Staff Favorites - Joe Manekin

Joe Manekin
Joe Manekin  | Send Email  |   Subscribe to My Sommelier Service
Joe arrived at our doors in February 2007 from far away, Washington, DC to be exact. Just so no one gets the wrong idea, though, he was merely earning a living in DC; Joe’s cultural identity, as well as his professional sports allegiances and, when he has a few drinks in him, his accent, are all Baltimore through and through. After working on the wholesale side of the business for nearly 4 years, Joe decided that he wanted to work wine retail with the best, so he emailed Cindy Westby at K&L and the rest is history. While Joe is well versed in a number of wine regions, he most enjoys the wines of Europe, though he is growing increasingly interested in the great wines of the Santa Cruz mountains. When he is not at K&L, Joe enjoys cooking, traveling, catching up on The Wire, doing occasional PR, booking and recording work for reggae band JohnStone (, and writing for his wine, food and music blog, Old world Old School (


Page:  prev  1 2  3  4  5  next
2013 TWR (Te Whare Ra) Riesling "D" Marlborough
Review Date: 7-10-2014
As an unabashed fan of Riesling, and a very occasional drinker of Sauvignon Blanc (no disrespect to all you SB fans out there, it's just typically not my thing) I would like to encourage you to try something new. Step outside your comfort zone, and live dangerously! Well, not too dangerously, since you probably already know and love TWR's Sauvignon Blanc, possibly their Pinot Noir as well. Their Riesling "D" has beautifully focused citric flavors, with a soft texture and lots of length. Try this dry Riesling; you may find that you have a new favorite.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 TWR (Te Whare Ra) Pinot Noir Marlborough
Review Date: 7-10-2014
Most any Pinot Noir fan will find something to like in this extremely well crafted bottling: juicy yet crisp fruits that fall somewhere in the middle of the red to dark spectrum, lovely floral inner mouth aromas, and balanced tannins that frame the wine and should give it enough structure to handle lamb chops equally well as a healthy slab of grilled Alaskan salmon (it is July, after all!)
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Bodegas Castano "Solanera Vinas Viejas" Yecla
Review Date: 7-10-2014
I'm getting the sense that, the more I taste of 2012 vintage wines from the Mediterranean portion of Spain, the more there is to like: all the usual intensity in flavors, but with the added bonus of extra freshness and structure. Solanera, for example, is usually a well made wine, with generous dark fruit and a flavor profile that suggests a good value red. In 2012 it is that plus more transparent minerality, a chalky and saline character mark this wine as it would a Bandol, or a Faugeres. While you won't confuse this wine for a Pradeaux, Tempier, or Barral you will pay less than one-third the price, with the added bonus of being able to enjoy it young! Recommended.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart RP 94 BC 0

2011 Arterberry Maresh Dundee Hills Oregon Chardonnay
Review Date: 7-7-2014
Positively bursting with bright, citric and stonefruit flavors, and bolstered by very strong acidity, this is my kind of Chardonnay. You can tell this is made from high-quality fruit, by someone who respects great white wine and old-timey Chardonnay. In a cold vintage especially, this for my money is a perennial candidate for best Chard in the store.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart RP 91 BC 0

2011 Teutonic "Laurel Vineyard - Bergspitze Schwarz" Chehalem Mountains Pinot Noir
Review Date: 6-28-2014
This is a barrel selection that is based upon aromatic intensity and textural delicacy; not surprisingly, we love it! Not trying to be Burgundy, and for that matter, nor is this very Willamette. It is very, well, Teutonic - light, beautifully cherry scented, and surprisingly complex and satisfying while being so light on its feet. Absolutely worth a try.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2009 Valderiz Ribera del Duero
Review Date: 6-18-2014
Given this wine's fruit intensity, clear expression, persistence on the palate and impressive balance in youth, I would challenge fans of the fuller bodied, dark berry fruited wines of the world to find something as delicious for under $30. Yes, of course this stuff is subjective, but I've tasted enough similarly priced and styled wines this year to reach that conclusion - if you like bigger, spicy reds and enjoy some structural tannic grip, this wine is for you. Also, for those with a cellar, this wine should improve nicely. Begin checking in on it another 5 years from now to observe a classic Ribera del Duero rich darker fruit to savory, elegant, meaty, chalk tinged minerality transformation!
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart RP 93 BC 0

2012 Losada "Pajaro Rojo" Mencía Bierzo
Review Date: 6-18-2014
This is as tasty a young Mencía as I have had from this region in quite some time. It is soft and approachable, with supple dark cherry fruit, and an overall balance that suggests something between medium weight, juicer Pinot Noir and mid-weight, fruit forward, gently spicy Syrah. There is a minerality and sense of balance, however, all its own, and something tells me that for those willing to experiment a bit, they will find in this wine great personality, individuality and value. Highly recommended!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart W&S 91 BC 0

Pierre Paillard Grand Cru Brut Champagne
Review Date: 5-7-2014
Phenomenal. I love these Champagnes. Very pure flavors, with clear Pinot Noir red fruit, and a juicy quality that belies how serious this wine is, and how seriously the Paillards take their vineyards (all massale selections) and their production. One of our favorites, and needless to say, very highly recommended.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart WS 92 BC 0

Ariston Aspasie "Carte Blanche" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 5-7-2014
Carte Blanche is always tasty, a Champagne with a soft bead, nice toast, crowd appeal and great value. This current batch, though, based on the very strong 2008 vintage, is impressive. Brighter than usual, with great purity and tasty fruit, easily the most impressive batch we have received. I'd be happy with this at $40, but for $28 it's one of our great values right now.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Renacer "Punto Final" Reserva Malbec
Review Date: 4-22-2014
Here is a wine which, for whatever reason, had fallen off my radar. Then a customer emailed me to let me know that he was looking for this wine; it is one of his favorite Malbecs and why didn't we carry it anymore? So, to that customer, I thank you for reminding me of the wine and once again proving the old adage: "The customer is always right." As usual, this is a wine featuring rich fruit and slightly toasty, high-quality oak, resulting in a spicy, fruit-forward wine that is crowd pleasing and should make plenty of folks happy.

2013 Bodegas Colomé Torrontes Valle Calchaquí Salta
Review Date: 4-16-2014
I don't think it gets more textbook for Torrontes than the always delicious version from Colomé. The country's best, most wonderfully fragrant, balanced and nervy Torrontes tends to come from Salta, where Colomé has been an innovator not only in the quality of its Torrontes but also its Malbecs. This wine has juicy yellow fruited flavors, with exotic aromas that suggest jasmine. A unique white to sip as an aperitif or to accompany seafood and vegetable dishes.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart ST 91 BC 0

2010 Cune Crianza Rioja
Review Date: 4-16-2014
This is a juicy, very quaffable Crianza from one of Rioja's most historic bodegas in Cune. With its red fruit flavors, supple tannins and balanced acidity, this is as comfortable at the table with roasted chicken, grilled salmon, lentils or pasta dishes as it is on its own or accompanied by cheese, tortilla española, grilled mushrooms and other tapas. Just a lovely, easy to like Tempranillo based red.
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart RP 90 BC 0

2009 Valserrano Crianza Rioja
Review Date: 4-15-2014
Delicious, bright, high toned berry fruited crianza Rioja, here! Thanks to Bodegas de la Marquesa's faithfulness to the classic Crianza style, their extensive vineyard holdings, and a healthy chunk of 10% Mazuelo (Carignane) in this blend, this is a 2009 that begs another sip, and another glass. However, it should age nicely in the short to mid-term as well. Good stuff.

1988 Littlemill 25 Year Old K&L Exclusive "Exclusive Malts" Single Barrel Cask Strength Lowland Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 4-9-2014
Littlemill is not the shouting type. No one who knows their single malt is going to talk about any huge Sherry sweetness or impressive, antique Oloroso barrel notes. Nor will they mention huge peat smoke. A finish that lasts forever and ever and just won't quit? Nope. This is simply effortless, rock solid, fully mature, perfectly balanced, higher end whiskey for drinking. Old school like an antique fountain pen, as confident as Oscar Peterson's command on a Steinway, as reliable and skillfully crafted as a Pendleton flannel shirt. Hey Dave OG, Driscoll, pass me that Littlemill, would'ya?
Price: $139.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2008 Americo Nunes Seabra "Americo" Dão
Review Date: 3-26-2014
Have you had Portuguese wine recently? Though it shares the Iberian peninsula with Spain, whose wines we feature regularly, somehow Portugal unfairly does not garner as much press or respect. We want to change that. Here we have a delicious, balanced (13% ABV) and notable value from the Dao, across the mountains from the Douro and port country. Not only is it a great under $10 value, there is nothing from Spain (or elsewhere) that is at all similar to this unique red.
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart WS 90 BC 0

Page:  prev  1 2  3  4  5  next