Vinopolpick Mid-Week 09-29-21

In This Newsletter:

New Arrival Feature: Canary Island Masterpieces

Champagne Season:
New Releases from Beloved Growers

En-Route and Newly Reviewed

Sassetti: New Single vineyard en-route

Staff Picks 

Producer Spotlight: Mellen Meyer 

Trending Wines:
From the Saar to the Southern Hemisphere

Rosé Feature:
French Rosé for all seasons 

Collector’s Corner: 
Andre Clouet’s Un Jour de 1911…


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New Arrival Feature: Canary Island Masterpieces

Envinate is a small group of winemaking friends (Alfonso Torrente, José Ángel Martínez, Laura Ramos, and Roberto Santana) that seek to highlight the individual terroirs of the Canary Islands and Ribeira Sacra. The friends produce wines of purity with low-intervention winemaking and vineyard management using ancient vineyards. 

Their Canary Island project is largely based on the island of Tenerife, where the Listan Negro and Bianco vines see a wholly unique pruning technique called Cordon Trenzado. Rather than prune and tie the canes to wires as seen everywhere else in the world, the vines are instead braided together with the clusters tucked inside to protect them from the hot sun and constant wind. Due to the island’s geographic isolation (the Canary Islands are closer to Morocco than Spain) phylloxera never arrived, so the vines are ungrafted and exceptionally old. Given the highly traditional vinification and average vine age, drinking this wine is a journey into the past from the first pour.

The reds are similar to Pinot Noir or Mencia, there’s a red and black fruited character that’s plumped up by a savory and chewy texture with highly expressive aromas. The tropical growing conditions are evident with extensive aeration, exhibiting a delightful tropical finish. Equally as compelling are the whites, with bottlings of similar pedigree (Centenarian vines, minimal intervention during fermentation). Rounded and textured, these are wines that completely evolve in the glass as oxygenation occurs and the temperature warms. Delivering salinity, basaltic minerality, and subtle skin tannin there’s also a delightful finish of coconut flesh that brings everything together.    

Newly Arrived from Envinate:

Envinate ‘Benje’ Blanco Canary Islands 2020 750ML ($36.95) $31.90 special
Winery note
 “Benje Blanco is sourced from several old-vine, untrained pie franco parcels of Listan Blanco. Each parcel is hand-harvested and vinified separately in a mix of concrete tank and open tubs. 75% of the fruit is pressed directly off the skins, the other 25% is skin- macerated 14-40 days between 18-30C. The wine is then raised for 8 months in 60% concrete and 40% old French barriques on fine lees without battonage or added SO2. Bottled without filtration. Benje Blanco is a high-toned white wine, showing its volcanic terruno with smoky notes wrapped around the orchard fruit core, braced by Atlantic-infused high-elevation acidity. Pair it with prawns, scallops, roasted pork or goat.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Envinate ‘Benje’ Red Canary Islands 2020 750ML ($39.95) $29 special
Envinate ‘Benje’ Red Canary Islands 2020 1.5L ($89.95) $69 special
Importer not
e “Benje Tinto is sourced from 1,000 meters elevation, old-vine, pie franco parcels of Listan Prieto (Mission) with a bit of Tintilla, named “Masca,” “La Zanja,” “Valle de Arriba,” and “Llano Redondo”, all of them located in Santiago del Teide. Each parcel is hand-harvested and vinified separately, some in concrete and some in small open tubs. Maceration is 10-30 days (depending on parcel) with daily punch-down; malolactic fermentation is in neutral French barriques, then raised 8 months in the same barrels without battonage. Bottling is without fining or filtration.”

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

Envinate & A Chingao Vineyards ‘Albahra Chingao’ Almansa 2020 750ML ($49.95) $33 special
Importer note
 “Albahra (Castilian for “small sea”) is named for the vineyard area in the Almansa region close to the town of Albacete, located at the southeastern tip of Castilla-La Mancha.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Envinate Migan Chingao Atlanticos Tinto 2020 750ML ($67.95) $49 special
Importer note 
“Migan this cuvee is sourced from two very old parcels of cordon trenzado (braided vines) Listan Negro. 60% comes from the La Habanera plot on volcanic sand at the highest elevation (600m) in the area, and 40% comes from the older San Antonio plot, lower on the slope (350m) and with more clay. The plots were hand-harvested, foot-trodden and fermented separately (La Habanera with 100% whole clusters, San Antonio 15% whole cluster) in large concrete vats, then into 228 & 600L old French barrels for malolactic and aging for 11 months. Bottling is without fining or filtration.”
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Shop our complete selection of wines from Envinate on our web store!

It’s Champagne Season:

Kick it off right with these hot new releases from some of our favorite small producers!

Arriving Friday:

Guiborat ‘Prisme’ Grand Cru 2015 NV 750ML ($64.95) $54.50 pre-arrival special
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 94+ points
 “Based on the domaine’s holdings in prime lieu-dit Le Mont Aigu, supplemented by another parcel in Chouilly and one in Cramant, Guiborat’s NV Extra-Brut Prisme . 15 was disgorged in October 2020 with 1.5 grams per liter dosage. Exhibiting notions of citrus fruit, Anjou pear, pastry cream and nougat, it’s full-bodied, layered and elegantly muscular, with a concentrated, chiseled core and an enlivening pinpoint mousse. Complete and penetrating, this is a terrific cuvée.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Nicolas Maillart Platine Premier Cru Brut NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 pre-arrival special
Winery Note
 “Golden in colour with a fine, lingering bead Nose: Intense with notes of fruit and hazelnuts and a slight toastiness Palate: The initial impact is wonderfully fresh and vinous, followed by great finesse. Slow, gentle pressing using gravity-flow techniques. Vinification in temperature-controlled stainless steel vats and a period in the barrel for a certain volume of reserve wines. Average two-year maturing period in the bottle. Disgorged by hand and laid down for at least three months before sale.”

Staff favorite rosé!
Pierre Paillard ‘Les Terres Roses’ Bouzy Grand Cru Brut Rose NV 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special

Never enough Champagne?

We vary over 165 different champagnes on our web store 

En-Route and Newly Reviewed: 

Arriving ETA Friday 

Did you know that G.D Vajra has a sister label? Founded in 2008 as collaboration between the Vajra and the Baudana clans, the operation is largely based in the minuscule village of Baudana. Located north of Serralunga, the village was historically known for bold and structured Nebbiolo. Unlike her sister village Serralunga however, Baudana has largely flown under the radar since the 1930’s. Baudana’s holdings don’t exceed 7 acres, making them one of the smallest wineries in all of Piedmont, let alone the surrounding villages. As a result these are wines made in highly limited qualities and offer a wholly unique interpretation of the varietal. The house style of Vajra is evident, with their technical skill on full display with the old vines of Baudana.   

Luigi Baudana Cerretta Barolo DOCG 2017 750ML (89.95) $75 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 96 points
 “This red boasts a beautiful balance between its cherry, strawberry, floral, eucalyptus and mineral aromas and flavors. Supple and elegant, despite the resonant tannins and lively acidity that boosts the lingering aftertaste, but with fine length. Don’t’ think about pulling the cork for five years. Best from 2026-2048
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Luigi Baudana ‘Baudana’ Barolo DOCG 2017 750ML ($89.95) $75 pre-arrival special
Kerin O’Keefe-Wine Enthusiast 96 points
 “Balsamic aromas of camphor and cedar mingle with rose and leather on this full-boded, savory red. Structured and delicious, the juicy palate is still youthfully austere, delivering ripe Marasca cherry, crushed raspberry, baking spice and licorice framed in noble tannins before a black tea finish. Drink 2025–2037.”
Antonio Galloni 95+ points “The 2017 Barolo Baudana is such a gorgeous wine. It, too conveys the power of Serralunga, but with a bit less heft than is typically the case. Sweet dark cherry, iron, cedar, rose petal, mint and white pepper give the 2017 its effusive, inviting personality. This is such a tremendous showing.”
Jeb Dunnuck 95 points “The 2017 Barolo Baudana has more savory and forward notes of dried cranberry, leather, and orange peel on the nose, with tangy ripe fruit on the palate. It has a rather approachable style, with the generosity of the fruit up front and well-managed tannins. Drink 2021-2040.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93 points ” From a historic vineyard in Serralunga d’Alba, the Luigi Baudana 2017 Barolo Baudana takes an extra minute to open and ultimately reveals a consistent and compact package of aromas centered on dark fruit, rusty earth and crushed flowers. It’s quite nice the way the wine holds its cards closer to its proverbial chest. It lets its guard down one little piece at a time. There is some sweetness, too, and the wine feels weighty and powerful. I’d definitely give it a few more years of cellar aging so that the wine finds time to focus and flesh out. Some 3,500 bottles were released.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Luigi Baudana Serralunga Barolo DOCG 2017 750ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special 
Antonio Galloni 93 points
 “The 2017 Barolo del Comune di Serralunga d’Alba may very well turn out to be one of the best wines of the year in its peer group. Dark and wonderfully expressive, yet also light on its feet for a Serralunga Barolo, the 2017 has so much going on. Black cherry, plum, spice, gravel, cured meats, lavender and sage all meld together in this dark yet translucent Barolo.”
Jeb Dunnuck 93 points “The 2017 Barolo Del Comune Di Serralunga d’Alba is resinous and assertive with aromas of tobacco, leather, dried cherry, and cedar. The palate is ripe with red plum, dried violet, and tar. The fruit dovetails to reveal its more powerful Serralunga structure, with building and firm tannins. Hold 2-4 years and drink 2023-2040.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 92 points “The Luigi Baudana 2017 Barolo del Comune di Serralunga d’Alba reveals a robust and fruit-forward bouquet, with pressed blackberry and plum, followed by licorice, iron ore and some of the candied orange aromas that often come with fruit from Serralunga d’Alba. The wine is tight in terms of structure, and you feel its strength, but ultimately the sensations are polished and smooth. There are no rough edges to these well-managed tannins, and this is especially impressive in an unruly vintage such as 2017. About 8,000 bottles were made.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

We carry a full assortment of Baudana, including back vintages on our web store.

Sassetti: New Single vineyard en-route

ETA Late October

Sassetti Livio Pertimali Brunello di Montalcino Mulino DOCG 2015 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Eric Guido-Vinous 93 points
 “This is the first vintage of the 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Mulino from Pertimali, a lower-elevation cru that’s noted for the high level of marine fossils found in its soils. Here I find a classic display of dried roses, black cherry, dusty earth and freshly-tanned leather. It envelopes the palate in fleshy textures offset by a mix of tart wild berries, zesty acids and savory spice, as building tension puckers the cheeks, seeding them with fine-grained tannins. This comes across as structured yet remarkably balanced, and it’s a beautiful expression of the vintage. Lose your bottles in the cellar for two to three years, and then reap the rewards.”
James Suckling 94 points “Dried leaves, chocolate and licorice on the nose, followed by black olives. It’s full-bodied with firm, focused tannins and a long, savory finish. Dark chocolate and crushed walnuts. Tar and hints of asphalt. Drink from 2023.”

Staff Picks 
Tinta de Toro, or its more recognized name Tempranillo is a wine with fascinating history behind it. Originally planted as early as the 2nd century by the Romans living in the area, it was prized by commoner and royal alike, most notably Queen Isabella. Triton’s offering is a high altitude (2300 ft.) vineyard cuvee composed of 63-121 Year old vines in 5 sites cultivated in sedimentary sand with a base of red clay. 

These growing factors help create a portrait of stunning terroir, with frankincense, crushed raspberry and blackcurrant preserves immediately leaping out of the glass. Cinnamon, Strawberries, Sultana and Marionberries quickly follow on the first tastes with an underscoring of dusty earth. Medium plus acidity keeps the high tannins from overstaying, and gives this wine great potential for drinking over the course of a week or further bottle age. There is a finish of Medjool date, mocha, Damson plum and Assam tea that resets and refreshes the palate. This is a highly versatile wine in terms of food pairing, bringing to mind tapas, Greek or the classic paella.

In stock and available now: 

Triton Tinta de Toro Toro 2017 750ML ($21.95) $16.60 special, 15 bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 93 points
 “Made from 100% Tinta de Toro aged a year in used barrels (and some demi-muids), the 2017 Tritón comes from multiple vineyards and is made in decent amounts. It’s a rich, powerful wine loaded with notions of blackcurrants, dark chocolate, licorice, crushed rocks, and crushed violets. It’s full-bodied, has impressive depth of fruit, sweet tannins, and a great finish. It’s a rocking wine that can be drunk today or cellared for 15 years or more.”
James Suckling 91 points “An array of ripe dark-berry and raspberry aromas with biscuity nuances, as well as boysenberries. The palate has a sleek, essence-like feel. Such richness. Open-knit with soft berries. Very long and very ripe. Drink or hold.”

Alexandre Chartogne is single handedly credited with reviving the reputation of his home village of Merfy. Located just northwest of Reims in the Massif de Saint-Thierry, Alexandre Chartogne took over his family’s 28 acres in 2006 after apprenticing under legendary Champenois, Jacques Selosse.  At its peak acclaim in the Middle Ages, there were more grapevines planted in Merfy than the entire Marne region of Champagne thanks to the local monks.

Alexandre instituted organic farming methods, horse plowing and restorative cover crops, while phasing out all chemical based inputs on the estate. Call it technical skill, or exceptional farming either way his entry level easily hits at a $75-$100 price point. The tutelage under Selosse is evident from the first pour, with beautiful aromas of autolysis and barrel fermentation like cream, toasted bread and vanilla at an undeniable level of intensity. These notes are bolstered by a spectrum of citrus, white flowers and pomme fruit like golden apple, lemon pith, quince flower and orange blossom.   

In stock and available now: 

Chartogne-Taillet Cuvee Sainte Anne Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($51.95) $44 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-6 Chartogne-Taillet Cuvee Ste Anne, Champagne NV 750ML ($299.95) $249 special (That’s $41.50 per bottle!) 
John Gilman 90+ points
 “The current release of Alexandre Chartogne’s Cuvée Ste. Anne non-vintage Brut is from the base year of 2017. The vins clairs were raised in a combination of both stainless steel and oak and the wine was not bottled up for secondary fermentation until July of 2018. The cépages is its customary blend of nearly equal parts of chardonnay, pinot noir and pinot meunier and the wine was disgorged in February of 2020, with a finishing dosage of just over five grams per liter. The wine offers up a vibrant bouquet of apple, white peach, a fine base of soil tones, brioche, gentle smokiness and a topnote of white flowers. On the palate the wine is bright, full-bodied, focused and complex, with a good core, elegant bubbles, fine balance and grip and a long, zesty and quite classy finish. This seems a touch longer on the backend to me than the last couple of iterations of this bottling that I have tasted and is first class, non-vintage Brut. But, this is still a fairly young wine and I would be inclined to give it some bottle age to let it start to blossom properly. 2022-2040.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 90 points “The latest release of Chartogne’s NV Brut Sainte Anne is based on the 2017 vintage, complemented by 40% reserve wines. Disgorged in September 2020 with five grams per liter dosage, it opens in the glass with aromas of crisp yellow orchard fruit, white flowers and fresh pastry. Medium to full-bodied, fleshy and enveloping, it’s elegantly textural, bright and precise, with a seamless, harmonious profile.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

As the old saying goes, for every end there’s a new beginning. This year marks the end of the Roederer Brut Premier line, as the company is now emphasizing estate-based production after 40 years of producing the cuvee. While the Brut Premier was previously sourced from purchased and homegrown fruit, the Collection 242 will be entirely sourced from company plots. In addition to the more focused sourcing, the Collection 242 will also feature a greater assortment of base years, as chosen by the Chef de Cave.  
Sourcing from organic, estate vineyards in the Côte des Blancs, Montagne de Reims and Vallée de la Marne; there’s nothing missing from this Champagne. The encapsulation of freshness, nuance, and breadth make this right at home in the Roederer house and a textbook example of a Grand Marque. We secured a limited allotment of these wines, so be sure to grab these while you can. Much like the Brut Premier these are Champagnes that can be enjoyed on release or cellared for a truly unique expression.  

In stock and available now: 

Louis Roederer Collection 242 Brut Champagne NV ($69.95) $55 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 92 points
 “The NV Collection 242 is a new wine from Roederer that replaces the Brut Premier in the range. The Collection (which now will be numbered by harvest) is a blend of three components: a perpetual reserve done in the classic non-malo Roederer style, reserve wines in oak with a touch of malo, and a base vintage, in this case 2017. That blend results in a NV Champagne that offers lovely richness and resonance, with plenty of yellow orchard fruit and floral character. Whereas Brut Premier was typically a focused, nervy wine that, while consistently excellent, also was not always in line with the Roederer house style, the 242 tastes more like a Roederer Champagne in terms of its complexity. Incidentally, there is no Vintage, Cristal or Cristal Rosé in 2017, so all the best lots went into this bottling. Dosage is 8 grams per liter, so lower than the 9 or so that was typical for recent Brut Premier and much lower than the 12-13 that was once customary. The 242 was also bottled with a bit less sugar than the norm, which results in lower atmospheres of pressure in the bottle and silkier texture. ‘Brut Premier was created in the late 1970s and 1980s, when we struggled to ripen,’ Chef de Caves Jean-Baptiste Lecaillon explained. ‘It was our way of compensating for lack of ripeness in the field and the variability of quality across vintages. Because of climate change, achieving ripeness is not an issue today. Instead, our challenge is maintaining freshness and precision. For that reason, we decided to re-think our NV and start from a place of positive rather than negative selection.’”
Decanter 92 points “Softly shimmering straw gold, green tints, with a delicate filigree dancing at will around the glass. The nose is gently authoritative; spring flowers garlanding stone fruit, a hint of hawthorn maybe, then lemongrass. The palate has encyclopedic depth, the intricacies of the Perpetual Reserve weaving their early magic; almond, sloe, gingerbread and apples; the finish has a pleasing twist of bitterness, courtesy of the small percentage of oak-aged reserve wine. Maybe the dosage (8g/L) can come down even further, such is the engaging and subtle complexity harnessed elsewhere? Drinking Window 2021 – 2025.”


Producer Spotlight: Mellen Meyer

Are you looking for an alternative to Champagne that delivers nuance, elegance and refreshment? Consider our selection of Mellen Meyer, one of the brightest stars in the “New School” of Oregon winemakers. Sourcing fruit primarily from the legendary Johan and Whistling Ridge Vineyards, these present a completely different interpretation of the fruit as compared to their still counterparts. If the still wines were neoclassical paintings, then Mellen Meyer would be Rococo. 

Mellen Meyer incorporates an entire palette of styles with a house style that is clearly evident across his portfolio. Featuring minimal dosage allowing for the full character of the varietals to make themselves known, there is a whole spectrum of fruit, spice, and tertiary character at play with a pervasive finish. The choice to source from non-irrigated vines delivers a fruit intensity and nuance rarely seen even in champagne, and speaks to the house’s commitment to quality. These are drinking beautifully now, and the Blanc de Noir and Blanc de Blanc promise plenty of aging potential given the kismet of the vintage and vineyard. 

In stock now: 

Mellen Meyer Brut Sparkling Willamette Valley NV 750ML ($39.95) $31.90 special, 6 bottles in stock now
Winery note:
 60% Pinot Noir & 40% Charodonnay. Disgorged March 20, 2021. Aged 30 months on the lees. Produced from non-irrigated vines.
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Mellen Meyer Johan Vineyard Blanc de Blancs Sparkling Willamette Valley 2016 750ML ($69.95) $51.90 special, 3 bottles in stock now
Winery note: 
Johan Vineyard Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut Sparkling, Willamette Valley 2016. Disgorged November 17th, 2019. Produced from non-irrigated vines.
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Mellen Meyer Whistling Ridge Blanc De Noir 2017 750ML ($69.95) $53.50 special, 6 bottles in stock now
Winery note:
 100% Pinot Noir form the North Block of Whistling Ridge Vineyard, Ribbon Ridge. Aged 34 months on the lees. Disgorged November 18th, 2020. Produced from non-irrigated vines.
This is the only listing in the USA today!


Trending Wines from the Saar to the Southern Hemisphere

Sourced from a vineyard planted at 5,900 feet above sea level and organically farmed you’d be hard pressed to find a better example of “Mountain wine”. Mineral driven, yet still fruity and floral the Amalaya is almost entirely Malbec, with a dash of Tannat and Petit Verdot contributing additional tannic power. Because of the intense sun exposure the fruit character is largely purple and black fruited with a grilled strawberry and Seville orange peel on the finish that keeps everything lifted. The vintage is reported to be one of the best in recent memory, promising both structure and concentrated flavors.     

Bodega Amalaya Malbec Calchaqui Valley 2019 750ML ($17.95) $16 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Bodega Amalaya Malbec Calchaqui Valley 2019 750ML ($199.95) $169 special, (that’s only $14.08/bottle!)
Decanter Wwa 2020 97 points
 “Perfumed attractive nose with layers of spice, crunchy strawberries, ripe red plums and fresh violets. Vibrant on the palate with a lovely freshness in harmony with a dense chocolatey character, ending in an elegant spicy finish.”

Looking for a wine that combines the spiced pear flavors of Chenin Blanc with the botanicals and zip of Sauvignon Blanc? Check out our offering of Rovello Bianco, or Grecomusc as named by her keepers. Nearly extinct in her home region of Campania with only one producer making commercial amounts of the varietal, this is a wine to experience while you can still find it. Sourced from a collection of centenarian vines the Grecomusc is a bottled contradiction. Dancing the line of fresh yet fleshy, bright yet brooding and exuberant yet subtle Lonardo makes a compelling argument for the continued production of this grape. 

Contrade di Taurasi Cantine Lonardo ‘Grecomusc’ Campania IGT 2017 750ML ($34.95) $28 special, 32 bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 90+ points
 “Bright golden-yellow; this is much deeper in color than the 2016, perhaps a reflection of the hotter, drier 2017 vintage. Earthy nuances greet the nose and complement aromas of nectarine, jasmine and Asian pear. Then more Asian pear, yellow apple and ginger, complicated by a hint of grapefruit and repeating earth notes. Closes long and quite tactile, even youthfully chewy, with hints of chamomile and dried ginger. I find this 2017 to be made in a much riper style than usual, but it’s nowhere near being flat or over the top. Give it another year in bottle and it might develop further complexity; it seems to be in a slightly brooding stage right now.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Looking for a benchmark example of Riesling for your cellar or table? Check out Marcus Molitor’s work with the legendary Ürziger Würzgarten in the Bernkastel village of the Mosel. Called the “heart” of the Mosel Valley; it is the most planted in terms of acreage and also production. The confluence of slope and refraction create a richer and fuller bodied style of Riesling that defines the area and also acts as a measuring rod for the rest of the country. These vineyards feature vast percentages of the trademark blue and gray slate which also aids in ripening, and contributes a clean slate-like character to the wine. Ürziger Würzgarten is famous for the high percentage of iron in the soil, contributing a spicy characteristic that proves its name (Ürziger Würzgarten translates to “the spice garden of Ürzig”).

The more favorable growing conditions allow for the entire spectrum of Riesling to be produced ranging from dry to lusciously sweet (Sometimes from the same vineyard). Molitor’s house style classifies sweetness levels by the capsule color; with white equating to trocken (Dry), Green for Kabinett (Off-dry to medium sweetness) and Gold (For sweet to luscious levels of residual sugar). The sweeter styles of Riesling naturally lend themselves to cheese and desserts courses but are a new level of magic when paired with spicy cuisines.      

Markus Molitor Urziger Wurzgarten Riesling Kabinett Mosel GK 2018 ($34.95) $29 special, 24 bottles in stock now
Decanter 95 points
 “Candied tangerine peel rejoices with tangy freshness, exuberant aromatics of ripe and heady citrus. There is lovely lightness, inherent playfulness, like little putti twirling and dancing in a fruit bowl. The dry Kabinett did not reach that balance so the counter-intuition of nature decrees that a richer year can take more sweetness – not less.”
Mosel Fine Wines 93 points “The 2018er Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Kabinett (Golden Capsule) offers a beautiful nose of strawberry puree, fine spices, and herbs on the nose. The wine offers a nice and beautifully playful side on the zesty and mineral palate. It leaves a gorgeously vivid and structured feel in the long and engaging finish. A creamy side comes through in the finish, which adds to the overall immense pleasure to enjoy this beautiful full fruity-styled wine. 2028-2048”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Largely considered the capitol of Australian wine, Barossa is known to produce some of the most full bodied yet age worthy examples of Shiraz on the global market. Known by the rest of the world as Syrah, the varietal reaches new levels in Australia’s famous red clay. Being one of the first varietals planted in the region there are sites as old as 175 years old still producing commercially.

With a varietal character that’s inky purple to black, full bodied, exuberantly aromatic and loaded with secondary notes this is a “Cabernet lover’s Syrah”. True to his name, the Black Pepper by E&E delivers spades of spice like vanilla, cloves, coconut husk, nutmeg, cinnamon, licorice root and dark chocolate. Sourced from a collection of old vines with an average age of 60 years and aged entirely in oak this is just starting to come into young adulthood from an aging perspective with plenty more to go.      

Barossa Valley Estate E & E Black Pepper Shiraz Barossa Valley 2016 ($69.95) $49 special, 20 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 93 points
 “Dense and muscular, showing appealing focus to the dark chocolate, blackberry paste, sage and huckleberry flavors, with espresso notes weaving in and out. Cigar box aromas emerge on the finish, where thick tannins offer a dense backbone and a touch of rusticity. Drink now through 2036.
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Rosé Feature: 

French Rosé for all seasons 

You would be hard pressed to find a more picturesque growing region than the village of Cassis. Plucked straight out of a Monet, it was a fishing village historically before tourism and the wine industry proved more profitable. Domaine Bagnol is a fixture in this scene, making some of the most compelling rose in all of southern France.

Farmed organically and biodynamically since the estate’s inception in the 1980’s; the Bagnol estate is blessed with the Cap Canaille to her back and the Tramontane, Mistral and Gregal winds to the front. These climatic variables create lifted aromatics and acidity, and slow ripening to allow for allow for more varietal character. Direct pressed from 55 year old bushvines of Grenache, Mourvèdre and Cinsault this is a rose that’s packed with flavor in spite of the pale color. Summer peach, watermelon flesh, strawberry, and herbs d’ provence with a refreshing, saline finish that speaks to the proximity to the Mediterranean Sea.

In stock and available now: 

Domaine du Bagnol Cassis Rose Provence 2020 750ML ($37.95) $31.90 special, 5 bottles in stock now
Rosenthal Wine Merchant note
 “Cassis Rosé: The Rosé is produced from several parcels that comprise slightly less than 7 hectares of vineyards. The vineyards are clay and limestone, situated on a gentle slope with a north – northwest exposure. The blend is Grenache (55%), Mourvedre (31%) and Cinsault (14%). This Rosé is vinified by “pressurage direct, the must is chilled to 12 degrees Celsius, the wine ferments at 18 degrees Celsius until it is completely dry; then, the wine is bottled during the first three months of the following year after a light filtration.

Looking for a style of rose that can stand up to heartier fare like barbequed meat, but is still at home with lighter options like sheep’s milk cheese? Try our Malbec rose from Cahors! Tu Boi Coa is a rarity in that it is the only non-red wine that they make at Domaine Berangeraie, a portfolio otherwise dominated by Malbec based blends. The rose is a perfect example of the fruity and playful side of Malbec, yet with a solid backbone of minerality evocative of the gravely loam and native Causses (Limestone plateaus). Additional flavors include crushed blue and blackberries, strawberry and bing cherry with medium plus acidity and aromatic intensity. 

Domaine de la Berangeraie ‘Tu Bois Coa’ Rose IGP Cotes du Lot 2019 750ML ($17.95) $11.90 special, 24 bottles in stock now
Importer note
 “Malbec rose. Sustainable. Ripe cherry flavors with fresh strawberry and raspberry. Medium body with a long finish.”
Winery note: 100% Malbec. Very aromatic (raspberry, wild strawberry, blueberry), with a pronounced pomegranate color. The palate is rich, vinous, and unctuous. Drink as an aperitif, or with BBQ and exotic fruits.
Region: IGP Cotes du Lot, South West France, France.
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Bandol Rose has taken the world by storm and for good reason, it’s delicious! Previously a village that made famously dense reds from Mourvèdre, Grenache and Cinsault; the rose revolution has now commandeered the lion’s share of production. Some producers choose a rich and extracted style that features more fruit with the opposing style being a leaner expression and emphasizing the mineral/botanical character you see in a lighter style. The pioneer of the latter style, or at least the first to hit the market was the legendary Domaine Tempier.  

Arguably the most famous Bandol producer in the entire world (Rose or otherwise), Tempier’s Rose is markedly lighter in shade but not in flavor. In addition to pervasive lift evident from the first pour, there is a creaminess that adds and emphasizes the lightness of the Tempier rose. This can be attributed to the more equitable blend of Mourvèdre, Cinsault and Grenache compared to most on the market. Flavors of strawberries and cream, white peach, gardenia, yarrow flower and tarragon make this incredibly nuanced yet linear when tasting, and promises even further development with some more time in the bottle. Tempier’s rose is also one of the few examples on the market that also benefits from cellaring       

In stock and available now: 

Domaine Tempier Bandol Rose Provence 2020 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 28 bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds Vinous 93 points
 “Light orange-pink. Expressive, mineral-accented orange zest, red currant, nectarine and succulent floral and herb aromas take on a spicy nuance with air. Lively and sharply focused in the mouth, offering concentrated red berry, pit fruit, tangerine and honeysuckle flavors and a hint of tarragon. The mineral and floral notes drive an impressively long, precise finish that leaves white peach and spice notes behind.”

You’ve heard of Clos Cibonne and their illustrious rose-based portfolio, but did you know that they also produced an entry level offering? Sourced from the younger plantings of grapes on the estate and purchased fruit from 3 neighbors, this is the only department in France that allows the varietal Tibouren. Called Rosesse in its other home in Italy, it is a heritage varietal famous for the nuanced rosé and compelling reds that are produced from it.

The Tentations rose is meant to offer an affordable introduction to the varietal and house style, and delivers in spades. Organically grown and fermented in steel with wild yeasts, the Tentations is pale in color with beautifully effusive aromas of orange peel, cherry blossom, marjoram and sea spray. A perfect introduction to Tibouren rose at a fraction of the cost you usually see. 

Clos Cibonne Cotes de Provence Tentations Rosé France 2020 750ML ($24.95) $18 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Clos Cibonne Cotes de Provence Tentations Rosé France 2020 750ML ($249.95) $199 special (that’s only $16.58/btl!)
De Maison Selections note
 “Tentations offers an accessible entry-point into Provence wine. Tentations is made with exceptional ingredients, including fruit from young tibouren vines and some purchased fruit from farmers they have long-standing relationships with, in prime spots in La Londe. The Tentations wines do not undergo the extensive aging process of the Clos Cibonne line. Offering immediate and unpretentious enjoyment, they are incredible food wines and represent one of the best wine values in the Côtes de Provence region. Site: La Londe. Grapes: 50% Grenache, 20% Cinsault, 15% Syrah, and 15% Tibouren.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Collector’s Corner: 

Andre Clouet’s Un Jour de 1911…

Did you know that Tête de Cuvee’s can also be non-vintage? While it’s true that non-vintage bottlings are every champenois “Bread and butter” there can still be top offerings made from the style. Often done from an artistic decision rather than economic, Clouet cites blending masters Laurent Perrier and Krug for the inspiration behind the cuvee. Taking the concept of using assemblage to create “A perfect year” within the bottle and combining it with a solera of reserve wines is how Clouet has melded the two styles and has clearly succeeded.   

Andre Clouet crafts their 1911 cuvee from the 10 best plots in their portfolio in the Grand Cru village of Bouzy. The village shares borders with 3 other Grand Cru villages and specialized in powerfully structured Pinot Noir. As such, the 1911 is entirely Pinot Noir and exemplifies the village’s reputation beautifully. Comprised of a single vintage that’s at least 7 years old and a solera based reserve wine that was started in 1998, this is champagne that encapsulates both maturity and youthful vigor. Complex doesn’t begin to cover this wine with the solera aging for the reserve wine portion adding incredible nuance like white truffle, rose petal, ground coffee, and miso to the flavor profile. The aromas are equally compelling, delivering a spectrum of white flowers like jasmine and orange blossom against a chalky backdrop. 

In stock and available now: 

Andre Clouet Un Jour de 1911 Champagne, NV 750ML ($99.95) $74.50 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 93+ points
 “[Review is for a prior disgorgement] The NV Grand Cru Cuvee 1911 emerges from the glass with the most haunting of perfumes. Sweet rose petal and jasmine are some of the nuances that emerge over time. Despite recent disgorgement, the purity of the fruit and the extraordinary elegance of the mousse are hard to miss. This is an exceptional, elegant version of the 1911 that should drink beautifully for years to come. The bottle I tasted needed quite a bit of air to open up, so readers should be patient with the wine at this stage.”

We carry a whole assortment of Clouet and Champagne in house and on our web store.