If I Could Buy Only One – Oct 15th, 2016 VINTAGES Release

As part of our VINTAGES recap for October 15th, 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 October 15th VINTAGES release:

David Lawrason – In recent years – since travels in Spain and Portugal in particular – I have become a big fan of the gentle, subtle and vaguely mineral white wines from indigenous, lesser known varieties of Europe. So not chardonnay, not sauvignon, not riesling, not pinot gris. The bottlings could be from Portugal, Spain, France, or Italy, but today I am talking grenache blanc from southern France, with the oh-so subtle but important, acid-firm roussanne in the blend.Saint Roch 2015 Vielles Vignes Grenache Blanc/Marsanne is unbelievably good value at $15.95. From old vines on slate soils it has a generous, clean nose of vaguely tropical banana and melon fruit, with some grainy complexity. It’s medium weight, quite broad yet firm with a sense of stoniness on the palate. Fine as a sipper, or with more mellow seafood recipes.

Saint Roch Vielles Vignes Grenache Blanc Marsanne

Michael Godel – Cariñena rocks! The Autochthonous soils, bush vines and their stones in the autonomous region of Aragón are home to great value cariñena and garnacha. Of the five like-minded grouped Aragonese and Catalonian appellations, it is Cariñena where the grapes mature first. The grape and the place come across with classic cariñena firmness and regional culture out of the impressive Grandes Vinos e Vinedos cooperative. You may recognize Spain’s third largest cooperative as the producer of Beso de Vino garnacha.The 3c Premium Selection Cariñena 2013 is juicy and gregarious like so many garnacha, but here as cariñena, with moderate alcohol, acidity and amenable tannin. This represents very good value for the price, as well as for the brusque and breviloquent Aragonese appellation.

3c Premium Selection Cariñena 2013


Sara d’Amato – A winery with a history of female leadership, Domaine Theulot Juillot’s Mercury is a welcome addition to the VINTAGES fold. The estate owns a dozen hectares in the appellation on both calcareous and red clay soils giving the wine brightness and exotic fruit spice. This 1er Cru site of La Cailloute is a monopole, owned entirely by the Domaine. Great complexity and an explosion of fruit on the palate make this pinot noir oh so memorable.

Domaine Theulot Juillot Mercurey Premier Cru La Cailloute 2014

John Szabo, MS – As I already pointed out in my preview report, the smartest buy in the October 15th release is the Sottimano 2013 Langhe Nebbiolo . It’s composed entirely of the declassified Barbaresco Cru Basarin, from the vines Andrea Sottimano deems too young to include in his top level cuvée. I first tried it in 2006 (and bought some for my cellar). Now, the vines are seven years older, almost a quarter century, usually considered prime producing age, and yet they still find their way into the Langhe bottling at a very keen price. 2013 has afforded a particularly elegant and floral example, though with tannic force and depth that belie the basic designation. It’s a wine of real depth and class, structured and serious, and in need of another 2-4 years minimum to come into its own. But don’t tell Sottimano, lest he start blending these lots into the more expensive Barbaresco. Best 2020-2025.
Sottimano Langhe Nebbiolo 2013

From VINTAGES October 15th, 2016:

Szabo’s VINTAGES Preview – Piedmont & International Smart Buys

Buyers’ Guide to VINTAGES – Outstanding Vintages from California

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 October 15th 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!


Stoneleigh Latitude Pinot Noir