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Staff Favorites - Ryan Woodhouse
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2009 Pyramid Valley Vineyards "Cowley" Pinot Noir Marlborough
Review Date: 4-9-2013
This Pyramid Valley Growers Collection bottling comes from one of my favorite sites within the region of Marlborough. The Cowley vineyard is nestled into the hills rising away to the south of the Wairau plains that make up most of Marlborough’s wine country. Here on the north facing slopes the soils turn from alluvial gravel to mixes of clay and decomposed bed rock, glacial deposits and volcanic uplift. The site produces complex pinot of real depth and character. The 2009 bottling has quite a rich dark fruit edge that illustrates the ripeness of the vintage. A seductive silky wine showing crushed plums, and red berries mingling with some freshly ground spices. Very drinkable and crowd pleasing in style, whilst retaining that authentic vibrancy that Pyramid Valley wines have in abundance.
2010 McHenry Estate Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir
Review Date: 3-3-2013
A pure, bright typical Santa Cruz Mtn nose leaping from the glass. Fairly light bodied with zippy acidity. Red fruited with orange peel and green tea. Some mulling spices in the background. Complex wine for the money.
2005 Bodegas Casa Juan Señor de Lesmos Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 3-2-2013
Absolutely classic old-school Rioja! Earthy goodness with concentrated fruit and spice. The wine is very food orientated, dry, structured and with bright acidity. If a rack of lamb is in your future, this wine should be too!
1999 Bodegas Puelles Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 12-29-2012
A remarkable wine that has aged with grace and finesse. We tasted this at a recent Rioja dinner and I was not alone in thinking what a stunning Gran Reserva this was for the incredible price of $19.99! Not a big wine but one remarkable balance and poise. Perfect acidity to hold the wine together as the tannin fades away. Some red fruits left but lots of those classic leathery, cigar box and warm earthy components starting to show and this bottle gains bottle age complexities. Perfect for roasted game, sausage or cured meats.
Drink from 2012 to 2016
Montechiara Prosecco DOC
Review Date: 9-29-2012
Fresh flavors of zesty lemon gelato lead onto the balanced and weighty palate. The bubbles are bright and energetic. This wine has great persistence and richness for a wine of this price point. On the finish, the citrus acidity is checked by just a subtle hint of almond paste sweetness. This is a perfect Extra Dry level prosecco for all your events and holiday parties at an incredible value price!
Fleury Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 11-27-2011
This fine Champagne has so many things going for it. A small producer we work with directly thanks to the great work of our Champagne buyer Gary Westby. This is a Champagne Rose of pedigree; Jean-Pierre Fleury was the first grower in the Champagne region to convert to Biodynamics in 1989. This wine is 100% Pinot Noir from phenomenal estate vineyards situated on steep sunny slopes in the village of Courteron. In the bottle we find an exhibition of both power and elegance. Ripe fruits on the nose, red currants and macerated strawberries. On the palate a fine balance of fruit, acid and minerality. This is a harmonious wine. Beyond all of this, the beautiful packaging makes this bottle a great gift. Definitely one of the most eye-catching wines in the store. Thankfully this is one time that choosing a bottle for its pretty label will not lead you astray!
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