Monday Newsletter 2-10-2020

In This Newsletter:

Mourre du Tendre Subscriber Special

Top Valentine’s Day Picks

Featured New Arrival

A Vertical of Oddero Riservas


Collector’s Corner
Clos des Lambrays
Mourre du Tendre

Subscriber-Only Special

We’re always on the hunt for hyper-traditional, old school Rhone producers. With Chateau Mourre du Terre, we’ve scored a massive success.  This is everything we love about old-school Rhone wines wrapped up into one very reasonably priced package.  Their importer asks the question “what would Roberto Conterno do if he owned a vineyard in Châteauneuf-du-Pape?” and that’s the best analogy here.  Lovers of age-worthy, old-school CdP should be racing to buy these.

The estate owns a meager 3ha of vineyards in Chateauneuf du Pape, and the oldest vines date back to 1929.  The youngest vines are a solid 50+ years old at this point, which is probably all you need to know.  This is an estate that doesn’t like change or “progress.” Everything is still done by hand and fermentation/elevage is done slowly in concrete and old foudre.  This is not the sort of estate to rush things.

We think this is an estate that should be getting a bit more attention, so we’re discounting the wines 10% until 6 pm Tuesday.  As with previous Subscriber Specials, the discount won’t display on our website, but we’ll apply it before we finalize your order.

Subscriber-Only Special:
10% Off All Wines from Mourre du Terre
Discount will not display online or in your cart.
We will manually adjust pricing before finalizing your order.
Valid until Tuesday, February 11th at 6 pm

In Stock Now:

Chateau du Mourre du Tendre Chateauneuf-du-Pape Tres Vieilles Vignes, Rhone 2015 750ML ($79.95) $59 Displayed Price, $53.10 Subscriber Special, 30 bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 93 points
“Château Mourre du Tendre has three hectares of vines in Châteauneuf-du-Pape in the lieu-dits of La Crau, La Guigasse and Saintes-Vierges, all in sandy terroirs. Kirsch, leather, peppery herbs and dried herbs all emerge from the 2015 Châteauneuf du Pape Tres Vieilles Vignes Cuvée Prestige, which is medium to full-bodied, concentrated, yet surprisingly elegant and seamless on the palate. Classic, with tons of the garrigue and herbs of the region, it has terrific tannin quality, no hard edges, and a great finish. This cuvée is 90% Grenache and 10% Mourvèdre brought up in concrete and larger foudre for three years.”
Importer Note “Château Mourre du Tendre tends 3ha of vines in Châteauneuf-du-Pape in the lieu-dits of Le Crau, La Guigasse and Saintes-Vierges – all sandy terroirs. While primarily Grenache, planted in 1929 and 1945, there is a small portion of Mourvedre that Jacques Paumel added in 1967 to compliment the final blend. Spending at least 3 years in concrete tanks and foudre before release, it perhaps answers the question, what would Roberto Conterno do if he owned a vineyard in Châteauneuf-du-Pape? …Farming at Mourre du Tendre is minimalist and traditional. Everything is done by hand and the family has never used pesticides in their vineyards. The harvest is conducted in several passes and the grapes are carefully sorted when they reach the cellar. The Paumel family makes powerful and traditional wines and the fruit is not destemmed, fermentations occur spontaneously after a short semi-carbonic maceration, and the elevage is quite long – averaging about three years in a combination of concrete tanks and foudre. The resulting wines are charming, bold and structured with much more in common with Barolo and Barbaresco than most anything else you will find in the region. Needless to say they age beautifully and gracefully, even the Côtes-du-Rhône. Sadly we only receive tiny quantities.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau du Mourre du Tendre Cotes du Rhone Villages Vieilles Vignes 2015 750ML ($34.95) $28 Displayed Price, $25.20 Subscriber Special, 12 bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 90 points
“The 2015 Côtes du Rhône Villages Vieilles Vignes Cuvée Tradition is another classic wine from this estate. Kirsch, currants, dried flowers, leather and some toasted, nutty notes all emerge from this medium-bodied, old-school, yet polished red that has tons of character. This cuvee is 80% Grenache and 20% Mourvèdre brought up in concrete and foudres for a minimum of three years before release.”
Importer Note “The oldest vines at Château du Mourre du Tendre is a Grenache vineyard planted in 1925 on gravelly clay soils in the Côtes-du-Rhône appellation. These vines were supplemented in 1969 with the addition of Mourvedre bringing the total size of site to 7 hectares. This is the source of the estate’s Côtes-du-Rhône Villages Vieilles Vignes cuvée. It is darker, earthier and more somber than the regular Côtes-du-Rhône, no doubt due to the Mourvedre, but it retains the intensity and charming rusticity that is the hallmark of this estate. Like it’s siblings, it is fermented whole cluster with indigenous yeasts and aged for three years before release.”

This was the lowest listed price in the USA today, 
Now it’s even lower!

Subscriber-Only Special:
10% Off All Wines from Mourre du Terre
Discount will not display online or in your cart.
We will manually adjust pricing before finalizing your order.
Valid until Tuesday, February 11th at 6 pm

Top Valentine’s Day Picks

Valentine’s Day is can be a bit of a challenge, wine-wise.  You’re trying to drink things that make your better-half happy.  That said, you also want to feel energetic after the meal, right? You can’t drink something too heavy.

The solution? Drink bubbly during the meal (it’s festive!) and then go with a dessert wine.  (Or, you know, make your boo happy and drink what they like.) 

Champagne Picks

Nothing says romance like Krug.  Especially Krug from one of their best vintages of the decade.
Krug Brut, Champagne 2004 750ML ($299.95) $259 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
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.”
Stephan Reinhardt-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.”
John Gilman 97 points “The new release of 2004 Krug is absolutely beautiful and is already quite elegant and open on both the nose and palate and is drinking with great finesse. I had expected this wine to be a bit more steely in structure out of the blocks, but the refinement of the blend this year has produced a wine that is already a joy to drink at age thirteen, though it will continue age gracefully for many, many decades to come… There is marvelous precision here on both the nose and palate, not to mention a sense of harmony and grace that is fairly rare in the 2004 vintage. Chapeau! 2017-2060.”

The bottle’s beautiful, the wine tastes beautiful, and it’s obscenely good for the price.
Andre Clouet Grand Cru Brut Rose, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Andre Clouet Grand Cru Brut Rose, Champagne NV 750ML ($499.95) $444 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90 points
“The latest release of Clouet’s deeply colored NV Brut Rosé No 3 Grand Cru is showing well, opening in the glass with notes of blood orange, red berries, ripe apples and oatmeal. On the palate, it’s full-bodied, broad and vinous, with ripe acids, a frothy mousse and a moderately intense finish. This is an attractive, gastronomic rosé that hails exclusively from Bouzy.” [Reviewed April 2019]

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $53

Looking for something rich, textured and seductive from Champagne at peak maturity? Look no further.
Pommery Cuvee Louise Brut Millesime, Champagne 2002 750ML ($149.95) $128 special, 31 bottles in stock now
Wine Enthusiast 95 points
“This well-aged wine from a top Champagne vintage is just now ready to drink after 12 years. It has a touch of toast, but it’s the rich, complex texture and fine structure that set it apart. It’s not a dry wine, it feels soft. It is so well integrated, elegant with hints of apples, a layer of minerality and still-fresh final acidity.”
James Suckling 94 points “A beautifully seductive and creamy nose with plenty of honey and clotted cream across lemon and grapefruit. Some white peach too, really alluring. The palate’s nicely orchestrated and balanced; it builds in stages and delivers pithy lemon and grapefruit flavor amid assertive driving acidity, good depth and concentration. Another great ’02. Drink now or in five or more years.”
Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2002 Cuvée Louise Brut is dressed in an intense citrus colored robe and offers – as if it was a Pfalz Riesling – ripe yellow fruit aromas of pineapples, oranges and ripe peaches along with noble yeasty layers in the background. Full-bodied, rich and fresh on the palate, Madame Louise is a firm and almost mineral structured, persistent Champagne of complexity, finishing with a refreshing citric aroma as well as a stimulating salinity and purity. Good length and balance.”

Insanely under-priced Grand Cru from Ambonnay, this bright, fresh Champagne is classic and classy.
R.H. Coutier Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 92 points
“Coutier’s NV Brut Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru is bright, focused and nuanced, not to mention incredibly delicious. The energy of Chardonnay and structure of Ambonnay yield a Champagne that is singular, classy and bursting at the seams with character. This release is based on 2016, with 40% reserve wines. I would give it another 6-12 months in bottle, although, truthfully, it is pretty hard to resist now. Dosage: 6.5 gr/L. Disgorged: July, 2019.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $43.65
The average price is $48

Looking for top of the line, prestige cuvee rosé?  This is your wine.  
Deutz Amour de Deutz Rose Brut Millesime, Champagne 2008 750ML ($219.95) $189 special, 15 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 95 points
“The 2008 Brut Rosé Millésimé Amour de Deutz is gorgeous and crystalline in the glass, as Champagnes from this vintage tend to be. Light on its feet yet also quite intense, the 2008 exudes energy in its finely sculpted red berry, floral and mineral-infused notes. The 2008 could use a bit more time in bottle to soften, but it is undeniably beautiful, even at this early stage.”
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 94 points “Deutz’ Millésime 2008 Amour de Deutz Rosé Brut shows a pale but brilliant salmon color and a clear, delicate bouquet of discreet red fruits as well as very fine spicy and floral notes. The palate is highly delicate and fresh, firmly structured and nicely dry, with good, dense, aromatic and well-structured length. However, the wine is still young and not yet perfectly round.” [Review is for lot LA112D32216]
Wine Spectator 93 points “Spring blossom and mineral notes waft through the flavors of white cherry, star fruit and marzipan in this elegant rosé Champagne, while the sleek acidity is finely meshed and carries the flavor range on the lacy finish. Drink now through 2028.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Classic Champagne at throwback pricing.
G.H. Mumm Grand Cordon Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $28 special, 36 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 90 points
“Chalky on the nose, this clean-cut Champagne is creamy in texture and elegant, offering a subtle mesh of biscuit, green pear, ground ginger and lemon zest notes. A fine aperitif, with a racy finish. Drink now through 2020.”

Budget and palate friendly. A rare rosé for your rare sweetheart.
Poderi Morini ‘Mo Rosé’ Spumante Brut Rose, Emilia-Romagna NV 750ML ($17.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-6 Poderi Morini ‘Mo Rosé’ Spumante Brut Rose, Emilia-Romagna NV 750ML ($99.95) $79 special (that’s only $13.17/bottle!)
Ian D’Agata 92 points
“Pretty pink color with a strong mousse. Lovely aromas of strawberry, aromatic herbs and anise. Fresh and juicy, with red berry and herbal flavors that have lovely inner-mouth perfume and a savory nuance. Boasts a rising, creamy mouthfeel on the long bright finish (about 9g/L residual sugar and 5.8g/L total acidity). A knockout Rosé wine with above average complexity for a Rosé sparkler made by the Charmat method (and only 12.5% alcohol). This is labeled as a non-vintage wine, but it is actually all from the 2015 vintage. 100% Centesimino, made with a long Charmat method (the wine stays on the lees for six months instead of the more usual three.)”
VinopolNote: Made from the rare Centesimino (Savignon Rosso) grape grown on the Ca’ Donati farm in the Emilia-Romagna. Aged for an extended time in stainless steel.

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Dessert Picks

The best bang-for-your-buck half bottle of Sauternes out there.
Chateau Raymond-Lafon, Sauternes 2006 375ML ($29.95) $19 special, 36+ half-bottles in stock now
Neal Martin 92 points
“Tasted at the Chateau. This is a superb Sauternes from Pierre Meslier. It has a fragrant bouquet with touches of Seville orange marmalade, green lemon and orange-blossom, all very well-defined. The palate is medium-bodied with a good level of botrytis, tangy tangerine and citrus fruits. This ’06 is fizzing with energy: great tension and vibrancy on the finish with just a hint of lemon curd on the aftertaste. Moderate length. Well-made 2006 that should offer splendid drinking over the decade. Drink now-2020. Tasted April 2009.”

Extra late-harvest Pinot Gris is one of the most thrilling dessert wines out there.
Agathe Bursin Pinot Gris Zinnkoepfle Selection de Grains Nobles, Alsace Grand Cru 2015 750ML ($89.95) $79 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata – Vinous 96 points
“Deep golden-tinged yellow. The perfumed nose combines ripe pear, lime blossom and powdered stone, plus hints of spicy botrytis. Sweet but taut, conveying a lovely light-on-its-feet quality and displaying noticeable tang to the citrus and floral flavors; the presence of noble rot adds personality. Closes minerally and very long. This very refined SGN offers noteworthy fragrance and vibrant acidity; in fact, it’s so stony that it’s almost Riesling-like. About 30% of the grapes were hit by noble rot, and this adds complexity to what is a memorable wine (check out these numbers: 5.7 g/L total acidity and 130 g/L total [sugar]).”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Your knees will go shaky and you’ll wish you had another half bottle.
Selbach-Oster Zeltinger Schlossberg Riesling Beerenauslese*, Mosel 2005 375ML ($149.95) $89 special, 26 half-bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 98 points
“Sweet and backed by a vibrant structure, this is elegant and detailed, with concentrated red berry, lime and nectarine. One of the few BAs to show a mineral component. Terrific balance and harmony, ending with a long, slate-tinged aftertaste. Drink now through 2040.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Go for the magnum.  Nothing says “I’m impressing you right now” like a magnum of d’Yquem.
Chateau d’Yquem, Sauternes 2015 750ML ($499.95) $449 special, 16 bottles in stock now
Chateau d’Yquem, Sauternes 2015 1.5L ($1,099.95) $979 special, 3 magnums in stock now
Wine Advocate 100 points
“Following a very long harvest stretching nearly two months, the 2015 Château d’Yquem came in at 13.9% alcohol and 144 grams per liter of residual sugar, sporting a pH of 3.65 and six grams per liter of tartaric acid. None of these numbers, however, even remotely begin to tell you how profound this wine is. The nose opens with electric notes of ripe pineapples, green mango, orange blossoms and lemon tart with hints of fungi, lime zest, crushed rocks and jasmine. The freshness on the palate is just astonishing, permeating and lifting layer upon layer of tropical fruits and earthy notions, all encased in a sumptuous texture and culminating in a very, very long, mineral-tinged finish. Truly, this is a legendary vintage for d’Yquem. I’ve been conservative with my drinking window here, and I would not be at all surprised if our descendants are drinking this vintage well into the next century.”
James Suckling 99-100 points “This is an incredible young Yquem that is so vinous like a great vintage of Montrachet but then on the palate it turns to Yquem with spice, dried fruit and mushroom as well as sweet fruit. Last for minutes. Acidity is all there giving it a dynamic vibrance that jolts your senses. Special wine. It has a little more than than 140 grams of residual sugar, less than the legendary of 2001. But is very close in greatness. Let’s wait and see.”
Antonio Galloni 98 points “The 2015 d’Yquem is without question one of the wines of the vintage. Just as alluring from bottle as it was from barrel, the 2015 is a wine that engages all of the senses, from the intellectual to the more hedonistic. Lilting notes of pineapple, mint, orange peel and white flowers grace the palate, but it is the wine’s sense of balance and total harmony that impress most. In 2015, Yquem had its earliest start to the harvest since 1893. Even so, the winemaking team did a magnificent job of preserving freshness. The 2015 was fermented in 100% new oak, and residual sugar is 145 grams per liter, but great wine is never about numbers. Above all else, the 2015 Yquem is a wine of energy and class. Don’t miss it!”

Featured New Arrival


Mugneret-Gibourg has gone from an insider’s pick to a blue chip, collectible estate in a few decades.  That’s a testament to the quality of the wines and, in turn, to the quality of the holdings of the family.  Blessed with exceptionally old, massale selection vines in some of the premier vineyards in Burgundy, these are some of the most pure, profound expressions of Pinot on the planet.

Mugneret-Gibourg’s wines are defined by their purity and compressed intensity—these feel like the channel the soul of the vineyards they hail from.  For the Grand Crus, that means grand wines—powerful, vivid bottlings that are showstoppers upon first smell. The village wines, while smaller in scale and scope, smell of Vosne and Gevrey in ways that most premier cru wines could only dream of.

They’re most famous for their Ruchottes (purchased in the same deal that brought the vineyard to Roumier and Rousseau), a vineyard that Henri Jayer described as “C’est un Chambertin vinifié à Vosne.”  Theirs is a wine that combines the innate power of Chambertin with the silk and exoticism of Vosne in beautiful, captivating fashion. 

Furthermore, they’re one of the few whose Clos Vougeot actually lives up to its Grand Cru designation and historical reputation—a classy wine that shows off its aristocratic pedigree.  Finally, their village wines over deliver on a grand scale—aging and developing like Premier Cru bottlings from others.

We’ve worked hard to secure an array of perfectly cellared examples of Mugneret-Gibourg’s greatness, arriving on Friday. These are wines that we rarely have an opportunity to sell—the global demand is just too high and most of the wines are drunk rather than released back into the marketplace.  As such, you’ll note that quantities are tiny and the wines are available first come, first served.

On that front, we sold out of nine of the fifteen bottlings before they landed, and our stocks of the remaining bottles are extremely low.  These treasures of Burgundy aren’t going to be around long, so interested drinkers should take note and act quickly.

Just Arrived, In Stock Now:

Only one bottle remaining.
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Ruchottes-Chambertin Grand Cru 2013 750ML ($599.95) $549 special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 96 points
“Tasted blind at the Burgfest tasting in Beaune, the 2013 Ruchottes-Chambertin Grand Cru was showing some quality new oak on the nose that still needs to be subsumed. It is tightly coiled but it just needs time because there is freshness, definition and beguiling complexity locked in here. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, very well judged acidity and clever use of new oak lending body without compromising terroir expression. The finish feels focused and satisfying and the texture leaves you totally seduced. Class, class, class. Tasted September 2016.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Only one bottle remaining
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 2013 750ML ($599.95) $499 special
Stephen Tanzer 95 points
“Bright medium red. Lovely ineffable perfume of red cherry, raspberry, minerals and flowers, plus a darker suggestion of blackberry. Boasts great intensity to its flavors of red and black fruits and flowers, with captivating minerality and perfectly integrated acidity giving the wine outstanding inner-mouth tension without any hardness. Firm, even, late-arriving tannins frame the fruit on the rising finish of this very classy grand cru.”
Burghound 95 points “An extraordinarily complex nose is composed of pungent earth, wood toast, dark berries and a whisper of the sauvage. There is outstanding volume and richness to the broad-shouldered, concentrated, intense and overtly powerful flavors that deliver the same terrific complexity as the nose, all wrapped in a robust, serious and moderately austere finale. Like its two grands crus brethren, this impressively scaled and beautifully well-balanced effort should age effortlessly for years to come yet will probably be approachable after only 8 to 10.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Only one bottle remaining
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru 2009 750ML ($349.95) $299 special
Antonio Galloni 91+ points
“The 2009 Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru is incredibly sensual and polished. Layers of effortless, gracious fruit caress the palate in this soft, perfumed wine. Freshly cut flowers red cherries and spices appear later, adding complexity and nuance. The 2009 comes across as a bit reticent, but with time in the glass the wine finds its minerality and focus. An energetic finish adds considerable brightness.”
Burghound 91 points “A cool, pure and quite airy nose of floral, dark berry fruit, truffle and sauvage aromas leads to mineral-inflected and vibrant middle weight flavors that are very Gevrey in character, all wrapped in a long and palate staining finish. There is subtle backend wood influence to this robust effort though there is sufficient mid-palate material present so that it shouldn’t present an issue after a few years in bottle.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Only two bottles remaining
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Vosne-Romanee 2009 750ML ($249.95) $219 special
Stephen Tanzer 91 points
“Bright medium red. Knockout nose combines sexy redcurrant, blackberry, flowers and perfumed gingery lift. Smooth, suave and lively, with mineral and floral elements lifting the seamless middle palate. Very generous, long village wine with a remarkably light touch for the vintage. This seems firmer in bottle than it was in barrel a year ago.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Only two bottles remaining
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Vosne-Romanee 2012 750ML ($219.95) $179 special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 91 points
“The 2012 Vosne Romanée Villages , mainly from Champs Goudins lieu-dit, has a lovely bouquet – very pure and precise with lifted red cherries and strawberry fruit, hints of limestone underneath. This feels very natural and elegant. The palate is medium-bodied with fresh, crisp tannin and a fine sense of energy, a little edginess on the finish lending tension. This is a superb Vosne-Romanée to enjoy over the next 6 to 8 years.”
Stephen Tanzer 90 points “Bright, moderately saturated red. Scented, inviting aromas of red raspberry, flowers and spices. Concentrated, suave and sweet; in a plumper style than the young 2013 and a bit less vibrant but quite long on the aftertaste. This will need at least a few years to absorb some of its building tannins.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Only three bottles remaining
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Vosne-Romanee 2013 750ML ($199.95) $149 special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 89-91 points
“From vines just behind the maison towards the Route Nationale, the 2013 Vosne Romanée has a precise bouquet, dark berries and a touch of black tea, fine delineation here and poise. The palate is medium-bodied and displays good weight in the mouth. It does not quite have the complexity of the 2012 on the finish, but still, this will be a delicious Vosne-Romanée.”
Stephen Tanzer 89 points “Good medium red. Savory red berries, spices and graphite on the nose; more complex than the 2014. Sweet but harmonious acidity is keeping this wine tight and taut in the early going. Finishes with serious but ripe tannins that will require a bit of patience.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Only one bottle remaining.
Domaine Georges Mugneret-Gibourg Vosne-Romanee 2014 750ML ($199.95) $149 special
Stephen Tanzer 89 points
“Bright ruby-red. Very expressive aromas of cherry, smoky minerals and coffee. Lovely silky, spicy, mineral-driven village wine with intense flavors of dark cherry, raspberry and chocolate, plus a hint of menthol. Still needs a couple years to absorb its dusty, slightly chocolatey tannins. Dry and classic.”
Burghound 88-91 points “A spicy and markedly floral nose blends aromas of red currant, raspberry and sandalwood. There is better underlying energy and punch to the relatively powerful and concentrated flavors that also display noticeable warmth on the detailed and mildly austere finale.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!


A Vertical of Oddero Riservas

“Brunate, which straddles the Barolo/La Morra border yields dark, powerful, tannic wines built for aging. Black fruit, tar, licorice, violets, dark spices and balsamic notes are some of the signatures of this great site. [Exceptional]” – Antonio Galloni, on the Brunate vineyard.

“Vigna Rionda yields the most perfumed, sensual and mystical of all Barolos. Rose petals, violets, sweet spices, nuanced fruit, silky tannins and often an element of weightlessness make Rionda the Musigny of Barolo. [Exceptional]” – Antonio Galloni, on the Vigna Rionda vineyard.

Oddero remains one of the best sources for traditional, uncompromising Barolo.  The estate itself is old even by Piemontese standards, dating back to the 1700’s, and they’ve been estate bottling since 1878—quite early by the standards of the region.  That history has ensured them some of the best holdings in Barolo and those terroirs translate into some absolutely classic Barolos in an old-school style.  Oddero has had some ups and downs over the last 40-50 years but the current generation is producing the best.

Oddero’s wines represent some of the best, most traditional Barolo on the market today. All of the Nebbiolo vineyards of the estate are farmed organically and fermentation of the Barolos takes place in stainless steel before maturation in large casks—no barrique here.  The top two wines at Oddero are their Brunate and their Vigna Rionda Riserva, released only after ten years of aging.  We’re excited to offer a small vertical of both wines, though quantities are fairly limited on both.  This set would be quite a fun collection for any lover of Piemontese wines.

In Stock Now:

2011 produced rich, early drinking (relatively) versions of Barolo.
Poderi Oddero Brunate, Barolo DOCG 2011 750ML ($149.95) $119 special, 9 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 94 points
“Gorgeous dried fruits and citrus character with a dense palate, fresh acidity and a lingering finish. Another gorgeous Brunate. Drink in 2017.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

2012 remains a favorite, classical Barolo vintage.
Poderi Oddero Brunate, Barolo DOCG 2012 750ML ($149.95) $119 special, 11 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 92 points
“Enticing aromas of cherry, rose and spice lead off, while the flavors pick up tar and tobacco, echoing the spice. This is rich and balanced, with oak tannins adding another layer on the long sweet-fruit finish. Best from 2018 through 2032. 180 cases made.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

What needs to be said about 2013? One for the cellar.
Poderi Oddero Brunate, Barolo DOCG 2013 750ML ($149.95) $119 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Wine Enthusiast 93 points
“This opens with alluring red berry, menthol, new leather, star anise and crushed herb scents. It’s elegantly structured, offering sour cherry, cranberry, licorice and sage flavors set against firm, fine-grained tannins and fresh acidity. A hint of orange zest closes the finish. Drink 2023–2033.”

Held ten years before release, only 200 magnums were bottled.
Poderi Oddero Vigna Rionda, Barolo Riserva DOCG 2007 1.5L ($499.95) $419 special, 4 magnums in stock now
James Suckling 96 points
“This is drinking wonderfully now with so much depth of fruit and lots of juicy character. Full body, layered and intense. Plenty of dark berry and chocolate. Fantastic. Drink or hold.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95 points “This wine is released ten years after the harvest, giving consumers the opportunity to buy an older vintage of Barolo that has been stored carefully back at the winery. Older-release wines like this are becoming ever more popular in the Langhe. The 2007 Barolo Riserva Vignarionda is a powerful and exuberant expression that shows the density and the inner energy of Serralunga d’Alba. Blackberry and dark cherry lift from the bouquet to reveal pretty undertones of spice, leather and savory tobacco. Only 2,763 750-milliliter bottles, 200 magnums and 20 jeroboams were produced. This wine offers a very special taste of Nebbiolo.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “After 10 years, this is ready to enjoy. However, despite the sweet cherry fruit, leather, woodsy and mineral flavors, there are still dense tannins. This is moving in the right direction, mellowing gracefully and lingering with a long, fresh, tobacco- and mineral-tinged aftertaste. Best from 2020 through 2034. 150 cases made.”

New release, ten years after harvest.  A magnificent wine.
Poderi Oddero Vigna Rionda, Barolo Riserva DOCG 2008 750ML ($219.95) $169 special, 6 bottles in stock now
Importer note
“The name Vigna Rionda, meaning “round vineyard”, comes from the plot of land, a depression filled with rows of vines, with the whole slope in full sun. Bought by the Oddero family in 1985, the Vigna Rionda, like all the land around Serralunga, Castiglione Falletto and Monforte, is part of an unusual tertiary Langhian-Miocene geological formation, rich in calcareous deposits, marl, fine sand and sandstone, alternating with mineral residues from plant and animal organisms. Additionally the Vigna Rionda is sheltered by the Castelletto hill from northeast winds and the winter cold, and it has an excellent microclimate for vine cultivation. The prizewinning Oddero Barolo Vigna Rionda is a great, tenacious wine with a long life, with an intense, spiced bouquet, structured and complex on tasting, and very exciting.”


You Picked ‘Em, We Report Them

One of the genre-defining rosés of Provence, this is a classic.
Peyrassol ‘Commanderie de Peyrassol’ Rose, Cotes de Provence 2018 750ML ($24.95) $19 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Peyrassol ‘Commanderie de Peyrassol’ Rose, Cotes de Provence 2018 1.5L ($51.95) $47 special, 7 magnums in stock now
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.”

This is a classic bistro red that’s a fantastic accompaniment to a ton of foods.
Bernard Baudry Chinon Cuvee Domaine, Loire 2017 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Importer Note
“Baudry’s style exemplifies rich, precise fruit picked at perfect ripeness levels and vinified cleanly using state-of-the-art equipment. The Cuvée Domaine is a blend of parcels of older vines (30-35 years old) planted in alluvial gravel bed and hillside clay. It has bigger structure and can use a short aging period in bottle before drinking. The wine has deep, dark ruby color and is beautifully extracted.”

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The average price is $26

“precisely the type of year in which Il Poggione excels”
Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany 2013 750ML ($89.95) $61.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 points
“The 2013 Brunello di Montalcino lives up to the impeccable reputation garnered by this estate over the years. This is a profound and beautifully rendered Sangiovese that delivers bold and luscious fruit quality with black cherry and spicy plum at the start. The bouquet follows through with mild oak notes of smoke, tar and toasted nut. There is another aromatic component that includes crushed stone and dried herb or mint. This Brunello shows elegant evolution in the glass and promises a very long aging future ahead. Some 200,000 bottles were made, so it should be easy to locate this excellent wine.”
Ian D’Agata – Vinous 95 points “Bright red. Pure, refined red cherry and wild strawberry aromas and flavors complicated by sweet spices and aromatic herbs. Deep and multilayered, the wine boasts polished tannins and a harmonious acid spine that lifts and extends the red fruit on the long, suave finish. An essence of Sant’Angelo in Colle with bigger body and palate weight than, for example, the Brunellos of Montosoli, but still sleek and refined as the best wines of Sant’Angelo in Colle can be. The cool-climate-styled 2013 vintage is precisely the type of year in which Il Poggione excels: this lovely, focused wine is the best classico Brunello from Il Poggione in years. Superb.”

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The average price nationally is $77

Jorge Ordonez built Numanthia into a phenomenon, sold it to LVMH, and promptly started Vatan.
Bodegas Ordonez Vatan Toro Tinta De Toro, Toro 2015 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 97 points
“Seeing the same élevage as the 2016, the 2015 Vatan offers a slightly more saturated color as well as smoking good notes of blackcurrants, smoked earth, melted licorice, violets, and dark chocolate. Fabulous on the palate as well, with full-bodied richness, flawless balance, ripe tannins, and a great, great finish, it’s a primordial baby at the moment, yet this thrilling wine could compete with wine costing 3-4 times the price.”

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Collector’s Corner

Clos des Lambrays

Clos de la Roche, Clos St.-Denis, Clos de Tart, Clos des Lambrays—this quartet represents the heralded set of Grand Crus in Morey-St. Denis.   The main difference between the first three and the Clos des Lambrays? Price.  All of the other major Grand Crus in Morey are easily $150-200 per bottle more expensive for new releases and, if you’ve got the money, well worth it. Lambrays, on the other hand, is every bit the wine of the more heralded names, especially over the last decade or so, and costs less than half of some of its neighbors (2016 Clos de Tart is spectacular, but well over $500, for reference).  

These are wines that show all of the glory and power of Morey St. Denis—the vineyard sits in between the Clos St. Denis and Clos de Tart—with elegant textures and rapturous aromatics. Domaine des Lambrays, as you might expect, is the majority holder and best producer of the vineyard, and their wines are spectacular.

In Stock Now:

Domaine des Lambrays Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru 2016 750ML ($319.95) $269 special, 23 bottles in stock now
John Gilman 96 points
“The grand cru here was raised in fifty percent new oak this year and is one of the stars of the 2016 vintage. The stunning bouquet delivers a complex combination of red and black cherries, black plums, pigeon, dark soil tones, raw cocoa, woodsmoke and a touch of nutty oak. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and shows off beautiful depth at the core, with plenty of sappiness in reserve, a great soil signature, ripe, suave tannins and a very, very long, nascently complex and vibrant finish. I love this wine’s potential!”
Wine Spectator 96 points “A racy style, defined by bracing acidity propelling the black currant, blackberry, iron, earth and spice flavors to a lingering conclusion. Balanced and full of energy, this needs time to really settle in and reveal all its facets in a harmonious way.”
Decanter 94 points “Vinified with 85% whole cluster fruit, the 2016 Clos des Lambrays wafts from the glass with a brooding bouquet of blueberry, wild berries, smoked duck, spice and rosehip. The wine is sappy, with lovely depth and concentration, a fine but firm structural chassis, succulent acids, and a long, penetrating finish. An elegant rendition of this wine in its largest harvest since 1999.”

Thank you for reading!