In This Newsletter:
Wine Spectator’s #1 wine of the year
Staff Pick Winery: Failla
Wines Arriving Friday
Delille, Pascal Doquet, Goodfellow, Gaja, and more!
Large format wines for your Holiday Dinner Table!
Italian luxury wines: The Three B’s
Vinopolis Wine Shop
Will Be Closing Early at 2pm
Thursday, November 23rd
We’re open for our regularly scheduled hours all other days:
10am – 6pm
WINE SPECTATOR #1 WINE OF THE YEAR 2023!!!
Argiano Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany 2018 750ml $99 special, only 6 bottles available
Wine Spectator “Rose, strawberry and cherry aromas and flavors are the main themes in this red, along with wild herb, mineral and cut hay accents. Racy and full of energy, with a long, saturated finish. Best from 2025 through 2042”
Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points “Pure and noble, the 2018 Brunello Di Montalcino is compelling in its expressive layers yet remains transparent, with aromas of fresh leather, red cherry, cedar, anise, and fresh pine all intertwining. It is medium-bodied but fills out with wonderful purity in its notes of blood orange, raspberry, saline minerals, and mouthwatering acidity. It is a gorgeous wine to hold another couple of years and best after 2025.”
We only have a few bottles of this wine and demand is high!
Purchase yours before it’s too late!
“If there’s a common thread In Jordan’s work, it might be his insistence on making wines that are authentic.
–Jon Bonne, Author of The New California Wine.
California Wines from Failla
Failla Olivet Ranch Vineyard Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley 2021 750ml $49 pre-arrival special
Vinous 94 Points “The 2021 Pinot Noir Olivet Ranch is laced with crushed red berry fruit, spice, cedar, tobacco, incense and dried flowers. Medium in body yet quite deep, the Oliver Ranch exudes class. Bright acids extend the vibrant finish effortlessly. Time adds notable texture and volume as the flavor profile turns a bit darker.”
Failla Hirsch Vineyard Pinot Noir, California 2021 750ml $84.50 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 98 Points “The 2021 Pinot Noir Hirsch Vineyard is gorgeous, with a floral perfume of fresh roses, raspberry eau de vie, fresh coniferous herbs, and spice. Medium-bodied, this stunning wine has wonderful transparency, with fine sweet tannins, ripe red berries, and fresh flowers. Its fabulous, mineral-laced texture lasts for days, and while it will certainly have serious longevity, it’s irresistible now. Drink 2023-2043.”
In addition to their Burgundy varietals, Ehren has been a fan of Syrah since his early days working alongside Cornas’ revered winemaker Jean Luc Colombo. This is a far cry from many new world examples of Syrah, revealing the deft work of Northern Rhône winemaking in their finesse.
Failla Estate Vineyard Syrah, Fort Ross-Seaview 2021 750ml $59 pre-arrival special
Vinous 96 Points “The 2021 Syrah Estate Vineyard is magnificent. What a wine. Silky and yet powerful, the 2021 is supremely well-balanced. Dark blue/purplish fruit, sage, mint, lavender and black pepper open over time, but what is most impressive about the 2021 is its impeccable balance.”
Oregon Wines from Failla
“Planted by Oregon legend Al McDonald in 1984, this may be one of the more dramatic-looking vineyards in the area. Eastern facing, situated among Douglas fir trees on a bed of volcanic soil, Seven Springs is Biodynamic and dry farmed. We feel this meticulous attention to farming generates grapes of depth and complexity.” –Winemaker Ehrin Jordan
Failla Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills 2021 750ml $59 pre-arrival special
Winemaker Notes “Aromatically the wine has notes of bramble, tart blackberry, cigar box, Asian spice, and black tea compliment a balanced tannin structure. This wine will age in a cellar for years to come. On the palate, there is a hint of riper fruit flavors, as well as restrained tannins that showcase just how cellar-worthy this bottle is.”
Failla Seven Springs Vineyard Chardonnay, Eola-Amity Hills 2021 750ml $49 pre-arrival special
Not reviewed, 2019 review provided for reference
Wine Enthusiast 91 “This biodynamic fruit has been fermented and aged in a mix of concrete egg and oak barrels, 10% new. The flavors have the wild feral character that suggests native yeasts were used, and that mix of fruit and flower and notes of pollen and spice and certain unidentifiable herbs makes this a wine to contemplate rather than pound down.”
Failla Seven Springs Vineyard Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills 2018 750ml $49 special, 28 bottles available
Vinous 95 points “The 2018 Pinot Noir Seven Springs Vineyard is another stellar wine in this range. Deep, layered and full of nuance, the Seven Springs has so much to say. Layers of inky red/purplish fruit flesh out as this pliant, powerful Pinot shows off its stunning beauty and textural depth. The 2018 is such a gorgeous and expressive wine.”
“Pascal Doquet”—VERY LIMTED
Winemaker Notes “The Mont Aimé lieu-dit is east of Vertus and faces due south. Even so, it is a cooler microclimate than Pascal’s parcels in Le Mesnil and Vertus and ripening here can happen a week later. Previous vintages were fermented in tank to support the racy, linear style of the wine, but as things evolve, Pascal now ferments roughly half in neutral barrel and half in enamel lined stainless steel tanks, which brings out a cool blueberry and smoky characteristic common to flinty, silex soils.”
Pascal Doquet Grand Cru Le Mesnil-Sur-Oger Blanc de Blancs Brut, Champagne 2009 750ml $149 pre-arrival special
Winery Notes “Pascal is fortunate to have some very old parcels in the mid-slope of this renowned Grand Cru village. His grandfather consolidated nearly a hectare of vines in “Champ d’Alouettes,” of which Pascal owns 60% of the original holdings. He also has very old vines in “Les Migraines” planted in 1929, as well as Chétillons, Coullemets and Finciarts. From these sites, Doquet selects the best lots and vinifies them for the Coeur de Terroir range. Aged for 12 years sur latte, this wine was disgorged with a mere 2 grams MCR. It’s Pascal’s most complex wine, showing ginger, anise and blueberry.”
Pascal Doquet ‘Diapason’ Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut, Champagne NV 1.5L $169 pre-arrival special
Falstaff 94/100 Points “Light golden yellow, silver reflections; very fine, persistent mousse. Fine yellow tropical fruit, a touch of pineapple and papaya, fresh apple, a hint of orange zest. Juicy, elegant, a touch of white peach, delicate fruit expression, elegant texture, finesse, rich acidity, mineral-salty, very persistent. A taut, multi-faceted food wine with ageing potential.”
Check out the rest of our Doquet Champagnes on our website!
Wine Spectator 91 points “A terrific value that would probably run you three times the price if it was from Napa, the 2021 Metier Cabernet Sauvignon has textbook leafy herbs, tobacco, and darker currant fruits in a medium-bodied, elegant, balanced package. It has classic Cabernet herbal, floral, spicy notes and is well worth drinking any time over the coming decade or so.”
Winery Note “Densely fruited, boysenberry, purple flowers, gravelly, intense, a shade darker than usual. There is a wonderful sense of intrigue in the 2021 Durant, so much going on just beneath the surface. It has the aromatics of whole cluster Dundee hills wines but in a stonier, sinewy way. Violet in tone, luxurious texture, energy, a mineral crunchiness that provides a framework for the mid-weight fruit, and fine finishing tannins.”
Goodfellow Heritage No. 17 Durant Vineyard Pinot Noir 2021750ml $66.50 pre-arrival special
Winery Notes “Deeper red hues and spice on the nose, black cherry, boysenberry, violets, cardamom, balsam, enveloping and textural with juicy, lovely acidity, firm tannins on opening that integrate over several days as the weight and texture of the wine fills in. Aromatically, the high point seems to really arrive after being open for about 48 hours, and the seamless interplay between fruit, baking spice, loamy earth, and hints of kitchen herbs is dramatic and superlative. In the zone the nose here is absolutely intoxicating.”
Goodfellow Heritage No. 18 Temperance Hill Pinot Noir 2021 750ml $66.50 pre-arrival special
Goodfellow Heritage No. 19 Whistling Ridge Pinot Noir 2021 750ml $66.50 pre-arrival special
Winery Notes “From the Beloved Acre at Whistling Ridge, the density of the vintage shows through in the color of the wine, a dramatic deep garnet red. The nose opens with dark cherry and loamy earth surrounded by sweet floral notes and baking spices. The palate is more coiled with a clean direct entry, sweet red berries, excellent weightless texture, bright acidity and firm tannins. After 48 hours open, the nose has evolved into a remarkably compelling array of nuances, the wine is very foresty, with notes of conifer, underbrush, and humus. Fruit is darkly red and savory but folds seamlessly into the non-fruit components. At this much air nothing is fading and the wine is a joy to inhale, and shows the remarkable potential of the 2021 vintage.”
Goodfellow Temperance Hill Pinot Noir 2021, Eola-Amity 750ml $44.50 pre-arrival special, only 12 bottles arriving
Winery Note “Classic, dense Temperance Hill fruit, powerful, tannins are distinct and refined. Dark berries, cedar, velvety dense nose with loads of graceful spices. Dense fruit in the palate, with Temperance Hill’s unique blend of power and grace. This is quite seamless for such a young wine from THV, but there is an abundance of dry extract folded into the velvety texture.”
James Suckling 95 Points “This is very dense and serious with freshness and powerful acidity that gives it intensity and focus. Goes on and on with so much floral and sliced-lime flavor and hints of white flowers, pear blossom and minerals. So beautiful to drink now, but will improve with age.”
Case-6 of Gaja Sperss Barolo 2019 750ml $2,999 pre-arrival special, 1 case arriving
Kerin O’keefe 99 Points “The 2019 Sperss is drop-dead gorgeous. Expressing the captivating combination of firm structure and understated finesse that defines the best Barolos from Serralunga, it opens with aromas of underbrush, forest berry, sun-warmed hay and botanical herb. Linear and focused, the vibrant, savory palate delivers red cherry, blood orange and licorice punctuated with saline mineral notes. It has incredible energy and will age beautifully. Drink 2029-2049.”
Antonio Galloni-Vinous 98 Points “A wine of stature and breeding, the 2019 Barolo Sperss is pure Serralunga power. Dark toned fruit, lavender, licorice, gravel and crushed rocks soar from the glass. There is plenty of the brooding intensity and tannic heft that are such signatures, but the 2019 is also wonderfully refined.”
James Suckling 96 Points “Very well integrated tannins that spread across the palate and give tension and form to the wine. Medium to full body. Chewy and juicy. Needs time to soften. Better after 2028.”
Great Values For Your Holiday Dinner Table!
Wine Advocate 96 Points “… this is the most elegant and ethereal vintage of Laurel as far as I can remember, with red rather than black fruit and a kind of cranberry quality. The palate is medium-bodied, textured and fluid, with subtleness, balance and very fine tannins. The oak is perfectly integrated, and the wine is easy to drink, approachable and very pleasurable right now… I love it.”
Andre Clouet Grande Reserve Brut Champagne NV 1.5L $89 special, 8 bottles available
Wine Advocate “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.
Donnhoff Felsenberg Grosses Gewachs Riesling, Nahe 2022 1.5L $199 special, 3 bottles available
James Suckling 95 Points “Ripe and concentrated, but also quite austere with stacks of spice and grapefruit character; everything from the juice to the pith and zest! A seriously dry riesling, but with moderate acidity. Long crushed rock finish. From organically grown grapes with Fair’n Green certification. Drink or hold.”
Domaine Eric & Joel Durand Cornas Empreintes, Rhone 2019 1.5L $99 special, 11 bottles available
Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points “Iron, peppered game, smoked black and blue fruits, and new leather notes emerge from the 2019 Cornas Empreintes, and it’s medium to full-bodied and wonderfully balanced, with ripe tannins and one hell of a great finish. It’s another pure, balanced, fruit-loaded beauty from this estate that has tons of character. This cuvée comes from hillside parcels (a mix of granite and limestone) and 30-year-old vines. It was 75% destemmed and spent a year in 20% new barrels.”
Drouhin Roserock Zephirine Pinot Noir 2021 1.5L $128 special, 2 bottles available
James Suckling 97 Points “Beautifully fragrant notes of cocoa-dusted raspberries and crushed blueberries with dried rose petals, sencha tea, cherry chocolate and crushed rocks. Ground spices, too. It shows both delicacy and power, with a compact and silky feeling to the tannin structure and impressive acidity which carries the freshness and tone through to the finish. Attractive tension of crunchy blue fruit and spices. Drink or hold.”
A Little Something For The Collectors
Wine Enthusiast 100 Points “TOP 100 CELLAR SELECTION IN 2019. This is a rich, perfumed wine, with dense tannins and intense layers of black plum and spice. The palate is firmly built yet broadened out by plump dark-fruit tones and honed by a solid, dry core. Drink from 2025. -Roger Voss”
Wine Advocate 98+ Points “Sporting a deep garnet-purple color, the 2016 Angélus erupts from the glass with powerful notes of blackberry pie, ripe black cherries and juicy black plums with an undercurrent of star anise, rose petals, chocolate mint, pencil shavings and wood-smoke plus a waft of allspice. The palate is pure decadence. Medium to full-bodied, rich and generously fruited, this wine is by no means heavy—it positively glimmers with freshness and vivacity, lending an ethereal nature to all that richness and power, beautifully framed by velvety tannins and finishing with epic length. The generosity, layers and plushness make for an absolutely DELICIOUS drink right now, but I’d suggest waiting 3-5 more years for the fireworks to really begin.”
Beaux Freres Beaux Freres Vineyard Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley 2021 1.5L $269 special, 4 magnums available
Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points “Layered and graceful, the 2021 Pinot Noir The Beaux Freres Vineyard pours a ripe ruby hue and reveals a beautiful perfume of orange rind, fresh red plum, clove spice, and rocky earth. Medium-bodied, with tremendous energy, fine tannins, a mineral texture, and a great, lightly toasty finish, it’s a gorgeous wine to drink over the next 10-12 years. Absolutely beautiful.”
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!”
Dow Vintage Port 2017 1.5L $219 special, 3 bottles available
Neal Martin-Vinous 98 Points “The 2017 Dow’s Vintage Port showed a slight reduction and required more time to really open in the glass. Typical of Dow’s it has a more backward and introspective bouquet compared to its peers, scents of blackberry, clove, wild mint, cassis and vanilla, gradually gaining more intensity with aeration. The palate is simply glorious. It is built around a compelling tannic frame that seems finer than any Dow’s I have encountered apart from the ethereal 2011. There is so much energy coiled up in this Port, a sense of symmetry that is enthralling and yet you just know that it needs to be cellared for 15-20 years for it to reveal its full potential. For serious Port-lovers. One of the vintages most cerebral offerings. Total production is 5,250 cases.”
James Suckling 98 Points “Pure grape aromas that remind me of fermenting must but then goes to stems and dried flowers. Full-bodied, medium sweet with fine-grained tannins that coat your palate. Powerful and muscular yet remains agile and beautiful. Grows on your palate. Wonderful ripe fruit in the middle palate. Try after 2030.”
Grapelive 92 Points “The beautiful “Silver” Andre Clouet 100% Pinot Noir non-vintage Grand Cru Blanc de Noirs is one of the best values in Champagne and this recent disgorgement is stunning and luxurious bubbly to enjoy almost guilt free. The Silver is a no dosage Brut Nature, meaning it is exceptional dry and vibrant in style, in a more grower-producer style, but still with regal richness and complexity with plenty of leesy brioche notes and a dense mouth feel showing lemon curd, quince, apple, wet stones, clove spice and hazelnut.”
Vieux Telegraphe Châteauneuf-du-Pape La Crau Rouge 2020 6L $899 special, just 1 magnum available!
*****IN-STORE PICK UP ONLY. SHIPPING NOT AVAILABLE*****
James Suckling 96-97 Points “Such a deep and meaty nose with a slew of wild-herb, savory and subtle balsamic notes. Then comes the expansive and very concentrated palate , which reveals so many spicy nuances as it rolls over the palate, the stunning fine tannins pushing the finish out even further. A grenache-based blend from 60-year-old vines.”
The Three B’s of Italian Luxury Wines
Selecting a special wine for the Holiday season?
Of course you are!
La Spinetta Barolo Campe 2015 750ml $119 special, only 2 bottles still available
James Suckling 97 Points “Very distinctive nose with violets and very pure blackcurrants and blueberries, as well as leafy nuances, all of which deliver a fresh impression. The palate has impressive depth and density and the cool, blue fruit at the center sits fresh and vibrant. Smoothly resolved tannins shape a distinguished, balanced and long palate. Drink or hold.”
Paolo Scavino Barolo Rocche d’Annunz 2013 750ml $199 special, 7 bottles available
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 97 Points “The 2013 Barolo Rocche dell’Annunziata Riserva was released in January of 2019, and once again it looks to be a top prize. Licorice and flowers dominate the bouquet, and its beautiful red fruit is generous throughout. This wine has always been a beauty and consistently has had a high price tag to reflect that quality, going back to the first vintages of the 1990s. It has regularly sold for about $200 every year for the last decade. These vines are old, some of them very old (reaching the ripe age of 60 years old in 1990s, when many of them were replanted with carefully selected clones), producing an elegance and concentration that brings intensity and a high standard of aromas. This Barolo without a doubt shows its pedigree and a quality of noble perfumes that demonstrate characteristics of the greatest Nebbiolo vintages, all delivered with excellent concentration. The magic lingers on the palate, right up to the finish.”
James Suckling 95 Points “Aromas of white truffles and dried red cherries here with an earthy nuance that makes for a complex and compelling nose. The palate has a deep and dense shape and delivers a wide array of rich cherry and plum flavors. Some handy spice here, too. Drink or hold.”
Wine Spectator 96 Points “This tightly wound red is dense with black cherry, black currant, plum, tar and iron flavors as well as tannins. Shows a lot of power and persistence, with all the components in the right proportion, ending with a long, resonant aftertaste. Needs time. Best from 2024 through 2048. 300 cases imported. — BS”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95+ Points “The 2017 growing season saw a couple of violent hail events in the Barbaresco appellation, and this celebrated vineyard suffered some damage during a storm that hit on July 19th. Yields were reduced, but the wine holds its own thanks to the careful fruit selection process put in place by the Gaja family. Their 2017 Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo is a shade richer in terms of flavor concentration, as is always the case with fruit from this slightly warmer growing site. However, like the other two single-vineyard Barbaresco expressions, this wine reveals a thin, sharp and nervous personality that is driven in large part by tannic firmness and acidity. Sorì San Lorenzo adds lots of dark mineral definition to cassis, wild cherry, rose and Provence herbs. Like the other wines, it needs extra cellar aging time.”
Bruno Giacosa Barbaresco Rabaja 2017 750ml $249 special, only 3 bottles available
Wine Advocate 95 Points “The Bruno Giacosa 2017 Barbaresco Rabajà is a fine and delicate wine that throws a curveball at our expectations of this notoriously hot and dry vintage. The wine is exceedingly generous when it comes to its fruit, especially its blackcurrant and plum, but what steals the show is that elegant mineral note that so seamlessly cedes to spice, licorice and cinnamon. Rabajà is one of the most distinctive growing sites in Barbaresco, thanks to its white stony soils that leave such a strong imprint on its wines. The wine is remarkable for its nicely linear and delicate style, but it ultimately proves its power and determination on the palate over many long minutes.”
Wine Spectator 96 Points “Firm and dense, this red sports cherry, leather, cigar box and sweet spice flavors. A juiciness midpalate adds depth. Finishes with tannins and a combination of earth, mineral and tobacco notes. Best from 2022 through 2038.”
Fuligni Brunello Di Montalcino Riserva 2012 750ml $199 special, 9 bottles available
Wine Spectator 98 Points “Bright and juicy, this is packed with cherry, strawberry, floral and mineral aromas and flavors. Linear in shape and tightly wound, yet very pure, with a long, detailed aftertaste that pulls all the elements together. Best from 2021 through 2040. 350 cases imported.”
Biondi Santi Il Greppo Brunello Riserva 1983 750ml $1,099 special, only 1 bottle still available
***Winery Cellared Release***
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 Points “[Reviewed July 2021] This precious bottle is part of Biondi-Santi’s late-release program for collectors (I tasted bottle number 10,723). The 1983 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is showing beautifully on its aging timeline, although this bottle is slightly more evolved since I last tasted this vintage in 2019 before the pandemic. With slow and measured determination, the bouquet embraces dried fig, cured bresaola, burnt caramel, wet campfire, dried oregano and a familiar aroma that reminds me of the Florence leather market. However, there is a lot of life and vertical lift in this Riserva, thanks in great part to the beautiful freshness that keeps the tannins alive and adds a pop of pretty acidity to the close. The wine shows its age with pride and grace, and the final results are quite spectacular. In fact, I’m opening the drinking window up by an additional five years thanks to the latitude and depth shown here.”
Biondi Santi Il Greppo Brunello Riserva 2016 750ml $699 special, 6 bottles available
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 99 Points, “Wow, here is a vintage I’ve been anxiously waiting to try. The 2016 growing season was one of the best in recent memory in Montalcino, and if we look back in time, this vintage marks the year Biondi-Santi was sold to a French group. The prestigious 2016 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva proves a mighty collector’s bottle that will undoubtedly gain in complexity and depth with careful bottle age. The wine offers wild nuances of forest berry and tart cherry, and there are herbal side notes as well as floral tones of dried violet and lilac. The tannins are soft, powdery and feel like they melt away on the palate.”
James Suckling 98 Points “Aromas of strawberries flowers fresh mushroom forest flower sandalwood and hints of balsamic. Full-bodied and tight on the finish. This is a linear and fine-tannined red. Available in March 2023. Needs another five years or so to show its full potential. New classic. Better after 2026.”