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Reviews for 2016

December 2016 - Stellar Cellar Selection

December 2016 - Stellar Cellar Selection
This month's Wine feature is Stellar Cellar Selection Wines

Stellar Cellar Selection Reviews

Peachy Canyon NV Port Zinfandel
96 points
$32
Dusty brown brick red color. Aromas and flavors of buttery praline and toffee, honeyed berries and citrus, and suede with a satiny, tangy, moderately sweet medium-to-full body and a warming, interesting, medium-length spiced cherries and apricots, honeyed golden raisins, sweet and peppery spices, and nuts finish with well-integrated, crunchy tannins and light oak. A superb, complex domestic port-style wine with long waves of rich berry, spice and honey flavors and an enticing layer of ice wine like stone fruits.
Monte De Oro 2010 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
95 points
$80
Dusty brick red color. Aromas and flavors of butter roasted nuts and sesame, clay and Playdoh, peppered dried berries, and leather and polished wood with an bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a sleek, appealing, crisp dill pickle and gravel finish with silky tannins and light oak. A silky, elegant cabernet.
Bichi Borghesi 2010 Riservva"COPPIOLE" Chianti Colli Senesi
94 points
$35
Bright dusty ruby color. Aromas and flavors of black cherries, chestnuts, cherry butter cream, and planked oak and potters clay with an vibrant, dry full body and an intricate, medium-length finish with earthy, woody tannins and moderate oak. An outstanding example.
Von Schleinitz 2015 Weissenberg Single Vineyard Auslese Riesling
94 points
$35
Straw color. Earthy, fruity, smoky aromas and flavors of spiced grilled lemon and peach, smoked nuts, and volcanic rocks and ash with a silky, tangy, fruity sweet medium-to-full body and a smooth, stimulating, immediate honeyed apple, orange and apricot, golden raisins, and Meyer lemon and lime sorbets finish with fine, fruit tannins and no oak. A vibrant and pure auslese riesling with rich fruit flavors and lip-smacking acidity.
Villadoria 2012  Barolo DOCG
94 points
$39.99
Burnt sienna color. Interesting, savory aromas and flavors of pressed flowers and dried mushrooms, spiced mulberries and cherries, marinated and roasted root vegetables, and conditioned leather with a satiny, lively, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a complex, long plum, cocoa, tomato-melon relish, and cedar mulch finish with fine, dusty, coating tannins and moderate oak. A complex, dry, earthy Barolo with a sinewy core of rich fruit, oak and mouth-coating tannins for the table.
94 points $39.99
Chateau Tour Saint-Christophe 2014 Grand Cru St. Emilion
94 points
$70
Nearly opaque deep purple color. Artificial aromas and flavors of chocolate covered berries, roasted nuts, and subtle brown spices with a satiny, bright, medium-to-full body and a smooth, layered, long praline, beets, and sandalwood finish with light oak. A voluptuous, very ripe red Bordeaux wine with delicious chocolatey oak.
Ledson 2013  Cabernet Sauvignon
94 points
$70
Dark violet color. Aromas of buttery berry tart and toffee with a satiny, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a seamless, distinctive, long spiced nuts and cherries, pencil shavings, and vanilla toffee finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. An elegant, super silky and satisfying cabernet with finely harmonized flavors.
Trinchero 2013 Forte Red Blend Napa Valley
94 points
$70
Opaque violet color. Fruity, spicy, herbal aromas and flavors of savory herbs and flowers, pickled citrus peels, and spiced berries with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, complex, long dried cherries and blueberries, cedar, leather, and earth finish with chewy, fine tannins and moderate oak. A bold, spicy, herbal red blend with nice pairing and cellaring possibilities.
Folie à Deux 2013  Zinfandel
93 points
$24
Dark dusty garnet color. Fruity, toasty aromas and flavors of dried berries, spiced cherries, s’mores, and hint of incense with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium body and a silky, engaging, medium-long vanilla cream, spiced oranges and apples, praline, and pepper finish with soft, chewy tannins and light oak. A nicely balanced and flavorful zinfandel with great versatility.
Zonte’s Footstep 2015 "Baron Von Nemesis" Shiraz
93 points
$28
Violet color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate espresso beans, toasted brown spices, and bubbly blueberry pie crust with a satiny, tangy, fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, medium-long spiced berries and cherries, mint and herbs, singed lemon and orange peels, and peppercorns finish with silky, fine tannins and light oak. A deliciously spicy and layered shiraz for all occasions.
Ruggeri 2014 Giustino B Prosecco DOCG
93 points
$29.99
Bright yellow straw color. Earthy, fruity aromas and flavors of waxy honeycomb, spiced apple and pear, and nougat with a satiny, tangy, effervescent, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, clementine and lime, delicate spices, meringue, and minerals finish with fine, fruit tannins and no oak. A lush, full-bodied Prosecco with many layers of flavor and pinpoint acidity.
93 points $29.99
Z-Force 2014  Shiraz
93 points
$44
Nearly opaque opaque violet color. Fruity, floral aromas and flavors of chocolate berries and apricots, mocha, and butter roasted nuts with a satiny, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, amusing, medium-long chocolate orange peel, vanilla nuts, and marinated yams finish with moderate oak. A satiny, savory, and somewhat cerebral shiraz with sumptuous fruit and subtle spiciness.
Blakeslee Vineyard Estate 2013 Reserve Chardonnay
93 points
$45
Bright bright gold color. Aromas and flavors of golden delicious apples, wood putty, stone fruit, and gravel and dried canvas with an tangy, dry full body and a delightful, swift finish with papery, earthy tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
Blakeslee Vineyard Estate 2012  Pinot Noir
93 points
$48
Medium brick red color. Aromas and flavors of honey baked cranberries and cherries, chocolate toffee, hint of pencil eraser, and clay and rose hips with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, intricate, long dried blueberry, spiced nuts, reduced lemon, and cedar finish with fine, dusty tannins and light oak. A rich, spicy pinot noir pleaser.
Ledson 2013  Malbec
93 points
$48
Nearly opaque violet color. Aromas and flavors of warm chocolate pot de creme, berry pie, and olives with a supple, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long creme brulee, spiced cherries, nutskins, and minerals finish with well-integrated, fine tannins and light oak. A lively, juicy malbec with attractive richness and fine balance.
Beppe Marino 2011 "Quatro Filare" Barbera dAsti
93 points
$50
Dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of melted chocolate, roasted chestnuts, and craisins with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-long plum and pomegranate chutney, apple and blood orange, hint of baking and peppery spices, and cedar finish with silky tannins and moderate oak. A finely tuned, ripe and stylish Barbera, perfect for serious sipping or the table.
Blakeslee Vineyard Estate 2015 White Pinot Noir Chehalem Mountains
93 points
$50
Golden yellow color. Creamy, fruity aromas and flavors of peach-pineapple buttercream, nougat, and spiced white cherries and apricots with a satiny, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, stimulating, medium-long coconut cake, vanilla caramel toffee, and sweet and peppery spices finish with crunchy tannins and a suggestion of oak. An elegant and flavorful white wine for all occasions.
Taylors 2014 St. Andrews Cabernet Sauvignon
93 points
$50
Dark violet color. Spicy aromas and flavors of menthol mint, chocolate toffee, blueberry tart, and mixed peppercorns and pickling spices with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, appealing, chocolate tangerine and lemon, cedar, and spiced almonds finish with silky, chewy tannins and light oak. A plush, fruity, spicy cabernet with lots of fun pairing possibilities.
Casado Morales 2009 Gran Reserva Rioja DOC
93 points
$60
Cloudy garnet black color. Earthy, spicy aromas and flavors of dried berries, wintergreen, menthol tobacco, and chocolate nuts with a silky, bright, dryish medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length spiced tomato, cedar, and nutskins finish with woody tannins and moderate oak. A rich, spicy, cellarable Rioja with an intriguing wintergreen note.
Domaine La Soumade 2014 Cuvee Prestige Rasteau
93 points
$65
Violet color. Interesting, complex aromas and flavors of dark caramelized stone fruits and berries, spiced yams, carob orange cake, and clay with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a seamless, refreshing, medium-long cherries and citrus, nutskin, pencil shavings, and earth finish with soft, dusty tannins and moderate oak. A rich, complex French red with enticing fruit and spice flavors.
Bodegas Escudero 2008 Vidau Rioja DOC
93 points
$88
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate coconut macaroon, blackberry pie a la mode, and delicate spice with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, complex, long sour cherries and craisins, nuts, and leather finish with well-integrated, fine tannins and light oak. A supple and inviting Rioja that begs another sip.
Nordby Vineyards 2006 Vintners Reserve "Re dei Re" Cabernet Sauvignon
93 points
$90
Dusty garnet black color. Spicy, complex aromas and flavors of cassis chutney, vanilla spiced nuts, single village chocolate, and olives with a silky, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, nuanced, long blueberry cobbler, creme brulee, chocolate mint and nuts, and menthol finish with fine, dusty tannins and light oak. A wonderfully flavorful and balanced mature cabernet that has been cellared beautifully.
Paradise On Earth 2013 Divine Series "Radiant Red" Napa Valley
93 points
$95
Dusty garnet color. Fruity, savory aromas and flavors of spiced berries, herbal olive tapenade, chocolate nuts, and forest floor with a satiny, tangy, off-dry medium-to-full body and a orange spice cake, dried cherries, cedar, and earth finish. A juicy, spicy red blend with nice length and structure.
Bodegas Escudero 2008 Arvum Rioja DOC
93 points
$115
Violet color. Toasty, tropical aromas and flavors of toasted coconut, berry pie, toffee, and slate with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length sour cherries and berries in cream, nutskin, and oak finish with fine, dusty tannins and moderate oak. A silky, sumptuous Rioja for now or later.
Ruggeri NV Gialloro Prosecco DOCG DOC
92 points
$21.99
Bright yellow straw color. Fruity aromas and flavors of lemon spritzed melon, yellow apple, and delicate spice with a supple, tangy, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an effortless, captivating, long sweet citrus and minerals finish with fine, fruit tannins and no oak. A rich, sumptuous Prosecco with baskets of ripe fruit flavor and great mouthwatering structure.
92 points $21.99
Beppe Marino 2012 "Freisa Brusia" Langhe DOC
92 points
$23
Dusty ruby color. Fruity, toasty aromas and flavors of exotic spiced cherries, cedar and sandalwood incense, and pistachio nougat with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium body and a polished, refreshing, medium-long goji berry, blood orange, nutskin, and minerals finish with fine, dusty tannins and light oak. A delicious, fruit-driven Italian red with a lovely layer of spicy oak.
Lawer Estates 2015 Betsys Vineyard Viognier
92 points
$24
Straw green color. Fruity aromas and flavors of apricot tart, peach yogurt, and nougat with a satiny, tangy, off-dry medium-to-full body and a tingling, involved, long cornucopia of tropical fruits, delicate baking spices, and cream finish with fine, fruit tannins and a suggestion of oak. A vibrant and pure viognier with enticing stone and tropical fruit flavors.
Papale 2013  Primitivo
92 points
$24.99
Violet color. Fruity aromas and flavors of berry compote, chocolate nuts, and baking spices with a satiny, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a silky, interesting, medium-long sour cherry pie, buttery praline, and mocha finish with silky tannins and light oak. A bright, fruity Italian red that is sure to please.
92 points $24.99
Zonte’s Footstep 2015 "Hills Are Alive" Shiraz
92 points
$28
Dark deep purple color. Spicy, green aromas and flavors of chocolate mint, spicy blueberry pie, menthol lozenge, and cappuccino gelato with a satiny, tangy, fruity medium-to-full body and an even, layered, medium-long spiced nuts, white toffee, and peppery spices finish with fine tannins and light oak. A lush, spicy shiraz that is sure to please.
Von Schleinitz 2015 APOLLO Dry Riesling
92 points
$29
Bright yellow straw color. Aromas of ripe nectarines, key lime cream, gravel, and hand milled soap with a lively, dry-yet-fruity full body and a complex, breezy finish with earthy tannins and no oak. An excellent example.
Villadoria 2013  Barbaresco DOCG
92 points
$29.99
Brown brick red color. Earthy, fruity aromas and flavors of olive skin, leather and clay, and spiced berries and cherries with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and an even, subtle, medium-long nuts, bark, and flower patch earth finish with crunchy, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A spot-on, chewy Italian red with great traditional flavor and structure.
92 points $29.99
Taylors 2015 St. Andrews Chardonnay
92 points
$32
Golden yellow color. Tropical aromas and flavors of coconut custard, pineapple cake, and hint of vanilla candle with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium body and an even, interesting, medium-long pineapple-lime relish and spiced green apple finish with fine, crunchy, fruit tannins and a suggestion of oak. A rich, pure chardonnay with bright zesty tropical fruit.
Taylors 2014 St. Andrews Shiraz
92 points
$50
Opaque dusty garnet color. Aromas of ripe mulberries and blackberries, bramble and dried flowers and violets, white peppercorns, and clay and baked oak with a crisp, dry full body and an appealing, brisk finish with woody, earthy tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
Hawk and Horse Vineyards 2012  Cabernet Sauvignon
92 points
$70
Dark ruby black color. Creamy, fruity aromas and flavors of warm chocolate nougat, berry pie crust, hint of cedar incense, and olive skin with a satiny, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long blood orange, delicate spiced plums, cola, and earth finish with dusty, chewy tannins and moderate oak. A rich, gutsy cabernet with plenty of stuffing for cellaring for later or hearty fare now
Soquel Vineyards 2014 "Intreccio" Library Selection Napa Valley
92 points
$75
Opaque dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of black currants, black plums, leather and sandalwood, and pressed red flowers and turned earth with a tangy, dry full body and a complex, breezy finish with woody, earthy tannins and moderate oak. Very complex enticing nose, big yet integrated flavors follow with a rich mid-palate.
Trinchero 2012 BRV Cabernet Sauvignon
92 points
$80
Opaque violet color. Interesting aromas of crayon and clay, cedar pencil, spice rubbed meat, and tomato-cassis compote with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a graceful, distinctive, medium-long spiced blueberries, nutskin, cocoa, and earth finish with well-integrated, crunchy, chewy tannins and moderate oak. A nuanced, fruit-driven cabernet with an earthiness and structure that will reward cellaring.
Zina Hyde Cunningham 2014 Reserve Chardonnay
91 points
Yellow straw color. Tropical aromas and flavors of roasted pineapple, spiced apples, and toasted Hawaiian bread with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium body and a smooth, stimulating, medium-long creamy vanilla, lemon curd, and pear finish with silky, fruit tannins and light oak. A delicate yet vibrant chardonnay with bright fruit and zippy acidity.
Folie à Deux 2013  Merlot
91 points
$20
Nearly opaque ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate and vanilla fudges, plum custard pie, and hint of dried meat with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, medium-length spiced praline, pomegranate, and mint finish with soft tannins and moderate oak. A savory, meaty merlot that will cover many bases.
Great Frogs NV "Red" Capital Series Maryland
91 points
$20
Ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of clover honey, black raspberries, and toasted herbs and spices with a supple, bright, dryish medium-to-full body and a sleek, interesting, medium-long roasted beets and root vegetables, dried cherries and pears, minerals, and toasted sandalwood finish with fine, dusty tannins and light oak. A silky and subtle red with appealing savoriness and structure.
John Robert Eppler 2014 "Rouge" Tradition Old Vines California
91 points
$22
Opaque ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of funky dark fruits and mulberries, black raspberries, wood smoke, and tree bark and white peppercorns with a tart, dryish full body and a subtle, brisk finish with earthy, woody, firm, barky tannins and heavy oak. Big bold, interesting flavors, youthful but good depth and ample fine fruit tannins
Taylors 2015 Reserve Parcel Shiraz
91 points
$22
Opaque ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of ripe huckleberries, mocha and planked oak, malabar pepper, and pressed violets and cream with a tangy, dry full body and a nuanced, medium-length finish with earthy, woody tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
Taylors 2015 Jaraman Shiraz
91 points
$22
Opaque color. Aromas and flavors of ripe mulberries and blackberry cream, planked oak, black pepper, and turned earth with an crisp, dry full body and a compelling, swift finish with earthy, woody tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
JAX 2014 Y3 Pinot Noir
91 points
$24.99
Bright brown brick red color. Aromas and flavors of baked black cherries and cobbler like, dried leaves, potters clay, and mocha and lemon pith with an lively, dry full body and a distinctive, brisk finish with leafy, earthy, woody tannins. An excellent example.
91 points $24.99
Kirkland Signature 2011 Signature Series Brunello di Montalcino
91 points
$24.99
Opaque brick red color. Aromas and flavors of pomegranate seeds, wet clay, mocha, and herb focaccia with a silky, crisp, dryish medium body and a sleek, appealing, medium-length spiced nuts and cherries, cedar, roasted lemon, and dried mushroom finish with dusty tannins and moderate oak. A nice bright Brunello for the table.
91 points $24.99
Von Schleinitz 2015 NITOR Dry Riesling
91 points
$25
Bright golden straw color. Aromas of peach skin, lime zest, potters clay, and dried canvas with an crisp, dryish medium-to-full body and a refreshing, brisk finish with cottony, earthy tannins and no oak. An excellent example.
Blakeslee Vineyard Estate 2015 Rosé of Pinot Noir Chehalem Mountains
91 points
$32
Light coral orange color. Aromas and flavors of cherries and strawberries, hint of beeswax, and white chocolate toffee with a silky, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, appealing, medium-length nut skin and minerals finish with no oak. An elegant and appetizing rosé.
JAX 2013 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
91 points
$45
Garnet black color. Fruity aromas and flavors of boysenberry pie, cassis jam, and chocolate mint with a satiny, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, delightful, medium-length spiced blueberries and cherries, vanilla toffee, nuts, and cedar finish with silky, chewy tannins and light oak. A silky, ripe and juicy cabernet.
City Winery 2012 Brut Nature Sparkling North Fork of Long Island
91 points
$49
Light gold color. Earthy aromas and flavors of lemon rind, starfruit, and frosted peach scone with a supple, tart, finely carbonated, dry medium body and a sleek, amusing, medium-long tart green apple, kumquat, nuts, and hint of herbs finish with a suggestion of oak. A very appetizing and dry sparkling wine that wakes up the palate.
Chateau Montaiguillon 2014  Montagne St. Emilion
91 points
$60
Dusty garnet color. Toasty, earthy aromas and flavors of pencil shavings, clay, dried berries, and nuts and pipe tobacco with a satiny, soft, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a graceful, interesting, medium-length cocoa, marinated root vegetables, and cedar and earth finish with dusty tannins and moderate oak. A super supple, savory and balanced Bordeaux red that will shine at the table.
Wakefield 2015  Shiraz
90 points
$18
Best Buy
Opaque garnet black color. Aromas and flavors of ripe blackberries and mulberries, pressed flowers and violets, potters clay, and malabar pepper with a tangy, dry full body and a complex, breezy finish with earthy, woody tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
90 points $18 Best Buy
Taylor Made 2016  Chardonnay
90 points
$22
Bright gold color. Aromas and flavors of baked apple and pear, delicate sweet and pepper spices, and white blossoms with a satiny, tangy, fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, long peach tart, honeyed pineapple, and lemon custard finish with fine, crunchy, fruit tannins and a suggestion of oak. A lively, appetizing chardonnay with nice layers of fruit.
Napa Cellars 2013  Merlot
90 points
$24
Nearly opaque violet color. Aromas and flavors of baked berries, dark chocolate, and nuts with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a graceful, breezy boysenberry custard tart, cedar, forest floor, and pepper finish with fine, dusty tannins and a suggestion of oak. A solid merlot for all occasions
Great Frogs 2015 "Red" Capital Series Maryland
90 points
$25
Brick red color. Aromas and flavors of roasted nuts and peppers, mocha, and dolmades with a silky, bright, dryish medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long pickled beets and okra, peppered berries, minerals, and tobacco finish with fine, crunchy tannins and light oak. A supple, savory red that will shine at the table.
Von Schleinitz 2015 Weissenberg Single Vineyard Riesling
90 points
$25
Bright golden yellow color. Aromas and flavors of ripe peaches, key lime custard, baked oak, and marshmallow with a lively, fruity full body and a complex, relaxed finish with papery tannins and no oak. An excellent example.
Ledson 2013 "Gunsight" California
90 points
$32
Bright dusty ruby color. Aromas and flavors of ripe blackberries, huckleberries, purple sweet tarts, and mocha and turned earth with a lively, dryish full body and an intricate, medium-length finish with earthy, woody, firm tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
Bichi Borghesi 2011 Bonico Rosso Toscana IGT
90 points
$39
Opaque dusty garnet color. Attractive, spicy, savory aromas and flavors of marinated berries and tomatoes, chocolate cherries and nuts, rhubarb pie, and fall leaves and earth with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and an even, interesting, medium-length chocolate chestnuts and earth finish with well-integrated, fine tannins and a suggestion of oak. A delicious savory Italian red with nicely interwoven flavors and texture.
Laurelwood Reserve 2014 Hirschy Vineyard Reserve Pinot Noir
90 points
$39.99
Dark garnet color. Earthy aromas and flavors of clay forest floor, honeyed cherries and berries, and banana nut muffin with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a silky, captivating, medium-length pickled watermelon rind, nectarine, nuts, and hint of coconut finish with a suggestion of oak. A nicely balanced pinot with ample fruit and a good sense of place.
90 points $39.99
Great Frogs 2014 Meritage Anne Arundel County
90 points
$40
Dusty dusty garnet color. Earthy, spicy aromas and flavors of spiced nuts, potting soil, cassis chutney, and roasted root vegetables with a silky, bright, dry medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long fleur de sel, grassy earth, and peppercorns finish with well-integrated, fine, crunchy tannins and light oak. A supple and savory red with nice structure for the table.
Gravel Bar Winery 2014 Estate Reserve - Red Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon
90 points
$45.99
Dark violet color. Interesting, fruity, meaty aromas and flavors of butter roasted nuts, marinated berries, citrus, mushrooms, chocolate pastry, and hint of grilled fish with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, engaging, medium-length mocha and vanilla cream and toasted herbs finish with well-integrated tannins and light oak. A nicely balanced cabernet that will shine at the table.
90 points $45.99
Diamond Ridge 2013  Pinot Noir
90 points
$48
Bright burnt sienna color. Aromas and flavors of black cherries, beet root and raspberries, tree bark, and turned earth with a lively, dryish full body and a nuanced, relaxed finish with barky tannins and moderate oak. An excellent example.
Trinchero 2012 Marios Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
90 points
$50
Indigo color. Fruity, inviting aromas and flavors of caramelized berries and yams, flan, blueberry pie, and menthol mint lozenge with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, complex, long vanilla nut brittle, chocolate, delicate baking spices, and cedar finish with silky tannins and light oak. A spot-on Napa cabernet with great texture and rich fruit.
Monte De Oro 2010 Reserve Syrah
90 points
$80
Dark garnet black color. Rustic aromas of barnyard mud and clay, butter roasted nuts and berries, toasted wood, and olive tapenade with a supple, tangy, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, chocolate orange peel and berries, spiced apples and cashews, sweet and peppery spices, and sandalwood finish with chewy, fine tannins and no oak. An entertaining flavor ride that would compliment an adventurous meal.
Taylors 2015  Shiraz
89 points
$18
Opaque deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of ripe mulberries, planked oak and toffee, pressed violets and turned earth, and malabar pepper with a tangy, dry full body and a complex, cheery finish with woody, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A very good example.
Folie à Deux 2014  Pinot Noir
89 points
$20
Bright dusty ruby color. Aromas and flavors of cherry compote, cacao nibs, and roasted nuts with a satiny, vibrant, fruity body and a silky, interesting, medium-long creme brulee, delicate spices, honeyed beets, and sweet and peppery spices finish with silky tannins and a suggestion of oak. A supple and tasty pinot pleaser.
JAX 2015 "Y3" Pinot Noir
89 points
$24.99
Medium dusty ruby color. Fruity, spicy, savory aromas and flavors of cherry pie and marinated beets with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long dried strawberry and citrus, nuts, and cedar finish with well-integrated, fine tannins and light oak. A flavorful, dry and savory pinot noir with lots of pairing possibilities.
89 points $24.99
Bichi Borghesi 2014  Chianti Colli Senesi
89 points
$25
Bright brick red color. Aromas and flavors of wild cherries, roasted nuts and chestnuts, red licorice and cream, and potters clay and oak with a vibrant, dry full body and a complex, medium-length finish with earthy, woody tannins and moderate oak. A very good example.
Cool Fish NV White California
89 points
$25
Yellow color. Floral, fruity aromas and flavors of spiced apricots and mangos, orange blossom honey, and exotic tropical fruits with a silky, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, compelling, medium-long coconut, Meyer lemon and clementine, and gooseberries finish with crunchy, chewy, fruit tannins and no oak. A vivacious, snappy white blend with lots of exotic tropical fruit flavors.
Lawer Estates 2015 Cannon Block Chardonnay
89 points
$26
Bright bright gold color. Aromas of baked yellow apples, butter cream, turned earth, and pencil erasers with an lively, dry-yet-fruity full body and an engaging, medium-length finish with earthy tannins and moderate oak. A very good example.
ONEHOPE 2013 Reserve Pinot Noir
89 points
$29.99
Bright burnt sienna color. Aromas and flavors of raspberry and cherry, rhubarb, dried twigs, and dried canvas and gravel with an tangy, dry medium-full body and an appealing, brisk finish with earthy, cottony, barky tannins and moderate oak. A very good example.
89 points $29.99
Chateau Tertre de Viaud 2014  Cotes de Bourg
89 points
$35
Ruby black color. Green, roasted aromas and flavors of toasted herbs, dark roasted nuts, and grilled green pepper with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length cedar plank, cocoa, and potting soil finish with dusty, woody tannins. A supple, smoky Bordeaux red.
Great Frogs 2015 Tanyard Reserve Maryland
89 points
$35
Garnet color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate espresso beans, berry pie crust, and nut brittle with a silky, bright, dryish medium body and a tingling, interesting, pickled beets and carrots, nuts, and grassy earth finish with crunchy, dusty tannins and light oak. A tangy, refreshing red with toasty oak that will pair nicely.
Nordby Vineyards 2008 Reserve "Il Re" Cabernet Sauvignon
89 points
$37
Dusty garnet black color. Interesting, meaty, spicy aromas and flavors of summer sausage, dried berries, chestnut honey, and spiced olives with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, intriguing, medium-length plum relish, chocolate berries, nutskin, and cedar finish with dusty, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A nice mature cabernet that is drinking well now.
Domaine du Grand Tinel 2015  Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc
89 points
$80
Yellow straw color. Fruity, interesting aromas and flavors of spiced papaya, melon, and pineapple, vanilla nuts, orchid, and earth with a silky, bright, dryish medium body and a tingling, medium-length nectarine skin, yellow apple, honeyed citrus, and minerals finish with fine, crunchy, dusty tannins and no oak. A delicate and even sipper.
Great Frogs NV Chesapeake Blend Maryland
88 points
$20
Ruby black color. Spicy, herbal, earthy aromas and flavors of spiced mulberries and cherries, toasted herbs and nuts, and flower stems with a supple, tart, dry light-to-medium body and a silky, interesting, breezy cranberry and green apple, nutskin, and borscht finish with fine, crunchy, chewy tannins and a suggestion of oak. A crisp and savory red that will pair nicely with spicy meat dishes.
Pacific Heights 2015  Chardonnay
88 points
$20
Bright light gold color. Aromas and flavors of stone fruit and peaches, buttered toast points, gravel, and pressed linen with a crisp, dry-yet-fruity full body and a complex, medium-length finish with cottony, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A good quality example.
Pazo Castrelo 2015  Albarino
88 points
$21
Pale golden straw color. Fruity, tropical aromas and flavors of papaya-mango relish, dried pear, and salty nuts with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, appealing, relaxed yellow apple and marinated cucumber finish with no oak. A very round albariño with pure restrained flavors.
Taylors 2015 Jaraman Chardonnay
88 points
$22
Golden yellow color. Aromas and flavors of creme brulee, nougat, and apple pie crust with a supple, tangy, fruity medium body and a seamless, interesting, medium-length reduced lemon, praline, and earth finish with no oak. A crisp, refreshing chardonnay well suited for fish and chicken dishes.
ONEHOPE 2012  Pinot Noir
88 points
$23.99
Bright dark garnet color. Aromas and flavors of ripe cherries, red rhubarb, dried leaves and planked oak, and oak with a tangy, dry medium-full body and a stimulating, brisk finish with woody, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A good quality example.
88 points $23.99
DH Lescombes 2013 Limited Release Mourvedre
88 points
$24
Medium garnet black color. Fruity aromas and flavors of melted toffee, spiced berries, and roasted chestnuts with a satiny, bright, fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length creme brulee, spice, minted melon, and mocha finish with dusty, fine tannins and light oak. A nice chocolatey, fruity red.
Pacific Heights 2015  Pinot Noir
88 points
$25
Cloudy dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate espresso bean, berry pie crust, and cedar with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, engaging, medium-long dark roasted nuts, dried berries, and pipe tobacco finish with fine tannins and light oak. A chewy, savory pinot that will shine at the table.
Von Schleinitz 2015 Blanc de Noir Pinot Noir
88 points
$25
Pale steely amber orange color. Earthy aromas and flavors of straw, white strawberry and mulberry, peach pit, and bread dough with a silky, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, charming, medium-length green apple, nectarine skin, melon rind, and hint of volcanic rock finish. An interesting dry rose of pinot noir with a nice touch of earthiness.
DH Lescombes NV "D" Danielle New Mexico
88 points
$36
Pale golden straw green color. Roasted, smoky aromas and flavors of dark roasted nuts, grilled apples and pineapples, and lit match with a supple, tangy, spritzy, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a polished, captivating, reduced lemon, kiwi and white strawberry, and whit balsamic finish with a suggestion of oak. A very savory and appetizing sparkler with interesting smoky tones and great mouthwatering acidity.
Daffodil Winery 2014 Eola Amity Pinot Noir
88 points
$39.99
Dusty dark garnet color. Earthy, fruity aromas and flavors of clay, cherry fruit leather, and suede with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, medium-length black walnut, blood orange, and huckleberry finish with soft, fine tannins and a suggestion of oak. A tasty pinot with a solid core of ripe fruit and supple texture.
88 points $39.99
Great Frogs 2015 White Capital Series Maryland
87 points
$20
Yellow straw color. Aromas and flavors of honey roasted nuts, apple butter, pineapple marmalade, and caramel rice cake with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an even, compelling, medium-long coconut cream and spiced apple and pear finish with fine, crunchy tannins and light oak. A crisp, crunchy white wine with nice fruit and a delicate style.
Folie à Deux 2013  Cabernet Sauvignon
87 points
$24
Violet color. Earthy aromas and flavors of spiced dried berries, pencil shavings, and earth with a supple, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy menthol tobacco, herbs, and cocoa-dusted nuts and currants finish with firm, dusty tannins and moderate oak. A chewy, light earthy cabernet for the table.
Napa Cellars 2014  Zinfandel
87 points
$24
Dark deep purple color. Fruity aromas and flavors of chocolate raspberries, linden honey, clay, and geranium with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a sleek, amusing, medium-long spiced cherries, peaches and oranges, vanilla mint cream cookie, and toffee finish with well-integrated, fine tannins and light oak. A very tasty, mouth watering, well composed zinfandel that is sure to please.
Los Ranchos Winery 2013  Sangiovese
87 points
$29
Burnt sienna color. Interesting, meaty, savory aromas and flavors of beef chili and pie crust with a soft, bright, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, amusing, buoyant spiced cherries and raspberries and cocoa finish with fine, dusty tannins and light oak. A meaty, fruity, interesting red for spicy meat dishes.
Great Frogs 2015 Vintners White Anne Arundel County
87 points
$30
Golden straw color. Earthy aromas and flavors of caramelized nuts and fruits and leaves and bark with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long dried apple and pear, salted papaya, and lemon pepper finish with dusty tannins. An savory, earthy, slightly rustic white blend.
Villa Giulia 2013  Chianti Classico Riserva
87 points
$35
Bright dusty ruby color. Aromas and flavors of dark cherries, chestnuts, planked oak and clay, and pressed violets with a tangy, dry full body and a subtle, buoyant finish with woody, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A fairly good quality example.
Great Frogs 2014 Vintners Red Anne Arundel County
87 points
$40
Dusty brick red color. Herbal, spicy aromas and flavors of pickle relish and roasted cherries and beets with a supple, bright, dry medium body and a tingling, breezy nutskin and earth finish with light oak. A dry, restrained red for the table.
Napa Cellars 2015 V Collection Chardonnay
87 points
$40
Bright gold color. Aromas of green apple skin, apple butter, minerality and gravel, and lemon curd with an tangy, full body and an involved, cheery finish with earthy tannins and moderate oak. A fairly good quality example.
Napa Cellars 2013 V Collection Cabernet Sauvignon
87 points
$55
Dark violet color. Inviting, savory aromas and flavors of dried cassis, olive tapenade, leather bound chair, and delicate green grass herbs with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a captivating, medium-long sandalwood and spiced berries finish with dusty, crunchy tannins and moderate oak. A subdued and spicy Napa cabernet that will reward cellaring.
Napa Cellars 2014  Pinot Noir
86 points
$24
Bright dusty ruby color. Aromas of black cherries, cranberries, planked cedar, and dried leaves with a lively, dry full body and an elegant, breezy finish with leafy, earthy tannins and moderate oak. A better than average quality example.
Great Frogs NV White Capital Series Maryland
86 points
$25
Light gold color. Grassy, yeasty aromas and flavors of apples on the tree, Greek yogurt, straw, and stewed fruits with a supple, crisp, dryish medium body and a sleek, brisk spiced citrus and melon and salty nuts finish with light oak. A soft, savory, earthy white wine.
Nicolas Potel 2015  Pouilly-Fuissé
86 points
$29.99
Pale golden yellow color. Curious aromas and flavors of porridge with cream, dried apple coconut granola, pound cake, and latex caulk with a silky, soft, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an effortless, interesting, breezy coconut water, green pineapple, nougat, and lemon chiffon finish with a suggestion of oak. A solid French white with nice fruit and good balance.
86 points $29.99
Nordby Vineyards 2003 Estate Reserve "Envy" Cabernet Sauvignon
86 points
$65
Dusty dull indigo color. Aromas and flavors of warm raisin-fig compote, pickled berries, hint of leather, and soy and olive with a supple, soft, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, breezy nut skin and pomegranate vinaigrette finish with dusty tannins and moderate oak. A mature cabernet for the table, drink up.
Monte De Oro 2015 "Bolle De Oro" Temecula Valley
85 points
$22
Clear yellow straw color. Interesting aromas of overripe melon and lemon, rubber leaf, green nectarine, and geranium with a supple, vibrant, fruity medium body and a smooth, buoyant warm apple-peach compote, spiced nuts, white toffee, and banana finish with a suggestion of oak. A round, spicy sparkler.
Los Ranchos Winery 2014  Tempranillo
85 points
$27
Minutely hazy dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate dark roasted nuts, roasted berries, ink, and clay with a lean, crisp, dry light-to-medium body and a tingling, rapid cedar bark, potting soil, and dried blueberry finish with dusty, firm tannins and light oak. A very dry, savory red for the table.
Villa Giulia 2013  Chianti Classico
85 points
$29
Bright brick red color. Aromas and flavors of spiced cherries, chestnuts, potters clay, and baked oak with a tangy, dry medium-full body and a nuanced, swift finish with earthy, papery tannins and moderate oak. A better than average quality example.
Napa Cellars 2014 V Collection Pinot Noir
85 points
$50
Bright brick red color. Aromas and flavors of spiced cherries, dried leaves, red licorice and star anise, and planked oak with an lively, dry full body and an interesting, buoyant finish with woody, earthy, leafy tannins and moderate oak. A better than average quality example.
Pollak Vineyards 2014 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
84 points
$24
Dark garnet black color. Green, fruity aromas and flavors of cassis tart a la mode, green leaves and herbs, and orange blossom beeswax with a supple, crisp, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, snappy craisins, pencil, and grass finish with dusty, woody tannins and moderate oak. A savory, rustic cabernet for the table.
Great Frogs 2015  Chardonnay
84 points
$30
Gold color. Curious, earthy aromas and flavors of clay, spiced apple, nutshell, and hint of mint gum with a lean, tart, sweet-and-sour medium body and a tingling, relaxed lemon and salty dark roasted nuts finish with dusty, earthy, fruit tannins and moderate oak. A very savory, earthy chardonnay for the table.
Taylors 2016 St. Andrews Riesling
84 points
$32
Bright golden straw color. Aromas and flavors of spiced yellow apples, clay and baked oak, and lime pith with an lively, dry medium-full body and a delightful, momentary finish with papery, earthy tannins and no oak. An average quality example.
Great Frogs 2015  Syrah
84 points
$35
Dull dusty ruby color. Smoky, earthy aromas and flavors of grilled tomatoes and root vegetables, lit match, tomato leaf, and bloody meat with a silky, soft, dryish medium body and a smooth, brisk toasted herbs, dark roasted nuts, burnt grape leaves and stems, and cranberry vinaigrette finish with barky tannins and heavy oak. A very green, savory, rustic red for the hunter’s table.
Von Schleinitz 2015  Pinot Noir
84 points
$35
Medium brick red color. Earthy, grassy aromas and flavors of wet haystack and stones, roasted chestnuts and berries, brown butter, and hint of fuel with a silky, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a tingling, brisk cherry pits and melon rind, burlap, and bark finish with dusty tannins and a suggestion of oak. A dry, earthy and austere pinot noir for the hunter’s table.
DH Lescombes 2012 Limited Release Petit Verdot
84 points
$38
Medium brown brick red color. Funky aromas of rubber, burnt nuts and berries, and lit match with a supple, crisp, medium body and a seamless, somewhat odd, short cranberry, lit cigar, and cedar mulch finish with heavy oak.
DH Lescombes NV "H" Hervé New Mexico
84 points
$38
Medium ruby black color. Fruity, meaty aromas and flavors of cranberry chutney, chocolate cherries, beef bouillon, and grilled pepper with a silky, dry-yet-fruity body and a smooth, breezy finish with crunchy, woody tannins and moderate oak. A rustic, woody red for the table.
Great Frogs NV Rosé Capital Series Maryland
81 points
$25
Coral orange color. Earthy, floral aromas and flavors of carnation patch, Asian pear, yeasty cranberry bread, and twigs and leaves with a supple, soft, dry medium body and a tingling, intriguing, medium-length pickled apple, citrus and melon finish with no oak. crisp, very dry, earthy rose for the table.
Napa Cellars 2014  Cabernet Sauvignon
80 points
$30
Violet color. Unusual aromas and flavors of fish oil, berry trail mix, pressed flowers and linen, and hint of shoe polished leather with a silky, crisp, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, brisk dark berry compote, cola, birch bark, and parchment finish with dusty, barky tannins and moderate oak. A dusty, dry, Napa cabernet for the table.
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