cellar favorite, Cellar Favorites, France: Bordeaux
Larcis Ducasse remains one of the truly great, reasonably priced wines of Bordeaux. I was once again reminded of that when I tasted the 2005 recently. Almost shockingly young, tannic and tightly wound for a wine of its age, the 2005 is positively stellar.
featured, France: Bordeaux
The bottled 2016s capture every bit of the potential I sensed when I started tasting the wines from barrel, prior to en primeur, in January 2017. I found many 2016s to be even better from bottle than they were during the spring futures campaign. The best 2016s are powerful, richly layered, vibrant and stunningly beautiful, not to mention incredibly delicious and alluring. For so many wines and estates, 2016 is an epic vintage.
featured, United States: California
As is our custom, the Sonoma Preview highlights wines that are just entering the market now, in January, typically a very busy time for new releases. Readers will find much to like this year, including a number of stunning 2017s that show the vintage was much better and far more consistent for Burgundian varieties in Sonoma than it was for Bordeaux varieties in Napa Valley.
Two thousand eighteen was a fabulous year full of highlights. More than anything else, though, as I type this, I realize how extraordinarily fortunate I am to do what I love more than anything each and every day for work. I hope readers will enjoy this look back at 2018. If you don’t, it is all Neal Martin’s fault – he pushed me to write about my favorite experiences of the year.
United States: California, Vinous Table
This recent charity dinner at Saison was easily the finest meal I have had there and also one of my best dinners of 2018, period. The evening came together as a charity lot that was auctioned off at the most recent La Festa del Barolo to benefit children’s oncology at The Mount Sinai Hospital.
featured, France: Champagne, France
A recent vertical of 1980s Cristals was the third chapter in a remarkable series of tastings I have been fortunate to experience at Roederer over the last few years. In each of those occasions, I have come away with a deeper understanding of what makes Cristal and Cristal Rosé so special. For this tasting, longtime Chef de Caves Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon presented a complete vertical of the 1980s Cristals, all from the original disgorgements, for what turned out to be an unforgettable survey of a decade during which so much changed in Champagne.
This spectacular bachelor party/dinner at Saison was a fitting sendoff as one of our dear friends prepared to embark on the next stage of life. The food, wines and service on this night were as good as it gets.
featured, United States: California
Napa Valley enjoyed an extraordinary vintage in 2016. The bottled 2016s are every bit as viscerally thrilling as they were last year when I tasted them from barrel. Best of all, 2016 is a captivating vintage from top to bottom, with a bevy of stunning wines for every palate and budget, as well as a number of bottles that are destined to become icons.
featured, Beyond Wine, FAQ
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featured, France: Champagne
I came away from my annual fall Champagne tastings absolutely exhilarated by the quality of the wines. As it turns out, I reviewed most of the new releases from the grandes marques in our Summer Preview, so this article focuses heavily on grower Champagnes. That is merely a coincidence, or maybe in the end, it isn’t. As I scan through the domaines covered in this article I can’t help but pause to think about how much Champagne has changed in just the last decade or so.