Vinopolis Labor Day Sale
Featuring Vincent Paris, FX Pichler,
Delas Freres, Hartford Court, & Cantina del Pino
New Vintages of Gaja Sori San Lorenzo
New Releases from Cameron
(Dundee Hills Reserve + Nebbiolo)
New Cult Wines from Sierra de Gredos:
Dani Landi and Comando G
Grapelive Reviews a New Chablis Classic
Labor Day Sale prices expire Monday, September 2nd at 11:59PM
We’ve got his excellent value, negociant Crozes in our Labor Day Sale, along with vintages of his two core Cornas bottlings, the Granit 30 and 60 (the numbers refer to the age of the vines and the slope of the vineyards). The 30 may be the ultimate “bistro Cornas,” combining Cornas character with surprising drinkability, where the 60 is built for longer in the cellar. These are wines that will be deeply satisfying to lovers of the Northern Rhone, especially at these prices.
Domaine Vincent Paris Crozes-Hermitage, Rhone 2017 750ML ($29.95) Was $24, Now $21.90 Labor Day Sale, 36+ bottles in stock now
John Gilman 90 points “The Crozes-Hermitage bottling from Vincent Paris is made from purchased fruit from a long-time organic farmer in the appellation, with the vines averaging thirty years of age. He destems the fruit for this bottling and raised it entirely in tank. The 2017 version comes in at an even thirteen percent octane and offers up a pure and classic bouquet of black raspberries, hung game, a touch of chocolate, gentle notes of pepper, woodsmoke, dark soil tones and just a touch of black olive in the upper register. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and already nicely velvety on the attack, with a lovely core, good focus and grip, melting tannins and a long, complex and wide open finish. This is lovely Crozes. 2019-2035.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92-94 points “(no new oak) Opaque ruby. Potent, mineral-accented dark berry scents are complicated by floral oil and peppery spice nuances. Smooth and seamless on the palate, offering gently sweet black raspberry, blueberry and violet pastille flavors that become livelier with air. Sappy and open-knit, closing with solid thrust, silky, even tannins and strong persistence.”
Jeb Dunnuck 91 points “The 2016 Cornas Granit 30 is another winner from this estate. Ultra-pure notes of cassis, blackberries, leafy herbs, liquid violets and pepper all emerge from the glass. It’s balanced, medium to full-bodied, and textured on the palate, with the balance and purity that this estate has become known for front and center.”
Wine Advocate 90-92 points “The 2016 Cornas Granit 30 had been blended and was in tank awaiting bottling during my visit. Medium to full-bodied, it’s already almost drinkable, showing attractive and classic notes of crushed stone, blood and cherries, reasonably supple tannins and charming blueberries on the finish.”
Jeb Dunnuck 93-95+ points “Similar colored, the 2017 Cornas Granit 60 comes from further up the slope and older vines. It offers a deeper, richer bouquet of black and blue fruits, smoked earth, violets, and ground pepper. Deep, full-bodied, thrillingly pure and elegant, yet still with classic Cornas density, power, and length, it’s another gem of a wine from this incredibly talented winemaker.”
The wines of F.X. Pichler are unique, in that no one else seems to wrangle power, freshness and complexity into a single package quite like this wizard of the Wachau. With a combination of intensive viticulture, native fermentations and great terroir, the wines are unlike anything else in the world. Broad and powerful, with a cut and minerality that’s unique, these are wines to drink now and to age, as well. F.X. Pichler stands as one of the two or three most important Austrian producers and hands down the winery crafting the most powerful, complex and bombastic dry Riesling and Gruner Veltliner on the planet.
F.X. Pichler Durnsteiner Liebenberg Gruner Veltliner Smaragd, Wachau 2015 750ML ($69.95) Was $48, Now $41.90 Labor Day Sale, 36+ bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 93-94 points “The 2015 Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Dürnsteiner Liebenberg comes from 70- to 80-year-old vines on a rare calcareous slate soil. The wine displays a very clear and pure, pretty open and lovely spicy, crystalline and flinty bouquet with ripe pip fruit aromas. Very distinguished and rather coolish in its expression. Full-bodied, round and elegant, with tension, salt and grip in the finish, this is a charmingly ripe and juicy but also challenging mineral and piquant Veltliner from one of the most exciting terroirs. The finish is powerful and complex but also fresh and stimulatingly piquant. Pichler has bottled this wine since 2010.”
The average price is $54
Wine Advocate 92-93 points “From probably the warmest vineyard of the Wachau, the 2015 Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Loibner Loibenberg is a full-bodied, rich and intense, very juicy, but also piquant and mineral Veltliner with tobacco flavors on the nose. Dense and with an old-vines intensity, this Loibenberg offers ripe yellow stone fruits with a tropical touch, but is also very well structred and finishes with a long and salty aftertaste. An impressive wine.”
Now it’s even lower!
The next best price is $47.98
Wine Advocate 94-95 points “The 2015 Grüner Veltliner Smaragd M is a selection of the ripest (overripe) grapes from the Loibenberg, Kellerberg and Liebenberg. Harvested in the last week of November and macerated for 20 to 24 hours, this is a rich and creamy textured yet elegant and vibrantly fresh Veltliner monument with finesse and purity and a long and tension-filled finish. Great salinity and concentration. An elegant and expressive wine for XXL drinkers.”
Now it’s even lower!
Wine Enthusiast 93 points “Freshly cut pear, some peardrop candy and a wonderfully zippy lemon freshness combine on a light, slender body into a very refreshing, even exciting palate that also has very slight echoes of yellow miso and fresh lovage. There is focus and precision—but this may need a little bottle age before unfolding completely. Drink 2017–2022.”
Now it’s even lower!
The next best price is $39
That’s hard to believe, given that Delas makes wines that are a) delicious and well-made and b) more than reasonably priced. This combination means that it’s possible to drink your way up and down the Northern Rhone, trying fantastic wines from fabled appellations, and you can still afford your next car payment. At these Labor Day prices they’re even better deals, so stock up on these two while the gettin’s good!
Delas Freres Hermitage Domaine des Tourettes-Marquise de la Tourette, Rhone 2013 750ML ($119.95) Was $69, Now $59 Labor Day Sale, 28 bottles in stock now
Jancis Robinson 18/20 points “Very dark purple indeed. Altogether broader and less focused than the Côte Rôties on the nose. Peppery and subtle. Very glossy, layered, complex and magnificent. I would reproach this only very slightly on the finish but it’s a pretty magnificent wine.”
Wine Advocate 94 points “One of the gems in the vintage is the 2013 Hermitage Domaine des Tourettes, which comes from both the Bessards and Grandes Vignes lieux-dits on Hermitage Hill. Completely destemmed, then vinified in stainless steel and concrete tanks, the wine is aged 18 months in 30% new French oak; it offers terrific notes of dark fruits, graphite and ample minerality in a full-bodied, layered, ripe profile. It’s more approachable than the Les Bessards, yet will still have three decades of longevity.”
Now it’s even lower!
The next best price is $79.97
Wine Advocate 93 points “Inky and concentrated, the 2015 Saint-Joseph Francois de Tournon is no easy-drinking Saint-Joseph. It’s smoky, herbal and ashy all at once, yet it’s buoyed by ample black cherry fruit and vibrant acidity. This medium to full-bodied Syrah has plenty of tannins, but they’re ultimately silky and most apparent on the long, licorice-tinged finish. This is approachable now but should be even better in 3 years and should drink well for at least another 10 after that.”
Jeb Dunnuck 93 points “Both Saint Joseph releases are brilliant in 2015. The 2015 Saint Joseph François De Tournon comes vines around Tournon, Mauves, Saint-Jean-de-Muzols, and Vion, and is always destemmed and aged in 30% new barrels. This full-bodied, rounded, sexy beauty shows the power and fruit of the vintage. With classic notes of black and blue fruits, violets, incense and pepper, drink this textured, expansive, terrific Saint Joseph over the coming 10-15 years.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92 points “Dark ruby. High-pitched red and dark berry and violet aromas show excellent focus and pick up hints of cracked pepper and sandalwood with air. Sappy and seamless in texture, offering fresh black raspberry and bitter cherry flavors and a hint of candied licorice. Turns sweeter on the penetrating, impressively long finish, which features smooth, even tannins and lingering boysenberry and floral qualities.”
The average price is $54
Hartford Family Winery Hartford Court Seascape Vineyard Chardonnay, Sonoma Coast 2016 750ML ($79.95) Was $69, Now $62.50 Labor Day Sale, 32 bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 98 points “The 2016 Hartford Court Chardonnay Seascape Vineyard leaps from the glass with exuberant notes of green mangoes, yuzu, mandarin peel and pink grapefruit with touches of baker’s yeast, pie crust, beeswax and oyster shell. It’s medium-bodied with a very, very taut, intense and refreshing palate, sporting incredible tension and layers and finishing very long and very minerally. 327 cases produced.”
Jeb Dunnuck 98 points “In the same league as the 2015 and flirting with perfection, the 2016 Chardonnay Seascape Vineyard comes from a ridgetop vineyard located at 1,150 feet above sea-level, just west of the town of Occidental. It was fermented and aged 16 months in 30% new French oak. Salty sea breeze, lemon curd, white flowers, beautiful minerality, and hints of toasted bread all flow to a medium to full-bodied, rich, powerful Chardonnay that has awesome purity, building density and depth on the palate, and bright acidity that carries through the finish. It’s straight-up awesome.”
The average price is $72
Jeb Dunnuck 98 points “Leading off the Pinot Noirs, the 2016 Pinot Noir Seascape Vineyard comes from a ridgetop vineyard located west of the town of Occidental. Aged 17 months in 27% new French oak, it offers a savory, marine-influenced bouquet of wild strawberries, cranberries, rose petals, and Asian spices. With medium to full body, supple tannins, and a great, great finish as well as a singular character, this magical Pinot Noir from this team will benefit from a year in bottle and keep for over a decade.”
Wine Advocate 97+ points “The 2016 Hartford Court Pinot Noir Seascape Vineyard is pale to medium ruby-purple colored and opens with vibrant cranberries, pomegranate and Bing cherries scents with touches of underbrush, wild sage, red roses and mossy bark with a waft of tilled soil. Medium to full-bodied, the palate packs in the elegant red fruit and earthy layers, finishing on a long, lingering, provocative mineral note.”
The average price is $66
The three crus that the Cantina is famous for are Ovello, Albesani and Gallina and all show the brilliant fruit, dazzling complexity and polish that the Cantina del Pino is famous for. Gallina is perhaps their best all-around vineyard, with depth and richness buttressed by vivacity. It’s one for the cellar but is always the most approachable of their cru bottlings. The “basic” Barbaresco is noteworthy as well—an outstanding wine for the price and one that likewise benefits from a few years in the cellar but drinks well now.
Cantina del Pino Barbaresco DOCG, Piedmont 2015 750ML ($49.95) Was $39, Now $36 Labor Day Sale, 36+ bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2015 Barbaresco by Cantina del Pino starts off gently with delicate notes of wild berry, red rose, toasted spice, licorice and camphor ash. The wine offers all the complexity and elegance you get with Nebbiolo but presented on a slightly lower intensity scale. This wine is geared for near- or medium-term drinking.”
Now it’s even lower!
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 94+ points “Renato Vacca’s 2013 Barbaresco Gallina shows a bright and luminous personality. This is a sharp and focused expression of Nebbiolo with linear aromas of wild berry, blue flower and licorice. The wine ages in oak for two years and sees another 18 months in bottle. I loved the silky and enduring nature of the finish.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “A generous, powerful wine, the 2013 Barbaresco Gallina exudes power and volume. Dark cherry, plum, spice, leather, smoke and licorice run through this decidedly ample Barbaresco. Gallina, a south-facing site in Neive, tends to naturally produce rich, generous wines. That is exactly what comes through here. The rich, unctuous style will appeal most to readers who appreciate bold, flamboyant wines. Ripeness feels like it is pushed to the limit.”
The average price is $57
We just acquired two vintages of his landmark single vineyard Sori San Lorenzo—one of the wines that put him on the map. The 2011 is made in his older style, with a touch of Barbera in the mix (hence the Langhe designation) while the 2014 is 100% Nebbiolo and is labeled Barbaresco. These are hard wines to source, so collectors should take note and act quickly.
Gaja Sori San Lorenzo Langhe, Piedmont 2011 750ML ($499.95) $399 special
Antonio Galloni 97+ points “The 2011 Sorì San Lorenzo boasts massive depth, intensity and power. Black fruit, smoke, tar, licorice, savory herbs and leather are some of the many notes that emerge from the glass. Regardless of the year, the personality of Sorì San Lorenzo always comes through, which is why this is one of the great sites in Barbaresco, Piedmont and Italy. In 2011 the contours are a bit softer, which gives the wine a level of accessibility that is quite rare in Sorì San Lorenzos when the wines are young. Why is Sorì San Lorenzo one of the world’s most profound vineyards? Because its personality simply can’t be denied.”
Wine Advocate 96 points “The exciting 2011 Sori San Lorenzo is a wine of enormous beauty and grace. Gaia Gaja classifies her three single vineyard Langhe Nebbiolo wines as follows: Costa Russi is “flowers;” Sori Tildin is “fruit;” and San Lorenzo is “plant” (with more structure and a more compact feel). San Lorenzo does indeed boast a strong mineral component of pencil shavings and crushed granite, followed by red cherry and soft spice. The wine’s tannins start off harder than the other wines, but soften with time. Drink: 2018-2040.”
Gaja Sori San Lorenzo Barbaresco, Piedmont 2014 750ML ($499.95) $399 special
Antonio Galloni 97+ points “The 2014 Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo is the most virile and explosive of Gaja’s Barbarescos. Dark, brooding and powerful, with a huge spine of tannin, the San Lorenzo is utterly regal in the glass. Gravel, smoke, menthol, tar, licorice and a host of sepia-toned fruits build into a crescendo of aromas and flavors that is truly compelling. What a gorgeous wine this is.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “Earthy notes lead off, followed by cherry, plum, graphite and tobacco flavors. Starts out broad and muscular, with a thick layer of tannins for support, yet gains elegance with aeration. A tad austere on the finish, but stays vibrant and long. Best from 2021 through 2036. 170 cases imported.”
The Dundee Hills Reserve and Nebbiolo Are Here!
In Stock Now:
Cameron Winery Reserve Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills 2017 750ML ($44.95) $36 special
Cameron Winery Nebbiolo, Willamette Valley 2015 750ML ($49.95) $36 special
”… the bottles with the most finesse and nuance, and which have drawn the most interest, are from Comando G, whose wines are now among the most compelling in Spain.”- Eric Asimov, New York Times
Comando G has become one of the hottest names in the world of Spanish wines. Working with old Grenache (Garnacha) vines, Fernando García and Daniel Gómez Jiménez-Landi looked to estates like Rayas and Gramenon in the Rhone for inspiration to produce balanced, chiseled wines of delicate power and elegance. Ever since Eric Asimov profiled them in the New York Times (an excellent read, which you can find by clicking here), the wines have been in incredibly short supply.
We offered a set last November that sold out in a week, so we’re excited to offer the new releases today. These arrive this coming Friday and won’t last long—especially because quantities for these are pitifully scarce.
Arriving Friday September 6th:
Comando G ‘La Bruja de Rozas,’ Sierra de Gredos 2017 750ML ($31.95) $28 pre-arrival special, only 12 bottles available
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 92 points “I tasted the 2017 La Bruja de Rozas from one of the most challenging vintages of recent times. The result is spectacular, but volumes are much lower. In this warmer and riper year, they also used a portion of the must without skins or stems to try to achieve a lighter wine with more freshness. It has the Rozas floral character, with a little more tannin, as I often see with warmer vintages. 35,000 bottles were produced in this vintage affected by hail, which also greatly affected this village.”
Comando G ‘Rumbo al Norte’ Navarrevisca, Sierra de Gredos 2016 750ML ($279.95) $219 pre-arrival special, only 6 bottles available
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 100 points
The next best price is $249.99
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 97+ points “The fifth vintage of the single vineyard of ungrafted vines at 1,100 meters altitude, the 2016 Tumba del Rey Moro was simply phenomenal. It had floral and herbal aromas (oregano?), with a textured palate, vertical, fresh and long, and dissolves towards the finish and leaves a mineral and tasty sensation on the palate, call it mineral, salty or umami. It has a tad more finesse than the Umbrías from this very same year. 1,317 bottles were filled in March of 018. Most (if not all) of these wines are very drinkable when young, but some have the inner energy that, most likely, will translate in a long life in bottle.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 97 points “The breathtaking 2016 Las Umbrías is all about finesse and subtleness. The color is very pale, it looks almost like a rosé. Everything is delicate, the aromas are reticent at first, with flinty/reductive characteristics, lots of dried rose petals, juicy pomegranate and watermelon on the palate with incredibly fine-grained tannins, faintly chalky and somehow salty on the finish, which makes it extremely tasty. 1,722 bottles of this heavenly nectar were filled in February 2018. Grab one if you can!”
This is very much Sierra de Gredos wine, but the distinction between his personal wines, which are from his home village of Méntrida, and Comando G, which works from a broad range of terroirs, is important. Landi’s personal wines come from vineyards that he started working with and acquiring since he started making wine at a very young age.
These arrive with the wines of Comando G this coming Friday. It’s our first time with these particular bottlings and we expect them to go quickly. Lovers of the finest wines of the world ought to be leaping over each other to get these.
Arriving Friday September 6th:
Daniel Landi ‘Cantos del Diablo’, Mentrida 2016 750ML ($119.95) $95 pre-arrival special, only 6 bottles available
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 95+ points “The 2016 Cantos del Diablo, single vineyard from the village of Real de San Vicente, the one plot that is bottled separately from within the Méntrida zone of Gredos, had notes of pomegranate, blood orange and wild cherries, showing elements of ripeness and restraint. It’s much more mineral, with a chalky sensation on the nose and palate. In fact, it started with a reductive personality, so decanting in advance might not be a bad idea. This cool year is quite pale and sharp, at times closer to a white than a red that is wild in nature and has a sharp palate. This is going to be phenomenal in four or five years. 1,737 bottles and 50 magnums were filled in March 2018.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 97 points “As a result of a soil study, the 2016 Las Iruelas comes only from the higher altitude part of the vineyard, a stonier and convex part that deliver more subtle wines with positive intensity, subtleness and detail. It felt a little shy and reticent, with finesse, tons of white pepper, wildflowers, herbs and berries with a depth and clout, which I had not seen in previous years. This can feel a little tight, even reductive at first and decanting it in advance can be a good idea. This character tells me that this wine might behave brilliantly in the bottle and have a long and positive evolution. 2,821 bottles and 50 magnums were filled in February 2018.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 95 points “The Cebreros vineyard was divided into two sections in 2016. In fact, there are two different wines bottled, differentiated by a small code on the lower right corner of the labels, RVL and RV, Reventón Ladera (slope) and Reventón proper, the names they have been using in the winery. The 2016 El Reventón RVL corresponds to the slope on the right-hand side, a west-facing plot in a very narrow valley that has more clay and achieves higher ripeness. Grapes there ripen up to 15 days earlier than the ones in the other, cooler plot. This has a more Mediterranean character within the style of the vintage, cool and fresh, with plenty of aromatic herbs and the classical Cebreros character, lavender, thyme, even curry. A more powerful Garnacha from Gredos.”
Daniel Landi ‘Las Uvas de la Ira’ Garnacha, Mentrida 2015 750ML ($39.95) $30.90 pre-arrival special, only 22 bottles available
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2015 Las Uvas de la Ira is pure Garnacha from the village of El Real de San Vicente. It comes from four different plots—three owned and one from purchased grapes—and each brings something, minerality, elegance, structure and fruit. It has an organic, earthy touch and a juicy palate with some chalky minerality; this is a polished 2015, with fine tannins, intense flavors and good freshness. 2015 was a dry and warm vintage but quite healthy and good yielding for Garnacha. It was harvested in early September, after some rain that eased the natural conditions of the growing season a little. Superb showing for the vintage, it really doesn’t show any heat. 15,000 bottles were filled in August 2016.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 92+ points “Also bottled and ready for tasting, the 2017 Las Uvas de la Ira shows the progress that started from 2015 (which I also tasted for reference), a wine from the Real de San Vicente village, three from owned vineyards and one purchased. This new vinification is inspired by the reds of Ganevat and Occhipinti, with some 35% of the bunches pressed and vinified in white, so there are fewer skins and stems in the vat and more liquid and the cap is totally immersed in the wine. Other 30% of the wine was inspired by Charme from Niepoort, which sees a very short but extracted vinification, and the rest is vinified traditionally. He thought this village needed a twist to gain in freshness and drinkability. It results in a very elegant and fresh wine, especially in a warm vintage like this 2017, with an impressive nose, open, very aromatic and floral, with citrus freshness within the style of the vintage. The palate showed very round, polished and elegant tannins, which makes it very approachable. It really transcends the vintage. I retasted the 2015, an even hotter vintage, and none of the three (including 2016) showed any heat. Remarkable. 11,500 bottles produced. It was bottled in August 2018.”
Grapelive Reviews a New Chablis Classic
Le Domaine d’Henri Fourchaume, Chablis Premier Cru 2016 750ML ($41.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Grapelive 93 points “A new project by famed Chablis master Michel Laroche with his kids the Le Domaine d’Henri is really worth checking out, especially for the quality to price ratio to be found on their Premier Cru offerings, like this stylish Fourchaume 2016 bottling. The Le Domaine d’Henri estate is a historic property in Chablis…This 2016 delivers classic cooly/steely crisp layers of lemon/lime, green apple, fleshy pear and spicy flinty wet rock, a touch of hazelnut and white flowers. This is racy Chardonnay, but gains more and more texture in the glass, making it great with food, especially sea food, though also great with Burgundian soft cheeses. The Le Domaine d’Henri wines are handcrafted using, as they put it, minimum intervention, with their Premier Cru grapes being harvested by hand only and are then carefully sorted on a vibrating table in order to ensure that only the best quality fruit goes into the gentle pneumatic press, with the wine being fermented using “pied de cuve”… the wines get between 10 to 35% of barrel aging, with almost no new oak being used in any given year…The domaine believes that minerality is the signature of Chablis and the winemaking here is managed accordingly to showcase that, but there is also no doubt that with Premier Cru concentration these wines show richness and palate impact.”