August 16, 2014
New Arrival Champagne
Maison Ruinart was founded in 1729 by Nicolas Ruinart, the nephew of the monk Dom Ruinart who had a passion for and foresaw a future for sparkling wine from the Champagne region. The Ruinart family managed the estate for two centuries. After WWI, the house was headed by Mary Kate Charlotte Riboldi who returned the house to its former glory after the destruction of the war.
The Ruinart Blanc de Blanc is blended from grapes grown in the Premier Cru vineyards in the Cote des Blancs and Montagne de Reims. The wine is matured for three years in the underground chalk tunnels of the estate that are former Gallo-Roman chalk quarries purchased by the estate in 1768. The tunnels are superb for aging wine as they maintain ideal temperature and humidity levels vibration-free. The wine has a bright blend of fresh fruit and floral aromas with background notes of spices. It is an excellent pairing with light seafood and shellfish dishes.
Ruinart Blanc de Blancs Brut NV ($79.95) $51.90 special 3 cases available Stephen Tanzer 92 points “Pale yellow. Complex, high-pitched aromas of orange zest, lemon pith, iodine, smoky minerals, anise and jasmine. Sappy and tactile on the palate, offering impressive volume to its ripe citrus and orchard fruit flavors accented by smoke and minerals. Finishes tangy and long, with lingering smokiness and an echo of anise.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today! The average price in the USA is $75 / 750ml bottle
Italian Invasion New Arrivals from two of Italy’s famed producers
“(Paolo’s) pride in his estate, on the western side of the Chianti Classico zone, is evident at every turn of the road… As we tour the vineyards or taste the wines, there is one theme to which De Marchi returns again and again: the typicity of Chianti. It is, for him, more than a philosophical or stylistic debate. It has to do with the relation of wine to the land on which the vines are grown.” – Stephen Brook (Decanter, May 2006)
Isole e Olena’s vineyards and hilltop estate
“Proprietor Paolo De Marchi has left an indelible and highly personal stamp on Isole e Olena, and all of Chianti Classico for that matter… De Marchi stands apart from many of his colleagues for his vocal opinions and intense dedication to the vineyard above all else. Since taking over his family’s estate… De Marchi has transformed Isole e Olena into a powerhouse.” – Antonio Galloni (Wine Advocate, June 2012)
Paolo and his son Luca, in the vineyard
Isole e Olena was created in the 1950s when the De Marchi family purchased and joined together two hilltop estates “Isole” and “Olena” in the Chianti region. The original Isole portion of the estate was founded in the 1700s as a farm growing a range of goods including grapes and olives. The 50 hectares of top-quality vineyards are on hillsides in Chianti, about 450 meters above sea level. The estate is led by oenologist Paolo de Marchi who took over in 1976. He introduced several French grape varietals including Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. He uses the non-Tuscan varietals as a spice to add refinement and complexity to his wines without trying to overpower the Tuscan character of the wines.
Isole e Olena Wines Arriving August 22nd
Isole e Olena Chianti Classico DOCG 2011 ($24.95) $19.90 special Antonio Galloni 90 points “Sweet raspberry, rose petal and spice notes wrap around the palate in the 2011 Chianti Classico. Soft and enveloping, the 2011 is highly typical of the vintage. In 2011 proprietor Paolo De Marchi used about 10% Syrah to give the wine a little more freshness. Savory herbs, tobacco and licorice add nuance on the finish. The 2011 is an outstanding wine. I would drink the 2011 now and give the 2010 another year in bottle.” Isole e Olena Collezione De Marchi Chardonnay Toscana IGT 2012 ($49.95) $39 special Isole e Olena Syrah Collezione de Marchi Toscana IGT 2007 ($69.95) $59 special Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2007 Syrah Collezione De Marchi bursts from the glass with masses of dark red fruit, smoke and spices, all of which flow effortlessly from this exuberant, caressing wine. This is a first-class effort from start to finish. Expressive aromatics are woven throughout, adding to an impression of total finesse and harmony. Mint, flowers and raspberries linger on the caressing finish. This is a dazzling effort.” Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2005 750ml($79.95) $59 special Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2005 3L ($399.95) $319 special Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2005 Cepparello is striking. It possesses stunning depth and a darker profile of fruit than is typical. The 2005 was quite compact when first released, but what a difference a few years in bottle make. Today the 2005 has begun to blossom into a big, dramatic wine for the year. As was the case throughout most of Chianti Classico, 2005 was shaping up to be a great year until the rains arrived just before harvest. This is a fabulous effort on its own, but especially notable for the vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2030.” AG Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2006 3L ($399.95) $319 special Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2006 Cepparello is a super classic wine. It brings together the best elements of the house style in its breathtaking aromatics, delineated fruit and striking overall balance. All of the elements are in the right place for the 2006 to develop into a spectacular wine. The 2006 stands apart for its nuance, depth and overall detail. Juicy red cherries, raspberries, rose petals and licorice build to the huge, dramatic finish. The 2006 is one of the all-time great Cepparellos. It bears more than a passing resemblance to the stunning 1988. The 2006 has blossomed beautifully in bottle over the last few years, and it is now clear I underestimated its potential. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2036.” AG Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2009 ($79.95) $59 special Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2009 Cepparello is gorgeous. It brings together the radiance and ripeness of a warmer year with the medium-bodied structure of a cooler vintage. Today the 2009 is a bit reticent and appears headed for a period of dormancy. From time to time hints of its ultimate potential come through in attractive layers of dark red fruit. The rich, textured finish bodes well for the future. Paolo De Marchi describes 2009 as a year with a cold spring and a hot summer that also brought hail in early August. The 2009 Cepparello is clearly one of the wines of the vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2019-2034.” WA Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2010 ($79.95) $59 special Antonio Galloni 96+ points “Isole e Olena’s 2010 Cepparello is magnificent. In particular, I admire the way the wine fleshes out in all directions, with seemingly endless layers of dark, mineral-infused berry, plum and pomegranate notes. A primal wine in need of significant cellaring, the 2010 is easily one of the highlights of the year. Bright, saline notes support the precise finish. Today, the 2010 is naturally quite backward and undeveloped, but it should be a gem in another 5-10 years. This is an especially dark, structured Cepparello built for the cellar. The 2010 brightens up with time in the glass, but it remains one of the darker, more brooding wines made in the estate’s history.” Isole e Olena Vin Santo del Chianti Classico 2003 375ML ($59.95) $49 special Decanter Magazine “High-toned nose, rich in dried fruit, marmalade and salted nut aromas. Utterly delicious; intense and crammed with flavour – raisins, figs, orange peel – but relatively light on its feet with cracking freshness.” Isole e Olena Vin Santo del Chianti Classico 2004 375ML ($59.95) $49 special Stephen Tanzer 94 points “Deep amber-yellow. Sexy, kaleidoscopic nose combines exotic tropical fruits, chestnut honey, raisin, dried fig, caramel and a musky iodine note. Then sharply delineated and penetrating on the palate in spite of its honeyed sweetness, with superb acidity giving spine to the dried fruit and ripe citrus flavors. This wonderfully vibrant yet thick and rich Vin Santo coats the mouth on the long, smooth finish. Great stuff.” ST
Isole e Olena Wine Arriving December 2014
Isole e Olena Collezione de Marchi Cabernet Sauvignon Toscana IGT 2010 ($99.95) $79 special Antonio Galloni 98 points “The 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Collezione De Marchi is magnificent. Violets, smoke, plums and cassis jump from the glass in a stunning wine. All I can say is the 2010 is incredible. Just bottled one month ago, the 2010 shows no hard edges, incredibly expressive aromatics and beautifully delineated fruit. The 2010 isn’t a huge wine, but rather one built on exceptional finesse and elegance. It is one of the great wines of what has turned out to be a great Tuscan vintage.”
Isole e Olena Wines Available Here Now
Isole e Olena Collezione de Marchi Cabernet Sauvignon Toscana IGT 2008 ($79.95) $66 special 3+ cases available Antonio Galloni 97+ points “At the beginning of what promises to be a long drinking window, the 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Collezione De Marchi is stunning. Savory herbs, tar, licorice, cassis, graphite and melted road tar seduce the intellectual and hedonistic senses in a wine that has everything. A vibrant, powerful, structured wine underpinned by intense saline notes, the 2008 possesses remarkable finesse and fabulous overall balance. This is another fabulous wine from Paolo De Marchi.”’ Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2005 1.5L ($179.95) $119 special 10 magnums available Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2005 Cepparello is striking. It possesses stunning depth and a darker profile of fruit than is typical. The 2005 was quite compact when first released, but what a difference a few years in bottle make. Today the 2005 has begun to blossom into a big, dramatic wine for the year. As was the case throughout most of Chianti Classico, 2005 was shaping up to be a great year until the rains arrived just before harvest. This is a fabulous effort on its own, but especially notable for the vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2030.” Isole e Olena Cepparello Toscana IGT 2006 1.5L ($199.95) $149 special 4 magnums available Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2006 Cepparello is a super classic wine. It brings together the best elements of the house style in its breathtaking aromatics, delineated fruit and striking overall balance. All of the elements are in the right place for the 2006 to develop into a spectacular wine. The 2006 stands apart for its nuance, depth and overall detail. Juicy red cherries, raspberries, rose petals and licorice build to the huge, dramatic finish. The 2006 is one of the all-time great Cepparellos. It bears more than a passing resemblance to the stunning 1988. The 2006 has blossomed beautifully in bottle over the last few years, and it is now clear I underestimated its potential. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2036.”
Il Poggione – Wines of Montalcino
One of the original producers of Brunello di Montalcino, Tenuta Il Poggione was established at the end of the 19th century by Lavinio Franceschi and is still owned today by the 5th generation of the family, siblings Leopoldo and Livia Franceschi. Il Poggione owns approximately 250 acres of vineyards in the Brunello di Montalcino zone, with 118 acres producing the Brunello Riserva and Brunello wines, the remaining 132 acres produced for the Rosso, as well as scattered plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon and several white varietals. Many of the vines are grown at more than 1,315 feet above sea level and are among the oldest in the appellation, with cool maritime breezes from the southwest the Sangiovese grape reaches its maximum ripeness here, giving fuller and richer wines than anywhere else in Tuscany.
The Il Poggione estate
A historic winery in harmony with its territory, Il Poggione’s guiding principle is to pay meticulous attention to their vineyards. Regular monitoring of vineyard conditions is a priority along with constant efforts to preserve the typical characteristics yet improve grape quality through research and selection. Father and son winemaking team Fabrizio and Alessandro Bindocci coax the best from their privileged vineyard sites, conducting harvest entirely by hand. The wine is made in the traditional method, though modern, state-of-the-art equipment is used, aging the wines in large French oak casks before bottling. The degree of cask aging will vary depending on the vintage, the Rosso sees 12 months in cask, while the Brunello receives an average of 36 months in cask. The Riserva Paganelli, made only in the finest vintages, receives at least one year extra ageing in French oak casks. A benchmark wine capable of ageing, Il Poggione’s typical style is full-bodied and powerful, packed with dark fruit, sweet smoke, and spice flavors.
Il Poggione Wines – Just Arrived
Il Poggione Rosso Di Montalcino 2012 ($29.95) $24 special 12+ bottles available Antonio Galloni 91 points “Il Poggione’s 2012 Rosso di Montalcino bursts from the glass with sweet red cherries, raspberries, pomegranate and spices. This is a superb Rosso to drink now or cellar.”
Il Poggione Brunello Di Montalcino 2007 ($89.95) $69 special 6 bottles available Wine Advocate 94 points “The 2007 Brunello di Montalcino is flat-out sexy. Layers of dark red fruit caress the palate in this round, voluptuous Brunello. Sweet roses, violets, mint and spices appear later, adding further complexity. The 2007 boasts striking inner perfume, radiant fruit and silky, super-refined tannins. Readers are going to have a hard time keeping their hands off this extraordinary wine. As great as the 2007 is today, it will be even better in a few years’ time. This is a fabulous showing from Il Poggione. Anticipated maturity: 2017-2037.”
More Il Poggione – Also Available Now
Il Poggione Brunello Riserva Vigna Paganelli 2006 ($119.95) $99 special 11 bottles available Wine Advocate 97 points “The 2006 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Vigna Paganelli is huge, powerful and totally implosive. The seductive allure of the 2007 is nowhere to be found. Instead, the 2006 is built on a serious spine of formidable tannin and dark red/black fruit. Hints of tar, licorice, rose petals and tobacco inform the powerful, virile finish. The 2006 is going to require considerable patience, but it is clearly a jewel of a wine, even at this early stage. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2046.”
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