Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 102

IMPORTED NEW RELEASES
Our blind panels tasted 555 imported new-release wines for this issue. Our critics rated 111 as exceptional (90+) and 40 as Best Buys.
Joshua Greene covers Australia and France (Bordeaux, Jura, Savoie); Patricio Tapia covers Chile and Spain.
Find a complete list of wines tasted and all reviews at wineandspiritsmagazine.com.

A UST R A L I A WHIT E
BLENDS
120760

88 | d'Arenberg

$13

2016 McLaren Vale The Stump Jump (Best
Buy) ^ This clean, fresh white is based on riesling and sauvignon blanc, but it's the small
amount of marsanne and roussanne that
lend the blend its luscious texture. As round
as it feels, the structure captures its juicy
weight with smoky, salty firmness. For an
oyster pan roast. § Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA

CHARDONNAY

120810

94 | Yeringberg

$35

2015 Yarra Valley Chardonnay ^ The de Pury
family established their vineyard in 1863 and
replanted it after a nearly 80-year hiatus in
1969. David de Pury now farms the vines; his
sister Sandra makes the wines. This 2015 is a
deep yellow-gold, a tangy chardonnay that
parallels Chablis in its briskness and mineral
tension. It's a wine of salty, creamy refinement, with nutmeat flavors that are fresh
rather than oxidative. For Raveneau drinkers
on a night off. § Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA

120749

93 | Giant Steps

$42

2016 Yarra Valley Chardonnay ^ Steve Flamsteed blends fruit from the Sexton, Tarraford
102

WINE & SPIRITS

OCTOBER 2017

and Applejack vineyards, fermenting it without added yeasts and moving the wine by
gravity. While this wine is not as distinctly
mineral as the Sexton Vineyard Chardonnay (also recommended here), its fruit complexity is fascinating. It's almost red in flavor, hinting at persimmon and the red skin
of a peach, with an herbal note, like lemon
verbena, and a spicy floral scent of jasmine
adding to the wine's vibrant approach. Juicy
and firm, the sense of luscious fruit is what
lasts. Delicious. § Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA
120431

93 | Snake + Herring

$35

2014 Margaret River Corduroy Chardonnay ^ Redmond Sweeney and Tony Davis
started this label to focus on sites that caught
their attention in Western Australia. This one
comes from a vineyard in Karridale; Sweeney allows it to ferment spontaneously, then
ages it in 500-liter French oak barrels (half of
them new). It's notably ripe for a Margaret
River chardonnay, with buttered-peach flavors and coastal, umami depths. The tension
between the soprano and bass notes make
it delicious, especially if there's rock lobster
for dinner. § Great Australian Wine Co., Calistoga, CA
120899

is shallow gravels and loam over rocky clay,
and the vines benefit from all those rocks,
producing fruit that lends this wine its tense
acidity and freshness. The rich lemon flavors,
sweet caramel and smoky notes of toasted
lees are all wrapped up in that freshness, a
ready complement to gingery grilled salmon. §
Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA
120773

91 | Giant Steps

$42

90 | Leeuwin Estate

$36

2015 Yarra Valley Tarraford Vineyard
Chardonnay ^ Creamy, leesy and broad, this
wine is mostly about its supple, luscious texture for now. While there's a touch of youthful sweetness, there's firmness to the fruit
from this cool, south-facing slope, providing a tight structure to sustain its evolution
in bottle. § Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA
120735
2015 Margaret River Prelude Chardonnay ^
Scents of chamomile and coastal freshness
come through this wine's substantial buttery notes. It's balanced in the end, spicy and
lasting, to pour for pasta tossed with English
peas. § Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA

RH ONE VARIETIES
120691

93 | Vasse Felix

$43

2015 Margaret River Chardonnay ^ Vasse
Felix farms chardonnay at three of its four
vineyard sites in Margaret River, including
the Home Vineyard in Wilyabrup, where
Tom Cullity planted the region's first vines
in 1967. This 2015 has the woodsy scent
of acacia blossoms and the cool feel of the
Margaret River's coastal forest. The fruit is
tight until, with air, its lemon severity opens
toward finesse, detailed floral notes and lasting tart citrus flavors. Pour it with grilled abalone or other fresh shellfish. § Negociants USA,
Napa, CA
120864

2008 Nagambie Lakes 1927 Vines Marsanne ^ The Purbrick family at Tahbilk farms
the largest planting of marsanne in the world,
propagated from their original vineyard,
planted in 1927. Those first vines provide the
fruit for this bottling. The color is light, the
aroma floral and exotic, the flavors leesy in
a way that brings Champagne to mind. It's
precise and harmonious, a wine that tastes
like the outback and feels like it could live
forever. § Foley Family Artisan Imports & Spirits, Santa Rosa, CA
120891

92 | Giant Steps

$42

2015 Eden Valley Viognier (Best Buy) ^
A dynamic, peppery viognier, one taster
related this more closely to the Rhône than
the New World. The heady flavors of kumquat and peach are generous while still hav-

2016 Yarra Valley Sexton Vineyard Chardonnay ^ This supple, succulent chardonnay
grows at Phil Sexton's north-facing vineyard
on the slope neighboring Yarra Yering, just
up the road from Coldstream Hills. The soil

92 | Tahbilk

$34

91 | Yalumba

$20


http://www.wineandspiritsmagazine.com http://www.obcwines.com/wineries/yeringberg/ http://www.obcwines.com/wineries/giant-steps/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Wine & Spirits - October 2017

Contents
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover1
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover2
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 1
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 2
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 3
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 4
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Contents
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 6
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 7
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 8
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 9
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Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover3
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover4
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