In Today’s Newsletter:
Collectors Corner: Henri Bonneau Celestins
Top Values of Barbaresco Join the June Sale
New Rosé Reviews
Jaboulet’s Top Class 2016’s
“A Drop-Dead Gorgeous Stunner” Under $25
June Sale Recap
Only four bottles available
Cayuse Vineyards Cailloux Vineyard Syrah, Walla Walla Valley 2014 750ML ($299.95) $249 special
Wine Advocate 100 points “Incorporating a touch more Viognier than normal, the 2014 Syrah Cailloux Vineyard is 93% Syrah and 7% Viognier from the first vineyard planted in the stones region of Walla Walla. Sporting a surprisingly deep, inky color, it offers a heavenly bouquet of black olives, tobacco leaf, smoked meats, pepper, blackcurrant and black cherry notes. Deep, rich and ever changing in the glass, with incredible complexity and layers, this full-bodied masterpiece has building tannin, a stacked mid-palate and a great, great finish. It’s pure perfection in Syrah, and the finest vintage of this cuvee ever made. As a bonus, it’s also the largest production Syrah they produce. Bravo!”
Only two bottles available
Cayuse Vineyards Camaspelo, Walla Walla Valley 2008 750ML ($159.95) $133 special
Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2008 Camaspelo is made up of 80% Cabernet Franc and 20% Merlot. Fresh herbs and spices, earthy minerals, cassis, and black currant aromas lead to an elegant, stylish Catherine Deneuve of a wine. This finesse-filled effort will provide pleasure through 2023.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Cayuse Vineyards Bionic Frog Syrah, Walla Walla Valley 2014 750ML ($419.95) $379 special
#57 Wine of the Year – James Suckling Top 100 in 2018
Wine Advocate 100 points “Always one of the most unique in the lineup, the 2014 Syrah Bionic Frog is phenomenal stuff any way you look at it. Cold fireplace, charred meat, tapenade, shiitake and loads of dark, earthy fruit all emerge from this full-bodied, tight, backward and beautifully concentrated Syrah that readers just need to taste. Incredibly long, elegant, building and heavenly juicy, don’t miss a chance to get some of this! It needs 3-5 years of cellaring and is going to blow you away over the following two decades.”
James Suckling 99 points “Deep fruit presence from the outset. Dark plums and purple cherries with abundant slate and graphite, dark chocolate and orange zest. The palate has impressive power and detail, superb purity and clarity. The palate glides effortlessly. A sexy finish. Drink or hold.”Only three bottles available
Cayuse Vineyards En Chamberlin Vineyard Syrah, Walla Walla Valley 2011 750ML ($219.95) $189 special
Wine Enthusiast 99 points “Dark and concentrated, this sends up complex aromas saturated with tar, asphalt, ink, steel, smoke and charred barbecue. It’s a beautiful wine, tight and textural, in perfect balance, with superb depth, precision and elegance. The most contemplative of a superb 2011 Cayuse lineup, this wine above all needs your full attention.”
Jeb Dunnuck – Wine Advocate 98 points “The 2007 Syrah Cailloux Vineyard might be the greatest vintage from this vineyard to date, although I think the ’06 and ’10 will be longer-lived. Seeing 4-6% Viognier and around 50-60% stems during fermentation, it’s a blockbuster effort that exudes notions of iron, dried blood, pepper, Asian spice and sweet red and black fruits. Full-bodied, supple and sexy on the palate, it has extraordinary purity, a layered, full mid-palate and beautiful depth and tannic structure that comes through on the finish. It’s far from unapproachable today, and I’d happily drink it anytime over the coming decade or more.”
Wine Enthusiast 99 points “The only one of the Cayuse Syrahs that is co-fermented with Viognier, this opens with a stunning, floral bouquet, showing extraordinary depth and texture. The wine has a floral top, a thickly fruity middle and a base with smoke, rock and meat. Still very young, it is already a complete, fully-realized, near-perfect wine with a finish that extends for many minutes. This should age for 25 –30 years. Right now, it’s almost frozen in place; still a bit tannic, but with superb aging potential.”
Wine Enthusiast 94 points “Cellar Selection. Intensely fruity on the nose, with spicy flavors that follow and expand across the palate. This has excellent grip and depth, along with balancing acidity and structure. Plum, kirsch and concentrated cherry flavors pop out. It’s a wine of refined power.”
Wine Advocate 93+ points “The almost all Grenache 2010 God Only Knows (named as such because the full blend is unknown, or so we’re told) is a complex, elegant version of this wine, with a Rayas-like perfume of kirsch, white pepper, stem, herbes de Provence and a gamey meatiness that comes out with air. Medium to full-bodied, silky and seamless on the palate, with juicy acidity, polished tannin and a light, clean texture, it lacks the back-end concentration of a top vintage, yet possesses brilliant purity and balance. It will benefit from short-term cellaring and impress for upwards of a decade. Drink 2015-2020.”
Henri Bonneau’s Celestins
Henri Bonneau is a producer without peer in the Southern Rhone. No other winemaker (other than perhaps Rayas) has produced as many epic bottles of Cheateauneuf as he has and at the top of his pyramid is the legendary Reserve des Celestins.
Produced only in the best years, it’s generally the best Southern Rhone wine made in the years that it’s bottled. We’ve been fortunate enough to acquire bottles from two fantastic years (2005 and 2011) that we’ve got for sale right now. Unfortunately there’s only a bottle of each available, but these are wines that would be the centerpiece of any Southern Rhone collection.
In Stock Now:
Only one bottle available
Henri Bonneau Chateauneuf-du-Pape Reserve des Celestins, Rhone 2005 750ML ($799.95) $699 special
Jeb Dunnuck 97 points “[Tasted 2012] A big, muscular Châteauneuf-du-Pape, the 2005 Henri Bonneau Réserve des Célestins delivers a thrilling array of plum, crème de cassis, roasted garrigue, blood, and hints of graphite on the nose. Absolutely compelling aromatically, with awesome typicity and complexity, this full-bodied, structured effort is thick and rich on the palate, with a layered, concentrated mid-palate, integrated acidity, and blockbuster length on the finish. Given the almost voluptuous texture and quality of fruit, this is a profound drink now; nevertheless, it will benefit from 5-7 years of bottle age, and keep for 2 decades or more. If I had to choose one bottle to represents the essence of traditionally made Châteauneuf-du-Pape, this would be it!”
Wine Advocate 96 points “Surprisingly, the 2005 Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve des Celestins was much more open, rounded and sexy than the more austere, angular Marie Beurrier. This is a gorgeous, classic effort by Bonneau that’s overflowing with notions of sweet Grenache fruit, Provencal garrigue, cured meats, beef blood and spice. The aromatics alone are worth the price of admission, and the palate doesn’t lose a beat, with full-bodied richness, a full, layered, concentrated mid-palate and sweet tannin on the finish. Like the Marie Beurrier, the acidity here is elevated, yet in this case, it’s beautifully woven into the wine. It offers serious pleasure now, yet will have no problems continuing to evolve nicely for another 15+ years.”
Josh Raynolds 96 points “Full ruby. Huge, room-filling bouquet of blackberry compote, cherry, potpourri and cured tobacco, along with an intense spicy quality and a hint of orange zest. Palate-staining dark fruit flavors are braced by a strong mineral component and complicated by star anise and candied lavender nuances. Refuses to let up on the finish, which emphatically echoes the dark berry and lavender notes. There are tannins lurking in here but they’re buried beneath this wine’s powerful fruit.”
Henri Bonneau Chateauneuf-du-Pape Reserve des Celestins, Rhone 2011 750ML ($399.95) $379 special
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 93-95 points “Bright ruby-red. Far more expressive than the Marie Beurrier, displaying a wild array of candied red fruits, flowers and Asian spices, along with an intense mineral overtone. Silky, sweet and pure on the palate, offering intense raspberry preserve and spicecake flavors and a jolt of lavender pastille. Closes long and sweet, with building spiciness and smooth, harmonious tannins that sneak up late.”
Wine Advocate 92-94 points “The 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape Reserve des Celestins (still in barrel) is rich, deep and concentrated. It’s also noticeably fresher tasting than the Cuvee Marie Beurrier from the same vintage, with ample cherry fruit and a touch of chocolate on the long, silky finish.”
Top Values of Barbaresco Join the June Sale
Barbaresco is the land of Great Value in the Piemonte. Moreso than in neighboring Barolo, the vineyards of Barbaresco are packed with under the radar, great producers—and none represents better buying opportunity than Paitin. Starting with a great set of vineyards that the family has owned for generations, Secondo Pasquero-Elia enlisted enologist Dante Scaglione (of Bruno Giacosa fame) as the enologist to take these wines to the next level.
The results are spectacular and offer a glimpse into the future of the winery. The wines are solid, deep, and built to last – echoing the family and their tie to their home and spectacular vineyards. From atop the hill where the winery sits, you can overlook the two main vineyard sites and understand the difference in microclimate, soil type and techniques for farming. The Bricco di Nieve side of the hill is steep, breezy and has beautiful older vines that produce the gorgeous Sori Paitin Barbaresco. The other side of the hill has the looser iron rich soil that is the Serra vineyard and it’s slightly more approachable wines.
2015 is already shaping up to be a world class vintage in Barolo and Barbaresco (to say nothing of Alto Piemonte). Combining aspects of 2009, 2013 and 2010, these wines are powerful, flamboyant and intensely complex. From the moment we started tasting the early released Langhe Nebbiolos of the vintage, we knew this would be a year to stock up on, especially for lovers of bigger Barolo and Barbaresco wines. 2014 is no slouch, either, with more approachable wines that show the pretty side of the appellation and will drink well younger and over the short term.
When looking for value in the Piemonte, Paitin is clearly at the head of the class because of the ratio of quality to price—at least for now. Like every other great value region, one day the world will wake up and notice how wonderful these wines are. In the meantime, though, buy as much as you can—especially at these June Sale prices. At least until these wines sell out (or the month comes to a close), these good deals are even better.
In Stock Now, New to the June Sale:
Paitin di Pasquero-Elia ‘Serraboella’, Barbaresco DOCG 2014 750ML ($41.95) Was $33, Now $29 June Sale Special
Wine Spectator 92 points “Currant, strawberry, cherry, floral and leafy flavors are the highlights of this racy, elegant red. Balanced on the firm side, with excellent length. Best from 2020 through 2032. 800 cases made.”
The average listed price is $38
Wine Spectator 95 points “Intense aromas and flavors of pure cherry, raspberry and flowers introduce this silky, delicate red, which is firmly structured, with dusty, assertive tannins. Notes of tobacco and mineral are woven into the long, detailed aftertaste. Best from 2021 through 2033. 1,200 cases made.”
The average listed price is $48
Paitin di Pasquero-Elia ‘Sori Paitin’, Barbaresco DOCG 2015 1.5L ($149.95) $119 special
Wine Spectator 95 points “Sweet cherry and strawberry fruit is framed by earth, eucalyptus, tobacco and tar notes in this rich yet firm red. The assertive tannins suggest a glacial evolution but the lasting impression of fruit shows this wine’s potential. Best from 2022 through 2040. 815 cases made.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
Antonio Galloni 95+ points “The 2011 Barbaresco Sorì Paitin Vigne Vecchie is just as stunning as it has always been. A wine of extraordinary purity, the 2011 is laced with rose petals, spices, mint, sweet red berries. The balance of fruit, acidity and tannin is simply magnificent. At the same time, the power and breadth of Serraboella comes through in spades.”
The next best price is $88.97
The average listed price is $95
Also new to the June Sale:
Avennia is the personal project of consulting-winemaking star Chris Peterson (formerly of DeLille, who now makes wine for Dan Marino among others). Their “Sestina” is a top of the line Cabernet (blend) that’s a dead ringer for Napa or modern-style Bordeaux wines of 2x the price—and that was before we dropped the price and added it to the June Sale!
Avennia Sestina Red, Columbia Valley 2016 750ML ($79.95) Was $69, Now $59 June Sale Special, 32 bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 95+ points “The 2016 Sestina checks in as 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc that saw 21 months in 48% new French oak before being bottled unfined and unfiltered. It shows the purity and elegance of the vintage beautifully and offers classic Cabernet notes of crème de cassis, lead pencil, crushed rocks, and tobacco leaf. With beautiful balance and that more elegant, finesse-driven style of the estate, it packs plenty of fruit and is a seamless wine that will benefit from 2-3 years of bottle age and keep for 15-20 years.”
Josh Raynolds 93+ points “(includes a good percentage of vines from the 1970s; aged in about 45% new oak): Bright dark red. Alluring violet and rose petal lift to the aromas of dark berries, licorice and black olive. Penetrating, savory wine with terrific saline minerality and lift to its wild berry and licorice flavors. This very concentrated, backward wine finishes with serious tannins but no rough edges. A bit more sharply focused than its 2015 sibling but this wine will need longer for its tannic spine to unclench. Even the Merlot yields were moderate in 2016, noted winemaker Chris Peterson. Following a bit of acidification, this wine finished with a pH of 3.8.”
Now it’s even lower!
Felsina Berardenga Rancia, Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG 2016 750ML ($59.95) $46 pre-arrival special
Decanter Magazine 97 points “The south-facing Rancia vineyard reaches altitudes of 420 metres, overlooking the lower-lying vineyards of Colli Senesi. It boasts complex soils of calcareous clay layered with the chalky white limestone-like alberese and schistose galestro. This 2016 vintage is simply stunning. It’s stately yet gracious, with personality for days, leading with a sumptuous nose of smoke, exotic spice and iron-rich earth. Ripe fruit coats the mouth yet it remains buoyant and tangy as chalky tannins charge in to frame the palate. A seductive wine with an appetising, savoury edge and a long, long life ahead. Drinking Window 2023 – 2041.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva Rancia knocks it out of the park. Like the other new releases from Fèlsina, this pure expression of Sangiovese needs more time to evolve and improve with bottle age. But even at this young stage, you are made fully aware of the beautiful intensity and complexity of the quality fruit at its core. There is so much energy and tension here, further reinforced by the fresh acidity of the vintage. There are vibrant tones of wild cherry, raspberry and spice, followed up by white truffle and tilled earth.”A favorite local pink bottling
Twill Cellars Rose of Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley2018 750ML ($21.95) $17 special
VinopolNote: A single-vineyard Pinot Noir rosé (with a dollop of Gamay) from Molly’s Vineyard in the Northeast Willamette Valley. Some of the barrels went through malolactic fermentation, offering a savory undertone to the elegant style. There are notes of red berries, rose petals and lemon zest. This is a superb release from the up-and-coming winery. Keep an eye on this estate!
Big, dense, rich and silky. Great Rioja.
Remelluri Rioja Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 750ML ($44.95) $33 special
Case-12 Remelluri Rioja Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 750ML ($479.95) $359 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.”
Krug did better in 2004 than 2002—that’s saying something.
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.”
Argiano makes full-throttle, yet approachable, Brunello.
Argiano Brunello di Montalcino DOCG,Tuscany 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
James Suckling 96 points “Fantastic aromas of orange peel and dark berry with plenty of plum and cherry. Sweet tobacco and mushrooms. Full body, juicy and fruity with firm tannins and a fresh finish. Complex and gorgeous. Fine and very long. Drink now.”
A great value at a fantastic price.
Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Tradition, Rhone 2016 750ML ($69.95) $49 special
Case-6 Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Tradition, Rhone 2016 750ML ($299.95) $249 special (Save $45 by the six-pack!)
Jeb Dunnuck 94-96 points “Incorporating 10% Syrah and 15% Mourvèdre, the Grenache-dominated 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape (there’s a touch of Cinsault) sports a saturated ruby/purple color. It shows hints of new oak in its black raspberries, blackberry, cured meats, crushed violets and spice-driven aromatics. This gives way to a rich, incredibly concentrated base cuvée that could easily be mistaken for the Vieille Vignes from another good year. Polished, concentrated and young, it’s going to need bottle age.”
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape exhibits more dark fruit than I would’ve expected, with black cherries, black olives and tar all mingling on the nose. In the mouth, the blend of 70% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre, 10% Syrah and 5% Cinsault is full-bodied, rich and velvety, with a lush, lingering finish. Easy to drink now, it should age for at least a decade just on its sheer concentration and ripeness.”
Wine Spectator 93 points “A lovely beam of cassis and dark plum fruit streams through, laced with anise and graphite notes and driving through a sage brush–accented finish. Shows the ripe, focused, racy feel of the vintage. Best from 2020 through 2030.”
Dry Riesling at the highest level—for far from the highest prices.
Selbach-Oster Zeltinger Schlossberg ‘Bomer’ Riesling Trocken, Mosel 2016 750ML ($37.95) $29 special
Grapelive 94 points “This Bömer Trocken is amazingly perfumed [and] really highly aromatic at this stage, much more so than when I tried the cask sample (a year ago). It is full of jasmine, rose oil and citrus blossom with a mineral tone… the wine is wonderfully lively, fresh and tangy with loads of dry extract and a light body at this stage. The delicacy is simply dreamy. Johannes Selbach’s 2016’s are remarkable wines, and I’m a huge fan of the Zeltinger Schlossberg site. It is magic and this single block “Bömer” is stunning in detail and unbelievably sexy on the palate with layers of apricot, white peach, passionfruit and tangerine/lime fruits, with a crystalline beauty, as well as flinty shale, verbena, minty tea, candied dried mango and saline notes in a refined Riesling that way over delivers. It’s a class act all the way. Zeltinger Schlossberg is a steep vineyard set on pure blue Devonian slate with the Bömer block being a parcel that sits directly behind the village of Zeltingen. It faces south east and gets reflected light from the Mosel and heat from the town’s rooftops which helps with ripening and the opulent flavors. I wonder if Selbach should join the VDP for his dry Riesling offerings, as this certainly would make for a Grand Cru in my opinion, but then again the price is outstanding the way it is without that GG on the bottle. Still it’s an interesting question. That said, Selbach-Oster’s strength is the balance achieved with generous sugar levels, and their fruity Spatlese and Auslese wines are some of the best in Germany. The “Bömer” is a gorgeous Riesling that should not be missed. It offers exceptional quality and stylistic charm with a heightened impact on the senses. It’s a brilliant dry wine. This one and Selbach’s Ur-Alte Reben Feinherb are my two absolute favorites in the lineup of greatness this Mosel winery has out right now. Both will drink beautifully for years to come.”
Stuart Pigott – jamessuckling.com 93-94 points ” As delicate as it is concentrated, this is a pretty serious wine with a long, sleek very mineral finish. A couple of decades ahead of it.”
In Stock Now:
Chateau Gassier Cotes de Provence ‘Esprit Gassier’ Rose 2018 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-12 Chateau Gassier Cotes de Provence ‘Esprit Gassier’ Rose 2018 750ML ($249.95) $196 special (that’s only $16.33/bottle—the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
Wine Enthusiast 90 points “This wine is the heart of the production from this estate. The blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah and Vermentino creates a wonderful freshness, while also showing richness and a touch of spice. It is intensely fruity and ready to drink now.”
Chateau la Mascaronne Cotes de Provence Quat’Saisons Rose 2018 750ML ($24.95) $19 special
Wine Enthusiast 90 points “This rich wine is full of red fruits with an elegant sense of shape and balance. Crispness adds a zesty element, making it brightly fruity at the end. Drink now.”
Wine Enthusiast 89 points “With its half share in the blend, Mourvèdre adds its spicy character to this rounded, smooth wine. Acidity gives enough freshness to the ripe berry fruits and dense texture. Drink the wine from late 2019.”
The hill of Hermitage is both one of the most famous wine landmarks in the world and also so much more interesting than common lore purports it to be. The story goes that the hill of Hermitage was the home of a knight seeking solace from the horrors of the Crusades upon his return home. He planted the vineyards that would become Hermitage and then built a chapel to pray in and that building, the Chapel of Saint Christopher, is the defining marker of the hillside. The name, Hermitage, takes the name of the hermit’s refuge.
Jaboulet purchased the Chapel of Saint Christopher and the surrounding plot of land in 1919—possibly the choicest part of the whole appellation. This is the core of their blend for La Chapelle, which for many defines what Hermitage can be. The 2016 version is a true legend in the making and we expect this will be a wine that is talked about reverentially in twenty years. We have a small lot of ’16 La Chapelle arriving in the Fall, along with the 2016 version of the Thalabert Crozes-Hermitage (a worthy follow-up to the best selling 2015). Quantities are limited, so you’d be wise to grab these now—they aren’t going to be around for very long.
Arriving ETA Fall 2019:
Paul Jaboulet Aine Hermitage La Chapelle, Rhone 2016 750ML ($269.95) $225 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 97 points “The 2016 Hermitage La Chapelle is slightly denser than the 2017 and is a bigger, richer, more structured wine than the La Maison Bleue. Crème de cassis, blackberries, crushed rocks, ozone, scorched earth, and violet notes all emerge from this beautifully classic, elegant, seamless wine that carries full-bodied richness, building tannins, and a big finish, all while staying in the classic, elegant, balanced style of the vintage. It has plenty of tannins and is a quintessential La Chapelle that will have three decades of longevity.”
James Suckling 97-98 points “Very spicy and peppery with blue-granite aromas plus hints of grilled and smoked meat. Cloves and nutmeg. Full body, round and juicy tannins and a super spicy finish that almost burns with so much character yet turns fine and focused at the end. A beauty.”
Josh Raynolds 96-98 points “(raised in 20% new oak) Dark purple. A highly expressive, mineral-accented bouquet evokes fresh blackberry and blueberry, candied flowers, incense and exotic spices. Sweet, palate-staining black and blue fruit liqueur and violet pastille flavors are complicated by suggestions of cracked pepper and bitter chocolate; a spicecake nuance gains strength with aeration. Steadily building tannins add shape and grip to the extremely long, incisive finish, which emphatically repeats the floral and mineral notes. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this wine turn out as well as the amazing 2015 version.”
Wine Advocate 96 points “Sourced from the granitic western portion of the appellation, the 2016 Hermitage La Chapelle features mouthwatering aromas of black olives and charred beef. It’s full-bodied and creamy-velvety in texture, incredibly lush without being overtly fruity. In fact, it’s largely savory, with elegant shadings of leather and spice on the long, silky finish. Yet despite being delicious now, this still has the granite backbone to age through 2040.-JC”
Paul Jaboulet Aine Domaine de Thalabert Crozes-Hermitage, Rhone 2016 750ML ($47.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Paul Jaboulet Aine Domaine de Thalabert Crozes-Hermitage, Rhone 2016 750ML ($279.95) $179 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points “The 2016 Crozes Hermitage Domaine De Thalabert offers a rocking (and classic) bouquet of ripe black fruits intermixed with notions new saddle leather, pepper, garrigue, and hints of bacon fat. This ripe, medium to full-bodied, silky wine has remarkable purity, is already complex, and finishes with serious length. Drink it over the coming 10-15 years.”
Wine Advocate 93 points “The classically styled 2016 Crozes Hermitage Domaine de Thalabert boasts savory scents of black olive and leather. Medium to full-bodied, it’s plummy and rich, creamy and ripe but savory and earthy, not jammy at all, with a lingering, velvety-textured finish. It drinks well now, but it should continue to evolve and drink well through 2035.-JC”
Josh Raynolds – Vinous 92-94 points “(20% new oak) Bright violet. Highly perfumed, mineral-accented dark berries, cherry liqueur and candied violet on the nose. At once rich and energetic, offering juicy, focused black raspberry and cherry cola flavors along with a hint of smokiness. Turns sweeter on the lively, penetrating finish, which features sneaky tannins and a strong echo of smoky minerality.”
James Suckling 92-93 points “This shows pretty dark fruit along with cloves, dark berries and hints of black pepper. Medium to full body and a juicy finish.”
Can’t Wait? Check out this fantastic wine from Jaboulet, In Stock Now:
Paul Jaboulet Aine Saint-Joseph Domaine de la Croix des Vignes, Rhone 2012 750ML ($69.95) $59 special
Wine Advocate 95 points “The only Saint Joseph produced, the 2012 St Joseph Domaine de la Croix des Vignes is another incredible effort from this team. Coming from steep, granite soils and a vineyard located just beside the famed Vignes de Hospice, this beauty knocks it out of the park with its massive minerality, currants, rare beef and tapenade-like aromas and flavors. Ripe, medium to full-bodied, beautifully textured and still lively and elegant, it too will knock your socks off over the coming 15-20 years.” WA
“A Drop-Dead Gorgeous Stunner”
“A drop-dead gorgeous stunner” and “don’t miss it” are words you expect for a $100+ wine, right?
Marziano Abbona Papa Celso, Dolcetto di Dogliani DOCG 2017 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 93 points “The 2017 Dogliani Papà Celso is a drop-dead gorgeous stunner. One of the most compelling wines in all of Italy, the Papà Celso captures the essence of Dolcetto from Dogliani in stunning style. The warm, dry year concentrated the flavors and textures, and yet all of the signatures are very much in place. A rush of black cherry jam, game, smoke, leather, and licorice infuse this super-expressive, beautifully delineated wine from Marziano Abbona. Don’t miss it.”
The next best price is $27.99
June Sale Recap
We’ve got a number of excellent wines in the June Sale! You can see the full list below or click here to view them all in our webstore!
Thanks for reading!