Monday Newsletter 10-14-19

In Today’s Newsletter:

Domaine Pallieres

New Wines from Cameron Winery

New Arrivals

Trending Wines

A Rosé for Rainy October Days

2017 Sea Smoke

2017 Markus Molitor

New Wines from COS, Sicilian Icon

Featured New Arrival

Domaine Pallieres

Both Kermit Lynch and the Brunier Family (Vieux Telegraphe) are legendary names in the French wine trade.  They went into business together with Domaine Pallieres in Gigondas and are now making some of the most exciting wines in the appellation.

Gigondas always represents some of the best value in the southern Rhone, especially when compared to Chateauneuf-du-Pape.  Like its more famous cousin, the Les Pallieres Terrasses du Diable displays all the richness and density you would want, coupled with a savoriness that is unique to Gigondas.  Made from the steepest slopes of the estate, this is an ageworthy, old-school style southern Rhone wine that (while delicious today) will age like $50+ CdP.

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Domaine Les Pallieres Gigondas Terrasses du Diable, Rhone 2015 750ML ($49.95) $33 special
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“The 2015s are also brilliant, and if not for the 2016s, I’d say best yet. The 2015 Gigondas Terrasses du Diable sports a ruby color as well as considerable polish and elegance in its blackberry, black cherry, garrigue and mineral-drenched style. Full-bodied, concentrated, loaded with spice, and beautifully textured, it’s a knockout 2015 to drink over the coming decade.”
Wine Spectator 93 points “Dark and focused, with cassis, blackberry and black currant fruit flavors spliced together, racing along atop mouthwatering bramble, lavender and rosemary accents. A bright iron streak pierces the finish, adding lift and range. Best from 2019 through 2027. 2,600 cases made.”
Josh Raynolds 92-94 points “Bright violet. Heady aromas of ripe black and blue fruits, potpourri and licorice are complemented by smoky mineral and spice nuances that emerge with air. Juicy, expansive black raspberry and bitter cherry flavors become sweeter and put on weight with aeration while retaining a graceful touch. Velvety tannins lend subtle grip to an impressively long, mineral-laced finish that echoes the floral note.”

Just Arrived

New Wines from Cameron Winery

Cameron holds a special place in the hearts of all Oregon wine lovers.  Winemaker John Paul has been making some of the best wines in the Willamette Valley since 1984.  The wines have Burgundian sensibilities, in that they age extremely well and have impeccable balance, but they are as ‘Oregon’ as they come.  Ask winemakers here to name their top five Oregon wineries, and Cameron will be on every list.

There are two main vineyards, Clos Electrique and Abbey Ridge, both in the Dundee Hills AVA.  The Clos (named after the electric deer fence that surrounds the property) makes slightly more powerful Pinots, while Abbey Ridge (at higher elevation) produces Pinot with a little more acidity and structure.  The whites are complex and intense as well.  In every measurable respect these are some of the finest wines made in the US today, and we’re proud to announce a few new releases from the master.

The new releases featured today include the entry-level Dundee Hills Chardonnay (which, unlike practices at most wineries, sees the only new oak of any of the Chards [15-20%—so not much]) and the step-up Reserve Chardonnay bottling (always a great deal, but especially so in 2017). We’ve also just acquired some of Cameron’s homage to Radikon, the cult-following-inducing Rouge de Gris, a light red wine made from the (sort of red) Pinot Gris grape.  It’s become one of our favorite Thanksgiving wines and has oodles of depth and savoriness.

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Cameron Winery Dundee Hills Chardonnay 2018 750ML ($21.95) $19.90 special
This entry level Chardonnay from Cameron represents some of the best value in Oregon wine.  Made with barrels declassified from Abbey Ridge and Clos Electrique, this wine sees a little bit of new wood (after being “seasoned” on the inexpensive wine, the barrels are moved on to the single vineyard wines).  Richer and more immediate than the Abbey or the Clos, this is a wine that’s showy now but will age into something more elegant.

Cameron Winery Reserve Chardonnay, Dundee Hills 2017 750ML ($39.95) $33 special
The ‘Reserve’ level of Cameron Chardonnay is an incredible deal.  Made of declassified barrels of Clos Electrique and Abbey Ridge, so without the new oak that the lower level bottling sees, this wine shows facets of the grace and intensity of Abbey and the Clos without the pricetag of those higher end bottlings.

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Cameron Winery Rouge de Gris Dundee Hills 2017 750ML ($29.95) $26 special
Winery Note
“This wine is dedicated to the late Stanko Radikon and his son, Saša of Radikon Oslavia, who made us realize the potential locked up in the Pinot gris grape. Its nose is respendent with juicy strawberries, bing cherries, violets and a touch of straw. The crisp palate with flavors of umami and ripe and supple fruit tannins make this a truly quaffable red wine.   The label honors the Italian plums that were planted on the site by early Oregon settlers prior to its current status as a Pinot gris vineyard at Abbey Ridge.  We wish that David Lett were here to see what is possible with Pinot gris!”
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Other great Cameron wines, in stock now:Cameron Winery Abbey Ridge Vineyard Chardonnay, Dundee Hills 2016 750ML ($79.95) $66 special
Abbey Ridge sits high atop the Dundee Hills; a collection of vines planted on their own roots in the mid-70’s. It’s unquestionably one of the most special sites in the Willamette Valley and though it’s better known for Pinot Noir, the Abbey Chard is fantastic.  This is the most limited of the Chardonnay bottlings from Cameron and isn’t produced every year (there was no 2014 version).
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The next best price is $77.99
Cameron Winery Abbey Ridge Vineyard Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills 2016 750ML ($79.95) $69 special
Abbey Ridge is one of the most hallowed sites in the Willamette Valley.  Planted in 1975, the Pinot Noir here is own rooted and at one of the highest elevations in the Dundee Hills.  The elevation and classic Jory soils give the wine an intense personality—high toned, elegant and tensile, with good power and a strong voice.  This bottling has been one of the defining Oregon Pinots since John Paul started making it.
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The next best price is $73
Cameron Winery Clos Electrique Blanc Chardonnay, Dundee Hills 2016 750ML ($79.95) $66 special
The Clos Electrique is Cameron’s estate vineyard, named after the electric deer fence that surrounds it.  This is planted to a mix of clones and is vinified traditionally—no racking and all in older barrels.  This is crisp and coiled, with distinct minerality and a lot of power in a lithe frame.  Like most vintages of the Electrique Blanc, this is quite good now but will be stellar in a few years.
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Cameron Winery Nebbiolo, Dundee Hills 2015 750ML ($49.95) $36 special
Winery note
“Our Nebbiolo is denominated “Willamette Valley” because the wine is a blend of fruit from Clos Electrique (Dundee Hills AVA) and Foster Farms (Ribbon Ridge AVA).  It is garnet red, with a complex bouquet of tart cherries, rosehips, tobacco and dried orange peel.  The palate has bright acidity, a long finish and firm “sand on the teeth” tannins that typify the Nebbiolo grape.  Just like the “real deal” from Northern Piedmont!”Cameron Winery Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2017 750ML ($27.95) $24 special
Grapelive 93 points
“Very different from his Dundee Hills bottlings, John Paul’s Cameron Ribbon Ridge Pinot shows terroir and darker black fruit profile, which seems highlighted by the Marine Sedimentary soils, though there is a family resemblance in its slight reductive presence in the glass and Burgundy-like class. As Paul notes, the grapes for this wine are sourced from two distinct vineyards: Foster Farms Vineyard and Armstrong Vineyard in the Ribbon Ridge AVA. The young vine Foster Farms site was planted in 2006, and is lovingly tended by famed cider apple grower Alan Foster. The Armstrong Vineyard was recently converted to dry-farming. Both give this wine its soul and complexity. Paul adds, fruit from Ribbon Ridge is always intense with loads of structure, making for a bold and gripping personality in the wine(s), but vintage is always key. This beautiful and lacy 2017 is stunner with a poise in the glass that is remarkable in this price point. This is a killer bottle of Pinot for the money, no wonder it sells out so fast. Part of the Deep Roots Coalition, Cameron is committed to dry farming for many obvious reasons, quality and intensity of the grapes through smaller yields and the less diluting of flavors and terroir transmission, plus he is concerned for the environment and wasting water is something he wants to avoid as that water usually means taking away from areas that need it, the [add] on effect is it saves salmon streams as well. Bursting with blackberry, plum and dark cherry fruits, a hint of sweet smoke and earthy tones this vintage of Cameron’s Ribbon Ridge is a thrilling wine with pure old world character… As with all of the Cameron wines, the winemaking is tradition Burgundy all the way with native yeasts used for primary fermentations and long elevages, usually between 18 and 20 months in barrique, that are seasoned with a couple of fills. The winery is very particular about its wood and Cameron’s choice of barrels, as Paul puts it, is equally crucial to the quality of the final product. For both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay he usually select barrels from a wonderful cooper he discovered, who lives in the village of Saint Romain in Burgundy. His name is Claude Gillet and together with his children and several master coopers they turn out some of the most exquisite wine barrels to be found. In fact every year Claude and his son, Laurent, visit [the]  winery, taste the wines in barrels and make recommendations for choice of forest, toast level and all of the other minutia that go into crafting an oak barrel that suits Cameron’s style. John Paul believes that barrels reach their perfection only after a couple vintages, he prefers to utilize used cooperage which is between 1-3 years old for [his] most precious cuvées and even older for the regional or village wines, like this one. Drink this Pinot over the next 5 to 7 years.”
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The next best price is $34.98

New Arrivals

West Coast

Bethel Heights’ entry level bottling is one of the best deals in Eola-Amity Hills Pinot
Bethel Heights Vineyard ‘Aeolian’ Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills 2017 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 special
James Suckling 92 points
“This has been made for just a handful of vintages now and it has a brightly perfumed edge with dark cherries and ethereal fragrance. The palate has attractive richness and density with a granular-tannin edge, and delivers intensity and depth. Drink or hold.”
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Rombauer Vineyards Zinfandel, California 2017 750ML ($39.95) $29.50 special
“Soft and jammy, with easygoing raspberry, toasty and pepper flavors. Drink now through 2022. 45,000 cases made.” -Wine Spectator
Savart’s rosé is every bit as delicious and vinous as you’d expect.
Savart Bulle de Rose Premier Cru Brut Rose, Champagne NV 750ML ($69.95) $51.90 special
2015 base
Importer Note “Fred’s rosé is a rosé d’assemblage composed of 70% Pinot Noir, 22% Chardonnay, and 8% still red wine. It comes entirely from the village of Ecueil. It is fermented mostly in stainless steel, with around 20% of the blend made in neutral barrels. The dosage is 6g/L.”The single vineyard wines are absolutely stunning from Savart in ’14, like this mag.
Savart Le Mont des Chretiens Premier Cru Extra Brut, Champagne 2014 1.5L ($299.95) $219 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 94+ points
“The 2014 Extra Brut Premier Cru Le Mont des Chrétiens is showing very well, wafting from the glass with scents of citrus oil, crisp green apples, fresh bread and crushed chalk. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, racy and incisive, with a tighter-knit and more precise profile than the very nicely balanced 2015 tasted alongside, concluding with a long, mineral finish. Note that this bottling used to be named Dame de Coeur.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2014 Extra Brut Le Mont des Chrétiens, 100% Chardonnay from Eceuil, is a worthy follow up to the 2013. Bright, focused and sculpted, with tons of energy, the 2014 is another winner from Fred Savart. Grapefruit, white pepper, mint and crushed rocks all run through this crystalline, precise Blanc de Blancs, with an attractive layer of reduction that adds a razor’s edge of freshness. In the glass, the 2014 is bright and perhaps a bit severe, especially next to the 2013, but it is nevertheless striking. The 2014 was vinified in 500 and 600-liter barrels. Disgorged January 2018. Dosage is 3 grams per liter.”
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The next best price is $238
You might not think of Italy for Chard, but this wine from the Dolomite mountains is primo.
Alois Lageder Tenutae Lageder ‘Lowengang’ Chardonnay Sudtirol – Alto Adige, Trentino-Alto Adige 2016 750ML ($69.95) $59 special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95+ points
“Opening to creamy aromas of almond butter and poached pear, the 2016 Alto Adige Chardonnay Löwengang is a beautiful and sophisticated interpretation of this versatile grape. The wine opens to a luminous golden color with balanced fruit and spice aromas that are expertly folded together. This vintage is especially bright and polished, especially in terms of mouthfeel. Honey and quince flood the very long and silky finish. Grapes are harvested from vines that range from 22 to 72 years in age. The grapes are fermented in barrique with ambient yeasts and aged on the fine lees in oak for 11 months. Some 50,700 of various format bottles are produced. I just love this supremely elegant wine.”
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This is a premier cru Burgundy in disguise.
Alois Lageder Tenutae Lageder ‘Krafuss’ Pinot Noir Alto Adige, Trentino-Alto Adige 2016 750ML ($69.95) $59 special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95+ points
“The 2016 Alto Adige Pinot Noir Krafuss is extremely pure and true to the variety, with gorgeous aromas of wild berry, rose, bitter almond, mountain herb and candied orange peel. The intensity and the purity of the aromas are really something spectacular, and each swirl of the glass reveals a new, previously undiscovered side to the bouquet. In the mouth, this northern Italian Pinot Noir is delicate, fine and ever so silky and polished. The wine is aged in barrels of various sizes (225-liter, 300-liter and 500-liter) for 18 months. Some 6,600 bottles were made. This wine absolutely hits all the sweet spots in the palate.”
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Pelaverga is an insider favorite grape—light and flavorful at the same time.
Castello di Verduno Basadone Pelaverga, Piedmont 2017 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special
Winery Note
“Soft, though bright ruby red. Intense fragrant nose, showing clear spicy overtones of black pepper and nutmeg, as well as fruity sensations reminiscent of cherries in spirit and strawberries. Nicely-balanced, lingering dry flavour.”
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The average price is $24
One of the best Sangiovese values in the shop, year in and out.
Flavio Fanti La Palazzetta Rosso di Montalcino, Tuscany 2016 750ML ($19.95) $16 special
100% Sangiovese. The grapes are organically grown in the estate vineyard that abuts abbey of Sant’Antimo in the southeast of Montalcino. The wine is aged in large neutral French oak barrels for one year. This is essentially a declassified Brunello. The vineyard is classed for Brunello and the wine is vinified the same as the Brunello. The grapes are typically from younger vines and are declassified to the Rosso at harvest.
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The next best price is $21
Everything you love about Nebbiolo in an approachable package.
G.D. Vajra Langhe Nebbiolo, Piedmont 2017 750ML ($29.95) $24 special
Wine Spectator 92 points
“This red is elegant and bursting with rose, strawberry, cherry, anise and flint flavors. Supple yet firm, balanced and poised for a fine evolution. Excellent length. Drink now through 2027. 3,500 cases made.”
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Back in Stock
That Felsina’s 2016’s are stunning is no surprise anymore.  These are obviously wines that any Italian wine lover with a cellar needs to own—they’re going to be legends in the not-so-distant future.Felsina Berardenga Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2016 750ML ($34.95) $29 special
Wine Advocate 94 points
“Streamlined and elegant, this mid-weight red trots out notes of grilled herb and dark fruit nuances that segue to spice, tilled earth and savory tobacco, with great complexity. This 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva Berardenga is still a bit closed and tight, but this beautiful wine boasts all the best qualities of this vintage. It shows elegance and power, two contrasting characteristics that only work well together in the world’s most achieved expressions. The most satisfying aspect of this Riserva is the crisp acidity on the close that keeps the palate refreshed and ready for the next sip.”
Wine Spectator 93 points “This red offers density and focus, creating an ideal frame for the cherry, strawberry, almond, leather and earth flavors. A firm backbone of tannins lends structure and the finish persists, leaving an accent of bitter almond. Best from 2022 through 2040. —B.S.”
Antonio Galloni 92+ points “The 2016 Chianti Classico Riserva shows all the quality and pedigree of the year in its layered personality and overall nuance. Cedar, dried cherry, game licorice and tobacco convey the darker, gamier side of Sangiovese that is such a signature at Fèlsina. The 2016 finishes with terrific energy and bright acids that suggest it will enjoy a long life in the cellar, but readers should plan on giving it at least a few years in bottle.”

Trending Wines

Honest, old-school Bordeaux under $20…did we say enough?
Chateau de Grandchamp, Montagne-Saint-Emilion 2015 750ML ($24.95) $19 special
Le Guide Hachette Des Vins 2/3 stars (Vin Remarquable)
“A mountain that exalts the qualities of the 2015 vintage and participated in the final of the favorites. From a blend of hand-harvested Merlot (90%) and Cabernet Franc, Château Grandchamp’s team has extracted a wine that combines power and elegance. The color of the dress is purple with violet, the nose is centered on dark fruits with spicy aromas, the palate is frisky, smooth, fruity, with fine, firm tannins and a long finish. [translated]”
Importer notes “Château de Grandchamp is the only domaine on the hillside overlooking the ancient commune of Parsac, located in the Montagne-Saint-Emilion appellation on the right bank of the Dordogne. Vigneron Gonzague Maurice manually farms Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon in densely planted vineyards rooted in clay-limestone soils with small traces of iron. The vineyard has been in organic conversion since 2010, however grass is sown regularly between vine rows and ploughing is done in alternating rows. Gonzague’s sole objective in the vineyard is to obtain perfectly ripe and clean fruit. Triage is done in both the vineyard and the cellar to ensure the highest quality grapes. In the cellar, grapes are vinified in small, temperature controlled tanks and then aged in a combination of tank and one to two year old barrels. Above all, he seeks to preserve the fruit throughout the fermentation and ageing processes. The resulting wine is aromatically vibrant and beautiful balanced with soft tannins.”One of the hidden gems among the heights of the N. Rhone.
Domaine Courbis Cornas Les Eygats, Rhone 2016 750ML ($89.95) $69 special
Jeb Dunnuck 96 points
“The 2016 Cornas Les Eygats is the gem in 2016 and has a fresh, focused, backward style that carries notes of crème de cassis, spring flowers, pepper, and crushed rocks. With full-bodied richness, good acidity, and impeccable balance, it’s a brilliant wine, but it’s going to need 2-3 years of bottle age to show its full potential.”
Josh Raynolds – Vinous 94 points “Brilliant magenta. Powerful, mineral-accented boysenberry, cherry preserve, violet and olive aromas are complemented by a smoky mineral nuance that builds in the glass. Palate-staining dark berry, licorice and bitter chocolate flavors pick up notes of candied flowers, vanilla and smoky minerals on the back half. Powerful but surprisingly lithe in style, finishing extremely long, with sharp delineation and gently gripping tannins that emerge slowly.”From an acid-hound’s vintage, this is screamingly mineral.
Weingut Karthauserhof Eitelsbacher Karthauserhofberg Riesling Grosses Gewachs Trocken, Mosel 2013 750ML ($69.95) $47 special
Wine Advocate 93 points “
Very clear, discreet and refined on the nose – where the 2013 Eitelsbacher Karthauserhofberg Riesling GG displays fine stone and fruit aromas of lemons and green apples. Lean and vital but also intense, rich and juicy on the palate, this is a lovely pure, straightforward, piquant and very salty expression of the Karthäuserhofberg terroir and the 2013 vintage. This long-distance runner has more fruit intensity than the Edition and reveals a very fine raciness and a complex finish with lingering lemon aromas.” WA
John Gilman 93+ points “The 2013 Grosses Gewächs is showing as beautifully this year as it did a year ago, wafting from the glass in a salty constellation of tart pear, pink grapefruit, plenty of smokiness, dried flowers, a touch of lemongrass and lovely slate-driven salinity. On the palate the wine is pure, fullish and absolutely seamless, with fine youthful complexity, a lovely core, bright acids and a very long, refined and racy finish. This is a touch lower in alcohol than the 2014 version (11.5 versus twelve percent), but is just a tad more tightly-knit and complete. A fine bottle in the making. 2020-2050. 93+.”

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The next best price is $64.95
A truly top-tier California Syrah from a special site.
Pax Castelli-Knight Ranch Syrah, Russian River Valley 2015 750ML ($69.95) $59 special
Antonio Galloni 93 points
“The 2015 Syrah Castelli-Knight Ranch is sensual, open-knit and quite inviting. Blood orange, star anise and spice add gorgeous aromatic nuance to the rich, layered fruit. Ample, silky and creamy, the 2015 is a real pleasure to taste today. The combination of a north-facing site with a warm microclimate yields a wonderfully complete and nuanced wine. All the elements simply fall into place in a refined, gracious Syrah that will drink well upon release.”
Winery Note “Our 15th Vintage working with this exceptional site and the exceptional people that own the vineyard and farm the land. The bright orange Haire Clay soils that cling to the slopes of this site are a godsend in warm dry vintages like 2015.  Black pepper and intense black currants hold down the deep and brooding aromas. Brown spices, pink peppercorn, blackberries and black cherries show up with air. This Syrah is dense and concentrated but lifted by natural acidity and firm aromas and flavors from the stems. Not quite as fleshy as the 2012 (in a good way), but very enjoyable and approachable on release and guaranteed to improve in your cellar like every other Castelli-Knight Ranch before it.”Under Latour’s direction, Eisele is reaching new heights.
Eisele Vineyard ‘Altagracia’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2016 750ML ($169.95) $149 special
James Suckling 96 points
“Lots of violets and dark berries with sweet underbrush and fresh mushrooms, following through to a medium to full body, soft and silky tannins and a succulent and refined finish. It remains supple and beautiful. Hard not to drink now. Better after 2023.”
Wine Advocate 95 points “The Altagracia is produced almost exclusively from estate fruit this year and was bottled at the end of June 2018. Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Altagracia comes bursting forth with vivacious black cherries, blackberries, wild blueberries and cassis notes with touches of cinnamon stick, cloves, forest floor, violets and dusty earth with a waft of violets. The palate is medium to full-bodied, firm and grainy with loads of iron and mineral accents, finishing long and perfumed.”

A Rosé for Rainy October Days

The essence of Provence and our workhorse rosé every year. Chateau Peyrassol’s Commanderie is especially elegant and nuanced, with excellent minerality and poise.

Peyrassol Cotes de Provence ‘Commanderie de Peyrassol’ Rose 2018 750ML ($24.95) $19 special
Peyrassol Cotes de Provence ‘Commanderie de Peyrassol’ Rose 2018 1.5L ($51.95) $47 special
Grapelive 93 points
“The famous Cotes de Provence winery, Chateau Peyrassol, is located in the hills of the Var, north of St. Tropez…and is well known for their top notch dry Rosé. This tranquil and picturesque spot is home to vineyards planted to primarily Cinsault, Grenache and Syrah used in the Rosé bottlings…The current release of the Rosé, 2018, is a beautiful vintage for this in demand wine, one of the finest I’ve tried from this estate in fact, in particular I love this Cuvee de la Commanderie, the work horse wine of the domaine. Like all of the Rosés of Peyrassol this one was made in the direct press method, with maceration and fermentation being done with cool temperatures. According to the winery and importer Rosenthal Wine Merchant, this winemaking process gives the Rosés of Peyrassol their beautiful watermelon and delicate salmon pink color. The fermentation is exceptionally long, resulting in rosés that are both lively, fresh and full-bodied and complex, as this one shows with its layers of tart cherry, the mentioned watermelon, strawberry and citrusy crisp fruits along with a steely/mineral character as well as having a wet stone, dried lavender and rosewater elements.  The Chateau Peyrassol, as it has been known since 2001, is one of the longest running domaines in the region being first established in the middle of the 1200s, when it was founded by the Knights of Templar, it rests near the sea and is surrounded by a beautiful Mediterranean forest, with Eighty hectares planted to vineyards which are cultivated on the dry, rocky clay and limestone based soils….I also really like the Blanc and Rouge (made from Cabernet and Syrah) a lot, though the Rosé is certainly the most charming and delicious of the wines and they go great with and without food, though they take on a more serious tone and fill out on the palate with food, I especially enjoy them with seafood like mussels in a Mediterranean inspired spicy broth.”

2017 Sea Smoke

Sea Smoke, made famous by the movie Sideways, is known for making tiny amounts of rich, full-bodied Pinot Noir.  We’ve got two of their Pinots coming in, the “Southing” and the even-more-limited “Ten”.  Made from their self-proclaimed “California Grand Cru” vineyards, these are rich, dense Pinot Noirs that will appeal to anyone who loves lots of power in their wines.  If you’re interested, act soon—these will likely sell out before they hit the shelf.

In Stock Now:

Sea Smoke Southing Pinot Noir, Sta Rita Hills 2017 750ML ($134.95) $99 special
Winery Note
“Southing refers to the south-facing hillside bluffs found on our estate vineyard.  Each year, our goal for this wine is to create the ideal marriage of complexity and elegance.  Southing is a true expression of the terroir of Sea Smoke Vineyard:  seductive flavors and fine tannins complimented by cool climate acidity.  The ever-changing nose of the2017 Southing exhibits baked strawberry, floral scents of rose and violet; and subtle spices. The fine tannins and minerality are enhanced by our estate vineyard’s characteristic cool climate acidity.”

Sea Smoke Ten Pinot Noir, Sta Rita Hills 2017 750ML ($159.95) $119 special
Winery Note
“Ten is named for the ten Pinot Noir clones found on our estate vineyard. Our most masculine wine, it is brooding and intense, with firm, mature tannins and a long, velvety finish. Ten is not for the faint-of-heart and has been known, on occasion, to convert even the most fanatic Cabernet lover. ”

2017 Markus Molitor

Arriving This Fall


Sicilian Icon

Arriving in January

The wines of COS, in Vittoria (Sicily) occupy a special place in the world of wine.   The winery was established in the early 80’s—a time when most of Sicily was trying make big, ripe, California style reds and whites (a lot of Chardonnay and Syrah was planted, to put it mildly) however COS was running the opposite direction, making wines from native Sicilian grapes.

They’ve been an inspiration and mentor to any number of producers that we now think of as important and vanguard (most notably Arianna Occhipinti, niece of the “O” in COS).  In addition, they were pioneers in the use of amphora fermentation and aging in Italy and moved in a “natural” direction long before it was cool.

All of that is their wines are unique and yet classic—wines that are at once primally Sicilian and yet uniquely COS, with brilliant minerality and earthy aromas married to beautiful fruit.  We’re bringing in a wide assortment at the beginning of next year and you’d do well to reserve them now.

Arriving ETA January 2020

Azienda Agricola COS Rami Bianco Sicilia IGT, Sicily 2018 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Azienda Agricola COS Rami Bianco Sicilia IGT, Sicily 2018 1.5L ($79.95) $69 pre-arrival special, only 4 magnums available

Grecanico 50% & Insolia 50%

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Azienda Agricola COS Pithos Terre Siciliane Bianco IGT, Sicily 2018 750ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special, only 12 bottles available
Azienda Agricola COS Pithos Terre Siciliane Bianco IGT, Sicily 2018 1.5L ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special, only 4 magnums available

100% Grecanico aged in terracotta amphorae on the skins with indigenous yeasts
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Azienda Agricola COS ‘Nero di Lupo’ Nero d’Avola Sicilia IGT, Sicily 2018 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
100% Nero d’Avola
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Azienda Agricola COS Pithos Rosso di Vittoria, Sicily 2017 750ML ($59.95) $45 pre-arrival special, only 12 bottles available
Azienda Agricola COS Pithos Rosso di Vittoria, Sicily 2017 1.5L ($119.95) $89 pre-arrival special, only 4 magnums available

60% Nero d’Avola & 40% Frappato di Vittoria aged in terracotta amphorae on the skins with indigenous yeasts.
Ian D’Agata 89 points “Bright red. Perfumed aromas of violet, rose and red berries. Then saline and savory herbs complement red berry flavors boasting very good inner-mouth perfume if not mind-boggling concentration or complexity. Closes long and mineral.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!
Azienda Agricola COS Cerasuolo di Vittoria Classico ‘delle Fontane’ DOCG 2014 750ML ($69.95) $59 pre-arrival special, only 12 bottles available
Azienda Agricola COS Cerasuolo di Vittoria Classico ‘delle Fontane’ DOCG 2014 1.5L ($149.95) $119 pre-arrival special, only 4 magnums available

60% Nero d’Avola & 40% Frappato di Vittoria
Importer note “The delle Fontane bottling of Cerasuolo comes from COS’ best estate parcels in the Fontane area of Vittoria.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!

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