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K&L Staff Recommendations
96 points Bob Campbell: "*Five Stars* From a clay and fragmented limestone soils of a vineyard in North Waipara. Around 35% whole-bunches were used to give structure and intensity. An impressively complex wine, with a mix of cherry, plum and chalky/mineral flavors, with a more savory, baked earth, dried herb character. Nicely structured so the wine is accessible but promises to age well." (1/2015) 95 points Decanter: "Wonderfully complex and enticing bouquet of limestone like mineral, ripe red berry fruits, distinctive oak and spice moments. Highly textured, complex, dry, ripe berry flavors, layers of ...Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "A solid and chewy young red with dried blackberries, licorice and hints of toasted oak and walnuts. A full-bodied, energetic red from the Chianti Classico region of Panzano. Needs two to three years of bottle age. A blend of Sangivoese, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Alicante." (8/2015) 93 points Vinous: "A dark, sumptuous beauty, the 2013 La Massa opens with superb depth and textural richness. Inky blue/purplish fruit, smoke, white pepper and violets are all super-expressive. Pliant, concentrated and deep, the 2013 is shaping up to be a real beauty. I especially like the de ...Read More »
If you liked the 2008, you are going to love the 2009 from Brison! This Champagne is composed of half Chardonnay, entirely barrel fermented, and one-half Pinot Noir that was fermented in two-thirds stainless and one-third barrel. This Champagne has perfect texture, medium body and a spectacular bead of compact streamers. It has aromas and flavors of cream, nuts and white fruit, and a very detailed, mineral-driven finish. It finishes quite dry, but I would never guess how little sugar has been added—only three grams per liter! The warm, ripe 2009 vintage ... Read More »
96 points James Suckling: "Fantastically complex aromas of spices, dried flowers and plums follow through to a full body, integrated and polished tannins and a superb finish. This is a 2012 Brunello with it all." (11/2016) K&L Notes: "[The 2012s] have more in common with the legendary 2010 vintage and are most like the 2004s, a harmonious and gorgeous year for Brunellos (James Suckling)." ---- Standing at the top of their portfolio, Argiano’s Brunello di Montalcino is the flagship wine for an estate that has a history tracing back all the way to the 1500s. The wine itself is steeped in traditi... Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "This large estate of 131 acres has been run brilliantly by a Belgian family, the Bonnies since their acquisition a number of years ago. The quality of the white and red have soared to exceptional heights, and this is certainly still one of the more realistically priced wines of Pessac-Lèognan and classified crus. The 2012 is a beauty, with a dense ruby/purple color, a fabulously plush, opulent texture and medium to full-bodied flavors of cassis, spicy earth and blueberry. Quite rich, yet light on its feet, this is an absolutely textbook Pessac-Lèognan, w ...Read More »
Winner Best Of Class, Gold Medal, in the Los Angeles Wine & Spirits Competition, 2013. Château Bois-Malot is located in St-Loubes and situated on the shoreline of the Dordogne River. The soils are clay and light limestone with a subsoil of red pebbles and clay. The blend is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, and 20% Cabernet Franc. It is aged for eighteen months in large vats and then an additional six months in oak.
A blend of 80 percent Grenache and 20 percent Carignan from a family-run winery in Châteauneuf-du-Pape.
Inventory: San Francisco
92 points Wine Enthusiast: "Peyrabon is owned by a branch of the Bernard family that also owns Domaine de Chevalier. This powerful, complex wine shows its pedigree. Dark tannins and ripe black fruits are all evidence of its aging potential. Drink from 2018." (5/2015) Wine Spectator: "Light loam and charcoal shadings line a core of plum skin and macerated blackberry fruit. A loamy edge lends a slightly chewy twinge to the finish. This has put on a bit of weight since the barrel tasting. (JM, Web-2015)"
This Sauvignon Blanc from Touraine displays an intense, classic nose of cut grass, pepper and, believe it or not, pineapples and lemons, with plenty of minerality. Very crisp and refreshing, like a cross between a classic Touraine and a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, at an astonishingly low price! Perfect with seafood. Grown in an area located between the Loire River and the Cher River and sandwiched between the towns of Tours and Blois, the wine shows the classic characteristics of the rich clay soils that are fortified with flint and limestone. Very brig... Read More »
Wine Spectator: "Soft, delivering ginger, brioche and pear notes, with a friendly, open finish. Drink now. (Web Only-2013) (JM)" K&L Notes: A pale yellow wine with tiny bubbles, this Cremant de Loire Brut is rounded and delicate with a fine, nervy, complex nose and the freshness of Chenin Blanc, floral Chardonnay and fruity Cabernet Franc from 20- to 30-year-old vines. With its lively attack, it evolves gracefully across the palate with nice aromatic persistence in the mouth and lingering notes of fresh peaches and pear. A great opener to a memorable night! 12.5% abv. (Eric Story, Lo... Read More »
93-95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "I was able to taste all of the components of the 2015 Châteauneuf du Pape and this is a vintage described by Marc Perrin where every variety excelled. The Grenache and Mourvèdre were the clear standouts, both possessing terrific concentration, purity of fruit and ripe tannic structure. This will certainly be an outstanding wine, and it has a touch more concentration than the 2012. This reference point estate continues to achieve incredible quality in just about every vintage. They’ve certainly made the wine of the vintage in 2014 with their Hommage a ...Read More »
Inventory: Special Order
Mas Codina is a 40 hectare estate in Penedès which dates back to 1681. This Brut Reserva Cava was hand-harvested from 20 to 30-year-old vines and estate bottled. Though it does not say it on the label, the current disgorgement is based entirely on the 2010 harvest. Vines are planted in calcareous and sandy clay soils which keep the wine minerally and lively. The wine undergoes secondary fermentation in the bottle, and is aged on its lees for a minimum of two years before disgorgement. Varietals include Macabeo, Xarel-lo, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. 100% ... Read More »
The Antech "Emotion" is a little something different: a blend of Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, Mauzac and Pinot Noir from AOC Cremant de Limoux in the Languedoc region of southern France. It was a huge hit with our staff beginning with the 2012 vintage; now it is back, to make our evenings and dinner parties sparkle just that much more. Pale pink hue, fine bead, delicate hints of cherry and strawberry with white floral notes. A crisp, elegant sparkler made in the traditional method, spending 15 months in the bottle before disgorgement. At about half the pric... Read More »
From La Maison Antech, located in the Southern France region of the Languedoc, comes this beautiful example of Cremant de Limoux. Named after the grande dame of the estate, Eugenie Limouzy, this Cremant is composed of 50% Chardonnay, 40% Chenin Blanc and 10% Mauzac. It is produced along the lines of methode champenoise and spends 12 months on the lees before being disgorged. This balanced and elegant sparkling wine reveals subtle hints of citrus fruits, toast and honey. At less than half the price of a bottle of Champagne, the Cuvée Eugenie is the perfec... Read More »
Jancis Robinson: "*Good Value* Apple nose. Refreshing but not much depth. Very clean. Not a bad value...Super clean and long." (9/2011) K&L Notes: Antech's Brut Nature is produced with no added dosage, which translates to a super clean and crisp glass of bubbles. It is composed of 90% Mauzac, 5% Chenin Blanc and 5% Chardonnay. All harvesting is done by hand. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel, and the wine undergoes a 12 month elevage on the lees a la methode traditionelle for 12 months before being disgorged. The Brut Nature is the perfect way to start off the evening's fest... Read More »
Ettore Spina and his wife, Enrica Bandirola, owners of Sesta di Sopra, planted a new vineyard to Sangiovese in 2005. It has the same Galestro soils as the Brunello vineryard, perfect for taming Sangiovese's natural vigor. Unfortunately, in Montalcino all of the Brunello di Montalcino and Rosso di Montalcino vineyards are all registered and controlled, and they aren't allowing any more to be added right now, so the wine that comes from this new vineyard has to be designated an IGT (Indicates Geographic Tipicity). The wine is just bursting with ripe fruit.... Read More »
94 points James Suckling: "An subtle nose with plenty of fine autolysis aromas of fresh bread and sweetly fragrant yeasty notes, plus some gentle spice and chalky notes. The palate unleashes beautiful wild strawberry fruit flavors, super fresh, fleshy and pure. Great balance and depth." (7/2015) 93 points Wine Spectator: "A lovely rosé in an almost vinous style, with mouthwatering acidity and a fine, lacy mousse carrying appealing flavors of ripe raspberry, white cherry fruit, star anise, mandarin orange peel and honeysuckle. Lightly chalky on the lasting finish. Enjoy with food. Drink now through 2020. (AN) ...Read More »
Francois and Jean-Marie Cherrier with father Pierre produce steely and citrus-driven Sancerre from fine parcels of Sauvignon Blanc planted in Sancerre's silex (flint) and chalky soils. Yields are kept low and harvest is done strictly by hand before fermenting in 100% stainless steel. Vibrantly aromatic and mineral-driven, this is quintessential Sancerre.
90 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* A selection from the best grapes and parcels, this is a dense, firm wine with both great tannins and dark fruits. Acidity gives a lift to the dry core of the wine and brings out the black currant fruits. Wood aging is still showing, so the wine needs time. (RV)" (11/2015) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "One of the old-time favorites and value picks in The Wine Advocate, this wine, from a gorgeous château in the Castillon, sports a completely new label. Black cherry and blackcurrant fruit, and some underbrush and earth are present in this supple-textured, medium-bodied, ...Read More »
92 points James Suckling: "This has a beautiful depth of fruit with spice and dark fruits. Hints of parsley and cilantro. Full and super silky with a long and beautiful finish." (5/2013) K&L Notes: Composed of the same grapes in the same percentages as the Crianza, the Reserva is a barrel selection of wines that Angel feels can undergo longer aging in barrel and then in bottle. Aged a total of 27 months in barrels, then into concrete for more than a year, the Reserva also sees bottle aging until Angel deems it ready for release. This wine ramps up the intensity of the Crianza, with more pungen... Read More »
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "Delicately scented, this alluring sparkler opens with aromas of white flowers and freshly picked orchard fruit. The vibrant, linear palate delivers crisp apple, pear and a citrus note accompanied by racy acidity and an elegant perlage. (KO)" (12/2015) James Suckling: "This is round and delicious with candied-apple and lemon aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, fresh and clean. Drink now." (10/2015) K&L Notes: San Venanzio has won many awards over the years. At K&L they get the coveted "Guido" award two thumbs up and three stars for value. On the nose, there are generous notes of apples, pe... Read More »
Vinous: "Light gold. Fresh melon, orange and peach on the fruity nose and in the mouth. Supple and broad on the palate, showing a hint of warmth on the back half. In an easygoing style, finishig with gentle cut and good length. (JR)" (1/2015) Wine Enthusiast: "With a high proportion of Pinot Meunier in the blend, this is ripe, warm and accessible. Fresh apple and ripe pear flavors are cut by grapefruit acidity. The texture is soft, ripe and very ready to drink. (RV)" (2/2016) Wine Spectator: "A firm bead and lively acidity structure this broad bubbly, with tightly knit flavors of white raspberry, cand ...Read More »
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "From the heartland of Chardonnay in Champagne comes this rich, creamy, apple-flavored wine. It has lively acidity, balanced with some sweetness from the dosage. It has weight and a crisp aftertaste. (RV)" (12/2012) 90 points Wine Spectator: "Lightly floral, this creamy crowd-pleasing Champagne shows good balance, with a lively mix of Honeycrisp apple, passion fruit and smoked almond. Drink now through 2018. (AN)" (12/2015) Jancis Robinson: "100% Chardonnay from Oger, Cramant and Avize. From a 50-ha estate. Olivier Bonville is the third generation to make wine here. Super-clean fresh nose, smells like ...Read More »
Invigorating and fresh, with lemony citrus aromas and flavors accented by delicate white flowers. The palate is full and fresh, with balanced acidity and minerality on the finish. This a style of wine that keeps your palate fresh and alive. Although easy to drink, it has complexity and intrigue up and down the aromatic and palate. You'll want another after the first one has disappeared. (Eric Story, K&L Loire buyer)
Wow! An insane value in Cabernet from famed (Jimmy Watson Trophy Winner) winemaker Jeremy Gordon. Trellis is a new line of wines from Margaret River-based Amelia Park. The fruit, as with all of Amelia Park's wines, is sourced from some of the best vineyards in the region. Most producers in this ultra-premium wine region charge top dollar for their wines, how Amelia Park can deliver this level of quality, for these tiny prices, continues to amaze me. Jeremy makes beautiful, pure, fruit driven wines with excellent richness, balance and polish. This is just... Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2015 Muscadet Sèvre et Maine sur lie Harmonie offers a very clear, elegant and pure bouquet of ripe pears with fresh citrus flavors. Full-flavored, juicy and full of minerals, this is a gorgeously pure and elegant but also sensual and stimulating Muscadet in perfect balance. The finish is pretty long, aromatic and structured, which is what makes this still primarily fruity wine highly attractive to be drunk young, although this Muscadet will gain even more complexity over the years." (10/2016) K&L Notes: Michel & Nathalie Delhommeau farm 28 hectares of vines plan... Read More »
Domaine Renaud is a small operation, making Mâcon, Pouilly-Fuissé and St. Veran from 12 hectares of estate vineyards. Their cellar is modern, and they use upright ovals for many of the wines, and stainless for others. This value is a great alternative to California Chardonnay and an entry into white Burgundy.
We met Marie Chauffray at the Vinifilles tasting in January of 2015 in Montpellier. The Vinifilles (which means "wine girls") is an association of women producers who own and operate their own estates. From growing to winemaking to marketing, they are involved in every aspect of their wineries' successes. I was invited by our friend Francoise Antech-Gazeau (our sparkling wine producer from the Limoux) to visit and taste her wines and meet some of her other grower-producer friends. Chauffray's was one of the most impressive wines we tasted at the event, a... Read More »
This is a property to watch in the future. Very well-priced wines that have great balance and fruit. This one has toasty aromas and a very fruity palate impression. Super value. Very elegant wine from one of my favorite ready-to-drink vintages. Enjoy with a rack of lamb. (Clyde Beffa, K&L Wine Merchants)
94 points Raymond Chan: "Bright, very pale straw colour with light golden-green hues, pale on rim. The nose is very elegantly presented, tightly bound with pure, mouthwatering aromas of passionfruit entwined with lime fruit, fresh herbs, subtle notes of white florals and stonefruits and thirst-quenching minerals. The aromatics show finesse, intensity and cut. Medium-full bodied, the palate is tightly constructed but has lusciously rich, bright and juicy, lively fruit flavours of passionfruit, gooseberries, herbs and minerals, lifted by fragrant white stonefruits and florals. The ...Read More »
90-92 points Vinous: "Vivid ruby. Fresh red berries, Asian spices and potpourri on the highly perfumed nose. Juicy and sharply focused on the palate, offering energetic raspberry and floral pastille flavors that put on weight and open up steadily with air. Closes spicy and long; harmonious tannins add shape and grip. (JR)" (2/2016) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014s from this estate are solid. Offering lots of cedary spice, dried red fruits and garrigue, the 2014 Gigondas Tradition is medium-bodied, rustic and charming. Drink it over the coming 7-8 years. (JD)" (12/2016) K&L Notes: Jean-Baptiste Meunier is the fift... Read More »
As is the case with so many other great spots in Spain, Bodega Casa Juan is located opposite the village church, in the beautiful walled pueblo of Laguardia. The winery is a converted flour mill, featuring concrete tanks for fermenting and blending the wine; and for ageing, barrels that are used for up to seven years. These are traditional Riojas in elaboration and spirit, though the site specificity of their Laguardia and Villabuena vineyards confers a fruit character all its own to these wines. And what fruit! This crianza is a potpouri of mixed berrie... Read More »
From some of the top sites in the Kamptal. Michaela Haas is the fourth generation of this family to run the 23-hectare domaine. Fermented and aged in stainless steel and bottled with a crown cap, this fresh, light, and snappy wine is the kind you want to drink by the liter. This food-friendly thirst quencher will be MVP at your next picnic.
Organic in fact bio-dynamic wine with all the bells and whistles. Our first red in from the great 2015 vintage. Soft and elegant and quite forward-in fact drink it in the next few years.
K&L Wine Merchants will present the 2014 vintage from the members of the Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux (UGC) at the Westin St. Francis (335 Powell St) in San Francisco on Friday, January 27th, 2017. Guests will taste with more than 80 different château owners and representatives from 6PM-8PM. $65 per person (tax not included). No paper tickets will be mailed. Names will be on a guest list at the door. Presenting châteaux: de Chantegrive, Bouscaut, Carbonnieux, Les Carmes Haut-Brion, Domaine de Chevalier, de France, Haut-Bailly, Larrivet Haut-Brion, L... Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Don't let the low price fool you; this is a great bottle of Champagne. The Ariston Aspasie "Carte Blanche" is made of 40% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir and 30% Meunier. A balanced cuvée in every way, this Champagne is clean and powerful at once. It has a natural toasty quality from spending five full years on the lees, and plenty of refreshing zip from the far northern location of the vineyards. No bottle in our inventory transports me to Champagne like this one. It is as true to the terroir and as pure as anything I could wish for! You don't have to settle... Read More »
James Suckling: "Lots of ripe strawberries, with juicy orange and chalky mineral notes. Sweet red fruit on the palate with a juicy acidity and fine ripe tannins. Medium-full body and a pleasant medium-long finish with nice red fruit. Elegant, but a bit linear. Second wine of Prieur de Meyney. Drink now-2017." (10/2011) Wine Spectator: "Offers a solid core of plum, currant paste and steeped cherry notes wrapped tightly with charcoal thread and dark briar patch and tobacco leaf notes. A bit rugged overall, but shows solid range and character. Drink now through 2020. (JM, Web-2013)" K&L Notes: This is the... Read More »
92 points Vinous: "Pale straw. Very pure and precise aromas of white stone fruit complicated by hints of ripe apricot and minerals and perked up by hints of white flowers. Clean fresh and juicy, with almost saline flavors of stone fruit and yellow apple. Long fresh and creamy on the extremely refined finish. Super Prosecco from Follador, whom I consider one of the true masters of the Glera grape variety and wine. 92+ (ID) Silvano Follador is in my opinion the single best producer of Prosecco today...made in a relatively drier style than most of his colleagues, are much s ...Read More »
98 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Flaccianello della Pieve is a commanding wine and a strong protagonist of both the vintage and its territory. Connoisseurs of Sangiovese will be hard pressed to find a wine more authentic, elegant, complex and pristine than this. I am a huge fan of the 2013 vintage in Chianti Classico and the Flaccianello della Pieva is one big reason for this love affair. The bouquet is gorgeous and delineated with wild berry, tangy spice, crushed mineral and forest flower. Yet, the wine's color is dark, brooding and austere. The wine offers exuberance and ener ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Guigal’s 2015 Condrieu is a blockbuster that, if not for its big brother, would be one of the wines of the vintage. Aged in one-third new barrels and two-thirds in tank, it’s a rich, unctuous, thrillingly textured beauty that has plenty of orange blossom, flower oil, tangerine and peach. Fruit-loaded, with just a touch of minerality, it should be drunk over the coming 2-4 years." (12/2016) 94 points James Suckling: "Peach and apricot-pie character that's very showy and very much within the sweet-pastry spectrum. There's also some spicy appeal to complement notes of cumquat rind. Pit ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Allen Meadows - Burghound: "Ripe but not really exotic aromas of pear and white peach are trimmed in a hint of wood. There is good concentration to the relatively powerful medium-bodied flavors that possess good intensity on the extract-rich finish where a hint of bitter lemon arrives just at the last. This is really quite good for its level and should drink well both young and after a few years of bottle age." (10/2015) Wine Enthusiast: "From vines at least 30 and up to 90 years old, this is the top of the Chablis range from La Chablisienne. Lightly wooded to bring out extra richness from the fruit, ...Read More »
92 points James Suckling: "This has impressive ripe stone fruits on the nose with peaches, mangoes, melon and cherries. Really upbeat and attractive purity. The palate follows the same thread of fruit characters with a clever balance of flesh and crunch, a bright finish and good balance. Drink now. A blend of roughly equal thirds of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier." (10/2016) 91 points Wine & Spirits: "This is a graceful, vinous Champagne with dramatic high notes of roses and red fruit, finishing clean with a grounding of pale earthiness. It’s a lovely prediction of what Champagne might become in a w ...Read More »
95-97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The Château Montrose 2014 is a blend of 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot that represents 47% of the total production. It was picked from mid-September via five or six tries through the vineyard. The aromatics represent a clear step in quality from the second wine, attired with far more precision and focus, much more purity with scents of blackberry, boysenberry and blue fruit, now with touches of violet and vanilla. It is beautifully defined and actually, at least at this juncture, closely aligned with Cos d’Estou ...Read More »
Wine Spectator: "A lush style, offering immediate vanilla and honey flavors. Picks up a citrus note on the finish, as the structure makes itself evident. Very open and accessible. (BS)" (12/2006) K&L Notes: Although not labled as such, this is a Blanc de Noir composed of 60% Meunier and 40% Pinot Noir. It is aged for over four years on the lees and dosed at about 10 grams per liter. It has a lovely combination of spiced pear, pie crust and black cherry on the very generous, open nose. The wine is broad, rich and textural in the mouth, and has a persistent black fruit finish. -Gary We... Read More »
Our best deal in pink bubbles! Fans of Billecart-Salmon take note: this is an elegant, dry style that is made entirely from estate-grown fruit in Brouillet. This Champagne is a blend of half and half Pinot Noir and Meunier. The color comes from 12% Meunier that is vinified red, from an old-vine plot that gets quite ripe. It is a very pretty tarnished pink color and has a lazy bead from over five years of aging on the lees. Our current selection has a 2012 base wine. It has gorgeous red cherry fruit on the nose and mid-palate, but still finishes snappy an... Read More »
One of K&L's very finest buys from France. This is a reserve cuvée, made from Millet's chalkiest limestone soils. There is a long maceration at very low temperatures to extract as much flavor and character as possible. The resulting wine is intensely charged with stone fruit and minerality, with bright citrus notes. However, due to the amazingly warm vintage, it's quite soft, with layers of rich fruit.
This Sancerre has a pale yellow color with hints of flashing green. Aromatically, it possesses a nice fruity component of crispy white peaches, melon, yellow plums and the typical presence of place notes of flinty minerals. On the palate, it has a richness and persistence which is nicely balanced with fruit texture, mineral and acidity. The excellent length gets even better as the bottle breathes. If you can get your hands on a round of Crottin de Chavignol, call it a day. Or, try this with pan roasted shellfish with just a touch of butter and a squeeze ... Read More »
*A K&L direct import! This is our latest arrival from Miguel Merino, whom we like to call "the hardest working man in Rioja." Having begun his humble "retirement project" in the early 1990s by restoring an older bodega just down the hill from the historic town of Briones, Miguel either owns or rents to own a total of around 8 hectares of vines, all of which are located in Briones; not only is this village specific Rioja, but it happens to come from one of the most sought after villages in all of Rioja Alta, where many top bodegas have some of their most ... Read More »
Outstanding value white from a reliable source.