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Lesley Quinn

Lesley Quinn Certified Sommelier

3735 days ago

Lesley scored this wine: 96/100

There are 3 things I love about this wine. #1 It's a 2007 what has been dubbed an outstanding vintage for Barolo. #2 It's soft and delicate like a rose and then boom it explodes in your mouth with a flurry of flavours, ranging from balsamic to dark plums. The tannins grab hold of your mouth and don't let go, as more layers of the wine express themselves through an everlasting finish. A transcendent experience with a Piedmont truffle risotto. But my #3 reason is the story of Rosa. She was a commoner that caught the eye of the original proprietor of Fontanafredda Vittorio Emanuele II King of Sardinia. Going against what was considered proper he gave the entire plot of land to Rosa making her a Countess. And they lived happily ever after. I just love a good romance story to tell over a glass of fine wine.

3764 days ago

Lesley scored this wine: 95/100

Austrian wines are hard to find and even harder to pronounce unless of course you speak German. But if you can get past those two hurdles you will be greatly rewarded with some incredibly fine wine. Take this Smaragd (a Grand Cru classification for the Wachau) from the single vineyard site of Achleithen, using the grape variety Grüner Veltliner produced by winemaker Rudi Pichler. The wine gives you a tantalizing preview with fresh limes, and a distinct minerality. On the palate the fruit deepens and becomes richer but is balanced out by the mouth watering acidity, and allows the terroir of Achleithen to take over. Drinking this wine reminds me of diving into Lake Taupo in NZ a lake so clean and pure you could see 10 metres down. This wine is like that, your mouth is left feeling refreshed and ready for more rather than coated. Try pairing it with your favourite asian spice influenced dish for a whirlwind of sensation.

3755 days ago

Lesley scored this wine: 95/100

A Riesling from Heiligenstein is like a Chardonnay from Montrachet, a pure expression of terroir. In other words it's like the Harvard of the wine world, some amazing wines have graduated from this site in the Kamptal of Austria. This Grand Cru (Erste Lage) Riesling from winery Jurtschitsch is a graduate with incredible potential. Notes of lime mingle amongst scents of river rocks and minerals. A bone dry wine with incredible elegance, soft yet mouth watering. Clean and crisp with a finish that is so delicious inevitably your eyes close as you try to fully appreciate the prize in your mouth. Enhance the Ivy league experience by pairing this wine with fresh shellfish, oysters are my favourite but this wine can work with clams, mussels, or all the above.

Poliziano "Asinone" Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2010

Vino Nobile Di Montepulciano Docg Tuscany, Italy
3732 days ago

Lesley scored this wine: 94/100

This single vineyard Vino Nobile is only produced in exceptional years. 2010 was certainly an exceptional year. This deep purple wine has a delicious combination of tart fresh black cherries and rich leather aromas. The texture is powerful with gripping tannins yet still fresh and vibrant. An exceptional top of the line Nobile best enjoyed with a balsamic marinated BBQ chicken breast.

Domaine des Baumard Quarts de Chaume' 2004

Coteaux Du Layon, Loire Valley, France
3261 days ago

Lesley scored this wine: 94/100

Quarts de Chaume wine is to the Loire Valley in France what Ice Wine is to Canada. Or what Sauternes is to Bordeaux. They may all use different grape varieties but what they all have in common is the wonderful ability to produce a decadently rich sweet wine that is still somehow refreshing and palate cleansing. Chenin Blanc is the grape of choice for Quarts de Chaume and the 2004 expression from Domaine des Baumard is just getting started. Honey, almonds and orange blossom are all present and the finish is all citrus, and lemongrass. A great wine to savour on its own but it loves the silky texture of blue cheese too.

Lesley Quinn

Wine BloggerVisit Lesley's Website

Memorable Wine

2003 Cuvee Indigene Chardonnay by Peter Michael


First Wine

A Hawk's Bay, NZ Pinot Gris


Unusual Wine Experience

I was working as a Junior Sommelier at the Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman during their star studded "Cayman Cookout" and I knew my restaurant was hosting a lunch prepared by Laurent Gras, but I had no idea I would be leading the Wine Pairings. Suddenly a microphone was put in my hand and next thing I knew I was speaking to an audience whose members included Anthony Bourdain, Eric Ripert and


Current Fav Wine

Open's Gewurztraminer and Riesling Blend





Winner World's Best Drink Writer
WFour-Time Winner James Beard Foundation
Five-Time Winner Association of Food Journalists
Six-Time Winner Bert Greene Award
Best Wine Literature Book Gourmand World Cookbook Awards
Online Writer of the Year Louis Roederer International Wine Writing Award