Staff Favorites

If you’re going to have Robert Parker or Stephen Tanzer over for dinner, selecting a wine they’ve rated highly will be a nice choice. However, when you’re buying wines for yourself, we’d love to see you find wines that match up your unique palate and pocketbook. We have a large staff of friendly and knowledgeable wine professionals that taste hundreds of wines each week. They can put you in touch with bottles that you are likely to love, often at a much lower cost than the highly-rated gems that often see a run-up in price and frequent availability issues. Like any great group of opinionated professionals, our staff has varied tastes themselves. Often our customers will find a particular staff member with a style that corresponds to their own. That concept works extremely well in our retail stores, and this section is our effort to bring you the same online. Don’t get us wrong, we love the highly rated wines from the press and will continue to offer them, but we think you’re missing out if you’re not augmenting those selections with picks from our excellent staff. Here are their favorites. (Click on a name to see their other selections - or to drop them a line.) Cheers!


Reviews

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DSP CA 162 Straight Vodka 750ml
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
  Really delicious, and very approachable in its neutrality. A blend of wheat vodka, and vodka made from Riesling and Viognier from Mendocino County.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Thierry & Pascale Matrot Bourgogne Blanc
 By: Jeff Garneau | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
  An unbeatable bargain in a white Burgundy. Richly textured. Lightly nutty. Very satisfying. Eminently drinkable. One of the best values in the store and a "must try" for Chardonnay fans.
Top Value!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart RP 90 BC 0

2012 Saxon Brown "Hyde Vineyard" Carneros Chardonnay
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
  Deep, layered, and complex with well integrated oak.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Odonata "Zayante Vineyard" Santa Cruz Mountians Syrah
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
  Rich and layered with black fruit and spice. From organically farmed vineyards in the Santa Cruz mountains, the wines are made in an accessible style, that will also lend themselves to graceful aging.
Price: $25.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Andrea Oberto Barolo "Brunate" Pre-Arrival
 By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
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  Aged in Slavonian oak this is a powerful expression of Brunate with more up front fruit and palate density shows lots of depth. The wine really has a complex blend of spice and earth that takes your breath away that blends nicely into the fruit. Certainly and outstanding wine with decades of life if you can wait.
Drink from 2020 to 2040
Price: $84.99 Add To Cart JS 98 BC 0

2010 Andrea Oberto Barolo Pre-Arrival
 By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
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  There's a supple richness to this wine that belies the structure underneath which is powerful but so well balanced there are no edges to the wine. Aged in Slavonian casks and 20% in barrique it shows lots of forward fruit and a hint of toastiness in its youth along with a vibrant, more forward fruit character. Great life ahead and the toastiness will eventually be absorbed.
Drink from 2018 to 2030
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart JS 95 BC 0

2010 Marchesi di Barolo "Coste di Rose" Barolo Pre-Arrival
 By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
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  I love Marchesi di Barolo's approach to winemaking a bit of old and new together, after fermentation the wine is aged in a combination of the traditional Slavonian oak barrels that hold between 8-900 gallons and then a portion in barrique that hold about 60 gallons and is aged for 2 years before blending together. The Coste di Rose vineyard is located in Monforte d'Alba with an east facing exposure that insures its more delicate aromatics. Barolo is said to have Tar and Roses in the nose but for me this wine's elegant, high toned rose aromatics dominates. Great vintage this wine has a long life ahead but is supple enough now to drink with a meal.
Drink from 2020 to 2040
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart JS 96 BC 0

2010 Agostino Bosco "La Serra" Barolo
 By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
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  Andrea Boscos’s wines have taken a gigantic step forward with this vintage, so much more complete, balance, this is a classic representation of La Serra with its subtle earth, leather and dried flower nose, more ethereal than dramatically primary flavors one might see in a young wine from California, this wine has depth, soul and longs for a spot in your cellar.
Drink from 2020 to 2040
Price: $67.99 Add To Cart JS 95 BC 0

2010 Agostino Bosco "Neirane" Barolo
 By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
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  The Neirane is spicy, more full flavored than the more subtle La Serra, and showing a bit of a rambunctious nature, wild and carefree, full bodied but buoyant. Superb balance and great length. Andrea Bosco has made his best wines ever this vintage!
Drink from 2020 to 2040
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart JS 96 BC 0

2001 Freemark Abbey Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
 By: Alex Pross | Review Date: 6/18/2014 | Send Email
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  Due to the economics of the wine business today, there is very little wine held back vintage-to-vintage. In order to taste bottlings with a little age, you either need to have a cellar yourself or a friend with a cellar. Imagine my excitement when I was presented with the 2001 Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon. From the very first sniff I knew we had a winner. Aromas of mocha, spice, cedar, coffee and sweet cherries slowly emerge from the glass while the palate deftly displays gorgeous layers of mature red berry fruit, oak, notes of mint and eucalyptus as well as a slight hint of chocolate. This wine is in the perfect place right now, soft and subtle with pretty fruit, hints of oak while showing nice secondary characteristics one would associate with a wine of 13 years of age. If you’re looking for an affordable Cabernet Sauvignon with some age on it then look no further.
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2020
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart BC 0

Lagavulin 16-year-old Islay Single Malt Whisky 750ml
 By: James Knight | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Earthy, smoky, ashy, and underneath it all, sweet and chewy. I waited nearly a month and a half after opening the Lagavulin 16 to review it; I figured it would reveal itself over time, that this lion would lamb out a bit. Well. I agree that it is defiantly smoky (as Dave Broom says), like a hearth, with some caramel candy and smoked meats like, say, the Talisker 10 (aka the Precious...in my regard) on the tongue. Nosing is hot and spicy, and the finish is like hot smoke. Richer, with less thin, iodine character than some Islay single malts--maybe a hint of singed seaweed. A serious Islay at a whacky good price.

Bummer & Lazarus Gin 750ml
 By: Jeffrey Jones | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  A great local gin that is packed full of delicious flavors. There are nicely pronounced juniper, citrus and subtle spicy aromas. In the mouth this gin is round, soft and full bodied, with juniper, citrus and spice to add to the enjoyment.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Henry's Drive "Pillar Box Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon Padthaway
 By: Jim Chanteloup | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  The Pillar Box Red was a standout value from the beginning, which was about 10 years ago. They now do reserve bottlings of Shiraz and Cabernet as well. I ran into Kim Longbottom, the owner of Henry's Drive where this wine is part of that portfolio last year in Australia, and could taste a shift in style coming on. There is more freshness and balance and less extraction and wood to be found. In doing this, I think they have also found a greater expression of their location in Padthaway on the Limestone Coast. The bouquet shows notes of dark plum, red currant, brambly boysenberry, iron, spice and a hint of tobacco leaf. On the palate there are fine supple tannins with a dusting of cocoa powder on the back end, with a elegant and balanced finish with good length. A fine Cabernet value.

2010 Henry's Drive "Pillar Box Reserve" Cabernet Sauvignon Padthaway
 By: Ryan Woodhouse | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
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  Really exceptional Cabernet at this price. Lashings of dark blue and black fruits, a lovely cedar spice and a touch of pipe tobacco. The ripe tannins are fine and silky giving good texture whilst remaining supple and juicy on the palate. This is a great wine for grilled meats but equally drinkable when you just want a big glass of full-bodied Cab. Drink up!
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2018

2012 Haden Fig "Bjornson Vineyard" Eola-Amity Hills Pinot Noir
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Big, rich, and juicy. This is a bit more substantial than the entry-level Pinot, but will likely age and improve over the next 3-5 years.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 St. Innocent "Villages Cuvée" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  A meaty, peppery Pinot with lush ripe fruit. This will stand up to substantial dishes, grilled meats, braised one-pot meals, and rich earthy preparations like mushroom soup finished with cream, cracked pepper, and a dollop of whipped creme fraiche.

2013 Bow & Arrow Willamette Valley Rosé of Gamay Noir
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Bright, enjoyable, weird, and cool. Try to wrap your head around this one while your enjoying a lazy Sunday.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Teutonic "Crow Valley Vineyard" Willamette Valley Riesling
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Sweet, but wildly tropical! Almost like a liquid version of a pineapple candy. A chilled bottle of this would be so good with a box of Chinese take-out sweet and sour pork over rice, and an episode of Broad City on the couch.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Arterberry Maresh "Maresh Vineyard" Dundee Hills Pinot Noir
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Ripe and complex with hints of thyme stem. This is calling for something akin to cassoulet with lentils and duck confit, maybe a wedge of grilled radicchio--a lovely fall dish and pairing.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Ponzi "Tavola" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  A fair price for a truly great Pinot from the Willamette. I think I've got my next go-to wine for my Pinot tasting events to represent this region. I'll probably end up enjoying this with pizza grilled at home with a variety of toppings from pesto to sauteed home-grown onions, mozzarella to buratta. The slight char from the grill and smokiness combining with the fresh ingredients will be an awesome complement to this wine.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart W&S 90 BC 0

2013 Ponzi Willamette Valley Arneis
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  A very cool wine. Esoteric, a mix of tropical fruits and ripe apples. I live for finds like this!
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Chehalem "3 Vineyards" Willamette Valley Pinot Gris
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Ripe, juicy, refreshing, and fun. This is the wine for summer foods. Serve this with a rindless cross section of a ripe watermelon drizzled with olive oil, chopped mint, coarse salt, a spritz of lime, and a smattering of great feta.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Haden Fig Willamette Valley Chardonnay
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  This winery might actually lead me to finally make a trek up to the Willamette Valley again. I've been a fan of their Pinot since it was released, and their Chardonnay is proving to be just as enjoyable. Balanced, with great bright acidity, and noticeable, but minimal oak.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Ovum "Suspension-Eola Springs Vineyard" Eola-Amity Hills Muscat
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/17/2014 | Send Email
  Intensely aromatic and dry. It has such a distinct apricot juice flavor that I'm reminded of those cans of Kern's apricot nectar I used to love as a kid. I would serve this as an aperitif with grilled nectarines served alongside a lobe of buratta drizzled with a toasted nut oil, sprinkled with Jacobson sea salt, and grilled crostini.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Margerum "K&L Cuvee" Happy Canyon Sauvignon Blanc
 By: Tom Martinez | Review Date: 6/16/2014 | Send Email
  This wine will be my summer white, while it lasts that is. Great aromatics of citrus and lemon are followed by a fresh clean minerality. This wine is ideal for your summer meals. It won't disappoint.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart

WINE CLUB

Club Price: $14.99
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2005 Thienot "Cuvée Stanislas" Blanc de Blancs Brut Champagne
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/16/2014 | Send Email
  Such a stunning Champagne, filled with that signature chalky note, and a richness that makes it hard to stop at one glass. This should age for a decade plus if you can hide it from yourself for that long.

2011 Esk Valley Chardonnay Hawkes Bay
 By: Jim Chanteloup | Review Date: 6/16/2014 | Send Email
  This is a great deal in a Chardonnay that manages to walk the line of opulence coupled with focus. The 2011 Esk Valley Chardonnay offers aromas of light toast, honey, spiced baked apple with a hint of tropical pineapple fruit. On the palate the wine is rich with a creamy texture that is supported by moderate plus acidity to keep it juicy with good persistence.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart WE 91 BC 0

Fuenteseca Reserva K&L Exclusive Extra Añejo Tequila 750ml
 By: Jeffrey Jones | Review Date: 6/16/2014 | Send Email
  This is the perfect extra anejo Tequila. It has nice citrus and salty aromas. In the mouth, the extended aging adds a deep brandy-like richness to the typical citrus and spice flavors.
Price: $189.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Kir-Yianni "Akakies" Rosé Amyndeon
 By: Jeffrey Jones | Review Date: 6/16/2014 | Send Email
  The Akakies has a nice dark pink color that is very inviting. It is full bodied with nice fruit but is very dry. Spice flavors help round out this delicious and fun wine.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2007 Cantina Sociale Copertino Riserva
 By: Olivia Ragni | Review Date: 6/15/2014 | Send Email
  Since my first sip of very expensive Copertino years ago, I have been searching for another solid Copertino that I can afford. My search ended a few weeks ago when I drank the Cantina Sociale Copertino. It’s incredible, I can’t believe the value of this wine. Made using the funky grape Negroamaro, this wine is full of earthy-meaty goodness, leather, spice box, plum and figs. Complex, earthy, and robust very reminiscent of my first delicious glass of Copertino.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Antech "Cuvée Eugenie" Cremant de Limoux
 By: Mike Parres | Review Date: 6/13/2014 | Send Email
  From the southern French region of the Languedoc comes this beautiful example of Cement de Limoux, very characteristic of the variety, with perfume of white flower, citrus, lemon soda and drying mineral tones. The wine offers intensity and precision with focused attention on acidity and freshness. A great party pleaser.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Léoville-Poyferré, St-Julien Pre-Arrival
 By: Clyde Beffa Jr. | Review Date: 6/13/2014 | Send Email
  *+ Sweet and lovely. So pure. Sweet edge of red fruits. Tannins at the back end.

2012 Léoville-Poyferré, St-Julien Pre-Arrival
 By: Ralph Sands | Review Date: 6/13/2014 | Send Email
  * Another winner! Rich wine with good, long tannins.

2013 Abbaye Saint Hilaire Coteaux Varois en Provence Rosé
 By: Mike Parres | Review Date: 6/13/2014 | Send Email
  This robust rose has a light salmon pink color with fascinating aromas of ripe wild mountain strawberries and I found a good amount of minerality. It's fresh and lingering on the palate with a very dry finish. Buy a couple bottles, as the first one will empty quickly.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Château de Maligny Chablis
 By: Mike Parres | Review Date: 6/13/2014 | Send Email
  A super value Chablis that expresses its uniqueness. This wine is elegant, crisp and well-structured. The 2012 Chablis is chalky with a mineral quality. The wine is mouth-filling and full, with a smooth and supple finish.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Domaine Weinbach "Cuvée Théo" Riesling
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/12/2014 | Send Email
  So incredible. While this wine will age beautifully, it is also drinking exceptionally well now. For a truly Alsatian experience, serve this with the Coq au Riesling recipe from the K&L blog! http://blog.klwines.com/httpblogklwinescomuncork/domain-weinbach-faller.html
Price: $31.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Zind Humbrecht Riesling
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/12/2014 | Send Email
  The incredible Zind-Humbrecht quality, dry with nice acidity. Try this with the Coq au Riesling recipe from the K&L blog!
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart WS 90 BC 0

2012 Cristom "Estate" Eola-Amity Hills Viognier
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/12/2014 | Send Email
  Ahh, this is Viognier!And a great one at that, beautiful nose, great texture, and the telltale canned apricot (in a good way)flavor I have always associated with California Viognier's. For this wine, I would serve a light, tropical, version of a ceviche. Sushi grade Hamachi in small cubes, tossed with a bit of pineapple the same size, chopped fresno chilies that have been candied slightly in a simple syrup (save the simple syrup for cocktails!), cilantro, a squeeze of lime, and finished with a sprinkling of fried shallots and toasted coconut for crunch.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Argentine Revolution Malbec Mendoza
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/11/2014 | Send Email
  Great price for a substantial wine! Big, rich, and powerful. This will make a great BBQ wine; I would recommend serving it with a bit of chill on it to really let the fruit sing. A nice alternative to a California Zin. No corkscrew needed!
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Quartz Reef Pinot Noir Central Otago (Biodynamic)
 By: Jim Chanteloup | Review Date: 6/11/2014 | Send Email
  Austrian-born winemaker Rudi Bauer is something of a pioneer in Central Otago, with almost 30 years under his belt making wonderful Pinot Noir and superb sparkling wine in this region. I have to say, the 2012 is one of his best in recent memory and a deal at $30. The bouquet is bright and lifted, offering notes of raspberry, cranberry,cherry, Asian spice, earth, dried tangerine peel and a hint of toffee. On the palate there is terrific balance and focus with a beautiful dance between power and elegance supported by lively acidity. The finish is long, complex and layered that fans out like a peacock's tail.

2008 Sesta di Sopra Brunello di Montalcino
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/11/2014 | Send Email
  ~Personal Sommelier Selection~ A young(ish) Brunello that is drinking surprisingly well already! Great structure,dark fruits married with savory notes of leather, earth, and spice. I'm thinking that braised beef shortribs with Parmesan loaded polenta and roasted heirloom carrots would be perfect with this.

2012 Alfaro "A" Estate Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir
 By: Jason Marwedel | Review Date: 6/10/2014 | Send Email
  I love selling this wine, as it is EASILY one of the best $20 Pinots sold at K&L. Great ripeness of fruit, balanced by fresh acidity and gentle tannin. Purity of fruit and lovely texture make this a Pinot everyone can get behind!
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Teutonic "Crow Valley Vineyard" Willamette Valley Riesling
 By: David Driscoll | Review Date: 6/10/2014 | Send Email
  Stupendous wine that comes closest to recreating Germany here in the states. The nose is just faintly showing fruit cocktail, almost like a classic Mosel Riesling, and the weight of the wine is medium-bodied and round. This wine is screaming for a plate of sausages and some cheese. Dynamite stuff.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Teutonic "Laurel Vineyard - Bergspitze Schwarz" Chehalem Mountains Pinot Noir
 By: David Driscoll | Review Date: 6/10/2014 | Send Email
  Spatburgunder finally comes to Oregon! Rather than a dark-fruited, brooding, and structured Pinot Noir from the Pac NW, we're witnessing a German-styled red wine that's light in color, lush-fruited, and elegant in style. This is like German Pinot Noir in every way, with lovely aromatics and hints of baking spice.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Eyrie Vineyards "Estate Grown" Dundee Hills Pinot Noir
 By: David Driscoll | Review Date: 6/10/2014 | Send Email
  This wine is absolutely outstanding--to the point that I'm almost in shock. There's a pure, red-fruited, Burgundian flavor that's more tart than it is supple, but the baking spices and forest floor notes really send this bottle over the top. It needs decanting and some food, but this is the kind of wine that becomes legendary. This is the kind of bottle you talk about years later.
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2009 Kingston Family Vineyards "Alazan" Pinot Noir Casablanca Valley
 By: Shaun Green | Review Date: 6/9/2014 | Send Email
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  Absolutely delicious Pinot Noir - one of the best Pinot offerings from Chile - fantastic red fruits and exotic spices mingling with a distinctive smoky note are extremely enticing and this wine pairs very well with many foods. Kingston's vineyards are in the Casablanca Valley, and with its cool maritime influence it's no wonder such high quality Pinot comes from their spectacular property. It's a great contender for the cellar too, but hard to resist so hide some from yourself if you want to age it!
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2020

2012 Kingston "Cariblanco" Sauvignon Blanc Casablanca Valley
 By: Shaun Green | Review Date: 6/9/2014 | Send Email
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  This is an absolutely fantastic Sauvignon Blanc - one of my favorites, especially at this price. It is wonderfully complex and has a very impressive texture and weight. Rich tropical and citrus fruits with a slight touch of savory - it is spectacular as a summer dinner wine.
Top Value!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart WE 91 BC 0

2013 Margerum "K&L Cuvee" Happy Canyon Sauvignon Blanc
 By: Melissa Smith | Review Date: 6/9/2014 | Send Email
  A dynamic Sauvignon Blanc from the Happy Canyon AVA in Santa Barbara's Santa Ynes Valley. Wildly dynamic, with bright acidity and layers of citrus, white flowers, honey suckle, lemongrass, and because of subtle oak treatment, a richness to carry through all of the layered nuance.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart

WINE CLUB

Club Price: $14.99
BC 0

2010 Seghesio Barolo
 By: Mike Parres | Review Date: 6/8/2014 | Send Email
  From the Great 2010 vintage this wine brings aromas of dried cherry, and rose’s and on the palate you will find raspberries, tar, tobacco, truffle, and a little Langhe dust with a good tannin structure. I love the elegance to this wine, and with all of its varietal purity here, I still might want to decant it for a couple hours or can even age for a couple of years (up to five or six years if you are that patient), and I am thinking it would show best with a wild mushroom risotto or a barbecue tri-tip.
Price: $26.95 Add To Cart BC 0

2001 Malescasse, Haut-Médoc
 By: David Driscoll | Review Date: 6/8/2014 | Send Email
  If you like traditional, earthy, savory Bordeaux that won't cost you an arm and a leg, then this is the bottle for you--and it's a damn good one. If you want the fruit and the oak, then maybe try something younger. This is classic claret for a hot price, with a soft, integrated core of tannins that spreads out nicely over the palate.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart BC 0

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