Sunday Night Newsletter 7-31-22

 In This Newsletter:

New Week – New Arrivals

Pie Rupestris:
Masterpiece Barolo from Cappellano

Champagne de Venoge

Collector’s Corner:
California Listicle, Part 2


New Week – New Arrivals


Ross & Bee Maloof Oak Ridge Vineyard Gewurztraminer, Columbia Gorge 2021 750ml ($34.95) $29 special, 11 bottles in stock now
Dry, extended skin-contact fermentation. Certified organic. Columbia Gorge AVA.

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

France – Chablis

“This venerable 66-hectare Chablis estate, owned by Beaune’s Maison Albert Bichot, boasts enviable holdings—including fully 25 hectares of premier and grand cru land, the fruit of which is harvested by hand—that are complemented by purchased fruit… Cécilia Trimaille—a former assistant vineyard manager at Château Margaux—took the reins here in 2018 and disclaims any intention to radically alter an aesthetic that emphasizes purity and incisiveness, while simultaneously displaying plenty of appetite to make incremental improvement in the vineyards and cellar… I’m looking forward to following Long-Depaquit’s evolution over the years to come.” –William Kelley, Wine Advocate

Albert Bichot Domaine Long-Depaquit Blanchot, Chablis Grand Cru 2018 750ml ($119.95) $89 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“This wine’s nose opens with subtle apple freshness followed by lemon brightness. The palate immediately shows rounded, chalky depth, filling the mouth with chalky yeastiness that is brightened and cooled by lemon. The heat of 2018 is well managed in this elegant wine, expressed in juicy ease but anchored in cooling depth, with a subtle whisper of oak. Drink 2025–2040. -Anne Krebiehl MW”
Decanter 94 points “The Bichots’ parcel runs from the top to the bottom of the slope on the Fyé side of the Grand Cru and is a comparatively sizeable plot of 1.5ha. Fresher and less marked by bitter notes than the rest of the producer’s range in 2018, this has the terroir’s classic freshness and focus, with zesty, mineral-edged acidity, a hint of vanilla spice and chalky freshness and length. Blanchot was one of the stand out sites this year. Drinking Window 2020 – 2028.”

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Albert Bichot Domaine Long-Depaquit Bougros, Chablis Grand Cru 2019 750ml ($119.95) $89 special, 12 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 93-94 points
“Super fragrant and attractively ripe peach aromas with a very lively and pure attitude. The palate offers such attractive and succulent ripe peaches and a sleeve of lemon, piercing right through to the long, fresh finish. Drink over the next five years.”
Burghound 93 points “Once again there is sufficient wood influence to merit pointing out on the aromas of green fruit, petrol, dried peach and shellfish nuances. The delicious and powerful yet relatively sleek big-bodied flavors flash plenty of muscle if not much refinement on the markedly saline, bone-dry and lingering finish. This robust effort will also need at least some patience as it’s presently markedly compact.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Albert Bichot Domaine Long-Depaquit Les Preuses, Chablis Grand Cru 2019 750ml ($119.95) $89 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Burghound 94 points
“Ample but not dominant wood doesn’t completely mask the equally exotic white and yellow orchard fruit scents that exhibit enough Chablis typicity to be persuasive. There is once again very impressive volume and mid-palate density to the long, caressing and balanced finale where a refreshing touch of bitter lemon character slowly emerges. This is a powerful Preuses that will require at least a few years to fully integrate the wood treatment and to develop more overall depth.”

Italy – Piedmont

Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo Bussia, Barolo DOCG 2017 750ml ($64.95) $59 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Kerin O’Keefe-Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“Editor’s Choice. Rose petal, crushed herb and woodland berry aromas mingle with hints of forest floor and vanilla. Full-bodied and elegantly structured, the delicious palate doles out raspberry compote, ripe cherry, licorice and wild herb before closing on a salty note. Noble tannins provide firm support. Drink 2027–2032.”
James Suckling 95 points “Ripe strawberries and flowers on the nose with hints of iron. Full-bodied with round tannins that are very velvety and flavorful. Lots of juicy fruit. Wonderful length. Needs three to four years to come together. But impressive. Try after 2024.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2017 Barolo Bussia is elegant, layered and mysterious, all of which make it incredibly appealing. Black cherry, spice, licorice, menthol, pine and espresso all open effortlessly in the glass. Deceptively light in its mid-weight structure, the 2017 delivers tons of flavor intensity and character. There is so much to like.”

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“José Lovaglio, the son of famous Argentine winemaker Susana Balbo, earned his enology degree at UC Davis in 2008 and in recent years has made the Bodini and Crios de Susana Balbo wines at the Dominio del Plata winery. The objective of his own project, Vaglio, launched in 2014, is to showcase a range of different Malbec terroirs; he takes the same approach to extraction with all of these wines and, except for the limited Miperal bottling, they all carry the same gentle price tag. Lovaglio makes his wines in a refurbished dairy in El Peral in the northwest corner of Uco Valley. Thanks to his use of concrete vats and the facility’s thick walls, he is able to ferment his wines without refrigeration.” –Stephen Tanzer, Vinous Media

“Here, he produces single vineyard wines from different sub-regions and soil types, all vinified in the same way with minimal intervention and oak contact. Each of Jose’s wines represent different stages of his life.” –David Bowler wine

Vaglio Blanco, Tupungato 2020 750ml ($19.95) $16 special
Case-12 Vaglio Blanco, Tupungato 2020 750ml ($239.95) $169 special (that’s only $14.08/bottle!)
Brazos Wine importer note
“This is a blend of 90% Chardonnay and 10% Semillon from El Peral in the Uco Valley, Mendoza. The nose is lively and bright with notes of green apple, pear, whites flowers, and a little green pea. The palate is well balanced with dense fruit and crisp acid.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Vaglio Wines Temple Malbec, Anchoris 2018 750ml ($19.95) $16 special
Case-12 Vaglio Wines Temple Malbec, Anchoris 2018 750ml ($239.95) $169 special (that’s only $14.08/bottle!)
James Suckling 93 points
“This is always a delicious red with lots of crushed-berry and walnut character. Full-bodied, dense and juicy. Lots of old-vine character. Succulent. Drink now.”

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Vaglio Wines Chacra Malbec, Agrelo 2018 750ml ($19.95) $16 special
Case-12 Vaglio Wines Chacra Malbec, Agrelo 2018 750ml ($239.95) $169 special (that’s only $14.08/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
James Suckling 93 points
“A dense, compact malbec with intense, blackberry and wet-earth character. Full body. Creamy texture. Tangy and delicious on the finish. Ends with green tobacco and tar. Excellent. Drink now.”
Brazos Wines importer note “This is 100% hand harvested Malbec is from a single vineyard in Agrelo, Lujan de Cuyo. The wine is dark with notes of dark fruits like plum, raisin and blackberry pie. The supple tannins and hint of oak lead to a round, smooth finish wrapped in caramel and walnuts.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $18

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Pie Rupestris: 

Masterpiece Barolo from Cappellano

One the most heralded names in traditional Barolo is Cappellano, a producer known for old-school, age-worthy wines that are some of the most profound bottlings in the region. Fifth generation owner and winemaker Augusto Cappellano uses long macerations and ages his wines only in large botti (casks). The results can often be austere in youth, but blossom over the decades into sensual wines that are intellectually and hedonistically satisfying, if you can find them. Case in point is the Pie Rupestris. Cappellano produces only about a dozen barrels of this glorious wine in a typical vintage, so just a handful of cases make their way to the States every year. Unlike investment wines that seem like a permanent fixture in online auctions, collectors of these bottles tend to cellar to drink rather than resell. It’s a miracle to find any bottles for sale, especially multiple vintages of excellent provenance from this old vine parcel. 

“The vineyards in Gabutti in Serralunga d’Alba are unanimously regarded as one of the most prestigious ‘crus’ of the Barolo-producing area. They are located at the centre of a land with an extraordinary vocation for growing nebbiolo, a vine which produces wines with remarkable character and structure perfect for ageing. This is the birthplace of Barolo OtinFiorin Piè Rupestris: it is 100% Serralunga in its character ‒ a paradigmatic wine thanks to its severe and authoritative tone, with an austere but also generous and sharing manner ‒ as well as in the organoleptic characteristics: liquorice, juniper, tar, balsamic notes, spices and undergrowth are just the most recognisable and typical expressions of an aromatic patrimony which sketches, year after year, a veritable narration of the land…” –Winery note

Please Note: Cappellano is adamantly opposed to the idea of numeric score being attached to a wine and requests his wines not be reviewed.  As a result, these wines lack the scores we usually publish. We encourage you to read Antonio Galloni’s praise and take note of the long drinking windows. Though the reviews may lack digits—we’re sure you’ll find drinking these precious bottles to be an off the charts experience.

In Stock Now:

Cappellano Otin Fiorin Pie Rupestris – Nebiolo, Barolo DOCG 2003 750ml ($279.95) $219 special, 1 bottle in stock now

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Cappellano Otin Fiorin Pie Rupestris – Nebiolo, Barolo DOCG 2007 750ml ($359.95) $299 special, 3 bottles in stock now
“Cappellano’s 2007 Barolo Otin Fiorin Piè Rupestris-Nebioli is a real head-turner. Gloriously ripe and opulent, the 2007 fleshes out beautifully in the glass, with ample fruit to match its broad, sweeping personality. Simply put, the 2007 Rupestris embodies all the best qualities of the year. I imagine the 2007 will reward readers with many years of fine drinking. Today, it is exceptional. Drink 2017-2042.” Antonio Galloni, Vinous, Not Rated, Tasted May 2017

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Cappellano Otin Fiorin Pie Rupestris – Nebiolo, Barolo DOCG 2008 750ml ($399.95) $369 special, 1 bottle in stock now
“One of the wines of the night, the 2008 Barolo Otin Fiorin Piè Rupestris-Nebioli is dazzling. All of the best qualities of this great Barolo vintage come through in the Barolo Rupestris. A wine of precision and crystalline, weightless beauty, the 2008 will leave readers weak at the knees. It is a wine to own, cellar and savor for the next thirty years. The translucency and vibrancy of the fruit is pure 2008. Drink 2018-2048.” Antonio Galloni, Vinous, Not Rated, Tasted May 2017

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Cappellano Otin Fiorin Pie Rupestris – Nebiolo, Barolo DOCG 2010 750ml ($499.95) $379 special, 8 bottles in stock now
“This third flight comes to a rousing finish with the 2010 Barolo Otin Fiorin Piè Rupestris – Nebioli. A towering, statuesque Barolo, the 2010 dazzles from the very first taste. It is, of course, too young, but it is a wine I chose for this tasting because I wanted Vinous readers to have a chance to experience it. When all is said and done, 2010 is the greatest young vintage I have tasted at Cappellano. Drink 2025-2060.” Antonio Galloni, Vinous, Not Rated, Tasted October 2020

Cappellano Otin Fiorin Pie Rupestris – Nebiolo, Barolo DOCG 2013 750ml ($419.95) $399 special, 1 bottle in stock now
“The 2013 Barolo Barolo Rupestris is insanely beautiful. Here the flavors are dark and intense. Black cherry, plum, lavender and menthol add to the wine’s sense of gravitas. The 2013 is endowed with serious power and intensity, and yet it has an element of inner sweetness that adds sensuality. In many ways, it reminds me of the 1989, which remains a tremendous Barolo. Powerful, explosive and tannic, the 2013 has much to offer. Drink 2023-2053.” Antonio Galloni, Vinous, Not Rated, Tasted February 2018

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Champagne de Venoge

De Venoge is an old-school Champagne House that’s relatively unknown in the United States, a fact that means even their finest and rarest wines continue to be undervalued relative to their peers. This is no better exemplified than their prestige cuvee, the LXV bottling. Named after Louis the 15th, who first authorized the bottling of Champagne, it sees extensive aging on its lees and is a true monument of vintage champagne. 

De Venoge was established in Champagne in the first part of the 19th century by Swiss born Henri-Marc de Venoge and his son Joseph.  Today the House has a strong following in Europe for good reason—they source from some of the best vineyards in Champagne and produce prestige cuvées of immense quality, built on long lees aging. The Louis XV, for instance, is sourced exclusively from Grand Cru villages such as Verzenay, Bouzy, Avize, and Le Mesnil. The resulting wines capture the essence of classical Champagne and are in high demand in Europe’s top restaurants. 

De Venoge prestige cuvée is an outstanding wine for lovers of truly mature Champagne in all its glory, offering a rich, creamy texture from the extended lees aging married to surprisingly fresh, mineral personalities. There’s a reason this House has such a following overseas: they produce stunning aged wines that are ready to go, so consumers can enjoy the magic on release. Now’s your chance to try them for yourself! These are perfect “occasion” wines that make for fantastic birth year or anniversary gifts.  

In Stock Now:

Champagne de Venoge Louis XV Brut Millésimé, Champagne 2006 750ml ($219.95) $189 special, 16 bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 96 points
“The assemblage of the 2006 Louis XV Brut Millésimé is about the same as the 1995 and 1996—composed of 50/50 Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, all from grand cru villages. The only difference is that the Chardonnay from Le Mesnil-sur-Oger (10% of the assemblage) spent 12 months in oak barrels. Disgorged in January 2017 (dosage: six grams per liter), the 2006 has a golden color and opens with a deep, ripe, elegant and vinous bouquet with toasty and chalky lemon and fresh white fruit flavors. On the palate, this is an intense, round, fresh and complex Louis XV with great purity and finesse. The wine opens on the palate like a soufflé, coating the whole palate without any pressure or weight—gorgeous! This is a delicate and fresh yet well-structured and persistent Louis XV whose intense and long but weightless finish reveals lovely, almost juicy fruit concentration with perfectly integrated freshness and lasting minerality that seems to give additional structure. The 2006 shows a lot of Chardonnay features right now and drinks perfectly today; however, it can be kept under perfect conditions for decades. Just keep it in the box, because the bottle is white and nothing makes a Champagne age faster than exposure to daylight. (Tasted in November 2017 from Lot LL15067017BT.)-SR”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Champagne de Venoge Louis XV Brut Millésimé, Champagne 2008 750ml ($299.95) $249 special, 12 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 95 points
“This is really punchy and broad-shouldered with muscular structure and citrusy undertones. Full body. Lightly tannic and a fresh and vivid finish. This is the first vintage without malolactic fermentation ever. One for the cellar. Better in 2022.”
Wine Advocate 93+ points “The straw-yellow/white-golden colored 2008 Louis XV Brut Millésimé blends 50% Chardonnay (20 % from Avize, 15% from Oger and 15% from Mesnil) with 50% Pinot Noir (41.5% from Verzenay and 8.5% from Bouzy). Disgorged in January 2018 with a dosage of six grams per liter, the 2008 displays a clear, pure, fresh, chalky-tinged and vinous nose with lemon, white fruits, brioche, hazelnuts, white blossoms and some caramel notes. Pure, lean, fresh and elegant on the palate, with a lingering hazelnut flavor, this is a straight yet complex cuvée with grip and a long, well-structured and textured finish. This 2008 is still terribly fresh and should benefit from further bottle aging. For the moment, I am missing the mouth-filling generosity of the 2006 and 1995. Mind that this is the first vintage of de Venoge’s prestigious Louis XV where the base wines didn’t undergo malolactic fermentation! Total production: 10,326 bottles. Tasted October 2018.”

Champagne de Venoge Louis XV Brut Rosé Millésimé, Champagne 2002 750ml ($219.95) $189 special, 23 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 93 points
“Harmonious, with fine intensity, offering rich notes of spice cake, toasted almond, dried cherry, grilled plum and smoky mineral. Almost velvety in texture, with juicy acidity that brings you back for another sip. Delicious. Drink now through 2022. 54 cases made.”

Champagne de Venoge Tour Eiffel 130 Anniversary Edition, Champagne NV 750ml ($99.95) $79 special, 4 bottles in stock now
Envie de Champagne
“The Maison De Venoge was founded in 1837 by Henri-Marc De Venoge. Innovation in the production and marketing of champagnes were the founding values of this of champagne house, which won the Excellence Price in Philadelphia in 1876. A few years later, in 1889, during the World Fair in Paris, the house became the partner of the event. This exhibition celebrated the centenary of the French Revolution and it is on this occasion that the Tower designed by Gustave Eiffel has been inaugurated. This monument, with a height of 312 meters during its construction can now 337 meters in 2019 following the installation of antennas. In addition to its cultural and tourist use, the Eiffel Tower is used as a transmitter for TV and radio programs. The Eiffel Tower, object of discord at the time of its creation has become today the most visited paying monument of France. It has about 7 million visitors a year. It is also inseparable from the history of the French capital. For the 130 years of this first collaboration, De Venoge signs a beautiful partnership with the company in charge of the exploitation of the iron lady (surname of the Eiffel Tower). This collaboration is obvious because of  the common history of both parties but also because of the characteristic shape of the bottles of the Princes cuvée. This limited edition vintage is named “Cuvée Princes Tour Eiffel”. Only 10,000 bottles have been marketed for this partnership.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Arriving in September:

Champagne de Venoge Cordon Bleu Brut, Champagne 2002 750ml ($99.95) $79 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 93 points
“A core of mineral-accented smoke, spice and honey notes is wrapped with flavors of glazed apricot, lemon preserves and candied ginger in this vibrant and well-balanced version. Creamy, with a lasting finish. Drink now through 2025. 3,000 cases made. — AN”

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Collector’s Corner:

California Listicle, Part 2

Practicing both dry and organic farming, Christian Moueix’s Dominus Estate produces one of the most terroir expressive wines in the entirety of California. 

Dominus Estate Christian Moueix, Napa Valley 2019 750ml ($359.95) $319 special, 4 bottles in stock now
Dominus Estate Christian Moueix, Napa Valley 2019 1.5L ($799.95) $649 special, 1 magnum in stock now
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, The Wine Independent 100 points
“Composed of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Cabernet Franc, and 6% Petit Verdot, the 2019 Dominus was harvested from September 29 to October 10. It was aged in 40% new oak. Deep garnet-purple colored, the nose slowly unfurls to unveil beguiling floral notes of candied violets and rose oil over a core of crème de cassis, blackberry pie, and plum preserves, giving way to notions of licorice, Indian spices, iron ore, and crushed rocks. Full-bodied, the palate is jam-packed with taut, muscular black fruit layers, intertwined with gorgeous floral and exotic spice accents, and framed by firm, finely grained tannins with seamless freshness, finishing long and mineral-laced. Tightly coiled with so much latent energy waiting to explode, this is a spectacular expression of the vintage and Napanook vineyard. Still tightly coiled, give it a good 6-7 years in the cellar before broaching, and allow it a few hours in a decanter if consumed before 2032.”
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 98 points “The 2019 Dominus is blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petit Verdot and 4% Cabernet Franc, aged in 40% new French oak. Impressively dark-hued in the glass, it yields scents of cherries and cassis on the nose—or is it black cherries and redcurrants? Subtle notes of mocha, pencil shavings and almost Graves-like earthiness wind through the concentrated, medium to full-bodied palate, giving it a sense of savory gravitas, while the finish is silky and long, leaving a lingering residue of soft tannins and mouthwatering freshness.”

This nearly 40-year old “First Growth” of Napa winegrowing estate is a highly esteemed for its Bordeaux-style red. Their 2017 represents one of the finest wines of the vintage in Napa.

“Yields are down over 40%, so there’s not much to go around, but it’s certainly another fine vintage for this landmark estate that will keep for 30 years or more.” –Jeb Dunnuck

Harlan Estate, Napa Valley 2017 750ml ($1,499.95) $1,199 special, 3 bottles in stock now
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate 97+ points
“Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2017 Harlan Estate needs a little coaxing to reveal captivating iron ore, red currant jelly, cloves and crushed rocks scents with a core of warm cassis, Black Forest cake and boysenberries plus a waft of pencil lead. Medium to full-bodied, it has a firm, grainy texture with a lively backbone and loads of earthy layers, long and mineral laced. This should be one of the longer-lived wines coming out of the 2017 vintage.”
Jeb Dunnuck 97 points “The Grand Vin is the 2017 Harlan Estate, and this beauty just about jumps from the glass with its pure cassis and blackcurrant fruits as well as notes of tobacco, graphite, crushed stone, and spice. With a full-bodied, expansive mouthfeel, building, velvety tannins, and a layered, seamless style that offers way more pleasure than just about every other wine in the vintage, bottles can be enjoyed any time over the coming 20-25 years.” 

Hundred Acre ‘Kayli Morgan Vineyard’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2004 750ml ($699.95) $549 special, 6 bottles in stock now
Robert Parker 98 points
“The wild man of Napa Valley, Jayson Woodbridge, has turned out one of the superstars of 2004, with the 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Kayli Morgan. His wines always tend to be gorgeous young, offering up an impression that they’re not going to last. But his first vintage, 2000, seems to get better and better, even though it was spectacular when released. The 2004, which was harvested in September, shows an almost Pomerol-like sweet mocha, kirsch, black currant and deeply fruited mouthfeel. It is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, but the clay soils of his vineyard seem to give a sweetness of tannin and a voluptuous character to the texture. This wine oozes rich, concentrated fruit, is light on its feet and has gorgeous purity, a multidimensional mouthfeel and a stunning finish. Silky black currant, kirsch, licorice, mocha and caramelized fruit make for a stunningly full-throttle, brilliant 2004 to enjoy over the next 15 or more years.” RP

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Lou Kapcsandy’s biography reads like a Horatio Alger story in a lot of ways.  Man flees communist Hungary, lands in the US and makes a name (and business) for himself. Grows to love the wines of Bordeaux, so he starts an import company before he stumbles upon a once-legendary vineyard in Napa that has been ripped up and needs to be revived.

And that’s where we pick up. In 2000 Lou Kapcsandy discovered that the old Beringer State Lane vineyard, primary source for the Private Reserve Cabernet program, was ripped out due to phylloxera and was for sale. He bought the twenty acre vineyard, replanted it and starting in 2005 began producing some of the most lauded wines to come out of the Napa Valley. The late Denis Malbec, formerly of Chateau Latour in Bordeaux, got the project up and running and served as a consulting viticulturist and winemaker, producing wines of depth and power.  These are Napa wines with a Bordeaux spine and sensibility.

Kapcsandy Family Winery State Lane Vineyard Grand-Vin Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2009 1.5L ($799.95) $699 special, 1 magnum in stock now
Antonio Galloni 98 points
“The 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Grand Vin opens with the most beguiling bouquet imaginable. Freshly cut flowers, mint, cinnamon and licorice all make an appearance as this vivid, beautifully delineated wine opens up in the glass. A model of total finesse and elegance, the 2009 wraps around the palate with what feels like endless layers of aromas and flavors. This totally seamless, polished Cabernet Sauvignon is virtually impossible to resist today, but it will be even better in another few years. The 2009 is 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc.”

“Bob Levy has been the winemaker at Harlan Estate since its inception, and, along with owner Bill Harlan, is in the process of making Bond as prodigious as Harlan Estate. Martha McClellan is the winemaker for two Napa Valley superstar cult wineries, Blankiet and Sloan. As I have written in the past, these efforts are produced by two quiet, somewhat reclusive individuals with extraordinary resumes, limitless talent, and a perfectionist, nearly obsessive attitude toward making world-class wines.” -Robert Parker, Wine Advocate

Levy & McClellan Red (Cabernet Sauvignon), Napa Valley 2006 750ml ($799.95) $599 special, 2 bottles in stock now
Robert Parker 95 points
“The 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon displays beautifully sweet blue and black fruits intermixed with espresso roast, smoked meats, chocolate, and scorched earth. Dense purple in color, deep, rich, broad, with plenty of tannin and concentration as well as noticeable oak, this wine is a massive Cabernet meant for long-term cellaring. I wouldn’t touch a bottle for 6 to 8 years, then watch it unfold over the following 25-30.”
Stephen Tanzer 94 points “(includes bits of cabernet franc and petit verdot) Deep red-ruby. Complex, inviting aromas of cassis, graphite, menthol and sexy new oak. Very ripe but bright and classic, with terrific lift to the cassis, mineral and dark chocolate flavors. This boasts remarkably deep fruit for seven-year-old vines and finishes with very sweet, suave tannins and superb length. Husband-and-wife team Bob Levy and Martha McClellan, who are also responsible for making Harlan, Bond, Blankiet and Sloan, consider their 2005 to be a bit more layered and complex, but this one is also a star of its vintage.”

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Peter Michael ‘Les Pavots’ Estate Red, Knights Valley 2019 750ml ($249.95) $219 special, 12 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 99 points
“This is very perfumed with blackberry and pine-cone aromas, as well as raspberries and black cherries. Full-bodied with firm, velvety tannins that are tight-grained. Creamy and beautiful. Currant and graphite flavors come through. Lightly chewy at the end. 60% cabernet sauvignon, 21% merlot, 14% cabernet franc and 5% petit verdot. Drink after 2025.”

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