Weekend VinopolPick 6-29-18

In Today’s Newsletter:

First Offer: Vietti’s Stunning 2014’s
Perrier Belle Epoque Rosé at Jaw Dropping Pricing

New Arrivals
Including: Barthod, Rossignol-Trapet,
Argiano, Oreno, Leoville Poyferre and More!

Grapelive Praises Etna’s Natural Wine King
Famous in Germany, A Discovery Here: Kees-Kieran
Ulysses, A New Epic from Dominus’ Author
The June Sale Ends Saturday Night
Trending – The Hottest Wines of the Week
Late Breaking News: A Tranche of 2010 Aldo Conterno
Wine Advocate Praises 2013 Produttori
The Complete June Sale


Vinopolis Wine Shop

Will Be Closed on July 4th

We will re-open on Thursday, July 5th
for our regularly scheduled hours:

10 am – 6 pm


First Offer:

Vietti’s Stunning 2014 Crus

Grand in Scope

Limited in Quantity

“This is an absolutely phenomenal set of wines from Vietti. The 2014s are every bit as magnificent as they have always been from barrel. The dual flagships Rocche di Castiglione and Ravera are superb, while the entry-level Barolo Castiglione does a great job of conveying the personality of the year. Sadly, Brunate sustained 60% hail damage. As a result, Luca Currado opted not to bottle his Barolo Brunate. Yields are down about 25% across the board, so readers will want to snap up these Barolos before they disappear.“-Antonio Galloni

Arriving July 6th:

Vietti Ravera, Barolo DOCG 2014 750ML ($179.95) $159 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 97 points “Another highlight in this range, the 2014 Barolo Ravera opens with the most exquisite, captivating aromatics imaginable. It will be interesting to see if it develops a bit more midpalate depth and pliancy. Today, the 2014 is a bit austere, even within the context of the year and this site, where the wines are a bit on the nervous side to start. I have seen Vietti Raveras blossom into spectacular wines and imagine that will be the case here as well. Readers should not plan on opening a bottle anytime soon.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Vietti Rocche di Castiglione, Barolo DOCG 2014 750ML ($199.95) $179 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 98 points “Vietti’s 2014 Barolo Rocche di Castiglione is shaping up to be a modern-day classic. Piercing, intense and austere in the best sense of the word, the Rocche is a wine of laser-like focus that will leave Barolo lovers weak in the knees. Candied cherry, pomegranate, kirsch, rose petal and violet overtones give the 2014 its inner sweetness and captivating perfume. In a word: stunning. Don’t miss it.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Vietti Lazzarito, Barolo DOCG 2014 750ML ($179.95) $149 pre-arrival special
Antonio Galloni 96 points “In many ways, the gorgeous 2014 Barolo Lazzarito is the most surprising wine in the range. Once a stylistic outlier with a considerable French oak influence, today it is much closer to the other Barolos in terms of feel. Deep, dark and intense, with all of the energy of the year very much on display, the Lazzarito is super-expressive and shows a more red-toned profile than is the norm. Kirsch, mint, rose petal and chalk all develop in the glass, while beams of tannin and salinity give the wine shape and persistence. The weight and depth of Serralunga come through on the midpalate and into the finish. Even so, this is in a decidedly laid-back style for Serralunga. In 2014, I especially like the wine’s aromatic presence.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!



Perrier Jouet’s Flower Power Rosé

At a Jaw Dropping Price

Perrier Jouet is one of the more overlooked Grande Marque houses in Champagne—they tend not to be discussed with the same reverence as Roederer or Bollinger. That is, with the exception of their top wine the beautiful (and beautifully packaged) Belle Epoque, a vintage wine that is as elegant and pretty inside as the flower adorned painted bottle it comes in.  The wine radiates elegance, with a fine mousse and delicate flavors and aromas.  The rosé version is the rarest, most expensive thing that PJ makes—which means when we can get it $150 below the national average we buy as much as we can.  The rosé at this price is a steal and a deal that only comes around once in a blue moon, so stock up!

Arriving Tuesday:

Beautiful, ravishing and beautifully packaged.
Perrier-Jouet Belle Epoque – Fleur de Champagne Brut Millesime Rose, Champagne 2005 750ML ($319.95) $159 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 95 points “The palest of rosés, this crisp, bright and fruity wine is full of tight acidity, freshly picked raspberries and steely acidity. It could age a few more years to bring out a toastier character.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average listed price is $310
New Week – New Arrivals

France – Burgundy

Only 6 bottles available of this staff pick!
Domaine Jacques-Frederic Mugnier Clos de la Marechale, Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru 2015 750ML ($179.95) $149 special
Stephen Tanzer 92 points “Bright, dark red. Aromas of blackberry, chocolate and licorice show the ripe side of the vintage but with plenty of lift. Then surprisingly tight in the mouth, with black raspberry and dark chocolate flavors complicated by savory earth and mineral tones. This seriously structured wine finishes with very fine-grained tannins.”
Burghound 92 points “Outstanding. This is also agreeably fresh and particularly so for the vintage while displaying much more earth character on the pretty mix of red and dark berries, especially cherry. There is a lovely texture to the sappy, delicious and succulent flavors that possess a fleshy mouthfeel, all wrapped in a lingering if slightly warm finale. This excellent effort should also age effortlessly yet there is so much mid-palate sap that it will be approachable young.”

Only 4 bottles available from a great vintage!
Domaine Rossignol-Trapet Chapelle Chambertin Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2010 750ML ($249.95) $199 special
Burghound 94 points “A very mild trace of reduction does not completely hide the densely fruited and well-layered nose of red berries, plum and distinct floral notes, all of which are intermingled with mineral nuances. The rich, round and impressively intense flavors possess both excellent volume and dry extract that partially buffers the very firm tannic spine, all wrapped in a mouth coating and seriously long finish. This is a big Chapelle with plenty of underlying material that should permit this to age beautifully.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Barthod’s here for a hot second—don’t miss out.
Domaine Ghislaine Barthod Bourgogne Les Bons Batons Rouge, Burgundy 2015 750ML ($69.95) $59 special

Domaine Ghislaine Barthod Chambolle-Musigny, Cote de Nuits 2015 750ML ($119.95) $99 special

Domaine Ghislaine Barthod Aux Beaux Bruns, Chambolle-Musigny Premier Cru 2015 750ML ($179.95) $159 special

France – Bordeaux
Only 9 bottles available!
Chateau Leoville Poyferre, Saint-Julien 2010 750ML ($199.95) $179 special
Jeb Dunnuck 99 points “Another massive, incredible release from this estate is the 2010 Léoville Poyferré. Based on 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot and the balance Petit Verdot, its inky purple color is followed by a massive, full-bodied, incredibly concentrated 2010 that has awesome notes of pure crème de cassis, licorice, graphite, and spring flowers. As with the 2009, it has incredible depth of fruit, yet a slightly more focused, classic style, which is very much in the style of the 2010 vintage. With its new oak completely absorbed by its wealth of fruit, perfect balance, and sweet tannin, it’s a sensational, monumental effort to drink over the coming 3-4 decades.”
Robert Parker 98+ points “The wine out distances both Leoville Las Cases and Leoville Barton, but all three of them are compelling efforts. Full-bodied, dense purple in color, with floral notes intermixed with blackberries, cassis, graphite and spring flowers, this full-bodied, legendary effort is long and opulent, with wonderfully abundant yet sweet tannin, a skyscraper-like mid-palate and a thrilling, nearly one-minute finish. This spectacular effort from Poyferre that should drink well for 30+ years.”

France – Rhone
Older Chateaunuef from a fantastic producer. Only 12 bottles.
Roger Sabon Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee Prestige, Rhone 2001 750ML ($99.95) $79 special
Wine Spectator 94 points “Mature spice, black tea and sandalwood notes lead the way, but this has deceptive richness despite its softening feel, with layered flavors of roasted fig, plum confiture and cherry compote gliding along. The structure has melded into the core and the finish is supple.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Italy – Tuscany
Mazzei’s Tignanello killer.
Mazzei Castello di Fonterutoli Concerto Rosso Vino da Tavola 2015 750ML ($89.95) $79 special
James Suckling 96 points “This is fabulous with blackberry, blueberry and currant aromas. Some slate. Full body, dense and smooth with firm and silky tannins and intense fruit. This is a classic sangiovese and cabernet sauvignon blend. Don’t miss it. Needs three or four years to completely come together.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
As you’d expect, 2015 is a great Oreno vintage.
Tenuta Sette Ponti Oreno Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2015 750ML ($89.95) $66 special
James Suckling 98 points “Plenty of blackcurrant, blackberry and dark chocolate character with oyster shell and walnut undertones. Full body, extremely tight and structured with blueberry and light vanilla and coffee highlights. A gorgeous Oreno. Give this wine two or three years to come together.”

Old and new school blend seamlessly.
Castellare di Castellina ‘I Sodi di San Niccolo’ Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2013 750ML ($89.95) $66 special
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2013 I Sodi di S. Niccolò is 85% Sangioveto (a more antique name for Sangiovese) and 15% Malvasia Nera from a single vineyard. This wine opens to a darkly saturated appearance and shows ruby, garnet and purple highlights. The bouquet is powerful but seamless at the same time with smooth transitions between dark cherry, spice, tobacco and moist clay. In the mouth, this wine shows dense extraction, but it never feels too weighed down by that mass. Instead, the freshness of the fruit and the natural acidity give the wine a bright and buoyant personality. Aged in barrique for 30 months, this is a delightful Tuscan red.”

Argiano Brunello di Montalcino DOCG,Tuscany 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
James Suckling 96 points “Fantastic aromas of orange peel and dark berry with plenty of plum and cherry. Sweet tobacco and mushrooms. Full body, juicy and fruity with firm tannins and a fresh finish. Complex and gorgeous. Fine and very long. Drink now.”

Italy – Sicily
One of the new benchmarks for Etna.
Alta Mora ‘Guradiola’ Etna Rosso, Sicily 2014 750ML ($59.95) $49 special
James Suckling 96 points “The crystal-clear nose of jasmine, slate, quartz, wild strawberries, blueberries and tons of orange rind, not to mention chocolate shavings and walnuts, is stunning. The full-bodied palate is expansive and fruit-forward yet so minerally and uplifted by a fresh line of acidity that culminates in a long finish. Tight and refined in terms of tannin texture. So good now but better in 2019.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
Argentina – Medonza
Only 12 bottles available!
Bodega Aleanna ‘Gran Enemigo’ Chacayes Single Vineyard Cabernet Franc, Tunuyan 2013 750ML ($99.95) $89 special
James Suckling 97 points “This is crazy and deep with such an incredible depth of fruit and character. Full body, layered and dense. Yet energetic and vibrant. Focused and precise. Love. Drink in 2020.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

New Grapelive Review

For the Belgian-Sicilian King of Natural Wine

Frank Cornelissen ‘Rosso del Contadino’ Sicilia IGT, Sicily 2016 750ML ($49.95) $39 special
Grapelive 92 points “The entry-level red wine of the organic and natural winemaker Frank Cornelissen is the Contadino. It is basically a field-blend of mainly Nerello Mascalese (about 85%) though the rest is made up of other local varietals from his old vine parcels, which includes Nerello Capuccio, Allicante Boushet, Minella and Uva Francesa. Belgian-born Frank Cornelissen was a wine merchant in his previous life before he located to the island and started making his own wines on the volcanic soil slopes of Mount Etna in Sicily. Corneilssen uses grapes from Picciolo, Malpasso, Campo Re, Crasà, Piano Daini, Feudo di Mezzo all in the cooler northern facing zone of Mount Etna, and of which all now qualify for Etna Rosso DOC and all these vineyard’s vine are on average 50 years old or more, this cuvee is all de-stemmed and aged only in epoxy lined tanks with no wood and no fining to showcase the purity of the region. The 2016 Contadino is bright, spicy and lightly smoky with pure volcanic flair showing it’s Nerello Mascalese core profile with racy and refined, Pinot Noir like red fruits, flinty notes and a mix of herbs, anise and subtle florals. Layers of cherry, strawberry, wild plum, cranberry, tart blood orange and almost peachy fruits, everything flowing across it’s light frame on the fresh medium bodied palate, there’s good lifting acidity and silky tannins making for a refreshing red that is at it’s best with a slight chill on it and with Summer cuisine. The only real knock here would be it’s price, to be honest, I know Etna Nerello Mascalese is Sicily’s Burgundy, but this is a bit too costly for what you get, even though I really enjoyed every sip and will without question drink a few more of Cornelissen’s wines after trying this one, drink this Contadino over the next year or so.”


Famous In Germany

A Discovery Here

The “Other” Kings of Graach

While Willi Schaefer is the best known producer in Graach, today we’re highlighting a winery from the same village that’s well known in Germany but is almost unheard of on these shores.  We’re referring to Kees-Kieren, a 300 year old estate that’s consistently ranked as a top 100 winery by VINUM (the German equivalent to Wine Spectator).  The current generation has been in charge since the mid 1980’s and they’re turning out some of best wines in the village, at prices that are much lower than Schaefer.

Stylistically, these are old-school Mosel wines.  Vineyards are worked in an environmentally friendly fashion and the wines are raised in fuder.  They now make some outstanding dry wines, as well—wines which capture the mineral essence of Graach.  The Kabinetts, both sweet and dry, are feather light and delicate and the Spatlese reach for (and achieve) profundity.  These are wines that should have been on our radar years ago but we’re happy to have now.

Just Arrived:

Kees-Kieren Graacher Domprobst Kabinett Dry, Mosel 2016 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Kees-Kieren Graacher Domprobst Spatlese Dry, Mosel 2016 750ML ($31.95) $26 special

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Kees-Kieren Graacher Himmelreich Kabinett, Mosel 2016 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Kees-Kieren Graach Himmelreich Spatlese**, Mosel 2016 750ML ($39.95) $31.90 special

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Ulysses: A New Epic

From the Author of Dominus

Christian Moueix, of the family behind Petrus and individually the driving force behind the Dominus Estate in Oakville, La Fleur-Petrus and Trotanoy in Pomeral, and Belair-Monange in St Emilion, acquired this century-old estate at the foot of the Mayacamas Range in Oakville in 2008. He has meticulously transformed it into a world-class vineyard, having renovated the vineyards and converted to dry farming. The result is a complex, pedigreed wine that will delight for decades to come, especially at our subscriber-only pricing!

Arriving Mid-July – Subscriber Special Pricing

Note: special pricing will not appear online. We will adjust your invoice before charging.

Ulysses Vineyard, Napa Valley 2013 750ML ($189.95) Displayed price: $159, Your price: $139 pre-arrival special, ETA Mid-July
James Suckling 98 points
“Fabulous subtle aromas of black currants, violets and lilacs with a hot stone undertone. Full-bodied and dense, it shows such wonderful energy and synergy that delivers a firm yet gentle tannin backbone and complex mouthfeel that seduces you. Evolves wonderfully. Second wine from this new estate, which is owned by Christian Moueix of Dominus and Bordeaux.”
Robert Parker 96 points “The 2013 Ulysses is absolutely mind-boggling, as so many wines from this vintage are. Gorgeous blueberry and blackberry fruit, along with the telltale cassis and floral notes, jump from the glass. Again, this is Pauillac-like, with some cedar wood and subtle barrique smells. Again produced nearly all from Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine is full-bodied, powerful, rich and long, with slightly sweeter tannins than the 2012. Production in 2013 was 960 cases, and Moueix told me that the entire growing season averaged about two and half weeks ahead of schedule from bloom break to harvest. This is a prodigious effort and will certainly stand as the great Ulysses of the first trio to be released. I suspect it will be drinkable in 3-4 years and keep for 30 or more, given the Moueix track record.”
Antonio Galloni 95+ points “Gravel, smoke, graphite, savory herbs, tobacco and iron are some of the signatures in the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon. A typical wine from the eastern sector of Oakville on the border with Yountville, the 2013 is loaded with feral, savory notes, while the expression of blue/blackish fruit lies a bit more in the background. In 2013, the main signature is an expression of structure that is both vertical but also incredibly insistent through to the finish. In other words, this is a super-classic 2013 built for the cellar.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $149.98
The average price is $185

Also Arriving Mid-July:

Ulysses Vineyard, Napa Valley 2014 750ML ($199.95) $169 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 98 points “The evolution of this wine has been phenomenal since I tasted it in barrel a year ago with the same black cherry, plum and citrus character but with a turn to orange leaf, dark Chinese tea, and mushroom. Full body, fine and velvety tannins with a touch of dust to the texture. So much chocolate and fruit undertones with forest floor and hints of tobacco, too. The mouthfeel and complexity are seductive. Better from 2022 but a joy to taste.”
Robert Parker 94 points “The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon, which was aged for 17 months in 45% new French oak, is a blend of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The wine is dense purple, with sweet cedar wood, unsmoked cigar tobacco, crème de cassis, and black raspberries in a classic, almost St.-Julien/Pauillac style. This emerged from a valley floor vineyard on the west side of Napa, where Christian Moueix told me that 2014 was characterized by generally slightly higher than average temperatures for the summer with only minor heat spikes in June and July. August and September went off without a hitch, and the harvest took place during the month of September. This full-bodied wine will hit its peak in 3-5 years and last for 25-30.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $174

June Sale Ends Saturday!

We’re moving on to July and with the new month, a new set of deals.  We’ve already got a head start on the July Clearance Sale, but all our June deals are about to disappear. We’ve got some highlights below, but you can see a full list at the end of our newsletter or by clicking here to see the set in our web store.

Nero d’Avola doesn’t get better, especially for the price.
Gulfi Neromaccarj Sicilia IGT, Sicily 2011 750ML ($49.95) Was $39, Now $33 Clearance Price
Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2011 Neromàccarj is the wine that, in my opinion, best encompasses the overall winemaking philosophy at Gulfi. Like the other Nero d’Avola selections presented, this wine boasts a super enriched and concentrated style. On top of black fruit and cherry marmalade, the bouquet offers Teriyaki, barbecue smoke and asphalt-like aromas. Neromàccarj presents a more balanced and complete picture because its large bulk is spread evenly in proportioned elements. In other words, the opulence of the bouquet is perfectly matched to the large footprint left on the finish.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
This wine is achingly beautiful and correspondingly hard to categorize.
Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Vom Stein Jungfernlese Riesling, Wachau 2006 750ML ($59.95) Was $49, Now $39 Clearance Price
Terry Theise notes: “It means the virgin-vintage, the first crop from young vines. And it’s what the Germans would call Feinherb, and it’s what any sane person would call irresistible! A potion of iris and lavender, spicy and penetrating; very long, seductively earthy, like a really profound Nahe Spätlese, almost the 5-spice and wildflower of Dönnhoff’s Felsenberg.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
It’s all Saar laser focus—a beam of Riesling.
Peter Lauer Fass 8 Ayler Kupp Kabinett, Mosel 2014 750ML ($37.95) Was $31.90, Now $26 Clearance Price
John Gilman 91-92 points ‘The 2014 Ayler Kupp Kabinett from Florian Lauer is really a lovely and quite classic example of this Prädikat, with lovely acidity and minerality providing a fine filigree to the wine and a nice sense of reserve out of the blocks as well. The very classy nose wafts from the glass in a mix of green apple, tart orange, slate, lovely smokiness and a touch of dried flowers in the upper register. On the palate the wine is medium-bodied, pure and focused, with a good core, bright acids, a nice touch of sweetness on the attack and lovely length and grip on the elegant and nascently complex finish. This is quite approachable now, but still a touch primary, and I would be inclined to give it at least a few years in the cellar to develop its secondary layers of complexity. 2019-2035+.” JG

This was the lowest listed price in the USA today,
Now it’s even lower!
The next best price is $31.99
In five years, this price is going to seem laughably low.
Domaine des Lambrays Clos des Lambrays Grand Cru, Cote de Nuits 2014 750ML ($249.95) Was $189, Now $169 Clearance Price
Wine Enthusiast 96 points “This is such a perfumed wine with deceptively soft tannins and great fruit. The acidity is classic for the vintage, with raspberries and intense freshness at the end. It has a fine line of tannins and a life that will go far.”
John Gilman 95 points “The 2014 Clos des Lambrays is a great wine in the making. The stunning bouquet delivers a pure and sappy constellation of sweet dark berries, black cherries, woodsmoke, currant leaf, dark chocolate, a very complex base of soil, fresh herbs and just a whisper of new wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, pure and rock solid at the core, with great mineral drive, refined tannins and impeccable focus and balance on the long, ripely tannic and seamless finish. 2025-2075. (Nov/Dec 2015)”
Burghound 94 points “A notably spicy, fresh, cool and floral nose displays mostly red berry fruit scents that are trimmed in discreet earth notes. There is excellent cut and definition to the nicely rich and attractively textured flavors that culminate in a presently austere finale though I doubt that austerity will persist. This is a relatively fine and forward vintage for Clos des Lambrays and one that should be approachable after only 7 to 8 years of bottle age. In a word, marvelous.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
Shake Ridge is a Grand Cru site for Amador, this is a great expression.
Gallica Suzuri Series Shake Ridge Ranch Vineyard Red, Amador County 2013 750ML ($59.95) $39 Clearance Price
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2013 Red Wine Shake Ridge Vineyard, Gallica’s Amador County red blend, is superb. Radiant, intense and refined, the 2013 is endowed with superb purity. Pomegranate, sweet red cherry, spice and mint are all beautifully delineated in this impeccably, totally striking, translucent wine. A touch of whole clusters adds lift and energy. What a gorgeous wine this is.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!
The average price for all vintages is $52
(Maillart+2012)*Clearance Sale=Happiness
Nicolas Maillart Premier Cru Brut, Champagne 2012 750ML ($69.95) $49 Clearance Price
Peter Liem Note “Maillart’s wines are bold and full of flavor, with an expressive character and harmonious depth. I enjoyed his father’s wines in the past, made in a more traditional style, but Nicolas Maillart’s wines express more depth and more clarity of fruit, demonstrating a contemporary emphasis on viticulture. Most of the wines are blended from Maillart’s three main terroirs of Ecueil, Villers-Allerand and Bouzy, all of which have different soil types… Historically, Michel Maillart made the vintage brut from equal parts of chardonnay and pinot noir, but Nicolas is more open to adjusting the proportions depending on the particular vintage.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $57.60
Throwback Cote Rotie at throwback pricing.
Domaine Patrick & Christophe Bonnefond Cote Rotie Colline de Couzou, Rhone 2013 750ML ($69.95) $39 Clearance Price
Josh Raynolds 91 points “Opaque ruby. Sexy aromas of dark fruit preserves, spicecake and potpourri carry a smoky mineral overtone. Sweet and seamless on the palate, offering juicy blackberry and floral pastille flavors and a deeper suggestion of licorice. Shows very good depth as well as vivacity, and finishes with strong nervy cut, supple tannins and a lingering floral pastille quality.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $52



The Hottest Wines of the Week

Beautiful, crisp Viognier.
Domaine de Triennes Sainte – Fleur Viognier, IGP Var 2016 750ML ($21.95) $14 special
Case-12 Domaine de Triennes Sainte – Fleur Viognier, IGP Var 2016 750ML ($239.95) $149 special (that’s only $12.42/bottle!)
Importer Note
“From 25- to 30-year-old vines sourced from the clay, limestone soils of Provence.  The wine is fermented in temperature-controlled tanks. Some of the wine undergoes malolactic fermentation, while the remainder is blocked at an earlier stage to retain its freshness.  Élevage occurs in 100% stainless steel tanks for 6 months to preserve freshness. The lots are subsequently blended.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $17
Beaujolais perfect for hot-weather grilling.
Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux, Beaujolais 2016 750ML ($29.95) $26 special
Case-12 Pierre-Marie Chermette Domaine du Vissoux Brouilly Pierreux, Beaujolais 2016 750ML ($339.95) $279 special (that’s only $23.25/bottle!)
Josh Raynolds 92 points
“Lurid ruby. Bright and sharply focused on the nose, displaying intense red fruit and floral scents and a smoky mineral overtone that builds with air. Appealingly sweet and lively on the palate, offering intense raspberry and cherry liqueur flavors that deepen on the back half while maintaining energy. The floral quality comes back strong on an energetic, silky finish that leaves a juicy red berry note behind.”
VinopolNote: Brouilly is normally considered to be the lighter cousin of the Cote de Brouilly.  In the hands of Chermette, though, this is a wine that has depth and power, with the finesse that the 2016 vintage brings with it.  This is still a pretty wine and among the most drinkable in the Vissoux lineup, but will reward a little time in your cellar if you can keep your hands off it.

It’s hard to find a better deal in Barbaresco, for sure.
Adriano Marco e Vittorio Basarin, Barbaresco DOCG 2014 750ML ($34.95) $29 special
Wine Spectator 94 points “Elegant, leading off with perfumed aromas of rose, cherry, strawberry and white pepper. The profile is sleek, with a solid base of acidity and tannins. Shows terrific length, evoking fruit and mineral on the aftertaste. Best from 2019 through 2033.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!
Les Hauts de Valcombe Ventoux, Rhone 2015 750ML ($15.95) $14 special
Case-12 Les Hauts de Valcombe Ventoux, Rhone 2015 ($179.95) $142 special (that’s only $11.84/bottle!)
Grapelive 92 points
“Sometimes you just need the warm comfort of a nice Grenache based Southern Rhone, with its full flavored and smooth tannin charm washing over your palate and light spicy character holding on the mouth coating finish adding complexity to its sweet fruits and earthy seduction. Yup, that is what was needed and this Valcombe Ventoux Rouge delivered! The “Les Hauts de Valcombe” is a cuvee cepage/blend of 60% Grenache and 40% Syrah from exclusively north-facing vineyards, allowing for less sun to give an extra burst of freshness, even in a ripe year…. It’s an easy Rhone to love with racy raspberry, plum, boysenberry, sweet cherry and strawberry fruits along with hints of dusty stones, pepper, anise, leather and wild lavender…. This is a winery that almost always over delivers in the price to quality ratio, especially this bottling, which I adore. Drink this dark garnet hued medium/full bodied and textural 2015 “Les Hauts de Valcombe” over the next 3 to 5 years, but there’s no need to wait as it is drinking beautiful and fresh right now. It’s a steal.

A Bordeaux-ish blend from a surprising place.
Peyrassol ‘La Croix Peyrassol’ Rouge, IGP Mediterranee 2016 750ML ($19.95) $16 special
“This cuvée is crafted specifically for presentation in the United States and is the result of a close collaboration between RWM and the team at Peyrassol (Alban Cacaret, Wladimir Holobinka [vineyard manager], Pierre Guérin [consulting oenologue] and Francoise Rigord [who maintains an active interest in the estate]). The blend varies depending on the particular conditions of the vintage but normally is composed of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah in varying proportions. It highlights the fresh wild berry fruits of the region married to a firm minerality that provides structure and discipline to the wine.”–Importer note

This is the only listing in the USA today!
Late Breaking News!

Aldo Conterno 2010s

Arriving July 6th:

Only 16 bottles available!
Poderi Aldo Conterno Bussia Cicala, Barolo DOCG 2010 750ML ($189.95)
$133 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 98 points “A gorgeous red, scented with rose, mint, menthol, cherry and leather notes, with intense flavors matching the aromas. Dense with tannins, finely wrought and dovetailing on the long, detailed finish, this is very harmonious, yet will need time to fully express itself. Best from 2018 through 2038. 200 cases imported.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 97 points “The 2010 Barolo Bussia Cicala opens to a dark ruby color and a richly concentrated appearance. This wine will appeal to those who appreciate added texture and heft in their Barolo. A special nod also goes to the aging potential of the wine that promises to be long and steady especially given the high quality of the 2010 fruit. Bussia Cicala imparts deep textural richness with lovely finesse and structural integrity. Hold this wine for ten years or more. Its profound beauty is already evident, but the wine has barely started its evolutionary course. Drink: 2018-2035.”

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The average price is $181

Only 28 bottles available!
Poderi Aldo Conterno Colonnello, Barolo DOCG 2010 750ML ($179.95) $125 pre-arrival special
Wine Spectator 98 points “A beautifully crafted Barolo, with ripe cherry, plum, leather, spice, mineral and smoke elements. Starts off supple and approachable, but the gripping tannins soon move in, securing the lengthy, spice-filled finish. An underlying mineral vein adds depth. Best from 2018 through 2036. 200 cases imported.”

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The average price is $162

Only 6 bottles available!
Poderi Aldo Conterno Romirasco Bussia, Barolo DOCG 2010 750ML ($289.95) $199 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 99 points “This is a big and powerful wine with incredible depth and power. Full body, with fabulous texture. It lasts for minutes on the finish. It shows dark fruits, hazelnut, chocolate and minerals. This is a monopole vineyard of 3.8 hectares. One of the wines of the vintage. So energetic and tangy. All in the finish. Better in 2018.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 98 points “Last but not least in this spectacular flight, the 2010 Barolo Bussia Romirasco is an absolute stunner that shows a level of excellence that is not easy to forget. This is one of the top five wines of the widely celebrated 2010 vintage. At this young stage, the bouquet is fresh and fruit-driven with evident tones of black currant and dried cranberry. Beyond those primary aromas, are a slew of interesting secondary tones that include tar, white truffle, forest floor, leather, cola and balsam herb. Most significant, however, is the superior performance this Barolo gives in the mouth. The structure is firm and unyielding, yet the wine’s texture is supple and silky. That’s a difficult balance to achieve. Put this bottle aside for more years of aging. Drink: 2018-2042.”
Wine Spectator 97 points “A touch of oak in the aroma leads off, masking the cherry, leather, tar and tobacco flavors for now. A solidly structured mineral element emerges at the end. Should come around nicely, given the overall balance and fine length on the finish. Best from 2018 through 2036. 150 cases imported.”

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New Wine Advocate Reviews

For the 2013 Produttori Crus

“General Manager Aldo Vacca says the co-operative counts 54 members, of which four joined the group within the past three years. Produttori del Barbaresco counts a total of 100 hectares (for an average annual bottle production of 500,000). Each individual farm is very small in size. In terms of winemaking, all Riservas are made in precisely the same way. Fermenting grapes see up to five weeks of skin contact with frequent pump-overs to break the caps during the first couple of weeks. That long maceration time finishes slowly until the wine is separated from the skins. It rests in both stainless steel and cement until malolactic fermentations are complete. During the winter cold in February, the wine undergoes a natural cold stabilization (Nebbiolo loses some of its color here as a result) and is later transferred to 25- and 55-hectoliter botte for three years. Two rackings are completed during this time, with more frequent topping offs. No refining occurs. These Riserva expressions usually see nine months of bottle aging before their commercial release, but times have been shortened to meet market demand.”Monica Larner, Wine Advocate

In Stock Now:

Produttori del Barbaresco Montefico, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($99.95) $79 special
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 96+ points “I am absolutely impressed by the stunning 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Montefico. The Montefico growing site is very small and only 13,000 bottles are produced as a result. There are just three farmers who tend to this vineyard cru, and because their respective plots are very small, they rely on the Produttori del Barbaresco co-operative model for survival. This wine shows amazing depth and enlarged dimension. Aromas of black fruit, spice, tar and crushed mineral contribute to the considerable volume and power of the wine. That precise and focused mineral definition is outstanding, recalling brimstone and pencil shavings. Montefico can underperform in the hot vintages, but it hits all the high notes in the cooler 2013.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Montestefano, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($79.95) $69 special
Produttori del Barbaresco Montestefano, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 1.5L ($179.95) $149 special
Case-12 Produttori del Barbaresco Montestefano, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($799.95) $699 special (that’s only $58.25/bottle!)
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 95 points
“The final wine in this portfolio of amazing single-vineyard expressions is the 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Montestefano. This is the densest and darkest of them all, and I would therefore suggest that the longest drinking window be reserved for this expression. Montestefano is shaped as an amphitheater of vines that locks in the summer heat and sees less wind compared to Montefico. This is a solid and firm wine with deep, dark intensity and solid tannins that form an unyielding backbone. You should hold onto this bottle for at least 5 more years before popping the cork.”

Produttori del Barbaresco ‘Muncagota’, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($79.95) $59 special
Case-12 Produttori del Barbaresco ‘Muncagota’, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($699.95) $599 special (that’s only $49.92/bottle!)
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 94 points
“You may remember that this wine was once called Moccagatta. Produttori del Barbaresco reverted to the local Piemontese spelling of the name in 2007 to stay consistent with the geographic mapping of local cru sites. The 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Muncagota stands apart from the nine other single-vineyard Riservas presented by Produttori del Barbaresco this vintage. Of these various wines, this is the most salty and savory. There is less primary fruit intensity here. The bouquet is laced with grilled rosemary and wild sage. This growing site absorbs loads of morning sunshine with southeast-facing exposures. The mouthfeel is characterized by dry tannins and very long, balsam-like persistence. Dried ginger and herbs appear on the menthol-like finish.”

Produttori del Barbaresco ‘Paje’, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($79.95) $69 special
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 93 points “The 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Pajè is another expression (similar to the Barbaresco Riserva Pora) that falls onto the more immediate and approachable side of the drinking spectrum. This near or medium-term Barbaresco opens to fresh aromas of wild cherry and forest fruit with subtle touches of spice and grilled herb. The wine’s aromas are delivered with direct, vertical intensity. Indeed, the mouthfeel is equally focused and precise. Pajè offers a robust, dark appearance with soft tannins that caress the palate.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Pora, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($79.95) $59 special
Case-12 Produttori del Barbaresco Pora, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($699.95) $599 special (that’s only $49.92/bottle!)
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 92 points
“This is the first wine tasted in a lineup of nine single-vineyard Riserva Barabrescos made by Produttori del Barbaresco in 2013. The tasting progression goes from most streamlined to most powerful and complex. The 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Pora starts off this happy continuum with exuberant but simple fruit layers of dried raspberry, wild cherry and plum. The wine reveals pretty color intensity and saturation. It shows mild acidity and a light tannic structure for a more accessible and immediate drinking approach. The Pora vineyard has fertile soils that are rich in nitrogen. There is less limestone here compared to the Montestefano and Montefico vineyards. Fruit from Pora tends to ripen faster than other sites. This was in June 2017.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Rio Sordo, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($79.95) $59 special
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 95 points “The delightful 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Rio Sordo is fourth on a scale of nine wines in terms of growing structure and power. This is the middle-point wine. You will immediately notice that the texture of this single-vineyard expression is increasingly thicker and pastier. The bouquet delivers opulent tones of blackberry and ripe cherry in thick and succulent waves. Yet, like the Pora, Pajè and Ovello expressions, the Barbaresco Riserva Rio Sordo is also a more accessible wine. You can save it for longer cellar aging, but you could also opt to serve it in the near or medium term. It offers both immediate pleasure and long-term potential.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Nebbiolo di Langhe, Piedmont 2016 750ml ($24.95) $21.90 special
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 91+ points “The 2016 Langhe Nebbiolo was bottled last September and is almost sold out at this point. The next vintage, 2017, will be bottled this upcoming September. Because Produttori del Barbaresco makes its Langhe Nebbiolo with declassified Barbaresco fruit, you see less of this wine in the good vintages and more of the wine in the difficult years (in which not all fruit meets the higher Barbaresco standards and is better sold at the more affordable Langhe Nebbiolo price tag instead). For example, 80,000 bottles were produced in 2016 compared to 120,000 in 2014. That said, Langhe Nebbiolo is quickly becoming its own wine with its own distinct identity and consumer. This is an elegant and silky expression with long flavors of dark fruit, tar, smoke and toasted clove. Best of all: it is a terrific value buy. Too bad not much is left.”

(Re) Arriving ETA September:

Produttori del Barbaresco Asili, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($99.95) $89 pre-arrival special
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 96 points “Here is a wine with a long and promising future ahead. The 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Asili is a Nebbiolo that boasts the tannic tightness, acidity and compact fruit flavors you look for when assessing a wine’s potential for cellar longevity. This vintage delivers encouraging results on all fronts. The mouthfeel is firm, compact and ready to loosen with time. The bouquet is both generous and dramatic with dark fruit followed by spice, smoke and an attractive mineral footprint. The finish is dry and almost salty, thanks to those lingering tones of brimstone and pencil shaving. The 2013 growing season saw a late harvest, and this helped to achieve full tannic and flavor ripeness. Hold off from drinking this wine for at least 5 years but preferably more.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($99.95) $79 pre-arrival special
Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 1.5L ($179.95) $149 special, in stock now!
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 95+ points
“The 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Ovello is the third wine tasted in our lineup of Produttori del Barbaresco Riservas and is one of my favorite expressions overall. The Ovello vineyard site sees a greater presence of limestone in its soil composition, and this factor helps to develop the tannic structure and consistency of the wine. At 18 hectares, Ovello is one of the biggest cru sites sourced by this co-operative estate. Twelve separate farmers tend to their private parcels in Ovello. Fruit from this site is often the main component of Produttori’s base Barbaresco along with blending material from Montestefano, Pora and Muncagöta (previously known as Moccagatta). You notice the color graduation getting darker here. The bouquet is expressive and bright and reflective of the cool and crisp late summer and pre-harvest nights. Some 17,000 bottles were made along with 1,500 magnums.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Rabaja, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 750ML ($99.95) $89 pre-arrival special
Produttori del Barbaresco Rabaja, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2013 1.5L ($199.95) $179 specialin stock now
Monica Larner – Wine Advocate 96 points
“The 2013 Barbaresco Riserva Rabajà is a gorgeous wine with a dark and penetrating quality of fruit that wraps sensuously over the palate. Our tasting order sees this wine as the sixth sample in a lineup of nine Riservas that were tasted in order of increasing structure and power. Well-exposed and sun-drenched fruit from the Rabajà cru offers dark color saturation and thickness. The high limestone content of the soils means this is a hotter growing site that performs best in cooler vintages like 2013. Those soil types help to concentrate the fruit, and you taste that here in terms of the wine’s broad concentration and vertical delivery of black fruit aromas. This is a complete and seamlessly integrated wine with drying mineral sensations on the powerful finish.”

June Clearance, While it Lasts!

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