Staff Favorites - Thomas Smith

Thomas Smith

Reviews

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2017 Château Léoube Côtes de Provence Rosé
Review Date: 06-17-2018
There's a lot to love about this rose. Soft cherries and strawberries on the nose. The acid is totally reigned in--just a touch softer than your typical Provence rose that nicely matches light citrus and red fruit tones. Yet, my favorite element of this wine is the finish. Soft, mellow, and clean this is the wine I want to sip on my front porch this summer.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart
DC 95

2015 Graci "Arcuria" Etna Bianco
Review Date: 06-17-2018
In a recent tasting of wines from Etna, this wine was a total stunner. I don't think I've ever had an Etna Bianco like this, much less an Italian wine. Despite the fact that it still showcased all the gorgeous elements of minerality and focus you tend to associate with Etna Bianco, the Graci Arcuria has the added element of flintiness--in the glass it was reminiscent of white Burgundy. Agile, light, intensely powerful with an almost vicious acidity, this wine absolutely blew me away. It's time for me to move the needle on what I thought these wines are capable of.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

2015 Château Pesquié "Terrasses" Ventoux
Review Date: 06-05-2018
Pesquie is one of those year-in-year out values from the Southern Rhone that never fails to disappoint. I’m really happy to report that the 2015 does a whole lot more than that. There’s plenty of gamey, savory notes on the nose with a touch of smokey, and round, dark fruits. The palate follows up with rich, dense blackberry and black cherry notes with that characteristic snap of acid that Pesquie always has, really popping the fruit and invigorating the palate.Dark and juicy, yet smooth, polished and totally accessible, I can really see the strength of the vintage in depth and concentration of the fruit here. A great buy.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart
RP 92

2015 Xavier Vignon Vacqueyras
Review Date: 06-04-2018
The 2015 Xavier Vignon Vacqueyras is just another reason why you should be drinking 2015 Southern Rhones. The nose is full of smoke and earth, above a floor of dark fruit. Nice and rich, it leans toward a more opulent style. It is mouthcoating with dark fruits and raspberries with a spicy finish. The best thing about this wine is it goes to this perfect place with plenty of fruit, without becoming a jammy fruit bomb. This is wine is an absolute killer value.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
RP 91 - 93

2015 Xavier Vignon Cairanne
Review Date: 06-04-2018
I was pleasantly surprised by the entire 2015 line-up from Xavier Vignon. The Cairanne has a striking aromatic profile, with blackberry fruit aromas beneath a slightly perfumed note of lavender and garrigue. Nice, light, and fresh with poppy acidity this is Southern Rhone easy-drinking at its best. If you have loved wines like the Delas Cotes-du-Rhone in the past, you should definitely check this out. It is a big step up that is still at a great, everyday price.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart
RP 91 - 93

2015 Château Saint-Roch "Chimères" Côtes du Roussillon-Villages
Review Date: 05-19-2018
Sourced from just outside the village of Maury, I was struck by the gorgeous nose on this wine. Highly aromatic with blackberry, wet stone, and gamey notes. I love that the wine strikes a more balanced medium body, with such a dark fruit profile. It makes for a more balanced wine. The palate has elements of blackberry compote, minerality and a slight garrigue/tobacco note, with a unsweetened chocolate component at the finish. Not an ounce of tannin on this wine, it will show perfectly right out of the bottle. A tick darker and more concentrated than the Bastide Miraflors, this is another brilliant wine from Lafage.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart
RP 93

2016 Moulin de la Gardette "Tradition" Gigondas
Review Date: 05-14-2018
I am so excited to see that the 2016 Moulin de la Gardette “Tradition” back at K&L. This is a legendary customer and staff favorite around here, and coming right off the back of exceptionally good 2015 vintage, I am thrilled to report that the 2016 is even better. I have a soft spot for the “Tradition”. Of the two wines of Moulin de la Gardette, it is a little more wild, rustic, and true to place. This is exactly what Gigondas should taste like. And it is delicious. The nose in unbelievably aromatic: earthy as all get-out with perfumed elements of garrigue and broody dark fruit tones. On the palate, the richness of this wine is absolutely full-throttle. Densely structured with plenty of tannin, the quality of the 2016 vintage has really pushed what is normally a charming and rustic wine to become a serious wine of extraordinary high quality, and I have no doubt will be even better in the years to come.

2016 Moulin de la Gardette "Cuvée Ventabren" Gigondas
Review Date: 05-14-2018
This is the perfect example of why I love the wines of Gigondas. The 2016 “Ventabren” is a stunning display of power, focus and balance. Every tiny corner of this wine seems pristinely polished, and nearly every component of this wine works beautifully with one another. In the aromas you will find dark fruits, garrigue and black pepper while on the palate generous fruit flavors of blackberry coulis accented with spice. I really love how this wine is structured--you can feel the energy and potential in this wine like a coiled spring. Yet, the tannins are fine enough to be accessible with a little bit of decanting. Of the dozen or so vintages of Moulin de la Gardette I have tasted, the 2016 “Ventabren” strikes a new chord for balance and quality from one of my all-time favorite producers. It may be awhile before we see another Gigondas like this.

2016 Clos de la Bonnette Syrah Vieilles Vignes Collines Rhodannienes
Review Date: 05-14-2018
The 2016 Clos de la Bonnette is a stunning example of cool climate Syrah. Even in an extraordinarily high-quality site like Cote-Rotie, it definitely stands out from the pack. The aromatics are incredibly powerful: tons of black peppercorn spice and red fruits soar out of the glass. But what I love about this wine is the weight and body. It’s almost ethereal-light, yet doesn’t sacrifice intensity or concentration. Likewise, there is an incredibly bright acidity that is perfect for a wide variety of food pairings. This is a fresh and brilliant take on Syrah. A must have for anyone who loves the variety.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2015 Guy Farge "Harmonie" Cornas
Review Date: 05-14-2018
The Guy Farge “Harmonie” is a perfect example of how extraordinary vineyard sites, when treated with care and thoughtfulness, always produce superior wine. The “Harmonie:” is sourced from one of the great vineyards in Cornas, La Reynarde. Sandwiched in between the plots of Allemand and Clape, the two of the most sought-after and hard-to-find wines in the region. In the glass, the Farge is classic Cornas. There arerich, densely layered, dark fruits with elements of bacon fat and leather. Structured and well-defined, there is plenty of tannin, yet it is finely-textured, making the wine totally approachable. I was really shocked out how well the wine showed right out of the bottle. This has definitely secured the spot as my go-to Cornas.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
JD 94 RP 91

2016 Clos de la Bonnette "Roches d'Arbuel" Condrieu
Review Date: 05-14-2018
The 2016 Clos de la Bonnette “Roches d’Arbuel” is my favorite release from Bonnette this vintage. I find that plenty of people are familiar with Viognier, but know much less about Condrieu, the original home of Viognier, which is grows in the Northern Rhone Valley on the Western slopes just south of Ampuis. The 2016 Bonnette is a showstopper of a wine. It shows soaring aromatics of honeysuckle and apricot, with softer moments of peaches and almonds. It has tons of weight, richness, and texture. This is one of the most opulent white wines you will find anywhere, with complexity and intensity that will make your head spin. The “Roches d’Arbuel” earns my top recommendation for anyone who loves Viognier.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart
RP 92 JD 90

2015 Château de Montfaucon Clairette "Vin de Mme la Comtesse" Lirac Blanc
Review Date: 05-11-2018
One of the true treasures of the Southern Rhone lies on the property surrounding the Château de Montfaucon. Here, the a small plot of 144 year old Clairette vines produces one of the most compelling and distinct wines of the region. For decades Clairette has been used as a blending grape in Cotes-du-Rhone and Chateauneuf-du-Pape blanc. But here, it takes center stage, displaying ripe aromas of pure fruit. There is an intensity and minerality to this wine that is incredibly focused. A nice wallop of acid keeps the palate fresh and lively, but should certain age remarkably well. There is just nothing else out there like this.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
RP 91 WS 91

2014 Château de Montfaucon "Baron Louis" Lirac
Review Date: 05-11-2018
I love the deep, black color of this wine. Hailing from the older vines on the property, the “Baron Louis” is classic Lirac. Brawny, and powerful with hints of smoke, depth and richness. Fruit on fruit, but with tons of earthy and herbal components to accompany, this is a wine for anyone who loves big Chateauneuf. This is dead-serious Southern Rhone, expressing all the hallmarks of some of the greatest wines in the region. It is absolutely nuts this wine costs $20.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
WS 91 RP 90

2015 Château de Montfaucon Lirac
Review Date: 05-11-2018
You can definitely taste the slightly elevated level of Syrah in the Montfaucon Lirac. There’s a burst of black pepper on the nose, and on the palate it leans towards black-fruited over red. The wine has a great acid line, that seems to run parallel to the fruit, giving the wine energy and verve without taking over the show. The tannins are just rustic enough to be charming, but soft enough to be accessible. This delivers just a touch more oomph than the Cotes-du-Rhone.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart

2015 Château de Montfaucon Côtes du Rhône
Review Date: 05-11-2018
I’ve tasted and reviewed a lot of Cotes-du-Rhone, far too many to count. Yet, the Montfaucon, without doubt, is my year-in-year-out winner without any question. Super-dependable and always delicious, it over-delivers every single time I pop a bottle. Beautifully aromatic with notes of strawberry and a hint of garrigue. Bright on the palate with warm fruit and just a hint of tannin texture on the tail end. There is no question you will love this wine. It is really just that charming. I’ve never taken home a mixed case of reds without it.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart
RP 90

2016 Baron de Montfaucon Côtes du Rhône Blanc
Review Date: 05-08-2018
The Montfaucon blanc has always been my go-to Southern Rhone white. I love the generous weight and texture of this wine on the palate, and unlike so many of its peers, there is still a nice crisp snap of acidity throughout. But most of all, I love that they push clairette, a relatively obscure grape variety, to the front of the blend here. It tamps down the viognier, and brings really lush floral tones to the nose. It's a great example of Southern Rhone white that will pleasantly surprise you, everytime.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart
WS 92

2014 Domaine de la Begude Bandol Rouge
Review Date: 05-08-2018
This is one of those wines that I knew I would fall head over heels for within moments of pouring a glass. Unbelievably explosive aromas of red fruits, black fruits with meaty undertones and an abundance of raw power. On the palate, the acidity and the fruit interplay beautifully with structure creating a seamless character on the wine. After tasting, I was surprised how well this walks the line between upfront fruit and old world style and character. It checks all the boxes for me: fruit, character, balance and sense of place. Anyone who feels like they are in a rut with their same old wine choices needs to try one of these bottles. It is absolutely outstanding.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart
WE 94

2015 Domaine Cabirau "First Things First" Maury Sec
Review Date: 04-06-2018
This is classic Cabirau. Big, concentrated, dark and rich. Hearing the story of late-picked grapes, you can absolutely taste the added weight and extra fruitiness in the wine. Tons of velvety black cherry, black cherry and plum notes along with more earthy notes of graphite and slate. This is voluptuous and supple. This is a serious wine that delivers on flavor and is sure to impress.

2016 Domaine Cabirau "Serge & Nicolas" Maury Sec
Review Date: 04-06-2018
This is one of the most distinct wines I’ve had from Domaine Cabirau. Normally I associate their wines with the bigger, juicier styles of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre blends found throughout Maury. Yet this wine has utterly captivating floral aromas, bright acidity, and a lifted style. Don’t get me wrong, this is still a very fruit-forward wine, that is modern and polished. But, I love the tangy acidity, the hint of sweetness, and the abundance of strawberry, raspberry, and bing cherry notes. This is hands-down my favorite Cabirau to date.

2016 Domaine Cabirau Côtes du Roussillon
Review Date: 04-06-2018
I thought that this was an incredible value, it goes on the list of fantastic under $15 reds along with the Bastide Miraflors and the Tessellae old-vine GSM. But what's great about it is that it expresses its own regionality and character. I found it to be full of ripe plum and blackberry coulis, with a tannin profile that adds build and structure to the wine yet is still smooth and accessible. Spicy, juicy, and perfect for a glass of wine after a long day of work.

2015 Domaine Calendal "Plan de Dieu" Côtes du Rhône-Villages
Review Date: 03-27-2018
It just goes to show you that everytime you try and put a wine region into a box, you're going to find a new wine that totally goes against the grain. The 2015 Domaine Calendal does this in the most perfect way. Where I was expecting, a dark, rich wine showcasing ripeness, this wine takes a totally interesting turn. First of all, the aromatics are absolutely explosive. Blackberry, cherry and spicy, vanilla notes soar out of the glass. On the palate, this is a bright, acid-driven wine that totally livens and awakens the palate. There aren't gobs and gobs of fruit, but really bright and fresh elements, that keep bringing you back to the glass. When we opened the bottle, we tasted a full pour, then another, then another. That's how charming and lively this is. In a sea of $12.99 Cotes-du-Rhone, the Domaine Calendal is a much more serious take on the Southern Rhone, and a great bottle to drink tonight.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart
RP 94

2015 Domaine Saint-Damien Côte du Rhône-Villages Plan de Dieu Vieilles Vignes
Review Date: 03-27-2018
Plan De Dieu is a Southern Rhone commune that has been gaining more and more traction in recent years. Tucked between Chateauneuf-du-Pape to the Southwest and Gigondas to the east, this wide, open plain is exposed to the elements resulting is drastically lowers yields and condensed, powerful wines. The Saint Damien is an excellent example of old-world wine making from this up-and-coming site. Dark and broody on the nose, yet filled with blackfruit and resonating earthiness this easily falls into the camp of old-school winemaking. There is a wonderful tannic backbone to the wine that gives it balance on the wine and a resonating finish you just don't find on wines at this price point. This hits all the sweet spots for me: sense of place, quality of wine making, and so tasty I wouldn't hesitate to take it home any night of the week.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart
JD 90 RP 90

2015 Yves Cuilleron "Cavanos" Saint-Joseph Vieilles Vignes
Review Date: 03-12-2018
I’ve been obsessive about St. Joseph recently. It’s one of the largest appellations in the Northern Rhone with 26 different villages and a plurality of different climates, soils, and sites. There’s plenty of good St. Joseph out there, but also plenty that isn’t good—so it’s important to make your selections judiciously. The ‘Cavanos’ uses the ancient name for the commune of Charvanay, the most Northern in St. Joseph and one of top sites within the St. Joseph AOC. It has gorgeous aromas of black pepper spice. On the palate there is dark fruit with a hint of oak as well as lighter red fruits. Stunning acidity really brightens the fruit, and all the elements hit you exactly where you want them to. This is St. Joseph does Cote-Rotie. One of my favorite wines on the shelf right now.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
VN 93 JS 92

2016 Saint Cosme Côtes du Rhône
Review Date: 03-12-2018
Slightly unusual for a Cotes-du-Rhone, the Saint Cosme is 100% Syrah. Despite the fact it is sourced from the Southern Rhone commune of Vinsobres, it is a tremendous value for anyone who loves Northern Rhone wines, but not their prices. The nose expresses depth, with blackberries and cranberries. Nicely concentrated with rustic tannins this is an old-school wine that tastes unmistakably like the old world. On the palate there are brambles, dark black fruits, plums, yet I would put this in the off-fruity camp. Absolutely traditional and totally classic.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart

2015 Clos Bellane Côtes du Rhône-Villages Valréas
Review Date: 03-12-2018
I have really been drawn to the wines of Valreas. This tiny commune sits at the northernmost region of the Southern Rhone valley. Tucked into the foothills at higher a elevation than other Rhone villages, the alpine air sweeps off the mountains and cools the vines. The result is an wine with greater aromatic intensity, and bright, crispy acid. Ripeness is still prevalent here, with blue and black fruits above a core of earthiness. Nice and concentrated while being still maintaining a firm structure, this is every bit as good a Cotes-du—Rhone as you can buy at under $20.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart
RP 91

2016 Domaine du Bagnol Cassis Blanc
Review Date: 03-12-2018
Looking for interesting wines from the south of France? Check out the wines from Cassis. This tiny appellation produces rich, low-acid wines that pair beautifully with seafood and are totally unique. The Domaine du Bagnol is a blend of 51% Marsanne, 31% Clairette Blanc, and 18% Ugni Blanc. The nose shows hints of citrus and spice. The palate is rich and textured, with flavors of lemon and marzipan. Very balanced and full of Marsanne character, it’s a great wine for interesting food pairings, or anyone who loves Cotes-du-Rhone Blanc.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2014 Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru
Review Date: 03-06-2018
This is a really difficult review to write. There are plenty of notes from professional listed above, who have far more experience tasting wines of this caliber than I have, or possibly ever will have. But for someone who loves wine, and especially someone who loves white Burgundy, I can tell you that being able to taste wine of this caliber is such a pleasure, and totally thrilling. The oak touch on this wine is very apparent, but the quality of the fruit holds it remarkably well.Unbelievably concentrated with racy acid. Citrus notes really peak on the palate, with a background of deeper flavors that move and cycle through the palate: hints of lemon, lime zest, minerality. The finish is deep, resonating, and long. The quality is so apparent, it seems certain that even now it is not at its best and will continue to improve over time. This is why I love white burgundy.

2013 Site Wines "Larner Vineyard" Grenache Ballard Canyon Santa Barbara
Review Date: 03-05-2018
This is a wine that Grenache drinkers absolutely need to check out. Actually, this is a wine for anyone that loves dark, rich, fruit-forward wines. At times, with its thin skins, Grenache can turn out light and flimsy, but with enough extraction and great fruit sources, it can be deftly powerful while still maintaining balance. The Site Wines Grenache is definitely in the later category, with rich, black berry and black cherry fruits delivered on silky tannins. This is definitely closer kin to Priorat than the Southern Rhone and is easily the best California Grenache I've had in the last year.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
RP 94 VN 91

2010 Domaine de Montbourgeau Vin Jaune de l'Etoile (620ml)
Review Date: 03-02-2018
The Vin Jaune by Montbourgeau is a must-buy for anyone out there who loves wines from the Jura and exceptional Vin Jaune. It is head and shoulders this best Vin Jaune I’ve come across at K&L. What I love about it is that it isn’t just about the sous voile character, there are so many other wonderful, complex pieces to this wine. The balance here is totally dialed-in. The acidity is absolutely nuts. There are points where it delivers like a classic wine, and others like a lambic ale. Yes, there are those notes that are classic to Vin Jaune-mushrooms and nuttiness, but more interesting are the citrus and petrol notes. What a slammin’ wine.
Price: $76.99 Add To Cart
RP 97

2012 Domaine de Montbourgeau "Cuvée Speciale" l'Etoile
Review Date: 03-02-2018
This is my favorite of the wines from Montbourgeau. The aromatics are absolutely perfect on this wine, present but not overly aggressive. The nose is full of sous voile aromas of earth, almonds and mushrooms. The palate of the wine is tightly focused, it hits you with a surge of lemon and oyster shells, then carries through with classic Jura flavors and a deep, resonating finish. I adore this wine. Don’t get me wrong, I love Vin Jaune, but for me it’s a bit much as a dinner wine, but the Cuvee Speciale has plenty of oxidative character, without going over the top. This would be absolutely devastating with roast chicken.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
RP 94

2014 Domaine de Montbourgeau "En Banode" l'Etoile
Review Date: 03-02-2018
This is the perfect entry-point for those of you who are interested in wines from the Jura. A blend of Chardonnay and Savanign, this wine is lean, and backed by powerful acidity that would make it an incredible food wine. There is a ton of lime and floral notes, neatly framed by just the slightest notes of nutty, oxidative character. Light and breathy, but focused and powerful this is exactly the type of wine I'm drawn to from the region. This is a crowd-pleasing Jura wine that anyone would find delicious.
Price: $31.99 Add To Cart
RP 93

2015 Danjean-Berthoux Givry "Meix Au Roi"
Review Date: 02-26-2018
The Berthoux wines are exceptional, under-the-radar buys for anyone looking for quality pinot at stellar price points. The Meix Au Roi is a touch more structured than the Bourgogne Rouge. It's deeper and richer with just a touch of that signature sweetness of the producer. Earthy strawberry, elements of bing cherries. Really nicely structured. You really don't need to be Burgundy aficionado to love these wines--they're for anyone who loves great pinot noir.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2015 Danjean-Berthoux Bourgogne Rouge "Chaume Ronde"
Review Date: 02-26-2018
Where have you been all my life? Super aromatic with spice, cranberry, and a gorgeous purity of fruit. Big acid. Wild, fresh, and fruity. I'm always a bit skeptical of recommending wines at the price range for cellaring, but I'm confident that the structural elements on this wine will actually improve if you want to case-down and forget it for a few years. But with that said, it's totally delicious now.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart

2016 Tenuta Carretta Gavi
Review Date: 02-26-2018
Who doesn't love Gavi? The wines are bright, fresh, and totally delicious. The Carretta has a brilliant nose with bright citrus and gentle floral notes. Gorgeous, zesty acid on the palate with apple notes. Just barely medium body, its weight is light enough to be refreshing. This will absolutely kill with a prosciutto and cheese.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

2010 Vigneti Massa "Monleale" Barbera
Review Date: 02-26-2018
This is one of my current go-tos for anyone looking for a wine that'll make your head spin. Richer and bolder than most of the Barbera's I've com across, the 2010 Massa delivers on impact of fruit. The nose retains the classic Barbera profile, ethereal with touches of smoke and spice, but the palate full of sweet red-fruited flavors of maraschino cherry, and blackberry compote. An absolute stunner of a wine.
Price: $28.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$22.99

2015 Purple Hands "Stoller Vineyard" Dundee Hills Pinot Noir
Review Date: 02-25-2018
This producers has steadily been gaining steam as a top-notch producer that belongs among Oregon super-star producers like Domaine Serene and Domaine Drouhin. The nose here is absolutely gorgeous. It has the Burgundian style dead-to-rights. Totally floral, blackfruited and powerful. Great weight on the palate, with plenty of savory and earthy characteristics. Wonderfully smooth, with just echoes of tannic structure on the finish, this is a wine that'll make any Oregon Pinot lover weak in the knees.
Price: $47.99 Add To Cart
WS 94 WE 92

2015 Yves Duport "Origin'L Reserve" Bugey Brut
Review Date: 02-25-2018
In my opinion, the best cremant at K&L hands-down. Tons of interesting notes on the nose: wild apple, almond blossoms, and a touch of lemon zest. But on the palate, this is all baked pear. With vigorous bubbles and dialed-in tartness, the Origin Reserve is light, crisp and fresh. This is what you want in your glass on a warm afternoon.
Price: Hidden View Price

2015 Chante Cigale "l'Extrait" Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc
Review Date: 02-25-2018
The Chante Cigale "l'Extrait" is a blend 60% Roussanne, 40% Grenache blanc, and a step up from the classic Chante Cigale Chateauneuf-du-pape Blanc that is a year-in-year-out staff and customer favorite. Fermented in concrete eggs with nine months of sur-lees aging, the l'Extrait is a gorgeous new take from a classic producer. The roussanne expression really punches through on the nose, full of pears, citrus apricot and floral notes. On the palate, there's that Southern Rhone big weight, and thick texture. But what I love most about this wine is the zippy acid profile, which surges through the wine, accentuating the fruit, and leading to a resonating finish.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine Lafage "Tessellae - Old Vines GSM" Côtes du Roussillon
Review Date: 01-29-2018
Seriously, Jean-Marc Larfage is just killing it right now. In addition to being one of the most in-demand consulting winemakers in France, he continues to put out unbelievable values from his region of specialty: the Languedoc and Roussillon. Take for instance the 2015 Tessellae. Farmed from over 100 year-old-vines, this wine is utterly delicious, displaying flavors of raspberry coulis and bing cherries above a darker, medium bodied blackberry fruit. Hints of charcoal, smoke, and well-integrated spice contribute to a nuanced aroma. It is warm, upfront, fruity and an incredibly well-made wine that will work with plenty of different types of cuisines and is good for any night of the week. I would argue that at this moment, Lafage is producing the best value wines anywhere in the world. If you’ve loved the Kerbuccio, Bastide Miraflors, or Arqueta from Domaine Lafage, you should definitely pick up the Tessellae.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart
RP 93

2016 Domaine des Remizières "Cuvée Christophe" Crozes-Hermitage Blanc
Review Date: 01-26-2018
I am such a total Rhone nerd. And being so I loved the 2016 Remizieres Crozes Blanc. It showcases coconut, marzipan, and even a touch of spearmint. But the texture and weight of this wine is where all the intrigue is. This wine has massive size, and the mouthfeel is lush, supple and rounded. This is the luxury edition of the white wine world, that is so totally distinct and yet absolutely grounded in its tradition and history.

2016 Domaine des Remizières Crozes-Hermitage
Review Date: 01-26-2018
This is a tremendous follow-up to the epic Remizieres 2015 Crozes-Hermitage we offered last year. If what we as the staff buy at K&L is any indication of quality, I bought more of Remizieres Crozes-Hermitage than any other wine, ever. Currently, I’m on track to beat that with the 2016. For lovers of Syrah, this is an absolute must-buy. Where you going to find a $16 Syrah anywhere that has the focus on quality and the hand-made production you find here? It’s upfront and fruity with all of that black pepper and spice goodness that you’re looking for, along with zesty acid and black fruits. It’s broad and full without going over the top, and retains that balance you’re only going to find in the northern Rhone. I can’t say enough about the staggering quality for the price of this wine.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart
WS 90

2014 Domaine des Remizières "Cuvée Emilie" Hermitage
Review Date: 01-26-2018
Keep in mind that Hermitage can only come from one beautiful hillside above the town of Tain l’Hermitage. Just one. The granite soils, the steep slopes, and perfect south-facing rows produce a wine unlike any other. Due to these limitations, you typically pay an arm and a leg for the world’s greatest expression of Syrah. The 2014 Remizieres “Cuvee Emilie” was priced so reasonably I swore that there had to be something off about it. There isn’t. This is stone-cold Hermitage, with insanely dense concentration, and a formidable wall of tannin that ensures this wine will be drinking great for years to come. I was further shocked at how well the wine performed after a decanting. This is a total gateway Hermitage for anyone who has been curious about the wines but turned off by the price. This one is worth it.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
RP 94 WS 92

2016 Domaine des Remizières "Cuvée Emilie" Hermitage Blanc
Review Date: 01-26-2018
Hermitage blanc is something special. From a single hillside vineyard above the Tain L’Hermitage, the appellation is typically well known for its ageable reds, but are rare due to the small size of the hillside. White Hermitage is even more rare. Yet, it stands as one of the worlds great white wines that age beautifully, and showcases rich complexity. At its price-point the Remizieres is an absolute steal. It shows rich melon and honeyed tones with tart apple, and a finish that goes on and on. This is a stone-cold serious wine that will only get better with time.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
RP 93 WS 93

2016 Domaine de Marcoux Cotes-du-Rhone
Review Date: 01-22-2018
The 2015 Marcoux Chateauneuf-du-Pape was my favorite of the season, and I was super excited to see the Cotes-du-Rhone arrive in the warehouse. It’s good. I mean, really, really good. As you creep out of $10-15 Cotes-du-Rhones into the $15-25 price point, you tend to see these wines just push harder on bigger, fatter, and richer. The Marcoux takes a defiant stance. It shows lifted and elegant red fruits with agile acid and exceptional balance. With gentle weight, but exceptional intensity, this wine has wonderful character, is expertly executed, and a total standout in the Cotes-du-Rhone category.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart

2015 Domaine de Marcoux Lirac "Lorentine"
Review Date: 01-22-2018
This is proper French wine. The nose has gamey and savory elements with floral nuances. The palate leans towards richness with dark fruits and blue fruit with tons of spice. Intriguing as well as inviting, It definitely hits that spot between Cotes-du-Rhone and Chateauneuf-du-Pape. It's soft and supple, but still has plenty of intriguing elements that keep you going back to your glass again and again.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2013 Château Peyros Madiran Vieilles Vignes
Review Date: 01-07-2018
A blend of 80% Tannat and 20% Cab Franc, the Peyros is one of the most interesting under French reds we have right now. I find touches of charcoal and black fruit on the nose with just a hint of leather. On the palate there is an incredibly pure fruit expression--you could draw similarities to Bordeaux or Chinon, but it has a thing all its own going on. With really mighty tannins, it is highly structured. This is pretty good right now, great, in fact, for the price. But you could just as easily sit on this and watch it evolve into something really special.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart
WE 93

2014 Château Haut-Monplaisir "Prestige" Cahors
Review Date: 01-07-2018
I love this producer so much. I have a thing for savory wines, and the Haut Monplaisir has that in spades. Meaty, gamey, almost a touch bloody aromatics with dark, dark, black fruits and earthiness on the palate. It's has some serious weight and concentration, but still displays a silky texture with rustic tannins and exceptional balance. My all-time favorite cahors.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart
WE 93

2015 Yves Cheron "Les Dentelles" Côtes du Rhône
Review Date: 01-07-2018
I continue to be surprised by the $15 and under Cotes-du-Rhones from 2015. Expecting rich, sweltering wines, I continue to find them exceptionally balanced with soaring aromatics and bright fruit. The Yves Cheron displays a bright, floral nose with blackberry notes and forward acidity that brightens the fruit on the palate. I was especially pleased that the wine had just a touch of tannic structure to frame everything and bring the wine together. At its price point, this is definitely my favorite Cotes-du-Rhones on the shelf.
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart
RP 92

2015 La Jasse Castel "La Pimpanela" Terrasses du Larzac
Review Date: 12-08-2017
My pick for best value in Languedoc-Roussillon. Hands down. The blend is 50% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 20% Cinsault, and 10% Carignan. It's built with a little more Grenache than the Bleu Velours, but absolutely outperforms its price point. The nose is full of smoky and gamy notes. The palate is all black cherry, with really sumptuous fruit and charming rustic tannins. Totally unique and one of the wines I recommend most for those looking to explore the Languedoc.
Price: Hidden View Price

2014 Chante Cigale Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Review Date: 11-28-2017
Typically, when I taste Chateauneuf-du-pape, I often ask myself whether the wine fits into the traditionalist or modernist grouping of Chateauneuf. This not to declare one better than the other, its simply way of distinguishing two different sets of objectives. Chante Cigale really nails the modernist style right on the head. When fruit, balance, and depth of flavor are the main focus of a wine and these elements are well-executed you get wines like the Chante Cigale. There's tons of dark fruit to this wine, clear and clean notes of black berry and blueberry are layered over a rich texture, with downplayed acidity and pleasing tannic structure. This packs a lot of punch for the price, and fans of power reds from the Languedoc and Roussillon should take note.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

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