March 4th Newsletter 2022

In This Newsletter:

Just in: 
Friday New and Re-Arrivals 

Springtime Specials:
New Wines on the Horizon 

Muse of Mallorca: 
Mesquida Mora’s Old-Vine Callet 

The King of Quarts de Chaume

Austrian Treasure 


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Just in: 
Friday New and Re-Arrivals 


France- Bordeaux 

Chateau Puy Blanquet Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2018 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 92-94 points 
“Deeply colored, the 2018 Château Puy-Blanquet checks in as 85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon from a 20-hectare parcel of clay and limestone soils. Beautifully ripe and sexy, with a massive bouquet of blackcurrants, macerated black cherries, and smoked earth, it’s full-bodied, opulent, and layered on the palate, with serious fruit. This brilliant wine will be approachable in its youth yet also evolve gracefully for 15 years or more. It should also be an incredible value.”
Antonio Galloni 90-93 points “The 2018 Puy-Blanquet is a rich, creamy and sensual wine with tremendous near and medium term appeal. In 2018, Puy-Blanquet is especially lush, almost shockingly so, for a Saint-Émilion that is usually quite classic in feel. Inky red and purplish berry fruit, spice, rose petal and mint build as this silky, pliant Saint-Émilion shows off its racy, inviting personality. Don’t miss it.”

Chateau Lafleur-Gazin Pomerol 2016 750ML ($79.95) $69 special, 23 bottles in stock now
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 93 points
 “The 2016 Lafleur-Gazin is made up of 94% Merlot and 6% Cabernet Franc. Medium garnet-purple colored, it simply sings of red roses, cherry cordial, blackberry pie and warm blueberries with suggestions of cinnamon toast and wood smoke. Medium-bodied, it fills the mouth with tons of juicy red and blue berry flavors, supported by a wonderfully soft, velvety texture and seamless freshness, finishing long and perfumed.”
James Suckling 93 points “A beautifully plush and attractively rich Pomerol with aromas of red cherries and plums, framed in cedar and cocoa, as well as notes of earth and undergrowth. The plush palate is undeniably silky yet long and powerfully regal. Terrific balance here. Try from 2022.”
Antonio Galloni 92 points “The 2016 Lafleur-Gazin is soft, open-knit and quite gracious. This is an especially lifted, perfumed Pomerol. Tobacco, cedar, dried flowers, mint and crushed red berries are all laced together in a silky, approachable, mid-weight Pomerol that will drink well upon release given its superb balance and sense of harmony.”
Wine Spectator 92 points “Rich cherry compote and plum preserve flavors define this wine, while licorice snap, singed alder and tobacco notes fill in the background. Lingering wood spice accents run through the finish, while the fruit hangs on. Best from 2021 through 2031. 2,700 cases made. — JM”

France- Beaujolais 

Stephane Aviron Beaujolais-Quincie France 2018 750ML ($21.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Frederick Wildman note
 “Terroir: The Stéphane Aviron Beaujolais Villages is sourced from two of the best terroirs of the appellation, both with old vines averaging at least 50 years in age. The vines in the commune of Quincié have sandy, granite soils and the commune of Lantignié has clay and limestone soils with favorable southwest exposure. Vinification: Whole clusters of grapes are fermented, and then macerated for six days to extract characters of fruit and finesse. The wine is aged in cement tanks to retain the purity of the fresh fruit. The wine shows great finesse, elegance and a very ‘easy drinking’ nature.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Spain – Galicia 

Daterra Viticultores ‘Azos da Vila’ Galicia 2019 750ML ($39.95) $33 special

Winery Note: “Field blend of Mouraton, Mencia, Garnacha Tintorera, Merenzao, Gran Negro, and other local varieties from 80-120-year-old vines on granitic soils near Manzaneda in the Val do Bibei. Grapes partially destemmed (50%), macerate for 15 days, and fermented with wild yeasts in an old, open-top French oak barrel. Raised for 11 months in used 225L & 500L chestnut and French oak barrels.”

Daterra Viticultores ‘Portela do Vento’ Galicia 2019 750ML ($36.95) $31.90 special
Winery Note:“100% Mencia from a south-facing parcel of 50-year-old vines planted on granitic, sandy soils at an elevation of 350-400 meters in the Amandi subzone of Ribeira Sacra. The grapes were destemmed and partially crushed then fermented in a used 4000L French oak foudre. The wine then rested for 11 months in the same foudre.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Daterra Viticultores ‘Casas de Enriba’ Galicia 2019 750ML ($36.95) $31.90 special
Winery Note:“100% Mencia from Laura’s own 20-25-year-old vines in Valdeorras, planted on granitic soils at an elevation of 550 meters. The grapes were partially destemmed and fermented in stainless steel tanks before being transferred to 4000L French oak barrels to rest for 10 months.”

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!

Spain- Navarra 

Vina Zorzal Garnacha Navarra 2020 750ML ($17.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Vina Zorzal Garnacha Navarra 2020 750ML ($214.95) $149 special, (that’s only $12.42/bottle!) 
Luis Gutierrez – Wine Advocate 92 points
 “The incredibly young and juicy 2020 Garnacha was produced with grapes from different villages, Corella, Cintruénigo, Fitero and Lerga, hence a regional blend that for the first time contains grapes from the cooler Lerga that adds lower pH, more freshness and complexity to the blend. They do a soft extraction in stainless steel using 20% full clusters and indigenous yeasts, achieving a wine with moderate alcohol (13.47%) and good freshness (pH 3.47). I felt like the wine had gone one step up in complexity and depth from the previous vintage; it’s precise, harmonious, elegant and nuanced and keeps varietal purity. It’s medium-bodied and has very fine tannins with herbal freshness, reminiscent of acid berries and bay leaf. This is a steal! One to buy by the case… 137,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in February 2021.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Italy – Barbaresco 

Nada Giuseppe Casot Barbaresco DOCG 2018 750ML 2018 750ML ($49.95) $33 special
Case-6 Nada Giuseppe Casot Barbaresco DOCG2018 750ML ($269) $189 special, (that’s only $31.50 per bottle!) 
Case-12 Nada Giuseppe Casot Barbaresco DOCG 2018 750ML ($539) $359 special, (that’s only $29.92/bottle!)
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93 points
 “The 2018 Barbaresco Casot is a fragrant and immediate wine that shows a good amount of ripeness and richness up front. This was a cool vintage overall, although the fruit ripened quickly toward the end of the growing season. There are sweet cherry aromas with spice and licorice. The wine drapes over the palate with silky and smooth intensity. The Casot vineyard is distinguished by layers of bluish tufo soil and layers of looser sand. Production is 10,000 bottles.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

California – Howell Mountain 

La Jota Vineyard Cabernet Franc Howell Mountain 2016 750ML ($109.95) $89 special
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 97 points
 “The deep garnet-purple colored 2016 Cabernet Franc Howell Mountain (100% Cabernet Franc) gives up exuberant bramble fruits, baked raspberries, mulberries and wild blueberries with suggestions of pencil shavings, kirsch, rose hip tea and tobacco leaf. Full-bodied and with a very firm frame of ripe, grainy tannins, it has wonderful perfume and depth, finishing long and mineral laced. 537 cases produced.”
Wine Enthusiast 96 points “Cellar Selection. This standout varietal wine is complex and lengthy in a wealth of juicy red and black fruit, with lasting accents of dried herb, sage, lavender and violet. Built to last, it should develop even more in bottle. Drink 2024–2026. -Virginie Boone”
Jeb Dunnuck 95+ points “Lots of spring flowers, chocolate, damp earth, and blue fruits emerge from the 2016 Cabernet Franc Howell Mountain, which is 100% varietal brought up in a mix of new and used barrels. With medium to full body, bright acidity, incredible elegance, and a still tight, focused style on the palate, hide bottles for 3-5 years and it should drink beautifully over the following 15-20 years.”

California – Mt Veeder 

Mt. Brave Cabernet Sauvignon Mount Veeder 2018 750ML ($99.95) $89 special
Antonio Galloni 97 points 
“The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon from Mt. Brave is fabulous. Inky, rich and explosive, the 2018 possesses tremendous depth and tons of personality. Graphite, blue/purplish fruit, blackberry jam, bittersweet chocolate, sage, lavender, menthol give the 2018 tons of character to match its explosive feel. The brooding, backward wine is going to need quite a bit of time to unwind, but boy is it gorgeous.”
Jeb Dunnuck 97 points “Lots of cassis and black raspberry fruits as well as classic Mount Veeder notes of lavender, violets, bouquet garni, and rocky, mineral-like notes emerge from the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon. A deep, full-bodied mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, it has a plush, layered texture, beautiful tannins, a deep, concentrated mid-palate, and a great finish. Another head-turning wine from this label, it’s a candidate for the best Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon out there at the price point.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 95+ points “A blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Merlot, 1.5% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Mt. Veeder was aged for 22 months in oak barrels, 82% new. Deep garnet-purple colored, it springs from the glass with vibrant crème de cassis, baked plums and Morello cherries scents, followed by nuances of sautéed herbs, clove oil, mocha and scorched earth. The full-bodied palate is densely laden with layers of black and blue fruits, sporting a rock-solid backbone of grainy tannins and great tension, finishing long and minerally. 6,753 cases were made.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Springtime Specials:
New Wines on the Horizon 

Arriving Late March, 2022

Hubert de Bouard has especially championed this within his family’s holdings. Undertaking massive renovations to their estate and vinification practices, Angelus is now farmed organically and uses gravity-feeding during fermentation. Hubert borrowed techniques from Burgundian producers like de-stemming by hand, fermenting parcels separately and extended contact with the lees with elevage in 100% new French oak.    
Chateau Angelus Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2015 750ML ($479.95) $419 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 97+ points
 “A total blockbuster is the 2015 Angelus and it’s reminiscent of a slightly more elegant 2009. Made from 62% Merlot and 38% Cabernet Franc brought up in new barrels, this rich, opulent beauty boast killer notes of blackcurrants, blackberry liqueur, truffle, chocolate and scorched earth. With full-bodied richness, building, ripe tannin and a stacked profile on the palate, this hedonistic Bomb of a wine from Hubert de Boüard needs 4-5 years of cellaring and will keep for three decades or more.”
Neal Martin-Vinous 97 points “The 2015 Angélus has a calm, cool and collected bouquet of tightly wound black fruit that unfurls with aeration to reveal blackberry, gravel and pencil box notes; classic, almost Left Bank in style, and delivered with real panache. The palate is exquisitely balanced with fine but grippy tannin, layers of black and red fruit tinged with vanilla and perfect acidity. The harmonious, sensual finish is very alluring. What a stunning 2015 this is going to be! Tasted blind at the Southwold 2015 Bordeaux tasting.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 97 points “Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2015 Angélus is a little closed to begin, soon blossoming into a wonderfully fragrant perfume of raspberry preserves, ripe black plums and chocolate-covered cherries with suggestions of Darjeeling tea, candied violets, spice cake and cinnamon stick with a touch of aniseed. Full-bodied, the palate is fabulously opulent, delivering mouth-coating black and red fruit layers with loads of floral sparkles and a seductively velvety texture, finishing with great length and tension.”
Wine Enthusiast 97 points “This wine is structured, powerful and ripe but also elegant and stylish. Juicy black fruits combine with a dry, structured core to give the wine both its richness and its future. Powered by its fruit and tannins, it has good aging potential. Drink from 2027. -Roger Voss”

One of Napa’s heritage vineyards, with its first planting dating to the 1920’s. Replanted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot in the late 90’s the site is famed for the high portions of gravel throughout the 21 planted acres. Soils in Dr. Crane vineyard are comprised of a thin layer of loam before giving way to bedrock, with the site originally housing a quarry in the 18th century.     

Salvestrin Winery Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon St Helena 2018 750ML ($99.95) $89 pre-arrival special
#9 Wine Spectator Wine of the Year in 2021
Wine Spectator 95 points
 “Bright and fresh, with lots of red currant, plum and black cherry fruit notes driving along nicely, while a subtle tug of iron runs underneath. Late floral and warm earth flashes on the finish add more range and contrast. Focused, detailed and really well built. To be released October 2021. Best from 2022 through 2035. 1,260 cases made. — JM”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 94+ points “The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Dr. Crane Vineyard is a blend of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet-purple in color, it strides confidently out of the glass with notions of crushed black and red currants, ripe blackberries and black raspberries plus hints of dried Mediterranean herbs, tilled soil and pencil lead. The medium to full-bodied palate is chock-full of crunchy black and red berries, framed by firm, grainy tannins and a lively backbone, finishing long with loads of minerals and an herbal lift.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Entirely Sangiovese from a high-elevation, hillside planting dating back to the 1980’s and farmed organically. Coming from a cooler vintage these are just finding their stride after years of bottle development.    
Fattoria Le Pupille ‘Poggio Valente’ Rosso Toscana IGT Tuscany 2018 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 94 points
 “Tasted from vat, the Fattoria le Pupille 2018 Poggio Valente is an elegant expression of Sangiovese with just a hint of the freewheeling wildness that characterizes the Maremma region of southern Tuscany. The wine delivers cherry, wild rose, forest fruit and blueberry. Beyond those primary tones are integrated notes of spice and mild tobacco. The wine is put together with careful precision, and all it needs now is more aging time in order to flesh out and build depth. Everything is set, just give it time.”
James Suckling 94 points “Really pretty balance and focus to this red with plums, berries, cherries, currants and hints of vanilla and hazelnuts. It’s medium-to full-bodied with refined tannins and a clean, fruity finish. Very elegant. Pure sangiovese. So drinkable now. Why wait? Drink or hold.”

Arriving ETA May 2022: 

Chateau Malescot-St-Exupery Margaux 2016 750ML ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 96 points 
“The ruby/plum-colored 2016 Château Malescot Saint-Exupéry comes from vines in the heart of the Margaux appellation and is 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, and the balance Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. It’s a total rock star of wine and has fabulous notes of crème de cassis, barbecue smoke, graphite, and sandalwood that build beautifully with time in the glass. Medium to full-bodied, concentrated, layered, and seamless, it’s incredibly impressive and I’d wager up with the finest vintages ever from this estate. Give it a few years and enjoy over the following 20-25. Bravo!”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “The 2016 Malescot Saint Exupéry has a well-defined bouquet of ample red currant, cranberry and strawberry fruit laced with rose petal and hints of graphite. There is something almost Saint Julien–like about the aromatics. The palate is medium-bodied with supple, graphite-infused black fruit, and quite linear and poised, but it conveys a genuine sense of energy and tension toward the classic finish. A magnificent Margaux.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 95 points “Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Malescot St. Exupery sings of cassis, fragrant earth, tobacco and lilacs with a compelling waft of mocha. Medium to full-bodied and strutting loads of expressive fruit layers at this youthful stage, it’s framed by ripe, grainy tannins and oodles of freshness, finishing with great length and depth.”

Muse of Mallorca: 
Mesquida Mora’s Old-Vine Callet 

Have you ever tried the varietal Callet? Native to the island of Mallorca, it’s one of two indigenous varietals that are still cultivated in commercial amounts. In the vineyard Callet is a late ripening grape that takes advantage of the generous Mallorcan sun and wind, producing highly aromatic and perfumed wines not unlike if Pinot Noir took a vacation to the Spanish island.   

The estate where Sotil is sourced from has been under the stewardship of the Mesquida Mora family for generations, having been founded in 1945. Upon assuming control of her family’s operations Bàrbara Mesquida Mora converted the vineyards to biodynamics, becoming one of the first certified wineries in all of Spain. Championing biodiversity and polyculture, Mesquida Mora grows apricots and carob among her bush trained vines, the oldest of which are over 80 years old!  

Sotil is just as unique as the estate she came from, with saturated color and effusive aromatics one would expect from a red wine clocking in at 14-15% ABV yet only 12 in the 2019 vintage. Delightfully juicy yet structured enough to handle heartier fare the fruit character is firmly red fruited and evocative of cherry juice, strawberry puree, and redcurrant. Accompanying the fruit are spice and mineral elements like copal resin, cinnamon, star anise and black pepper that refresh and enliven the palate.   

Mesquida Mora wines in stock now: 

Mesquida Mora Sotil Pla i Llevant 2019 750ML ($79.95) $58 special, 15 bottles in stock now
No reviews for the 2019 vintage. 2018 review provided for reference.
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 94+ points
 “I already loved the 2017, and the 2018 Sòtil was possibly more impressive, floral, aromatic with detail and nuance, harmonious, velvety with very fine tannins and great purity. It’s precise and focused and has symmetry and great clarity. It’s a very elegant expression of the Mediterranean produced in a very subtle way, ethereal, with moderate alcohol and lots of inner power. 2,180 bottles were filled in December 2019.”
Luis Gutierrez, Wine Advocate -“Mesquida Mora is the personal project of Bàrbara Mesquida Mora, who works exclusively with her biodynamic vineyards in the villages of Porreres and Felanitx in Mallorca. She produces 85,000 to 90,000 bottles per year.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Baumard: The King of Quarts de Chaume

Baumard is the most famous producer in the Quarts de Chaume appellation, despite farming a tiny portion of the regions 110 acres. The area has been famous for its sweet wines made from Chenin Blanc since the Middle Ages, with the Quarts de Chaume name originating with the 25% of the crop the peasants owed to the Diocese of Angers as tax. This fame continued into the modern era, with the area being the first in the entire Loire to be classified as a “Grand Cru” site. The proximity to the Layon River creates waves of humidity that are perfect for cultivating Botrytis Cinerea in the grape clusters, which concentrates the sugars in the grape via shriveling.

Baumard’s holdings in the appellation consist of several soil types and are farmed organically. Baumard’s house style can be described as “Seeking a purer expression of site and fruit” and eschews any use of oak during the winemaking process. Expect a spectrum of flavor that encompasses everything from honeyed Seville orange, spiced Anjou pear and lychee with a plethora of lilies and jasmine aromas.       

In stock now: 

Domaine des Baumard Quarts de Chaume Loire 2015 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, 19 bottles in stock now
#52 Wine Of The Year – Wine Spectator Top 100 IN 2018
Wine Spectator 98 points
 “Highly Recommended. Waves of creamed Jonagold apple, Cavaillon melon, mirabelle plum, mango and white peach flavors provide thrilling range, while flashes of honeysuckle and verbena add detail and focus throughout. Unctuous yet pure, sweet yet invigorating, with an inner brightness that matches the outward hedonism. Best from 2020 through 2045. 100 cases imported.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Austrian Treasure 

Did you know that Central Europe was one of the first regions in Europe that saw widespread viticulture? Archeological evidence shows that the Smaragd was making wine as early as the 9th century with the arrival of the Roman Empire. Much like the Languedoc in France and Campania in Italy you can still see the stone terraces that were built by the Romans to prevent erosion. Hirtzberger has dedicated themselves to restoring and maintaining these sites, as the vast majority are abandoned due to the extensive labor required to farm them. 

Despite of this storied history and, as well as being the birthplace of Biodynamic farming and the strictest farming standards in the European Union, the wines of Austria remain critically undervalued. With the strictest production laws in the world, Austrian wines are required to show no oak influence and reach a minimum alcohol level depending on their classification. These laws were drafted by a consortium of producers not unlike the VDP in Germany. 

The Vinea Wachau as its known recognizes three quality levels and can include Riesling, Grüner Veltliner, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris. Hirtzberger produces wines across all quality levels recognized by law entirely from their terraced vineyards. With the minimum slope of 33 degrees and going as high as 90, the vines are quite literally clinging to the rocks. These precipitous conditions create a level of mineral expression paired with phenolic ripeness in a way that is wholly unique. These juxtaposing characteristics make them perfect for a variety of cuisines, with vegetable courses being the traditional pairing.

Hirtzberger wines in stock now: 

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Pluris Grauburgunder Smaragd Wachau 2018 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 92 points
 “The 2018 Ried Pluris Grauburgunder Smaragd comes from deep and clayey soil and shows a clear and coolish, fine and elegant bouquet. Picked on September 17, this is a delicate, very elegant, lush and salty Pinot Gris with remarkable purity, elegance and finesse. It’s an aromatic and crystalline cool-climate version of the grape variety. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Wosendorfer Kirchweg Gruner Veltliner Smaragd Wachau  2018 ($49.95) $39 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 92 points
 “The 2018 Ried Kirchweg Wösendorfer Grüner Veltliner Smaragd is clear, deep, intense and slightly crystalline and flinty on the elegant nose. Full-bodied and sweetish on the palate but fresh and elegant, with fine mineral grip, this is a charming Veltliner with a refined and elegant, aromatic and nicely grippy finish. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Rotes Tor Gruner Veltliner Federspiel Wachau 2018 ($39.95) $29 special, 24 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 90 points 
“Assembling the fruit from several vineyards that were picked in the first half of October, the 2018 Spitz Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Rotes Tor offers a clear, ripe and elegant nose of tropical fruits intermixed with elegant and flinty terroir notes. Ripe and piquant on the crystalline and salty palate, this is an elegant and already pretty complex Veltliner with an aromatic and refreshing, elegant finish with good grip. 12.5% alcohol. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Rotes Tor Gruner Veltliner Smaragd Wachau 2018 ($69.95) $59 special, 21 bottles in stock now
Stuart Pigott 94 points 
“The nose here has a very restrained and rocky feel with such intense aromas of ripe citrus fruit, pepper and pears. The palate is dry, sheer and linear with good, fresh acidity drive and a smoothly rendered finish. Drink or hold.”
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2018 Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Rotes Tor is entirely based on the fruit from Spitz (the vineyards below the red gate) and opens with a deep, precise and flinty bouquet that shows a coolish-mineral and darker-toned character with rather discreet fruit aromas. On the palate, this is a lush and mouth-filling, very fine and elegant Grüner with a long, intense and refreshing crystalline and salty finish. Excellent grip. From pure, weathered gneiss soils. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Spitzer Donaugarten Gruner Veltliner Steinfeder Wachau 2018 ($29.95) $24 special, 8 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt, Wine Advocate
“Hirtzberger’s 2018 Spitz Grüner Veltliner Steinfeder was picked between October 17 and 19 and opens with a ripe and elegant, fruit-intense and charming nose with delicate crystalline aromas. Round and salty-piquant on the palate, this is a mouth-filling and refreshing Grüner bottled with 11.5% alcohol. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.” –

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Setzberg Riesling Smaragd Wachau 2018 ($69.95) $59 special, 21 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 93+ points
 “From the Spitzer Graben, and thus picked pretty late on October 21, the 2018 Ried Setzberg Riesling Smaragd is intense and concentrated but coolish and spicy on the elegant and promising nose that represents the weathered gneiss soils and its coolish terroir perfectly. Precise ripe apricot aromas on the nose lead to an elegant fine and balanced, almost silky-textured, full-bodied palate, with lush and ripe but precise and elegant fruit and a long and intense, well-structured and salty finish. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Singerriedel Riesling Smaragd Wachau  2018 ($99.95) $89 special, 5     bottles in stock now
Stuart Pigott 96 points
 “Stunning depth, but also purity to this complex riesling that is bursting with life. Cascades of honeysuckle, melon and prosciutto, green mangoes, riper papaya, crushed gunpowder and asphalt. Dense layers of peaches and citrus fruit ride the creases of the palate, filling every corner in bright colors of flavor and acidity. Long, structured and focussed. Drink now or hold.”
Wine Enthusiast 96 points “Mandarin orange, clementine and tangerine vie for attention on the nose with their ripe, aromatic and almost heady juiciness. The palate adds a note of peach and pith to those citrus aromas, adding flesh and direction. The pithiness has a welcome textural element that, along with aromatic, citric freshness, gives both outline and backbone that seems to have corralled all of this fruit into the bottle. Drink 2025–2045. -Anne Krebiehl MW”
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 95 points “Picked between October 5 and 31, the 2018 Ried Singerriedel Riesling Smaragd is clear, deep, pure, precise and flinty on the concentrated and piquant apricot nose with aromas of broken gneiss. Lush and round on the palate, this is a very elegant and balanced Singerriedel with immensely fine and juicy fruit, very fine tannins and great finesse. The acidity is ripe and refined and perfectly integrated and delivers persistent and stimulating salinity. A gorgeous Riesling and perhaps the finest 2018 I tasted in Austria last year. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Steinterrassen Riesling Federspiel Wachau 2018 ($41.95) $36 special, 24 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 91 points 
“From the fruit grown in terraced single vineyards and predominantly from younger vines, the 2018 Riesling Federspiel Steinterrassen is still somewhat untamed and reductive but very clear on the nose that reminds me of the Rieslings from Tim Fröhlich (Weingt Schäfer-Fröhlich, Nahe). Flinty, fresh, very precise and refined, this is a remarkably fine and elegant Riesling with intense and elegant, really refined and piquant apricot fruit. Excellent! Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Ried Steinporz Riesling Smaragd Wachau  2018 ($79.95) $59 special, 24 bottles in stock now
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
 “Tangerine and peach unite on the nose in a quite disarming fashion. The palate comes in with more peachy juiciness and adds overtones of ripe passion fruit with both its tartness and tropicality. A lovely seam of vivid, zesty freshness cuts through the generous, abundant and juicy fruit, always with exotic highlights, always with zesty aromas. This has life and drive, energy and brio. Enjoy 2025–2045. -Anne Krebiehl MW”
Decanter 95 points “Franz Hirtzberger is the most esteemed grower in Spitz, and his wines can be surprisingly voluptuous. Often Singerriedl is the source of his top Riesling, but in 2018, I prefer the Steinporz, which grows on weathered gneiss soils. The stone-fruits nose is rich and opulent without being blowsy. Creamy, very ripe, it’s a touch broad but that ripeness is cut by a stony minerality. Resplendent fruit, fine depth and impressive length. Drinking Window 2020 – 2035.”
Stuart Pigott 94 points “So much going on here from the outset, the nose suggesting mango pastries, papaya dessert and then fresher sensations of gin and tonic and jasmine. Full-bodied, very intense and oily, but linear and vertical at the same time. The acidity crafts a wiry shape, amidst powerful tropical notes. Drink now.”
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 93+ points “Picked on September 24, so a month earlier than in 2017, the 2018 Ried Steinporz Riesling Smaragd is intensely aromatic and spicy on the concentrated nose that is reminiscent of apricot chutney. Round and lush on the mouth-filling palate, this is an intense and juicy, very charming and generous but still elegant and refined Riesling with a long and complex, tightly woven and spicy-flavored finish. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger Steinporz Weissburgunder Smaragd Wachau  2018 ($54.95) $41.90 special, 4 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 93 points
 “Grown on loess and picked on September 19, the 2018 Ried Steinporz Weissburgunder Smaragd offers a coolish and precise bouquet with flinty aromas of crushed stones. Lush and round but precise, piquant and elegant on the palate, this is another impressive Pinot Blanc from Franz Hirtzberger. Everything is finely interwoven and perfectly balanced, while the finish is crystalline, salty-piquant and provided with fine tannins. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”

 This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!