Reviews Tastings

Considered South America’s Grand Cru, Mendoza’s Adrianna Vineyard

WCM Co-President Shawn Zylberbegs with Pablo Piccolo, Bodega Catena Zapata Export Director

If you were to ask wine enthusiasts from around the world, as well as locals, they would likely recommend the Adrianna Vineyard in Mendoza, owned and planted by the Catena Zapata Winery. This single vineyard was planted in 1992 and is divided into parcels that produce five unique wines, including two Chardonnays and three Malbecs. For WCM’s first tasting of 2024, we visited Miami’s leading Argentinian cuisine destination, Fiorito, where we sampled the latest vintages with Pablo Piccolo, the export director.

Catena Zapata White Stones Chardonnay 2010 – RP 94-This is really backward and ungiving, slowly showing some white flowers,citric notes and echoes of chalk and smoke. The palate is medium bodied,really seamless, with great freshness and pungent acidity ending long and with a mineral feeling. This is superb! 3,600 bottles produced.

Catena Zapata White Stones Chardonnay 2021 – RP 98- The 2021 White Stones Chardonnay is subtler and more elegant, a little closed with moderate ripeness and alcohol (12.5%) and a mineral palate with strongchalky sensations. This is serious and tasty. 7,300 bottles produced.

Catena Zapata White Bones Chardonnay 2021 – RP 98-This wine was harvested at two different points of ripeness and then blended into the final wine, which is subtler than the explosive 2020 I tasted next to itbut with the same palette of aromas—thyme, rosemary, lavender, rockrose, white flowers, citrus, pine needles, incense, curry and spices—and the palate is seamless, mineral and with a chalky texture. It’s brilliant and expresses the variety, vintage and soil perfectly. 6,240 bottles produced.

Catena Zapata Mundus Bacillus Malbec 2020 – RP 97-The wine was still very young with a luxurious, creamy texture and mouthfeel.2020 was an extremely dry year and the grapes were picked two to three weeks earlier. It has a bright, saturated color and a heady nose with ripeberries and a spicy, smoky twist from 19 months in oak vats. It’s medium to full bodied, with a soft texture and velvety tannins, sleek and seamless. 5,700 bottles produced.

Catena Zapata River Malbec 2020 – RP 97- It’s juicy but beautifully textured with a spicy twist of curry that reminded me of some bottlings from El Enemigo in El Cepillo. It seems to open up slowly in the glass—the violet and berry aromas get complicated by some spice (curry?)—and the palate feels more layered. This is a superb expression of the austere wildness of Gualtallary. 5,700 bottles produced.

Catena Zapata Fortuna Terrae Malbec 2020 – RP 98 –The 2020 Adrianna Vineyard Fortuna Terrae shows exceptionally well. It’s still young and juicy with some baby fat that should get rendered with somemore time in bottle. It’s a little lighter, and the tannins gave it grip and a chalky limestone sensation. But the wine is very expressive, with purity, clean and precise and not showing any signs of coming from a warmer year like 2020. It finishes with the telltale violets from the great Malbec grape coated by chalky minerality. This plot behaves well in warmer years like this one. 5,400 bottles produced.

Fiorito 5555 NE 2nd Ave, Miami, FL 33137

A truly epic lineup for any collector who is serious about Malbec and Chardonnay’s longevity.





Sangiovese to Nebbiolo to Aglianico to Corvina and more

In December, we Explored Italy’s top grapes and the producers who master them.  

We opened a Tignanello 2011 and noticed that it was still tight, restraining its full expression at that moment. Despite decanting it for more than 3 hours, we could still see signs of early development. However, it was still very good with bold fruit, wild herbs, concentrated red cherry, and a hint of mint.

Tenuta Luce Brunello di Montalcino 2010 is a high-quality wine with a strong flavor of Sangiovese grapes, booming with strawberry and earthy cherry notes.

Tenuta Luce Brunello di Montalcino 2010

Felsina Chianti Classico 2004 could be the best of the night and is the least expensive wine. It is rich with notes of eucalyptus, mint, forest cherry, mushroom, and rose. A delightful wine to contemplate!

Felsina Chianti Classico 2004

Marcarini Barolo Brunate 2003 – this baddie needed its own decanter. Classic orange peel flooded the glass followed by earthy notes and mulled strawberry

Radic Taurasi 2006 is a big wine with prominent fruit and structure, featuring notes of blueberry crumble cake and prunes.

Mazzi Amarone Punta di Villa Classico 2013 is a fan favorite, with notes of deep red cherry, earth, vanilla, and a touch of sweet grape skin.

Isole e Olena Vin Santo 1997 – Classic producers can’t go wrong (Trebbiano/Malvasia blend). Such a treat, with tertiary floods of orange, apricot and mouthwatering acidity. Jesus nailed it

Wine Club Miami’s Italian Lineup

A beautiful closing to 2023!

Events Tastings

A feast for the senses. WCM’s October tasting, we decided to explore Left Bank Bordeaux from several 90s vintages.

What distinguishes a truly exceptional Bordeaux from one that is highly praised? Age. And to many in the wine world, Bordeaux has mastered wine’s greatest friend: Time. While most wines are made to drink young, several Chateaux would recommend you wait at least 10 years before noticing the magic in their wines. The structure starts to give way, opening the floor for silky tannins, tertiary aromas, complex flavors that change on a dime, and epic finishes on the palate. Here is what we tasted:

Considered an impressive lineup of wine nobility with age and finesse working in harmony
      • Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 1994 (Pauillac, 12.5% ABV)
      • Château Léoville Las Cases Grand Vin 1998 (Saint Julien, 13% ABV)
      • Château Léoville Barton 1995 (Saint Julien, 12.5% ABV)
      • Château Ducru-Beaucaillon 1996 (Saint Julien, 13% ABV)
      • Château Montrose 1998 (Saint Estèphe, 12.5% ABV)
      • Cos d’Estournel 1996 (Saint Estèphe, 13% ABV)
Château Montrose 1998. Saint Estephe
Cos d’Estournel 1996, Saint Estephe
Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 1994, Pauillac

The Montrose and Barton showed up to dance, while the Cos d’Estournel was a bit shier than expected. The Pichon was also a winner tonight with subtle aromas of stewed cherry, delicate leather and tobacco leaves. 


Reviews Tastings

September Tasting: Echoes of 8,000 Years: An Evening of Armenian Wines

Wine Club Miami President Stephen Gamson

Hosted at South Beaches’ Call Me Gaby, Wine Club Miami tasted HAYK Wines, Armenian wines that featured grapes with a winemaking legacy dating back over 8,000 years. Paired with the restaurant’s exceptional menu featuring Ravioli di Ricotta e Spinaci al Burro e Salvia, Tagliata di Manzo (Sliced Steak) with Arugula and Parmesan along with a Fresh Watermelon Salad.

A Journey to Peace™ HAYKWINE.COM 689-263-2252

Three signature wines and a selection of dessert wines all showcasing the lasting heritage of Armenian wines as truly old world wine with outstanding quality and style.

2019 Single Vineyard Voskehat Reserve White This single grape white wine is sourced from the Arpa Valley of Armenia’s premier wine growing region: Vayots Dzor. It has pronounced aromas of white flower, ripe lemon cream, apricots and hints of tropical fruit such as mango and pineapple. On the palate, the wine is medium bodied and is marked by acidity that seems to expand with each second like Chenin Blanc from South Africa. It has an extensive, refreshing finish that recalibrates the wine to more minerality than fruit.


2018 Arpa Valley Areni Noir is ruby in color with a magenta rim. It has an enticing nose of cassis,blackcurrant, vanilla, sage and Tobacco Oak. IMG_0915 Upon entry, this wine builds from wild flowers and bramble to a bright pop of raspberry and plums on the mid-palate. A juicy finish with silky tannins and a medium length, it will provide drinking pleasure through 2042 with proper cellaring.

Open Container Rose features high acidity, floral aromas and minerals on a long and pleasant finish. An uncommon wine that features elements of traditional French rose with subtle hints of lime and grapefuit and honey to round out a long finish.

Call Me Gaby 22 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL (305)-531-4800




Summer 2023 Champagne Tasting

Wine Club’s Miami’s Summer 2023 Champagne Tasting, generously hosted by Jesus and Pamela Cabarcos, brought the club together for one last round before our summer break.

Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

Jesus Cabarcos presents a magnum of Charles Heidsieck
Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

And a pour of Grand Siecle, 24th Iteration
Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

Pamela Cabarcos provided the perfect pairing for our tasting.
Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne Tasting

Our tasting line-up consisted of:

Gosset, Aged in lees 12 years
Grand Siecle, 24th Iteration
Charles Heidsieck Magnum, 2015 base
Vilmart Rose
George Laval Le Cumieres
Delamonte Blanc de Blancs
Egly Ouriet Grand Cru
Nicholas Maillart Platine
Louis Roederer 243 Collection

Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne TastingTo cap off our night, Jesus opened a pair of exceptional bottles of Dunham Cellars 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon.

Wine Club Miami 2023 Champagne TastingHost Jesus Cabarcos in his wine rooom


April Tasting at Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink


Hosted at Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink, Wine Club Miami’s California Cabernet Tasting explored four unique vintage years with a selection of notable wines showcasing complexity and age. Wine Club Member, Jesus Cabarcos shares insights on the wines and vintages selected.

1997 Beaulieu Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Georges de Latour Private Reserve & 1997 Spring Mountain Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Miravalle-la Perla-Chevalier: The generous harvest of widely admired wines with all varieties ripening at once. To drink now. The riper, lusher character of the 1997 vintage means wines tended to be very well received upon first release but have proven less complex and age-worthy with time in the bottle compared with 1998, 1999, and 2001 vintages

2006 Pride Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Sonoma: An unusually cool, wet growing season forced growers to drop substantial quantities of rotten fruit and pushed the harvest back to November. Far from a banner year, though, the fruits of strict selection may surprise us.

2007 ZD Wines Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford & 2007 Robert Mondavi Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley: Harvest began early mid-August in the warmer regions, then a cool September slowed ripening to a crawl, allowing physiological maturity to catch up with sugars. October warmed up, and most had their grapes in before late-October rains. Elegant, balanced wines. Yields down 15 to 25%.

2008 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon: Sonoma’s earliest harvest, and very early throughout northern California. Fires in Mendocino affected red wines in the region and as far south as northern Napa Valley. It was one of the first vintages forcing producers to face the realities of smoke impact in California.


March Blind Tasting – Italian Reds

Wine Club Miami Italian Red Blind Tasting

The March 2023 meeting of Wine Club Miami brought members together for a Blind Tasting of Italian Reds at the Miami Yacht Club thanks to an invite from Commodore Mark Ingraham.

Wine Club Miami Italian Red <a href=

Jesus supplied six wines under the cover of foil – three Nebiolo, one Barbera, one Sangiovese and one Cabernet Franc. Three wines were under $60 and the other three over $100. Members were tasked with determining the grape, price and age of each.

Wine Club Miami Italian Red Blind Tasting

Wine Club Miami Italian Red Blind Tasting

Beneath to foil, in the order of tasting, the wines were:

#1. 2017 Roberto Voerzio Barolo Del Commune Di La Morra
(Nebiolo) $165

#2. 2007 Paolo Scavino Bric de Fiasc
(Nebiolo) $120

#3. 2015 Arpepe Valtellina Superiore Sassella ‘Stella Retica’
(Nebiolo) $56

#4. 2015 Proprieta Sperino ‘L Franc Bandir Vino da Tavola
(Cabernet Franc) $115

#5. 2018 Fontodi Chianti Classico – Tuscany
(Sangiovese) $44

#6. 2018 Alberto Voerzio Barbera D’Alba La Morra – Piedmont
(Barbera) $40

Wine Club Miami Italian Red Blind Tasting

How’d we do? No one got all the wines, ages and prices right, but most members were close. We all agreed it was a great exercise of our tasting agility and when it comes to fine wine, we’re alweays ready to give out tastebuds a challenge.

Wine Club Miami Italian Red Blind Tasting

Miami Yacht Club was founded in 1927 by Miami pioneers. Located on Watson Island, the club is surrounded by the Biscayne Bay overlooking the Miami City skyline and South Beach. The Club offers youth sailing, multihull racing, one class regattas and sponsors numerous regattas.


Great Wines of the World 2023 Grand Tasting Visits Miami Beach

James Suckling hosts Great Wines of the World 2023 Grand Tasting at the Miami Beach Convention Center

James Suckling brought over 300 world-renowned wine producers to Miami Beach for the Great Wines of the World 2023 Grand Tasting – one of the USA’s best and largest wine gatherings featuring the top wine regions in the world. This tour of top-scoring wines, which were all rated at least 92 points (most scoring 95-98 points) featured many of the Top 100 Wines of 2022 list. The event featured celebrated winemakers from iconic wineries sharing their valuable insights.

James Suckling hosts Great Wines of the World 2023 Grand Tasting at the Miami Beach Convention Center

Beaulieu Vineyard’s Ruterford Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and Georges de Latour Private Reserve
Beaulieu Vineyard’s Ruterford Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ($85) dubbed “Baby George” held up quite nicely beside their signature 100-point Georges de Latour Private Reserve 2019 ($150)

FUTO Estate Vineyards 2019 FUTO OV | SL and FUTO Oakville Cabernet
FUTO Estate Vineyards pours their 2019 FUTO OV | SL ($270) 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Cabernet Franc, 16% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot and FUTO Oakville Cabernet ($480) 100% Cabernet Sauvignon

Daou Vineyards’ Soul of a Lion and 2019 Estate Mayote
I’ve always enjoyed Daou Vineyards’ signature Soul of a Lion ($150) and was equally impressed with their 2019 Estate Mayote ($125)

Concha y Toro’s Don Melchor 2019 and 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon
Long-time favorite Chilean wine producer Concha y Toro poured their 2019 and 2020 Don Melchor Cabernet Sauvignon ($145)

Vik Millahue from Chiles Cachapoal Valley
After 24-months barrel aging, Vik Millahue ($149) from Chile’s Cachapoal Valley perfectly pairs with wagyu steak and herb rubbed roasted lamb ribs.

Seña unique Bordeaux-style red blend
Seña ($150) is a unique Bordeaux-style red blend with a very Chilean soul backed by family heritage, Eduardo Chadwick and Robert Mondavi. Its predominant variety is Cabernet Sauvignon while Carmenere ties it to Chile.

Baronesa P. from Baron Philippe de Rothschild in Maipo, Chile
Baronesa P. ($68) is a full-bodied blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Carmenere with Cabernet Franc from Baron Philippe de Rothschild’s operation in Maipo, Chile

Cathiard Vineyard’s new range of limited-production wines

Florence and Daniel Cathiard of Bordeaux’s Smith Haut Lafitte recently acquired Cathiard Vineyard, a historic property in Napa Valley. The prestigious estate is situated in Rutherford and St. Helena at the foothills of the Mayacamas Mountains, and the winery’s tasting boutique offers on-site experiences featuring Cathiard Vineyard’s new range of limited-production wines.

2020 vintages of Saint-Émilion Château Tour Saint Christophe and Château Haut-Brisson
2020 vintages of Saint-Émilion’s Château Tour Saint Christophe ($35) and Château Haut-Brisson ($30) under stewardship of Peter Kwok and his daughter Elaine.

Château Mouton d'Armailhac and Château Clerc Milon
Château Mouton d’Armailhac ($75) and Château Clerc Milon ($105) Fifth Growth neighbors located between two prestigious First Growths, Château Mouton Rothschild and Lafite in Pauillac.

Ruffino Super Tuscan Modus
Ruffino Super Tuscan Modus ($29) features a blend of three noble grape varieties and punches way above its weight class.

Second Grand Cru Classé Château Pichon Baron and their second wine Les Griffons de Pichon Baron
Second Grand Cru Classé Château Pichon Baron ($200) and their second wine Les Griffons de Pichon Baron ($60) hail from one of the great historic vineyards of Bordeaux.

Sons of Eden Remus 2019 Eden Valley and Romulus 2019 Barossa Valley Old Vine Shiraz
Sons of Eden Remus 2019 Eden Valley ($80) and Romulus 2019 Barossa Valley Old Vine Shiraz ($80) showcase an exceptional Barossa vintage for old vine Shiraz that should age gracefully for many years to come.

Prats and Symington Chryseia and Post Scriptum
Prats + Symington Chryseia ($106) and its second wine, Post Scriptum ($36), are consistently amongst the most highly rated Douro wines

Taylor Fladgate 20 Year Old Tawny and  Quinta de Vargellas Vintage Port
Taylor Fladgate 20 Year Old Tawny ($50) and Quinta de Vargellas Vintage Port ($53) provide the perfect finish to any tasting

Wine Club Miami


January Blind Tasting

Burgey-Cerdon, LA Cueille: The Bugey is one of t he best-kept secrets of France. A geographical crossroads between Savoie, the Jura, Burgundy, and the Rhône, this small region encompasses the mountainous eastern half of the Ain département. (Kermit Lynch)

2019 Marsannay, Sylvain Pataille: Marsannay Rouge  is a concentrated wine with a lot of intensity that will make it a wine to keep. On the nose, the wine opens with aromas of red fruits such as strawberries, raspberries or even cherries. The palate is medium bodied with bold tannins, also leaving a spicy side to reveal all its complexity and richness. (Vine Neuvo)

2004 Beni Di- Batasiolo Barolo, 100%Nebbiolo Monforte d’Alba: This base Barolo from the folks at Batasiolo (one of the area’s biggest producers) offers a classic view of the Nebbiolo grape. The wine is seeped in traditional aromas of Spanish cedar, pencil shaving, red currant and black licorice. It’s bright and lively in the mouth with crisp acidity and raw fruit flavors. (Wine Enthusiast)

2006 Castello Romitorio Brunello di Montalcino Riserva:           ” Lush, powerful, subtle with hints of oak, ripe dark fruits. Great tannic structure after 6 hour breathing. Drink now or hold 10 more years”  (Wesley Castellanos)

2013 La Petite Chapelle Hermitage: A much more structured, even austere, Hermitage than the La Petite Chapelle release, the 2013 Hermitage la Chapelle came from minuscule yields of ten to 18 hectoliters per hectare and was aged 15-18 months in 20% new French oak. Not harvested until the 12th of October, it offers a sensational bouquet of blackberry and black raspberry fruits, powdered rock, gunpowder and pepper. Medium to full-bodied, with good (though maybe not great) levels of concentration, it has high, yet beautifully polished tannin, integrated acidity, and terrific cut and focus on the finish. Give bottles 4-5 years of cellaring and enjoy over the following two decades. (Robert Parker)

2015 ANDREMILY: The 2015 No 4 is composed of 90% Syrah, 4% Mourvèdre and 6% Viognier and saw 35% whole cluster, while spending around 22 months in French oak (70% new). Sporting a very deep purple-black color, it reveals vibrant black currants, blackberries and mulberries notes plus touches of sandalwood, espresso, black soil and stewed tea. Full-bodied, rich, concentrated and with lovely energy, there is a good firm backbone of grainy tannins supporting the generous fruit, finishing long and savory. (Robert Parker)

2006 Bodegas El Nido Clio: The purple/black 2006 Clio is composed of 70% old vine Monastrell and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon aged for 26 months in new oak. It offers up a super-sexy nose of underbrush, incense, lavender, blueberry muffin, and black currant. Voluptuous and creamy on the palate, this loaded, well-balanced wine is a total turn-on. For those who prefer their flavor in moderation, look elsewhere. Drink this pleasure-bent effort from 2011 to 2021. Bodegas El Nido employs Aussie vigneron Chris Ringland as its winemaking consultant.(Robert Parker)

Events Tastings

Wine Club Miami 2022 Annual Event at Orilla Miami Beach

2012 Demiere-Ansiot Blanc De Blanc Grand Cru
Region: Côte des BlancsChampagne Grand Cru ‘Oger’ Grapes: Chardonnay “This classic and utterly delicious blanc de blancs spends four years on the lees and offers sexy floral and citrus notes, with a lovely texture and energy.” David Yarus, President, Wine Club Miami

2019 Aubert LaurenVineyard Chardonnay
Region:North Coast / Sonoma County Grapes: Blend of Burgundy old world clones: Montrachet & Corton-Charlemagne (and Wente + MountEden)  Sea spray, crushed cashews, beeswax and allspice over a core of fresh pineapple, passion fruit, lemon meringue pie and toast.  That combination produces a wine of uncommon elegance. Texturally alone, the Lauren is so distinctive. Pear, lemon confit, chamomile, marzipan and dried flowers all grace the Lauren, a wine that is just off the charts.” David Yarus, President, Wine Club Miami


Wine Club Miami Founder, Jeff Tenen offers up a 94′ Vintage Warres Port

2006 Kapcsandy State Lane Magnum    
Region: North Coast /  Napa Valley. Grapes: 48% Cab Sauv, 48% Merlot, 4% Cab Franc. “Displays classic aromas of pain grille espresso roast black currants mocha and chocolate presented in a full-bodied deep textured impressively pure style. The oak is restrained the acidity noticeable but not tart and the tannins substantial but sweet.”  Notice the Family Crest which dates back to the 1730’s.David Yarus, President, Wine Club Miami

2008 La Spinetta Barolo Campe      
Region; Northern Italy / Barolo  Grapes: 100% Nebbiolo. A strong and chewy wine with polished and rich tannins. Cedar and mushrooms. Full and intense. Goes on for minutes. Finish goest to flowers and dried fruits. Powerful yet enjoyable- James Suckling.