.5% D 750 mL $16.85 Score: 89/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

DR. Pauly-Bergweiler Riesling Kabinett 2006, Qmp, Bernkasteler Badstube, Germany: Vintages Wine Panel: Bernkasteler Badstube is considered one of the finest terroirs in the whole of the Mosel region. According to Jancis Robinson’s The Oxford Companion to Wine (2005), Bernkastel Rieslings are known for their aromas and flavors of orchard fruit, vanilla, nut oils and a characteristic note of black cherry. My note: A pleasant-drinking, light-bodied white with aromas of ripe pears. Dr. Pauly-Bergweiler Riesling Kabinett food pairings: spciy shrimp dishes, flavorful dish. 33407 8.5% MD 750 mL $21.80 Score: 88/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Kruger-Rumpf Riesling Kabinett 2004, Qmp, Münsterer Rheinberg, Estate Btld., Germany: Gorgeous concentration of flavors with notes of peach, pear and minerals that dance on the palate. 991745 8.8% MD 750 mL $16.85 Score: 89/100. January 2008. Favorite White Wine Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Featherstone Old Vines Riesling 2006, V.Q.A. Niagara Peninsula, Estate Btld., Canada: A vivacious white with lively aromas of pears and citrus. Closed with a screwcap. 64584 10.2% D 750 mL $16.85 Score: 88/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart

Featherstone Gewurztraminer 2006, V.Q.A. Niagara Peninsula, Estate Btld., Canada: Exotic and lovely wine redolent of rose petals and lychee. Closed with a screwcap. Featherstone Gewurztraminer food pairings: Asian dishes, curry. 64592 12% D 750 mL $18.80 Score: 90/100. January 2008. Full Review Add to Shopping Cart


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