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Quinta do Noval: Latest Releases

featured, Portugal

Neal Martin, Jun 2024

This brief article updates readers on new releases from Quinta do Noval and Romaneira, including the latest Naçional, plus a smattering of older vintages back to a 62-year-old Crusted Port.

Pomerol 1961 bottles

Desert Island Dinner: 1961 Pomerol in Excelsis

featured, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Jun 2024

All wine lovers have their fantasy tasting. I’m lucky that several of mine came true. But I never thought that one day I’d taste the trinity of 1961 Pomerols side-by-side: Petrus, Lafleur and Latour à Pomerol. This is the story of an extraordinary evening where a dream came true…almost.

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Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2022: Bring It On

featured, France: Rhône & Beaujolais

Nicolas Greinacher, Jun 2024

After getting a good glimpse at the 2022 vintage while visiting other Rhône appellations last year, I was eager to see how Châteauneuf-du-Pape performed in a growing season marked by heat, drought and hail. The short answer is that 2022 is a very good vintage in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, clearly surpassing 2021 for the reds, though likely not at the same level as 2020. Overall consistency for reds in 2022 is higher than in 2021, and there are plenty of excellent wines cruising in an affordable price range.

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It’s All in the Name: Domaine Pierre Vincent

France: Burgundy, featured, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Jun 2024

Pierre Vincent is one of the most talented winemakers working in Burgundy. After producing a raft of great wines at Domaine de la Vougeraie and then Domaine Leflaive, Vincent is about to embark upon a new chapter in his career, the 2023s representing the maiden vintage of wines under his own name.

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Aerika Estate: The Prologue

featured, United States: California

Antonio Galloni, Jun 2024

Over the years, I have been fortunate to see many projects get off the ground in Napa Valley. Founded by Rob Black and Julia van der Vink, Aerika Estate is one of the most exciting and promising new ventures I have seen in Napa Valley in some time.

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A Century of…Fours

France: Burgundy, featured, South Africa, France: Bordeaux

Neal Martin, Jun 2024

Century of Fours examines vintages ending in four and adds historical context via a parallel timeline of the FA Cup Finals from 1904 to 2014. It is two journeys through time for the price of one.

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The Bewildering 2024 Season in Argentina

featured, Argentina

Joaquín Hidalgo, Jun 2024

The 2024 vintage, despite being one of the warmer ones, presents wines with distinct fruit flavors, vibrant colors and juicy freshness in its reds. While the exact reasons remain unclear, both barrel samples and winemaker reports suggest this trend. This report explores hypotheses to understand the uniqueness of the 2024 vintage.

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Ironing Out The Kinks: Jim Barry The Armagh 1985-2021

featured, Australia, Verticals & Retrospectives

Angus Hughson, Jun 2024

The tale of Jim Barry’s Armagh Shiraz has mirrored the national wine story over the last forty years. Terroirs with the highest aspirations from the outset have taken time to hit their straps, with occasional missteps along the way. Thanks to greater precision in the vineyard and winery, the last ten years have seen this Clare Valley Shiraz slip into a neat groove with a unique mix of sheer power and finesse. This was showcased in this complete vertical tasting stretching back to the inaugural 1985 vintage.

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2021 and 2022 Set the Tone for the Classic Reds of Mendoza

featured, Argentina

Joaquín Hidalgo, May 2024

The northern oasis of Mendoza is a large and diverse area that covers almost one-third of Argentina's wine production. However, in the foothills, known as the Primera Zona, the cool 2021 and 2022 vintages allowed for delicate balance and complexity in the wines. This report is a journey through the region and its styles, with some bottles brimming with the magic that made Malbec famous.

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Chile: El Niño Brought a Slow-Motion Season with a Long Harvest Window

featured, Chile

Joaquín Hidalgo, May 2024

Two thousand twenty-four was characterized by the El Niño phenomenon, resulting in a cool spring and a summer with erratic veraison. By March, when the harvest window opened, the grapes had barely developed any sugars. Biding your time and choosing the perfect moment were the key factors in a year with less structure and more delicate fruit flavors.