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Two thousand twenty-two in Austria is a vintage that had the misfortune of following a stellar year. With the spectacular 2021 vintage still fresh in producers’ memories, nobody was waxing lyrical about 2022. It is one of those years that will live in the shadows and eventually be quietly reassessed, especially since the combination of slightly more moderate alcohol levels, with not-quite-as-much stuffing provides surprising drinking pleasure. But, talking about stuffing, there is plenty of that in the best wines.
France: Loire, featured
When it comes to Loire Valley reds, there is one cult producer whose bottles consistently steal the limelight: Clos Rougeard. Following the inauguration of its revamped winery, financed by the Mariana-Trench-deep pockets of its new owners, it’s timely to consider the impact of this unicorn on local producers and international consumers.
United States: Washington, featured
The smoke-plagued 2020 vintage produced wines that are significantly better than originally expected. By comparison, the 2021s show the effects of unrelenting heat and a compressed season. Despite those challenges, top producers found balance in creating opulent wines that will please a broad audience.
featured, Australia, Argentina featured, Verticals & Retrospectives
There are more famous Chardonnays in Australia, but none are more keenly collected or tightly held than Rick Kinzbrunner’s enigmatic Giaconda. Originally conceived in California, Giaconda not only put the small outpost of Beechworth in Victoria on the international map, it also helped an entire nation to find its Chardonnay mojo. A rare chance to taste the last decade of vintages exceeded expectations and showcased a world-class wine that can compete with the very best.
featured, Italy: Piedmont
Festa del Barolo is right around the corner. As we make the final preparations, so many memories of the 2023 edition come rushing back. In 2023, we presented an expanded program of tastings, seminars and dinners. This is a look at some of the many highlights.
In the initial stages of the fellowship process with Vinous, I had composed a list of regions I was interested in writing about. In addition to my top areas of interest, I offered a supplemental shortlist of honorable mentions. One of those was Friuli Venezia-Giulia. Despite being a professional wine buyer, I realized that my perception of the region was narrow and inaccurate. A place I once understood as a Pinot Grigio and orange wine haven is a patchwork of fine wine producers struggling to form an identity on a global stage.
featured, United States: Oregon
Producers in Oregon have made a remarkable comeback following the nearly non-existent 2020s, with two vintages that are stylistically yin and yang, yet are sure to win the hearts of long-time collectors.
France: Burgundy, featured
I cannot help thinking that Burgundy, or specifically the Côte d’Or, is analogous to a passenger in a sports car in which the accelerator has become stuck, and there is no means of slowing down. Everything hurtles past faster and faster. Everything is sped up. – Burgundy 2021: The Market
United States: California, featured
Pinot Noir leads the way in what is turning out to be a surprising set of new releases from Sonoma. The 2022 growing season was marked by several key events, most notably record-setting heat over Labor Day weekend. Not surprisingly, there is some variability, but there are also plenty of stunning wines that are well worth seeking out. This Preview covers new releases from Sonoma and neighboring regions. As is our custom for this article, we will post frequent updates in the coming weeks, which we feel is the best way to keep readers current, given the sheer volume of wines released this time of year.
France: Burgundy, featured
The Burgundy 2022 vintage defies all expectations. At best, it presents life-affirming, vivacious wines that leave you grinning like a Cheshire cat. Quality aside, the vintage raises two questions: How was this possible and who will be able to afford the wines?