Top Mother’s Day Picks
The Hyper Talented Telmo Rodriguez
A Mesnil Masterpiece
First Offer: 2017 Chateau Saint Cosme
Ridge’s Baby Monte Bello
New Raul Perez Releases
A Wine Spectator Top-20 Wine: Back In Stock Friday
Brilliant Whites of Costal Spain
Top Mother’s Day Picks
In Stock Now:
A treat of a rosé Champagne—truly one of the best, especially at this price.
Champagne Aubry ‘Sable’ Premier Cru Rose Brut, Champagne 2012 750ML ($99.95) $69 special
Antonio Galloni 91 points “The pale-colored 2012 Brut Sablé Rosé Nicolas Francois Aubry is striking in its beauty. The non-dosage style adds briskness, but there is just enough richness to the fruit to balance things out. Cranberry, white pepper and chalky notes add lift and overall precision. The 2012 is 30% Meunier and Pinot Noir done in a co-fermentation, along with 25% Petit Meslier, 20% Arbanne, 10% Chardonnay and 5% still Meunier fermented as red wine.”
The next best price is $89.99
R. Dumont & Fils Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($39.95) $29 special
Importer note “The Dumont Brut NV is a blend of 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay. The grapes from their vineyard have qualities that seem less aggressive and more sumptuous than those from the northern districts. In addition, vinification of whole berries at low temperatures enhances this quality of soft elegance. The NV is a blend of vintages typically between two and five years old. It is aged for two years on the lees before disgorgement. Dosage is 9 grams.”
The average listed price is $41
Krug Brut, Champagne 2004 750ML ($299.95) $248 special
Antonio Galloni 97+ points “Krug’s 2004 Vintage is absolutely mesmerizing. Layers of bright, chiseled fruit open up effortlessly as the wine fleshes out with time in the glass. Persistent and beautifully focused, with a translucent sense of energy, the 2004 captures all the best qualities of the year. Moreover, the 2004 is clearly superior to the consistently underwhelming 2002 and the best Krug Vintage since 1996. Readers who can find it should not hesitate, as it is a magical bottle.”
Wine Advocate 97 points “Combining subtleness with complexity, the coolish Krug 2004 Brut opens with a highly elegant, fascinatingly clear, bright and refreshing bouquet of ripe (apple) fruits. Dense and round, with a delicate mineral soul, the pure but perfectly balanced 2004 reveals great finesse and weightless elegance with a long and round finish. This is a gorgeous Krug vintage that is 14 years old but still on the rise. Tasted from ID 316034 in New York in November 2018.”-SR
Decanter 97 points “This is the current and latest vintage release from Krug, and is a fitting successor to 2002, though it’s very different in style – unusually, the blend contains more Chardonnay than Pinot Noir. Despite this, it is hallmark Krug with its oxidative profile. It has a luminous freshness and good density without heaviness. There’s a controlled power to this poised, vinous, linear 2004, displaying candied fruits, minerals, gingerbread, white chocolate, caramel and marzipan. This has a long, dry autolytic finish, great balance and lovely bead. Disgorged just after the next, and very different, vintage we tasted, the Krug 2003. Drinking Window 2017-2037.”
Tempier isn’t out yet, so this might be the next best thing.
Peyrassol Cotes de Provence ‘Chateau Peyrassol’ Rose 2018 750ML ($31.95) $26 special
Peyrassol Cotes de Provence ‘Chateau Peyrassol’ Rose 2018 1.5L ($99.95) $79 special
Importer note “This is the elite cuvée of the estate relying as it does on grapes harvested from the oldest vines of the domaine (35 years and older). Principally composed of Cinsault, Grenache and Syrah, the “Chateau” bottling also sees the addition, from time-to-time of Tibouren, the ancient and regal Provencale grape. This Rosé is produced via the “direct press” method and has a long cuvaison designed to produce a wine of character and concentration. Vinified in stainless steel and bottled in late winter – early spring, production is quite limited.”
Brunch for a crowd? This is your go-to, right here.
Planeta Rose Siclia, Sicily 2018 750ML ($17.95) $14 special
Case-6 Planeta Rose Siclia, Sicily 2018 750ML ($89.95) $71.90 special
Winery note “50% Nero d’Avola 50% Syrah. Our Rosé, fresh and fruity, represents all the feelings of a Sicilian summer. Its colour is that of a summer sunset. The fresh aromas of strawberry make it a marvellously friendly wine, and easy to drink. Enjoy Planeta’s Rosé in good company, as an aperitif with tapas, raw fish, fresh salads or alone with seasonal fruit.”
Domaine Renardat-Fache Bugey Cerdon Rose Sparkling, Savoie 2017 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special
Winery note “Cerdon is a terroir of Bugey. It’s a rose sparkling wine with low alcohol content. It is produced from Gamay and Poulsard, following the traditional techniques of the “Méthode Ancestrale.” The “Méthode Ancestrale” is a fermentation technique that makes it possible to obtain a sparkling wine without the adjunction of any yeast nor sugar. The fermentation process is natural, and uses only the yeasts and sugars contained in the grapes. Comfortably hidden in the foothils of Jura between Lyon and Geneva, the tiny village of Merignat emerges at a bend of the road. Under its austere face of a small medieval town, it hides in its cellars a sparkling natural wine that unveils part of its mystery when the bottle is opened, revealing its color. Our family has been cultivating the vineyards of the domain for more than eight generations. The vineyards themselves have been part of the village since the Middle Ages. The family Renardat Fache also used to cultivate fruits, like apples, walnuts, cherries and strawberries.”
Agusti Torello Mata Trepat Rosat Brut Cava, Catalonia 2015 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Remelluri eschews American oak, finding it too overblown, and instead works with only the highest quality French cooperage. No expense is spared, up and down the line, and these wines are special as a result of that. We will receive our allocation in May of this fantastic 2012 Rioja Reserva—a wine that somehow manages the magic trick of being delicious today and capable of aging for decades. This is one of the landmark wines of Spain and deserves a prominent place in any cellar.
Remelluri Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 750ML ($44.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Remelluri Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 750ML ($479.95) $359 pre-arrival special (that’s only $29.92/bottle!)
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 93 points “Deep ruby. Ripe red berries, dried flowers, illicit herb and smoky minerals on the exotically perfumed nose. The palate offers spicy, penetrating, concentrated flavors of black raspberry, cherry compote and floral pastilles, with a zesty mineral quality building in the glass. Shows excellent clarity and intensity on the very long, floral, gently tannic finish.”
Wine Advocate 93 points “The flagship 2012 Reserva was cropped from a year when they started seeing the results of improvements made to the work in the vineyards that started in 2010. 2012 was not as warm and ripe as 2011, and the wine comes through as a nice balance between power and elegance, with some earthiness, good fruit and a fine palate. It has a personality between the Labastida and San Vicente bottlings of the Lindes bottlings. It matured in barrique for 18 months, but the wood feels very well integrated. 2012 was a shorter crop, and they produced some 281,000 bottles. It was bottled in April 2015.”
Remelluri only produces estate wines under their label, but if you know where to look, there are two wines made by the same talented team that cost much less. These are the “Lindes de Remelluri” (borders of Remelluri) wines, made from old vines in specific terroirs in other parts of Rioja. We’ve secured a parcel of the 2014 San Vicente and are excited to offer it at a fantastic price. This might be the best Rioja under $25 out there—big and rich, with a style that rides the border of modern and traditional.
Arriving ETA May:
Remelluri ‘Lindes de Remelluri Vinedos de San Vicente’, Rioja DOCa 2014 750ML ($27.95) $24 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Remelluri ‘Lindes de Remelluri Vinedos de San Vicente’, Rioja DOCa 2014 750ML ($179.95) $128 pre-arrival special (that’s only $21.33/bottle!)
James Suckling 96 points “Some richer, darker and deeper fruit character with plums, blackberries and a dark, earthy streak. The tannins are more upright, more elevated, and the fruit is richer and darker than in the Labastida. This has real presence, grip and energy. Try from 2021.”
Arriving ETA Fall:
Pegaso Barrancos De Pizarra, Sierra De Gredo 2013 750ML ($44.95) $36 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Pegaso Barrancos De Pizarra, Sierra De Gredo 2013 750ML ($259.95) $199 pre-arrival special
James Sucking 96 points “Exuberant red berries and cherries with a fine, rose-like edge and some coal smoke. Very juicy, fleshy, rich and ripe mid-palate with a dense, long and showy, glossy black-cherry finish. Drink or hold.”
Wine Advocate 94 points “Cropped from a cooler and late ripening vintage, the 2013 Pegaso Barrancos de Pizarra resulted in fresh wines and certainly worked well with the slate soils of these old Garnacha vines in Cebreros. This has a very good balance between ripeness and freshness, power and elegance, with the character of the soils slowly coming through in the shape of fresh meat and beef blood, with the iron-like notes still pretty shy. This should develop nicely in bottle. 8,931 bottles produced.”
From Rising Star JL Vergnon
J.L. Vergnon Blanc de Blancs Confidence Brut Nature Millesime, Champagne 2009 750ML ($99.95) $75 pre-arrival special
Burghound 93 points “Mild reduction isn’t enough to mask the aromas suffused with notes of petrol, yeast and a hint of citrus character. There is excellent depth to the delicious, intense and vibrant flavors that are supported by a moderately firm but fine effervescence before culminating in a dry but not particularly austere finale. Most 2009s are already drinking well but here I would advise holding it for a few more years first. In a word, terrific.”
The average listed price is $86
Saint Cosme is one of the notable estates of the Southern Rhone. 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.
The 2017’s are some of the best wines they’ve yet made. The Valbelle cuvee is gone—blended in to the base level Gigondas. The remaining single vineyards are stunning. From the “best of everything” Hominis Fides to the more elegant Le Claux or the richer, more powerful Le Poste, these are a world-beating set of wine—at fantastic, best in country pricing. If past is precedent, these will sell out quickly, so secure your wines immediately.
Arriving ETA June:
Chateau de Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone Le Poste Blanc, Rhone 2017 750ML ($69.95) $49 pre-arrival special
The next best price is $63.99
Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Hominis Fides, Rhone 2017 750ML ($149.95) $119 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 96-99 points “My favorite of the single vineyard cuvées in 2017 is the Gigondas Hominis Fides, which comes from a vineyard just across the street from Le Claux. It has a killer nose of exotic flowers, freshly crushed rocks, new saddle leather, flowers, spice, and violets. Possessing full-bodied richness, an incredibly sexy, seamless, yet powerful style, and an awesome finish, it’s unquestionably one of the wines of the vintage.”
Wine Advocate 94-96 points “Somehow managing to be rich, dense and chocolaty—almost fudge-like—yet remaining fresh and vivacious, it will be fascinating to see how the 2017 Gigondas Hominis Fides develops over the next year.(JC)”
Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Le Claux, Rhone 2017 750ML ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 94-96 points “Notes of camphor, dried soil, crushed rocks, and loads of red and black fruits define the 2017 Gigondas Le Claux, which is 100% Grenache from a site just down the road from the estate. I always find a certain Burgundian character in this cuvée and it’s certainly present in the 2017. With medium to full body, a beautiful elegance and purity, and fine tannins, give bottles a few years and enjoy over the following decade or more.”
The next best price is $109.99
Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Le Poste, Rhone 2017 750ML ($139.95) $109 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 95-97 points “The 2017 Gigondas le Poste is just super: super purple, super concentrated and super tannic. Really intense, it’s not a wine for the shy, steamrollering along with dark fruit and powerful notes of licorice on the lengthy finish. (JC)”
Jeb Dunnuck 94-96+ points “More full-bodied, with incredible purity in its aromatics and fruit, the 2017 Gigondas Le Poste is another 100% Grenache cuvée that’s from a slightly higher elevation, terraced vineyard near the domaine. As with all the cuvées here, it’s not destemmed and is brought up mostly in used barrels. Offering lots of black currants, spice box, graphite, and licorice, it builds beautifully on the palate, has great concentration and intensity, and a blockbuster finish.”
The next best price is $119.99
Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas, Rhone 2017 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas, Rhone ($599.95) $419 pre-arrival special (that’s only $34.92/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 91-93 points “More concentrated and tannic than the 2016, the 2017 Gigondas shows outstanding potential. Marked by hints of charred wood and mocha, it’s nevertheless rich, ripe and fruity, with a long finish. (JC)”
Decanter 92 points “Whole-cluster fruit from limestone, marl and Miocene sand soils is fermented in concrete with indigenous yeasts. It’s then aged 70% in barrel, 20% new, with the remaining 30% in concrete. It has a very oaky aromatic profile at this early stage, but it’s joined by a lovely herbal aspect from the stems. Medium to full-bodied, the fruit has a vibrant freshness and the acidity is pretty marked, while the tannins are massy but ripe and harmonious. Long finish.”
The average listed price is $53
Ridge Vineyards Estate Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains 2017 750ML ($59.95 $49 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 92 points “A big, rich and showy white, filled with spicy notes to the ripe apple, pear and wild herb flavors. Minerally and buttery accents emerge on the contoured finish. Drink now through 2024.”
Winery Notes “Saturated purple in color. Aromas of cassis, blueberry, cola, licorice, and sweet oak. Ripe blackberry fruit entry, full bodied, rich textures, exotic spice and toasted oak. Complex, long, sensuous finish. EB (1/19) A mild winter resulted in early bud-break, but the return to cool weather in spring slowed vine growth. Summer warmth was offset by unseasonably cold nights and fog, resulting in greater acidity and firm tannins. Shortened fermentations helped balance the tannin structure. This wine combined lots with appealing fruit and elegance. Enjoyable now, this excellent vintage will reach full maturity within fifteen years. ”
Since then, a number of new wineries have popped up, but most of them are in the Palacios mold—made from around the warm, Mediterranean-climate village of Corullon. Perez, on the other hand, has walked a different path and focuses on wines made from Atlantic-influence climates in villages like Villadecanes or Cacabelos. As a result, the wines tend to be impressive, but in an introspective, earthy way.
Winemaking plays a part in that, as well. Perez prefers indigenous yeasts, neutral vessels and a lot of whole-cluster fermentation in his wine. Citing the (unlikely) influence of Bartolo Mascarello, he performs a long post-fermentation maceration on his wines as well, which give the wines powerful, yet elegant, structures that complement food exceptionally well. When you roll all of this together, you understand why Perez is making waves—these are unique and exceptional wines that show off terroirs previously unexplored by serious winemakers.
We’ve acquired a large selection of the wines Perez makes under his own name as well as those off of the La Vizcaina property (which are all single vineyards from a single estate), arriving Friday. We’ve got some highlights below but you can see all of them on the website by clicking here or looking at the full list at the end of the section.
Some Highlights, Arriving Friday:
Raul Perez Ultreia La Claudina Godello, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 94 points “$70. The 2016 Ultreia La Claudina is a white that had a very slow fermentation. It has strong citrus aromatics, notes of lemon and lime, complicated by petrol-like aromas. It’s more fruit driven and less spicy, and it was not a good year for flor (which occurs when the barrels are not topped up and the wine develops a thin veil of yeasts). With time in the glass it developed notes of chamomile and pollen, gaining in complexity but without reaching the subtleness of the 2017. It was a low-yielding vintage, and there are around 1,400 bottles.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 93 points “Limpid yellow-gold. Fresh nectarine, Meyer lemon and pear on the highly perfumed, mineral-tinged nose. Shows very good depth and sharp delineation to its intense citrus and orchard fruit flavors and picks up floral and iodine nuances as the wine opens up. The strikingly long, smoke- and mineral-accented finish features a sexy floral quality and a spicy touch of candied ginger. (Raised in neutral French oak foudres.)”
Raul Perez Ultreia de Paluezas, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($79.95) $59.95 pre-arrival special
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 96 points “One of the few vineyards in Bierzo where the soils have a significant content of limestone is San Juan de Paluezas, in a different valley looking into Las Médulas goldmines. They produce three barrels of the 2016 Ultreia de Paluezas from this vineyard. This year it had a shorter élevage, only around 12 months, as they saw it was ready and was racked out of the wood. Limestone soils always deliver dry, chalk-like tannins and a special tastiness that often translates in an almost salty feeling. It has more bones than flesh; it’s austere and should develop slowly in bottle. In fact, they are now releasing the 2015, as they feel it benefits from some more time in bottle. I like the austerity here. 850 bottles produced from a small plot with very low yields.”
Wine Advocate 95+ points “There is a new Ultreia bottling, the 2014 Ultreia El Rapolao, from a vineyard that now sees five or six different bottlings, sourced from their old vineyards that used to go to the Vizcaína bottling. This is really pretty, with intense floral aromas, spices, a touch of earth and something herbal. The palate is medium-bodied with refined tannins, great balance and a tasty, long, sapid, almost salty finish. There were some 600 bottles produced. it was bottled in January 2017. Outstanding.”
Case-12 Raul Perez Ultreia Saint Jacques, Bierzo 2017 750ML ($249.95) $199 pre-arrival special (that’s only $16.58/bottle—the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!)
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 93 points “The clean, floral and 2017 Ultreia Saint Jacques comes mostly from old vineyards from different soils in Valtuille and Villadecanes fermented in stainless steel and oak vats with part of full clusters and matured in used barriques for one year. It’s produced in a fresh and very drinkable way. This is one of the best values from Bierzo and Spain, and a great introduction to Bierzo. It’s a more serious wine than what the wine was when it was first produced, fresh and elegant. It’s very reliable and a great value. There are some 100,000 bottles that were filled in two production runs.”La Vizcaina ‘El Rapolao’, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 95+ points “The cool and elegant character of the El Rapolao plot seems to have been amplified by the weather conditions in the 2016 La Vizcaína El Rapolao. Pérez does not own all the vineyards, so sourcing can sometimes vary within the same vineyard, and since 2016 it comes from two old plots where the Mencía is mixed with other varieties; the wine seems to have gained in depth and complexity as a result. In 2016 he did a slightly shorter maceration and matured the wine in 500-liter oak barrels for a little over 12 months. The vineyard yields well, and the wine is always expressive, balanced and elegant. It seems like slightly higher yields suit it better, and the wines have good tension and an herbal twist that adds to the complexity and freshness. 5,000 bottles produced.”
Wine Advocate 96 points “The vines at La Vitoriana are from a north-facing part of the vineyard and are extremely old, and the grapes show their best between 13% and 13.5% alcohol. The maceration of the 2016 La Vizcaína La Vitoriana is the longest of all wines from La Vizcaína wines, and it always has very strong balsamic notes. It’s subtle and elegant with a velvety texture, with lots of energy and inner strength. Pérez selects about half of the vineyard, and he feels 2016 is the year that best represents the character of the place. I’d add it’s probably the best vintage so far. 3,000 bottles produced.”
Just click here to view the list in our web store or check out the full collection below:
Back In Stock Friday
Arriving Friday, Already in the May Sale!
#19 Wine Of The Year – Wine Spectator Top 100 2017
Marques de Caceres Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 1.5L ($59.95) Was $39, Now $28 May Sale Special
Case-6 Marques de Caceres Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 1.5L ($319.95) Was $219, Now $159 May Sale Special (that’s only $26.50/magnum!)
Wine Spectator 93 points “Black cherry, currant and floral notes are expressive and alluring, balanced by loamy earth, tobacco and mineral elements that add a savory quality. Firm, well-integrated tannins give support to the polished texture, while orange peel acidity fuels the fresh finish. Drink now through 2027.”
The next best price is $43.97
Just click here to view the entire list!
Case-12 Chateau de Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone 2017 750ML ($189.95) $149 special (that’s only $12.42/bottle!)
Grapelive 92 points “Saint Cosme’s Cotes-duRhone, grown on a mix of soils, including red clay, pebbles and limestone sands all hillside vines is partial whole cluster and all tank raised. Always a wine of value and purity it gives a ton of character, personality and never disappoints in any vintage, and this one is an exceptional year. In 2017, low yields produced wines with lots of intensity and depth with hedonistic density, but with vibrant fresh detail, with what Barruol notes, adds crunchiness and salinity to this beautiful red wine. This 2017, which is an amazing follow up to the great 2015 and 2016 versions that I loved, delivers boysenberry, sweet blueberry and plum fruit as well as savory spices, a touch of meat, black licorice and a inner perfume of violets and lavender. Rounded tannins give structure, making this wine perform at a higher level than one would expect and this vintage in particular will age well, maybe a decade or more, impressive for the price!”
James Suckling 91 points “Beautiful, garrigue herbs and flowers across fragrant, red berries. The palate has a very deep-set, plush and ripe core of dark-berry flavors, amid glossy, ripe tannins. Great value. Drink or hold.”
Wine Advocate 90 points “The 100% Syrah 2017 Cotes du Rhone is a bargain superstar, offering hints of smoke, cracked pepper, blueberries and black olives. It’s medium to full-bodied, with a long, supple finish. For the $20 (or less) I’ve seen it selling for, you’re not going to find a better Syrah.”
One of the landmark reds of France—at a great price.
Domaine Tempier Bandol, Provence 2016 750ML ($59.95) $45 pre-arrival special, arriving Friday May 10th
Case-12 Domaine Tempier Bandol, Provence 2016 750ML ($719.95) $499 pre-arrival special (that’s only $41.58/bottle—the lowest listed price in the country!)
Importer Note “75% Mourvèdre, 14% Grenache, 9% Cinsault, 2% Carignan from 40+ year old vines on clay and limestone soils. Destemmed, fermented with indigenous yeasts and then aged 18-20 months in large oak foudres.”
This exceptional deal comes from the masters of Chateauneuf.
Pegau ‘Pink Pegau’ Rose, Vin de France 2017 750ML ($21.95) $14 special
Case-12 Pegau ‘Pink Pegau’ Rose, Vin de France 2017 750ML ($249.95) $149 special (that’s only $12.42/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 91 points “The plump, medium-bodied 2017 Vin de France Rose is a bit darker and richer than normal, but that’s just fine with me. Raspberry and watermelon flavors pack in more spice than usual as well, giving it more complexity and flavor interest than in the past, including a savory edge to the finish. It should drink well for at least a year.”
Josh Raynolds 90 points “Light, bright orange. Musky cherry, red berry and orange zest aromas show very good clarity and pick up a minerally nuance with air. Chewy, focused and light on its feet, offering biter cherry and redcurrant flavors that take a sweeter turn and deepen on the back half. The mineral note repeats on a long, incisive finish that leaves a hint of juicy raspberry behind.”
An exceptional value in top-quality white Burgundy.
Henri Prudhon & Fils Sur le Sentier du Clou Blanc, Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2016 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
Burghound 91 points “There is a whiff of the exotic present on the mandarin orange, white peach and hint of lychee-suffused aromas. There is a bit more volume, particularly on the mid-palate, to the medium-bodied flavors that possess a highly seductive texture on the markedly more complex and persistent finish. Good stuff.”
Importer (Neal Rosenthal) Note “Always a standout in Prudhon’s cellar, “Sur le Sentier du Clou” produces both white and red wine of great character. The Prudhons own a 0.4-hectare parcel of 35-year-old Chardonnay in this vineyard, which lies in the heart of the western flank of Saint-Aubin, completely surrounded by other premier crus.”
Domaine Le Clos des Fees Cotes du Roussillon Villages 2015 750ML ($79.95) $54.50 special
Case-6 Domaine Le Clos des Fees Cotes du Roussillon Villages 2015 750ML ($399.95) $299 special
Wine Advocate 96 points “Eighteen months in new French oak barrels has given the 2015 Côtes du Roussillon Villages le Clos des Fées a certain tightness and discipline lacking in the Vieilles Vignes bottling. There’s still massive fruit and buried complexity, full body and rich tannins, but there’s also firmness of structure that shows the serious, age-worthy side of Bizeul’s winemaking. Vanilla and baking spices accent deep, dark cherries and plums, ending in a long, velvety finish.”
Finca La Emperatriz Cepas Viejas Garnacha, Rioja 2014 750ML ($39.95) $33 special
James Suckling 95 points “An intensely herbal and floral nose displaying raspberries, cherries and hints of cloves. Mint, too. Medium body, ripe and juicy tannins and a very long, citrusy and savory finish. Made from vines over 65 years old. A wine that boasts superb finesse and style. Drink or hold.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 93 points “The wine that won my heart this time was without a doubt the 2014 Finca la Emperatriz Garnacha Cepas Viejas. This wine is sourced from the Rioja Alta subzone, not quite the classical Garnacha place, from the only old-vine Garnacha plot they have in the estate. It displays a captivating nose of sweet Garnacha fruit akin to cherries in liqueur, but keeping the freshness in a coolish vintage like 2014. The uncrushed grapes fermented in open-top stainless steel vats and 500-liter oak barrels with indigenous yeasts after five days of pre-fermentative maceration, and it matured in 500-liter oak barrels for ten months. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannins, delicious fresh flavors and very good length, ending with a tasty, almost salty note. 8,966 bottles and a bunch of magnums were produced and filled in November 2014.”
Vina Mein is a perfect example of this revitalization—working in the Ribeiro DO, they produce a range of mineral whites and perfumed reds that are all stunning, especially for the prices involved. We generally carry their excellent entry level white, but have secured a few cases of their allocated, higher tier wines. These two wines, based on the Treixadura grape, are wines that white Burgundy lovers need to pay attention to. These will arrive in the early summer and although they’d be fantastic drinking wines this year, probably deserved to be laid down for a year or three.
Arriving ETA June:
Vina Mein ‘Tega do Sal’, Ribeiro 2016 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 93 points “The single-vineyard 2016 Tega do Sal is 90% Treixadura and 10% Albariño from the Vilerma zone, from 25-year-old plants on granite soils that have more clay and some laminar, schist-like texture, soils that give a little more volume. There’s also a high percentage of Treixadura and an east-facing exposition that provides good ripeness. They try to tame that natural power, as they are looking for tension in a place that would naturally deliver more volume, so they decided to ferment the Treixadura in stainless steel. It has great finesse and elegance; it’s floral and has a fresh palate with very good acidity. 2,745 bottles produced.”
Wine Advocate 93+ points “The lemony and citrusy 2016 Eiras Altas comes from the vineyard that surrounds the winery, a place that was mentioned in old books linked to the San Clodio Monastery, where the Ribeiro wine was born. They used a blend of 70% Treixadura, 20% Loureiro and 10% Albariño from three hectares planted in 1987 on soils of white granite sand. The full clusters were pressed and the juice fermented in oak foudre, stainless steel and egg-shaped concrete vats with indigenous yeasts and then matured in those vessels for ten months with lees but without bâtonnage. This has great freshness and purity, great tension and length, it feels very young and undeveloped. There are some balsamic notes, possibly from the Loureiro, which they try not to pick early. It has tingling acidity that gives an electric sensation. This should develop nicely in bottle, and even if it’s drinkable now, I’d wait a little more before pulling the cork. 5,544 bottles were filled in September 2017.”