New Perspective Wines – December 2016

Ribbonwood Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2015, Marlborough, New Zealand, $8.99, PLCB Code# 78379

“The 2015 Ribbonwood Sauvignon Blanc is scented of ripe lemons, asparagus and grass with touches of crushed stones and sweat. Medium-bodied, it offers mouth-filling citrus and grass-laced flavors and a good Long finish.”  87 Points Wine Spectator 11/15

Light straw color, grassy citrus nose, light, fresh grapefruit and citrus flavors very even through to a clean finish.  To me this wine confirms my theory of NZ Sauv Blanc terrior that the Marlborough region has a trademark flavor profile even at the most affordable pricepoints. Great Value!  88 Points Jack Brice

Bleasdale Langhorne Crossing White Blend 2015, Langhorne Creek, South Australia, $8.99, PLCB Code# 78284

“Bright, breezy … would do the job [as a wine to drink outdoors] – it’s a “super everyday fridge door wine”, as they describe it in winesocietyspeak. – Fiona Beckett “The Guardian 5/16

“Pale straw. Pungent citrus pith, quinine and fresh herbs on the nose. Dry and racy in style, displaying good lift and firm bite to its bitter lime zest and quince flavors. Closes taut and spicy, with good cut and lingering bitterness.” *88 points Vinous, 3/16

The first Verdelho vines were planted when Bleasdale Vineyard was founded in 1850 – so it stands to reason their white blend featuring Verdelho would nearly jump out of the glass with an immediate attack of tropical, then stone fruits and juicy acidity.  A mineral tinge accompanies the almost effervescent, tingly finish.  This wine is a fantastic value at the price and will please anyone seeking a non-Chardonnay white to surprise dinner guests.  (80% Verdelho, 15% Sauvignon Blanc, 5% Chardonnay)  89 Points Jack Brice

Tolpuddle Vineyard Chardonnay Tasmania 2013, Tasmania, Australia, $56.99, (limited availability), PLCB Code# 72752

This label is certain to grace some of the greatest Australian pinots and chardonnays in the years ahead, the vineyard (planted in ’88) a Tasmanian jewel. The most remarkable part of this wine is its combination of finesse, length and intensity of varietal fruit flavour, in turn based on the laser etching of Tasmanian acidity. Drink By: 2025. Special Value.  97 points James Halliday 7/15

Wonderful aromas of apple pie, straw and mineral. Hints of dried apple, too. Full body, bright acidity and an oyster-shell, apple and mineral aftertaste. So layered and intense but delicate and beautiful.  March 2015  95 Points James Suckling 3/15
Aromatic, linear and very pure with nice citrus fruit. Bright and very direct with a lovely acidic core. Linear and refined, showing real finesse. 94/100  1200 cases total production  94 Points wineanorak 5/15
Tasmania, my mother’s home state and my childhood home, is an island containing some of the world’s most picturesque, free of pollution, naturally rich ecosystems.   In recent years the clean climate, some suggest it is the cleanest on earth, has supported development of a vibrant food and wine culture – and the world is quickly taking notice… check out more about Tasmania here:

Medium rich color, savory oak on the nose, powerfully focused with intense green and baked apple flavors supported by impressive length – spicy finish persists a full minute or more.   Deeply concentrated flavors impress by providing depth without becoming too heavy – one could cellar it another year or two.  The density of finessed flavors reminds me of a White Burgundy Corton-Charlemagne style wine instead of an all too common style of fruity/buttery/flabby mass-market, new-world Chardonnay.  Pricey but rewarding!  95 Points Jack Brice


 Champagne Moutard Pere et Fils Grande Cuvee Brut NV, Champagne, France  $25.99  PLCB Code# 48025  

“Tropical hints of papaya and passion fruit pâte de fruit are enlivened by bright and tangy acidity, layered on the lively bead with flavors of Gala apple, blanched almond and fresh ginger. Well-knit and vibrant, with a sleek, minerally finish. Disgorged January 2015. Drink now through 2018.”   91 Points Wine Spectator 12/15

Moutard’s Champagne making house is located in the Cote de Bar region, which is the most southeast wine producing region in Champagne – with rolling hills and good soil for such pursuits.  This Champagne shows trademark tiny bubbles, yeasty nose, smooth mousse with apple, pear and bread flavors followed by crisp clean finish.   A real Champagne for the cost of domestic bubbly – worth a try!   91 Points Jack Brice


Champagne Moutard Pere et Fils Rose de Cuvaison Brut Non Vintage  Champagne, France, $27.99, PLCB Code# 48007

“A tangy version, showing steeped peach and raspberry fruit, with almond and preserved lemon flavors. Floral and spice accents ride the creamy bead and linger on the chalky finish. Disgorged January 2015. Drink now through 2018.” 90 Points Wine Spectator 11/15

Darker than many Rose Champagnes, rich with cherry and raspberry flavors.   Mouth feel is full and creamy without heaviness, finishes clean with lingering cherry notes. 89 Points Jack Brice


Falesco Tellus Merlot Umbria 2013, Umbria, Italy  $9.99  PLCB code: 78263

“Grippy tannins are layered with flavors of grilled herb, spice box, mineral and dried currant and strawberry fruit in this medium-bodied red. The tannins hold sway on the finish. Best after 2017.”  87 points Wine Spectator Online, 2016

“The 2013 Merlot Tellus was initially closed during my tasting and opened slowly to reveal red fruit, spice and grilled herb. Fruit is sourced from different soil types and at different harvest times to allow for more variability in winemaking. This is a new product in the Falesco line. The Merlot is smooth and silky on the finish.”  88 points Wine Advocate, 3/16

If any country could take a grape known in the USA for big-boned, huge-fruited heavy red wines, and create a trademark light- to medium-bodied food wine, it would absolutely be Italy.  In the case of the Falesco Tellus Merlot from Umbria, Italy delivered!   This wine is not especially light, but it is compared to the American versions, which makes it quite useful as a burger/pizza/pasta weeknight-easy to drink wine.   There are typical Merlot flavors of dark fruits and even a little blueberry, but on a lighter frame than many of us are accustomed.   Ready to drink now, it is a nice wine at a nice price!  87 Points Jack Brice


Trivento Malbec Reserve 2015, Mendoza, Argentina $11.99  PLCB Code# 4369

“Gorgeous nose exhibiting an array of aromas such as peppery mulberry, sour and black cherry, violet and a subtle touch of wild strawberry jam. The palate is full, complex, with a fantastic energy and bursting with ripe dark plums; tannins are impressively silky and freshness is amazing. An exceptional nectar from the Agrelo terroir.”  95 Points Decanter Magazine 6/16, Decanter Platinum Medal for Best Argentinean Malbec under £15

Purple and opaque in the glass, with a floral/violet nose, full bodied and smooth on the palate, lots of grip with archetypal rich, dark, inky black fruit and plum flavors.  Surprising depth – finishes with nicely integrated fresh acidity.  All components in equal amounts create great value for Malbec lovers. 91 Points Jack Brice


Antonin Rodet Chateau de Mercey Rouge Hautes Cotes de Beaune 2014, Burgundy, France  $14.99  PLCB Code# 78305

“Color: Bright red. Nose: Explosive, with aromas of slightly toasted red fruits. Palate: A lot of fruit in the mouth. Rich structure with ripe tannins.”  *Winemaker’s notes

“A pure expression of Burgundian Pinot Noir. Elegant and plush with plum and Bing cherry notes combined with raspberry and hints of earth. Nicely balanced mouthfeel and finish.”  —Steve Pollack, Chairman’s Selection program

Red Burgundy is the holy grail for many wine lovers.  The world’s most expensive wines are Red Burgundies.   For the rest of us, we can enjoy a nicely made non-Grand Cru-fancy-pants Pinot with cheese or a meal and feel satisfied that we didn’t need to sell a Porsche to pay for it!   This is one of those wines – light red color, perfumed fresh red fruits in the nose, light but silky mouth feel with red fruits and undercurrent cherry, slight mineral tartness at the finish.  A lovely, light red for when you don’t what to be kicked in the head – Red Burgundy for thrifty pinot purchasers.   90 Points Jack Brice


Canonica A Cerreto Chianti Classico Riserva 2011  $19.99  Chianti, Tuscany, Italy  Chairman’s Selection  PLCB Code# 78439

“There’s plenty of sweet fruit to this red, but also a sinewy structure, with bright acidity and dense tannins. Shows persistent leather, tobacco, spice and dried berry flavors, with a mineral element emerging on the long finish. Drink now through 2023. 3,500 cases made.”  94 Points, Wine Spectator

Dark brick red with dried fruits on the nose. A lush mouth feel incorporates smooth, generous black fruit, tobacco and leather flavors with an undercurrent of dried fruits supporting a savory-tinged, but still smooth finish.  I would consume next 2-5 years.  Tuscany’s 2011 vintage provided many lush-fruited early drinking reds – and this is a fine example!  92 Points Jack Brice


Produttori del Barbaresco 2012, Piedmont, Italy  $29.99 PLCB Code# 44444 

“A graceful and detailed red, marked by ripe cherry, strawberry, floral and tar flavors, with the fruit intensity persisting on the finish, showing excellent length. This is well-integrated and just needs time for the tannins to soften. Best from 2018 through 2030.”  93 Points Wine Spectator  1/16

“A big, powerful wine, the 2012 Barbaresco hits the palate with surprising depth allied to nervous tannins that are going to need time to soften. Tobacco, smoke, licorice, menthol, game and a host of dark, ferrous notes give the wine much of its virile personality. The 2012 is not as finessed as some recent vintages, yet it offers considerable potential for the future. Most importantly, it is a terrific value at a time when well-priced Barbaresco is increasingly hard to find. In 2012, the Produttori did not bottle their Riservas. When that happens, the straight Barbaresco is often an overachiever. That is certainly the case here, as the 2012 offers outstanding quality for the money, with plenty of potential for the future. I can’t think of too many wines that deliver this much pleasure and value.”  92 Points  Vinous / Antonio Galloni  12/15

Big intense flavors on a mid-weight frame – classic Nebbiolo grape flavors of cherry and other red fruits with tar and licorice underneath.   With some decanting, it would easily stand up to the biggest Italian meatballs.  Seamless flavors matched to fine and seriously grippy tannin structure suggests a wine with some time ahead of it.  A serious wine… if you have the time (to cellar or decant).  92 Points Jack Brice

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