Mid-Week VinopolPick 2-15-17

This Week: Saint Cosme’s North to South Brilliance, Le Vissoux: Quiet Stars of Beaujolais, 2004 Riesling Revisited, Montezemolo’s Barolo, Staff Pick: Affordable ’05 Bordeaux, Inman Russian River Pinot, #Trending Wines, Zorzal’s Exceptional Argentine Wines, Orin Swift Returns, Pre-Arrivals from Germany, France and Italy, 2015 Clementin du Pape

Featured Wines of the Week

Domaine de L’Edre Cotes du Roussillon Villages 2013 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 special, 36+ bottles available
Case-6 Domaine de L’Edre Cotes du Roussillon Villages 2013 750ML ($299.95) $239 special, 4 cases available (That’s only $39.83/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 95 points “One of the wines of the vintage is the 2013 Cotes du Roussillon Villages Domaine de l’Edre. While this cuvee had a rustic edge in the past, today it’s incredibly polished and pure, with brilliant aromatics of cassis, black raspberries, licorice, crushed flowers and chalky minerality. Medium to full-bodied, ripe, yet elegant and balanced, it’s a classic Roussillon that can be enjoyed today or cellared for a decade.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Nicolas Chemarin Regnie Les Haute Ronze, Beaujolais 2014 750ML ($21.95) $18 special, 36+ bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 92 points “Vivid ruby-red. Sexy, mineral-laced aromas of ripe red and dark berries, violet and licorice. Sappy and penetrating, offering bitter cherry and black raspberry flavors that become sweeter as the wine opens up. Concentrated yet lithe, delivering excellent finishing clarity and strong, mineral-driven persistence.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Saint Cosme: North to South

Impressive Wines at Impressive Prices

“Without a doubt, the leading estate in Gigondas is Louis Barruol’s Chateau Saint-Cosme. Located just outside the village, he releases an assortment of world class Gigondas, as well as a number of value priced, negotiate-styled Cotes du Rhone efforts that always deliver high-quality” – Jebb Dunnuck in The Wine Advocate

Saint Cosme is one of the notable producers of the Southern Rhone and at this point are the reference point for Gigondas. Louis Barroul is a talented winemaker and is the 14th generation of his family to make wines in the domaine that was founded in the 1500’s. The wines he makes are rich and powerful, with undeniable terroir signatures.  To highlight these varying terroirs, the estate bottles a handful of single vineyard Gigondas which are the most interesting and coveted wines in the portfolio (and which we have a small assortment of today).

They also bottle a selection of wines from up and down the Rhone from special growers whose grapes or wines would otherwise be sold to giant corporate negociants.  These wines, which aren’t bottled under the ‘chateau’ label, are highlights of their appelations and generally incredible value for the quality in the bottle.  We never see Condrieu, St. Joseph or Côte Rôtie (for example) for this pricing and this quality and it’s wise to pay attention to them.
Chateau de Saint Cosme Condrieu 2014 750ML ($69.95) $54.50 special, 36+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 95 points “Gorgeous, with papaya, white peach, mango, persimmon and Cavaillon melon notes seamlessly stitched together, lined with light honeysuckle and jasmine accents and backed by a twinge of bitter citrus oil and well-buried minerality. A exemplary display of large-scale fruit and precision. Drink now through 2019. 416 cases made”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone Le Poste Blanc, Rhone 2014 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 13 bottles available
Jeb Dunnuck-Wine Advocate 90 points “Coming all from the second terrace of the le Poste vineyard in Gigondas (there’s no white wines allowed under the Gigondas AOC, so this is released as a Cotes du Rhone), the 2014 Cotes du Rhone Le Poste Blanc is 100% Clairette, from vines planted in 1963, that’s raised all in older barrels. It offers terrific notes of mulled pears, buttered citrus, lemon curd and a kiss of minerality as well as medium-bodied richness, lively acidity and outstanding length. It’s beautiful now, but this cuvee also ages gracefully and has a broad drink window.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Cote Rotie, Rhone 2014 750ML ($69.95) $49 special, 30 bottles available
Wine Spectator 94 points “A firm, taut, minerally style, with lots of iron-edged grip striding from start to finish, while red currant and damson plum fruit push out from the core. White pepper and singed juniper details fill in the background. This will need some time to stretch out fully. Best from 2019 through 2030.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92-94 points “(made, as usual, from vineyards in the Côte Brune): Opaque ruby. Vibrant, sharply focused black and blue fruits on the nose, complicated by peppery spice and mineral notes. Lithe and precise, showing strong lift to the intense blueberry, violet pastille and spicecake flavors. Picks up a smoky quality with air and finishes sweet, seamless and very long, with sneaky tannins adding shape and grip.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone 2012 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 23 bottles available
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92 points “Opaque ruby. Deep, smoke-accented dark berry and floral scents are lifted by a note of peppery spice. Smoky and sweet in the mouth, offering intense blueberry and cassis flavors and a hint of candied violet. Suggests the north in its fruit profile, finishing with very good punch and length and velvety, late-arriving tannins.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas, Rhone 2014 750ML ($39.95) $29 special, 35 bottles available
Wine Spectator 92 points “Sports solid, charcoal-edged grip, with roasted alder and savory notes forming a robust frame around the chewy currant, plum and bitter cherry paste flavors. Best from 2018 through 2024.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 90-92 points “Brilliant ruby. Smoky cherry, boysenberry and potpourri scents show very good clarity and pick up a spicy quality with aeration. Intense red and blue fruit flavors are complicated by a floral pastille nuance. Finishes on a gently tannic note, delivering very good energy and spicy thrust. All of the Valbelle fruit was included in this bottling in 2014.”
Wine Advocate 89-91 points “Checking in as a blend of 65% Grenache, 20% Mourvedre and 15% Syrah, the 2014 Gigondas is a rock solid effort in a difficult vintage. Offering the classic graphite, camphor, mineral and darker fruit that’s the hallmark of this estate, it’s medium to full-bodied, nicely concentrated and has a tight, backwards, age-worthy feel. Give bottles 3-4 years of cellaring and drink through 2029.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Hominis Fides, Rhone 2014 750ML ($89.95) $69 special, 23 bottles available
Wine Spectator 93 points “Well-built, with sage, savory and tobacco notes weaving around the core of blackberry and black currant, picking up charcoal and roasted alder accents. Best from 2017 through 2024.”
Jeb Dunnuck – Wine Advocate 92-94+ points “What will mostly likely end up being the wine of the vintage is the 2014 Gigondas Hominis Fides. From a single vineyard located just down the hill from the estate, fermented with 100% whole clusters and aged all in Burgundy barrels, it offers sensational notes of crushed rock, graphite, dried rose petals and licorice in a medium to full-bodied, elegant, seamless style that hides considerable tannic grip. It’s a beautiful wine that will still be drinking nicely in 2034.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 91-93 points “Deep ruby. Powerful, smoke-accented aromas of dark berries and incense, complicated by suave floral pastille and woodsmoke nuances. Fleshy and deeply concentrated, showing impressive depth to the densely packed red and blue fruit flavors, which are lifted by juicy acidity. The smoky note repeats on a youthfully tannic finish that shows impressive energy, power and thrust.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Le Claux, Rhone 2013 750ML ($119.95) $79 special, 17 bottles available
Wine Spectator 95 points “Grippy and well-packed, with a core of macerated currant, blackberry and raspberry flavors, offering mouthwatering notes of bay, roasted alder, tar and ganache.  Best from 2017 through 2027.”JM

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Le Claux, Rhone 2014 750ML ($99.95) $69 special, 20 bottles available
Wine Spectator 94 points “Intense, with lots of grip along the edges, as rosemary, tobacco and charcoal notes coil around the core of steeped plum, blackberry and red currant fruit. Best from 2018 through 2024.”J.M.
Jeb Dunnuck – Wine Advocate 92-94 points “The most mineral-driven in the lineup, the 2014 Gigondas le Claux is almost 100% Grenache, and was fermented with 100% stems and aged in Burgundy barrels. Freshly crushed rocks, black currants, forest floor and truffle notes all flow beautifully to a medium to full-bodied, layered, sexy and nicely concentrated Gigondas that has enough fruit to drink well on release, yet the structure, balance and depth to evolve for 10-15 years. It’s an undeniable success in the vintage.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92-94 points “Vivid ruby-red. Highly perfumed red fruit liqueur, potpourri and Asian spice scents show impressive clarity and vivacity. Sappy, tangy and precise, offering lively raspberry and floral pastille flavors and a touch of spicecake. Closes on a smoky mineral note, displaying superb focus, silky tannins and emphatic, floral-driven persistence.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Valbelle, Rhone 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 21 bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91-93 points “Brilliant ruby. An expansive, complex bouquet evokes fresh blackberry and boysenberry, lifted by a sexy floral topnote and a hint of incense. Silky, sweet and palate-caressing, with intense black and blue fruit flavors given spine by tangy acidity. This juicy, pure wine finishes with excellent clarity and smooth, building tannins.” JR

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Le Vissoux – Pierre-Marie Chermette

Over Delivering, Under the Radar

Poor little Beaujolais; so often overlooked for big wines that promise so much power in only 750 ml. It has influenced a number of producers to push their Gamay further and further in order to try and grab the attention of the critics. This is why I send out a heartfelt thank you to the beautiful wines coming from Le Vissoux. Pierre-Marie Chermette has been making the wine since the 1982, showcasing old vines and pure Beaujolais flavor.

The Le Vissoux wines are a great value; the quality is uncompromised and the wine is joyful and vibrant. Even their Cœur de Vendanges, featuring 100 year-old vines and 6 months in barrel shows only a subtle touch of wood. The fruit is deeper and pure, reminiscent of the ripest of early summer berries, but it doesn’t go beyond perfectly ripe. The wines are quite simply a near perfect reflection of what Beaujolais should be.

We loved these wines and bought plenty to go around. See our selection below:

Domaine le Vissoux “Pierre Chermette” Beaujolais 2015 750ML ($17.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 90 points “Bright violet. Vibrant cherry and dark berry aromas, along with lively floral and spice qualities. Silky and incisive, offering bitter cherry and blackberry flavors given lift by tangy acidity. Clean and nervy on the finish, which features hints of candied flowers and licorice.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Cuvee Traditionnelle Vieilles Vignes, Beaujolais 2015 750ML ($19.95) $16 special, 29 bottles available
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Cuvee Traditionnelle Vieilles Vignes, Beaujolais 2015 ($199.95) $169 special (That’s $14.09 a bottle!) 1 case available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91 points “Vivid ruby. Expansive, highly perfumed raspberry and floral pastille aromas are complemented by a suggestion of Asian spices. A core of minerality adds definition and spine to juicy red fruit flavors, which show impressive focus and back-end lift. Finishes gently sweet and very long, leaving behind sappy red fruit and rose pastille notes. As always, this wine delivers excellent value.”

Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux, Beaujolais 2015 750ML ($29.95) $24 special 36+ bottles available
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux, Beaujolais 2015 ($299.95) $259 special, (That’s $21.59 a bottle!) 1 case available
John Gilman 93+ points “As I have mentioned in the past, the Brouilly “Pierreux” bottling from Pierre-Marie Chermette hails from the southern part of Brouilly appellation, just to the east of the village of Odenas, and often this wine has more in common with bottlings of Côte de Brouilly as a result. The 2015 Pierreux is fairly low octane for the vintage, coming in at 13.5 percent, but offering plenty of depth and structure, which are the hallmarks of this year. The complex bouquet is a bit more black fruity out of the blocks than the 2014 was at a similar age, offering up scents of black cherries, pomegranate, a striking base of soil tones, woodsmoke, fresh rosemary, chicory and a nice touch of meatiness. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, tangy and laser-like in its focus, with a rock solid core, some firm, well-integrated tannins and superb soil drive on the very long and youthful finish. This is going to be a stunning bottle of Brouilly, but, like many of the very best 2015s, it is going to want some time in the cellar. 2019-2045+. 93+.”
Josh Raynolds 91 points “Bright violet. Ripe cherry and dark berries on the powerful, spice-accented nose. Supple and open-knit, offering fleshy cherry and cassis flavors lifted by a jolt of juicy acidity. Shows very good energy and breadth on the gently tannic, dark-fruit-dominated finish, which leaves a sappy blue fruit note behind.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Coeur de Vendanges, Beaujolais 2014 750ML ($24.95) $19 special, 36+ bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91 points “Lurid ruby-red. Pungent raspberry and cherry pit on the fragrant nose, with hints of white pepper and smoky minerals adding lift and complexity. Spicy and sharply focused, offering vibrant red berry and blood orange flavors that put on weight with air. Closes taut and gently sweet, with strong spicy lift and silky tannins coming in late.”
Wine Enthusiast 90 points “This “heart of the harvest” Gamay is produced from 100-year-old vines, a rarity in any appellation. With less than five acres to work with, this ripe and structured wine shows the potential even of “simple” Beaujolais-appellation wines. It has weight, spice and warm red fruits that are laced with acidity. Drink this wine from 2016.  — R.V.  (12/1/2015)

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie les Garants, Beaujolais 2014 750ML ($27.95) $24 special, 28 bottles available
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie les Garants, Beaujolais 2014 750 ($319.95) $259 special, (That’s $21.59 a bottle!) 4 cases available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 93 points “Deep ruby. Intense black raspberry, cherry and floral pastille aromas are complemented by suggestions of licorice and smoky minerals. Juicy and penetrating, offering sappy red and blue fruit flavors that effortlessly marry power to finesse. The mineral and floral notes linger impressively on the finish, which is given shape by fine-grained, sneaky tannins.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie Poncie, Beaujolais 2015 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 21 bottles available
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Fleurie Poncie, Beaujolais 2015 ($299.95) $259 special, (That’s $21.59 a bottle) 1 case available
John Gilman 94+ points “The 2015 Poncié from Pierre-Marie Chermette’s Domaine du Vissoux is a superb followup to the brilliant 2014 bottling of this wine. The bouquet is deep, very, very pure and shows a nice touch of sappiness in its aromatic constellation of black cherries, pomegranate, intense violets, bitter chocolate, a fine base of dark soil tones, fresh thyme, a hint of cedar and a topnote of spit-roasted gamebirds. On the palate the wine is deep, pure, full-bodied and hauntingly wellbalanced, with tangy acids, a fair bit of tannin (particularly for a young Fleurie), lovely midpalate concentration and superb intensity of flavor on the very, very long and minerally finish. I loved the 2014 Poncié, but this seems likely, with sufficient bottle age, to be even better! 2020-2045+. 94+.”

Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Moulin-a-Vent Les Trois Roches, Beaujolais 2014 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 16 bottles available
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Moulin-a-Vent Les Trois Roches, Beaujolais 2014 ($319.95) $259 special, (That’s $21.59 a bottle!) 2 cases available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 92 points “Vivid ruby. Assertive dark berry and floral pastille aromas show very good energy, with a spicy nuance adding complexity. Juicy and pliant, offering sweet, nicely concentrated blackberry and cherry flavors and a of touch of spicecake. Dusty tannins build slowly on a long, smooth and impressively persistent finish, with the dark fruit and spice notes echoing.”
Wine Advocate 90 points “The 2014 Moulin-à-Vent les Trois Roches was matured in 1- to 5-year-old half-tuns. Some attractive undergrowth/woodland scents permeate the dark berry fruit, a touch of cold black tea in the background. The palate is medium-bodied with supple, ripe tannin. There is appreciable depth and roundness here, with a soft and fleshy, but quite complex finish. This is an excellent Moulin-à-Vent from Pierre-Marie Chermette.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Moulin-a-Vent Les Trois Roches, Beaujolais 2015 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 12 bottles available
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Moulin-a-Vent Les Trois Roches, Beaujolais 2015 ($299.95) $259 special, (That’s $21.59 a bottle—the lowest price in the country!) 1 case available
John Gilman 96 points “The 2015 Moulin-à-Vent “Les Trois Roches” from Domaine du Vissoux is another absolutely stellar example of the vintage from Pierre-Marie Chermette, coming in at 13.5 percent octane and offering up all of the depth and intensity of the vintage, without sacrificing any of the customary Vissoux precision and purity. The stunning nose is youthful, but oh, so promising, as it delivers scents of sweet cassis, black cherries, espresso, violets, dark soil tones, a touch of licorice, gamebird, woodsmoke and lead pencil. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and seamlessly balanced, with ripe tannins, laser-like focus, a superb core and a very, very long, soildriven and still quite youthful finish. If one wanted a prime example of a 2015 that might replicate the longevity of the finest 1947s, this would be it, as it has stunning concentration, tied to impeccable balance and plenty of structural integrity. 2022-2075. 96.”


Our Current
Shipping Promos:

Welcome to the club, Colorado!

Along with Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and California,
we now offer flat rate shipping to Colorado! Here’s the scoop:

Single orders of any quantity of wines qualify for the flat rate;
this does not apply to orders held in storage for any reason
or multiple orders consolidated into one shipment.
The flat reach for each state is, as follows:

-to Oregon for $17,
-Washington & Idaho for $20,
-and California & Colorado for $25.

Take Advantage of the Flat Rate!


2004 German Riesling: A Mini Restrospective

Among the many things we love about Riesling is the way that it evolves and grows more interesting with age.  Young wines are all about fruit—exuberant and expressive with minerality woven in.  As the wines age, the fruit fades, the wines appear to dry out and the mineral qualities come to the fore.  Eventually, they become honeyed, nutty and smoky.

2004, as a vintage, was really excellent on release and is in a beautiful place right now. It’s a vintage with higher, but not extreme, acidity and wines that are lighter framed than some, but have a playful tone to them. The wines are also in a great place in terms of their evolution—they have moved out of the “fruit phase” and started to show the underlying structure and minerality in a really attractive way.  We’ve managed to gather a few examples, all released from the wineries’ cellars,  that we’d like to highlight today at prices that remind you why German Riesling (even approaching maturity) is one of the better deals in wine.

In-Stock Now!

Featured Wine:

Kruger-Rumpf Munsterer Dautenpflanzer Riesling Spatlese, Nahe 2004 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles available
Jancis Robinson – Top 20 German Wine Producer in 2004
David Schildknecht “Rumpf’s 2004 Munsterer Dautenpflanzer Riesling Spatlese smells of pineapple, pear and white peach, following with a delicate and refined palate impression saturated with a sense of liquid slate and pure pear, peach and pineapple fruit. The finish is smooth and long with generous fruit augmented by subtle spice and crushed stone. Classic 2004 virtues are on display.”-[Reviewed 2005]
Terry Theise notes “Dautenpflänzer is one the leading Grand Crus of the lower Nahe, with a typical mélange of soil types within its borders. Rumpf claims some of it is slatey and some of it is “sandy loam,” which agrees more with the standard references. It is in any case singular and immediately significant, giving a sometimes damnably complex set of aromas and flavors including coconut, violet, soursop, leaf-smoke—it is a very long list even if you’re sober. In any case it belongs with the vamping exotics of the Nahe.” [Reviewed 2015]
Wine Spectator 89 points “Very firmly structured, but this is dense and offers spice and mineral shadings to complement the apple and white peach notes. Still leaning toward the structure on the finish, but this shows promise. Best from 2007 through 2020. 250 cases made.” WS [Reviewed 2006]

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Schlossgut Diel Dorsheimer Burgberg Riesling Spatlese, Nahe 2004 750ML ($69.95) $54.50 special, 19 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92 points “Resplendent aromas of papaya, pineapple and oyster shell. Dense but juicy, with a finely spiced acidity that seizes one’s palate. Finishes with impressive concentration and length. One of the finest spatleses of the vintage.” ST

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Weingut Jos. Christoffel Jr. Christoffel-Prum Erdener Treppchen Riesling Auslese***, Mosel 2004 750ML ($44.95) $39 special, 13 bottles available
VinopolNote: Erdener Treppchen is the counterpart to the Wurtzgarten and has similar red-slate soils which provide the wine with an exotic tone.  The Treppchen (little staircase, for the vineyard is so steep that steps were carved into the rock for the workers) produces wines that are typically powerful and compact and require several years of age to show their stuff.  Luckily, this wine, direct from the producer’s cellar, is in that window now.

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Weingut Jos. Christoffel Jr. Christoffel-Prum Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Auslese***, Mosel 2004 750ML ($44.95) $39 special, 5 bottles available

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Kruger-Rumpf Munsterer Pittersberg Riesling Spatlese, Nahe 2004 ($49.95) $39 special, 18 bottles available
Wine Spectator 88 points “Off-dry, this shows plenty of pepper and mineral notes, along with peach and citrus flavors. It’s elegant and balanced, showing the Mosel style of Nahe Riesling. Moderate length. Drink now through 2018. 140 cases made.” WS

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!


Cordero di Montezemolo:

Piedmonte’s Legacy in Capable Hands

Cordero di Montezemolo, in Barolo, was founded in 1340.  We’ll let that sink in for a second. That’s a long time, by any measure, and when you have one family, in the same place, farming the same land, generation after generation, they are bound to become really good at it.  That’s very true here.  Aside from a detour into and out of modernism in the 90’s, the Montezemolo wines have been really wonderful, classic examples of Piedmontese wines in their respective categories.

They’re best known for their Baroli, but don’t sleep on the Dolcetto and Barbera as well.  Those wines are delicious—well-made and extremely affordable, especially given the quality and pedigree of the wines produced.  The Barolo deserves the special attention it gets.  Super long lived and extremely complex (their wines from the 60’s and 70’s are stunning today), it nevertheless is extremely well priced.  That’s something we can all be happy about.

In Stock Now!

Cordero di Montezemolo Enrico VI, Barolo DOCG 2010 750ML ($119.95) $85 special, 20 bottles available
James Suckling 96 points “Wonderful aromas of crushed berries and flowers here. Particularly roses. Full body, with fine yet chewy tannins and a long intense finish. Needs four or five years to open. Best wine ever from here?” JS
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The estate’s Barolo Enrico VI, which emerges from the Villero vineyard in Castiglione Falletto, is one of the most beautiful wines I have tasted here in some time. Vivid and layered in the glass, the 2010 is all about polish, silkiness and pure nuance. Sweet, silky tannins support a core of dark red cherries, plums, tobacco, menthol and smoke, all in a textured, layered style that is hugely appealing. The Enrico VI is a wine of significant potential. I can’t wait to see how it ages.”
Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2010 Barolo Enrico VI sees fruit sourced from the celebrated Villero cru in Castiglione Falletto. It’s hard not to be enthusiastically impressed by this gorgeous effort. The fruit is stunning and dark with a deep, penetrating level of aromatic intensity that spans from creme de cassis to dried licorice root. In the mouth, it is extraordinarily bright and silky and the seamless finish can be counted in long, delicious minutes. A special nod goes the high energy and vibrant quality of this beautiful Barolo. Drink: 2016-2026.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Cordero di Montezemolo Monfalletto, Barolo DOCG 2012 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 13 bottles available
James Suckling 94 points “Muscular and buff for the vintage with plenty of plum, terra-cotta and dry soil aromas and flavors. Full body, flavorful finish. Drink in 2018.”

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

Cordero di Montezemolo Barbera d’Alba, Piedmont 2015 750ML ($24.95) $20.90 special, 36+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 90 points “This rich, dark red exudes violet, blackberry, plum and leafy flavors, with light tannins and vivid acidity. Finishes with freshness and spice. Drink now through 2020.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Cordero di Montezemolo Dolcetto d’Alba, Piedmont 2015 750ML ($21.95) $16.60 special, 18 bottles available
Wine Spectator 89 points “A well of cherry jam and boysenberry fruit is accented by black pepper in this boisterous red. Dusty tannins line the finish. Drink now.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Don’t forget you can visit www.vinopoliswineshop.com to see all 76 Baroli in stock now!


Staff Pick: Aged, Affordable Bordeaux

When I am craving a Merlot, I look to Bordeaux. Not to knock California or Washington, but the value and the amazing balance of the wines can’t be beat. Ch. Gigault Cuvee Viva is exactly the type of wine I will search out. Subtle anise notes behind blackberry, cocoa powder and nicely integrated oakiness. The balance is great, as the whole wine has come together beautifully. This is the perfect window for this wine; decant and go for it.


Chateau Gigault Cuvee Viva, Cotes de Bordeaux Blaye 2005 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 24 bottles available
James Suckling 93 points “Wow. Lots of bright and intense fruit on the nose with blueberries, milk chocolate, and flowers too. Full-bodied with seamless tannins and a long intense finish. The fruit here is compelling and beautiful. Give it time to come together, but already impressive.”
Wine Spectator 91 points “Ripe cherry and berry, with a melange of fresh herbs, olive and a hint of coffee and chocolate on the nose. Medium to full-bodied, intense and silky, with loads of fruit pushing through the long finish. Delicious even now. This is always excellent value” WS
Inman Family Wines’ Spectacular OGV Pinot Noir

We can be homers for Pinot from Oregon here, but every now and then we get a wine from California that is spectacular enough to break the spell of the Willamette–at least for a minute.  That’s how it is for us with the wines of Inman Family Vineyards in the Russian River Valley, especially for the OGV estate Pinot Noir.

Kathleen Inman is one of the most delightful winemakers we know of and the wine she makes from her estate vineyard, “Olivet Grange,” is the highlight of her portfolio every year.  Her wines manage to combine a grace and elegance that one usually associates with old world wines with the rich, cherry fruit of the Russian River Valley.  The results are crowd pleasing wines that manage to be both intellectual and hedonistic year in and out.

They also age remarkably well, which is nice because we just got our hands on a cache of some of her 2010 OGV Pinot Noir, which we’re super excited to offer. Even better, they’re just $33/bottle, which is more than 50% off the price that you’d pay if you ordered from the winery (her 2012’s and ’13’s are both $73/bottle from the estate).  2010 was an excellent vintage in the Russian River Valley and the wine is in a really nice place right now, though it will surely age for another 5-10 years without a problem.

Inman Family Vineyards “OGV Estate” Pinot Noir 2010 750ML ($49.95) $33 special, 36+ bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 93 Points “(made with one-half whole clusters and 12.5% alcohol): Bright ruby-red. A heady, spice-accented bouquet displays scents of strawberry preserves, potpourri and incense, complemented by a lively note of white pepper. Silky, spicy and lithe, with an alluring sweetness and bright mineral cut to its intense red fruit and floral pastille flavors. Pure and seamless pinot, with great upfront appeal and a delicacy that hearkens to the Old World. The “OGV” here stands for Olivet Grange Vineyard, the Inmans’ home property. They are unable to use the word “Grange” in the wine name because of legal challenges.”

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# Trending: Hot Wines

Round Pond Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Rutherford 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 36+ bottles available
Antonio Galloni 92 points “Round Pond’s 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is fabulous. Aromatic, pliant and expressive, the 2013 is incredibly nuanced for such a young wine. Sweet red plum, wild flowers, mint and cinnamon meld together in a medium-bodied, gracious Cabernet that will drink well with minimal cellaring.”
Robert Parker 92 points “The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford, a blend of 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Petit Verdot and 4% Malbec, is a beauty. It’s also realistically priced by Napa standards. The wine reveals toasty oak, blackberry and cassis fruit, beautiful texture, purity and length. This is a big-time winner and should drink well for 12-15 years.”

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Piedlong Chateauneuf-du-Pape, (Brunier)  Rhone 2012 750ML ($59.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 93 points “Deep ruby. Assertive aromas of fresh black and blue fruits, potpourri and garrigue, along with hints of cola and anise. Sappy and seamless on the palate, with juicy boysenberry, cassis and floral pastille flavors that flesh out with air. Fine-grained tannins build on the finish, which lingers with excellent tenacity and resonating spiciness.”

Broc Cellars Valdiguie, Solano County Green Valley 2014 750ML ($27.95) $24 special, 14 bottles available
VinopolNote: “Made with partial carbonic maceration from Valdiguie, a grape often called ‘Napa Gamay’ on old wine labels.  It’s not Gamay, but we get the confusion.  This drinks like a well made cru Beaujolais, with snappy/ripe fruit and a beautiful bouquet of flowers and plums.”

Domaine de la Cuvee Maurin, Cahors 2014 750ML ($17.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles available
Importer note “In 1971 André Berenger came to Cahors from Provence with his wife Sylvie, who is originally from Champagne, and planted their vineyard near Grezels, on the red clay/ iron stone soil known as Grèzes. Their two children, Maurin & Juline not only joined them in the family business, but brought in their respective spouses. Thus the 3 couples all work together and do everything on this 35 hectare domaine themselves. Pruning, the sustainable farming of the vineyards (Terra Vitis certified) and harvesting are all done by hand; a disappearing practice in Cahors where harvesting is now done almost exclusively by machine. Moreover, Maurin, and his wife, Marlène, are graduates of oenology school with diplomas in oenology. Complemetary, Juline and her husband, Henri, both studied at viticulture school. The Bérangeraie wines are proof that hand-made artisanal wines of character yet accessibility, are still being made in Cahors today.”

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Decanter’s Darling Argentine Producer

Zorzal makes wines that never cease to impress. Their 2014 Eggo Tinto de Tiza just caught Decanter’s palate, earning itself a 96-point score in the British wine magazine along with being tagged a “Top Ten 2016 Exciting Buy” – when’s the last time you heard of a Malbec being described as “refreshing” or “invigorating?” This is a truly great follow up after the 94 point review from Luis Gutiérrez of the Wine Advocate.

We knew the sleek, sublime power of this wine, and the rest of the Zorzal range, long before Decanter tasted it, so we have a range of the never-oaked Eggo wines for you to try, including a Pinot Noir, a Cabernet Franc, and a Sauvignon Blanc. At $26 a bottle, the 2014 Tinto de Tiza is a wine to enjoy as often as you crave.

Zorzal Eggo Tinto de Tiza, Tupungato, Argentina 2014 750ML ($39.95) $26 special, 36+ bottles available
Decanter 96 points ‘Top 10 Exciting Buys’ “Refreshing, beautiful nose with herbal and minty cool notes but also some chalky, mineral nuances so characteristic of the Gualtallary terroir. Bags of red fruits and lemon on the palate, vibrant, with a sensational invigorating freshness. Austere, precise, Malbec is one of the few grapes able to get such a pure expression. Texture is amazing, tannins are finely grained and oak is superbly managed. This is the treasure of Argentina.”
Wine Advocate 94 points “The 2014 Eggo Tinto de Tiza is a blend from three different vineyards in Tupungato Winelands in Gualtallary. It’s a blend of mostly Malbec with some Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. As is the case with the whole Eggo range, the wine didn’t see any oak, and in this case it was matured in egg-shaped cement vats for one year. There are violets, plums, dark cherries and something earthy. This is slightly riper than the 2013. The medium-bodied palate has is fresh with a silky texture, pure flavors and a mineral-driven finish. At this price I’d buy it by the case. Super!”

Also Newly Reviewed:

Zorzal Eggo Franco Cabernet Franc, Tupungato, Argentina 2015 750ML ($34.95) $21.90 special, 36+ bottles available
Wine Advocate 93 points “The second vintage I tasted from this Cabernet Franc, the 2015 Eggo Franco is produced, like many of their wines, with grapes from Tupungato Winelands in Gualtallary. It fermented in cement eggs with some stems and with 50% of the wine kept in contact with skins for some three to four months, then pressed and put back in the eggs to complete its élevage, which lasted some nine months. It shows a mixture of herbal and candied berry aromas, hints of beef blood and iron. The absence of oak shows the naked tannins and provides an earthy side, which to me is very much the wild character of Gualtallary. 6,000 bottles were filled in December 2015 (it was harvested in March).”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Also available from Zorzal:

Zorzal Eggo Filoso Pinot, Tupungato, Argentina 2014 750ML ($29.95) $20.90 special, 32 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2014 Eggo Filoso Pinot Noir is produced with fruit from Gualtallary. It fermented after carbonic maceration in cement vats and like the whole Eggo line, it matured in cement eggs for some nine months and never saw any oak. Pale-colored, floral and showing a lactic touch, it is earthier than the Gran Terroir. The palate is medium-bodied, with floral flavors, very good acidity and a fine texture.”

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Zorzal Eggo Blanc de Cal, Tupungato, Argentina 2014 750ML ($27.95) $20.90 special, 36+ bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2014 Eggo Blanc de Cal is pure Sauvignon Blanc from two different vineyards in Gualtallary. The full clusters are pressed and the must was fermented and aged in contact with the lees for nine to ten months in their famous egg-shaped cement vats. This is more subtle and earthy, less Sauvignon, with the fruit expressing itself in a lower-pitched voice, more of a baritone. It’s also has a little wider, pungent and powerful character in the mouth. This is only around 13% alcohol, and even though in 2014 it didn’t go through malolactic fermentation, it’s still a very light and fresh wine. Groundbreaking Sauvignon. 4,800 bottles were produced, fruit of two eggs.” LG

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $26.25
The average price is $33


Orin Swift Returns to Vinopolis

Arriving Friday

Orin Swift Abstract Red, California 750ML ($37.95) $27 pre-arrival special, 36+ bottles available
No Reviews For The 2015 Yet
2014 review– Robert Parker 94 points “The absurdly delicious 2014 Proprietary Red Blend Abstract comes from multiple AVAs: Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, Amador and El Dorado and is a blend of Grenache, Petite Sirah and Syrah aged 10 months in 30% new French oak. This is a beauty and a great price for a wine of this quality. There are 26,547 cases, and the wine has an opaque ruby/purple color, gorgeous nose of creosote, kirsch liqueur and cassis with a touch of licorice, Provençal herbs and pepper. Delicious, full-bodied, unctuously textured, thick and juicy, this mouth-filling, big wine cuts a broad swath across the palate, but is never hot or awkward. Best drunk in its first 5-6 years. It finished at 15.7% natural alcohol.”

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Orin Swift Mercury Head Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 750ML ($139.95) $119 pre-arrival special, 6 bottles available
Robert Parker 96 points “A spectacular wine, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Mercury Head is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from the Taplin and Morisoli vineyards and several Atlas Peak vineyards, aged 18 months in 50% new French oak. There are 5,461 cases of this wine. The wine is a classic, broad-shouldered, compelling Cabernet Sauvignon with beautiful blueberry and crème de cassis fruit, Christmas fruitcake, cedar wood, white chocolate notes and a hint of graphite and background toast. It is ripe, full-bodied, pure, multidimensional and a mouthful of succulent Cabernet Sauvignon to drink over the next 20+ years.”

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

Orin Swift Palermo Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 750ML ($44.95) $39 pre-arrival special, 36 bottles available
Robert Parker 91 points “I tasted three Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines from Orin Swift. The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Palermo, all Napa Valley fruit and a blend dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon with a little Merlot and Malbec, was aged only 10 months in 35% new French oak. Bottled early to accentuate its fruit, this wine has soft, low-acid flavors, plenty of crème de cassis, chocolate and tobacco leaf, a medium to full-bodied mouthfeel and a long finish. It should drink well for the next 10-15 years, perhaps longer.”

Orin Swift Papillon Red, Napa Valley 2014 750ML ($69.95) $59 pre-arrival special, 12 bottles available
Robert Parker 94 points “The 2014 Bordeaux Proprietary Blend Papillion (15,748 cases) was aged 16 months in 40% new French oak. Fairly priced for what the consumer gets, this blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc (15.1% alcohol) exhibits notes of forest floor, graphite, blackcurrant, blackberry fruit and spring flowers followed by a full-bodied, unctuously textured, deep, rich pure wine to drink over the next 10-15+ years.”

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Also Available Pre-Arrival

Arriving Friday

Weingut Donnhoff Oberhauser Brucke Riesling Eiswein, Nahe 2015 375ML ($199.95) $159 pre-arrival special, 24 bottles available
Wine Advocate 97 points “Picked in 2016 on January 18th, the 2015 Oberhäuser Brücke Riesling Eiswein is very clear and displays black bread, fresh lemon and even some flinty aromas on the nose. On the palate, this is a highly elegant, precise and piquant Riesling with tension, grip and concentration, but also finesse and beautiful roundness. This Eiswein is as razor-sharp as sensual and is a fascinating drinking experience. The aftertaste reveals raisin, chestnut cream and even some malty flavors. “The berries were so stable due to the high acidity, but the juice inside was slightly oxidized through the sensitive skins,” says Helmut Dönnhoff. “However, thanks to the yeasts, it ends up as a reductive wine.” (This is produced in 375 milliliter bottles.)”

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Arriving in May

“Avignonesi is one of the reference-points in Montelpulciano” –Antonio Galloni

From Monica Larner of the Wine Advocate: “Avignonesi is of course the name behind one of the world’s finest dessert wines. The Vin Santo di Montepulciano Occhio di Pernice defies all convention and exceeds all expectations. This wine offers a deep sense of visceral joy and pure excitement to those lucky enough to get their hands on a bottle. Liquid nectar may be hyperbole, but it certainly applies here. I am overjoyed to report that, after a long and often checkered past, the Avignonesi pendulum is swinging strongly towards quality under Virginie [Saverys]’s dynamic leadership. Congratulations.”

Avignonesi Occhio di Pernice Vin Santo di Montepulciano, Tuscany 2001 375ML ($319.95) $279 pre-arrival special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 100 points “This wine merits every one of these 100 points. The 2001 Vin Santo di Montepulciano Occhio di Pernice (375 milliliters) is a singular work of art and a profound expression of Tuscany. I know Avignonesi owner Virginie Saverys would like to draw attention to the other wines in her portfolio, and she has every right to do so. But I just want to cry. When you have a wine as profound and perfect as this, everything else fades fast into the background. Virginie likes to say that Occhio di Pernice (made with red grapes) is the “male” and the Vin Santo di Montepulciano (made from white grapes) is the “female.” This is a great observation. The bouquet here is smoky and savory, but brilliant and sophisticated at the same time. You get an infinite array of caramel, maple syrup, espresso bean, licorice and candied fruit aromas. There’s so much dried fig as well. The concentration and thickness is out of this world. This wine is built like a tank and I’m not sure it will ever exit its drinking prime.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Avignonesi Vin Santo di Montepulciano, Tuscany 2001 375ML ($219.95) $189 pre-arrival special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 98 points “The 2001 Vin Santo di Montepulciano (375 milliliters) is a divine and superbly delicious sweet blend of Trebbiano, Malvasia and Grechetto. The results are super concentrated and simmered down to a virtual reduction sauce of deliciousness. There are so many aromas to name, but some of the most evident highlights include candied orange peel, almond marzipan, caramel, toasted coffee bean, vanilla stick, mocha, dark honey and fragrant yellow rose. The mouthfeel is creamy, rich and deeply layered. I’m suggesting a slightly shorter drinking window here compared to the Occhio di Pernice. But, the truth is: I have no idea. I’m pretty sure these wines will outlive anyone of legal drinking age.

Arriving in June

M. Chapoutier Hermitage Blanc Chante-Alouette, Rhone 2015 750ML ($89.95) $69 pre-arrival special, 14 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95 points “The finest vintage for this cuvée I’ve ever tasted, the sensational 2015 Hermitage Chante Alouette boasts awesome notes of white peach, orange marmalade and white flowers in a rich, full-bodied, concentrated style. Coming from three different terroirs on Hermitage Hill (Méal, Les Murets and Chante Alouette), don’t miss it!”

Arriving in October

San Filippo Le Lucere, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2012 750ML ($89.95) $79 pre-arrival special, 24 bottles available
James Suckling 98 points “This is an incredible 2012 with fantastic depth, richness, focus and tension. Full body, polished tannins and a long and flavorful finish. Goes on for minutes. Better in 2020 but a joy to taste now. One of the wines of the vintage.”

Altesino Montosoli, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2012 750ML ($99.95) $71.90 pre-arrival special, 36 bottles available
James Suckling 97 points “Fantastic aromas of blueberries, plums, bark and wet earth follow through to a full body, velvety and polished tannins and a wonderful finish. Refined and persistent on the finish. Drink in 2019 and onwards.”
2015 Clementin de Pape Clement

Arriving This Fall!

2015 in Bordeaux is being recorded as one that hits the rare sweet spot for those who love to drink these wines. Landing, stylistically, somewhere between 2009 and 2010 where there is a lot of fruit present, but not as hedonistic as 2009, and well balanced with tannic structure and fine acidity, but not nearly as austere as 2010. Decanter described this vintage as a medium term drinker that will offer wine lovers a chance to explore this often overlooked region of Bordeaux.

Pape Clement shares some nice real estate, its closest neighbor being Haut-Brion, but until the winery’s management was taken over by Bernard Magrez the wines were difficult to find and the results were not always up to expectations. The thorough exploration revealed only the most basic updates to the winery’s techniques were needed to improve consistency and the results have been spectacular.

The 2015 Clementin de Pape Clement, the second wine of the estate, mirrors the plantings in the vineyard: 56/40 Cabernet Sauvignon to Merlot, with a dash of Petit Verdot. Aromas that build upon ripe, abundant cherry fruit, followed by an Asian spice box and a tight whiff of  smoke. Tannins are present but rounded and certain to be an integral part of this wine in the near future. A modest amount of cellar time is in store for these wines, yet it isn’t one to shy away from. Accessing the Clementin in its youth will not disappoint, but will certainly make you wonder what the next bottle will be like.

Le Clementin du Chateau Pape Clement, Pessac-Leognan 2015 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special, 24 bottles available
James Suckling 92-93 points “A firm and silky second wine with blueberry and blackberry aromas and flavors…Full body, bright and fresh. Fine tannins.”