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#4 2012 Casanova di Neri Brunello di Montalcino
Casanova di Neri was established in 1971 when Giovanni Neri acquired a large estate within Montalcino. Over the years their continuing goal has been the search for land believed to be optimal for growing high quality grapes. There are now 120 acres of vineyards divided amongst four distinct sites. Improved quality in the vineyards has led to more attention in the winery, from vinification to the careful selection of casks for aging but always with the maximum respect for tradition. Today the property is operated and wines made by Giacomo Neri, who states, “Our greatest pride is our vineyards: their high quality and their history.”
Wine Spectator 95 Points: Precise balance sets the stage for cherry, black currant, violet and tobacco flavors in this smooth, intense red. The tannins are present yet well-integrated and this persists with echoes of fruit and tobacco. Reveals an element of spice on the aftertaste.
#6 2016 Domaine Huet Le Monts Vouvray
Since its founding in 1928, Vouvray’s Domaine Huet has been the standard-bearer for great, age-worthy Chenin Blanc. And to this day, year after year, the estate produces some of the world’s most compelling white wines—and in a remarkable range that spans sparkling, dry, semi-dry, and breathtaking dessert styles.
Today, Domaine Huet may be making its most consistently great wines. As was one of the earliest adopters of biodynamic practices, and with years of experience working with the appellation’s greatest terroirs, winemaker Jean-Bernard Berthome and his team are achieving a fascinating level of transparency, purity, and knife-edged balance in the wines.
Wine Spectator 95 Points: A refined tropical nose of guava and pineapple with a touch of fresh almonds and zesty citrus. On the mouthwatering palate, a waxy and creamy textured surface gently coating a stony structure. Notes of caramel and tropical fruit permeate through a long uplifting finish.