On first sniff, the French oak veneers the underlying brooding scent of black currant preserves. But with patience, the oak integrates to reveal details of incense, cumin seed and cocoa. This blend features a lush mouthfeel, which is bolstered by mighty tannins that act as a crescendo across the palate. It’s a bruiser of a wine, yet despite the elevated alcohol it…
Winemaker Jim Law has fashioned a finessed Chardonnay that offers impressive purity and minerality, bearing Burgundian-like qualities. Notes of pear, green apple, kiwi and white currant are offset by a lemon-lime edge. It’s all layered with streaks of blonde caramel and toasted hazelnut that add richness. The palate is clean, linear and vibrant, with a modicum of…
An initial hit of game sets the scene for this savory Bordeaux-style blend, which has succeeding notes of tar, blackberry, rock, licorice and cocoa. Medium to full bodied, it feels poised, with accessible acids and well-managed tannins that bolster the palate. The earthy, expressive finish picks up a hint of cedar. A blend of 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Cabernet…
Gorgeous aromas of white currant, spiced breakfast toast, caramelized macadamia and golden stone fruit are bold and unwavering. The palate feels malleable and finessed, with precise notes of pineapple and mango purée that lend an intense, exotic edge. The zesty acids are impressive, keeping the finish clean and elevated.
Starts with restrained aromas of fresh pear, clove and honey, then develops candied pineapple and citrus flavors along with a hint of corn on the cob. Focused, not overly sticky or concentrated, finshing clean and fresh.
A lush, sweet blend of honey, apricot, citrus, kumquat, spice and vanilla notes. Viscous and rich on the palate, the wine makes a very satisfying dessert or dessert accompaniment. -J.M.
Pure, intense aromas of grass, melon, gooseberry and underripe peach hit the nose with vibrancy. Alert acids shoot across the light- to medium-bodied palate with great precision, keeping the palate frisky. A note of liquid stone and a spritz of lemon keep the finish clean.
85 Linden 2001 Hardscrabble Chardonnay (Virginia); $22. Not afraid of using oak, Linden’s Hardscrabble, named after the site in the Blue Ridge Mountains, has toasty vanilla and popcorn aromas that translate to buttery oak in the mouth. It’s backed by nice tropical fruit, but the wine’s body doesn’t quite size up.