"Wine Press: 2015 & 2016 Outstanding For Many Wine Regions"

MassLive/The Republican | By Ken Ross | November 26, 2018

Doing something exceptional back to back rarely happens in many areas of expertise.

Just look at sports.

Sure, there are exceptions like the New England Patriots in 2004 and 2005, the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2016 and 2017, the Golden State Warriors in 2017 and 2018 or the Boston Celtics or Montreal Canadiens in the 1960s or Roger Federer winning Wimbledon in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 and...

Okay, maybe sports isn't the best example.

Clearly, certain teams and iconic athletes have a knack for winning year after year after year.

But when it comes to wine, it's often quite rare for two years in a row turn out to be so good.

Often, one great year is followed by a real dud.

Sort of like the movie Dustin Hoffman made after he won his second Oscar for "Rain Man."

Remember "Family Business"?


Nobody's perfect.

So when the 2015 vintage started getting rave reviews in many parts of the world, I started worrying that maybe 2016 would not live up to the same dizzying standards.

But in many parts of the world, the 2016 vintage has started to earn some buzz of its own. And based on tasting a lot of wines in barrels and bottles from the 2015 and 2016 vintage, I can definitely say that I am absolutely impressed with many wines from both years.

So which parts of the world produced outstanding wines in 2015 and 2016? And which affordable wines would I personally recommend?

Here are a few areas to keep an eye on and suggestions for wines from there. Remember, when it comes great wines from outstanding vintages, you'll often need to wait a few years to drink these wines at their best. As one wine maker said to me recently, "Wine is about time." You need to be patient.

It's also the reason why wines from the 2015 and 2016 vintage sometimes cost more than wines from other vintages. That's why I did my best to recommend affordable wines from both vintages. It wasn't always easy but there are bargains out there.


Like many parts of France, 2015 was a vintage for the ages for many California Cabernet Sauvignon wines. And while it's still a bit too early to tell, early reports about the 2016 vintage have been extremely promising. Let me add that any good news about northern California is welcome news especially in light of the devastating forest fires that have plagued this region in recent weeks.

Recommended Wines

2015 Bonterra Cabernet Sauvignon (SRP $16) - This is dense, complex, red wine produced with organic grapes tastes great now. Flavors and aromas cover a wide range, from black currants and cherries to dark chocolate and almonds.

BV 2015 BV Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon (SRP $45) - Another stellar wine from one of the most revered wineries in Napa Valley. Really enjoyed the full bodied yet robust finish on this wine.


Wine Press by Ken Ross appears on Masslive.com every Monday and in The Republican's weekend section every Thursday.


Click here for the full publication: "Wine Press: 2015 & 2016 Outstanding For Many Wine Regions", MassLive powered by The Republican

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