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The Dozen - A Noah's Arkful of Wines

What if Noah had really been a wine director and took on board one bottle of every wine (wine doesn’t multiply, so one works) and didn’t charge markup during the cruise?  The ark’s bill of lading, aka wine list, might have looked something like this.

(A giraffe isn’t the only animal who sticks its neck out.)

2019 Ponga Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc ($13). Very nice for the price – green flavors of lime and gooseberries with a little spritz, medium body, and a take-it-on-home finish.

2017 Les Alexandrins “Terrasses de l’Éridan” Côtes du Rhones Blanc ($19). Lovely, flowery spiciness in the fruit, moderate body, a touch of crème fraise in the finish.

2018 Vietti Roero Arneis ($24). One of the best Arneises I have tasted – fruity, yet refreshingly tart with good minerality.

2018 Anaba “Turbine White” Sonoma Valley White Blend ($32). Well-balanced Viognier-led Rhone blend with lots of exotic flavors with a whey/cream underlay.

2017 Frank Family Carneros Chardonnay ($38). In the Frank Family menagerie of varietals, this has always been one of the better buys – a blend of mellow apple and tropical fruit flavors, smooth on the palate with a fine structure.

NV La Marca “Luminore” Conegliano-Valdobiaddene Prosecco Superiore ($30). Soft and fragrant like liquid cotton candy – but I would have liked a bit more crispness in the finish.

Vista del Sur “High Note” Uco Valley Malbec ($12). Quite enjoyable – bright, fresh fruit, medium body, good closing acidity, light tannins.

2018 Domaine Bousquet “Gaia” Tupungato Red Wine ($17). Combo of red and black fruitiness, moderate weight, mature fruit finish.

2016 Pascal Aufrance “Les Cerisiers” Juliénas ($18). Very enjoyable with nicely balanced lean black raspberry flavors – so fresh you can almost taste the seeds.

2016 Dalton Galilee Grenache ($19). Lots of jammy fruit with piercing acidity and drying bitters in the finish.

2016 Château Malescasse Haut Medoc ($23). Even in classic regions such as the Medoc, there are still very-affordable, good-quality wines, and this one comes from a very good vintage as well. Plump cherry flavors, but with typical Bordeaux reticence in the finish, smooth with a little nutty note of bitters at the end.

2017 The Prisoner “Saldo” California Zinfandel ($27). A big, jammy, fruity wine with cherry/blackberry flavors and some mocha notes. Mouth-filling with 15.5% alcohol. Suggest decanting an hour or two before serving.

Prices listed are generally SRP or from

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