Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.

New Wine Releases February 2013

Duckhorn Wine Company bottles

Find tasting notes, prices and ratings for recent vintages in our selection of February 2013 new wine releases. You can click on highlighted winery names to view a full-page review.

NORTH AMERICA

CANADA

BRITISH COLUMBIA

OKANAGAN VALLEY

Inniskillin
2005 Sparkling Icewine; $70 (375 ml)
15/20Generous in aroma and flavor, it offers sweet apricot, honey and spice with a delicate effervescence and a touch of viscosity.


UNITED STATES

CALIFORNIA

CENTRAL COAST

Edna Valley Vineyard
2011 Sauvignon Blanc; $15
13/20This crisp white wine displays bright citrus and tropical fruit flavors balanced by a lively acidity.


Hahn Winery
2010 Central Coast Meritage; $18
13.5/20Nearly half Cabernet Sauvignon, this red Bordeaux-style blend features dark berry flavors balanced by sturdy tannins.


Robert Mondavi
2010 Private Selection Cabernet Sauvignon; $11
12.5/20Blended with small amounts of Syrah, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet France, this Cabernet Sauvignon features fresh red fruit flavors and a touch of vanilla on the finish.


Wild Horse
2010 Central Coast Cabernet Sauvignon; $20
13/20This full-bodied red wine offers aromas of cherry, mint and rosemary with firm tannins.


Livermore Valley

Steven Kent
2009 Folkendt Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon; $65
15/20Aged for two years in new oak barrels, this full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon boasts well-integrated fruit flavors and soft tannins.


Monterey

Darcie Kent Vineyards
2011 Rava Blackjack Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc; $18
14/20Blended with a little Grüner Veltliner, this Sauvignon Blanc features fragrant tropical fruit aromas and bold citrus flavors with mineral notes.


Paso Robles

Troublemaker
Blend 4; $20
13.5/20Composed of 67 per cent Syrah, 22 per cent Mourvedre, 8 per cent Grenache and 3 per cent Petite Sirah from the 2010 and 2011 vintages, Blend 4 is dry and well-balanced.


Santa Barbara County

Lucas & Lewellen
2006 Goodchild Vineyard Chardonnay; $22
14/20This full-bodied white wine offers tropical fruit aromas on the nose and pineapple and mango flavors in the mouth.


Santa Maria Valley

Riverbench
2010 Estate Pinot Noir; $28
13.5/20A full-bodied red wine, it features fruit-forward flavors of strawberry and raspberry with a touch of smoke on the finish.


Tantara
2010 Solomon Hills Vineyard Pinot Noir; $50
14.5/20Fruit-forward on the palate, there are cherry, plum, currant and raspberry flavors which marry beautifully with a plush mouthfeel.


Santa Rita Hills

Transcendence
2009 Babcock Vineyard Pinot Noir; $45
14/20This small-production Pinot Noir boasts complex earthy aromas and bright red fruit flavors with a hint of sweetness.


Santa Ynez Valley

Jorian Hill
2010 Viognier; $24
14/20Boasting fragrant floral aromas, it reveals sweet peach and honeysuckle flavors balanced by a zesty acidity.


CENTRAL VALLEY

Clarksburg

Clarksburg Wine Company
2010 Remenance; $32
14.5/20Composed of 50 per cent Cabernet Franc, 25 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon and 25 per cent Merlot, this well-balanced red blend features rich dark berry flavors with earthy and spicy notes.


Madera

Kalyra
NV Black Muscat; $17 (375 ml)
13.5/20A fortified dessert wine boasting 15.5 per cent alcohol, its up-front flavors are of raspberry, boysenberry and strawberry.


NORTH COAST

Domaine Chandon
NV Reserve Blanc de Blancs; $30
14/20Composed of 85 per cent Chardonnay and 15 per cent Pinot Noir, this aromatic sparkling wine was aged on the lees for 57 months giving it a soft, toasty finish.


Mendocino

Flirt
2010 California Red Wine; $12
13/20A blend of Syrah and Tempranillo, it offers simple, juicy flavors of cherry and berry with a bit of vanilla.


Navarro Vineyards
2010 Zinfandel; $19
13.5/20This robust Zinfandel offers black fruit flavors and a touch of black pepper and licorice on the finish.


Napa Valley

Ackerman Family Vineyards
2008 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon; $75
15/20A concentrated wine, its dark fruit flavors deliver a punch of black cherry and blackberry.


Conn Creek
2009 Napa Valley Herrick Red; $18
14/20Composed of 70 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon, 18 per cent Syrah, 8 per cent Malbec, 2 per cent Merlot and 2 per cent Primitivo, this rich red blend boasts ripe black fruit flavors and a touch of bitter chocolate on the finish.


Duckhorn Vineyards
2009 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon; $68
14.5/20This full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon is young and fruity, featuring blackberry and blueberry flavors with a hint of cola and drying tannins.


Mumm Napa
2006 DVX; $60
14.5/20On the palate, its fine bubbles and bright acidity dance in harmony with baked, spiced apple and fresh pear.


Swanson
2009 Alexis Cabernet Sauvignon; $60
15/20At once silky, graceful, musky and finessed as well as bold, rich and intense, it is a classic Napa Cab, yet one with a mind of its own.


Trefethen
2010 Chardonnay; $30
14.5/20Offering fragrant tropical and floral aromas, it reveals apple and citrus flavors in the mouth.


Tyler Florence
2010 Sauvignon Blanc; $20
14/20Celebrity chef Tyler Florence's food-friendly white wine features tangy citrus flavors that would pair well with fish and seafood.


Yao Ming
2009 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon; $170
16/20This well-balanced Napa Cab boasts complex blackberry and cherry flavors with hints of vanilla, silky tannins and a long finish.


Russian River Valley

Benziger Family Winery
2010 Pinot Noir; $28
14.5/20This certified sustainable red wine boasts complex aromas, dark fruit flavors with earthy notes and soft tannins.


Biltmore Reserve
2010 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir; $25
14/20A potent Pinot Noir at 15.9 per cent alcohol, it offers cherry and strawberry flavors and a full-bodied mouthfeel.


Dutton-Goldfield
2011 Dutton Ranch Chardonnay; $35
15/20This soft, creamy white wine features citrus and butterscotch flavors with tropical and mineral notes.


Iron Horse
2007 Brut X; $50
13.5/20Composed of 75 per cent Pinot Noir and 25 per cent Chardonnay, this extremely dry sparkling wine boasts flavors of apple and orange zest with a nutty finish.


Iron Horse
2007 Fairy Tale Cuvée; $50
14/20Elegant and creamy, it is a regal rendition of American sparkling wine and would work well juxtaposed against the sharpness and spice of Asian cuisines.


Lawer Family Wines
2011 Duck Shack Chardonnay; $22
13.5/20A well-oaked Chardonnay offering apple and pear flavors, it would pair appropriately with duck and pheasant.


MacMurray Ranch
2010 Winemaker's Block Pinot Noir; $60
14.5/20This full-bodied red wine features dark cherry and pomegranate flavors and a hint of lavender on the long finish.


Truett Hurst
2010 Bewitched Chardonnay; $20
14/20Part of Truett Hurst's wrapped bottled series, this Chardonnay will bewitch you with its well-integrated flavors of fruit and oak.


V. Sattui
2009 Gilsson Vineyard Zinfandel; $37
15/20Blended with a little Petite Sirah, this robust Zinfandel boasts ripe blackberry flavors with a touch of spice and sturdy tannins.


Sonoma Coast

Flowers
2010 Camp Meeting Ridge Vineyard Chardonnay; $65
15.5/20A subtle wine with pretty pear and lemon flavors and seductive undertones of mineral and musk, it pairs well with simple, briny foods like shellfish on the half shell or cracked, fresh crab.


MULTIPLE AVAS

Kendall-Jackson
2011 Vintner's Reserve Sauvignon Blanc; $13
13.5/20Comprised primarily of Lake County fruit, it offers bright floral and citrus aromas and slightly sweet tropical fruit flavors.


Korbel
Sweet Cuvée; $12
13.5/20This sweet sparkling wine composed of Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Colombard and Muscat Canelli pairs well with fresh fruits and sorbets.


NEW YORK

FINGER LAKES

Dr. Frank's Vinifera Wine Cellars
2011 Gewürztraminer Reserve; $25
13.5/20An aromatic dessert wine that is not overly sweet, it boasts mouthfilling flavors of grapefruit, lime, lychee and banana.


NORTH FORK OF LONG ISLAND

Bedell
2009 Merlot; $30
14/20This fine Merlot features delicious cherry, raspberry and cranberry flavors and soft tannins.


OREGON

DUNDEE HILLS

Sokol Blosser
2010 Pinot Noir; $38
14.5/20Made from estate-grown organic grapes, this medium-bodied red wine features black cherry and raspberry flavors with earthy notes and delicate tannins.


WASHINGTON

COLUMBIA VALLEY

Mercer Estates
2011 Chardonnay; $15
14/20A plush Chardonnay, it boasts pineapple and citrus flavors on the palate and a toasty finish.


Sleight of Hand Cellars
2011 Magician; $18
13.5/20This sweet Riesling displays green apple and pear flavors that would pair well with foie gras.


WALLA WALLA VALLEY

NxNW
2009 Walla Walla Valley Syrah; $30
14/20A big, rich, inky purple wine, it starts out sweet with raspberry and cherry but strong, earthy notes sneak in toward the back, including dark chocolate, tar and toast.


YAKIMA VALLEY

Willow Crest
2011 Pinot Gris; $14
12/20Offering pungent aromas of citrus, lavender and wet stone, it reveals a bracing acidity and oily mouthfeel.

EUROPE

FRANCE

Charles de Fère
Réserve Rosé Dry; $13
12.5/20A sparkling blend of Gamay, Cinsault, Cabernet and Sciacarellu from the Loire Valley, Charentes and Corsica, it offers refreshing strawberry and raspberry flavors.


Alsace

Pierre Sparr
Crémant d'Alsace Brut Reserve; $19
13/20Composed of 80 per cent Pinot Blanc and 20 per cent Pinot Auxerrois, this crisp sparkling wine features tropical fruit aromas on the nose and mineral notes in the mouth.


Bordeaux

Chateau Lafaurie-Peyraguey
2006 Sauternes; $30 (375 ml)
16.5/20Seduction in a bottle, it is full-bodied with a silky texture, racy lemon zest acidity and ample spice.


Burgundy

Domaine Jaeger-Defaix
2007 Mont-Palais Blanc, Rully Premier Cru; $24
14/20This aromatic Chardonnay offers delicate notes of apricot and peach that continue on the palate.


Domaine J. M. Boillot
2010 Puligny-Montrachet, Les Referts Premier Cru; $63
15.5/20A full-bodied Chardonnay, it boasts fragrant tropical fruit aromas and a creamy mouthfeel.


Languedoc-Roussillon

Arrogant Frog
Lily Pad Noir; $10
12.5/20This fruit-forward Pinot Noir displays juicy strawberry and cherry flavors with notes of vanilla and baking spice.


Loire Valley

Bougrier
Sparkling Vouvray; $16
13/20A light, fruity sparkling wine, it would make an excellent accompaniment to weekend brunch.


GERMANY

Mosel

Dr. Pauly-Bergweiler
2010 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese; $31
14/20Offering peach, apricot and mineral notes on the palate, the sweetness of the dessert wine is balanced by plenty of acidity.


Nahe

Paul Anheuser
2010 Blanc de Noir Qualitätswein; $14
13.5/20This peach colored wine made from Pinot Noir features sweet berry flavors without the structure provided by the tannins.


Pfalz

Fitz-Ritter
2011 Gewürztraminer Spätlese; $25
15/20Subtly sweet, it offers honeyed fruit up front with zingy tangerine on the mid and back of the palate.


GREECE

Santorini

Koutsoyiannopoulos
2010 Dry White Wine; $19
13.5/20Made from Assyrtiko grapes, it offers citrus flavors with a hint of smoke that would pair well with lemon and herb-rubbed chicken.


ITALY

Piedmont

Ceretto
2010 Rossana Dolcetto d'Alba DOC; $29
13.5/20This dry red wine displays red fruit and floral aromas that continue on the palate with a touch of almond.


Sicily

Dievole
2007 Fourplay Rosso; $15
13/20This seductively-named red blend offers raspberry and wild strawberry, licorice and spice flavors.


Tuscany

Brancaia
2008 IL BLU; $85
15/20Composed of 50 per cent Sangiovese, 45 per cent Merlot and 5 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon, this full-bodied red blend boasts rich blueberry and blackberry flavors with a touch of chocolate.


Brancaia
2009 Chianti Classico Riserva; $40
14.5/20A generous wine with good length and drying tannins, it shows nicely now but would blossom with a few years of aging.


Tenuta Guado al Tasso
2010 Il Bruciato; $32
14.5/20A dry red wine composed of 50 per cent Cabernet Sauvignon, 30 per cent Merlot and 20 per cent Syrah, it features black fruit flavors and supple tannins.


Veneto

Fattori
2011 Vecchie Scuole; $17
14/20This crisp Sauvignon Blanc displays fruity and floral aromas on the nose and tangy flavors of lime and grapefruit on the palate.


Masi
2008 Costasera Amarone Classico; $60
16.5/20Up front, it's berries, plums and balsamic but deeper, darker leather, chocolate and exotic spice notes creep in toward the back.


Ruffino
2011 Lumina Pinot Grigio; $10
13/20Offering heady aromas of citrus, pear and apple, it features bright citrus flavors with a touch of sweetness.


Zardetto
Treviso Prosecco Brut; $15
12.5/20A light, aromatic sparkler, it displays citrus and tropical fruit on the nose and soft, yeasty notes in the mouth.


PORTUGAL

Douro

Ramos Pinto
1995 Duas Quintas Vinho Tinto; $N/A
15/20This full-bodied red wine boasts ripe black fruit flavors with peppery notes and smooth, well-aged tannins.


SPAIN

Catalonia

Juvé y Camps
NV Brut Rosé; $16
13/20Made entirely from Pinot Noir grapes, it displays red apple and strawberry aromas and a creamy mouthfeel.


Segura Viudas
ARIA Estate Brut; $14
13.5/20A classic Cava blend of Macabeo, Parellada and Xarel-lo grapes, this sparkling wine features pineapple, pear and almond notes on the palate.


Rías Baixas

Martín Códax
2011 Albariño; $15
14/20This dry white wine offers apple, pear and lemon flavors with mineral and spice notes.

SOUTH AMERICA

ARGENTINA

Mendoza

CJR
"Celestina" Rosé of Malbec; $20
13.5/20This sparkling rosé is bottle fermented and boasts bright strawberry and rhubarb flavors with floral notes.


Don Miguel Gascón
2010 Reserva Malbec; $25
13.5/20A robust red wine, it displays blackfruit flavors with a touch of baking spice and drying tannins.


Susana Balbo
2010 Late Harvest Torrontes; $30 (375 ml)
13/20Offering fragrant floral and citrus aromas, this ripe dessert wine features sweet honey and pear flavors and a slightly syrupy finish.


Sensual
2012 Torrontes; $10
12.5/20This aromatic white wine displays crisp citrus and spice flavors balanced by a zesty acidity.


CHILE

San Antonio Valley

Matetic Vineyards
2010 EQ Syrah; $42
14/20Made from certified organic grapes, this full-bodied red wine boasts earthy dark fruit flavors and well-structured tannins.

AUSTRALASIA

AUSTRALIA

Jacob's Creek
2011 Moscato Rosé; $12
13/20At 8 per cent alcohol, this rosé is on the sweet side and offers the usual strawberry and raspberry flavors.


Barossa


Penfolds
2009 RWT Barossa Valley Shiraz; $150
16.5/20Full-bodied and intense, this dry and elegant red wine is young now, but will be even better in years to come.


NEW ZEALAND

Marlborough


Drylands
2011 Sauvignon Blanc; $16
13.5/20A crisp and aromatic white wine, it would pair well with seafood and grilled chicken.

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