Tuesday Night Newsletter 8-9-22

In This Newsletter:

Vinopolis August Sale:
Sweet Deals Are Made Of This

Rosé Roundup

Buckin’ the Price Trend:
Delicious Wines from Bucklin

Sherry Wants To Come Out Tonight

Trending Five Under $50
Collector’s Corner:
Elite Champagne
Vinopolis Wine Shop

Will Be Closed

Wednesday, August 10th

We’re open for our regularly scheduled hours all other days:

10 am – 6 pm

Our webstore never closes!

Vinopolis August Sale:

Sweet Deals Are Made Of This

Brought to you by the letter “A”:

Domaine Alary Cairanne La Font d’Estevenas, Rhône 2018 750ml ($34.95) Was $26, Now $21.90, 10 bottles in stock now
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 93-95 points
“Normally a 50-50 blend of Grenache and Syrah, the 2018 Cairanne L’Estevenas continues the successful run for this cuvée, even though it might be more like 60% Syrah. The volume produced was about half of normal. It combines peppery-herbal notes with violets and blueberries on the nose, then adds raspberries on the medium to full-bodied palate. Supple and almost creamy in texture, it finishes with terrific length and vitality. Tasted twice (once blind), with consistent notes.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Bodega Aleanna ‘Gran Enemigo’ Gualtallary Single Vineyard Cabernet Franc, Tupungato 2015 750ml ($119.95) Was $99, Now $89, 13 bottles in stock now
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 98 points
“Powerful places tend to mark wines in a stronger way than even the vintage conditions or the grape variety, and that seems to be the case with the 2015 Gran Enemigo Gualtallary Single Vineyard. But of course there are elements of both the year—slightly warmer and riper than 2016—and the grape—mostly Cabernet Franc with some 20% Malbec, which is what is planted in the vineyard, with the logical variations depending on the yields of each grape in a given vintage. This is a little more direct than the 2016, powerful and concentrated but balanced and fresh, and it has a little more tannin. As I said, this is more about the high altitude and austere place with all the components in great harmony. You do not notice the alcohol, concentration of tannins or acidity, as it’s all very integrated. All these wines are not about fruit but about soils, about rocks. 3,000 bottles produced.”
James Suckling 98 points “This is such a fabulous red with ripe berries, blackberries and hints of dried mushrooms and black tea. Full body and crystalline tannins that carry the wine on for minutes. Energetic and takes off like a rocket. Extreme, great wine. Drink or hold.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $104
Weingut Leo Alzinger Ried Hohereck Riesling Smaragd, Wachau 2018 750ml ($64.95) Was $49, Now $41.90, 6 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 91+ points
“From a very small cru between Hollerin and Loibenberg and cultivated in pretty shallow soils, the 2018 Riesling Smaragd Ried Höhereck is concentrated and warm on the nose, with dried white fruit aromas intermixed with lovely herbal and stony aromas. Rich and concentrated on the lush and fleshy palate, this is a full-bodied, dense and firmly structured Riesling that combines warmth and ripeness with the coolish mineral drive of the terroir. The acidity is remarkably fresh, and the wine develops a long, tensioned finish that is still a bit drying. Keep for three or so years before drinking.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $55
Weingut Leo Alzinger Hollerin Riesling Smaragd, Wachau 2018 750ml ($69.95) Was $51.90, Now $41.90, 3 bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 90 points
“The 2018 Riesling Smaragd Ried Hollerin is the most charming, fruity and powerful Riesling of the domain. From the vineyard looking onto the coolest part of the Kellerberg and cultivated on large terraces with deeper soils, the 2018 opens with an intensely fruity and only slightly flinty nose. Rich, round and massive but still elegant, with delicate tannins and pretty sweetish stone fruit, this is the dry dessert wine of Leo Alzinger. Tasted at the domain in September 2019.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Marchesi Antinori Tenuta Guado al Tasso Bolgheri Superiore, Tuscany 2018 750ml ($149.95) Was $135, Now $119, 12 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 95+ points
“The 2018 Guado al Tasso is silky, delicate and exceptionally polished. I can’t remember tasting another Guado like it. Medium in body and gracious, the 2018 offers up a compelling mélange of dark fruit, chocolate, cedar, licorice and dried herbs, all in a mid-weight style that is incredibly appealing. The 2018 has just been bottled, so it needs time to bounce back. I can’t wait to taste it with a bit more time in bottle.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
Antoniolo Vigneto Castelle, Gattinara DOCG 2012 750ml ($69.95) Was $59, Now $49, 18 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 93 points
“Balance and expressiveness are the hallmarks of this red. Cherry, tar, menthol, mushroom and mineral flavors are backed by a solid structure as this plays out on the long, tobacco- and mineral-inflected finish. Drink now through 2030. 226 cases made. — BS”
This is the only listing in the USA today!
Domaine Les Aphillanthes Nymphea Rosé, Cotes du Rhône 2020 750ml ($17.95) Was $14, Now $11.90, 36 bottles in stock now
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 88 points
“Mainly Cinsault and Grenache, with traces of Carignan and Mourvèdre, this impeccably run domaine has turned out a rich, round 2020 Cotes du Rhone Rose Nymphea. Medium to full-bodied, it hints at strawberries and cherries, delivering plenty of concentration and flavor.”
Weygandt-Metzler Import note “Grenache, Cinsault, Mourvedre, Counoise. Biodynamic. Gailloux/Galets Roules over clay & limestone. Tasting note: Red fruit and bright acidity. Full body with a long and balanced finish.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Tenuta di Arceno Arcanum Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2008 750ml ($99.95) Was $79, Now $69, 29 bottles in stock now
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 96 points
“The 2008 Arcanum is a monumental achievement and my favorite wine in an already impossibly impressive collection. The blend sees Cabernet Franc (77%), Merlot and a very small part of Cabernet Sauvignon. Like many Tuscany growers, Tenuta di Arceno is betting on Cabernet Franc’s performance in the warmer corners of Tuscany. The integration here is absolutely beautiful and the wine glides smoothly over the palate with the perfect balance of extraction, glycerin, residual sugar and acidity. The aromas span the spectrum, from bright cherry to dark chocolate. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2030.”
This was the lowest listed price in the USA today,
Now it’s even lower!
Rosé Roundup
Did you know that Mary J Blige operates a wine label in addition to her illustrious career in the Arts? Sourced from the picturesque Friuli Venezia Giulia region at the foothills of the Dolomite Mountains, the soil is comprised of gravel and glacial rockdust from runoff over the centuries. The rose or Ramato as it’s known as in the area is made entirely from Pinot Grigio that’s been subjected to a few hours of skin contact, giving the resulting wine additional complexity.

Sun Goddess Pinot Grigio Ramato Friuli Friuli-Venezia Giulia 2019 750ml ($21.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
James Suckling 90 points
“A fun, tasty rosé made with pinot grigio that shows light strawberry and lemon-rind aromas with hints of white pepper. It’s medium-bodied with pretty fruit and a delicious finish. Drink now.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
“This cuvée is assembled by Peter Weygandt, of Weygandt-Metzler, at the domaine with the talented help of Stéphane Bourret, the winemaker, and the Bronzo family. This is delicious and very rewarding dry pink wine and, selling at almost half the price of Tempier’s Bandol Rosé, it is a real bargain!” –Kerry Winslow, Grapelive

Domaine de la Bastide Blanche Bandol Rose, Provence 2021 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Winery note
“[Translated] Mourvèdre, Grenache, Cinsault, Clairette and Ugni blanc from clay-limestone and gravelly soils. 28-year-old vines. Intensely colored rosé. Notes of citron, Sichuan pepper, and dried apricot on the complex nose, mixing floral and spicy notes. Ample, dense and structured mouth with complex aromatics (pomelo, peony, pepper).”
Weygandt-Metlzer Wine importer note “Rosé wine. Provence, France. Mourvèdre, Grenache, Cinsault. Organic. An absolute beauty of a rosé at this price point. Mouthwatering aromas of strawberry cream on the nose, followed by a silky, refined palate with delicate but distinct flavors of melon and peach. A relatively light wine for a southern French rosé, but with a texture and character of impressive weight and substance.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
A wine insider’s top rosé pick; exquisite minerality and poise
Domaine du Bagnol Cassis Rosé, Provence 2021 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Rosenthal Wine Merchant note
“Cassis Rosé: The Rosé is produced from several parcels that comprise slightly less than 7 hectares of vineyards. The vineyards are clay and limestone, situated on a gentle slope with a north – northwest exposure. The blend is Grenache (55%), Mourvedre (31%) and Cinsault (14%). This Rosé is vinified by “pressurage direct, the must is chilled to 12 degrees Celsius, the wine ferments at 18 degrees Celsius until it is completely dry; then, the wine is bottled during the first three months of the following year after a light filtration. Production tops out at about 40,000 bottles per annum; approximately 6000 bottles are allocated to the US market.”

Domaine du Vissoux has been one of the region’s visionary producers ever since Pierre Chermette took the helm in 1982. During his nearly four decades, Vissoux has remained at the forefront of Beaujolais’ quality movement. Neither strictly modern nor traditional, they focus on sustainable viticulture and sheer deliciousness. See for yourself why Vissoux is our best-selling Beaujolais estate each year.

Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Les Griottes Rosé, Beaujolais 2020 750ml ($19.95) $16.60 special, 21 bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 90 points
“Translucent orange-pink. Lively and sharply focused on the nose, presenting ripe red berry and floral scents and a hint of botanical herbs. Smooth and broad on the palate, offering bitter cherry, red currant and candied rose flavors that firm up and become spicier with air. Closes long and silky, with resonating floral and spice notes and strong cling.”
Weygandt-Metzler Import note “Gamay. Sustainable. Quartz & clay.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
If you’re a fan of Catalonian whites or Cava you might have heard of Xarel-Lo, an aromatic white grape that’s often compared to Chardonnay due to its versatility during vinification. Being an indigenous varietal in Spain since 1548 it mutated at some point and also has a red skinned clone called Xarel-lo Vermell. Less than 300 acres of this varietal are still in existence in the entire world, with Gramona dedicating part of their production to preserving the varietal. Expect the acidity, structure and stonefruit character of Xarel-Lo with a definitive red fruited element not unlike Goji, fresh cranberries and redcurrants.

Gramona ‘Mart’ Xarel-lo Vermell Rosat Penedes 2020 750ML ($37.95) $26 special, 24 bottles available
Eric Solomon Imports note
“Xarel-lo Vermell Certified organic CCPAE and biodynamic DEMETER. The pale color of this rosé comes from a 48-hour maceration before pressing. With this additional skin contact, combined with the already high levels of antioxidants present in the juice of this variety, Mart cannot only be enjoyed in its youth (peaches and strawberries) but it has the capacity to develop for several years in the bottle as more pink peppercorn nuances emerge.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Torre dei Beati’s ‘Rosa-ae’ is made in the cerasuolo style of rose from Montepulciano d’Abruzzo grapes that’s traditional to the region. Its name is derived from the Italian word for cherry and certainly lives up to that in both color and primary flavors. There’s an entire spectrum of red fruit to be perceived like pomegranate and cherry juice with botanicals like marjoram and basil at play. There’s a savory acid structure knitting everything together beautifully on the finish, making it sturdy enough to pair with anything spicy.

Torre dei Beati ‘Rosa-ae,’ Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo 2021 750ML ($21.95) $18 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Eric Guido-Vinous 92+ points
“The color of the 2021 Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo Rosa-ae is stunning; a deep translucent red with violet shades, as a vivid mix of wet stones, strawberries and dusty rose form it’s compelling bouquet. It enters the palate with an initial burst of ripe wild berries, yet quickly gains in tension, as zesty acids and citrus tones reverberate throughout. The Rosa-ae finishes with an amazing persistence of purple- and blue-tinted florals all over a coating of salty minerals and the slightest tug of sweet tannin. This is a beauty today, yet it will also excel over the next year or two in a cold cellar. Well done.”
Winery note “‘Cerasuolo’ is the cherry colour of this very traditional Italian rose, that combines the freshness of a rose to the body of a light red. This unusual combination makes this wine very eclectic in matching food, ranging from antipasti, all’italiana, to ‘paste e fagioli’, to the typical ‘chitarra’ noodles with tomato sauce and little meatballs, to fish dishes like the celebrated Adriatic ‘brodetto'”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Buckin’ the Price Trend:

Delicious Wines from Bucklin

Bucklin’s wines hails from the historic vineyard Old Hill Ranch, originally planted in 1851 and organic and dry farmed since before those were terms. This is a snapshot of American wine history.

Their Ancient is gorgeously saturated in color and throws aromas of lavender, five spice, dried cherries and terra cotta in a multilayered spectacle. On the palate the old vine influence is evident, with a full body serving bucketfuls of berry, spice, and herb notes. There’s a beautiful minerality that is reminiscent of hot sandy loam and granite. The acid and tannins are stratospheric on this wine, which speaks to a long life in the bottle but also temper the alcohol level to the point you’d expect it to be 13-14% ABV.  Get one if you can resist opening it and a few if you can’t.

Also offered by Bucklin are wines made from their younger parcels of vines. Otto’s Grenache is composed of a hillside planting done in 2010 over decomposed volcanic tuff and basalt. Incredibly structured and burly on first pour, Otto throws out strawberry jam, kirsch cherry and fresh raspberry, but with a subtle note of dried hibiscus, daffodil and honeysuckle. There’s a tremendous minerality throughout the wine, exhibited by hot pumice in the aromas and a savory basaltic note on the finish. Otto’s Grenache is something to cellar for at least five years after the vintage, or to be had by the glass over the course of a week.

The Bambino was planted in 1998 and is generally around 75% Zinfandel co-fermented with Alicante Bouchet and Petite Sirah. The exact blend is vintage dependent as a result of Bucklin’s commitment to entirely estate grown fruit. Bambino exhibits an old world character that would have me thinking this was imported from Puglia. There’s a fruit character that sets it aside from its centarian counterparts on the ranch, but sharing in the layers of purity, spice, minerality and old world rusticity.

With all that history, complexity, and panache, you’d expect these bottles to run in the $200-$400 price range. Fortunately, you can acquire all of Will Bucklin’s wines here for under $50/bottle.

Bucklin wines in stock now: 

“Ancient” as in “one of the oldest vineyards in Sonoma”-ancient
Bucklin Old Hill Ranch Ancient Field Blend, Sonoma Valley 2019 750ML ($49.95) $37.70 special, 17 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Bubbling over with personality yet remains focused and polished, this offers an array of currant and raspberry flavors accented by bitter chocolate, orange zest and smoked pepper beef. Finishes with briary, ripe tannins. Zinfandel, Grenache, Alicante Bouschet, Petite Sirah, Mourvèdre, Grand Noir, Syrah and Carignan. Drink now through 2032. —T.F.”

Bucklin Old Hill Ranch Otto’s Grenache, Sonoma Valley 2019 750ML ($49.95) $36 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Bubbling over with personality yet remains focused and polished, this offers an array of currant and raspberry flavors accented by bitter chocolate, orange zest and smoked pepper beef. Finishes with briary, ripe tannins. Zinfandel, Grenache, Alicante Bouschet, Petite Sirah, Mourvèdre, Grand Noir, Syrah and Carignan. Drink now through 2032. —T.F.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Bucklin Anne’s Upper 5th Vineyard Field Blend, Sonoma Valley 2018 750ML ($39.95) $30.90 special, 7 bottles in stock now
Winery note
“Our Mom, Anne Teller has been farming commercially in Sonoma Valley since the late 1970’s. Her 50-acre farm includes the Upper 5th Vineyard, a century old, one-acre vineyard that is promiscuously interplanted with nut and fruit trees. Managed with Anne’s conscientious and benevolent farming practices, including no-till dry farming. The Upper 5th is a field blend of five grape varieties: 67% Zinfandel, 19% Peloursin, 8% Petite Sirah.”

Bucklin Old Hill Ranch Bambino, Sonoma Valley 2019 750ML ($29.95) $28 special, 20 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 93 points
“Opens with a fruit-bomb of wild berry briar patch before transitions into an appealingly rustic and structured zest fest, revealing heaps of licorice, roasted sage and forest floor accents that build toward medium-grained tannins. Drink now through 2030. —T.F.”

Bucklin Old Hill Ranch Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County 2018 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Old Hill Ranch planted a block of Cabernet in 1983 on a rootstock known as “AXR”. Fast forward 20 years and the block was infected by phylloxera due to an undiagnosed susceptibility in AXR. This means that the block is in the process of dying, with the resulting wine being every bit of a “Swan song” you’d expect.

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
Sherry Wants To Come Out Tonight
Sherry is one of the most underappreciated wine styles in the entire world and one of the best buys in the market as a result! The dominant soil type albariza is composed almost entirely of chalk, which imparts a distinctive, pervasive and saline minerality to the finished wine. Due to the inherent saline minerality, these are incredibly food friendly, particularly the light, dry, unoxidized style known as Fino. The traditional pairing of paella or charcuterie or even something along the lines of sushi, oysters in half shell or lobster. Given the fortification that Sherry undergoes, it is also perfect suited for slowly enjoying over the course of a week and will continue to evolve in your refrigerator and glass.

Emilio Lustau ‘3 En Rama’ Fino de Jerez de la Frontera Sherry Andalucia 2021 500ML ($27.95) $24 special, 20 bottles in stock now

Shop our full selection of Sherry wines on our webstore!

Trending Five Under $50

It’s Tuesday night, and we’re looking for great wines that won’t break the bank. Shop these stunners that will pair with your evening of pizza & streaming.

Vie di Romans Dessimis Pinot Grigio Friuli Isonzo, Friuli-Venezia Giulia 2019 750ml ($37.95) $31.90 special, 23 bottles in stock now
Wine & Spirits 92 points
“Dessimis is a rich and exotic pinot grigio, with pungent scents of apple blossom and clove that lead into layers of dried orange and grilled strawberry laced with notes of lemongrass. Those spicy notes continue on the long, creamy finish, warmed by a pleasant bitter almond note.”
Wine Spectator 92 points “This is lightly copper-colored in hue, offering appealing aromas and flavors of ripe apricot and yellow peach, passionfruit coulis, chopped hazelnut, verbena and spun honey. Lightly chalky in texture, with well-cut acidity providing definition for the lush range of flavors. Mouthwatering and well-spiced finish. Drink now through 2026. 1,500 cases made, 500 cases imported.  –AN”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
Andre Clouet The V6 Experience Brut, Champagne NV 750ml ($59.95) $49 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 93+ points
“Aged for six years on the second lees, the yellow-golden NV Brut The V6 Experience is a Bouzy Pinot Noir that displays great purity and intensity but also reduction on the mineral-scented nose. This is deep and complex, but it needs all our patience and perhaps even a decanter or at least a big glass and lots of aeration. The palate is rich and powerful, firmly structured, very tight and still astringent on the finish, but there is so much finesse paired with power, concentration and fruit, which give the V6 a promising future. The wine just starts a bit slowly (like a rocket, which is pictured on the label), but it will most probably go very steep in a couple of years. I have ever had this cuvée before, so I can only guess, though.”

Franco Serra Barbaresco DOCG, Piedmont 2018 750ml ($34.95) $30.90 special, 29 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 91 points
“Red berries with a clay-like mineral note. Some flowers, too. Medium-to full-bodied with clean fruit and soft, fine-grained tannins. More minerally finish. Best after 2022.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Domaine Collotte Marsannay Le Clos de Jeu, Cote de Nuits 2018 750ml ($39.95) $33 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Weygandt-Metzler Importer note
“The Clos de Jeu Marsannay comes from several parcels of 50 year old vines from Clos de Jeu on soft limestone crinoidal soil. Aged in oak, 25% new, this wine is harmonious in its flavors and tannins.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Castello di Volpaia Citto Rosso Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2017 750ml ($19.95) $14 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Castello di Volpaia Citto Rosso Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2017 750ml ($199.95) $149 special (that’s only $12.42/bottle!)
In the super-Tuscan mode with a Sangiovese-Cabernet composition, but with a lighter and brighter nature achieved by vinification entirely in stainless steel tanks. Cherry flavors dominate in this spring and summer pleaser. Consider chilling when you need to beat the heat!
Importer Note “In the Tuscan dialect, “Citto” means “a young boy.” In the tradition of Bordeaux Châteaux — Mouton Rothchild has its Mouton Cadet, Cheval Blanc has its Petit Cheval — Castello di Volpaia has its Citto. Mostly Sangiovese with some Cabernet Sauvignon. The grapes were destemmed and crushed, then fermented in stainless-steel vats for 10 days at 26 C to 30 C (80 F to 86 F). After eight days, the juice was drained off the skins. This generous, silky wine displays ripe fruit aromas with intense cherry and red berry flavors on the palate.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!
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Collector’s Corner:

Elite Champagne

Bollinger La Grande Annee Brut, Champagne 2004 1.5L ($419.95) $379 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“Cellar Selection. A blend of 66% Pinot Noir and 34% Chardonnay, this is opulent and full bodied, with toast and wood flavors. Rich and ripe, this beautiful wine is generous and still young, with just a touch of bitterness at the end. -Roger Voss.”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “Bollinger’s 2004 Brut La Grand Année is a beautiful wine with a lot of vintage character, but the style is a bit less oxidative than Bollinger fans are likely to expect. Pears, hazelnuts, spices and crushed rocks all flow through to the tense, vibrant finish. It will be interesting to see if the 2004 puts on weight in the bottle, as so many wines from this vintage have. Today, it is bright, linear and quite pretty. Green apples, pears and flowers all add lift on the close.”

Laurent Perrier Grand Siecle Alexandra Rosé, Champagne 1990 750ml ($699.95) $599 special, 3 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Beautifully done. Vigorous and almost chewy, this intense, full-bodied rosé exudes mint, berry and wood aromas and flavors. Muscular and dense, with a character that engages the palate and needs contemplation or food.”
Wine Enthusiast 94 points “It’s a pale wine, on the rose side of gold, a beautiful visual introduction to a stunning wine. The strawberry flavors are wrapped in a silvery texture, crisply dry, and despite the intensity of fruit, the wine seems weightless on the palate. It’s gorgeous now, but, amazingly, just a baby. It’s long-term future is assured. Twenty years from now, this will be heavenly.”

Georges Laval Cumieres Premier Cru Brut Nature, Champagne 2015 3L ($699.95) $599 special, 2 jeroboams in stock now
John Gilman 94+ points
“This is the exact same blend as the Cumières non-vintage bottling from the base year of 2015 that was released without any vintage-dating on the label in regular-sized bottles two years ago, but the magnums (and jeroboams for those so disposed) were aged an additional two years sur latte and hence are labeled with the vintage date on the front label. The larger-sized formats are also non-dosé. This magnum was disgorged at the end of November of 2019 and offers up a superb nose of apple, discreet tangerine, hazelnut, excellent minerality, a hint of iodine, warm bread, gentle smokiness, acacia blossoms and a whisper of oak (with most of this having been subsumed into the other aromatics). On the palate the wine is pure, racy and full-bodied, with a rock solid core, great delineation and mineral drive, refined mousse and absolutely stellar backend lift, grip and length. When this was first released, Vincent Laval was convinced it was one of the finest vintages of his Cumières bottling in many years, and drinking it now out of magnum with more time on the fine lees, it is awfully easy to agree with him! The extra few years aging sur latte have allowed the fine girdle of acidity to relax here nicely and this wine is now drinking really quite well out of magnum (and probably regular-sized bottles as well), but my bottles are staying put in the cellar for at least another five years! 2020-2055.”
Importer note “1/3 Chardonnay, 1/3 Pinot Noir, 1/3 Pinot Meunier. Premier Cru.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Louis Roederer Cristal Millesime Brut, Champagne 2014 750ML ($379.95) $349 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 98 points
“This vivid Champagne shows up-front and linear definition, thanks to rapierlike acidity, with finely meshed flavors of ripe black cherry and mandarin orange fruit, raw almond, anise and cardamom spice as well as a touch of honeycomb, which all unfurl and expand on the fine, creamy palate. Sleek acidity continues through to the finish, with additional racy character provided by a streak of minerally saline and chalk, which gains momentum through the midpalate and rings out on the well-cut, lasting finish. Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Drink now through 2040”
Antonio Galloni 98 points “The 2014 Cristal is another in a long line of gorgeous wines from Roederer and long-time Chef de Caves Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon. A dazzling, vibrant Champagne, the 2014 impresses with a stunning combination of fruit density and linear energy that brings to mind a hypothetical blend of 2012 and 2008. At times, the bubbles feel totally wrapped up in waves of creamy, resonant fruit to the point the mousse is barely perceptible, especially with aeration. The flavors are bright and finely sculpted, leaning very much into the citrus, floral and mineral end of the spectrum… The 2014 Cristal is a riveting Champagne. Don’t miss it.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2014 Cristal is a terrific effort that transcends the vintage. Bursting from the glass with expressive aromas of ripe citrus fruit, nectarine, white flowers, freshly baked bread and subtle hints of honeycomb, it’s medium to full-bodied, vinous and fleshy, with an exuberant core of fruit that’s girdled by racy acids, resulting in a wine that’s simultaneously chiseled and demonstrative, meaning that early appeal doesn’t come at the expense of the requisite tension for long-term cellaring. Concluding with a long, aromatic and intensely chalky finish, it is a brilliant Champagne that will offer a broad drinking window. This bottle was disgorged in June 2021 with seven grams per liter dosage.”
Simon Field MW-Decanter 95 points “The rollercoaster growing season of 2014 is reflected to perfection by the innate tension here; ripe citric fruit and even a touch of exoticism (mango and fig) tempered by a fine shard of acidity and a lifted ethereal character, described paradoxically by chef de caves Jean-Baptiste Lecaillon as ‘weightless density’. Purity, energy and power make for very happy bedfellows, courtesy the chalky terroir and its organic husbandry. The texture is silky, the bubbles joyfully integrated and the finish resourceful and precise, its salinity deferential to the deep-digging roots. Disgorged: June 2021. Dosage: 7g/L. Drinking Window 2022 – 2030.”

Louis Roederer Cristal Vinotheque Edition Brut Millesime, Champagne 1999 750ml ($1,499.95) $1,245 special, 3 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 98 points
“The nose has such beautiful, autolysis character with brown-mushroom and toasted-almond aromas. The nose has still-fresh lemons and oyster shell. Very smooth, pastry-like texture on the palate with even layers and a core of fresh lemons and peaches. The striking thing here is the balance and melted-together complexity. In a very great place. This spent seven years sur latte, seven sur pointe and was disgorged in 2014. Drink now.” [Reviewed 2019]
Antonio Galloni 97 points “Roederer’s 1999 Cristal Vinothèque is endowed with tremendous power and concentration, especially for a Champagne of its age. Palate staining minerals, chalk, white pepper, mint, citrus and orchard fruit soar out of the glass. Tasted next to the Rosé the Blanc has a slightly more toasty character along with more body and a stronger presence of the mousse, which in this wine wraps around the fruit. At the time, Cristal was made from 37 parcels. The Pinots were a blend from Aÿ (where the wines are naturally riper) and Verzenay, Verzy and Beaumont-sur-Vesle, (where Pinots are nervy and taut), while the Chardonnay was sourced from Avize, Mesnil and Cramant. Dosage is 7-8 grams per liter.” [Reviewed 2020]
Disgorgement dates may vary from reviews.

This is the only listing in the USA today for the 750ml!
Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs Brut, Champagne 2004 750ml ($349.95) $279 special, 27 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 96 points
“I am thrilled with the way the 2004 Comtes de Champagne continues to evolve in bottle. A few years ago, the 2004 was quite focused and linear, in the style of the vintage, but more recently, the wine has begun to fill out beautifully. The 2004 remains bright, with a full range of citrus, white flower and mineral nuances that dance on the palate. A brisk, saline-infused finish rounds things out beautifully in a Comtes that impresses for its crystalline purity. I expect the 2004 will always remain a bit cool next to the more opulent 2002, but it is still drop-dead gorgeous.”
Decanter 96 points “It was a dry vintage up to August, which turned exceptionally wet and cool. September saved the vintage with the ideal weather conditions – low rainfall and cool nights. The graceful nose opens to white flowers, ripe apricot and citrus hints. It is tense and refined, with a vivid mineral core balanced by pristine acidity and some toasted notes on the finish. It’s not the most expressive today, but wait for it to awaken. This is built for cellaring. Drinking Window 2025 – 2040.”
Wine Spectator 96 points “A rich and enticing aroma of roasted hazelnut heralds this elegant blanc de blancs, with flavors of pastry, poached apple, crystallized honey and candied ginger riding the finely detailed mousse. This is a touch smoky, presenting a resonant minerality on the finish. Drink now through 2029. 500 cases imported. — AN”