Casanova di Neri – Brunello di Montalcino 2012
Casanova di Neri’s Brunello di Montalcino 2010 is a beautiful wine, from one of the all-time great Brunello vintages. Refined and elegant with gorgeous aromas of ripe cherries, blackberry, smoke, leather and fresh floral notes. Focused and tightly wound with wonderful fine-grained tannins and a long lingering finish. This is younger brother of the 2010 Casanova di Neri Brunello di Montalcino ‘Tenuta Nuova’, which scored 100 points in Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.
96 Points James Suckling
“Gorgeous aromas of sea salt, savory, smoked meats and dried fruits follow through to a full body, with fine tannins and a long and intense finish. So beautiful and enticing. Goes on for minutes. Excellent quality for the standard bottling of this winery. Better in 2016.”
96 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.
“The outstanding 2010 Brunello di Montalcino gives you everything you want to see in a great wine, a great Tuscan wine. This monumental expression of Sangiovese delivers top-notch intensity with seamless integration of aromas. They span from dark fruit and Morello cherry to chocolate, spice, licorice, balsam herb and rosemary sprig. The energy and vitality of the vintage is locked perfectly within. This Brunello exhibits especially soft, silky tannins with long persistence and momentum. There is nothing out of place and the price tag is certainly not exaggerated for this level of excellence.”
Casanova di Neri
The Casanova di Neri Estate was founded by Giovanni Neri in 1971 and is now run by his son Giacomo. Giacomo has spent several years acquiring the best possible vineyards within the Brunello di Montalcino DOCG area. Most recently, he has re-developed the winemaking facilities at Casanova di Neri and has just completed an impressive underground winery and cellar. Giacomoâ??s passion and expertise, together with 55 hectares of vineyards, represent the ideal combination for producing wines with exceptional personality, uniqueness, and recognisable characteristics. The Casanova di Neri vineyards, set on the slopes of Montalcino, are influenced by radical differences in soil, microclimate and surrounding vegetation, whilst maintaining a maximum separation of just one kilometre. Although primarily an advocate of Brunello (a Sangiovese clone), Giacomo has recently experimented with international grape varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon for his Pietradonice DOC. The winery is now recognised as one of the finest producers in Italy. It has been awarded the Tre Bicchieri at the Gambero Rosso and received international recognition in the wine industry’s most important publications.
Côte-Rôtie “Brune et Blonde de Guigal” 2012
94 points James Suckling
– Bottled as a single blend in 2012, this has a fine, peppery edge to the nose with elegant dark-chocolate aromas ahead of brambly dark plums and black-cherry fruits. There’s a wealth of richness and power here, and it’s so layered and dense. A wine that shows a smooth build of fine and even tannin. The gentle pepperiness cracks into the finish, where there’s another warm dark chocolate afterglow. This spent 36 months in oak, of which 50% was new. Best from 2018 and for at least a decade afterwards. (11/2016)
91-93 points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
– Scheduled to be bottled in two weeks, the 2012 Cote Rotie Brune et Blonde has a complex, pure, medium to full-bodied feel in its cassis, black raspberry, olive and spice-laced bouquet. Possessing sweet tannin, plenty of fruit and a great finish, it has plenty of similarities to the 2011 and is joy to drink. (JD) (12/2015)
93 points Vinous
– Saturated ruby. A highly perfumed bouquet evokes black and blue fruit liqueur, incense and fresh flowers, and notes of smoky minerals, vanilla and licorice adds complexity. Coats the palate with sweet cherry-vanilla and blueberry flavors given lift and cut by zesty acidity and a hint of cracked pepper. Finishes on a gently tannic note, showing excellent lift and floral-driven tenacity. (JR) (3/2016)
92 points Wine Spectator
– This offers a distinctive set of alder and olive aromas before giving way to a slightly taut core of bitter cherry, plum and red currant fruit. Lovely bay and leather accents hang on the background, leading to a long, grippy finish that exudes a slightly perfumy sandalwood note. (JM) (4/2016)
Dezzani – Barolo “San Carlo”, 2012
From one of the great recent Barolo vintages, the taste is dry, full, austere, and velvety. The scents are of a violet, rose and spices. It has a garnet red colour.
Grapes: Nebbiolo – clones: Michet, Lampia and Rosé
Area: Langhe, Piedmont.
The manual harvest in early October is followed by vinification: forty-days of maceration at controlled temperature and the subsequent malolactic fermentation. The process is completed by a twenty-four months ageing in big oak barrels and a further twenty four months in bottle.
The colour is typically red garnet.
The aromas are complex and elegant, ranging from ripe red fruit and spices, until toasty and ‘tar’.
The flavour is gently tannic, austere, full and velvety.
This great bottle is ideal with important first courses, roasts, game and hard cheeses, but can also be a great sipping wine after dinner.
Serve at 20-22 °C.
Wine with a long ageing potential.
Finca La Emperatriz – Reserva, Rioja DOC, Spain 2012
A ruby red wine, very brilliant, with medium to high colour intensity and slightly tinted legs. Very intense on the nose, with initially complex, mineral aromas originating from the soil. This is followed by notes reminiscent of cigar boxes and sweet dairy products, with a hint of black fruits and orange peel; very elegant. Very intense in the mouth; a spirited wine with good acidity and medium strength on the palate. A friendly, enveloping sensation in the mouth, with a fruity and mildly spiced finish. Enjoy with Stews and casseroles.
Bodegas la Emperatriz
Bodegas la Emperatriz is great find. A picturesque estate in the heart of Rioja Alta which has been winning awards since the Paris Universal Exposition of 1878, when it was owned by the last empress of France, Eugenia de Montijo. Now owned by the Hernaiz family since 1996, the estate boasts 67 years old vine Garnacha and Viura, and produces Rioja’s only single estate Crianza. Their wines have proved a huge hit with wine critics across the globe and are widely listed in Madrid’s Michelin starred restaurants.
Madiran AC Cuvée Charles de Batz Domaine Berthoumieu 2012
A nose of plums, blackberries, spice and hints of vanilla and toasty oak. The palate has plenty of fresh redcurrant and plums with a silky mouth feel, food friendly tannins and hints of dark chocolate on the finish.
Quinta da Alorna – Marquesa de Alorna, Grande Reserva Tinto, Tejo, Portugal 2012
‘Dried cranberries and pomegranate are fruity yet demure on the nose. Bold flavors mimic the fruity aromas on the palate, juicy and tart. A well integrated vanilla and toasty coconut flavor perfumes the finish, with a slightly leathery kick.’ – 92pts. Excellent, Highly Recommended, Ultimate Wine Challenge 2017.
Aromas of blackberry and raspberry fruit with a touch of fragrant wild flowers, vanilla and spice from its ageing in French oak. The palate reflects the nose with a silky texture, a richness of flavour and good freshness.
Serve at 16-18ºC. Serve with roasted meats such as game or beef.
Crushing and total destalking of the grapes. Pre-fermentative maceration at controlled temperature of 15 ºC; Fermentation in stainless steel tanks at 23ºC and maceration for 2 weeks. Before being bottled, the wine ages in new French oak barrels for 12 months.
Raventós i Blanc – L’Hereu Brut, 2012
The search for clarity and purity has produced this sparkling wine with a gentle citric aroma highlighted by hints of white fruits, with all the olfactory elements in perfect balance. The palate is built on both freshness and concentration: a wine that combines firmness and smoothness with creamy bubbles. A long and very clean finish.
Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.
“When Raventós i Blanc, a scion from Codorníu, left the boat in 2012, alarms really went off. They are not only one of the quality leaders in the category, they are also direct descendants of the creator of the first sparkling wine in Spain and the first president of the Cava appellation. They did not seek refuge in the Penedès appellation, but instead they want to promote the creation of a new, smaller appellation, Conca del Riu Anoia.”