The Tasting Panel magazine

May 2011

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 64 of 132

Publisher’s PICKS WINES Meridith May hams it up with Derek Brown of the Columbia Room and The Passenger in Washington, DC and NYC “Cocktail Guru” Jonathan Pogash. Long Meadow Ranch 2010 Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley ($19) Love the die-cut label, but the liquid is even more fun. Plenty of sunny limes and tart kiwi refreshment, balanced with crisp acidity. 90 Buried Cane 2009 Whiteline Chardonnay, Columbia Valley ($14) An ethereal sip: lean and feminine. A bite of tart here, a savory nutti- ness there, blanketed by a creamy lemon chiffon. Unoaked. 90 In each issue THE TASTING PANEL’s Publisher and Executive Editor, 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. MIDDLETON FAMILY WINES Steele Wines 2008 Writer’s Block Syrah, Lake County ($16) Noticeably more fleshy and velvety than last year’s vintage. Blackberry goes extreme and a bittersweet chocolate bar strides alongside a trio of white, red and black pepper. Long, prominent and juicy. 92 Worthy of a smooch. French-style double bizou. Wildly infatuated. Seriously smitten. Head over heels in love. 64 / the tasting panel / may 201 1 Rancho Arroyo Grande 2008 Syrah, Arroyo Grande Valley ($36) An attention-getting, buxom cool-weather Syrah that knocks on your door with ripe blackberry—almost syrupy—den- sity. White pepper, lavender and cocoa undertones mellow that texture for a refined finish. 93 CONWAY FAMILY WINES Tobin James 2007 James Gang Reserve Refosco, Paso Robles ($38) Inky deep, sumptuous plums ignite a string of fruit explosions, from currants to black cherries. A chocolate-powered palate. 93 Silver Oak Cellars 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley ($100) With an entrance of smooth tannins (from Napa!?!) and exquisite ripeness, the cur- tain opens mid-palate for a performance of chocolate cherries. A troupe of high level players: tones of mocha coffee and blackened grilled beef see you through to the long bow at the finish. 93 Fra Guerau 2006 Montsant, Spain ($16) A most mouth-filling, generously endowed red blend of seven estate varieties. Dark cherries begin to mingle with espresso and cedar. The spice is subtle but still alluring as a background player. Plush complexity and an amazing value. 92 FREIXENET USA Exopto Cellars 2008 Horizonte Rioja, Spain ($37) The combo of black fruit and mineral rich soil-and- sunshine makes for an exhilarating Spanish red. Garnacha adds bright lights to the middle of this dark attention-getter. 94 OLÉ IMPORTS Bodega Vizcarra Ramos 2010 Ribera del Duero “Senda del Oro,” Spain ($18) This 100% Tempranillo shows its youthfulness with searing acidity, but its fruity ripeness displays an adolescent charm, juicy to the core of rich currant and blackberry. Cinnamon and raisins add character. 90 OLÉ IMPORTS PHOTO: TOM CLARK

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - May 2011