Staff Favorites - David Othenin-Girard

David Othenin-Girard
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Reviews

  
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2014 Domaine Baud Chardonnay l'Etoile Blanc
Review Date: 03-23-2017
The gorgeous Baud L'Etoile is an outrageous value. This is "Chardonnay" for the people that say they HATE Chardonnay. For me it's nearly the perfect white wine. Gorgeous golden color. A stupendous nose of rocky minerals, bright white currants and yuzu peel. Ultra clean and refreshing, but not light or low flavor. I love this style, but we usually have to pay $20 more to get there. Gonna buy a case before their all gone.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart

2015 Clos de la Bonnette Syrah Vieilles Vignes Collines Rhodannienes
Review Date: 03-23-2017
I'm not sure there's a better more put together and drinkable Syrah in the store at any price. Beautiful dark blue fruit, peppercorn, and dark earthy undertones. The palate is perfectly structured but not in need of any additional aging to be truly enjoyed. That's not to say it won't develop wonderfully over the next 10 years. This is absolutely perfect Syrah and at a stupendous price.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

2015 Clos de la Bonnette "Roches d'Arbuel" Condrieu
Review Date: 03-23-2017
It's absolutely incredible that Clos De La Bonnette is not with a national importer. This is world class Condrieu that Somms and retailers across the country will be jealous they can't get. The beautiful Roches d'Arbuel is textbook Condrieu. Powerful aromatics, but not overly perfumed and with tons of pithy fruit. Very richly textured with a slightly hidden acidity poking out behind the richness. This is about the best value you could ever expect from one of the world's top white wine appelations.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

Fleury Blanc de Noirs Brut Champagne
Review Date: 03-23-2017
I was all ready a Fleury freak before I tasted the new BdN, but this just solidified what we already new. Fleury is a world class producer of Champagne and should recognized as one of the very best. A beautiful honeyed hue. A stupendous nose of bright candied cherries, honeysuckle, and zesty citrus. Very racy on the palate, ultra clean and precise. The style is so drinkable here, but I would love to see what would happen in the cellar for a few years. Stock up while you can.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$34.99
VN 91

Le Brun de Neuville "Authentique Assemblage" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 03-23-2017
I just can't believe Gary keeps pulling these magical DI Champagnes out of god knows where! He's a magician after all. This is ultra complex for the price, savory with out being stinky or funky. A beautiful bouquet of orange marmalade, quince, slightest hint of fresh mushroom, and a touch of brioche. Wonderfully rich on the palate with a pointed structure and a beautiful long soft finish. The total PACKAGE.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WE 90 WS 90

2012 Giacomo Fenocchio "Bussia" Barolo
Review Date: 03-23-2017
The stupendous 2012 Fenocchio is classic Bussia in everyway. The color is a rustic bloody red. A wild nose of dense dark tar, sweet dried roses & herbs, earthy red fruit. Dense but with great structure and length. No stinky new oak, no sweet over ripe fruit. It's a baby and needs sometime, but a fabulous under valued old school Barolo for the long haul.

2013 Contrade di Taurasi (Cantine Lonardo) Aglianico Irpinia
Review Date: 03-23-2017
Oh Aglianico...I caught the bug on my honeymoon in Praiano and haven't been able to shake it. When I want a big structured red I'm almost ALWAYS looking at this special grape from Campania. Deep dark red in color, almost black, but not inky somehow. Big nose of dark fruit, earth and mineral. Very clean with no hints Brettanomyces. The palate is very classy and very structured although the tannins are not grippy, but ultra fine and elegant. Earthy red fruit continue until a wonderful gravelly, mineral finish. I'm totally in love.
Price: $22.99 Add To Cart

2015 Treves Petite Arvine Val d'Aosta
Review Date: 03-23-2017
This lovely Swiss varietal always gets me going. The wine is very light colored almost clear with flecks of green. White peaches and almond blossom, slight savory nuttiness. More body than expected with great length and a long medium level acidity that keeps it from feeling heavy. A pretty serious little wine masquerading as an aperitif, although the versatility here is endless. I'd pair up with a more serious food if necessary, although it could easily stand on its own if you don't want to bother cooking.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart
JS 93

2014 Drew "The Gatekeeper" Anderson Valley Pinot Noir
Review Date: 03-23-2017
Drew has always been a favorite of the staff in LA, but this 2014 Gatekeeper really blew me away. In a lot of ways this is exactly what I expect from Anderson Valley Pinot, but almost never get. It feels very much like the winemakers have achieved a true expression of terroir in a way that's really very rare in CA. The translucent crimson reminds us immediately that we're drinking pinot noir. Its got a beautiful bouquet of ripe strawberry, fresh figs, dark red flowers and gravelly earth. Wonderful lift and a slight hint of structure to keep it from being too fruity. An absolutely wonderful example of what this special little region is capable of.
Price: $31.99 Add To Cart

2015 Arnot-Roberts North Coast Syrah
Review Date: 03-23-2017
Arnot Roberts is a favorite of the wines of balance geeks and there's no doubt that they're doing something really special up there in Healdsburg. That said this does not strike me as something that should be reserved for the geeks, while it's certainly a vin de garde, there's an obvious depth and complexity beyond just the wild acidity. A wonderful ethereal violet color in the glass. Deep dark aromas of fresh cracked pepper over dark blue fruit. Wonderful earthy and exotic woodsy tones and a racy structure hints at the incredible depth behind the fabulous wine. IT's begging you to put it away til 2020 and I think those who can commit to a longer term relationship with this special bottle will be seriously rewarded.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2012 Daniel Ricci "Terre del Timorasso" Colli Tortonesi Timorasso
Review Date: 03-23-2017
Timorasso is one of those easily forgotten about Italian grapes that deserves to be in everyone's wine fridge. A beautiful pale yellow in the glass, this ultra pithy and mineral driven wine has gorgeous depth and vibrant acidity. A very low fruit style. A total quaffer but not boring or light by any means. This stuff is a must have for me.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

2013 Hanzell "Estate" Sonoma Valley Chardonnay
Review Date: 03-23-2017
Hanzell is one of those wines you talk about being really special, but if you haven't tasted it recently it's hard to appreciate just how incredible it really is. Ultra dense nose of white and yellow fruit, honeysuckle - floral, but not perfumed. Dense and oaky in the best way, delicious Meyer lemon and the best quality popcorn you could imagine. It's somehow so Californian, but nothing in California is quite like this. A master piece.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart
WS 90

1982 Miltonduff 34 Year Old "John Milroy" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-21-2017
This old Miltonduff really got me going. It's not some sherried old monster, but instead the most delicate and complex old style malt. I normally wouldn't bother with water on something this old, but I found the tiniest possible addition of water served this whisky well. The nose is heady with lemony herbs, linseed oil, fresh Mirabel, and touches of mint. The palate has this dense tropical fruit, deep fudge chocolate, oatmeal with a touch of brown sugar on top. An absolutely lovely old malt in a very delicate restrained style. Totally magical and a must have if you can spare the coin.
Price: $229.99 Add To Waiting List

1989 Linkwood 27 Year Old "John Milroy" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-21-2017
Here is some really old whisky from a great hard to find distillery for a wonderful price. The nose is all fudge, fruit, and sweet malt. Please don't add more than the tiniest drop of water (if that) as it's naturally down to near 90 proof. It must have been in a very humid part of the warehouse. Some air and we start to get baking bread, whiffs of marmalade and old exotic wood. The palate is ultra buttery in texture, luscious and fruit forward. A stupendously drinkable old malt that remains fresh and ultra balanced despite the intense age. A total treat to find such old wonderful whisky at this spectacular price.
Price: $149.99 Add To Waiting List

1995 Glen Garioch 20 Year Old "John Milroy" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-21-2017
The first nosing of this stupendous cask takes me right back to Old Meldrum and our first visit to Glen Garioch. Here we have that wonderful Garioch maltiness, that's almost unmistakable. It could easily be a helping of skirlie ir mealie (oats fried in butter) if it weren't for that deep gravelly malt note in the background. With a bit of air and a drop of water, the beautiful flinty character of Garioch shines through, almost on the level of the best trocken Rieslings. The nose is vibrant with waxy fruit, grapeseed oil, lemon peel and tiny hints of camphor. The palate is so open, yet wildly complex with the waxy fruit gaining hold culminating in a long finish of herbs and green tea. An absolute treat and a great value for a rare blue chip distillery.
Price: $119.99 Add To Waiting List

1995 Tormore 20 Year Old "John Milroy" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 03-21-2017
This is the first Tormore we've had in the shop in over a decade and it's a wonderful example of this ultra fresh and light style. The perfect summer malt, and it loves water. For anyone that's driven around Speyside, you'd recognize the incredibly beautiful grounds and stunning copper roofs of this rare little distillery. It's not small production, but Chivas lets very little out as it's a base malt for many of their blends. This light fresh style is exactly what you want on a hot summers night or even GASP over ice. The nose starts a bit hard edge with a pointed oaky note at full strength. With a nice dollop of water the edginess falls away leaving wonderful pithy citrus, stone fruit skins, sweet malt. The tiniest hint of peat doesn't show it's self until the spirit hits the palate. This plays perfectly off the super sweet malt and round fruit. An easy soft let down on the backend. This is real drinkers malt and loves water, so it should be consumed with that in mind.
Price: $89.99 Add To Waiting List

2014 Gitton Père & Fils "Montachins" Sancerre
Review Date: 03-17-2017
The spectacular Gitton Montachins is not your grandma's Sancerre, but it might be your great-grandma's. This is serious old school Sauv Blanc that's not afraid to douse you in pungent aromatics and textural complexity. With the plethora of easy-going Sancerre on the market it's great to experience something with a little bit more tension and depth. Expect powerful flinty and dense lemon zesty, pointed hints of savory pyrazines in the background. On the palate a great weight and complexity, building acidity and crushed stone. This wine will easily develop over the next several years. A world-class offering.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart

2015 Kistler Sonoma Mountain Chardonnay
Review Date: 02-28-2017
The wonderful '15 Kistler Sonoma Mountain lives up to every expectation. A big nose of ripe tropical fruit, well integrated toasty oak, and decadent vanilla cream. The powerful nose makes you expect a total monster on the palate and it is REALLY rich, but there's this lovely lemony zesty side that reminds us, yes indeed this is Chardonnay. Really the total package from the highest quality Sonoma Mountain Chard producer.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

1976 Domaine de Baraillon 40 Year Old K&L Exclusive Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 02-22-2017
Even after years of doing this, I'm still flabbergasted that we're able to bring you such high quality old brandy for this outrageous a price. After 40 years in the barrel, this brandy is reaching levels we'd describe in french as surmaturité (overripe in the context of grapes) but in this case we're talking about those ultra rancio flavors that only the oldest of aged product exhibit. Here we're in the realm of a great old Oloroso, with a splash of old Madeira added in for good measure. Dark nutty, roasted coffee beans, the thickest fruit compote and the most subtle hints of wild honey and dried herbs. The palate remains lifted although it's very dry and not as nutty as the nose might imply. Still on the dark woodsy flavors, a little bit of air tames the intensity on the palate nicely. That wonderful subtle Baraillon funk and oak spice take over and build into a big warm spicy finish. This is not one for those with a sweet tooth, but represents serious old school full mature brandy.
Price: $129.99 Add To Cart

1987 Domaine de Baraillon 29 Year Old K&L Exclusive Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 02-22-2017
The exceptional '87 vintage has become prolific in the Gers and elsewhere in high quality growing regions in Armagnac. Just now reaching maturity this wonderful brandy has everything you want from middle aged Armagnac. The nose is this wonderful balance between rich exotic savoriness and dried sweet fruit. Cigar box, cedar, sandalwood covered in stewed fruits, candied plums and dark black tea. On the palate we get subtle nuttiness and wonderful oxidized fruit (slight oloroso note), which build into a big spicy finish. Exhibiting great texture despite the relatively low proof and a building dryness as it travels the palate. It's so drinkable and appealing its down right dangerous. Stay at home with this one.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

2012 Leeuwin "Art Series" Cabernet Sauvignon Margaret River Western Australia
Review Date: 02-21-2017
The majestic wines of Leeuwin are such a pleasure to consume, we often forget how special they are, whether the reason be the screw top or their limited availability. The potential of Margaret River on full display here, with incredible depth matching stupendous freshness. This is what Cabernet is all about. The wonderful deep dusty cassis fruit, the eucalyptus, the high grade fresh tobacco leaf, fancy leather imply a powerful. Perhaps the most intriguing aspect is that it achieves such depth and complexity, a full bodied experience while remaining elegant and somehow demure. Not bombastic, but a completely encompassing experience nonetheless.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
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2005 Domaine A Cabernet Sauvignon Tasmania
Review Date: 02-21-2017
Love this Old School style. A legend in a different hemisphere this special wine is truly a unique offering. Deep dark cassis, minty fruit, salted fruit, exotic wood, fine pipe tobacco. The wonderful fruit and slight funky savoriness add to the incredible length on the palate. I keep wanting to compare this to Bordeaux, but it's hard to pigeon hole it because it's just so unique and so familiar at the same time. A stupendous wine that should be included in both serious collectors and accomplished drinkers portfolios.

2013 Dog Point Chardonnay Marlborough
Review Date: 02-21-2017
Another stupendous wine from Dog Point. Deep and leesy with profound acidity and great textural complexity. Hard to compare this to Chardonnay from any other region, but it easily out performs the vast majority of similar wines in the price point. This wine is showing no signs of slowing down 4 years after harvest and I really want to stick a case in the cellar to see how this develops over the next half decade.

2015 Dog Point Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough
Review Date: 02-21-2017
This gorgeous wine from Dog Point proves once again that they're not only on the forefront of Marlborough production, but one of the most exciting winery anywhere in the world. The quality and intensity for the price is only matched by the very best producers out of France and while Dog Point is a benchmark wine for the area it's not necessarily representative of the local style. Instead expect flinty, craggy rocks crushing ultra ripe lemons. Juicy, aromatic, but not grassy or tropical. Textural and satisfying like few SB in this price point anywhere in the world.

2006 Belle Meade 10 Year Old "K&L Exclusive" Single Barrel #2573 Cask Strength Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 02-08-2017
Barrel Number #2573 is more woodsy and deep than her sister. The nose is all coffee and cocoa, leafy forest shrubs, a flinty herbal and slightly medicinal note, and powerful baking spice top note. The palate is quite rich, with a wonderful cracked pepper component that balances the sweet fruit and earthy grain perfectly. The fruit and spicy pepper build into a long dry finish with an a subtle saltiness to it. There’s that MGP brine, but here it’s incredibly well balanced within the larger package. It’s incredible how two similar casks can provide such wonderful contrast to each other. Although at slightly lower proof, this cask packs the knockout punch while the other rocks you to sleep. Hard to decide which is better, you’ll just have to taste them both.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Old Forester "1920 Prohibition Style" Kentucky Bourbon Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 02-03-2017
The Old Forester 1920 is as fabulous as it is frustrating. Yes, it's no age statement! Some of the marketing has alluded to it being an old expression, but nothing concrete can be found. The mashbill remains a mystery, though we can assume it's the modern Old Forester recipe (72%, 18% Rye, 10% Malt), Brown-Foreman isn't above experimenting. All we know about this stuff is that it's high proof, it's got something to do with Prohibition and it's absolutely delicious. Big powerful nose of pepper and rye spice unfolds into caramelized apples and dark exotic spice. The spice takes front and center on entry, but brings in some red fruits and burnt sugar as it lingers toward a long soft finish of nutmeg, cloves and green apples. The only other fact we know for sure is that we'll all be kicking ourselves when we finish our bottle and realize we should have bought more.
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart
WE 91

Chateau de Laubade Special Reserve Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 02-03-2017
We so rarely get to try brandy from this period and when we do they're so expensive that they don't make sense no matter how good they are. It's such a treasure to experience a product like this, but it definitely is a different experience than most are used to. At this age the intensity of fruit is incredible with deep dried plums and dense nuttiness taking over from the spice and oak of younger eau-de-vie. This esoteric style represent the true character of old school Armagnac. The palate continues with powerful dried fruits paired with a long drying tannin, which provides structure without being viscous at all. Maybe this is not the big monstrous brandy that's going to win over the bourbon lover, but it's an absolute delight and a spectacular value for fully mature 50+ year old Armagnac.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

Writer's Tears Pure Pot Still Irish Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 01-09-2017
This elusive and quite wonderful little whiskey has been on constant request at the story for years. Actually, I've been telling people "No, sorry we can't get that" every other week of so for over 7 years now! It's one of those things that people fall in love with over there and don't realize they can't just pick it up when they get home. Well, the wait is finally over. This wonderful offering from the exceptional Walsh Distillery in County Carlow is easily one of the best values in Irish Whiskey. Hailing from Ireland's historic east, this area is famous for whiskey and beer thanks to the incredible waters that bubble below the surface, but no large distillery has had a presence here for more than 100 years. In the 1800s, the Irish Whiskey industry was on fire. Consumption, production and exports, continued to break records despite social and political upheaval in Ireland. Funny thing about Irish Whiskey, because of the unique process of blending malted and un-malted barley and distilling in pot-stills, it was actually considered the top quality whiskey in the world pre-prohibition. That's because then, and now, the majority of people didn't want stinky peaty malty single malt from Scotland, but instead were looking for a whiskey that's rich, smooth and easy to drink. Irish Whiskey was the best choice for most consumers before the controversial introduction of grian (column still) production in the 1830s. When this low cost and low flavored spirit was introduced there were legal battles across the world about whether the product could actually be called whiskey. The Scots realized early that they could cut their flavorful malts with this new type of whiskey. This new lower flavored Scotch started to beat the Irish in terms of cost and attain similar levels "smoothness". Across the Irish Sea, Ireland's stalwart large distillers considered the grain whiskies inferior and committed to producing only higher quality pot still whiskey. By never adopted this cheaper technology despite the nationality of it's inventory, Aeneas Coffey, they'd unwittingly caused the decline, which would almost destroy the industry completely. In the coming decades, the loss of Ireland's primary market due to alcoholic prohibition, was the final blow to the struggling Irish Whiskey industry. It wasn't until the '70s that the industry acquiesced and began to produce whiskey in the style most know it today, Jameson Blended Whiskey. Any even LESS flavorful version of the Scottish style blend. Now, we have this special whiskey, a recreation of what might have been served to Yeats or Joyce might have been served at the pub in Dublin during their youth. It takes us back to that era when the Irish dominated both the whiskey and literary world. Regardless of the historical importance of this style of whiskey, what really matters is that it's absolutely LOVELY to drink. It's the sort of thing that makes you realize why in the 19th century Irish Whiskey was widely considered to be the world's best dram. Like Redbreast or Green Spot, the Writer's Tears sets a new bench mark for people who want rich, complex yet ultra smooth whiskey. The whiskey is even more open than those other two, shedding the dense grainy fruitiness, for a lifted nose of citrus, rich malt, and rich wild honey. The palate shows more of the pot still intensity, with dark grains and rich spicy malt relenting to the dense floral and more honey notes on the finish. The finish is soft and round, bringing the whole package together with a pretty little knot. Maybe this isn't the whiskey to buy for Scotch nerd friend that loves Laphroaig, but it's probably a great choice for just about everyone else in the world.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

1987 Domaine du Cardinat 28 Year Old "K&L Exclusive" Bas Armagnac (750ml)
Review Date: 01-06-2017
We've widely found that the 87 vintage was spectacular across Gascogne -producing some of the most complex and powerful brandies we've tasted. IN no place is this more clear than the western edge of Gers where the soil types are much more similar to Les Landes, as opposed to the more clay driven soils in the rest of Gers, known as Ténarèze. The geology and geography is most similar to that of Baraillon only a 30 minute drive to the north, but Domaine de Cardinat's southern sloping vineyards provide for a very even harvest, as opposed to Baraillon's small parcels speckled across the hills behind the domaine. It's hard to connect the topography with the specific flavors we experience in their products, but Cardinat makes a very ester driven lacquer box style in all vintages. What stands out about the '87 vintages is the wonderful and open fruit flavors and a distinct cola note on the palate, showing more elegance than the other two vintages from this domaine. 87 is briming with complexity and texture, tons of prune, but also some other exotic fruits and a wonderful subtle nuttiness. It may not have the elegance of some of the top houses in Les Landes, but we're getting very close and at a fraction of price of a Domaine De Boingnères or Chateau de Briat. I think this one is probably perfect for traditionalists wanting to experience really authentic high quality Bas-Armagnac.
Price: $74.99 Add To Cart

Casa Dragones Blanco Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 01-03-2017
Ultra smooth blanco component from the wildly successful Casa Dragones Sipping Tequila Joven. The spicy black pepper and dark mineral notes are softened by a third distillation. Usually, I would avoid triple distilled Tequila because they tend to lack character, but this Blanco is definitely the exception to that rule of thumb. The result is a fruity, whimsical blanco, that provides good depth and structure thanks to the ultra high quality lowland fruit that's being used. Drinking Blanco is becoming cool again and this is one of the best options to get you away from the oaky extra anejos or the ultra intensely flavored old school blancos.
Price: $58.99 Add To Cart

Casa Dragones Sipping Tequila (750ml - ships as a 1.5L due to bottle shape)
Review Date: 01-03-2017
This improbable product has been one of our most popular ultra premium offerings. Building on what others in the industry have done (with varying levels of success, e.g. Don Julio 70th Anniversary Anejo, Patron Platinum & Maestro Dobel) Casa Dragones has reinvented the Joven category as an ultra premium style. We're used to having aged rums filtered to remove color, but it's a much more striking process in a spirit like Tequila. The key to Casa Dragones' success in this unusual category or aged colorless agave spirit is the blending process. By blending Blanco and Extra Anejo, the spirit retains a freshness and intensity that is lost other similar products. Because Dragones uses lowland agave, we retain tons of spice and mineral despite the rich oakiness of the Extra Anejo. The two flavors work wonders and result in an utterly balanced product that retains character and provides similar complexity to the great sipping spirits from around the world. In addition, the elegant presentation makes it one of the best gifts for any lover of spirits regardless of taste or proficiency.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart
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Ohishi "'K&L Exclusive"' Single Sherry Cask #1023 Japanese Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-13-2016
This magic little cask of Ohishi proves again there is just nothing wrong with rice whisky, nothing at all. The nose is wonderfully fresh and keeps you on your feet for a big dose of fresh cut apple, followed by a deep dark Oloroso note, and sweet caramelized citrus. Subtle yet full of life, the whole thing builds and brings you some lovely hints of funk around these very pretty fruit flavors. The palate is pretty weighty, but balance is the key factor. The freshness isn't lost at all, and some cocoa and barrel spice along with dark vanilla bean and slight earthy warehouse funk take over. It's so utterly drinkable it will be difficult to put down, if you know what I'm saying. Beware!
Price: $74.99 Add To Cart

Rhum Clement "K&L Exclusive" Cask Stength Single Barrel Agricole Martinique Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 12-13-2016
When I first nosed this cask I knew immediately that we had to have it. It's full-strength-full tilt Agricole aged in NEW AMERICAN OAK. The perfect crossover to get bourbon people into Agricole Rhum WITHOUT sacrificing authenticity. On first nosing, you get a strong, dry oak tannin, but a moment later the dry feeling is gone and a spectacular complexity arises from the glass. This baby loves air. Deep dark spices, kola nut, mahogany, flambéed orange peel. The palate is vibrant, with subtle funk of Agricole never lost around the rich oak spice, powerful tropical fruit, and long dry finish. BUT WAIT, add one tiny drop of water -this thing is cask strength after all - and this little puppy explodes. Gone are the dark oak tannins and replaced with candied orange peel, sweet Tahitian vanilla, and this underlying topicality that's so inviting. On the palate it explodes with rich exotic spices, marzipan, ginger, coffee, and salted fruits. Sometimes adding water breaks rum as it does with many brandies, but in this case it reacts much like a fine single malt. Without a doubt one of the finest cane spirits we've ever had on our shelves at any price point. A legend by all accounts.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

2012 Au Bon Climat "Historic Vineyards Collection-Bien Nacido Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay
Review Date: 11-16-2016
I tasted this gorgeous little bottle next to some of the world's top burgundies last week. Surprising balance and depth for the price and while it stood out as distinctly SoCal in nature, for the first time it was a good thing. Lovely aromatics on the nose with excellent integration of fruit and toasty oak. The palate is big tropical fruit and well structured without any popcorn or overt sweetness. A lovely example of what SO Cal does so well for such a reasonable price.

2014 Clos de la Bonnette "Roches d'Arbuel" Condrieu
Review Date: 09-21-2016
An absolutely wonderful additional to our northern Rhone white offering, this stupendous producer is one of those world class offerings that's yet to hit the limelight, but surely will soon. Big nose of the finest buttered popcorn, although the butter is powerful, it's not overpowering and aeration brings deep yellow fruit, white flowers and big minerality. This is is what Viognier should be and exactly the reason I list Condrieu as one of my preferred appellations. Sure it's not cheap, but it roundly best big powerful whites in the price range in almost every other category.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine de la Réserve d'O "La Reserve d'O" Saint Guilhem le Desert Blanc
Review Date: 09-21-2016
This lovely little wine drinks like something much more seriously priced. Big nose of apple and pear, with strong mineral notes behind. The palate is structured, but open with incredible complexity, hinting at a great potential for aging. It's hard to compare this to anything else due to the unusual blend, but it easily beats most southern Rhone blends at twice the price.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2014 Clos de la Bonnette "Légende Bonnetta" Condrieu
Review Date: 09-21-2016
This is just a monster in every way, what the Roches d'Arbuel has in opulence and openness this wine has in power and longevity. This is a world-class wine that deserves 5-10 years in your cellar and will likely become one of your most appreciated purchases. There's really nothing on this quality level and price point in the category. Despite the increase oak utilization, this shows LESS buttery oak and much more mineral intensity. Deep, complex and ultra-lengthy, these is clearly in its youthful phase, but still SO pleasurable right now.
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart

2013 Knez Winery Anderson Valley Pinot Noir
Review Date: 09-21-2016
As usual, Knez is producing some of the most authentic and affordable Pinot in CA. Big notes of hibiscus, rose hips, Bing cherry, and baking spice. The aromatic fruit is perfectly balanced with an exotic woodsy notes. On the palate, well structured with out any flab, and that lovely earth lacquer box thing continues to frame the fruit wonderfully. Powerful acidity that remains balanced throughout. Some real-deal wine made by some real-deal-ass wine makers.
Price: $32.99 Add To Cart
VN 90

2013 Hendry "Block 13" Napa Valley Merlot
Review Date: 09-21-2016
Most people see Hendry and think Zinfandel, but this wonderful Merlot should be redefining them across all categories. Round old-school Merlot in the most classic sense, with big, ripe, plummy fruit and deep, dark earthiness almost brooding, but never sweet. Absolutely lovely structure and incredible length that makes me think of the really old school CA wine that few make any longer. A real outlier in the region and category in general.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine Santamaria Patrimonio Muscat du Cap Corse (Corsica)
Review Date: 09-21-2016
A phenomenal value for a very special muscat comparable to the best from Beaume De Venise at a fraction of the price. Wonderful Muscat nose of deep dried citrus and exotic flowers. The palate exhibits stupendous acidity and a lovely bitter sweet quality that reminds me of the very best marmalade. A unique example of this very special and difficult-to-do-well style.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine Begude Sauvignon Blanc Pays d'Oc
Review Date: 09-21-2016
Absolutely glorious! Every year the Begude SB gets better and better and this is BY far the BEST we've had. Ultra tropical, light but not boring, zippy but not sharp. Super-duper pricing and SO MUCH PLEASURE. Cases all around, cases.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart

2015 Chante Cigale "L'Apostrophe" Mediterranée
Review Date: 09-21-2016
Wowwy wow, I was not expecting this to be SO good. Awesome dark fruit and depth on the nose, followed by a rich texture that's perfectly balanced by the juicy acidity. I guess the 2015s are going to be the real deal. Can't believe the balance and depth they've achieved at this price point.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2015 Mönchhof Erdener Prälat Riesling Auslese Mosel
Review Date: 08-25-2016
A legendary wine and one of the best Erdener Pralat I've ever tasted. Focused yet complex - this wine should evolve for several decades, but it will be difficult to keep your hands off it. Magical!!!
Price: $48.99 Add To Cart

2015 Leitz Rüdesheimer Riesling Trocken Rheingau
Review Date: 08-24-2016
An absolute dream for Trocken riesling lovers finding that perfect balance between aromatic intensity, textural richness, and powerful acidity. A nose of freshly crush meyer lemon - peel and all. Big notes of limestone and sea spray which all come together on the palate with great richness and focus. Beaming all the way through it never stops and delivers the goods with out seeming austere or hard edge like some other trockens. Leitz kills it all the time.
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart
RP 90

2012 Vignobles des 2 Lunes "Périgée" Pinot Noir
Review Date: 08-24-2016
I'm definitely impressed with these 2 Lunes wines, but the pinot out performed even my already lofted expectations. The nose is exactly what I want from Alsatian pinot without any semblance of under ripeness or veggie quality, yet expressive and powerful. Super gorgeous pointed cherry, flecks of earthy mineral and a subtle texture makes this one of the most drinkable and delicious Pinot Noirs on the shelf for those seeking balance and freshness.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

2011 Vignobles des 2 Lunes "Comète" Cremant d'Alsace
Review Date: 08-24-2016
This fabulous little wine took me utterly by surprise. We get stuck assuming that many Cremant are built as some sort of approximation of their more expensive counterparts in Champagne, but that's not at all the case here. I'm totally enamored because this is different and delicious. The nose is all creamy sherbet -Orange sherbet, tangerine peel, and soft clean nuttiness. The palate, the citrus turns up, but remains totally balanced. Creamy, but lifted. Total pleasure going down and something utterly unique.
Price: $21.99 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.

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 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

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

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