If I Could Buy Only One – February 18th, 2017 VINTAGES Release

As part of our VINTAGES recap for February 18th, 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 February 18th VINTAGES release:

Michael Godel – For the sake of comparison, Victoria’s latitudinal equivalents are Gisborne in New Zealand, Sonoma and Napa Valleys in the USA and Mendoza in Argentina.As the southern-most and coolest state of mainland Australia, Victoria’s savour brings more than mere credibility to the Fowles 2013 Stone Dwellers Shiraz, it sets it up for excellence. In these ancient granite boulders of the Strathbogie Ranges the sort of mineral gifts are not small and with optimum phenolic fruit the connection is beautiful. This shiraz carries great strength without ever resorting to jammy or over the top. The fruit is just fruit, ripe, tart and purposed. A gem to drink now or let it hone more skill for 10 plus years.

Fowles Stone Dwellers Shiraz 2013

David Lawrason – With great syrahs from Hermitage and Cote-Rotie now priced beyond my snack bracket I am always on the look-out for fine examples from Saint-Joseph and Croze-Hermitage. The Nicolas Perrin 2013 Saint Joseph is textbook stuff, still affordable and decent value. Crammed with classic black pepper, meat, dried cherry fruit and wood smoke, all on a firm continuum of acidity and granitic minerality.

Maison Nicolas Perrin Saint Joseph 2013

Sara d’Amato – A thoughtful, modern take on Rioja offering a clear sense of place through generosity and purity of fruit rather than through evolved maturation. The 2010 Vivanco Reserva is largely made up of tempranillo with just 10% graciano for greater intensity, adding darker fruit and floral lift. Still quite youthful with a great deal of life ahead but it offers hedonist pleasure now following a short decant. Terrific value in this bottle that will help you weather the last frigid days of winter.

Vivanco Reserva 2010

John Szabo MS – Drinkability is something I prize highly in a young, relatively inexpensive wine, that easy of enjoyment and deliciousness which comes without undue effort. The Yalumba 2014 The Strapper Barossa Valley  delivers all that and more, a lovely, fragrant, peppery-strawberry scented grenache blend with silky-firm texture and savoury finish and minimal wood influence. It’s the sort of red I’m happy to drink on myriad occasions, from casual sipping to accompanying braised meats. Best 2017-2021.

Yalumba The Strapper 2014


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

Michael’s Mix
Lawrason’s Take
John’s Top Picks
Sara’s Sommelier Selections
All February 18th Reviews

New Release and VINTAGES Preview


The Federalist Cabernet Sauvignon