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Wine Reviews by Keith Wallace

Great Wines Available in Philadelphia and Beyond

Over two thousand wine reviews! While most of our reviews focus on great wines under $20, we also offer reviews of luxury and collectible wines. As we are located in Philadelphia, most  wines reviewed here are available via PLCB Wine & Spirits Shops in Pennsylvania. Our main reviewer is Keith Wallace, the executive director and founder of the Wine School of Philadelphia.  

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Tudernum 2008 Montefalco Sagrantino

A classic Sagrantino with an intimidating style. Tobacco and cedar are the building material of this colossus. It is austere and muscular with the barest hint of fruit, some leafy plum buried under a thick layer of minerality. If there ever was a complete opposite of...
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Merryvale 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa

2011  in Napa Valley was a difficult vintage. It was the year when using too much oak in the aging process turned the wine anemic and unpleasant. Many big name Napa wineries turned out duds in 2011. Not surprisingly, 2011 is  the least popular vintage since...
The Full Review

Castelli del Grevepesa 2010 “Clemente VII” Rosso

Castelli del Grevepesa offers two wines with the name ” Clemente VII ” this bottling and the Chianti Classico. This wine is a Super Tuscan, a blend of Sangiovese, Merlot, and Syrah. It is a modern and supple and smooth as any Napa Cabernet. It is far...
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Masi 2011 “Campofiorin” Rosso del Veronese

This 2011 bottling is a fantastic example of a Ripasso style wine from Northeast Italy. Lavender and fresh fennel on the nose with a whiff of burnt vanilla. Dense tannins prop up lively dark fruit flavors. There is a background of savory elements and the finish melts...
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Guigal Cotes du Rhone

This bottle is a bit of essential wine knowledge. At least once a quarter, I pop open this wine to introduce our students to the Cotes du Rhone region of France.  Vintage after vintage,  this has been a go-to bottle.   I don’t even think about it anymore, I...
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Wine reviews and all things vino from Keith Wallace

The Wine School Blog

This is where we feature all our favorite things.  Great wines, top sommeliers, awesome winemakers, great articles,  and charity events at the Wine School. If we really love it, or we think you should know about it, it’s going to be right here.

Selections from our Wine Cellar

A few wine reviews from our archives. 

Chateau Liot 2005, Sauternes

From perhaps the most famous sweet-wine region in the world comes this wildly affordable sticky. We’ve recommended it before and are unashamed to do so again. A drinkable, not-cloyingly-sweet wine from Sauternes is always something to cheer about.
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Mondavi 1991 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

From the moment I opened the bottle, this wine was one surprise after another. The color didn’t imply that the juice was 16 years old, and the nose, though redolent of the subtle aromas of leather and tobacco, developed a cinnamon-rolled blackberry character after a few minutes of air. And while the palate started off slowly, it blossomed into a stately mouthful of dried violets and apricots, with still-velvety tannins and a solid acid balance keeping it all alive. It certainly would have been better a year or two ago–or longer–but it was still hanging in there and giving plenty of pleasure.

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Valdipiatta 2010 Chianti Colli Senesi

  Colli Senesi is the wine region surrounding the Tuscan town of Siena. Two of Chianti’s top wine regions –Montepulciano and Montalcino– are located there.  Valdipiatta is a well regarded producer of Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. This bottling is sourced from their Montepulciano vineyard along...
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Craiglee 2007 Shiraz, Victoria

Australian wine review The cooler climate of Victoria often delivers Shiraz with more complexity and a lighter framework than other South Australian regions.  This bottle is a wonderful example of that style. Its dark violet stains the glass purple,  and it’s aromas offer up charcoal smoke and white pepper...
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Burgo Viejo Licenciado 2008 Rioja Reserva

A full metal wine label? That is a badass as it comes. This bottling hails from the Baja region of Rioja. The winery–which started as a cooperative back in the ’50’s— is located in  Alfaro, the easternmost Riojan town, at the border with Navarra. If you relied solely on wine textbooks, you...
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