Here are a handful of recently reviewed wines, roughly in order of preference:
–Peter Zemmer 2018 Furggl Lagrein Riserva, Alto Adige, Italy, $38. Rich but elegant and balanced. Plum and dark cherry fruit along with earth. Luscious and velvety, with moderately assertive tannins. Very good.
–Neal Family Vineyards 2017 Howell Mountain Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, Ca., $100. Blackberry, cedar and earth aromas. Blackberry, cedar, earth, tobacco, spice and vanilla on the rich, rounded palate, with a long finish. Very good.
–Cantine Florio Vecchioflorio 2018 Marsala Superiore Sweet, Italy, $14. Nutty, caramel aromas. Dates and apricots on the smooth palate. Very good.
–Ernest Vineyards 2019 Joyce Vineyard Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast, Ca., $62. Bright and lively, a bit floral, with apple, pear, lemon, minerality and salinity. Fresh and clean with a long, lemony finish. Very good.
–La Quintinye Vermouth Royal Blanc, Charente, France, $15. A sweet vermouth meant to be sipped chilled or over ice with attractive aromatics and nice blend of floral, herbal and citrus (especially orange) flavors with a touch of licorice. Very good.
–Los Vascos 2018 Cromas Cabernet Sauvignon Gran Reserva, Colchagua Valley, Chile, $22. Cherry, light strawberry and brambly aromas. Darker fruit, including black currant, on the savory palate, with tobacco, spice and a bit of licorice, and a lingering finish. From Domaine Barons de Rothschild (Lafite). Good plus.
–Cecchi 2015 Chianti Classico Riserva, Italy, $32. Dried herbs and dark cherry on the nose. Cherry, herbs, earth and touch of leather on the rich and smooth palate, with a lingering finish. Good plus.
–Beaulieu Vineyard 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, Ca., $38. Black cherry, tobacco and brambles on the nose. Black cherry, plum, cola and vanilla on the silky palate. Good plus.
–Cakebread Cellars 2021 Chardonnay, Napa Valley, Ca., $40. Baked apple, citrus, minerals. Fresh but a bit creamy with a clean finish. Good plus.
–Zenato 2018 Valpolicella Ripasso DOC Superiore, Italy, $28. Restrained nose. Smooth and juicy with dried cherry, herbs and spice; moderate tannins. Good plus.
–Beronia 2020 Verdejo, Rueda, Spain, $14. Floral and herbal with peach and apricot, and bright acidity. Good.
–ColleMassari 2017 Montecucco Rosso Riserva, Italy, $25. Blackberry, blueberry, plum, touch of herbs, spice and vanilla. Good.
–Wente 2019 Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon, Livermore Valley, Ca., $20. Black cherry and spice aromas. Plum, black cherry, sweet toasted spice and vanilla on the palate. Good.
–Segno Librandi 2021 Ciro DOC, Italy, $15. Made from 100% gaglioppo, this is light-bodied and smooth but tannic with cherry, herbs, spice and a touch of licorice. Good.
–Corvezzo 2020 Prosecco D.O.C. Rose, Italy, $13. This has a yeasty nose with red berries and a touch of orange zest and grapefruit on the palate. A bit tart and almost bitter, but dry and crisp. Good.
–Le Fat Bastard 2021 Pinot Noir, Pays d’OC, France, $14. Ripe cherry and spice aromas. Mixed red berry, spice and earthy brambles on the palate. Good.
–Forum 2021 Malbec, Argentina, $10. Bright blackberry and raspberry, leather and tobacco. OK.