One of the founding members of the prestigious Amarone Families association who focus on safeguarding the unique winemaking traditions of Valpolicella, Allegrini sets the standard for a new generation of vintners. This opens with sweet tones of Indian spice, ripe fruit and tobacco. The mouthfeel is exceedingly rich, long lasting and intense.
This wine typically starts life out as a young, tannic puppy, and although it has ripe flavors and a suppleness that can handle rich meats and cheeses, it's best to cellar it. This vintage is quite undeveloped, wrapped in tannic astringency, but with a hopeful core of fruit that should age well from 2008 on.
Another brilliant offering is the 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Georges de Latour Private Reserve. It possesses a dense ruby/purple color along with terrific structure, lots of creme de cassis, minerality, beautiful purity of black currants and cherries, a judicious touch of oak, and a full-bodied, structural profile that is almost Bordeaux-like. This complete, rich and promising effort should be a 25-30-year wine.
Harkening back to the elegant style of the 2001, 2004, and 2006 vintages, the 2008 Banda Azul opens with a rich perfume of dark cherries and vanilla; on the palate, the authoritative Tempranillo fruit is well-seasoned by notes of spicy vanilla oak from aging in new barrels. Although fully ready to enjoy now, this wine offers a significant aging potential of 3 to 9 years.
Clos Apalta, depending on your point of view, is arguably Chile's best wine. And this vintage is outstanding! Earth, minty spice, ripe berry, minerality and smoky aromas cover the bases. It's superbly structured, with a fine texture and depth. Tastes lush and complex, with blackberry, creme de cassis, fine herbs and tobacco. Finishes classy. Drink now through 2016.
The 2008 Chianti Classico Riserva is a very pretty, centered wine. Dark cherries, plums, spices, menthol, cedar, game and tobacco are some of the notes that emerge from the glass. The 2008 is an understated Riserva that impresses for its length, focus and balance. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2023.
The perfect bookend to the fully mature 2002 Château Canon, the 2008 is a great wine in the making. Although 3 to 4 years away from full maturity, its impeccable balance makes it highly approachable now. This is a wine of enormous freshness, vibrancy, and class, a symphony composed in notes of raspberry, strawberries, cassis, and gentle notes of new oak. An exceptional value in a great wine.--Ben Giliberti, CW (June 2012)