The Tasting Panel magazine

November 2018

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november 2018  /  the tasting panel  /  67 Van Ruiten Family Winery 2017 Pinot Grigio, Lodi ($7) Surprise! This wine is in a can—and we liked it. This contains the same juice (from the Acamp Ranch Vineyard) as the glass bottling. Fermented in 100% stainless steel with an ABV of 13.5%, this 375-milliliter cutie is fresh and fruity, as advertised on the label. Aromas of mango and melon entice as pineapple and sweet kiwi get kissed by minerality. 88 Cashmere Black Magic 2016 Red Blend, California ($14) Aromas of mountain brush, black pepper, and blackberry compote arouse the senses. On the palate, the flavors turn floral with garrigue and blackstrap molasses weaving in and out of savory notes: olive, soy sauce, and plenty of dense, ripe, black fruit. The blend, which includes Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, Mourvèdre, Carignan, and Alicante Bouschet, personifies temptation with its rich texture, balanced acid, and defined structure. 90 CLINE CELLARS Farmhouse 2017 Red, California ($11) The Farmhouse Red is Zinfandel- dominant with Syrah, Mourvèdre, and Carignane blended in. The result is approachable and terrifically food-friendly: just the thing for washing down mid-sum- mer barbeque. Sweet and savory aromas of rhubarb and sweet tobacco mingle with red berries perfumed with crushed pepper. Fine acidity lifts vanilla notes from toasty cedar as spiced cranberries tickle the tongue. 89 CLINE CELLARS Klinker Brick Winery 2015 Old Ghost Old Vine Zinfandel, Lodi ($37) This is a mouth-filling, plush, and dense wine with aromas of fresh earth, tomato leaf, and dark plum. White pepper tingles on the palate, aligning with firm tannins, licorice, and bramble berry. It's a force of nature. 93 Peter Yealands Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand ($15) This light straw–colored beauty features a classic petrol-to- grapefruit nose with a hint of baby's-breath flowers and a kiss of wet stone. Grapefruit peel gives a pleasant texture to the mouthfeel while dill, tarragon, and chamomile add zest, zing, and tonality. 92 TAUB FAMILY SELECTIONS Terlato 2017 Friulano, Friuli Colli Orientali DOC, Italy ($29) Nectarine and almonds buoy the aromatics of this delight- ful white, grown entirely on estate vineyards from hillsides more than 1,000 feet in elevation. Apricot and pear generate a nectar-like sensation, but salinity cuts through to establish a more precise palate that leans into the fruit. The Terlatos are committed to producing world-class wines from this region. 92 TERLATO WINES INTERNATIONAL Peter Yealands Pinot Noir, Marlborough, New Zealand ($19) Unique aromas of chocolate cherries arise with a thread of graphite built in. Precise acidity points to savory and juicy notes of cranberry and coffee before spiced plum takes over on the pleasant finish, lingering with a long note of sweet tobacco. 92 TAUB FAMILY SELECTION S Ryan Patrick 2015 Elephant Mountain Vineyard Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Rattlesnake Hills, Columbia Valley, Washington ($45) Bittersweet dark chocolate and graphite combine with aromas of black currant and sage. This red has big, austere edges with dry, chewy tannins: Espresso bean and cocoa powder seem to linger on the tongue before merging with decadent blackberry. Aged in 50% new French oak for 20 months, the wine has an ABV of 15.5%. 92 Château de Pizay 2017 Morgon, Beaujolais, France ($16) This sensational Gamay, from one of the oldest and most famous estates in the Beaujolais region, sourced its fruit from 45-year-old vines. Fresh and inviting cherry-vanilla aromas accompany dry tannins marked by sweet tobacco, raspberry liqueur, and ripe peach. With its well-framed and focused texture, this wine way overdelivers. 93 DAVID MILLIGAN SELECTIONS

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