Josh Raynolds, from the prestigious Antonio Galloni Vinous publication, recently tasted through Santa Lucia Highlands wines from the 2018 vintage. He described it as a “picture-perfect growing season” and highly recommended the Single Vineyard bottlings from the region to readers. Here is an excerpt from the report:
The 2018 vintage wines have “distinct energy and fine definition, with expressive fruit, well-integrated tannins for the red wines and relatively uncommon nerviness for the whites…the 2018s are loaded with fruit, but the flavors are fresh, mostly suggesting a red and blue style for the Pinot Noirs and citrus to orchard fruits for the Chardonnays. The 2018s have power, too, which is typical for this region, but that power is mitigated by juicy acidity, which makes most of the wines very approachable already. Their balance, though, suggests the 2018s will be ideal cellar candidates….For lusty, often extravagantly fruity renditions of the Burgundy varieties, the Santa Lucia Highlands is tough to beat…the fleshiness and concentration of the best Santa Lucia Highlands wines often makes them deceivingly cuddly on release but a few years of patience rewards with slowly increasing savory character, while the fruit always stands out.”
Antonio Galloni was the lead critic of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate before starting his own publication in 2013. Robert Parker had intended on handing the reigns to Antonio Galloni when The Advocate sold in 2012, but Galloni had his own plans and started his own competing publication instead. Galloni has recruited some of the most respected personalities in the wine industry, and a 90+ score from Vinous has become synonymous with quality.
The 2018 vintage has brought some truly remarkable wines. All Testarossa Santa Lucia Highlands wines tasted for review by Vinous scored 90 points or higher and they will not be available for long!