Vinopolis Sunday Supplement 11-24-18

In Today’s Newsletter:

Black Friday Specials End Sunday at Midnight!

Post-Black Friday Sale – JL Jamet’s 2015 Cote Rotie

New Weekend, New Arrivals
Hebrart, Bouchard, Donnhoff, Palacios and More!

Holiday Trendsetters

Aldo Conterno: Perfect for Holiday Gifting

True Treasures of Burgundy

Taylor Fladgate: Port Royalty

2015 Ornellaia – “A Dream Wine”


Black Friday Specials End Sunday at Midnight!
Black Friday Subscriber Special – Save $30/Bottle on Schrader
Black Friday pricing cannot be displayed online.
We will adjust pricing manually before finalizing your order.
In-Stock Now:

Schrader Cellars CCS Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2016 750ML ($419.95) Displayed price $399, Your price $369 for Black Friday, only 2 bottles available
Wine Advocate 98 points
“Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon CCS has exuberant notes of plum preserves, baked blackberries and warm cassis with notions of cedar, pencil lead, Indian spices and Sichuan pepper plus a touch of rose hip tea. Very firm and structured in the full-bodied mouth, the palate is laden with tightly wound black and blue fruit layers, lifted by an exciting line of freshness and finishing on a lingering perfumed note.”

Schrader Cellars GIII Beckstoffer George III Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Rutherford, Napa Valley 2016 750ML ($419.95) Displayed price $399, Your price $369 for Black Friday, only 1 bottle available
Wine Advocate 97 points
“The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon GIII is deep garnet-purple in color with boisterous black fruits notes of crushed blackberries, warm black plums and blackcurrant cordial with touches of cedar chest, roses, tilled black soil and tar plus a waft of cloves. The palate is big, rich, full and packed with black fruit preserves and exotic spice notions with a velvety frame and a very long finish.”

Schrader Cellars RBS Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley 2016 750ML ($419.95) Displayed price $399, Your price $369 for Black Friday, only 2 bottles available
Wine Advocate 97+ points
“Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon RBS gives beautiful scents of lilacs and dried lavender over wild blueberries, chocolate-covered cherries, blackberry pie and eucalyptus with a touch of pencil shavings. Full-bodied and built like a brick house, it has a solid frame of grainy tannins and plenty of freshness to lift the densely packed, muscular fruit, finishing very long.”

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Saint Cosme
Saint Cosme Saint-Joseph, Rhone 2016 750ML ($29.95) Was $26, Now $24 Black Friday Special, 36+ bottles in stock now
James Suckling 94 points
“A wild array of fragrant, savory spices and white pepper with a bright array of mixed berries. The palate is suave, succulent and focused. This has elegance and poise. Subtly powerful and beautifully balanced. Drink or hold.”

Saint Cosme Crozes-Hermitage, Rhone 2016 750ML ($27.95) Was $24, Now $21.90 Black Friday Special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 93 points
“I loved the 2016 Crozes Hermitage, which comes from granite terroirs located behind Hermitage hill. It offers layers of blackberry fruit, olive tapenade, ground pepper, and violet aromas and flavors. Deep, medium to full-bodied, and seamless, it shows the purity and finesse that’s the hallmark of this vintage.”

These were both the lowest listed prices in the USA!
Now they’re even lower!
Sequitur Black Friday pricing cannot be displayed online.
We will adjust pricing manually before finalizing your order.

Mike Etzel’s Sequitur Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2014 750ML ($119.95) Displayed price $99, Your Price $79, 7 bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 94 points “Limpid ruby-red. Smoky, mineral-accented aromas of black raspberry, cherry cola and incense carry a strong spicecake overtone. Stains the palate with sappy red berry liqueur, spicecake and floral pastille flavors that are lifted and given definition and tension by juicy acidity. At once rich and nervy, with no excess fat but showing excellent depth and intensity of flavor. Finishes with sexy notes of candied violet and smoky Indian spices and superb, gently tannic persistence. This wine’s Beaux Freres bloodline is very clear to see.”

Mike Etzel’s Sequitur Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2015 750ML ($119.95) Displayed price $99, Your Price $79, 4 bottle available
Josh Raynolds – Vinous 95 points
“Deep brilliant red. A strikingly complex bouquet evokes ripe, mineral-accented red berries, cherry cola, vanilla, five-spice powder and sandalwood. Alluringly sweet, seamless and expansive on the palate, offering concentrated black raspberry, cherry liqueur, spicecake and lavender pastille flavors that are given spine and lift by a core of juicy acidity. Delivers a compelling blend of power and delicacy and finishes extremely long and smooth; rounded tannins frame the lingering red fruit preserve notes.”

Mike Etzel’s Sequitur Pinot Noir, Ribbon Ridge 2016 750ML ($119.95) Displayed price $99, Your Price $79, 7 bottles available
Wine Advocate 94+ points
“Pale to medium ruby-purple in color, the 2016 Sequitur Pinot Noir has a lovely, open nose of black and red cherries and blackberries with notions of wood smoke, turned earth, autumn leaves, cardamom and potpourri. Medium-bodied, it floods the mouth with ripe black and red fruits with wonderful earthy/spicy accents, very fine, grainy tannins and mouthwatering acidity, finishing long with spice and floral layers. 480 cases produced.”

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The Best Value Willamette Pinot?

Matello Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, Oregon 2013 750ML ($24.95) $16 Black Friday Special
VinopolNote: 40%+ whole cluster, bright and fresh.  This has Marcus Goodfellow’s signature touch from a cooler, more elegant vintage. If this said “Bourgogne” on the label it’d be twice as expensive.
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $22
Matello Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, Oregon 2014 750ML ($24.95) $18 Black Friday Special
VinopolNote: Lots of whole cluster to balance out the warmth and richness of the year.  2014 power and fruit marries with spice and structure to produce a beautifully integrated bottle of Pinot Noir.

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A Post-Black Friday Sale

Jean-Luc Jamet’s Brilliant

2015 Cote Rotie

Special pricing ends Friday, November 30th at 11:59PM (PT) or when sold out
Jean-Luc Jamet Cote Rotie ‘Terrasses’, Rhone 2015 750ML ($119.95) Was $99, Now $89 Post-Black Friday Special
John Livingstone-Learmonth – 5 stars “Shiny dark red, a handsome robe. The bouquet is bold, on beef stock, iron, dense black berries, has a poised, integral sweetness, airs of raspberry liqueur, oak smoke. It’s a solid start. The palate has the theme of mineral well placed through it, a lot of mountain of matter, thickening towards the finish. It holds sparkling and dense fruits – cassis, soaked cherries. It is vibrant and very full; there is real flair off its sun-dialled deck. It has great juice; it’s a treat to taste this. Decanting advised. “It has a lot of black fruits, a belle freshness to underpin it; it’s very long,”

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New Weekend – New Arrivals 

Champagne & French Sparklers

Clotilde Davenne Cremant de Bourgogne Brut Extra NV 750ML ($24.95) $21.90 special
VinopolNote: From a far-flung Chablis appellation, as close to Champagne as you can get!

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
Champagne Hebrart Blanc de Blancs Premier Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
Wine Spectator 91 points “Crushed cherry, slivered almond, pomegranate and lemon curd flavors are underscored by a streak of salinity in this creamy and balanced blanc de blancs Champagne.” [Review is for March 2017 disgorgement]

Champagne Hebrart Cuvee Reserve Premier Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special
Wine Spectator 92 points “Pretty floral and spice aromas lead to ripe crushed cherry and peach fruit flavors on the palate of this mouthwatering, elegant Champagne. Well-knit and lacy in texture, with toast, citrus and chalk accents lingering on the finish.” [Review is for Sept 2017 disgorgement]

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Champagne Hebrart Cuvee Rose Premier Cru Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
Terry Theise note “At first quite Pinot before it breaks out into whorls and eddies and rivulets of almost indescribable complexity, paragraphs’ worth, as the osmanthus-scented Chard steps into the light. Only a slight—believe me, slight—brevity in the finish precludes the third plus. Another 100% Mareuil, and if you want to know why many people think this commune should be Grand Cru, you need only taste this one wine. The blend is, as always, complex. 55% CH from 2015 (zero grassiness!), 38.5% PN from 2014-2013, and 6.5% still PN made in cask, from 2014. I don’t repeat my “horny librarian” trope any more, apt though it was, but this is a wine that’s crazy-sexy and wants to show you how smart it is, or else crazy-smart and wants to show you how sexy it is.”

Champagne Hebrart Special Club Millesime Brut, Champagne 2013 750ML ($99.95) $79 special
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2013 Brut Premier Cru Special Club Millesime offers a fresh and intense bouquet of ripe and stewed white fruits with a hint of butter. Pure, fresh, fine, ripe and intense on the palate, this is a very fruity but also pure and tensioned blend of 55% Pinot Noir from Aÿ and Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and 45% Chardonnay from Oiry and Chouilly. It has a fresh and aromatic but somewhat reductive finish. It needs time. Disgorged in August 2017 with a dosage of 6.5 grams per liter.”

Cedric Bouchard Roses de Jeanne La Presle, Champagne 2014 750ML ($179.95) $149 special, 1 bottle available
Peter Liem note
“The newest release from Roses de Jeanne is Presle, an unusual blanc de noirs from a west-facing parcel of the same name in the village of Celles-sur-Ource. Bouchard owns just 15 rows here, and in 2007, he planted this parcel with ten different rootstocks, each selected for low yields and high concentration: “I wanted as much diversity as possible,” he says. “The complexity of the genetic material encourages the complexity of the wine.””

Cedric Bouchard Roses de Jeanne Les Ursules Blanc de Noirs, Champagne 2014 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 5 bottles available
Peter Liem note
“The original Roses de Jeanne wine is Les Ursules, which is a blanc de noirs from a relatively flat vineyard of the same name, located down the street from Bouchard’s cellars in Celles-sur-Ource. It covers 90.51 ares, with most of the vines planted in 1974, and the average production is about 2,800 bottles a year. As the original manifestation of Bouchard’s philosophies, Les Ursules is likely to be the wine most representative of the estate: concentrated and intense in flavor without being weighty, it combines depth, complexity and poise. Its ripe fruit aromas are a testament to Bouchard’s viticultural practices, but so is the elegantly smoky, almost flinty minerality that consistently appears in this wine.”

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Cedric Bouchard Roses de Jeanne Parcelle Bechalin NV (2011) 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 4 bottles available
Peter Liem note
“La Parcelle comes from a 0.73-hectare, southwest-facing parcel of pinot noir in the Celles-sur-Ource vineyard of Côte de Béchalin that Bouchard purchased in 2007, from an old friend of the family. Its previous owner made a little wine but never sold it, and Bouchard was so impressed with the viticulture and the winemaking that when he purchased the vineyard, he also bought all of the old stocks of champagne… 2004 was the first vintage of La Parcelle that Bouchard made himself, although between 2004 and 2006 he made the wine at the previous owner’s facilities; beginning in 2007, the wine has been made in Bouchard’s own cellars.”

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Weingut Donnhoff Roxheimer Hollenpfad Riesling Trocken, Nahe 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 special
Stuart Pigott – 94 points “Who could resist this beauty? All the flowers and fresh herbs of spring are married to considerable elegance and there’s a ton of minerality at the crystalline finish. Drink or hold. Made from organic grapes and Fair’n Green certified.”


Descendientes de J. Palacios ‘Petalos’, Bierzo 2015 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-12 Descendientes de J. Palacios ‘Petalos’, Bierzo 2015 750ML ($249.95) $189 special (that’s only $15.75/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 92+ points “The entry level 2015 Pétalos del Bierzo, their regional wine, in the new official category that will start working in the appellation from the 2017 vintage, a blend of many different vineyards planted with field blends, where the breakdown might come to some 5% white varieties (Valenciana/Doña Blanca, Godello and Palomino/Jerez) and around 1% other reds (Pan y Carne, Negrada and Gran Negro), all from vines ranging between 40 and 90 years of age on slopes (half of the grapes around the village of Corullón and the remainder in the rest of Bierzo). It’s a showy, approachable, aromatic and open version of Pétalos, and as I tasted it later on in the season, it felt more polished and round, with a lush texture. It’s extremely aromatic, in a way similar to the 2012. This is always one of the best values not only of Bierzo but for the whole of Spain. 310,000 bottles and 2,000 magnums produced.”

Holiday Trendsetters

Can you expect any more out of a Chateauneuf?
Domaine de la Janasse Cuvee Vieilles Vignes, Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2016 750ML ($149.95) $119 special
Jeb Dunnuck 98-100 points “Incorporating 8% Mourvèdre, 12% Syrah and 5% other permitted variety, 60% destemmed, the 2016 Châteauneuf-du-Pape Cuvée Vieilles Vignes sports a deep, inky color as well as sensational notes of black currants, smoked meats, earth and crushed rocks. Deep, rich, unctuous and decadent, with huge extract and richness, yet never over the top or overripe, it’s a killer wine that’s going to flirt with perfection on release.”
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 97+ points “Time will tell if this wine equals the stellar 2015; it’s certainly very close in quality. The 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Cuvee Vieilles Vignes is a blend of approximately 75% Grenache, 12% Mourvèdre, 8% Syrah and the rest other permitted varieties. Tarry and deep on the nose, it delivers waves of blackberries and black cherries on the palate, framing those flavors with plenty of richness, layers of silky tannins and a long, elegant finish.”
Wine Spectator 97 points “This is packed with plum, raspberry and blackberry confiture flavors that are youthfully wound up, while warm stone, anise, bay leaf, garrigue and tar notes fill in throughout. Dense but juicy, with a long, smoldering feel on the finish. Best from 2020 through 2040.”

Dom, amplified. The rosé is the epitome of luxury.
Dom Perignon Rose, Champagne 2005 750ML ($379.95) $248 special
James Suckling 99 points “A mind-blowing wine. This is super subtle and intense with aromas of peaches, light strawberry and cream. Also shows rose petal and cooked peaches. Medium to full body, with ultra-fine tannins that feel like fine silk. The finish goes on for mintutes. It floats across the palate. The winemaker says the closet vintage to this is the 1990, but I think this is better.”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “The 2005 Dom Pérignon Rosé is intriguing, complex and multi-faceted. Brisk and refreshing, with a slightly herbal (but not unpleasant character), the 2005 is superb today. Over time, the wine has acquired a bit more depth and body than it showed at the outset. Even with all of its depth, though, I would not suggest cellaring the 2005 too long given the challenges of the year. Hints of blood orange, mint, sage and dried flowers add the closing shades of nuance.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “This rosé Champagne is rich and vinous, offering smoky minerality up front, expanding to show dried raspberry, mandarin orange zest, brioche and espresso crème flavors that ride the fine, lacy mousse. Spice and mineral details persist on the racy finish. Drink now through 2027.”

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One of the finest wines made in Tuscany, from a great vintage
Castellare di Castellina ‘I Sodi di San Niccolo’ Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2013 750ML ($89.95) $66 special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2013 I Sodi di S. Niccolò is 85% Sangioveto (a more antique name for Sangiovese) and 15% Malvasia Nera from a single vineyard. This wine opens to a darkly saturated appearance and shows ruby, garnet and purple highlights. The bouquet is powerful but seamless at the same time with smooth transitions between dark cherry, spice, tobacco and moist clay. In the mouth, this wine shows dense extraction, but it never feels too weighed down by that mass. Instead, the freshness of the fruit and the natural acidity give the wine a bright and buoyant personality. Aged in barrique for 30 months, this is a delightful Tuscan red.”

While not “budget,” very few Rhones at this price approach this quality.
Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas, Rhone 2016 750ML ($49.95) $39 special
Wine Spectator 95 points “Perfumy and stylish, with rooibos tea, blood orange and cherry aromas and flavors weaving through, infused with sandalwood, anise, bay leaf, sage and pepper notes along the way. A very fine and persistent chalky spine supports it all. Best from 2020 through 2035.”

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Perfect winter rosé
Domaine Lafond Tavel Roc-Epine Rose, Rhone 2017 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-12 Domaine Lafond Tavel Roc-Epine Rose, Rhone 2017 750ML ($249.95) $189 special (that’s only $15.75/bottle!)
Wine Advocate 93 points
“A dependable producer of Tavel and Lirac (and Châteauneuf-du-Pape), the Lafonds have turned out a spice-driven 2017 Tavel that’s bottled under screwcap. Hints of allspice and clove accent watermelon and red berry flavors, while the palate is medium to full-bodied and richly textured, leading into a long, silky finish. Bravo!”
Wine & Spirits 92 points “The Lafonds turned out a lush 2017 Tavel from their organically farmed vineyards, a wine that balances its sunny generosity with refreshing acidity. It has the girth for meaty dishes, with berry notes that bring red meat to mind, but the herbal and earthy flavors have enough restraint to work with fish, too.”

The pinnacle of German Riesling? Certainly for the price.
Weingut Donnhoff Niederhauser Hermannshohle Riesling Spatlese, Nahe 2016 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
Stuart Pigott – 96 points “Another 2016 Spätlese from Dönnhoff that’s still a bit shy on the nose, but on the palate it’s like a huge glittering diamond with more facets flashing many colors. An extremely long super-mineral finish that is impeccably clean in spite of the generous grape sweetness in this masterpiece of elegance. Better from 2018 with decades of ageing potential. Made from organic grapes and Fair’n Green certified.”
David Schildknecht-Vinous 94 points “A fascinatingly multifaceted nose incorporates wet stone, leather and almond extract with more familiar white peach, quince and lime. A seductive aura of lily-like perfume hangs over this entire performance. The palate is palpably dense despite alcoholic levity, and subtly creamy while retaining animating primary juiciness. In common with its Brücke sibling, this leans more toward quince as it launches into a finish of honeyed richness – a function of nearly overripe but also nearly botrytis-free berries – yet retaining freshness as well as transparency to crystalline stony mineral nuances. “Under the right conditions,” observed Dönnhoff, “Hermannshöhle delivers something extra in the realm of sweetness, and for that you need cool nights that preserve slightly harder acidity” – which 2016 delivered in spades. Look for significantly more from this bottling after it’s had a decade or so in bottle.”
Wine Advocate 94 points “The 2016 Nahe Riesling Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Spätlese is bright, fresh and coolish-piquant on the nose, with flinty and slightly reductive aromas. Lush and piquant on the palate, this is a generous, mouth-filling Spätlese with a long, piquant and spicy-mineral finish. The Hermannshöhle is more dense and rich on the palate, the Brücke more light, delicate and finessed.”



Aldo Conterno

High Scoring, Powerful Barolo

Perfect for Holiday Gifting

Poderi Aldo Conterno has been producing remarkable wines ever since it was created in 1969 by the man whose name is on the label.  Sick of fighting with his brother over the winemaking style to be used at the family’s estate, the venerable Giacomo Conterno, Aldo left and never looked back. Over the course of the next several decades he established the winery as one of the most important in Italy.

Based in the Bussia hamlet in Monforte, the estate’s wines have always been powerful yet polished, with dark rich fruit.  These wines are bold Barolos, with great density and power—though they still have nuance and complexity.  We have a small assortment of wines in from several heralded recent vintages.   Needless to say these wines are epic and if you or someone who you’d like to buy a present for likes powerful Barolo, you should buy heavily.

Poderi Aldo Conterno Barolo DOCG, Piedmont 2008 750ML ($119.95) $79 special
Case-12 Poderi Aldo Conterno Barolo DOCG, Piedmont 2008 750ML ($1199.95) $819 special (that’s only $68.25/bottle!)
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Beautiful raspberry, cherry and black currant flavors are backed by firm, dusty tannins in this harmonious, fresh red. Floral and tobacco notes add dimension as this cruises to a long, lingering finish. Best from 2016 through 2033. 600 cases imported.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “The 2008 Barolo is a beautiful wine. Super expressive, knock-out aromatics lead to expressive layers of fruit. The 2008 shows gorgeous richness and depth within the context of the year. Tar, smoke, licorice and crushed rocks wrap around the finish. This is a striking, elegant Barolo from Aldo Conterno.”

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Poderi Aldo Conterno Bussia Cicala, Barolo DOCG 2008 750ML ($179.95) $119 special
Antonio Galloni 95 points “The 2008 Barolo Cicala is beautifully focused and vibrant from start to finish. It boasts fabulous energy and sheer tension in its ripe red berries, spices, crushed flowers and mint. All the elements come together beautifully in the pure, delineated Barolo. Huge, powerful tannins provide the backdrop for layers of cool, mineral-infused fruit. There is a pulsating energy to the Cicala that is absolutely irresistible. This is another fabulous showing.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “There’s fine depth to this red, like a grand cru red Burgundy, with a silky texture framing black cherry, black currant and tar flavors. Solidly built, this features a deceptively charming exterior that conceals firm tannins. The finish evokes violet and black cherry notes. Best from 2016 through 2035. 250 cases imported.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $156
Poderi Aldo Conterno Bussia Cicala, Barolo DOCG 2009 750ML ($179.95) $119 special
Wine Spectator 94 points “Aromas of fresh cherry, raspberry, licorice and spice fill the glass as this red unfolds. Offers dense tannins and bright acidity, lending definition to the cherry, strawberry, tobacco and spice flavors that persist through the long finish. Best from 2017 through 2030. 300 cases imported.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “An aromatically beguiling wine, the 2009 Barolo Cicala is laced with dark plums, truffles, tar, incense and a host of other balsamic-infused aromas. Today, the fruit lies a bit in the background, while the wine’s aromatics and overall structure are much more in evidence. I imagine the 2009 will require at least a few more years in bottle to flesh out, but it is quite beautiful, even at this stage. There is a weightless tension in the 2009 that is remarkable.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 94 points “The 2009 Barolo Cicala reveals the particular dynamic of the vintage with firmly astringent tannins and power coupled with a leaner, more streamlined mouthfeel. You can also feel some of the heat of the 2009 summer with upfront aromas of prune and cassis followed by a visibly darker appearance and sweet spice on the bouquet. The wine has the inherent complexity, structure and acidity for long aging, but it offers less pulp to sink your teeth into. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2027.”

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The next best price is $159.99

Poderi Aldo Conterno Colonnello, Barolo DOCG 2008 750ML ($149.95) $119 special
Wine Spectator 96 points “Round and supple, with a fleshy profile enveloping pure cherry, raspberry and spice flavors. Ripe and harmonious, with no shortage of structure. A mineral element emerges on the tight finish. Best from 2016 through 2035. 200 cases imported.”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “The 2008 Barolo Colonnello is super impressive. It shows gorgeous richness and depth in its focused, energetic fruit. Sweet red berries, flowers and spices are woven together beautifully in the 2008 Colonnello. The elegant side of Barolo comes through, but with an extra degree of muscle. The oak, sometimes noticeable in this bottling, is very well integrated. Floral notes are woven throughout the finish. The Colonnello often gives the impression of being early to mature relative to the estate’s other Baroli, but the 2008 is surprisingly powerful and structured.”

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The next best price is $134.99
Aldo Conterno Colonnello, Barolo DOCG 2009 750ML ($199.95) $125 special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95+ points “The 2009 Barolo Colonnello is destined to occupy a special place in my heart as it turned out to be the first sample in my opening blind flight as Italian reviewer with The Wine Advocate. Darkly concentrated and rich, it sets the stage beautifully for 2009 Barolo thanks to its enormous grace, power and elegance. Where it really wins praise, however, is in the mouth. It shows solid grip and firm tannic tenacity that is bold and muscular without going over the top. It moves steadily over the palate in an exceptional manner. The bouquet opens to wild cherry, black licorice and drying notes of crushed white pepper. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2030.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “Alluring and complex aromas of cherry, licorice, sandalwood and leather segue into sweet berry, floral and spice flavors in this red, which is still a bit monolithic, but harmonious and youthful, with a long finish and a spicy aftertaste. Best from 2017 through 2032. 250 cases imported.”

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True Treasures of Burgundy

Tip Top Bottles from the Jewel of Wine

In Stock Now:

Only five bottles available
Domaine Dujac Clos de la Roche Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2016 750ML ($699.95) $579 special
Jasper Morris, MW 95-97 points “A satisfactory yield approaching 45 hl/ha. Medium deep purple. Refined, reserved and really classy. Do not expect an explosion from Clos de la Roche but do expect something to make a long term classic. The balance on the palate is exquisite and subtly nuanced, as always it is a drier style but the fruit is infused throughout. Exceptional persistence. Magical. (Jan 2018)”
John Gilman 95 points “The 2016 Clos de la Roche from the Seysses family was really singing at the time of my visit. The bouquet jumps from the glass in a refined blend of red plums, cherries, gamebird, a touch of fresh nutmeg, superb soil tones and a deft base of vanillin oak. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and very elegant out of the blocks this year, with a sappy core of fruit, outstanding backend soil signature, ripe, suave tannins and a long, complex and tangy finish. I love the balance and breed this exudes this year. 2030-2075. (Nov/Dec 2017)”
Stephen Tanzer 93-96 points “(the estate made a full crop of 40 hectoliters per hectare, as there was no frost here): Full, dark red. Captivating aromas of raspberry, strawberry, spices, flowers and sweet new oak. Juicy, intense and aromatic on the palate–youthfully imploded in a positive way. Projects compelling energy and subtle sweetness to its red berry and spice flavors. Finishes very long and tight, with an exhilarating wild berry element. A knockout sharply delineated Clos de la Roche that offers terrific intensity without any sense of weight.”

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Only three bottles available
Chateau de La Tour ‘Hommage a Jean Morin’ Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2013 750ML ($699.95) $519 special
Burghound 96 points “The oak influence is a bit more subtle though by no means invisible as it suffuses the very spicy plum liqueur-like aromas that are liberally laced with earth, exotic tea and dried floral scents. There is a lush, even opulent mouth feel to the dense big-bodied flavors that possess excellent size, weight and power yet the palate impression is finer, partially because the dry extract enrobes the tannins but also because the tannins themselves are finer on the massively long finish. The level of dry extract present here is simply amazing and this is going to require at least 20 years to realize all of the incredible upside development potential. Flat out terrific!.”

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The next best price is $649
Only one bottle available
Domaine Roulot Charmes, Meursault Premier Cru 2015 750ML ($999.95) $799 special
Burghound 93 points “Sweet spot Outstanding. Here too the admirably pure aromas are distinctly cool with its ripe nose of white peach and essence of pear that is trimmed in notes of subtle wood, spice and citrus zest. Once again there is fine volume to the solidly concentrated and sappy medium-bodied flavors that possess first-rate complexity and persistence on the balanced finale. A classic Charmes.”

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Only two bottles available
Olivier Bernstein Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2015 750ML ($599.95)
$519 special
Wine Spectator 98 points “A brilliant red, bursting with cherry, strawberry, floral and mineral aromas and flavors, backed by a firm structure, with an overall sense of elegance, restraint and understated power. This will need a few years to reveal all its charms, yet remains long and focused. Best from 2023 through 2040. 28 cases imported.”
Stephen Tanzer 95+ points “Medium red. Deeper, musky, rather backward nose offers soil-inflected aromas of black cherry, coffee, mocha and minerals but a bit less energy and peppery lift than the Bonnes-Mares. Then wonderfully silky and thick in the mouth, and surprisingly lively and expressive considering the nose. Conveys terrific energy and peppery pungency to its flavors of dark raspberry, black cherry, licorice and crushed rock. There’s a positive and very sexy wildness here that may become more pronounced with time in the cellar. Finishes with outstanding length.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Taylor Fladgate: Port Royalty

Taylor Fladgate is a premier name in the world of Port.  In most declared vintages, the Fladgate offering is the top, especially for lovers of elegant, rich port with sublime aromatics.  They’ve always been innovators (basically inventing LBV port) but we love them for their classical vintage ports.

Founded in 1692, Taylor Fladgate sources their wines from a variety of vineyards, but the vintage ports lean heavily on Vargellas, Terra Feita and Junco, three quintas that are some of the finest few vineyards in the Douro.  The resulting vintage Port that is produced is something that demonstrates the Taylor Fladgate commitment to excellence from vineyards all the way to bottle.

Unlike the sometimes showier Fonseca’s (their only real competitor for top old-school port house), these are wines that often take some time to mature and show their full stuff. When they do, though, these are wines that dreams are made of (and wines you should plan meals around).  Luckily, we’re able to save you the trouble and are able to offer this fine collection of already aged treasures, perfect for holiday drinking.

In Stock Now:

Only three bottles available
Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 1970 750ML ($499.95) $399 special
Wine Spectator 98 points “Clearly lives up to Taylor’s superb reputation. Deep ruby, with intense violet and chocolate aromas, full-bodied, with gorgeous fruit flavors, full but well-integrated tannins and an extremely long finish. Amazing balance and finesse. Still needs time.”

Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 1977 750ML ($349.95) $299 special
Note on condition of bottles: labels and bottles show wear and tear of 40 years in cellar.
Wine Spectator 97 points “Good ruby color still. The nose is fresh, with lots of crushed berry and plum, with a hint of piecrust. Full-bodied, with firm tannins and a caressing texture. This delivers loads of complex fruit and spiciness. Medium-sweet. A beauty. Will improve for decades, but why wait? ’77/’85/’97 blind Port retrospective. Drink now.”
Robert Parker 96 points “This house must certainly be the Latour of Portugal. Their ports are remarkably backward yet still impressive when young. Of all the vintage ports, those of Taylor need the longest time to mature and even when fully mature seem to have an inner strength and firmness that keep them going for decades. Their tawnys are also among the very best, though somewhat expensive. The 1977 has consistently been at the top of my list of vintage ports in this great vintage, although the Dow, Graham, and Fonseca are equally splendid. It is a mammoth, opaque, statuesque vintage port of remarkable depth and power, but is should not be touched before 2000.”

Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 1985 750ML ($149.95) $119 special
Jancis Robinson 18/20 points “Still going very strong from a bottle via a decanter. (The Robertsons served Fonseca 1985 at their dinner that night to celebrate Fonseca’s bicentenary.) Lovely hazelnuts nose and soft, spicy and sweet on the palate. Tannins fully resolved but still vigorous too.”    (6/2015)
Neal Martin’s Wine Journal 95 points: “A very youthful deep garnet core with ruby rim. This has a much more precocious nose than the -83 with ripe blackberry, raspberry coulis, black olives and a certain minerality to it. Very fresh and well defined, the palate is full-bodied, certainly more structured and complex than the previous two declarations. Notes of black cherry, fig, raisin with a hint of savoury fruit towards the finish that has great length and refinement. Still in its youth, this has great potential…” (05/2008)
Wine Spectator 93 points “Medium ruby. Beautiful aromas of flowers and fresh plum, with hints of stems. Full-bodied and medium-sweet, with gorgeous silky tannins and a long, long finish. This is just starting to come around and offers wonderful flavors. Long life ahead, but ready to try.”

Only six bottles available
Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 1994 750ML ($249.95) $219 special
Wine Spectator 100 points “In a word, superb. It’s full-bodied, moderately sweet and incredibly tannic, but there’s amazing finesse and refinement to the texture, not to mention fabulous, concentrated aromas of raspberries, violets and other flowers. Perhaps the greatest Taylor ever, it’s better than either the ’92 or the ’70, though it’s very like the ’70 in structure.”

Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 2003 750ML ($119.95) $99 special
Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 2003 1.5L ($299.95) $249 special
Robert Parker – Hedonist’s Gazette 100 points “I noticed the Chinese love to have both a sweet wine and a vintage port at the end of a meal, which is pretty much over-kill for me. However, I was blown away by the 2003 Taylors vintage port. The Great Wall of China, Black Tie Dinner.”
Pierre Ravoni – Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2003 Taylor’s has a lovely ripe, primal bouquet of blackberry, raspberry, vanilla and marmalade that shows slightly better delineation than the Fonseca. The palate is medium-bodied with very composed, refined tannins that belie the heat of that summer. There is wonderful focus here and fine tension, the finish offering precise notes of black cherries, mulberry, cloves and white pepper. This is one of the finest Ports of a precocious vintage. Tasted May 2013.”

Arriving ETA Late November:

#4 Wine of the Year – James Suckling Top 100 in 2018
#23 Wine of the Year – Wine Spectator Top 100 in 2018

Taylor Fladgate Vintage Port, Portugal 2016 750ML ($119.95) $89 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 100 points “OMG. This is really the most amazing young Taylor’s I have ever tasted. Full-bodied and lightly sweet with super power and intensity. So racy and focused. Yet this has such muscle and intensity. Needs at least eight years to show you everything it has to offer. Drink in 2025.”
Wine Spectator 98 points “This is packed with raspberry, blackberry and blueberry fruit flavors that play off one another, melding with anise, fruitcake and ganache notes. A warm tarry edge coats the finish, revealing an echo of bramble. A seriously grippy, strapping Port, this revels in its power. Best from 2032 through 2055.”
Wine Enthusiast 98 points “Ripe, structured while also fruity, this intense, perfumed Port is opulent while also elegant. Its tannins and great fruit are finely integrated and are rich with potential. Black fruits, berries and a juicy aftertaste add freshness to the wine. Drink from 2028.”
Neal Martin – Vinous 97 points “In 2016 Taylor’s began picking in Vargellas on 17 September, followed by Pinhão Valley estate on 23 and 26 September. The 2016 Vintage Port has an aristocratic bouquet with tight wound aromas of blackberry, bilberry, crushed stone, black olive and a light, marine-tinged element, perhaps almost peat-like. The palate is just beautiful with fine, chiseled tannins and a perfect line of acidity. There is that almost “arching” structure one always seeks in a great Taylor’s with a gentle but insistent grip towards the finish. It is everything you really want from a Vintage Port. Production is 6,200 cases.”

2015 Ornellaia

“A Dream Wine”

Ornellaia remains a reference point wine both in Italy and the world of fine wine writ large.  The 2015 is every bit the wine you’d expect given the strength of the the vintage.  Antonio Galloni called it “a dream wine with magnificent balance” and said that “All the elements are in the right place.” It should rival Sassicaia (recently named as Wine Spectator’s Wine of the Year) for wine of the vintage.

Arriving ETA February:

Ornellaia Bolgheri Superiore, Tuscany 2015 750ML ($279.95) $219 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 98 points “The 2015 Ornellaia is a dream wine with magnificent balance. All the elements are in the right place. In most vintages, Ornellaia needs time to fully come together, but the 2015 is just impeccable, even in the early going. The warm vintage notwithstanding, winemaker Axel Heinz crafted and Ornellaia is more about finesse and power. The potent, bruising tannins Ornellaia can show as a young wine are nowhere to be found. Bright raspberry jam, mint, white flowers and pomegranate are some of the many notes that punctuate the finish in a memorable Ornellaia that will go down among the great vintages produced at this reference-point estate.”
James Suckling 98 points “The blackberry and blueberry aromas with fresh sage and bay-leaf character are impressive. Stone, graphite and mineral undertones. Full-bodied and silky and refined tannins. Dusty. Elegance and polish. Shows greatness in strength and refinement. A dialed-in, dialed-back Ornellaia. Drink in 2022.”
Wine Spectator 97 points “A big, brooding red, packed with blackberry, plum and earth flavors, all wrapped in spicy oak. Monolithic now, finishing with saline mineral elements, a leafy tobacco edge and dense, mouthcoating tannins. Terrific potential. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Best from 2023 through 2038.”

Thanks for reading!