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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2012 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) Red Blend Swartland
By: Gary Westby | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
It is rare to find a big red wine that is balanced, rarer still to find a powerful wine that has nuance, and near impossible to find one with all these features at a reasonable price. Our South African buyer Ryan has done it with this Sequillo, and I am very impressed... If you like Syrah this has it all- meaty brawn, seamless texture and enough lift and length to make you want glass after glass!
Top Value!
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2013 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) White Blend Swartland
By: Gary Westby | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
These Sequillo wines are on the top of my must-try value list. The Eben Sadie White Blend is loaded with the kind of complexity and exoticism that makes sommelier's swoon with a rich texture that even lovers of California Chardonnay will not be able to resist. This wine is snapped together with excellent acidity, and really seems to have it all. Don't miss this, it will fool you for a bottle twice the price!
Top Value!
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2009 d'Escurac, Medoc
By: Jeff Garneau | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
The 2009 Chateau d'Escurac, Medoc is a seductive pleasure, a superb example of the best of what this vintage has to offer. Super rich with a positively silky texture. Loads of sweet, dark fruit lightly seasoned with spicy oak. Would age effortlessly for a handful of years in the cellar, but SO easy to drink now.
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2013 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) White Blend Swartland
By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
The Chenin Blanc backbone really stands out and I love Chenin, the supple richness it provides as a canvas for the rest of the varietals. Excellent balance but still richly textured, so complex and an absolute steal. I'm buying this wine!
Drink from 2015 to 2015
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) Red Blend Swartland
By: Greg St. Clair | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
This is one of the most unique, vibrant and exciting wines I've had in sometime. It's rare to get an opportunity to taste something so different yet absolutely delicious, it makes me remember my first wine experiences. On top of the superb drinkability and character these wines are priced incredibly low for the quality. You need to try this and experience the ride!
Drink from 2015 to 2015
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2013 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) White Blend Swartland
By: Steve Bearden | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
The Sequillo white blend is unfined, unfiltered, naturally made and possessed of fantastic texture and weight. Aromas and flavors of honey, apricot, almond, honeysuckle, white peach and more resonate in this layered, full-bodied and impeccably proportioned wine. This has all the texture, complexity and acid/mineral tension of a great Vouvray but at less than half the price. Amazing quality for less than twenty bucks!
Top Value!
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) Red Blend Swartland
By: Steve Bearden | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
Attention all Chateauneuf-du-Pape lovers who are on a budget: here is a wine for you. This bold and lively Rhone blend has layers of crisp and crunchy dark fruit, a rich, smooth texture, balanced weight and a long, compelling finish. Here is a satisfying and delicious naturally crafted wine for less than twenty bucks. Easily the quality of a $40.00 bottle.
Top Value!
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Balnaves Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot Coonawarra South Australia
By: Ryan Woodhouse | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
The blend consists of 91% Cabernet Sauvignon and 9% Merlot. This is a stunning wine with a powerful bouquet of pronounced ripe berry fruits (black and red), cassis, cedar, fresh tobacco and crushed mint. On the palate these aromas are echoed by the wines pure flavors with some ripe plum and mulling spice adding to the mix. The wine is powerful with great depth and richness, the tannins are fine but firm and give good structure and form to the decadent fruit. For all its ripe fruit and forward nature the wine also has great balanced acidity and a real vibrancy on the palate, I believe owing to Coonawarra's limestone soils and cool, ocean breezes. This wine is accessible to drink right now but I believe will also prove to be a great asset in the cellar for mid-term ageing over the next 5-10 years. This is a serious Cabernet at a very reasonable price thanks to our relationship with this excellent, boutique Australian importer.
Price: $24.99 Add To Waiting List
JH 95 WS 93

2010 Talosa Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Riserva
By: Andrew Whiteley | Review Date: 5/28/2015 | Send Email
2010 is the banner vintage for Brunello di Montalcino, but let us not forget the neighboring region of Montepulciano. Just a few miles to the East of Montalcino, Montepulciano has been making terrific wines since the beginning of viticulture and the wines of the region have been lauded by Popes and poets as 'the perfect wine' (see Jancis Robinson’s companion to wine). This beautiful 2010 Vino Nobile Riserva show tremendous dark, rich fruits, spice, and tobacco characteristics and shares many of the same characteristics of the stunning Brunellos from the same year. A well balanced and small, fine tannic structure is beautifully balanced by a light crisp acidity and splendid ripeness of fruit. The finish is long, bright, and clean. Just like it’s neighbors, this wine can be enjoyed for its great ripeness now, or put down in the cellar for 10-20 years to enjoy in the future. At $35/bottle, grab a case and try one or two now, and save 10 for later if you can keep your hands off of it!
Price: $34.99 Add To Waiting List
WS 94

2014 Les Vignerons de Fontès "Prieuré Saint-Hippolyte" Languedoc Rosé (1.5L)
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
This is the consummate summer rosé. It is fully fruited with pretty strawberry and raspberry notes. A nice streak of grapefruit citrus keeps it focused. This is a lot of rosé for such a good price. Be the hit of every party and picnic you attend this summer. Not only is the bottle impressive, so is the wine!
Price: $21.99 Add To Waiting List
Limit of 36 per customer

2014 Les Vignerons de Fontès "Prieuré Saint-Hippolyte" Languedoc Rosé
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
This is the consummate summer rosé. It is fully fruited with pretty strawberry and raspberry notes. A nice streak of grapefruit citrus keeps it focused. I first had this in January out of tank and was delighted by it's freshness. Now that it is in bottle and newly arrived it is showing even more intensity. This is a lot of rosé for such a good price.
Price: $9.99 Add To Waiting List

J. Laurens Brut Cremant de Limoux
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
One of the top producers in Limoux and always a favorite. Roasted pears with notes of green apples permeate the wine. Serve with some ultra creamy soft cheeses and be delighted.
Price: $13.99 Add To Waiting List

Antech "Brut Nature" Blanquette de Limoux
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
Of all the Antech wines, this is the cultiest and possibly my favorite. Not everyone is drawn to this for its bright brined apple, crispy jicama and crunchy pear flavors. I am though, because this is the ultimate aperitif sparkler. So crisp and racy, this is the goods. Serve it with fresh shucked oysters, crab salad, or maybe a little uni.
Price: $12.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Antech "Cuvée Eugenie" Cremant de Limoux
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
Eugenie is one of the stalwarts of our direct import program. Year in year out, this over delivers delicious bubbly goodness for its price. The 2012 is no exception and may be one of the best to date. Apples, pears, a hint of ginger and a touch of brioche add to the complexity of what is the cleanest freshest sparkling wine for the price.
Price: $13.99 Add To Waiting List

2014 Château Miraval Côtes de Provence Rosé (1.5L)
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
There's so much you could say against celebrity vanity projects but Miraval is most definitely not one of those. Though the property is owned by two of the biggest mega stars in Hollywood, the wine is elaborated by one of the top Rhone producers, the Perrin family of Chateau de Beaucastel. The attention to detail shows. The Miraval is a perfumed and pretty style with red fruits, blood oranges and a touch of peach. Clean and refreshing, this is one of the hits of the summer and it didn't cost $100 million to make.
Price: $49.99 Add To Waiting List

2014 Château Miraval Côtes de Provence Rosé
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
There's so much you could say against celebrity vanity projects but Miraval is most definitely not one of those. Though the property is owned by two of the biggest mega stars in Hollywood, the wine is elaborated by one of the top Rhone producers, the Perrin family of Chateau de Beaucastel. The attention to detail shows. The Miraval is a perfumed and pretty style with red fruits, blood oranges and a touch of peach. Clean and refreshing, this is one of the hits of the summer and it didn't cost $100 million to make.
Price: $21.99 Add To Waiting List

2011 Obsidian Ridge "Obsidian Ridge Vineyard" Red Hills Lake County Cabernet Sauvignon
By: Olivia Ragni | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
I love how this California Cabernet is so balanced and elegant!! The nose has aromas of blackberries, spice box and cocoa. On the palate blackberries and plums dominate the fruit character, while there is core of earth, graphite and coffee grounds. Best Cabernet for under $30.
Price: $24.99 Add To Waiting List
W&S 92 WE 90

2013 Napa Cellars Napa Valley Chardonnay
By: Mahon McGrath | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
Are you looking for oak and butter front and center in your Chardonnay, but at a price that makes it an affordable, everyday pleasure? This no-holds-barred style delivers just that and then some, with plenty of toasty vanilla, oaky spice, and buttery richness. Though definitely the secondary aspect, there is also candied pear and pineapple lurking underneath, and a decent level of acidity as a counter weight, keeping everything from slipping too far into the plush-zone. Could be just the wine for your Tuesday night white!
Price: $13.99 Add To Waiting List

Pierre Paillard Grand Cru Brut Champagne
By: Mahon McGrath | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
The key feature of this Champagne is, for me, the completeness. You get a little bit of everything, without an excess of anything. We have other non-vintage brut Champagnes that hit this or that mark well, but few that tie it all together so convincingly. Flavor wise, there’s fresh bread yeastiness, with just a slightly toasty aspect, citrus, and an underlying sense of minerality. The wine has good intensity, yet never takes it over the edge into the realm of the rich and robust, keeping a trimmer profile, and maintaining its vibrancy. Taste this once, and you’ll next thought will be to wonder whether you had the forethought to buy a second bottle.
Price: $48.99 Add To Waiting List
WS 92

2014 Domaine de Reuilly Pinot Gris Rosé
By: Olivia Ragni | Review Date: 5/27/2015 | Send Email
The color is so light, almost like lemon juice, it doesn’t even look like rose. This wine is delicate and has so much elegance. Aromas of melon, white flowers and crushed stones lead to a flinty palate with nectarines and beautiful acidity. With air, this wine will continue to unfold. Always one of the top rosés of the season.
Price: $18.99 Add To Waiting List

2014 Big Flower (Botanica) Petit Verdot Rosé
By: Ryan Woodhouse | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
One of the coolest rosés I have tasted in a long time. Precise, spicy, fresh red berry fruits, lovely floral tones, and a hint of kaffir lime leaf. On the palate the wine is juicy, quaffable, has great fruit and fresh acidity, finishes dry but not aggressively so. Super drinkable...you will wonder where the bottle went! Made from Ginny's little parcel of Petit Verdot plus a secret vinous ingredient from old vines up in the Skurfberg. This is gonna be my go to this summer!
Top Value!
Price: $15.99 Add To Waiting List

2013 TWR (Te Whare Ra) Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough
By: John Majeski | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
To quote an old Bond film—-sorry, I forget exactly which one, but when it comes to pitch-perfect, terroir-driven Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, "nobody does it better" than Te Whare Ra’s incredibly textural, infinitely captivating version, and 2013 has apparently spun more superlatives from the finicky wine world than any vintage in recent memory. Showering further praise might seem like overkill, but I can’t resist adding a line or two about the tensile grace and innate beauty of this wine, a thoroughbred of marvelous precision and persistence ready to be unleashed in the glass.
Top Value!
Price: $18.99 Add To Waiting List
RC 94 SK 93

2012 Haut-Monplaisir "Tradition" Cahors
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
I first had the Haut Monplaisir "Tradition" on a cold winter's day in February in the Hollywood Hills part of Los Angeles. Okay maybe it wasn't that cold, we're talking about LA here. We did have it with cassoulet though which is truly a classic pairing. The wine showed ripe black and blue fruit with polished tannins. It was expressive and inviting, especially for a Cahors which for years were more rustic wines that could be a little rough around the edges. It was delicious. Flash forward a few months, having retasted the wine, I found it to have much of the lovely Malbec fruit qualities but it was beginning to show more of its terroir. The black and blue fruit was there but notes of graphite and fresh crushed herbs emerged. Fans of Malbec from Argentina may be swayed to try the wine because of the fruit but they'll stay for the layers of complexity from this most classic of Malbec producing regions.
Price: $14.99 Add To Waiting List
WE 90

2012 Olema Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon
By: Andrew Whiteley | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
The Olema Cabernet, second label from our friends at Amici Cellars, is a terrific wine from the 2012 vintage. Bright fruit and an easy going and approachable tannic structure make for great drinking on its own, or for a beautiful pairing with any protein rich food (especially the delicious steak kabobs I just tried it with!). The excellent use of a small amount of new French oak gives this wine lots of weight and character, but doesn’t overpower the high quality of the ripe fruit. For only $20 bucks, it's hard to go wrong here.
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) Red Blend Swartland
By: Jim Chanteloup | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
We have been waiting for the Sequillo wines to arrive for some time now, and that day has finally come. As I said befor,e Eben Sadie is making some of the most exciting wines coming out of South Africa. He makes pure wines to deliver character and a sense of place. I visited him a few years ago and tasted the brilliant Old Vine Series that he does before they launched here in the States and got a chance to get to know him beyond his wines. While his accolades are well deserved, he is one of the most unpretentious winemakers I've met and focuses on what brings him joy. A loose quote from him one day was "I need to surf, to drink, spearfish and to dream. All these things need to happen for me to make wine." While South African for sure, if I had to draw a comparison (he probably would hate this), this wine reminds of a traditional style Southern Rhone. The bouquet offers up spicy raspberry,plum, clove, leather, cumin and some meaty notes. On the palate there are integrated fine tannins with good acidity, texture and balance with a long, complex finish. Serious stuff.
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2013 E. Guigal Côtes du Rhône Blanc
By: Daniel Maas | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Such a nice wine this is! The Guigal CDR Blanc is an easy-drinking, balanced white wine that boasts expressive peach notes, a hint of subtle spice, and a soft, round structure that leaves a lingering finish. Very nice indeed!
Price: $12.99 Add To Waiting List
RP 90

2009 La Velona Brunello di Montalcino
By: Steve Bearden | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
This is soft, warm, caressing and just delicious to drink over the next several years. Oodles of lush, baked cherry fruit, earth, and herb meld into a long mineral laced finish. The tannins are ripe and enveloped in the plush texture of this food-friendly wine.

2013 Erik Banti Morellino di Scansano
By: Angie An | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
This is a crowd-pleaser and best bang-for-your-buck all day, everyday! Morellino is another word for "brown" or "browning" which is used to describe how Sangiovese grapes look in the region. This tasty bottle has all the classic characters with red cherry, a super easy drinking mouthfeel and nice acidity to pair with your pizza or pasta on a weeknight. This wine always sells out FAST!! (Partially because all of us staff buy it by the case) so grab yours today and give it a try!
Top Value!
Price: $11.99 Add To Waiting List

Nikka Taketsuru Pure Malt Japanese Whisky 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
I was pretty bummed to hear that the U.S. market would not be getting the 12 year Taketsuru any longer and skeptical that a no age statement replacement would be acceptable. I was wildly mistaken. While the 12 year seemed safe and predictable, there's something wild and untamed about the NAS. While it doesn't have an age, the supplier says it's around 10ish -- I do think it's got more depth and complexity than the whisky it replaces. Hopefully they'll be able to keep this in good supply 'cause this is solid drinking for a good price.
Price: $59.99 Add To Waiting List

Nikka Coffey Still Japanese Grain Whisky 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Nobody expected this goofy little whisky to explode the way it has. It's odd, but so inviting and unpretentious. Sure it's column distilled, but that doesn't mean it's any less flavorful than it's malted potstilled brothers. Just different. Candied melon, sweet oak, fresh sawdust, and peanuts. Medium bodied, with a pointed finish that really turns up the oak. Not only is this awesome Japanese (distinctly Japanese) Whisky, but it's also available and relatively affordable. Can't say that about many products out there right now. Get it, drink it, love it, repeat.
Price: $62.99 Add To Waiting List

Lagavulin 16-year-old Islay Single Malt Whisky 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Lagavulin is a pillar. Without a doubt one of the most important distilleries in Scotland, it is the darling of Diageo and continues to crank out ultra high quality smoky malt year after year. Even though cranky critics like to lament how Lag 16 year doesn't taste like it used to, I've had it along side bottlings from the last 3 decades and I have to say, while the style is slightly different (OBE might be in play here), it without a doubt continues to be one of the most special whiskies on the market. Quality, flavor, and depth are unsurpassed at this price point (and our price point continues to be pretty seriously low all things considered). The Lagavulin is an oily best, rich and peaty, but with a balance that makes you itching to get the glass back up to your lips.

Macallan 12 year old Single Malt Whisky 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Often dubbed the "Royals Royce of Single Malt," the Macallan distillery continues to have one of the best reputations in the business. Of course with Scotch, a good reputation always equals a higher price! However, over the last several years as Macallan's competitors have chipped away at this behemoth of a brand, the lowly 12 year old hasn't really increased much in price. That means we're getting 100% sherry 12 year old whisky for Speyside's best regarded distillery for only $50. Is Macallan a value brand again? We see people selling young sherried malts of lesser quality for much much more than this. And it's taste good too.
Price: $49.99 Add To Waiting List
WE 90 - 95

Tears of Llorona Extra Anejo Tequila 1L
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
German Gonzalez has become one of the most respected and important Distillers in Mexico. His work at Chinaco and his other projects have solidified him as one of the categories very best. He's partnered with our dear friend Enrique Fuenteseca to create the masterful product unlike anything else on the market. If German could improve his reputation anymore this was the product to do it. Originally created to be his private drinking stock, ultra limited amounts of the wild elixir are now available. The begin with agave at peak ripeness, hand selected by the master himself. After roasting in stone ovens and maceration, the aguamiel is fermented using German's proprietary yeast. This ultra slow fermentation allows for the deeps possible flavor. Double distillation on copper pot stills before being put into American oak barrels for at least 3 years. The exact aging regiment isn't totally clear, but we do know that after the initial aging it is transferred for at least another years in the following types of wood, French ex-Cognac, ex-Scotch, ex-Sherry. The final blend is a selection of those and maybe other types of wood all around 5 years. A stupendous example of what a skilled artisan when cost is no object. Really it's a pretty good deal for how incredible it is.
Price: $229.99 Add To Waiting List

Angel's Envy 86 Proof Bourbon 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
So what happens when one of Kentucky's most respected distillers source ultra high quality bourbon and finishes it in sweet Port wine casks, the bourbocalypse? Perhaps. But what's really going on here is one of the most successful examples of the potential of wine finishing in modern whiskey. Be it the Henderson's deft palate or their monumental experience - the Angel's Envy is unquestionably a sensation. Easy enough for you mom to love it, yet NOT boring in the slightest. The flavor profile is never dominated by the port, so it still tastes like bourbon, put the sweet rich flavors are there to enhance and envelop the already wonderful profile of the bourbon. The late Lincoln Henderson was clearly a genius and we know his legacy will be well looked after by the brands current custodians.
Price: $43.99 Add To Waiting List
WE 98 WA 93

2012 Fattoria Petrolo Torrione Toscana
By: Angie An | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
The Petrolo Torrione is mostly Sangiovese with a bit of Merlot blended in. Located just north of Cortona this talented producer makes a broad and firm wine with warm red fruit notes and solid texture.

Four Roses K&L Exclusive OESF (10 year 9 month Barrel #48-2Q) Single Barrel Cask Strength Bourbon 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Big and bold is the best way to categorize this guy. Lower rye content doesn't stop this guy from being a peppery spice monster. Aromatics move between the spice and the exotic vanilla bean stuff. The palate is slightly more tame, with the oaky vanilla taking over before the spiciness kicks up again on the back end. Stupid good.
Price: $66.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Isole e Olena Chianti Classico
By: Angie An | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
This winery is located close to the western border of the Chianti Classico DOCG, half way between Florence and Sienna. This is 100% Sangiovese that is super expressive and floral right out of the glass with and elegant touch, warm baking spices notes and good acidity on the back end. This is what I consider a classic example of what Chianti Classico should taste like!

Four Roses K&L Exclusive OBSO (11 year & 2 month) Single Barrel Cask Strength Bourbon 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Bold and full bodied. The OBSO recipe (O,stands for 4Rs - B, the high rye mashbill - S, for Straight Bourbon - O for the fruity spicy yeast) is one of the most variable and interesting they have. IN this case the higher rye content of the mashbill provides a lovely spicy balance for the luscious red fruit flavors on the nose. This leans toward the almost caramelized sugar flavors. On the palate we have more tension. Spice, pepper, dark red fruits, maybe a bit of cocoa. Wonderful stuff to say the least.
Price: $66.99 Add To Waiting List

Dudognon Heritage 40 year Cognac 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
For all the stuff I say about Dudognon being the highest quality cognac house, it's not until you taste the big boy Heritage that you truly begin to understand why they're so special. At 40 years, we're beginning to see the real full potential of these stupendous EDVs. Ultra decadent while never cloying, the Heritage has everything that the big house brands strive for in their ultra-premium offerings at 10 times the price. Only this one is made without a single additive. They've achieved such incredible depth and balance it's almost hard to believe this isn't much more expensive. Yet here we are.
Price: $249.99 Add To Waiting List

Dudognon Vielle Reserve 20 year Cognac 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Somethings in the world our are subjective. Other things are not. For instance, I can unequivocally that Dudognon is the most open, transparent, and honest producer in Cognac. They have some of the best terroir and use only the highest quality wood (100% of their cognac sees at least 1 year in new oak). They are the only producer who I can honestly tell you have not utilized additives in their cognac in any way. All of these things come together to make me say highly subjective things like, "Dudognon is the best producer in Cognac!" One might quibble with the details, but what is clear is that Dudognon makes their brandy like no one else in the region. Absolutely the purest expression of terroir with nothing in the way. The real complexity starts to show when their brandies at the Vieille Reserve level (20 years). Always drier than most people are used to with cognac, Dudognon's house style is this wonderful tension between freshness and age. Always keeping you guessing, this is the superlative product for the price point, a base from which I believe all others should be judged.
Price: $89.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Carpe Diem Anderson Valley Pinot Noir
By: Steve Bearden | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
2012 was a spectacular Pinot Noir vintage all up and down California and Anderson Valley was no exception. This has a wild, brambly side rarely seen in this appellation yet retains all the cool balance and equilibrium you expect from this outstanding Northern region. There is freshness as well as depth to the layers of earthy dark cherry and berry fruit that linger on the gripping finish.
Price: $29.99 Add To Waiting List

Wine Club

$24.99
WS 90

2012 Rocca di Montegrossi Chianti Classico
By: Andrew Whiteley | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
A beautiful wine. Not quite traditional, as it has more breadth than most Chianti, this wine doesn’t quite fit into a fully modern style either. There is still tons of great acidity and focus, but it is much softer and broader on the palate than a traditional Chianti Classico. Bright fruit and cola notes in combination with this rounder texture make for a crisp and refreshing red, perfect for pairing with any pizza or pasta dish.
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2014 Montmassot Picpoul de Pinet
By: Keith Mabry | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
It was a bit of a cold and rainy day when I visited the cooperative that produces the Montmassot. We cruised around and toured the vineyards for an hour before we did the thing that all Picpoul demands - drink it with oysters! We had oysters three different ways: raw with a mignonette; baked with sauteed fennel and cheese; and broiled with a gorgeous aioli. Wow!! I really began to understand beyond the brightness and freshness of the wine. This is a wine from a region famous for its oysters and the wine paired perfectly with every permutation of that food. Vibrant and clean with notes of pink grapefruit and green apples on the palate. The finish is full of salty sea air. I think you know what you're supposed to do next...
Price: $10.99 Add To Waiting List

2013 Sequillo (Eben Sadie) White Blend Swartland
By: Jim Chanteloup | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
At last the Sequillo wines have arrived! Eben Sadie is making some og the most exciting wines coming out of South Africa...period. This unique blend dominated by Chenin Blanc has aromas of honey, apricot, peach,stoney minerality and a nutty note. On the palate, the wine is rich with a round creamy texture that all the while is supported by good acidity that leads to a long persistent finish. This is a wine of purity and character the belies the price.
Price: $19.99 Add To Waiting List

2012 Haut-Monplaisir "Tradition" Cahors
By: Daniel Maas | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Yeah, that's right people. Malbec isn't just from Argentina. In fact, it actually traces its roots back to France, as one of the traditional blending grapes of Bordeaux. Here, in Cahors, the wine is a classic representation of the region. Medium plus in body, the wine has firm tannins intermixed with plum, subtle hints of roasted meat (which make it an excellent pairing), and tart spice. Lovely.
Price: $14.99 Add To Waiting List
WE 90

Glenfarclas 25 year old, Distillery Bottling 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
It's still astonishing that this whisky is on the shelf for $150. Just absolutely flabbergasted by the continued price/quality ratio here, even while their competitors are raising prices every quarter. Glenfarclas is of course one of my favorite distilleries, not only because it's producing some of the most consistent and delicious malt in Scotland, but also because of the magnanimous family that's owner is for centuries - The Grants. The 25 year is the Grant's flagship product, often compared to their neighbors the Macallan, but truly in a class of it's own. While 'Farclas has a great amount of Sherry butts in this blend, unlike the Macallan, their not married to only using that type of cask. The result is something that is big and bold enough for a Mac drinker to appreciate, but with a subtle complexity that the most discerning palates could spend hours analyzing. And then there's is the price. Not even Scotland' WORST distilleries sell their 25 year old for anywhere close to this bad boy. This is unequivocally the best value in mature Scotch...maybe ever.
Price: $149.99 Add To Waiting List

Whistle Pig "Boss Hog" 13 Year Old Straight Rye Whiskey 750ml (2 bottle limit - ships as 1.5L)
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
The ultra limited new single barrel from the Whistle Pig Farm's in Vermont. This is top quality Canadian Straight Rye bottled right from the cask at full strength. Massively powerful and intense, the Boss Hog will literally rule your palate for hours after tasting it. Rye is still hard to find and older rye is all but extinct, so this really is a special thing to find. Despite the impressive textural quality and over the top flavor profile, Boss Hog retains a sense of smoothness, a roundness that's most likely thanks to the wonderful Canadian rye and high quality distillation.
Price: $174.99 Add To Waiting List
Limit of 2 per customer

2012 Domaine Lafage Carignan "Tessellae" Cotes Catalanes
By: Daniel Maas | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
Too often does Carignan go unnoticed as a single varietal wine, and here we have a great example of how good it can be on its own. It is full bodied, and chock-full of blackberry, licorice, and spicy pepper, though it is elegant. A fruit-bomb that actually has old-world complexity and finesse! Simply lovely.
Price: $12.99 Add To Waiting List
RP 92

Benromach 10 Year Single Malt Whisky 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
This is the stupendous new presentation of the well regarded distillery owned by Gordon & Macphail. G&M have established BenRomach as one of the most consistent and high quality Speyside malts on the market today since they purchased the distiller in 1992. Recent package changes have pushed the price up, but we're in the business of keeping our prices low, so this final batch of 100 bottles will be the last at this ridiculously low price. Expect an increase of as much as $15 when this stock is gone.
Price: $49.99 Add To Waiting List

Tosba Espadin Mezcal 750ml
By: David Othenin-Girard | Review Date: 5/26/2015 | Send Email
A massively delicious and highly affordable mezcal from some of our favorite guys in the industry. This is true grower producer Mezcal. Mezcal has become somewhat like wine or cognac over the last decade, with importers and brand owners buying bulk product from farmers and distillers throughout the region. But very few true Mezcaleros have been able to connect and market their own product in the US. This is one of the few and one of our favorites. What makes Tosba unique, is that it's basically been built from the ground up by two cousins, who had never distilled a drop of Mezcal before they agreed to start farming in their home town of San Cristobal. Their inexperience in production was more than made up for by a drive to bring the finest Mezcal to directly from a producer to this growing market. They learned to distill over the last decade by trial and error and through studying the techniques of their favorite distillers. The result is something all together unique. On the nose we're off the standard carbonized, charcoal smoke we often get on less expensive mezcal and well into the wonderul agave fruit and spice. The palate is absolutely balanced and more generous than most. Tons of minerally, white pepper, cinnamon, and nutty spice - it's all about the mouthfeel here, which is viscous without feeling sweet or overpowering. A spirit of great balance rather than overbearing power.
Price: $44.99 Add To Waiting List

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