AIX Rose 2019
Located in beautiful Provence (South of France), AIX rosé wines have become a synonym for
the trendy lifestyle of the region. As the number one choice of sommeliers, AIX is enjoyed by
celebrities and lifestyle enthusiasts who cannot escape a seductive rosé.
Whether it is during the legendary Grand Prix of Monaco, or the illustrious St. Tropez Sailing
Regatta, AIX has always been the exclusive rosé of choice.
Crafted with greatest care and awarded Gold Medal for best rosé at the famous wine show
‘Concours Général Agricole’ in Paris, AIX is not only an expression of the unique terroir in the
Provence, but a real taste of summer!
Allegrini La Grola IGT Veronese 2015
Wine Advocate 92+
The 2015 La Grola is a terrific wine, both food friendly and accessible. The blend is 90% Corvina with 10% Oseleta, which adds color and richness to the overall wine, thanks to the grape's small and compact berry size. You get terrific value here in a wine that has the aromatic intensity and textural fiber to stand up to barbecued meats or tri-tip. The fact that the wine's tannins are slightly more contained and soft means La Grola would beautifully match those spicy and smoky flavors.
Alphonse Mellot Sancerre Generation XIX Blanc 2017
Wine Advocate 94
Even in a region with such a venerable history as Sancerre, the Mellot family boasts an unusually rich heritage. Alphonse Mellot represents the 19th generation of a wine making dynasty: his ancestor, Cesar Mellot was appointed wine advisor to King Louis XIV in 1698. Great wines are not made by obsessing with the past and this is a domaine which is very much focused on the present, but with an eye to the future. A total of 45 hectares of vineyards are immaculately managed according to biodynamic principles and the wines, particularly the top cuvees, benefit from being sourced from old vines; over 80 years in the case of generation XIX. These wines show precise flavours which combine fruit and minerality with a touch of wood
From calcareous marl soils the 2017 Sancerre Génération XIX is a great, pure, vibrantly fresh and tensioned representative of the region and a great vintage. Deep, fine and complex on the very elegant and fresh yet concentrated nose, this is a tight, complex and sustainable Sancerre whose density is lifted by mineral freshness and backboned by extract and a tight yet fine tannin structure. The finish is fresh and stimulatingly salty and exhibits the complexity of 100+-year-old vines
Arlaud Morey-St-Denis 1er Cru Aux Cheseaux 2018
Allen Meadow 90
Firm reduction once again flattens the underlying fruit. The delicious, vibrant and beautifully well-delineated flavors possess a plush mid-palate texture that also contrasts with the compact, raspy and moderately short finish. This too is a bit of a question mark as to how it will react to the bottling so please note that my estimated range offers the benefit of the doubt.
Cyprien Arlaud, who directs this domaine which owns 15 ha and farms another 3 ha (see the related wines under Cyprien Arlaud immediately below), described 2018 as a vintage that "had a wet spring followed by a markedly hot and dry growing season where the former provided just enough water reserves to avoid massive amounts of hydric stress though there was some. And this is the reason that the results are heterogeneous. We decided to plow our vines via horse, which is risky because if there isn't any rain, plowing exposes even more soil to the sun's heat. On the other hand, if there is rain and you haven't plowed, the soil is like concrete and runs off too rapidly to be absorbed. We were lucky because even though there wasn't much rain, it was enough to mostly keep the photosynthetic process going. I chose to begin picking on the 3rd of September and brought in very clean fruit yet quantities, while perfectly good, were actually lower than the 38 hl/ha that I realized in 2017. Potential alcohols were again good but not high as I had nothing come in over 14%. I did have a few fermentations that proceeded very slowly and in fact this is the first time in my career where I have had that happen. I used around 30% whole clusters for the grands crus and a few of the 1ers but otherwise there was none. Overall, 2018 is a very good vintage but I wouldn't call it a great one, at least not for us." Arlaud pointed out that none of the wines had been racked since they were barreled down and this explains why some of the wines showed noticeable reduction.
Arnoux Lachaux Clos de Vougeot 2010
Allen Meadow 94
Here too there is mild reduction that does not completely hide the subtle aromas of red berry fruit, crushed herbs, earth and a hint of the sauvage that continues onto the intense, robust and powerful flavors that are underpinned by relatively fine tannins on the moderately austere, linear and persistent finish of impeccable balance. This is packed with upside potential though note that ample cellar time will be required.
Arnoux Lachaux Vosne Romanee 1er cru Les Chaumes 2014
Allen Meadow 92
A discreet application of wood frames the overtly spicy and floral aromas that display notes of plum, black cherry, violet, lavender and Asian-style tea. The medium weight flavors are lush to the point of opulence with a seductive texture, all wrapped in a delicious, refined and balanced finish. This should also drink well young if desired.
Wine Advocate 92
The 2010 Almaviva is a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend complemented with Carmenere, Cabernet Franc, and for the first time in 2010, a small quantity of Petit Verdot. 2010 was a cool vintage, giving the wine an herbaceous character with good freshness and balance. It is still young with some lactic notes and some aromas derived from the elevage (roasted coffee and dark chocolate), with terse black fruit and some beef blood overtones. This vintage seems to be a worthy follower of the 2005, with sweet round tannins, intense flavors, very good balance and the stuffing to live a long life in bottle.
Antoine Pouget 2009
It would be difficult to miss the imposing coat of arm on the label. There is no doubt, Antoine Pouget comes from the vineyard of the prestigious Château Pouget. Its name pays homage to the founder of the vineyard, François-Antoine Pouget, King counsellor during the reign of Louis XV. The Duke de Richelieu is at the origin of the coat of arms and motto of Château Pouget. «L’amour sur ton cœur étendra sa puissance. Ton verbe sera clair comme le chant du Coq. A l’égal du Lion tu ne craindras le choc. Si de cestuy nectar tu te remplis la panse.»
Since 1906, the estate has been in the hands of the Guillemet family. Technical director Lucien Guillemet applies his vast experience into making sure the wine he produces expresses all the beauty of these gravel soils envied the world over. He manages Château Pouget with conviction, but also subtlety.
A well rounded, accessible, gourmet and fruity wine with balance and harmony, Antoine Pouget is a feminine wine. Silky and smooth, this wine possesses the balance and harmony characteristic of the finest Margaux wines.
Armand Rousseau Gevrey Chambertin 1er cru Lavaux Saint-Jacques 2012
Allen Meadow 91
Here the moderately expressive nose is both more complex and more deeply pitched with more obvious earth, humus and underbrush tones to the dark currant and soft floral aromas. Here too there is very fine detail and even more minerality present on the medium-bodied flavors that offer fine depth and length on the slightly more firmly structured finale.
Arnoux Lachaux Vosne Romanee 1er cru Aux Reignots 2017
Allen Meadow 94
A very fresh and admirably transparent nose reflects notes of ultra-elegant and airy essence of mostly red berry fruit aromas that include cherry, raspberry and a hint of pomegranate along with plenty of spice and floral wisps. The markedly tension-filled flavors are at once seductive and intense while displaying superb minerality on the driving, highly complex and lengthy finish. Reignots is usually among the most refined of the Vosne 1ers and this is no exception.
Charles Lachaux describes the 2018 vintage as one that "had a bit of everything except botrytis and oidium. We had mildew in the spring, hail damage in a few parcels in July and then very dry and hot conditions basically up until the harvest which I chose to begin on the 3rd of September. Yields were definitely on the low side as we basically brought in only 50% of the authorized volumes, which is to say between 25 and 28 hl/ha. Potential alcohols were not particularly high either as the highest was 13.2%. I used 100% whole clusters for everything except the Bourgogne, Poisets and Corvées Pagets which were hit by hail. I vinified softly without sulfur during a moderately short cuvaison of 8 to 10 days. As to the 2018s, they're quite different from the 2017s but attractive in their own right plus we avoided the excess ripeness that some 2018s have. Overall, I am quite happy with the results." Lachaux should be happy with the results as I found them to be among the best wines of the vintage when considered from top to bottom.
Ata Rangi Chardonnay Craighall 2017
Wine Advocate 91
Undoubtedly one of the best Pinot Noir makers in the famous area of Martinborough, Ata Rangi produces amazing wines year in and year out. This winery was one of the first to plant grapes in this region in 1979. The clone is Dijon and Abel which is now widely known as the Ata Rangi clone in New Zealand. Instead of turning out monotonous wines, the style of the Ata Rangi Pinot Noir is complex, elegant and supple with gorgeous ripeness of red fruit and spice. Wines of Ata Rangi can well be New Zealand’s top treasure to export.
The 2017 Craighall Chardonnay looks to be considerably crisper and more tightly structured than the rather plush 2016 version I drank the night before while dining at the Martinborough Hotel. Notes of toasted grain frame bright citrusy fruit in this medium-bodied wine, which shows ample length and focus on the finish.