If I Could Buy Only One – Nov 26th, 2016 VINTAGES Release

As part of our VINTAGES recap for November 26th, we asked our critics:

“If you could buy only one wine from this release – which one would it be and why?”

Our picks from the November 26th VINTAGES release:

John Szabo, MS – It’s that time of year when things slow down, and we can take more time with our friends and families to linger over long meals. Rather than one-course/one glass, now we can enjoy several dishes and a technicolour range of flavours, and open wines that don’t seem to fit in at other times. One such wine that I’ll be having, especially when the cheese course is dropped, is the mesmerizing Domaine Cauhapé 2012 Jurançon Symphonie de Novembre from France’s deep southwest. It’s a deeply coloured and rather exotic late-harvest petit manseng, with tropical fruit, ginger spice and wild flowers. The palate is neither dry nor fully sweet, just perfectly pitched and balanced by savoury acids. And the length is exceptional – long enough to linger into the night.

Domaine Cauhapé Jurançon Symphonie De Novembre 2012

David Lawrason – I actually had the pleasure of enjoying a bottle of Livio Sassetti 2009 Pertimali Brunello di Montalcino with a steak dinner this week, and it just kept delivering. I was well into the second glass when reason for its magic hit me, I was already enjoying the very complex, maturing seven-year old aromas and flavours and the very smooth texture. But the wine just kept on refreshing as well, with such fine acidity and balanced alcohol. And this was a bit of a surprise given that the 2009 vintage was a hot one in Tuscany, and some examples are rather soupy. So perhaps it has to do with the site – a 16 ha vineyard set on fairly steep hillside in the northern reaches of Montalcino. Or maybe it is simply the taste culture of the Sassetti family, that has been working this plot for three generations. In any event, here is a mature red I would love in my cellar, ready to go and ready to please on a moments notice.

Livio Sassetti Pertimali Brunello Di Montalcino 2009

Michael Godel – From Aragon’s Campo de Borja, “The Empire of Garnacha,” comes Borsao’s most basic offering that is anything but, with the many-pronged effect created off of old vines, a looming mountain and a prevailing wind playing vital roles in its upbringing. Of the five DO’s (Denominación de Origen) that comprise the collective (garnacha) wine growing regions located in Aragon and Catalonia, none walk with a swagger like Campo de Borja. It has been described as a homogeneous physical space capable of producing wines with peculiarities. Much of its viticulture, in kinship with the other four Aragonese DO’s, perpetuates the viñedo en vaso, “vines in a glass,” in reference to its old bush vines. As a leading progenitor of style and stability for the region, director of winemaking Chris Ringland means business with the lowly-priced Borsao 2013 Bole. It is full of clay, slate, ripe fruit and ripping acidity. It should be paid great attention as a stepping stone towards more developed, variegated and serious garnacha, often with a syrah twist.

Borsao Bole 2013

Sara d’Amato – From 2003 and fabulous, this dramatic back vintage release of Domaine Daniel Etienne Defaix’s Côtes de Lechet Chablis 1er Cru offers an abundance of character and charm held together by impressive acidity that is rarely seen from this heat wave of a vintage. Carefully matured for you but this Chablis is by no means over the hill. The inherent complexity has been added to by flavours developed in bottle. A compelling find sure to stoke conversation among your fellow oenophiles.

Domaine Daniel étienne Defaix Côtes De Lechet Chablis 1er Cru 2003

From VINTAGES November 26th, 2016:

VINTAGES Preview – Szabo’s Top Buys & Fine Volcanic Wines

Buyers’ Guide to VINTAGES – Under $25 Value finds at VINTAGES


Use these quick links for immediate access to all of our Top Picks in the New Release.

Lawrason’s Take
Sara’s Sommelier Selections
Michael’s Mix
Szabo’s Smart Buys
All November 26th Reviews

New Release and VINTAGES Preview

Editors Note: You can find complete critic reviews by clicking on any of the highlighted wine names, bottle images or links. Premium subscribers to WineAlign see all critics reviews immediately. Non-paid members wait 30 days to see new reviews. Premium membership has its privileges; like first access to great wines!


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