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Posted by on June 21st

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Wine Report by Keith Wallace

 

Wine Report | Wine Ratings

Feel free to use our wine finder to locate these bottles near you. I will be publishing expanded ratings on our wine review page starting next week. However, I always give our newsletter readers the first shot at these great wines. Cheers!

-Keith

Kieran Robinson 2012 “R Five” Syrah
Kieran Robinson 2012 “R Five” Syrah

Kieran Robinson “R Five” Syrah

Kieran is a Philly native who got his start at Chaddsford Winery as a cellar rat back in 2005, back when Eric Miller was still the winemaker. He then jumped around California and France, learning the craft at several wineries. For the past five years, he’s been making wine in Sonoma at his own facility.

However, his heart is still in Philly:  each of his wines has Philly-centric names (Jawn and R5). He even still vacations on the Jersey shore: Avalon looms large in his Instagram account.

This bottling is from Sonoma’s Bennett Valley. It balances the finesse of the Northern Rhone with the dense fruit and oak-driven panache of Northern California. Savory smoke and burnt wildflowers on the nose with cassis and creamy blueberry. A limousin oak sweetness pushes forward layered tannins and glycerine smoothness. A fruit-bomb of a finish is balanced with black pepper and cardamom.

92 Points | Wine Report by Keith Wallace

Massena 2012 The Moonlight Run, Barossa Valley
Massena 2012 The Moonlight Run, Barossa Valley

Massena The Moonlight Run, Barossa Valley

One of the greatest bottles of GSM (Grenache-Syrah-Mourvedre, the classic Rhone blend) is coming out of Australia these days. Massena is really putting in the overtime with this one.

It has the full-bore take-no-prisoners attitude that is the signature of Aussie wine. But that isn’t enough to keep our fancy. This one is remarkable because it manages to balance out BIG with complicated.
There are Asian 5-spice notes that tangle with the candied cherry notes. There are wild rose notes that keep the melted chocolate flavors from getting out of control. And there is smoke to keep the bacon flavors from getting to, well, bacon-y.

93 Points | Wine Report by Keith Wallace

Anzivino 2010 Gattinara
Anzivino 2010 Gattinara

Anzivino Gattinara

Aromas of crushed lilac rose water and sage. Rum raisin and cherry compote fill in the edges with a bit of wood smoke. On the palate, it is elegant, with bright acids and finely grained tannins. Flavors of chocolate and licorice are balanced by fresh red fruit and game. Aged in old Puncheons (huge oak barrels ) for over two years and another two years in bottle.

90 Points | Wine Report by Keith Wallace

Tormaresca 2012 Trentangeli Castel del Monte
Tormaresca 2012 Trentangeli Castel del Monte

Tormaresca Trentangeli Castel del Monte

This is a Super-Puglian wine: a big boisterous blend of Aglianico, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon.  It is both accessible and elevated, with cassis, espresso, and toasted vanilla barrelling through the fleshy structure; There are also beautiful notes of wet earth and savory spices that open up through the finish.

91 Points | Wine Report by Keith Wallace

Venus La Universal 2013 “Dido” Monsant
Venus La Universal 2013 “Dido” Monsant

Venus La Universal “Dido” Monsant

A glorious bottle of wine with more pedigree than Prince George of Cambridge.
This wine shows little if any oak, which only amplifies its elegance and class. Dried lavender on the nose, with blue fruits and a wisp of the forest floor. Notes of smoke and mineral intermix with orange blossoms and tart cherries. Medium-bodied with a sexy lushness that is backed up with structured tannins and an open, appealing freshness. The finish turns toward darker fruit, rich savor, and black pepper.

93 Points | Wine Report by Keith Wallace

Chamisal Vineyards 2013 Estate Chardonnay, Edna Valley
Chamisal Vineyards 2013 Estate Chardonnay, Edna Valley

Chamisal Vineyards Estate Chardonnay, Edna Valley

Daydream of those buttery-but-bright chardonnays of lore? Wishing for those happy days listening to Depeche Mode and noshing on brie from Canada? If so, grab a few bottles: this is the classic 80’s style chardonnay.

This bottle has the toasted almond and butterscotch overlaying key lime and blood orange zest. There is plenty of oak-derived coconut butter and vanilla, like a nice day at the beach. A core of crunchy acid to keep it all from going kitsch. It’s very much in the Puligny-Montrachet style that made Chardonnay famous in the first place.

91 Points | Wine Report by Keith Wallace

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