Rick’s Picks


Spring 2017

 
“Rick’s Picks” is WineDealAdvisor’s list of recommended wines, wineries and vintages. These wines were selected because… well, because they are the wines we most want to drink! They also just happen to be among the best wines for their variety, location and price range in every vintage. We hope you will find the list useful, enjoy the wines, and perhaps discover a few new favorites for yourself.

“Rick’s Picks” is available free-of-charge to anyone who visits our website. You are welcome to make copies for your personal or immediate family use. Please have anyone else obtain their copy directly from our website at WineDealAdvisor.com.

Enjoy!
Rick



Sign Up for Future Updates


Rick’s Picks is updated periodically. If you would like to be alerted to new updates, please provide your email address in the form below: (this page will reload after you press the “Submit” button).



 

Download Rick’s Picks


Select a link below to download a copy:
 
Rick's Picks - Spring 2017 (MS Excel)
 
Rick's Picks - Spring 2017 (.pdf)
 
Rick's Picks - Spring 2017 (MS Word)
 
 

Scroll down this page to view Rick’s Picks


Rick’s Picks – Spring 2017
 
Contents

 

©2017 WineDealAdvisor


 

Vintage Recommendations

Because the quality of a wine often varies significantly from year to year, vintage should be an important consideration when purchasing wine.

Country/Region      Wine      Great Vintages      Good Vintages      Avoid
US

    • California
    •  
    •  
    • Oregon
    • Washington
 

    • Chardonnay
    • Cabernet Sauvignon
    • Pinot Noir
    • Zinfandel
    • Pinot Noir
    • Cabernet Sauvignon
 

    • 2015 / 2013 / 2012
    • 2015 / 2013 / 2012
    • 2014 / 2012
    • 2014 / 2012
    • 2014 / 2012
    • 2014 / 2013 / 2012
 

    • 2014
    • 2014
    • 2013 / 2010
    • 2011
 

    • 2011
    • 2011
    • 2015 / 2011
    • 2011
FRANCE

    • Bordeaux
       
    • Burgundy
    • Rhone
 

    • Bordeaux Blend – Cabernet
    • Bordeaux Blend – Merlot
    • Burgundy – Red
    • Burgundy – White
    • Chateauneuf-du-Pape /
      Rhone
 

    • 2015 / 2010 / 2009
    • 2015 / 2010 / 2009
    • 2015 / 2010 / 2009
    • 2014
    • 2010
 

    • 2014
    • 2014
    • 2012 / 2011
    • 2004 +
    • 2015 / 2012 / 2009
 

    • 2013
    • 2013
ITALY

    • Tuscany
       
    • Piedmont
 

    • Chianti / Super-Tuscan
    • Brunello
    • Barolo
 

    • 2015 / 2013 / 2010
    • 2010
    • 2010
 

    • 2012
    • 2012 / 2011 / 2009
    • 2013 / 2011 / 2009
 

    • 2014
Australia
    • Shiraz
    • 2015 / 2013 / 2012 / 2010
    • 2011
Spain
    • Rioja
    • 2010
    • 2014 / 2013 / 2012
Argentina
    • 2013 / 2011
    • 2014 / 2012 / 2010
Chile
    • 2013 / 2011

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



 

“Top Picks” – US WINERIES
By Variety

     Chardonnay      Cabernet Sauvignon      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – Oregon
    • Beringer
    • Cakebread
    • Chalk Hill
    • Chateau St. Jean
    • Evening Land
    • Hanzell
    • Hartford /
      Hartford Court
    • Mount Eden
    • Newton
    • Patz & Hall
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Ramey
    • Rochioli
    • Rombauer
    • Sonoma-Loeb
    • Stonestreet
    • Walter Hansel
    • Anderson’s Conn Vly
    • Beaulieu Vineyard
    • Beringer
    • Caymus
    • Chappellet
    • Dunn
    • Fisher
    • Forman
    • Joseph Phelps
    • Montelena
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Pride
    • Ramey
    • Ridge
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Robert Mondavi
    • Seavey
    • Shafer
    • Stag’s Leap
      Wine Cellars
    • Arcadian
    • Black Kite
    • Calera
    • Capiaux
    • Copain
    • Dumol
    • Hartford /
      Hartford Court
    • Inman
    • Kosta Browne
    • Loring
    • Melville
    • Merry Edwards
    • Mount Eden
    • Patz & Hall
    • Rhys
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Roar
    • Rochioli
    • Siduri
    • Sojourn
    • Walter Hansel
    • Williams-Selyem
    • Windy Oaks
    • Adelsheim
    • Arterberry Maresh
    • Beaux Freres
    • Bethel Heights
    • Bergstrom
    • Cristom
    • Domain Drouhin
    • Domaine Serene
    • Elk Cove
    • Evening Land
    • Evesham Wood
    • Eyrie
    • Patricia Green
    • Penner-Ash
    • Ponzi
    • Shea
    • St. Innocent
    • White Rose

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


“Top Picks” – US Wines
By Variety

     Chardonnay      Chardonnay      Chardonnay      Chardonnay
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Beringer
      – Private Reserve
    • Chalk Hill
      – Sonoma Coast
    • Chateau St. Jean
      – Durrell, – R.Young
    • Gary Farrell
      – Russian River
      Selection
    • Hartford
    • LaFond
      – Santa Rita Hills
    • Landmark
      – Overlook
    • Melville Estate
      – Santa Rita Hills
    • Mount Eden
      – Wolff
    • Paul Hobbs
      – CrossBarn
    • Stuhlmuller
      – Alexander Vly.
    • Cakebread
      – Napa
    • Chalk Hill
      – Estate
    • Newton
      – Unfiltered
    • Pahlmeyer
      – Jayson
    • Pride Moutain
    • Ramey
      – RRV, – Sonoma
    • Rombauer
      – Carneros
    • Stonestreet
      – Estate
    • Walter Hansel
    • Cakebread
    • Dumol
    • Kistler
    • Mount Eden
    • Pahlmeyer
    • Patz & Hall
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Ramey
      – Hyde, – Platt,
      – Ritchie
    • Ridge
      – “Monte Bello”
    • Rochioli
    • Stonestreet
    • Aubert
    • Kistler
    • Peter Michael
     Cabernet Sauvignon      Cabernet Sauvignon      Cabernet Sauvignon      Cabernet Sauvignon
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Arrowood
    • Beringer
      – Knights Valley
    • Buehler
    • Chappellet
      – Mountain Cuvee
    • Chateau St. Jean
      – Alexander Valley
    • Conn Creek
    • Hardin
    • The Pairing
      – Red
    • Beaulieu Vineyard
      – Tapestry
    • Hall
    • Mount Eden
      – Domain Eden
    • Paul Hobbs
      – CrossBarn
    • Robert Mondavi
      – Oakville
    • Ramey
      – Napa, – Claret
    • Robert Craig
      – Affinity
    • Stags Leap
      – Artemis
    • Stonestreet
      – Alexander
    • Anderson’s Conn Vly
      – Reserve
    • Beaulieu Vineyard
      – Geo. De Latour
    • Chappellet
      – Signature
    • Fisher Vineyards
      – Coach Insignia
    • Forman
    • Frank Family
      – Reserve
    • Joseph Phelps
      – Estate
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Pride Mountain
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Seavey
    • Shafer
      – One Point Five
    • St. Jean
      – Cinq Cepages
    • Beringer
      – Private Reserve
    • Dominus
    • Montelena
      – Estate
    • Phelps
      – “Insignia”
    • Ridge
      – “Monte Bello”
    • Staglin
    • Togni
     Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – California
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Calera
      – Central Coast
    • Copain
      – Tous Ensemble
    • LaFond
    • Loring
      – RRV, – SRH, – SLH
    • Meomi
    • Siduri
      – RRV, – SRH,
      – Sonoma
    •  

    • Belle Glos
    • Mount Eden
      – Domain Eden
    • Hartford
    • Merry Edwards
    • Patz & Hall
    • Siduri
    • Sojourn
    • Walter Hansel
    •  

    • Calera
    • Copain
    • Kosta Browne
    • Merry Edwards
    • Mount Eden
      – Estate
    • Rhys
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Rochioli
    • Sea Smoke
    • Aubert
    • Kistler
    • Williams Selyem
     Pinot Noir – Oregon      Pinot Noir – Oregon      Pinot Noir – Oregon      Pinot Noir – Oregon
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Adelsheim
      – Willamette
    • Arterberry Maresh
      – Dundee
    • Bethel Heights
      – Estate, – Willamette
    • Cristom
      – Mt. Jefferson
    • Evesham Wood
      – Eola, – La Grive Bleue
    • Eyrie
      – Estate, – Dundee
    • Patton Valley
      – Estate
    • Ponzi
      – Willamette
    • Arterberry Maresh
    • Ayoub
    • Bergstrom
    • Bethel Heights
    • Cristom
    • Domain Drouhin
    • Domaine Serene
    • Elk Cove
    • Evening Land
    • Evesham Wood
    • Eyrie
    • Patricia Green
    • Penner-Ash
    • Ponzi
    • Shea
    • St. innocent
    • White Rose
    • Antica Terra
    • Archery Summit
    • Arterberry Maresh
    • Ayoub
    • Beaux Freres
    • Bergstrom
    • Bethel Heights
    • Cristom
    • Domain Drouhin
    • Domaine Serene
    • Elk Cove
    • Evening Land
    • Eyrie
    • Penner-Ash
    • Ponzi
    • White Rose

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


“Top Picks” – US Wines
By Price

     $15 – $30      $15 – $30      $15 – $30      $15 – $30
     Chardonnay      Cabernet Sauvignon      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – Oregon
    • Beringer
      – Private Reserve
    • Chalk Hill
      – Sonoma Coast
    • Chateau St. Jean
      – Durrell, – R.Young
    • LaFond
      – Santa Rita Hills
    • Landmark
      – Overlook
    • Melville Estate
      – Santa Rita Hills
    • Mount Eden
      – Wolff
    • Paul Hobbs
      – CrossBarn
    • Stuhlmuller
      – Alexander Vly.
    • Arrowood
      – Sonoma
    • Beringer
      – Knights Valley
    • Buehler
    • Chappellet
      – Mountain Cuvee
    • Chateau St. Jean
      – Alexander Valley
    • Conn Creek
    • Hardin
    • The Paring
      – Red
    • Calera
      – Central Coast
    • Copain
      – Tous Ensemble
    • LaFond
    • Loring
      – RRV, – SRH,
      – SLH
    • Meomi
    • Siduri
      – RRV, – SRH,
      – Sonoma
    •  

    • Adelsheim
      – Willamette
    • Arterberry Maresh
      – Dundee
    • Bethel Heights
      – Estate,
      – Willamette
    • Cristom
      – Mt. Jefferson
    • Evesham Wood
      – Eola,
      – La Grive Bleue
    • Eyrie
      – Estate, – Dundee
    • Patton Valley
      – Estate
    • Ponzi
      – Willamette
     $25 – $50      $25 – $50      $25 – $50      $25 – $50
     Chardonnay      Cabernet Sauvignon      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – Oregon
    • Cakebread
      – Napa
    • Chalk Hill
      – Estate
    • Newton
      – Unfiltered
    • Pahlmeyer
      – Jayson
    • Pride Moutain
    • Ramey
      – RRV, – Sonoma
    • Rombauer
      – Carneros
    • Stonestreet
      – Estate
    • Walter Hansel
    • Beaulieu Vineyard
      – Tapestry
    • Hall
    • Mount Eden
      – Domain Eden
    • Paul Hobbs
      – Crossbarn/li>
    • Robert Mondavi
      – Oakville
    • Ramey
      – Napa, – Claret
    • Robert Craig
      – Affinity
    • Stags Leap
      – Artemis
    • Stonestreet
      – Alexander Valley
    • Belle Glos
    • Mount Eden
      – Domain Eden
    • Hartford
    • Merry Edwards
    • Patz & Hall
    • Siduri
    • Sojourn
    • Walter Hansel
    •  

    • Arterberry Maresh
    • Ayoub
    • Bergstrom
    • Bethel Heights
    • Cristom
    • Domain Drouhin
    • Domaine Serene
    • Elk Cove
    • Eyrie
    • Patricia Green
    • Ponzi
    • Shea
    • St. innocent
    • White Rose
     $50 – $100      $50 – $100      $50 – $100      $50 – $100
     Chardonnay      Cabernet Sauvignon      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – Oregon
    • Cakebread
    • Dumol
    • Kistler
    • Mount Eden
    • Newton
      – Unfiltered
    • Pahlmeyer
    • Patz & Hall
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Ramey – Hyde,
      – Platt, – Ritchie
    • Ridge
      “Monte Bello”
    • Rochioli
    • Stonestreet
    • Anderson’s Conn Vly
      – Reserve
    • Beaulieu Vineyard
      – Geo. De Latour
    • Chappellet
      – Signature
    • Fisher
      – Coach Insignia
    • Forman
    • Frank Family
      – Reserve
    • Joseph Phelps
      – Estate
    • Mount Eden
      – Estate
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Pride Mountain
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Seavey
    • Shafer
      – One Point Five
    • St. Jean
      – Cinq Cepages
    • Calera
    • Copain
    • Kosta Browne
    • Merry Edwards
    • Mount Eden
    • Rhys
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Rochioli
    • Sea Smoke
    • Antica Terra
    • Archery Summit
    • Arterberry Maresh
    • Ayoub
    • Beaux Freres
    • Bergstrom
    • Bethel Heights
    • Cristom
    • Domain Drouhin
    • Domaine Serene
    • Elk Cove
    • Eyrie
    • Ponzi
    • White Rose
     $100+      $100+      $100+      $100+
     Chardonnay      Cabernet Sauvignon      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – Oregon
    • Aubert
    • Kistler
    • Peter Michael
    • Beringer
      – Private Reserve
    • Dominus
    • Chateau Montelena
      – Estate
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Phelps
      – “Insignia”
    • Ridge
      – “Monte Bello”
    • Staglin
    • Togni
    • Aubert
    • Kistler
    • William Selyem

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


US – Recommended Wines
Chardonnay

  • Characteristics:
    – Chardonnay fruit flavors and aromas include peach, pear, melon, pineapple, citrus and honeysuckle. Most California chardonnay is oaked which adds buttery, vanilla, honey, toast and even creme brulee flavors.
    – Un-oaked chardonnay will taste of green apple and citrus with a light body and sharp acidity. Chablis (France) popularized the un-oaked style and remains the best example.
    – Chardonnay styles range from high acidity and tartness with sharpness on the palate, to a soft and richer texture with a creamy feel in the mouth.
  • Best areas:
    – Sonoma (Alexander Valley, Anderson Valley, Carneros, Russian River Valley, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma Mtn., Sonoma Valley)
    – Other good areas include Napa Valley, Santa Cruz Mtns., Santa Lucia Highlands and Sta. Rita Hills
  • Best Vineyards:
    – Hudson, Hyde, Ritchie, Rochioli, Sangiacomo
     Chardonnay      Chardonnay      Chardonnay      Chardonnay
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Beringer
      – Private Reserve
    • Chalk Hill
      – Sonoma Coast
    • Chateau St. Jean
      – Durrell, – R.Young
    • Evening Land
      – Sonoma
    • Frank Family
      – Napa, – Sonoma
    • LaFond
      – SRH
    • Landmark
      – Overlook
    • Melville Estate
      – SRH, – Verna’s
    • Mount Eden
      – Wolff
    • Neyers
      – Carneros, – Napa
    • Sbragia Family
      – Home Ranch
    • Stonestreet
      – Estate Alexander Valley
    • Talley
      – Arroyo Grande
    • Walter Hansel
      – Estate
    • Cakebread
    • Chalk Hill
      – Estate
    • Dehlinger
      – Russian River Valey
    • Hartford
    • Jos. Phelps
      – Freestone
    • Montelena
    • Newton
      – Unfiltered
    • Pahlmeyer
      – Jayson
    • Paul Hobbs
      – Crossbarn
    • Pride Mountain
    • Ramey
      – RRV, – Sonoma
    • Ridge
      – Estate
    • Rochioli
      – Russian River Valley
    • Rombauer
      – Carneros
    • Sojourn
    • Stonestreet
    • Walter Hansel
    • Aubert
    • Cakebread
    • Dumol
    • Evening Land
      – Summum.
      – Source
    • Kistler
    • Mount Eden
    • Newton
      – Unfiltered
    • Pahlmeyer
    • Patz & Hall
    • Paul Hobbs
    • Peter Michael
    • Ramey
    • Rhys
    • Ridge “Monte Bello”
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Rochioli
    • Aubert
    • Kistler
    • Peter Michael

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


US – Recommended Wines
Cabernet Sauvignon & Blends

  • Characteristics:
    – A full-bodied, robust red wine with flavors of black currant, blackberry, black cherry, oak, vanilla, earth and spices. Mushrooms, eucalyptus, damp earth, tobacco, cedar, mint, and leather often appear with age.
  • Best Areas:
    – Napa Valley: Diamond Mtn., Howell Mtn., Oakville, Rutherford, Stags Leap, Spring Mtn., St. Helena and Yountville.
    – Also Sonoma Valley: Alexander, Chalk Hill, Dry Creek, Knights Valley, Sonoma Mountain and Sonoma Valley.
     Cabernet Sauvignon      Cabernet Sauvignon      Cabernet Sauvignon      Cabernet Sauvignon
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Arrowood
    • Beringer
      – Knights Valley
    • Buehler
    • Chappellet
      – Mountain Cuvee
    • Chateau
      St. Jean
    • Conn Creek
    • Foley Johnson
    • Hardin
    • Stonestreet
      – Alexander Valley
    • The Paring

  • $$$+
    (“Cult” wines)

      • Bryant ($ 750+)
      • Colgin ($ 500+)
      • Grace ($ 300+)
      • Harlan ($1000+)
      • Kapcsandy
        – State Lane
      • Peter Michael
        – Les Pavots
      • Schrader
        – Beckstoffer ToKalon
      • Screaming Eagle
        ($ ridiculous!)
    • Domain Eden
    • Faust
    • Frank Family
      – Napa
    • Hall – Napa
    • Paul Hobbs
      – Crossbarn
    • Phelps Estate
    • Ramey
      – Napa
    • Ridge Estate
      – Santa Cruz Mtn.
    • Robert Craig
      – Affinity
    • Robert Mondavi
      – Oakville
    • Seavey
      – Caravina
    • Snowden
      – The Ranch
    • Stags Leap
      – Artemis
    • Stonestreet
      – Alexander,
      – Monument Ridge
    • Vineyard 29
      – Cru
    • Woodward Canyon
      – Artist (WA)

  Blends:

    • Alpha Omega – II
    • Andersons Conn Vly
      – Right Bank
    • Beaulieu Vineyards
      – Tapestry
    • Conn Creek
      – Anthology
    • Dominus
      – Napanook
    • Ramey
      – Claret
    • Rodney Strong
      – Symmetry
    • St. Clement
      – Orropas
    • Alpha Omega
    • Altamura
    • Anderson’s Conn Vly
      – Reserve
    • Beaulieu Vineyards
      – Geo. De Latour
    • Chappellet
      – Signature
    • Cliff Lede
    • Doubleback
    • Foreman
    • Frank Family
      – Reserve
    • Jos. Phelps Estate
    • Larkmead
    • Mount Eden
      – Estate
    • Nickel & Nickel
    • Paul Hobbs
      – Napa
    • Pride Mountain
      – Cabernet
    • Rivers-Marie
    • Robert Foley
    • Shafer
      – One Point Five
    • Snowden
    • Sojourn

  Blends:

    • Anderson Conn Vly
      – Eloge
    • St. Jean
      – Cinq Cepages
    • St. Supery
      – Elu
    • Orin Swift
      – Papillon
    • Stonestreet
      – Legacy
    • Araujo
      – Eisele
    • Beringer
      – Private Reserve
    • Dominus
    • Lail – J. Daniel
    • Leonetti (WA)
    • Montelena
      – Estate
    • Peter Michael
      – Les Pavots
    • Pride Mountain
      – Reserve
    • Quilceda Creek (WA)
    • Quintessa
    • Ridge “Monte Bello”
    • Robert Mondavi
      – Reserve
    • Schrader
      – To-Kalon
    • Seavey
    • Shafer
      – Hillside Select
    • Spottswood
    • Staglin
    • Togni

    • Cont’d in
      $$$+
      (“Cult” wines)
      in far left column

  Blends:

    • Opus One
    • Pahlmeyer
      – Proprietary Red
    • Phelps “Insignia”
    • Quintessa
    • Realm
      – “The Bard”
    • Robert Foley
      – Claret

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


US – Recommended Wines
Pinot Noir – California

  • Characteristics:
    – Flavors range from cherry to black raspberry and strawberry along with vanilla, spice, cola and earth.
    – Styles can range from elegant and lean, to big, bold and plush, but in general, they are bigger, riper and more lush than pinot noirs from other areas.
  • Best areas:
    – Sonoma – Anderson Valley, Carneros, Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast, Santa Cruz, Santa Lucia Highlands, Santa Maria, Sta. Rita Hills
  • Typical styles by area:
    – Anderson – 1) Dark fruits and earth or 2) Red fruits and spice
    – Carneros – Lighter and tighter than those from other Californian regions
    – Russian River Valley – Fruit-forward and famous for cola & cherry-cola flavors, along with strawberry, raspberry and spice.
    – Santa Cruz Mtns – Aromatic, red & dark fruits, lively acidity, minerals.
    – Santa Lucia – Big, fleshy and mouth-filling with flavors of blackberry, herbs and minerals.
    – Santa Maria – The best wines tend to be big, lush and concentrated with flavors of black cherry, spice and earth.
    – Sonoma coast – Lots of structure, dense and concentrated. Dark cherry, savory, earthy, peppery.
    – Sta Rita Hills – A wide diversity of styles ranging from big wines with deep, concentrated flavors, to wines with freshness, elegance and finesse
  • Best vineyards:
    – Bien Nacido, Clos Pepe, Gary’s. Hirsch, Pisoni, Rochioli-Allen, Sea Smoke, Sangiacomo
  • Typical styles by producer: I am going “out on a limb” with this, but I have indicated what I think is the predominant style of (almost) every winery. Either (F) Full-bodied, fruity; (E) Elegant, lean; or (M) Middle.
     Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – California      Pinot Noir – California
      $15 – $30       $25 – $50       $50 – $100       $100+
    • Calera (E)
      – Central Coast
    • Copain (E)
      – Tous Ensemble
    • Evening Land (E)
      – Occidental
    • LaFond (F)
    • Loring (F)
      – RRV, – SRH, – SLH
    • Melville (F)
      – Estate, – Vera’s
    • Meomi (FF)
    • Siduri (F)
      – RRV, – SRH,
      – Sonoma

(F) Full-bodied, fruity
(E) Elegant, lean
(M) Middle
 

    • Anthill (E)
    • Arista (F)
    • Arcadian (E)
    • Belle Glos(FF)
    • Capiaux (E)
    • Domain Eden(E)
    • Hartford (F)
    • Inman (E)
    • Loring (F)
    • Merry Edwards(F)
    • Melville (F)
    • Patz & Hall (F)
    • Rhys (E)
    • Rivers-Marie (M)
    • Roar (M)
    • Rochioli (E)
    • Siduri (F)
    • Sojourn (F)
    • Walter Hansel (E)
    • Windy Oaks (E)
    •  

    • Bevan (F)
    • Black Kite (F)
    • Calera (E)
    • Copain (E)
    • Dehlinger (M)
    • Donum (F)
    • Dumol (F)
    • Inman (E)
    • Kistler (F)
    • Kosta Browne (F)
    • Littorai (E)
    • Merry Edwards(F)
    • Mount Eden (E)
    • Radio Coteau (F)
    • Rhys (E)
    • Rivers-Marie (M)
    • Roar (M)
    • Rochioli (E)
    • Sea Smoke (F)
    • Sojourn (F)
    • W.H. Smith
    • Williams Selyem (M)
    • Windy Oaks (E)
    • Aubert (F)
    • Kistler (F)
    • Kosta Brown (F)
    • Marcassin (E)
    • Peter Michael (E)
    • Williams Selyem (M)

(E) Elegant, lean
(F) Full-bodied, fruity
(M) Middle

 

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



US – Recommended Wines
Pinot Noir – Oregon

  • Characteristics:
    – Not as ripe and with a leaner texture and higher acidity levels than California Pinot Noir.
    – The flavors vary… a lot. The best known is an earthy style with flavors of cranberries along with spice, damp soil and forest floor that generally has a lean texture and high acidity levels. At the other end of the spectrum is a fruity style similar to California pinot noir.
    – Oregon pinots exhibit more variation than California pinots. This is because the weather in Oregon can vary significantly between vintages (see “Vintages:” below).
  • Best areas: All in Willamette Valley
    – Chehalem Mtn., Dundee Hills, Eola-Amity, McMinnville, Ribbon Ridge, Yamhill-Carlton.
  • Best Vineyards:
    – Bergstrom, Beaux Freres, Freedom Hill, Maresh, Seven Springs, Shea, Resonance, Temperance Hill
  • Vintages:
    Cooler vintages produce more tart, elegant, lean wines that will age well, whereas hotter vintages make richer, fruitier and more opulent wines

  • Typical styles by producer: I am going “out on a limb” with this, but I have indicated what I think is the predominant style of (almost) every winery. Either (F) Full-bodied, fruity; (E) Earthy, lean; or (M) Middle
     Pinot Noir – Oregon      Pinot Noir – Oregon      Pinot Noir – Oregon      Pinot Noir – Oregon
     $15 – $30      $25 – $50      $50 – $100      $100+
    • Adelsheim
      – Willamette
    • Arterberry Maresh (M)
      – Dundee
    • Bethel Heights
      – Estate, – Willamette
    • Cameron
      – Dundee, – Willamette
    • Cristom
      – Mt. Jefferson
    • Evesham Wood (M)
      – Eola, – La Grive
    • Eyrie
      – Estate, – Dundee
    • Ken Wright
      – Oregon
    • Lange
      – Will., – Dundee,
      – Reserve
    • Patricia Green
      – Estate, – Reserve
    • Patton Valley
      – Estate
    • Rex Hill
      – Willamette
    • Stoller
      – Dundee

(E) Earthy, lean
(F) Fruity, full bodied
(M) Middle

    • Adelsheim (M)
    • Archery Summit (E)
    • Arterberry Maresh (M)
    • Bergstrom (F)
    • Bethel Heights (F)
    • Cameron (E)
    • Cristom (M)
    • Domain Drouhin (E)
    • Domaine Serene (E)
    • Evening Land (E)
      – Willamette
    • Eyrie (E)
    • Ken Wright (F)
    • Le Cadeau (M)
    • Panther Creek
    • Patricia Green(M)
    • Penner-Ash (F)
    • Ponzi (F)
    • Scott Paul (E)
    • Shea (F)
    • Sokol Blosser
    • Soter (F)
    • St. innocent (M)
    • Stoller
    • Westrey (F)
    • White Rose (E)
    • Winderlea (M)
    • Antica Terra
    • Archery Summit (E)
    • Arterberry Maresh
    • Ayoub
    • Beaux Freres (E)
    • Bergstrom
    • Brick House (E)
    • Cameron
    • Cristom
    • Domain Drouhin (E)
    • Domaine Serene (E)
    • Elk Cove (E)
    • Evening Land (E)
    • Kelly Fox (E)
    • Patricia Green (E)
    • Penner-Ash
    • Resonance (E)
    • Scott Paul (E)
    • Shea (F)
    • White Rose (E)

(E) Earthy, lean
(F) Fruity, big
(M) Middle

 

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



US – Recommended Wines
Merlot, Zinfandel

  • Merlot Characteristics:
    – Merlot is a soft, medium-to-full bodied dry red wine. Typical flavors include black cherry, ripe plum, blueberry and pomegranate with undertones of cocoa, vanilla and various earthy notes.
  • Merlot Best Areas:
    – Napa (Los Carneros, Mount Veeder, Oakville and Rutherford), Sonoma (Alexander Valley, Carneros and Dry Creek Valley), Washington State (Walla Walla, Red Mountain and Horse Heaven Hills)
  • Zinfandel Characteristics:
    – Dominated by ripe berry flavors ranging from strawberry to blackberry bramble and including jam, cherry, and cranberry, along with black pepper and licorice. Often has candied fruit flavors followed by spice and sometimes a tobacco-like smoky finish.
  • Zinfandel Best Areas:
    – Sonoma (Dry Creek Valley, Rockpile, Russian River Valley), Napa Valley (both valley and hillside) and Lodi.
     Zinfandel      Zinfandel      Merlot      Merlot
     $15 – $30      $25 – $50      $15 – $30      $25 – $50
    • Edmeades
    • Frank Family
    • Mazzocco
    • Pezzi King
    • Regusci
    • Ridge
    • Robert Biale
    • Bedrock
    • Bella
    • Carlisle
    • Hartford
    • Limerick Lane
    • Rafanelli
    • Ridge
    • Robert Biale
    • Scherrer
    • Seghesio
    • Turley

  $50+

    • Bella
    • Carlisle
    • Martinelli
    • Turley
    • Duckhorn – Decoy
    • Ferrari-Carano
    • L’Ecole 41 (WA)
    • Markham
    • Sbragia Family
    • St. Michele (WA)
    • Chappellet
    • Darioush
    • Duckhorn
    • Leonetti (WA)
    • Paloma
    • Plumpjack
    • Pride Mountain
    • Ridge
      – Estate Santa Cruz
    • Seavey
    • Shafer

  $50+

    • Barnett
    • Beringer Reserve – Bancroft
    • Leonetti (Washington)
    • O’Shaughnessy
    • Pahlmeyer
    • Plumpjack


US – Recommended Wines
Sauvignon Blanc

  • Sauvignon Blanc Characteristics:
    – Sauvignon Blanc is a dry wine with tart flavors of white peach, lime, green apple and melon. What makes Sauvignon Blanc unique from other white wines are its herbaceous flavors especially grass.

  • Sauvignon Blanc Best Areas:
    – Napa and Sonoma
     Sauvignon Blanc      Sauvignon Blanc      Sauvignon Blanc
     $0 – $25      $25 – $50      $50 – $100
    • Cakebread Cellars
    • Ch. Ste. Michelle – Horse Heaven
    • Kunde – Magnolia Lane
    • Ladera
    • Robert Mondavi – Fume Blanc
    • Rodney Strong – Charlotte’s Home
    • St. Supery – Dollarhide
    • Substance
    • Alpha Omega
    • Bevan Cellars – Dry Stack Vyd
    • Cade
    • Merry Edwards
    • Quintessa – Illumination
    • Quivet Cellars – McGah
    • Spottswood
    • Stonestreet – Aurora
    • Araujo Estate – Eisele Vineyard
    • Arkenstone
    • Kenzo Estate – Asatsuyu (WA)
    • Lail Vineyards – Georgia
    • Larkmead – Lillie
    • Morlet – La Proportion Doree(WA)
    • Peter Michael – l’Apres Midi
    • Rudd Estate – Mt. Veeder
    • Signorello – Seta
    • Vineyard 29

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



FRANCE – Recommended Wines
Burgundy – White (Chardonnay)

  • Characteristics:
    White burgundy is generally more elegant and complex, and with less richness and ripeness than California chardonnay.   Styles range from the tart, crispness of Chablis to the bigger, fleshier, more intense wines of Corton and Montrachet.
  • Best Areas:
    In Burgundy, the quality and style of the wine is critically dependent on the location of the vineyard and wines are classified based on their location.  Wines from a single location will generally have multiple producers, and wines produced there will have the same classification regardless of the producer. The major areas and their classification are listed in the chart below.
     Burgundy – White      Burgundy – White      Burgundy – White      Burgundy – White
     $25 – $50      $50 – $100+      $50 – $100+ (cont’d)      $$$+
    • A. & F. Boudin
    • Bertrand Ambroise
    • Charly Nicolle
    • Chateau Fuisse
    • J.J. Vincent
    • Laurent Tribut
    • Louis Michel
    • Roux
    • Benjamin Leroux
    • Bouchard
    • Bernard Defaix (C)
    • Billaud-Simon (C)
    • Christian Moreau
      (Chablis)
    • Daniel Dampt (C)
    • Francois Raveneau
      (Chablis)
    • Henri Boillot
    • Jacques Prieur
    • Jean-Marc Brocard
      (Chablis)
    • Jean-Paul &
      Benoit Droin
      (Chablis)
    • Joseph Drouhin
    • Laurent Tribut (C)
    • Laroche (C)

(C) = Chablis

    • Domain Leflaive
    • Louis Jadot
    • Louis Latour
    • Louis Michel (C)
    • Lucien le Moine
    • Marc Colin
    • Moreau-Naudet (C)
    • Michel Niellon
    • Olivier Leflaive
    • Remoissenet
    • Servin (C)
    • Verget
    • Vincent Dauvissat(C)
    • Vincent Girardin
    • William Fèvre (C)

(C) = Chablis

    • Benjamin Leroux
    • Bouchard
    • Bonneau
      du Martray
    • Henri Boillot
    • Joseph Drouhin
    • Domain Leflaive
    • Francois Raveneau
    • Louis Latour
    • Louis Jadot
    • Lucien le Moine
    • Remoissenet
    • Verget
    • Vincent Girardin
 Region and Village:
(Lowest Classification)

    • Auxey-Duresses
    • Bourgogne Blanc
    • Chablis
    • Cote Chalonnaise
    • Maconnais
    • Mâcon-Villages
    • St.-Aubin
    • Saint-Véran
Village:

    • Chablis
    • Chassagne
      -Montrachet
    • Cote de Beaune
    • Meursault
    • Puligny
      – Montrachet
Premier Cru:

    • Beaune:
      – Mouches,
      – Greves,
      – Perrières,
      – Clos du Roi
    • Chablis
    • Chassagne
      – Montrachet:
      – Caillerets,
      – Champs-Gains,
      – Chaumées,
      – Morgeot,
      – Verger
    • Meursault:
      – Charmes,
      – Genevrières,
      – Perrières
    • Puligny
      -Montrachet:
      – Champ Gain,
      – Folatières,
      – Perrières,
      – Pucelles, –
      – Combettes,
      – Referts
Grand Cru:
(Highest Classification)

    • Aloxe-Corton:
      – Corton Charlemagne
    • Chablis
    • Chassagne-Montrachet
      – Batard-Montrachet
    • Pernand-Vergelesses:
      – Corton Charlemagne
    • Puligny-Montrachet:
      – Batard-Montrachet,
      – Bienvenues-Bâtard-Montrachet,
      – Montrachet

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


FRANCE – Recommended Wines
Burgundy – Red (Pinot Noir)

  • Characteristics:
    Typically leaner with more structure and grip, and often with more complexity than Pinot Noir from the the US. Flavors and aromas tend toward dark fruits and spice with earthy notes (truffles, damp earth, wet leaves, leather, etc.).

  • Best Areas:
    In Burgundy, the quality and style of the wine is critically dependent on the location of the vineyard and wines are classified based on their location.  Wines from a single location will generally have multiple producers, and wines produced there will have the same classification regardless of the producer. The major areas and their classification are listed in the chart below.
     Burgundy – Red      Burgundy – Red      Burgundy – Red      Burgundy – Red
     $25 – $50      $50 – $100+      $50 – $100+ (cont’d)      $$$+
    • Alain Hudelot-Noella
    • Bertrand Ambroise
    • Bruno Clair
    • Camille Giroud
    • Chanson
    • Daniel Bouland
    • David Moreau
    • Jean-Marc Pavelot
    • Jean-Noel Gagnard
    • Jean Paul Brun
    • Joseph Drouhin
    • Louis Boillot
    • Maison Louis Jadot
    • Michel Gros
    • Seguin Manuel
    • Simon Bize
    • Bruno Clair
    • Claude Dugat
    • Denis Bachelet
    • Drouhin-Laroze
    • Dujac
    • Emmanuel Rouget
    • Faiveley
    • Fourrier
    • Henri Gouges
    • Jacques Prieur
    • Jean-Marc Pavelot
    • Joseph Drouhin
    • Joseph Roty
    • Joseph Voillot
    • Louis Latour
    • Michel Gros
    • Rossignol Trapet
    • Hubert Lignier
    • Jean-Jacques Confuron
    • Lignier-Michelot
    • Louis Jadot
    • Lucien le Moine
    • Remoissenet
    • Robert Chevillon
    • Vincent Girardin
    • Armand Rousseau
    • Benjamin Leroux
    • Comte de Vogue
    • Romanée-Conti
    • Dugat
    • Dujac
    • Emmanuel Rouget
    • J-F Mugnier
    • Jacques Prieur
    • Joseph Drouhin
    • Leroy
    • Laurent
    • Louis Jadot
    • Lucien le Moine
Region & Village:
(Lowest Classification)

    • Auxey-Duresses
    • Blagny
    • Bourgogne Rouge
    • Chorey-lès-Beaune
    • Côte Chalonnaise
    • Marsannay
    • Pernand Vergelesses
    • Santenay
Village:

    • Chambolle Musigny
    • Clos de Vougeot
    • Gevrey Chambertin
    • Echezeaux
    • Morey St. Denis
    • Nuits St. Georges
    • Volnay
    • Vosne Romanee

Premier Cru: (cont’d)

    • Savigny-les-Beaune
      – Les Lavières,
      – Les Narbantons
    • Volnay
      – Les Caillerets,
      – Clos des Chênes,
      – Champans
    • Vosne Romanee
      – Les Beaux Monts,
      – Les Chaumes,
      – Les Suchots
Premier Cru:

    • Beaune:
      – Mouches, – Ursules,
      – Greves, – Bressandes,
      – Teurons
    • Chambolle Musigny:
      – Amoureuses,
      – Charmes,
      – Cras
    • Gevrey Chambertin:
      – Aux Combottes,
      – Les Cazetiers,
      – Lavaux St-Jacques
    • Echezeaux:
    • Morey St. Denis
      – Les Millandes,
      – Les Ruchots
    • Nuits St. Georges:
      – Aux Boudots,
      – Les Damodes,
      – Aux Murgers,
      – Les Pruliers,
      – Les St Georges,
      – Les Vaucrains
Grand Cru:
(Highest Classification)

    • Chambolle-Musigny:
      – Musigny
    • Echezeaux
    • Gevrey-Chambertin
      – Chambertin,
      – Chambertin Clos de Bèze,
      – Charmes-Chambertin,
      – Mazis-Chambertin,
      – Latricières-Chambertin,
      – Ruchottes-Chambertin
    • Morey-Saint-Denis
      – Bonnes Mares,
      – Clos de la Roche,
      – Clos des Lambrays,
      – Clos de Tart
    • Vougeot
    • Vosne-Romanée
      – Romanée-Conti
      ($12,000+),
      – La Tâche ($3,000+),
      – Richebourg ($2,000+)

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



FRANCE – Recommended Wines
Bordeaux – Medoc, aka “Left Bank” (Cabernet Blend)

  • Characteristics:
    – Red bordeaux wines are always a blend of different grape varieties, with either Cabernet or Merlot being the dominant grape.
    – Cabernet-blends are typically powerful, rich wines that age a bit better than merlot-blends. Due to the elevated tannins and acidity, most Left Bank Bordeaux wines need time in the bottle to mellow and develop
    – In their youth, the wines are dominated by dark ripe fruits, tannin and acidity, but they change dramatically as the wine ages in the bottle. The flavors become more subtle and complex, and the texture changes to a softer style with a silky or velvety texture.
    (see “How long to cellar wine – Aging Guidelines”)

  • Classification:
    – In Bordeaux, unlike Burgundy, wines are classified based on the producer, not the location. The cabernet-based wines are classified into one of five categories (called “growths) ranging from First Growth (the best wines) down to Fifth Growth (lesser wines), and then the unclassified wines.
  • Best Areas:
    – St-Estephe, Pauillac, St. Julien, Margaux and Graves.
     Bordeaux – Cabernet      Bordeaux – Cabernet      Bordeaux – Cabernet      Bordeaux – Cabernet
     $25 – $50      $50 – $100+      $100+      $$$+
    (Unclassified &Fifth)

    • Brane-Catenac
    • Cantenac Brown
    • D’Armailhac
    • Grand Puy Ducasse
    • Grands Chenes
    • Haut Bergey
    • Haut Marbuzet
    • La Tour Carnet
      (Fourth Growth)
    • La Vieille Cure
    • Meyney
    • Phelan Segur
    • Reignac
    • Sociando Mallet
    (Third to Fifth)

    • Batailley
    • Beychevele
    • Clerc Milon
    • Duhart-Milan
    • Grand Puy Lacoste
    • Gruaud Larose
      (Second Growth)
    • Haut Bages Liberal
    • Lafon Rochet
    • La Lagune
    • Malescot-St-Exupery
    • Rauzan-Segla
    • Talbot
    (Second and Third)

    • Cos D’Estournel
    • Ducru Beaucaillou
    • La Mission Haut-Brion*
    • Leoville-Barton
    • Leoville Las Cases
    • Leoville-Poyferre
    • Lynch Bages
      (Fifth Growth)
    • Montrose
    • Pichon Baron
    • Pichon Lalande
    • Pontet-Canet
      (Fifth Growth)

*Not officially
classified

    (First Growths)

    • Haut Brion
    • Lafite Rothchild
    • Latour
    • Margaux
    • Mouton-Rothschild

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



FRANCE – Recommended Wines
Bordeaux – St. Emilion & Pomerol, aka “Right Bank” (Merlot Blend)

  • Characteristics:
    – Red bordeaux wines are always a blend of different grape varieties, with either Cabernet or Merlot being the dominant grape.
    – Merlot blends tend to be softer, smoother, more juicy and are usually ready to be drunk much earlier than Left Bank Bordeaux.
    – When young, they have less acidity and feel richer, softer and more plush than Cabernet-based wine. These wines are among the world’s most opulent wines because of their sensuous textures.
    – Aging Bordeaux wine is a matter of personal taste, however the better Right Bank wines clearly develop more complexity and the textures become more velvety with bottle age. (see “How long to cellar wine – Aging Guidelines”)
  • Best Areas:
    – St-Émilion, Pomerol, and to a lesser extent, Fronsac.
     Bordeaux – Merlot      Bordeaux – Merlot      Bordeaux – Merlot      Bordeaux – Merlot
     $25 – $50      $50 – $100      $100+      $$$+
    • Barde-Haut
    • Clos des Jacobins
    • Dassault
    • Destieux
    • Fombrauge
    • Grand-Mayne
    • Haut Brisson
    • Haut Brisson La Reserve
    • La Confession
    • La Croix de Gay
    • Larmande
    • La Vieille Cure
    • Beau-Sejour-Becot
    • Bon Pasteur
    • Canon la Gaffeliere
    • Clinet
    • Clos de l’Oratoire
    • Clos de Sarpe
    • Faugeres
    • Figeac
    • Larcis-Ducasse
    • La Conseillante
    • La Dominique
    • Larcis-Ducasse
    • Troplong-Mondot
    • Angelus
    • Beausejour (Duffau)
    • Certan de May
    • Clos Fourtet
    • La Fleur Petrus
    • Latour a Pomerol
    • Vieux Chateau Certan
    • Ausone
    • Cheval Blanc
    • Lafleur
    • Le Pin
    • Pavie
    • Petrus ($2000+)

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



FRANCE – Recommended Wines
Southern Rhone & Chateauneuf-du-Pape (Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre)

  • Characteristics:
    – The wines from Southern Rhone range in quality from basic Cote-du-Rhone up thru Chateauneuf-du-Pape.
    – Cote-du-Rhone is dominated by red wines made with a minimum of 40% Grenache. They have flavors of red fruits, leather, tobacco and garrigue (the wild herbs from the area). Typically light and fruity, the best examples can be rich, spicy and full-bodied. Almost all are best drunk young.
    – Chateauneuf-du-Pape is made in many styles, but all share the common characteristics of red and black cherries, raspberry, strawberry, kirsch, spice, earth and garrigue. The textures can be lush and supple when young, and take on silky characteristics with age.
     Rhone Blend      Chateauneuf-du-Pape      Chateauneuf-du-Pape
     $25 – $50      $25 – $50      $50 – $100+
    • Coudoulet de Beaucastel
    • Delas
      – St.-Esprit
    • La Garrigue
      – Cuvee Romaine
    • Les Grands Bois
      – Les Trois Soeurs
      – Cuvee Phillippine
    • St. Cosme
      – Cotes du Rhone
    • Chante Cigale
    • La Nerthe
    • Mont-Redon
    • Clos Saint Jean
    • Mas de Boislauzon
    • Pierre Usseglio
    • Xavier
    • Beaucastel
    • Bosquet des Papes
    • Charvin
    • Clos des Papes
    • Janasse
    • Marcoux
    • Grand Veneur
      – Les Origines
    • Pégaü
    • Rayas
    • Vieux Télégraphe

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



FRANCE – Recommended Wines
Sancerre (Sauvignon Blanc)

  • Sauvignon Blanc Characteristics:
    – Sancerre wines are bone dry, highly aromatic with intense flavors of peaches and gooseberries.

  • Sancerre Best Areas:
    – The three villages of Bué, Chavignol and Ménétréol-sous-Sancerre are considered the finest.
     Sauvignon Blanc      Sauvignon Blanc      Sauvignon Blanc
     $0 – $25      $25 – $50      $50 – $100
    • Thomas-Labaille – Chavignol
      – Les Monts Damnés
    • Franck Millet
    • Gérard Boulay – Chavignol
    • Pascal Jolivet – Sancerre
      – Pouilly-Fumé
    • Alphonse Mellot – Génération XIX
      – La Moussière, – Satellite
    • Claude Riffault – Les Chailloux
    • Couhins-Lurton Blanc
    • Domaine Vacheron
    • Francois Cotat
    • Gérard Boulay – La Côte
    • Lucien Crochet – La Croix du Roy
    • Pascal Cotat
    • Pascal Jolivet
    • Alphonse Mellot – Edmund
    • Edmond Vatan – Clos la Néore

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



ITALY – Recommended Wines
Tuscany (Chianti, Super Tuscan)

  • Characteristics: Chianti
    – Chianti is a medium-bodied, very dry red wine from Tuscany, Italy made with Sangiovese grapes. It tastes primarily of red and black cherry, strawberry, herbs and spice. Usually with racy acidity and mild tannins, and often has some bitterness. As the wine ages, aromas of tobacco and leather can emerge.
  • Classification: Chianti
    – There is a strict classification system for Chianti with the top three being Chianti Classico, Chianti Classico Riserva and Chianti Classico Gran Selezione (Great Selection).
  • Characteristics: Super Tuscan
    – Super Tuscan wines are red wines from Tuscany that do not conform to the requirements for Chianti. They are blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, and/or Sangiovese. They tend to be modern, big and rich with Bordeaux-like or California Cabernet-like flavors and textures.
     Chianti      Chianti      Super-Tuscan      Super-Tuscan
     $15 – $30      $25 – $50+      $15 – $30      $25 – $50+
    • Ama Classico
    • Antinori Classico
      – Riserva
    • Badia a Coltibuono
      – Classico
    • Barone Ricasoli
      – Classico Brolio
    • Brancaia
      – Classico, – Riserva
    • Castell’in Villa
      – Classico
    • Castellina
      – Riserva Il Poggiale
    • degli Dei
    • Gabbiano – Classico
    • Monsanto – Riserva
    • Felsina – Riserva
    • Fontodi – Classico
    • Frescobaldi
      – Nipozzano Riserva
    • Il Molino di Grace
      – Classico, – Riserva
    • La Maialina
      – Riserva
    • Marchesi Mazzei
      – Classico Fonterutoli
    • Querciabella
    • Rampolla – Classico
    • San Felice
      – Il Grigio
    • San Giusto
      – a Rentennano
    • Volpaia
      – Classico, – Riserva
    • Antinori
      – Badia a Passignano
    • Barone Ricasoli
      – Castello di Brolio
    • Castellina
      – Riserva
    • Castello di Ama
      – Riserva
      – Bellavista
    • Fattoria di Fèlsina
      – Rancia
    • Fontodi
      – Vigna del Sorbo
    • Marchesi Mazzei
      – Fonterutoli
    • Monsanto
      – Riserva Il Poggio
    • San Giusto
      – a Rentennano
    • Antinori – Toscana (S)
    • Carpineta Fontalpino
      – Do Ut Des (S)
    • Frassinello
      – Rocca di Frassinello (S)
    • Frescobaldi
      – Le Sughere (S)
      – Tenuta di Castiglioni (S)
    • La Massa – Toscana (S)
    • Le Macchiole
      – Bolgheri (S)
    • – Gratius (S)
    • Luce Della Vite
      – Lucente (S)
    • Ornellaia
      – Le Volte (S)
    • Perlato del Bosco (S)
    • Petrolo Torrione (S)
    • Sette Ponti
      – Crognolo (S)
    • Tolaini
      – Valdisanti (S)
    • Tua Rita
      – Perlato del Bosco (S)
    • Volpaia – Balifico (S)
  • (S) = Sangiovese Blend
  • (B) = Bordeaux Blend

    $50+ (cont’d)

    • La Massa
      – Giorgio Primo
    • Marchesi Mazzei
      – Siepi (S), – Mix 36 (S)
    • Montevertine
      – Le Pergole Torte (S)
    • Ornellaia – Ornellaia (B),
      – Masseto (B),
      – Le Serre Nuove (B)
    • Petrolo – Galatrona (B)
    • Rampolla – Sammarco (S)
    • Sette Ponti – Oreno (S)
  • (S) = Sangiovese Blend
  • (B) = Bordeaux Blend
    • Arceno
      – Il Fauno di Arcanum (S)
    • Brancaia – Tre (S)
    • degli Dei
      – Cavalli (B)
    • Fattoria Petrolo
      – Torrione (S)
    • Guado al Tasso
      (Antinori)
      – Bolgheri Il Bruciato (S)
    • Marchesi Mazzei
      – Philip (B)
    • Montevertine
      – Toscana (S)
    • Ruffino
      – Modus (S)
    • San Guido
      – Guidalberto (S)
    • Sette Ponti
      – Crognolo (S)
    • Tesoro
      – Sondraia (B)

    $50+

    • Antinori – Solaia (S)
      – Tignanello (S)
    • Argiano – Solengo (B)
    • Brancaia – Ilatraia (S)
    • Felsina – Fontalloro (S)
    • Fontodi – Flaccianello (S)
    • Guado al Tasso (Antinori)
      – Bolgheri Superiore (B),
      – Matarocchio (B)
    • Grattamacco
      – Bolgheri Superiore (S)
      – Matarocchio (Cab Franc)
    • Isole e Olena
      – Cepparello (S)
  • (S) = Sangiovese Blend
  • (B) = Bordeaux Blend

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



ITALY – Recommended Wines
Tuscany (Brunello)

  • Characteristics:
    -It’s a red wine made from 100 percent of a specific clone of Sangiovese grapes that are grown only in Montalcino. Brunellos are big, intense, dry and complex with high acidity levels and flavors of blackberry, black cherry, aged balsamic, chocolate and leather.
  • Classification & Styles:
    – There is no classification system, but most producers make a Rosso, a normale and a riserva bottling. There are a wide variety of styles ranging from traditional with more aromatics, higher tannins and acidity, and requiring extended aging, to a more modern, accessible, softer, fruit-forward style.
  • Aging:
    – Brunello should be aged for a few years, and it will continue to improve for up to 25 or 30 years. As it ages, Brunello softens out and becomes pale and brick red with aromas of fig, carob, sweet tobacco and espresso.
     Brunello      Brunello      Brunello
     $25 – $50      $50 – $100      $100+
    • Caparzo
    • Caprili
    • Collelceto
    • Fanti
    • Fattoria dei Barbi
    • La Lecciaia
    • LLa Mannella
    • La Poderina
    • Molino di Sant’Antimo
    • Piccini
    • Pinino
    • Podere La Vigna
    • Poggio Nardone
    • Potazzine
    • Renieri
    • Talenti
    • Tiezzi Reserva Vigna Soccorsco
    • Villa I Cipressi

Brunello $50-$100 (cont’d)

    • Tassi
    • Terralsole
    • Tenute Silvio
    • Uccelliera
    • Val di Suga
    • Vasco Sassetti
    • Altesino
    • Camigliano
    • Canalicchio di Sopra
    • Caparzo
    • Castelgiocondo (Frescobaldi)
    • Castello Banfi
    • Castello Romitorio
    • Castiglion del Bosco
    • Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona
    • Conti Costanti
    • Donatella Cinelli Colombini
    • Fanti
    • Fattoria dei Barbi
    • Gaja – Pieve Santa Restituta
    • Gianni Brunelli
    • Il Marroneto
    • La Rasina
    • La Serena
    • La Velona
    • Lisini
    • MastroJanni
    • Mocali
    • Pertimali (Livio Sassetti)
    • Poggio Antico
    • Ragnaie
    • Siro Pacenti
    • Argiano
    • Biondi-Santi
    • Canalicchio di Sopra
    • Casanova di Neri
    • Castelgiocondo
    • Castello Banfi
    • Cerbaiona
    • Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona
    • Fattoria dei Barbi
    • Fuligni
    • Gaja – Rennina
    • Gianfranco Soldera
    • Il Morroneto, – Grazie
    • La Gerla
    • La Serena – Gemini
    • Luce
    • Poggio Antico
    • Poggio di Sotto
    • Siro Pacenti
    • Soldera
    • Tassi
    • Tenuta Greppo (Biondi-Santi)
    • Tenute Silvio Nardi
    • Valdicava

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



ITALY – Recommended Wines
Piedmont (Barolo)

  • Characteristics:
    – Barolos tend to be rich, concentrated full bodied wines with pronounced tannins and acidity. Surprisingly, the wines are almost always lightly colored and are never opaque. Barolos have the potential for a wide range of complex and exotic aromas with tar and roses being common notes.

  • Classification & Styles:
    – While there is no official designation of cru vineyard in the Barolo zone, the high prices paid by negociants for some vineyards has elevated them to “cru” status.
    – Stylistic differences are due to differences in soil type and range from aromatic and fruity wines that age relatively sooner, to more intense, structured wines that need more time to mature.
     Barolo      Barolo      Barolo
     $25 – $50      $50 – $100      $100+
    • A. & G. Fantino
    • Attilio Ghisolfi
    • Aurelio Settimo
    • Beni di Batasiolo
    • Bosco Agostino
    • Ca‘ Rozzeria
    • Cascina Adelaide
    • Cascina Ballarin
    • Ceretto
    • Fontanafredda Serralunga
    • Fratelli Allesandria
    • Fratelli Brovia
    • Fratelli Monchiero
    • G.B. Burlotto
    • G D Vajra
    • Giacomo Fenocchio
    • Giacomo Grimaldi
    • Giovanni Manzone
    • Guido Porro
    • Luigi Pira
    • Marcarini
    • Marchesi di Barolo
    • Massolino
    • Mauro Veglio
    • Oddero
    • Rivetto
    • Roagna
    • Rocche Costamagna
    • Aldo Conterno
    • Andrea Oberto
    • Aurelio Settimo
    • Fratelli Brovia
    • G.B. Burlotto
    • Cavalloto
    • Ceretto
    • Conterno Fantino
    • Giacomo Conterno
    • Cordero di Montezemolo
    • Damilano
    • E Pira-Chiara Boschis
    • Elio Altare
    • Elio Grasso
    • Elvio Cogno
    • Ettore Germano
    • Fontanafredda
    • Fratelli Alessandria
    • Luigi Einaudi
    • Luigi Pira
    • Marchesi di Barolo
    • Massolino
    • Mario Marengo
    • Mauro Molino
    • Mauro Veglio
    • Michele Chiarlo
    • Paolo Scavino
    • Pecchenino
    • Renato Ratti
    • Silvio Grasso
    • Vietti
    • Aldo Conterno – Gran Bussia
    • Bartolo Mascarello
    • Cavallotto – San Giuseppe
    • Conterno Fantino
    • Domenico Clerico – Percristina
    • Giacomo Conterno – Francia
    • Giuseppe Mascarello
    • Gaja – Sorì Tildìn
    • Giuseppe Rinaldi
    • Luciano Sandrone
    • Paolo Scavin
    • Roberto Voerzio – Cerequio
    • Vietti

Best Vineyards:

    • Brunate
    • Bussia
    • Cannubi
    • Cerequi
    • Ginestra
    • Lazzarito
    • Monprivato
    • Rocche
    • Santo Stefano di Perno
    • Sarmazza
    • Vigna Rionda
    • Villero

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



AUSTRALIA – Recommended Wines
Shiraz, Blends

  • Characteristics:
    – Shiraz in Australia is a dry, full-bodied, long-lived, intense, fruity wine with flavors and aromas of dark berries, black currants, chocolate, black pepper, olive and spice. It is opaque and purple to almost black in color.
  • Best Areas:
    – Barossa Valley (best), Hunter Valley and McLaren Vale
     Shiraz, Blends      Shiraz, Blends      Shiraz, Blends
     $15 – $30      $25 – $50      $50+
    • Clarendon Hills
    • D’Arenberg
    • Elderton
      – Estate, – Shiraz
    • Jim Barry
      – The Lodge Hill
    • John Duval
      – Entity
    • Leeuwin
      – Shiraz Art
    • Penfolds
      – Bin 8, – Bin 28, – Bin 128
    • Two Hands
      – Angels, – Gnarly
    • Clarendon Hills
    • Henry’s Drive
      – Shiraz, – Reserve
    • Kilikanoon
      – Covenant
    • Kalleske
    • Mollydooker
    • Penfolds
      – Bin 389
    • Penley Estate – Special Select
    • Two Hands
      – Lily, – Max, – Samantha
    • Yalumba
      – The signature
    • Clarendon Hills
      – Astralis
    • Clonakilla
    • D’Arenberg
      – Dead Arm
    • Elderton
      – Command
    • Greenock
    • Kaesler
      – Old Bastard
    • Kilikanoon
      – Oracle
    • Penfolds
      – Magill, – St. Henri, – RWT
    • Two Hands
      – Bellas

  $$$+

    • Penfolds Grange ($700+)

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor



AUSTRALIA / NEW ZEALAND – Recommended Wines
Sauvignon Blanc

  • Sauvignon Blanc Characteristics:
    – Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand’s Marlborough region can be quite herbaceous and is marked by its intense gooseberry, citrus and tropical fruit aromas and flavors.
    – Depending on where in Australia the Sauvignon Blanc originates, it runs the gamut of flavors from herbal, grassy, sour citrus and gooseberry, to passionfruit and tropical fruit.

  • Sauvignon Blanc Best Areas:
    – Marlborough, Adelaide Hills and Margaret River
     Sauvignon Blanc      Sauvignon Blanc      Sauvignon Blanc
     $0 – $25      $25 – $50      $50 – $100
    • Astrolabe – Province
    • Dog Point
    • Greywacke (all)
    • Kim Crawford – Marlborough
    • Loveblock
    • Mud House
    • Palliser Estate
    • Te Mata – Cape Crest
    • Cloudy Bay – Marlborough
    • – Te Koko

    • Dog Point – Section 94

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


How long to cellar wine
Aging Guidelines:

    • If the wine costs less than $25 … Drink it up!
    • Don’t bother aging wine if you do not have proper storage (55-58 deg F & 60% humidity or more is optimum)
    • Red wines will typically age longer than white wines
    • Higher classified wines should age longer than lower classified wines
    • More expensive wines will typically age longer than inexpensive wines
    • Great vintages will age longer than poor vintages
      (Add 25% to the aging times for great vintages and reduce 25% for lesser ones.)
Country / Region Wine Aging Window (years)
US

    • California
    • Oregon
    • Washington
 

    • Chardonnay
    • Cabernet Sauvignon
    • Pinot Noir
    • Zinfandel
    • Merlot
    • Pinot Noir
    • Cabernet Sauvignon
 

    • 2 – 6
    • 5 – 20+
    • 2 – 8+
    • 2 – 6
    • 3 – 10+
    • 3 – 10+
    • 4 – 12+
FRANCE

    • Burgundy
    • Bordeaux
    • Rhone
 :

    • White (Premier or Grand Cru)
    • White (Region or Village)
    • White – Chablis (Premier or Grand Cru)
    • White – Chablis (Other)
    • Red (Premier or Grand Cru)
    • Red (Region or Village)
    • Bordeaux – Cabernet Blend (1st – 3rd Growth)
    • Bordeaux – Cabernet Blend (Other)
    • Bordeaux – Merlot Blend (Premier Grand Cru)
    • Bordeaux – Merlot Blend (Other)
    • Rhone
    • Chateauneuf-du-Pape
 

    • 5 – 10+
    • 2 – 6
    • 5 – 15+
    • 3 – 7+
    • 5 – 15+
    • 3 – 10
    • 8 – 30
    • 5 – 15
    • 5 – 25+
    • 5 – 15
    • 3 – 6
    • 5 – 25
ITALY

    • Tuscany
    • Piedmont
 

    • Chianti /
    • Super-Tuscan
    • Brunello
    • Barolo
 

    • 4 – 10
    • 6 – 10
    • 5 – 25
    • 10 – 30
AUSTRALIA
    • Shiraz
    • Cabernet Sauvignon
    • Chardonnay
    • 5 – 30+
    • 4 – 20+
    • 1 – 3
SPAIN
    • Rioja
    • Ribera del Duero
    • 6 – 20+
    • 6 – 30+

Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor


Appendix

I first started Rick’s Picks back in about 1990 at the request of several of my friends who enjoyed wine, but did not know what to buy. They kept asking for advice, so I created a list to give them.  

I thought it would be interesting to see some of those early lists for comparison with today’s version.

Here is the list from 1994:

Ricks Picks 1994
Return to “Contents”
 
©2017 WineDealAdvisor