John Szabo’s VINTAGES Preview – Sep 29th, 2018

Three-Star Values
By John Szabo, MS, with notes from Michael Godel

John Szabo, MS

This week we feature top, three-star values from the September 29th VINTAGES release, which covers a broad swath of the wine world from Argentina to Washington State. These are the wines that line up intrinsic wine quality and regional typicity with the best price within the expected range; Muscadet and basic Chianti, for example, are priced within entirely different structures than, say, Napa Valley cabernet or Burgundy. As such, value can be found at every price point, save for the truly luxury brands for which you pay more for the name than what’s inside the bottle. Here, prices range from $15 to $89, so we hope there’s something for everyone. Sparkling wine lovers should check out the VQA’s upcoming “Sparkling Wine Tasting Deconstructed”. Details below.

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Beringer Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

Buyers Guide to VINTAGES Sep 29th

Three-Star Value Whites:

Carabella Dijon 76 Clone Chardonnay 2015 Chehalem Mountains, Willamette Valley, Oregon ($27.95)
John Szabo – From the volcanic soils near the top of Chehalem Mountain, ex-geologist Mike Carabella’s Dijon 76 chardonnay is crafted at the leaner and sharper end of the varietal spectrum, with appealing white-fleshed fruit flavours – green apple and pear – and minimal oak influence. The acids are still firm and tight despite the warm growing season – altitude mitigates the heat – and length is very good to excellent. I’d tuck this in the cellar for another year or two; it should integrate further and develop additional complexity. Best 2018-2025. …

Love bubbles? Join VQA Wines of Ontario for a spectacular evening of sparkling wines from 12 Ontario wineries – 13th Street, Angels Gate, Cave Spring, Colio, Hidden Bench, Strewn, Trius, Two Sisters, Ravine, Rosehall Run and Westcott. Wines will be complemented by culinary creations from Guest Chef Nick Liu of DaiLo, known for his innovative take on New Asian Cuisine, and music from a top Toronto DJ. See the VQA Tastes Untamed Dinner Scene first-hand, take a photo, and celebrate 30 years of VQA.

When: Wednesday September 26th, 7-10pm

Where: the historic Berkeley Bicycle Club

Tickets: $55 online in advance and $65 at the door.


There are 12 VINTAGES Release recommendations this week that are currently only available to our premium members. This complete article will be visible to all members 30 days after publication. We invite you to subscribe today to unlock our top picks and other Premium benefits.

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That’s all for this report. See you around the next bottle.

John Szabo, MS

Use these quick links for access to all of our Top Picks in the New Release. Non-Premium members can select from all release dates 30 days prior.

Szabo’s Smart Buys
Michael’s Mix
Sara’s Sommelier Selections

New Releases