The Tasting Panel magazine

November 2018

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66  /  the tasting panel  /  november 2018 WINES Ménage à Trois 2017 Luscious Pinot Noir, California ($14) An unexpected combination of varieties—76% Pinot Noir, 13% Petite Sirah, 6% Syrah, and 5% Zinfandel—brings out a lusciousness in both texture and aromatics. The flavors are rich and expressive: chocolate- infused coffee emphasizes ripened wild cherry and black raspberry. Mouthwatering acidity and a perpetual juiciness make this wine delightfully food-friendly. 91 TRINCHERO FAMILY ESTATES MacLaren 2017 Lee's Sauvignon Blanc, Roger's Vineyard, Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County ($30) Dried herbs and slate introduce a minerally and savory quality to this unique white with a low ABV of 12.5%. The citrus-floral qualities also come alive with a grapefruit- peel edge. It's crisp with precise acidity and a clean finish. 92 MacLaren 2014 Heather Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley ($45) A aromatic mélange of dried herbs and lavender interlaces with lovely red fruit: Rhubarb and cherry are exquisitely positioned with white pepper and forest floor. Aged 14 months in 100% neutral oak, it's a feminine wine with loads of expression. 93 Doña Paula 2017 Smoked Red Blend, Luján de Cuyo, Mendoza, Argentina ($19) From a vineyard site more than 3,000 feet above sea level, this decisively generous red features a core of concentrated fruit. Aromas of dense black fruit, coffee, and vanilla bean and the meaty texture and flavor profile are balanced by a fine acidity level and satiny tannins. A blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Malbec, and 10% Bonarda, the wine is stored in used French oak barrels for 12 months. Smoked over an open fire, the barrels impart aromas similar to those in traditional Argentinian barbeque. 93 TRINCHERO FAMILY ESTATES In each issue, The Tasting Panel's Publisher and Editorial Director Meridith May selects her favorite wines and spirits of the month. Check here for the latest arrivals in our offices, the hottest new brands on the market, and an occasional revisited classic. Publisher's Worthy of a smooch. French-style double bizou. Wildly infatuated. Seriously smitten. Head over heels in love. PICKS PHOTO: JEREMY BALL

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