In Today’s Newsletter:
William Fevre’s Grand Chablis
New Year’s Dom Perignon Spectacular
A Great Deal on a Rising Star of Champagne (Mouzon-Laroux)
Pegau: a Highlight of 2015 Chateauneuf
The Rare Demi-Sec Veuve Clicquot
Newton’s Excellent-Value Red Labels
New Arrivals from Rousseau, King of Gevrey
2016 Clos de Tart: Legend in the Making
William Fevre’s Grand Chablis
The Domaine William Fevre was born of a force of will in 1959, when William declared his first vintage; this, in a region where winemaking families stretch for centuries, not just decades. The purchase of land seemed to be first and foremost in their mission, acquiring a whopping 78 hectares over 90 separate parcels. The access to this much fruit, in one of the priciest AOC in France, gives Fevre a leg up in making some of the most iconic Chablis available today.
The wines, from Petit Chablis up to Grand Cru, are marked by their chalky, smoky intensity. A character branded into the vineyards by Kimmeridgian soil, clay and sea floor sediment; a strata that reaches from Chablis, through Champagne and out to the Loire. The acidity is preserved by a growing zone at the edge of being too cool, yet this has been challenged with warmer vintages creeping in more recently. How does a winery that rests its very brand upon a hallmark style change with the climate? Diversify and reinvent Chablis, bien sur. Play with ripeness and judiciously incorporate more oak regime into the mix, but make certain that the heart of Chablis is preserved. Some purists cry foul; Fevre just keeps on its course.
William Fevre Chablis, Burgundy 2016 750ML ($31.95) $33 special
Stephen Tanzer 88-90 points “(just 18 hectoliters per hectare produced): Hazy medium yellow. At once more fruity and more exotic than the Champs Royaux, offering scents of orange zest, lemon, mango and lichee. Fat, round, rather large-scaled wine with serious volume for a village offering, but kept fresh by a streak of limey acidity. Finishes with noteworthy persistence. This will be good in six months but needs time to knit.”
Burghound 88-90 points “A ripe and fresh nose offers up notes of iodine, oyster shell, mineral reduction, pear and plenty of citrus influence. There is fine density to the concentrated and sappy flavors that possess fine volume while delivering very good length and solid depth. Good stuff and worth a look.”
Domaine William Fevre Chablis Bougros Grand Cru 2016 750ML ($119.95) $89 special
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points “(50% fermented in oak; from a yield of 35 hectoliters per hectare): Pale green-tinged yellow. Wonderfully expressive, pungent, classic Kimmeridgian nose offers scents of lime, grilled almond and iodiney minerality. Round, plush and seamless on the palate, with its juicy citrus fruit and ginger flavors lifted by minerality. This silky, sedate, rich wine has no corners and seems almost too easy and expressive today for grand cru. But it also has the stuffing and balance to age, and a finishing element of brown spices provides lift.”
Burghound 96 points “Once again, based on the nose alone, this could be nothing else but Chablis with its mélange of tidal pool, mineral reduction, citrus blossom and discreet spice nuances. There is fantastic detail to the focused, mineral-driven and powerful middle weight plus flavors that do a slow build from the mid-palate all the way back to the explosively long, balanced and bone dry finish. This appears to be drawn directly from liquid Kimmeridgian and should also amply reward longer-term cellaring. In a word, brilliant.”
Stephen Tanzer 95 points “Very pale yellow. Very ripe but vibrant nose combines lime, spices, white pepper, crushed rock and liquid minerals. Delivers a saline, sappy combination of rich peachy fruit and floral/mineral lift, with a remarkably weightless quality. The chewy, saline, bone-dry finish reinforced by minerality conveys a powerful impression of dry extract and Kimmeridgian soil. Really inexorable on the back end.”Domaine William Fevre Chablis Grand Cru Bougros Cotes Bouguerots 2016 750ML ($149.95) $128 special
Stephen Tanzer 93-95 points “Very pale green-tinged yellow. Classic Chablis scents and flavors of white peach, ginger, oyster shell, iodine and flint. Highly concentrated, tactile wine offering an impression of strong dry extract and a compelling combination of pliancy and energy. A very powerful, structured Chablis with a long, chewy, saline finish. Really saturates the palate without leaving any impression of weightiness. Offers splendid potential.”
Burghound 92-94 points “A super-fresh, cool and admirably pure nose exhibits notes of iodine, citrus, white rose petal, sea breeze and mineral reduction scents. Like several wines in the range I very much like the lovely texture of the energetic medium weight flavors that also possess fine concentration before terminating in an intensely saline-infused, balanced and wonderfully long finale.”
Domaine William Fevre Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos 2016 750ML ($179.95) $149 special
Stephen Tanzer 93-95 points (just 18 hectoliters per hectare produced owing to frost and mildew): Pale yellow. Lovely brisk citrus and apple aromas complicated by gingery spices, white pepper and iodiney minerality. Large-scaled, dense and quite powerful but not yet filled in, with its very concentrated peach and citrus flavors accented by ginger and white pepper. More glyceral in the early going than the Preuses but showing less personality today. This fruit was picked very ripe, with nearly 13% potential alcohol, according to Didier Séguier.
Burghound 92-95 points “An even more complex nose displays excellent Chablis typicity with its combination of citrus, white orchard fruit, sea breeze, mineral reduction and soft oyster shell nuances. The broad-shouldered flavors are rich and concentrated to the point of opulence while managing to retain reasonably good precision on the citrus and solidly dry finale that really fans out as it sits on the palate. This is one of the few 2016s that may need most of a decade to arrive at its peak. In a word, impressive.”
William Fevre Les Lys, Chablis Premier Cru 2015 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
Stephen Tanzer 91 points “Pale, green-tinged yellow. Fresh but reticent scents of lime peel and minerals. Pliant and dense, with intense flavors of lemon, lime zest and underripe pineapple currently dominated by salty, almost metallic minerality. This energetic wine is really stuffed with fruit and it maintains its density through a long finish.”
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points “(23 hectoliters per hectare): Pale, slightly cloudy yellow. Strong mineral notes of shrimp shell and sea breeze currently dominate citrus and white peach on the nose. Densely packed, concentrated and energetic; wonderfully fresh and balanced for the year. Clamps down impressively on the superb, sappy, slowly rising finish, leaving behind piquant notes of grapefruit, lemon zest and minerals. Classically dry, crystalline and taut but not austere. This beauty really spreads out to saturate the palate on the back end.”Domaine William Fevre Chablis Grand Cru Preuses 2015 1.5L ($249.95) $219 special
Stephen Tanzer 94 points “Pale, bright yellow. More feminine on the nose than the Valmur, offering aromas of citrus fruits, pear and white flowers plus a soupçon of oak spice. Very silky, seamless and refined but also shows terrific intensity and floral lift. Harmonious acidity leavens the density of this wine, giving it an almost weightless impression in the mouth. Perfectly integrated and balanced from the start. The impressively long, rising finish features piquant notes of citrus peel, minerals and flowers. I’d give this fine-grained beauty a good five years in the cellar before pulling the cork.”
Burghound 93 points “Once again there is a subtle but not invisible application of wood setting off the more elegant aromas of green fruit, almond, citrus, floral, spice and quinine. The super-intense, delineated and vibrant middle weight plus flavors possess both good richness but also the hallmark refinement of a fine Preuses, all wrapped in a more complex and sneaky long finish. Lovely.”
Domaine William Fevre Chablis Grand Cru Preuses 2016 750ML ($149.95) $128 special
Stephen Tanzer 93-95 points “(22 hectoliters per hectare): Pungent but reticent nose hints at pineapple, peach, ginger, menthol and subtle crushed-stone minerality. Rich, spicy and sweet, with its ripe orchard fruit flavors leavened by a floral topnote. Very subtle, elegant yet extract-rich wine with terrific dusty length and lift. Ultimately dry and classic, this wine reverberates on the palate for a minute or more. Vincent Dauvissat’s Preuses is frequently the finest and most complete example of this grand cru but the William Fèvre version is often my #2 choice.”
Burghound 92-94 points “A pungent nose consists of a potent mix of fennel, oak, menthol, mineral reduction and essence of pear. There is excellent density and power to the medium weight plus flavors that still manage to come across as quite refined thanks to hugely long, balanced and sappy finish. This classy effort needs a few years to develop more depth but the material is present for that to happen.”
William Fevre Vaulorent, Chablis Premier Cru 2016 750ML ($89.95) $79 special
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points “(all of William Fèvre’s vines in Fourchaume are situated in Vaulorent, where they’re the largest land owner; there’s usually a separate estate bottling labeled as Fourchaume but not in 2016): Pale green-tinged yellow. Musky, complex aromas of citrus fruits, spices, minerals and pepper. Ripe fruit notes are joined by a hint of exotic lichee, but the wine’s pliant texture is nicely supported by pepper, spices and minerals. This fairly large-scaled, savory wine boasts an exhilarating balance of sweetness and acidity. Finishes with explosive length and a strong impression of terroir. The crop level here was just 18 hectoliters per hectare and my notes say that this wine is at the same high level of quality as the Montée de Tonnerre.”
Burghound 91-93 points “Sweet Spot Outstanding! This could be from nowhere else but Chablis with its nose of oyster shell, iodine and strong mineral reduction aromas. The concentrated, mouth coating and serious flavors are at once muscular yet refined, all wrapped in an explosively long and well-balanced finish. As good as the Montée de Tonnerre is, and it’s very good, there is just a bit more overall depth present here.”
New Year’s Dom Perignon Spectacular
It’s nearly New Year’s Eve, which means we’re offering you a great deal on Dom Perignon. With pricing under $130 by the six pack, any lover of classic Champagne needs to stock up!
Dom Perignon Brut, Champagne 2009 750ML ($199.95) $149 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Dom Perignon Brut, Champagne 2009 750ML ($999.95) $769 pre-arrival special (that’s only $128.17/bottle—the lowest listed price in the country!)
Case-3 Dom Perignon Brut, Champagne 2009 750ML ($499.95) $399 pre-arrival special (that’s only $133/bottle!)
Antonio Galloni 97 points “The 2006 Dom Pérignon is a beautifully balanced, harmonious Dom Pérignon that strikes an incredibly appealing stylistic middle ground. Rich, voluptuous and creamy, the 2006 shows off fabulous intensity in a style that brings together the ripeness of 2002 with the greater sense of verve and overall freshness that is such a signature of the 2004. Bass notes and a feeling of phenolic grip on the finish recall the 2003, as the Pinot Noir is particularly expressive today. After an irregular summer that saw elevated temperatures in July followed by cooler, damp conditions in August, more favorable weather returned in September, pushing maturation ahead and leading to a long, protracted harvest. The 2006 falls into the family of riper, more voluptuous Dom Pérignons, but without veering into the level of opulence seen in vintages such as 2002.”
Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2006 Dom Pérignon comes from a very rich vintage with an early ripeness that brought a lot of aromatic maturity. The white-golden prestige cuvée contains a bit more Chardonnay than Pinot Noir and opens with a deep and seductive, pretty accessible nose with intense yet fresh fruit aromas of pineapples, with peaches and tangerines. Lively and elegant on the palate, this is a full-bodied, unusually aromatic and fruity DP with a long and tension-filled expression.”
Great Deal on a Rising Star of Champagne
“confounding in the best possible way”
Mouzon-Leroux L’Atavique Grand Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($79.95) $49 special
Grapelive 94 points “This is an exciting new-to-me grower producer that does a biodynamic Extra Brut from estate vines. [It’s a blend of] 55% Pinot Noir and 45% Chardonnay from Verzy, and it’s a thrilling and dry style Grand Cru bubbly. Interestingly it is from mostly 2012 vintage, about 65%, with the rest a blend of leesy reserve wine from 2009 to 2011 with very low dosage, hence the Extra Brut. It was native yeast or natural fermented with the lots going through full Malo, so that very little sulfur had to be used. This Champagne is extremely brisk and vividly vibrant, but with complex layers and ever expanding depth on the palate. It has zingy citrus, orange blossom, apple, white cherry, fig and hazelnut leading the way with a steely core and lemon zest along with wet stones, before opening to brioche, a hint of smoke, chalky spice and quince. The mousse is remarkably fine and caressing, allowing lovely texture and mouth feel in such a taut Champagne. It’s not a crowd pleaser really, but a jewel for the enthusiast. The Mouzon-Leroux cuvee L’atavique is a special Champagne for grower fizz fans, imported by The Source (California) is certainly a great effort to search out! Happy Bastille Day, Viva La France!”
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91 points “Pale gold. Fresh pear and melon aromas are complemented by chamomile, toasty lees and honey. Fleshy and toasty on the palate, offering juicy orchard and pit fruit flavors with a touch of brioche. The toasty quality recurs on the sappy, lingering finish. Half of the Chardonnay here was raised in oak barrels.”
Pegau: a Highlight of 2015 Chateauneuf
“An iconic producer of traditionally styled Châteauneufs, Pegau has a vast worldwide group of highly loyal fans, many of whom have trekked to the estate for a visit with the extremely hospitable and entertaining Féraud family. Laurence Féraud makes no apologies for the sometimes rustic character of Pegau’s wines, which are sourced from the domain’s 21 hectares of vines, made entirely with whole clusters and aged in old foudres and demi-muids for two years before bottling without fining or filtration. On the contrary, Féraud relishes the opportunity to continue the family tradition of making ‘wild wines that have their own personality. Like people with a unique character, not everybody is going to be in love with them.'”-Josh Raynolds, Vinous
Additional Stock-Just Arrived:
Domaine du Pegau Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Reservee, Rhone 2015 750ML ($89.95) $75 special
Jeb Dunnuck – Rhone Report 95-97+ points “A vintage compared to 2010 by Laurence, the 2015 Châteauneuf-du-Pape looks to be one of the big successes in the vintage. Possessing a ripe, rounded, sexy style backed up by solid density and concentration, it offers classic Pegau notes of currants, pepper, and cured meats. Big, rich, concentrated and beautifully textured, it offers a rare depth of fruit and richness in the vintage.”
Wine Spectator 94 points “Solid, with a muscular core of dark fig, blackberry, raspberry paste flavors mixed liberally with anise, savory, tobacco and singed mesquite notes. Shows a sanguine thread on the finish, where everything knits together. This has ample depth and character. Best from 2020 through 2035.”
Wine Advocate 93-95 points “The 2015 Châteauneuf du Pape Cuvée Réservée is beauty, and about as classic an expression of this estate as I can recall. Blackcurrants, peppery herbs, roasted meats and garrigue all emerge from this medium to full-bodied, balanced, nicely concentrated 2015 that has ripe tannin and a great finish. It’s not on par with the 2010, 2009 or 2003, but it should surpass the 2012 and have two decades or more of longevity.”
Josh Raynolds 93-95 points “Vivid ruby. An exotically perfumed bouquet evokes ripe raspberry, cherry and garrigue, while a suave floral element expands with air. Fleshy, seamless and broad on the palate, offering intense black raspberry and fruitcake flavors that are braced and lifted by a spine of juicy acidity. The floral note builds as the wine opens up and carries through the sweet, strikingly long finish, which leaves behind red fruit liqueur and licorice notes.”
The Rare Demi-Sec Veuve Clicquot
Long before Brut Champagne was de rigueur, most houses produced bubbles in a range of sweetness. Veuve Clicquot is one of the few that upholds that tradition with their Demi-Sec bottling—a bottle of wine sweeter than the ubiquitous yellow label Brut. It can be hard to come by, but we’ve secured some, arriving Monday, for those looking outside the Champagne box.
Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Demi-Sec, Champagne NV 375ML ($37.95) $21.90 special
Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Demi-Sec, Champagne NV 750ML ($69.95) $39 special
This is the lowest listed price for a half-bottle in the USA today!
Newton’s Excellent-Value Red Labels
While Newton Vineyard is best known for their higher end “unfiltered” bottlings, their red label wines provide exceptional value for under $20. Now those prices are even lower—we’re offering a deal that’s too good to pass up. If you drink California Chardonnay or Cab, these are going to become your new house wines, at least until we run out (Only ten cases of each are available).
Newton Vineyard ‘Skyside-Red Label’ Chardonnay, California 2017 750ML ($21.95) $21.95) $14 special
Case-12 Newton Vineyard ‘Skyside-Red Label’ Chardonnay, California 2017 750ML ($249.95) $149 special (that’s only $12.42/bottle!)
Case-12 Newton Vineyard ‘Skyside-Red Label’ Claret, North Coast 2016 750ML ($299.95) $169 special (that’s only $14.08/bottle—the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
Grand Crus (and Some That Should Be)
New Arrivals from Rousseau
The wines of Rousseau have no peer in Gevrey-Chambertin. No other grower has produced wines with their level of profundity and a similar track record over the decades. From top to bottom, they are the class of the village. We are always on the hunt for their wines—as you’d expect they’re maddeningly scarce and correspondingly expensive, but we recently hit the jackpot. No fewer than twenty different bottlings just arrived from the master of Chambertin and its surrounds. With vintages going back to 1999 and all of the best vineyards represented, this is a do-not-miss chance for Burgundy lovers. We’ll give you some highlights below, but to see the full list on our webstore, just click here.
Just Arrived, In Stock Now:
Domaine Armand Rousseau Pere et Fils Chambertin Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2008 750ML ($1799.95) $1599 special
Burghound 96 points “A still mildly toasty nose features remarkably dense yet elegant aromas of deeply pitched yet extremely cool and restrained red and blue fruit aromas that are nuanced by a broad range of earth, game and underbrush hints. There is an utterly beguiling purity to the relatively refined but muscular medium full-bodied plus flavors that are strikingly complex, vibrant and perfectly balanced before culminating in a gorgeously long finish. This is brimming with upside development potential and while it too will require plenty of patience, its class and grace are such that it can be enjoyed now though I would strongly counsel waiting. In a word, magnificent. Tasted thrice recently with consistent notes.”
Antonio Galloni 95+ points “The 2008 Chambertin is rather delicate and almost ethereal in its seductive personality. This is another surprisingly open, expressive 2008. The tannins are elegant, while the wine’s balance is simply terrific.”
Wine Advocate 94-96 points “The 2002 Chambertin Clos de Beze bursts with spicy red cherry aromas. This medium to full-bodied wine has an exceptionally spicy personality that is crammed with red licorice (Twizzlers), candied raspberries, Asian spices, and blackberries. Wonderfully focused and armed with substantial depth, this medium to full-bodied wine’s exceedingly long finish displays awesomely ripe tannin. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2020.”
Burghound 94 points “(with thanks to Steve Baum and opened from personal storage). While not nearly as reserved as it once was the beautifully spicy and well-layered nose is on the restrained side with a distinctly earthy character to the elegant mix of both red and dark pinot fruit aromas that are just now beginning to display secondary hints. There is fine concentration to the utterly delicious flavors that are exuberant, big, rich, round and seductively sappy before culminating in an explosive and strikingly persistent finish. This remains an exciting wine of exceptional purity and balance. For my taste this is very much still on the way up and while it can certainly be drunk with pleasure it seems quite clear that this is nowhere yet near its apogee and as such, I would recommend allowing this to continue to slumber. Multiple and consistent notes save for one bottle that was initially reduced but quickly opened up.”
Stephen Tanzer 94+ points “Good ruby-red. Black raspberry, licorice and chocolatey oak on the nose. Offers compelling lushness, sweetness and fat for a 2002; wonderfully harmonious from the outset. Very suave, clearly defined flavors of blackberry and blueberry retain their shape through to the very long aftertaste. Tannins are quite fine.”
David Schildknecht 94-96 points “With the 2005 Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St.-Jacques (which by its position in tastings here the Rousseaus conspicuously rate as grand cru) we arrive at the first wine that is matured in new wood. Pure, sweet, fresh black cherry fruit, marrowy and enveloping carnal richness, mysteriously enticing florality, low-toned, chalky minerality and accents of black tea and star anise are featured in this remarkably seamless wine. Meat, minerals and mystery dominate a finish that is profoundly layered yet preserves sheer palate-cleansing refreshment and positively vibrates with vividly fresh fruit intensity. Rousseau owns around one third of this great site, meaning that there are over a thousand cases of this phenomenal wine to ransack the marketplace in search of, then sock away for at least a decade and preferably two. It is always the last-harvested site, says Eric Rousseau, and in 2005 his roughly twenty veteran pickers could certainly afford to wait and richly rewarded us for it.”
Burghound 94 points “A ripe yet cool and wonderfully fresh nose is composed of mostly red berry fruit, discreet spice and earth, all of which is trimmed in an extremely subtle touch of oak. There is fine delineation and plenty of minerality on the utterly delicious middle weight flavors that are perhaps a bit less powerful than one might expect in the context of the vintage on the impeccably well-balanced and gorgeously long finish. This is a wonderfully harmonious effort that is very much still on the way up but among the 3 Rousseau “big boys”, this is the closest one to being able to enjoy now. That said, another 5 to 8 years will certainly return benefits.”Domaine Armand Rousseau Pere et Fils Clos Saint-Jacques, Gevrey-Chambertin Premier Cru 2010 750ML ($1599.95) $1399 special
Antonio Galloni 97 points “Rousseau’s 2010 Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St. Jacques takes things into the stratosphere. A model of extreme purity and grace, the Clos St. Jacques leaves the room speechless, and understandably so. Here the fruit is impossibly sweet, perfumed and resonant. If there is one wine in this tasting that encapsulates what makes Burgundy so compelling, this is it. In a word: magnificent!”
Burghound 95 points “Moderate amounts of wood frames wonderfully fresh, airy, perfumed and beautifully complex aromas of red currant, warm earth, stone, crushed herbs and spice hints. The excellent depth of the nose continues onto the equally cool and brilliantly refined mineral-inflected medium-bodied flavors that possess outstanding depth of material and simply stunning length. We gave this an hour’s worth of air first and it helped enormously as it was quite closed at first. While I wouldn’t suggest opening a bottle now as there is sitll so much unrealized upside development potential remaining, if you do decide to pop one anytime soon, then be sure to decant it first for at least 30 minutes. In sum, this is a strikingly beautiful CSJ that should live for a very long time.”
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 95-97 points “The 2010 Gevrey-Chambertin Clos St. Jacques flows across the palate with fabulous depth and richness. Dark red fruit, licorice, smoke and exotic spices all come together in the glass, while the intensity of the fruit covers every corner of the palate. This huge, powerful wine will require considerable patience, but it is impeccable, not to mention stunning in its beauty. Anticipated maturity: 2025-2045.
Burghound 93 points “Ripe and very floral aromas display pure red pinot fruit that is cut with minerality and crushed herbs that introduce earthy and stony middle weight flavors that possess a taut muscularity and excellent power on the beautifully well-balanced and lingering finish. This is a very fresh wine of harmony that should age for decades if well-stored and while it’s not quite at the same level as the brilliant 2005 version, it’s close.”
Stephen Tanzer-Vinous 91-93 points “(aging in 15% new oak) Bright deep red. Knockout aromas of raspberry, rose petal, spices and blood orange offer lovely tangy lift and purity. Then sweet and silky in the mouth, with terrific verve and energy for the year. A wine of great finesse, showing the spicy, floral side of Gevrey. This cuvee has been getting better in recent years. Rousseau attributes this to the fact that he has replanted about 5% of these vines, and the young vines are now bringing more fruit and perfume.”Domaine Armand Rousseau Pere et Fils Ruchottes-Chambertin Grand Cru ‘Clos des Ruchottes’ Monopole, Cote de Nuits 2010 750ML ($899.95) $799 special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 95-97 points “The 2010 Ruchottes-Chambertin is an intensely cool, reticent wine. The bouquet recalls the Mazis, but then the firm Ruchottes tannins set in. Ultimately the Ruchottes is built on purity, definition and nuance. The chiseled aromas and flavors possess stunning detail, but it will be some time before the 2010 is ready to drink. Still, I very much like the energy and drive. Bright, floral notes add lift and vibrancy on the finish. Anticipated maturity: 2025-2045.”
Domaine Armand Rousseau Pere et Fils Ruchottes-Chambertin Grand Cru ‘Clos des Ruchottes’ Monopole, Cote de Nuits 1999 750ML ($999.95) $899 special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 94+ points “The 1999 Clos des Ruchottes is tussling with the 1996 as the best of the decade. Lucid, almost iridescent in color, the bouquet explodes across the sky with voluptuous aromas of cassis, black cherries and vanilla pod. Brilliantly defined and focused, it is utterly beguiling. The palate is very well balanced with silky smooth tannins that just glide across the mouth. Cashmere! It fans out gloriously toward its crescendo with lush plum and blackberry notes, but underneath there is a minerally core to counterbalance the sheer sexiness of this wine. Fabulous, but you need patience to really appreciate it. Drink 2018-2040. Tasted September 2013.”
Want to see all twenty bottles of Rousseau that are in stock right now? Just click here to view a full list on our website.
“One of the finest wines from the Côte d’Or in 2016”
Domaine du Clos de Tart ‘Clos de Tart’ Grand Cru Monopole, Cote de Nuits 2016 750ML ($699.95) $519 pre-arrival special
Domaine du Clos de Tart ‘Clos de Tart’ Grand Cru Monopole, Cote de Nuits 2016 1.5L ($1499.95) $1099 pre-arrival special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 97-99 points “The 2016 Clos de Tart Grand Cru was assessed from a blend of all the component parts (except the young vines) that I previously tasted separately, as I have done over the last decade. The final blend will be 80% new oak, whereas my sample contained 100%, although this was discrete and enmeshed with the fruit. It has a fascinating bouquet, much more nuanced than those from a decade ago, dark fruit, a little earthier, with the stem addition lending it more freshness and even, dare I say, slightly green—and I mean that in a very positive sense. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp acidity, a core of slightly candied black cherry and blackcurrant fruit framed by quite “strict” tannin and a fresh, marine-influenced, brine-tinged finish that lingers long in the mouth. There is a sense of harmony and completeness here that, even over 20 years tasting at this address, I have rarely encountered. You can just feel the frisson in this wine. One of the finest wines from the Côte d’Or in 2016. It’s that simple.”
These are the lowest listed prices in the USA today!
A Pair of 2014 Rieslings from the Austrian Master
Arriving in May 2019
We’re in love with Nikolaihof’s wines. They’re bright, precise and mineral drenched with the power and density of the Wachau, their nook on the Danube. More importantly, though, they have a sense of restlessness and invention about them—which is remarkable given the estate dates back to the fourteenth century. Whether that’s using a centuries old wooden press or reimagining what wine from the Wachau can be through extended cask aging, they take very traditional techniques to occasionally give us a beautifully refracted image of Austrian wine. We’ve got two masterpieces from the 2014 vintage arriving this spring, available for purchase now.
Nikolaihof Steiner Hund Riesling, Wachau 2014 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Nikolaihof Steiner Hund Riesling, Wachau 2014 750ML ($479.95) $319 pre-arrival special (that’s only $53.17/bottle!)
James Suckling 98 points “A huge dried apricot nose. In spite of the power this is super-elegant with a very long, radically mineral character that makes the wine swell in your mouth at the amazing finish. It may be too dry for some, but I find this spectacular. Drink or hold as long as you dare!”
David Schildknecht 96 points “Like its remarkable Vom Stein counterpart, I tasted this wine after it had been racked to tank, a few months before its December 2017 bottling, then again from bottle in the course of 2018. The penetrating nose is dominated by white peach, white currant and lime, anticipating the brightly juicy palate impression. But suggestions of crushed stone, bittersweet iris, clam stock, radish, kelp and smoky black tea add increasing intrigue as the wine opens to the air and is worked over in the mouth. There is underlying firmness but also a suggestion of silkiness born of lengthy lees exposure in cask, and the sense of levity, remarkably, is that of a typical Nikolaihof Federspiel more than of a Smaragd. The vibrant finishing influx of alkali, crushed stone, iodine, mineral salts, mustard seed and white pepper is almost savagely intense, practically stinging – taking matters in an at once mouthwatering and invigorating but also slightly austere direction. Here’s further proof for any who remain skeptics that the 2014 vintage – its challenges and vicissitudes notwithstanding – has at its very best delivered some of the Wachau’s and neighboring Lower Austria’s most exciting and potentially ageworthy wines of the past two decades. Tasting the outstanding 2013 alongside, this 2014 came nipping right at its heels: attention au chien!”
Wine Enthusiast 96 points “Cellar Selection. The beeswax, wet stone, hayflower and dried lemon notes on the nose of this wine suggest development. Its dry, slender yet concentrated palate has a weightless fluidity that echoes with eloquent beeswax and citrus oil flavors. The combination of lightness and beautiful depth make it so intriguing and moreish. Subtle, lovely, taut and fresh, it’s nowhere near its peak. The finish reveals a brilliant dash of mandarin. Drink 2028–2040.”
Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Riesling vom Stein Smaragd, Wachau 2014 750ML ($69.95) $49 pre-arrival special
David Schildknecht 97 points “In a departure from usual Nikolaihof practice – given that it had by then been filtered and assembled into tank – I was offered my first taste of this wine shortly before the initial, December 2017 bottling. The wine was exciting then, and when re-tasted repeatedly in the course of 2018 had only gained in stature. Moss, lemon zest, peach kernel and toasted grain on the nose put me in mind of a relatively austere white Burgundy. But that sense of kinship dims with the emergence of high-toned hints of lavender and mint, mouthwatering ocean breeze and a sappy, juicy abundance of fresh lime and white peach juiciness on the silken palate. There are also faint hints of kirsch and mothball such as one can encounter from time to time at this address and to whose volatility some tasters might object. The finish is transparent to a veritable carpet of mineral matter – albeit a levitating, vibrantly undulating one! Crushed stone, alkali, mineral salts and iodine combine with herbal and protein-rich flavors for something approximating a blend of oyster liquor and clam stock that set my salivary glands to palpitating. And now for the astonishing kicker: This remarkable stuff filled the largest cask in the Nikolaihof cellar, with a capacity of 12,000 liters! Half was bottled in 2017 and 2018; the rest will be held back – let’s hope eventually to inform a Vinothek offering. “The only sense in which this wine needed to be bottled,” noted Saahs, “was in order to avoid Vom Stein Smaragd temporarily dropping from our price list and to make room in the cellar. It wasn’t the phases of the moon calling the shots,” he added with a sly grin. (Re-tasted alongside, the corresponding 2013 showed at the upper end of my earlier projection. But despite issuing from one of the two finest Wachau vintages that it has been my privilege to taste as young wines, that 2013 doesn’t quite reach the complexity nor exhibit the clarity and energy of this 2014 – not for now, at least.)”
James Suckling 95 points “An intensely minerally riesling that combines considerable power with a slim silhouette. Finely etched dried-pear and candied-lemon flavors echo through the long, subtle finish. From biodynamically grown grapes. Demeter certified. Drink or hold. Screw cap.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!