I realize the Top 100 information has been available online for a little while, but I usually don’t bother reading about it until it comes out in the magazine, mainly since I rarely see many of the wines I am personally interested in that are on the list.
Now that the article is in the December 31, 2009 issue, I thought I would look it over. I noticed two things right away. Overall, there seems to be a trend to lower priced selections this year. And I actually saw several wines/wineries that I am familiar with, although in most cases I have not had the current year’s bottlings:
#1 Columbia Crest Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley Reserve 2005: While I have not had this particular wine, we did have a nice visit at the winery a few years back.
#4 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast 2007: In general, I am not a Pinot drinker, but a good friend shared some of his Kosta Browne with me a while back and it was pretty darn tasty; not sure if it was this bottling, though.
#12 Saxum Broken Stones Paso Robles: A Paso star that I really want to try. If anyone wants to share some Saxum, let me know!
#14 Two Hands Shiraz Barossa Valley Bella’s Garden 2007: I’ve always enjoyed this winery’s Garden Series of wines. I also highly recommend their screw top wines: Gnarly Dudes, Bad Impersonator, Angel’s Share and Yesterday’s Hero are the ones that come to mind.
#17 Carlisle Syrah Russian River Valley Papa’s Block 2007: Carlisle is on my list of all time favorite Syrah and Zinfandel producers. I’ve already done an article about them, so I’ll let that do the talking: http://evewine101.blogspot.com/2009/09/michael-perlis-visits-carlisle-winery.html
#22 Tensley Syrah Santa Barbara County Colson Canyon Vineyard 2007: Had a bottle of Tensley Syrah at a recent visit to Rosemary’s Restaurant in Las Vegas. Actually, we had two bottles. Enough said.
#24 Penfolds Shiraz South Australia St. Henri 2005: Penfolds has such a great lineup at all price points. Anybody have any Grange to share?
#38 Chateau Ste. Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills Canoe Ridge Estate 2006: Visited them on the same trip as Columbia Crest. Had a great wine pairing lunch in their private dining room, but that’s a whole other story.
#39 Yalumba Viognier Eden Valley 2008: Great Viognier from a great winery. And only $19!
#47 Orin Swift The Prisoner Napa Valley 2007: For me, this wine always needs a little cellar time to let the various elements [Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Petite Sirah] come together.
#82 d’Arenberg Shiraz McLaren Vale The Stump Jump 2008: Another great Australian winery that hits all the price points. My favorite is The Dead Arm.
#83 Bodegas Juan Gil Jumilla 2006: A great producer of Monastrell [Mourvedre]. And only $16!
#91 Four Vines Zinfandel Paso Robles Biker 2007: Four Vines totally rocks! They make great Zinfandel and Syrah. Also, check out their “Freak Show” blends.
I’m wondering how many people pay attention to the WS Top 100. So often, by the time the list hits, many of the wines are long sold out. Comments would be greatly appreciated.
Michael Perlis provides outsourced controller services to businesses that do not need a full-time controller. He balances this with his interest in wine: reading and writing about it and, of course, drinking it. He is still trying to figure out how to combine these two pursuits. Feel free to contact him about either at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.