Monday Newsletter 7-12-21

In This Newsletter:

Featured New Arrival
Tautavel Vingrau Silex:
Your Backyard BBQ Red

New Week – New Arrivals

Burgundy’s Most Underrated Domaine?
Henri Prudhon

Staff Pick:
Sekt-y Time With Von Winning

Superb Santa Barbara for a Steal:
Sandhi’s Zuni Chard

Nahe Wine Royalty

Caruso e Minini:
Gem of the Tyrrhenian

Sansonnet: A Cellar-Worthy Gem @ PnP Pricing

Sauternes Season

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Featured New Arrival

Tautavel Vingrau Silex:

Your Backyard BBQ Red

There are wine cooperatives, and then there are wine cooperatives. Much of the world’s forgettable, bottom-shelf plonk is produced in Europe’s numerous wine co-ops, and as result serious wine drinkers look at co-op produced wines with suspicion. Fortunately there are exceptions to every rule, and great co-ops do exist (think Produttori), and often offer some of the fine wine world’s smartest buys. Coop Terres Plurielles (Les Vignerons de Tautavel Vingrau ), one of France’s most respected co-ops, is one such example.

The result of a merger of Southern France’s best co-ops (Tautavel and Vingrau, now under the umbrella of Coop Terres Plurielles), it makes classically apportioned wines from the country’s sunny southern coast. We have just received our allocation of this Grenache-based blend, a wine that is destined to rank as one of the shop’s best values. Order your case today, just in time for grilling season.

Just Arrived:

Les Vignerons de Tautavel Vingrau Silex, Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2017 750ML ($27.95) $24 special
Case-6 Les Vignerons de Tautavel Vingrau Silex, Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2017 750ML ($159.95) $136 special (that’s only $22.67/bottle!)
Case-12 Les Vignerons de Tautavel Vingrau Silex, Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2017 750ML ($319.95) $259 special (that’s only $21.58/bottle!)
Jeb Dunnuck 93-95 points
“The 2017 Côtes Du Roussillon Villages Tautavel Silex might end up matching (or even surpassing) the 2016. The same 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah, and 10% Carignan brought up in tank, it offers a ripe, medium to full-bodied, straight-up sexy style to go with complex notes of kirsch, black olives, black licorice, and dried garrigue. It’s a powerful yet elegant red that has tons of potential.”
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 93 points “A blend of 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 10% Carignan from old vines, the 2017 Côtes du Roussillon Villages Tautavel Silex is partly aged in barrel and part in tank. It delivers just enough cedar on the nose to let you know there’s barrel influence, without overwhelming the terroir-derived hints of crushed stone or the varietal notes of dark berries. Full-bodied, concentrated and supple, it’s a terrific bottle of Roussillon wine, with a long, elegant finish.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Shop the entire selection of wines from the Roussillon & Languedoc on our web store now.

New Week – New Arrivals


Goodfellow Family Cellars Heritage #10 Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2017 750ML ($69.95) $61.90 special 
Josh Raynolds – Vinous 96 points
“Shimmering red. An expansive, spice- and mineral-accented bouquet evokes fresh red and blue fruits, and a sexy floral nuance builds as the wine stretches out. Sweet and seamless in the mouth, showing a suave marriage of depth and liveliness to the penetrating raspberry, boysenberry, cherry and rose pastille flavors. The spicy note comes back strong on a strikingly long, vibrant finish framed by polished, even tannins.”
Erin Brooks – Wine Advocate 95 points “The numbered iterations in the Goodfellow portfolio are different each year. Marcus Goodfellow says, “The numbering is all specific to a time and place, so you won’t see another no. 10.” Pale to medium ruby, the nose of the 2017 Pinot Noir Whistling Ridge Heritage No. 10 blossoms to fresh currants, tar, Earl Grey tea leaves, dried flowers, mushroom and warm earth with an undercurrent of mineral notions and spices. The medium-bodied palate slowly reveals nuanced flavor layers, with very finely grained tannins and seamless freshness on the very long, layered finish. Beautiful! Give this another couple of years in bottle or cellar it—this has the structure and flesh to age very well in bottle.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Goodfellow Family Cellars Long Acre Whistling Ridge Pinot Noir Ribbon Ridge 2018 750ML ($59.95) $46 special
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 93 points
 “The 2018 Pinot Noir Whistling Ridge Long Acre has a pale ruby color and slowly opening scents of amaro, licorice, charcuterie and dusty earth with a core of bright red and black berry fruit. The medium-bodied palate is grainy and fresh with loads of spicy accents lingering on the finish.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Winery library release!
Goodfellow Family Cellars Heritage #04 Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2015 750ML ($89.95) $79 special
Wine Advocate 92 points
 “Pale to medium ruby in color, the 2015 Pinot Noir Heritage No. 4 opens with spiced blackberry, blackcurrant and black cherries on the nose with a lovely spicy core—candied citrus peel, wood smoke, fresh tobacco leaves, potpourri and cola—with earthy notions of dried leaves and underbrush. Light to medium-bodied, it fills the mouth with black fruit flavors and is just packed with spice and earthy notions, with a firm frame of grainy tannins and great freshness, finishing long. 226 cases produced.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92 points “Lurid red. Vibrant, spice-tinged red fruit and candied rose scents, along with suggestions of blood orange and smoky minerals. Taut and well-delineated on the palate, offering juicy bitter cherry and red currant flavors that slowly deepen and turn sweeter with air. Fine-grained tannins come in slowly on a very long, precise finish that strongly echoes the red berry and spice notes. (from the Whistling Ridge vineyard; two-thirds whole clusters and 50% new French oak) “
Winery notes “Made with great thought, our reserve wine is crafted to stand strong for years to come. The genesis was a wine to age for our son to enjoy one day. Thus, it seems more new oak and is made from our favorite parcel of the vintage. Lay down for as long as you can, as patience is to be rewarded. Whistling Ridge Vineyard Pinot from a 1990 planting aged for 20 months in French oak. Sedimentary soils with a South/Southeast exposure at 350-450’ elevation. Dry farmed.”

Winery library release!
Goodfellow Family Cellars Heritage #05 Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2015 750ML ($89.95) $79 special 
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92 points 
“Glistening red. A highly perfumed, incisive bouquet displays scents of fresh cherry, raspberry and baking spices, and a sexy floral nuance builds with air. Sweet and focused on the palate, showing good heft and focus to the intense red fruit, rose pastille and spicecake flavors. Delivers strong, spicy cut on the gently tannic finish, which hangs on with resonating cherry and floral qualities. (from the Durant vineyard; 50% whole clusters and all neutral French oak)”
Winery note “Made with great thought, our reserve wine is crafted to stand strong for years to come. It was created to age for our son to enjoy one day, who is presently a toddler. Thus, it sees more new oak and is made from our favorite parcel of the vintage. Lay down for as long as you can, as patience is to be rewarded. #5 is from the volcanic soils of the Durant Vineyard. Vines planted in 1973. It spent 20 months in French oak.”

The Eyrie Vineyards Original Vines Reserve Pinot Noir Dundee Hills 2017 750ML ($79.95) $71.90 special
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 95 points 
“Glistening red. A highly complex bouquet evokes fresh red berries and cherry, along with suave Asian spice, potpourri and mineral accents. Shows superb delineation on the palate, offering vibrant, spice-tinged red fruit liqueur, rhubarb and spicecake flavors that pick up a strong floral pastille nuance as the wine opens up. Finishes extremely long and lively, with fine-grained tannins providing shape and discreet grip to lingering raspberry, mineral and floral notes.”
James Suckling 96 points “Very pure, fragrant red-berry and cherry aromas here with a fresh, sweetly fragrant and spicy edge, as well as forest wood. The palate has such volume and completeness with a very succulent, red-cherry core that has effortless depth and pure-fruit flavor. Very fresh finish. Drink or hold.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Shea Wine Cellars Estate Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2018 750ML ($59.95) $39 special 
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92 points
 “Deep magenta. Spice-laced red and dark berry, cherry cola and floral pastille scents take on a savory herb quality with air. Shows very good depth and breadth on the palate, which offers appealingly sweet red and blue fruit preserve, mocha and black tea flavors and a hint of allspice. Gains energy with air and repeats the floral note on a long, gently tannic finish that leaves a bitter cherry note behind.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Ross & Bee Maloof ‘Beckenridge Vineyard’ Gewurztraminer Willamette Valley 2020 750ML ($34.95) $26 special, only six bottles available!
Winery note
“Own rooted, dry farmed, planted in 1976. Organic farming program, in 2nd ‘transition year’ for Organic certification through Oregon TILTH. Fermented until dry on the skins (16 days) in open top fermenters. Pressed off and moved into neutral burgundy barrels for 8 months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered. Black tea, rose petals, and sea salt. Serve chilled or at cellar temp with bitter greens and alpine cheeses. Or with pizza, serve all our wines with pizza.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Maloof Johan Vyd Rouge De Gris 2020 750ML ($31.95) $26 special
Winery note
“70% Fermented on the skins with daily punch downs until fully dry (17 days). 10% Fermented carbonically for 17 days, before being pressed off with skin contact PG and moved to neutral oak. 40% Direct pressed, fermented and aged in neutral burgundy barrels for 8 months. Bottled unfined and unfiltered. Vineyard History – Dag Sunby purchased the property in 2005, where he and his family continue to live. Dan Rinke joined Dag just two years later in 2007 to head up the farming. Dan began converting Johan into a biodynamic farm upon his arrival, and has aggressively grafted and replanted portions of the vineyard using lesser known varieties ever since. In 2020, Dan Stepped back from the day to day, leaving the farming rains to Elise Hansen, who has continued to do wonderful work growing grapes, and expanding the farming to include animal grazing, as well as beginning to farm vegetables for a Johan CSA. Morgan Beck heads up the cellar team and is producing some of our favorite wines in the area. The Johan crew continues to push the envelope in Oregon in both farming, and winemaking. It is a remarkably special place. Drink their wines!”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Burgundy’s Most Underrated Domaine?

Henri Prudhon

“The quality that this domaine consistently achieves is nothing short of remarkable… I have said this before but I would go so far as to say that Domaine Henri Prudhon is one of, and perhaps even the most under rated producer in all of Burgundy. The style is ultra-pure and completely classic. Moreover, the wines sell for very reasonable prices so if you don’t need a famous name on a label to be happy, try a bottle from Prudhon and in either color.” – Allen Meadows, Burghound

Most of the time when the phrase “cult wine” is used we think of small production, pricy wines with lots of points. Every now and then we see a wine that breaks that mold. The wines from Domain Henri Prudhon are prime examples. They aren’t expensive, but they are hard for us to source because they occupy a unique place in the Burgundy world. For one, they’re incredibly fairly priced, which seems to be rarer than ever before in Burgundy. But most of all, they’re mineral-driven wines, built on stone and not fruit. A far more solid foundation, no?

The Prudhon wines seem to hold the essence of their stony terroirs inside of them. Both red and white have a minerality and precision that’s very old-school and completely captivating. We have a limited number of bottles that just arrived, and cannot recommend these wines highly enough for your summer drinking pleasure.

Newly Arrived from Henri Prudhon:

Henri Prudhon & Fils Les Chenevottes Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, only twelve bottles available!
Burghound 91 points
 “Outstanding. Here the petrol character is a bit more pronounced on the more elegant aromas of various white orchard fruit, floral, citrus and hint of herbal tea. The citrus-tinged medium weight flavors possess a lovely sense of energy that carries over to the delicious, focused and moderately tightly wound finale. This needs more overall depth so I would suggest holding it for at least a few years first.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Puligny-Montrachet Les Enseignieres Cote de Beaune 2018 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, only twelve bottles available!
Burghound 89-91 points
 “Outstanding. This is actually pretty similar to the Rue aux Vaches with a soupçon more floral influence but a bit less citrus character in evidence. The succulent, round and generously proportioned medium-bodied flavors possess a caressing and seductive palate impression, all wrapped in a sappy and sneaky long finish. This too is a quality Puligny villages that is worth your interest.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils La Chateniere Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, only six bottles available!
Burghound 91 points 
“Outstanding Top Value. This is the first wine to display appreciable reduction and it’s enough to obscure the underlying fruit. The middle weight flavors are rich to the point of opulence as the plush and caressing mid-palate coats the palate with extract on the citrusy, dry and sneaky long finish. This too is really quite good.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils En Remilly Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($89.95) $66 special, only four bottles available!
Burghound 91 points 
“Outstanding Top Value. The hallmark citrus and mildly exotic aromas of a classic En Remilly are present on the ripe nose that primarily offers up white-fleshed fruit aromas. The succulent, round and beguilingly textured medium weight flavors retain a lovely sense of underlying tension and detail on the lightly stony finish. This isn’t as dry as some of the wines in the range but it’s even more complex.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Sur Gamay Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($89.95) $57 special
Burghound 91 points 
“Outstanding Top Value. Smoky hints of mineral reduction combine with those of essence of pear and citrus peel. There is a bit less volume but better precision to the attractively textured, succulent and very rich medium weight flavors that possess fine depth on the well-balanced finale. This is lovely and worth considering.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Saint-Aubin Le Ban Cote de Beaune 2018 750ML ($59.95) $44 special, only eleven bottles available!
“A markedly floral-suffused nose combines notes of exceptionally fresh and airy white orchard fruit with a variety of citrus and discreet spice whiffs. The delicious, energetic and focused middle weight flavors possess a bracing salinity on the lingering finale. To enjoy young.” -Allen Meadows, Burghound

Henri Prudhon & Fils Les Castets Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($69.95) $55 special, only twelve bottles available!
Burghound 89 points
 “This is aromatically similar to the Le Banc but with even more floral influence. The succulent, round and attractively textured medium weight flavors possess notably better depth and length on the balanced, clean and appealingly dry finale. This well-made effort should repay a few years of keeping if desired.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Les Perrieres Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, only twelve bottles available!
Burghound 90 points
 “A cooler and slightly more elegant combination reflects notes of a panoply of white orchard fruit, lemon zest and pretty lilac and rose petal. The rich and relatively full-bodied flavors possess a good level of sappy dry extract that buffers the citrusy, dry and sneaky long finish. This caressing effort could also be enjoyed young or aged to good effect for a few years.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Sur le Sentier du Clou Blanc Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2018 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, only twelve bottles available!
Burghound 89 points 
“Super-fresh aromas include those of pear, apple, white flower and a touch of mineral reduction, all of which is trimmed in discreet citrus elements. There is slightly better volume to the rich, round and delicious medium-bodied flavors that exude a subtle minerality on the dry and lingering finish. This needs to add depth which it may well do if allowed a few years of bottle age first.”

Shop our selection of white Burgundies and Chablis on our web store now!

Staff Pick

Sekt-y Time With Von Winning

German Riesling is probably the favorite wine category amongst the staff here at Vinopolis, and for good reason. You’d be hard pressed to find so many styles of wine in one place, with sparkling being the latest to make waves. Sekt, as it’s called in Germany, has been around for a while, but most examples have historically been panned internationally for being too acidic (or worse, under ripe). That’s all changing with the climate with Germany experiencing some of the best yields and growing seasons ever recorded. Never one to settle for a standard portfolio, Von Winning makes a dizzying assortment of wines ranging from the more typical Riesling and Pinot Noir to Sauvignon Blanc and a sparkling Riesling. Fermented in tank to preserve the fruitiness, with secondary fermentation in bottle this is a sparkling wine with endless potential. In addition to a fruit salad of red apples, white peach and Meyer lemon there’s a beautiful minerality that is reminiscent of slate and baking spice. The minimal sugar input is noticeable as the acid provides a clean and persistent finish, making this food friendly but can still be enjoyed by itself. Built for any occasion, budget or activity.

Von Winning Riesling Sekt Extra Brut Pfalz, Deidesheim NV 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Grapelive 92
points “I’m lucky to have enjoyed this exciting Riesling Sparkler on a few occasions now. I love its intensity, crisp detail and briskly dry profile that make it celebratory but sublime with meals especially first courses or as an aperitif to whet the palate. German bubbles are incredible and this one is a classy example at a reasonable price, not to be outdone by Prosecco, the Cremants of Alsace, the Loire and Burgundy, and Champagne even, these modern Sekt(s) are stylish, elegant and full of personality. This one [is] in the mold of one of my favorite small Champagne house, Agrapart, with its cool invigorating mineral tones and extreme dry flavors. Von Winning is one of Germany’s top wineries, based in the chalky sandstone soiled Pfalz region, with an exceptional range of wines, especially their absolutely awesome series of Grosses Gewachs (Grand Cru) Rieslings, though there is excellence throughout the collection here and as I have noted in my prior reviews, Von Winning does one of the finest Sauvignon Blanc(s) in the world, too. The Extra Brut Riesling Sekt is vibrant and steely from the start with a mix of zesty citrus and peachy fruits, a hint of wet stones, leesy/yeasty notes and a faint floral element all of which folds together nicely and vigorously on the energy driven light to medium bodied palate that gains texture with air, but stays firmly taut with an expressive, subtly luxurious small bubbled mousse…”

Explore more selections from Von Winning on our web store.

Superb Santa Barbara:

Sandhi’s Zuni Chard

When examining the recent vintages of Santa Barbara, you see everything from the good, bad and ugly. 2019 was a much welcomed “reset” after wildfires and drought seen in previous years with rain in the wintertime restoring ground reserves. That energy continued throughout the season, with the growing year recording exceptionally high acids and low yields. This is music to a winemaker’s ears, as it usually promises flavor intensity and a long life in the bottle. The 2019’s we’ve received from Sandhi are no different, offering a fabulous juxtaposition to their 2016 of the same label, both featuring notes of grilled citrus, lime leaf, sea spray and white flowers. There’s also notes of pine and oregano flower on the 2019 that makes it perfect for any course pairing. We were only able to acquire limited quantities of this vintage, so stock up while it’s here!

Vineyard sources for the Sandhi lineup include the legendary cool climate Bien Nacido, best known by the single vineyard bottlings produced by the Bien Nacido estate, Au Bon Climat, and Qupe Winery, and the world-classic, historic Sanford & Benedict. This Chardonnay is a barrel selection from these illustrious vineyards. It was crafted with the wine director at one of SF’s finest restaurants, Zuni Café. We knew it would be a charming and food-friendly wine, but we were stunned by the quality when we tasted a sample bottle last week. Fans of Evening Land will be dazzled by the beauty and elegance through a Californian lens, fans of Sandhi will be impressed by the price.

Available Now:

Sandhi Zuni Chardonnay Santa Barbara County 2019 750ML ($34.95) $24 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Sandhi Zuni Chardonnay Santa Barbara County 2019 750ML ($399.95) $249 special (that’s only $20.75/bottle!)
Winery note
“If you’ve ever sat at San Francisco’s iconic Zuni Café with a plate of oysters in front of you while you wait for the iconic whole roast chicken, you may have had a glass or two of this collaboration between longtime friends Rajat Parr of Sandhi and Zuni wine director Thierry Lovato.  The wine is a barrel selection from some of Sandhi’s iconic Sta. Rita Hills sites, (think Mt. Carmel, Sanford & Benedict) with enough own-rooted, 1973 Wente selection Bien Nacido Chardonnay blended in to warrant a Santa Barbara County designation.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!


Nahe Wine Royalty

Kruger Rumpf is a consistent favorite at Vinopolis, and justifiably so. Sitting at the most northerly point of the Nahe, one of the world’s new favorite German wine regions, they have been growing wine grapes since 1708. Grapes were sold to a regional cooperative until Stefan Rumpf began their estate program in 1984. Their estate holdings now encompass just under 124 acres in both the Nahe and Reinhessen, the majority planted to Riesling. This embrace of innovation has continued into the next generation, with Georg Rumpf transitioning the estate to organic farming practices and spearheading a reduced spray program. Also members of the VDP, an invite-only consortium of German producers largely considered the best in the country (membership numbers less than 200 nationwide), they have clearly not let their size interfere with the quality of their wines.

At Vinopolis we carry a dizzying array of their wines. The majority are Riesling from their estate holdings. The top off-dry wine from the estate comes from the “Dautenpflänzer” from near the town of Munster. This is a prime Grand Cru site of the lower Nahe, a place that yields wines of power and resonance, and Kruger-Rumpf is the primary (and best) landholder. Their top dry wine comes from the Abtei, Im Pitterberg, and Burgberg vineyards, which are more suited to the production of bright, dry bottlings than the Dautenpflänzer. Their “1937” is a single-block bottling of the Abtei vineyard’s oldest and steepest section. Despite the vine age and fantastic quality, it’s just half the price of similar unicorn wines (think Carl Loewen’s “1896”). The Burgberg is one of the top GG sites in the upper Nahe, tiny and impossibly steep, and the Kruger-Rumpf version shows off the classicism and elegance of the site.

Highlights In Stock Now from Kruger-Rumpf:

Kruger-Rumpf Abtei ‘1937’ Riesling Trocken, Nahe 2018 750ML ($41.95) $36 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Grapelive 94-96 points
“The 2018 barrel sample of Kruger-Rumpf’s Abtei 1937 was stunningly gorgeous with brilliant details, ripe extract density, vivid mineral tones and vibrant acidity showing a purity and vitality of youth, but with the complexity and length of its old vine material. Georg Rumpf has crafted a Trocken beauty here with layers of delicacy and substance. This juice is on par with almost any GG, making it an incredible value already. Be sure to book your allocation of this ultra-limited bottling from Terry These and importer Skurnik Wines. You will not be disappointed, I know I will be hustling to get some myself. The regular Abtei offering is one of my new favorite Nahe Rieslings and while I love all the latest Kruger-Rumpf wines, especially from the Grosse Lage: Münsterer Dautenpflänzer, Münsterer im Pitterberg and Dorsheimer Burgberg, as well as exotic Rumpf’s Scheurebe plus their off dry Kabinett, Feinherb and wonderfully balanced Spatlese(s) I have become obsessed with the Bingerbrücker Abtei im Ruppertsberg vineyard and wines. This ’18 starts with subtle aromatic charm with orange blossom, rosewater, flinty stones, salt lick and quinces before thrilling the palate with energy and white peach, tangerine, lime intensity, verbena, mint tea and tart green apple. This light/medium dry Riesling is brisk and racy, at first but gains depth and builds with air in the glass adding some leesy texture, it is totally thrilling and will only get better with bottle age. Terry Theise adds that, Kuger-Rumpf’s vineyards are farmed sustainably; bees are kept nearby to facilitate pollination and aid in overall bio-diversity. Periodically sheep are allowed to roam the vines helping to control underbrush. All vineyards are hand harvested to ensure that only optimally ripe grapes are selected. Stefan believed that “you can’t improve wine in the cellar, only make it worse…” and Georg has continued his cellar work with this philosophy in mind, which to me shows in wines like this fantastic Abtei.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Kruger-Rumpf Dorsheimer Burgberg Riesling Grosses Gewachs, Nahe 2018 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Grapelive 94+ points
“Coming from a tiny incredibly steep Grand Cru site, the Burgberg Vineyard, that is set on volcanic and quartz soils near Munster in the village of Dorsheim. The Kruger Rumpf Burgberg GG is one of the most exciting wines of vintage at this small winery… It is fantastically mineral-driven dry Riesling. This latest set of wines, especially the Rieslings, from Georg Rumpf and his family are some of the best yet from this estate. The GG’s and the Premier Cru Trockens are gorgeous wines. No one is going to want to miss these 2018 Nahe offerings, especially the Pitterberg GG, the Abtei Erste Lage 1937 old vine, one of my secret favorites and this beautifully detailed Burgberg GG. Rumpf has turned to mostly all organic practices, and the Burgberg parcel is farmed organic. [He] prefers to do natural fermentations, or Sponti, with his Cru wines with the GG’s getting less aging in large cask, Stuckfass, to allow less reduction and enhance generosity, while retraining freshness and vitality in the wines. [It] shows here in this barrel sample of Burgberg… These Kruger-Rumpf GG’s are some of the best values out there, they really deserve much more attention, as do the lesser bottlings and their wildly tasty Scheurebe, which is one of the best examples in Germany. The Kruger-Rumpf winery, which dates back to the 1790’s, is focused on purity and the expression of the distinctive terroirs in the family’s holdings, but only began making estate labeled wines in 1984 when Georg’s dad Stefan began crafting small production bottlings. Now, mostly retired Stefan has turned things over to his sons Georg and Philipp, who are continuing the traditions here with a renewed energy and technical skill. [Their work] impresses Terry Theise, their importer, who considers Kruger-Rumpf one of best under the radar estates in the region. [Theise] notes that Kruger-Rumpf is innovative and is always striving to reach new levels of quality. I visited Kruger-Rumpf in the fall of 2016 at harvest time and was thrilled with the stylish wines I found and was blown away with the individual vineyards they farm and the hard work they have been putting in the restore the Abtei site. The iron rich volcanic and quartz influenced 2018 Burgberg GG starts with white flowers, stone fruits and vibrant citrus before expansion on the medium full palate with layers of lime/tangerine, apricot, green apple, papaya, bitter pit white peach and white cherry fruits along with steely form, spearmint, verbena, mouthwatering saline, exotic spices and subtle leesy elements. This is going to be a legendary wine and is already showing Georg’s signature finesse and vinous personality. It has masses of potential and its delicacy is utterly delicious! There’s a lot to admire at Kruger-Rumpf these days and this crisp 2018 Burgberg is a stunning effort that gains with air in the glass and will more so with a few years in bottle.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Kruger-Rumpf Munsterer Pittersberg Riesling Spatlese GK, Nahe 2018 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
David Schildknecht-Vinous 95 points
“Picked at the end of October but with minimal botrytis, this certainly stands in magnificent contradiction to my vintage generalization that picking past the middle of that month was not advantageous. Unlike its counterpart form the Dautenpflänzer, this was raised in cask, and was allowed to ferment to a lower level of residual sugar. It comes off as a riper, richer sibling of the corresponding Im Pitterberg Riesling Kabinett, its gloss merging with creaminess, yet with fresh white peach and lime juiciness complementing ripe quince and serving for animation and refreshment. The finish is unexpectedly electrifying in its vibrancy and mouthwateringly saline, and gains stimulating counterpoint from peach kernel piquancy, peach fuzz prickle and a crystalline sense of stone-showering mineral impingement. (If there is a second, “regular” Im Pitterberg Spätlese from this vintage, I am not aware of it.)”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $49.99

Caruso e Minini: Gem of the Tyrrhenian
When you think of Sicilian wine, your mind probably goes to Mt. Etna right off the bat. However the whole island of Sicily produces wine, including the world famous fortified wine Marsala. Located only 12 miles from the ocean, Caruso has been making wine since the late 1800’s. However it wasn’t until the 1990’s did they ever bottle their own wine, previously contracting out to the cooperatives of Marsala. With holdings encompassing almost 300 acres at almost 1000 feet above sea level these are some of the best examples of “New Sicily” winemaking and production. Their portfolio is entirely composed of indigenous Sicilian varietals, including the exceedingly rare Perricone. Liked to Barbara by wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson it’s a juicy yet herbaceous red that is spectacular with pizza or anything else based in red sauce. 

Caruso e Minini Arriving ETA July 23rd:

Caruso e Minini Naturalmente Bio Catarratto Sicilia 2019 750ML ($21.95) $18 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 90
points “Made entirely with organically framed Catarratto grapes, this zesty white opens with aromas of Spanish broom, chamomile and white stone fruit. The savory, linear palate offers juicy Meyer lemon, honeydew and Bartlett pear alongside bright acidity. It closes on an almond note. -Kerin O’Keefe”

Caruso e Minini ‘Terre di Giumara’ Frappato – Nerello Mascalese Terre Siciliane IGT 2019 750ML ($17.95) $14.90 pre-arrival special

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Caruso e Minini Naturalmente Bio Nero d’Avola 2019 750ML (21.95) $18 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 88
points “Made with organic grapes, this has aromas of ripe black-skinned berry, new leather and crushed Mediterranean herb. On the medium-bodied palate, polished tannins accompany ripe Marasca cherry, star anise and a hint of carob. Bright acidity keeps it fresh. Drink through 2022. -Kerin O’Keefe”

Caruso e Minini Naturalmente Bio Perricone Terre Siciliane IGT 2019 750ML ($21.95) $18 pre-arrival special

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau Sansonnet:

A Cellar-Worthy Gem @ PnP Pricing

Those that say the Right Bank does not produce wines of structure and power should explore Chateau Sansonnet. Unlike the other soils in Saint Emilion which are predominantly clay based, Sansonnet is situated at the top of a plateau, making their soil primarily limestone with a marginal percentage of clay for topsoil. This composition and aspect paid off brilliantly in 2018. The site escaped climatic issues that arose in the vintage, resulting in perfectly ripe and healthy fruit. This is evident when tasting, with a spectrum of black, blue and purple fruits with an undercurrent of vanilla, cloves and graphite. Raised in 100% new oak this is something to purchase in multiples and try over the course of a couple decades. It’s drinking beautifully now with almost endless potential.

Chateau Sansonnet Arriving ETA September:

Chateau Sansonnet Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2018 750ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 96+
points “This estate has been on fire of late and that doesn’t appear to have changed with the 2018 Château Sansonnet. Revealing a dense purple hue as well as a young, unevolved bouquet of pure crème de cassis, graphite, crushed violets, bouquet garni, chocolate, and distinct chalky minerality, it delivers remarkable purity, full-bodied richness, silky tannins, and flawless balance. A wine that builds slowly with time in the glass, offering a beautiful mix of richness, elegance, and length, it’s as good, if not even better than the 2016. Don’t miss it!”
Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2018 Sansonnet is super-impressive right out of the gate. In recent years, Sansonnet has been opulent. The 2018 captures all of that richness but also has an extra kick of vibrancy that works so well in balancing things out. The style is still concentrated, and there is plenty of new oak, but it all works so well together. Inky red fruit, chocolate, plum, rose petals and spice linger on the exotic finish. The 2018 is so expressive today. Moreover, it is flat-out delicious.”
James Suckling 96 points “Blackberry, black truffle, red tile and walnut on the nose. Full-bodied with a very dense, polished palate of ripe, firm tannins and beautifully pure fruit. Transparent and gorgeous. This will age nicely. Try after 2024.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 94+ points “The 2018 Sansonnet is a blend of 90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Cabernet Franc. With 15% alcohol and a deep garnet-purple color, it opens a little broody, offering glimpses at tar and damp earth notes before bursting forth with expressive plum preserves, blueberry pie and licorice scents, followed by hints of cedar chest and pencil lead. Full-bodied, rich and impactful in the mouth, the generous black fruits are nicely framed by firm, rounded tannins and loads of freshness, finishing long and earthy.”

Shop our entire selection of red Bordeaux!

Sauternes Season

Sauternes Arriving ETA Late July:

Chateau Raymond-Lafon Sauternes 2006 750ML ($49.95) $38 pre-arrival special 
Wine Spectator 91
points “Unctuous, sporting apricot, glazed pear and creamed melon flavors, with a lush coconut-tinged finish. A nice floral hint weaves in and out, adding length and vivacity, too. Drink now through 2020. 2,165 cases made. — JM”

Sauternes Arriving ETA September:

Chateau d’Yquem Sauternes 2015 375ML ($269.95) $219 pre-arrival special
Lisa Perrotti-Brown – 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!”
Wine Enthusiast 96-98 points “Barrel Sample. This wine is ethereal. It certainly offers attractive honey and bitter orange flavors but also a fresh character that gives the wine lift and crispness. It is, of course, going to age magnificently, although it is so delicious and refreshing now.”

Chateau Climens Sauternes Barsac 2004 375ML ($59.95) $44.50 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 95
points “This wine is well balanced, rich and unctuous, the sweetness and denseness so carefully blended with acidity, orange zest and dry botrytis. It is a gorgeous, ripe wine, intense but retaining its freshness. -Roger Voss”
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2004 Climens is beginning to open up nicely – no surprise given that this Barsac always needs a decade in bottle. The nose has a delicacy that is uncommon for a youthful Climens, unfurling with subtle scents of caramelized butter, dried honey, mint and lemon thyme, but immediately identifiable as Climens. The palate is viscous on the entry, with Climens’ trademark spiciness lurking under the surface. This is very harmonious and focused – probably just beginning to enter its drinking plateau. I suspect that it will never reach the heights of the 2001 or 2009, but is a very commendable “second tier” Climens. Drink now-2035.  Tasted February 2014.”

Chateau Coutet Sauternes Barsac 2016 750ML ($69.95) $51.90 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 97
points “One of the top sweet wines in this report is the 2016 Château Coutet, which has the vintage’s plush, opulent style as well as thrilling purity and good acids. Pineapple, white flowers, sugared peach, and honeyed notes all emerge from this full-bodied, layered, balanced Barsac that’s already impossible to resist yet will evolve gracefully 2+ decades.”
Decanter 96 points “Oh that’s lovely. Ginger and sumac spice, and a gorgeous richness with the perfect balance of minerality. Rich but pure botrytis character and gently curling smoky notes leap out of the glass. Amazing persistency, easily one of the best wines in the tasting. This is excellent; succulent and mouthwatering.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 95 points “With coaxing, the pale lemon colored 2016 Coutet slowly unfurls to give a myriad of preserved lemons, pineapple pastry, almond croissant, fresh ginger and lime blossoms scents with nuances of chalk dust, white pepper, star anise and cedar. Rich, seductive and yet exquisitely balanced, the satiny-textured palate has layer upon layer of citrus and savory notions, finishing very long and spicy.”
Wine Enthusiast 95-97 points “95–97. Barrel Sample. This wine is dense, mingling spicy nutmeg along with superb ripe honey and marmalade flavors. With its balanced acidity and opulence, it is going to be a great wine. -Roger Voss”
James Suckling 95 points “The vibrant, tropical fruit-coulis character draws you into this concentrated and elegant Barsac. Then the crisp acidity and a wave of lemon and mineral character comes through, driving the finish out in the direction of the horizon. Drink or hold.

Chateau Coutet Sauternes Barsac 2009 375ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Decanter 96
points “On clay over limestone soils, relatively cool compared to Sauternes, this has a purity and freshness that is striking and moreish. Full of the quince, candied orange, truffle, apricot and lemon curd that you hope for in a quality sweet Bordeaux, coupled with lime blossom, ginger and citrus zest adding poise and character. Drinking Window 2020 – 2042.”
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 96 points “[Reviewed 2019] Pale to medium gold colored, the 2009 Coutet leaps from the glass with warm apple pie, dried mango, fresh straw, lemongrass, ginger and crème caramel notes. The rich, concentrated, unctuous flavors are lifted by amazing freshness, finishing epically long, layered and with a tantalizing nuttiness.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “Very lightly toasty, this is more floral for now, with lively honeysuckle and pineapple notes up front, giving way to richer hints of warm brioche, fig, glazed pear and lemon shortbread that should emerge more with time. The long, lacy finish has the poise and balance for long-term cellaring. Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle. Best from 2014 through 2034. 5,000 cases made. — JM”

Thank you from the team at Vinopolis!

Be well & drink well.