Staff Favorites - David Othenin-Girard

David Othenin-Girard
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Reviews

  
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Michel Couvreur K&L Exclusive "Blossoming Auld Sherried" Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 07-22-2016
The first time I tasted the Blossoming Auld Sherry was at a wonderful little bistro in Levernois outside of Beaune called Du Bord De L'Eau. After a wonderful meal at this exceptional casual restaurant, the director of Couvreur Jean Arnauld suggested we finish the night with a taste of something special from his exceptional collection. We could have taken the exceptionally expensive vintage offerings, but he recommended this special little treat. From the moment I put my nose to the glass I was transfixed. Of course, I know Couvreur's style and what to expect, but this was unlike anything I'd yet come across. It was truly like diving head first into the finest Sherry, but at 90 proof!!! The nose exhibits an intoxicating bouquet of plum preserves, old exotic wood, fresh leather, tobacco and the intricately carved wooden pipe to pack it. The palate is SO smooth. When someone says they like something "smooth," it's such a vague notion, and difficult quality to guarantee in a product, but THIS is what they're talking about. The density of the fruit remains on the palate, but it's pointed with wonderful dried citrus and sweet herbal notes. This is the real deal, and while not inexpensive, it out-performs its price point by a mile and then some. Imagine having a bottle of sherry that never goes bad, which you can sip by the ounce and clocks in at 45%! You'd never stop, so you know, you shouldn't. We're the exclusive source for this product in California and will likely buy the entire US allocation of 20 cases.
Price: $219.99 Add To Cart

Michel Couvreur 12 Year Overaged Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 07-22-2016
The most classic of all of Couvreur's offerings actually provides some of the best bang for you buck drinking in the store. This is indeed a very similar blend to the K&L Exclusive, less the peated element. There is a tiny hint of peat here, and I have to say, I think this blend has improved seriously over the last 10 years since I first tried it. Less raw and pointed now, we have more influence on the sherry and more of those wonderful damp cellars notes that we love about Couvreur. Big bold vanillas and fruit notes jump from the glass around the funky malt and remain through the palate. Thanks to going direct on this one we've been able to get the price down. A stupendous deal for when you're not feeling like the peaty attack of the K&L Overage.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Michel Couvreur Pale Single-Single Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 07-22-2016
A single malt from a single cask from this renowned blender is always a treat. Here we're off the big sherry notes that Couvreur is known for and onto something more malt-driven. Still with that beautiful Burgundian cellar experience, but now pointed with Highland flowers, wild honey, white and yellow fruit. I'm wanting to say this is Clynelish, but cannot confirm. Now that we're able to list this below $100 it's a no-brainer and certainly a unique experience that's not easily replicated anywhere else on the shelf.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

2013 Tenuta Novare Valpolicella Ripasso
Review Date: 07-13-2016
Wow! Ripasso with some acid and finesse? Sign me up. All the big bold flavors you'd want from the category without any stinking baked fruit or sweet overripe finish. Dense dark and lush, but with a wonderful acidity and an abv under 14%! The total package in my book - if you've been slaving over a proper bolognese this might be the perfect answer!
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2011 Rivella Barbaresco
Review Date: 07-13-2016
This precise and seamless Barbaresco is so clearly made with one of the finest touches, it's almost not a surprise to find out that the winemaker was Gaja's top guy for 30 years. It's SO open and generous right now without any hints of manipulation or over extraction. This elegant and attractive style is exactly what I love about Barbaresco and the perfect contrast to the brooding style made over the hill. The purity is unsurpassed in the price point and worth stocking up on in a big way if you're at all a lover of nebbiolo.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart
VN 92

2014 Einaudi Dogliani (Dolcetto)
Review Date: 07-13-2016
Super refined style dolcetto with complex funky fruit note and well balanced structure. This is superb value and you'll have trouble finding better Dogliani at twice this price.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

2013 La Massa "La Massa" Toscana
Review Date: 07-13-2016
The absolute perfect Tuscan under $20. Not with the ripe dense intensity of last years, but with so much more depth and complexity it's impossible not to LOVE! It's soft and open, but very with this wonderful acidity that makes it ultra quaffable. The key here is balance and this beautiful red fruit that's almost impossible to describe properly. This bombastic nose is balanced by great herbal quality and this beautiful dried floral component. Maybe not as hedonistic as some would like, but for me this is the clearly best Massa I've tasted.

2011 Felsina "Rancia" Chianti Classico Riserva
Review Date: 07-13-2016
Oh the Rancia! This famous vineyard (now a selection of the best) is Felsina's answer to modern wine making. And boy their answer is well put together. Rich and bold without feeling overly ton or out of place. Powerful and textured enough that anyone lover of Napa or Bordeaux will feel right at home, but yet some how uniquely Felsina. This has always been a favorite of mine in the style and NOTHING has changed. Should be in almost an serious collectors cellar at this price.

2013 Farnetella Chianti Colli Senesi
Review Date: 07-13-2016
I don't know if I'd necessarily pick this out as chianti blind and indeed Chianti is a difficult style to pin down, but regardless of the provenance this wine out shines its price point by a mile. Dark cherry and soft plummy notes, with a gorgeous little acidity the permeates through the end. Not some complex monster that needs to be peeled apart, but absolutely drinkable and super generous little wine for the summer.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart
JS 92 WS 91

2013 Le Battistelle "Roccolo del Durlo" Soave Classico
Review Date: 07-13-2016
A little more serious than it's little brother the Roccolo Del Durlo is singing right now. Big notes of yellow flowers, dense tropical and stone fruits. The palate shows great weight and texture. The fruit and florals of the nose fall away in favor of more mineral and tamed herbaceous quality. This cries out for food and makes me hungry just thinking about it.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$14.99

2013 Le Battistelle "Battistelle" Soave Classico
Review Date: 07-13-2016
So much schlock in the Soave category, I had low expectations for this one. It was a bit dumb when it we first tasted it, but right now it's absolutely delightful. Open expressive nose without being super fruity or lactic. Honeysuckle, apricot, wet stone and meyer lemon zest. The palate has wonderful lift and great acid, but isn't light per say. The subtle citrus notes continue with a building mineral quality. Total quaffer and priced to drink. Might be the White of the Summer for me...
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2012 Gloria, St-Julien
Review Date: 07-13-2016
Another stupid value from 2012! This is St. Julien through and through. Big cacao, mocha, coffee nose. Deep dark fruit, subtle integrated spice. Big structured and tons of length, moving back toward those roasted coffee and a slight sanguine note on the finish. Totally integrated and note particularly oak driven despite the 40% new oak.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WE 92 - 94

2012 d'Issan, Margaux
Review Date: 07-13-2016
This might be the deal of the vintage. This is real solid uncompromising style of Margaux for a very reasonable price. I really can't believe it's still in stock because this is both drinking and cellaring Bordeaux at a fraction of the cost of some of it's neighbors. Big notes of coffee, violets, dark plum and vanilla. The perfect silky texture and wonderful ripe tannin. The whole thing is balanced and lifted with a great freshness! An open bombastic style without the sense that it's modernized or international in style at all.

2012 White Rock Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 07-13-2016
White Rock is a freakin' home rum for lovers of the old school style Napa Cab that's so hard to get these days. What I love about this wine, in the vibe of Heitz or maybe even Dunn, it has this incredible sense of place. While it doesn't taste like Bordeaux, there's clearly an eye to a more restrained, terroir driven style. And if you're about terroir then your wines should not taste like they're from the Medoc, indeed they should taste like they're from Napa, which so few wines from Napa seem to do any longer. This is the real deal. Do not ignore it.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
VN 92

2012 Keenan "Reserve" Spring Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 07-13-2016
Good old Keenan continues to deliver extreme quality year after year. The '12 Reserve is a structured and classic Napa style with great density and power without crossing that line into the over oaked, overripe, overly alcoholic style that's become so popular! Tons of fresh cola and dense dark fruit. The density is balanced with a wonderful structure built for the cellar. Set it and forget it. This stuff will be magic in 5-10 years.

2004 Heitz Cellar "Trailside" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 07-13-2016
A triumph! Totally round and open. Fully mature, but still with plenty of life. Silky textured mouth feel. The sign of a perfectly ripe tannin! Dense dark fruit and a wonderful gravelly cab note. More proof that Heitz is still one of the best in the west.
Price: $74.99 Add To Cart

2013 Moulin de la Gardette "Tradition" Gigondas
Review Date: 07-13-2016
The wonderful wines of Gardette always delivery wonderful quality for the price, but I haven't had one this good in several vintages. Bright fresh red fruit and pointed mineral notes are balanced by wonderful acidity. The aromatics develop toward the fresh hibiscus and gravel notes with some air. An absolute pleasure and the perfect example of why Gigondas should be considered one of the very best values in Southern France.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart
VN 91

2014 J.L. Chave Selection "Silene" Crozes-Hermitage
Review Date: 07-13-2016
This wine is going to cause a lot of trouble for the already struggling domestic syrah market. It just makes American syrah look like an after thought. Even wines at twice the price point don't show half the depth or complexity as this and while it's absolutely delicious right now with five years in the cellar it will be singing like a Siren! You won't be able to ignore it. Luckily for the domestic producers we've only got a limited supply of the spectacular value.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

2014 J.L. Chave Selection "Mon Coeur" Côtes du Rhône
Review Date: 07-13-2016
The total package. It's absolutely astonishing that Chave continues to make such high quality wines regardless of vintage and price point. Totally seamless and classical, without the overripe baked fruit that's become ubiquitous with southern Rhone in general over the last decade. That does not mean it's austere or funky, but still has plenty of completely clean dense fruit and the perfect amount of earthy spice. I've always loved this wine and it's a no brainer for almost any drinker in a pinch, but this vintage seemed particularly special and I plan to put a case away for cooler weather.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

2014 Clos de l'Anhel "Les Terrassettes" Corbières
Review Date: 07-13-2016
While I love all three of the Anhel wines, the Terrassettes spoke to me as the best of the bunch to open today. Absolutely gorgeous texture and wild aromatics of blackberries, ripe red cassis, black pepper, and rock earth. Powerful and dense, but not heavy or overripe. A truly spectacular wine the feels effortlessly drinkable, while over delivering on complexity.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart

2014 Clos de l'Anhel "Lolo de l'Anhel" Corbieres
Review Date: 07-13-2016
We're all in love with the Anhel wines, but this new vintage is a benchmark for me. Ultra pure expression of the terroir, big floral notes without the hint of perfumed artificial quality. Dark and spicy fruit and a great texture that's all about the lifted structure while maintaining the intensity. Stupidly cheap price on these.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine Begude Grüner Veltliner "Exotique" Pays d'Oc
Review Date: 07-13-2016
This special little oddity is so familiar yet not quite what you'd expect. Gruner apply and subtle mineral quality paired with a building fresh herbal quality and a great dry stony note on the finish. Totally fun and priced to give Austrian liters some heat.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart

2015 Chateau les Valentines "Le Caprice de Clementine" Cotes de Provence Rosé
Review Date: 07-13-2016
Easy fresh and well integrated. Tons of bright lemon and fresh peach aroma. So drinkable yet not boring or neutered.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

Kavalan Solist Ex-Bourbon Cask #52" K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Single Barrel Taiwanese Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 06-30-2016
I remember the first time I tasted Kavalan Single Cask (Solist). It was at the 2013 Whisky Fest in San Francisco. This special little distillery was completely unknown by the general public at the time. While people lined up out the door to get a tiny snort of Pappy, I sauntered over to the small table where Ian Chang stood completely alone and got REAL excited to see all FOUR Solists casks there to taste. I'd heard good things from Taiwanese friends and certain members of the whisky geek elite, but I was very surprised to see Mr. Chang actually manning the table. He took me through the line-up and I became completely enamored. The incredible complexity and depth that these whiskies show is unprecedented for an upstart single malt distillery. After a nice long chat, I thank Mr. Chang and jokingly said as I left, "can't wait to buy some single casks!" The ever gracious distiller, looked at me slyly and said, "You’ll have to come to Taiwan." I promised I’d tried and walked away certain that this was the best whisky of the night. A year later, my colleague David was actually able to make the journey to visit Ian and there the true seed of the possibility began to grow. Then one day months later, the importer walked in and slid three samples across my desk. In the mean time, Kavalan had become one of the hottest brands in the world and we were selling out ever drop we could get our hands on in a matter of days if not hours. The prospect of getting a single cask was almost too good to be true. Indeed, as we tasted through them I was blown away by the complexity and depth of each. We just couldn't let these incredible whiskies slip through our fingers, no matter what the cost. And so we didn't. We may be one of the only places in the US right now to have cask strength ex-bourbon. Thanks to our importers efforts, we locked in the casks at the 2015 pricing, so expect subsequent offerings to be $20-30 more expensive than then. Cask #52 has a massive nose of creamy rich coconut, powerful Tahitian vanilla, and sweet fresh spices. Expect deep toasty caramel on the palate, with piles of over ripe fruit and American oak spices taking over on the back palate. This may be too powerful for many single malt drinkers without water, but should satiate the most seasoned bourbon lover right out of the bottle.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart

Kavalan Solist Ex-Bourbon Cask #75 K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Single Barrel Taiwanese Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 06-30-2016
I remember the first time I tasted Kavalan Single Cask (Solist). It was at the 2013 Whisky Fest in San Francisco. This special little distillery was completely unknown by the general public at the time. While people lined up out the door to get a tiny snort of Pappy, I sauntered over to the small table where Ian Chang stood completely alone and got REAL excited to see all FOUR Solists casks there to taste. I'd heard good things from Taiwanese friends and certain members of the whisky geek elite, but I was very surprised to see Mr. Chang actually manning the table. He took me through the line-up and I became completely enamored. The incredible complexity and depth that these whiskies show is unprecedented for an upstart single malt distillery. After a nice long chat, I thank Mr. Chang and jokingly said as I left, "can't wait to buy some single casks!" The ever gracious distiller, looked at me slyly and said, "You’ll have to come to Taiwan." I promised I’d tried and walked away certain that this was the best whisky of the night. A year later, my colleague David was actually able to make the journey to visit Ian and there the true seed of the possibility began to grow. Then one day months later, the importer walked in and slid three samples across my desk. In the mean time, Kavalan had become one of the hottest brands in the world and we were selling out ever drop we could get our hands on in a matter of days if not hours. The prospect of getting a single cask was almost too good to be true. Indeed, as we tasted through them I was blown away by the complexity and depth of each. We just couldn't let these incredible whiskies slip through our fingers, no matter what the cost. And so we didn't. We may be one of the only places in the US right now to have cask strength ex-bourbon. Thanks to our importers efforts, we locked in the casks at the 2015 pricing, so expect subsequent offerings to be $20-30 more expensive than then. Cask #75 is easily the most closed of the three casks right out of the bottle. It shows dark flavors, more exotic wood and deeper spice notes, still exhibiting incredible complexity, but without the intense sweet notes of the other two casks. With water however, this baby really opens up and starts to bring in complexities not available in its sisters. First, the mahogany notes begin to move more toward sandalwood and around the omnipresent vanilla, you'll see fresh mint and echoes of malted grain. This whisky begs you to take your time an watch it's layers unfold.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart

Kavalan Solist Ex-Bourbon Cask #76 K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Single Barrel Taiwanese Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 06-30-2016
I remember the first time I tasted Kavalan Single Cask (Solist). It was at the 2013 Whisky Fest in San Francisco. This special little distillery was completely unknown by the general public at the time. While people lined up out the door to get a tiny snort of Pappy, I sauntered over to the small table where Ian Chang stood completely alone and got REAL excited to see all FOUR Solists casks there to taste. I'd heard good things from Taiwanese friends and certain members of the whisky geek elite, but I was very surprised to see Mr. Chang actually manning the table. He took me through the line-up and I became completely enamored. The incredible complexity and depth that these whiskies show is unprecedented for an upstart single malt distillery. After a nice long chat, I thank Mr. Chang and jokingly said as I left, "can't wait to buy some single casks!" The ever gracious distiller, looked at me slyly and said, "You’ll have to come to Taiwan." I promised I’d tried and walked away certain that this was the best whisky of the night. A year later, my colleague David was actually able to make the journey to visit Ian and there the true seed of the possibility began to grow. Then one day months later, the importer walked in and slid three samples across my desk. In the mean time, Kavalan had become one of the hottest brands in the world and we were selling out ever drop we could get our hands on in a matter of days if not hours. The prospect of getting a single cask was almost too good to be true. Indeed, as we tasted through them I was blown away by the complexity and depth of each. We just couldn't let these incredible whiskies slip through our fingers, no matter what the cost. And so we didn't. We may be one of the only places in the US right now to have cask strength ex-bourbon. Thanks to our importers efforts, we locked in the casks at the 2015 pricing, so expect subsequent offerings to be $20-30 more expensive than then. The gorgeous cask #76 is perhaps the most balanced of the three. Like getting that perfect dessert from a world class chef, it shows incredible richness and complexity but never feels out of balance. Big bold sweet notes, but moving away from the frosting and caramel of cask #52 toward a more seamless spiced honey tone. Slightly lower proof than her sisters, this whisky drinks right of the bottle like a dream, although a touch of water does highlight some of the wild honey that I love. Either way, this whisky seems to have no edge and while bold, it's never sharp or aggressive. A truly special cask and a pleasure to have on the bar for however long it can possibly last.
Price: $149.99 Add To Cart

Tom's Foolery Bottled In Bond Batch #1 Ohio Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 06-16-2016
A weekend in my wife's hometown - celebrating her incredible accomplishments as a designer - turned into one of the most exciting work trips of the year when I realized her grandparents' house was a five minute drive from the well-regarded Tom's Foolery Distillery. The town of Chagrin Falls is a beautiful, quaint little place, which as the name suggests has a massive waterfall running through the middle of town. Just outside the town are some of Ohio's largest and most historic estates along with apple orchards and open space. It was there that we came upon the home of the Herbrucks. Tom and Lianne are the real deal. With out the pomp, ego, or gimmicks that have become ubiquitous in the Craft Whiskey world, these two are generally achieving something great through hard work and dedication. They hit all the important craft notes without making a fuss about it (local grain grown on their own farm, hand distillation, pot stills, years of experience). They have several hundred barrels sitting in their unheated warehouses and while they no longer have the historic Michter's stills that is not stopping them from continuing to make some of the best craft whiskey in the country. This whisky does of course come from those special stills. Expect big bold flavors of dark wood, stewed stone fruits, minty spice and earthy grain. The nose reminds me of some of the great young old whiskies I've had (those post-Prohibition gems). Ultimately, it's a flavor profile that's almost non-existent in KY today. Dryer than most modern bourbon, likely due to the lack of patent warehousing, it remains very balanced with a lovely palate filling texture - leaving you with a unique forest floor and dark cocoa finish. There isn't a hot or harsh note anywhere in the mix and the whole thing is as seamless and integrated as can be. We're all very lucky to have a crack at this special juice.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Ariston Aspasie "Prestige Vielles Vignes" Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
This is a wonderful example of what OLD VINES means for champagne. Real old vines! The depth and power is not surpassed by anything in the price point. Fresh open and alive, tons of black cherry, touches of fresh brioche, big bold richness with an ultra long finish. Bubbles for ballers who don't have that black card yet.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Ariston Aspasie Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
Just astonishing how delicious this is for the price. It hits every note you want from a rose champagne, both power and elegance, round and rich with great long structure, aromatic pinot fruit with a hint of savory spice. You could decant it and serve it with a filet mignon as easily as you'd serve it with your aper'eau. A triumph of wine making fit for the most frugal lover of bubbles and the most opulent spender alike.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

2008 Michel Loriot "Apollonis" Vintage Extra Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
A fabulous little wine designed for those who really love the bright fresh floral and tropical fruit qualities of Meunier with the depth and complexity provided by a healthy dollop of high quality chardonnay. This vintage product is easily accessible now and can be served on nearly any occasion. Lovely white flowers, but not too perfumed though -no gardenias, more honeysuckles. Lovely long soft finish with fresh tropical fruit continuing throughout. This I want to have with french onion soup for some reason.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$34.99

1998 Dom Pérignon "P2" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
This decadent offering from one of Champagne's most storied brands does everything you'd expect. Bold, rich and over the top, it's as showy and opulent as the price point would suggest. Expect intense oak and nutty spice balanced by a powerful creamy texture and ultra complex pommace fruit. Perfect pair for hoisting the automatic sails on your Swan! Press that button and pour.

1992 Louise Brison Vintage Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
There are simply so few opportunities to taste something like this, 24 years on the lees from a small grower producer. It's incredible that we have access to this stuff and all serious champagne collectors and lovers of old wine should take note. The price point is not to be ignored considering how rare and special this is. Don't expect it to be the easiest glass of wine of your life, but it might be one of the most memorable. This is a wild animal erupting with glorious savory and exotic fruit aromas. Still, it remains fresh on the palate with a lifted vibrant acid and a strong nutty finish. Out there in the very best possible way. It's not for everyone, but for the select few it be a triumph.
Price: $199.00 Add To Cart

Michel Loriot "Authentic" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
People often look at you quizzically when you talk about Meunier. Indeed, it's lost in the sea of blanc de blancs and even in Champagne it's widely considered the third tier grape. But done correctly, with the right vineyards and proper care, Meunier produces something altogether unique and utterly fascinating. Loriot is a true specialist of the grape and their entry level offering provides the perfect example of the unique capacities of this special varietal. Big bold tropical fruit, unlike anything chardonnay or pinot could ever produce. Aromas of guava and pineapple and a beautiful golden hue. The palate is really fresh and clean, with those exotic fruits still taking front seat and despite the low dosage a wonderful balance of sweetness and acidity. Top value for those who don't want the same old thing.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
ST 90

Charles Ellner "Carte d'Or" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
I was skeptical thanks to the wonky label, but I am converted. I even think the label has started to grown on me. Here we have wonderful balance and depth, a sign that the wines in the cuvee are perfectly matured. Indeed, the elevage must have been of the very highest quality. Expect a nose of dense stone fruit (apricot jam) spread next to the finest wildflower honey. A slight breadiness keeps the aromas from feeling too sweet. The palate is perfectly balanced with less sweet flavors and the perfect dose of acidity. Round ripe citrus, complex leesy notes and a lengthy closure. Truly an honor to sell the estate bottlings from this wonderful negoc.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WS 90

Ariston Aspasie "Carte Blanche" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
A great mousse, clean apple, subtle cherry. Lovely freshness with a distinct bready top note. Rare to find a better value than this in Champagne, the Ariston's commitment to quality is second to none and thanks to our DI relationship, we're selling this at Cremant prices!
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

Charles Ellner "Premier Cru" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-27-2016
This is really a classic offering from the exceptional little negociant whose own vines produce some of champagnes finest offerings. Creamy rich nose with biscuits and a surprisingly strong showing from the Pinot. Bright red fruit aromatics translate on the palate and the wide mouth feel is balanced by great structure and hint of the pinot savoriness at the end. Another stupendous one from Ellner that sparkles as brightly in the glass as it does on the label.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
WE 92 WS 90

2009 Louise Brison Vintage Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-25-2016
The newest staff favorite is consistently providing some of the absolute BEST values we've seen in bubbles to date. Ultra open and expressive, but with the chops to develop nicely over the next several years. What I really love about this stuff is the balance between creamy fruit (sherbets & creamsicles) and nutty richness (hazelnuts and walnuts). Absolutely transfixed by the combo. And that price! Wow.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

Franck Bonville "Belles Voyes" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 05-25-2016
This spectacular wine is word class in every way. IN our recent tasting, although it was much younger, this was closest in style to the $350 Dom Perignon P2 that we tried, but it's just SO much better! The massive richness and complexity of the grapes works perfectly in this style, small barrel ageing. If you're going to oak your wine, you better make sure that you're putting the very best grapes in there or you're gonna have a bad time. The ultra complex style is as seamless as it is sexy. Truly the perfect Tete-de-Cuvee and would be a steal at twice the price. But then again we sell out of this one every time, so not sure if I'm doing anyone any favors with this one...

2007 Michel Loriot "Monodie Meunier" Extra Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-25-2016
I'm absolutely floored by this new bottling of the Monodie. The richness and complexity is through the roof compared to a couple of years ago. This one has really benefited from some time on the lees. A big dense nose of ultra high quality black and herbal teas, savory salted citrus, stone fruits and fruit preserves on the nose. Rich creamy textural and lengthy with a fabulous continued freshness on the finish which belies the savory and pointed nose. An absolute gem!!!
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

2009 Trimbach "Cuvée Frédéric Émile" Riesling Alsace
Review Date: 04-06-2016
Truly a superlative offering from one of Alsace's most prominent producers. This is full-bodied dry Riesling in its prime. Developing great texture and supreme complexity, the 2009 is drinking like a dream. Big honey, big citrus aromatics, powerful mineral and fresh white pepper on the nose. The palate bodes well for this wines future, great structure and intensity, but open and ready to go if you need it. You can drink it all up right now, or put it away for another decade or more.

2013 Penfolds Bin 389 Cabernet-Shiraz South Australia
Review Date: 04-01-2016
This wine, like so many of the Penfold's offerings, is just such an easy decision for anyone who likes a slightly bolder style. Each wine is made deftly with the great care and the endless resources of Australia's finest wine producer. The result is one of the safest buys in the industry. It's like an even money bet at the race track, you know everyone knows it's a winner, but in this case you get to drink your winnings. Big bold fruit here with this pointed dark blue and blackberry poking through. Lovely touch of smokiness and complex structure to balance this. A wonderful example of what these two noble varietals can do together. Aussie wines built with character, complexity and structure to last years or drink soon? As I said even money bet. NO RISK, BIG REWARD!

2013 Penfolds Bin 407 Cabernet Sauvignon South Australia
Review Date: 03-29-2016
This monster cabernet is one of the finest choices for anyone looking to build a cellar. It has legs to last decades but you won't have to wait decades to start drinking! This wine trounces the big American Cabs that you probably know and love, pummels Caymus, laps Lewis, and puts many more of Napa's finest to downright shame. It is nonetheless relatively affordable in comparison. Penfold's has a track record of making impeccable wine that drinks beautifully for years and years, you just can't deny yourself that opportunity. Don't expect the bombastic sweet fruit of some other Southern Australian producers, here we have Cabernet that really tastes that way. Classically produced and impeccably designed, it's a stunner, big and bold, but with no caveats.

2012 Domaine du Pégaü "Cuvée Réservée" Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Review Date: 03-17-2016
This is the real deal. So many CDP these days are so polished and juicy, it's easy to forget that there's a tradition of rustic winemaking in the region. Indeed, Pegau is widely regarded as ultra old school and it's always one of my favorite offerings. The richness and depth are balanced by complex leathery earthiness. Drying Tobacco, deep dark berries, and exotic spice; the appeal is endless. Structured yet already showing wonderful openness, the tannins will give it life long into the next decade. It's not full on barnyard, but a wonderfully integrated element of brett. This is some real-ass wine. Wine that makes you really stop for a second and wonder what you're wasting your time worrying about life or worrying about anything for that matter. Don't worry, drink Pegau — that's what I always say.

2002 Cooley 13 Year Old "Irish Malt" Exclusive Malts K&L Exclusive Cask Strength Single Cask Irish Single Malt Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 03-16-2016
This is a massive score for K&L and our first cask strength Irish Single Cask Single Malt that we've ever bottled exclusively. This special whiskey was distilled at the exceptional Cooley distillery now owner by Jim Beam and is truly one of a kind. Last year, a bottling from this lot was named the top bottling in Whisky Advocates Fall issue. That whisky, garnering an astounding 96 points, disappeared almost instantly. This one will last a little long, but not by much. The subtle influence from the refill Madeira cask has added incredible depth and complexity, but also a wonderful liveliness not typical for Cooley. Expect vibrant green apples, salted oats, galangal sizzling in a hot wok, nutty richness, and the finest floral honey. Slightly deeper and more saline than its sister, the palate has a rush of sweetness before opening to a long, candied apple finish. Absolutely spectacular! This is top tier Irish malt is one of the best the Emerald Isle has ever sent our way.
Price: $129.99 Add To Cart

2013 Robert Craig "Affinity" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 03-02-2016
Don't be fooled by the new package, this is the same old Affinity that we know and love. Ultimately one of the best values in the spectacular vintage, the Affinity shows tons of depth and openness without being a modern fruit bomb. No doubt the wine is big, but the juicy structure and deep, complex aromatics more than make up for the texture intensity. Certainly "classic" California in the best sense of the word. Expect deep dark berry, rich roasted espresso bean, hints of fresh vanilla, dense brambly Cabernet notes and a lifted long finish. Robert Craig always hits the spot when you want Cali, but don't want a sledgehammer directly to the palate.

Don Julio Anejo Tequila (750ml) (ships as 1.5L)
Review Date: 03-02-2016
Don Julio is one of the finest producers of Tequila in Jalisco. Underappreciated and always solid, Don Julio has never compromised quality to meet demand. The anejo is rich and smooth. Don Julio tequila always exhibits a very clean body with subtle hints of agave spice.
Price: $45.99 Add To Cart
WE 95

John L. Sullivan "Irish Bourbon" Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 02-19-2016
This is just supremely drinkable whiskey, plain and simple. It's everything you love about Irish whiskey with an extra kick. A no-brainer.
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart

1989 North British 25 Year Old Sovereign K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 01-26-2016
North British is the backbone of a few legendary blends, but at 25 years it's gained considerable complexity. The nose is not hyper exotic, instead familiar aromas of sugar candies, white chocolate, canned fruits and cream. The mouth is soft and open with the sugar candies turning to buttery sugar cookies. No heat and no need for water, the medium body reminds and the clean finish has a slight twist of lemon and a long soft finish. Killer price here!
Price: Hidden View Price

1988 Invergordon 27 Year Old Sovereign K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 01-26-2016
This is the most subtle and reserved of the three single casks of Grain from this year. Light, fresh and open, slight herbal notes, medium-strong vanilla, an open easy-drinking style that can be appreciated by even the most novice of Scotch drinkers, yet will satisfy the hardened few. The palate is fresh apples and a slight note of varnish. There's definitely that corny quality on the nose you'd expect in a bourbon yet without any of the charry sweet notes. After all, this is made from nearly 100% corn with just a dash of malted barley. This is honestly exactly what I imagine a distilled bourbon mash left in refill casks would taste like after 27 years.
Price: Hidden View Price

1998 Ladeveze Plant de Graisse Tenereze Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 01-20-2016
It's not every day that you run into a brandy distilled from Plant de Graisse. In fact, this maybe the only brandy like it in the entire world. Apparently, it's quite hard to grow, but I have to say I can't believe it's not more planted considering the wild exotic flavors it produces. This is absolutely one of the most unusual and interesting Armagnacs I've ever tasted. Showing the big powerful aromatics that Tenereze is known for, but in a totally different context than the usual Ugni Blanc/Colombard based spirits. The clay soils produce an intense style, but the flavors the Graisse produce fall more toward the cedar box, lacquer, and dried flowers. Deep spiced plums and odd fruits. Totally wild, it sort of stops you in your tracks. On the palate it's big, powerful, long and dry. The crazy fruit flavors taking over, some floral and that dark quality. It’s definitely one of the more esoteric products we’ve ever sold, but it will enthrall any spirits lover from the first whiff to the final drop.
Price: $89.99 Add To Cart

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