Wednesday Newsletter 10-14-20

In Today’s Newsletter:

It’s Back, Baby!
Your (And Our) Favorite Spanish Producer:


Staff Pick:
Sharply Priced Pinot Blanc from St. Innocent


New Wine Spectator Insider Reviews

Collector’s Corner:
Stella di Campalto


It’s Back, Baby!

Your (And Our) Favorite Spanish Producer:


Muga is considered one of the finest old producers of Rioja, combining a traditionalist approach with modern cellar techniques.  Up and down the line, their wines offer tremendous value—these are wines that will age into dynamic, complex beauties, but are delicious today.

Featured Offer:

Emphasizing the power and tradition of La Rioja Alta, this is an impactful wine. The grapes are sourced from one of the coolest sub-regions, imparting elegance and grace to this fabulous red.

Bodegas Muga Torre Muga, Rioja DOCa 2016 750ML ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special, ETA Friday
James Suckling 98 points
“The purity of fruit to this is very, very intriguing with blackberries, graphite, and charcoal. Full-bodied. It radiates intense fruit with perfectly polished tannins. Subtle asphalt and blue fruit. Very long and beautiful. Racy. Tempranillo with graciano and mazuelo. Needs two to four years of bottle age. Try after 2021.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 96 points “I tasted a super young 2016 Torre Muga that had only been in bottle for some four months. But even so, the year seems to be approachable and open. Even if the wine has concentration and power, it has great balance and freshness. And it’s drinkable now, even if it’s going to get polished with some more time in bottle, where it should have a long life. This was the most modern of the wines in the portfolio, but I think the modern and traditional styles have been converging over the years, and nowadays there is not a huge difference between them. And for its age, it feels quite round, and it doesn’t have edges or any harsh tannins; the oak is present but it’s neatly integrated in the wine. It has to be one of the finest vintages for Torre Muga. 36,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in early 2019.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “This bold red is assertive, yet holds power in reserve. A thick texture, supported by muscular tannins, supports ripe flavors of currant, fig, cocoa, loamy earth and tar. Concentrated, but remains harmonious. Impressive, in the modern style. Best from 2022 through 2036. 3,000 cases made, 400 cases imported.”

Arriving Friday, October 16th

Muga makes one of our favorite Rioja rosés—a crisp, pale, dry version that seems to capture the spiciness of Tempranillo with the brightness of the best rosés on the market.  
Bodegas Muga Rosado, Rioja DOCa 2019 750ML ($19.95) $14.50 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 90 points
“Pleasant watermelon, pink-guava and peach character with some citrus. It’s medium-bodied with good fruit and a fresh finish. Macabeo, grenache and tempranillo. Drink now.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $16

Few rose wines reach for greater heights: Chateau Simone Palette, Tempier Bandol, Peyrassol Clos de Peyrassol and Clos Ste Magdeliene Cassis rose are the rare examples that prove that the oft-derided category of unoxidized rose can truly express terroir. What does Spain have to offer that can compare? Muga’s old-vine Flor de Muga. Not to be confused with their entry-level bottling, the Flor de Muga is 100% Grenache from select parcels of 70 to 90 year old vines grown on clay, limestone and iron soils at high elevations in the Najerilla Valley. There’s an intoxicating freshness to the wine that hides a lengthy, complex finish. If this were red wine, one could expect to shell out $50 or more for such a pedigreed wine. 

Bodegas Muga ‘Flor de Muja’ Rosado, Rioja DOCa 2018 750ML ($34.95) $24 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 92 points
“The top rosé is the 2018 Flor de Muga Rosado, which is 100% Garnacha from older vines that spent five months on lees. It’s a beautiful, elegant rosé that offers terrific notes of ripe strawberries, white flowers, white peach, and honeysuckle. It’s layered and medium-bodied, has a rounded, deep texture, and is seamless on the palate. This is pure class and up there with the crème de la crème in rosé. Count me impressed.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $31

This is always our best-selling Rioja and has a massive fan base at the shop.
Bodegas Muga Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2015 750ML ($34.95) $23.50 pre-arrival special
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points
“One of the flagship cuvées from this estate that’s produced in every vintage, the 2015 Reserva is a blend of 70% Tempranillo and the rest Garnacha, Mazuelo, and Graciano that spent 24 months in used French and American oak. Blackberries, currants, cigar wrapper, cedar box, and hints of vanilla all flow to a medium-bodied, concentrated, beautiful Rioja that has ripe tannins, beautiful balance, and a great finish. You couldn’t go wrong with a case of this.”
James Suckling 94 points “Complex nose with ripe black cherries, deeply integrated cedary oak, baking spices, dried flowers, leather, fresh tobacco and earthy notes. This is silky and mellow with long, laid-back tannins that deliver ripe dark plum flavors into a spicy and earthy finish. Drink or hold.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 92 points “…This was a very long harvest (similar to 2016). They started at the end of August with the Cava, and they finished at the end of October with very healthy grapes, good yields and very good quality. The wine shows very good ripeness but without any excess. It has incipient complexity, still young and undeveloped but with very good balance between power and elegance, with fine-grained tannins and integrated acidity. This has to be one of the best recent vintages of this popular bottling. There are around one million bottles of it.”
Wine Enthusiast 92 points “Earthy black fruit aromas are warm and ripe. Befitting a reserva from a hot year like 2015, this is big-bodied and flush, with flavors of toasty oak, chocolate and mixed berry fruits. Ripeness is not lost on a finish with mild heat. Drink through 2023.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $27

Muga’s top-end “Prado Enea” bottling is a wine that represents the best of Rioja.  Produced only in great years and held extensively before release, this is one of the top examples of traditional Rioja and will age and deliver pleasure like a top Bordeaux—only a lot less expensive. 2011 was about as perfect a year as you could hope for in Rioja, with warm but not hot weather and a dry harvest.  Muga took advantage of this and has made one of their best ever bottlings of Prada Eneo—structured, big and rich.  This is one for the cellar but will repay some time asleep with bountiful complexity and luxurious flavors and aromatics.  With proper age, it’s a wine that can be the best bottle on the table in almost any company, which makes it a steal.

Bodegas Muga ‘Prado Enea’ Gran Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2011 750ML ($89.95) $69 pre-arrival special
#3 – James Suckling’s Top 100 Wines of the Year
James Suckling 99 points
“The most structured Prado Enea ever. A reduced center palate that is so compact with dark fruit, dark mushrooms and cedary spice. Full body. Wonderfully polished tannins and a long, long finish. Electric acidity. Muscular and well toned. The is a new classic that reminds me of great Spanish wines from the 1940s and 1950s. Better after 2021, but already so impressive.”
Luis Gutierrez 96 points “The most classical of the wines from Muga, the 2011 Prado Enea Gran Reserva comes from a warm year that here was cooler than 2012, when they did not produce it. There won’t be a 2013 either. So after this 2011, the following vintage will be 2014 but with fewer bottles and then 2015 and 2016. The wine has a developed nose with some tertiary notes, combined with some notes of ripe black fruit and sweet spices. It fees like an open, expressive and hedonistic year for Prado Enea. The palate reveals polished tannins and some balsamic and developed flavors, truffle, forest floor and hints of cigar ash and incense. Stylistically, this could be close to the 2006, which was also surprisingly fresh for the average ripeness found in Rioja in general. 92,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in early 2015 after almost 40 months in barrel. Time in bottle has polished the wine, and it’s ready to drink on release, but it’s a wine that is going to develop in bottle for a long time.”
Wine Enthusiast 96 points “Earthy plum and berry aromas set up a palate with plush tannins and layers of depth. Befitting a hot year like 2011, dark berry and plum flavors are full, while this exhibits fine shape on the finish and only gets better the longer it sits. This is no doubt a delicious Rioja from one of the top wineries in Spain. Decant if drinking now. Enjoy through 2035.”
Jeb Dunnuck 95+ points “The 2011 Prado Enea checks in as a blend of 80% Tempranillo, 20% Garnacha, Mazuelo that spent a full three years in oak, followed by three years in bottle before being released in May of 2019. It reveals a deep ruby/plum color as well as a closed, tight nose of blackcurrants, smoked earth, graphite, and Asian spices. It’s rich, medium to full-bodied, has a layered, balanced texture, integrated tannins, and a great finish. It’s holding things a little close to its vest at the moment, so I suspect 2-4 years of bottle age are warranted.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $77

Arriving October 23rd

Bodegas Muga Seleccion Especial Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2015 750ML ($49.95) $36 pre-arrival special
Case-12 Bodegas Muga Seleccion Especial Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2015 750ML ($549.95) $399 pre-arrival special (that’s only $33.25/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
James Suckling 96 points
“The balance and purity to this wine is really impressive with blackberries, black truffles and dark fruit. Wet earth. Full body. Tight and compact. Structured, long and powerful. Superb length. Compressed and polished texture. Drink in 2022.”
Jeb Dunnuck 95 points “The 2015 Selección Especial checks in as 70% Tempranillo and the balance Garnacha, Mazuelo, and Graciano that’s an old vine and terroir selection. Aged 6 months in new oak followed by 24 months in 90% French oak and 10% American oak, it has a beautiful bouquet of blueberries, black raspberries, crushed violets, incense, and cedar. This gives way to a full-bodied, rich, powerful wine that has an incredible sense of elegance and finesse on the palate. It’s a brilliant Rioja that can be drunk today or cellared for 10-15 years or more.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 94 points “The very perfumed, expressive and floral 2015 Selección Especial is a lot fresher than the stereotype of the vintage I had before I tasted 2015 widely. It’s a year that has turned out fresher than what the weather during the growing season pointed at. It was a dry and warm year, but the wines have very good freshness, which in this case feels exceptional. My first surprise was how aromatic and open the wine is for such a young age, with aromas of lavender and other Mediterranean herbs jumping from the glass. I expected that from the 2016s, but I thought the 2015 was going to be more closed and reticent. The palate is medium to full-bodied with fine-grained tannins, balanced, fresh and very clean. This combines energy and elegance with classical Rioja character. 220,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in December 2017.”

The average price is $42

Arriving in November

Bodegas Muga Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2016 750ML ($31.95) $26 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 95 points
“This is really tight and powerful with gorgeous tannins and solid fruit. Full body. Tight and composed. Wet earth, smoked meat and hints of black truffles. Very long and powerful. Wonderful length. Real Rioja. One of the top best-value, high-quality reds in Spain. Drink or hold.”
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 93 points “The largest volume of the Muga winery is for the red blend 2016 Reserva, a wine that is sold as 2016 Crianza in Spain (for commercial reasons). This has the Muga style and the imprint of the cool and fresh 2016 vintage, one of the best vintages of recent years. 2016 is also a year of harmony and freshness that reminds me a little of the 2010. But the Muga family thinks it’s somewhere between 2010 and 2011, because for them 2011 is not so warm, even if it generally produced quite ripe wines. It has a mixture of red and black fruit with sweet spices that are very integrated and in harmony. The palate is silky and clean, and the tannins are round and gentle. A delicious Reserva/Crianza. They produced around one million bottles of this. It was bottled in January 2019. They like to bottle the wine in winter, perhaps in a couple of months.”

Shop our selection of 121 Rioja wines in-stock now on our web store!



Staff Pick

It’s been increasingly difficult to find a domestic Pinot Blanc that honestly represents how luscious and lovely this varietal can be. Some recent wines have seemed thin, metallic, and yet too heady and unbalanced. Thank goodness St Innocent has a wonderful option for a Pinot Blanc that is drinking beautifully for an incredible price.

The 2016 vintage is powerfully rich upon opening, showing ripe pear, lemon and roasted almond. It’s a wine that pairs best with more subtle foods, but can certainly play along if it happens to be Thai take out night. The richness and 14% alcohol stand up to the bite and spice of many Asian dishes, though if I was picking a favorite to pair, I would go with Hamachi sashimi. Tasty together…

I found it to be a touch powerful at first crack – if you have the time open it about half an hour early. Holds up quite well over two to three nights and is a terrific value for the price. Should develop nicely if you’d like to hold onto it for a couple years, but there’s no real need to age it further. Enjoy it soon and often.

Re-Arriving Friday, October 16th

St. Innocent Freedom Hill Vineyard Pinot Blanc, Willamette Valley 2016 750ML ($21.95) $16 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 92 points
“Editors’ Choice. This delicious, sexy wine impresses with its leesy, textural mouthfeel, its mountain spring freshness, it’s crisp lemon and grapefruit flavors, and its underlying minerality. One-quarter was fermented in neutral French oak, the rest in stainless steel. A dash of minty wintergreen trails the finish.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $21

Shop our selection of 279 Pacific Northwest wines in-stock now on our web store!



Drinkable, delicious Bordeaux for under $20.
Chateau de Grandchamp, Montagne-Saint-Emilion 2015 750ML ($24.95) $19.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Le Guide Hachette Des Vins 2/3 stars (Vin Remarquable)
“A mountain that exalts the qualities of the 2015 vintage and participated in the final of the favorites. From a blend of hand-harvested Merlot (90%) and Cabernet Franc, Château Grandchamp’s team has extracted a wine that combines power and elegance. The color of the dress is purple with violet, the nose is centered on dark fruits with spicy aromas, the palate is frisky, smooth, fruity, with fine, firm tannins and a long finish. [translated]”
Importer notes “Château de Grandchamp is the only domaine on the hillside overlooking the ancient commune of Parsac, located in the Montagne-Saint-Emilion appellation on the right bank of the Dordogne. Vigneron Gonzague Maurice manually farms Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon in densely planted vineyards rooted in clay-limestone soils with small traces of iron. The vineyard has been in organic conversion since 2010, however grass is sown regularly between vine rows and ploughing is done in alternating rows. Gonzague’s sole objective in the vineyard is to obtain perfectly ripe and clean fruit. Triage is done in both the vineyard and the cellar to ensure the highest quality grapes. In the cellar, grapes are vinified in small, temperature controlled tanks and then aged in a combination of tank and one to two year old barrels. Above all, he seeks to preserve the fruit throughout the fermentation and ageing processes. The resulting wine is aromatically vibrant and beautiful balanced with soft tannins.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Saint Jean du Barroux Ventoux La Pierre Noire, Rhone 2015 750ML ($49.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
No reviews available for the 2015. Reviews For 2014 Vintage Provided For Reference.
Decanter 96 points
“[2014 vintage] Lifted loganberry, leaf tea and tarragon. Beautifully mouthcoating, elegant and harmonious, long and svelte, with a tapered finish. Gently perfumed, beautifully balanced. It’s concentrated without over-extraction, combining the elegance of the northern Rhône with the generosity of the south. A beautiful wine.”
Jeb Dunnuck 95 points “[2014 vintage] A total gem in the vintage, the 2014 La Pierre Noire is an insanely good wine made from 80/20 Grenache and Syrah that spent three years in concrete tanks. Black raspberries, kirsch, pepper, garrigue and liquid flowers notes all soar from the glass of this incredibly elegant, seamless, silky red that does everything right. With medium to full-bodied richness, ultra-fine tannin, no hard edges and a seamless texture, it’s at the top of the heap in 2014. Don’t miss a chance to try this beauty!”
Importer Note “La Pierre Noire, or “the black stone,” is a cuvée made from Grenache and Syrah grown on clay limestone soils marked by abrupt appearance of black gravel. So sudden and noticeable is this change in the vineyard that Philippe has always known that this site was its own cuvée. At once more stern but contradictorily more elegant, La Pierre Noire is fermented and aged in concrete for at least 36 months before bottling and released only when Philippe feels it’s ready.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Chateau Grange Cochard Morgon Vieilles Vignes 2017 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 91 points
“Deep, brilliant ruby. Displays an array of ripe black/blue fruit and spice qualities on the expressive nose, along with building spice and mineral elements. Smooth, broad and open-knit, showing very good depth to its juicy boysenberry and cherry flavors, which pick up a sweetening hint of cola on the back half. Supple tannins lend shape to a persistent, dark fruit-driven finish that leaves a suggestion of smoky minerality behind.”
William Kelley-Wine Advocate 91 points “The 2017 Morgon Vieilles Vignes wafts from the glass with a pretty bouquet of red cherries, rose petals and wild berries. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, velvety and enveloping, with a layered core of fleshy fruit, ripe acids and powdery tannins that gently assert themselves on the finish. It will be even better after a year in bottle.”
Wine Spectator 90 points “Juicy acidity binds the ripe raspberry, peach and cherry flavors of this supple red, with accents of peach, floral and licorice lingering into the moderately tannic finish. Drink now through 2025. 100 cases imported.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2013 750ML ($89.95) $59 Subscriber Special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-6 Il Poggione Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2013 750ML ($519.95) $336 Subscriber Special (that’s only $56/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!
The average price is $77

Trendy Pre-Arrival

Armando Parusso Bussia, Barolo DOCG 2016 750ML ($119.95) $89 pre-arrival special, ETA January
Antonio Galloni 96+ points
“Marco Parusso’s 2016 Barolo Bussia brings together all the best elements of his style and year in a wine that is simply brilliant. Sweet floral notes, dark red fruit, mint, blood orange and spice infuse the 2016 with myriad layers of complexity. A bold, dramatic Barolo made from Rocche and Munie fruit, the 2016 is going to need a number of years to be at its best.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 points “This is one of the most important single-vineyard expressions from Marco and Tiziana Parusso, a formidable brother and sister team whose winery is located at the edge of Monforte d’Alba on the road to Castiglione Falletto. Their 2016 Barolo Bussia is a dark and brooding expression with some of those aromas of Nebbiolo stems and skins that give extra power and density to the wine. I’d suggest a pairing of succulent red meat, but you definitely need to put this wine aside for more time. This classic vintage is especially well suited to cellar aging. The structure of this Bussia is a tiny bit more pliant and approachable compared to the more astringent Mosconi.”
James Suckling 95 points “Wild strawberries and plums with spices, dried flowers and hazelnuts. It’s full-bodied, yet tight, fine and focused with lovely balance and finesse. Drink or hold.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Get the Inside Scoop!

With Wine Spectator Insider
Paitin di Pasquero-Elia ‘Serraboella’, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($47.95) $39 special, 19 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 94 points
“Shy in aroma, this red evokes macerated cherry, strawberry, menthol, iron and tobacco flavors. There is ripe, rich fruit and a velvety texture up front, building to a finish where the dense, assertive tannins reign. Best from 2023 through 2042.”

Saint Cosme is one of the notable estates of the Southern Rhone. Louis Barroul is a talented winemaker and is the 14th generation of his family to make wines in the domaine that was founded in the 1500’s. The wines he makes are rich and powerful, with undeniable terroir signatures.  The 2018’s are some of the best wines they’ve yet made.

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Hominis Fides, Rhone 2018 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 14 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 95 points
“This is dense and dark, with lots of currant and fig paste flavors that have melded with licorice root, singed apple wood and warm earth notes, followed by a long, tobacco- and garrigue-edged finish. Youthfully gutsy, but with everything in place and plenty of energy, so this should cellar well. Best from 2022 through 2036.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $128

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Le Claux, Rhone 2018 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 21 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 95 points
“Quite ripe, with waves of warmed plum sauce and blackberry preserves rolling through, wrapped liberally with licorice root, sage and lavender notes. Iron minerality runs through the finish, letting the fruit and savory notes meld wonderfully. Built for the cellar. Best from 2022 through 2035.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $131

Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas Le Poste, Rhone 2018 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Wine Spectator 96 points
“Packed, with a core of steeped plum, boysenberry and blackberry confiture flavors layered nicely with violet, anise and applewood notes. Dense but vibrant throughout, with a bundle of energetic grip on the finish that melds nicely with the fruit. Deeply buried minerality lurks at the very end. This should be long-lived. Best from 2022 through 2036.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Miss last week’s edition?

Here is a highlight!

G.D. Vajra Bricco delle Viole, Barolo DOCG 2016 750ML ($99.95) $89 special, 8 bottles in stock now
Case-6 G.D. Vajra Bricco delle Viole, Barolo DOCG 2016 750ML ($599.95) $499 pre-arrival special (that’s only $83.17/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today), additional stock arriving in November!
Wine Spectator 96 points
“Mint and cut grass aromas give way to cherry, black currant and raspberry fruit in this juicy red. Tar, tobacco and eucalyptus accents add depth as this builds to a long, gripping finish. Shows fine balance and length. Best from 2023 through 2046.”

The average price nationally is $95

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Collector’s Corner:

Stella di Campalto

Stella di Campalto is a force of nature—a woman with a vision for how Sangiovese is best expressed and the will to ensure that every single bottling is as perfect as possible.  Her wines are vivid, powerful expressions of the southeast corner of Montalcino and her commitment to quality (which includes holding back the wines several additional years before release) means that they’ve become wines to pay attention to for Italian wine collectors.

Stella took over Podere San Giuseppe, a farm and winery that was founded in 1910 but had been abandoned in the 40’s and replanted her current vineyards by herself.  She farms all of her land with Biodnynamic principles and her goal is first and foremost to express the terroir of Brunello to the utmost.  That includes holding back her wines until she thinks they ought to be released. These are epic wines—Brunello for the lover of top-tier Burgundy.  

“Stella di Campalto would tell you that the location of her vineyards chose her, as her passion for the land and culture turned into a love for wine and, of course, Montalcino. Being a neighbor of Poggio di Sotto, she was also fortunate to find a friend and mentor in Piero Palmucci, who she describes as the winemaker who whipped her into shape. This makes a lot of sense when you taste a wine from Stella di Campalto, as she continues to follow many of Piero’s teachings. The winery (Podere San Giuseppe) is located in Castelnuovo dell’Abate, consisting of 16 hectares, where Stella tends to olive groves, fruits, vegetables and, of course, vineyards, all through biodynamic practices. Her Brunello is released a year later than other producers, designated as a Riserva, and it is worth waiting for. Luckily, she also produces a Rosso from a declassified barrel of Brunello, which is not to me missed. These are wonderfully aromatic, sometimes even exotic wines that flaunt their primary fruit while remaining true expressions of Sangiovese, and they are classic in structure.” –Eric Guido, Vinous Media

Arriving in November

Stella di Campalto Rosso di Montalcino, Tuscany 2015 750ML ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special, only 24 bottles available
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 93 points
“Very pale red. Delicately spicy and herbal nuances complement red cherry and berries on the perfumed floral nose. Then similarly impressive in the mouth, with sneaky concentration and depth to the redcurrant, strawberry and floral flavors. Finishes long and suave, with saline nuances but enticing lovely sweetness. Knockout Rosso.”
Eric Guido-Vinous 92 points “The 2015 Stella di Campalto Rosso di Montalcino shows a beautiful translucent ruby color, with a bouquet of sweet florals and dusty spice giving way to fresh strawberries, white smoke, and hints of leather. On the palate, soft textures flesh out across the senses in a wave of pure bright cherry, lifted by a core of vibrant acidity, which energizes yet also adds sweetness to its pretty red fruits, as minerals settle in and inner floral tones develop. The finish is long yet quite feminine, resonating on ripe red fruits, sweet florals, and spice, with lingering acids which sizzle on the senses. The 2015 is an understated yet remarkably pretty vintage for the Rosso; it’s a wine that begs to be drunk, not tasted, showing all the best qualities of the vintage while maintaining perfect form. It also worth mentioning that this was tasted within a flight of 2015 Brunellos, and it held its own.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $110

Stella di Campalto Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG, Tuscany 2013 750ML ($249.95) $199 pre-arrival special, only 12 bottles available
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 95 points
“Deep red. Initially slightly reduced, but clears with aeration to showcase peach, blood orange, cinnamon, balsamic oils, and talcum powder on the pretty but still youthful nose. Fresh and juicy, but boasting noteworthy size to the pretty red berry and floral flavors. A complicating note of cocoa and coffee rises to the fore on the long juicy finish that showcases sneaky concentration and lurking tannic power. Still youthfully chewy and with some oak that needs to be resolved, but this is a very promising Brunello.”
Eric Guido-Vinous 95 points “I could sit with this glass of 2013 Stella di Campalto Brunello di Montalcino Riserva for hours, simply taking in its bouquet, as it rises up from the glass with an alluring and intoxicating display of crushed ripe strawberries, both rich and sweet, giving way to exotic spice, rhubarb, dusty florals, and mineral tones. On the palate, it’s taking a turn to the savory side, as fleshy textures are offset by zesty acids, with a mix of cherry sauce, spice, wild herbs, and minerals drenching the senses, as pretty inner floral tones develop. It finishes fresh, yet buzzing with energy, contrasted by a tart berry twang, with resonating minerals, spice, and just a hint of fine tannin. This is so clean, so pure, and so easy to like, yet decidedly savory as well. The 2013 Riserva will have a lot of fans and comes off to me as a perfect mix of the 2008 and 2010 vintages.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $214

Vinopolis is an independent wine shop in Portland that opened in 2004. Our goal has always been to offer the finest, broadest, and largest selection of wines at the best prices to our customers in Portland, in Oregon, across the West Coast, and throughout the United States. Thank you for reading and for continuing to support our team.

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