2019 Saumur Champigny, Les Gravieres du Roy, Loire Valley, France
This exceptional Cabernet Franc is ripe and juicy. It has a fabulous bouquet of summer berries that continue on to the palate. There is also a herbal note in the background, and on the palate it has a delightfully smooth finish. This is a great introduction to the red wines of this part of the Loire Valley, most of which are produced from the Cabernet Franc grape.
2017 Chateau Peychaud, Cotes de Bourg, Bordeaux, France
This is a remarkably serious claret at a very attractive price. It's a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc which has undergone part barrel ageing to add a hint of coffee and cocoa to the ripe autumnal fruit. It's concentrated, has a strong tannic backbone and is best served with quite a hearty plate of food.
There is potential for a little development here with time, but it's great now as a young wine when opened in advance or decanted.
2018 Merlot/Cabernet, Snapper Rock, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand
This is beautifully fruited on the nose showing dark plum, cranberry, toasted hazelnut and game characters with a touch of dark cocoa. The palate is wonderfully weighted and fleshy, delivering excellent fruit intensity and rounded mouthfeel, finishing persistent and silky. The wine offers gorgeous fruit flavours with subtle spicy complexity.
The merlot was grown in the Bridge Pa region and was handpicked and fermented in small open-top fermenters. Aged for 18 months in oak barrels, the wine was then blended and bottled to achieve what we think is a stunning little wine.
About Snapper Rock
Over the long warm summer months, we spend endless days on the blue waters of New Zealand’s oceans at our favourite fishing spots or Snapper Rocks hoping to catch the elusive Snapper.
We have crafted a range of affordable New Zealand wines that truly express the unique terroir and marine climate of New Zealand’s two major wine producing regions Marlborough and Hawke’s Bay.
To make our wines we have leveraged off the local knowledge of two of New Zealand’s most talented young wine makers David Clouston from Marlborough and Hayden Penney form Hawke’s Bay. Using fresh fruit driven styles of wine making pioneered in New World to create wines that reflect the variety’s best suited to those regions of New Zealand.
2016 Chateau Saint Robert, Graves, Bordeaux
There were some exceptional wines made in Bordeaux in 2016 and this is certainly no exception, in fact this is an absolute triumph. It is such a beautifully balanced claret, in both flavour and texture. The fruit on the palate is clean and pure with very subtle coffee and graphite notes in the background. It has beautifully integrated tannins, making this a very enjoyable drink in its youth, but giving it the structure for a few years in the cellar if you like somethigna little more mature.
2011 Chateau Haut Brisson, St Emilion Grand Cru, Bordeaux, France
This wonderful under-the-radar St Emilion is fantastic value. It has a wonderful depth of cherry and plum fruit, with hints of cedar wood and a touch of vanilla spice. It now has a mature softness making it perfect for drinking over the next year or two.
2012 Chateau Beau-Sejour Becot, St Emilion Grand Cru Classe, Bordeaux, France
"A spectacular wine from this nearly 50-acre vineyard situated atop St.-Emilion’s famed limestone plateau, the final blend for the 2012 Beau-Sejour Becot was 70% Merlot, 24% Cabernet Franc and 6% Cabernet Sauvignon. It achieved 14% natural alcohol and yields were 31 hectoliters per hectare. One of the stars of the vintage, it is elegant yet powerful, rich and authoritative with abundant black raspberry, blueberry, graphite and toasty vanillin notes. Full-bodied and super rich for a 2012, it is packed with potential. The tannins are ripe as well as abundant suggesting several years of bottle age will be required. It should turn out to be a 20 year proposition." 92-95pts, Wine Advocate
2016 Chateau Montlandrie, Cotes de Castillon, Bordeaux
The Côtes de Castillon vineyard of famous Pomerol winemaker Denis Durantou. This 11 hectare vineyard has 25 year old vines - 75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 5% of a new clone of Cabernet Sauvignon that Denis planted in 2009. Always modestly priced, this is a wine that gives brilliant value for money.
The 2016 Montlandrie is the Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux from Denis Durantou. On the nose, it is the ripest of Durantou’s six offerings, offering mulberry, Dorset plum and hints of fresh fig, and more open than either La Chenade or Les Cruzelles, his two Lalande de Pomerols. The palate is medium-bodied with fine grip on the entry. There is good volume and depth to this wine. The red fruit merges with more black fruit toward the finish, where hints of tobacco and cedar lend a slightly Left Bank feel. Very impressive. Drink 2021-2036. 91 Neal Martin, vinous.com (Jan 2019), January 2019
2015 Chinon 'Reserve Stanislas', Pierre Sourdais, Loire, France
Full-bodied and robust Cabernet Franc; it offers both a good balance and undeniable power. Nose of candied fruits which, after a few years, evolves on earthy notes of leather to continue on aromas of undergrowth. It will be wise to wait for its true opening a few years to appreciate the finesse of its bouquet.
2017 Anjou Rouge, Chateau de Fesles, Loire Valley, France
The Château de Fesles Anjou Rouge is a deep red colour. The well-balanced nose contains aromas of ripe red fruit. Very good attack on the palate with plenty of substance, this full-bodied, elegant wine has a good persistence after tasting. Serve between 13°C and 16°C. The perfect accompaniment to cold meats, red meat, small game, soft cheese and bloomy rind cheese.
2015 Chateau Kirwan, Gran Cru Classe Margaux, Bordeaux, France
A rich, deep colour that immediately announces the tone of the vintage. It appears as a highly concentrated wine. The rich, complex nose confirms this impression, with a blend of black fruit and spices such as black pepper, cinnamon and vanilla.
In the mouth, the attack is at once fresh and profuse. The sense of volume continues mid-palate while velvety tannins gradually develop, giving the wine its body without ever becoming overbearing. Everything is in perfect balance. A few notes of cocoa and coffee complement he broad aromatic palette right up to the prolonged finale, supported by extremely mature tannins.
While the pleasure it procures may tempt some to drink it young, I suggest waiting a few years. Indeed, everything indicates long and propitious ageing.
2014 Acaibo Red, Trinité Estate, Sonoma, California, USA
A deep coloured and richly flavoured blockbuster of a wine. This traditional, Bordeaux style, blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc is produced by the Lurton family, one of the grand old families of Bordeaux.
The 2014 vintage produced beautiful, evenly ripened fruit, and following 16 months ageing in French oak barrels the result is a concentrated red with silky tannins, vibrant fruit and a touch of sweet spice to the finish.
2004 Chateau Pavie Macquin, St Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé, Bordeaux, France
"A noble, complex nose of flowers, beef blood, black currants, licorice, and truffles reveals surprising evolution. The full-bodied, powerful wine exhibits stunning concentration, beautiful richness, sweet tannin, and a long finish. A blend of 75% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon (all from a bio-dynamically farmed vineyard), the 2004 Pavie-Macquin is another dazzling success from the brilliant winemaking team of Stephane Derenoncourt and Nicolas Thienpont." 93pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
2000 Chateau Troplong-Mondot, St. Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé, Bordeaux, France
"Extremely young with an unbelievable deep purple color, the 2000 Troplong Mondot has hardly budged since I tasted it in 2003. Two recent tastings confirmed that this is the greatest Troplong Mondot between their profound 1990 and more recent vintages such as 2005, 2008, and 2009. Copious chocolate, graphite, blackberry, blueberry, cassis, and ink characteristics are present in this full-bodied, powerful, massive St.-Emilion. While the tannins are noticeable, they are better integrated than they were seven years ago, and the fruit, extract, and richness clearly outweigh the wine's structure. This 2000 will benefit from another 4-5 years of cellaring (longer than I originally predicted), and has at least two decades of drinkability ahead of it." 96pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 2010
2016 Chateau La Patache, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
Chateau La Patache is a 2.5-hectare vineyard owned by Peter Kwok close to Château Clinet. It's traditionally made in wooden vats, followed by 18 months in ued French barrels.
An elegant wine with ripe dark fruit scents, spice notes, tobacco and vanilla aromas. On the palate it has a powerful boldness, it's well-balanced with a good structure and subtle tannins.
Magnum - 2009 Chateau Petit Villages, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
"Their finest effort since 1982, Petit Village has turned out a beautifully generous, succulent, fleshy 2009 with loads of ripe plum, black currant, black cherry, mocha and subtle earthy undertones. Round, flamboyant, dense and rich, with low acidity, outstanding concentration and purity, and a long finish, this outstanding wine should drink well for up to 15 or more years." Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
2017 Giusto di Notri, Tua Rita, Tuscany, Italy
"The 2017 Giusto di Notri is a special 25th anniversary bottling that is chiseled, sharp and focused. The small part of Merlot gives it some added sweetness (the percentage of Merlot was slightly reduced in this vintage), the touch of Cabernet Franc contributes the power, freshness and dark fruit, and along with a starring role of Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine has lots of beautiful plushness restrained by a tight, disciplined linearity. This vintage saw less time in barrique (about 16 months) but the barrels had more toasting. There is a lasting mineral note of chalk or limestone that frames the dark and opulence quality of fruit at its core. The bouquet is stunning. The wine treads lightly in the palate, with a very elegant and nuanced approach. It really is another gorgeous wine from Tua Rita that shows the profound skill of this winemaking team even when faced with a hot vintage such as this. 2020-2040" 96pts Wine Advocate
2014 Chateau Gloria, St Julien, Bordeaux, France
The 2014 Gloria is a bold, powerful wine. Dark cherry, smoke, licorice, tobacco and underbrush effortlessly fill out its frame. Ample and richly textured, the 2014 offers remarkable depth, power and pure pedigree. Pomegranate, blood orange and iron add further complexity on the finish. This is a superb showing. Tasted two times. 94 Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, February 2017