Staff Favorites - Joe Manekin

Joe Manekin
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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 (www.johnstonemusic.com), and writing for his wine, food and music blog, Old world Old School (www.oldworldoldschool.blogspot.com)


Reviews

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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

2012 Tinto Negro Malbec Uco Valley
Review Date: 3-12-2014
Yes - This is what I'm talkin' about! I want under $15 Malbec to taste like this: dark fruits, subtly toasty but not overly so from too much oak, notable minerality and a nicely firm, tannin structure to frame the wine and lend balance. It's delicious and a lot of bang for the buck, but deceptively serious as well for a value red.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart RP 91 BC 0

Kilchoman K&L Exclusive Single Bourbon Barrel #172 Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 3-12-2014
I'm excited that we bought two different casks of Kilchoman, to highlight how two barrels with the same distillate can age in completely different ways. They're both very good and very distinct from each other. Barrel 172 may have a stronger ABV, but it's so briny, pure, and beautifully balanced, that you're not likely to notice. Sorry for the wine speak here, but this one is elegant, pure, linear, and to my experience, textbook Islay single malt. Kilchoman does not come cheap, but if you take a moment and taste, focus on the quality of what you're tasting, and look at what else is available on Islay for a comparable price, what you have here is a very individual single malt, that at a much younger average age is showing character and personality all its own - without sacrificing balance or drinkablility! Highly recommended.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart BC 0

Kilchoman K&L Exclusive Single Bourbon Barrel #74 Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky 750ml
Review Date: 3-12-2014
I'm excited that we bought two different casks of Kilchoman, to highlight how two barrels with the same distillate can age in completely different ways. They're both very good and very distinct from each other. This one is spicy and fatter, a bit sweeter but with excellent chewiness and savory smoke, and still a subtly briney quality. Kilchoman does not come cheap, but if you take a moment and taste, focus on the quality of what you're tasting, and look at what else is available on Islay for a comparable price, what you have here is a very individual single malt, that at a much younger average age is showing character and personality all its own - without sacrificing balance or drinkablility! Highly recommended.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Wiston Estate "South Downs Cuvée Brut" West Sussex, England
Review Date: 3-8-2014
ENGLISH METHOD! That's right, the methode champenoise has origins in England. That's not where the Champagne comparison ends for Wiston, as their vines grow on prime chalky soils, they have been farming their land for over 250 years, and the grapes grown are Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. How's the wine? It's spectacular. Very linear, focused and brightly citric, with incredible minerality and length on the finish. It sort of reminds me of Bruno Michel's Blanc de Blancs, that kind of crackling, bright, acid and chalk driven style. Definitely worth a try.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Bodegas Olivares "Altos de la Hoya" Jumilla
Review Date: 3-5-2014
I think I recall reading somewhere, in someone's wine blog, that they found this to be hands down the most consistently interesting, over delivering under $10 red around. While I agree that you should not believe everything you read on the internet, this was a statement I read and simply had to nod my head in agreement. This is delicious, juicy, and full of fruit, but not simple or cloying in a way that many $10 reds are. Delicious, full of character and value.

2010 Bodega Eguren Tempranillo Vino de la Tierra de Castilla
Review Date: 3-5-2014
This is delicious, very easy to drink Tempranillo, or Cencibel as it is known in Castilla La Mancha. Juicy dark cherry and red fruit flavors have just the faintest hint of herbal savor. The wine is mainly about fruit, though, juicy, abundant fruit that makes it very easy to drink.
Price: $8.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Palacios Remondo "La Montesa" Rioja
Review Date: 2-5-2014
What a delicious, well-made red! If there is a more likeable, juicy, impeccably produced Rioja out there that does a better job of introducing the region to newbies, I'd be surprised. Full of mixed berry fruit, perhaps with more red fruit notes given the larger portion of Garnacha in this wine, this wine shows off the incredibly high quality of Rioja's 2010 vintage, as well as the extra richness and ripeness of this region's wines from the slightly more inland Rioja Baja sub-zone.

2012 Bernabeleva "Camino de Navaherreros" Garnacha Vinos de Madrid
Review Date: 2-4-2014
Yes, we consistently hype this wine year after year, but I have to say there is a very good reason for this: it is, quite simply, amongst the best under $15 red wines in the store. Particularly so if you enjoy some crispness, fresh acidity, and real energy to your reds. All without sacrificing great intensity of fruit. Kudos to Marc Isart and the team at Bernabeleva for continuing to make such a delicious wine and charge very reasonably for it!
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart ST 91 BC 0

2011 Lothian Vineyards Chardonnay Elgin
Review Date: 1-29-2014
Serious Chardonnay! This is creamy and rich, yet balanced and mineral as well. While so many Chardonnays are either overripe and aggressively oaked, or minimally oaked but one-dimensional and over-sulphured, it is refreshing to taste one that just shows great and drinks wonderfully right now! For those who value Chardonnay with bottle age, a hint of fat but tempered by mineral and elegant flavor development, this is as good a Chard as any in our current inventory.
Price: Hidden View Price BC 0

2008 Rippon Riesling Lake Wanaka Central Otago New Zealand (Biodynamic)
Review Date: 1-29-2014
Rippon, the iconic Central Otago estate best known for Pinot Noir, also happens to skillfully produce a range of whites. Their Riesling is just one of them, and to give you an idea how these age, how about giving this '08 a try? Candied citrus on the nose leads to a slightly creamy, exotically fruited palate that shows good development and a style more reminiscent of Alsace or even the Alto Adige than either Germany or Austria. Not surprisingly, this is a very balanced and elegant wine from the pros over at Rippon.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart RP 89 BC 0

2011 Jacques Bavard Saint-Romain Blanc "Sous le Château"
Review Date: 1-29-2014
While I have huge respect for the many talented, multi-generational domaines working in historic terroirs, producing excellent wine year after year, it is interesting to me how an outsider, or at least one not long involved on the production side of the business, can make excellent wines due to their palate preferences, context for wine tasting, work ethic, and savoir faire. Bavard is a perfect example. The Saint Romain Sous Le Chateau is so bright, with so much drive, that if you're like me and love such whites you may almost forget its capacity to put on weight and intensity with a few years of bottle age. So, enjoy now but don't forget to stash a few away for later!
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Peñalolen Cabernet Sauvignon Maipo Valley
Review Date: 1-28-2014
This is a big, brawny and richer style of Cabernet, but one that also shows solid tannin structure and balance for its heft. Aromas of dark and red fruits also show a hint of eucalyptus. On the palate, this Cab has intensity and rich fruit to spare, coupled with a savory, meaty quality. This would certainly work nicely with your favorite cut of steak. Bone in ribeye would work, though I'd personally go for a New York!
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart WS 91 BC 0

2012 Carlos Diaz "Estrela" Ribeira Sacra
Review Date: 1-15-2014
Our first Galician DI is this delicious Ribeira Sacra. What I love about the better red wines from this region (and I would certainly place the Estrela amongst them!) is their freshness, their minerality, medium body and overall balance. While the treacherously steeply sited vineyards, the poor slate soil and the dramatic scenery is eye catching,the most important thing here is the quality of the wines, which is terrific and improving with every vintage.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart BC 0

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