25 New Whites and Reds to Welcome in 2017
It’s always good to start off the beginning of a new year by sampling a variety of whites and reds from around the world. The selection here includes an excellent group of spicier white wines — gewürztraminers from Alsace, a German riesling, and herbal sauvignon blancs from Marlborough — along with some interesting new wines from Beaujolais, among other delights.
Noble Vines “446” San Bernabe Chardonnay 2015 ($10). A good, basic, Monterey County chardonnay with mellow fruit, light wood notes, and good structure.
Nobilo Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2016 ($11). Very good with moderate herbal flavors, fresh gooseberries, and light lime — a lighter-bodied white.
M. Chapoutier Bila-Haut Côtes du Roussillon Villages White 2015 ($15). Enjoyably spicy with tangy fruitiness and a dry finish.
Nik Weis Selection St. Urbans-Hof “Urban” Mosel Riesling 2015 ($15). A characteristic riesling petrol nose with tart and juicy fruit — enjoyable.
Esporão Quinta dos Murcas Assobio Douro White 2015 ($17). A nice combination of tropical and mellow fruits; a tad murky with some light, dusty tannins.
Nobilo Icon Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2016 ($17). Exotic, fruit-forward aromas with tangy lime and fresh kiwi fruit.
Kim Crawford Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2016 ($18). For those who love that “Marlborough taste,” this wine will not disappoint — limey, crisp, and grassy.
Trimbach Gewürztraminer 2013 ($21). Quite nice — smooth and fruity but with balancing spicy berries and a tart finish.
Georges Duboeuf Domaine les Chenevières Mâcon-Villages 2015 ($22). Good flavors and a little sweeter in impact than most Mâcons.
Georges Duboeuf Émile Beranger Pouilly-Fuissé 2015 ($30). Well-made wine, tightly wound with good structure and lots of metallic minerality.
Thomas George Russian River Chardonnay 2013 ($30). Very enjoyable with a good combination of juiciness and creaminess blended with hints of toasty vanilla and mellow pears.
Albert Mann Gewürztraminer 2015 ($31). Medium-sweet, a tad plump, a little spicy — perhaps better as a sipper than a table wine.
Pierre Sparr Mambourg Gewürztraminer Grand Cru 2011 ($48). Perfect as a sipping wine or with a fruit-custard tart; fragrant with some carbon in the nose; very, very fruity and sweet (red raspberry, lychee) but well-balanced.
Joseph Drouhin Puligny-Montrachet 2014 ($75). Just lovely — silky yet quite lively and long on the palate with hints of fresh oak in the finish.
Pahlmeyer Napa Valley Chardonnay 2014 ($75). Delicious with mellow fruit, vanilla cream, well-integrated wood notes, and good volume.
Joseph Drouhin Folatiéres Puligny-Montrachet Ier Cru 2014 ($115). Tangy apple, lots of mineral flavors, and stony notes with plenty of green fruit, even lime; full-bodied yet crisp.
Esporão Quinta dos Murcas Assobio Douro Red 2013 ($14). Mellow cherry fruit, some chalkiness, moderate weight, good balance, and acidity.
Domaine de Montalon Bordeaux Supérieur 2011 ($17). A softer, quite enjoyable Bordeaux with a good blend of fruity and savory flavors and a good finish.
Garzón Tannat 2014 ($17). Though not a great wine, this Uruguayan entry is the kind of individualistic wine that experienced drinkers like to come across — very full-flavored and very fruity with hints of cherries and blackberries with prickly edges.
Christophe Pacalet Moulin-a-Vent 2014 ($19). The earthier, mushroom-y side of Beaujolais with pastel fruitiness.
Georges Duboeuf Domaine des Quatre Vents Fleurie 2015 ($22). Assertive in a good way with tangy cherries, good structure, and balance.
Julien Guillot Les Pierres Bleues Beaujolais-Villages 2014 ($24). Lean and well-structured but with juicy fruitiness of cherries and strawberries.
19 Crimes “The Warden” South Eastern Australia Red 2015 ($24). For fruit-forward fanatics — super-ripe, sweeter than most, and very granular on the palate.
Esporão Quinta dos Murcas Douro Red Reserva 2011 ($37). Made from old vines with foot-treading of grapes, this is a spicy, full-bodied wine with red and dark fruits, lots of tannins, and a touch of tartness.
Thomas George Russian River Pinot Noir 2012 ($43). Very nice and very elegant with ripe, rooty flavors that make their presence felt on the palate without being big or grapey.