Vinopolis Newsletter — Monday 9/18/23

 In This Newsletter:

New Arrivals
Bow & Arrow, Mellen Meyer, Domaine Anita, Nikolaihof, and more!
Recently Reviewed
Great scores for Beaux Freres 2021 Vintage
Staff Pick
A Sancerre for Chablis lovers?
Better Know A Wine Region
Oregon’s Yamhill-Carlton AVA
Close-out Sale
Save on Vietti, Sprietzer, and Caiarossa!
Collector’s Corner
The Champions of Champagne
New Arrivals
Bow & Arrow Cabernet Franc 2021 750ml $29 special, 36 bottles available
Vinopolnote “If you don’t know Scott Frank’s wines yet, you are missing out on some the best varietal focused wines at value prices in the market. Specializing in the styles and varietals of the Loire Valley, this cab franc clocks in at 12.5% alcohol and captures the magic of Chinon with Willamette fruit.”

Mellen Meyer Willamette Valley Brut Nature NV 750ml $31.90 special, 24 bottles available
Winery note: 60% Pinot Noir & 40% Chardonnay. Disgorged March 20, 2021. Aged 30 months on the lees. Produced from non-irrigated vines.

“Domaine Anita, Beaujolais”
Anita Kuhnel is a former professional cyclist who launched her eponymous domaine in Chénas with the 2015 vintage. Her namesake winery has quickly become a powerful force in Beaujolais, crafting minimal intervention wines vinified parcel by parcel to bring a laser-like intensity on the focus of each terroir.
Domaine Anita Morgon Chateau Gaillard 2021 750ml $28 special, 36 bottles available
James Suckling 96 Points “So ripe and so graceful, this is a staggering wine for 2021 that shows what was possible if you had old vines, you did everything right in the vineyard during the growing season, and then you hit the ideal harvest date. The balance of concentration and the super-fine tannins must be tasted to be believed. And the stony minerality at the finish is off the scale. Great aging potential!”
Domaine Anita Moulin A Vent Riene De Nuit 2021 750ml $33 special, 36 bottles available
James Suckling 97 Points “This majestic Moulin-a-Vent marries very ripe forest berry aromas with stunning salty minerality, and the enormous freshness makes it extremely vibrant and exciting. The very long, super-fine finish makes you wonder why this appellation isn’t as famous as Burgundy’s finest. From a parcel next to the winery that belongs to the site and ripens very early.”
Domaine Anita Moulin A Vent Tres VV Les Caves 2021 750ml $28 special, 36 bottles available
James Suckling 96 Points “Stunning nose of licorice and ripe (but not overripe) plum. Very elegant and silky, this has so much mineral intensity and such fine tannins. The freshness at the finish could wake the dead! Hard to imagine how a wine could be more focused than this. From 80 and 100 year old vines.”
“Giovanni Gurrieri, Sicily”
Giovanni Gurrieri Grillo 2022 750ml $19 special, 36 bottles available
Winemaker’s Note “Estate-grown near Mazzarrone, west of Chiaramonte Gulfi, at around 180 meters/600 feet in altitude. After about 9 months in tank the wine is bottled. Gurrieri’s Grillo is a beautiful example of the variety, pale straw color in the glass with green glints, aroma and flavor includes citrus, herbal, green apple notes, very bright and fresh.”
Giovanni Gurrieri Frappato 2021 750ml $21.90 special, 36 bottles available
Winemaker’s Note “Frappato is an aromatic variety, unusual for a red grape. The wine is brilliant mid-red in color, with clear floral and berry/pomegranate fruit notes and some spice and tea-leaf on the nose and the palate. Very useful food wine. Amazing with grilled tuna, and a clear candidate for the Summer Red Wine Hall of Fame. I drink it slightly chilled, but then any good red wine should be drunk at the temperature of a cool cellar, not room temperature.”
The vineyards have essentially been organic since Roman Times, tended by German monks for millennia before they were purchased by the Saah family in the 19th century. The family took Nikolaihof to the next level and converted to Bio-dynamic farming in 1971, making them one of the longest practicing Bio-dynamic wineries in history.
Nikolaihof Gruner Federspiel Wachau 2021 750ml $38 special, 9 bottles available
Nikolaihof Riesling Federspiel 2021 750ml $39 special, 12 bottles available
Nikolaihof Riesling Steiner Hund 2017 750ml $99 special, 6 bottles available
Nikolaihof Riesling Vom Stein Smaragd 2017 1.5L $169 special, 3 bottles available
Nikolaihof Riesling Vom Stein Smaragd 2017 750ml $79 special, 12 bottles available
Arriving September 22nd
“Champagne Guy Larmandier”
In the village of Vertus at the southern base of the Cote des Blancs, the Larmandier family has crafted their champagnes since 1982. Since Guy Larmandier’s death, his wife Colette and their two children, Francois and Marie-Helene, have continued business with no alteration in production or quality. Harvests are still conducted manually, the wines are still aged a minimum of 36 months on the lees and all Champagnes for US export are disgorged on order. These memorable and pure Cru champagnes are a love letter to Guy’s vision and dreams.
Guy Larmandier Cramant Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut NV 750ml $59 special, 36 bottles available
Importer’s Note “From Chardonnay vines in the Grand Cru village of Cramant. The total absence of any sense of sweetness in this Brut Zéro allows the limestone to take center stage, and it presents in a more piercing and saline manner than in Larmandier’s Brut wines. Despite its relative rigorousness and austerity, however, this is by no means a difficult wine. Rather, it will appeal to those who relish the sort of palpable, intense mineral character Champagne is capable of when made in such a straightforward fashion. Aged 3 years sur lattes.”
“Brovia, Piedmont”
Brovia Barolo 2019 750ml $69 special, 36 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95 Points “On a shortlist of “Annata” wines to buy from Piedmont this year is the Brovia 2019 Barolo. Made from a blend of fruit from Castiglione Falletto and Serralunga d’Alba, this wine delivers a very sharp and chiseled performance that puts a priority on directness, freshness and length. This pretty wine has a pronounced fruity side and a mineral side, and these two parts converge beautifully. There are hints of dried mint and licorice on the close of this must-have wine.”
Recently Reviewed
Beaux Freres
Beaux Freres “The Beaux Freres Vineyard” Pinot Noir 2021 750ml $124.95 special, 10 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95+ Points “Medium ruby-purple, the 2021 Pinot Noir The Beaux Frères Vineyard opens slowly on the nose to a core of wild blackberry and blueberry, revealing tones of forest floor, licorice, bitters and floral potpourri as it spends time in the glass. The light-bodied palate is soft and juicy with surprisingly concentrated flavors for its delicate frame, and it has a long, floral finish. This is elegant, expressive and easy to drink!”
Staff Pick
Loire Valley

Gerard Boulay Sancerre Chavignol 2022 750ml $36 special, 22 bottles available
“This is a sharp-tongued devil of a wine. Grown in the same Kimmeridgian soils that cover Chablis and Champagne’s Côte-des-Bar, this is a Sancerre for those who love their wines bristling with intensity and minerality. An epic wine for cheeses or seafood. Try this with oysters, sashimi, or baked fish.”

Better Know A Wine Region

Millions of years ago, Oregon was on the Ocean’s floor. The same marine sediments that rose as tectonic shift created the Pacfic Rim and Cascade mountains now make up the majority of Yamhill-Carlton’s arable soil. These silty-loamy soils promote the excellent drainage that provides the strong concentration and moderated acidity that the grapes from this region are famous for.
Located in between Dundee Hills and Chehalem Mountain, the secret to this AVA’s terroir is not just the earth itself, but also the its proximity to the “Spencer Formation,” a U-shaped ridge that comes together with Chehalem’s mass to form a rain shadow over Yamhill and Carlton and promote excellent ripening potential.
The wines from this area are well-regarded for their structure and ageability and myriad spice and herbal notes.
A selection of wines made from Yamhill-Carlton grapes
“Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noirs”
The going wisdom in the 80’s was that the best vineyards in Oregon had South-west facing slopes. But David Polite planted his vineyards on east-facing slopes like many of the great vineyards of Burgundy and his vines flourished.
This line-up of his library wines presents a rare opportunity to purchase a piece of history.
Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noir 2011 750ml $69 special, 2 bottles available 
Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noir 2013 750ml $59 special, 3 bottles available
Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noir 2015 750ml $59 special, 3 bottles available
Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noir 2016 750ml $49 special, 20 bottles available
Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noir 2017 750ml $49 special, 12 bottles available
Carlton Hill Estate Pinot Noir 2019 750ml $49 special, 21 bottles available
Also Available:
Gran Moraine Yamhill-Carlton Chardonnay 2019 750ml $48 special, 2 bottles available
Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points “The 2019 Chardonnay Yamhill-Carlton is perfumed with opulent fruit, ripe melon, pine, and delicate oak spice. It has a rich texture, although it has tension and does not feel heavy at all. The palate is fresh with ripe green apple, lime blossom, and delicate oak spice. Drink 2024-2034.”
Nicolas Jay Bishop Creek Chardonnay 2018 750ml $79 special, 3 bottles available
Winemaker’s Note “The wine is still reserved aromatically, but shows a pale straw color in the glass and offers pear, pear skin, meyer lemon and wet stone on the nose. The palate is defined by minerality and a vibrant core of acidity. Some oak impact is still present in the wine, which contributes subtle flavors of vanilla and toast. Juicy pear and citrus persist through the lengthy finish. A young wine which will improve greatly with age.”
Nicolas Jay Bishop Creek Pinot Noir 2021 750ml $99 special, 2 bottles available
Winemaker’s Note “Just a spectacular vintage from this unparalleled, ungrafted old-vine site in the NW corner of the Yamhill-Carlton district. It opens with anise, pencil led and a gamey quality as the dark-colored wine moves slowly around the glass. After further aeration there’s a roasted plum and cassis aroma, then a forest floor freshness emerges with a candied fennel and balsamic element.”
Martin Woods Yamhill Valley Vyd Chardonnay 2019 750ml $45 special, 9 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 Points “The 2017 Chardonnay Yamhill Valley Vineyard was aged entirely in Oregon oak barrels, one of them new. It gives up baked apples, toasted cashews, lemon meringue, honey toast and marshmallow hints with notes of hay and warm earth. The palate is medium-bodied and rounded with rich, savory flavors and tangy acidity, finishing with great length and texture.”
Close-out Sale
St Jean du Barroux La Pierre Noire 2015 750ml $33 special, 31 bottles available
No review available, 2014 review  provided for reference
Decanter 96 Points “Lifted loganberry, leaf tea and tarragon. Beautifully mouthcoating, elegant and harmonious, long and svelte, with a tapered finish. Gently perfumed, beautifully balanced. It’s concentrated without over-extraction, combining the elegance of the northern Rhône with the generosity of the south. A beautiful wine.”
Vietti Barolo Cerequio 2018 750ml WAS $219 NOW $199 special, 7 bottles available
Vinous 97 Points “The 2018 Barolo Cerequio is a new wine in this range. Soaring aromatics and bright, red-toned fruit give the Cerequio its effusive personality. Nuanced and deep, with tremendous complexity and tons of character, the Cerequio is dazzling. This is everything a great Barolo from Cerequio should be. In other words: textbook. More-over, it’s one of the best wines of this very uneven vintage.”
Vieux Telegraphe CDP La Crau Rouge 2018 1.5L WAS $199 NOW $179, 13 bottles available
James Suckling 96 Points “Traditionally dominated by clairette (45%) and grenache blanc (30%), then roussanne and bourboulenc. The vines average 50+ years and there’s a very restrained nose with dialed-back white-pear and chalk aromas with dried flowers, too. The palate has a super fresh, zippy feel and a long, juicy and attractive core of fresh, salty minerals. The balance is innate and very fluid.”
Vieux Telegraphe CDP Telegramme 2019 750ml WAS $49 NOW $45 special, 36+ bottles available
Vieux Telegraphe CDP Telegramme 2019 Case of 12 750ml bottles WAS $519 NOW $499, 2  available
Vinous 93 Points “Deep violet. Ripe, spice-accented dark berry and cherry preserve scents show strong garrigue and floral accents. Pliant in texture and broad in the mouth, offering sappy boysenberry, bitter cherry and floral pastille flavors and a peppery topnote.”
Chermette Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux 2018 750ml WAS $29 NOW $24 special, 32 bottles available
Wine Advocate 91 Points “Aromas of raspberries, plums and orange rind preface the 2018 Brouilly Pierreux, a medium to full-bodied, fleshy wine with a satiny attack that segues into a fine-boned, elegantly structured mid-palate, with lively acids and a fragrant, expansive finish.”
Chermette Vissoux Saint Amour 2018 750ml WAS $29 NOW $24 special, 25 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92+ Points “The 2018 Saint-Amour Les Champs-Grillés is a serious wine, “not just for Valentine’s Day,” as Jean-Étienne Chermette observes. Revealing attractive notes of raspberries, rose petals and cherries, it’s medium to full-bodied, layered and spicy, with a muscular chassis of fine, powdery tannins.”
Spreitzer Winkeler Jesuitgarten Spatlese 2018 750ml WAS $28   NOW $24 special 16 bottles available
Wine Spectator 90 Points “Bright and succulent, featuring notes of yellow apple, peach and floral. Offers a light-bodied frame but remains very flavorful, with high acidity providing balance and support. Best from 2022 through 2032. 100 cases imported.”
Spreitzer Oestricher Lenchen “303” Riesling Spatlese 2018 750ml WAS $49   NOW $39 special, 7 bottles available
Wine Spectator 92 Points “Concentrated, with peach, orange peel and spice aromas and flavors set on a velvety texture. Nicely structured, showing complexity, focus and length due to the acidity, which will help this age gracefully. Best from 2022 through 2036. 50 cases imported.”
Spreitzer Wisselbrunnen Riesling GG 2018 750ml WAS $49   NOW $39 special, 2 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92+ Points “The 2018 Hattenheimer Wisselbrunnen Rheingau Riesling Trocken “GG” is subtle and deep on the nose, with bright yet concentrated fruit flavors. Full-bodied, lush and mineral on the palate, this is a tensioned, stimulatingly salty Wisselbrunnen with a firm structure and very good length. Tasted at Schloss Johannisberg and in Wiesbaden in August 2019. “
Collector’s Corner
The Champions of Champaign 

Agrapart Mineral Extra Brut 2015 750ml $169 special, 1 bottles available
Vinous 94 points “The 2015 Extra Brut Blanc de Blancs Minéral Grand Cru is bracing, taut and wiry. Crushed rocks, mint, white pepper and lemon peel drive this blend. The Minéral is especially fine in 2015. There is a bit of youthful austerity, but nothing a few years in bottle can’t take care of. The Minéral is one of the finer 2015s I have come across so far.”
Bollinger RD 2004 1.5L $519 special, 1 bottle available
Wine & Spirits 98 Points “As it opens in the glass, revealing racy energy, a range of floral pear and apple flavors emerge, resonant with a sense of limestone capturing the sun and reflecting it back in pale power. Enjoy this over the course of an evening as its presence shifts, providing varied perspectives on a great Champagne.”
Wine Enthusiast 98 Points “Top 100 Cellar Selection in 2019. The wine’s name stands for recently disgorged and this vintage Champagne was taken off its lees in 2018. That gave many years for it to develop its depth of flavor, richness and beautifully memorable toasty flavors.”
De Venoge Louis Xv Brut 2006 750ml $189 special, 18 bottles available
Wine Advocate 96 Points “50/50 Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, all from grand cru villages. The only difference is that the Chardonnay from Le Mesnil-sur-Oger (10% of the assemblage) spent 12 months in oak barrels. On the palate, this is an intense, round, fresh and complex Louis XV with great purity and finesse. The wine opens on the palate like a soufflé, coating the whole palate without any pressure or weight—gorgeous!”
Dom Perignon 2012 750ml $289 special, 3 bottles available
Decanter 98 Points “What a magnificent bouquet for this Dom Pérignon 2012! Pastry, a hint of smoke and autolytic notes provide a compelling counterpart to eager yet elegant aromas of citrus (lime, tangerine and kumquat) joined by those of fresh fruit, herbs, liquorice, and menthol. There is even a refreshing note of ivy. The palate is tense, vibrant, and very fresh despite its impressive density, which meets its match with an unending finish. This 2012 incarnates the very essence of Dom Pérignon with such a concentrated degree of intensity.”
Georges Laval Hautes Chevres 1er Brut Nature 2015 $249 special, 3 bottles available
John Gilman 96 Points “The 2015 les Haut Chèvres from Vincent Laval is flat out brilliant young wine. As readers will recall, after the 2009 vintage, this single vineyard bottling changed cépages, as Vincent had to replant his parcel of pinot noir vines planted in 1930, so this switched over to a pure pinot meunier cuvée from the same lieu à dit, with the vines having been planted in 1931 and 1947.”
Georges Laval Les Longues Violes Brut Nature 2013 750ml $779 special, 1 bottle available
Vinous 96 Points “The 2012 Brut Nature Les Longues Violes is one of the most distinctive wines in Champagne. Weightless and perfumed in the glass, the Longues Violes possesses unreal finesse and stunning beauty. Floral, citrus and orchard fruit notes are all finely sketched in this a Champagne that sizzles with tension. This is a fabulous showing. Les Longues Violes is 90% Pinot Noir planted in 1964 and 1974 and 10% Meunier planted in 1947.”
Pol Roger Cuvee Sir Winston Churchill Brut 2013 750ml $319 special, 3 bottles available
Wine Enthusiast 98 Points “Although ready to drink, this very fine Champagne has plenty of aging to go. With its rich Pinot Noir and ripe fruits, it is generous while also fully textured. Complex and balanced, mature fruit and toast working together, this is a great wine.”
Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points “The 2013 Champagne Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill Brut, composed of 95% Pinot Noir, is the 20th release of this cuvée, and this version is robust, classic, and noble in its expression.”
Louis Roederer Cristal 2014 750ml $349 special, 4 bottles available
#1 Top 100 Cellar Selections 2022 – Wine Enthusiast
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.”
Louis Roederer Cristal Rose 2013 750ml $619 special, 2 bottles available
Wine Advocate 99 Points “A candidate for wine-of-the-vintage honors in Champagne, Roederer’s 2013 Cristal Rosé is showing brilliantly, unfurling in the glass with notes of crisp orchard fruit, white flowers, red berries, stone fruit, freshly baked bread and tangerine oil. Full-bodied, layered and multidimensional, the vintage’s bright girdling acids are amply cloaked in exuberant, expressive and notably concentrated fruit; so while this Cristal is as tensile and age-worthy as one would expect, it’s also impressively fleshy and generous given the year.”

Louis Roederer Cristal 2015 750ml $379 special, 6 bottles available
The Wine Independent 98 Points “The 2015 Cristal is a blend of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. No malo-lactic was employed and 25% wine was aged in oak. The dosage is 7 grams per liter. An exquisitely delicate yet complex perfume of clover honey freshly shaved ginger marzipan and jasmine slowly emerges from the nose giving way to a core of pear tart persimmons and apple butter. The palate is an exercise in finesse featuring very fine bubbles and fantastic intensity with a myriad of spice and floral nuances finishing with impressive persistence and jaw-dropping poise. This is a style for those that embrace purity soft-spoken expression and impeccable crafting. It won’t disappoint those who love Champagne in its initial youthful perfume flushes yet will undoubtedly reward the patient with a richer toastier more obvious and opulent style with 5-10 years+ of cellaring.”

Louis Roederer Cristal Vinotheque 1999 750ml $1245 special, 3 bottles available
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.”
Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame Yayoi Kusama 2012 750ml $189 special, 10 bottles available
Wine Enthusiast 96 Points “#3 Wine Of The Year 2020. With a slight preponderance of Pinot Noir in the blend, this wine is rich and impressive. It is still young, with a crisp edge that makes the fruit shine. Apple and citrus flavors are integrated into a mineral vein.”
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