The top 10 wines in the US press
In the San Francisco Chronicle Jon Bonné reviews Napa County Zinfandels while Will Lyons recommends a Bordeaux white that “oozes a creamy vanilla character”.
In reviewing Napa County Zinfandels Bonné revealed that US federal regulators have approved vine geneticist Carole Meredith’s wish to have Tribidrag made in modern times.
Bonné wrote: “All grist for the nerdiest of the nerdy – if not for the fact that Meredith is also the vine geneticist who sleuthed out the mystery of Zinfandel’s origins, finding it identical to an obscurity in a single vineyard on the Dalmatian coast of Croatia, where it was known as Crljenak Kastelanski.
“Next month, 70 cases of the first California Tribidrag will be sent out into the world. Technically it will be Mount Veeder Red Wine; the feds approved Tribidrag only as a fanciful name.”
In the Wall Street Journal Will Lyons compares New and Old World Sauvignon Blanc, he wrote: While many are happy drinking the New World expression (and why not? it is often exquisite), those wanting to explore wines with a little more delicacy and complexity should look no further than the vineyards of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé.”
To find out which wines these and other wine writers in the US press have recommended over the last week, click through the following pages.
Château Ste. Michelle 2010 Canoe Ridge Estate Merlot
Paul Gregutt in the Seattle Times recommends this wine, which has been limited to a few thousands cases and “shows off the great strengths of the vineyard”.
He adds that the wine is “dark, dusty fruit is firm and concentrated, and finishes with a tasty mix of cocoa, coffee grounds and Asian spice.”
Dandelion Vineyards Lion’s Tooth of McLaren Vale Shiraz-Riesling 2009
In the Washington Post, Dave McIntyre, gives this wine three stars (out of three), but does say that because of the screwcap it needs to be decanted for at least 30 minutes before drinking.
He writes that once decanted “you have a rich, spicy, racy wine brimming with blackcurrant and blackberry fruit, eucalyptus and mint. Fermenting the Shiraz on the pressed skins of Riesling grapes gives the wine an enticing, irresistible lure.”
Domaine Terlato-Chapoutier Shiraz-Viognier 2010
McIntyre recommends another Australian wine, which comes from a “joint venture of Michel Chapoutier, a legend in the northern Rhone Valley, and Anthony Terlato, the US importer who made Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio a sensation in this country.”
McIntyre said that the wine is “a compelling combination of earth, fruit and spice. Those of us who bemoan the globalisation of wine should celebrate this example of international cooperation”.
Closson Chase S. Kocsis Vineyard Chardonnay 2010
In Canada’s Globe and Mail Beppi Crosariol recommends this Chardonnay from Ontario, giving it a score of 93.
He wrote: “The toasty oak is well-integrated into the silky frame, and the wine offers up complementary nuances of honey and butter woven all the way through. Fabulous stuff from world-class grape grower and winemaker Deborah Paskus.”
2008 Arrowood Cabernet Sauvignon
This Sonoma County red is “highly recommended” by Fred Tasker in the Miami Herald.
He wrote that the wine has a “hint of oak, aromas and flavours of black raspberries and dark chocolate, big, ripe tannins, full body”.
2011 Lagier Meredith Tribidrag Mount Veeder Red
In reviewing Napa County Zinfandels the San Francisco Chronicle‘s Jon Bonné said this wine has “the floral intensity of young Zin, with candied violet and crushed stone, and beautiful red fruit and wild blueberry. A graceful expression of Mount Veeder, mixing volcanic-soil intensity with a quiet, shaded side.”
2011 Bedrock Papera Ranch Vineyard Russian River Valley Zinfandel
Bonné also recommends this wine, which he said comes from “an old Zin holdout in the heart of Pinot country.”
He added: “It leads with a hearty and savoury aspect – roasted meat, chalk dust, birch bark, blueberry and bramble fruit, almost as though it wanted to channel Syrah.”
2010 Smith Haut Lafitte White
In the Wall Street Journal Will Lyons picks out this wine, writing that the château’s “reputation and price have shot up in recent years”.
Lyons added: “One sip of their white wine and it isn’t hard to see why. A blend of Sauvignon and Semillon, this sensational wine, once sniffed, oozes a creamy vanilla character before revealing floral and peachy notes.”
Freemark Abbey Napa Valley Merlot 2010
Bill St John, writing in the Chicago Tribune, encourages his readers to “rediscover good Merlot”.
He wrote: “Find it and do both your palate and table a favour. Merlot is so appealing — plush, round, low in tannin, loaded with juicy tastes of black cherry, chocolate and ripe plums or, if from Bordeaux, even an acceptable turn on the flavours of fruitcake.”
He said this wine is “a big, fleshy and flashy Merlot, with mouth-puckering tannins on the attack for fat; better at table than alone in the glass, but here’s to that.”
Byron, 2011 Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley
In the Detroit News Sandra Silfven recommends this wine, which she said is “lean but rich, packed with citrus and minerality and brown spices off the barrels”.
Silfven adds that the wine “evolves as it warms in the glass. You catch the lemon, tangerine, subtle honey and minerality. It’s a wine to savour and study, to catch the nuances off the skins and the oak.”