Vinopolis Newsletter- October 28th

October 28, 2013

Jump Start Sale 

Bodega Riojanas Monte Real Rioja Gran Reserva 1998 ($59.95) $39 jump start special
Josh Raynolds 93 points “Dark red with a pale rim. Pungent, spicy nose shows pure cherry, redcurrant and plum complemented by succulent herbs, vanillin oak spice and a hint of dried flowers. Supple, lush and deep, with sweet red fruit flavors framed by gentle, harmonious tannins. Fleshy and sweet on the back end, with impressive concentration and focus. This should age well.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA
The next best listed price is $48.99

New Week – New Arrivals 


Cameron Chardonnay Willamette Valley NV ($17.95) $14 special
Cameron Chardonnay Dundee Hills 2012 ($21.95) $18 special
Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection 2004 ($179.95) $159 special only 12 bottles
Robert Parker 96 points “The brilliant, super-rich 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection (this cuvee is now aged only 15-16 months in barrels compared to older vintages that spent almost twice as long in wood) boasts an inky/purple hue, and sweet notes of lead pencil shavings, creme de cassis, licorice, and charcoal. This dense, full-bodied, opulent, seamless, heady Cabernet is ideal for drinking over the next 15+ years.”
Abreu Cabernet Sauvignon Madrona Ranch 2004 ($499.95) $399 special only 6 bottles
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 mouth feel, 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.”
Verite La Joie 2002 ($199.95) $169 special only 6 bottles
Robert Parker 98 points “The full-bodied, classically-styled, Bordeaux-like 2002 La Joie (64.2% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28.5% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, and .3% Malbec) deep ruby/purple color is followed by gorgeous aromas of black truffles, scorched earth, tobacco leaves, blackberry and cassis liqueur, and notions of minerals as well as acacia flowers. This stunning red can be drunk in 2-3 years, or cellared for two decades.”
Verite La Muse 2002 ($249.95) $199 special only 6 bottles
Robert Parker 99 points “A blend of 93% Merlot / 7% Cabernet Franc (92% from the Alexander Mountain Estate, 6% from Bennett Valley and 2% from Knight’s Valley), the 2002 La Muse is a ‘kissing cousinâ?? of the 2001, only softer and more flamboyant. Classically Californian in its exuberant, flamboyant, super-rich, unctuously textured style, the tannins are softer than in the 2001, but the wine unquestionably has the potential to last for another quarter of a century. It exhibits an opaque plum/purple color along with abundant notes of cassis, licorice, graphite, coffee cake and spice box. More approachable than the 2001, the 2002 will offer phenomenal drinking over the next 25 years.”
Bollinger Champagne Brut Grande Annee 2004 ($149.95) $119 special
Wine Spectator 94 points “Firm, with well-cut acidity and a fine texture, this is aromatic, delivering a skein of ground spice and graphite notes that mesh seamlessly with the flavors of black currant, black cherry, toasted almond, financier, honey and smoky mineral. Offers a long, mouthwatering finish. Drink now through 2024. Tasted twice, with consistent notes.”
Dom Perignon Jeff Koons Special Edition Brut 2004 ($199.95) $179 special
Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2004 Dom Pérignon continues to develop beautifully. A vibrant, focused Champagne, the 2004 clearly reflects the personality of the year. Freshly cut flowers, white peaches and pears are woven together in a Champagne that impresses for its focus and energy. Chiseled saline note support the crystalline finish. I imagine the 2004 will always remain relatively bright and linear, but at the same time, each time I have tasted it over the last two years the 2004 seems to have a little more body and broader shoulders. The 2004 will appeal most to readers who find the 2002 and 2003 too exuberant. There is a lot to like in the glass”
Dom Perignon Jeff Koons Special Edition Brut Rose ($349.95) $299 special
Antonio Galloni 93 points “The 2003 Dom Pérignon Rosé is another wine that has come together quite nicely over the last few months. Given the exuberance and sheer vinosity of the 2000 and the 2002, along with the ripeness of the year, and the heft of the 2003 Blanc, I expected the 2003 Rosé to be a much bigger wine. Instead, it is surprisingly delicate and medium in body. Dried flowers, crushed raspberries and sweet herbs waft from the glass in a Rosé that is all about sensuality. With time in the glass, the richness of the fruit becomes more pronounced, while the tannin from the red grapes is also noticeable.”
Domaine Leflaive Bourgogne Blanc 2011 ($59.95) $49 special 
Burghound 86-89 points “A very pretty and reasonably complex nose features notes of citrus peel, white flower and peach aromas. There is good vibrancy to the lightly mineral-inflected middle weight flavors that possess good verve and better than average depth and length. This should be very good and is worth a look.”
Domaine Leflaive Meursalt Le Dos D’ane 2011 ($139.95) $119 special 
Burghound 89-91 points “There is a trace of sulfur that does not detract unduly from the otherwise fresh, pretty and airy aromas of white flowers, pear and white peach that are trimmed in soft citrus scents. There is good energy and fine detail to the mineral-inflected middle weight flavors that possess a really appealing mouth feel before terminating in a saline, balanced and solidly persistent finish.”
Domaine Leflaive Puligny-Montrachet 2011 ($109.95) $89 special 
Burghound 88-91 points “A similar if less expressive nose is trimmed in just enough wood to notice. There is really lovely purity of expression to the energetic and beautifully well-detailed medium weight flavors that are notably tighter and better focused before terminating in a lightly mineral-inflected, dry and persistent finish. This should also be lovely with a few years of bottle age.”
Domaine Leflaive Puligny-Montrachet Clavoillon 2011 ($139.95) $119 special 
Burghound 89-92 points “A markedly floral and distinctly riper nose displays notes of white peach, apricot and pain grillé are trimmed in pretty citrus notes. There is good concentration to the sappy and mouth coating medium-bodied flavors where there is a real sense of volume and dry extract. The 2011 version is a relatively powerful wine and is really quite good though it doesn’t have the precision or mineral character of the best here.”
Domaine Leflaive Puligny Folatieres 2011 ($219.95) $189 special 
Burghound 90-92 points “This is also notably riper but slightly fresher with its aromas of acacia blossom, lemon zest and mineral reduction. There is both good energy and volume to the stony medium-bodied flavors that are relatively generous yet retain a good sense of detail on the naturally sweet, intense and lingering finish. I like the complexity and this should age well over the mid-term.”
Domaine Leflaive Puligny Pucelles 2011 ($279.95) $229 special
Burghound 91-94 points “A broad-ranging nose is comprised of honeysuckle, anise, clove, lemongrass, brioche and pear. There is an appealing sense of volume to the beautifully delineated, serious, textured and energetic flavors that are both classy and stylish, all wrapped in a hugely long yet impeccably balanced finish where a touch of wood influence surfaces. A classic Pucelles of generosity and refinement that should amply reward up to a decade of cellaring.”
Domaine Leflaive Bienvenues-Batard Montrachet 2011 ($499.95) $379 special 
Burghound 92-94 points “Very fresh aromas of honeysuckle, oak nuances and mandarin orange possess really lovely purity and complexity. The sleekly muscled and palate coating flavors possess good size and weight as well as an excellent sense of focus and precision on the delicious, long and stylish finish. A lovely Bienvenues that offers both length and depth as well as the same silkiness as the Combettes. This should drink well young but also reward 10 to 12 years of cellar time.”
Domaine Leflaive Batard Montrachet 2011 ($499.95) $419 special 
Stephen Tanzer 94+ points “Pale bright yellow.  Sexy perfume of lemon, lime, clove and white flowers.  A step up in weight and power from the Bienvenue, but still with lovely lift to the generous flavors of ripe peach and spices.  Wonderfully energetic, tactile wine with terrific rising length and grip, and a late mineral character that contributes finesse.  But this big, rich, backward Batard will need time to express itself.”
Domaine Leflaive Chevalier Montrachet 2011 ($599.95) $519 special 
Burghound 93-96 points “An ultra-elegant, pure and strikingly expressive nose of airy and intensely spicy acacia blossom, wet stone, lemon peel and various white-fleshed fruit aromas. There is a lilting mouth feel to the gorgeously intense, precise and cuts-like-a-knife medium weight plus flavors that brim with mineral and an abundance of dry extract that coats the palate on the hugely long finish. The balance is impeccable and this will be one of the relatively few 2011s that should amply reward longer-term cellaring.”
Bize Savigny Les Beaune 1er Cru Macronnets 2010 ($64.95) $49 special
John Gilman 92-93 points “The 2010 Marconnets was also still in barrel at the time of my visit, but its
malo had just finished up a very short time before and was a bit more grumpy about being tasted. The nose is very pure and vibrant, jumping from the glass in a blend of red and black cherries, a touch of currant, coffee, stony soil tones, gamebirds and a smoky topnote. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and sappy at the core, with a superb signature of soil, firm, well-integrated tannins and outstanding length and grip on the soil-driven finish.”
Tissot Chardonnay en Barberon 2011 ($39.95) $33 special
Wine Spectator 90 points “Well-focused, with a light hazelnut frame that lends a firm edge to the core of melon, apple, pear and ginger. A hint of bitter almond extends the finish. Chardonnay. Drink now through 2014”
Tissot Cremant du Jura Blanc de Blanc BBF Extra Brut NV ($34.95) $28 special
Wine Spectator 91 points “Plump at the core, with bracing cut along the edges, this delivers apple, ginger, walnut and brioche notes and a broad mousse on the finish. Shows good range and length. Drink now.”
Tissot Cremant du Jura Indigine Brut NV ($29.95) $24 special
Wine Spectator 90 points “Shows a mature edge, with tender apple, ginger and almond notes at the core, revealing a lightly toasty accent lingering on the finish. Drink now.”
Philippe Alliet Chinon 2011 ($24.95) $21.90 special
“Philippe Alliet is the proprietor of a small domaine in Cravant-les-Côteaux, location of some of the best Cabernet Franc vineyards in the Loire Valley. Alliet is part of a new generation of Loire winemakers dedicated to low yields, optimally ripe fruit, and overall fastidious vineyard management. Inspired by the greatest wines of Bordeaux – a region he visits several times a year – he aims to create wines of similar structure and power. and, in fact Philippe produces a stunning lineup of 100% Cabernet Franc wines: a basic Chinon of great purity and balance; “Vieilles Vignes” a gravel-grown cuvée from 50 year-old vines that is aged in 5 year-old barriques; and “Côteau de Noire” aged in new barriques and grown on a superbly situated hillside vineyard.  For all his cuvées, the grapes are totally de-stemmed in an effort to reduce the vegetal characteristics often associated with Loire Valley reds,and, a five week maceration period produces a wine with great extract.”
Karthauserhof Riesling Spatlese 1. Lage Eitelsbacher Karthauserhofberg 2012 ($39.95) $30.90 special


Boekenhoutskloof Chocolate Block Franschhoek Valley 2011 ($34.95) $24 very super special
Stephen Tanzer 90 points “Good full medium red. Highly aromatic nose melds blackberry, licorice, menthol and spicecake. Sweet and supple but juicy and primary too, with harmonious acidity framing and intensifying the dark fruit and spice flavors. A serious, youthfully aggressive midweight with substantial building, tongue-dusting tannins and a late note of balsamic nutty oak. Already quite perfumed but in need of at least another year or two in the cellar to express itself.”
~~~~~~~~We adopt a new grower


Brad Baker – Champagne Warrier “Daniel and Frédéric Savart are currently producing some of the best wines to come out of the Montagne de Reims villages Ecueil and Villers-aux-Noeuds. With production of a mere 3,000 total cases a year, this Ecueil-headquartered winery is and has been making tiny quantities of superior Champagne for years. All the wines the Savarts produce are worth searching out, although they will be difficult to find – stopping by the winery is still the best way to take a bottle (or a case) home. Winemaker Frédéric (Daniel’s son) is trying to make the wines more available to a broader audience and is looking to expand outside of cellar door sales and a few select retail outlets in France and the US. Given the miniscule production and supremely high quality of the wines, I can only imagine the demand his bottles will one day experience, but for right now, I advise you to track them down and enjoy the fruits of a challenging search. I first tasted the Savart wines a couple of years ago and was blown away by the quality of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and yet the wines have only improved since. Coming from Montagne de Reims, the wines tend to be Pinot Noir-driven, but the Chardonnay they make is also very tasty. The winemaking is entirely adapted to the different wines produced – this is a style of winemaking that I appreciate. Different wines may or may not see malolactic fermentation and may or may not see any oak. Dosage also varies throughout the range, with anywhere from 2 to 9 g/L used. I’ve been very impressed by these fruit- and mineral-driven wines that display an underlying richness; I wholeheartedly recommend you search them out while they still fly under the radar.” Thanks Brad!
Champagne Savart l’Accompile Brut NV ($59.95) $41.90 introductory special
80% Pinot Noir, 20% Chardonnay; great purity, rounded texture, and world-class balance
Champagne Savart l’Overture Brut NV ($49.95) $37 introductory special
100% Pinot Noir, a little more rich & less elegant then l’Accompile, same world-class balance.Plus these arriving late November:

Champagne Savart Calliope Extra Brut 2007 ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Champagne Savart l’Annee Extra Brut 2009 ($69.95) $51.90 pre-arrival special
Champagne Savart Bulle de Rose Brut NV ($59.95) $44 pre-arrival special


Savart’s vineyards in Montagne de Reims
Savart: drink better, spend less

Evening Land Pinot 3 ways

arriving this week

Evening Land Santa Rita Hills Estate Pinot Noir 2010 ($44.95) $31.90 super special
Wine Advocate 92 points “[$45 list] Evening Land’s 2010 Pinot Noir is simply beautiful. Dark red cherries, pepper, spices and new leather inform this juicy, supple Pinot. There is an inviting, textural finesse that is alluring. Here, too, the minerality and energy are striking. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2018.”
Evening Land Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir Tempest 2010 ($64.95) $49 super special
Wine Advocate 93+ points “The 2010 Pinot Noir Tempest is fabulous. It possesses striking aromatic nuance and delineation, largely from the use of 100% whole clusters. Firm yet well-balanced tannins leave the wine rich as well as enhancing its energy and focus. There is a verve to the Tempest that is absolutely thrilling. The balance of fleshiness and structure is utterly compelling. I can’t wait to see how the Tempest develops in bottle. This is a great showing from Evening Land. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2020.”
Evening Land Sonoma Pinot Noir Occidental 2009 ($119.95) $89 super special
Wine Advocate 94 points “The 2009 Pinot Noir Occidental is gorgeous. Sweet, silky tannins frame an expressive core of fruit in this refined, subtle wine. The finish is refined and haunting. Shatter was a big issue here in 2009 and lowered yields significantly, but the positive side of that is that the wine has more than enough stuffing to handle its 100% new French oak with grace. This is a striking wine from Evening Land. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2022.”


Bollinger NV 3 ways

arriving this week

Bollinger Special Cuvee Brut NV ($59.95) $49 special
Case-6: Bollinger Special Cuvee Brut NV $282 special (that’s $47 / bottle)
Case-12: Bollinger Special Cuvee Brut NV $540 special (that’s $45 / bottle)
Wine Spectator 94 points “A rich, smoky Champagne, with hints of marzipan and fennel seed accenting honeyed malt, bread dough, baked apple and gingersnap flavors. It’s all focused by intense acidity, which meshes beautifully into the layers of flavor and refined texture, with a lingering finish. Drink now through 2021.”
WA/ID Flat rate shipping- $20 any size order,
Oregon Flat rate shipping- $17 any size order,

A Few Good Burgs

Arriving this Week

Leroy Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux Monts 2009 ($899.95) $799 pre-arrival special only 6 bottles
Antonio Galloni 96 points “The 2009 Vosne-Romanee Les Beaux Monts bursts from the glass with dazzling fruit that covers every inch of the palate. Sweet dark fruit, spices, tar and leather are some of the notes that flesh out on the stunning, multi-dimensional finish. This is a dazzling wine endowed with tons of class and sheer pedigree. It is not to be missed.”
Leroy Vosne-Romanee Les Genaivrieres 2009 ($699.95) $599 pre-arrival special only 3 bottles
Antonio Galloni 95+ points “The 2009 Vosne-Romanee Aux Genaivrieres opens with delicate spice notes, then explodes on the mid-palate with waves of flavor. Sweet crushed rose petal notes develop in the glass, weaving through the eternal finish. This is a gorgeous, fleshy wine graced with exquisite class. I especially like the way the Genaivrieres fleshes out on the finish. Frankly, it’s hard to move on to the next wine after this.”
Leroy Clos de la Roche Grand Cru 2007 ($1499.95) $1399 pre-arrival special only 3 bottles
Wine Advocate 96 points “Kirsch, rose hip, and soy intensely scent the Leroy 2007 Clos De La Roche, which reveals brightness and finesse as well as a saline savor unusual for its appellation. To be sure, notes of leather and crushed stone as well as smoked and roasted meats contribute further and perhaps more site-typical complexity. But it’s the sheer finesse, buoyancy, and vibratory energy on display that most amaze, leaving your tongue and gums a quiver and your salivary glands pumping helplessly. There is also a faint hint of heat, but its effect is negligible given what’s going on around you when you swallow (or, in my case, spit). Look for 20 or more years of excitement.”
Leroy Romanee St Vivant Grand Cru 2007 ($1799.95) $1499 pre-arrival special only 3 bottles
Steven Tanzer 96 points “Good bright dark red. Knockout nose combines raspberry, mocha, minerals and underbrush. Silky-sweet and utterly spherical, conveying superb fruit intensity without any heaviness or hardness. Finishes with sweet tannins and terrific aromatic persistence. Wonderfully complex and soil-driven wine.”

PX Perfection

Arriving in November

Toro Albala in TWA “This is a peculiar winery, a little eccentric and unusual, a family affair created in 1922 although their roots can be traced back to the 19th century. The core of the winery is located inside an old electricity plant in Aguilar de la Frontera, south of Cordoba, in the heart of the Montilla-Moriles appellation and directed by collector, inventor and entrepreneur Antonio Sanchez. … the whole Montilla-Moriles is better known for its sweet, dark, unctuous Pedro Ximenez wines. All the wines they produce are of course fermented from Pedro Ximenez white grapes, but for the sweet wines the grapes are sun-dried, dehydrated into raisins, and the resulting wine is brown in color which gets darker as the wine ages and concentrates in barrel. The oldest examples are an opaque black with an amber rim as dense as motor oil. They have a most impressive collection of single vintage PX wines going back to the time of the Second World War.” 

Toro Albala in the midst of drying their grapes in the hot sun
Toro Albala Don Pedro Ximenez Reserva Especial 1949 750ml ($249.95) $219 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 97 points “The 1949 Don PX Reserva Especial differs from the other old wines from the winery as it is less dark, it even has a (very dark) translucent tone compared with the others, maybe because it has 2% more alcohol. It feels incredibly elegant and balanced, fresher in comparison than the beasts from 1962 and 1946, medicinal, full of spicy notes of cinnamon, cloves, a touch of ash, and the smell of an antique shop. The palate is fluid, sweet and fresh. Putting a drinking window to these wines feels a bit silly. You should drink it whenever you have the occasion. Drink 2013-2040”
Toro Albala Don Pedro Ximenez Convento Seleccion 1946 750ml ($399.95) $299 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 100 points “The 1946 Don PX Convento Seleccion produced with Pedro Ximenez grapes dehydrated under the sun at the time of the Second World War, was only bottled in September 2011. This is an extreme wine, my first descriptor was ultra-mega-super concentrated. It is unbelievably powerful, both in the nose and the palate, full of umami, with sweet cinnamon, Christmas cake, camphor, petrol, lemongrass, Belgian chocolate and butter. Incredibly complex and rich, sweet, balanced and smooth in the palate, it is both very sweet and somehow salty, and with time it develops a black olive note. It combines the texture of the 1962 and the elegance of the 1949. It is as decadent as it gets. 825 bottles were produced. This wine will survive all of us. These wines are kept for generations and offered in very small quantities, but it’s amazing that you can still buy and drink something so old, and I’m even tempted to say that it might represent good value for what it is. A real tour de force sweet wine. Drink it if you ever have the privilege to do so from 2013-2060.”

Time To Say Goodbye


Vina Zorzal Garnacha Vina Viejas 2010 ($14.95) $8.80 special
Josh Raynolds 88 points “Bright purple.  Jammy black and blue fruits on the nose and in the mouth.  Open-knit and juicy, with good clarity and lift.  Not the last word in complexity but extremely easy to like.  Finishes with good clarity and subtle spiciness.”
Riojanas Peurta Vieja Rioja Crianza 2010 ($17.95) $9.90 super special
Josh Raynolds 90 points “100% tempranillo, from vines that range from 35 to 55 years of age; aged for 18 months in American oak):  Bright ruby.  Zesty redcurrant and cherry aromas are complicated by notes of fresh rose and blood orange.  Firm, focused and juicy, with lively cherry and red berry flavors showing a refreshing bitterness.  Bright and focused on the clinging finish.”
Alvear Fino Sherry NV ($14.95) $9.90 special
Wine Advocate 89 points “The non-vintage Fino possesses a light straw color in addition to a crisp, earthy, nutty nose, and a dry, slightly bitter, but fresh, zesty finish.”