Vinopolpick New Years Bonus 12-31-21

In This Newsletter:

Featured New Arrival: 
Tan Fruit – Jim Maresh’s New Chardonnay Project
& the Hottest Oregon Wines @ Wine Advocate

Il Poggione Half-Bottles
Arriving Tomorrow

Budget-Friendly Sparklers

Barolo’s Best Value?
Azienda Bruna Grimaldi 

Jerome Chézeaux’s Affordable 2017 Burgundies

Bordeaux to Bekka: Chateau Musar’s Journey


Featured New Arrival:

Tan Fruit – Jim Maresh’s New Chardonnay Project

You know the Maresh family for their stunning examples of old-vine Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. In the spirit of experimentation Jim decided to launch a separate label, named Tan Fruit, in order to craft Oregon Chardonnay completely untethered. After blowing us away during a visit to the shop and sweeping Wine Advocate’s 2021 Oregon Chardonnay awards, there’s something special going on! Jim noted that his goal was “to explore outside of the Dundee Hills.” In future vintages, he will continue to explore, sourcing from a mixture of vineyards, new sources, and even new regions within Oregon.

He began Tan Fruit to “experiment and play around with techniques” for crafting Chardonnay, but the essentials for making Oregon Chard great in the winery will always be in his mind to pick early, age in a combination of steel and oak, and to ferment bone dry. He said that he loves Chardonnay. It’s his “favorite to drink and favorite to make.”

Sourcing from vineyards throughout the Willamette Valley, these represent dry-farmed artistry at its finest. These Chardonnays exhibit a complete and unique showing of Oregon’s terror as well as the varietals reputation for being a “winemaker’s grape”. Regardless of vineyard location, vine age and élevage these are both delightfully accessible now and yet demand further bottle age.

Newly Arrived Direct from the Winery:

Tan Fruit Dux Vineyard Chardonnay, Dundee Hills 2019 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, 24 bottles available
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 98 points “The aromas of the 2019 Chardonnay Dux Vineyard are alluring and savory, with ripe peach layers, beeswax, roasted almonds and pastry. The palate has a singular satiny texture and impressive concentration, enlivened by tangy acidity and streaks of graphite and finishing with tremendous length and energy. Wow!”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Tan Fruit Eyrie Vineyard Chardonnay, Willamette Valley 2019 750ML ($79.95) $66 special, only 8 bottles available
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 98+ points “Only one Damy barrel of the incredible 2019 Chardonnay Eyrie Vineyard was made, from Draper selection vines planted in 1968. It was matured for 20 months, about 14 in barrel and six in stainless steel. The Eyrie is characterized by singular tones of graphite and mushroom powder. “There’s only one barrel in the cellar that behaves like that,” says Maresh, “and it’s the Eyrie. It’s just something in those vines. I oxidize early and make wine that heavily combats reduction. But even with my process, there is something that still comes through on the Eyrie.” Its aromas continually open and evolve as it spends time in the glass, the palate mirroring with waves of savory, flint-streaked flavor. It finishes with tremendous length. This exceptional, age-worthy Chardonnay should rest in the cellar at least another 3-5 years.”
VinpolNote: Featuring savory gunsmoke reduction on opening, there’s a nearly endless cascade of sensory notes ranging from Fuji apple, white peach, and Madagascar vanilla. Structure is beautifully layered and exhibits both minerality and a textual softness that’s only achieved with French oak. 

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Tan Fruit Maresh Vineyard Chardonnay, Dundee Hills 2019 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, only 15 bottles available 
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 97 points “The 2019 Chardonnay Maresh Vineyard comes from Dijon clones planted in 1991, and it was matured in about 35% new oak. This vintage is pure and tensile, with scents of tarragon and fragrant herbs, beeswax and almonds, with plush white peach fruit. The palate combines intense ripe fruit with a spine of tangy, tense acidity, and it finishes with tremendous length. Allow it another 3-5 years in bottle.”

Tan Fruit Oak Grove Vineyard Chardonnay, Eola-Amity Hills 2019 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, only 15 bottles available 
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 98 points “The 2019 Chardonnay Oak Grove Vineyard has a unique personality that combines powerful exotic fruit with tangy energy and a shimmery saline quality, derived from a year’s maturation in barrel and then stainless steel. Guava, peaches, lilac and beeswax aromas burst from the glass, and the textural palate, which continues to change and evolve as it spends time in the glass, demands your attention with its rich but precise fruit. This unabashedly hedonistic Chardonnay has the intensity and energy to age well, but that youthful, gregarious fruit is hard to resist!”

Tan Fruit Tank Fruit (Oak Grove Vineyard) Chardonnay, Eola-Amity Hills 2019 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, only 16 available 
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 99 points “The Chardonnay Tank Fruit comes from the same Oak Grove fruit as that vineyard designate, but was aged a bit longer, with 12 months in oak and another 12 months in stainless steel. It is pure, ultra perfumed, intense and layered, with alluring white peaches and lilac interwoven with cashews and honeycomb on the nose. The palate derives incredible energy from the push-pull of those deeper tones with salty, energetic acidity, and it finishes with extraordinary length.”

Tan Fruit Vojtilla Vineyard Chardonnay, Chehalem Mountains 2019 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, only 16 bottles available 
Erin Brooks-Wine Advocate 97 points “Vojtilla is a small, four-acre vineyard in the Chehalem Mountains that sits at around 500 to 600 feet in elevation and, says Jim Maresh, is influenced by the nearby Willamette River. Harvested in October this vintage, the 2019 Chardonnay Vojtilla Vineyard comes from Dijon clone vines planted in 1991, and it was matured in about 25% new Damy barrels. It has a stunning perfume of quince paste and mushrooms, pastry and flowers, and the palate is satiny, plush and pure, with a seamless tangy streak and long, powerful finish.”

Shop our complete selection of Oregon Chardonnays on our web store now!

Il Poggione Half-Bottles

Arriving Tomorrow

For those unfamiliar with the wines of Il Poggione, let’s catch you up quickly. They’re a classic Brunello producer working with very traditional methods in the subzone of Sant’Angelo in Colle, a region that tends to produce wines with big, bold personalities. The results are both crowd pleasing (rich fruit, up front aromatics) and intellectually stimulating (age-worthy, not obstructed by new oak) in way that’s unique in Brunello –outside of names that trade for significantly more money per bottle. Il Poggione’s Brunello is contradictory in all the best ways. It’s an age-worthy wine that doesn’t necessarily require aging. And in a half-bottle of one of the finest vintages of the century, there’s no excuse not to pop one now!

Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Tuscany 2013 375ML ($39.95) $28 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Tuscany 2013 375ML ($479.95) $299 pre-arrival special (that’s only $24.92/half-bottle!) 
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 points
“The 2013 Brunello di Montalcino lives up to the impeccable reputation garnered by this estate over the years. This is a profound and beautifully rendered Sangiovese that delivers bold and luscious fruit quality with black cherry and spicy plum at the start. The bouquet follows through with mild oak notes of smoke, tar and toasted nut. There is another aromatic component that includes crushed stone and dried herb or mint. This Brunello shows elegant evolution in the glass and promises a very long aging future ahead. Some 200,000 bottles were made, so it should be easy to locate this excellent wine.”
Ian D’Agata – Vinous 95 points “Bright red. Pure, refined red cherry and wild strawberry aromas and flavors complicated by sweet spices and aromatic herbs. Deep and multilayered, the wine boasts polished tannins and a harmonious acid spine that lifts and extends the red fruit on the long, suave finish. An essence of Sant’Angelo in Colle with bigger body and palate weight than, for example, the Brunellos of Montosoli, but still sleek and refined as the best wines of Sant’Angelo in Colle can be. The cool-climate-styled 2013 vintage is precisely the type of year in which Il Poggione excels: this lovely, focused wine is the best classico Brunello from Il Poggione in years. Superb.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Don’t miss our December Burgundy sales:

Pierre Gelin

Pierre Bouree &

Francois Gay

Shop the sales on our web store!

Budget-Friendly Sparklers

Importer note: “The Dumonts have owned vineyards in this area for over two hundred years and today three Dumont brothers work together to produce champagne exclusively from their own 22 hectares. The soils are a geological extension of those in Chablis, namely kimmeridgian chalky clay. The vineyard is planted with 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay. Bernard Dumont’s comments are insightful. ‘We grow grapes on the same soils as the vine growers in the Chablis region. There, they produce white wine from white grapes and here we produce white wine from red grapes.'”

R. Dumont & Fils Cuvee Rose Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 19 bottles in stock now
Importer note
“The Dumont Brut Rosé is made exclusively from Pinot Noir. A selection is made in the vineyard from parcels that are particularly ripe and from bunches with deeply colored skins. Fermentation proceeds as with red wines but the wine is drawn off the skins after a day or so with the Dumonts looking carefully at the balance of extraction, color and tannin. This method, known as “saignée”, is a tricky art but one that can produce the most natural and delicately complex style of Rosé champagne. The Brut Rosé NV is aged for two years on the lees before disgorgement and dosage is 10 grams.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $43

R. Dumont & Fils Tradition Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($49.95) $33 special, 9 bottles in stock now
R. Dumont & Fils Tradition Brut, Champagne NV 375ML ($27.95) $20.90 special, 36 half-bottles in stock now
Importer note
“The Dumont Brut NV is a blend of 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay. The grapes from their vineyard have qualities that seem less aggressive and more sumptuous than those from the northern districts. In addition, vinification of whole berries at low temperatures enhances this quality of soft elegance. The NV is a blend of vintages typically between two and five years old. It is aged for two years on the lees before disgorgement. Dosage is 9 grams.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

True to Roederer’s house style the Brut Excellence is mostly Chardonnay with enough Pinot Noir to contribute red fruited character. Scharffenberger’s Brut Excellence undergoes complete malolactic fermentation, contributing a fuller and creamier texture. A surprisingly delicious wine for the money!

Scharffenberger Cellars Brut Mendocino County NV 750ML ($21.95) $16.60 special, 36+ bottles in stock now 
Case- 12 Scharffenberger Cellars Brut Excellence Mendocino County NV 750ML ($249.95) $179 special (that’s only $14.92/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!) ***In-store pick up only available for the case special 
Wine & Spirits 91 points
“This is clean and crisp with rich undertones of brioche and lemon custard. It offers a balance of the soft and the lively, a refreshing sparkling wine to kick off a dinner party. —J.G.”

Selbach-Oster is known as one of the best Riesling houses in the entire Mosel River Valley. Based in the Mittelmosel they estimate 55% of their grapevines are still ungrafted and entirely planted on mind-bendingly steep slopes. These factors converge with generations of winemaking talent to make some of the most compelling examples of Riesling in the world, be they sweet, dry or sparkling. Their Sekt is no exception, which undergoes champagne-style fermentation in the bottle as opposed to the more standard tank method. This creates a finer bubble, additional complexity and aging potential in the bottle, at half the price of what grower champagne is selling for these days!

Selbach-Oster Zeltinger Himmelreich Riesling Sekt Extra Trocken Mosel 2018 750ML ($34.95) $28 special, 28 bottles in stock now

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Alexandre Chartogne is single handedly credited with reviving the reputation of his home village of Merfy. Located just northwest of Riems in the Massif de Saint-Thierry, Alexandre Chartogne took over his family’s 28 acres in 2006 after apprenticing under legendary Champenois, Jacques Selosse.  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, with his vintage offering comparable to any Tête de cuvee on the market. 

Chartogne-Taillet Cuvee Sainte Anne Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($51.95) $44 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-6 Chartogne-Taillet Cuvee Sainte Anne Brut, Champagne NV 750ML ($299.95) $249 special (That’s only $41.50 per bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
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.”
Importer note “60% 2017 base, 40% from 2016 & 2015.”  Disgorgement date may vary from reviews.

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $52

Arlaux Grande Cuvee Premier Cru Brut NV 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Wine Enthusiast 90 points
“From a vineyard with records going back over 1,000 years, this nonvintage cuvée is balanced and rounded, with harmony between the apple and tangy fruits and a touch of toastiness from bottle aging. It is ready to drink. -Roger Voss”
Importer notes “Arlaux is a small family-run champagne house producing only 5,000 cases a year located in a small village on the Petit Montagne de Reims called Vrigny.  Arlaux has been producing champagne since 1826 but the Arlaux-Marchal family have lived in Vrigny since the 13th century. Exclusively 1er Cru Champagne with a minimum of 4 years aging. They only use their own grapes from 20 to 100 year old vines which are hand-picked in order to select only the very best. 

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $46

Champagne shortage? Ha! Shop our selection of 140+ Champagnes in stock now.


Barolo’s Best Value?

Azienda Bruna Grimaldi

Azienda Bruna Grimaldi’s modern history dates back to the 1990s when Bruna (along with her husband Franco Fiorino) began to bottle her own wine after decades of selling the estate’s exceptional fruit. As the quality of their wine improved they began to receive interest from exporters and distributors. Today, the estate is known for making classic, well-structured, delicious wines that outperform their modest price tags.

The three Barolos that we’re featuring today are the Camilla, Bricco Ambroggio and Badarina. All are distinct and delicious. The Camilla is the only one blended from multiple sites, mostly from the ridgelines to the north of La Morra. Limestone found throughout the area lends to softer tannins and a more approachable style. Bricco Abroggio is an outlier of a vineyard, and the wine is equally special. The site is predominantly clay and marl, so you’d expected a tannic powerhouse yet its light on its feet with great freshness and plenty of cellar potential. Finally, the Badarina is the flagship and pride of the estate. Structured and tight in its youth, it always develops extraordinary aromatics with age.

Overall, Bruna Grimaldi’s quality/price ratio is nearly unequaled in Barolo. These are incredibly well made wines and not one of them costs more than $50/750ml. So don’t buy just one, you’ll want to see for yourself how these develop over the next decade and beyond.

In Stock Now:

Bruna Grimaldi Bricco Ambrogio, Barolo DOCG 2016 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93 points
“Roddi is one of the least-traveled areas in the appellation, and Bricco Ambrogio is one of its best growing sites, with clay and Sant’Agata marl soils. Bruna Grimaldi and her family reveal one of the finest interpretations of the site, offering a wine that is sturdy on its feet and compelling in terms of its aromatic offerings and complexity. The 2016 Barolo Bricco Ambrogio plays a strong hand in terms of mouthfeel, where this structured and firm wine grips tightly to the palate. The aromas are fleeting and fluid with a flurry of wild rose, forest berry, tar and black licorice aromas. I found this wine to have a larger disconnect between nose and palate compared to the more seamless Baroli from the estate. The wine is fermented with submerged cap and completes its malolactic fermentation in tank. Both methods play toward the delicate nature of this Barolo. Only 4,500 bottles will be released in July 2020.”
Kerin O’Keefe-Wine Enthusiast 92 points “Mature dark-skinned berry, eucalyptus and rose aromas lead the nose on this full-bodied, enveloping red. On the densely concentrated velvety palate, close-grained tannins surround fleshy black cherry, baked plum and licorice alongside the warmth of alcohol before a clenching finish. Drink 2024–2031.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $48

Bruna Grimaldi Badarina, Barolo DOCG 2015 750ML ($59.95) $45 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93+ points
“($90) This wine has already evolved to show some tar and savory aromas. The 2015 Barolo Badarina offers pretty color saturation with linear and fresh lines of plum, black fruit, dark spice and tilled earth. The wine delivers much of the heft and power promised by this Badarina cru in Serralunga d’Alba. If you’re looking for a Barolo vintage to pair with a rich meat like liver or game, this could be the one. This is Bruna Grimaldi’s flagship Barolo, as her mother was born in Badarina and this site has always had special meaning to her family. Some 8,000 bottles were produced.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $51

Bruna Grimaldi Badarina, Barolo DOCG 2016 1.5L ($119.95) $99 special, 3 magnums in stock now
Kerin O’Keefe-Wine Enthusiast 97 points
“Woodland-berry, eucalyptus, star anise and new leather aromas are front and center on this radiant red. Firmly structured, the youthfully austere palate shows Marasca cherry, strawberry compote and licorice accompanied by assertive, fine-grained tannins that need a few more years to fully unwind. Fresh acidity keeps it well balanced and lends great aging potential. Drink 2026–2056.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95 points “You will be very favorably impressed by the delicate and floral aromas that peel softly off the bouquet in the Bruna Grimaldi 2016 Barolo Badarina. There are distinct notes of wild rose and pressed violets that pop out with playful intensity. Badarina is located in Serralunga d’Alba, known for some of the most powerful expressions of Nebbiolo in the appellation. This estate farms a 1.8-hectare plot at 450 meters above sea level with a mix of white marl and calcareous deposits with layers of sandstone. In the end result, this wine exudes elegance more than it does power per se. I feel the tighter grip of the young tannins on the close, but otherwise, this wine will be remembered for its overall finesse and startling clarity. Like the other wines in this group, this Barolo is fermented with submerged cap and completes its secondary fermentation in cement tanks. It refines in large oak casks for 30 months. Some 6,000 bottles will hit the market in July 2020.”
James Suckling 95 points “A layered, rich young Barolo with dried-strawberry, orange-peel and bark character. It’s full and flavorful with lots of fruit and fine, dusty tannins. Serious red. Try after 2023.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Bruna Grimaldi Camilla, Barolo DOCG 2016 1.5L ($99.95) $79 special, 3 magnums in stock now
Kerin O’Keefe-Wine Enthusiast 95 points
“Camphor, pressed rose, truffle and wild red-berry aromas are front and center on this full-bodied red. Juicy and delicious, the taut muscular palate has unexpected finesse, delivering juicy Marasca cherry, black raspberry, vanilla and licorice alongside enveloping, velvety tannins and fresh acidity. Thanks to the ripe, delicious fruit, you can’t detect the declared abv of 15%. Drink 2024–2036.”
James Suckling 94 points “Complex Barolo with crushed berries, walnuts and chocolate that follow through to a medium to full body, round and juicy tannins and a flavorful finish. Hints of bitter citrus at the end. Needs time to soften. Better after 2023.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93+ points “Bruna Grimaldi’s 2016 Barolo Camilla shows a fine and silky texture with just enough weight and texture to support elegant and fragile aromas. The bouquet reveals a subtle approach, followed by wild berry, violet, spice, tar and smoke that follow with slow and seamless transitions. The tannins are young and tight, but the texture of the wine is fine and silky overall. Fruit for this wine is a blend from the Raviole, Borzone, Roere di Santa Maria, Bricco Ambrogio and Badarina vineyards. It was previously a single-vineyard expression from a plot located behind the Grinzane Cavour castle, but that is no longer the case. Given the more-pronounced structure of the vintage, I have extended the drinking window, allowing for extra lead time for cellar aging. Some 18,000 bottles were produced.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $95 for the magnum

Love Barolo? We have 75 different options in stock. Shop the entire selection, including famous names like Brovia, Cappellano, Vietti and more, on our web store now.

Jerome Chézeaux’s Affordable 2017 Burgundies

Jérôme Chézeaux makes wines that epitomize our favorite sort of Burgundy. Age-worthy, fine and built on a core of minerality, but priced a tier below what the wines deliver. Make no mistake about it—Chézeaux makes wines that can be poured with the finest producers in Nuits, but cost 25% less. In a vintage like 2017 he really shines, as the warm year buttresses his mineral style with a bit broader shoulders and more fruit. The three Premier Cru Nuits-St. George wines are of particular note—they’re incredible values and are only slightly more expensive than some producer’s village bottlings.

“From the moment we encountered Chézeaux’s 2017s, shortly after they completed malolactic fermentation, we knew this was a special, potentially career-making collection. The wines, which had been neither racked nor sulfured at that point, raised goosebumps with their purity of fruit, their startling transmission of site character, and their haunting equilibrium; these are wines into which one can peer deeply. From a relatively problem-free growing season whose warmth expressed itself in the fruit much differently than the similarly solar 2015 and 2016, the 2017s “found their structure over some élevage,” Jérôme remarks, calling it a “very Pinot” vintage… These 2017s are uniformly ultra-fine and lifted, with remarkably well rendered and supple tannins, and an underlying mineral freshness, and they are quite accessible at this youthful stage—even the typically colossally stern Clos de Vougeot—though their impeccable balance will allow them to develop beautifully. Worth emphasizing is the almost shockingly sane pricing in effect at this domaine, which makes these wines irresistible for the prudent collector, especially given their current level of quality.” – Neal Rosenthal

Highlights In Stock Now from Jérôme Chézeaux:

Jérôme Chézeaux Nuits-Saint-Georges, Côte de Nuits 2017 750ML ($69.95) $52.50 special, 34 bottles in stock now
Importer note
“Chezeaux’s holdings of villages-level Nuits-Saint-Georges encompass 3.3 hectares spread throughout the appellation, with a significant proportion from the vineyards of Aux Saint Julien and Chaliots. In keeping with the spirit of the underlying terroir, this is wilder in character than the Vosne-Romanée, marked by notes of iron, and with a rambunctious bent to its tannins. Never deficient in fruit, it offers plenty of earth and sous-bois elements as well, all in a driving fashion.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $57.94

Jérôme Chézeaux Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Charbonnières Vieilles Vignes, Côte de Nuits 2017 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 6 bottles in stock now
Importer note
“With the 2011 vintage, and with our encouragement, Jérôme began separating out his oldest villages-level parcel—a 0.67-hectare holding of 80-year-old vines in Les Charbonnières, situated just below the premier cru Aux Corvées on the slope in the appellation’s southern sector. Boasting true old-vines power, this is always thicker-fruited and more exuberantly spicy than its counterpart above, with greater length. Its lusciousness, however, does nothing to mask the underlying complexity that sets this cuvée apart.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Jérôme Chézeaux Les Prulieres, Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru 2017 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, 3 bottles in stock now
Importer note
“The smallest-production premier cru in Chézeaux’s cellar, Les Pruliers lies near the border of Nuits-Saint-Georges and Premeaux-Prissey in the southern part of the appellation. Jérôme works a mere tenth of a hectare here—a parcel of extremely old vines that produce a wine of warmth and generosity. More full-bodied than the Rue de Chaux above, its fruit is pitched toward the black, and, while not heavy-handed in the slightest, it emphasizes robustness over sleekness.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Jérôme Chézeaux Rue de Chaux, Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru 2017 750ML ($89.95) $75 special, 6 bottles in stock now
Importer note
“Located almost dead-center in the appellation, Rue de Chaux is perhaps the most quintessentially “Nuits-Saint-Georges” among Chézeaux’s premier crus. Jérôme owns a mere 0.29 hectares in this steep, topsoil-deficient vineyard, and his ever-elegant touch yields a wine of both grace and power. Darkly fruited, dense, and slightly brooding, it also offers an enchanting savory-spicy perfume.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
Love the Côte de Nuits? We have 220 different reds in stock. Shop the entire selection on our web store now, including famous names like Dujac and Fourrier, as well as additional options from Chézeaux.

Bordeaux to Bekka: Chateau Musar’s Journey  

Looking for a cult producer that’s still affordable? There are very few producers who are synonymous with the production of their entire region’s output. Dal Forno in Valpolicella, Dönnhoff and the Nahe, Cayuse and Walla Walla, the list is as long as there are production zones. In that same vein you cannot talk about Lebanese wine without mentioning Chateau Musar. Founded by Gaston Hochar in 1930, his son Serge took the world by storm in the late 1970’s after leaving Bordeaux for the Bekka Valley. Lebanon is one of the world’s first producers of wine that dates back over 6,000 years and was mentioned throughout antiquity for its quality, but has seen almost constant unrest since World War 2. 

In spite of that, Musar has consistently delivered exceptional reds, whites and rose year after year to the international market. This is in part from their vineyards located in the Bekka Valley of Lebanon, A high elevation region between Mt. Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon mountains. The elevation and mountainous conditions allows for massive temperature shifts during the evenings, allowing for the grapes to slowly ripen with good acidity. Working exclusively with old vines that have always been farmed organically, Musar makes a fantastic single village wine named after Gaston in addition to their Cuvee that’s made them world famous. Working with a blend of varietals including Cinsault, Carignan, Grenache, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvigion for reds, the reds are built for serious aging and collecting. Expect all the power and nuance of a super Tuscan, with the lift of Bandol and a totally unique frankincense, oud and cumin character that is definitively Middle Eastern. We were only able to secure limited quantities of the reds, with these wines usually being snapped up by restaurants in New York before they can reach our market, so get these while you can!

In stock now: 

Chateau Musar Bekaa Valley, 2015 750ML ($69.95) $54.50 pre-arrival special

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

Chateau Musar ‘Hochar Pere et Fils’ Red, Bekaa Valley 2017 ($34.95) $28 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Decanter 91 Points
“This single-vineyard wine, from Aana, is made in a modern style: concentrated and slightly reductive. It shows notes of new oak barrels, lovely red berry fruit (reminiscent of Grenache) and garrigue aromas. So Mediterranean on the palate, with sweet tannins, spices and a meaty hint on the aftertaste. A very friendly, easy-to-drink and enjoyable wine. It becomes even better and more refined a day after the bottle is opened. I would recommend decanting it.”
Antonio Galloni 90 Points “The 2017 Hochar is powerful and dense in the glass. Ripe flavors and incisive tannins give the 2017 much of its brooding personality. Readers should plan on opening the 2017 at least an hour or two in advance, as the tannins are rather grainy at the outset. With time, ripe black cherry, spice, leather and licorice flavors emerge nicely. The blend is 55% Cinsault, 35% Grenache and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon.”  

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


Tasting through Marcus Goodfellow’s Chardonnays was very memorable, and the Richard’s Cuvee stood out the most to me. They are made in an old world style, and this bottle itself is low alcohol, very complex and mineral driven with lean acidity. Richard’s Cuvee will definitely develop and open up with more age.

Goodfellow Family Cellars Richard’s Cuvee Chardonnay, Whistling Ridge Vineyard, Ribbon Ridge 2019 750ML ($69.95) $55 special
Case-6 Goodfellow Family Cellars Richard’s Cuvee Chardonnay, Whistling Ridge Vineyard, Ribbon Ridge 2019 750ML ($379.95) $309 special (that’s only $51.50/bottle!)
Winery note
“Oh boy…first gravel and smoke, opening to fresh pear, hazelnuts, straw and raw grain, then lime and yuzu blossom. Old world notes of river stones, and seashells. Palate is immediately bright, stony, mineral, lime, clean, lucid, direct, and steely. Acidity runs through the wine from the front palate to the long, long, long finish. Like Corton from the mid-90s… 11.8% abv, finished under Diam 30. 155 cases.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

While most reasonably priced Bordeaux is commercial and unremarkable, La Bastienne bucks the trend. Hands on farming and winemaking make this a wine of place and personality.  It’s no wonder why it remains beloved in France.  The only outstanding question is how long this open secret across the pond will remain under the radar in the United States.

Château La Bastienne, Montagne-Saint-Émilion 2016 750ML ($34.95) $21.90 special, 12 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 93 points
“Very rich blackberry and vibrant fruit aromas in the mulberry and dark-plum spectrum with a concentrated palate that offers a very fleshy and attractive set of supple fruit, framed in ripe, sturdy tannins. Try from 2022.”
Wine Advocate 90 points “The 2016 La Bastienne is medium to deep garnet-purple colored and features fragrant roses, oolong tea and baking spices scents with touches of warm plums, black cherries and raspberry pie. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is packed with expressive red berry and floral layers with a fine-grained frame and long, lively finish.

Charles Smith K Vintners Milbrandt Vineyard Syrah Wahluke Slope 2017 750ML ($39.95) $29 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“The only wine fermented in stainless steel (they like more precision with this wine) and aged in 30% new puncheons, the 2017 Syrah Milbrandt Vineyard reveals a deep ruby color as well as ripe, sexy notes of blackberries, raspberries, black pepper, leafy herbs, and smoked game. It’s rich, medium-bodied, layered, and just a beautiful wine that will keep for 8-10 years.”
Stephen Tanzer 92 points “Dark red-ruby. Higher-pitched aromas of blueberry, redcurrant, flowers and spices. Good mineral grip gives sharp definition to the fresh red fruit and spice flavors, with aeration bringing notes of rhubarb, black cherry, wet earth and mint and an emerging saline character. Finishes with big, broad, dusty tannins that grab the tongue. Highly distinctive Syrah. (a 50/50 blend of two distinct soil types in a high-elevation site–one gravel and sand and the other featuring limestone and volcanic rock–vinified together in stainless steel).”

Charles Smith K Vintners Milbrandt Vineyard Syrah Wahluke Slope 2018 750ML ($31.95) $24.50 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 93+ points
“Another ripe, sexy wine from this estate, the 2018 Syrah Milbrandt has a lifted bouquet of ripe plums, candied violets, chocolate, and gamey, peppery herb nuances. Rich, round, and mouth-filling on the palate, this full-bodied Syrah packs a punch yet stays fresh, balanced, and incredibly drinkable. It will benefit from a year or three in the cellar and drink well for over a decade.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

We’re pleased to offer one of our favorite Châteauneuf du Pape producers, Olivier Hillaire. Back when the shop was in its old location, Hillaire was one of our two or three best-selling producers—we stacked it high and it flew out the door by the (very heavy wooden) case. We were unable to source Hillaire for several years, and as a result were thrilled recently to be able to bring it back into stock. Hillaire’s wines have always delivered exceptional value at each price level. Rediscover an old favorite.

Domaine Olivier Hillaire Châteauneuf-du-Pape ‘Les Terrasses’, Rhône 2016 750ML ($89.95) Was $69 Now $59, 36+ bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 95 points
“The 2016 Châteauneuf du Pape Les Terrasses is a fine example of old-vine Grenache from a parcel of vines near La Nerthe. Rose petals and black tea accent pristine cherry and raspberry fruit in this full-bodied but silky-lacy, delicate wine. Long, briny and refreshing on the finish, it’s deceptively drinkable but undoubtedly packs a wallop.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

2016 was a standout Bordeaux vintage, and this is exceptional for the price (well, our price 🙂
Chateau Grand Corbin, Saint-Emilion 2016 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Chateau Grand Corbin, Saint-Emilion 2016 750ML ($599.95) $449 special (that’s only $37.42/bottle!)
Case-6 Chateau Grand Corbin, Saint-Emilion 2016 750ML ($299.95) $239 special (that’s only $39.83/bottle!)
James Suckling 93 points
“Attractive dark-stone aromas with graphite and ripe dark berries sit fresh on the nose. The palate has a riper feel with very rich, dense fruit presence and a heavier, tannin line weight. Full body. Try from 2022.”
Antonio Galloni 92 points “The 2016 Grand Corbin has grown into a powerful, dense Saint-Émilion. This is a fairly rich, bombastic style, and yet all the elements fall into place. I would give the 2016 a few years in bottle to allow the tannins to soften, but there is good depth and plenty of potential. A rush of chocolate, leather, licorice, smoke and black cherry meld into the potent finish. Tasted three times with consistent notes.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $46

Such a wildly popular wine, we convinced our importer to send us more!
Rocca di Frassinello ‘Le Sughere di Frassinello’ Maremma Toscana, Tuscany 2016 750ML ($29.95) $21.90 special, 27 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 93 points
“Wild rosemary, thyme and camphor aromas lead off, with concentrated flavors of blackberry and black currant. An iron edge sinks in as this unfolds to the long, staining finish. Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Best from 2020 through 2032. 11,000 cases made, 5,500 cases imported.”

Founded by Pablo Calatayud in 1995, Cellar Del Roure has made a name for itself by bucking tradition. This is no better illustrated than by Safra, made with the indigenous varietal Mando, using traditional lagar and amphorae during fermentation to preserve the natural structure and earthy flavors. Mando is described as being similar to Pinot Noir or Mencia and is largely extinct even within Valencia. This is largely due to Valencia’s history as breadbasket for Spanish agriculture, producing massive quantities of wine, olive oil and most famously oranges. This led to  massive plantings of grapevines meant for bulk wine production, at the cost of historically premium sites and varietals. 

Celler del Roure ‘Safra’, Valencia 2019 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 94 points
“The 2019 Safrà was produced with a base of Mandó, but it’s a different Mandó from Parotet, livelier and more fluid. They say it’s a red with the soul of a white. In any case, both wines change in 2019 with the addition of Arcos. They harvest the grapes early and use some 30% stems for the vinification in stainless steel with indigenous yeasts. This 2019 is a blend with 30% Arcos, an almost forgotten grape they are recovering and to which they are paying very much attention. Like many of the other wines, it matured in ancient buried 2,600-liter tinajas in their impressive 17th-century cellar. I’ve always liked the floral and aromatic expression of this wine, which has nice aromas and complexity, developing beautiful notes of sour cherries; and in the palate, it’s more serious than you expect, longer, deeper and very tasty. This is more ethereal than Vermell and less spicy that Parotet. I think it has gained in freshness and complexity with the addition of Arcos, which is part of the blend for the first time in 2019. In fact, this is better than ever! 20,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in June 2020.”
Decanter 93 points “Mainly Mandó grapes with Arcos (rather than Garnacha Tintorera as in previous blends) – a change that brings greater finesse to this aromatic wine. Bright, mid-weight, juicy, with sour cherries and cranberries and the faintest rasp of tannin. Fermented in stainless steel and matured in buried clay amphorae in the remarkable cellar. Organic. Drinking Window 2021 – 2024. -Sarah Jane Evans MW.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Please note:

We will close at 5 pm sharp on New Year’s Eve,
be closed New Year’s Day,
& reopen on Sunday the 2nd for our regular hours
10 am – 6 pm

Thank you for reading and for your continuing support!

Stay safe, be well, & drink well.