Staff Favorites - Christie Brunick

Christie Brunick
Christie Brunick  | Send Email  |   Subscribe to My Sommelier Service
I was first introduced to the fabulous world of California wine in Napa where I spent weekends bike riding and wine tasting with my parents up and down the Silverado Trail. Growing up in the East Bay Area it was only a hop...skip...jump away from wine country where my family would venture to relax and play every possible moment. It wasn't until my senior year at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo that I realized I had a passion for the wine industry. My first encounter with the working world of wine was my volunteer internship at Edna Valley Winery where I traveled to a number of tasting events with the marketing manager for the winery and realized I needed to get in the business. I added a minor in wine and viticulture to my communications studies major and ended up writing my thesis on the differences in wine marketing throughout a choice number of Paso Robles wineries. My first "real job" in the wine industry was at the smallest tasting room with the biggest personality in Paso Robles named Four Vines Winery. I worked there for almost three years while going to school and fell in love with not only central coast wines, but also with the business of sales and all those who loved, appreciated, and enjoyed our fruitful product. After graduation in 2007 I loved the central coast so much I decided to make a go for it and stay in this blissful paradise of beach and vines. I became fond very fond of making trips to Los Olivos and Santa Ynez valley quite often and in the mean time also became employed at Tolosa Winery in San Luis Obispo and 15 degrees wine bar in Templeton. In the summer of 2009 I decided to take a chance and move to Hollywood for more opportunity. Being from northern California I wanted to expand my horizons and see what the LA lifestyle was all about. I knew this was where I belonged the moment I stepped into this oasis of wine and cuisine. Never had I been to a place where I could find so many restaurants, bistros, wine bars, and the like within a 4 mile radius, and I don't have to get on the freeway! I'm in heaven. When I walked into the infamous K&L Hollywood Store it was love at first sight! I'm thrilled to be working here doing what I love, and love the incredible people here who share this passion and commitment with me.


Reviews

  
2012 Grgich Hills "Estate" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 12-03-2015
Classic and elegant, Napa meets Bordeaux in style and drinkability. Will cellar nicely as well for the next decade.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
JS 92

2010 Heitz Cellar "Martha's Vineyard" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 12-03-2015
If I could have a "last meal" wine this would be it. It doesn't lack anything. And it's not pretentious or shy. It's exactly what you want for a special occasion to blow your palate away!
Price: $189.99 Add To Cart
VN 96

2012 Grgich Hills "Estate" Napa Valley Chardonnay
Review Date: 12-03-2015
Always classic and lovely. Grgich has a way with keeping their wines balanced and nuanced without too much oak and malo. I always recommend this to someone who is trying to cut back on the typical Cali Chard and wants to move closer to a Burgundian styled Chardonnay.
Price: $36.99 Add To Cart
CG 90

2014 Evesham Wood Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
Review Date: 10-28-2015
If you thought 2012 was an amazing vintage for Oregon Pinot Noir then wait till you start tasting the 2014s! Like the '12s, these puppies are vibrant and juicy, but with possibly even more suppleness on the palate and intense purity of fruit. I love the Evesham Wood's entry-level Pinot at just $20 because it shows off the highlights of this amazing vintage while remaining true to the classic roots of this Burgundian inspired producer with all of its complex spice, floral, and savory undertones. Absolutely the perfect wine for fall, and will pair perfectly with all those autumn-inspired Thanksgiving flavors!
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

Opus One "Overture" Napa Valley Bordeaux Blend
Review Date: 10-12-2015
I took a whiff of this and the aromatics screamed Bordeaux! But with a Napa Valley sensibility, of course. You can smell how expensive the oak is they use in this, and trust me, they spare no expense in accessories at Opus One. I love the Overture because it's so much more open and gives immediate gratification, while their first label takes a few years in cellar to open up. This isn't usually released and is very rarely in stock. So take advantage.
Price: $114.99 Add To Cart

2014 Pine Ridge California Chenin Blanc-Viognier
Review Date: 10-06-2015
This wine always over-delivers for the price. And with the fall weather and Thanksgiving coming up this is the perfect white wine, with the mouth-feel just a bit richer than your other typical aperitif-type whites but still plenty of great acidity making it food-friendly.
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart
RP 90

2012 Inglenook "Cask" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 10-06-2015
Just like the classic story behind this famous label, so is the wine...Classic! This is pure, polished, elegant yet packs a punch, and is cellar-worthy as well. You really can't ask for much more with this quality of fruit and winemaking combination for this price!

2005 Heitz Cellar "Martha's Vineyard" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 10-06-2015
If you want to drink one of the finest and most old-school styled Napa Cabs that is actually almost ready to drink, then get your hands on a very special and limited release Martha's Vineyard Cabernet for a special occasion. It never disappoints!
Price: $159.99 Add To Cart
WS 93

2013 DuMol Russian River Valley Chardonnay
Review Date: 10-06-2015
Dumol has been called by an anonymous source "the DRC of California Chardonnay and Pinot Noir." And I won't totally disagree. These wines are extremely elegant and classically made, and very cellar-worthy for California standards.

2013 Beckmen "Cuvée Le Bec" Santa Ynez Rhône Blend
Review Date: 09-25-2015
Year in and year out, Beckmen has always delivered solid Rhone-styled blends that are truly Californian in fruit but classically Rhone in quality and texture. This is by far the best vintage of the Cuvee Le Bec I've tasted yet, and for this price, it won't last long. Talk about a crowd-pleaser for the upcoming holidays, well this is it! Act fast or forever be regretful.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart
VN 91 RP 90

Sean Thackrey "Pleiades XXIV Old Vines" California Red Blend
Review Date: 08-18-2015
Consistently one of the best non-vintage blends on the market today. Always food friendly, yet drinkable on its own, this is the perfect red that can be enjoyed all year round. Spicy, floral, medium-full bodied, supple texture and ripe fruit. This is always surprising and intriguing every time.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2006 Drappier "Grande Sendrée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 07-15-2015
Drinking perfectly upon release, this blend of 55% Pinot Noir and 45% Chardonnay is the definition of expressive elegance in a glass. Gorgeous aromas, texture, and fruit, this is the belle of the ball. Absolute perfect amount of creaminess to acid ratio, this is bright and buttery at the same time.

2012 Domaine Courtois "La Grange" Vinsobres
Review Date: 05-08-2015
This Southern Rhone Blend is from a lesser known sub-region called Vinsobres. I love this wine because it retains the plush and ripe fruit we all know and love from Cote du Rhone but has a much more depth of character. It's mineral driven at the core, with great acidity and structure to give it a rustic edge, but remaining friendly at the same time. Enjoy and Cheers!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

Del Professore Vermouth (750ml)
Review Date: 04-01-2015
Looking for a great springtime aperitif? This semi-off-dry Italian White Vermouth is soo delicious and refreshing! It's a great option for someone who wants something a little different than there typical Lillet Blanc or similar. I love it over the rocks with a twist of lemon or other citrus! I will be enjoying this all summer!
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

Alexandre Le Brun "Tradition" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 03-20-2015
A new Direct Import for us and I'm in love! This is the perfect Champagne to start out the night with! Although dry, it has a ripeness to the fruit that makes it a great aperitif or sipping Champagne on its own. This will be great for anyone that wants to dive right into our grower Champagne program and see what it has to offer! Great Champagnes for less than you'll find anywhere!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

2007 Bodegas Puelles Rioja Reserva
Review Date: 02-25-2015
Drinking beautifully now and is extremely supple with polished tannins and a pure expression of fruit. Lots of violets, purple and blue fruit, with a touch of savory earth and tobacco on the finish. Absolutely perfect with tapas and easy enough to sip on its own. A great Rioja to introduce friends to as well.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart
RP 90

2010 Château la Caminade "Fut de Chene" Cahors
Review Date: 02-25-2015
Malbec from Argentina = cocktail wine, Malbec from Cahors France = food wine! All the dark fruit but with so much more structure. Gorgeously rustic with high acid and integrated tannins that will go oh so well with any red meat you can get your hands on! Delicious.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

Jardesca California Aperitiva (750ml)
Review Date: 07-29-2014
Looking for your summer aperitif wine that's local, light, aromatic, complex, and wont give you a hangover?! This small production aperitif is made in Northern California's Sonoma County and is loaded with natural aromatic botanicals like basil, Kaffir lime, fresh herbs, mint, flowers, and citrus. This is a drier style aperitif wine whose cocktail combinations are endless! Splash of soda, lime, fruit, or lavender, and you've got yourself one complex concoction! I've been enjoying it on my deck during sunset for an immediate summer refreshment! You must try! You will be hooked.
Price: $28.99 Add To Cart

Underwood by Union Wine Co. Oregon Pinot Noir (375ml can)
Review Date: 07-03-2014
I'm extremely excited to announce the inaugural release of our favorite value Oregon Pinot Noir in the best possible package for easy and efficient summer sipping! Yes people, it's in a can! But don't let that fool you, it's the same juice that goes into the 2013 750ml bottle. Union Wine Co. orders labeled empty cans in quantity. This allows more flexibility with future cannings and makes sure they don't end up with unused vintage-specific cans. This is very similar to the beloved 2012 vintage that flew out of here before we could take a breath between sips! It has gorgeous aromatics of bright red and purple fruit--strawberry and pomegranate--with great texture and supple acid on the palate, pepper spice and a mineral finish. Serve with a slight chill and be the star wherever this summer takes you, whether it be camping, boating, picnicking, beaching or the Hollywood Bowl this year!
Price: $5.99 Add To Cart

Caves Messias Santola "Crab Wine" Vinho Verde
Review Date: 05-27-2014
Its like a white wine spritzer but better! I love this Fizzy, zippy, frizzante, dry white wine! I can drink it all day long, and my palate stays refreshed and alive with this wonderful wine! Great with salads, fish, Mexican food, or just on its own!
Price: $8.99 Add To Cart

Bruno Michel "Rebelle" Extra Brut Champagne
Review Date: 03-08-2014
This extra Brut will surprise and seduce your palate. Aromas of baked stone fruits of apples, pear, and pie crust. The palate is focused and intense but gives way to its lovely biscuity notes with piercing minerality and acidity on the finish. For an extra Brut I would say this has more flavor and texture than most, especially at the price!
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart

Montechiara Prosecco DOC
Review Date: 11-08-2013
This little Italian Prosecco has changed the way think about Prosecco here at K&L, and trust me, that's not an easy task. With a label that mimics a yellow/orange Veuve Cliquot label, and a price that will keep your wallet full, this lovely bubbly will be the hit of every party, day or night. Not too dry, not too fruity, it's just right. You and your friends will be very, very happy!
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart

Egrot (formerly Elisabeth Goutorbe) Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-17-2012
From the daughter of Henroit Goutorbe, Elisabeth is making something so elegant and superb for a far better price! 70% Pinot noir, and 25% Chardonnay, with 5% Pinot Meunier, this Champagne is rich and moussy, with a full of honey and caramelized fruit on the nose and finish. delicate yet plush, and a steal in my book!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Bruno Michel "Blanche" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-04-2012
This is my quintessential Holiday Party Champagne, and it aims to please! Not too big and over-the-top, and not to light and lean either, its just right! Made from almost half Chardonnay and half Pinot Meunier graps giving it lots of depth and great texture on the palate. This is the bell of the ball as far as I'm concerned. This lovely bubbly is feminine yet sexy and bold at the same time. Its bright and fresh character gives it a friendly quality that can be sipped on and enjoyed all day and all night long! This is heaven in a flute!
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Deligeroy Crémant de Loire Brut Rosé
Review Date: 09-28-2012
This is one of my all time favorite Bubbly Rose and a fraction of the price of Champagne.I love the new cuvee of my Deligeroy Rose. Its much softer and more feminine that the last cuvee which was a touch herbaceous. This Cab Franc based blend is aimed to please this holiday season! Its the perfect party wine that will please a crowd instantly. Subtle fruit with balanced acid and a clean, dry finish! You wont believe your wallet! It has subtle red berry and sweet herb undertones with its racy acid and minerality keep it refreshing but still full on the palate. Perfect for any gathering or romantic date, or just sip and savor alone! Its that good
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2009 Sequana Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
Review Date: 07-05-2012
James MacPhail has done it again! Varietally and Regionally correct Pinot Noir! This Russian River Pinot is full of classic Dark Black and Red Cherry fruit on the nose and palate. Juicy acid and floral and baking spice notes also come through on the nose and finish. Very food friendly and a steal for Beautiful Russian River Pinot at its finest!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Ariston Aspasie Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 01-27-2012
My favorite Rose Champagne for the price! Amazing bright and vibrant red-pink fruit with a broad and creamy mouthfeel with racy acidity to keep it all in balance. As far as I'm concerned it's my Billecart Rose for a quarter of the price! Always elegant and delightful!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Franck Bonville Grand Cru Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 12-14-2011
The best deal in direct import Blanc De Blanc Champagne Yet! Its an entire staff favorite here at K&L, and once you try it you'll understand why. Its elegant and pure but has a richness on the palate that is creamy and fulfilling. This is my personal house Champagne! My favorite Champagne under $50 by far! This has no hard edges at all; it's completely seamless from start to finish. Crisp, with elegance, round and creamy richness, the Bonville is full of bright fruit and mineral notes. As much fun as bubbly gets! Try it ASAP!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Graham's "Six Grapes" Port
Review Date: 11-10-2011
The best value I've tasted for a full 750ml bottle of Ruby Port! Dark and deep in color with loads of black fruit, spice, and chocolate on the nose. Richly intense with a creamy mid-palate with plenty of good acidity to balance it out. I'll be definitely buying some for the holiday season!
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

Pol Roger "White Foil - Extra Cuvée de Réserve" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-11-2011
One of my new favorite finds at K&L! This is a gorgeous Champagne. Lots of focus and elegance showing from start to finish. Just slightly toasty, this Brut is full of integrated acid and fresh minerality that will have your taste buds tingling and salivating for more! An amazing value for under $40 as well! Stock up for the holidays before its gone!

Franck Bonville "Belles Voyes" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 06-01-2011
On of the most elegant yet powerful Blanc de Blancs Champagne I've had this year. I also think its one of the houses best cuvee's they've made that you can enjoy now or cellar for years! All 2004 vintage old vine fruit shows lovely integration on the palate. The nose is crisp and minerally with subtle sweet sugar cookie dough essences. Freshly smashed ripe apple crisps up on the palate with notes of allspice! A very amazing Champagne...treat yourself before its gone!

Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 04-16-2011
If I could pick any Champagne to drink on a daily basis regardless of price, it would be the Beautiful Billecart Salmon Rose! Without a doubt your last sip will still taste as good as the first. And your obsession will start at your first sip. This is a clean and elegant style that will impress just about any level Champagne drinker

Deligeroy Cremant de Loire Brut
Review Date: 03-09-2011
Its a beautiful thing to have an exceptional sparkler for an amazing price! This is always one of my favorites to always keep on hand at home because it is so fresh, minerally, with crisp acidity, elegant zesty bubbles, what more could you ask for from the Loire Valley? Its perfect day and night!
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart

Baron-Fuente "Esprit" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 02-09-2011
This is one of my favorite direct import Champagnes because it is seamless from start to finish. Very elegant but brilliantly intense as well. Using all stainless steel and spending 7 years on the lees gives the wine its smooth and creamy texture with that nutty brioche and layers of complexity. Triple cream on the nose with pommace fruit on the mid palate and a crisp finish.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WS 92

Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne
Review Date: 02-09-2011
Although I am usually a fan of our smaller producer direct import Champagnes I really loved the Laurent-Perrier for the price! And we have the best price for this in town by the way. I love the crisp and elegant nose with a mousse filled mid-palate and a clean and toasty finish.

Michel Arnould "Reserve" Brut Verzenay Champagne
Review Date: 02-03-2011
Quite possibly the best deal in Champagne ever! Michel Arnould delivers way above and beyond! This direct import Pinot Noir based cuvee has a brightness to it that most Champagnes in this price range lack. Lots of citrus and wild berry fruit on the mid palate with bursting minerality and acid with a toasty but clean finish! Don't let this one pass you by...
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart

Charles Baur Cremant d'Alsace Brut Rosé
Review Date: 02-02-2011
This is not your average Alsatian Sparkling Rose! This is complex, elegant, yet approachable and perfect for sipping day or night! Full of great flinty minerality and bright racy acid for texture, yet still has a brilliant aroma of strawberry seed and wild flowers. This will keep your loved one wanting more...perfect for lovers day!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart
WE 89

Sorelle Bronca Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Extra Dry
Review Date: 02-02-2011
This is K&L's best selling Prosecco by far! No matter who your entertaining, even yourself, you will revel in the masterpiece of sweet seduction! Perfectly balanced Italian style...Not too sweet, not too dry, but just right! Day time Brunch, or evening pre-dinner cocktail, this Prosecco is so pretty and elegant you just can't get enough!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart
W&S 90

Ariston Aspasie Blanc de Blancs Brut Champagne
Review Date: 01-05-2011
Ariston has done it again! They have created a Blanc de Blanc Champagne that is so unique and special compared to all the typical blanc de blancs on the shelf. Right off the bat after the Champagne Pop you get a whiff of the aromas of fresh baked brie, ripe apple, and Gruyere fondue...followed by a mysterious mid-palate chalk full of minerals and body. This isn't your typical super racy and tight blanc de blanc. It is fully developed into a mature ready to drink state of mind. Finishes with caramelized fruit and nuts...Enjoy!!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Michel Arnould "Grand Cuvée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 12-01-2010
This is my quintessential Classic Champagne for the Holidays and all Year round for that matter. Mineral and fresh on the nose, Rich and luscious on the mid-palate, with an elegant, seamless finish. It keeps you wanting more...
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Réserve Champagne
Review Date: 10-03-2010
If you want a fantastic Champagne with a great reputation and uses better quality fruit than the beloved brand Veuve Clicquot! Feminine and rich, it brings a great balance and seamless effort on the palate. I've never tasted such great bubbles for under $30!
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart
WS 90

Marguet Pere et Fils "Cuvée Reserve" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-31-2010
I'm the biggest bubbles fan I know, and when I say this delightfully decadent bottle of bubbles tastes and feels like it could be easily worth a $60-$80 Champagne, I'm being very serious! If you're looking for something elegant and round with a touch of bold, masculine undertones, then you've hit the lottery! It is so incredibly versatile you can sip and savor on its own or pair it with a multitude of courses to enjoy throughout the evening. Super interesting yet approachable for all bubble loving palates!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
RP 91 ST 91

2008 Bruno Michel "Les Roses" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 10-19-2009
A standout rosé from a boutique producer who is delivering everything and more for the most experienced Champagne afficianado to the novice taster. At K&L's Champagne tent event this year, this rosé stood out far beyond the rest of the competition. On the nose fresh strawberry and toast, followed by a rich yet delicate mid-palate and a finish of perfection! The grasping fresh fruit quality is insane without being overwhelming. The finesse and elegance of this French beauty is even more mind boggling. Enjoy this before the word gets out!
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart

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Launois "Cuvée Reserve" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($34.99)