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Staff Favorites - David Othenin-Girard

David Othenin-Girard
David Othenin-Girard  | Send Email  |   Subscribe to My Sommelier Service


Reviews

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2015 Domaine Petroni Corse Rouge (Corsica)
Review Date: 11-16-2017
Another lovely little value from the coop in Corsica that's making some of the most affordable and approachable wines in the store. This years Rouge is easily the best we've tasted from them. It does away with the brambly dried fruit of the 2014 and replaces it with a vibrant dark berry, tiny hints of fresh tobacco and evergreen. The palate is medium and wonderfully lifted, with the plummy dark fruit taking over from the subtle earthy herbal quality on the nose. Super juicy length and clean. A total joy to drink and priced to move.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart
WS 90

Wathen’s Special Release "Barrel Proof" K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Single Barrel Straight Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 11-10-2017
This amazing cask of Wathen's is one of the most exciting releases of the year. We've been hounding the Medleys for a cask-strength single barrel for years and this special batch couldn't have been a better introduction for the brand. The reason I'm so excited about this cask isn't simply that it's crazy rare and sought-after by collectors, but because the whiskey is exactly what I love to drink. This Wathen's is brimming with character, tons of savory sweet complexity on the nose and a wildly boisterous profile on the palate, but what strikes me most about it is perfect balance between all the elements. The result is something that's ultimately difficult to describe because none of the elements stand out beyond the others. They meld together in a perfect sphere of bourbon deliciousness. This really reminds me of some of the older dusty bourbons I've had. At one moment the nose seems nutty, buttery and woodsy. The next it's all dried stone fruit and spice. The whiff, literally gone, a void. For a moment it seems overtly sweet, almost like jam, but before you know it a gravely earthiness has taken over. There's so much there and so much to tease from the whiskey, I'm literally spending hours tasting and re-tasting to try to get a handle on it. That additional time in the glass is crucial because it absolutely loves air. Ultimately, though I have to admit that this bourbon beat me, I must stop thinking about it and just experience it. That's what it's for in the first place. I will note that a tiny drop of water does soften the nose and open the aromatics up quiet dramatically. Not more than the tiniest drop though.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

Russell's Reserve K&L Exclusive Single Barrel #550 Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 11-04-2017
Barrel #550 is easily the crowd pleaser in this recent batch of excellent Wild Turkey barrels. The nose is 100% baked Red Delicious, sweet wild honey, woodsy spice. Unctuous and mouth coating with a strong sense of brown sugar and none of the pepper we usually get on these Russell's Casks. Full bodied and full steam it sticks with you for quite a while after the glass is empty. A true treat and easily what some might term a honey barrel.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

Russell's Reserve K&L Exclusive Single Barrel #545 Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 11-04-2017
This barrel #545 fits perfectly in between the other two barrels in terms of style. Not as austere and intense as #89, but not as sweet and soft as #550. The nose has wonderful pop of evergreen, roasted herbs, flambeed orange peel, and sweet oak. On the palate we've got tons of fruit up front, braised orchard fruits and dark cherry that build into a strong pepper and spice on the finish. The mid-palate is textured and bursting with roasted woods and exotic vanilla. This whisky isn't restrained by any means, but does need some teasing to really open up, maybe 15-20 min in the glass to really unleash the full potential.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

Russell's Reserve K&L Exclusive Single Barrel #089 Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 11-04-2017
Barrel 89 is easily the funkiest and most herbaceous of this new batch of wonderful Russell's Reserve single Barrels. While it doesn't enter the full on barnyard funk that sometimes exists in these barrels, it definitely has a bigger spice than the others. Big notes of varnish and antique wood, savory herbs, subtle notes of hay and fresh roasted coffee. Melted brown sugar round out those drier flavors on the nose. The palate continues the orchestra of herbaceous dark flavors. A bit of sweet maple notes on the mid palate keep it from being totally overpowering, but the pepper and spice build again on the finish. For those who like the big bold dry rye driven style WT this is definitely the move.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

1998 Pierres Jacques Druet "Grand Mont" Bourgueil
Review Date: 11-04-2017
The 1998 was the funkiest of the Druet wines. For lovers of that earthy old cab franc this will be a MUST buy. For all those people who guzzled the Joel Taluau St Nicolas' at $28 a bottle, this is easily as good as any of his wines for nearly 30% a bottle. Not as approachable as some of the other vintages, but for the initiated this is the one to grab. You will not be sorry.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart

2002 Pierres Jacques Druet "Grand Mont" Bourgueil
Review Date: 11-04-2017
These Druet wines offer so much value and character for the price. The 2002 was in a perfect place in terms of age, although by no means near the end of the road. Nose of tart purple fruit, earthy pepper, soft herbaceous mint, and freshly tilled soil. The palate is surprisingly fruity despite the nose and filled with juice acid and a long silky tannin. Fabulously priced and wonderfully versatile. Just what I need.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart

2009 Pierres Jacques Druet "Clos de Danzay" Chinon
Review Date: 11-02-2017
This is absolute INSANITY! These Druet wines are all ultra heady and complex, but the 2009 is truly a special wine. It's still a tiny little baby, but there's already so much life and depth. It's cleanest of the multi-vintage line-up showing the most fruit on the nose. The palate is still lively, taught and full of deep earth notes, but it's not as austere as the others. Tons of structure and tannin mean that this one is designed for the long haul. Easily one of the best values in the store and the perfect way to move from some of the bolder richer wines to the Southwest into the Loire valley.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

Old Forester K&L Exclusive Single Barrel #3511 (5th Floor, Warehouse G) Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-01-2017
When I was tasting this cask with Brown-Forman's Master Taster and Bourbon Specialist Jackie Zykan, this barrel stood out like a sore thumb...dipped in cherry cola! I was enamored, but she seemed concerned that it fell distinctly outside of the standard OF profile. Turns out this cask had been leaking, likely the reason for the out-of-the-norm aromatics. Despite her concern I was totally taken by this one. It had this wonderful nose of wood varnish and vanilla that reminded me of some of the old bourbons I've been lucky enough to taste. It's perhaps the old bottle effect being replicated in barrel as the massive loss means massive oxidation. But this stuff drinks like sweet tea and cherry cola and only reminds you it's bourbon on the way down where it grabs hold of you for a bit before softening up a few moments later. Only 108 bottles in this miniature, bizarre little cask of Old Forester.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Fukano K&L Exclusive Single Cask #2827 Japanese Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 10-11-2017
There's something special about Fukano that sets it apart from the other whiskies in this category. Often times I'm worried with Rice based whisky that they're trying to sell us glorified Shochu. Some brands do indeed make products that are only a tick or two away from what you might expect a high proof sake to taste like, but Fukano is in another league. I'm not sure if its the quality or intensity of the malt that is used or the distillation or perhaps the new oak Puncheons, but the depth and aromatic power that is achieved on the Fukano is simply unparalleled. The nose is a heady mix of Cola nut, dried fruit, maple wood, and bold dark spices. A bright fresh front palate of coconut and citrus fruit devolves into an incredible spiced fruit bouquet. The finish is big bold toasted Tahitian vanilla. There's something perfectly balanced about it although it's got some wild flavors and it's hard to pinpoint which category it reminds me of most. At one point, I'm thinking, "this feels like Single Malt." The next I'm drinking brandy. The fresh oak alludes to bourbon, but some of the exotic notes are distinctly rummy. Whatever you want to compare it to Fukano is producing some of the best whisky in the world right now and we're extremely lucky to get a little bit when we can.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Tom's Foolery Bottled In Bond Single Barrel #31 Ohio Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 10-09-2017
Here's another wonderful BIB Bourbon from our friends outside of Chagrin Falls, OH. This one, much more so than the rye we've also recently acquired, is very much in the "typical" Tom's Foolery style. That means a big nose of sweet grains and toasty oak. With these pot stilled bourbons you've really got to hammer them with air to get the full experience, but once you've allowed it to mellow in the glass for a solid 30 minutes, the nuance and depth really come out. Tinctures of dark herbs, sweet corn, dark fruits (cherries?), a subtle earthy gravel notes and a deep oak spice. The palate is brighter and opens up nicely with air as well. Textured and chewy, but very much on the dry side of bourbon. Here the subtle malty tones give the impression of a roasted coffee, dried stone fruit and a long warming finish. It's definitely whiskey the old fashioned way, without all the sugary sweetness of some modern bourbons. Makes you kind of nostalgic for a time you never knew.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Tom's Foolery Single Barrel #127 Cask Strength Ohio Straight Rye Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 10-09-2017
This monstrous whiskey maybe the best we've ever had from Tom and Lianne. The full rye mashbill and slow pot still distillation have produced some sort of sensory neutron bomb. The big bold nose is filled with fresh mint, dried fruit, Christmas cake and cocoa nibs. As it opens the baking spice becomes more prominent and the mint as well. It's forestry and almost piney, but not herbal to the point of being anis-like. The entry is racy and generous, with the spicy oak and powerful rye battling for dominance. The texture is unparalleled at full strength, such that it envelopes the mouth like a steal trap. It won't let go. You've just got to accept your fate. This is exactly what I imagine whisky in the old days was like. A truly unique eye opening experience. Why can't all craft whiskey be like this?
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

2002 Balvenie 14 Year "Peat Week" Vintage Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 09-13-2017
I couldn't love this special limited edition Balvenie ANY more than I do. It strikes a chord with me on so many levels. Balvenie is a stupendously high quality operation, but there are a few things about their standard bottlings that trouble the nit picky nerd in me. They're bottled at lower proof with chill filteration, this whisky is not. They utilize both industrial and floor malted barley, this whisky does not. They represent a relatively modern style of Highland Whisky, where the complete lack of peat has meant ultimately less complexity even if you create a whisky that might appeal to more people. Before the industrialization of the maltings pretty much everyone was drying barely in house using some mixture of fuels to do it. But the Highland peat gives you very different flavors than those Islay bogs and the result should not be considered off limits for non-peat lovers. The Highland peat adds some smokiness, but also a bouquet of intense floral, herbal and fruity aromas. Right out of the bottle you'll notice the distinction and with a bit of air that first wave of intensity settles into one of the most pleasurable and complex $100 you could spend in Scotch today.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Cadenhead's Classic 100 Proof Caribbean Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 09-13-2017
The insanity of this product is that there's not a regularly available rum on the market today that comes anywhere close to delivering this much rummy complexity for the price or any price for that matter. There are some wonderful blended rums available, but few capture the exotic intensity of this special product. Dense nose of ultra ripe pineapple syrup, funky Caribbean pot stills, sweet Tahitian vanilla, and roasting Demerara sugar. The palate entry has tons of structure, with an obvious molasses note at the front the builds to a dry mid palate filled with tropical fruit. The medium funk from nose persists on the palate, but not to the extent of taking over the other flavors. Long and satisfying like a day on the beach. Bravo to our friends in Campbeltown!
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Bowman Bros Small Batch Virginia Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 09-06-2017
The wonderful Bowman Bros Bourbons are an odd thing. This is one of the only triple distilled bourbons out there and it starts with distillate from Buffalo Trace (mashbill #1 & #2) being trucked out to the Bowman facility in Virginia. It's distilled a third time (the continuous still and again on the doubler at BT should count as two) on the Bowman's pot still, which looks as though it might be a component on a space rocket built in the 1800s. The resulting distillate is rich and supple, unique, but familiar. The small batch is a great balance between the sweet Bowman's style and some nice rye spice. An easy going whiskey at a great price that hints at the potential of some of Bowman's higher-end offerings.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
WE 90

2016 Lucy Margaux "Noir de Florette" Pinot Noir Adelaide Hills South Australia (Biodynamic / Natural)
Review Date: 08-24-2017
This is one of the cleanest sulfur free wines I've yet to try. Very clean, light fresh tart red fruit and subtle earthy. Natural wine making is the hot new thing, but few producers are daring enough to bottle their wines without an sulfur additions before bottling and than ship them around the world. That's now possible thanks to some higher quality wine making and transport methodology.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2015 Te Mata "Estate" Syrah Hawke's Bay
Review Date: 08-24-2017
I'm pretty picky about my syrah. I like them fancy and cool climate. Very few under $20 suit my palate, but this exceptional offering should prove to everyone that Hawke's Bay is capable of making world class syrah for an incredible price. We already know Te Mata is the gold standard in NW, but at this price point it's also becoming one of the best value driven producers on our shelves. A nose of dense dark pepper, herbal brambly red and purple fruit and heady sandalwood. The palate is perfectly structured with evident but approachable tannins and a lovely lifted acidity. This is one to buy by the case and drink over the next 5+ years without questions one of the best values of the year.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
JS 92

2015 A.J. Adam Dhron Hofberg Riesling Kabinett Mosel
Review Date: 08-24-2017
There's very little in the store that offers so much overt pleasure, complexity and versatility than this special Kabinett. The nose is just crammed full of juicy yellow fruit, strong petrol fumes, crunchy pulverized stone. The palate is vibrant, super fresh wonderfully balanced showing formidable acidity to offset any obvious sweetness. Few wines spark the appetite more readily than this little magic bean, have it with spicy thai, spetzle, or my favorite pairing with Double Double animal style.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

2013 Rudi Pichler Riesling Federspiel Wachau
Review Date: 08-24-2017
Pichler is just a stellar producer and each time I taste it I realize that the glowing accolades aren't hyperbolic whatsoever. The Federspiel Riesling delivers everything you could ever want from a dry Riesling and more. A nose of incredible freshness, crushed stone, lemon oil, vibrant and piercing mineral note. Not as brooding as some, but still with a hint of petrol. Long structured and full of crunchy acidity. A world class wine from a world class name.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2004 Langoa-Barton, St-Julien
Review Date: 08-24-2017
Aye I couldn't believe that this was showing better than the 2005 in the last tasting. The 2005 feels downright shutdown next to this gorgeous and mature 2004. Surely the 05 is still the vintage to hold, but for drinking now there's very little in the store that will offer more for your dollar than the special 04 Langoa. Gorgeous soft black and red fruits, totally integrated and seamless. The ultra elegant style is the hallmark of this special property and the 04 delivers that experience to a T.

2007 Haut-Bailly, Pessac-Léognan
Review Date: 08-24-2017
Another '07 that is out performing the price point. The ultra old school style, which is usually pretty darn tannic until they're 20+ years old is actually showing extreme elegance in this cooler vintage. Big perfumed nose of mineral, gravel, dark cherry and exotic aged woods. Structured and mouthfilling, but not heavy or tight at all. For the quality and reputation it's great to take advantage of the odd vintage discount.

2007 Tronquoy-Lalande, St-Estèphe
Review Date: 08-24-2017
I love Tronquoy's Merlot heavy St Estephe style. Leafy, mineral driven red fruit, subtle licorice and earthy underbrush. The palate shows great structure, lovely acid driven style that just keeps you wanting more. Some gravelly notes, but more on the red fruit and leafy earth. Medium bodied but with a long subtle finish. Awesome example of cool vintage merlot and how fab it can be. A reminder that you should always buy the chateau not just the vintage.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

2009 Branas Grand Poujeaux, Moulis
Review Date: 08-24-2017
Bold powerful and robust nose of dark blackberry fruit, subtle hints of incense and lacquer. Lush, soft and rich on the palate with the tannins totally integrated. A very open and bold style without compromising it's origin or throwing to much sweetness or oak at you.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
RP 90 WS 90

2014 St Estephe de Calon-Ségur, St-Estèphe
Review Date: 08-24-2017
A gorgeous little example of how special the seconds can be for your dollar. Ultra drinkable and open, with a slight bit of funky earth and vibrant red fruit. The palate has tons of acid and a medium body but not green or under ripe at all. A beautiful old school claret for drinking now at a stupendous price.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

Siete Leguas Blanco Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 08-09-2017
The Siete Leguas Blanco stands as a pillar among all spirits. Proof that agave can produce spirits unlike almost any other spirit in that they can be superlatively good without the addition of any flavoring, aging or adulteration of any kind. I'd put the 7 Leguas Blanco up at the top of my list of wonderful white spirits along with other great authentically produced tequilas like El Tesoro, Tapatio and Fortaleza. I'm not a complete purist though as this tequila is not 100% Tahona press like the Fortaleza, but the exquisite character, supreme drinkability and obvious quality sets 7 Leguas apart from only the very best competitors. The nose is strongly floral (honeysuckle and rose hips) and surprisingly less fruity than the reposado yet showing plenty of gorgeous green agave notes and easy earthy pepper. On the palate the fruit is turned up before moving back toward this earthy almost green tea flavor. This is NOT tequila for vodka drinkers, but does stand out (as it always has) as one of the most exciting spirits in the store at any price.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
WE 94

Siete Leguas Reposado Tequila
Review Date: 08-09-2017
The special 7 Leguas brand of tequila continues to be one of the most underappreciated operations in Mexico. Founded in 1952 by Ignacio Garcia Vargas in Atotonilco, this tequila stands a pillar of tradition and passion for this great spirit. Easily in my top five tequilas brands and unique in their production technique, 7 Leguas produces tequila exclusively for their own brand and no third party brands from what I can tell. Siete Leguas actually operates two distilleries in the highlands. El Centenario uses traditional Tahona, wooden fermenters, old brick ovens, the inclusion of bagazo in the mosto (wort), and tiny copper pot stills. The other is called La Vencedora and is their "modern" distillery. Here they use mechanical mills, larger steel fermenters without the bagazo included, large brick ovens and larger copper pot stills. So still pretty old school compared too many of their contemporaries. These two distillates are blended by taste and then rested in ex-bourbon barrels for 8 months to create one of the most overtly pleasurable drinking experiences on the market today. This gorgeous reposado exhibits heady agave fruit, candied pineapple, subtle oak spice and rich vanilla. The palate is very rich, but always remaining on the fresh agaveness with the oak only serving to frame the beautiful authentic quality of this special spirit. It doesn't matter how you drink this, cocktail, shots, or sipped straight, if you're drinking 7 Leagues, you're gonna have a good time.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
WE 90 - 95

Berry Bros & Rudd "No. 3" London Dry Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 08-02-2017
The wonderful Berry's No 3 Gin is a classic, but there's no better way to experience this special gin than sitting down at DUKES Bar in London's West End and having the illustrious Alessandro Palazzi mix you his famous Martini. The key isn't the way he shakes it, but instead the incredible Amalfi lemon that he uses for his for his garnish. Otherwise, his Martini consists of a vermouth rinse (of course he makes his own) and an ice cold bottle of No 3 right out of the freezer. Nothing more nothing less. You can get 98% percent of that experience by following those simple steps at home with a high quality lemon and a fine Italian dry vermouth. It's pure pleasure.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WE 92

Letherbee Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 08-02-2017
Letherbee's captures Chicago's independent spirit perfectly. This is what craft is all about. It's basically a group of solid drinkers/bartenders who believed that they could do something special. Their good taste and exacting standards speak for themselves once you taste their flagship gin. Big bold juniper note on the attack with cardamom, coriander, cinnamon and citrus to round it out. The addition of java pepper brings dark pepper and subtle ginger. An herbal finish with hints of anise and nutty spice. A gin made for anyone by bartenders. One of the most versatile and enticing offerings on the shelf.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart

Jensen's Old Tom Bermondsey Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 08-02-2017
Jensen's Gin is quickly becoming one of the most well liked craft gins on the market. The reason they're having such great success is their commitment to creating authentic, historically relevant and delicious of the highest gin. Their Old Tom is distinct from every other commercial Old Tom on the market today. Taken from a handwritten recipe in an 1840s distiller's manual, the Bermonsday Old Tom is the only UNSWEETENED Old Tom on the market. Intensely flavored and achieving that sweet Old Tom flavor via the heavy use of angelica root rather than the addition of sugar, this is the perfect gin to create OT Classics like the Martinez or the Ramos Fizz. The lack of sugar gives the bartender much more control over the final flavor and the big bold botanicals lends itself to use in other classics like the Negroni or the Last Word.
Price: $33.99 Add To Cart

St. George Gin 3-pack 200ml (cannot ship)
Review Date: 08-02-2017
The perfect gift for any gin drinkers. St George is California's premier craft distiller and they've exploded onto the gin scene with these three magical offerings. The cute little bottles and easy to wrap packaging make it the perfect gift for any occasion. Of course, these three unique and special gins are second to none and represent the completely different styles. Playful and full flavored each lends itself to different application and transcends the old ideas of what gin should be.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart

Mulholland New World Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 08-02-2017
Mulholland Spirits is LA's newest brand. These guys are all about having fun and giving people spirits that they love to drink. This gin definitely falls into the gin for non-gin drinkers category, although I've seen plenty of London Dry drinkers come back for a second bottle. Tons of citrus, cucumber, and a distinct lavender note, this is perfect for someone who LOVES Hendricks.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart

2012 Rivella Barbaresco
Review Date: 07-18-2017
We are just so lucky to have these Rivella wines, the fact that we're able to sell such a stupendous wine at such a reasonable price literally makes me proud to be a part of this organization. The nose explodes from the glass with gorgeous dark red fruits, savory spice, rhubarb jam, figs, and black flinty earth. Juicy and structured, built for at least another 10 years in the cellar, the vibrant nebbiolo fruit is pointed by a wonderful smoky incense quality. A truly world class wine that gets absolutely no attention from the international wine community because WE BUY IT ALL!
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart
VN 93

2014 Rivella Barbera d'Alba
Review Date: 07-18-2017
Wonderful juicy serious Barbera. Ultra clean and vibrant on the nose with tons of red fruit and subtle hibiscus fruit. The crunchy fruit on the palate just goes on and on. Very approachable despite the significant structure and I'm very intrigued to see what a couple of years in the cellar does to this little guy. Absolutely world class wine making here resulting in exceptional complexity achieved at this very reasonable price point.
Price: $22.99 Add To Cart

2015 Uccelliera Rosso di Montalcino
Review Date: 07-18-2017
Another one of these awesome Rossos that's reinvigorating my interest in Montalcino. Bold savory nose of spice, slightly smokiness, and distinctly old school character without being unapproachable. This is old school in a way that almost anyone could appreciate. It very generous and lively on the palate and finishes long and quite clean considering the striking savory quality on nose. Stupendous stuff, which serious buyers should be trying to buy by the case.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart
JS 92 WS 90

2015 Talenti Rosso di Montalcino
Review Date: 07-18-2017
A wonderful example of everything I wished Rosso was today. Does that make sense? Anyway, we've been drinking so much of these unusual 2010s that you kind of forget the normal parameters for Montalcino. Now having come back to a traditional producer like Talenti in a top tier vintage albeit a hot one, we get reminded what Montalcino is really about, gorgeous expressions of Sangiovese in it's truest form. While this one isn't ultra funky, it does have a lot of the earthy depth you'd expect from an traditional producer, fresh tobacco, tilled earth etc. The palate, however, has tons of juicy red fruit and lovely acid. It's fun to love Sangiovese and this wine makes it easy for you.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2015 Edi Keber Collio Bianco
Review Date: 07-18-2017
Keber is a legend in Collio. The wines are always delicious. The nose is a monsterous bouquet of musky angelica, fresh anis seed, pithy tangerine and a subtle savory white pepper. The intense bouquet doesn't interfere with the incredibly delineated palate showing tons of juicy acidity and a fabulous creamy citrus. It finishes long and dry with the savory herbs poking back out at the end. Totally in love here.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

2015 Sarno 1860 Fiano di Avellino
Review Date: 07-18-2017
Sarno is one of the greatest for Fiano and I had high hopes for this. Truly text book here with tones of white flowers, ripe peaches and acacia honey. The honey becomes freshly harvest beeswax on the palate with tons of texture and a long finish. Fiano is great when there's acid and this one integrates it perfectly. Another stupendously drinkable wine from Sarno and easy to integrate into almost any meal.
Price: $25.99 Add To Cart
VN 93

2015 Porta del Vento Catarratto Sicilia
Review Date: 07-18-2017
This wonderful expression of the often maligned catarratto grape is going to change peoples minds about the whole varietal. The perfect balance between aromatic depth (pithy exotic citrus peel) and mineral intensity (flinty rocks being smashed together). In the mouth it's dense but not flabby at all, an acidic counterpoint allowing it to remain refreshing and open. More flinty rocks, soft yellow fruits and tiny touches of fresh herbs. This is a pretty serious little wine for the price.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

Hochstadter's Family Reserve 16 Year Old Cask Strength Straight Rye Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 07-05-2017
Everyone in the bourbon world always talks about the golden age of whiskey being behind us. "Remember when we could walk into the store and get Pappy Rye for $90 all day long?" Actually that era never existed, but although things have changed, if you do your homework you can still pick up gems like this one. What we have is a world class fully mature rye whiskey bottled a full strength in a tiny batch and its absolutely stunning! Sure it's from Canada, but if you need to relinquish your biases to appreciate one of the best Rye whiskey we've ever had on the shelf than modern decency OBLIGATES us to do so! Bold, rich textured, spicy and unmatched by any other product on the shelf right. The world about lost it's mind for Booker's 13 Year Rye at $300 and in my estimation this is twice the whiskey that ever was. I wouldn't have been surprised if they'd asked $400 for this bad boy. Yes it's still not cheap, but if this isn't the deal of the year then I'm going to be buying lots more whiskey this year!!!
Price: $189.99 Add To Cart

Wild Turkey "Master's Keep - Decades" Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 07-05-2017
The Wild Turkey Decades is distinct from your every day Wild Turkey as it contains nearly two decades of production. The concept actually seems crazy considering how much old whiskey is actually in this blend (it's likely 90%+ 15 years old) but the inclusion of both the very old 20 year and the standard 10 year add some incredible edges to the exquisite center. Expect powerful WT spice on the nose pointed with sweet burnt sugars, cedar, spearmint, cocoa and blackberry jam. The old whiskey comes forward on the palate allowing some of those mahogany and roasted walnut flavors out from behind the bold spice and sweet oak. The finish is long a pleasing, leaving you with just the right amount of Tellicherry pepper to balance the sweet fruit. For sales purposes I wish I could say this is 100% over 15 years old, but honestly the balance between young and old does wonders here and I'm certain that it would be a lesser whiskey without the inclusion of the powerful young WT.
Price: $129.99 Add To Cart
WA 93

VING "KLC" Kale, Lemon Peel, & Cucumber Infused Organic Farm Fresh Vodka (750ml)
Review Date: 06-30-2017
When Flo Vinger came into my shop to tell me that she'd been making kale vodka in her bathtub, I honestly thought it was a joke. But, when she produced a shimmering elixir moments later I was astounded. It was totally wild unlike any other I'd come across previously. And of course it wasn't just KALE because kale just doesn't taste very good. But you slice some cucumber and a squeeze of lemon and we're in business. Industry skeptics and geeks will likely scoff, but in the end Ms Vinger has produced something total unique with an integrity rarely seen in the vodka category. She cares about her product more than anything else in the entire world and she's spent four long years perfecting it. Now anyone can experience the world's first KALE vodka for themselves. While it's stupendous cold or on the rocks, ultra easy and approachable, where this stuff really sings is in the cocktails. Adding subtle nuance and structure to what would otherwise be a neutral base does wonders in the classics, but also lends itself to experimentation.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Black Cow Vodka (750ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2017
What is this sorcery? Made from 100% West Dorset milk? Nothing else. How can it be? It's just impossible. But nonetheless here we are. Pure Milk vodka. And it's delicious! Soft, supple, slightly sweet and creamy. This stuff is textured and nuanced in the perfect way. Understated yet still distinctive somehow. Distiller and dairy farmer Jason Barber came up with the plan to utilize leftover whey from his cheese making operation. This is fermented into a wheat beer and distilled before being blended (with what I can only assume is more milk) and filtered to create the utterly (sorry) unique spirit. Keep an eye out for the Black Cow Deluxe Cheddar which is also made by Mr. Barber. Should pair perfectly!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WE 90

Tequila Fortaleza Reposado Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2017
I go on and on about how much I like Fortaleza. They're the most authentic. No one else comes close. Most of the rest of the agave in Mexico is wasted on crap industrial production. blah blah blah...While all these things are true that's not what matters most. What matters about Fortaleza is that it's absolutely delicious. The Reposado is often the one I find myself reaching for. Their repo is the perfect balance between the gorgeous and complex agave spirit that they produce and the oxidative complexity of barrel aging in the hot Jalisco climate. The perfect showcase for this juxtaposition. But regardless of any intellectual exercise, it just tastes utterly delicious. Soft barrel influence envelopes the gorgeous peppery fruit and floral components of the spirits. Nuanced spice and touches of smoky barrel. Very few come close indeed.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

Tequila Fortaleza Anejo Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2017
I often catch myself waxing poetic about Fortaleza. How it's the most authentic and old school. How they went back when everyone else was moving forward. How their tequila represents the true soul of Jalisco and makes their competitors look kind of stupid. Of course there are other great distilleries in Jalisco, but none is more committed to producing exclusively old school single estate real deal tequila. There base spirit is so good in fact that some aficionados look down on their exquisite anejo because it doesn't taste enough like the blanco. That said, taking this product out of that context reminds us how exceptional it really is. The quality of agave is matched perfectly by the quality of the oak and the confluence of those two flavors reminds us that great tequila doesn't have to be blanco! This delectable treat is all tropical fruit (coconuts, pineapple and passionfruit), butterscotch and subtle earthy pepper. A legend deserving of every accolade it's already received.
Price: $74.99 Add To Cart

Arette Artesanal Gran Clase Extra Anejo Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2017
The Arette Artesanal is the first Extra Anejo I really fell in love with. The Gran Clase Suave is one of the easiest to drink spirits in the store. Crème caramel, sweet tropical fruit and a smidge of peppery agave fruit found out this exceptional offering from one of Tequilas great distillers. I love the classic looking bottle, but very few extras match the balance and complexity without overpowering with sweet oak. There's no questions that El Llano distilleries commitment to quality remains second to none.
Price: $89.99 Add To Cart

1999 Thierry Darrimajou "Domaine du Berdet" 17 Year Old K&L Exclusive Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2017
I'm totally in love with this gorgeous vintage from the new Domaine du Berdet. Like all Thierry's armagnacs this is distilled from 100% baco, but it's not as soft and supple as the 1999. Instead expect bigger notes of fresh oak spice, fresh earth, dried fruit, exotic wood and a sweet burnt sugar finish. This one might for the bourbon drinkers thanks to the notes of vanilla, varnish, caramel and sweet fruit. The long spicy finish is drier than the 1999 and really highlights the vanilla extract notes from the nose. Another rockin' price as well.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

1995 Thierry Darrimajou "Domaine du Berdet" 21 Year Old K&L Exclusive Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2017
When I first arrived at Domain du Berdet a didn't expect to meet one of the most forward thinking producers of Armagnac. Theirry Darrimajou is a farmer, winemaker, and eleveur of Armagnac, but he has a vision for the future like no other producer in Gascogne. He envisions buses of tourists pulling up to his property and entertain them in his new clean and inviting tasting room/warehouse. IN order to keep the authentic aging environment, his warehouse is open ground with a drip irrigation system installed in the ground to keep the humidity at the correct level. The whole thing is unseen beneath a layer of gleaming white stones. Thierry spares no expense in the cellar, springing for new oak for every vintage and aerating the brandies several times a year to soften the strong esters. The baco here is very delicate on the sandy calcareous soils and the resulting spirit is one of the finest and most supple we've come across. Thierry adds a tiny splash of water every time he aerates believing that reduction at bottling time is sacrilege - I'm trying to convince him to leave them alone altogether, but that doesn't preclude this brandy from being exquisitely delicious. Big nose of dried plums and barrel spice. The palate nicely weighted without being overtly thick. Long and balanced on the finish. It's not one of these ultra funky armagnacs, but it might be the most inviting on the shelf and the price is unbeatable.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

Highland Park "Valkyrie" Isle of Orkney Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 06-13-2017
I'm predisposed to dislike releases like this one. Fancy new bottle, danish design partnership, etc. But, as it turns out this is really well put together new product. An absolutely delicious example of why own floor maltings make better whisky and a reminder of why Highland Park remains one of the highest quality distilleries on the market. Today a tiny percentage of the whisky we drink is produced using barley that is malted at the same distillery. This age old practice of drying barley is extremely expensive and time consuming. Since 95% of all malt is used in blended whisky the cost and consistence advantages of using industrially malted barley are crucial to the success of that industry. But, what you gain in efficiency and consistency you may forfeit in complexity. With the new Valkyrie, they've taken the venerated malt dried with special Orkney peat and unleashed it's potential in a way unseen in modern bottlings of HP. The result is something extremely pleasurable. Matured in a combination of first-fill American oak sherry, bourbon, and Spanish oak sherry butts as well as a selection of refill casks, which regardless of the lack of age statement have been married to create one of the best malts for your dollar available in the store right now. That Orkney peat is so unique, much more underbrush and earthy campfire than the Islay salty brine and the cask selection for this one was clearly excellent. Big nose of sweet fruit, candied citrus, and smoldering chaparral. Creamy rich textured and balanced with the sweet American oak playing perfectly with the smooth smokiness of the Orkney peat. The finish is long and soft and satisfying. A truly fun and somewhat didactic offering that nearly any scotch lover will appreciate.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Damrak Amsterdam Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 05-31-2017
DANG! I just couldn't believe it when the supplier dropped this CRAZY price on us. This is actually GOOD gin that should be much more expensive. It's higher proof super clean and zippy, but with the complexity of 17 botanicals. Very easy to appreciate and even easier to afford!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart
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2015 Domaine Les Pins "Les Rochettes" Bourgueil
Review Date: 05-31-2017
This gorgeous example of cab franc is the perfect introduction to this special grape. The varietal is so often neglected, although a darling of the serious nerds, it rubs so many people the wrong way. Here we have this incredible vibrant example of the special grape of the right bank in it's most approachable yet authentic expression. Vibrant earthy red fruit and only the slightest hint of greenness followed by a lovely lifted medium body. Perfect red to have around as summer bbq season starts to heat up.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart
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