Ian D’Agata’s Memorable World Wines 2023

by Ian D’Agata

Our world’s a big place. Maybe not Jupiter- or Saturn-like big, but still. Clearly, I don’t know just how big it really is, but it’s pretty big for sure; at least, that’s what I find myself thinking every time I can’t find my keys. There’s really way too much space for them to hide in, and that’s just in my house.

The song remains the same when it comes to wine. Simply put, there’s just so many different and far away places where decent to outstanding wine is now being made. Back in the 1980s, when I started to get professionally involved with wine, there weren’t that many great wines being made outside of the historic wine producing countries we all know. The majority of wines worth writing about, and more importantly drinking, were made in France, Italy, Germany; obviously, some great stuff was also made in Hungary, Australia, California, even New York State (I’m looking at you, Hermann), Canada, Oregon and other regions, states and countries. But at the time, there was nowhere near the large body of wines to choose from that lucky wine lovers have at their disposal today.

What all that means is that to draw up a list of the world’s best world wines in any given year is an impossible task. Incredible too, as in that word’s actual meaning, the lack of credibility. There are just too many good wines being made nowadays and nobody gets to taste them all. In this light, you understand that the following list’s objective is not to tell you what are the can’t miss wines of 2023, or the best wines of the year, or the wines that you should stock up on for the next twenty years or so. No: this is just a list of good to outstanding wines some of which you you might have already tried, while others you might have never heard of. For sure, you can choose to take the names on this list that follows with a pinch of salt, perhaps on the rim of an admirably well-filled margarita glass while you sit back and sip away enjoying a quiet moment in the company of wine. But if in reading it it moves you to get up and try something new, then it’s a list that will have, most likely, done it’s job.

The wines in this tasting report

All the wines in this report were tasted in 2023. Almost all were released in the current year. A few wines on the list might have been released in 2022, but were so delectable and are still easy enough to find that I included them in the list anyways. A few wines that made the list were the choices of some of my longtime collaborators and friends, Robert Millman, Michael Apstein, Michele Longo and Emily Huang. Cheers!



  1. Trimbach 2015 Riesling Clos Ste. Hune Alsace France



  1. Bollinger 2008 Champagne R.D Extra Brut France
  2. Hugel 2015 Riesling Selection de Grans Nobles Alsace S France
  3. Zind Humbrecht 2021 Pinot Gris Rangen Grand Cru Clos Saint Urbain Alsace France



  1. Ao Yun Cabernet Sauvignon 2019 Shangri-La Yunnan China
  2. Catena Zapata 2019 Adriana Vineyard Fortuna Terrae Vino de Percela Argentina
  3. Château Leoville Las Cases 2020 Saint Julien France
  4. Domaine Arlaud 2021 Clos de la Roche Burgundy France
  5. Domaine Weinbach 2021 Gewurztraminer Furstentum Grand Cru Alsace France
  6. Klein Constantia 2020 Vin de Constance South Africa



AA Badenhorst Family Wines 2020 Steen Klip Klop Swartland

Albert Boxler 2021 Riesling Sommerberg Grand Cru Eckberg Alsace France                           

Alvaro Palacios 2021 Finca Dofi Priorat Spain

Château Beausejour Duffau Lagarosse 2020 Saint Emilion France

Chateau Nine Peaks 2020 Petit Manseng Collection Shandong China

Domaine Ponsot 2020 Chapelle-Chamberton Burgundy France

Dominus Estate 2020 Napa Valley USA

Hillick & Hobbs 2020 Riesling Estate Vineyard Seneca Lake New York USA       

Huet 2020 Vouvray Moelleux Le Mont Premier Trie

Quilceda Creek 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon USA



Amethyard 2018 Merlot Hualai Hebei China 

Arterberry Maresh 2021 Pinot Noir Maresh Vineyard Dundee Hills Oregon USA

Bodegas Benjamin De Rothschild & Vega Sicilia 2018 Macán Clásico Rioja Spain             

Château Brane Cantenac 2020 Margaux France

Château d’Issan 2020 Margaux France

Château Pavie Macquin 2020 Saint Emilion France

Château Pichon Lalande 2020 Pauillac France

Domaine de Chevalier 2020 Rouge Pessac-Leognan France

Domaine Drouhin 2021 Pinot Noir Cuvée Laurene Dundee Hills Oregon USA

Donkiesbaai Steen 2020 Old Vine Chenin Blanc Piekenierskloof South Africa                                    

Duckhorn 2020 Merlot Three Palms Vineyard Napa Valley USA

Ernest Burn/Clos Saint-Imer 2022 Sylvaner Alsace

Henri Germain 2020 Chassagne Montrachet Morgeot 1er Cru Burgundy France

Josmeyer 2019 Riesling Hengst Grand Cru Le Samain Alsace France       

Le Enemigo 2018 Gran Enemigo Mendoza Argentina

Léon Beyer 2019 Riesling R de BeyeR Grand Cru Eichberg Alsace France

Lisi 2022 Italian Riesling Sissi Yinchuan Ningxia  China                       

Marcel Deiss 2020 Mambourg Alsace France 

Muré 2020 Sylvaner Clos Saint Landelin Cuvée Oscar Alsace France                          

Nicolas-Jay 2021 Pinot Noir Bishop Creek Yamhill-Carlton Willamette Valley Oregon   USA

Pago de Carraovejas 2020 Ribera del Duero Spain                           

Ponzi 2021 Pinot Noir Laurelwood District Willamette Valley Oregon USA 

Quinta do Noval 2005 Colheita Tawny Port  Portugal  

Taittinger 2012 Comtes de Champagne France

Tement 2020 Sauvignon Blanc Ried Zieregg Styria Austria    


Agathe Bursin 2022 Sylvaner Eminence Alsace France

Ata Rangi 2020 McCrone Vineyard Martinborough New Zeland

Bachelder 2021 Pinot Noir Old Eastern Block Lowery Vineyard St.David’s Bench Niagara Canada

Bassermann-Jordan 2021 Jesuitengarten Riesling Pfalz Germany

Butterworth 2021 Dry Riesling Julicher Te Muna Martinborough New Zeland       

Castell 2020 Casteller Kugelspiel Silvaner Spätlese Franken Germany                             

Château Haut Bages Liberal 2020 Pauillac France

Chateau Montelena 2019 Zinfandel California USA

David and Nadia Howe 2020 Chenin Blanc Hoe-Steen Swartland South Africa 

Dirler-Cadé 2022 Muscat Spiegel Grand Cru Alsace France              

Domaine du Vieux Telegraphe 2018 Châteauneuf du Pape Télégramme Rhone France

Domaine Roulot 2020 Meursault Meix Chavaux Burgundy France               

Double Diamond 2021 Proprietary Red Wine Napa Valley USA 

Duval NV Champagne XXV France

La Jota 2019 Merlot Howell Mountain California USA

Joseph Mellot 2022 Sancerre La Chatellenie Loire France

Main Divide 2020 Gewurztraminer North Canterbury New Zeland

Oremus 2018 Furmint Petracs Single Vineyard Hungary                     

Scions of Sinai 2020 Single Vineyard Pinotage Wellington South Africa

Schoffit 2020 Gewurztaminer Grand Cru Clos St.Theobald Alsace France                                            

Trinite Estate 2018 Acaibo Red Wine Sonoma County California USA

Ullens NV Champagne LPM La Petite Montagne Extra Brut France

XIGE Estate 2019 Cabernet Gernischt Jade Dove Single Vineyard Qingtongxia Ningxia China           




Abel Tasman 2020 Chardonnay Nelson New Zeland        

Achaval-Ferrer 2018 Malbec Finca Altamira Valle dell’Ecu Argentina

Angosto 2021Teuladí Blanco Spain

Argyle 2018 Blanc de Blancs Knudsen Vineyard USA

Artevino 2019 Malpuesto Rioja Spain             

Benjamin and David Duclaux 2020 Côte Rôtie La Germine Rhone France            

Blandy’s 1978 Madeira Terrantez Portugal

Brightwater 2022 Pinot Gris Nelson New Zeland        

Brokenwood 2017 Semillon ILR Reserve Hunter Valley New South Wales Australia

Burrowing Owl 2022 Pinot Gris British Columbia Canada

Calera 2019 Pinot Noir de Villiers Vineyard Mt. Harlan USA

Chateau de Beaucastel 2021 Chateauneuf-du-Pape Rhone France                

Domaine de Longue Toque 2018 Vacqueyras Rhone France

Domaine Fontaine-Gagnard 2021 Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru Clos des Murées Burgundy France                           

Domaine Maire & Fils NV Savagnin Grand Héritage Côtes du Jura France

Eric Morgat 2019 Savennières Fides Loire France                       

Eyrie Vineyards 2021 Pinot Gris Dundee Hills Willamette Valley Oregon USA

Fei Tswei 2019 Marselan Reserve Dry Red Wine China                       

Figgins 2020 Figlia Walla Walla Columbia Valley Washington State USA

Fritz Haag 2018 Brauneberger Juffer Riesling Trocken GG Germany

Garzon 2019 Tannat Uruguay               

Heitz Cellar 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley USA

Henry of Pelham NV Cuvee Catharine Sparkling Brut Niagara Canada

Henri Rebourseau 2019 Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru Fonteny France

Hirsch Vineyards 2021 Pinot Noir Hirsch San Andreas Fault Estate California USA

Gusborne 2018 Blanc de Blancs Kent United Kingdom

Kumeu River 2020 Chardonnay Mate’s Vineyard New Zeland

Kohler-Ruprecht 2021 Riesling Spätlese Trocken Kallstadter Saumagen Pfalz Germany

Leaning Post 2019 Riesling Wismer Foxcroft Vineyard Twenty Mile Bench Niagara Canada

Le Clos de la Meslerie 2018 Vouvray Tendre Loire France

Loimer 2021 Gruner Veltliner Ried Loiserberg Premeir Cru Kamptal Austria

Longting Vineyard 2020 Petit Mangsen Jade Art Series Late Harvest Penglai Shandong China

Mas Amiel 2021 Maury Sec France

Carl Loewen 2022 Riesling Alte Reben Mosel Germany                                 

Mas des Bressades 2021 Cinsault Les 5 Sens Vin de France          

Penfolds Cabernet Shiraz Bin 389 Australia

Pierre Boisson 2020 Bourgogne Aligoté Burgundy France

Puchang Vineyards 2020 Rkatsiteli Xinjiang China

Rafael Palacios 2020 As Sortes Val do Bibei Spain          

Schittler Becker 2021 Gewürztraminer Spätlese

Silver Heights 2021 Chardonnay Jinshan Ningxia                    

Tablas Creek 2021 Esprit Blanc de Tablas  Adelaida District USA

Terrazas 2020 Cheval des Andes Argentina

Twomey 2020 Pinot Noir Dundee Hills Willamette Valley Oregon USA

Wittman 2021 Niersteiner 1G Riesling Rheinhessen Germany



Baron Kyphausen 2021 Roter Riesling Rheingau Germany

CedarCreek 2021 Aspect Collection Block 3 Riesling Okanagan Canada

Celler del Roure 2021 Blanc de Mandó Rosado Les Prunes Moxient Valencia Spain

Domaine de Villaine 2020 Rully Premeir Cru Cloux Burgundy France

Domaine Levert-Barault 2019 Mercurey l’Automne Burgundy France 

Elk Cove Vineyards 2022 Pinot Gris Willamette Valley Oregon USA                 

Hermann J. Wiemer 2022 Semi-Dry Riesling Finger Lakes USA

Hidden Bench 2019 Pinot Noir Locust Lane Vineyard Beamsville Bench Niagara Canada

Lustau NV Oloroso Emperatriz Eugenia  Spain

Misha’s Vineyard 2019 Pinot Noir The High Note Central Otago New Zeland 

Moillard 2020 Vosne-Romanée Aux Brûlées Premier Cru Burgundy France

Nortico 2022 Alvarinho Vinho Verde Portugal

Ravine Vineyard 2021 Brut Niagara-on-the-Lake Canada

Ryme Cellars 2022 Vermentino California USA

Schloss Gobelsburg 2021 Domaene Gobelsburg Gruner Veltliner Kamptal Austria

Toro Albala Solera 5 Anos Electrico Montilla-Moriles Spain




Anthony Road 2021 Riesling Dry Finger Lakes USA

Karlo Estates 2020 Gewurztraminer Niagara Peninsula Canada

Lucashof 2021 Forster Riesling Ungeheuer Pfalz Germany

Massican 2022 Sauvignon Blanc California USA

Pierre-Marie Chermette 2021 Beaujolais Griottes Beaujolais France

Rene Bouvier 2020 Marsannay Le Clos Burgundy France



Famille Vaillant 2021 Pineau d’Aunis les Grandes Vignes Vin de France

Phantom Creek 2022 Pinot Gris Okanagan Valley BC Canada 

Thibault Liger-Belair 2020 Bourgigne Les Deux Terres Burgundy France




Ian D'Agata

Editor-in-Chief of Terroir Sense Wine Review
President of Terroir Sense Academy
Vice President of Association Internationale des Terroirs
Chief Scientific Officer of TasteSpirit

Ian D’Agata has been writing and educating about wines for over thirty years. Internationally recognized as an distinguished expert, critic and writer on many wine regions, his two most recent, award winning books Native Wine Grapes of Italy and Italy's Native Wine Grape Terroirs (both published by University of California Press) are widely viewed as the "state of the art" textbooks on the subject. The former book won the Louis Roederer International Wine Awards Book of the Year in 2015 and was ranked as the top wine books of the year for the Los Angeles Times, the Financial Times and the New York Times, while the latter was named among the best wine books of the year by Food & Wine Magazine and the NY Times.

All Articles by the Author
Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ian D'Agata