2015 Bien Nacido Estate ‘LXXIII Reserve’ Pinot Noir$95.00WA 94WE 96VN 94Robert Parker's Wine Advocate 94: There are 127 cases of the lovely 2015 Bien Nacido Vineyard LXXIII Pinot Noir, which offers up a deep-pitched bouquet of crushed cassis, cracked pepper and nori that's a bit darker and more brooding than usual, without the suggestions of the candied peel and Christmas cake that this often displays. On the palate, it's medium bodied, concentrated and structured around a fine-grained chassis of tannin and juicy acids. Give this youthfully tight-knit Pinot Noir a few years in the cellar, then follow it for a decade.Wine Enthusiast 96: Intense cranberry aromas meet with smoked pork roast, crushed slate and pinches of sage, thyme and white pepper on the nose of this luxury-level bottling. The palate is florally flush in touches of rose and tarragon, set against snappy red-plum fruit and racy acidity.Vinous 94: The 2015 Pinot Noir LXXIII Bien Nacido Vineyards is gorgeous. Inky blue and purplish fruit, licorice, menthol, sage, violet and lavender infuse the 2015, a wine of extreme richness and unctuosity. It will be fascinating to see how the 2015 develops during its aging. The 2015 is dense and rich, with an almost Syrah-like element of savoriness on the finish.
2017 Beaux Frères ‘The Beaux Frères Vineyard’ Pinot Noir$122.00WS 95JS 96Wine Spectator 95: Combines structure with verve, offering richly expressive raspberry, violet and orange peel flavors that take on polish and complexity toward well buffed tannins. Drink now through 2028.James Suckling 96: There’s a real sense of depth and detail here with fresh cherries and blueberries, swathed in vanilla-dusted violets, fresh-cut roasting herbs and biscuit spices. The palate has a very plush and smoothly rendered feel with a long, smooth and seamless run of ripe blueberries and cherries. Concentrated and elegant pinot with a long, long finish. Drink across the next decade.
2013 Paolo Scavino ‘Rocche dell’Annunziata Riserva’ Barolo$247.00WA 97JS 95WE 94Robert Parker's Wine Advocate 97: The 2013 Barolo Rocche dell'Annunziata Riserva was released in January of 2019, and once again it looks to be a top prize. Licorice and flowers dominate the bouquet, and its beautiful red fruit is generous throughout. This wine has always been a beauty and consistently has had a high price tag to reflect that quality, going back to the first vintages of the 1990s. It has regularly sold for about $200 every year for the last decade. These vines are old, some of them very old (reaching the ripe age of 60 years old in 1990s, when many of them were replanted with carefully selected clones), producing an elegance and concentration that brings intensity and a high standard of aromas. This Barolo without a doubt shows its pedigree and a quality of noble perfumes that demonstrate characteristics of the greatest Nebbiolo vintages, all delivered with excellent concentration. The magic lingers on the palate, right up to the finish.James Suckling 95: Aromas of white truffles and dried red cherries here with an earthy nuance that makes for a complex and compelling nose. The palate has a deep and dense shape and delivers a wide array of rich cherry and plum flavors. Some handy spice here, too. Drink or hold.Wine Enthusiast 94: Violet, iris, exotic spice and menthol aromas lead the way on this fragrant red. The firmly structured palate boasts elegance and tension, delivering cranberry, pomegranate, licorice and white pepper set against tightly knit, fine-grained tannins and bright acidity. It’s still youthfully austere and will be even better after several more years of aging. Drink 2023–2033.