If I Could Buy Only One – February 18 VINTAGES Release

We asked our writers, “If you could buy only one wine from this release, which one would it be and why?”

Radford Dale Black Rock 2019

($41.95, Nicholas Pearce Wines Inc)
David Lawrason –  This great value from the Cape’s rugged, arid Swartland possesses all kinds of energy and presence, fuelled by a touch of volatility. The Radford Dale Black Rock 2019 is a five-grape Rhone-inspired blend with 60% syrah in the driver’s seat. The nose shows great spice-driven complexity – pepper, cinnamon, cedar, along with wood smoke and licorice. The fruit is dried cherry/currant and olive. It is firm, fairly tannic and mineral, with excellent to outstanding length. I would stash six bottles for the cellar.

E. Guigal Châteauneuf Du Pape Blanc 2018

($67.95, Vinexx)
Sara d’Amato – A contemplative find for the changing of the seasons whose complexity is a result of both its assemblage and its terroir. Grenache blanc, clairette, bourboulenc, picardan along with small amounts of picpoul and roussanne grown on three distinctive terroirs that include the red sandstone of Nalys, as well as the famous Rhône galets of the vineyards of Bois Sénéchal and La Crau make up this E. Guigal Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc 2018 cuvée. Mineralily supplants acidity on the palate providing freshness to this delicately oak aged blend that showcases place above all else. You’ll want to hunker down with this marvel or be prepared with a second bottle if you have company. 

Michael Godel – Always have a look at the only available online selections. This is what you might find. What a treat to have a go at this rare release of E. Guigal Châteauneuf Du Pape Blanc 2018, or any white Châteauneuf-du-Pape for that matter. They are a rare presence through the VINTAGES program and Guigal’s is one of the icons. This is simply and unequivocally a touchstone for the truth in southern Rhône blanc, fleshy and unctuous, fundamental for criterion by which wines of this ilk are recognized and judged. Ripeness of the vintage puts this all in, whereas precision and focus are exemplary. All adds up to marking this ’18 as a beacon of shining light in a glorious and textural wine to represent the model. Will evolve slowly and drink well for a decade or more.


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
Lawrason’s Take
Michael’s Mix
Sara’s Selections
Megha’s Picks

New Release and VINTAGES Preview


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