September 24th Newsletter 2016

Gosset 2002 Offer / Pierre Peters ‘Chetillons’ 2008; Bruno Giacosa Falletto ’07; Chateau du Retout; Huet Arrivals; New Flat Rate Shipping Addition; Wines Currently Trending; Saint Joseph Mini-Feature; Allegrini Estate Highlight; Castello di Ama Featured Wines; Great Champagne in the Pipeline; Chateau Gigault 2005; Chateau Meyney 2009; September Sales – Ending 9/30!

Wine of the Weekend!

Gosset ‘Cuvee Celebris’ 2002

Champagne New Arrival

A very fine offering from Champagne’s oldest estate – founded in 1584! The 2002 ‘Cuvee Celebris Extra Brut’ is composed of roughly equal parts of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir sourced from vineyards in Aÿ, Bouzy, Verzy, Chouilly and Cramant. This is the current release of the wine, which carries on a tradition begun in 1988 and continuing in ’90, ‘95’, and 1998.
Gosset Cuvee Celebris Extra Brut Millesime, Champagne 2002 750ML ($149.95) $119 special, 23 bottles available
Antonio Galloni 96 points
“Magnificent in its complexity and pure breeding, the 2002 Extra Brut Celebris has it all. The Extra Brut style confers the signature Gosset drive, while extended time on the lees has given the wine just enough texture and body to fill out nicely. In the meantime, the aromas and flavors have mellowed into those that are typical of Champagne entering the first plateau of its maturity. The 2002 is vinous, fleshy and super-expressive, yet retains striking freshness throughout. Candied lemon peel, apricot jam, honey, mint, spices and sage form a compelling fabric of flavors and textures in a knock-out Champagne that is peaking today. The 2002 is 52% Chardonnay, 48% Pinot Noir from vineyards in Aÿ, Bouzy, Verzy, Chouilly and Cramant.”
Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2002 Celebris Vintage Extra Brut displays a noble, clear, fresh and subtle bouquet with white fruit and brioche flavors intertwined with mineral aromas. Silky textured and highly elegant, this full-bodied yet delicate blend of 48% Pinot Noir and 52% Chardonnay is clear and straight on the palate, revealing a ripe and intense, yet refined fruit. It has a persistent and complex, firmly structured, stimulatingly pure and salty finish. Great finesse and ethereal lightness here, with great purity and mineral tension. It also has the intensity of perfect fruit in the long and persistent finish. A great Champagne for the next ten and probably many more years.”

And finally! Here today (but sure to disappear soon), the Pierre Peters Chetillons 2008! More than worth the wait, a superb vintage from Pierre Peters, who released this wine a year later than the 2009 – it’s that good….
Pierre Peters Cuvee Speciale ‘Les Chetillons’ Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Brut 2008 750ML ($149.95) $136 special, 36+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 95 points
“This harmonious Champagne offers fine interplay between power and finesse, with ripe poached apricot, rich lemon meringue pie and spun honey flavors married to chalky minerality and focused acidity. The overall impression is elegant and fresh. Drink now through 2030.”

Bruno Giacosa Falletto 2007
Epic Wine – Available here, At Last!

Any discussion of Barolo and Barbaresco could begin and end with mention of Bruno Giacosa, undisputedly one of Italy’s most esteemed producers.Born into the family wine firm, Bruno Giacosa started his career at the tender age of 15 as a grape buyer, sourcing fruit for his father and grandfather, and then for many of Barolo’s large houses. In 1960, he started his own company and, with a profound passion for Piemontese wine handed down for three generations, became famous for crafting some of the most prestigious single-vineyard Barolos and Barbarescos in all of Piedmont.

While Bruno was one of the first in the region to fully understand the importance of site selection – he began bottling his crus separately in 1967 – he didn’t own any property until the early 1980s. His first purchase was his long-revered Falletto vineyard in 1982, and, by the late 1980’s, Giacosa’s search for the best vineyard sources initiated the process of acquiring 22 hectares of vineyards throughout Serralunga d’Alba, La Morra, and Barbaresco. With a wide breadth of some of the best vineyards in the area, Bruno Giacosa produces an extensive range of high-profile bottles. Starting in 1996, Giacosa has divided into two winery names based on whether the grapes are estate grown. The “Azienda Agricola Falletto – di Bruno Giacosa” labels represent the estate vineyards (Barolo Falletto, Barolo Rocche del Falletto, Barbaresco Asili, Barbaresco Rabajà), while the “Casa Vinicola Bruno Giacosa” labels are used for wines produced from grapes purchased from historical grape growers(Barbaresco Santo Stefano, Barbaresco Gallina, Barolo Villero). Prior to 1996, all his wines were made under the “Casa Vinicola Bruno Giacosa” name.

Bruno Giacosa’s winemaking philosophy combines a respect for tradition and conservative winemaking with the selected use of modern technology to obtain the best expression of each vineyard’s terroir. He is convinced that great wines begin in the vineyard with the production of grapes cultivated by experienced growers. With a true belief that wines were better in the past, Giacosa focuses on simple and traditional methods of winemaking, managing to bring out a richness of flavor and an intensity of character that has secured his spot as one of the most respected Piedmont producers.
We are extremely proud to offer Msgr Giacosa’s 2007 Barolo ‘Falletto’ bottling, listed below. Please feel free to respond directly to this email or call 503-223-6002 to secure your bottles!

Falletto di Bruno Giacosa ‘Falletto’, Barolo DOCG 2007 750ML ($249.95) $189 special, 12 bottles available
Wine Spectator 96 points
“An elegant, fruity style, boasting raspberry, cherry and floral aromas and flavors. This is pure and delicate for the commune, with fine intensity, finesse and depth. The tannins mesh beautifully with the wine’s silky texture, ending with an excellent finish. Just surprisingly open and approachable. Best from 2014 through 2032”
Stephen Tanzer 95 points “Good deep red. Perfumed, complex nose melds plum, red cherry, mocha, tobacco, wild herbs and spices. Sweet, silky and seamless, with almost painful intensity to its fruit if not yet as complex in the mouth as on the nose. Healthy acidity accentuates the wine’s perfume. Finishes with very suave tannins and outstanding floral persistence. Said Dante Scaglione: “I thought 2007 in Serralunga would be great from the moment of the harvest.”
Also Available Here Now from Bruno Giacosa:

It’s Been a Hit Thus Far…

Low Price, Plenty of Points, High Octane Washington Syrah…
The Motor City Kitty is Back on Tour!

K Vintners MCK 2013 by rock-star wine demigod Charles Smith:
Charles Smith K Vintners ‘M.C.K. Motor City Kitty’ Syrah 2013 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 22 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95-97 points
“Coming from an older vineyard planted next to Dick Bushey’s Bushey Vineyard, Smith’s 2013 M C K Syrah (this stands for Motor City Kitty) is inky colored and off-the-charts good, with layers of black fruits, olive tapenade, crushed rock and pepper. Massive, full-bodied, decadent and voluptuous, it’s certainly not for those craving lightweight aromas and flavors and dishes out immense pleasure.”

White Bordeaux With Class – but without the Classification

Chateau du Retout

The Chateau du Retout story begins with the end of many a Bordeaux estate following the phylloxera epidemic. After the vineyards and cellars withered, only an injection of capital and passion could bring a return to winemaking. Enter the Kopp family, which bought three extinct chateaux in the Medoc in the late 1950s. Together, the new property claimed Cru Bourgeois classification and began making traditional Cab-Merlot blends. Then, in 2009, the Kopps embarked on production of a white wine like no other found in Bordeaux, or France for that matter. After grafting white varietals on 5 acres of Merlot, they began growing Le Retout Blanc: 41.5% Gros Manseng (the grape behind Jurançon whites), 40% Sauvignon Gris (a relative of Sauv Blanc), 9.5% Savagnin (of Jura vin jaune fame), and 9% Mondeuse Blanche (a rarity from Savoie). The result is a luscious, dry white of incomparable character. A Medoc-grown white that breaks barriers and eludes all Bordeaux classification, but impresses even Wine Spectator.
Chateau du Retout ‘Le Retout Blanc’, Bordeaux 2014 750ML ($29.95) $21.90 special, 36+ bottles available
Wine Spectator 91 points
“Alluring, with lemon curd, citrus oil, white peach and candied grapefruit peel notes streaking along together, backed by a twinge of quinine that beautifully offsets the rich feel. Gros Manseng, Sauvignon Gris, Savagnin and Mondeuse Blanche. Drink now through 2017.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Meanwhile, another deliciously uncommon white wine has re-arrived:

Domaine Sigalas Assyrtiko – Athiri, Santorini, Greece 2015 750ML ($29.95) $27 special, 36 bottles available
Wine Advocate 94 points
“The 2015 Assyrtiko, Sigalas’ monovarietal Santorini, comes in at 14% alcohol. If this isn’t the unoaked wine of the vintage so far, it is pretty close and certainly on my short list. As always, Sigalas is not necessary the big blockbuster, but the winery provides superb concentration in its own right. Yet, the result always seems very graceful. When you realize how many layers there are, it seems hard to believe because it shows so well on first taste. It doesn’t seem overly big. It doesn’t seem to be hiding anything. Yet, it is. The wine always shows better with a few years in the cellar, or a day or two later. (Or, decant it. Do an experiment: taste half a bottle undecanted and compare to a decanted half bottle.) The tastings on the second day were really what sold on me this. It was fine on the first day, but impressive on the second. The concentration, finesse, balance and structure always serve this wine in good stead. This year, its purity of fruit seems even more impressive. It is a gorgeous Sigalas, mingling understatement, fine persistence and purity. Do yourself a favor and give this about three years in the cellar (maybe five). They always blossom. It is a wine that will not only hold, but improve. As I’ve stated recently, this category needs some reevaluation upwards, so it is not really that this is so unique. That said, this is still an exceptional Sigalas.”

Our Current
Shipping Promos:

Welcome to the club, Colorado!

Along with OregonWashington, Idaho, and California,
we now offer flat rate shipping to Colorado. Here’s the scoop:
Single orders of any quantity of wines qualify for the flat rate;
this does not apply to orders held in storage for any reason
or multiple orders consolidated into one shipment.
The flat reach for each state is, as follows:

-to Oregon for $17,
 –Washington & Idaho for $20,
-and California & Colorado for $25

Take Advantage of the Flat Rate!

Huet New Arrivals
Sec & Demi-Sec

…With More to Come Next Week

Domaine Huet, founded in 1928 by Victor Huet and his son Gaston, is the premier name for the finest Vouvray; some call it the best Chenin Blanc on the planet. Made according to tradition and terroir, with utmost respect for nature, Huet wines can keep for over a century. Every wine lover should try one, be it an older vintage or new, a sec, demi-sec, moelleux, or sparkling.
Today, Domaine Huet owns 74 acres across three parcels. Le Haut-Lieu vineyard produces the most straight-forward wines. Le Mont’s low-yielding vines make supple wines. And Le Clos de Bourg, whose shallow, clay-limestone soil drains especially well, provides wines of great structure and ageing potential. The three vineyards are vinified separately.

This was one of France’s pioneers in biodynamic viticulture. Horses still plough between the rows. In the winery, the recipe remains relatively simple. Fermentation takes place half in stainless steel, half in old oak, without malo. After only six months, the wines are bottled and then laid to age in a cellar dug from tuffeau rock, no air conditioning required. From here the Huet work is done: the rest is up to nature, Vouvray, and what eventually tastes like divine intervention. Who wouldn’t want to acquire some of that?

As the leaves start to change colors and fall, it’s time to tuck golden Vouvray into the cellar. And what better producer to choose for this than Domaine Huet? We’ve got the Sec and Demi-Sec new vintages in stock now, with the Moellux arriving next week.

Just Arrived from Huet:
Domaine Huet Vouvray Le Haut Lieu Sec 2015 750ML ($37.95) $30.90 special
Wine Spectator 93 points
“Solidly ripe, with a full-bodied core of ginger, pear and persimmon notes allied to a racy spine that lengthens the finish, letting ginger, quince and green almond accents play out. This should age well in the cellar. Best from 2017 through 2027.”Domaine Huet Vouvray Le Mont Sec 2015 750ML ($39.95) $33.60 special
Wine Spectator 93 points
“A light echo of baked apple leads off, followed by quince, powdered ginger and verbena notes at the core. The long, minerally finish features rippling acidity. Still tight, so let this unwind in the cellar. Best from 2017 through 2027.”

Domaine Huet Vouvray Clos du Bourg Demi-Sec 2015 750ML ($47.95) $39 special
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Quite ripe, with tropical mango and papaya notes mixed with peach, apple and quince flavors. Pretty ginger and heather details fill in the background, while the finish shows a well-embedded mineral edge, imparting tension to match the opulence. Best from 2017 through 2030.”
Importer note “This ancient, walled vineyard has the estate’s shallowest, stoniest soils. The wines are rich and intense. Many consider this to be Vouvray’s finest single vineyard site. Size: 6 hectares Orientation: South-facing Soil: Limestone-rich clay soils — the stoniest of the three crus. Viticulture: The vines are farmed using biodynamic methods and harvested by hand. Vinification: Undergoes temperature-controlled fermentation in large, old oak demi-muids as well as stainless steel vats. There is no encouragement of the malolactic fermentation, thus many Huet wines remain rich in malic acid, a character that brings an age-worthiness to the wines. The concentration of residual sugar in demi-sec cuvées is traditionally around 10-20 g/l.”

Domaine Huet Vouvray Le Haut Lieu Demi-Sec 2015 750ML ($41.95) $36 special
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Features a wide range of apple, green melon, ginger and green plum notes gliding throughout, with the off-dry edge imparting a flattering feel. Latent minerality lengthens the finish. Best from 2017 through 2030.”

Also: Arriving Next Week from Huet…

Get ‘Em While They’re Hot!

Wines Currently Trending:

Andre Clouet Grande Reserve Brut, Champagne  NV 750ML ($39.95) $36 special, 33 bottles available
Antonio Galloni 90 points
“The NV Brut Grande Reserve emerges from the glass with layers of hazelnut, pear, spice and dried flower aromas. This rich, creamy wine impresses for its balance and sheer richness. I loved it.” AG
Domaine Servin Bougerots, Chablis Grand Cru 2014 ($59.95) $49 special, 20 bottles available
Wine Advocate 91-93 points
“Marc Cameron described his 2014 Chablis Grand Cru Bougros as the “big bad boy of the group.” It has a glorious bouquet, perhaps partly because unlike other vintages there is some new oak in the blend. But it works well. The palate is clean and fresh with bright citrus peel and orange zest notes, the wood element more expressive toward the finish. It perhaps lacks Chablis typicité, but you’ll still polish off a bottle without a murmur of complaint.”
Burghound 90-93 points “Ample but not dominating oak influence surrounds the ripe green fruit and floral aromas that also exhibit plenty of Chablis typicity. The big-bodied, muscular and overtly powerful flavors possess good concentration and impressive amounts of dry extract, all wrapped in an explosively long finish where the wood reappears. This is not really my style but it is clearly a Bougros of quality.”
Stephen Tanzer–Vinous 91+ points “(done entirely in oak): Brisk aromas of lime, white peach, spearmint, white pepper and fresh-cut grass are complemented but not overwhelmed by a strong note of cinnamon spice. Juicy, savory and nicely concentrated; less oaky in the mouth than on the nose, with the orchard fruit and lime flavors leading to a saline finish featuring a touch of sweetness from the wood and good tannic grip. A very promising Bougros.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Chateau Coutet, Barsac 2003 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 9 bottles available
Wine Spectator 95 points
“Honey, apple tart and lemon rind. Full-bodied, medium-sweet and very spicy with intense flavors of mace, apple and honey. Long finish. Thick and powerful. Best after 2010.”Cristom Marjorie Vineyard Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills 2014 750ML ($79.95) $69 special, 9 bottles available
Winery note
“Originally planted in 1982, the Marjorie Vineyard is one of the oldest vineyards in the Eola-Amity Hills AVA and home to some of the oldest vines we farm. Marjorie is a gently sloped East-facing hillside found between 480 feet and 615 feet above sea level. Named for Paul Gerrie’s mother, the first single vineyard estate Marjorie was released in 1994. A true example of terroir, the soil, elevation, climate, and vine age meet and produce a wine capable of great depth, complexity, and long-term age ability.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Montevertine Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 18 bottles available
Antonio Galloni 92-94 points
“The 2013 Montevertine is pliant and expressive, with lovely mid-palate resonance and gorgeous depth. Today, the Montevertine comes across as a bit raw and unpolished, especially next to the sublime Pergole Torte, but it nevertheless shows ample potential as well as pedigree, not to mention multiple dimensions to its personality. This sample was a bit unsettled, which suggests it might have been racked recently. Still, the overall texture is impossible to miss.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $58
Condado de Haza Crianza, Ribera del Duero 2012 750ML ($26.95) $18 special, 34 bottles available
Wine Spectator 93 points
“This rich red shows a deep core of plum, bramble and mineral, with notes of loam and game that impart a savory character. Solid tannins support a thick texture, while balsamic acidity keeps this balanced. Austere but harmonious. Drink now through 2024.”Altesino Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany 2011 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 36+ bottles available
Case-12 Altesino Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany 2011 750ML ($599.95) $549 special, 2 cases available
Antonio Galloni 92 points
“Altesino’s 2011 Brunello di Montalcino opens with beguiling aromatics. Sage, licorice, menthol and sweet tobacco flesh out nicely as the wine shows off its ample, broad personality. The tannins could use another year or two to soften, but all the elements are very nicely balanced throughout. This gracious, silky Brunello will drink well for the next decade-plus.”
James Suckling 92 points “This is long and delicious with lovely cherry, chocolate and fresh walnut flavors. Linear yet open with persistence and joy. Drink now.”

Northern Rhone Mini-Feature

Saint Joseph Two Ways

The vineyards of the northern Rhone seem to have been laid out with the cellar in mind. Hermitage and Cote-Rotie deserve priority seating due to their phenomenal concentration and class, but you may as well bury them deep. These wines require extended ageing, which is why the northern Rhone also provides wines like St. Joseph. Flanking the great river along its western bank, the 30-mile stretch of Appellation St. Joseph becomes shadowed early in the afternoon. As a result, the wines offer a lighter, though still rich and pure, taste of Syrah that matures quickly enough for early drinking. Meanwhile, the same arrangement exists for white wines. St. Joseph produces soft, dry, full-bodied Marsanne that suggests the greatness of Hermitage blanc, for far less money. Nature has been kind to the northern Rhone, and the wine lover ought to pop open some St. Joseph red and white in heart- (and wallet-) felt appreciation.We’ve selected a stand-out St. Joseph, from iconic northern Rhone producers, in either color so that you may taste this appellation’s beauty and character yourself.

Paul Jaboulet Aine Saint-Joseph Domaine de la Croix des Vignes 2012 750ML ($69.95
) $59 special, 31 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95 points
“The only Saint Joseph produced, the 2012 St Joseph Domaine de la Croix des Vignes is another incredible effort from this team. Coming from steep, granite soils and a vineyard located just beside the famed Vignes de Hospice, this beauty knocks it out of the park with its massive minerality, currants, rare beef and tapenade-like aromas and flavors. Ripe, medium to full-bodied, beautifully textured and still lively and elegant, it too will knock your socks off over the coming 15-20 years.” WA

M. Chapoutier Saint-Joseph Les Granits Blanc 2011 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 19 bottles available
Robert Parker 96 points
“The brilliant 2011 St.-Joseph Les Granits Blanc offers up scents of caramelized citrus, orange blossoms and honeysuckle. It is full-bodied with loads of fruit, and as of now, the telltale minerality has not yet penetrated the lavish fruit notes.” RP

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $72

AllegriniThe Flagship of Veneto Wine

For over 400 years, the Allegrini family has played an important role in the Valpolicella Classico region’s grape growing and wine making traditions. In the 1960s, Giovanni Allegrini led the estate into modernity: encouraging strict grape selection and modern practices to improve quality as needed, while retaining the positive traditional practices that set this region apart.The estate is composed of 90 hectares of vineyards on steep hill slopes and along the river beds that stay dry during most of the year. The primary grape is Corvina, which provides the naturally high acidity and dark cherry aromas for which all levels of wine are known. Other grapes, such as Corvinone and Rondinella, add color, body, and additional aromatic notes to the final blends. The typical wine is surprisingly light in body, which gave rise to the practice of drying the grapes to add body and depth, resulting in the passito, ripasso and Amarone styles of wine.

Allegrini’s is dedicated to producing single vineyard wines that highlight these unique, local varieties. La Poja vineyard rests in the small, triangular plateau within the La Grola vineyard. The soils are rich in limestone and small stones. It is 100% Corvina which was planted in 1979. The situation and soil result in excellent ripening and phenolic maturation. The result is a fantastic wine for rich roasts and strong cheeses.

The standard Valpolicella is the traditional blend aged in stainless steel, producing a fresh, fruit forward wine – think pizza, pasta with fresh tomatoes or antipasta. The Palazzo della Torre is a ripasso wine, a “baby Amarone,” produced from a single vineyard. It combines the freshness of a Valpolicella with the dried fruit aromas of an Amarone. A great all-around wine that works with sausages, tomato or cream sauces, grilled meats and roasted vegetables. The La Grola vineyard was purchased by the Allegrini family in the late 1970’s and is one of the more unique crus with the addition of 10% Syrah to the mostly Corvina based wine. Enjoy with earthy mushrooms or flavorful meats such as lamb.

Available Here Now from Allegrini:
Allegrini Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOCG, Veneto 2010 750ML ($79.95) $59 special
Wine Advocate 92 points
“The 2010 Amarone della Valpolicella Classico takes a modern spin on a local classic. The blend is 90% Corvina Veronese with smaller parts Oseleta and Rondinella that add color intensity. The wine’s leading aromas revolve around Morello cherry and dark blackberry. But this New World Amarone also undergoes 18 months in new barrique. Its secondary aromas are vibrant and bold with cumin, dark spice and barbecue smoke. In the mouth, this Amarone offers velvety tannins and thick consistency.”Allegrini La Poja Monovitigno Corvina Veronese IGT, Veneto 2010 750ML ($89.95) $69 special
Wine Advocate 93 points
“The 2010 La Poja is the latest bottling of one of Italy’s most unique wines. This is a pure expression of the Corvina Veronese variety, the chief component of Amarone wines made according to the appassimento process. La Poja allows this finicky grape to sing solo with some 20 months in new barrique followed by eight months in the bottle. The results are outstanding with pristine cherry and blackberry followed by spice, leather and tar. For best results, age this wine another four or five years.”

Allegrini Valpolicella, Veneto 2014 750ML ($17.95) $16 special
Case-12 Allegrini Valpolicella, Veneto 2014 750ML ($199.95) $166 special (that’s only $13.83/bottle)
James Suckling 91 points
“A fresh, fruity red with lemon, dried-cherry and raspberry aromas and flavors. Medium body, bright acidity and a clean finish. Drink or hold.”

Allegrini La Grola Veronese IGT, Veneto 2012 750ML ($29.95) $26 special
Case-12 Allegrini La Grola Veronese IGT, Veneto 2012 750ML ($349.95) $279 special (that’s only $23.25/bottle!)
James Suckling 93 points
“A red with lots of tannin, mint and berry character. Fresh herbs. Full body, firm tannins and a fruity finish. This is very structured for La Grola. Try in 2016.”

Allegrini Palazzo della Torre Veronese IGT, Veneto 2012 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-12 Allegrini Palazzo della Torre Veronese IGT, Veneto 2012 750ML ($249.95) $189 special (that’s only $15.75/bottle!)
James Suckling 92 points
“Aromas of dried earth, dried raspberry and blueberry. Full body, chewy tannins and a fresh, bright finish. Lively and delicious. This is always a delicious blend of corvina and rondinella. Drink now.”

Castello di Ama
Reaching for Perfection

Ama is a modern estate comprising 500 acres of land, 200 of which are vineyards. These vineyards are divided into five important parcels; San Lorenzo, Bellavista, La Casuccia, Bertinga and Montebuoni. In the 1970s, four families formed a partnership and purchased the property with the goal of producing world-class wines. Castello Di Ama is unique, employing its best Sangiovese to produce Chianti Classico, unlike many Tuscan producers who have chosen to blend their best Sangiovese into Vini da Tavola or Super Tuscans. The San Lorenzo is one of three Gran Selezione Chianti Classico wines from Castello di Ama.  Gran Selezione is a new classification for Chianti Classico, representing the very pinnacle of wine production from the region. 

Castello di Ama ‘San Lorenzo’, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG 2011 750ML ($57.95) $41.90 special, 36 bottles available
Case-12 Castello di Ama ‘San Lorenzo’, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG 2011 750ML ($549.95) $432 special (that’s only $36/bottle!), 9 cases available
Case-6 Castello di Ama ‘San Lorenzo’, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG 2011 750ML ($259.95) $233 special (that’s only $38.83/bottle!), 2 half-cases available
James Suckling 96 points
“This has a dusty character on the nose with soil, dried fruit and blueberry. Flowers too. Full body, firm tannins and a fresh finish. Tight and structured. Shows wonderful depth of fruit and beauty. Chewy. Better in 2016.” JS

Castello di Ama Haiku Toscana IGT 2010 750ML ($69.95) $49 special
James Suckling 95 points
“A very powerful red with layers of dense, ripe fruit and firm, savory tannins. This is extremely structured and superb quality. Full body. Long, intense finish. Shows the winemaking prowess of Ama. A blend of 50% sangiovese, 25% merlot and 25% cabernet franc. Better in 2017.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points
“Beautifully vivid and nuanced in the glass, the 2010 Haiku impresses for its purity and clarity. Sweet tobacco, licorice, mint, cedar and dark red stone fruits are all woven together in a fabric of sensual elegance and total finesse. The 2010 is gorgeous today, but my sense is it also has enough pedigree to develop nicely in bottle. The style is built on grace and finesse.” AG
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $53

Fantastic Champagnes,
Absolute Values…

Arriving Mid-October!

Perseval-Farge C. de Pinots Premier Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $37 pre-arrival special
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 90 points
“(55% Pinot Noir and 45% Pinot Meunier; 7 g/l dosage): Light yellow. Ripe pear and nectarine on the musky, floral nose and palate. In a fleshy, ample style, showing a sweet touch of vanilla on the back half. Closes smooth and broad, with building spiciness and a hint of smokiness.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $47
The next best price is $44.89
Perseval-Farge ‘La Pucelle’ Premier Cru Brut Nature, Champagne NV 750ML ($69.95) $59 pre-arrival special

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Jose Michel & Fils Blanc de Blancs Brut, Champagne 2007 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
This is the only listing USA today!
Thierry Triolet Cuvee Grande Reserve Blanc de Blancs, Champagne NV 750ML ($39.95) $29 pre-arrival special
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91 points
“(11 g/l dosage): Pale gold. Intense citrus and orchard fruit aromas are complicated by notes of honeysuckle, tarragon and iodine. Chewy tangerine and pear skin flavors become silkier and spicier with aeration. Shows a seductive floral quality on the clinging finish, which features a dusty mineral nuance and a touch of buttered toast.” JR
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $38

Chateau Gigault 2005

Arriving October 23rd

Chateau Gigault Cuvee Viva, Cotes de Bordeaux Blaye 2005 750ML ($29.95) $24 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 93 points
“Wow. Lots of bright and intense fruit on the nose with blueberries, milk chocolate, and flowers too. Full-bodied with seamless tannins and a long intense finish. The fruit here is compelling and beautiful. Give it time to come together, but already impressive.”
Wine Spectator 91 points “Ripe cherry and berry, with a melange of fresh herbs, olive and a hint of coffee and chocolate on the nose. Medium to full-bodied, intense and silky, with loads of fruit pushing through the long finish. Delicious even now. This is always excellent value” WS

Italian ClassicsElio Grasso, Produttori, Petrolo…
Arriving October 24


Elio Grasso Ginestra Vigna Casa Mate, Barolo DOCG 2008 750ML ($149.95) $119 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 98+ points
“Licorice, tar, menthol, spices and crushed rocks are some of the nuances that flow from the 2008 Barolo Ginestra Vigna Casa Mate. This dramatic, large-scaled Barolo impresses for its towering depth, complexity and sheer pedigree. Tar, menthol, licorice and spices wrap around the fleshy, deep finish. The Ginestra Vigna Casa Mate is considerably more powerful than the silkier Gavarini, but both wines represent the height of finesse in Nebbiolo. Anticipated maturity: 2018-2038.”Produttori del Barbaresco Montestefano, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2008 750ML ($69.95) $51.90 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 95+ points
“The 2008 Barbaresco Riserva Montestefano is exquisite and harmonious from start to finish. Among the more structured 2008s, the Montestefano is the wine that most hides its tannin, as the fruit is intensely perfumed, rich and totally seductive. Today the Montestefano provides the illusion of being relatively accessible, but it is virtually certain to shut down in bottle. The 2008 boasts striking aromatics, seemingly endless layers of fruit and power to burn. Readers can think of the Montestefano as a synthesis of Montefico, Ovello and Rabaja. Not bad, to say the least. Anticipated maturity: 2018-2048.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $59
Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG  2008 750ML ($69.95) $51.90 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 95+ points
“The Produttori’s 2008 Barbaresco Riserva Ovello is a reference point wine for the village, even if, in truth, Ovello is a fairly diverse zone with many exposures. Firm, steely tannins support a core of expressive fruit in this vibrant, energetic Barbaresco. The 2008 is going to require considerable patience, but it is striking, even today. Sweet floral notes reappear on the vivid, utterly breathtaking finish, adding lift, precision and vibrancy. This is a stunning wine from the Produttori. The style is built on tension, energy and focus; in other words, all the qualities Ovello is known for. Anticipated maturity: 2018-2048.” WAPetrolo Torrione Valdarno di Sopra, Tuscany 2009 750ML ($34.95) $28 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 94 points
“Aromas of lightly stewed fruit, with hints of fresh herbs and spices. Full bodied, with soft tannins and a fruity finish. This is balanced and long, with a caressing finish. Best ever. Mostly Sangiovese, with a hint of Merlot. Better after 2013” JS

Chateau Meyney 2009

Pauillac Pre-Arrival
December ETA
Chateau Meyney, Saint-Estephe 2009 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Chateau Meyney, Saint-Estephe  2009 750ML ($549.95) $438 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 93 points
“Green olives, spices and currants on the nose. Full body, with velvety tannins and a juicy finish. Lovely layers of ripe tannins and ripe fruit. Best after 2018.”
Robert Parker 92 points “I clearly underrated this wine from barrel. The finest wine made at this estate since 1982, this opaque black wine is a sleeper of the vintage, with oodles of blackberry fruit interwoven with hints of charcoal, forest floor, licorice and damp earth. Deep, rich, chewy, full-bodied and opulent, this is a fabulous Meyney that, because of its low acidity and very ripe tannin, can be drunk in 3-4 years or cellared for two decades. Bravo!”

Don’t miss out…

September Sales!
Ending 9/30

Vega Sicilia Unico Gran Reserva, Ribera del Duero, Spain 2007 750ML ($379.95)
[$269] Sale: $249; 16 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95 points
“They have kept 2005 and 2006 for now, and they are releasing the 2007 Único from a lighter vintage that is accessible already; they will even sell 2008 before 2005 and 2006. 2007 was a cold vintage in Ribera and it produced lighter, fresher wines (perhaps not as problematic as 2008, but there was also frost in 2007). The wine might be a tad lighter than other vintages, but it’s more structured than 2008; it combines elegance and power, is nicely balanced and should be able to develop in bottle for many years, although the quick evolution of the bottle once opened made me hesitate about its drinking window. Let’s hope I’m wrong. 80,000 bottles produced.” WA
Wine Spectator 94 points “This harmonious red is balanced and deep, offering ripe plum and currant flavors, with black pepper, tobacco, licorice and mineral accents. Delivers plenty of structure, with well-integrated tannins and lively acidity. The wine remains graceful through the long, spicy finish. Drink now through 2027”
…the average price is $348!
Casanova di Neri Cerretalto, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2010 750ML ($379.95) [$319] Sale: $296; 15 bottles available
James Suckling 100 points
“This is very tannic and powerful with loads of currants, spices and hints of wood. So much stone and mineral character to this. Violets, too. Full-bodied, tight and structured. Massively dense yet agile and bright. It goes on for minutes. Needs at least three or four years to soften. Try in 2020.”
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 99+ points “This is a towering achievement. It is delightful on every level. The 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Cerretalto is an expressive, exuberant and stunning wine that opens to a dark ruby color and rich consistency. The bouquet is never-ending with immediate intensity that is followed closely by finely-tuned aromas of black cherry, spice, grilled herb, clove, tobacco, wet earth and white truffle. A gorgeous display of elegant mineral tones rises from the bouquet with time. Later, those aromas turn to cola, licorice and tar. This wine showed an impressive evolution over the 24 hours I tasted it and delivered solid improvements each time. The mouthfeel is silky and smooth, and there’s enough power here to move the wine over the palate in seamless fashion. This is a bottle for the back of your cellar.”

Domaine Faiveley Corton ‘Clos des Cortons’ Faiveley Monopole Grand Cru 2011 750ML ($199.95)
[$149] Sale: $119; 36+ bottles available
Antonio Galloni 95 points
“Faiveley’s 2011 Corton Clos des Corton is a fitting conclusion to this great night of wine and food. Intensely saline and pointed, the 2011 impresses for its pure energy and tension. The flavors are vibrant and impeccably delineated in a Burgundy that is all about finesse. This is a great showing from the Clos des Corton.” AG
Stephen Tanzer 94 points “Medium red.  Ineffable nose and palate offer red fruits, minerals, spices and flowers, complicated by game, earth and leather.  Sweet, concentrated and very intense, boasting outstanding density and a fine-grained texture, with salty minerality giving the wine a weightless impression that’s remarkable considering its density.  A strong tannic spine and brisk acidity energize and draw out the finish of this sharply delineated, pristine grand cru.” ST
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $181
Domaine Faiveley Chambertin Clos de Beze Grand Cru 2011 750ML ($349.95) [$279] Sale: $219; 27 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 94 (+?) points
“Medium red.  Highly nuanced yet quite primary on the nose, offering scents of raspberry, underbrush, dried rose, ginger and smoky oak.  Juicy, saline and quite dry, with dark berry and strawberry flavors complicated by an earthy perfume.  Finishes with substantial dusty tannins and excellent length.  With 24 hours in the recorked bottle, this beauty showed a silkier texture and chewy, deep flavors of raspberry and spices that saturate the palate without leaving any impression of weight.  A great effort for the vintage.” ST
Bernabeleva Arroyo del Tortolas, Madrid, Spain 2012 750ML ($41.95) [$33] Sale: $29; 26 bottles available
Wine Advocate 94 points
“The 2012 Arroyo del Tórtolas is one of their single-vineyard reds, in this case it’s a north facing-slope of 1.25 hectares, planted with 2,200 plants per hectare that are 65 years old. The soil is quite thin and poor, rich in granite. Fermentation is carried out in oak tinas (vats), with stems, but on a higher or lower proportion depending on the vintage, and foot trodden. Malolactic fermentation is in used barriques of different sizes (from 225 to 600 liters) made of French oak where the wine ages for one year. This is the plot of vines that gets more complete ripeness, the nose is very sharp and focused, with notes of good ripeness, some pine cone traces, red berries, flowers and dry herbs. The palate is really supple, straight, vertical, with very good acidity (this is harvested earlier than other plots, as the grapes ripen earlier which somehow provides for better acidity) with fine, velvety and elegant tannins. This is a great expression of Garnacha and, even though it’s not cheap, it still represents good value. Bravo!”
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 92+ points “(100% garnacha): Brilliant ruby-red. A highly perfumed bouquet evokes Asian spices, raspberry, potpourri and smoky minerals. Extremely tight on the palate, offering vibrant red fruit and floral pastille flavors and a jolt of blood orange. Opens up slowly on the finish, which clings with excellent tenacity and silky, harmonious tannins. This one should age slowly.” JR
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $37
Caparzo Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2010 750ML ($89.95) [$79] Sale: $69; 36+ bottles available
Antonio Galloni 96 points
“The 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is a big, powerful wine that is going to require at least a few years to soften. Dark and brooding, the Riserva shows the more masculine side of Sangiovese. Black cherry, plum, leather, spice and tobacco all sit on firm beams of acidity and tannin. There is a sense of explosive energy to the 2010 that I find quite appealing, but readers will have to be patient in order to experience the wine at its best.”

…have a nice weekend!