Staff Favorites - Olivia Ragni

Olivia Ragni
Olivia Ragni  | Send Email  |   Subscribe to My Sommelier Service
My roots are in Philadelphia, and to a greater extent, Italy. Wine has always been a focal point of my Italian-American culture, and the years I spent working in Philadelphia’s fine dining scene piqued my interest in the wine industry. Prior to Los Angeles, I was a resident of Portugal, Turkey, and Germany, three stops on my tour of Europe as an English teacher. Portugal was my first locale and the one that left the greatest impression. The wine culture of Portugal is so rich and so storied; I was completely taken by the people’s passion for wine. I decided to explore the vast expanse of European wine regions, including Italy, Andalusia, and Croatia. In each of these locations I discovered wines and cultures that I had previously not known and discovered my affinity for the bold sherries of Jerez de la Frontera and the crisp, maritime whites of Vrbnik. My hope is to share my love of these old world wines with people who have not yet had the pleasure of discovering them.


1995 Glen Garioch 20 Year Old "John Milroy - K&L Exclusive" Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 04-30-2017
The John Milroy bottling of Glen Garioch is quite elegant and insanely complex. The different aromas and flavors just go on forever. Fresh fennel, candied orange peel and lemongrass jump from the glass while on the palate notes of candied lemon peel, mint and sugar cookie come through. A stunning single malt.
Price: $119.99 Add To Cart

2014 Clos Saint-Jean "Vieilles Vignes" Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Review Date: 02-05-2017
The Clos Saint Jean Chateanueuf is not for the faint of heart. This wine has power and persistence. It is quite young and would cellar well, but is also surprisingly expressive in its youth. Aromas of blueberry compote, rhubarb, lavender, and clove pop from the glass. Flavors of blackberry jam, star anise, and cassis are surrounded by structure, and power. Enjoy with a hearty oxtail stew!

Writer's Tears Pure Pot Still Irish Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 01-06-2017
This is absolutely lovely pure pot still Irish Whiskey. Aromas of flowers, tea and bananas lead to a palate of chestnuts, caramel, malt and spice. This is rich, full-bodied and textural whiskey that is extremely smooth and easy to drink. The only problem is the bottle will be gone faster than you intended, so stock up!
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2014 Ancient Peaks/K&L Wine Merchants Paso Robles Zinfandel
Review Date: 11-16-2016
Not over ripe, jammy or too high in alcohol, this is a beautifully balanced Zinfandel. Cassis, figs, plums, berries and baking spice coat your palate with juicy acidity and soft, rich texture. This is elegant Paso Zin!
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club


Ariston Aspasie Brut Rosé Champagne (375ml)
Review Date: 10-30-2016
We have been working with Aspasie for years, as they were our first direct import Champagne producer. Their wine continues to be of the highest quality, making it the best value Champagne in the store. Year after year, the rosé is my favorite rosé in the store. With flavors of black cherry, ripe cranberry, rosemary and an earthier backbone, this rose is beautiful both as an aperitif and especially fantastic with food. Try it with a roast duck or heavier fish like salmon or tuna steak.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart

Charles Ellner "Carte d'Or" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-13-2016
The whole lineup of Charles Ellner blew us away with complexity and elegance all around. The Carte d’Or is my favorite of the bottlings. It is a little different from your typical Brut Champagne, they intentionally hold back malolactic fermentation making for a Champagne with loads of character. There are flavors of nuts, minerals and fino sherry, balanced with notes of white nectarine, cranberry and a hint of caramelized apples. This is an incredibly complex Champagne for under $35 a bottle.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WS 91 VN 90

2015 Michel Delhommeau "Harmonie" Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Sur Lie
Review Date: 10-13-2016
The "Harmonie" Muscadet is a consistent staff favorite due to the fact that year after year it drinks well beyond its price point. Muscadet, not to be confused with Moscato, is a wine making region in the coastal area of the Loire Valley where they make a very dry, mineral driven wine from a grape called Melon de Bourgogne. With aromas of wet stones, sweet peas and white flowers, the palate shows chalky, limestone minerality with flavors of lemon curd and white nectarine. Consume this bright, dry, mineral-driven wine the way the locals do, with oysters or just about anything from the sea.
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart
RP 90

Cruz Vieja Viña Roble Amontillado Jerez
Review Date: 10-01-2016
Cruz Vieja makes some of the most intricate, complex wines of the region, with such attention to detail and care for every step of the process. This Amontillado is elegant and complexly layered with flavor. It is extremely aromatic, revealing notes of hazelnuts, white flowers and bitter cocoa with flavors of salt, honey, roasted almonds and a long finish. Food pairings are endless with this wine, anything from olives to artichokes, to cured meats, to even heavier meats like pork or lamb.
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart
RP 91 WS 90

Four Pillars Navy Strength Gin 750ml
Review Date: 06-23-2016
The Navy Strength compared to the Rare Dry has more zesty notes of orange and lemon rind, lemon grass, sea salt and anise. At 118 proof, this is serious stuff that should be stocked in every cocktail enthusiast's bar.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin (750ml)
Review Date: 06-23-2016
Beautiful and bright, the Rare Dry has notes of fresh squeezed blood oranges, sweet herbs, sage, juniper and a hint of basil. It's the perfect gin for tonic or citrus heavy gin cocktails.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WE 92

Charles Baur "Emotion" Cremant d'Alsace Brut
Review Date: 06-16-2016
Sometimes sparkling wines with no dosage are piercingly acidic but the Emotion manages to be completely dry while still maintaining balance. The nose has a touch of toasty aromas without being overpowering, while yellow apples, pears, toasted walnuts and honeysuckle round out the nose. There is great mid-palate weight and texture with some brioche, apple and quince characteristics and frothy, clean bubbles with a long, lovely dry finish. The perfect accompaniment to tapas and charcuterie.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
WE 90

Ariston Aspasie Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 05-25-2016
We have been working with Aspasie for years, as they were our first direct import Champagne producer. Their wine continues to be of the highest quality, making it the best value Champagne in the store. Year after year, the rosé is my favorite rosé in the store. With flavors of black cherry, ripe cranberry, rosemary and an earthier backbone, this rose is beautiful both as an aperitif and especially fantastic with food. Try it with a roast duck or heavier fish like salmon or tuna steak.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Copper & Kings "Cr&ftwerk" Oskar Blues IPA-Aged Brandy (750ml)
Review Date: 04-15-2016
This Oskar Blues IPA is the most obviously influenced by its beer barrel of the four bottlings. Aged in a barrel that once contained a hoppy IPA, fruity and yeasty aromatics burst form the glass. The palate is expressive with notes of orange, grapefruit, fresh hops and white flowers. This is the perfect brandy for the California beer drinker.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

2009 Trimbach "Cuvée Frédéric Émile" Riesling Alsace
Review Date: 04-03-2016
With 7 years of age, the Cuvee Frederic Emile is just beginning to develop. The nose burst with aromas of white flowers, honeycomb, herbs and a subtle hint of petrol. On the palate a smack of minerality like wet stones shows first, with white tea, rhubarb and white nectarine shining through. While this Riesling is drinking exceptionally now, it is structurally sound, with bright acid and big texture, ready to sit in your cellar for a few more years. Enjoy it now with some Szechuan food.

2012 Léoville-Barton, St-Julien
Review Date: 10-14-2015
Incredibly elegant and complex with aromas of violets, fresh herbs and ripe cherries. The palate has an elegant soft texture while maintaining structure and expresses notes of fresh ground coffee, cassis and pencil shavings. This 2012 is a stunning bottle of elegant, classic Bordeaux that is integrated enough to drink now and complex enough to hold on to for a number of years.

Deligeroy "La Petite Marquise" Cremant de Loire Brut
Review Date: 07-17-2015
Yes, it back!!! Light and refreshing, hints of brioche and laser sharp acid! The perfect sparkling wine for mimosas, celebrations and any morning that ends in day!
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

Michel Arnould "Reserve" Brut Verzenay Champagne
Review Date: 07-15-2015
I'm still sticker shocked at the price for this Champagne, I can't believe it's only $33. This bubbly has such complexity and elegance. The nose provides notes of apple, pith and chalky minerality while the palate is classic Verzenay with black cherry and hazelnut. The palate is rich with a beautiful creamy texture, yet this wine sees no oak. A gorgeous wine for such a steal!
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart

West Cork Bourbon Cask Blended Irish Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 05-20-2015
A fantastic, easy going Irish whiskey to have around the house for making cocktails but also soft enough to drink straight at the end of the evening! New favorite for under $30!
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart

Rey Fernando de Castilla "Antique" Palo Cortado Jerez (500ml)
Review Date: 05-20-2015
The Rey Fernando de Castilla Palo Cortado is over 30 years of average age with both tremendous aromatics and flavors. Aromas of cocoa, roasted chestnuts, tiramisu, and nutmeg beam from the glass. The palate is bright at first, showing it’s years aged under flor with a beautifully tangy acidity, lemon rind and burnt orange peel. The palate turns to flavors of almonds, mocha and espresso on the finish. Potentially the finest example of Palo Cortado that exists. A must try bottle for Sherry lovers. Oh and properly stored, this bottle will keep well once opened for a couple of months.
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart
RP 93 WS 92

Lustau Dry Amontillado "Los Arcos" Solera Reserva
Review Date: 10-22-2014
This dry Amontillado is a perfect accompaniment to cured meats and other Spanish style snacks. With its beautiful amber color, this Amontillado has pungent aromas of roasted nuts, coffee and dried figs, while the palate includes candied orange peel, seawater, toffee and butterscotch. Its pronounced flavors open up your pairing possibilities to more than just snacks, it could even hold up to a full array of grilled meats.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart
RP 93 WS 90

La Cigarrera Manzanilla Sanlucar de Barrameda (375ml)
Review Date: 08-27-2014
A true Manzanilla with a bouquet full of oysters, clams and salted toffee. A flavor intense palate of oceanic salt and seaweed, peanut butter, bitter almonds and squash. Impeccable quality, a crazy value. What a steal!!!
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

El Maestro Sierra Fino Jerez de la Frontera (375ml)
Review Date: 08-27-2014
At this stage, this delicate Fino has subtle notes of pecans, fresh apples, pie crust, and toasted pumpkin seeds with a mildly salty palate of butterscotch, almonds and bitter orange peel. Great companion to a tomato, basil salad!
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart
W&S 91 RP 90