Vinopolis February 10 Newsletter

 February 10, 2014

Arriving tomorrow:


Produttori del Barbaresco Barbaresco 2009 ($29.95) $25 special
Wine Spectator 93 points
 “Bright cherry, strawberry, floral, licorice and herbal aromas and flavors highlight this fragrant, elegant red. Silky and pure, with fine, ripe tannins for support. Best from 2015 through 2028”





Tendril Wine Cellars Chardonnay 2011 ($44.95) $37 special
Tendril Wine Cellars Pinot Noir White Label 2011 ($57.95) $44 special
Tendril Wine Cellars Pinot Noir ‘Tightrope’ 2011 ($69.95) $59 special

Matello Caprice Blanc 2012 ($19.95) $16 special
Matello Durant Vineyard Chardonnay 2012 ($27.95) $24 special

Matello Durant Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011 ($37.95) $31.90 special
Matello Hommage Pinot Noir 2012 ($27.95) $24 special
Matello Lazarus Pinot Noir 2012 ($22.95) $19 special

Trisaetum ‘Trisae’ Pinot Noir 2011 ($37.95) $28 special
Trisaetum Ribbon Ridge Pinot Noir 2011 ($49.95) $39 special
Trisaetum Coast Range Pinot Noir 2011 ($49.95) $39 special
Stephen Tanzer 91 points 
“Vivid red.  Sexy, oak-spiced aromas of red fruit liqueur, Asian spices and rose oil.  Juicy, penetrating and appealingly sweet, offering vibrant raspberry and blood orange flavors that turn spicier with air.  Closes on a bright, fruity note, with subtle vanilla and cola nuances adding depth.  Very expressive right now but this pinot has the depth to warrant at least a few more years of bottle age.”


Vintager Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma 2005 ($24.95) $19 special Vinopolpick
“Vintager” is a so called negociant label. A negociant being an enterprise that acquires finished wines from wineries, sometimes in barrel or tank and sometimes already bottled but not bearing the winery label (so called ‘shiners). These wines are then sometimes blended and bottled, sometimes just bottled, or in this case just labeled. Wineries sell this way for various reasons, the most common being wines surplus to their sales abilities, wines that don’t fit their stylistic identity, and also simply financial pressures. This wine was ‘shiners’ from the cellar of an Alexander Valley winery. We don’t know which one; secrecy is always a part of this sort of trade. It is midweight, dark flavored, pure, and has been cellared into its prime. Tasted like $30+ to me.


Savart Calliope Champagne Extra Brut 2007 ($79.95) $59 special
Savart L’Accomplie Champagne Brut NV ($54.95) $41.90 special
Savart L’Annee Champagne Extra Brut 2009 ($69.95) $51.90 special
Savart L’Ouverture Blanc de Noirs Champagne NV ($49.95) $37 special

Camus Bruchon Savigny les Beaune 2010 ($37.95) $30.90 special
Camus Bruchon Savigny les Beaune Pimentieres 2010 ($41.95) $36 special
Camus Bruchon Savigny les Beaune Grand Lairds 2010 ($44.95) $39 special

Domaine de Montille Volnay Les Mitans 2011 ($129.95) $109 special
Stephen Tanzer 90-92 points  “(100% vendange entier; 20% new oak; small, concentrated berries from old vines):  Good medium red.  Lovely subtle perfume of cherry and raspberry liqueur lifted by a peppery element.  Sweet, dense and lively but restrained on the palate, with distinctly dark flavors of blueberry, licorice and bitter chocolate.  The brooding finish features broad, palate-coating tannins.  I like the peppery stem element here as it contributes energy without overpowering the wine’s fruit.”

Domaine de Montille Volnay Taillepieds 2011 ($139.95) $119 special
Burghound 91-94 points
 “There is enough reduction present to mask the nuances of the nose though the floral character does sneak past the funk. There is a wonderfully silky texture to the intense mineral and soil-inflected medium-bodied flavors that display really lovely delineation on the moderately austere and very firmly structured finish that delivers outstanding depth and length. This should improve for years to come and this is really most impressive.”


Burmester Vintage Port 2011 ($59.95) $40.90 special
Wine Spectator 93 points
 “Intensely fruity and lusciously concentrated, with raspberry, dark plum and wild cherry flavors, offering a rich finish of dark chocolate, tea and brown sugar. Drink now through 2040.”






Abreu Madrona Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon 2004 (priceless) $319 special
Robert Parker 97 points
 “The 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Madrona Ranch, which is usually about 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Cabernet Franc with a touch of Petit Verdot, displays a black/purple color to the rim and an extraordinarily beautiful nose of lead pencil shavings, blue and black fruits, licorice, subtle oak, and some acacia flowers. The wine has fabulous stuffing, a rich, full-bodied mouthfeel, tremendous opulence, but plenty of tannin lurking below the surface. Give this wine 2-3 years of cellaring, and drink it over the following 25+ years.”



Betts & Scholl Black Betty Shiraz 2007 ($59.95) $39 special
Wine Spectator 92 points, Stephen Tanzer 92 points
 “Inky ruby. Pungent, heady aromas of black raspberry, cola, incense and potpourri. Smells like a head shop, with notes of patchouli and star anise coming up with air. Taut and focused, offering spicy red and dark berry flavors and a strong suggestion of cracked pepper. Livelier than the excellent 2006, with strong finishing cut and spicy persistence. These grapes were not destemmed. ”

Terlato & Chapoutier Shiraz lieu dit Malakoff 2008 ($39.95) $19 special
Wine Spectator 91 points
 “Lean and lithe, tangy on balance, with roasted tomato overtones to the blackberry and pepper flavors, lingering on the polished finish. Tannins slide in on the finish. Best from 2014 through 2019.”
Lapostolle Clos Apalta 2008 ($89.95) $59 special
Wine Enthusiast 95 points 
“Clos Apalta, depending on your point of view, is arguably Chile’s best wine. And this vintage is outstanding! Earth, minty spice, ripe berry, minerality and smoky aromas cover the bases. It’s superbly structured, with a fine texture and depth. Tastes lush and complex, with blackberry, crème de cassis, fine herbs and tobacco. Finishes classy. Drink now through 2016.”

Piollot Champagne Cuvee de Reserve Extra-Brut NV ($39.95) $27 special
Rowland Piollot is a 5th generation grower in Polisot, Cotes des Bar. A zealot in respect to organic practices, and literally married to Champagne- his wife is Dominique Moreau, she of Marie-Courtin acclaim. This wine is nicely balanced in all respects; the light touch on dosage (extra-brut) adds a verve to the richness inherent in a 50% Pinot Noir blend from the relatively warm Cotes des Bar, in the southern reaches of the Champagne Appellation.
Ayala Champagne Rose Brut Majeur NV ($59.95) $36 special
Stephen Tanzer 90 points
 “(made from 51% chardonnay, 39% pinot noir – about a quarter of which is still red wine – and 10% pinot meunier; disgorged September, 2011):  Pale orange.  Bright, mineral-accented aromas of orange peal, brioche and white flowers, with a spicy topnote.  Silky and open-knit, offering tangy citrus fruit and red berry flavors and a hint of toastiness.  Closes smooth, fruity and long, with good breadth and clarity.”

Domaine Huet Vouvray Moelleux Le Haut-Lieu 2008 ($59.95) $39 special
Wine Advocate 92 points
 “With striking clarity and lift welcome in the present context though typical for the very best wines of its vintage, Huet’s 2008 Vouvray Moelleux Le Haut-Lieu smells almost like Gewurztraminer in its evocation of litchi and bacon fat, rose petal, pear and quince. Opulently rich and subtly creamy, its salinity and bright citricity keep it invigorating, and it finishes with admirable refreshment and perspicuous floral and mineral complexities alongside of ripe, honeyed quince and pear. ”

Pavelot Savigny-Les-Beaune 2010 ($44.95) $24 special
Burghound 88 points
 “Here the fruit is ripe though distinctly different as the Savigny style earth character is quite prominent on the somber dark pinot fruit nose. There is a velvety texture to the supple and relatively forward flavors that possess good concentration and fine balance on the sappy finish. This isn’t an especially elegant effort but it is certainly delicious and satisfying.”

Geantat-Pansiot Gevrey-Chambertin Vieilles Vignes 2010 ($89.95) $59 special
Burghound 91 points 
” gorgeously complex and lightly spiced nose serves up notes of violet, plum and plenty of pungent earth that is also reflected by the dense and serious medium-bodied flavors. There is excellent volume and concentration to the mid-palate that possesses impeccable phenolic ripeness, all wrapped in a seductive yet linear finish. This is very Gevrey in character with a brawny yet not overtly rustic mouth feel. Recommended.”

Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Reservee 2010 750ml ($119.95) $95 special
Wine Spectator 97 points, #7 WOTY 2013 Robert Parker 98 points
 “Looking at the 2010s and a brilliant vintage for Laurence, the 2010 Chateauneuf du Pape offers up classic Pegau aromas and flavors of ripe dark fruits, garrigue, cured meats, tobacco leaf, saddle leather and hints of game. Full-bodied and beautifully concentrated, it offers a seamless, layered profile on the palate with thrilling mid-palate depth, sweet, yet substantial tannin, and a blockbuster finish that stays fresh and beautifully focused. Quite polished by this estates standards, it nevertheless screams southern France and I doubt it’s possible to have too much of this beauty in the cellar. It will absolutely thrill over the coming 2-3 decades”

Chapoutier Hermitage Rouge La Sizeranne 2004 ($89.95) $44 half of release price special, only 23 bottles
Wine Spectator 91 points
 “Slightly firm, with taut, sinewy tannins driving the black cherry, currant, tobacco and mineral notes. Purple fruit and flowers on the focused finish”
Stephen Tanzer “Dark red. Wild, funky, game- and earth-accented dark fruit aromas, with strong iron and graphite components. Packed with bitter cherry and dark berry skin flavors, plus deeper espresso and dark chocolate notes. Finishes with powerful tannins and real grip, suggesting that this serious, structured Hermitage needs to be left alone for some time.”JL Chave Selection Saint Joseph Blanc ‘Celeste’ 2010 ($34.95) $24 special
Wine Spectator 92 points
 “This has a lovely, creamy mouthfeel, with very enticing blood orange, creamed peach, Cavaillon melon and sweetened butter notes. The long, dacquoise-framed finish glides beautifully. Drink now through 2014. 300 cases imported, Marsanne / Roussanne”

Durand St. Joseph Les Coteaux 2009 ($27.95) $19 special
Wine Spectator 92 points
 “This is still slightly reticent, with a pronounced iron minerality holding sway over the supple cherry and black currant fruit. The lovely violet and black tea aromas fill in the background, and the finish is long and sleek. Let this open with modest cellaring. Best from 2012 through 2017.”

Saint Cosme Cotes du Rhone Les Deux Albions 2011 ($24.95) $19 special
Robert Parker 92 points 
“More serious is the 2011 Cotes du Rhone Les Deux Albion. This cuvee always includes a small amount of white Clairette co-fermented with red grapes such as Grenache and Syrah. There is more Syrah in the 2011 than usual because it was essential for the success of this medium-bodied, deep ruby/plum/purple-colored effort. It possesses notes of spring flowers, black fruits, licorice, forest floor and spice. It is another brilliant example of this cuvee”

Domain Vaudieu Chateauneuf du Pape 2008 ($49.95) $33 special
Wine Spectator 93 points
 “Very fresh and racy, especially for the vintage, with mouthwatering mineral and shiso leaf notes pushed by bright minerality, all of which is then backed by a ripe core of crushed red and black cherry and currant fruit. The finish is long and silky. A very impressive turnaround has been made at this estate. Drink now through 2022”

Domaine de Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape Rouge 2011 ($79.95) $44 special
Case-12: Domaine de Pegau Chateauneuf du Pape Rouge 2011 $499 special (that’s$41.59 / bottle)
Wine Advocate 93 points
 “Beautiful in the vintage, the 2011 Chateauneuf du Pape is a forward, perfumed example of the cuvee that has classic Pegau black fruits, tobacco leaf, pepper and leathery notes as well as medium to full-bodied richness and depth on the palate. Early-drinking by this estate’s standards, there’s nevertheless good mid-palate density and fine tannin. It should have 15 years or so of overall longevity.”

Hillaire Chateauneuf du Pape Petites Pieds d’Armand 2008 ($59.95) $33 special
Wine Spectator 93 points 
“A very stylish, perfumy version, with alluring incense and black tea aromas giving way to a silky palate loaded with kirsch, pepper, shiso leaf and lingering plum skin notes. The long finish lets a hint of anise check in. Best from 2011 through 2022”

Chateau Deyrem Valentin  Margaux 2010 ($49.95) $33 special
Wine Enthusiast 92 points
 “Located north of Margaux village, Deyrem Valentin is a small, family-owned property of 32 acres that represents one of the values of Margaux. This wine is smooth, polished and concentrated, with flavors of wood and a sweet-tasting blackberry. The acidity and tannins demonstrate a fine balancing act. This shows good aging potential.” Jancis Robinson – Financial Times 16/20 “Distinguished- Sweet dark fruit with a touch of vanilla, matched on the palate. Seemingly soft though there’s plenty of tannin undergirding its apparent roundness.”

Chateau La Clemence Pomerol 2000 ($119.95) $69 special
Robert Parker 91 points 
“This looks to be the strongest effort to date from the Dauriac-Rolland team. Deep, opaque purple-colored, with a tight but promising nose of truffles, licorice, underbrush, incense, and black fruits, this big, huge, dense, full-bodied Pomerol shows no compromising for readers looking for something immediately drinkable. As the French would say, a true vin de garde. This backstrapping, muscular wine is loaded, but patience is most definitely a virtue. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2022+.”

Vietti Barolo Castiglione 2009 ($49.95) $37 special
Wine Advocate 94 points
 “The 2009 Barolo Castiglione delivers a radiant but subdued quality with polished notes of dry mineral, black fruit, tar, licorice, leather and many more levels of complexity. This entry-level Barolo demonstrates that great results are achieved in 2009.

Caparzo Brunello Di Montalcino 2006 ($49.95) $33.50 special
James Suckling 93 points 
“Love the flowers, ripe berries and minerals on the nose here. Light dried fruits too. Dried porcini! Full bodied, round and fruity, with a decadent and fruity finish. Try in 2013.”

Franco Serra Barolo 2007 ($29.95) $19 special
Wine Spectator 90 points 
“Sweet cherry and berry notes mingle with licorice, leather and spices in this appealing Barolo. Open and approachable, with harmony and finesse already. The long aftertaste is licorice- and tobacco-tinged. Best from 2013 through 2025.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Paje Barbaresco Riserva 2008 ($59.95) $41.90 special
Antonio Galloni 93 points
 “The 2008 Barbaresco Riserva Paje wraps around the palate with layers of dark fruit, spices and menthol. Today, the Paje is one of the more open of the 2008 Riservas, but there is plenty going on in the glass. Sweet floral and spiced notes add lift on the finish..”
Wine Spectator 93 points “Packed with rich, sweet cherry and raspberry flavors, this red is juicy and well-defined, backed by a firm backbone of tannins and bright acidity. The finish echoes the cherry flavor and introduces woodsy and spicy accents. Best from 2014 through 2024”

Brovia Barolo Rocche 2007 ($99.95) $69 special
Antonio Galloni 96 points 
“The 2007 Barolo Rocche emerges from the glass with freshly cut roses, sweet berries and spices. The Rocche is always the most open of Brovia’s single vineyard Baroli. In 2007 the wine has an extra dimension of textural richness that makes it incredibly appealing even at this young stage. Floral notes reappear on the silky, pure finish. This is a fabulous showing, but the wine will be even better in a few years”G. Mascarello Barolo Monprivato 2008 ($119.95) $99 special
Wine Spectator 95 points #6 in Wine Spectator Top 100 2013
 “Detailed and fragrant, offering floral, strawberry, cherry, licorice and spice flavors, this is elegant and underlined by a strong mineral streak. Well-proportioned, picking up intensity and complexity on the long, savory finish. Extremely fresh and classy”


Felsina Fontalloro Toscana 2008 ($59.95) $37.50 special
Case-12: Felsina Fontalloro Toscana 2008 $399 special (that’s $33.25 / bottle)
Antonio Galloni 94 points 
“The 2008 Fontalloro is the yin to the Rancia’s yang. It is also characteristically beautiful, open and expressive at this stage. Layers of sweet red fruit, flowers and spices blossom effortlessly from the 2008 Fontalloro. The intensely saline finish that is present in the Rancia is found in Fontalloro as well. I am usually not the biggest fan of Fontalloro, but there is no denying the superb pedigree and sheer class of the 2008. This is a wonderfully, sophisticated, polished wine from Felsina. In 2008 the slightly drier microclimate at Fontalloro vis-a-vis Rancia is the main reason this wine is such a huge success in 2008. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2026.”

Fontodi  Flaccianello Toscana 2009 ($129.95) $89 special
Wine Spectator 96 points
 “The first impression of this red is purity and finesse, as black currant, raspberry and violet aromas and flavors stay focused and persistent. An earthy leather element and mineral notes chime in on the finish, backed by a vibrant structure. Sangiovese. Best from 2015 through 2032.”

Tenuta di Arceno Il Fauno di Arcanum Toscana 2008 ($29.95) $20.90 special
Case-12: Tenuta di Arceno Il Fauno di Arcanum Toscana 2008 $228 special (that’s $19 / bottle)
Wine Advocate 94 points
 “A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese and Petit Verdot, the 2008 Il Fauno di Arcanum opens with an inky dark color and perfectly ripe aromas of plump cherry and blackberry. Beyond the enticing fruit aromas is a long list of spice and tobacco-related characteristics. This is a thickly layered and opulent Tuscan blend that is enhanced by territory-driven aromas of grilled herb and rosemary oil. The best part for me, however, is the soft richness this wine delivers in the mouth. Anticipated maturity 2014-2027. ”

Montepeloso A Quo Suvereto Toscana 2011 ($24.95) $17.70 special
Antonio Galloni 90 points:
 “Once again, Montepeloso’s entry-level A Quo is fabulous. I expected to find a rich, powerful wine given the year, instead the 2011 A Quo is fresh, vibrant and beautifully delineated. Hints of raspberry jam, rose petals and sweet spices literally jump from the glass. The 2011 is best enjoyed over the next few years, while the fruit remains vibrant. This is a terrific showing from proprietor Fabio Chiarellotto.”

Vitanza Brunello di Montalcino Tradizion 2007 ($49.95) $28 special
James Suckling 93 points 
“Rose petals and plums on the nose. Full body, with round and chewy tannins and a ripe finish. Tannic, yet polished texture. Give it two to three years of bottle age. This wine is clearly better in 2007 than 2006”



Donnhoff Oberhauser Leistenberg Kabinett 2010 ($34.95) $21.90 special
Wine Advocate 91 points
 “Enhanced levity to Donnhoff’s 2010 Oberhauser Leistenberg Riesling Kabinett, even when compared with the corresponding Krotenpfuhl, may well be the effect of these vines’ literally slate underpinnings. In any event, this displays a lovely hint of creaminess allied to refreshment, and features a dynamic finishing interaction of fresh lemon and grapefruit, herbs, and wet stone. I would anticipate 12-15 years of high-performance.”

Selbach- Oster Zeltinger Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese 2009 ($49.95) $29 special
Wine Advocate 92 points 
“The Selbachs’ 2009 Zeltinger Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese smells complexly of spiced apple, lily, narcissus, sassafras, musk, and white raisin. It may give up something in elegance, refinement, textural allure, or finishing juiciness vis-a-vis typically exemplary performances chez Selbach of this site and degree of ennoblement, but it offers a dynamic, interactive multiplicity of flavors with pungent penetration and exotic intrigue. Look for 20-25 years of fascination.”


Pingus Psi 2010 ($41.95) $29 special
Stephen Tanzer 92 points 
“Bright purple.  Pungent, expressive scents of cherry and dark berries, dried flowers and incense.  Sappy cherry and cassis flavors are braced by tangy acidity and gain sweetness with air.  Richer on the finish, with its resounding notes of cherry compote and Asian spices.  This vibrant wine drinks very easily right now.”

Dominio de Eguren Codice Castilla La Mancha 2009 ($14.95) $7.50 special
Josh Raynalds 90 points
 “Vivid purple.  Aromas of cassis, cherry, licorice and mocha.  Dense, alluringly sweet and juicy, with excellent concentration to its chewy dark berry and bitter chocolate flavors.  Stays sweet through the persistent finish, which features silky, fine-grained tannins and lingering spiciness.  This wine (Tempranillo) always delivers serious value.”


Lucien Le Moine 2011
Arriving Late Feb
Very Limited Supplies


Lucien Le Moine Chassagne-Montrachet Abbaye de Morgeot 2011 ($139.95) $119 special
Antonio Galloni 92-94 points
 “The 2011 Chassagne-Montrachet Abbaye de Morgeot leaves an impression of Pinot-like depth. A broad-shouldered, intense wine, the 2011 boasts tons of class and potential. The flavors remain quite floral and bright, but with plenty of underlying structure. This is going to be a fascinating wine to follow.”

Lucien Le Moine Meursault Charmes 2011 ($139.95) $125 special
Antonio Galloni 92-95 points 
“Bright beams of minerality run through the 2011 Meursault Charmes. This is without question one of the more focused, structured and tight Charmes of the year. The 2011 boasts remarkable polish in its flavors and texture. A rich, insistent finish rounds things out nicely. There is plenty of potential here, but readers are going to have to be patient.”

Lucien Le Moine Meursault Genevrieres 2011 ($139.95) $125 special
Steven Tanzer 92-94 points 
“Orange oil and a hint of fresh pineapple on the nose; reminded me a bit of a German riesling.  Intensely flavored and glyceral too, with sneaky sweetness leavened by ripe pineappley acidity.  Very tactile, superconcentrated wine with broad shoulders (Saouma describes it as “a red wine made from chardonnay”) and a seriously palate-saturating finish.  These 60-year-old vines always maintain very good acidity, notes Saouma.  Exciting potential.”

Lucien Le Moine Puligny-Montrachet Folatieres 2011 ($149.95) $133 special
Antonio Galloni 91-94 points 
“The 2011 Puligny-Montrachet Folatieres is going to need serious time to come together. Today, it is the wine’s persistence and textural finesse that stand out most, even if all the elements haven’t fully come together just yet. There is a lot to look forward to here. It will be interesting to see if the wine retains the powerful personality that is on display today, or if further time in barrel tames some of the exuberance.”

Lucien Le Moine Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2011 ($249.95) $219 special
Antonio Galloni 93-96 points
 “…the 2011 Clos de la Roche has an expressive bouquet with lifted raspberry, crushed strawberry and red currant notes that blossom in the glass. The palate is very well-defined on the entry with crisp red fruit, cold stones, citrus fruit and a touch of black currant. The acidity is very well-judged, the finish sophisticated and beautifully poised. Excellent.”

Lucien Le Moine Latricieres-Chambertin  Grand Cru 2011 ($299.95) $279 special
Burghound 92-95 points 
“Don’t miss!-Noticeable but not prominent oak frames restrained, cool and stony red pinot fruit scents that complement perfectly the textured, mineral-inflected and notably taut medium full-bodied flavors brimming with dry extract on the explosive and energetic finish that is finer than that of the Charmes. There is plenty of underlying tension and I very much admire the balance and obvious class though note that patience will be required.”

Lucien Le Moine Chenas 2011 1.5L ($149.95) $133 special
David Schildknecht 92-93+ points
 “…it mingles striking wisteria perfume with scents and flavors of blueberry, pomegranate, black raspberry and smoked meat. Mouthwateringly salt-tinged and with crystalline suggestions of stony counterpoint, its infectiously juicy primary fruit informs a silken-texture palate and strikingly vibrant and persistent finish.”




Time to say Goodbye Sale 

Produttori del Barbaresco Montefico Riserva 2008 ($69.95) $49 special
Antonio Galloni 95 points
 “The 2008 Barbaresco Riserva Montefico hits the palate with a blast of fruit intermingled with copious acidity and pure structure. Montefico shares a boundary with Ovello, and shows many of the structural elements typically associated with that side, but with more depth in its fruit, probably because of the southern exposure. The high altitude of these parcels ensures there is plenty of freshness and vibrancy. The Montefico is dazzling, but it will require considerable patience.”


Thank you for your reading time!!