Weekend VinopolPick 2-7-20

In Today’s Newsletter:

The Rare Cristal Vinotheque Bottlings

Two Subscriber Specials, Ending Soon
10% Off German Magnums and
10% Off Domaine Collotte Burgundy

Staff Pick: At New Pink Bubbly Favorite

New Arrivals
Including Marietta Cellar’s Stellar Cali Values,
Dehu’s Cutting Edge Champagne, Beru’s Cult Chablis
Cabs from Freemark Abbey, and More!

2013 Goodfellow Bishop Creek: Back in Stock!

Trending Wines

Collector’s Corner:
De Montille’s “Hommage” Bottlings


The Rare Cristal Vinotheque Bottlings

Roederer’s Cristal is one of the premier bottlings in Champagne—a tete du cuvee that always lives up to the hype.  Even better than Cristal? Cristal Vinotheque—a late released bottling that represents the absolute pinnacle of what Roederer is capable of.

We’re pleased to offer two stunning vintages of Cristal Vinotheque: 1995 and 1996. The pair may represent the best back to back vintages in Champagne’s history—certainly we can’t think of a better duo off the top of our heads (we weren’t around to taste the ’61/’62 combo when they were young, but if you want to argue that, go for it).  Cristal excelled in both years and the newly released Vinotheques are anything you could ever want in Champagne.

As you’d expect for these stunners, quantities are tiny and prices are high—these are wines that we don’t expect to hit the open market for long.  Orders will be processed first come/first served.  Please note that we cannot run email or phone orders until we open for business on Saturday, so our online store is the fastest and most efficient way to purchase these.

Arriving ETA Mid-March

Louis Roederer Cristal Vinotheque Edition Brut, Champagne 1995 750ML ($1,299.95) $1,199 pre-arrival special, 2 bottles available
Louis Roederer Cristal Vinotheque Edition Brut, Champagne 1995 1.5L ($2,699.95) $2,499 pre-arrival special, 2 magnums available
Decanter 99 points
“This Vinothèque version hasn’t moved from Roederer’s cellars in Reims until now. During its long evolution, it has spent ten years on its lees and then another ten on cork. Significantly, it also receives a lower dosage than the original Cristal release. Supremely seductive and endlessly complex, it has a generous, supple texture and intense yet delicate filigree flavours of sweet yellow fruits, quince, nougat, cream, patisserie and savoury hazelnut. Still remarkably young and fresh, this dances across your palate and has a long, savoury, autolytic finish. Charming beyond compare.”
Wine Enthusiast 98 points “This amazing wine is timeless. Just hinting a golden hue, the nose offers layers of toastiness balanced by an impressive amount of fruit and freshness. At 23 years old, it still has some life in it, showing bright citrus and minerality. Let it breathe before drinking to bring out all the subtleties.”
James Suckling 98 points “A very different style to the 1996, this has much more savory, autolytic influence. Fresh, chalky aromas with hazelnuts and grilled lemons, as well as a super fine, toasty thread. There’s roasted coffee, smoky grilled lemons and a big mouthful of fresh white peaches and truffles. Gently nutty. Pulls into chalk at the finish. Eight years sur latte and seven years sur pointe. Disgorged with 7g dosage of the same wine. Drink now to 2025.”
Stephan Reinhardt-Wine Advocate 96+ points “Disgorged in 2010 and re-launched in September 2017, Roederer’s low dosed 1995 Cristal Vinotheque (dosage: six to seven grams per liter) is very intense on the nose and shows lovely maturity. Due to the vintage, which saw some rain in the summer, the Chardonnay part is a bit higher than usual (43% instead of 40%), with just 57% Pinot Noir (from Aÿ). Five percent of the wine was fermented in oak, and 15% underwent malolactic fermentation (only the Pinot Noir though). The palate is rich and vinous but also pure, straight and fresh, finishing with a tight structure, persistent minerality and a yeasty character. Tasted in Reims in May 2018.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Louis Roederer Cristal Vinotheque Edition Brut, Champagne 1996 750ML ($1,499.95) $1,349 pre-arrival special, 2 bottles available
Louis Roederer Cristal Vinotheque Edition Brut, Champagne 1996 1.5L ($2,999.95) $2,799 pre-arrival special, 1 magnum available
Antonio Galloni 100 points
“One of the many highlights of the afternoon, the 1996 Cristal Vinothèque (magnum) exudes a level of richness and intensity that is simply breathtaking. That extra kick of richness the 1996 has developed in magnum and over extended time on the lees is pure magic in balancing some of the natural austerity of the year. What comes through is a Champagne of unforgettable profoundness. Smoke, crushed rocks, white flowers, mint and finely sculpted citrus confit/orchard fruit add striking layers of dimensions. The 1996 is so bright and so alive in the glass. A whole range of Chardonnay inflections punctuate the finish…” [Review is for a late disgorgement from 2009]
Wine Enthusiast 100 points “A re-release from one of the legendary vintages of the last 30 years, this Champagne still shows some of the intense acidity that marked that year. It has gained maturity, but it’s an ageless, magnificent wine. Although it is ready to drink, it will hold well through 2029.”
James Suckling 99 points “The wine starts with attractive, reductive, toasty aromas, then freshens with air to offer fresh flowers and very fine lime peel and lemon pith, as well as grapefruit and yellow plums. The palate has an intense, fine and fresh feel with super long, lemon and lime flavors, together with subtle, nutty moments that will build with time on cork. Then, a late, spicy edge and super tart, mouthwatering grapefruit. Seemingly endless length and potential. Kept on the lees for its entire life and disgorged in 2012. Dosage of 7g using 1996 wine – as pure as possible. A must for every collector of great Champagne.”
Decanter 98 points “A blend of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay, this is a truly remarkable champagne offering pure, unalloyed pleasure now and for many years yet. It has a fabulous nose showing freshness and fruit with supple, savoury aromas of brioche and cox’s apple. The acidity is vibrant, light and taut yet somehow also exhibits lovely roundness and a gorgeous satin-like texture. The palate spectrum is mind-boggling, with flavours ranging from cashew, cream, nougat and toast to white pear, citrus and crystallised fruits. Supremely balanced and refined, it finishes with a sumptuously long, savoury-umami finish.”



Two Subscriber Specials, Ending Soon

We’ve got two Subscriber Specials going on right now—10% off both all in-stock German magnums and also off of in-stock wines from Domaine Collotte.  The Collotte special ends tonight at midnight and you have until Sunday morning (at 10AM, PT) to capitalize on our discounting those German mags.  Act quickly and save!

10% Off In Stock German Magnums – Through 10AM Sunday

Magnums of German Riesling are objectively the best large formats out there.  This is a fact, not open to dispute—we refuse to hear any counter-arguments. Somehow need convincing?  Consider the “pouring wingspan” of a German magnum.  From a seated position, a host can easily pour into any glass at a dinner party of eight people—that extra three feet of bottle makes it happen. Plus, they’re filled with German Riesling!  These are some of the most delicious, joyous wines on the planet!  Light, fresh and pairing with seemingly everything, there’s a bottle of Riesling for every palate and a magnum in stock at Vinopolis.

To put more mags on more tables, we’re offering our email subscribers (that’s you) an extra 10% off all in stock German magnums until we open for business on Sunday.  Whether luscious Auslese or powerful and dry GG wines, if it’s in magnum and German (and here) it’s 10% off.

Subscriber Special: 10% Off All In Stock German Magnums
Subscriber Special pricing will not display online or in your cart.
We will manually adjust pricing before finalizing your order.
Subscriber Special valid until Sunday, February 9th at 10 AM Pacific

In Stock Now:

Maximin Grunhauser Abtsberg Riesling Kabinett, Mosel 2017 1.5L ($79.95) Displayed Price: $69, $62.10 Subscriber Special, 7 magnums in stock now
Stuart Pigott-jamessuckling .com 94 points
“Quite funky from the wild ferment, but behind that, there is a very expressive wine with great fruit. The very racy acidity makes the finish really uplifting. Drink or hold.”

This was the lowest listed price for a magnum in the USA today,
Now it’s even lower!

Weingut Donnhoff Dellchen Riesling Grosses Gewachs, Nahe 2017 1.5L ($219.95) Displayed Price: $189, $170.10 Subscriber Special, 2 magnums in stock now
#3 Wine of the Year – James Suckling Top 100 in 2018
Stuart Pigott-jamessuckling .com 100 points “An enormous spectrum of fruit aromas, from peaches through grapefruit to wild strawberries and pineapple. However, that doesn’t prepare you for the mind-blowing concentration and brilliance on the palate. Extremely filigree finish, in spite of the profound minerality. From organically grown grapes. Fair’n Green certification. Drink or hold. Limited production.”
Mosel Fine Wines 95 points “The 2017er Norheimer Dellchen GG exhibits a superbly aromatic and fruit-driven nose of pineapple, grapefruit, apple, grape juice and lime, all wrapped into smoke and anise. The nose gains even in finesse and presence with further airing. The wine has great presence and focus on the palate, w here spices and delicately herbal notes give a great refreshing side to this playful dry Riesling. The finish is pure, gorgeously long and driven by lime. This is a classic in the making. 2025-2042.”
David Schildknecht – Vinous 94 points “Iris and ginseng, sea breeze and ripe white peach combine for a site-typical aromatic performance and correspondingly alluring presence on a silken palate. Cool and laid-back in personality, yet possessed of an intricate as well as active impression of mineral matter – stone, alkali above all salts – and with its pit-piquancy deftly-integrated and harnessed entirely in the service of invigoration, this remarkable elixir takes control of the salivary glands as it glides off into a lingering finish that preserves haunting, billowing florality, and whose sense of buoyancy is rare among Grosse Gewächse. For intriguing and subtle complexity, this easily surpasses the three wines of that genre to have preceded it in Dönnhoff’s tasting line-up. If you follow my frequent comments concerning the taste preferences that prevail among his countrymen and many German critics, it won’t surprise you that Dönnhoff says many tasters – most of whom, granted, assess this wine at a much earlier stage than I do – aren’t excited by Dellchen and “find its aromas and sense of buoyancy almost a bit frivolous.””

This is the only listing for a magnum in the USA today!

Weingut Korrell Johanneshof Kreuznacher Paradies Riesling Trocken, Nahe 2017 1.5L ($99.95) Displayed Price: $79, $71.10 Subscriber Special, 8 magnums in stock now
Grapelive 94 points
“The radiant and graceful Korrell Paradies Trocken leads with expressive pure apple tones. [It] impresses for its elegance and subtle character. It’s a wine of great poise and delicacy, especially admirable for such a young Riesling. The monopole estate vineyard, Paradies, is the oldest single site Korrell has and is the flagship wine from winemaker Martin Korrell. It comes from his family’s vines that are set on limestone and clay soils in Bad Kreuznach area of the Nahe region. The Paradies Riesling Trocken is a gorgeous white of depth and precise winemaking that takes advantage of this unique site in the Nahe. This wine is the heart and soul of Korrell and it is product of its unique climat,or terroir. It sees more sunshine and the limestone allows for serious concentration, while retaining acidity, though there is always great attention paid to pick dates to finely tune this signature bottling to place and vintage. Korrell mixes some traditional stainless fermentations with some native yeast and barrel ferments to craft his wines. The Paradies shows a beautiful leesy finesse that reminds me a bit of the Von Winning GG’s, with a long time on the lees adding a beautiful glycerin density to this gorgeous dry Riesling. Coming off Korrel’s incredible Riesling Cup win for his Von den Grossen Lagen (Grand Crus) Riesling Trocken, I was absolutely thrilled to be able to try this wine, and found this particular wine just as intriguing. Martin focuses on preserving heightened aromatics and crisp mineral tones, while allowing the mouth feel and depth to shine through. It is an amazing accomplishment to get it all right, and Korrell deserves his time in the limelight. This is complex and glorious stuff. Layers of green apple, peach, mixed fresh citrus and melon fruits are lifted by liquid rock, steely mineral and faint perfume of white flowers along with a silkiness of mouth feel. While still delightfully crisp, [this delivers] an exciting energy filled performance. This is a winery that about to break out and join some elite company, in fact they are riding high after winning, as mentioned, the famous Riesling Cup award with their unique multi (Grand) cru Von den Grossen Lagen Trocken Riesling. This wine is just extra proof there is real quality here! The lightly golden hued and generously textured Paradies will age well. It’s full of charm, class and potential. Best to let this one have another 3 to 5 years, though it certainly is delicious right now.”
Stuart Pigott-jamessuckling .com 94 points “Very clean and fresh, but behind the effusive, fruit-salad character that makes this so seductive, there is a lot of structure and the finish keeps pumping out the fruit and chalky minerality. Drink or hold.”

This was the lowest listed price for a magnum in the USA today,
Now it’s even lower!
Subscriber Special: 10% Off All In Stock German Magnums
Subscriber Special pricing will not display online or in your cart.
We will manually adjust pricing before finalizing your order.
Subscriber Special valid until Sunday, February 9th at 10 AM Pacific

Browse all 26 German magnums on our web store, including wines from JJ Prum, Donnhoff, Willi Schaefer, Korrell and more!

Domaine Collotte – Value Burgundies, Further Discounted

Love our subscriber-only deals? Don’t miss our 10% deal on the Domaine Collotte Burgundies—ending tomorrow night at midnight.

A vintage like 2015 isn’t just a great year in Burgundy—it’s a great buying opportunity if you know where to look.  A perfect example? Domaine Collotte’s wines from Marsannay and Fixin. We’ve carried these wines for a few years and are always excited to source them, but there’s a marked step up in quality for the 2015’s.  The best part of the equation is the pricing—and we’re making that even better, offering you an additional 10% off these excellent values until midnight tonight (Friday) night.  

Subscriber Special: 10% Off all In Stock Wines from Domaine Collotte
Subscriber Special pricing will not display online or in your cart.
We will manually adjust pricing before finalizing your order.
Subscriber Special valid until 11:59 PM Pacific on Friday, February 7th 



Staff Pick

At New Pink Bubbly Favorite

Von Boden is an importer that should be on your radar. These Cool Kids are bringing in some of the most exciting wines from Germany: Keller (of Keller fame :-), Peter Lauer, and JB Becker, to name a few. So when they followed the Mosel River into France (here the Moselle), you knew they’d pick some of the finest yet-to-be-discovered stars such as Domaine Migot. Winemaker and owner Camille Migot is new to the wine scene, having completed his first harvest in 2013, but his family and the estate are not. He’s the 13th generation to farm vineyards in the tiny, 100 hectare appellation of Cotes de Toul near Alsace. His five hectares of vines are certified organic and worked by hand, and this approach carries into the winery: all native yeast in stainless or neutral oak with very minimal filtration. The results? Think classic Loire Valley style. The 100% Gamay sparkling Methode Traditionnelle is an elegant and light-bodied bubbly with a refreshingly low alcohol. Despite the inaccurate back label saying it’s blanc (it’s a small estate), it’s a pink rose that borders on an oeil de perdrix color. The wine opens with a savory, yeasty flavor that’s subtle and allows the bright raspberry and strawberry aromas to shine. It’s what I’d imagine a Champenois Grower with a light touch making from Gamay grapes. It has a lengthy finish with a crisp citrus and brambly note. It’s sure to appeal to any lover of lighter wines from the Loire, Chablis, Mosel or Champagne, and would be an excellent aperitif on the 14th.

Domaine Migot Methode Traditionelle Brut, Moselle NV 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 24 bottles in stock now
100% Gamay

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



New Arrivals

West Coast

Marietta Cellars is one of the preeminent producers of excellent value, honestly made California wine.  They’re known for delicious, gutsy wines that deliver exceptional value at all prices.  These are fantastic wines from their sub-$20 Zinfandel and Cabernet bottlings all the way through their “Gibson Block” Syrah, which hails from a parcel of Syrah planted in the 1880’s and still producing (tiny quantities) of fruit today.  You’ll note the glowing reviews and high scores for these wines, all of which are deserved.  These are classically Californian and perfect for your table tonight.

Marietta Cellars Angeli Cuvee Zinfandel, Alexander Valley 2017 750ML ($39.95) $29 special, 23 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 94 points
‘The 2017 Zinfandel Angeli, from a site in Alexander Valley, is rich, pliant and expressive. Super-ripe black cherry, hard candy, new leather, lavender and mint give the Angeli decidedly dark shades of expression. This sumptuous, flavorful Zinfandel should drink well for another decade or more.”

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

Marietta Cellars ‘Game Trail’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Yorkville Highlands 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 17 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 94 points
“Marietta’s 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Game Trail is powerful, dark and quite savory. Smoke, tobacco, gravel, menthol, cedar and licorice all run through this bold, pungent mountain Cabernet. There is quite a bit of aromatic intensity to play off the blackberry fruit in this strapping young wine. Give it a few years in bottle for the tannins to soften.”

Marietta Cellars Gibson Block Syrah, McDowell Valley 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 20 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 95 points
“The 2016 Syrah Estate Gibson Block is the star of this range from Marietta. From a dry-farmed site planted in the 1880s, the Gibson Block is powerful, sumptuous and racy to the core. A whole range of complementary varieties give the Gibson Block striking inner perfume and lift to play off the intense dark fruit, while silky tannins add to the wine’s racy, inviting personality.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Marietta Cellars Arme Estate Cabernet, North Coast 2016 750ML ($24.95) $19 special, 22 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 92 points
“The 2016 Armé is another superb wine in the middle tier of the Marietta range. Fresh, savory and super-expressive, the Armé has a lot going on. Black cherry, sage, lavender, menthol and licorice give the wine striking savory nuance to play off the dark Cabernet Sauvignon fruit. More than anything else, though, the Armé is a superb value in California Cabernet.”
Wine Enthusiast 92 points “Editor’s Choice. Saturated with opulent black-fruit flavors and moderately tannic, this wine is big but polished and complex. It shows little obvious oakiness, but rather feels shaped by oak aging until it was velvety and firm. Enjoyable now with something roasted or braised, this wine will drink best after 2022.”

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

Marietta Cellars ‘Christo’ Rhone Blend 2016 750ML ($21.95) $17 special, 17 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 93 points
“The 2016 Christo, Marietta’s Syrah-based blend, is terrific. Black cherry, chocolate, leather, licorice and spice give the wine much of its dark, brooding feel. Powerful and intense, but with good freshness, the 2016 is wonderfully complete and absolutely delicious.”

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

Marietta Cellars ‘Roman’ Estate Grown Zinfandel, North Coast 2017 750ML ($21.95) $18 special, 13 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 91 points
“The 2017 Román is a gorgeous, Zinfandel-based blend from Marietta that offers sweet floral notes and bright, red-toned berry flavors. Medium-bodied and refreshing, the 2017 is delicious, fun and easy to drink. I loved it.”

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

A benchmark Chardonnay that we sold out pre-arrival, until we were able to secure more bottles.
Arnot-Roberts Trout Gulch Vineyard Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains 2016 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 96 points
“The 2016 Chardonnay Trout Gulch is wonderfully polished, nuanced and transparent. Lemon peel, white flowers, mint and chalk notes give the Trout Gulch its distinctive, bright flavor profile. In some years, the Trout Gulch has leaned towards the more austere of the Chardonnay spectrum. The 2016 has all the energy of the more tightly wound vintages, but with a bit more textural resonance that is the result of the wine having spent more time on its lees during aging.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

This vineyard has been one of the best in Napa since the ’70’s.
Freemark Abbey ‘Bosche’ Cabernet Sauvignon, Rutherford 2015 750ML ($179.95) $149 special, 11 bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 97 points
“Blended of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon and 8% Merlot, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Bosche Vineyard has a deep garnet-purple color and is scented of earthy nuances of truffles, dusty soil and underbrush with a core of crème de cassis, black cherry compote and blueberry pie plus hints of camphor and scorched earth. Full, concentrated, rich and densely packed with loads of earth and black fruit layers, it has a firm, ripe, grainy frame and oodles of freshness, finishing long. 2,018 cases produced.”

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


Chateau de Beru has gone from an insider’s secret to one of the most in-demand Chablis producers in a matter of a decade as a sheer result of winemaking talent.  Athénaïs Beru is an absolute rockstar who has elevated the 400 year old estate to prime Chablis status. These new wines are from the outstanding 2017 vintage and display all the precision and minerality we hope to find in Chablis.  If you want your Chablis to be packed with rocks, citrus oil and an electric energy, you ought to be buying them.  By all measures, Beru is on a trajectory that will soon take them into Dauvissat or Raveneau realms of pricing, but at the moment the wines are still relatively affordable, even if they’re no longer a secret.

Chateau de Beru Chablis Terrois de Beru, Burgundy 2017 750ML ($49.95) $41.90 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 94 points
“The 2017 Chablis Terroirs de Béru is striking. Wonderfully fresh and delineated, the 2017 possesses striking depth, not to mention tons of sheer character. Dried flowers, orchard fruit and mint all develop in the glass, but it is the wine’s crystalline personality that really stands out. The Terroirs de Béru is conceived as a representation of the entire property, and it is absolutely gorgeous.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau de Beru Chablis Cote Aux Pretres, Burgundy 2017 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 94 points
“Another magnificent wine in this range, the 2017 Chablis Côte aux Prêtres Orangerie Montserre emerges from a parcel that is near the paths pilgrims followed from Vézelay on their way to Santiago de Compostela. Powerful and intensely saline, the Côte aux Prêtres is drenched in mineral-infused intensity. Drive, focus and explosive energy all set this cuvée apart in the range. This is such a compelling wine.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Benoit Dehu is officially on the Prevost path.  Like Prevost, he’s making single-vineyard Champagne from Pinot Meunier in a lean, vinous style and the wines are getting harder and harder to find. The hallmark of Dehu’s style is vinousity—these are profound wines that happen to have bubbles in them.  The production is miniscule, though (~250 cases per year), limited by tiny size of his vineyard. Our allocation just arrived and is already being snapped up (one cuvee is already sold out).

Benoit Dehu ‘La Rue des Noyers’, Champagne NV (2015) 750ML ($119.95) $89 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 94 Points
“The NV (2015) Extra Brut Cuvée La Rue des Noyers speaks with real authority, and yet the 2015 is one of the more delicate versions of this cuvée so far. Time in the glass allows the wine to blossom nicely. Dried pear, smoke, herbs and dried flowers fill out the wine’s creamy frame effortlessly. Once again, the Rue des Noyers is one of the most distinctive wines in Champagne. Dosage is 1 grams per liter. Disgorged: July 2017.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Benoit Dehu ‘Initiation’ Brut Nature, Champagne NV (2016) 750ML ($89.95) $75 special, 10 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 94 points
“Benoit Déhu’s NV [2016] Initiation is a blend of 78% Pinot Noir and 22% Meunier. Ample and resonant in feel, the 2016 retains a gorgeous sense of transparency as well. Floral and spice inflections build as the 2016 shows off its multi-faceted, exotic personality. The non-dosage style works perfectly here. Initiation is one of the most singular Champagnes I tasted all year. Don’t miss it. No dosage.”
Importer note “Cuvée Initiation is the newest addition to the Déhu lineup. Made from his signature variety Pinot Meunier and 25% Pinot Noir, which Benoît planted using massale selection of Pommard clone from Burgundy. Oak vinification and ageing, unfined and unfiltered, low dosage. The wines is zippy and round with a persistent finish.  Sourced from a small parcel at the bottom of the hill which Benoît planted using massale selection of Pommard clone from Burgundy.

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


This has always been a standby and the new 2012 is one of the best vintages produced.
La Rioja Alta S.A. Vina Arana Gran Reserva, Rioja DOCa 2012 750ML ($49.95) $38 special, 12 bottles in stock now
James Suckling 95 points
“Brambleberries, licorice, dried blueberries, cedar, tobacco, smoke, vanilla, dried citrus and even a hint of grapefruit. The lazer-sharp acidity evinces a real sense of purity, and the tannins are really edgy and structured. Full-bodied but very elegant and stylish. The finish goes on and on, thanks to the shimmering acidity. Beautiful now, but better in 2024.”

More stock has arrived for this stunner from Ribera del Duero.
Dominio de Pingus ‘Flor de Pingus’, Ribera del Duero 2016 750ML ($99.95) $85 special, 34 bottles in stock now
Wine Advocate 95 points
“I also tasted the unbottled 2016 Flor de Pingus before, so a revisit now, some 15 months after it was bottled, was due. There is great freshness in these 2016s, with a character that reminded me of orange peel, citrus and floral. There is great balance in the palate, and the tannins are velvety within the faintly rustic character of the zone; keeping the style of the zone, that texture is what Peter Sisseck calls “three-dimensional” tannins—very clean and focused, long and tasty and ending with great freshness. They were able to harvest early with proper ripeness and tons of freshness; in fact, that year they finished harvesting when some had not even started in the zone… In the future, they will include some Garnacha in the blend of Flor de Pingus (starting with 2018 with a very small percentage), as they have planted some vines selected from old vineyards in the region. They now have 35 hectares from four parajes in the village of La Horra for this wine, and in 2016, they produced 105,000 bottles. It was bottled in June 2018.-LG”
James Suckling 96 points “Chalky and intense with so much blackberry character. Some smoke, too. Full body. Firm and chewy with lots of fruit, but a tight and linear finish. Chewy and intense. Needs a year or two to open, but already a joy. Better after 2021.”

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


A fantastic deal on an old-school bottle of Barolo from a great vintage.
A & G Fantino Cascina Dardi, Barolo 2013 750ML ($59.95) $41.90 special, 28 bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 93+ points
“The 2013 Barolo Bussia Cascina Dardi is a super-appealing, old-school Barolo that is going to require a number of years to be at its best. Deceptively medium in body, the 2013 possesses quite a bit of aromatic nuance and depth, but at present the tannins dominate. Scents of dried herbs, tobacco, leather and licorice open up over time, but only gradually. Readers should be prepared to be patient. Drink 2019 – 2033.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $49.97
The average listed price is $57


Previously Sold Out, Now Back In Stock

Goodfellow 2013 Bishop Creek

The 2013 vintage remains something of an Oregon insider’s secret.  At the time the wines were released, no one knew what to make of the year, marked by an intense rain storm after an otherwise fantastic growing season.  The wines were often backwards on release (or dilute), so they were hard to judge.  Now, though, those backwards wines have put on weight and their tannins have softened, yielding wines that are in an absolute sweet spot right now.

A prime case in point? Marcus Goodfellow’s 2013 Bishop Creek Pinot Noir. This is a wine that the winery chose not to try and sell in its youth.  A few dozen cases went out to the wine club, but other than that, the wine was just too ornery to deliver much in the way of pleasure and so the winery didn’t actively try and sell it.  They held onto it, knowing it had the raw materials to age—and boy, were they right. We tasted it and it’s turned into a fantastic bottle of Pinot. 

This is a wine that lovers of Oregon and lovers of Burgundy can agree on. Beautifully fruited with a distinctly savory note of earth and spice, this shows off its terroir in a suave, sophisticated way. Bishop Creek vineyard is a site that has since been sold to the famed Burgundy producer Meo-Camuzet.  On an absolute basis, the wines that Goodfellow made from the site are clearly superior—when you factor in that they’re $60+ per bottle less expensive, well, it’s a no-brainer.  The 2013 is in a fantastic place right now, but will age effortlessly for another 5-10 years.

This wine sold out in 48 hours last weekend, but we just got a resupply from the winery.  Unfortunately, we were only able to get another five cases, so this probably won’t last too long.

Back In Stock Now:

Goodfellow Family Cellars Bishop Creek Vineyard Pinot Noir, Yamhill-Carlton 2013 750ML ($39.95) $29 special, 36+ bottles in stock now

“Twenty five year old un-grafted Wadensville vines, dry farmed in the Yamhill-Carlton AVA are handpicked for this wine. From 3 acres, each clone is fermented separately with native yeasts in small lots, typically with 50-60% whole-clusters. The wine is aged in 0%-40% new French oak barrels for 18-21 months and bottled unfined and unfiltered. There is intensity at Bishop Creek, with deep, dark toned fruit, a spicy floral edge and savory tones with acidity and length.”–Winery Notes

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Peppery and delicious, this Yamhill-Carlton Syrah is a steal of a wine.
Matello Fool’s Journey Deux Vert Vineyard, Willamette Valley 2013 750ML ($24.95) $18 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Josh Raynolds – Vinous 90 points
“Bright violet. Smoke-tinged dark berries and pungent flowers on the nose. Juicy and focused on the palate, offering bitter cherry and cassis flavors that take a sweeter turn on the back half. Dusty tannins make a late appearance and add gentle grip to the smooth, energetic finish.”
Winery note “From the Willamette Valley’s first planting of Syrah, this cool climate, low alcohol wine will redefine your idea of the possibilities of new-world Syrah. If you like your Syrah French, here is a kindred but one of a kind wine from Oregon.”

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A top, collectible bottle from one of Tuscany’s top estates in a great vintage.
Fontodi Flaccianello della Pieve Colli della Toscana Centrale IGT, Tuscany 2012 750ML ($119.95) $99 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Antonio Galloni 97 points
“Tasted next to the 2012 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Vigna del Sorbo, the Flaccianello is richer, deeper and more flamboyant. Super-ripe red stone fruit, smoke, licorice and dark spices meld together in a deep, powerful wine. The 2012 is impressive, but personally I prefer the finesse and freshness of the Sorbo. The greater influence of new French oak is also felt in the wine’s texture. Still, that is splitting hairs, as the level here is high. Very high.”

Raul Perez is the voice of New Spain and his wines from Bierzo show why he’s beloved.
La Vizcaina ‘El Rapolao’ Lomas de Valtuille, Bierzo 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 16 bottles in stock now
Luis Gutierrez-Wine Advocate 95+ points
“The cool and elegant character of the El Rapolao plot seems to have been amplified by the weather conditions in the 2016 La Vizcaína El Rapolao. Pérez does not own all the vineyards, so sourcing can sometimes vary within the same vineyard, and since 2016 it comes from two old plots where the Mencía is mixed with other varieties; the wine seems to have gained in depth and complexity as a result. In 2016 he did a slightly shorter maceration and matured the wine in 500-liter oak barrels for a little over 12 months. The vineyard yields well, and the wine is always expressive, balanced and elegant. It seems like slightly higher yields suit it better, and the wines have good tension and an herbal twist that adds to the complexity and freshness. 5,000 bottles produced.”

Gamay from granite soils just west of Beaujolais—a steal of a wine with old-school pricing.
Domaine Serol Eclat de Granite Cote Roannaise, Loire 2017 750ML ($21.95) $16.50 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Grapelive 93 points
“Stephane Serol is making compelling wines from his upper Loire [Valley] Cote Roannaise estate [using the] Saint Romain clone of Gamay. These are wines that defy regional landscapes and should be almost considered an iconic individual appellation or maybe a lost Cru Beaujolais on par with Morgon or Cote de Brouilly! Especially this 2017 Eclat de Granite which is plush and expressive much in the same way Dutraive, Lapierre, Sunier, Thivin, Chanrion and Thevenet are with plenty of intense Cote Roannaise mountain tannin and structure. Minerally detailed, this beautifully clear Serol Gamay has a deep sense of varietal, place and remote wildness. Stephane has captured his place in the bottle to near perfection. Vivid purple, magenta and ruby/garnet in the glass the Eclat de Granite is bursting with vibrancy and dark flavors showing flinty spices, herbs, violets and walnut complexities to go along with a core of blackberry, blue plum and bing cherry fruit, adding a touch of grenadine, straw and tart blood orange as well as a faint trace of stony/earthiness in an absolutely balanced wine that really delivers exceptional quality. One of the best vintages from Serol, it combines a lovely and graceful medium bodied palate and a flowing almost seamless stream of Gamay flavors, textural pleasure and a vivacious personality. [It’s] easy to love from start to finish. Serol, whose Domaine sits at high elevation not too far from the Loire’s source at the Massif Central, has some 80 year old vines and is the fifth generation to farm and make wine up here. He and his wife Carine have made this wild almost forgotten land a serious place to search out. Stephane employed partial whole cluster and traditional fermentation with his 2017 Eclat de Granite and raised it in a combination of neutral cask and tank, again to add live, grip and sense of place and while non carbonic it has a pop of juicy fruit and some nervy coil from the limited use of stems. This is almost impossible for Gamay lovers to resist and Burgundy fans will also grudging and maybe secretly adore this stuff as they do with producers like Foillard! Serol works all organic and is almost finished converting to full biodynamic practices in the vineyards and in the cellar uses ultra-low sulfur. Rather than [label] him as a natural winemaker, I’d say he is committed to his land and passionate in everything he does. Drink his 2017 Eclat de Granite over the next 3 to 5 years, if not longer.”

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The best value out of Barbaresco? It’s hard to think of one better.
Adriano Marco e Vittorio Basarin, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Adriano Marco e Vittorio Basarin, Barbaresco DOCG 2016 750ML ($479.95) $359 special (that’s only $29.92/bottle!)
#6 Wine Enthusiast Top 100 of 2019
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“Spearmint, black-skinned berry, blue flower and new leather aromas lead the way along with a whiff of menthol. Tight and taut, the elegant, structured palate delivers juicy black cherry, crushed raspberry, wild herbs and white pepper alongside assertive, close-grained tannins. Bright acidity provides balance. Best 2024–2036”
Wine Spectator 94 points “Aromas of rose, cherry, strawberry and white pepper draw you in, while vibrant acidity and a lacy texture carry the fruit flavors, adding tobacco and earth details. A solid base of tannins provides support. This should come together nicely. Best from 2022 through 2038.”


Collector’s Corner

De Montille’s “Hommage” Bottlings

De Montille’s Malconsorts “Cuvee Christiane” is one of the rarest, most prized wines in Burgundy.  A special cuvee, it’s from a small plot of Vosne-Romanée Malconsorts that is separated from the rest of the vineyard by a foot-path and, most importantly, sits right next to La Tâche.  

It’s significantly different and better than their (already excellent) Vosne Malconsorts, more than meriting its status as a separate cuvee.  While Malconsorts is often sold as “La Tâche like,” the de Montille is one of the few bottlings that truly delivers on the comparison.  From quality to rarity to pricing, this is truly Grand Cru stuff.

Because of the small production, this isn’t a wine we’re able to source every vintage, but in 2015, we struck gold.  Because of the death of Hubert de Montille that year, the Christiane and the Pommard “Rugiens-Bas” were only bottled in magnum, both with a special “Hommage” neck label (and a fancy two-pack OWC).  These are some of the rarest and most collectible bottles of Burgundy we’ve offered in a while.

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Only one magnum available
Domaine de Montille Les Malconsorts Cuvee Christiane, Vosne-Romanee Premier Cru 2015 1.5L ($2,799.95) $1,899 pre-arrival special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 95-97 points
“The 2015 Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru les Malconsorts Cuvée Christiane is 100% whole bunch matured in 65% new oak. It has a very intense bouquet, perhaps a little more opaque than the regular Malconsorts, gradually opening with grey slate aromas tincturing the dark berry fruit. The palate is very well balanced with filigree tannin, supremely well-judged acidity, harmonious and focused with a long and tensile finish. Just a fabulous Malconsorts.”
Stephen Tanzer 94-97 points “(100% vendange entier; 65% new oak; from slightly heavier soil than the “regular” Malconsorts): Deep red. Much more closed on the nose than the Malconsorts, offering perfumed but slightly stunted scents of medicinal dark cherry and spices. Very rich and deep but without the screaming perfume of the first Malconsorts. But this wine is inkier, denser, chewier and even longer, with building tannins and a powerful structure to support a very long evolution in bottle. Both of these Malconsorts cuvées finished their malos very late, in September.”

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Only two magnums available
Domaine de Montille Les Rugiens-Bas, Pommard Premier Cru 2015 1.5L ($1199.95) $899 pre-arrival special
Neal Martin-Wine Advocate 94-96 points
“The re-christened 2015 Pommard 1er Cru Rugiens Cuvée Hubert is 100% whole cluster fruit from Rugien-Bas, matured in 45% new oak. The grapes went through a selection process and will be labelled as “Cuvée Hubert” and will only be bottled in magnums. It has a beautiful bouquet, so pure and refined, with red cherry, wild strawberry and wet limestone aromas. The palate is very well defined with a crisp line of acidity and very fine tension; the wine is very focused, a gentle grip on the finish with a long and persistent, minerally finish. I think Hubert de Montille would appreciate this.”
Stephen Tanzer 92-95 points “(100% vendange entier; from the upper part of Les Rugiens-Bas): Bright, dark red. Pungent iron-like minerality and terrific floral lift to the nose. Wonderfully juicy, deeply spicy wine with compelling floral delicacy and blazing definition. Really distinctive minerality here. Finishes firmly tannic, racy and extremely long, with razor-sharp delineation. Etienne de Montille will bottle this homage to his late father Hubert entirely in magnums.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!


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