Staff Favorites - Matthew Callahan

Matthew Callahan

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2013 Muddy Water Sauvignon Blanc Waipara Valley  
Review Date: 9-2-2014
This is NOT your average Kiwi SB. First, it's not from Marlborough. Second, it's farmed organically and uses native yeast for fermentation. And third, it's 90% barrel fermented with more neutral than new oak. The bouquet opens with a flinty and leesy note along with more stone fruit character of white peach and nectarine. On the palate there is good weight, with a figgy richness and creamy texture. Good acidity keeps it juicy and long on the finish.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart BC 91

2012 Mount Trio Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot Great Southern  
Review Date: 9-2-2014
Flat out...this is killer Cabernet Sauvignon for $12. Yes, it says Cabernet-Merlot, but it's 94% Cabernet and a 100% value. The nose shows cassis, black cherry, dark plum, minerals, a hint of sage cedar, violets and earth. There is a surprising supple fine tannin structure for a wine at this price point that is seamlessly integrated and leads to a long finish.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Domaine de Laidiere Bandol Blanc  
Review Date: 9-2-2014
White Bandols are tricky animals. They are not inexpensive and doesn't usually fit into the crisp and citrusy category of a Sauvignon Blanc or buttery and creamy category of Chardonnay (not that either of those has to specifically be those things). So where does that leave Bandol blanc? Maybe more like a white Rhone? Possibly, but really it is its own thing. These are wines of texture and weight with subtle aromatics. Hints of peach skin, apricot pit but not full-blown fruit flavors. Subtle citrus with a rocky mineral finish. The Laidiere has those things and more. This is a terrific rendition with an almost full body mouthfeel and deft lively brightness on the tongue. It's like a happy medium. Not too heavy, not too light, just right. So where does it fit? I say in my glass.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Gessinger Zeltinger Schlossberg Riesling Kabinet  
Review Date: 9-1-2014
Spicy, and stony, with incipient petrol, the fruit is far more reluctant here than in many Mosel Rieslings. The palate is fairly dry, too, but texturally it is quite rich. Those looking for something other than orchard fruit extravagance have come to the right place!
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Fritsch Mordthal Grüner Veltliner  
Review Date: 9-1-2014
This is a hefty Gruner Veltliner with a plush texture. Rich flavors of yellow fruit, with sweet spice, lead to a long, dry finish, with floral notes, lemon curd, and echoing spice. Looking for a white wine that punches in a big Chardonnay weight class, but without all the oak and malolactic foofaraw? You have a good bet here.
Price: $28.99 Add To Cart ST 91 BC 0

2012 Erste e Neue "Gröbnerhof" Santa Magdalener Alto Adige  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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I love the 2012 Erste e Neue “Gröbnerhof” Santa Magdalener Alto Adige made with the Schiava grape. This light-bodied red is perfect for so much of modern cuisine, which begs for lower alcohol wines that don’t sacrifice flavor. The fresh-ground black pepper and a supple body are outstanding; it sort of looks like a dark rosé. Serve it about 55 degrees.
Drink from 2014 to 2016
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2006 Il Valentiano "Campo di Marzo" Brunello di Montalcino  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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This was a delicious and incredible representation of this classic 2006 vintage, with definition, balance, length and wonderful palate richness, all at a stunningly good price!
Drink from 2012 to 2021

2009 Il Valentiano "Campo di Marzo" Brunello di Montalcino  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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This was a wine that has character and an immediate palate presence. There is a certain weight and density that signals “serious” to me, and this wine had it. The 2009 vintage was a four-star year in Montalcino, but the wines have been pooh-poohed by the critics looking for more blockbuster wines that can age for two decades or more. Well, I don’t think all wines need to age that long; I’m more of a realist. Hell, I’d like to drink some before I turn 80! So knowing I was tasting a 2009, I was still impressed by the serious nature of the wine. Its flavors were real, faceted and intense. Unlike a wine that is like a pearl, smooth and lustrous, faceted wines remind me of why I love cut stones—diamonds, emeralds—because to me those wines have so many more expressions to show you. The Brunello had that verve I look for; it also had a classic Sangiovese earth, spice and just a bit of cocoa powder.
Drink from 2012 to 2019

2008 Il Valentiano Brunello di Montalcino Riserva  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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The 2008 vintage was another four-star vintage in Montalcino, but with the complete opposite character than 2009. The 2008s, in general, are much higher in acid, tighter wines with more evident tannins. The 2008 Il Valentiano Brunello di Montalcino Riserva* was a revelation. It was a decidedly more linear wine, but so supple, texturally important and layered with vibrant, fresh Sangiovese fruit. The Riserva has more structure, too, but that wasn’t what jumped out at me. Again it was the flavor profile, a real, pure expression of the soil with a bit of chocolaty ripeness, and it was really drinkable!
Drink from 2014 to 2020
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart RP 90 BC 0

La Monacesca "Mirum" MV Verdicchio di Matelica Riserva 20th Anniversary  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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Although labeled as a 2008 this is a multi-vintage blend. (To be fair, the “MV” designation is my creation.) This is 85% 2008 vintage Verdicchio and 15% 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2004. I’ve never had a blend like this before, other than Champagne. The concept is the same, however, to use reserve wines to add depth of flavor. It is an experience to behold.
Drink from 2014 to 2020
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 La Monacesca "Mirum" Verdicchio di Matelica Riserva  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
The Mirum is a big league wine. The level of flavor saturation, power, density and age-ability is remarkable. Mirum is harvested the third or fourth week in October, assuring the maximum amount of flavor, focus and richness on the palate, all coming together in a focused, textured, seamless experience. The wine is fermented in stainless steel for 20 days and then remains there for 18 months sur lie.
Drink from 2014 to 2020
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 La Monacesca Verdicchio di Matelica  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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The 2012 La Monacesca Verdicchio di Matelica* is harvested the first 10 days of October, fermented and aged in stainless and released after a year. The wine is so powerful and intense that bottle aging, or decanting, is needed to get to this powerful wine’s mineral core. The nose is full pear-like fruit spiced with anise, citrus and a bit of brioche-like toastiness, although the wine sees no wood.
Drink from 2014 to 2018
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Riposte "The Dagger" Pinot Noir Adelaide Hills South Australia  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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This wine really surprised me, because of its really rich texture and weight but it has really good acidic balance. The fruit character is a little fuller and riper than what I normally look for in Pinot Noir but it still said Pinot Noir to me. Luscious texture, nice balance and a pleasure to drink. Try it with grilled meats.
Drink from 2014 to 2017
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart JH 95 BC 0

2012 Penfolds "Bin 8" Cabernet Sauvignon-Shiraz South Australia   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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A classic Australian blend with an explosion of rich dark fruit. Aged in the same barrels as Bin 389, 128, and 28, this wine carries its oak nicely both on the nose and palate. Smooth tannins and a long finish allow for lovely drinking now but you can also enjoy it for years to come. At this price why not do both.
Drink from 2014 to 2020

2009 Valserrano Crianza Rioja  
Review Date: 8-31-2014
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I think some of the most amazing bargains coming on the market, the last few years, are the wines from Rioja. This is a perfect example and shows such a deeply flavored, broad wine. Well-defined rose petal to currant aromas, this intensely flavored wine is incredibility complex and layered, with well defined currant, floral, and cassis notes on entry, a great mid-palate richness, and a long, bright finish. 14.5% ABV
Drink from 2014 to 2024

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