Big Reds

Not to be taken lightly, these reds strive to get as much out of their grapes as they can—flavor, concentration, depth and power. Ripeness is key to producing these bold wines, so look to warmer areas for the finest versions. California Zinfandel, Australian Shiraz and Argentine Malbec are reliable sources of value, yet the rebirth of historic regions such as Campania in Italy, where Aglianico is grown, and Nemea in Greece, home to Agiorgitiko, presents a range of exciting options.

92 $20 Turley Zinfandel California Juvenile 2014
California  Plump and racy, with cracked pepper and black cherry aromas that lead to lush flavors of raspberry, licorice and orange zest. (T.F.)
91 $12 Columbia Crest Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley Grand Estates 2014
Washington Broad, generous and inviting, with cherry, currant and red plum flavors that swirl enticingly on the finish. (H.S.)
90 $15 Apex The Catalyst Columbia Valley 2013
Washington  Broad and spicy, with pepper and licorice accents to the dark berry flavors as they pick up momentum on the finish. Syrah blend. (H.S.)
90 $19 Gérard Bertrand Syrah-Grenache Languedoc 2014
France Polished and juicy, with blackberry and dark cherry fruit layered with licorice, spice and mineral notes. (G.S.)
90 $15 Hahn GSM Central Coast 2014
California  This has plenty of personality, offering cherry, pepper and smoky herb aromas and zesty raspberry and licorice flavors. (T.F.)
90 $16 Hess Family Latin America Malbec Salta Amalaya 2015
Argentina This red is fleshy, delivering concentrated blackberry and dried blueberry flavors that are supported by fresh acidity. (K.M.)
90 $20 Domaine de Mourchon Côtes du Rhône-Villages Séguret Tradition 2013
France  This offers solid depth and flesh for the vintage, with a hint of singed iron running amid the dark plum and blackberry fruit. (J.M.)
89 $12 Casa de Santar Dão 2014
Portugal This red is ripe and a touch brooding, delivering roasted plum and baked dark cherry flavors that are firmly tannic. (K.M.)
89 $18 Cline Zinfandel Contra Costa County Ancient Vines 2014
California Soft and jammy, with supple flavors of raspberry, grilled anise and white pepper that linger on the finish. (T.F.)
89 $15 Lamadrid Malbec Agrelo 2015
Argentina This red is suave and rich, showing savory accents to the flavors of dried raspberry and roasted plum. (K.M.)
89 $18 Viña San Pedro Carmenère Maule Valley 1865 Single Vineyard 2014
Chile Dense and powerful, with herbal notes to the roasted plum, dried cherry and cocoa powder flavors. (K.M.)
89 $14 Skouras Saint George Nemea 2013
Greece  There’s a rich, spicy allure to the flavors of red berry, Christmas pudding and red currant that glide across the palate in this red. (K.M.)
89 $12 Bodegas El Somo Rioja NV
Spain This generous red delivers ripe flavors in a plush texture, exhibiting notes of plum, currant, chocolate, cigar box and toast. (T.M.)
89 $17 Vinaceous Shiraz McLaren Vale Snake Charmer 2014
Australia  Licorice, wild berry and black tea notes have grippy tannins in this red, with plenty of spice on the finish. (M.W.)
89 $17 Vigneti del Vulture Aglianico del Vulture Pipoli 2013
Italy Well-knit and fresh, with ground spice notes layered with flavors of mulberry, mocha, bergamot and herbes de Provence. (A.N.)
88 $20 Alto de Casablanca Primus Colchagua Valley 2014
Chile This ripe red shows good concentration to its flavors of violet, dark cherry and roasted plum. Cabernet blend. (K.M.)
88 $20 Bodega Catena Zapata Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza 2014
Argentina Shows good cut to the brambly flavors of boysenberry, red currant and plum, with green olive notes. (K.M.)
88 $19 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône 2013
France Plush and forward, with a core of creamed plum and warmed fig notes backed by a hint of baker’s chocolate. (J.M.)
88 $15 Jacob’s Creek Shiraz Barossa Reserve 2014
Australia Smooth and lush, this red offers creamy, milk chocolate–covered cherry notes at the core, with herbal notes lingering. (M.W.)
88 $16 Cave de Roquebrun Coteaux du Languedoc Chemin des Olivettes 2015
France  This big red offers layered flavors of roasted plum, raspberry torte, mocha and spice, with grilled herb and mineral accents. (G.S.)