In Today’s Newsletter:
Tradition with a Capital H
New Wines from Raul Perez, Icon of the New Spain
Vietti Barolo Cru Subscriber Special
The Criminally Underrated Tempier Reds
A Wine Spectator Top-20 Wine, Back In Stock Next Week
New Wine Advocate Champagne Reviews
A Back Vintage Barolo Gets a New Review
Bodegas Hidalgo is a legendary name in sherry, best known for their Manzanilla “La Gitana.” Hidalgo’s cellar is located right on the water in Sanlúcar de Barrameda where the humidty and breeze from the ocean preserves the flor to a much greater extent than in other parts of Sherry country. The resulting wines have a freshness that defines the house style—everything here is based off of the lightness and elegance of Manzanilla and it shows.
We recently tasted through the entire lineup and were incredibly impressed. The La Gitana was bright and fresh as always, but once you moved up the line the quality improvements seemed exponential. The En Rama (unfiltered from selected casks) bottling was stellar—like the La Gitana but with more of everything we love. The Pastrana, a single-vineyard Manzanilla Pasada (ie: Manzanilla on the way to Amontillado) remains one of the best values in the style.
From there, the Amontillado, Oloroso and especially the Palo Cortado sherries offer dry, rich, textural experiences that vastly overperform their prices (even in the value land that is Sherry). Also of special note are the unfortified, non-flor affected whites that are fermented and aged in sherry casks. These are brilliant, throwback style wines that offer immense complexity and depth for the price.
These are wines to buy and drink with abandon—especially in the summer, when our warm weather seems to invoke Cadiz and southern Spain. Some of these arrive on Friday and some arrive later this month, but all are worth buying now. We’ve got them listed below but you can also view the entire set on our webstore by clicking here.
Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana ‘Las 30 del Cuadrado’ Cepas Viejas, Andalucia 2017 750ML ($27.95) $19 pre-arrival special
“an unfortified Palomino fermented in old Manzanilla casks, a style that wants to revive the wines from yesteryear, so it has some of the flor notes of a Manzanilla” –Luiz Gutierrez, Wine Advocate [No reviews yet for the 2017 vintage]
This is the only listing in the USA today!
Wine Enthusiast 93 points “Cellar Selection. Heady aromas of malted milk ball, ripe berry fruits and tobacco are warm and welcoming. Hailing from a warm year, this feels full but playful, with tannins that are only mildly scratchy. Flavors of vanilla, tobacco, butter, herb and dried berry fruit are textbook for Rioja gran reserva, while this takes a while to fully unfold on the finish. Drink through 2035.”
VinopolNote “Viura from Rioja aged in ex-Sherry casks, this wine combines old-school white Rioja texture with the savoriness and smokiness we associate with Manzanilla. This is exceptional, unique stuff that will appeal to lovers of Lopez de Heredia’s whites.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!
Wine Spectator 91 points
“Bright, with saline, sunchoke and blanched almond notes backed by a piercing, chalk-framed finish. This is all precision and cut. Drink now.”
Wine Spectator 92 points “Very energetic, with a crunchy feel to the mix of dried chamomile and honeysuckle notes, accented by hints of lemon peel, white peach and quinine. The long finish is tightly zipped up.”
Wine Advocate 93 points “This is a special bottling to celebrate Hidalgo’s 225th anniversary. The NV Manzanilla La Gitana Aniversario, in a large, old-style bottle, was selected from ten botas of 12-year-old Manzanilla, bottled after three years in three 1,000-liter foudres, two 600-liter botas and one 500-liter bota without being refreshed. Even after those 15 years the flor was still alive. It’s very intense in color and on the nose and palate. There are no signs of oxidation and it remains fresh with a texture that has been sharpened throughout the years. It’s dry and very long, with chalky minerality. This is a textbook Manzanilla Pasada.”
Wine Enthusiast 92 points “Editor’s Choice. The people at Hidalgo in Sanlúcar have taken dry Manzanilla and have let it age until it has turned golden and mature. The bouquet is full of exotic oils, nuts and some horsehide. In the mouth, it’s a touch salty and astringent, but there are buttery, sweet undertones and great focus. And on the back end the pure flavor of mushroom and almonds is uncanny. Sleek, acidic and likely perfect with lobster or shrimp bisque.”
Wine Spectator 91 points “A stunning manzanilla, from its combination of grilled nuts, apple and ocean aromas to the long, walnut aftertaste. In between there’s freshness, vibrancy and concentrated flavors. Drink now.”
Wine Spectator 92 points “Lovely notes of singed almond, praline and Brazil nut weave in and around a core of bitter orange and salted caramel flavors, with a lingering green tea echo giving the finish extra tension. Drink now. 1,660 cases made, 720 cases imported.”
Wine Advocate 95 points “The NV Palo Cortado Wellington VORS is produced from Palomino grapes from the Balbaina and Miraflores vineyards, both in the municipality of Sanlucar de Barrameda, where the winery is also located. The wine has a deep amber color, a profound, clean, subtle nose of candied oranges, ginger, hazelnuts, cigar ash and smoke. The complex palate is very gentle, sharp but not aggressive, with clean flavors, great persistence and a dry finish where the orange rind comes back with a touch of beeswax. An exceptional Palo Cortado. 19% alcohol.”
Wine Enthusiast 94 points “This tawny tinted Palo Cortado will make a Sherry fanatic smile. Aromas of hazelnut, almond liqueur and toffee introduce an oily, creamy palate cut by a beam of blazing acidity. Briny apricot, persimmon and caramel flavors offer a dusting of cocoa in front of a long, classy, nutty finish. This has everything and lacks nothing.”
Wine Advocate 93 points “A stylish version, with a caressing edge to the walnut cream, dried ginger and hazelnut skin notes. Features a core of green tea, Brazil nut and bitter almond flavors, with a long, lacy finish. Drink now. 300 cases made.”Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana Oloroso Seco Faraon Sherry, Andalucia NV 500ML ($19.95) $16 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 93 points “A sweet hint of flan lurks throughout, but this stays bright and dry in feel overall, with a mix of persimmon, quince and date flavors threaded with hazelnut and bitter orange notes. Offers a long and layered finish. Drink now. 1,800 cases made, 900 cases imported.”
Bodegas Hidalgo La Gitana ‘Alameda’ Cream Sherry, Andalucia NV 500ML ($19.95) $16 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 91 points “The Alameda Cream is dark amber and medium sweet with creme brulee aromas and flavors, a far classier drink than what your grandmother used to imbibe.”
Wine Enthusiast 90 points “Smooth and sweet, like a cream Sherry is supposed to be. On the nose, this one easily shifts from ripe apricot and peach fruit to nuts and saline. The palate starts with a blast of coffee and mocha and then folds in brown sugar and spice. Sweet, long and generous, with accents of cinnamon, clove and mild chocolate.”
New Releases from Raul Perez
Icon of the New Spain
Raul Perez has emerged as one of the most exciting Spanish winemakers of the last few years. He’s done it in an interesting way: not by making over-the-top big fruit and oak bombs, but rather by honing in on the terroirs in Galicia, a relatively unromantic vinicultural region. Until the late 1990’s, when his mentor Alvaro Palacios started the Petalos/Descendientes project, most of the wines in the region were sold locally, often to pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago.
Since then, a number of new wineries have popped up, but most of them are in the Palacios mold—made from around the warm, Mediterranean-climate village of Corullon. Perez, on the other hand, has walked a different path and focuses on wines made from Atlantic-influence climates in villages like Villadecanes or Cacabelos. As a result, the wines tend to be impressive, but in an introspective, earthy way.
Winemaking plays a part in that, as well. Perez prefers indigenous yeasts, neutral vessels and a lot of whole-cluster fermentation in his wine. Citing the (unlikely) influence of Bartolo Mascarello, he performs a long post-fermentation maceration on his wines as well, which give the wines powerful, yet elegant, structures that complement food exceptionally well. When you roll all of this together, you understand why Perez is making waves—these are unique and exceptional wines that show off terroirs previously unexplored by serious winemakers.
We’ve acquired a large selection of the wines Perez makes under his own name as well as those off of the La Vizcaina property (which are all single vineyards from a single estate), arriving Friday May 10th. We’ve got some highlights below but you can see all of them on the website by clicking here or looking at the full list at the end of the section.
Highlights Arriving ETA May 10th:
Raul Perez Ultreia La Claudina Godello, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 94 points “$70. The 2016 Ultreia La Claudina is a white that had a very slow fermentation. It has strong citrus aromatics, notes of lemon and lime, complicated by petrol-like aromas. It’s more fruit driven and less spicy, and it was not a good year for flor (which occurs when the barrels are not topped up and the wine develops a thin veil of yeasts). With time in the glass it developed notes of chamomile and pollen, gaining in complexity but without reaching the subtleness of the 2017. It was a low-yielding vintage, and there are around 1,400 bottles.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 93 points “Limpid yellow-gold. Fresh nectarine, Meyer lemon and pear on the highly perfumed, mineral-tinged nose. Shows very good depth and sharp delineation to its intense citrus and orchard fruit flavors and picks up floral and iodine nuances as the wine opens up. The strikingly long, smoke- and mineral-accented finish features a sexy floral quality and a spicy touch of candied ginger. (Raised in neutral French oak foudres.)”
Raul Perez Ultreia de Paluezas, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($79.95) $59.95 pre-arrival special
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 96 points “One of the few vineyards in Bierzo where the soils have a significant content of limestone is San Juan de Paluezas, in a different valley looking into Las Médulas goldmines. They produce three barrels of the 2016 Ultreia de Paluezas from this vineyard. This year it had a shorter élevage, only around 12 months, as they saw it was ready and was racked out of the wood. Limestone soils always deliver dry, chalk-like tannins and a special tastiness that often translates in an almost salty feeling. It has more bones than flesh; it’s austere and should develop slowly in bottle. In fact, they are now releasing the 2015, as they feel it benefits from some more time in bottle. I like the austerity here. 850 bottles produced from a small plot with very low yields.”
Wine Advocate 95+ points “There is a new Ultreia bottling, the 2014 Ultreia El Rapolao, from a vineyard that now sees five or six different bottlings, sourced from their old vineyards that used to go to the Vizcaína bottling. This is really pretty, with intense floral aromas, spices, a touch of earth and something herbal. The palate is medium-bodied with refined tannins, great balance and a tasty, long, sapid, almost salty finish. There were some 600 bottles produced. it was bottled in January 2017. Outstanding.”
Case-12 Raul Perez Ultreia Saint Jacques, Bierzo 2017 750ML ($249.95) $199 pre-arrival special (that’s only $16.58/bottle—the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!)
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 93 points “The clean, floral and 2017 Ultreia Saint Jacques comes mostly from old vineyards from different soils in Valtuille and Villadecanes fermented in stainless steel and oak vats with part of full clusters and matured in used barriques for one year. It’s produced in a fresh and very drinkable way. This is one of the best values from Bierzo and Spain, and a great introduction to Bierzo. It’s a more serious wine than what the wine was when it was first produced, fresh and elegant. It’s very reliable and a great value. There are some 100,000 bottles that were filled in two production runs.”La Vizcaina ‘El Rapolao’, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 95+ points “The cool and elegant character of the El Rapolao plot seems to have been amplified by the weather conditions in the 2016 La Vizcaína El Rapolao. Pérez does not own all the vineyards, so sourcing can sometimes vary within the same vineyard, and since 2016 it comes from two old plots where the Mencía is mixed with other varieties; the wine seems to have gained in depth and complexity as a result. In 2016 he did a slightly shorter maceration and matured the wine in 500-liter oak barrels for a little over 12 months. The vineyard yields well, and the wine is always expressive, balanced and elegant. It seems like slightly higher yields suit it better, and the wines have good tension and an herbal twist that adds to the complexity and freshness. 5,000 bottles produced.”
Wine Advocate 96 points “The vines at La Vitoriana are from a north-facing part of the vineyard and are extremely old, and the grapes show their best between 13% and 13.5% alcohol. The maceration of the 2016 La Vizcaína La Vitoriana is the longest of all wines from La Vizcaína wines, and it always has very strong balsamic notes. It’s subtle and elegant with a velvety texture, with lots of energy and inner strength. Pérez selects about half of the vineyard, and he feels 2016 is the year that best represents the character of the place. I’d add it’s probably the best vintage so far. 3,000 bottles produced.”
Just click here to view the list in our web store or check out the full collection below:
Vietti Subscriber Special
At the Lowest Prices in the Country
“…the 2015s here [at Vietti] are brilliant. I won’t be surprised if they show even better with a few more years in bottle, as they are among the most reticent 2015s I tasted.”
“I generally advise Vinous readers to focus on producer above all else. Two thousand fifteen is a perfect vintage to see why that approach makes sense.” – Antonio Galloni
Vietti is a classic producer working in a neo-classic style, in our minds. The wines aren’t ultra-traditional, but they do combine what Luca Currado values most about traditional wines of the Piedmont with modern cellar practices. The result is a set of wines that show tons of Nebbiolo character and distinct terroir signatures, but with an elegance that’s all Vietti. The 2015’s are a prime example, combining the warmth and power of the vintage with a level of detail that few other producers were able to harness in their cru bottlings. The result is a set of wines that (like 2009) are positive outliers for a vintage that has some very high highs. We’re receiving a limited allocation of the 2015 cru wines next month and smart buyers should lock these in now.
We decided to double down on these wines and we’re offering you, our newsletter subscribers, an even better deal than what were already the lowest prices in the country! These prices won’t display online, but we’ll manually adjust it before finalizing your order. We’ll run this special for you all until the current tranche sells out, so don’t delay.
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James Suckling 95 points
“This has a rather reserved nose with dried-herb, rosehip, potpourri and light cedary aromas, ahead of fragrant dried cherries. The palate has quite dense and smoothly rendered, ripe tannins that deliver a long, composed and approachable Barolo. Drink or hold.”
Antonio Galloni 93+ points “The 2015 Barolo Brunate is powerful and dense in the glass, with plenty of Brunate tannin that enshrouds the palate. Iron, smoke, grilled herb, menthol and spice notes add complexity to the dark, sepia-toned fruit. The 2015 is a baby. It will benefit from several years in bottle and then drink well to age 25-30, perhaps beyond. This is the first vintage made from Vietti’s expanded holdings following the acquisition of a parcel that formerly went to Andrea Oberto.”
Now it’s even lower!
James Suckling 96 points “This is a very youthful Barolo that has attractive, fragrant perfume with freshly picked roasting herbs and a strong, central thread of ripe cherries and red plums. The pure and concentrated palate frames intense plum and cherry flavors in long, unwavering tannins that deliver rich, strong and seamless into the finish. Exceptional quality and built for aging. Try from 2025.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2015 Barolo Lazzarito is one of the highlights in this range from Vietti. The power and gravitas of Serralunga come through loud and clear in a deep, beautifully resonant Barolo loaded with character. Iron, smoke, sage, menthol, licorice and rose petal give the Lazzarito its beguiling aromatic complexity. The massive tannins need time to soften, but there is a lot to look forward to once that happens.”
Now it’s even lower!
Antonio Galloni 95 points “The 2015 Barolo Ravera is once again the head of the class at Vietti. Bright, sculpted and wonderfully nuanced, the Ravera is very pretty. Floral aromatics and the pointed, brilliant fruit that is such a Ravera signature are very much in evidence. Hints of blood orange, mint, crushed rocks and flowers add shades of complexity as the 2015 gradually opens up in the glass. This is one of the finer wines of the year. Don’t miss it!”
James Suckling 95 points “The beautifully fragrant roses are impossible to resist. This oozes charm. Also, there are red cherries, cocoa powder and an array of wild herbs in the mix. The palate has toned yet muscular tannins that build nicely to deliver a concentrated core of ripe red-cherry flavor that holds long, fresh and youthful. Great Barolo. Try from 2022.”
Now it’s even lower!
James Suckling 98 points “A hauntingly complex and finely detailed nose that touches so many different characters. Roses, dried wood, cedar, fine brown spices, light earthy notes, warm stones, mountain herbs and leaves. All here – very complex. The density and weight is exceptional, as is the fine, firm weave of tannins. The length is staggering and the tautness and balance are captivating. One of the stars of the vintage! Try from 2025.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2015 Barolo Rocche di Castiglione is incredibly inviting from the very first taste. Silky and aromatic, the Rocche shows plenty of the classiness that is such a signature of this Castiglione Falletto site. As with all of these 2015s, readers will have to be patient. The 2015 gains striking volume and resonance with time in the glass, but a few years in bottle are an absolute must for the wine to show at its very best.”
Now it’s even lower!
We will manually adjust your price before finalizing your order.
If you aren’t familiar with the Tempier reds (or Bandol in general) know that these are Mourvèdre based blends that turn the Rhone on its head—they are big and rich with a distinct earthiness and a spicy, bright finish. Historically, they were quite tannic as well, but Tempier has made current releases much more approachable—these are now wines that you can drink on release without a pang of guilt (just give them a healthy decant).
Oh, and they age. Mourvèdre seems to have an ability to absorb the years like no other grape (pace Nebbiolo)—despite their youthful charm they’ll improve for decades in the cellar. We’d recommend buying a mixed case and drinking the basic rouge over the next decade and the single vineyards starting after that. 2016 represents a fantastic vintage for the region and we’ve gone long on as much as we could get our hands on. These are the best prices in the country, so buy with confidence—you can’t end up with too much.
Arriving ETA May 10th:
Domaine Tempier Bandol, Provence 2016 750ML ($59.95) $45 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Domaine Tempier Bandol, Provence 2016 750ML ($719.95) $499 pre-arrival special (that’s only $41.58/bottle—the lowest listed price in the country!)
Importer Note “75% Mourvèdre, 14% Grenache, 9% Cinsault, 2% Carignan from 40+ year old vines on clay and limestone soils. Destemmed, fermented with indigenous yeasts and then aged 18-20 months in large oak foudres.”
About the single vineyard cuvees:
“The three single-vineyards of Domaine Tempier are: La Migoua, La Tourtine, and Cabassaou. All are made up of clay and limestone, but there are variations in each. La Migoua is made up of heterogeneous clay that varies in color between red, ochre, and blue. At 270 meters, it sits at the highest altitude of all the vineyards. The parcel’s complex sedimentation is largely due to the subduction of a tectonic plate which has surfaced the oldest rock outcroppings in the whole of the appellation. Surrounded by garrigue and pine forest, the grapes translate to earthy, gamey wines. La Migoua has the smallest amount of Mourvèdre in the blend, with the highest percentage of Grenache of the three cuvées. La Tourtine sits just above Cabassaou. The soil here is more homogeneous, with rich clay. La Tourtine produces powerful, tannic wines with gorgeous fruit character. Since Cabassaou sits lower on this hillside, it is protected from the strength of the Mistral, enjoying temperate breezes and maximum sunshine. There is ripeness, density and power in these wines.” –Kermit Lynch
Domaine Tempier Bandol Rouge Cuvee La Tourtine, Provence 2016 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Importer Note “80% Mourvèdre, 10% Grenache, 10% Cinsault from 40+ year old vines on clay and limestone soils. Destemmed, fermented with indigenous yeasts and then aged 18-20 months in large oak foudres.”
The average listed price is $80
Domaine Tempier Bandol Cuvee Speciale La Migoua, Provence 2016 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Importer Note “50% Mourvèdre, 20% Grenache, 26% Cinsault, 4% Syrah from 40+ year old vines on clay and limestone soils. Destemmed, fermented with indigenous yeasts and then aged 18-20 months in large oak foudres.”
The next best price is $65.95
The average listed price is $80
Domaine Tempier Bandol Rouge Cuvee Cabassaou, Provence 2016 750ML ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special
Importer Note “95% Mourvèdre, 4% Syrah, 1% Cinsault from 50+ year old vines on clay and limestone soils. Destemmed, fermented with indigenous yeasts and then aged 18-20 months in large oak foudres.”
The average listed price is $117
A Wine Spectator Top-20 Wine
Back In Stock Next Week
Arriving Soon, Already in the May Sale!
The Wine Spectator Top 100 list always seems to have a number of excellent value wines that are highlighted for high honors. The 2012 Caceres Reserva was one such wine—and it sold out in a heartbeat. Luckily we’ve secured more of it in magnums, arriving next Friday. These are perfect for spring and summer cookouts, when you want something robust and plenty of it to go around. We expect it to go quickly this time as well, so buy some now if you have any interest at all.
Re-Arriving Friday, May 10th
#19 Wine Of The Year – Wine Spectator Top 100 2017
Marques de Caceres Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 1.5L ($59.95) Was $39, Now $28 May Sale Special
Case-6 Marques de Caceres Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 1.5L ($319.95) Was $219, Now $159 May Sale Special (that’s only $26.50/magnum!)
Wine Spectator 93 points “Black cherry, currant and floral notes are expressive and alluring, balanced by loamy earth, tobacco and mineral elements that add a savory quality. Firm, well-integrated tannins give support to the polished texture, while orange peel acidity fuels the fresh finish. Drink now through 2027.”
The next best price is $43.97Want to see all the wines in the May Sale? Just click here to view the entire list!
In Stock Now:
Ulysse Collin ‘Les Pierrieres’ Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut, Champagne NV (2014) 750ML ($149.95) $119 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 96 points “Disgorged last year, Olivier Collin’s superb NV Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Les Pierrières (2014) wafts from the glass with aromas of smoky citrus oil, crushed rocks, white flowers and a subtle top note of blanched almonds. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied, tensile and searingly intense, with a vinous but tight-knit profile, superb concentration and depth at the core and a long, racy and undeniably mineral finish. I have already worked my way through half a case of this wine from my own cellar, and it continues to blossom and unwind with each month on cork. The 2014 base isn’t as reserved and introverted as some vintages of Pierrières, and its purity and precision are already easy to appreciate.”
Pierre Gimonnet et Fils Blanc de Blancs Cuis Premier Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($59.95) $45 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 91 points “Disgorged in May 2018 with six grams per liter dosage, the latest rendition of Gimonnet’s NV Brut Premier Cru Cuis is delightful, bursting from the glass with notes of white flowers, green apple, subtle brioche and walnut oil. On the palate, the wine is medium to full-bodied, bright and racy, with a youthfully frothy, pinpoint mousse, ripe acids and a long, nutty finish. This is a lovely introduction to the Gimonnet range that represents terrific value.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90 points “Aromas of lemon oil, crushed chalk and oyster shell introduce the NV Grand Cru La Grâce d’Alphaël, a medium-bodied, bright and vibrant wine with a crisp core of fruit, tangy acids and a delicately chalky finish. It’s a racy, flavorful 100% Chardonnay bottling that was disgorged in October 2017.”Aubry Premier Cru Brut Rose, Champagne NV 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 92+ points “The latest release of Aubry’s NV Brut Rose Premier Cru was only disgorged in July 2018, but it’s already showing well, opening in the glass with scents of strawberries, red apples and potpourri. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, with an impressively deep, layered core of nicely concentrated fruit, ripe but tangy acids, a youthfully frothy mousse and a long, intense finish. This is a powerful, serious rosé that will work well at table or as an aperitif, especially after another year or two on cork.”
Andre Clouet Grande Reserve Brut, Champagne NV 1.5L ($99.95) $89 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90 points “The latest release of André Clouet’s NV Brut Grand Réserve Grand Cru is showing well, exhibiting a nicely integrated bouquet of red apple, ripe citrus fruit, honeycomb and blanched almonds, followed by a medium to full-bodied, enveloping palate with a fine mousse, ripe but racy acids and an elegant, understated profile, concluding with a well-defined finish. This is a stylish, harmonious wine that makes for a fine introduction to the Clouet portfolio.”
Andre Clouet Grand Cru Brut Rose, Champagne NV 3L ($379.95) $319 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90 points “The latest release of Clouet’s deeply colored NV Brut Rosé No 3 Grand Cru is showing well, opening in the glass with notes of blood orange, red berries, ripe apples and oatmeal. On the palate, it’s full-bodied, broad and vinous, with ripe acids, a frothy mousse and a moderately intense finish. This is an attractive, gastronomic rosé that hails exclusively from Bouzy.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 93 points “Aromas of crushed chalk, dried white flowers and lemon oil introduce the 2011 Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Les Chétillons Cuvée Speciale, a bright, medium to full-bodied wine that’s as pure and incisive as usual, with a delicate but tight-knit core that’s structured around a tangy line of acidity, concluding with a precise, searingly mineral finish. It’s an elegant, understated vintage of Les Chétillons that will come into its own with five or six years on cork.”Vilmart & Cie ‘Coeur de Cuvee’ Premier Cru Brut, Champagne 2010 750ML ($159.95) $128 special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 94+ points “Disgorged in February 2017, this rendition of Vilmart’s 2010 Coeur de Cuvée is still very tightly wound, unfurling in the glass with aromas of lemon oil, crisp green apples, white flowers and subtle hints of praline that has almost entirely integrated its framing of recently used wood. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied, broad and vinous, with superb concentration, an electric line of acidity and a deep, tight-knit core, concluding with a long, tongue-tinglingly chalky finish. This is a superb Coeur de Cuvée, but it will need more time on cork to realize all its potential.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 94 points “Disgorged in July 2017, this release of Geoffroy’s 2009 Brut Premier Cru Volupté is still a very youthful wine, unfurling in the glass with scents of fresh and dried white flowers, lemon oil, white currants and wet stones. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, vinous but incisive, with a lively spine of acidity, a tight-knit core, a delicate mousse and a penetrating, chalky finish. This is a beautifully pure, precise Champagne, which, in that respect, belies its name and its vintage.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 93 points “The July 2017 disgorgement of Vilmart’s 2013 Premier Cru Grand Cellier d’Or is showing brilliantly, bursting with scents of lime, citrus oil, freshly baked bread, crisp green apples and white flowers. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, broad and incisive, with an elegantly textural attack, a beautifully pure core of fruit, tangy acids and a nicely defined finish. While it’s still a young wine, just beginning its drinking window, its quality is already apparent.”Only 27 bottles remain!
Vilmart & Cie ‘Coeur de Cuvee’ Premier Cru Brut, Champagne 2009 750ML ($179.95) $115 special, 27 bottles in stock now
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 96 points “Disgorged in May 2016, Vilmart’s 2009 Coeur de Cuvée is predictably superb, wafting from the glass with a lovely bouquet of lemon oil, verbena, dried white flowers, walnut oil and wet stones. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied and fleshy but precise, with a voluminous mousse, incisive acids, superb concentration and more energy and tension than many examples of this vintage—no doubt amplified by Vilmart’s use of only the best press fraction for this bottling—concluding with a long, elegantly chalky finish. The blend is 80% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Noir. This is a wine that merits ardent pursuit.”
The average price is $151
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 95 points “Doyard’s 2013 Grand Cru Extra Brut Millésime Œil de Perdrix is showing superbly, bursting from the glass with an expressive bouquet of honeyed red apples, brown sugar, confit citrus fruits and warm, exotic spices that speak of mature grapes. On the palate, it’s full-bodied, broad and vinous, with tangy acids, a deep core of ripe, concentrated fruit, a frothy mousse and a long, sapid finish.”Arriving ETA May:
Gaston Chiquet Carte Verte Premier Cru Brut Tradition, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90 points “The latest rendition of the NV Brut Premier Cru Tradition is excellent, unfurling in the glass with aromas of mandarin, apple, freshly baked bread and white flowers. On the palate, the wine is medium to full-bodied, broad and fleshy, with tangy acids, a fine mousse and a generous but vibrant core of fruit. It’s an expressive, giving Champagne that will offer a broad drinking window—and it’s also a great value.”
In Stock Now:
Poderi Oddero Vigna Rionda, Barolo Riserva DOCG 2008 750ML ($219.95) $169 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 94 points “The 2008 Barolo Riserva Vignarionda was held back at the winery to be released commercially ten years after the harvest. The fruit is sourced from 50-year-old vines that benefit from organic farming. You feel the robust nature of the Serralunga d’Alba village, with heat, structure and power at the back. It is a classic but powerful Nebbiolo, with earthy tones, sweet spice and dark chocolate. This wine is moving beautifully along its aging trajectory. Bravi. Only 2,000 bottles are available.”