OG Tasting Notes Lot 301-400

Look back on the amazing wines we have released to check out tastings notes. These are the original product notes archive for the purposes of providing product information for products that no longer have online product information. Pricing, availability and shipping content may be out of date. We make no claims of having any of these products available to sell at the pricing listed in this content. Most recent tasting notes may also be missing.


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Lot 301 | 2019 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

First run juice produced by one of Sonoma's most successful Pinot Noir producer's, Lot 301 2019 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir hails from a collection of some of the finest Pinot vineyards on the Sonoma Coast.

Elegant and nuanced with precision detailing, this is a region-defining offering.

The winery's 2019 Sonoma Coast Pinot has already garnered a 91-point score from The Wine Spectator under its original label. However, with 2019 awarded the first ever "Classic" vintage from the Wine Spectator at 95-points, competition is tough with 250+ wines scoring above 90-points.

Just like Lot 307, new management is trimming inventory and we got the call!

This is a fantastic wine and and, without a doubt, a spectacular value!

Deep garnet with some pale purple verve in the glass. Open-knit and juicy on the nose with a complex and delineated bouquet of black cherry, raspberry, black tea and strawberry framboise with a brown sugar underpinning haloed with toasted spice and rose petal. Dense and full yet seamless and soft on entry displaying an energetic panoply of ripe, juicy red and black fruits assembled with verve and precision over pretty mineral-driven, well-integrated tannins. Rich, perfectly-ripe and sexy with fantastic length and purity throughout!

90% Sonoma Coast, 5% Napa Carneros, 4% Mendocino County,  2% Santa Lucia Highlands
100% Pinot Noir, 100% 2019 vintage
~50% new French oak
~14.5% alc.

 

Lot 302 | 2021 Languedoc (Cesseras) Petite Sirah

I tasted this wine from barrel with winemaker Camille Ournac (a graduate of Burgundy's prestigious oenology school) at Chateau Cesseras in the Minervois (in the Languedoc region) last month and was blown away, not just by having found Petite Sirah in the Minervois, but at the ridiculous quality-to-price ratio.

Eight-generations of Ournac's have produced wine here in Minervois but it was Camille's father, Pierre-Andre, who saw the potential to grow a broader array of varietals and, 15-years ago, began to add Syrah, Viognier, Pinot Noir, Petite Verdot and, thankfully, Petite Sirah to the families 90-hectares of vineyards. The vines, now 9-year-old vines and just hitting their stride, are planted in limestone soils on the foot hills of the “Montagne Noire” close to the medieval city of Carcassonne, at over 200m of altitude.

There are only about 150-200 cases of the Petite Sirah produced every year and we've purchased every last drop of the 2021 which we expect to remove from barrel and bottle in late May.

Deep and dark in the glass with a little purple edge. The bouquet is dense with emerging complexity with a bouquet of black cherry and blackcurrant notes wrapped around rocky minerality, a hint of garrigue and toasty oak notes. On the palate, lots of black fruits and spicy huckleberry notes provide excellent freshness and inform a long, peppery and generous finish with perfectly-integrated tannins.

Given the dense color, this is a surprisingly seductive and elegant wine. However, given the winemaker was trained at Burgundy's prestigious oenology school and has made wine in South Africa, New Zealand, Chile, Italy and the USA (Gramercy Cellars), it should come as no surprise. Cheers Camille!

100% Petite Sirah
100% open top oak vat fermented before transferring to barrel for ageing (40% new French oak)
13.5% alc.
150-200 cases produced
Bottled mid-May 2022

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Lot 303 | 2017 Minervois La Liviniere GSM

A small limestone plateau in the heart of the Minervois with only 350 planted hectares, La Livinierie is the first cru-status appellation and known in the region as the Premier Cru of the Languedoc. One of the driving forces behind the appellation and largest landholders is the Ournac family of Chateau Cesseras (Domaine Coudoulet as well).

I was visiting and tasting with winemaker Camille Ournac last February when he admitted to me that a deal for a significant quantity of his 2017 La Liviniere bottling had blown up when COVID hit. If I could help him move the wine, he would give me a special price.

That's what I do brother, I told him.

The wine, a blend of 70% Syrah and 10% each of Carignan, Grenache and Mourvedre, was fresh as a daisy having been stored in a large oak foudre after 12-months in barrel. This wine has never been exported to the US but it would retail somewhere in the $35-$40 range, maybe $30 with a big discounter or direct import program.

Decanter awarded a 90-point score the 2017 Chateau Cesseras La Liviniere.

If you thought Lot 239 GSM was a good deal, you ain't seen nothing yet.

Deep ruby, almost opaque in the glass. The effusive bouquet is nevertheless beautifully restrained with notes of violets, blackberry, raspberry, black olive and garrigue, leather, and coriander spice with praline notes. Focused and silky with a beautiful structure, the smooth layers of flavors mingle throughout, delicately supported by melted notes of wood. Concentrated on the mid-palate, rich and expressive with an exquisite freshness evolving into a long mineral finish with lingering fruit and spice. Fantastique!

100% La Livininiere
70% Syrah, 10% each of Carignan, Grenache and Mourvedre
12-months in oak barrel, 30% new French oak. 2 years in oak foudre.
14% alc.
500 cases produced

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Lot 305 2016 Listrac-Medoc

Deep purple in the glass, just a shade off of opaque. Amazingly fresh bottle bouquet with violets, black fruits and scorched earth opening up to reveal vanilla-specked graphite, blueberry syrup, leather and walnut notes riding a core of riverstone minerality and a pretty clove perfume. Chewy on entry with juicy blackberry fruit riding robust, mineral and tobacco-laced tannins that melt on your palate to unfurl a 30-40 second finish punctuated by a lovely violet and rock perfume.

100% Estate Vineyards, 100% Listrac-Medoc
54% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Petite Verdot
30% new French oak
14% alc.

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Lot 306 2018 Listrac-Medoc

Even darker in the glass. The bouquet is quite similar to the 2016 but bright with more ripe raspberry and juicy black cherry lifted fruit complexed with clove and thyme spice. Savory leather and cedar notes anchor the fruit. Fleshy through the mid palate but balanced and restrained on the finish, a foot in the new world and a foot in the old world, fine tannins throughout and lingering finish that carries endlessly. Fantastic oak integration throughout with tremendous precision across both wines.

100% Estate Vineyards, 100% Listrac-Medoc
52% Merlot, 47% Cabernet, 1% Petite Verdot
25% new French oak
14.5% alc.

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Lot 307 | 2019 Napa Carneros SVD Pinot Noir

First run juice from one of Sonoma's most successful Pinot Noir producer's, Lot 307 2019 Napa Carneros Pinot Noir hails the legendary Hyde Vineyard in Carneros and is part of the unnamed wineries huge single-vineyard designate program.

The winery's just released 2019 Pinot has already garnered a 93-point score from both The Wine Spectator and Decanter Magazine under its original label. However, with 2019 awarded the first ever "Classic" vintage from the Wine Spectator at 95-points, competition is tough with 250+ wines scoring above 90-points. New management is trimming inventory and we got the call!

Deep garnet in the glass, this wine offers a ripe, sexy bouquet of dark cherry liqueur, dried blueberries and cocoa. Rose petal, strawberry, and plum complex the bouquet along with a vinous quality that keeps things lively - there is definitely more here than meets the nose, however. Perfectly plump-yet-concentrated black fruit on entry is melded to a classy structure with sleek tannins carrying vibrant cherry and raspberry notes to hugely long finish layered with more black fruit and spicy floral kick. Extremely well-delineated with fantastic, lingering persistence, this is world-class Pinot Noir without a doubt.

100% Napa Carneros Pinot Noir, 100% 2019 vintage
approximately 50% new French oak

 

Lot 308 | 2021 Alto Totihue Cachapoal Valley Chardonnay/Semillon

The longest and thinnest country in the world with thousands of miles of south Pacific coastline paralleled between thousands of miles of Andean Mountains with valley's sandwiched in-between, Chile is one of the most unique winegrowing regions in the world.

Given the massive coastline, many of the regions rely on marine influence for the diurnal swing that defines many of the world's best wine growing regions. However, some of Chile's most exciting wine regions (particularly for Bordelaise varieties such as Cabernet, Carmenere and Merlot) are hidden inland, back up against the Andes where lean alluvial soils conspire with altitude-driven temperature swings and higher UV radiation to produce concentrated yet ethereal reds and whites that, at their best, bring freshness, elegance and power in equal parts.

Originally content to play second fiddle to its more celebrated neighbors (Maipo to the north and Colchagua to the south), the warm, inland Cachapoal Valley was content to produce good fruit and pedestrian wines. However, a few French winemaking families recognized that the higher-altitude, eastern reaches of the valley, nestled into the alluvial drainages of the mighty Andes, had tremendous potential leading to a post-Pinochet land grab in the 1990's.

One of the first to recognize the potential of Alto Cachapoal (now known as Alto Totihue) was the iconic Bordeaux producer Chateau Larose Trintaudon, who, in 1994, partnered with small growers in the region and brought their know-how to plant the more challenging 2000-foot terroir of the Alto Cachapoal and build the Casas del Toqui winery.

In 2010, the Chilean Court family purchased Casas del Toqui and continues to produce wines of profound structure, depth and complexity with a Napa Valley meets Bordeaux sensibility. We've partnered with them to bring you their top of the line offerings and I am confident you will be blown away by these classic, distinctive wines and the tremendous value they represent. You will not find wines of this breed and concentration at this price anywhere else.

The first wine on offer is their fantastic Alto Totihue white blend, 82% Chardonnay and 18% Semillon. Half the wine is barrel-fermented with a portion (20%) undergoing malolactic fermentation while the other half is produced in tank and stored on its lees. The resulting wine combines fantastic freshness with supple richness, elegance and great persistence on the palate. Classy, artisanal juice.

Pale yellow in the glass. The bouquet is fresh and bursting with lemon candy and butter blossoms draped over a gorgeous minerality. Tropical fruit notes embolden with air adding hints of vanilla and toasted almond to the citrusy complexity. Supple and harmonious on entry turning rich, fleshy and mouthwatering through the mid-palate; however, this Burgundian-styled effort always retains its nervy energy leading to a vibrant finish of tremendous purity and incredible finesse. Like I said, classy juice. Will age beautifully for another decade.

82% Chardonnay, 18% Semillon (from vines planted in 1943)
50% barrel-fermented, 20% new French oak, 20% FML/50% stainless steel resting on lees for 8 months before combing for bottling
13% alc.
200 cases produced
Bottled September 2021

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Lot 309 | 2019 Alto Maipo Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Looking for fantastic Napa Valley Cabernet value? Look no further than the Alto Maipo Valley of Chile. While many of the wines from this region have skyrocketed into the triple digits (Don Melchor, Almaviva, Chadwick, Aurea, etc), the source for Lot 309 is a winemaker I have been with for many years. Very knowledgeable about the international wine market, he has a passion for working with small winegrowers who are passionate about their land but not interested in building a wine brand. I am definitely looking forward to sourcing more treasures from Chile!

And, indeed, Lot 309 is a treasure. A fantastic value, grown at 1600-feet of elevation in the low-yielding, rocky alluvial soils draining off the Andes in the Alto Maipo region of Chile. No expense was spared in the production of this Cabernet including 33% new French oak and 20-months in barrel.

I was only able to peel off 250 cases of this Cabernet (not typically exported but this would be priced around $39/bottle through traditional three-tier distribution). If you are looking for a great everyday Cabernet that is at home in a Michelin-star restaurant as it is on your dinner table, then I encourage you to grab this amazing value before its gone.

Deep purple, inky color. The nose is beautifully expressive with gobs of blueberry and blackberry fruit complexed with cassis, dried fig, and pretty spice notes. Ripe but also complex and well-supported with mineral notes that lift and carry. Similarly, the wine is rich on entry but amply structured with intense rounded ripe tannins that create a firm backbone that leads into a wonderfully textured dark fruit and creamy dark chocolate finish. Rich and ripe yet complex and harmonious, this is a tremendous value in Cabernet Sauvignon.

92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot, 100% Alto Maipo Valley in Chile
33% new French oak
14.5% alc.
250 cases produced

Bottle Date: March 2021

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Lot 310 | 2019 Alto Totihue Cachapoal Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

On offer here is the last of the Court Rollan "Genus" Edition wines. Lot 310 is a fantastic addition to their high-altitude-derived, Alto Cachapoal vineyards.

Mostly Cabernet Sauvignon with just a dollop of Syrah blended in for complexity, this wine retails for $40/bottle here in the US. The 2018 version scored 91-points in the Wine Enthusiast. I have tasted both and am confident the 2019 is the superior wine.

 

Inky in the glass with notes of violets swirling with blueberry and black current. Layer in warm cedar, hint of leather and fennel as well as a hint of graphite. Silky and smooth on the front of the palate, with soft delicate tannins and vibrant acidity to lift the density. The REAL deal, this balanced and juicily complex Cabernet Sauvignon is a true pleasure. 

100% Alto Totinhue, Cachapoal Valley estate vineyards
82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Syrah
33% new French oak
14% alc.
65 cases produced

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Lot 311 | 2020 Alto Totihue Cachapoal Valley Syrah

The longest and thinnest country in the world with thousands of miles of south Pacific coastline paralleled between thousands of miles of Andean Mountains with valley's sandwiched in-between, Chile is one of the most unique winegrowing regions in the world.

Given the massive coastline, many of the regions rely on marine influence for the diurnal swing that defines many of the world's best wine growing regions. However, some of Chile's most exciting wine regions (particularly for Bordelaise varieties such as Cabernet, Carmenere and Merlot) are hidden inland, back up against the Andes where lean alluvial soils conspire with altitude-driven temperature swings and higher UV radiation to produce concentrated yet ethereal reds and whites that, at their best, bring freshness, elegance and power in equal parts.

Originally content to play second fiddle to its more celebrated neighbors (Maipo to the north and Colchagua to the south), the warm, inland Cachapoal Valley was content to produce good fruit and pedestrian wines. However, a few French winemaking families recognized that the higher-altitude, eastern reaches of the valley, nestled into the alluvial drainages of the mighty Andes, had tremendous potential leading to a post-Pinochet land grab in the 1990's.

One of the first to recognize the potential of Alto Cachapoal (now known as Alto Totihue) was the iconic Bordeaux producer Chateau Larose Trintaudon, who, in 1994, partnered with small growers in the region and brought their know-how to plant the more challenging 2000-foot terroir of the Alto Cachapoal and build the Casas del Toqui winery.

In 2010, the Chilean Court family purchased Casas del Toqui and continues to produce wines of profound structure, depth and complexity with a Napa Valley meets Bordeaux sensibility. We've partnered with them to bring you their top of the line offerings and I am confident you will be blown away by these classic, distinctive wines and the tremendous value they represent. You will not find wines of this breed and concentration at this price anywhere else.

Lot 311 is the 2020 Alto Totihue Syrah originally bottled under the top-of-the-line, no-expense-spared, Gran Toqui label. The $30, 2019 bottling was awarded 90-points by the Wine Enthusiast just a week ago and there is no doubt the 2020 is just as good, if not better. There is very little of this wine produced, much less making its way to the USA; in fact, we've secured the entire allocation of 2020 for the US market.


Syrah thrives at altitude and is fantastic in hot dry years like 2020, especially when combined with the low yields that plagued producers. Weighing in right at 14% alc., Lot 311 combines density, concentration, and elegance in a decidedly French package that reminds of a fine Crozes Hermitage crossed with a powerful Burgundian Pinot Noir.

Deep purple, almost opaque, in the glass. The tightly wound and powerfully monolithic nose draws you down into the glass. While the core of oak and black fruit broods, spicy red raspberry, cassis, leather and rock escape the abyss with a kiss of black pepper haloing the bouquet. Medium-complex for now but there is so much more to come. Medium-full-bodied on the palate, it's fleshy and juicy but also surprisingly light and airy with an interesting marriage of ripe plum, oak, pepper and mineral. There's great length and plenty of emerging complexity but clearly this wine is just a baby.

The producer bottle ages this wine for a year before before release, which aligns perfectly with our timeline of a mid-July arrival (of course, we will not ship your wine in the heat and will store it free of charge should there not be a good shipping window) so look to try this out on the Fall - it's fantastic Syrah and a revelation for the region and for Chile in general.

100% Alto Totinhue, Cachapoal Valley Chile
95% Syrah, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon
40% new French oak
Bottled July 2021
100 cases produced

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Lot 312 | 2019 Alto Totihue Cachapoal Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 

I was blown away by this wine when I first tasted this fantastic Cabernet. The next in our series of Alto Totihue releases, Lot 312 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon will knock your socks off with its sophisticated power and nuanced richness and structure. Tasted blind, you would be forgiven for thinking this was an altitude-driven Cabernet from either Atlas Peak or Mt. Veeder.

Frontlining here in the US at $45, it is an incredible value you would be paying $75-$100+ for if you were to purchase a similar quality wine from the aforementioned Napa Valley sub-AVA's.

Even more compelling is the fact the 2017 and 2018 versions have scored 92- and 93-points from the Wine Enthusiast and both vintages have scored 92-points from British MW, Tim Atkin (not to mention consistent 94-point scores from Chilean wine guide, Descorchados, for the 2017, 2018, and 2019). Having tasted the 2018 along with the 2019, I am confident its fair to say the 2019 is every bit as good.

Deep ruby, opaque in the glass. Complex, fresh, and well-delineated bouquet of dusty damson plum, blackcurrant, dark chocolate and cedar are embraced in a blackberry and rock perfume. Plush and chewy on entry but beautifully structured with mineral-coated tannins loaded with black cherry, blackberry and cassis fruit and plenty of barrel-toast. Finishes long, generous and ethereal with a persistent dance of fruit and mineral.

100% Cabernet Sauvignon, 100% Estate fruit, Alto Totinue, Cachapoal Valley
33% new French oak
14% alc.
250 cases produced

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Lot 313 | 2021 IGP Gard Rose Wine

Sourced from a long-time colleague in Southern France, this stellar Grenache is 100% organic from the producers estate vineyard in the Gard region just between Costieres di Nimes and the southern Rhone valley. A perennial fantastic value producer, their lower-priced, non-organic offering just scored 89 points in the Wine Enthusiast and was called a "fantastic bargain".

Juicy, vibrant, and richly fruited, this rose is uber-complex and pungent with spring florals, ruby red grapefruit, watermelon and nectarine up front with raspberry, black cherry and lilac notes appearing as the wines opens. Juicy and well-balanced on entry, fleshy and racy across the palate with grapefruit and nectarine fruit fleshing out over mouthwatering, chalky acidity with a crisp, mineral finish with a whisper of watermelon.

100% Estate, 100% Organic
80% Grenache, 20% Syrah
Stainless steel fermentation and ageing.
13% alc.
600 cases produced

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Lot 314 | 2020 Costières de Nîmes GSM

Sourced from a high-end, organic producer in Costières de Nîmes, this wine exudes tremendous complexity, class and finesse along with ripe precision and pure hedonistic pleasure.

With a 90-point score from Jeb Dunnock, it is an absolutely amazing value.

The 100% organic estate vineyard is composed of the same large, fist-sized rolled river rocks that populate Chateauneuf du Pape surrounded by iron-rich clay. Extremely well-drained and poor soils, they provide grapes that deliver robust, spicy reds that maintain their freshness and aromatic complexity.

Complex indeed, this gorgeous bouquet is redolent with ripe yet perfumed fruit and the classic regional garrigue. Black plum and cherry fruit ride a core of caramel dark chocolate truffle haloed with violets, blonde tobacco, and peppery roasted lamb. Palate staining yet lifted and refreshing with candied plum and cherry that carry through the finish of fine mineral tannins. Plush but focused, this wines wonderful mouthfeel and graceful purity guarantee a fantastic finish.

100% Organic, estate vineyard in Costières de Nîmes
60% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 20% Mourvedre
Fermented in combo of concrete and stainless steel tanks for effortless extraction
13.5% alc.
350 cases produced

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Lot 315 | 2019 Vin de France Cabernet Savignon 

Yes, indeed, it is time again to back up the truck!

Sourced from old vines planted in the Languedoc-Roussillon and Minervois regions of southern France, this gorgeous Cabernet Sauvignon is an absolutely screaming deal.

I think this is the best deal we have ever offered on a Cabernet.

The wine was built to impress but trying to get the French to drink 15 euro (well-over $20 here in USA) Cabernet Sauvignon from Southern France proved too difficult for this supplier and they offered me a killer price to take it all off of their hands.

Folks, this is as quaffable and delicious as Cabernet gets but, again, beautifully built and harmoniously balanced - only 13.5% alc!

The ultimate cellar defender if there ever was one - I promise, you are going to love this wine!

Deep garnet in the glass. Ripe, open-knit bouquet of black cherry chocolate truffle decadence with notes of walnut husk, brown sugar and fresh tobacco leaf. Succulent and juicy on entry, plush and full-bodied on the palate with tobacco and mineral-laced tannins carrying black cherry and brown sugar to a delicious, magic-carpet-ride conclusion.

Absolutely fantastic - you won't be able to have just one glass!

100% Old Vine Cabernet Sauvignon, sourced from Languedoc-Roussillon and Minervois regions.
100% barrel-aged in large format foudre, 18% new French oak
13.5% alc. **Note - the label says 14.5%. This was a mistake at the printers in France!**
1000 cases produced
Bottled June 2022 

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Lot 316 | 2020 Costieres de Nimes Vielles Vigne Rhone White

A blend of Old Vine (Vielles Vignes) Grenache Blanc, Clairette, Viognier and Rousanne, this fantastic Rhone-style white blend has scored 91-points from Jeb Dunnock for the 2020 vintage. Pungent with a racy core of sparkling minerality, this gorgeous, crystalline beauty is a screaming deal...

The gorgeous bouquet is simultaneously crystalline and pungent with ripe honeysuckle and acacia flowers adorning a generous core of quince, apricot and pineapple with subtle notes of river rock. Rich on entry with excellent succosite, perfectly-ripe apricot is supported by chalky-minerality punctuated with a crisp finish of honeyed mandarin and allspice. Ripe but never cloying, the finish has huge length and persistence. Fantastic!

100% estate, 80+-year-old vine, organic vineyard
50% Grenache Blanc, 30% Roussanne, 15% Clairette, 5% Viognier
50% barrel (25% new FO), 50% concrete tank aged on lees 8-months
13.8% alc.
Bottled June 20, 2022

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Lot 317 | 2020 Costieres de Nimes Vielles Vignes Rosé Wine

Under its original label, this gorgeous Rose has scored 91-points from Jeb Dunnock every year since 2016. His review of the 2019 pretty much sums up the program: The 2019 Costières De Nimes Vieilles Vignes Rose is rocking stuff, and possibly the finest rosé I’ve tasted from the Costières de Nimes...I’d put it up against any Provençal rosé out there.

As I have mentioned previously, 2020 (which is the wine on offer today), was an all-around fantastic vintage for whites, reds and rose so you'll just have to trust me on this one.

Sourced from 80+-year-old, head-trained Grenache and Mourvedre vines, this beautifully structured Vielles Vignes Rose is crystalline and gorgeous, as well as fantastically mouthwatering.

Blood orange and white peach are complexed with perfumed lavender, lemongrass and orange blossom. Generous and elegant on the palate this wine has a core of fleshy white peach encased in a steel beam of chalky, mineral-laced acidity sprinkled with grenadine, lilac and a fantastic white pepper retro-nasal blast. Mouthwateringly delicious with perfect fruit acid tension, this dynamic Rose will knock your socks off!

100% estate, organically farmed, 80-year-old vines.
85% Grenache, 15% Mourvedre
13% alc.
Bottled June 22, 2022

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Lot 318 | 2020 Costieres de Nimes Vielles Vignes GSM

Fabulously dense, concentrated and super-sexy, this one the greatest "Rhone varietal" red wine deals we've ever offered. Produced from 80+-year-old vines.

Scored 92-94-points out of the barrel in January by Jeb Dunnuck who commented on it's "rocking levels of black and blue fruits as well as notes of smoked meats, violets, and spring flowers. Concentrated and mouthfilling on the palate, it should be another gem of a wine from this talented team."

Singing lavender, simmered plums and black raspberry, complemented with savory notes of dark earth, roasted thyme and fennel. Dense and concentrated but beautifully focused on the palate with elegant lifted acidity and mineral laced tannins carrying chalky black raspberry and licorice notes carry through the finish. Nice Asian spice retronasal note completes the experience nicely.

70% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 15% Mourvedre
33% whole cluster fermentation
25% new French oak, 75% aged in cement
Bottled June 20, 2022

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Lot 319 | 2018 Santa Barbara County Nebbiolo

Killer Santa Barbara County, single-vineyard Nebbiolo? Talk about a needle in a haystack.

I see a lot of solid bulk wines from this producer (they own a lot of vineyard), but it's usually just that, bulk wine...solid wines but nowhere near great.

This wine, however, is great.

Color me surprised.

Extremely-well-built, it's an excellent approximation of Barolo's Nebbiolo but with a bit of California sunshine. Juicy yet complex with a robust, incredibly age-worthy structure, it will open your mind to the Cal-Ital opportunity on the Central Coast!

Italian wine lovers - ya gotta trust me on this one.

Deep garnet. 20-months in barrel and years in a zipped up tank have open up the bouquet beautifully with rose water, candied fig, ripe strawberry and orange marmalade underpinned with savory leather and tobacco leaf tinged minerality. Smooth and silky up front and resolving with a chewy, robust tannin structure that perfectly mirrors the bouquet on your palate. Bone-dry throughout with fruit and earth in perfect balance, this wine finishes long, echoing with red fruit richness and nicely attenuated minerality. Delicious!

100% Nebbiolo, 100% Single Vineyard
25% new French oak barrels, 20-months.
15.5% alc.
250 cases produced

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Lot 321 | 2018 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING END NOVEMBER, SHIPPING DECEMBER***

I asked the winemaker - another legendary consultant making wine for the who's who of Napa for over 40 years - why he was selling the wines (I also have the 2019) and his comment was: "I'm too busy with my other consulting projects to worry about 4-500 hundred cases of wine just 'cuz my names on the label...I love making the stuff, but I hate selling it. I'm too old for this shit."

Well, OK, then.

Both Lot 321 2018 Napa Valley Cabernet and Lot 322 2019 Napa Valley Cabernet hail from a small estate vineyard at just under 1,000 feet of altitude high above St. Helena. Just a couple hundred-feet from Howell Mountain appellation, this vineyard is surrounded by luminaries such as Viader, Cade and Merus. The wine is made with no-expense-spared, hand-punched-down in small 1-ton bins and aged for over 30-months in 25% new French oak. Classically-styled but in the tried-and-true sense, it's fantastic wine with superior structure and complexity.

Rich, ripe and voluptuous nose of briary blackberry and blueberry jam are well-supported with creamy mocha and caramel oak notes with hints of leather and red-rock to provide aromatic lift - the bouquet is ripe but never overripe. Supple and balanced on entry with chewy, muscular-yet-well-integrated tannins that are nicely balanced against the ripe blackberry fruit and creme-caramel finish. Great texture. The finish is delicious and complex with very good length, persistence and terrific overall balance. 100% classic and a steal at this price!

100% Cabernet Sauvignon, 100% estate fruit in the Napa Valley appellation, just under 1,000-feet of altitude
25% new French oak, aged for over 30-months.
15% alc.
Bottling end of November 2022

 

Lot 322 | 2019 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING END NOVEMBER, SHIPPING DECEMBER***

I asked the winemaker - another legendary consultant making wine for the who's who of Napa for over 40 years - why he was selling the wines (I also have the 2018) and his comment was: "I'm too busy with my other consulting projects to worry about 4-500 hundred cases of wine just 'cuz my names on the label...I love making the stuff, but I hate selling it. I'm too old for this shit."

Well, OK, then.

Both Lot 321 2018 Napa Valley Cabernet and Lot 322 2019 Napa Valley Cabernet hail from a small estate vineyard at just under 1,000-feet of altitude high above St. Helena. Just a couple hundred-feet from Howell Mountain appellation, this vineyard is surrounded by luminaries such as Viader, Cade and Merus. The wine is made with no-expense-spared, hand-punched-down in small 1-ton bins and aged for over 30-months in 25% new French oak. Classically-styled but in the tried-and-true sense, it's fantastic wine with superior structure and complexity.

Deep garnet in the glass, the 2019 Cabernet is a bit more blue-fruited than the 2018 with more pronounced florals. However, these wines are quite similar (as one would expect :-), with plenty of ripe blue and black fruit nicely balanced against red rock, leather and mocha turning more caramel-y with air. The 2019 is more vibrant on the palate with sexy acidity and a rich amalgam of blueberry jam and chocolate, hints of cassis and leather that finish atop a robust tannin layer that is so well-balanced it's almost imperceptible. Just a bit less chewy than the 2018, the liquid silk structure is uber-compelling with huge length and, again, incredible balance of fruit and red rock mineral-infused tannin's.

100% Cabernet Sauvignon, 100% estate fruit in the Napa Valley appellation, just under 1,000-feet of altitude
25% new French oak, aged for over 30-months.
15% alc.
Bottling end of November

 

Lot 323 | 2020 Langhe Nebbiolo

Another fantastic wine tasted last Spring at VinItaly, Lot 323 Langhe Nebbiolo hails from the dynamite 2020 vintage in Piedmonte.

Produced from the same Nebbiolo grape as Barolo, Langhe Nebbiolo is a lighter and more approachable style, typically meant to be drunk over the next 3-5 years. Usually softer than a Barolo, in 2020 the exceptional hang-time led to beautifully structured, complex and harmonious wine truly deserving of the Baby Barolo moniker.

It's a great everyday drinking wine that punches waaaay above its weight class and is as food-friendly as it gets - I highly recommend you try it with tagliatelle pasta with a meat or porcini mushroom sauce not to mention red and white meats including grilled game. Great too with medium hard cheeses with some age on them.

Bone-dry, focused and complex, this is an artisanally crafted wine that will thrill Italian wine lovers with its combination of incredible value and high quality.

Pale, medium garnet in the glass. Much appreciated in a big Burgundy bowl with nice chimney. Give it a minute or two of swirling and pretty cherry and raspberry fruit come to the fore, underpinning the tarry rose petal and anise notes and growing more powdery, spicy and ripe with air. Savory mushroom, sweet tobacco, leather and red rock mineral notes complex the bouquet nicely adding depth and dimension. Supple on entry with minerally tannins beautifully attenuated with pretty red fruits and sweet tobacco in a long, youthful finish just beginning to unwind. Dry and harmonious with a beautiful structure, Lot 323 will knock your socks off with its fantastic combination of elegance, complexity and food-friendliness.

100% Nebbiolo
50% tank-raised, 50% large format barrique
14% alc.
200 cases produced
Bottled September 2022

***

Lot 324 | 2021 Barbera D'Alba

Delightful.

Yes, delightful. That's exactly what I think of this wine...racy aromatics with ripe, fresh fruit and pretty florals just make it...delightful.

A 2021 Barbera D'Alba from the Langhe area of Barolo, Lot 324 is the kid sister to Lots 323 Nebbiolo and Lot 326 Barolo, all sourced from the same producer. Lot 326 Barbera was just bottled and should be on the water later this month (along with its siblings) and arriving in early January.

This is a drink early, drink fresh offering that delivers tremendous pleasure for everyday consumption. Sure, it's serious enough to warrant a little cellaring, but happy enough to be plucked and eaten straight off the vine as well.

Either way, it's a pleasure to drink with its vibrant character and excellent freshness. 

Intense ruby red with vibrant purple hues. Fresh, crisp, lovely bouquet of black cherry and blackberry haloed with rose petals and spice with hints of mineral and fresh leather. Concentrated and smooth on entry with ripe fruit layered over vibrant graphite and mineral notes that make for a dynamic palate. Plummy and harmonious on the finish with pretty retronasal fruit blast highlighting the purity of fruit.

This is an amazingly food-friendly wine, in fact, I would say this is purpose-built food wine. It will a perfect pairing for just about any pasta dish, robust stews, cold cuts, baked pork medallions and fairly fresh soft cheeses.

100% Barbera D'Alba
4-months in stainless steel to preserve the pretty fruit
14% alc.
200 cases produced
Bottled August 31st, 2022

***

Lot 325 | 2016 DOCG Barolo

Only at de Negoce!

I tasted this wine at VinItaly last Spring and immediately put my foot on the last remaining 195 cases. Man, do I wish I had more of this...

I am working super-lean here and, thanks to the strong dollar, am able to offset the unprecedented shipping costs and offer this wine to you!

This is direct from the cellar with a 93-point score from James Suckling and a 91-point score from Decanter Magazine. We've agreed to affix our label and not mention the producer (this wine is all over the internet at $40-$50 plus shipping) so I am unable to re-produce the reviews here. However, the descriptors "exceptional", "delicious", "perfumed", "flavorful" and "chewy" all appear in the reviews.

Barolo fans, trust me on this one....this is classic Barolo in an exceptional vintage.

Medium-deep garnet and, as expected, I had a definite preference for a more chimneyed Burgundy glass versus a traditional Bordeaux. Right out of the bottle, the archetypal perfume of tar, roses and cherry is accented by rosemary, and umami leather and mushroom notes in a wonderfully complex bouquet that has evolved nicely and is now fully delineated. The red cherry note becomes more pronounced and spicy as the bouquet opens up further and reveals its numerous layers. Just beautiful. Smooth as silk on the attack with sappy fruit and earth in equal measure resolving in a potent array of chewy but exceptionally-well integrated tannins...fleshy, perfectly ripe, perfectly balanced and complex as hell, this is screaming deal for a wine that delivers tremendous complexity now and will age another 20+ years in your cellar. Perfetto!

100% Barolo DOCG, 100% Nebbiolo
40+months including a mix of ageing 18-months in smaller barrels and longer ageing in large format wooden vats.
Alc. 14%
195 cases produced

***

Lot 326 | 2017 DOCG Barolo

From the same producer as Lot 325, Lot 326 is their 2017 Barolo and it is a fantastic wine. Stylistically richer and riper, it will have massive appeal; however, let me be clear, these are not a repeat of the uber-hot, overripe 2003 vintage Barolo's. Riper fruit, yes, but with all the elegant structure and class one would expect from a delicious vintage - you guys are going to love this!

Antonio Galloni sums up the vintage best: In tasting, the 2017s are mid-weight Barolos with the classic structure of Nebbiolo. They are often intensely aromatic. Acids and tannins are prominent in many wines. The fruit profiles are ripe, often distinctly red-toned, but not cooked or over-ripe. Perhaps most importantly, the 2017 Barolos are very true to site, which is always a concern with vintages marked by warm weather. The best 2017s are exceptionally polished, vivid and flat-out delicious. If tasted blind, my guess is that few people would identify the wines as coming from a hot and very dry year.

Only at de Negoce!

Lot 326 2017 Barolo has multiple 92-point scores from Decanter Magazine and James Suckling but, as before, we've agreed to affix our label and not mention the producer (this wine is all over the internet at $40-$50 plus shipping) so I am unable to re-produce the reviews here.

I am working super-lean here and, thanks to the strong dollar, am able to offset the unprecedented shipping costs and offer this wine to you.

Deep garnet in the glass. The bouquet is immediate with morello cherry, leather, tobacco and spicy minerality. It soon blossoms with powdered lilac garrigue, rose petal, menthol and cinnamon beautifully complexing the ripe bouquet - and it is complex. Open knit and accessible on entry with a juicy structure gripped in robust, chewy tannins coated in red cherry and raspberry, tobacco. Great depth! The finish is juicy with mouthwatering fruit and mineral-laced tannins yet velvety carrying red fruits and tobacco notes in a long, persistent finish. Fantastic!

100% Barolo DOCG, 100% Nebbiolo
40+months including a mix of ageing 18-months in smaller barrels and longer ageing in large format wooden vats.
Alc. 14.5%
Bottled September 2022

***

Lot 328 | 2020 Sonoma County Chardonnay

Some of the best deals come over the transom this time of year as folks finalize their blends or look at the upcoming harvest and make some tough decisions on how much inventory they want to hold.

This is one of those deals.

From an absolutely legendary producer comes this fantastic Chardonnay. They would only sell the wine as "Sonoma County" appellation to protect their identity and all I am able to relay to you is that the wine comes from 1500-2000-foot-elevation vineyards not far from the Napa Valley border.

This wine is the definition of no expense spared production and sees 100% new French oak from the worlds best artisan coopers. Their various Chardonnay's sell for well over $100/bottle.

Given the impending harvest we were able to secure this wine at a quite advantageous price.

Now, lets get down to brass tacks - this is not a $100/bottle Chardonnay. I think its a 92-93 point wine, not a 96-99-pointer, which is likely why we got our hands on it - it just didn't make the cut. Its far more fairly priced in the $50-60 range to be frank.

The bouquet opens with candied ginger and apple pie notes but quickly blossoms with lemon oil, yellow flowers and ripe stonefruit notes haloed with brioche/pastry notes complexed with hints of nougat and marzipan. Fantastic! Smooth yet vibrant on the attack with a honey beam of acidity bursting with lemon curd and stonefruit and finishing with lingering salt water taffy notes. Medium-full bodied and beautifully framed with lush opulence and great mineral focus throughout, this wine has it all!

100% Chardonnay
100% Sonoma County, 100% estate fruit
100% new French oak
15% alc.
300 cases produced
Bottling in September and shipping in October

***

Lot 329 | 2019 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 

We managed to get our hands on just 2 barrels (40-50 cases) of Lot 329. This is a very limited, exclusive offer. 

Sourced from the same producer as Lot 328 SoCo Chardonnay I am, again, prevented from mentioning much about this wines provenance. What I can tell you is that this Pinot Noir is sourced from an estate vineyard in Fort Ross/Seaview AVA (we are prevented from using Fort Ross/Seaview AVA on the label, hence the Sonoma Coast appellation) and retails under its original bottling for around $150/bottle. The vineyard sits at around 1200-1500-feet of elevation and the wine is raised in 50% new French oak.

The result is a powerfully structured Pinot Noir that will require a few more years in the bottle to crack open. The bottled wine has garnered 94-, 95- and 96-point scores from Vinous, The Wine Advocate, and The Wine Spectator (not necessarily in that order).

Why do they have two barrels of 2019 sitting around? It's simple: there are a lot of mid-90's scoring, $60-80 luxury Pinot Noir's on the market and even the $150 blue chips have to trim their sails on occasion.

Deep garnet in the glass with shades of ruby - dark for a Pinot Noir from this area. The bouquet features a full array of ripe red and black fruits, from strawberry and cherry kirsch to blackberry tart wrapped in chocolatey oak. As things open up toasty rose petals, forest floor and caramel notes complex the bouquet. Rich and fleshy on the palate, seamless with taught acidity and plenty of plush tannins to carry all the fruit richness and depth. Finishes long and lingering with chocolatey fruit and a spicy top note.

Overall, this is spectacular, muscular, dense Pinot Noir. It shows well now and is nicely delineated already, yet the taught acidity and powerful structure surely indicate great things to come.

100% Pinot Noir, 100% Estate fruit
50% new French oak - top artisan cooperage
15.2% alc.
40-50 cases
Bottled November 2022

***

Lot 330 | 2021 Sonoma County Chardonnay

Lot 330 is from the same producer as Lot 328 2020 Sonoma County Chardonnay and it is the better wine of the two, just a bit younger.

2021 is clearly a fantastic vintage for Chardonnay and, luckily, I have a 100 more cases this time :-). I paid a bit more for the '21, but not too much, so I can hold the price.

More good news, I purchased the wine and the barrels. It's a bit young still so we will store it through harvest to get a little more time in oak. I anticipate bottling and shipping in December.

Here is the copy from Lot 328 for reference...I've tweaked the copy a bit to reflect the quality of the '21 vintage and the tasting notes are different.

Some of the best deals come over the transom this time of year as folks finalize their blends or look at the upcoming harvest and make some tough decisions on how much inventory they want to hold.

This is one of those deals.

From an absolutely legendary producer comes this fantastic Chardonnay. They would only sell the wine as "Sonoma County" appellation to protect their identity and all I am able to relay to you is that the wine comes from 1500-2000-foot-elevation vineyards not far from the Napa Valley border.

This wine is the definition of no expense spared production and sees 100% new French oak from the worlds best artisan coopers. Their various Chardonnay's sell for well over $100/bottle.

Given the impending harvest we were able to secure this wine at a quite advantageous price.

Now, lets get down to brass tacks - this is not a $100/bottle Chardonnay. I think its a it better than Lot 328 and more like a 93-94-point wine, not a 96-99-pointer, which is likely why we got our hands on it - it just didn't make the cut. Its far more fairly priced in the $50-60 range to be frank.

Pale yellow straw in the glass. Gorgeous, succulent bouquet of lychee, orange marmalade, white peach, vanilla blossom and baked baguette, with a whisper of oyster shell minerality giving lift and freshness. Still youthful and evolving, the nose is going to develop into something really fantastic with a few more months of barrel. Rich yet vibrant on entry, with a broad and generous mid-palate weight concentrating in a saline mineral finish, with lingering notes of toasted brioche, allspice, and vanilla creme brulee. Fantastic verve throughout but the wood notes are dominant right now. The additional barrel time will give the fruit time to come up. Trust me, this is going to be fantastic!

100% Chardonnay
100% Sonoma County, 100% estate fruit
100% new French oak
15% alc.
400 cases produced
Bottling in December 2022

***

Lot 340 | 2017 Clare Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER AND ARRIVING EARLY 2023***

It's time to...

BACK UP THE TRUCK!

Lot 340 2017 Clare Valley Cabernet Sauvignon comes to us from one of Australia's most iconic winemakers, a James Halliday 5-Star Winery and one of critic Huon Hooke's Top Winery's of Australia.

We initially discovered this Cabernet at our massive, 500-wine "triage" tasting in June, then returned in August with a visit to the winery and dialed-in the blend.

The result is a simply astonishing value.

Renowned for its Riesling's, the Clare Valley has a variety of climates and aspects allowing for a wide array of varietals to be successful there. Essentially, the further you move up the valley away from Watervale and towards Clare, the warmer it gets. This Cabernet is produced from an estate vineyard in the northern part of the Valley where Cabernet and Shiraz thrive.

The style is quite classic, with complex fruit, a balanced structure, and deftly-deployed oak. Medium-bodied and plush, it's very approachable now and will continue to improve over the next decade. The Ultimate Cellar-Defender!

A mixture of ruby and deep garnet. With 24-months in barrel and another 24-months in tank (to further clam the tannins), the bouquet is complex, effusive and quite evolved with spicy red hots ("spicy capsicum" the Aussies call it), camphor, powdered violets, blackcurrant, ripe plum and blackberry. Juicy and substantial on the palate with sweet florals haloing spicy blackcurrent, blackberry, and plummy chocolate notes supported with very-well integrated, barely perceptible tannins. The finish long and clean with excellent persistence of fruit and oak. 

Bottling schedule for Mid-November

89% Cabernet, 5% Merlot, 2% Shiraz, 2% Grenache, and 2% Tempranillo
100% estate vineyard
24-months in BBL, 20% new French oak
14.5% alc.

 

Lot 341 | 2018 Eden Valley of the Barossa Cabernet Sauvignon 

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER TO ARRIVE EARLY 2023***

Up above the Barossa Valley floor is the Eden Valley of The Barossa. Located at altitudes of 330 to 550-meters, this cooler-climate produces wines of power and intensity as well as elegance and finesse. In fact, this producer is less than a mile away and just across the valley from the legendary, $900/bottle Henschke's Hill of Grace Vineyard and located at the same 400-meter altitude.

Under the sixth-generation producer's label, their top-of-the-line, no-expense-spared, Estate, Icon-level 2018 Barossa Cabernet Sauvignon has received a 95-Point score from James Halliday, 94 from James Suckling, 93 from Wine Pilot (Aussie reviewer), and has multiple 93-point scores from Vinous.com for the inferior 2016 and 2017 vintages (the 2018 will be rated in January 2023 I am told). We have the same wine in our Lot 341 bottling.

Opaque, dark and inky in the glass. Vibrant black currant descends into a deep and luscious spectrum of black plum and dark chocolate candied with bread pudding. The upper spectrum is adorned with roasted thyme, bell pepper spice, leather and graphite and framed with aged spruce. Focused, alluring, and succulent on the palate, the dense core is lifted with youthful and mouth-watering acidity that provides a liveliness and energy to match the depth and richness. Deeeelicious!

100% Estate vineyards, Eden Valley of the Barossa
40% new French oak
15% alc
Bottling November 2022 for Spring 2023 delivery

 

Lot 342 | 2017 Clare Valley GTM (Grenache-Tempranillo-Malbec)

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER TO ARRIVE EARLY 2023***

One of the things I noticed visiting tasting rooms in Australia was that the Aussies are planting and producing just about every variety imaginable down there. From Teroldego to Albarino to Tourigo Nacional, they are experimenting like crazy. However, on offer today is a supremely unique wine compromised of old-vine classics like Grenache blended with some of the Clare Valley's original Tempranillo vines. The result is as fantastic as it is unique, a blend pioneered by the producer.

Pinot-lovers, Italian wine-lovers, Spanish wine-lovers, Aussie wine-lovers it's time to...

BACK UP THE TRUCK!

Even at its native sale price in Australia of $300/case.

Like Lot 340, Lot 342 2017 Grenache-Tempranillo-Malbec (known as GTM but it also has a little Mouvedre/Mataro and Syrah in the blend as well) comes to us from one of Australia's most iconic winemakers, a James Halliday 5-Star Winery and one of critic Huon Hooke's "Top Winery's of Australia".

This the same wine the producer bottles and we haven't touched it - its perfect as it is - the original bottling scoring 93-points from the Aussie reviewer Wine Pilot (though they got the final blend wrong in the description). FWIW, Vinous reviewed the similar vintage 2013 version and awarded it 91-points - that's the only recent review from them.

Other Aussie reviewers note the wine is "Top Value" at the $25/bottle price tag. 

Folks, you have to trust me here, this is simply astonishing value and a fabulous wine. It drinks beautifully now, and will go another 10-15 years in bottle.

Despite the Tempranillo, to me the sensibility here is Australia meets Italy. Medium garnet in the glass and super-expressive and fragrant bouquet of black raspberry, dried orange peel, menthol and gumtree backed by tootsie roll, leather, and cedar with a kiss of cherry lurking in the background. While the aromatics are well-delineated and fresh, the palate is surprisingly sensuous and succulent with a plush, viscous entry beautifully integrated with lifted red fruits(Grenache), savory depth (Tempranillo), violet perfume (Malbec) and a tootsie roll magic carpet ride finish from the hogsheads. Outstanding!

I should note that, throughout our Australian tasting room visits, Mark and I noticed that the Australians were planting just about every varietal under the sun down under.

100% Estate vineyards in Clare Valley
39% Grenache, 26% Tempranillo, 12% Malbec, 12% Mataro, 11% Syrah
Aged 24-months in 20% new French oak barrels - Aussies call them hogsheads.
350 cases available
Bottling TBD November 2022 - should arrive February 2022 or thereabouts

***

 

Lot 343 | 2020 McLaren Vale Shiraz

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER AND ARRIVING USA EARLY 2023***

Lot 343 comes to us from a fifth generation winegrower and premier viticultural consultant who's family pioneered the Australian wine business in the 1850's. This guy has planted more ultra-premium vineyards and knows South Australia better than just about anyone.

The only reason we got our hands on this wine is the ongoing trade war between Australia and its leading wine export partner, China. Combined with the strong dollar, this situation makes for some rather insane values.

After three-years of drought and a tough 2019 harvest, the 2020 vintage in McLaren Vale turned small but the quality was fantastic. Lot 343 2020 McLaren Vale Shiraz is an absolute classic, archetypal for the region and fabulously delicious.

Deep purple in the glass with ripe, expressive aromas of black plum, blueberry and cocoa contrast with savory notes of black pepper, bay leaf, roasted aromatic herbs and braised lamb. Dried orange peel with air. Silky and rich on entry, the wine is juicy with dried blueberrys covered with dark chocolate, and complexed with the lifted notes of lavender, roasted thyme, and meaty pepper spice. Plush, juicy and generous on the midpalate with fine mineral tannins and focused, mouthwatering acidity that extends through the silky, glycerine-like finish with a hint of roasted cocoa bean. First-class all the way and OMG good!

100% Shiraz, 100% McLaren Vale producer estate vineyards
Aged 20-months in 20% new French oak hogsheads
15% alc.
Projected Bottling November 2022 to arrive USA Winter 2023

 

Lot 344 | 2018 Eden Valley of the Barossa Shiraz

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER TO ARRIVE EARLY 2023***

Up above the Barossa Valley floor is the Eden Valley of The Barossa. Located at altitudes of 330 to 550-meters, this relatively cooler-climate produces wines of power and intensity as well as elegance and finesse. In fact, this producer is less than a mile away and just across the valley from the legendary, $900/bottle Henschke's Hill of Grace Vineyard and located at the same 400-meter altitude.

Under the sixth-generation producer's label, their top-of-the-line, no-expense-spared, Estate, Icon-level 2018 Eden Valley of the Barossa Shiraz has received a 95-Point score from both James Halliday and Sam Kim (Wine Orbit), 93-points from James Suckling, 92-points from Wine Pilot (Aussie reviewer), and, like Lot 341 Cabernet, has multiple 92-point scores from Vinous.com for the inferior 2016 and 2017 vintages (the 2018 will be rated in January 2023 I am told).

 As brash and explosive wine as this wine is, it never exceeds its boundaries. The bouquet is redolent with coconut, toffee and graham cracker bass notes enveloping a core of ripe bourbon-soaked cherry with an amalgam of chocolate cake and plum reduction complexed with mint, lavender and thyme florals. Liquid sex on the palate, sensuous and juicy but powerfully structured and intense with lush fruit and oak beautifully entwined. The finish is a fabulously rich yet perfectly-attenuated magic carpet ride, a master class in world-class winemaking.

100% Estate vineyards, Eden Valley of the Barossa
40% new French oak
15% alc.
Bottling November 2022 for Spring 2023 delivery

 

Lot 345 | 2022 Clare Valley Riesling 

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER AND ARRIVING EARLY 2023***

The Clare Valley is the spiritual home of Riesling in Australia. It's insane diurnal swing ripens fruit yet allows it to retain its rapier-like acidity which starbursts on your palate in a mineral explosion. Some of the finest examples of the varietal hail from this region.

From the same producer as Lots 340 Clare Valley Cabernet and 342 Clare Valley GTM, this Clare Valley Riesling is an absolute classic from a master of the varietal. Good luck finding this anywhere else in the USA, this wine is gobbled up as a perennial favorite by its core Aussie audience. However, we used our purchasing leverage to get an allocation.

A mouthwatering masterpiece, this electric, bone-dry Riesling is lightning in a bottle!

"[this] Riesling has been  one of my favourite Aussie whites for years now." Oz Clarke

Lot 345 is the same wine as the standard bottling from this producer - it's an outstanding wine from a truly great vintage. It has already been scored 95-points from Wine Pilot under the producers label

"95 points. Always one of the exemplary Rieslings from this classic region, this vintage is one of their best. It offers a glorious Clare Valley nose, perfumed with limes, spices, grapefruit and florals, notably jasmine. Bright, even slightly grippy acidity, with a minerally, chalky texture. Very long and focused. This is superb. Depending on whether you love your Rieslings young and fresh or developed and complex, this is available for drinking any time over the next twenty years. More compelling evidence of how good the 2022 vintage is." Ken Gargett (Winepilot)

A crisp, dry, zingy, intensely flavoured Riesling that will make you sit up and take notice! Aromas and flavours of lemons, limes and candied grapefruit that are fused together by a laser-like beam of acidity that carries right through to the long finish.

It’s drinking beautifully right now, brilliant on its own or as an accompaniment to seafood, salads or poultry dishes.

100% estate vineyards, 100% free run juice, 100% stainless steel.
12% alc.
BOTTLING NOVEMBER AND ARRIVING EARLY 2023 

 

 

Lot 348 | 2021 Barossa Valley Century Vines GSM

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING END OF NOVEMBER AND ARRIVING FEBRUARY FOR EARLY SPRING SHIPPING***

***WILL ARRIVE READY-TO-DRINK!***

Deep, dark and spicy bouquet is complexed with ripe redcurrant, plums and dried blueberry with dark chocolate bass notes. Lavender, herbs de provence, and new leather halo it all. Juicy, rich, fresh and vibrant (the hallmarks of the fantastic 2021 vintage) with balanced savory depth, beautifully layered with boysenberry, roasted thyme, upholstery leather, and dark earth, with a whisper of lavender lamb on the finish. Super plush, beautifully layered, and punctuated with plum, raspberry, leather, and roasted thyme echoing over fine tannins. Fantastic!

50% Grenache, 35% Mataro (Mourvedre), and 15% Shiraz
18-months in barrel, mostly neutral oak
15% alc
300 cases available
Bottling end of November, 2022

***

Chateau Serilhan 2019 St. Estephe Cabernet/Merlot

Located on the Left-Bank in St. Estephe, Chateau Sérilhan's vineyards and winery were recently re-invigorated across the board and the legendary oenologist Alain Reynaud added to the team. Performing extremely well in 2019, Serilhan was awarded TOP 5 Wines of Saint Estephe En Primeur 2019 from both Vinous.com and The Wine Advocate, earning 92-94 and 91-93 scores respectively.

Check out these fantastic reviews:
Vinous, Antonio Galloni: The 2019 Sérilhan is a total knock out. A rush of grilled herb, inky dark fruit, licorice and menthol notes hit the palate as the 2019 makes a strong opening statement. Deep and virile in feel, the 2019 has so much to offer. It is without question one of the sleepers of the vintage. In a word: impressive. 92-94

Vinous, Neil Martin: The 2019 Sérilhan, attired in a very chic blue label now, conveys real quality on the nose with well defined blackberry, cedar and sous-bois aromas that seem very pure and nuanced. The palate is ripe and succulent on the entry, yet there are genuinely very fine tannins here, lending this Saint-Estèphe a silky texture à la 2016 and a persistent, gratifying finish. Bon vin! 92-94

Wine Advocate (Lisa Perrotti) With a deep garnet-purple color, the 2019 Sérilhan bursts from the glass with notes of ripe blackcurrants, boysenberries, black raspberries and cedar chest plus nuances of red roses, pencil lead and camphor. The medium-bodied palate shimmers with energy, featuring tons of crunchy black fruit and a finely grained texture, lifted by fantastic tension, finishing long and perfumed. Impressive! 91-93

REGION: Saint-Estèphe, Bordeaux, France
BLEND: 60% Cabernet, 40% Merlot
TERROIR: Saint Estèphe Lieu-dit Aillan, Bocq, Pez et St Corbian, Graves of Günz, clay, and limestone.

HISTORY: 20 years ago, this family vineyard property of 20 ha in total in AOC Saint-Estèphe and Haut-Médoc, initiated a “return to its roots” inspired by the vision that Émile Peynaud, founder of modern oenology, had of Saint- Estèphe wines: “lively colour, bright fruit and harmony on the palate”. The resources and methods of renowned growths were used to create a seductive wine: completely picked by hand – meticulous sorting of the grape berries – vinification by plot – haute-couture ageing – special attention paid to the blends.

WINEMAKING: Coming from 33-year-old vines, fermentation takes place in concrete tanks, stainless tanks and wooden vats and includes a 4-day cold maceration. Malolactic fermentation takes place in barrel and includes some stirring of the lees. The wine is aged in oak barrels, of which 37% new, 32% one-wine, and 31% second-wine for 15 months.

 

Lot 349 | 2021 Barossa Valley Old Vine Single Vineyard Shiraz


***WINE FUTURE ARRIVING SPRING 2023***

From day one, this wine has been one of my Aussie favorites due to its combination of incredible mouthfeel, intricacy and complexity. It's also slurpy as hell...even if you have found Barossa Shiraz to be a bit overwrought in the past, I am confident you will find this wine quite compelling.

Sourced from a vineyard planted in the 1970's, this 40-50-year-old-vine Shiraz is basket-pressed into open-top fermenters, fermented with natural yeasts only, and aged in completely neutral french oak barrels to preserve the old vine character. Trust me, with all this gorgeous extract and silky finesse, you won't miss the oak here. 

The vineyard is legendary and a source for Rockford, Torbreck, St. Hallett and Peter Lehman.

This wine is not imported into the US but, if it were, it would priced alongside the aforementioned wines not to mention Two Hands, Mollydooker and D'Arenberg. It is every bit as good and, to my palate, better. The purity here is super-compelling, I promise. Dark and meaty out of the bottle with aromas of crushed flowers, mint, stewed mulberry, ripe morello cherry and graham cracker. The bouquet quickly opens up, exuding lavender, blackberry syrup, wild boysenberry bramble, cocoa, leather, and pungent herbs. Pure umami and multi-layered, so good you can hardly pull your nose out.  Silky, seamless and glycerine-like on entry, the rich mid-palate studded with chewy, chocolately tannins and mouthwatering acidity that focuses the wine through the finish. Incredibly well-balanced, this wine is at once dense, hedonistic and sensuous while also being soft, delicate and ethereal. My original notes say "this is a wine that wants to be drunk" and "incredible pleasure derived".


Drink now and over the next decade or two.
100% Old Vine, Single Vineyard, Estate Shiraz
100% neutral French oak for 12-months
15% alc.
Bottling Late November, 2022 to arrive USA Spring 2023

 

Lot 350 | 2019 Adelaide Hills "Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon


***WINE FUTURE ARRIVING JANUARY AND SHIPPING EARLY FEBRUARY 2023***

Lot 350 2019 Adelaide Hills Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon was produced by rockstar winemaker Shane Harris for Geoff Hardy's 2019 Tzimmukin program. This is their most expensive and iconic wine, selling for $295/bottle in Australia. We were allowed the privilege of purchasing just 80 cases of this magnificent wine (I had to buy quite a bit of 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon to get my hands on it :-).

This is the priciest wine I have ever offered in the Lot program, but it's worth every penny.

You've likely never heard of Shane Harris but he's a legend in Australia. In 2012, 2018 and 2021, he was named Australian Winemaker of the Year by Australia’s leading wine industry publication, Winestate Magazine (Australia's version of the Wine Spectator). In 2012 and 2014, Wines by Geoff Hardy was also named Winestate Magazine’s Australian Wine Company of the Year, an award based on individual wine scores throughout the year. Shane also played an important role in earning the company’s five red star rating in James Halliday’s Wine Companion, a top rating only awarded to 10% of Australian wineries. The 2016 Tzimmukin was named as one of the Top 10 red blends by The Real Review.

Only produced in special vintages (the last being 2016), the Tzimmukin is made from partially air-dried grapes from the best parcels of their K-1 estate vineyard in the rolling Adelaide Hills region. In the past, the wine has been a blend of Cabernet and Shiraz but, in 2019, they decided to do 100% Cabernet Sauvignon.

The wine was originally presented to us at our epic two-day 500 wines tasting and, I'll admit, at first I didn't get it. It had a concave bouquet, was supremely tightly wound and simply impenetrable on the palate. Still, I thought, there is gobs of structure and potential here - lets see where this goes.

Sure enough, the next day the bouquet had really started to bloom and we spent the next several days watching this wine come to life. By the end of the week it was really singing, and I decided then and there it would be assigned as Lot 350.

The wine arrives next month but here are my notes from a recent tasting of one of the samples I brought home with me last Summer.

Day One: deep purple in the glass with just a kiss of ruby around the rim. Tightly wound aromatics with a concave bouquet that draws you donw into the glass but gives up very little. The palate is the same, just a wall of tannins. Nope, let cork this up and see where it goes.

Couple days later things are looking better...the bouquet is vibrant and sexy with blackberry, mulberry and black cherry interlaced with currant notes that provide lift to the sensuous, rich, high-quality oak. Peppery gumtree, spicy clove and cinnamon florals complex the nose. Vibrant, muscular and sinewy but surprisingly elegant on the palate with beautifully-integrated, minerally tannins interlaced with black and red fruits in a big, lush, palate-staining finish with big, chalky length and resounding fruit that echoes for a good minute or more. Wow. With pinpoint precision, seamless, ethereal structure and exquisite balance, this is a truly Epic wine!

Adelaide Hills K1 vineyards, 100% Estate Vineyards
100% Cabernet Sauvignon
65% new French oak, 20-months
30-year DIAM closure
Bottled Summer 2021

 

Lot 351 | 2021 Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING NOVEMBER AND SHIPPING MARCH 2023***

Cabernet-lovers, its time to back up the truck!

Surrounded by Margaret River legends Vasse Felix, Howard Park and Cape Grace, Lot 351 comes to us from one of the pioneering wineries in the Margaret River. Planted in the early 70's, it is one of the founding vineyards of the region (along with Cape Mentelle, Cullen, Moss Wood and the aformentioned Vasse Felix). Ranked in the Top 5% of Australian wineries by Huon Hooke of The Real Review, this vineyard is higher ranked than Cullen and Cape Mentelle!

Priced around $50/bottle in Australia (it is not exported to the US), the wine is renowned for being an amazing value, routinely outscoring its neighbors at much higher prices with the vast majority of the production selling through the wineries very popular tasting room. The 2020 version of this Cabernet Sauvignon has earned either 93- or 94-point scores from both Aussie and International critics James Halliday and James Suckling amongst others.

Produced from 100% estate-grown, organically-farmed fruit, and raised in 30% new French oak barrels for 18-months, this is a damned fine wine. Its supple, cool-climate styling and underlying complexity make for a super-compelling Cabernet Sauvignon that will have broad appeal.

Youthfully deep and dark, almost opaque in the glass. Blackcurrant, blackberry and cocoa lead the charge, brightening up with air as raspberry and blueberry notes for to the fore along with the classic, minty Margaret River bay leaf. Fresh and fruit-focused with 25% new French oak uplifting and not overpowering the bouquet. Supple, elegant, energetic and mouthwatering on entry with a super fine tannin structure covered in dark fruit and chocolatey oak notes that resolve into chocolate covered cherry notes in an pure, elegant, persistent finish with nice minty retronasal blast. Fantastic mouthfeel. Archetypal Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon!

100% Margaret River, 100% Estate
88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8.8% Shiraz, 2.5% Petit Verdot, 0.5% Merlot and 0.2% Cabernet Franc.
18-months in 30% new French oak
13.5% alc.

Lot 352 | 2021 Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon

***WINE FUTURE ARRIVING AND SHIPPING LATE FEBRUARY***

In retrospect, I should have assigned this wine to Lot 350 - it deserves the honor. Indeed, if there is a wine that defines the de Négoce model of incredible wines at incredible prices, this is it!

Regardless of its number, Lot 352 2021 Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon is a stunning value and a compelling wine.

The producer's 2019 and 2020 vintage bottling's have 93- to-95-point scores from James Halliday, Sam Kim (Wine Orbit) and WinePilot. While both 2019 and 2020 were solid vintages, they simply don't compare to the stellar, picture-perfect 2021 vintage.

Folks, there is no better value in Cabernet Sauvignon - accessible, complex, and classically-styled, you simply cannot go wrong here. It has it all: finesse, power, and balance, supple, succulent, silky mouthfeel and pitch-perfect oak deployment. It drinks great now and will age gracefully for another 10-15 years.

If you buy one Cabernet from me this year, this is the one - just trust me (and don't forget the de Négoce Guarantee!).

Yes, indeed, Ladies and Gentlemen, it's time to...

Back Up The Truck!

Opaque in the glass but not quite squid ink - just a little garnet around the rim.  Already showing beautifully with just six-weeks in the bottle with a ripe, gorgeously fragrant bouquet of cassis, dark plum and menthol/bay leaf opening further to reveal ripe cherry, blackberry jam and crushed red rock aromas anchored with chocolate and toasty brown sugar notes. Concentrated, expressive and perfectly-weighted on the palate with a supple-yet-powerful entry leading to a succulent mid-palate where the fantastic complexity of the vintage is in full effect. Here gobs of blackcurrant, ripe blackberry, dark plum, dark chocolate, leather and cedar are perfectly arrayed over silky, nuanced tannins seamlessly woven throughout. Delectable and well-structured at the same time with deftly-deployed oak carrying it all to a fabulously long and sumptuous finish.

100% estate grown and produced
100% Coonawarra
35% new French and American oak
15% alc. (may seem high but the wine is exquisitely balanced)
Bottled November 24th, 2022

 

Lot 353 | 2021 Single-Vineyard Barossa Valley Shiraz

***ON THE WATER, SHIPPING LATE JANUARY/EARLY FEBRUARY 2023***

Yes, this wine is bottled and on the water now!

From one of The Barossa's founding families, this gorgeous, sophisticated Shiraz comes from the upper reaches of the legendary Narrow Road Vineyard. The Three Springs block is located high above the Barossa flats on sandy alluvial hillsides at 380-metres, producing world-class fruit that combines richness, power, and elegance in equal measure.

If you are worried about buying and over-ripe, over-extracted Shiraz, don't be. This wine is powerfully built but also a very elegant, complex, elevation-driven expression of Shiraz. The fruit has a crisp, energetic ripeness to it and the overall impression here is remarkably fresh. For comparative purposes, it's structurally akin to Lot 120 Moon Mountain Cabernet, powerful-yet-ethereal. But it's less savory from a flavor profile, more like a racy Gigondas or Vacqueyras, with ripe, energetic fruit.

Opaque in the glass with a little magenta around the rim. Mulberry, reduced plum, and blackberry fruit are vibrant and ethereal riding cracked pepper and leather notes. Graham cracker, creme de cassis, and powdered lilac and sous bois florals further complex the bouquet. Smooth, muscular and precise on entry with crunchy red fruits and mulberry notes over a granitic, minerally spine that gives the wine excellent tension and verve. Sexy, ethereal and elegant with excellent purity, this is world-class, high-elevation Shiraz deftly produced by masters of the craft.

100% 2021 estate, single-vineyard Shiraz
40% new French oak, no American oak (which has been more typically deployed historically in many Aussie Shiraz but, today, winemakers use both French and American)
15% alcohol
Bottled mid-November. On the water arriving in January and shipping in February.

 

Lot 354 | 2021 Barossa Valley Centenarian Vine Shiraz

***ARRIVING EARLY JANUARY AND SHIPPING MID-TO-LATE JANUARY***

Folks, trust me on this one. If you like big, rich, powerful-yet-sumptuous red wines, this hedonistic and delicious wine is for you.

Sourced from 120+ year-old Centenarian Bush Vines and aged in 50% new French and American oak, this Icon-level, single-vineyard, mid-to-high 90's scoring (US and AUS critics!).

The producer is legendary and, in this case, rightfully concerned about their brand here in the USA. As such, I am unable to go anywhere near their name; however I can tell you these ancient, dry-farmed vines are planted in red clay loam and river silt over limestone - the classic combo for big, bold, rich, powerfully structured Barossa reds!

I told you the opportunities over there were unprecedented...

Squid ink in the glass, this visually impenetrable wine surprises with a ripe, expressive nose. It's rich and meaty with dark chocolate, coffee bean, savoury leather and peppery cedar notes surrounding layers of blackberry jam, plum fruit and raspberry kirsch over a core of granite and limestone that beautifully complexes the bouquet. Powerful on entry yet silky smooth and generous, the palate oozes with hedonistic richness. Ripe plum, cedar and chocolate notes swirl with pepper and mineral-laden tannins providing excellent structure and tension in a super sexy mid-palate and long, mouthwatering finish. Powerful and rich yet velvety smooth with lots of spice, this is a massively appealing glass of wine!

100%, 100+-year-old Centenarian Vine Shiraz, Single-Vineyard Estate
Dry-farmed, hand-picked
50% new French and American oak
15% alc.
Bottled late November 2022
Arriving early January and shipping shortly thereafter

 

Lot 361 | 2019 Russian River Valley Zinfandel

***WINE FUTURE BOTTLING END OF NOVEMBER, SHIPPING DECEMBER 2022***

Sourced from a tiny, boutique producer almost solely-focused on Zinfandel for its red wine program who, like so many wineries in Sonoma County, is largely tasting room driven. And, like so many other tasting room driven wineries still suffering from COVID-related hangover's and the reduced traffic this summer, they are looking to free up some inventory.

Bold, brash, and briary, this flagship bottling of Russian River Valley Zinfandel is an archetypal classic, chock full of rich fruit, pepper and the silky tannins that thrill Zin-lovers. It's perfectly balanced however, with it's ripeness and richness caressing the palate, never overpowering.

Medium- to deep-garnet in the glass with a hint of magenta showing freshness. The bouquet features spicy florals wrapped around wild strawberry and blackberry fruit underpinned with chocolate, bourbon vanilla, and toasty black pepper. Plush, juicy and smooth on entry with an open-knit structure piled high with rich boldness delivering blackberry jam, chocolate-covered cherry, black pepper and toasted vanilla laid over fantastic red dust-coated, minerally tannins providing depth and pitch-perfect balance. Pure, seamless, and well-integrated throughout, there is clearly a deft-hand at the wheel here.

100% Zinfandel, 100% Russian River Valley comprised of three vineyard sites
15% new American oak, remainder second and third fill barrels
15.5% alc

 

Lot 362 | 2019 "Vineyard X" Russian River Valley Zinfandel

Sourced from a head-pruned, old-vine Zinfandel paradise, this gorgeous Zinfandel features a piercing bouquet of plum, pepper, and sweet, powdery florals that opens up to reveal ripe cherry and raspberry notes underpinned with chocolate and white raisin. Smooth on entry but juicy, racy and energetic on the palate with mouthwatering minerality carrying pretty cherry and raspberry notes with a black pepper flourish leading to a long finish of plums and chocolate. Supremely elegant, this deftly-made wine exudes verve and class.

100% Zinfandel

 

Lot 363 | 2019 "Vineyard Y" Alexander Valley Zinfandel

Lots of bass notes up front with brown sugar and chocolate covered blueberries but it quickly opens to complex with pretty wild strawberry and raspberry, caramel/vanilla, and tobacco notes haloed by spicy cinnamon/red hots. Rich yet racy on entry with chalky, mineral-laced tannins carrying juicy, succulent blackberry syrup and ripe cherry notes to a long, sustained finish. Perfectly ripe and expressive with excellent purity and energy throughout, this another classy display of place-driven winemaking.

100% Zinfandel

 

Lot 364 | 2019 "Vineyard Z" Russian River Valley Zinfandel

Remarkable for a 2019 Zinfandel, this wine pours deep, dark and brooding with hints of chocolate, blackberry syrup, raspberry and wood resin eeking out of the void. With time, the fruit becomes more pronounced with the cherry, blackberry and cinnamon spice coming to the fore. Dense and tightly wound on entry with red and black fruits arrayed over a powerful layer of minerally tannins that lead to a long, if tightly wound, finish that echoes for some time. Clearly lots more to come here once this cracks open in the bottle.

Field Blend of approximately 85-90% Zinfandel,10% Petite Sirah with the remainder Alicante Bouschet, and Grenache.

Lot 367 | 2018 Russian River Valley Chardonnay

Lot 367 2018 Russian River Valley Chardonnay is from the same producers as Lot 247 and 258. We were offered this wine late in summer and bottled it into shiners on September 1st. It was too late to get labels printed so they go on in a couple of weeks. The wine will ship after Thanksgiving and is already drinking great!

Stylistically, this wine is quite similar to Lot 247 with perhaps a bit less new French oak (30% vs 40%) and lower alc. at 13.5%. It is a beautiful wine and an insane insane deal at $69/6-pack!

For the uninitiated, here is the original producer release with tasting notes adjusted.

Chardonnay Lovers: its time to back up the truck!

I'll be honest, I bought this for a song; however, I am passing the savings along to you.

The winery was a little backed up and had the wine stored offsite. The offsite location needed it out and the winery offered us a hot price to make it go away. Pretty much the same way we got our hands on Lot 239, actually. Same vintage as well, 2018, but the wine has been stored perfectly.

With it's California "sunshine in a glass" styling, this gorgeous wine is a right-up-the-middle rendition of Russian River Valley Chardonnay, bringing purity as well as richness from partial malolactic fermentation and well-integrated barrel support - it perfectly threads the needle between rich, ripe and complex elegance.

Trust me folks, this is top-quality, first-run RRV Chardonnay and it will have hugely broad appeal.

Pale yellow in the glass, this wine features a beautifully perfumed bouquet of lemongrass and lemon blossom underpinned with peaches and creme brulee. Lightly toasty and a little hazelnut comes on with air. Silky smooth on the palate and perfectly balanced with peach and vanilla and caramel flavors riding pretty, lemony minerality to a long, juicy finish that echoes with excellent persistence and purity. The oak is beautifully integrated throughout with classic Russian River Valley mineral providing energy and verve throughout.

100% Russian River Valley Chardonnay
30% new French oak
13.5% alc.

 

Lot 373 | 2021 "Milesimato" Prosecco Brut Italy

 ***WINE FUTURES ARRIVING FEBRUARY 2023, SHIPPING IN MARCH***

Looking for a fantastic bubbly?

The Fantinel family own over 300 hectares of vines planted in some of the best dirt in Grave, Colli Orientali del Friuli, and Collio districts in Friuli-Venezia Giulia (the northwest corner of Italy). They've been farming this land since the 60's and, under my friend Marco Fantinel's ceaseless efforts, have expanded their distribution to over 90 countries. If you are ever in the region, do not hesitate to visit their multiple estate wineries - across the board the wines are fantastic. And, while today's focus is on Prosecco and Brut Rose, we will have offers from his other wineries down the road.

Lot 373 2021 Prosecco DOC - from the Fantinel estate vineyard in Friuli Grave, this is their "highest expression" of Prosecco DOC. The light straw color and beautifully persistent perlage reveal refined and elegant yet intense floral aromas complexed with crisp apple and baked bread notes. Velvety on the palate with perfectly delineated and delicate fruit essences dancing across your tongue. This is an absolutely captivating wine with a persistent finish combining elegance and purity of fruit complimented with a nice, toasty halo. Squisito!

100% Prosecco DOC (Glera grape), 100% Estate fruit
12% alc.
ETA February/March 2022

 

Lot 374 | 2021 "Milesimato" Prosecco Brut Rose Italy

  ***WINE FUTURES ARRIVING FEBRUARY 2023, SHIPPING IN MARCH***

Looking for a fantastic bubbly that won't break the bank?

The Fantinel family own over 300-hectares of vines planted in some of the best dirt in Grave, Colli Orientali del Friuli, and Collio districts in Friuli-Venezia Giulia (the northwest corner of Italy). They've been farming this land since the 60's and, under my friend Marco Fantinel's ceaseless efforts, have expanded their distribution to over 90 countries. If you are ever in the region, do not hesitate to visit their multiple estate wineries - across the board the wines are fantastic. And, while today's focus is on Prosecco and Brut Rose, we will have offers from his other wineries down the road.

On offer today is a vintage-dated or "Millesimato" 2021 Prosecco Brut Rose straight from Marco's "One and Only" program. Essentially, these are single-vineyard, reserve-level quality sparklers made with tremendous precision and attention to detail.

Lot 374 2021 Brut Rose - again, from the Fantinel estate vineyard in Friuli Grave, this wonderful Brut Rose is comprised of 90% Pinot Nero and 10% Chardonnay. The color is a gorgeous pale pink with a hint of gold shading the background such that it is practically luminous. Fine grained bead from a long, 5-month fermentation. Red currant and delicate rendered wild strawberry essences lead the soft, generous bouquet with crusty bread, raspberry notes and a little rose perfume rounding things out. The red fruits are again crisply and delicately rendered over a mouthwatering minerality that fuels a long, velvety, elegant and persistent finish. Delizioso!

100% Estate, Single-Vineyard fruit
90% Pinot Nero, 10% Chardonnay
12% alc.