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Wine Notes: September 2014

Jeffery Lindenmuth - September 2014

Nicolas Potel Bourgogne 2012
Potel crafts this medium-bodied, nicely restrained Pinot, sourced primarily from Côte d’Or vines, offering pleasant strawberry and red currant fruit flavors, with aromas of earthy forest and hints of smoke before finishing with soft tannins.
Score: 85
Cost: $128
Cases: 30,000

Château Villars Fronsac 2011
Aromas of violet, plum, cherry, and currant introduce this fresh and fruit-forward Bordeaux, crafted primarily from Merlot, with additions of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. The palate is rich, full, and rounded, with a velvety texture to the plush red fruits, while spice and toasty oak peer through on the finish.
Score: 89
Cost: $160
Cases: 4,050

Bodegas Campo Viejo Tempranillo Rioja Reserva 2008
Oak flavors of smoky barrel char, vanilla, and cloves are well integrated on the palate of this smooth, supple red, centered on cherry fruit, showing good maturity, yet still bright and lively. The long finish reveals a savory edge and a streak of minerality with ripe tannins contributing to superb balance.
Score: 89
Cost: $170
Cases: 42,000

Jean-Luc Colombo Cornas Terres Brûlées 2011
Brawny, bold, and juicy, this Syrah is wrapped around a molten fruit core of raspberry and plum, with notes of grilled herbs, anise, and bramble. Full-bodied and bold on the palate, hints of oaky spice and toast lend a modern edge to this powerful red that will benefit from up to a decade in the cellar.
Score: 92
Cost: $450
Cases: 2,020

Moris Farms Morellino di Scansano Riserva 2010
Often overshadowed by its more prestigious Tuscan neighbors, here Morellino di Scansano delivers an intensely aromatic wine, wrought from Sangiovese with small additions of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Initial notes of crushed berry and violet turn dark and brooding on the palate, joined by cigar box, baking spices, and tar, as the flavors build to an impressive finish. Score: 92
Cost: $320
Cases: 16,600

Buty Conner Lee Vineyard Columbia Valley 2011
With raspberry, plum, cherry, and blueberry aromas that follow through on the palate, this red (67 percent Merlot and 33 percent Cabernet Franc) represents a riot of fruit, delivering fine balance, courtesy of its precise acidity and supple tannins. Savory and spicy notes chime in on the medium-bodied palate and ride the lingering finish.
Score: 93
Cost: $450
Cases: 282

Château d’Yquem Sauternes 2010
Initially reserved in aroma, some coaxing reveals tropical fruits of pineapple and mango, joined on the palate by candied citrus, stone fruits, and honeysuckle, the ample sweet fruit perfectly balanced by racy acidity. Nearing the finish line, the wine shifts gears, as green fruit and coconut lead to the long, elegant finish.
Score: 96
Cost: $7,500
Cases: 8,334

Prats & Symington Douro Chryseia 2011
Prized Port grapes Touriga Nacional and Tour­iga Franca stand tall in this powerful, structured red, showing concentration of plum and raspberry fruit underscored by notes of black olive, cocoa, and currant, and punctuated by white pepper details. The mid-palate is already showing roundness and finesse, but the grippy tannins are a potent reminder of its pedigree.
Score: 97
Cost: $500
Cases: 2,500

Marcassin Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast Marcassin Vineyard 2009
Richly layered and alluring, aromas of toasty oak, smoky fruit, sweet earth, and creamy vanilla introduce this red, leading to a palate of great fruit purity, a mouth-filling mélange of cassis, raspberry coulis, and kirsch flavors. After building to a crescendo, the fruit is finally reined in by firm tannins on the persistent finish.
Score: 97
Cost: $1,400
Cases: 1,800