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New Wine Releases September 2015

Pine Ridge Winery in Napa Valley planted their first vineyard on a steeply terraced hillside

New Wine Reviews - September 2015

Find tasting notes, prices and ratings for recent vintages in our selection of September 2015 new wine releases.



Russian River Valley

La Crema Russian River Valley
2013 Pinot Noir; $40
14/20Juices from 14 vineyards comprise this balanced Pinot Noir from Sonoma's cool growing region. As an impressive gift to bring to a party, this wine is worth every penny. Wine enthusiasts will appreciate a range of aromas, rich character and a solid finish.

2012 Old Vine Zinfandel — Starr Road Ranch; $45
15.5/20This silky wine begins with a nose weaving aromas of blackberry bramble and cherry vanilla with hints of cider spice and nutmeg. On the palate, intense layers of juicy dark fruits are complemented by freshly toasted cocoa, caramel and mildly spicy tobacco leaf. With only 770 cases produced, this wine is sure to go fast.

Dutton Goldfield
Pinot Noir; $58
15/20Only 654 cases of this Pinot Noir have been produced. Rich flavors of black raspberry and strawberry are present on the palate, giving the wine a rich, silky taste. Cinnamon spice and subtle herbal notes of sage peek out, making for an enticing finish.


2012 Old Vine Zinfandel; $20
13/20 Winemakers Barry Gnekow and Joseph Smith produce this food-friendly Zinfandel blended with Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. It packs a punch at 15.5 percent alcohol. Full-bodied with dark berry notes, the taste will fill your mouth as you wash down burgers or other barbecued fare.

Napa Valley

CADE Winery
2012 Cabernet Sauvignon; $63
15/20Sourced from numerous vineyards in Napa Valley, this wine has an incredible color and aromas of chocolate-covered cherries, roe, raspberries, blueberries and cocoa nibs. The enticing aroma couples with the rich tastes of graham cracker, roasted marshmallow, berry compote, vanilla, coffee, and cassis.

Pine Ridge
2014 Chenin Blanc + Viognier; $15
13.5/20This esoteric blend of 80 percent Chenin Blanc and 20 percent Viognier offers great value. With a refreshingly low alcohol content of 12.5 percent, it's a versatile wine, whether paired with salads, seafood dishes or even a Thanksgiving feast. Flavors of ripe honeydew, yellow plum, citrus blossoms and lychee will take you to a crisp finish.

Trefethen Family Vineyards
2009 HaLo; $200
16.5/20Named after the founders' children, this exclusive wine is limited to just 370 cases. Though best to age this vintage for a bit, you will get aromas of black plum, chocolate and a hint of cinnamon upon opening the bottle. The taste is smooth with great structure and leaves a pleasantly lingering finish.

Educated Guess
2013 Cabernet Sauvignon; $25
14/20This Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is rich, ripe, and well-structured with flavors of juicy blackberry and cherry fruit, creamy milk chocolate, and dusty notes all tied together with a toasty oak finish.

J. Lohr
Carol's Vineyard 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon; $40
14.5/20Made of 80 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and 20 percent Petit Verdot, this Cabernet Sauvignon offers concentrated black fruit, violet and hazelnut aromas followed by a rich palate with a touch of coconut.

Paso Robles

Concannon Vineyard
2013 Cabernet Sauvignon; $20
Made by one of America's oldest family wineries, this full-bodied wine is sourced from three different Concannon Cabernet Sauvignon clones. With luscious red cherry, black currant, ripe plum and hints of cocoa, vanilla and spice, this wine has a complex yet smooth taste.

Villa San-Juliette
2013 Small Lot Selection Reserve Pinot Gris; $20
Only 92 cases of this 100 percent Pinot Gris have been produced. This wine was tank fermented for 17 months, and then further aged sur lie in neutral French oak. Winemaker Matt Ortman advises you to pair it with fettuccine Alfredo or chicken Parmesan.

California — Multiple AVAs

2013 California Old Vine Zinfandel; $22
From vines averaging over 80 years in age planted throughout the diverse state of California, this wine aims to reflect the perfume, freshness and spice that make Zinfandel so delicious. It features notes of raspberries, black cherries, forest, earth, pepper and spice.


Columbia Valley

Charles & Charles
2013 Cabernet Sauvignon & Syrah Blend; $12
13.5/20Sourced from multiple AVAs in the Columbia Valley (Columbia River, Wahluke Slope and Yakima Valley), this well-priced blend is a mix of 68 percent Carbernet Sauvignon and 32 percent Syrah. Robust in nature, it will pair well with steak.




Don Miguel Gascón
2012 Reserva Malbec; $25
14/20Mostly Malbec with 6 percent Petit Verdot, this robust wine from the Argentinean powerhouse is marked with a "Reserve" title. Made from grapes that feature thick skins because of their terroir, the wine offers exceptional color, powerful tannins and great flavor concentration. Aged for 15 months in French and American barrels, it also went through malolactic fermentation. You can either let it age a bit longer or drink it now for a flavorful streak.




Champagne Pierre Paillard
Bouzy Blanc de Blancs Les Mottelettes; $55
15/20 Try this delicate Champagne made with 100 percent Chardonnay grapes from the heart of the Grand Cru Bouzy vineyards. Citrusy notes meet the nose while exotic fruits and fine mousse flavors dance on the palate.

Pays d'Oc

Arrogant Frog
2013 "Ribet Red" Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot; $10
13.5/20We like this wine for its plum flavors, smoothness and lengthy finish. Though it has a kitschy name, you will find it at a great price. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot from the Languedoc-Roussillon region along the Mediterranean Sea come together in this fruity blend that pairs well with light meat and fish dishes



Tenuta Sette Cieli
2011 NOI4; $37
14.5/20The name NOI4 represents the four members of the Ratti family. This red blend is ripe and sweet with fruit flavors, and has a well-developed character that stands out among the other qualilty Tenuta Sette Cieli wines.


Brunello Di Montalcino DOCG

Bottega S.P.A.
Brunello Di Montalcino Prêt-à-Porter; $80
15/20This limited series comes in a studded leather Alpinestars box and bottle designed by Denise Focil. While the wine could do without the flashy packaging, the taste is memorable enough with its velvety character and long finish. Pair it with game or ripe cheese.

Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG

Fattoria Del Cerro
2011 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; $20
The intense aroma of this Sangiovese-based vino from Montepulciano will pair well with grilled meats. The best part: It comes at a great value.


Langhe Nebbiolo DOCG

Cascina Ca' Rossa
2012 Funsu Langhe Nebbiolo; $19
Grown in the municipality of Canale d’Alba in chalky soils using the Guyot system, these Nebbiolo grapes were aged in stainless steel vats. As a result, they deliver a light red ruby-colored wine. Untainted by wood, the wine presents a fruity and complex nose, a good structure, some tannins and a pleasant finish. Serve it on the cooler side with carpaccio or chicken dishes.


Et Cetera
2012 Cuvée Rouge; $20
14/20 Not to be mistaken for a Romanian wine, this label hails from Romania's neighbor, Moldova. Unusual origin denotes unusual varietals — this wine is composed of 50 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 30 percent Merlot, 15 percent Saperavi and 5 percent Rara Neagra. The red blend leaves a solid impression with dark cherry flavors and a strong finish.

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