Wine Reviews

All Things Corked & Forked

 

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 wine & spirits shops in Pennsylvania. Our main reviewer is Keith Wallace, the executive director and founder of the Wine School of Philadelphia.  Want to locate a specific wine? Use our PLCB Wine Finder.

Italian Wine Primer

Italy has a rich, deep history with wine – dating back thousands of years. Being the biggest producers of wine in the world, Italian wines are kept at a consistently immaculate standard. It is one of the many reasons that wine from the Italian regions is so widely...

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Contino 2014 Rioja Reserva

Contino is the first and remains one of the greatest single-vineyard Rioja producers in the marketplace. Based on the ideals of 19th Century French château's, Contino has been CVNE's premier label since 1973. Back then, it was rare to grow and produce wines at the...

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Wine Review Search

You can search our database of wine reviews for free. From Bordeaux to Virginia: there are over twenty thousand wine reviews dating back over twenty years. If you want access to the newest reviews, please register for our newsletter, the Wine Report. It’s a great free resource to find the top-rated wines currently available. 

Our focus is on wines available in Pennsylvania. We feature wines in the Chairman’s Selection program and other discounted wines available in the PLCB Wine & Spirits Stores. You can also check out our reviews of Philly’s Top Wine Shops

 

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Wine reviews and news from Keith Wallace and the Wine School of Philadelphia. 

Wine Reviews and Features from the Wine School

Castello di Gabbiano 2013 Chianti Classico Riserva

The  Gabbiano Castle has been a focal point in Tuscany since the 12th century. Being between the rival towns of Sienna and Florence, it was more often about war, not wine. Here's a section from a 19th-century account of medieval warcraft: Fulminato da dieci cannoni,...

Hope after Tragedy: The Origin of the Wine School

In this week's episode of Philly Who? I sat down for a deeply personal interview with Kevin Chemidlin, the podcast's host. This is unlike any other interview I've done in the past 20 years of running the wine school. It goes deep into my past, including the tragedies...

October 2018 Newsletter

Suggested Classes A few upcoming classes at the school that you should consider attending. First Growths of the East Coast Thursday, November 15th at 7:30 pm There are hundreds of wineries scattered from Virginia to Maine. Over the last few years, a quiet revolution...

Carden 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley

  This wine exists. It's amazing. It drinks well above it's current price in the PA Wine & Spirits stores.  It's winemaker exists: Tony Rynders, the former winemaker at Domaine Serene. I just don't think the winery exists. At one point, there was a Bomb Winery,...

North by Northwest 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley

The first time I heard of an Oregon winery making a wine with Washington State fruit, it sounded a little odd. Why would an Oregon winery buy grapes from so far away when they are smack in the middle of some of the best Pinot Noir vineyards in the world? It seems a...

Andre Delorme Blanc de Blancs Brut Reserve, Burgundy

Shopping  for wine in Pennsylvania can be tough. It's not just the sluggish bureaucracy. It's not just the on-average-higher prices. It not just the communist-era florescent lighting. It's the fact that the PA Wine & Spirits stores don't hire much wine talent. One...

Eleven Wine Blogs to Follow

The wine industry just wouldn’t be the same if it weren’t for some of the fantastic wine blogs we had access to today. Whether it is to inform us about serious wine matters or to relate better to new-wine-lovers, there is something out there for everyone. We’ve put...

Isabella 2016 Bobal, Ribera del Jucar

This is a small wine region that most wine maps forget to include (I'm talking to you Wine Folly). That's not unexpected, actually, as there are hundreds of tiny and obscure wine regions that don't make the cut. Ribera del Jucar is next to the more famous (and that's...

Matetic 2014 Corralillo Syrah, San Antonio Valley, Chile

  I've never really cared much about an artist's life. If their work inspires me, I don't need to be weighted down with their ideas on religion or politics. I feel the same way about fellow artisans. If another chef or winemaker is making delicious things, I really...

Shannon Ridge “Vigilance” 2017 Sauvignon Blanc, Red Hills

  Shannon Ridge is becoming a favorite in Pennsylvania. It's wines have showed up in so many Chairman Selection offerings, that it's becoming a annual tradition to review a bottle or two of their wines. This bottling is quite a pleasant surprise, exceeding their very...

September Newsletter 2018

50% OFF BOGO SALE For the rest of September, get a 50% off coupon for any class, up to $250 in value. Purchase any upcoming class or course, and the 50% off coupon code will be emailed to you immediately. This is the best sale we've ever put on in a long time, so I'd...

Mark Herold 2014 “Collide” Red, California

  Mark's new tasting room just opened in Napa --just down from the Oxbow Public Market-- a scant three months before I reviewed his wines. I loved the room --super fun and modern-- but another journalist gently pointed out that it was geared towards Millennial wine...

Mount Veeder Winery 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley

In the late 90's, Constellation Brands started buying up Napa wineries. At the time, they were an unknown wine company that produced low-end brands like Cribari. What a lot of people in the wine trade didn't know was how profitable cheap wine could be. It was a three...

Wines of Portugal

Portuguese Wines There is evidence of wine production in what is now Portugal since the time of the Tartessians, who planted vines in the Sado and Tagus valleys around, at least, 2000 BC. Later, Phoenicians, Romans, and Celts contributed to the expansion of the...

Cambria 2014 “Benchbreak” Pinot Noir, Santa Maria Valley

Cambria has always been that tiny corner of the Kendall-Jackson empire that didn't have that smell of overstuffed marketing. It was family home of Jess Jackson and  Barbara Banke, his second wife. His daughters grew up there. The winery itself, located in the Santa...

Mazzei Belguardo 2013 “Serrata” Toscana

  I've written about  Tenuta Belguardo over the years. It's a property owned by the Mazzei family of Chianti, which also owns Castello di Fonterutoli.  They consistently put out wines that perform well above their price categories. Belguardo's vineyards are on the...

Bodegas Montecillo 2011 Reserva Rioja

A 19th Century winery that still manages to put out some serious juice,  year in and year out. If you need an everyday bottle of Rioja, this will fit the bill.  Aromas of cigar box and tomato leaf; flavors of cherry, burnt vanilla, and laurel. There is plenty of fresh...

Commanderie de la Bargemone 2017 Rose, Coteaux d’Aix en Provence

It's about time America fell in love with rosé wines. We've been extolling the virtues of rosé since the 2006 vintage. Historically, one of the great spots for the wine has been the  Coteaux d’Aix region in Provence, France. The region has been making one version or...

Jean Cavaille 2016 “Cep Noir Vielles Vignes” Apremont, Savoie

Sometimes you find a great bottle using a wine heuristic.  Sometimes is simply picking up a bottle from a beloved-but-obscure wine region. The Apremont region in the Savoie department in France makes delicious light wines, pretty as a filigree of sunlight on a...

Domaine Kuentz-Bas 2014 Alsace Blanc

Sometimes a wine review doesn't start with the wine, but how the writer discovered it.  Finding great wines at any price point would be impossible if I were to taste every wine. There are over 2 million wine brands in the world currently, which breaks down to about...

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