05-30-2022 Newsletter

In This Newsletter:

Final Additions to the May Sale

New Vintage Alert: 
Ameztoi Rubentis Txakoli Rose 

Producer Spotlight: 
Jean Foillard 

California’s New Gold: 
Christian Moueix’s Exceptional Cabernet

Astounding Albarino from Val do Salnes
Ar.Pe.Pe’s Alpine Nebbiolo

Featured Producer:
Ruwer roundup with Karlsmuhle



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Final Additions to the May Sale

Diamond Creek Gravelly Meadow Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2018 750ML ($299.95) was $259 now $249 special, 7 bottles in stock now
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 97 points
 “The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Gravelly Meadow is a blend of 78.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8.4% Merlot, 8% Malbec and 5.1% Petit Verdot. Deep garnet-purple in color, it slips effortlessly from the glass, singing of ripe black cherries, black raspberries and cassis, plus hints of red currants, roses, cinnamon stick and garrigue. The medium to full-bodied palate delivers lovely freshness, offering bags of perfumed black fruits in the mouth, beautifully supported by fine-grained tannins, finishing long with lots of soft-spoken floral and mineral whispers. This perfumed beauty wears the 2018 vintage stamp well, presenting a more delicate expression of this vineyard—one that I love! 647 cases were made.”
Wine Spectator 94 points “Ripe and a bit showy in feel, with a blast of cassis and plum purée notes liberally laced with violet, singed applewood and red licorice notes. Then a nice mix of iron and warm stone accents cuts in on the finish, pulling everything together as the violet note takes an encore. Best from 2022 through 2038. 647 cases made. — JM”

This is your last chance to secure the best price in the country for our May Sale wines including Sandhi ChardonnayBeau Marchais and Venoge’s Louis the14th cuvee from 2006!

New Vintage Alert: 

Ameztoi Rubentis Txakoli Rose 

Basque Country is famous for a great many things, with a thriving food and wine scene taking the foreground. Ubiquitous as the porrón from which it’s traditionally served from, Txakoli is a slightly fizzy wine grown in the highlands around the villages made from two closely related grapes. Hondarrabi Zuri and Beltza are white and red grapes respectively that bring to mind the salinity of the nearby sea with electric minerality and bright, citrus flavors. Ameztoi is particularly blessed with family holdings dating back to the 1840’s with some of the oldest Hondarrabi Beltza still in production. 

The 2021 vintage is described as “elegant with a definitive Atlantic character” with a primary fruit character of Pomello, Grapefruit rind and white cherry against sea salt and flinty minerality. Slightly spritzy due to the natural fermentation that allows for minimal sulfur application, the wine is also harvested early enough to keep alcohol levels low. The aromas bring to mind basil flower, citrus rind and a sea breeze making it a perfect summer quaffer.    

Ameztoi Rubentis Rosado Getariako Txakolina 2021 750ML ($24.95) $21.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
De Maison importer note
 “The iconic Ameztoi Rubentis rosé is a field blend of the local, indigenous hondarrabi zuri and hondarrabi beltza varieties, grown on traditional trellises high on the slopes rising above Getaria, an ancient Basque fishing village on Spain’s rugged northern coast. In the 2000s, when almost all of the other local wineries gave up on the indigenous red hondarrabi beltza vines, the Ameztoi family retained their old vines, in turn, lending their rosé such exceptional vibrancy and complexity. Rubentis, the region’s first pink wine, was inspired by the historic claret style wines which were once produced in the area long before the current global craze made rosé famous. The backbone of the blend comes from an old hondarrabi beltza vineyard planted in 1840, preserved by the Ameztoi family for generations. Ameztoi Rubentis is an authentic original, a wine that is often imitated but never replicated.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Also in stock by Ameztoi: 

Ameztoi Rubentis Rosado Getariako Txakolina 2020 750ML ($24.95) $19 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds – Vinous 92 points
 “Shimmering orange-pink. Pungent cherry and red berry scents take on floral and spice nuances with air. Shows silky texture and good depth to the zesty red currant and bitter cherry flavors, which turn sweeter through the midpalate. Smoothly blends heft and energy and finishes long and nervy, with a hint of bitter orange pith adding final bite.”
Importer note “The pink sibling of Ameztoi’s flagship white, this vibrant rosé is made from a mix of red and white indigenous grapes and is bottled with a little residual carbonation to give it a light spritz.”
Region: Getariako Txakolina, Pais Vasco (Basque Country), Spain.
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Ameztoi Primus Txakoli di Getaria Hondarribi Zuri Getariako Txakolina 2019 750ML ($29.95) $21.90 special, 11 bottles in stock now
Winery note 
“[Edited for clarity] A white wine from the Hondarrabi Zuri grape. Naturally lightly sparkling. Pale with a touch of green, its bright tone has fine and elegant bubbles. Has a delicate and sophisticated fragrance, reminiscent of green apples and grapes, with a minty note. Opens dry, and is harmonious in the mouth. It has a broad and aromatic finish, which is cheerful because of its bubbles.”
Note on the 2018 vintage by Luis Gutierrez (provided for reference) “The white 2018 Primus is 100% Hondarribi Zuri and was selected with the idea of aging potential. It has 11% alcohol and seven grams of acidity balanced by three grams of sugar, which resulted from fermenting the must in stainless steel at low temperature and keeping the wine with the lees at zero degrees to preserve the dissolved gas. This has a more traditional style with quite a lot of gas, closer to the light, sharp and citrus style, finishing dry with notable tart acidity.”

Producer Spotlight: 

Jean Foillard 

Foillard is one of the members of the “Gang of Four”, a group of young producers who catapulted Beaujolais onto the world stage with their incredible re-interpretation of traditional winemaking . Sourcing from organically farmed, old-vines with no intervention during fermentation and élevage these are among the most transparent expressions of Gamay Noir on the market. Irresistibly delicious on release, these are wines that reward the patient but won’t scold you for opening one now.  

Foillard Wines in stock now: 

Domaine Jean Foillard Morgon Les Charmes Eponym Beaujolais 2019 750ML ($57.95) $46 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 94 points
 “Glistening ruby. Powerful, mineral-accented cherry, black raspberry, violet and black cardamom scents pick up a spicy nuance as the wine opens up. Chewy and tightly wound on entry, offering juicy dark berry, bitter cherry and floral pastille flavors that deepen and slowly spread out through the back half. Shows firm tension and impressive energy on a very long, mineral-driven finish framed by polished, even tannins.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 93 points “Aromas of sweet red berries, plums and smoke introduce the 2019 Morgon Eponym, a medium to full-bodied, supple and charming wine that’s fine boned and elegant, with powdery tannins and lively acids, concluding with a perfumed finish. This is a pretty rendition of this cuvée derived from climat Les Charmes.”

Domaine Jean Foillard Fleurie Beaujolais 2019 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 11 bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 94 points
 “Dark, bright-rimmed ruby. Incisive, spice-accented red and blue fruit and allspice scents show excellent clarity and pick up floral and smoky mineral flourishes with air. Juicy and alluringly sweet, offering vibrant black raspberry, boysenberry and five-spice powder flavors that deepen through the midpalate. Shows impressive energy and finishes seamless and impressively long, with discreet tannins and a strong echo of juicy red fruit.”

Domaine Jean Foillard Morgon Beaujolais 2019 750ML ($34.95) $28 special, 29 bottles in stock now
Kermit Lynch note 
“This estate comprises nearly fourteen hectares. Foillard’s Morgons are deep, structured, and complex, with a velvety lushness that makes them irresistible when young despite their aging potential. Jean raises his wines in older barrels sourced from top estates in Burgundy, a logical decision for someone crafting Gamay in a Burgundian style. It is the passion and dedication of vignerons like this that have brought pride back to the crus of the Beaujolais.”

Domaine Jean Foillard Morgon Cuvee Corcelette Beaujolais  2019 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 27 bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 94 points
 “Saturated magenta. Expressive aromas of red and dark fruit preserves, star anise and potpourri pick up a smoky mineral topnote with air. Juicy and energetic in the mouth, offering concentrated raspberry and cherry liqueur, fruitcake and floral pastille flavors supported by a core of smoky minerality. At once powerful and lithe, finishing on a gently tannic note with superb, floral- and mineral-driven tenacity.”

Domaine Jean Foillard Morgon Cote du Py Beaujolais  2017 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 14 bottles in stock now
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 94 points
 “Tasted at the domaine, Foillard’s 2017 Morgon Côte du Py is much the same as it showed from my cellar earlier this year. Unwinding in the glass with aromas of cherries, red berries, grilled meats, rose petals and orange rind, it’s medium to full-bodied, velvety and fleshy, with fine and powdery tannins, lively acids and a ripe core of fruit. It’s a touch richer and more sun-kissed than the stunning 2016 rendition, but this is a very fine Côte de Py from Foillard.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 94 points “Vivid ruby. A highly complex bouquet evokes ripe red/blue fruits, candied flowers and exotic spices, and a smoky mineral nuance builds as the wine opens up. Stains the palate with appealingly sweet black raspberry and cherry flavors that become livelier and spicier on the back half. Conveys an impressive blend of power and finesse and lingers with superb persistence on the finish, which features sneaky tannins and lingering florality.”
Neal Martin-Vinous 94 points “We finished with a 2017 Morgon Côte du Py from Jean Foillard, which showed up the Kiwi Pinot. The color was iridescent, the bouquet pure Gamay in full flight: copious blueberries, cassis, crushed violets and blood oranges, all delivered with superb delineation and brightness. The palate harnessed the vivacity and unpretentiousness of Gamay with fine tannins, pure, tart black and red fruit and veins of blueberry. There was a gentle but insistent grip on a finish of supreme length. An outstanding Beaujolais wine, but frankly, I expected nothing less from this producer.”

Domaine Jean Foillard Morgon Cote du Py Beaujolais 2019 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 95 points
 “Deep, shimmering violet. Powerful, spice-tinged red and blue fruit preserve and floral pastille aromas are complemented by suggestions of musky earth and licorice. Alluringly sweet and seamless in the mouth, offering sappy, mineral-driven black raspberry, cherry liqueur, lavender and five-spice powder flavors that expand through the back half. Finishes extremely long and nervy, with harmonious tannins building steadily and adding solid grip to reverberating cherry and floral notes.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 94+ points “The most reserved wine in the range is the 2019 Morgon Côte du Py, a terrific effort that unwinds in the glass with notes of sweet berry fruit, peonies, loamy soil and sweet spices. Medium to full-bodied, deep and concentrated, with ultra-fine tannins and lively acids, it’s sapid and mouthwatering. Stylistically, this sits somewhere between the richer, riper register of 2018 and 2017 and the fragrant classicism of 2016. As ever, it’s one of the most dependably delicious purchases to be made in the region.”


California’s New Gold: 

Christian Moueix’s Exceptional Cabernet
“To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield” – Alfred Lord Tennyson, Ulysses 

You’ve heard of Dominus and their multi-award winning Cabernet, but did you know that there’s a sister label just as storied? Ulysses is another single vineyard owned by Christian Moueix located in Oakville at the foot of the Mayacamas Mountain Range. Just like her sister, the Ulysses vineyard is organically farmed with no irrigation (No small feat given the rising temperatures as a result of climate change) and given as much pampering in the cellar as Dominus.

Primarily composed of Cabernet Sauvignon with a sprinkling of Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, the resulting wine from 2018 has been called “Dark enough to write a letter with” by some reviewers. We’ve secured an allotment of various formats, but as you can expect quantities are in short supply given the restrictive growing conditions. The vintage was described as “Picture Perfect” with no heat spikes and cooler evenings that hadn’t been seen in years. Even fire season seemed to wait until harvest was complete, making this an especially kismet vintage. 

Ulysses in stock now: 

Ulysses Vineyard Napa Valley 2018 750ML ($179.95) $169 special
Ulysses Vineyard Napa Valley 2018 375ML ($99.95) $79 special 
Ulysses Vineyard Napa Valley 2018 1.5L ($399.95) $319 special
James Suckling 98 points
 “Aromas of terra cotta, chocolate and hazelnut with iron and ink. Dusty. Full-bodied and round. Layered. Flamboyant and juicy. Rather soft and gorgeous. Some walnut and chocolate at the end. persistent. Always there. Drinkable now, but will age wonderfully.”
Antonio Galloni 97 points “The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon is the best wine off Christian Moueix’s Oakville ranch so far. Deep, creamy and generous, the 2018 captures the unqiue blend of fruit in a savoriness that is typical of the southern sector of Oakville where cooling winds from the south lend palpable freshness and vivacity to the vines. Black fruit, chocolate, spice, lavender and new leather are some of the many notes that build into the sumptuous finish.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Don’t forget the Dominus!


Astounding Albarino from Val do Salnes
The DO Rias Baixas is famous for her exquisite seafood and spectacular vistas of where mountains meet the Atlantic Ocean. Consisting of several growing regions, the Val do Salnes is the closest to the sea out of the five sub-appellations. Some of the biggest contributors to the terroir of Salnes are the granitic mountains and blankets of sea fog found throughout the area, creating the building blocks for an invigorating and savory wine with surprising aging potential.

These features also have a meteorological effect, creating an exceptionally cool and oftentimes wet growing season with the average temperature being 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result of these challenges, there has been very little deviation from the traditional growing practices. The winemaker for Leirana named Rodrigo Mendez exemplifies this in spades, farming ancestral plots just as his family has done for five consecutive generations. Previous vintages have garnered worldwide attention, with the New York Times naming the 2012 vintage the best in the entire region!

With the average planting date being in 1967 the influence from the granitic bedrock is evident from first pour. Vinified in a combination of steel and neutral foudre, there’s a plethora of highly aromatic fruit and floral elements underscored by a saline and mineral finish. The fruit character ranges from green pineapple, papaya and guava with a topknot of geranium, honeysuckle and ‘ōhi‘a lehua. The extended hang time practiced by Rodrigo pays off in a richer texture than your standard Rias Baixas without overstaying or being cloying.

Val Do Salnes Albarino in stock now: 

Bodegas Forjas del Salnes Leirana Albarino Rias Baixas 2020 750ML ($39.95) $26.60 special
Case-12 Bodegas Forjas del Salnes Leirana Albarino Rias Baixas 2020 750ML ($479.95) $299 special, (that’s only $24.92/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 94 points 
“The vibrant 2020 Leirana was produced with a blend of 60% wine matured in used oak foudre and the rest stainless steel, as the wine has very high acidity (9 to 9.5 grams with a pH of 2.99!) and doesn’t go through malolactic; so, it is very sharp, and the higher percentage of oak makes it a little rounder. It’s powerful and pungent, serious and with granite minerality, showcasing the serious style of the whites from 2020. It has moderate alcohol (12.9%) and an electric palate that is clean and tasty, with a stony finish.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Nanclares y Prieto ‘A Grana’ Galicia 2020 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 93 points
 “The 2020 A Graña has a more fruit-driven nose and a round palate, perhaps because it has retained some five grams of residual sugar and the wine has less acidity. It might have had some partial malolactic. 1,200 bottles were produced. It feels like a 2020 nose and a 2019 palate.”

Nanclares y Prieto ‘Crisopa’ Branco Tradicional Galicia 2018 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Luis Gutierrez – Wine Advocate 94 points
 “The completely unusual “orange” wine is a bright amber Albariño macerated with skins during the fermentation. The 2018 Crisopa, produced with grapes from the same vineyard as Soberrivas, has a completely different nose and a brighter and deeper color than any previous vintage. Perhaps the grapes were smaller and there might be more skins for the juice, and the wine underwent malolactic (at least partially). There are notes of apple liqueur, pollen and beeswax, and the palate is finely tannic. Here, the process overpowers the variety and place. It has lower acidity than most of the wines from the winery, but this is one of the finest examples of the type. It should develop nicely in bottle. 636 bottles were filled in August 2019.”
Importer note “Crisopa Branco Tradicional comes from the same parcel as “Soverribas” (Paraje Manzaniña) but is picked one day earlier to select the best bunches. After a wet and cool spring and summer, it turned dry and hot in August, with hand-harvesting on Sept. 10th through Oct. 6th. The grapes were foot-trodden in open plastic vats with 100% whole-clusters, and then skin-fermented for 20 days in a steel vat. After a vertical press the wine is racked into a used 500L French oak cask, where it rests for 11 months on the lees with battonage for first 3 months, before being bottled on Aug. 21st (fruit day) without clarification, filtration and only modest amounts of SO2. A fascinating and extremely textured Vinho Branco made in the style of the ancients!”
This is the only listing in the USA today!


Ar.Pe.Pe’s Alpine Nebbiolo

You’ve heard of sister regions Barolo and Barbaresco but did you know that there is a third sibling that also specialized in Nebbiolo? The Italian Alps are home to some of the most ethereal and mineral driven expressions of wine in the entire world. Naturally insulated from the rest of the country due to the topography, the villagers practice winemaking exactly as they have for centuries. Alto Piemonte as it’s known by the locals was formed during the shift of the African and European tectonic plates millions of years ago, creating one of the most diverse mix of soils in the world. 

You see everything from prehistoric marine sediment, schist, fractured limestone, granite and even sandstone. There is so much complexity that only the locals have dared to try classifying the contents of their soil. Located near the Italian-Swiss border Arpepe does exactly that, producing Chiavennasca (The local name for Nebbiolo) from terraced vineyards that have been in their family for generations. Known as a benchmark producer for the regions expression of nebbiolo , Ar.Pe.Pe. is a fantastic introduction to the particular stylings of Chiavennasca. Their style draws comparisons to Barolo and Barbaresco of years past. Considering the advancement of climate change these wines are well on their way to becoming the next hotbed for Nebbiolo in Italy, as freshness and elegance become more elusive further south. We’ve also just secured our allocation for their late harvest wine, the Ultimi Raggi. A true rarity in that most examples of the style are perceptibly dry due to the varietals high tannins and acidity. Arpepe takes this artistry to the next level by allowing the grapes to dry on the vine, allowing for even more sugar accumulation and further ripeness in the flavors. The site’s high altitude at over 2,000 feet elevation maintains acidity and wild botanical character. 

Ar.Pe.Pe. wines in stock now: 

Ar.Pe.Pe. Ultimi Raggi Valtellina Superiore Sassella 2009 750ML ($119.95) $99 special
Antonio Galloni-Vinous 95 points 
“The 2009 Valtellina Superiore Sassella Ultimi Raggi is beguiling, rich, dense and powerful. Cinnamon, dried dark cherry, leather, smoke and licorice come together in a full-bodied, somewhat rustic wine with no shortage of character. The Ultimi Raggi is made from the last fruit on the vine to ripen, and is therefore sweeter and richer through the mid-palate, with more palate weight and overall density than is found in most of these wines. I loved it.”
Antonio Galloni-Vinous 95 points “The 2009 Valtellina Superiore Sassella Ultimi Raggi is beguiling, rich, dense and powerful. Cinnamon, dried dark cherry, leather, smoke and licorice come together in a full-bodied, somewhat rustic wine with no shortage of character. The Ultimi Raggi is made from the last fruit on the vine to ripen, and is therefore sweeter and richer through the mid-palate, with more palate weight and overall density than is found in most of these wines. I loved it.”

Ar.Pe.Pe. Buon Consiglio Riserva Valtellina Superiore Grumello DOCG 2013 750ML ($119.95) $99 special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95+ points
 “One of two late-release wines from Ar. Pe. Pe., the 2013 Valtellina Superiore Grumello Riserva Buon Consiglio is a beautifully light and delicate expression of Nebbiolo with a lean, ruby-tinged appearance. The wine ages to silkiness and extreme suppleness, and I cannot help but notice the unique aromas of toasted hazelnut, mountain flower and balsam herb that rise so delicately from the bouquet. These results are exquisite and ultra delicate, giving the wine a lithe or ethereal personality. What a beauty. Only 6,000 bottles were released.”
Wine Spectator 94 points “A perfumed red, exuding aromas and flavors of crushed raspberry and pureed strawberry, exotic spice and graphite, dried marjoram and thyme. It’s finely knit, with silky tannins and mouthwatering, citrus peel acidity. A graceful version with a lasting, mineral-laced finish. Drink now through 2028. 500 cases made, 175 cases imported.  –AN”
Wine Enthusiast 93 points “Camphor, wild rose and botanical herbs mingle with a whiff of wet granite. On the elegantly structured, still youthfully austere palate, tight, refined tannins lithely support sour cherry, orange zest and star anise. It’s vibrant and balanced, with bright acidity. Drink 2023–2033. -Kerin O’Keefe”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Ar.Pe.Pe. Sesto Canto Riserva Valtellina Superiore Inferno DOCG 2013 750ML ($119.95) $99 special
Wine Spectator 93 points
 “There’s a lovely juiciness to the crushed black raspberry and strawberry fruit on display in this elegant, medium- to full-bodied red, yet sleek tannins are well-integrated and provide fine definition. Fragrant notes of tea leaf, pomegranate and hot stone chime on the silky finish. Drink now through 2033. 500 cases made, 175 cases imported.  –AN”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Ar.Pe.Pe. Vigna Regina – Nuova Regina Riserva Valtellina Superiore Sassella DOCG 2013 750ml ($119.95) $99 Special
Wine Enthusiast 96 points 
“Loaded with finesse and energy and still youthfully austere, this linear, structured red offers tart cranberry, blood orange and star anise sensations. A vein of salty mineral provides the backdrop while fine-grained tannins provide elegant structure and support. Racy acidity keeps it balanced. Give it time to fully develop and blossom into even more of a beauty. Drink 2025–2035. -Kerin O’Keefe”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95 points “A release of about 6,000 bottles, the Ar. Pe. Pe. 2013 Valtellina Superiore Riserva Sassella Nuova Regina draws its fruit from terraced vineyards delineated by rocky drywalls. The vines are at least 50 years old and planted in friable metamorphic rock or gneiss shaped by glaciers. This wine is made in a highly traditional manner with extended skin maceration in oak casks, and all the harvest work is done by hand. This is a true beauty with enormous finesse and a deep well of aromatic nuances that center around wild berries, blue flowers and iron ore. The wine is carefully aged with fine and silky tannins. It tastes great, so if you have a bottle you can drink it now or wait longer if that is your pleasure.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Ar.Pe.Pe. ‘Il Pettirosso’ Valtellina Superiore DOCG 2016 750ML ($54.95) $45 special
Decanter 93 points 
“Il Pettirosso, or ‘robin redbreast’, is a dedication to Ar Pe Pe’s founder, Arturo who first created this bottling in 1997. A selection of casks ready to be bottled after relatively minimal ageing, it brings together parcels in the subzones of Sassella and Grumello. Piercing pure rose, cherry blossom and tobacco lead the way to a nucleus of sweet raspberry, red cherry and subtle flintiness. It’s fine-boned in frame and zesty in acidity, with silky-smooth tannins that glide effortlessly across the palate. The epitome of elegance. Drinking Window 2021 – 2028.”
Antonio Galloni 92 points “The 2016 Valtellina Superiore Il Pettirosso is a terrific choice for readers who want to explore the Ar.Pe.Pe. wines before delving into some of the more pricey bottlings. Dried autumn leaves, cedar, pipe tobacco, herbs and licorice are some of the many notes that grace this wonderfully expressive, super-classic Valtellina Nebbiolo. Aging in cask brings out the nuances of these old vines so well. The transparency of Nebbiolo comes through beautifully.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 92 points “Here’s a beautiful wine with a great human story behind it. Fruit from 50-year-old vines planted in friable granitic mountain soils is carried down to the winery in small cassettes on the hearty shoulders of the harvesters. With some 24,000 bottles made, the Ar. Pe. Pe. 2016 Valtellina Superiore Nebbiolo Il Pettirosso is perfumed with rosebud, wild berry, sour cherry and crushed stone. All that backbreaking human labor leads to a soft and gently polished red wine to pair with a classic buckwheat pasta from this ski-loving region.”
Wine Enthusiast 92 points “Bright and tangy, this fragrant wine offers head scents of red rose, pine forest, wet flint and Alpine herb. Vibrant and savory, the racy palate has lovely mineral energy and tension, doling out juicy Marasca cherry, ground clove and a hint of hazelnut alongside taut, refined tannins and bright acidity. Drink through 2026. -Kerin O’Keefe”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Ar.Pe.Pe. Grumello Rocca de Piro Riserva Valtellina Superiore Grumello DOCG 2015 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93 points
 “Fruit for this wine comes from the high altitudes of the Rhaetian Alps, where decomposed granite soils make for a dark contrast against brilliant white ice and snow falls. The Ar. Pe. Pe. 2015 Valtellina Superiore Nebbiolo Grumello Rocca de Piro reveals a long succession of dried raspberry, cassis, pressed violets, iron ore and crushed stone. This wine promises to make a terrific pairing with a simple plate of thinly sliced Valtellina bresaola. Some 30,000 bottles were made.”
Wine Enthusiast 92 points “Initially shy, the subtle nose eventually reveals new leather, Alpine herb and wild berry. The savory palate has an understated elegance, offering Marasca cherry, pomegranate and graphite alongside refined tannins. Drink through 2027. -Kerin O’Keefe”
Wine Spectator 92 points “An elegant light- to medium-bodied red, with fine tannins creating a supple frame for flavors wild strawberry, black tea leaf and a ferrous, minerally underpinning. It’s fresh and focused, with a lingering, lightly spiced finish. Drink now through 2030. –AN

Featured Producer:

Ruwer roundup with Karlsmuhle


Thanks to the recommendation of Johannes Selbach, we were able to find a local gem that’s rarely discussed outside of German wine media. The Ruwer is one of the most unique of the Mosel sub-regions, in that it does not receive the benefits of refracted sunlight off the surface of the river like her sisters Bernkastel or Terrassenmosel due to the smaller size of the Ruwer river. Climatologically speaking this slows ripening and requires longer hang time on the vine, as seen in the wines produced with higher sugar levels and pronounced floral aromatics. You’d be hard pressed to find a producer that better exemplifies these qualities than Peter Geiben’s work at the Karlsmuhle estate. 

Karlsmuhle is based in the Ruwer and has an estate blessed with exceptionally steep vineyards and old vines. These factors considered it’s little surprise that his wines have won “Best in Germany” multiple times and have been mentioned by the likes of Terry Theise. In four years of competing, Karlsmuhle won nine medals across multiple categories. Karlsmuhle is one of only a handful of producers in all of Germany that make Riesling at all levels of the Prädikatswein ladder. 

This was one of the most favored winegrowing areas by the Romans, with archeological sites showing wine production dating back to the first century (making it one of the first colonized and planted by the empire!) If you appreciate the delicate and ethereal qualities of Riesling, this is a sub-region to try! The soil here is deeper than other sub-regions and contains veins of iron but still featuring a base of slate like the rest of the Mosel. Examples from this area usually feature generous amounts of fruit, refreshing herbaciousness, high acidity and a slightly spicy finish. 

Karlsmuhle wines in stock now:  

Weingut Karlsmuhle Lorenzhofer Riesling Kabinett Trocken Mosel 2019 750ML ($24.95) $19 special

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Weingut Karlsmuhle Kaseler Nies’chen Kabinett Riesling Mosel 2019 750ML ($24.95) $19 special
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Weingut Karlsmuhle Kaseler Nies’chen Spatlese Riesling Mosel 2019 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Weingut Karlsmuhle Kaseler Nies’chen Riesling Auslese Lange Goldkapsel Mosel 2019 750ML ($44.95) $38 special
This is the only listing in the USA today!