More Reviews

Reviews for 2017

February 2017 - US Rhone Varietal

February 2017 - US Rhone Varietal
This month's Wine feature is US Rhone Varietal Wines

US Rhone Varietal Reviews

Tertulia Cellars 2013 "The Great SchisM" Riviere Galets Estate Vineyard Walla Walla Valley
94 points
$55
Garnet black color. Attractive, fruity aromas and flavors of coffee and vanilla bean gelatos, crusty huckleberry pie, and chocolate cherries with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a seamless, interesting, medium-long finish imparting notes of roasted nuts, delicate spices, and sandalwood with fine, dusty tannins and moderate oak flavor. A delightfully fruity, spicy, and engaging Rhone varietal blend.
MYKA Cellars 2015 Cotes du Cruz Blanc El Dorado County
93 points
$32
Bright golden yellow color. Toasty, creamy aromas and flavors of coconut creme brulee, pineapple cake a la mode, and spiced apples and nuts with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long finish with touches of nougat, vanilla cream, and pepper with well-integrated, chewy, fruit tannins. A delicious toasty and rich white blend that is sure to please.
Tertulia Cellars 2014 "Reserve" Syrah
93 points
$45
Bright violet color. Aromas and flavors of maple nut fudge and boysenberry pie with a satiny, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, amusing, buoyant finish revealing notes of buttery nuts, blueberry chutney, and peppery spices with silky, soft tannins and light oak flavor. A robust, flavor packed syrah with an elegant edge.
Ledson 2013 Estate Old Vine Petite Sirah
93 points
$46
Opaque violet color. Aromas and flavors of dried berries, waxy orange blossom honeycomb, floral spices, and almond nougat with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length finish with accents of craisin, cassis chutney, and cedar with firm, crunchy, woody tannins and moderate oak flavor. A rich, age-worthy petite sirah that will be even better in a few years.
Alta Colina 2013 GSM Estate Paso Robles
93 points
$48
Nearly opaque violet color. Fruity aromas and flavors of blueberry pie a la mode and cherry chutney with a satiny, tangy, fruity full body and an even, delightful, medium-long finish with notes of nougat, floral honey, creme brulee, and pink pepper with fine, silky tannins and light oak flavor. A silky and stylish red blend with lovely fruit and balanced, creamy oak.
Tertulia Cellars 2013 Estate Vineyards Syrah
92 points
$35
Dark violet color. Toasty aromas and flavors of fresh nut brittle, blueberry bran muffin, smoked bacon, and mixed peppercorn with a satiny, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length finish that shows suggestions of dried berries and apples and spiced nuts with chewy, dusty tannins and moderate oak flavor. A nicely compacted syrah with good potential for aging.
Dusted Valley 2013 Stained Tooth Syrah
92 points
$36
Opaque violet color. Aromas and flavors of blueberry pie, baking spices, and nougat with a satiny, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long finish imparting nuances of craisin, nuts, earth, and caramelized bacon with well-integrated, chewy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A rich, complex, and delicious syrah that is sure to please not or later.
Daybreak Cellars 2015 Torres Vineyard Viognier
91 points
$23
Golden straw color. Toasty, interesting aromas and flavors of peach and lemon pastries, pickled apple, and nougat with a satiny, bright, fruity medium body and a polished, delightful, medium-long finish revealing notes of apricots in vanilla cream and delicate spiced praline with fine, crunchy tannins and light oak flavor. An appealing, nicely oaked viognier with rich balanced fruit and a silky texture.
Ledson 2014 Estate Old Vine Carignane
91 points
$36
Bright brown brick red color. Aromas and flavors of pine twigs, planked pine, mocha and clay, and dried meats and beef jerky with a tangy, dry full body and an interesting, short finish with woody tannins. An excellent example.
90+ Cellars 2014 French Fusion Red Languedoc AOP
90 points
$11.99
Best Buy
Dusty ruby color. Savory, minerally aromas and flavors of berry and tomato chutney, toffee, clay, and pepper focaccia with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium-full body and an interesting, medium-length finish revealing suggestions of craisin, nutskin, and marinated root vegetables with fine, soft tannins and light oak flavor. A rock solid southern French red with great savory flavors, fine balance, and a nice sense of place.
90 points $11.99 Best Buy
Smirk 2016  Moscatel
90 points
$15.99
Best Buy
Silvery straw color. Fruity, floral aromas and flavors of peach cobbler and oranges and orange blossoms with a supple, tangy, fruity light-to-medium body and an effortless, compelling, abrupt finish that exhibits shades of melon and grassy earth with fine, crunchy tannins and no oak flavor. A delightfully crisp and fruity moscato with great balance and structure.
90 points $15.99 Best Buy
Matchbook 2012 Tinto Rey Dunnigan Hills
90 points
$17
Best Buy
Dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of baked berries and tomatoes, butter roasted nuts, chocolate, and red clay with a supple, bright, dryish medium body and a graceful, interesting, medium-length finish displaying suggestions of dried sour cherries, nuts, and grilled blood orange with light oak flavor. A very nice, dry tangy red that will pair nicely and is drinking very well now.
90 points $17 Best Buy
Anaba 2014 Turbine Red Sonoma Valley
90 points
$35
Dark color. Aromas and flavors of red fruit, cola, and black pepper with an vibrant, dryish medium body and a captivating, medium-length finish with medium tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. A very dry red with firm tannins and dark red fruit.
Alta Colina 2013 Toasted Slope Estate Syrah
90 points
$48
Dark color. Aromas and flavors of roasted nuts and berries and smoked bacon with a supple, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, medium-long finish with impressions of dried blueberries and citrus, mixed peppercorns, and oak with firm, woody tannins and moderate oak flavor. A chewy, deeply fruited wine with nice firm oak and spice notes; give this a bit of time to blossom.
90+ Cellars 2015 French Fusion White Languedoc AOP
89 points
$11.99
Best Buy
Bright light gold color. Aromas and flavors of dried fruit and peach skin, minerality, baked almonds, and lemon peel with a lively, dry full body and an involved, medium-length finish with well-integrated tannins and no oak flavor. Scents and flavors are seamlessly integrated, rich supple mid-palate.
89 points $11.99 Best Buy
5 String 2015  Petite Sirah
89 points
$21.99
Opaque dusty garnet color. Toasty, fruity aromas and flavors of buttery berry pie crust, nut brittle, and beets with a supple, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a sleek, appealing, medium-length finish that shows accents of sour cherry, honeyed nuts, and cedar with light oak flavor. A rock solid petite sirah that will be versatile.
89 points $21.99
San Simeon 2012 Estate Reserve Petite Sirah
89 points
$22
Opaque violet color. Spicy aromas and flavors of plum compote, chocolate nuts, pickled cherries, and honeycomb with a satiny, tangy, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, intricate, medium-long finish displaying accents of spiced oranges, marinated beets, nutskin, and cedar with chewy, earthy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A rich and satisfying petite sirah with lovely flavor and depth.
Alta Colina 2013 Sun Worshipper Estate Paso Robles
89 points
$55
Dusty garnet color. Interesting aromas and flavors of mocha, cedar, spiced nuts, and dried berries with a silky, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length finish with notes of chocolate craisins, pomegranate, and pepper with fine, well-integrated tannins and moderate oak flavor. A chewy, full-throttle red Rhone blend.
Grizzly Peak 2015  Viognier
88 points
$22
Pale straw green color. Creamy aromas and flavors of tapioca, peach cream danish, and hint of sweet pickle relish with a silky, bright, off-dry medium-to-full body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length finish with notes of spiced apple with light oak flavor. A ripe, juicy viognier with lots of creamy fruit flavors.
Matchbook 2013  Syrah
87 points
$16
Dark dusty garnet color. Toasty aromas and flavors of butter roasted nuts and berry pie crust with a supple, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a polished, interesting, medium-length finish that exhibits overtones of berry compote, blood orange and melon, and spiced nuts with well-integrated, fine tannins and moderate oak flavor. A solid syrah for everyday enjoyment.
Cedar Creek Winery 2014  Syrah
87 points
$17
Opaque dark ruby color. Aromas and flavors of roasted berries, dried leaves and nettles, chestnut honey, and hint of crayon with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, buoyant finish with notes of earth, nutskin, and dried herbs with fine, dusty tannins and light oak flavor. A dry, savory, herbaceous syrah for the table.
Sunstone 2014 Rapsodie Santa Ynez Valley
87 points
$45
Dark color. Aromas and flavors of dark berry and cola with an vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a compelling, medium-length finish with well-integrated tannins and no oak flavor. A nice everyday red that would be a nice house wine.
Frey 2014 Organic Petite Sirah
86 points
$15
Best Buy
Opaque deep purple color. Interesting aromas and flavors of stewed berries, peach blossoms, pistachio nougat, and añejo tequila with a silky, bright, fruity medium body and a smooth, interesting, breezy finish manifesting suggestions of beef bouillon, cedar bark, and agave drizzled lime with dusty, barky tannins and moderate oak flavor. An intriguing petite sirah with a distinctive tequila note.
86 points $15 Best Buy
Hot Ticket 2015  Shiraz
86 points
$16.99
Dark violet color. Buttery, toasty, interesting aromas and flavors of fresh pretzel bread, roasted nuts and peppers, and dried berries with a silky, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a polished, snappy finish manifesting elements of spiced apple and cocoa-dusted fruits with soft tannins and moderate oak flavor. A toasty, tangy shiraz.
86 points $16.99
Anaba 2014 Turbine White Sonoma Valley
86 points
$28
Bright bright gold color. Toasty aromas and flavors of roasted coconut and nuts and peach custard pie crust with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy finish conveying nuances of spiced apples and pears, almond skin, lime, and earth with fine, chewy tannins and light oak flavor. A nice well-oaked white Rhone blend sipper.
Sunstone 2014  Syrah
86 points
$45
Dark dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of black cherry, proscuitto, and orange rind with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a sleek, stimulating, medium-length finish manifesting overtones of cocoa nib and ripe fig with chewy, medium, fruit tannins and no oak flavor. A nice Syrah for sipping on its own or with a good burger.
Ledson 2013 Estate Vineyard Syrah
86 points
$46
Opaque deep purple color. Aromas of roasted plum and blackberry, baking spice, and nuts with a supple, tangy, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a graceful, medium-length strawberry and herbs finish with dusty, chewy, fruit tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. A crowd-pleasing, mouth-filling Syrah that will work great with many meat dishes.
Dark Horse 2015 Limited Release Petite Sirah
85 points
$9.99
Opaque violet color. Spicy, fruity aromas and flavors of spiced berries, buttery toffee, roasted nuts, and white pepper dust with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length finish revealing suggestions of sandalwood, cocoa, and cedar with medium tannins and light oak flavor. A chewy, nicely oaked petite sirah.
85 points $9.99
Tria 2015  Syrah
85 points
$23.99
Dark color. Aromas and flavors of red fruits, french herbs, and graphite with a vibrant, dryish medium body and a compelling, medium-length finish with fruit, medium, well-integrated tannins and a suggestion of oak flavor. A juicy syrah with dark berry fruits, spice and a hint of tobacco on the finish.
85 points $23.99
1850 Wine Cellars 2015  Viognier
85 points
$24
Pale light gold color. Toasty, fruity aromas and flavors of fresh peach pastry and honeyed nuts with a silky, tangy, fruity medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-length finish conveying notes of nougat and delicate spices with no oak flavor. A nicely balanced viognier with tangy stone fruit flavors.
Anaba 2015 Landa Vineyard Viognier
85 points
$36
Brilliant yellow straw color. Aromas and flavors of apricot yogurt, banana nut muffin, nutshell, and paper mache with a soft, bright, dry light-to-medium body and a tingling, brisk finish that presents suggestions of apple skin, Meyer lemon, and green pineapple with a suggestion of oak flavor. A somewhat lean and earthy viognier for the table.
Barefoot NV  Shiraz
84 points
$6.99
Opaque garnet black color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate cherry bonbon, praline, roasted nuts, and mulberries with a supple, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, breezy finish that shows shades of peppercorns and cedar shavings with well-integrated, chewy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A juicy, chewy everyday shiraz.
84 points $6.99
Frey 2015 Organic Syrah
83 points
$15
Medium dusty ruby violet color. Fruity aromas and flavors of crusty berry pie, caramelized smoked bacon, and chocolate dried cherries with a soft, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an effortless, cheery finish revealing nuances of brown sugar and nuts with crunchy, fine tannins and light oak flavor. A nice everyday syrah.
Shortcut: https://www.tastings.com/Calendar-Wine/Review-2017-02-03-US-Rhone-Varietal.aspx