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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 (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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2017 Joseph Drouhin Beaujolais Nouveau
Review Date: 11-16-2017
This is delicious, and among the roundup of 2017's it is my favorite nouveau. Less simplistic and bubblegummy than that other Beaujolais nouveau (not to name names but the one that rhyme's with "enough"), the Drouhin is vinous, brightly fruited and has surprising structure and volume for a nouveau. Fresh, slightly floral and easy to drink, Joseph Drouhin Beaujolais Nouveau is my nouveau pick for 2017!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

1974 Garnheath 43 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Grain Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-16-2017
This is one of the richest, most burnished and appealingly maple/cola/sweet-ish grain whiskies I have yet to try. The alcohol is perfectly balanced, the lush burnt sugar and spice notes are expansive and linger on the palate for a long while. If you're after older grain whiskey, or even if you're a Bourbon fan chasing after something rare, old and delicious, I would strongly recommend the Old Particular Garnheath 43 Year Old. Yes, 43 year Old! Delicious stuff.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

1995 Miltonduff 22 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-16-2017
For those who like a classic, old school, no frills Highland style, this is perhaps the best value in the store. Full of aromas and flavors of hulled grains, there are also nicely integrated bass tones of dark chocolate and roasted coffee beans. A delicious and satisfying dram if you don't need tons of smoke or Sherry, but rather are up for a fine, textbook single malt.
Price: $89.99 Add To Cart

1977 Quarles Harris Vintage Port
Review Date: 11-14-2017
This little known port house is actually one of the oldest, first founded in 1680 and held by the same family up until 1920 or so, at which point the Symington family (who own Graham's, Dow's, and Warre's) purchased it. This wine is in great shape, likely re-conditioned with what appears to be a newer cork. Relatively light on the palate, there is a perfectly balanced sweetness, notes of candied violet, lovely minerality and an overall sense of subtlety and elegant balance. Not a blockbuster, but rather a beauty, Quarles Harris also happens to be the most reasonably priced of our 1977 vintage ports.
Price: $129.99 Add To Cart

2015 Palacio del Burgo Tinto Rioja
Review Date: 11-14-2017
This is exactly the type of Rioja I seek out when the holidays come our way: inexpensive, brightly fruited, no oak whatsoever, juicy and surprisingly structured, with a fresh acid structure that makes it sing with food. Unoaked Tempranillo is not always the easiest wine to produce, as it can show a heat stamp in warmer years and be reductive and firm in cooler ones. In great vintages like 2015, however, unoaked wines represent one of my favorite types of Rioja as they accentuate the grape's delicious inherent fruit, and show off the pleasing lightly tannic grip of a young red wine. For under $10, this won't break the bank, and you can afford to stock a case to have plenty of wine on hand for visiting friends and family. Highly recommended, sub $10 house red!
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart
VN 90

2011 Can Mayol Loxarel "Reserva Familiar" Brut Nature Penedes
Review Date: 11-13-2017
Once again, another release of Loxarel Reserva Familiar brings the goods. As always, the aromatics are filled with generous yellow fruits, clean chalk and some traces of the Mediterranean countryside. It's the palate where the fireworks really begin: ripe citrus fruits show real precision and a mouthwatering saline quality as well, with a fine stream of bubbles creating a wonderful texture, and flavors that linger nicely long after taking a sip of the wine. For this organic, estate grown, old vine Xarel-lo dominated blend, carefully aged on its lees for over five years and then hand disgorged (and hand labelled!) to come in at under $20 is mind boggling. I don't say this lightly, but pound for pound, euro for euro and dollar for dollar, this is my favorite bottle of bubbles in the store.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2013 Kir-Yianni "Ramnista" Naoussa
Review Date: 11-08-2017
Full disclosure: my first job in the business was selling a portfolio of Greek wines which included Kir Yianni. That said, I still love this wine's wild strawberry confit palate profile, that also shows a savory/salty and decidedly tannic edge to it. Think Barbaresco for this one, and serve it with meat or lamb, or perhaps a braised meat sugo over pasta.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart

2016 Sigalas Assyrtiko Santorini Greece
Review Date: 11-08-2017
Tasting this phenomenal Santorini white recently, I have decided it is not merely my favorite Greek white, but one of my absolute favorite whites from anywhere currently in stock. Mineral, salty and lively, the wine's 6 months of lees ageing (with battonage) does not take away from the spritely, linear, focused quality of the wine. The wine's length, and it's phenolic, subtly bitter snap towards the finish, makes you want to drink it, particularly with a spread of simply prepared grilled seafood on the table! Great wine.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart
RP 95

2014 Fleur de Pedesclaux, Pauillac
Review Date: 11-08-2017
This lovely Pauillac from one of our favorite value properties in the communie shows pretty mixed berry fruits and a rather sumptuous, supple quality which belies the more typically classic and restrained quality of the 2014 vintage. That said, this precocious Pauillac is delicious now and should continue to drink well for a decade.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
JS 90

2016 Viña Godeval Godello Valdeorras
Review Date: 11-08-2017
Compared to our other delicious $15 Godello from Valdesil, the Vina Godeval shows more yellow and stone fruit, with a bit more volume. Godello is definitely the white everyone is after in Spain, and tasting how good it can be, from well made inexpensive versions such as this on up to more rare $50 bottlings, I can see why! This wine's fruity freshness makes it perfect as an aperitive.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

2008 Raventos i Blanc "Manuel Raventos" Conca del Riu Anoia
Review Date: 11-08-2017
From one of our favorite Spanish producers in Raventos i Blanc comes this tete de cuvee, a selection personally selected by someone who is by all accounts an incredibly gifted taster, owner Manuel Raventos. This spend 72 months on the lees and shows lovely toasty and doughy qualitites, though incredible structure and freshness, all the more impressive given the length of its ageing. Only 2000 bottles of this delicious and serious wine were produced.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart
RP 93

2015 Azul y Garanza Tempranillo Navarra (1L)
Review Date: 11-08-2017
Does slightly peppery, fresh and dark fruited Tempranillo hold some appeal for you? How about one bottled in a one liter bottle, for maximum bang for buck? For value red seekers, whether or not you veer towards Spain, this is absolutely a delicious Tempranillo to try.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2016 Azul y Garanza Viura Navarra (1L)
Review Date: 11-08-2017
Fermented in a combination of stainless steel and concrete tanks, this Viura shows just a little rounder and softer on the palate than some of our favorite Viuras from Rioja. That said, it is crisp, refreshing and yellow fruited, with an extra third a bottle built in (the eternal advantage of 1L bottles!) For anyone who appreciates a good value in dry white wine (for drinking and perhaps cooking as well), this has got to be right up there with some of our very best.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2015 Espelt "Old Vines" Garnacha Emporda
Review Date: 11-08-2017
Hailing from near Roses, Catalunya, off the road that leads to the beautiful village of Cadaques and eventually to Port Lligat, where Salvador Dali's house is located. This is perhaps the tastiest Grenache in the shop for under $12. Wonderfully bright black and raspberry fruits show a plump and fresh quality, making this one easy to drink.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart

1977 Graham's Vintage Port
Review Date: 11-06-2017
Graham's Vintage Port from a vintage as strong as 1977 is truly one of the greatest and most long lived wines around. This '77 shows all the trademark richness and generosity on the palate, with a lovely herbal and almost amaro-like complexity which certain fine vintage Ports begin to acquire after 40 years of bottle age. A great bottle of wine and ideal gift for 40th birthdays or anniversaries.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart
RP 93 WS 91

1977 Dow's Vintage Port
Review Date: 11-06-2017
This is an absolutely delicious, impeccably balanced bottle of port from the great 1977 vintage. Dow's style is relatively drier than most of the other houses, except perhaps Taylor's, and after 40 years of ageing, it has reached prime drinking: beautiful florals, perfectly sweet fruits and a graceful mouth feel all combine to make this one of the more memorable vintage ports I have yet to enjoy. A real treat, and a perfect gift to mark that 40th birthday or anniversary.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart
RP 93 WS 92

2011 Ramos Pinto Late Bottled Vintage Port
Review Date: 10-25-2017
I am loving the 2011 vintage LBV bottlings. While perhaps this is a bit controversial, I happen to believe that the overall quality of a vintage absolutely has a strong impact on the quality of a producer's LBV, and here is yet another example that proves the point. Sweet aromas of dark fruit, licorice and cracked black pepper lead to a quite vinous and structured style port, with classic violet inner mouth aromas emerging as well. While it could certainly be a great dessert on its own, this would be terrific with a flourless chocolate cake.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart
RP 93

2014 Ramos Pinto "Duas Quintas" Douro
Review Date: 10-25-2017
Produced from a blend of primarily Touriga Nacional and Touriga Franca, planted at Ramos Pinto's Quinta da Ervamoira from 1974 through 1996, this is a lovely Douro red from this solid vintage. Floral and fresh berry flavors, along with just the right amount of tannic backbone, combine to create one delicious, balanced red Douro wine. It's more about balance and drinkability then brawn and extraction, which is right on trend in this beautiful Portuguese wine growing region.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

2011 Louis Roederer Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 10-23-2017
Louis Roederer continues to be one of my favorite, go to grand marque Champagnes. This vintage rosé is everything that I am looking for in pink Champagne - bright, crunchy red berry flavors, well integrated acidity, dosage and bubbles, and a well defined minerality which I find present in all of Louis Roederer Champagnes. The difference in their vintage dated wines is added intensity on the mid-palate and more length on the finish. Well worth the price, I find this to be one of our better values in vintage, grand marque Champagne!
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart
WE 94 WS 91

Billecart-Salmon Brut "Sous Bois" Champagne
Review Date: 10-23-2017
Containing base wine that is barrel fermented, and then given a generously long ageing on its lees, this cuvée is rich, elegant and expensive tasting. That said, given the quality of the base wine and the blocking of malolactic, there is a fine line of acidity marking this rich barrel aged Champagne, as well as a soft bead as well. A great Champagne for a meal, though for my taste I would be just as happy sipping on this and simple hors d'oeuvres as I would be enjoying it with a sumptuous meal.

2013 Dominio del Aguila Ribera del Duero
Review Date: 10-19-2017
A more serious, young Ribera del Duero I have yet to taste, except for perhaps one or two fresher, more aromatic vintages of Vega Sicilia (the 1999 comes to mind) I don't draw that comparison lightly, particularly as Vega Sicilia costs upwards of $350 upon release, and of course is the original high end Spanish collectible wine. That said, if this 2013 vintage of Domninio del Aguila is any indication, I think it's not a stretch to say that this wine is every bit as good, and perhaps nearly its rival in terms of long term ageability. Time of course will tell, but I love this wine for its salted plum flavors, with a truly Castillian soil inflection and mineral backbone, alongside balanced, subtle spicy/sweet notes from the oak (35 months in oak, in fact, not quite Vega length elevage but certainly longer than the normal these days). I encourage anyone - Vega Sicilia collector or simply Spanish wine fan - to check out this fantastic new Ribera del Duero producer.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart
RP 96

2015 Comando G "La Bruja de Rozas" Garnacha
Review Date: 10-19-2017
This is serious Garnacha! Grenache from granite, made by true masters of the genre, the team of Fernando García and Dani Landi. Named for one of their favorite comics, Comando G focuses on a very fresh, structured and brightly fruited style of Grenache that always seems to have me reaching for the correct comparison to do the wines justice: well made, traditional Barolo? Ripe vintage, 1er cru Cotes de Nuits Burgundy, old fashioned, top quality Chateauneuf du Pape? Whatever the comparison, the Garnacha based wines from Comando G, when on their 'A' game, are some of the tastiest Grenache based wines out there. I've said it before, but it absolutely bears repeating again, these wines are as good or better than some of France's best names in Chateauneuf du Pape. This particular bottling shows spicy, cinnamon laced, bright red fruited aromas which lead to fantastic, crunchy, lively flavors on the palate. A delicious wine.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart
RP 92

2014 Terroir al Limit "Terra de Cuques" Priorat Blanc
Review Date: 10-18-2017
A blend of Pedro Ximenez (cool story: first brought up from the south by Andalusians who came up to work in the region's gypsum mines) and Muscat, this wonderful Mediterranean white shows aromas of tarragon and fennel pollen, leading to a chalky, mineral and nicely dry palate. Surprisingly, the exotic, floral qualities one may expect from the Muscat do not show in this wine. German born Dominik Huber did not to my knowledge grow up in a winemaking family, though he did grow to develop a love of good food, cooking and fine wine, and decided to venture into wine production in the beautifully rustic Priorat region of southern Catalonia accompanied by his then business partner, South African savant Eben Sadie. Having learned over the years how to spot a great vineyard, and more recently, how to harness the fruit to retain all of the Mediterranean character with maximzied mineral expression and freshness through thoughtful winemaking, Dominik now is right up there amongst the top few projects in Priorat.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2014 Terroir al Limit "Dits del Terra" Priorat
Review Date: 10-18-2017
Dits del Terra is one of two single vineyard Carinena based wines, what proprietor Dominik Huber describes as his "1er Cru" bottlings. This shows incredibly intense aromas of blackberry and licorice that are brooding in a way. Wonderfully pure, dry and mineral laced flavors on this young Priorat. German born Dominik Huber did not to my knowledge grow up in a winemaking family, though he did grow to develop a love of good food, cooking and fine wine, and decided to venture into wine production in the beautifully rustic Priorat region of southern Catalonia accompanied by his then business partner, South African savant Eben Sadie. Having learned over the years how to spot a great vineyard, and more recently, how to harness the fruit to retain all of the Mediterranean character with maximized mineral expression and freshness through thoughtful winemaking, Dominik now is right up there amongst the top few projects in Priorat.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

2014 Terroir al Limit "Torroja" Priorat
Review Date: 10-18-2017
German born Dominik Huber did not to my knowledge grow up in a winemaking family, though he did grow to develop a love of good food, cooking and fine wine, and decided to venture into wine production in the beautifully rustic Priorat region of southern Catalonia accompanied by his then business partner, South African savant Eben Sadie. Having learned over the years how to spot a great vineyard, and more recently, how to harness the fruit to retain all of the Mediterranean character with maximzied mineral expression and freshness through thoughtful winemaking, Dominik now is right up there amongst the top few projects in Priorat. His Torroja "villages" bottling, from the very good 2014 vintage, took a bit of bottle age to open up over the past year or so, but is now showing fantastically, with beautiful dark berries and red fruited aromas, as well as floral qualities on the nose. Juicy and spicy, ripe yet wonderfully fresh, I truly believe that this is Priorat as it should be. Drink it up.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
RP 92

2012 Sesta di Sopra Brunello di Montalcino
Review Date: 10-18-2017
I have to give our Brunello customers credit: this is always amongst our most popular Brunelli, and as consistently tasty as it is, I can see why. While Sesta tends to show rich, succulent red fruits, they are even more delectable in a forward, juicy vintage such as 2012. While there is fruit here, and lots of it, there is also sufficient acid balance and structure to see it through some mid-term cellaring. Greg (St Clair, our Italian buyer if you don't know him by now) refers to 2012 as something of a goldilocks vintage, and this wine does indeed taste just right.

2012 Cortonesi "Poggiarelli" Brunello di Montalcino
Review Date: 10-18-2017
Cortonesi, née La Manella, produces this particular bottling of Brunello from a well regarded site in the Southeast corner of the denominazione. The wine is brawny, salty, savory, black fruited and built, though there is still a quality to the wine that makes you salivate and reach for another glass. I like the style, and with any meat finished with rosemary and sea salt, I imagine I would like it even more. Bravo! A fine Brunello.

2012 Armilla Brunello di Montalcino
Review Date: 10-18-2017
I was immediately smitten with this Brunello. Straight out the gate, it exudes old timey charm with restrained aromas of red fruits and dried mandarin peels. Flavors are also red fruited, with a light textural feel, layered, subtle flavors, and an overall airiness to the wine that makes it drink well young, though I feel like the impeccable balance at this young age may well allow for some solid mid-term cellar potential. A new name, but one that I will be sure to remember: Armilla!

2015 Domaine Faiveley Mercurey "Clos Rond"
Review Date: 10-18-2017
The wines at Faiveley have been improving dramatically over the past decade, though perhaps it takes a vintage as successful as 2015 to clearly illustrate how far these wines have come. Aromas and flavors of freshly pressed raspberries are friendly but not simple or one dimensional, just really tasty and satisfying. A fine Pinot Noir to drink now or cellar for several years.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$26.99

2015 Domaine des Terres Dorées (Jean-Paul Brun) Moulin-a-Vent
Review Date: 10-18-2017
We recently tasted a fairly comprehensive line-up of Beaujolais, and I think for several of us this definitely took best in show, for its value, fruit intensity and sheer deliciousness. Jean Paul Brun is a good producer, whose wines always seem to showcase bright fruit and vintage character, which in this case means that the fruit is generous, but still sufficiently balanced to remind you that the grapes were grown in solid terroir in Moulin a Vent. As with other top wines from this Beaujolais cru, there is less earthiness and less of a floral quality, more of a direct fruity richness to this wine. Highly recommended.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
JG 92 JS 92

2013 Raventos i Blanc "de la Finca" Gran Reserva Conca del Riu Anoia
Review Date: 10-18-2017
Though it is not their least expensive wine, this could well be the best value of the Raventos stable. It of course is all organically cultivated estate fruit, but in this case the vines are grown on an especially calcareous portion of their property, rich in marine fossils. The result is a sparkling wine with delicious yellow and citrus fruit, quite powerfully flavored, but with a chalkiness that combines with the bubbles to refresh the palate. There is such impressive length and purity here, that I think we can honestly pour this side by side with our favorite Champagnes and have the wine more than hold its own. Simply a great bottle of bubbles from one of the world's more serious sparkling wine producers.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
RP 93

2014 de Braude, Haut-Médoc
Review Date: 10-12-2017
This was a runaway hit at our last Bordeaux staff tasting. Dark fruit with a hint of mint on the nose leads to a palate that is just so elegant and balanced. While "seamless" has became an overly used adjective amongst us wine professionals, I think the word applies here as well. Pure class in a glass!
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart
WE 92 RP 90

2014 Gigault "Cuvée Viva," Premières Côtes de Blaye
Review Date: 10-12-2017
Always a house favorite here at K&L, the 2014 Gigault shows bright, pure red fruits. There is typically a poise and freshness to this wine when it is young, though allied with a classic vintage like 2014 it becomes all the more notable. Also worth mentioning is the fact that this wine - delicious as it is to drink now - ages quite nicely in the mid-term. Best value Bordeaux under $15? I think the answer is an emphatic 'Yes."
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart
JS 91

2012 du Glana, St-Julien
Review Date: 10-12-2017
This is currently a go to Bordeaux bottle for me. Unsurprisingly it is from my favorite commune, St. Julien, which continues to be home to some of the most elegant, wonderfully savory and textbook value examples of left bank Bordeaux. This 2012 shows the supple red fruited qualities of the vintage, with lovely floral undertones and admirable balance. Thinking of this wine has me craving a nice steak and reaching for the decanter - not a bad notion for your next Friday evening at home!
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart
JS 90 WS 90

2015 Raventos i Blanc "de Nit" Rosé Conca del Riu Anoia
Review Date: 10-12-2017
Raventos' De Nit rosé sparkler is back and better than ever. The winery has for several years now only used their biodynamically grown estate fruit, which is pretty impressive given the very reasonable price compared to other producers in Champagne who purchase grape from other producers. This is a delicately colored rosé, with just a hint of red fruit and structure provided by a small percentage of Monastrell. Precise, crisp, slightly tangy and salty, this is a beautiful bottle of bubbles to enjoy on its own or with grilled coho salmon steaks.
Price: $22.99 Add To Cart

2014 Raventós i Blanc "L'hereu" Brut Conca del Riu Anoia
Review Date: 10-12-2017
This entry level Raventos sparkling wine shows off all the pedigree, investment and improvements which the family has been busy with over the past decade. The fact that this is made from 100% estate, biodynamically grown fruit should tell you about their seriousness of intent (and also clue you in to what a great value it is at under $20!) Always bright, mineral, a touch salty even, this is the perfect aperitive, the kind of wine you can just drink and drink. One of my favorite Spanish producers, and certainly at the top of my list for bubbles, Raventos continues to bring their 'A' game to the table amongst their entire range of sparklers.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2010 Louise Brison Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-10-2017
Vintage Champagne for under $30 is an anomaly to be sure. Thanks to our DI Champagne program, though, we have a Champagne here that is not only vintage dated and carefully aged (for a good bit longer than the AOC dictated minimums) but also stylish and much more expensive/serious tasting than the price would suggest. There are two very good reasons for this: very expensive Chardonnay from Kimmeridgian soils and barrel ageing. I love Louise Brison's vintage Champagnes not only for their fair pricing, but also the inherent quality, craft and style in each one that I've had. These are always incredibly popular Champagnes here - don't miss out on the 2010!
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2014 Claude Dugat Gevrey-Chambertin
Review Date: 09-28-2017
A classic Gevrey, through and through, the Dugat opens with aromas dominated by savory red cherries, leading to a savory palate, a bit meaty and slightly tannic, but otherwise so well balanced and spot on in a traditional Gevrey Chambertin that you won't likely mind those tannins. This is about as textbook as it gets!
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine Huguenot "Champs Perdrix" Marsannay
Review Date: 09-27-2017
I've a soft spot for good Marsannay, and so I certainly have an even greater weakness for great Marsannay. Domaine Huguenot Champs Perdrix is great Marsannay. Explosive on the nose, with loads of red and blue fruit aromas, and a floral, violet quality, the palate is juicy and vibrant, generous yet poised, ever so slightly showy but ultimately balanced. Delicious red Burgundy to drink now or cellar in the mid-term.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2014 Domaine Marc Colin Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Cru "Champs Gain"
Review Date: 09-27-2017
A truly great bottle of white Burgundy, this wine currently shows in a nicely linear way, with racy citrus fruit, lovely texture, loads of persistence and fine balance. A fantastic bottle worthy of splurging on to enjoy now or stash away in the cellar.

2014 Domaine Faiveley Montagny Blanc
Review Date: 09-27-2017
A delicious bottle of white Burgundy, this has clean, focused citrus fruit and a notable mineral underpinning. For under $20, you are getting a wonderful wine from a classic white Burgundy vintage in 2014. And I would add that this wine just tastes tres, tres Frahnch....
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2016 Bodegas Miras Malbec Joven Rio Negro
Review Date: 09-27-2017
This Malbec has lovely, fresh, plum fruit with accents of black pepper, as well as the fine tannin structure present in Miras' Pinot Noir. Honest, purely fruited, bright and so easy to drink, I would not hesitate to recommend this graceful Malbec to fans of medium bodied or even lighter wines, including Pinot Noir. Highly recommended!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

2016 Bodegas Miras Pinot Noir Joven Rio Negro
Review Date: 09-27-2017
A delicate, floral and fresh style of Pinot Noir, this is as strong a value and as convincing an argument for Pinot Noir in Argentina as I have yet to taste. Organically cultivated Pinot Noir is vinified with some stem inclusion, which shows in the lighter color and elegant grip of the tannins. Lovely Pinot Noir, and very fairly priced - thank you, Marcelo!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

2016 Bodegas Miras Pinot Salvaje Patagonia
Review Date: 09-27-2017
This is an original Patagonian white, made from 30% Sauvignon Blanc and 70% Pinot Noir grapes, both of which are co-fermented without extended skin maceration. A very minimal amount of SO2 was added prior to bottling - this fact combined with the retained CO2 during bottling creates a s lovely, refreshing white, with bone dry flavors and just a hint of Sauvignon's snappy green quality. 10% ABV, dry, a bit fizzy and every bit as refreshing as it sounds! Yes!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

2015 Seña Red Blend Valle de Aconcagua
Review Date: 09-27-2017
Eduardo Chadwick's Sena has worked hard to stake out its own identity in the realm of Chile's long-standing collectible icon wines. According to many (myself included), it is the wine amongst this group that consistently has the brightest fruit expression, the most deft balance between oak and fruit, the most elegant tannins. Yes, that is indeed a bunch of superlatives, but in recent years I feel like this has become Chile's first amongst first growths. It shows in the wine, it shows in the perfect review for this vintage, and I suspect it will continue to do so as this pedigreed red continues to age in your cellar. In fact, it already has proven its ageability, as various vintages of Sena repeatedly swept the top spots in a series of professionally judged tastings alongside Bordeaux's first growths. Highly recommended for the cellar.

2014 Garage Wine Company "Vigno" Carignane Maule Valley
Review Date: 09-27-2017
We worked our supplier connections pretty hard to get as many bottles of this sub 3,000 bottle production gem of a wine as we could. Vigno represents an association of growers who source old vine Carignane from Chile's Secano interior section of the Maule Valley, an area which, for Carignane lovers (count me in) arguably produces the best examples of this grape variety in the world, right up there with bottlings of Priorat which often sell for nearly three figure prices. Derek's 2014 VIGNO is a masterpiece of the genre. It opens with one of those explosively bright noses where you can smell the freshness and acidity, a fine beginning to be sure. The palate shows incredibly energetic, lively black cherry and wild berry fruit flavors, a freshness that betrays the low 3.2 pH, as well as the fresh granite, quartz and red clay soils in this section of Chile's coastal range. It is one of the few wines I've tasted recently that I simply could not spit out - it's that good, and I suggest you buy some before we run out.While we secured, by my calculation, about 10% of the production, as I mentioned earlier on that is still a very tiny amount!
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
RP 95 JS 94

2015 Losada Mencía Bierzo
Review Date: 09-25-2017
More people should discover the wines of Bierzo, a region famous for it slightly smokier style of chorizo, its cecina (Spanish bresaola), and the fresh, peppery yet structured red wines from Mencía grapes. The Losada really hits the mark, with rich fruit, licorice and a smoky minerality on the nose, leading to blue and red fruits, well integrated oak and an overall juicy quality that belies its structure and ability to improve with age. Tasted alongside one of the region's other great values, the Ultreia St. Jacques from Raul Perez, this wine more than held its own! It's not often that we email out wines from this region, but given the value and unique qualities of this particular example we couldn't help but spread the word on this one.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart
JS 95

2014 Pere Mata "Cupada" Rose Brut Reserva Penedes
Review Date: 09-25-2017
This is fantastic - one of my favorite rosé sparklers I've had this year. The secret to this cava's delicate pink color and fresh red berry fruit is a tiny portion of direct press Monastrell. This is quite dry, but the fruit is juicy - mouthwateringly so - and expressive. Pere Mata clearly is up to some magic in Cava country, and in relatively short order has established his wines amongst the region's best.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2009 Latour-Martillac, Pessac-Léognan
Review Date: 09-25-2017
We recently were lucky to taste through a fairly extensive vertical of this excellent Graves estate's wines and this 2009 vintage was a standout for many of us (including none other than Head Wine Buyer Emeritus, Clyde Beffa, Jr.) Plump fruit shows a rather sumptuous quality, with more deeply pitched mixed berries than the red fruits shown in other vintages we tasted such as 2005, 2010 and 2015. This is drinking wonderfully now, should have a wide ranging appeal to both the classicists and those who, as Clyde seems to these days, prefer richer fruit. Highly recommended.

2016 Zabala Natural Cider Pais Vasco
Review Date: 09-25-2017
Produced from a blend of indigenous Basque apple varieties, Zabala is a delicious, authentic expression of the local sidra from the province of Guipuzkoa. It's very tangy to be sure, but also expressive, appley, and once you've developed a taste for it, very little if anything else will do! Enjoy it with cheeses, charcuterie, tortilla espanola, or even as they do locally during the celebration of the new cider release, with a nicely grilled bone in ribeye steak.
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart

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