Our Best Picks, June 2017

GOLD PACKAGE

Featuring our selections from the New World (Australia, New Zealand, the United States and South America) and Europe that are rated 90 points and above.

 

JH 94
CELESTIAL BAY SEMILLON SAUV BLANC 2012

Tasting Notes: A blend of 55% Semillon (25% barrel-fermented) and 45% sauvignon blanc, with great focus and elegance, all the inputs symbiotic, and pointing to a long future; this is absolutely not simply a barrel selection of the standard SSB.

JH 92
MAJELLA THE MUSICIAN 2013

Tasting Notes:  On the lighter side of medium-bodied, with gum leaf and black, clove pepper as highlights, but with trademark soft, berried fruit flavour to the fore. Creamy oak is a whisper at its loudest point. Not as dense as some previous releases but perhaps more charming.

JS 90
MONTES ALPHA CARMENERE 2014

Tasting Notes:  A very pretty carmenere with light leaf, dark berry, and spice. Medium to full body, fine tannins and a spicy finish. Drink now.

RP90
AGUAZA SO RA DA SELECCION 2009

Tasting Notes: The 2009 Sa-Ra-Da Seleccion is a blend of Garnacha Tintorera and Monastrell aged in a combination of stainless steel and oak. Opaque purple in color, it offers up an alluring perfume of smoky wild blue and black fruits and exotic spices. Dense, layered, and concentrated, it sports plenty of volume and power. Drink this exuberant effort over the next 5-6 years.

PLATINUM PACKAGE

Featuring our fine selections from France, Italy and Spain that are rated 90 points and above.

 

JS 91
MUGA RIOJA BLANCO 2015

Tasting Notes: Aromatic nose showing a green-apple, passion-fruit and white-flower character. Full-bodied with a green-apple-like acidity that follows through to a long, fruity finish. Drink now.

RP 90
SANTA DUC GIGONDAS LES HAUTES GARRIGUES 2012

Tasting Notes: Made from 80% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre and the balance Syrah (there’s normally no Syrah, but this was a difficult year for Mourvedre), aged all in foudre, the 2012 Gigondas Prestige des Hautes Garrigues is the darkest colored of the 2012s and offers a solid bouquet of smoked black cherries, new leather, bouquet garni and scorched earth. Medium to full-bodied, with beautiful purity of fruit and fine tannin, it has good, not great concentration and elevated acidity that comes through on the finish. I’d love more depth here, and despite being an outstanding wine, this is a disappointing example of this cuvee.

JS 92
BASTIANICH VESPA ROSSO 2012

Tasting Notes: A silky and refined red with chocolate, berry and light vanilla aromas and flavors. Full body, firm tannins and a clean finish. This is always a delicious red. A blend of 50% merlot, 30% refosco, 15% cabernet sauvignon, and 5% cabernet franc. Drink or hold.

JS 90
TENUTE DELL'ORNELLAIA LE VOLTE 2014

Tasting Notes: A refined and delicate red with plum and sweet berry. Lemon undertones. Medium to light body, fresh finish. Drink now.