Monday Newsletter 5-11-2020

In This Newsletter:

Subscriber-Only Special:
Marques de Murrieta’s Profound
Castillo Ygay 

K Vintners:
New Releases Arriving in May!

Diatom’s Chardonnay:
Expressive Wine of Balance

Rosé of the Day:
Decanter’s Pick for Provencal Pink

New Arrival Special Feature
2016 Ca’ del Baio


Back In Stock & Newly Reviewed

Pop Up Bargain: 
Tenute Lunelli Aliotto 

Staff Pick

Subscriber-Only Special:

Marques de Murrieta’s Profound

Castillo Ygay 

Marques de Murrieta is one of the great pillars of classical Rioja—a titan of the region that’s responsible for some of the greatest wines ever produced in Spain.  They resemble a more polished, powerful version of Lopez de Heredia in some ways, sharing age-worthiness but offering up a distinctly more fruit-driven profile in youth.  Their flagship, the always impressive Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial, has garnered multiple high marks from professional reviewers. It has a long name but an even longer lifespan and bottles from the ’60’s and ’70’s are (right now) some of the finest wines you can drink, holding their own with old DRC, Rousseau and top Bordeaux.

The 2010 will be arriving on Friday, and we’re offering a special subscriber-only price through this Wednesday!

Subscriber Special Discount Will Not Display Online
We Will Manually Adjust Your Order
Before Finalizing It

Subscriber-Only Special Ends
Wednesday, May 13th at 6 PM Pacific

Arriving Friday & On Sale Now

Marques de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial, Rioja DOCa 2010 750ML ($149.95) Displayed price: $129, Your price: $119 pre-arrival special
Falstaff Magazine 100 points “[Translated] Dark ruby garnet, violet reflections, subtle brightening of the edges. Fine mint, fine black cherries, fine herbs, fresh heart cherries, mineral and inviting, a multi-faceted, young bouquet. Juicy, complex, elegant, extract-sweet texture, fine round tannins, ripe heart cherries, delicate nougat, sticks for minutes, enormous future potential. Simple calculation: buy what is possible.”
James Suckling 99 points “Marvelous aromas of crushed berries, tobacco, cedar and mushrooms. Some dried cheese. Then turns to flowers. Very complex. Full and intense with fantastic depth and power. It goes on for minutes. It is a wine that exudes tradition but gives a sense of modernity with precise winemaking. Two years in oak, one in concrete and three or four in bottle. Drink on release and age onwards.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 97 points “I had very high expectations for the 2010 Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial, and the wine delivered as expected. 2010 was one of the finest vintages in Rioja in recent years, and this blend of Tempranillo with 15% Mazuelo (Cariñena) has to be one of the finest modern day Castillo de Ygays. The grapes come from a plot planted in 1966 at 485 meters in altitude, the highest in the estate, and the vines yielded 3,500 kilos per hectare. The two varieties fermented separately in stainless steel for 11 days, and the wine spent 26 months in a mixture of American and French oak barrels. I tasted the 2009 next to this 2010, and I had also had a bottle two nights before. So, I was able to compare this with the 2009, which was a very different year, as 2010 was a cooler year and a priori a more adequate year for long-aging wines like this Gran Reserva. The difference was the vegetative cycle, as the vinification and élevage was the same. This is sleeker and sharper, less developed and livelier than the 2009, which already shows some signs of “old wine” with aromas that remind me of the old classical Rioja reds. It has greatness and finesse and is a very attractive wine with all the stuffing and balance that is needed for a long (and positive) aging in bottle. This is one of the finest modern day vintages of Castillo Ygay. This is going to develop in the direction of the classical bottlings from yesteryear. 130,853 bottles produced. It was bottled in March 2015.”
Decanter 97 points “Ygay these days is a blend of Tempranilo and Mazuelo, the later making up 15% in this vintage. 2010 will be remembered in the great vineyards of Europe as a classic year, elegant restraint and wonderful harmonious balance, even in youth, its key characteristics. The Ygay fits this template perfectly; plums and sloes, hints of blueberry and cassis, then figs, cocoa and sousbois, a distinct balsamic note to underline provenance. The Mazuelo etches fresh acidity and a powerful finish, leaving the Tempranillo the opportunity to dance flamboyantly on the mid-palate, the bringer of joy and harmony.”

This is below the next best listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $133

Subscriber Special Discount Will Not Display Online
We Will Manually Adjust Your Order Before Finalizing It
Subscriber-Only Special Ends Wednesday, May 13th at 6 PM Pacific

In Stock Now from Marques de Murrieta

“This is a great classical Rioja for the long haul”
Marques Murrieta Ygay Gran Reserva, Rioja 2009 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 14 bottles in stock now

Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 96 points “Marqués de Murrieta didn’t produce their top red in 2008, so I tasted the 2009 Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial. In 2009, the final blend was Tempranillo with 19% Mazuelo (or Cariñena), one of the highest percentages of Mazuelo ever. The grapes are now sourced from the La Plana vineyard within the Ygay estate, one of the higher-altitude plots at 485 meters. The grapes fermented and aged separately, the Tempranillo in American oak barrels and the Mazuelo in French barriques for 26 months, given its power. It has that seriousness, character and somehow rusticity of the Mazuelo, austere,  harmonious and still young. It has good depth and concentration, still young and lively with fine tannins and a backbone of freshness that lifts it up. It will develop for a very long time in bottle. This is a great classical Rioja for the long haul. 109,000 bottles and some larger formats were produced. It was bottled in October 2014. The prices are increasing but so is the quality. The following vintages will be 2010, 2011 and possibly 2012. I cannot wait to taste them…”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 94 points “(aged in new American and French oak barrels for 28 months) Vivid ruby-red. A highly perfumed, expansive bouquet evokes ripe red and dark berries, cherry liqueur, coconut and cigar box, along with a sexy floral nuance that emerges slowly. Plush and seamless on the palate, offering sweet, deeply concentrated blackberry, cherry-vanilla and mocha flavors that are given spine and lift by a core of juicy acidity. Rich yet energetic in style, displaying superb finishing clarity, even tannins and a lingering spicecake note. The Tempranillo saw only American oak while the Mazuelo component saw only French.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $122.99

“How much better can Dalmau get?”
Marques de Murrieta ‘Dalmau’ Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2014 750ML ($99.95) $88 special, 20 bottles in stock now

Decanter 98 points “How much better can Dalmau get? It’s exceptionally finely balanced, a perfect expression of a single vineyard within the estate, resoundingly full of black fruit, dark chocolate, liquorice. A powerful wine, but never overbearing, even in its youth. Wonderful to enjoy now, but will seriously reward cellaring.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

#40 Wine of the Year – Wine Spectator 2019
Marques de Murrieta Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2015 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special, 18 bottles in stock now

Wine Advocate 93 points “The red blend 2015 Rioja Reserva is 80% Tempranillo with 12% Graciano, 6% Mazuelo and 2% Garnacha, a little more Graciano and Mazuelo, something logical in ripe and warm years like 2015. It’s produced with grapes from a diversity of the 30 different plots within the estate, to represent the character of if. It fermented in stainless steel and matured in American oak barrels for 18 months. It’s spicy and somewhat balsamic, with some dusty tannins. It’s a ripe and powerful vintage that only suffers next to the 2016 I tasted next to it when there’s a jump in precision and finesse.”
Wine Spectator 92 points “Cedar, tobacco, dried cherry and spice flavors mingle in this red. Features a polished texture, with well-integrated tannins and orange peel acidity. Supple, harmonious and graceful. Tempranillo, Graciano, Mazuelo and Garnacha. Drink now through 2025. 100,000 cases made, 9,067 cases imported.”

Arriving Late May

K Vintners

During a motorcycle trip through Walla Walla Valley, Charles Smith was struck by the majesty of the terrain and the vineyards.  He returned to open a winery and a string of wildly successful and popular labels. He has grown into one of the region’s defining winemakers, the man behind several of its most sought-after labels.  The wines are big, rich, ripe, and polished.  Everything you want in a modern Washington red.  Due to their popularity, K Vintners wines are not easy to source, and for this reason we’re especially proud of our wide selection (almost 700 bottles in stock now). Needless to say, we’re incredibly excited for the latest releases, arriving late May! 

Arriving Late May from K Vintners

K Vintners The Boy Grenache, Walla Walla Valley 2017 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 96 points
“Made from 100% Powerline Vineyard (since 2015), the 2017 Grenache The Boy Powerline Vineyard sports a lighter ruby hue as well as Rayas-like notes of decayed flowers, kirsch liqueur, licorice, and cured meats. Seamless, medium-bodied, and beautifully polished, with fine tannins, it’s a stunning, Burgundian example of this variety to enjoy over the coming 15-20 years. There are a little over 1,000 cases produced.”

K Vintners The Creator Cabernet – Syrah, Walla Walla Valley 2017 750ML ($69.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“The 2017 Cabernet / Syrah The Creator Powerline Vineyard doesn’t match the 2016 yet is still a brilliant blend (75/25 Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah) sourced from a site on the southern side of the Walla Walla Valley. Loads of jammy blackberry and black cherry fruits as well as hints of chocolate and peppery herbs emerge from this purple/plum-hued 2017. Offering full-bodied richness, a layered, seamless texture, ripe tannins, and a great finish, it’s another sexy, pleasure-bent effort from this team that can be drunk any time over the coming 10-15 years.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $54.99

K Vintners ‘M.C.K. Motor City Kitty’ Syrah, Washington 2017 750ML ($41.95) $36 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 95 points
“Coming from the Oldfield and Boushey Vineyards (basically the same vineyard), the 2017 Syrah Motor City Kitty Oldfield-Boushey Vineyard is slightly darker colored and, as with all the Rhones here, wasn’t destemmed and was brought up in mostly neutral puncheons. Blackberries, smoked earth, game, chocolate, and chalky minerality all emerge from this beauty, and it’s a powerful, full-bodied, concentrated effort that will evolve positively for 2-4 years and keep for a decade.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

The Italian-inspired ‘house wine’ for your table!
CasaSmith Cinghiale Sangiovese, Wahluke Slope 2018 750ML ($19.95) $16.60 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 91 points
“Also terrific, the 2018 Sangiovese Cinghiale has complex, savory notes of dried herbs, new leather, and ripe cherries. Medium-bodied and seamless on the palate, with no hard edges, it’s another wine under this label that delivers the goods at a great price. Drink it over the coming 4-6 years as well.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

K Vintners’ day-to-day winemaker is Brennan Leighton.  A super-talented voice in the world of Washington wine, Brennan also has his own label, B. Leighton, which is the focus today. These are do-not-miss wines for anyone who loves the K wines and old school, Rhone inflected Washington State reds.  Full of generous fruit and beautiful earthy and floral tones, these are wines that are powerful and delicious on release, but have the track record and pedigree to age.

“Brennon Leighton is one of the pillars behind the incredible quality coming from the K Vintners lineup, yet he also makes a tiny amount of wine under his own B. Leighton label. These are singular, incredibly impressive wines which are unfortunately made in just tiny quantities. Trust me, they’re well worth the effort to track down!” –Jeb Dunnuck

B. Leighton Olsen’s Brothers Vineyard Gratitude, Yakima Valley 2017 750ML ($59.95) $45 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 96 points
“A cuvée made for winemaker Brennen Leighton’s wife and a field blend of 70% Mourvèdre, 25% Grenache, and 5% Syrah, the 2017 Gratitude ranks with the finest Mourvèdres to come from the state. Awesome notes of black raspberry liqueur, incense, ground pepper, and forest floor give way to a medium to full-bodied, ripe, powerful yet weightless 2017 that does everything right. It’s already just about impossible to resist, yet my money is on it evolving for a solid decade.”

B. Leighton Olsen’s Brothers Vineyard Petit Verdot, Yakima Valley 2016 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“Lastly, the 2016 Petit Verdot comes from a higher elevation block and was brought up in 40% new French oak. It has a great bouquet of white pepper, chocolatey dark fruits, tobacco, and a kiss of violets to go with a full-bodied, incredible elegant profile on the palate. You don’t find Petit Verdot with this level of finesse very often, and it has silky tannins, good mid-palate concentration, and a great finish. It’s another stunning wine from Leighton I’d be thrilled to drink over the coming 10-15 years.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

B. Leighton Olsen Brothers Vineyard Syrah, Yakima Valley 2017 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“The 2017 Syrah comes all from the Olsen Brothers Vineyard in the Yakima Valley and is a mix of the 383 and Phelps clones of Syrah. It was not destemmed and was brought up in just 15% new French oak. Ground pepper, meat, smoked game, and decayed flower notes all emerge from this Northern Rhone look-alike. It’s beautifully balanced, medium to full-bodied, and a rock star expression of Syrah to enjoy over the coming 8-10 years.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Can’t Wait? Check out some top picks in stock now from K Vintners:

K Vintners The Beautiful Syrah, Walla Walla Valley 2016 750ML ($89.95) $66 special, 36 bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 98 points
“The 2016 Syrah The Beautiful Powerline Vineyard is stunning and one of the finest Syrahs in the vintage. Coming all from Clone 470, co-fermented with 3-4% Viognier in concrete tanks, and brought up in mostly neutral oak, it’s a rich, meaty, smoky, full-bodied Syrah that has classic Northern Rhône-like aromas of black olives, smoked meats, ground, earth, and dark fruits. With a stacked mid-palate and beautiful balance, it’s going to keep for 10-15 years.”
Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2016 Syrah The Beautiful is rich and lush on the nose with an impressive core of sappy fruit, savory essence, olive tapenade and crushed violets. The full-bodied palate is generous and compelling with a robust yet velvety base that demonstrates elegance with power. The wine glides over the palate, connecting structuring tannins and supporting acidity to carry this wine for more than a decade. The wine ends with a long and drawn-out finish, with mineral tension and lingering spice tones on the aftertaste. Just 1,135 cases were produced.”

New Review!
K Vintners Milbrandt Vineyard Syrah, Wahluke Slope 2017 750ML ($39.95) $29 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“The only wine fermented in stainless steel (they like more precision with this wine) and aged in 30% new puncheons, the 2017 Syrah Milbrandt Vineyard reveals a deep ruby color as well as ripe, sexy notes of blackberries, raspberries, black pepper, leafy herbs, and smoked game. It’s rich, medium-bodied, layered, and just a beautiful wine that will keep for 8-10 years.”
“A milestone and the best one ever. Seamless on the nose? Go figure. Laser focus. Cool fireplace ash, bing cherry, nori, oil-cured olives, mouth-filling with minerality to spare. A true classic.” – Charles Smith

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $31

“Talk about value”
Charles Smith Golden West Pinot Noir Washington State 2018 750ML ($21.95) $17.50 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Charles Smith Golden West Pinot Noir Washington State 2018 750ML ($249.95) $189 special (that’s only $15.75/bottle!)
Jeb Dunnuck 91 points
“A new project by the team at K Vintners being headed up by Charles Smith and Brennon Leighton, Golden West will focus on Pinot Noir from cooler climate, higher elevation sites in the Columbia Valley. The 2018 is the first release and it’s a great bottle of wine that sells for a song. Coming from a mix of clones (777, 115, 2A, and Pommard) vines planted in 2014-2015, the 2018 Pinot Noir was 70% destemmed and spent a full 41 days on skins before spending a year in 15% new French oak. Classic Pinot Noir notes of black cherries, forest floor, autumn leaves, and spice all flow to a beautifully textured, medium-bodied, seamless wine that has present tannins, outstanding balance, and a great finish. It’s easily the best Pinot Noir I’ve tasted from Washington State. Talk about value.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $19.99

Extended Through May by Popular Demand!

Arriving Friday

Diatom’s Chardonnay:

Expressive Wine of Balance

“The Diatom wines are made by Greg Brewer, although the label, along with Brewer-Clifton, was purchased by Jackson Family Wines in 2017. ‘I started Diatom in 2005. It’s all stainless steel, very skeletal and very deviant ultimately,’ Greg explains. ‘And here’s this large Chardonnay house whose reputation is for barrel fermentation, new oak, etc. It gave me great confidence, for them to take this on. They want me to push harder, be more me. It is really demonstrative of how that company works.’ The wines are racy and precise yet never lacking in fruit flavor or layering. ‘The potential is hedonistic,’ he says, ‘but it’s like slicing it thin with yuzu. I love straddling that. The dialogue around Chardonnay is either lean or big and oaky. So I want to explore big and neutral. Expressive, giving, full tilt and clean.'” -Erin Brooks, Wine Advocate

Diatom Bar-M Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County 2018 750ML ($29.95) $24 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Diatom Bar-M Chardonnay, Santa Barbara County 2018 750ML ($349.95) $259 pre-arrival special (that’s only $21.58/bottle!)
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 93 points
“The 2018 Chardonnay Bar-M has an open nose of quince, warm hay, green apple and pear, baker’s yeast, acacia and dried chamomile with white peach and nectarine plus hints of lime peel and crushed stone. Light to medium-bodied, it has a wonderful core of spicy fruit and wicked minerality in the mouth, amplified by juicy freshness and a long, energetic, layered finish. Yum! About 3,000 cases were produced.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “From a site in Los Alamos, the 2018 Chardonnay Bar M is perfumed, lifted and wonderfully gracious in feel. Citrus and floral notes abound in a very pretty, expressive Chardonnay that shows the aromatic style that is so common here. White flowers, mint and saline overtones add closing layers to this pretty and inviting Chardonnay from Greg Brewer’s Diatom label.”
Winery note “Diatom Bar-M Vineyard is sourced from the stunning contiguous blocks of clone 76 Chardonnay planted over 20 years ago in the Los Alamos region of Santa Barbara County. Los Alamos is a magnificent and relatively unknown region whose sandy loam soil lends itself to fruit with a bit more flesh and weight – perfectly suited to the diatom model. Fermentation at very low temperature in small stainless-steel tanks, coupled with inhibited malo-lactic and short hose transit ensure precision and focus.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $27

Also Arriving Friday

Wine Spectator Top 100 in 2019 – Smart Buys
Cambria Estate Winery Katherine’s Vineyard Chardonnay, Santa Maria Valley 2017 750ML ($19.95) $16.60 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Cambria Estate Winery Katherine’s Vineyard Chardonnay, Santa Maria Valley 2017 750ML ($249.95) $179 pre-arrival special (that’s only $14.92/bottle!)
Wine Spectator 91 points
“Well-structured, with a smoky richness to the mineral-infused apple and pear tart flavors. The fresh, spicy finish lingers with a creamy texture. Drink now through 2022. 40,000 cases made.”

Need some well-priced Cali Chard right now? 

Don’t miss the latest vintage of RouteStock, the private label bottling from Wilson Daniels:

RouteStock Cellars ‘Route 121’ Chardonnay, Carneros 2019 750ML ($24.95) $18 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Wilson Daniels is a venerable importer of some of the finest wines in the world.  They import and nationally distribute legendary names like Domaine de la Romanée Conti, Domaine Leflaive and Biondi-Santi.  So when they set out to create a private label, working with top estates around the world to deliver excellent wine at approachable prices, we could be sure that they’d be fantastic.  We’re pleased to offer their RouteStock Chardonnay from Carneros, which delivers a classic experience for the money.

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $24.99


Have Wine Ready to Pick Up?

Stop by our shop 10 am – 6 pm daily
Feel free to call ahead before you arrive or for curbside service:


(You’ll help free up some space for your next order!)

Rosé of the Day:

Provencal Rosé Taking Inspiration from Oregon

“Mirabeau rosé wines represent the fruition of a long-held winemaking dream and a shared loved of Provence rosé for British couple Stephen and Jeany Cronk. With no previous experience of making wine, the couple took the plunge in 2009 by moving with their children from London life to the picturesque rolling hills and blue skies of southern France. ‘We were absolute devotees to Provence rosé,’ says Jeany Cronk. ‘It was one of the things we always agreed on, we just loved it and it wasn’t even particularly fashionable in those days.’ Stephen Cronk describes Classic as ‘a really good representation of a Provence rosé’. It’s made from a non-prescriptive blend of Grenache, Syrah and Cinsault and is dominated by red fruits…. [Their vineyard management is] inspired by Oregon winemaker, botanist and ecologist Mimi Casteel. Stephen aims to ‘take organic to the next level’ and to ‘see whether we can move away from a mono-culture to a biodiverse vineyard and still make good wine’.” –Georgia Hindle, Decanter

Newly Arrived

Mirabeau ‘Classic’ Cotes de Provence Rose 2019 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special
Decanter 90 points
“An expressive nose of berry notes that, on the palate, transforms into succulent and juicy red cherries, raspberries and strawberries. The palate offers a light creaminess and silky texture with a round, crisp finish. Made from 60% Grenache, 25% Syrah and 15% Cinsault, it has complexity and drive, delivering great quality and value.”

Vinopolis Wine Shop Curbside Pick Up

Don’t want to stop in?

Order Online / By Phone / By Email

When you’re ready to pick up, just park in our lot,
give us a call, & we’ll bring your order to your car. 

(If another adult is picking up for you, please let us know
their name when placing your order.)


New Arrival Special Feature

2016 Ca’ del Baio

Hitting the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 list last year was a big deal for this small Piedmont producer. They’ve always been a best value producer in our hearts, so it’s lovely to see them get even more recognition. If you’re not familiar with Ca’ del Baio, know that they are a traditionally-styled Barbaresco producer. They employ a long and slow maceration before aging in neutral Slavonian oak boti, resulting in fresh and aromatic wines with a rich complexity and glorious tannic structure. The wines can be pretty wound up on release, so give them a healthy decant (or pop a day before service!) At these prices, it’s not hard to get acquainted.

“This is a winery on the rise” –Kerry Winslow, Grapelive

Newly Arrived

Ca’ del Baio Asili, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($54.95) $37.80 special
Case-12 Ca’ del Baio Asili, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($599.95) $419 special (that’s only $34.92/bottle!)
James Suckling 94 points
“Raspberry coulis, wild-strawberry compote and dried oranges. Medium to full body, a sturdy core of red fruit, driven acidity and a cutthroat finish. Drink from 2022.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “Ca’ del Baio’s 2016 Barbaresco Asili is every bit as gorgeous from bottle as it was from barrel. Ample, creamy and inviting, the 2016 boasts superb richness and plenty of the suave radiance that makes the Barbarescos of Asili so distinctive. Dark cherry, plum, licorice, tobacco and spice all develop in the glass. Since I tasted it last year, the 2016 has acquired more body as well as darkness.”
Jancis Robinson 17.50/20 “Tasted blind. Lustrous mid ruby. Gorgeous nose of cherry and raspberry fruit shot through by spice. Elegant and at the same time concentrated and embryonic with mouth-filling, ripe tannins. Very long and impressive.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Ca’ del Baio Vallegrande, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($49.95) $33 special
Case-12 Ca’ del Baio Vallegrande, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($599.95) $379 special (that’s only $31.58/bottle!)
James Suckling 94 points
“Lots of dried strawberries with watermelon and hints of cherries on the nose and palate. Medium to full body. Firm and silky tannins. Flavorful finish. Drink after 2021.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “The 2016 Barbaresco Vallegrande is bright and fragrant, with tremendous energy driving the red/purplish berry fruit, spice and floral flavors. Medium in body and finely cut, the 2016 is a model of elegance and finesse. It is easily one of the most polished Barbarescos I have tasted from Ca’ del Baio, and, frankly, what Barbaresco is all about.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $45
Love the Piedmont?

So do we. 

Shop all 43 Barbaresco wines in stock now on our web store!


Delas makes some of the most powerful, intense wines in the Northern Rhone at prices that make them one of the superior values in the region. Density and richness are a hallmark of both the reds and the whites—there are no shrinking violets in the lineup.  We turn to them for big, bold wines that often show very well young—a remarkable trait in their part of France.

Delas Freres Saint-Joseph Francois de Tournon, Rhone 2016 750ML ($44.95) $33 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-6 Delas Freres Saint-Joseph Francois de Tournon, Rhone 2016 750ML ($279.95) $179 special (that’s only $29.83/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“The 2016 Saint Joseph François De Tournon comes from more schist and gneiss soils and spent 10-14 months in mostly used barrels, with a small part in tank to preserve more freshness. It’s another ruby/purple-colored effort from this estate and gives up lots of blackberry and blueberry fruits intermixed with earthy minerality, ground pepper, and hints of damp earth. Rich, layered, and textured, it will be better in a year or two and keep for 8-10, if not longer.”
Wine Spectator 93 points “Features a solid core of dark currant and blackberry fruit, inlaid with notes of tar, anise and warm tobacco leaf. Reveals a tug of iron through the fruit-laden finish. Best from 2020 through 2026. 1,033 cases made, 123 cases imported. — JM”
James Suckling 92-93 points “This has fragrant and floral character with wild raspberries and red plums. The peppery palate has a vibrant array of ripe, red and purple fruit. Good depth and drive here. Barrel sample.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $42

“precisely the type of year in which Il Poggione excels”
Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany 2013 750ML ($89.95) Was $61.90, Now $55 Subscriber Special
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.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average listed price is $77

2017 has scaled up even “humble” wines into powerful, bold new territories.
Castello dei Rampolla Chianti Classico DOCG, Tuscany 2017 750ML ($37.95) $29 special
Case-12 Castello dei Rampolla Chianti Classico DOCG, Tuscany 2017 750ML ($449.95) $315 special (that’s only $26.25/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
Wine Enthusiast 94 points
“Plum, fragrant blue flower, leather and ripe berry are just some of the aromas you’ll find on this fragrant, delicious wine. It’s chewy and enveloping but also boasts a weightless elegance, delivering juicy Marasca cherry, cranberry compote, licorice and tobacco while velvety fine-grained tannins offer polished support. Drink through 2023.”
James Suckling 93 points “The nose of this Chianti Classico is unique, with abundant fresh rose petals, orange zest and lemon peel. Medium-bodied and very lithe yet firm on the palate. Elegant and very taut and tangy on the finish. So well done in a challenging vintage. Drink now.”
Antonio Galloni 91 points “Rampolla’s 2017 Chianti Classico is a powerful, dense wine that shows all of the natural richness of the year. Super-ripe dark cherry, spice, licorice, new leather and lavender give the 2017 its decidedly flamboyant personality. I would prefer to give the 2017 a few years in bottle, but there is plenty to look forward to. Today, the Chianti Classico is youthfully exuberant and full of promise. Sadly, production is down by 50% because of frost in May, hail in August and then dehydration on the vine later that month.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
The average price nationally is $36

We’ve always looked to Argentina for excellent values, but this might take the cake.  Vaglio’s “Aggie” bottling scored an impressive 95 points from James Suckling and is available for just $18 per bottle or $199 per case (that’s only $16.58/bottle!).  It’s perfect for grilling.

Vaglio Wines Aggie Malbec, Uco Valley 2018 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-12 Vaglio Wines Aggie Malbec, Uco Valley 2018 ($249.95) $199 special (that’s only $16.58/bottle!)
James Suckling 95 points
“Wonderful intensity of crushed berries, pink pepper and volcanic salt. Full-bodied, yet fresh and vivid with energy and focus. Extremely long and flavorful. Drink or hold.”

Trending Wines Arriving in June

Dominus Estate Christian Moueix, Napa Valley 2017 750ML ($249.95) $219 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 98+ points
“The 2017 Dominus is one of the truly epic, grand wines of the vintage. Rich, dense and explosive, with tremendous concentration and sheer power, the 2017 Dominus captures all the personality of this site along with the natural opulence of the year. Inky dark fruit, lavender, menthol, licorice, plum, gravel and a host of dark spice notes infuse the 2017 with seemingly endless layers of nuance. Over the last two years I have tasted several hundred Napa Valley Cabernets, both from barrel and bottle. There is no question that Dominus belongs among the elite in 2017; it is simply a breathtaking wine. Certainly readers looking for a Napa Valley Cabernet to cellar should put Dominus at the top of their lists.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown – Wine Advocate 97+ points “There was about 50% of a normal crop this year for the 2017 Dominus, due to strict selection. Grapes were harvested from September 21 to October 3 and the wine was bottled in June 2019. This year the blend is 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot, aged in 40% new French oak barrels. Very deep purple-black in color, it sashays nonchalantly out of the glass with graceful notions of potpourri, forest floor, crushed rocks, Ceylon tea and licorice with a core of black currant cordial, chocolate-covered cherries, mulberries and preserved plums plus a waft of garrigue. Full-bodied, the palate has a beautifully impactful, wonderfully quiet intensity of black and blue fruits with loads of floral and spicy sparks, framed by firm yet plush tannins, finishing with long-lasting earthy notes. 2,800 cases were made.”
James Suckling 97 points “Very intense aromas of fruit, yet complex subtlety. Blue fruit, licorice and blackberries with flowers and perfumes. Full-bodied, round and chewy with black tea, currants and hints of leather and incense. Coffee undertones. Extremely long and exciting. Available April 2020. Drink in 2022.”
Jeb Dunnuck 97 points “The grand vin is the 2017 Dominus, which is based on 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot, harvested between September 21 and October 3, and aged in 40% new French oak. Chateau Lafite-like notes of blackcurrants, lead pencil shavings, cedary tobacco, and gravelly earth all emerge from the glass, and it’s full-bodied, has a terrific sense of elegance, lots of tannins, and a great finish. This tight, powerful, concentrated Dominus will benefit from 4-5 years of bottle age and keep for 25 years or more. 2017 doesn’t get much better.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($89.95) $62.50 pre-arrival special
Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 1.5L ($179.95) $135 pre-arrival special, only 2 magnums available!
Wine Enthusiast 97 points
“EDITOR’S CHOICE. Fragrant and full bodied, this structured red has enticing aromas evoking woodland berry, balsamic aromas of pine, rose petal and exotic spice. The enveloping palate delivers crushed raspberry, succulent Marasca cherry, licorice and nutmeg alongside firm, tightly knit tannins. Fresh acidity lends tension and balance. Best 2022–2027.”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “One of the stand outs in this range, the 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Ovello shows the energy and tension that are so typical of this site, but with a slightly riper profile than is the norm. Then again, we are talking about 2015. Although perhaps not the most classic expression of Ovello, the Produttori’s 2015 is very nicely done. Best of all, it will drink well with just a few more years in bottle. This is an especially heady, exotic Ovello Barbaresco that needs to shed some baby fat, its considerable appeal today notwithstanding.”
Decanter 95 points “Ovello is the northernmost vineyard in the Barbaresco commune – and the largest. It was one of the original five vineyards individually bottled in 1967 by Produttori. The clayey soils and exposure to the cool northern winds gives this wine a full body and structured tannins. The 2015 features a woody, vanilla-toned fragrance with some delicate cherry fruit. In the mouth it’s a latticework of well integrated tannins with lacy acidity draped over deep hedgerow fruits, followed by some subtle wood spice on the long finish. This is one to leave for a few years, but there’s so much potential here. 17,000 bottles and 1,200 magnums produced. Drinking Window 2024 – 2040.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today for the magnum!
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast for the 750ml!
The average price nationally is $69 for the 750ml

Italian Whites

Back In Stock & Newly Reviewed

Spring is heating up, and Italian white wines are the perfect way to cool off while the local waters are still too cold (or closed) to swim in. 

Viticoltori de Conciliis Donnaluna Cilento Fiano, Campania 2018 750ML ($24.95) $19.90 special
Eric Guido-Vinous 91 points
“Here in the 2018 Fiano Donnaluna I’m finding a fresh display of crisp green apple, crushed stone minerality, and dried florals. On the palate, soft textures give way to ripe apple and pear, with refreshing acidity bringing minerals and inner perfume to the stage. It finishes clean, with a hint of residual acids and spice, as green apple tones linger on. The 2018 Donnaluna Fiano is clean, fresh, vibrant, and a total pleasure to taste.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $21.99

Viticoltori de Conciliis Falanghina del Beneventano IGT, Campania 2018 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Eric Guido-Vinous 89 points
“The nose on the 2018 De Conciliis Falanghina is smoky and intense, with crushed stone minerality up front, blowing off to reveal notes of kiwi, ripe peach, sage, and a roasted nutty richness. On the palate, soft textures are contrasted by saline-infused acids, showing young stone fruits with a savory herbal twang. The finish is long, displaying a lime zest and mineral mix that’s further accentuated by zesty acids which beg for another sip.” 

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $25.99
Love Italian wines? 

Don’t miss the ultra-rare bottlings from the Sisters of the Cistercian order, arriving Friday!

Monastero Suore Cistercensi 

Cool, Funky Wines
The wines of the Sisters of the Cistercian order achieved cult status a few years ago, and have been a challenge to acquire ever since. We’re excited to be able to offer the full lineup once again!

Neal Rosenthal note “Fate can have lovely consequences. Our fortuitous encounter with the Bea family of Umbria of course led to the unearthing of one of the great domaines of Italy. But, we have been additionally blessed as we marched together with Giampiero Bea as he made the acquaintance of the Sisters of the Cistercian order living and working at their monastery in Vitorchiano, ninety minutes or so north of Rome in the Lazio district. Here at this quiet religious outpost eighty women of this religious order work vineyards and orchards and gardens organically. Under the guidance of Bea, they produce two wines as honest and sympathetic and gracious as they are. The vineyards are planted to a series of four essentially local white grape varieties: Malvasia, Verdicchio, Grechetto and Trebbiano.”

Arriving Friday

Only nine bottles available!
Monastero Suore Cistercensi Coenobium Bianco, Lazio IGT 2018 750ML ($35.95) $26 pre-arrival special
Neal Rosenthal Note
“The Coenobium: is the basic wine of the Monastery with an approximate annual production of 12000 bottles, about 80% of which is shipped through us to satisfy the US market. Its intrigue comes from the volcanic soils that underlay the vineyards and the longer than usual contact that the fermenting juice has with the skins … this being a vinification technique encouraged by Bea.”

Only eight bottles available!
Monastero Suore Cistercensi Ruscum Bianco, Lazio IGT 2018 750ML ($39.95) $31.90 pre-arrival special
Neal Rosenthal Note
“The Ruscum: is a blend of the same four grapes (Trebbiano, Malvasia, Verdicchio and Grechetto) but, in this instance, the juice is left to ferment on the lees for a period of two weeks or more, extracting all of the flavors, colors and textures of its fruit. The result is a wine of often deep golden color and penetrating minerality with hints of herbs, particularly anise, and wild flowers. There are approximately 4000 bottles produced annually of this cuvée, the overwhelming majority of which comes to the USA.”

Only eight bottles available!
Monastero Suore Cistercensi Benedic Rosso, Lazio IGT 2018 750ML ($33.95) $26 pre-arrival special
Neal Rosenthal Note
“‘Benedic’ Rosso: The sisters produce a scant amount of red wine: a charming blend of equal parts Sangiovese and Ciliegiolo called “Benedic.” Despite a two-week maceration, “Benedic” is typically a beautifully pale, translucent wine. Registering just 11% alcohol, its color is calm, soft, and almost coppery—one can sense its gentle nature just from looking at it. A pure, honest nose of red licorice, dried leaves, and fresh pipe tobacco introduces an ethereal caress of a palate with almost no detectable tannins. “Benedic” is a pretty, tasty, plain-speaking wine with no makeup and no pretension, and its softly floral edge puts one in the mind of springtime. Those expecting power may be disappointed, but a wine this guileless is nearly impossible to dislike.”

Arriving Late May

Pop Up Bargain!
Superb value, superbly styled. Secure your Super Tuscan / super discounted six-pack now!

Tenute Lunelli Podernovo Aliotto Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2014 750ML ($21.95) $14 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Tenute Lunelli Podernovo Aliotto Toscana IGT, Tuscany2014 750ML ($119.95) $79 pre-arrival special (that’s only $13.17/bottle!)
James Suckling 92 points
“This has plenty of classic red cherries and herb character on the nose before following through to a medium- to full-bodied palate that is extremely fresh and elegant. Drink-me style. Drink now.”
Sangiovese, Cabernet and Merlot blend

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $19

Staff Pick:

Chinon’s Enduring Legend

Like many wine lovers, I adore Kermit Lynch’s classic Adventures on the Wine Route.  It’s responsible for my interest in a lot of wine regions, but none more so than Chinon.  Lynch’s description of the magnetic Charles Joguet captivated me and is certainly part of the reason I love the wines of the Loire. The dirty secret, though, was that for a period of time in the late 90’s/very early 00’s, the wines from Joguet weren’t particularly great.  Charles had retired and the new winemaking team wasn’t quite up to his exacting standards.

Thankfully, Kevin Fontaine, the current winemaker, is a talented individual who has fully restored the Charles Joguet to the very top tier of producers in Chinon—recent releases have made me a believer again.  The wines have more polish than in the past, but they do so without sacrificing the character of the place or the ageability of the wines.  He’s really doing justice to one of the best collections of vineyards in the Loire—and being Chinon, prices are still reasonable.

The Petites Roches bottling is a perfect bistro Franc, showing off the elegance and charm of gravelly terroirs in Chinon. This is a step up from their entry-level bottling (the Cuvee Terroir), and we’re able to offer for entry level pricing (less than $20/btl by the case!).  

In Stock Now:

Domaine Charles Joguet Chinon Les Petites Roches, Loire 2016 750ML ($29.95) $21.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Domaine Charles Joguet Chinon Les Petites Roches, Loire 2016 750ML ($359.95) $219 special (that’s only $18.25/bottle!)
Domaine Charles Joguet Chinon Les Petites Roches, Loire 2016 1.5L ($59.95) $49 special, 3 magnums in stock now
Importer Note
“When Charles Joguet took over the family vineyards in 1957, he set out to do something that was unheard of in the Loire Valley. Rather than blending all the fruit from his varied parcels, he opted for a more Burgundian approach and began vinifying each individually, highlighting Chinon’s diversity of soils and exposures and playing with the nuances of vine age to propose a gamut of different wines of unique character. It is in this spirit that the domaine’s current vigneron, Kevin Fontaine, crafts the cuvée Les Petites Roches, named for the estate’s gravelly terroirs. Given light treatment in the cellar, this wine shows off Cabernet in its most delicate, charming form, rife with aromas of roses, damp earth, and little red berries, along with a gentle tannin holding it all together. This classic representation of Cabernet Franc from Chinon can be enjoyed over the next five or so years with roast chicken, pork chops, or game.”

Vinopolis is an independent wine shop in Portland that opened in 2004. Our goal has always been to offer the finest, broadest, and largest selection of wines at the best prices to our customers in Portland, in Oregon, across the West Coast, and throughout the United States.
Thank you for reading and for continuing to support our team at Vinopolis!

Stay safe, be well & drink well.