95 Points! Made of 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon One Point Five Stags Leap is very deep purple-black in color and gives up intense Black Forest cake, black berry pie and blackcurrant cordial scents with hints of licorice, eucalyptus, espresso, tar and chargrilled beef. Full-bodied, it packs the black fruit preserves flavors and earthy accents into the palate, with a firm frame and great freshness on the finish. - Lisa Perrotti-Brown, robertparker.com
The effusive nose shows notes of violets, wild herbs, fresh leaf tobacco and a little note of pepper as accents to the central theme of mulberry and red currant fruit. In the mouth, the plump, supple, gentle, but expansive fruit comes to the fore and takes charge, with gentle tannins and subdued acidity. No ’green’ flavors anywhere.
98 Points! One of the gems in Margaux is unquestionably the 2015 Palmer. Possessing more elegance and purity, as well as concentration, than the Alter Ego, it offers up a gorgeous bouquet of crème de cassis, caramelized cherries, charcoal, and graphite, with just a hint of spring flowers in the background. A final blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 44% Merlot and 6% Petit Verdot that was brought up in 70% new oak, this full-bodied, ripe, incredibly polished 2015 is already hard to resist given its elegance and purity, yet should be at its best from 2023-2043. If you have more than one bottle, it's sensational today as well. - Jeb Dunnuck
100 Points! I am breathless with the dark-berry, lavender and burnt-orange aromas. Some salt. Just so formidable and deep. Stunningly sexy on the palate with a density and power, yet it leaves things so clean and bright. You want to drink it and enjoy it now, but it has the structure to last forever. Drink in 2022. - James Suckling, 2/2/18
Named for the 300-year-old Southern Burgundy village in which it is located, Monthelie Douhairet was run by the Douhairet family for many years. In 1989, Madame Douhairet asked renowned winemaker André Porcheret to take charge and added his name to the domaine. One of the great figures in Burgundy during the past half-century, André was the cellar manager at the Hospices de Beaune from 1976–1988, before he was hired by Lalou Bize Leroy to make wines at the newly created Domaine Leroy from 1988–1993. He returned to the Hospices de Beaune from 1994–1999, and since 1989, he has also been overseeing Monthelie Douhairet Porcheret’s 15 acres, mainly in the Côte de Beaune appellations of Pommard, Volnay, Meursault and Monthelie.
96+ Points! Opening to a beautifully floral bouquet, the 2015 Barolo Lazzarito delivers fragrant tones of violets, wild rose and a touch of orange blossom. As is the norm at Vietti, I tasted this wine and then wrote this review based on impressions gained from two samples—one opened several hours before my tasting and one opened at the moment of my review. Those floral notes came forth with increased intensity and clarity in the bottle that had been opened longer. The bouquet continues to surprise with touches of black fruit and freshly milled white pepper. However, like many wines from Serralunga d’Alba, this expression from Lazzarito reveals a pretty inner paradox. Those ethereal and balsamic aromas cede to a dense and rich mouthfeel, characterized by structure and power. Those two sides of the wine reach beautiful parity and lasting harmony. - Monica Larner, robertparker.com
This is our first go-round with Hauts Baigneaux so we aren’t sure how much the 2015 vintage had to do with these fresh, pristine wines. As such, we aren’t ready to declare these guys the second coming of Huet or Chidaine, but the wines impressed the heck out of us.
The Hauts Baigneux Touraine Azay-le-Rideau Blanc Chenin 2015 comes from two vineyards, one in Hauts Baigneaux and one in Sache, with vines 30 to 60 years of age. The grapes were harvested by hand and fermented in demi-muids (600-liter barrels roughly 2.5 times the size of a ‘regular’ barrel, probably ‘neutral’ in this case). The wine then spent 18 months in contact with the lies in a combination of demi-muids, concrete ‘eggs’ and regular barriques.
This shows classic Chenin flavors of peach, apricot and quince, hints of honey and vanilla, with a good bit of subtle but insistent minerality underlying everything. There is a pleasing, slight waxiness to the texture approximating physical fruit, and a precise, restrained clean nip of acidity. The style here we would describe as demi-demi-sec, which hits the perfect note. Some bone dry Chenins can be bitter in the finish, and some demi-secs can be a touch sweet. This one strikes just the right chord and the acid gives it just the right tension. This will age as well, too, only 300 cases made.
94 Points! In 2013, the father and daughter winemaking team of Bruno and Bruna Giacosa decided not to produce their Barbaresco Asili. They made a Rabajà expression instead. Asili was vinified separately again in 2014 and more recently to create the impressive 2015 Barbaresco Asili. This wine was bottled one year ago in July and has been on the market since February. This expression offers accessible and generous fruit tones, with blackcurrant and dark plum. The wine delivers big inner power with evident tannic firmness and a point of astringency on the finish. All it needs is more time in the bottle. - Monica Larner, Wine Advocate
100 Points! The 2015 Canon was a benchmark wine that seemed to revitalize this historic estate. I was crossing my fingers that it would not disappoint in bottle and I am glad to say that it delivers the goods. It has a very intense bouquet (just as it showed out of barrel) with laser-like precision offering wild strawberry, raspberry preserve, wet limestone and hints of truffle. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, clean and fresh with pure black and red fruit whose every atom appears infused with minerals. The mouth is tingling long after the wine has exited and your brain is thinking...when is the next sip coming? It is frankly heads and shoulders above almost every Saint Émilion this vintage, to reaffirm, a benchmark for this historic estate that will give pleasure to many over the coming years. Astonishing. - Neal Martin
90 Points! The 2015 Riesling Federspiel Ried Klaus offers a precise bouquet of white fruits intertwined with herbal and flinty stone aromas. Round and intense on the palate, with beautiful concentration and a persistent, lovely salty finish, this is a highly elegant and complex, tightly structured Riesling from one of the most spectacular single-vineyard sites of the Wachau. The finish is full of tension, purity, salt and finally pretty long as well. - Stephan Reinhardt, Wine Advocate #225
92 Points! Bright straw-yellow. The very floral nose also hints at liquid minerals, minty herbs and marzipan. Then lemony fresh, featuring a peppery, zingy acidity that nicely frames the flavors of ripe orchard fruit, fennel and licorice. Clearly, this is more penetrating and has stronger, more intense flavors than the Riesling Réserve. Not made every year but only in exceptional ones, for “… the key when making this wine is not to impoverish our Riesling Réserve by diverting grapes to yet another wine. In 2015, we could do that without worries,” said the Trimbachs almost in unison. Very classy wine from grapes grown mainly on the marly calcaire soils of the Hagueneau; this will last, but is deceptively easy to drink now. - Ian D'Agata, Vinous Media
This Chianti was a staple at the Orange store for years, though this is the first time this ‘regular’ bottling of the Fattoria Basciano Chianti Rufina 2015 has appeared here. We hadn’t seen the wine in a while. The fact that this came from the juicy 2015 vintage made a perfect platform for Basciano's stylistic bent. Key words that seem to come up consistently when we talk about Basciano is ‘lip smacking’ and 'juicy'. Father Renzo and son Paolo Masi run something of a negociant enterprise with the idea of consistently creating enviable quality at attractive prices. This they do quite well.
The 2015 has the bright, slippery, ripe black and blue fruit core that should appeal to anyone. The wine is packed with tender fruit, has plenty of energy, and is far too easy to haul off and drink for something from Rufina. At this point we don’t see a lot of the minerally terroir that appears in a supporting role in most efforts from this part of Chianti. But this wine is the proverbial, succulent ‘fastball down the middle’.
Wine Spectator’s deors work efficiently here, “Pure aromas and flavors of cherry, blackberry and floral gain depth from earth and leafy tobacco accents. Firms up on the finish, with a pleasant astringency.” One doesn’t write paragraphs on this one. The Basciano simply wants to be liked and it succeeds admirably on that score. Don’t let the $12 price scare you either. This delivers plenty of character and value as well.
90 Points! Brilliant ruby-red. Intense red berry, floral and peppery spice aromas are complemented by a suggestion of succulent herbs. Appealingly sweet and juicy on the palate, offering lively raspberry and boysenberry flavors and a touch of licorice. Silky tannins give shape to the nervy finish, which lingers with very good persistence and gentle sweetness. - Josh Raynolds, Vinous Media
92 Points! Montelena's 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon is gorgeous. Pliant and supple, the 2015 offers notable density and raciness in an up-front style that will drink well upon release. Succulent red/purplish fruit, spice, new leather and licorice are front and center. A wine of total allure, the 2015 hits all the right spots. Best of all, at $62 a bottle it is one of the best values readers will find in Napa Valley Cabernet. Don't miss it. - Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media
98 Points! Reminding me of the 1990, the 2015 Château Pichon Baron is a sensational bottle of wine made from 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Merlot that spent 18 months in 80% new French oak. Boasting a deep purple color as well as awesome notes of black raspberries, toasted spices, cassis, lead pencil shavings, tobacco leaf and building minerality, this full-bodied, concentrated 2015 has sweet tannin, a great texture, and a big, big finish. Pauillac all the way, with both opulence and finesse, forget bottles of 4-5 years and enjoy anytime over the following two to three decades. This is a match for the 2009, 2000, and 1990. - Jeb Dunnuck
This one is love at first sniff for any true fan of Zinfandel. It will also win a lot of converts to the varietal among those who don’t think of Zinfandel as ‘serious’ wine. One good whiff of the spicy, brambly, old-vine berry aromas transports us back to some of Zinfanel’s greatest hits from the breakout efforts of the early 1990s. DeRose has 15 acres of Zinfandel vines originally planted on their own roots in the late 1890s. Dry farmed on steep hillsides in Cienega Valley, the head-trained vines produce highly pigmented grapes inscribed with a spicy mountain terroir. This kind of profile is very hard to create. You either have the special old vines and the understanding of what to do with them, or you don’t. Captivating aromatics and tender, ripe, plush but still buoyant fruit on the palate are on stunning display here. This is the essence of what ‘old vines’ are all about. In all of the wines we taste we’re lucky to run into two or three a year like this one. A rich-yet-balanced expression of Zin-ness, with flecks of the area’s spice and faintly chalky mineral terroir, this wine has incomparable harmony and surprising complexity. Everyone should taste this just to see what Zinfandel at the top of its game can be, and Zinfandel fans simply should not miss it, period!The wine is powerful, rich but on point. It is neither jammy nor alcohlic, though it has a ton of chewy dark fruit and a healthy knock of octane. Nope, the balanced found in the fruit from these 100+ year-old vines allows this wine to push the envelope but come across as balanced. A fantastic, heritage wine.
99 Points! Terrific aromas of violets, roses and raspberries with hints of strawberries and brown sugar. Full body. Phenomenal layers of focused fruit and polished velvety tannins. This is the Galatrona that everyone has been waiting for. It's the vintage that shows depth and power yet wonderful finesse and focus. Best ever. Drink from 2023 but already electrifying. - JamesSuckling.com
95 Points! Notes of blackcurrants, plums, chocolate, and lead pencil emerge from the ripe, sexy styled 2015 Château Grand Mayne. This full-bodied, opulent, beautifully concentrated 2015 hits the palate with loads of fruit and texture, yet stays balanced, has terrific purity of fruit, and ripe tannin. I was only able to taste this one time, but wow, what a wine. It should be at its best from 2020-2035. - Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com