Midweek VinopolPick 11-13-18

In Today’s Newsletter:

New Release: Taittinger Comtes

German Riesling for Thanksgiving: Our Picks

Kathryn Hall is “Flirting with Perfection”

Top Wines from Fourrier:
The Best of Gevery-Chambertin’s Brightest Star

Trending Wines of the Weekend

Champagne Spotlight: Bereche

“One of the Finest Wines From the Côte d’Or”

“everything Brunello Riservas should be…”


Don’t forget to order wine in plenty of time for Thanksgiving!
Shipping is always disrupted the week of a holiday, so get your orders in as soon as you can to ensure that we (and UPS) have time to get your provisions to you.
Taittinger Comtes

“Will be Nearly Impossible to Resist Upon Release…”

Arriving November 20th:

“has been positively brilliant on the three occasions I have tasted it so far”
Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut, Champagne 2007 750ML ($179.95) $149 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 98 points “This is a step up from the linear and fresh 2006. It shows subtle depth and power with a dense block of vivid fruit that’s highlighted with lemon zest, green apples and hints of white peaches. Just the right amount of praline and nuts on the nose. Fine and tight bead give the Champagne a luxurious mouthfeel. One for now or the cellar. Drink or hold.”
Antonio Galloni 96 points “Taittinger’s 2007 Comtes de Champagne will be nearly impossible to resist upon release. Soaring aromatics, mid-weight structure and soft contours give the 2007 its alluring personality. Lemon oil, white flowers, mint, chamomile and green pear add brightness and freshness throughout, with a persistent, clean finish that makes it impossible to resist a second taste. Today, the 2007 comes across as a slightly more open version of the 2004, with freshness that makes that wine so appealing, and a touch of textural richness that recalls the 2002. Although the 2007 does not have the explosive energy or verticality of the profound 2006, it will drink better earlier. The 2007 has been positively brilliant on the three occasions I have tasted it so far.”
Wine Advocate 95 points “Taittinger’s prestigious Comtes de Champagne is composed entirely of Chardonnay grapes from the Grand Cru villages of Avize, Chouilly, Cramant, Mesnil-sur-Oger and Oger (Côte des Blancs). The citrus-golden colored 2007 Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs is the fourth in a row after the 2004 vintage (which will be followed by 2008 whereas there will be no Comtes from 2009, 2010 and 2011) and opens with a nobly intense yet nuanced bouquet of ripe fruits, chalk, iodine and a touch of brioche. The wine indicates a coolish and precise character on the clear, flinty nose that develops lemon, pastry and floral notes. On the palate, this is Taittinger at its best: clear, fresh, lush and elegant, offering both sensuality and noble elegance. The 2007 reveals great finesse and is a perfect expression of both the Taittinger style and the Côte de Blancs. The wine (of which 5% has spent four months in oak barrels to give roundness and a touch of toast) is tightly woven, well concentrated and even juicy yet always clear, fresh, pure, fine and elegant. The finish is intense, clean, vivacious and complex, with good grip and lingering salty minerals that indicate good aging potential. Disgorged in October 2017; tasted in May 2018.”

German Riesling for Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is definitely the holiday that sees the biggest spike in Riesling sales.  We have 300+ different bottlings in stock right now, so we obviously think that German Riesling is worth your and our attention throughout the year, but woe be it unto us to avoid making a strong “this is the Riesling you want for T-day” pick.  So, without too much more ado, let’s just say it—these are the wines you want for Thanksgiving.  We have them in quantity, so stock up.

In Stock Now:

Classic Bernkastel—juicy and rich but not too round.
Dr. H. Thanisch Bernkasteller Badstube Riesling Kabinett, Mosel 2016 750M ($34.95) $28 special
David Schildknecht – Vinous 91 points “Ripe pear and apple dominate on the nose as well as on a silken, buoyant palate, supported by subtle sweetness. Mouthwatering salinity and transparency to crystalline stony nuances give the long, refreshingly juicy finish a fascinating and delightful sense of shimmer.”
Mosel Fine Wines 90 points “The 2016er Badstube Kabinett was harvested at 88° Oechsle. It offers a delicately ripe nose of pear, earthy spices, slate and smoke. The wine comes to life on the palate as acidity peps up some succulent pear right into the long finish and gives it a gorgeously lively and well-balanced side. The after-taste is elegantly playful. 2026-2041”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
Cult classic, old-skool Mosel Spät.
Weingut Alfred Merkelbach Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Spatlese #6, Mosel  2016 750ML ($29.95) $24 special
Mosel Fine Wines 92 points “The 2016er Ürziger Würzgarten Spätlese AP06 was harvested at a refreshingly light 84° Oechsle in a parcel in the Fischerei sector situated upstream of the village of Ürzig. It offers a gorgeous nose of ripe pear, raspberry melon and spices. A great citrusy feel brings great freshness to the palate where more ripe and juicy fruits come through. The finish is delicate and elegant, with gorgeous fruity and spicy flavors in the after-taste. 2026-2041.”
David Schildknecht – Vinous 91 points “Picked at the same low must weight as its A.P. #5 sibling, this offers even more brightness of fresh lime to accompany its site-typical and lusciously ripe kiwi fruit. And like that sibling, the combination here of refreshment, levity and subtle creaminess engenders a flatteringly chiffon-like palate impression. Yet there is a soothing sense of glycerol-richness as well. A glaze of quince preserves enhances the impression of ripeness on the lusciously lingering, subtly wet stone-tinged finish. Incidentally, this comes from some of the few young Merkelbach vines, trained on wires rather than to the traditional single posts.”

Bass heavy and rich with age, it tastes drier than young Riesling with nice savoriness.
Kruger-Rumpf Munsterer Dautenpflanzer Riesling Spatlese, Nahe 2004 750ML ($49.95) $39 special
Grapelive 93 points “Deep, golden and mature in character, the opulent and beautiful 2004 Münsterer DautenpflänzerSpatlese from Kruger-Rumpf is in a wonderful window. It may just be the peak period for this vintage with layers of apricot, quince jelly, candied pineapple, marmalade notes and vinous textural charm along with nice salinity, mineral, rose led florals and light earthy and petrol fume notes in a classic Nahe Riesling. In recent years I’ve been lucky enough to have been able to re-visit some 2004’s and they have really blossomed, losing the year’s awkward form, going from an almost an ugly duckling into a swan in bottle with age. This is especially true in some late releases by Schlossgut Diel and this Weingut Kruger-Rumpf Münsterer Dautenpflänzer Spatlese, both of which can still be found if you look, a well worth it exercise. The VDP Grosse Lage (Grand Cru) Münsterer Dautenpflänzer, a tiny parcel within Kapellenberg, is set on quartzite and loess-clay based soils, which in my humble opinion highlights fruit detail and brings out a yellow fruit profile along with crystal clear mineral intensity with this wine bringing out baked peach core on the palate with hints of honey, fig and liquid stone. Georg Rumpf is moving towards organic in most of the vines with his vineyards being farmed to sustainable  practices with hand harvesting employed to ensure that only optimally ripe grapes are selected. There is intense attention to detail here. I was here at harvest in 2016 and saw the team in action as well as the vines, which are steep and well cared for. Rumpf goes for native (spontaneously with ambient yeast) on the cru trockens (dry) and fruity (off-dry and sweeter) Rieslings and he uses large old stuckfass (oak casks) with extended lees aging. This all adds to the wines purity, extract and concentrated depth. This such a steal, I highly recommend searching for a few bottles, drink now.”

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Spicy and bright, tangy and fresh—perfect with turkey.
Weingut Jos. Christoffel Jr. Christoffel-Prum Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett, Mosel 2016 750ML ($34.95) $27 special
Mosel Fine Wines 91 points “This offers a beautiful nose of pear, citrusy fruits, brown sugar and herbs. The wine proves quite racy on the palate as lively acidity provides the frame to fresh and zesty fruits. The finish is refreshingly tart, with a nice salty side. Still a bit wild, the wine will gain in presence and elegance at maturity. 2023-2036.”
David Schildknecht-Vinous 90 points “Alluring, site-typical scents of lemongrass, sassafras and tangerine set the stage for a lusciously juicy, invigoratingly tangy, zesty palate impression. The finish is unabashedly sweet but so brightly juicy that it refreshes and calls forth the next sip. The vintage’s A.P. #1, this represents its first-picked fruit. But even then, we’re talking mid-October, so early picking goes only a little way toward explaining the modest degrees Oechsle on which this alcoholically featherweight bottling is founded. The vines themselves and how they are handled – certainly including the yields Christoffel permits – are important factors.”

2014 is a vintage for acid hounds.  And stuffing.
Peter Lauer Fass 8 Ayler Kupp Riesling Kabinett, Mosel 2014 750ML ($37.95) $31.90 special
John Gilman 91-92 points ‘The 2014 Ayler Kupp Kabinett from Florian Lauer is really a lovely and quite classic example of this Prädikat, with lovely acidity and minerality providing a fine filigree to the wine and a nice sense of reserve out of the blocks as well. The very classy nose wafts from the glass in a mix of green apple, tart orange, slate, lovely smokiness and a touch of dried flowers in the upper register. On the palate the wine is medium-bodied, pure and focused, with a good core, bright acids, a nice touch of sweetness on the attack and lovely length and grip on the elegant and nascently complex finish. This is quite approachable now, but still a touch primary, and I would be inclined to give it at least a few years in the cellar to develop its secondary layers of complexity. 2019-2035+.” JG

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

We currently have 303 German Rieslings in stock now and ready for your Thanksgiving feast! (plus another 112 on sale as pre-arrivals) Just click here to see them all on our web store!



“Flirting with Perfection”

The 2015 Kathryn Hall Arrives

Just Arrived:

“it’s time to jump on the Hall bandwagon, as they are doing everything right”
Hall Wines ‘Kathryn Hall’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2015 750ML ($219.95) $189 special, only 3 bottles available
Robert Parker 96-100 points
“As for the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Kathryn Hall, this could be a wine flirting with perfection. It has unbelievable complexity already, with that wonderful sucrosity, blue and black fruits in abundance, an opulent, full-bodied mouthfeel, but no heaviness or rusticity. This is a seamless, flawless, compelling Cabernet Sauvignon that should drink beautiful upon release and for another 25-30+ years. Subscribers who have followed recent years of The Wine Advocate know that this is one of the most exciting producers in Napa Valley, having burst on the scene a short time ago and offering a brilliant array of Cabernet Sauvignons. As a post-script to subscribers, it’s time to jump on the Hall bandwagon, as they are doing everything right, and their wines are among the most exciting being made in the world today. (RP)   (12/2016)”
Jeb Dunnuck 96-99 points “The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Kathryn Hall is another huge wine that offers just about everything you could want from Napa Valley, including incredible opulence paired with sensational purity and elegance. Blackberries, black cherries, blueberries, violets, spring flowers and white chocolate notes all flow to a full-bodied, deep, multi-dimensional effort that has sweet, yet present, tannin and a big finish. It’s going to be up with the top handful of wines in the vintage. One of the eye-opening tastings while working on this report was the lineup from Kathryn Hall’s estate located in St. Helena. There’s a wealth of wines here, yet they all have deep, concentrated, pure profiles as well as singular characters. You could pretty much randomly select from this lineup and be guaranteed to have a brilliant wine. Hats off to winemaker Steve Leveque. All the 2016s, and the majority of the 2015s, were tasted as barrel samples.    (12/2017)”


Top Wines from Fourrier

The Best of Gevery-Chambertin’s Brightest Star

Domaine Fourrier makes some of the most captivating wines in Burgundy. To Burgophiles, this isn’t much of a claim—the wines that Jean-Marie has produced since taking over from his father have become hot tickets in the Burgundy world. If you aren’t familiar, though, these are wines to put on your radar. Fourrier’s style is heavily influenced by his time working under Henri Jayer and the wines show this.

When young they’re among the most impressive in Burgundy, combining succulent fruit with minerality and a complexity that’s nearly unmatched in newly released wines. They improve with age, as well, though we’ve always had a hard time keeping our hands off of the lower-tier wines in the first five years after the vintage. Fourrier works exclusively with old massale vineyards (anything from vines younger than 30 years is sold off) and that sort of soul really makes it into the bottle.

We’ve got some new wines from Fourrier arriving soon, including the nearly-impossible-to-find Griotte-Chambertin and (negociant) Clos de Beze (and more). We’ve included some highlights below, but you can see all 20 bottlings on our web store by clicking here.

Arriving This Month:

Only one bottle available
Jean-Marie Fourrier Chambertin Clos-de-Beze Grand Cru Vieilles Vignes, Cote de Nuits 2015 750ML ($699.95) $599 pre-arrival special
Stephen Tanzer-Vinous 93-95 points “Moderately saturated medium red. High-pitched perfume of raspberry and crushed rock. Savory and sharply delineated, conveying strong soil character to its flavors of raspberry, minerals and rose petal. Still tight but not austere, this compellingly juicy wine finishes brisk and very long. This will need time in bottle to open and blossom. These vines are located just above Fourrier’s Cherbaudes holding.”
Burghound 92-95 points “Discreet wood does not interfere with the clear expression of the wonderfully spicy red currant, black cherry and softly earthy-scented nose. There is much more refinement to the powerful, intense and moderately dense flavors that delivers excellent complexity and outstanding length. A wine of class and grace.”

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Only two bottles available
Jean-Marie Fourrier Chambertin Grand Cru Vieille Vigne, Cote de Nuits 2015 750ML ($779.95) $679 pre-arrival special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 94-96 points “The 2015 Chambertin Grand Cru has a beautifully defined bouquet with black cherries, crushed strawberry, bergamot and rose petal scents, the mineralité surfacing with a few swirls of the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy red berry fruit, gentle grip, fine structure with impressive density on the finish. The elegance will come later, with bottle age.”
Stephen Tanzer-Vinous 94-96 points “(made from even smaller berries than the Clos de Bèze, according to Fourrier; this fruit was picked on September 20; just one new barrel out of four): Deep red. Wild, soil-driven scents of raspberry, minerals, spices and game. Boasts outstanding richness and depth of texture without heaviness, although some unabsorbed CO2 is muting the wine’s fruit today. Most impressive today on the spicy, building finish, which features utterly noble tannins and pronounced terroir character. “The magic of 2015 was the way the vines were able to maintain their plateau of ripeness for two weeks,” noted Fourrier.”
Burghound 93-95 points “Don’t miss! A prominently less spicy but even more complex nose displays admirable purity on the cool, dense and restrained array of various black berry fruit, earth, forest floor and a hint of the sauvage. The more mineral-driven and overtly powerful big-bodied flavors possess even better energy if less refinement on the hugely long, serious and built-to-age finale. This will absolutely require at least a decade of bottle age and reward double that.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Only three bottles available
Domaine Fourrier Clos Saint-Jacques, Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru 2008 750ML ($699.95) $599 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2008 Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St. Jacques engages all of the senses with its cool, mineral-laced fruit and expressive bouquet. This shows marvelous tension and energy, not to mention fabulous overall balance. It could not be more different in style than the 2009 tasted alongside it. Both are fabulous, though. The 2008 is one of the more backward wines of the vintage and will require considerable patience.”

Only two bottles available
Domaine Fourrier Clos Saint-Jacques, Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru 2014 750ML ($669.95) $599 pre-arrival special
Stephen Tanzer-Vinous 94 points “Healthy medium red. Sexy, complex aromas of strawberry, crushed stone and rose petal convey a captivating combe coolness. Wonderfully concentrated and bright, combining classic 2014 salty minerality with superb fruit intensity. Boasts the kind of restrained generosity of fruit that reminds me of the ’99s in the early going. A compelling, saline vin de terroir but not a powerhouse. The long, rising finish features very suave tannins.”
Wine Advocate 93 points “Tasted blind at the Burgfest 2014 tasting, Jean-Marie Fourrier’s 2014 Gevrey Chambertin 1er Cru Clos St Jacques (labelled with “Vieilles Vignes”) has a very pure bouquet, almost coulis-like fruit, dark cherries intermingling with blueberry and light marmalade scents. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, a fine line of acidity, quite sensual in the mouth with good depth on the finish. Perhaps what it is missing is that peacock’s tail—it sort of ends in the wrong key. There is great potential here though not best in the (Clos Saint-Jacques) show this year. Like a television with its contrast turned up a bit too high when compared to its peers. Tasted September 2017.”
Burghound 92-94 points “Sweet Spot Outstanding. This is at once cooler and more elegant with its airy assortment of pure red and blue pinot fruit, floral, spice, earth and tea scents. There is fine intensity and excellent delineation to the pungently mineral-inflected and refined medium weight flavors where the sense of refinement is enhanced by the super fine-grained tannins, all wrapped in an explosively long and perfectly balanced finale. In a word, marvelous.”

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

Only one bottle available
Domaine Fourrier Griotte-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieille Vigne, Cote de Nuits 2009 750ML ($1399.95) $1199 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2009 Griotte-Chambertin is a relatively delicate, ethereal wine with expressive aromatics and understated fruit. Deceptively medium in body, the Griotte needs time to flesh out a bit, but it is a stunner. Anticipated maturity: 2019-2029.”
Stephen Tanzer 94+ points “Medium red. Slightly high-toned aromas of blackberry, black raspberry, violet and licorice. The high-toned quality carries through in the mouth, where the sappy-sweet black and blue fruit flavors are complicated by saline soil tones. Less creamy than some of Fourrier’s 2009 premier crus, this very firmly structured, long wine will demand patience. The lovely lift on the back end suggests that it has the energy for a long evolution. Fourrier now gets all his corks from a single supplier in Corsica, who simply steams them and does not use a peroxide solution.”
Burghound 94 points “This is also intensely floral as well as quite elegant with a highly attractive sense of freshness to the high-toned red berry and wet stone suffused aromas. The seductively textured, concentrated and mouth coating flavors possess a taut muscularity on the refined, intense and hugely long finish where a discreet touch of wood surfaces. This should make for a seriously fine example of the appellation in a decade or so yet thanks for the ample dry extract, it should be enjoyable young if desired.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Only one bottle available
Domaine Fourrier Griotte-Chambertin Grand Cru Vieille Vigne, Cote de Nuits GC 2014 750ML ($899.95) $799 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 94-96 points “The 2014 Griottes Chambertin Grand Cru has a very intense bouquet with maraschino, blueberry and violets blossoming in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with succulent ripe black fruit, blueberry and a hint of balsamic, leading to a quite a structured and dense finish that just needs a touch more finesse. I think that will develop with time. Superb.”
Stephen Tanzer–Vinous 94+ points “Good medium red. Strawberry and rose petal on the nose. At once dense and brisk, displaying a penetrating quality to its seamless, fine-grained flavors of red fruits and orange zest. Wonderfully taut and energetic but also fine-grained and suave. Less saline today than the Clos Saint-Jacques but boasts terrific fruit and mineral extension on the long, savory finish.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Want to see all 20 bottlings of Fourrier, in stock and arriving soon, on our web store? You can by clicking here.



Trending Wines of the Weekend

In Stock Now:

A stunning wine, mostly Malbec, with power and balance.
Zorzal Eggo Tinto de Tiza, Tupungato 2015 750ML ($29.95) $24 special
Case-12 Zorzal Eggo Tinto de Tiza, Tupungato 2015 750ML ($319.95) $266 special (that’s only $22.17/bottle!)
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 94 points
“The one blend in the Eggo range is the 2015 Eggo Tinto de Tiza, which mixes Malbec with 10% Cabernet Franc and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon fermented in 2,000-liter egg-shaped cement vats where the wine matured for almost one year. This feels quite complete and balanced, with good ripeness while keeping the balance and poise. The palate is juicy and fresh, with fine-grained tannins and a bittersweet finish akin to sour cherries. Very tasty and long. Super. Incredible for the price. 16,000 bottles were filled in January 2016.”

Tavel is a classic for Thanksgiving for a reason.
Domaine Lafond Tavel Roc-Epine Rose, Rhone 2017 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-12 Domaine Lafond Tavel Roc-Epine Rose, Rhone 2017 750ML ($249.95) $189 special (that’s only $15.75/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 93 points
“A dependable producer of Tavel and Lirac (and Châteauneuf-du-Pape), the Lafonds have turned out a spice-driven 2017 Tavel that’s bottled under screwcap. Hints of allspice and clove accent watermelon and red berry flavors, while the palate is medium to full-bodied and richly textured, leading into a long, silky finish. Bravo!”
Wine & Spirits 92 points “The Lafonds turned out a lush 2017 Tavel from their organically farmed vineyards, a wine that balances its sunny generosity with refreshing acidity. It has the girth for meaty dishes, with berry notes that bring red meat to mind, but the herbal and earthy flavors have enough restraint to work with fish, too.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
“a characterful Chardonnay that represents terrific value”
Varner El Camino Vineyard Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County 2015 750ML ($24.95) $21.90 special
Case-12 Varner El Camino Vineyard Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County 2015 750ML ($299.95) $236 special
Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2015 Chardonnay El Camino Vineyard from the Varner brothers is lovely, wafting from the glass with an expressive bouquet of honeycomb, ripe peaches and fresh apricot. On the palate, the wine is medium-bodied, pure and textural—displaying a touch more mid-palate ripeness than the 2014 rendition—and concludes with a long, saline finish. This is a characterful Chardonnay that represents terrific value.”

Crisp and bright, this is delicious.
Domaine Jean Masson & Fils Savoie Apremont La Dechiree 2017 750ML ($29.95) $21.90 special
Importer note “Shows high acidity with a long finish. The interesting minerality intertwines with notes of tarragon, verbena and orange.”
Winery note “[Translated] A very atypical wine, the Dechiree comes from a hill at the highest point in Apremont. The vineyard is surrounded by brambles (mulberry and raspberry), and the vines offer a powerful wine with a cascade of complex and pronounced aromas. This wine has a nice minerality highlighted by a rich texture. It pairs well with fish in a cream sauce, roasted poultry and lobster.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Red Burgundy is always a solid choice for turkey day.
Domaine Collotte Marsannay Les Champsalomon, Cote de Nuits 2015 750ML ($34.95) $28 special
Wine Spectator 91 points “Silky, this red evokes cherry, strawberry and graphite flavors, with bright acidity keeping this fresh and focused. Harmonious and long, offering a light chalky feel on the finish. Drink now through 2023. 150 cases imported.”
Importer Note “The Marsannay Champsalomon is from the village of Couchey. The 40+ year old vines are on the marl soil of the Ostrea Acuminata.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Good vintage, good producer Hermitage for under $50? Yes.
Delas Freres Hermitage Domaine des Tourettes-Marquise de la Tourette, Rhone 2013 750ML ($119.95) $49 special
Case-6 Delas Freres Hermitage Domaine des Tourettes-Marquise de la Tourette, Rhone 2013 750ML ($549.95) $249 special (that’s only $41.50/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 94 points
“One of the gems in the vintage is the 2013 Hermitage Domaine des Tourettes, which comes from both the Bessards and Grandes Vignes lieux-dits on Hermitage Hill. Completely destemmed, then vinified in stainless steel and concrete tanks, the wine is aged 18 months in 30% new French oak; it offers terrific notes of dark fruits, graphite and ample minerality in a full-bodied, layered, ripe profile. It’s more approachable than the Les Bessards, yet will still have three decades of longevity.”
Jancis Robinson 18/20 points “Very dark purple indeed. Altogether broader and less focused than the Côte Rôties on the nose. Peppery and subtle. Very glossy, layered, complex and magnificent. I would reproach this only very slightly on the finish but it’s a pretty magnificent wine”
James Suckling 93 points “This has a refined, fragrant and very composed character with inherent aromatic spices and a stony edge, in addition to licorice and some star anise. The fruits are in the dried-plum and dried-cherry spectrum, but this also hints at plenty of cloves, cardamom and pepper. The palate’s succulent, powerful, even and really finely layered. The tannins are most definitely a feature now, and this has plenty of ageing potential. Enjoy the dark-plum and black-cherry finish. Best from 2020 and for a decade after that. Fom 100% granitic soils.”
Josh Raynolds 93 points “Brilliant violet. Complex mineral- and smoke-accented scents of dark fruit liqueur, violet and olive paste gain urgency from a smoky mineral quality . Juicy and sharply focused on the palate, offering sappy blueberry and bitter cherry flavors that deepen and become sweeter with air. Shows excellent depth and vivacity and finishes spicy and very long, displaying a resonating floral quality and building tannins.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $79.97
The average price is $89

Champagne Spotlight


Bereche is a nearly universally beloved Champagne producer—a testament to the absolute quality emanating out of their cellars.  Deep, resonant and vinous, Vincent and Raphael (the brothers Bereche) seem to spare no expense to turn out the best possible wines, whether aging under cork before disgorgement or fermenting in a mixture of stainless and old, large barrels to give the wines extra vinousity.  Everything Bereche produces oozes class and this is one of the strongest set of wines they’ve ever made.

In Stock Now:

Bereche et Fils Le Cran Premier Cru Brut Nature Millesime, Champagne 2010 750ML ($119.95) $99 special
Stuart Pigott-Jamessuckling.com 95 points “A very different Champagne to the 2009, which is touched strongly by the vintage. This has more classic chardonnay on the nose, in the orange and grapefruit zone, with smooth pastry notes. The palate has terrific texture and depth, holding smooth and even with great length and power. The acidity highlights fresh cashew nuts and smoky, mineral-flecked lemons on the finish. Drink or hold.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2010 Le Cran, a blend of equal parts Chardonnay and Pinot Noir brings together the flavor profile of the former and the textural resonance of the latter. Apricot, lemon confit and wild flowers are some of the many notes that flesh out in this creamy, super-expressive Champagne. This is one of the bigger, more dramatic wines in the range, but everything works together nicely. Disgorged December 2017. Dosage is 4 grams per liter.”
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 94 points “The Ludes Premier Cru 2010 Le Cran is from a very cool and late-ripening terroir at 190 to 220 meters in altitude. The vines (a 50/50 mix of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir) were planted between 1963 and 1967 on a shallow chalky terroir with just 25 centimeters of topsoil, with the Pinot Noir facing east and Chardonnay to the west. Vinified in oak, aged under cork and disgorged in December 2017, the 2010 vintage offers a pure, deep, elegant, pretty charming and chalky bouquet with ripe fruit notes. Pure, fresh and elegant, the palate features a long, iodine expression of chalk and crushed stones. This is a firm, serious, structured and spicy Champagne with generous chalkiness and creamy texture, with a very long, complex finish. If you like the dirty chalkiness of wines from Jerez and the Jura, this Champagne could be your preferred choice. Tasted April 2018.”

Bereche et Fils Les Beaux Regards Blanc de Blancs, Champagne NV (’14) 750ML ($99.95) $89 special
Antonio Galloni 96 points “Weightless, elegant and remarkably pure, the 2014 Les Beaux Regards has it all. Lemon confit, pastry, white flowers, smoke, slate and a touch of new oak infuse a regal Chardonnay endowed with pure class. The depth and nuance of the flavors recalls a great Corton Charlemagne. The 2014 needs a bit of time in bottle to fully assimilate its oak and the slight bit of reduction that comes from aging on the cork. Disgorged February 2018. Dosage is 3 grams per liter.”

Bereche et Fils ‘Montagne’ Grand Cru Brut, Champagne 2007 1.5L ($199.95) $159 special

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Bereche et Fils Reflet d’Antan Brut, Champagne NV (12) 1.5L ($299.95) $219 special
Antonio Galloni 93 points “The flagship NV (2012) Reflet d’Antan is quite rich and intense, yet it also maintains striking translucence. Dried flowers, herbs and spices add aromatic nuance throughout, but, as is often the case, Reflet d’Antan is a wine of texture and feel above all else. Dosage is 6 grams per liter. Disgorged December 2016.”
Disgorgement date: 12/2016

This is the lowest listed price for a magnum in the USA today!
Arriving ETA November:

Bereche et Fils Brut Reserve, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 92 points
“The NV Brut Réserve Vieilles Vignes Cuvée Non Filtrée is a blend of all the four different terroirs cultivated by the Bérêche family—35% Ludes (chalk), 30% Ormes (sand), 25% Mareuil-sur-Port (clay) and 10% Trépail (chalk), which adds up to seven hectares for this cuvée. The current release of the non-vintaged unfiltered Réserve is based on the 2015 vintage and, as usual, includes 35% of reserve wines from a solera. Fermented in oak barrels and small cuves, the assemblage of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir (from vines averaging 40+ years old) is pure and fruity on the nose, very elegant and spicy, with red fruit and cherry aromas. Pure and elegant on the palate, with intensity, remarkable finesse and complexity, the Brut Réserve reveals a still tight but long, salty, promising finish.”
Wine Spectator 92 points “Lemon curd, delicate herb and spice notes lead to flavors of crushed white cherry, toasted brioche and honey, with a streak of salinity, in this firm, focused Champagne, showing a lacy mousse. Offers a long, mouthwatering finish.” [Review is for the Jan 2018 disgorgement]

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Arriving ETA December:

Bereche et Fils Campania Remensis Extra Brut Rose, Champagne (2014) NV ($89.95) $69 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 92 points “The 2014 Campania Remensis offers notable tension and along with a good bit of vibrancy that livens up the red berry, tobacco and floral notes. Deceptive in its pale color, the 2014 is beautifully persistent, not to mention impeccable in its balance, with terrific underlying structure. The 2014 is wonderfully alive in the glass. I loved it. Disgorged February 2018. Dosage is 3 grams per liter.”

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Bereche et Fils Reflet d’Antan Brut, Champagne (2013) NV 750ML ($129.95) $99 pre-arrival special
Bereche et Fils Reflet d’Antan Brut, Champagne (2013) NV 1.5L ($299.95) $249 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 95 points “The NV Reflet d’Antan is weightless, airy and gracious. Graphite, crushed rocks, petrol, smoke and licorice infuse this super-refined, polished Champagne. Intensely mineral, chalky and savory, Reflet d’Antan is a model of total precision. The current release is based on the 2013 vintage, with 30% perpetual reserve wines. Reflet d’Antan is 35% Pinot Noir, 35% Meunier and 30% Chardonnay. I tasted two bottles of the same wine; the first aged on crown seal and the second (the commercial release) aged on cork. The version aged on cork was noticeably more complex, and that is for a wine that had just been disgorged about a month before this tasting. Dosage is 6 grams per liter.”

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A Profusion of Produttori


“One of the Finest Wines From the Côte d’Or”

Clos de Tart 2016

Arriving Friday:

Domaine du Clos de Tart ‘Clos de Tart’ Grand Cru Monopole, Cote de Nuits 2016 750ML ($699.95) $599 pre-arrival special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 97-99 points “The 2016 Clos de Tart Grand Cru was assessed from a blend of all the component parts (except the young vines) that I previously tasted separately, as I have done over the last decade. The final blend will be 80% new oak, whereas my sample contained 100%, although this was discrete and enmeshed with the fruit. It has a fascinating bouquet, much more nuanced than those from a decade ago, dark fruit, a little earthier, with the stem addition lending it more freshness and even, dare I say, slightly green—and I mean that in a very positive sense. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp acidity, a core of slightly candied black cherry and blackcurrant fruit framed by quite “strict” tannin and a fresh, marine-influenced, brine-tinged finish that lingers long in the mouth. There is a sense of harmony and completeness here that, even over 20 years tasting at this address, I have rarely encountered. You can just feel the frisson in this wine. One of the finest wines from the Côte d’Or in 2016. It’s that simple.”

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“everything Brunello Riservas should be…”

The Fantastic 2012 Brunello Riservas

“I cannot remember when I so thoroughly enjoyed tasting one Brunello Riserva after another. As I wrote last year in my article on the 2012 Brunellos, this was a much better vintage than 2011 and many more producers set wine aside for making Riservas in 2012 than they did in 2011. For the most part, the 2012 Riservas are very good examples of everything Brunello Riservas should be but rarely are: deeper, bigger and more complex wines than the classico bottlings, with a mellow aspect given their extra time and oxygenation in mostly large used oak barrels.” – Ian D’Agata, Vinous

The 2012 vintage was a good one for Brunello, but a spectacular one for Brunello Riserva.  It’s not often there is such a divide, but the warm, dry conditions in 2012 were the perfect year for the class of Riservas to be significantly better than their classico cousins.  These are monuments to Sangiovese, possibly even better than the heralded 2013’s arriving next year.  Anyone who loves Brunello needs to load up.

Featured 2012 Brunello Riservas Arriving in December:

Sassetti Livio Pertimali Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2012 750ML ($149.95) $119 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 96 points “Firm and dense, this red sports cherry, leather, cigar box and sweet spice flavors. A juiciness midpalate adds depth. Finishes with tannins and a combination of earth, mineral and tobacco notes. Best from 2022 through 2038.”

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Altesino Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2012 750ML ($149.95) $119 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 98 points “($150) This delivers intense balsamic notes of juniper, wild rosemary and sage, along with rose, cherry and berry aromas and flavors. Elegant and saturated with flavor, supported by a vibrant structure. Ends with energy and refined tannins. Best from 2022 through 2040. 750 cases made.”

Fuligni Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2012 750ML ($219.95) $179 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 98 points “Bright and juicy, this is packed with cherry, strawberry, floral and mineral aromas and flavors. Linear in shape and tightly wound, yet very pure, with a long, detailed aftertaste that pulls all the elements together. Best from 2021 through 2040. 350 cases imported.”

In Stock Now:

La Gerla Riserva gli Angeli, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2012 750ML ($99.95) $69 special
La Gerla Riserva gli Angeli, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2012 1.5L ($219.95) $159 special
La Gerla Riserva gli Angeli, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2012 3L ($499.95) $319 special
Ian D’agata-Vinous 95 points “Bright medium ruby. Very clean and fresh aromas and flavors of red currant, cherry pit, flowers and blood orange jelly. Bright, juicy and very light on its feet, offering superb vinosity and clarity of flavor, this conveys an impression of real underlying density and a multilayered mouthfeel. A knockout wine of outstanding energy and class, finishing with polished tannins, uncanny sweetness and lovely subtle persistence, not to mention outstanding balance (it hides its 14.5% alcohol very well).”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95 points “Here is a dense and meaty Tusan red that flaunts its immediate power, structure and intensity. The 2012 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva gli Angeli is robust and deep thanks to a generous offering of dark fruit, spice and tar-like aromas. Fruit is carefully selected for this wine, and the grapes are fermented in stainless steel. Post fermentation, the wine goes into large Slavonian oak casks for four years. The finish is soft and supple with sweet berry flavors. This wine has made an impressive jump forward in this vintage.”

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