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Wines of the Year 2012 Edition

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My list for 2012. What are your favorites.

1. 1996 Château Margaux - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, Margaux (10/6/2012)
A hammer lock for wine of the year! Amazing and the groups wine of the night! Blueberries, coffee, chocolate, leather and minerals. Complex and wonderful perfume to this wine. Decanted 3 plus hours and it never lost a step in the glass for over 2 more. Long finish and young wine. Wine of the Vintage? (99 pts.)

2. 2004 Greenock Creek Shiraz Apricot Block - Australia, South Australia, Barossa, Barossa Valley (10/28/2012)
DAY 2 REVIEW: Mega complex nose of roasted meats, coffee beans, soy, charcoal and exotic spices. On the palate dense with the addition of raspberries. Fine sediment and long finish. An amazing transformation and a top Shiraz for 2012. 96 points plus (96 pts.)

3. 2004 Bodegas Muga Rioja Aro - Spain, La Rioja, La Rioja Alta, Rioja (4/22/2012)
A early top ten wine of the year. A powerhouse and tannic but showing a ton. Blackberries, bing cherries, leather, cigar, oak, vanilla and a hint of mint. Long finish, complex and age worthy. Drink now through 2030. 96-98. (96 pts.)

4. 2005 Domaine Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Hermitage (1/15/2012)
Close to the best wine I have ever had and over time it might get there. Intense nose with white pepper, blueberries, roses, raspberries, mild oak and minerals. Complex is an understatement and the palate and finish just change over and over. The finish on this wine is over a minute and a true wine to savor. A pure effort that will improve. This could get to 100 for me. 97-100. (97 pts.)

5. NV Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Brut - France, Champagne (11/28/2012)
Great stuff and as good as many vintage Champagnes. For $28 a super QPR. Minerals, sour apples, spice and pear. Crisp wine and refreshing. Complex, medium finish. (93 pts.)

6. 2008 Antica Terra Pinot Noir Botanica - USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley (3/31/2012)
Light in color. Exotic nose of floral, dust, earth, cranberry and smoke. Complex wine with a medium plus finish. Improved with some time and this has a decade plus of enjoyment. (94 pts.)

7. 2008 Dönnhoff Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Riesling Spätlese - Germany, Nahe (6/3/2012)
Super light in color, almost clear. Appricots, floral, peaches and super balanced. A touch of sweetness but this should really age into an amazing wine in a decade or enjoy right now! (94 pts.)

8. 2009 Thibault Liger-Belair Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru Les Saint Georges - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Nuits St. Georges 1er Cru (4/6/2012)
Should improve with age and my wine of the night! Complex with earth, ripe fruit, coffee and spices. The perfect "funk" quality on the nose that makes you realize how good Burgundy can be. Long finish and tannic and should age nicely for 30 years. 94-96. (94 pts.)

9. 2008 Kitchak Cellars Adagio - USA, California, Napa Valley, St. Helena (5/17/2012)
One of the best wines in Napa Valley for under $100. Intense nose of cherry, oak, vanilla, licorice, blueberries and tobacco. Firm tannins and super long finish. Concentrated wine and this will age a decade or more. Outstanding and a chance to improve in the bottle. (95 pts.)

10. 1996 Château Léoville Las Cases - France, Bordeaux, Médoc, St. Julien (5/5/2012)
My wine of the night and groups wine of the night. An amazing effort that is balanced, powerful, graceful, elegant, etc. One of the best wines from Bordeaux I have sampled to date. Intense nose of clay, chocolate, figs, stones and raspberries. Long finish and complex. Drink now- 2040. Wonderful effort!!! (97 pts.)

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