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K&L Staff Recommendations
Monterey's first winery sits atop the Gavilan Mountains and boasts vines planted in the highly-desirable granite and limestone soils found there. Perhaps this is why winemaker Robert Cook says, Chalone isn’t a label; it’s a place on earth.
Italy known for good, large co-operative wineries. (A few good co-ops exist in other regions, but not lots of them in one region.) This top-notch wine comes from the co-op Erste + Neue, which is right in the center of Caldaro, one of the small towns on the "Wine Road" south of Bolzano. They make the range of white wines that you would expect, Sauvignon, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris (and an excellent Müller Thurgau). Gerhard Sanin, the enologist for E+N, favors a bright, restrained winemaking style that really allows this place and these varieties to shine.
91 points Vinous: "A wine of precision and nuance, the 2015 Terlaner Classico once again shows why this is one of Alto Adige's most compelling and delicious wines. The Pinot Blanc/Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc blend that has worked so well here for decades yields a white endowed with striking focus. White flowers, lemon peel, ripe orchard fruit, apricot pit, almond, mint and chamomile form a super-appealing fabric of aromas, flavors and textures. There is a lot to like here. The Terlano has a level of precision that none of these varieties show on their own. Then again, that ...Read More »
94 points Vinous: "Bright, dark golden-yellow color. Very intense aromas of ripe yellow apple, pear, chamomile and white flowers. Rich, dense and juicy, with orchard fruit and botanical herb flavors complicated by a savory element. Finishes long and almost creamy (despite 6.4 grams per liter of total acidity, expressed as tartaric), with hints of lime and custard cream. Undoubtedly, this rather richly styled Vorberg will remind many drinkers of a wine made from Chardonnay. This vintage is especially successful in the context of the very difficult growing season, which was ...Read More »
90 points Wine Enthusiast: "All the mellow charm of ripe red apples, both baked and fresh, plays on the nose. The palate displays the same mellow richness, cut by brisk lemon freshness. The fizz is fine and enhances the delicacy of the sumptuous flavors on the palate that manages to be both rich and slender. The utterly dry finish is full of glorious baked-apple notes. (AK)" (12/2016) K&L Notes: This bright and fresh Cremant d'Alsace is composed of 100% Pinot Blanc, vinified in the Traditional Method with 18 months aging sur latte. Hubert Meyer harvests their Pinot Blanc fruit destined for Crem... Read More »
Wine & Spirits: "Round and peppery with extract, this tastes of the variety with its honey, saddle soap and wet stone notes. Clean, brisk and pleasantly creamy, it’s ready to chill for cracked crab." (12/2015) Wine Spectator: "A crisp, stony white, with hints of pear, lemon zest, spring blossom and crunchy white peach. Drink now. (AB, Web-2015)"
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "*** Editors' Choice *** This barrel-fermented wine drinks like a beautifully proportioned Chardonnay. It takes bright, intense fruit flavors of melon, yellow apples and green bananas, and puts a Burgundian spin on the mouthfeel with judicious acids and a touch of caramel. It's delicious, complex and should age nicely for another five to six years. (PG)" (12/2016)
91 points James Suckling: "A subtle and interesting pinot bianco with sliced pear and mineral character. Hot stones too. Medium body and a fruity and refined finish." (11/2016) Wine Spectator: "A vibrant white, with racy acidity and stony minerality driving the flavors of Honeycrisp apple, orchard blossom, pickled ginger and pink grapefruit granita. (AN)" (10/2016)
The Schmitt's village is located in the far northern part of the Bas Rhin province about 25 kilometers west of Strasbourg. Although not as picturesque as the quaint villages further south in the Haut Rhin, Bergbieten produces some of the most remarkable wines in all of Alsace. The soil is gravelly limestone, which provides perfect drainage during wet periods, reflects the sunlight well during cool, sunny weather, and remains moist in dry spells. The Schmitts vinify their wines in the traditional style. This means a cool fermentation of a hand picked harv... Read More »
Wine Spectator: "A modest white, with smoky stone and ground spice notes and hints of pear and lemon pith. (Web Only-2017)"
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2015 Weisser Burgunder Trocken is clear, pure and fresh on the nose, quite mineral and a bit flinty. On the palate, this is a juicy-piquant and grippy Pinot Blanc; it has a round and juicy palate with a grippy finish. Enormously attractive in its ripeness, intensity and grippy raciness. (SR)" (8/2016) K&L Notes: Quiet, focused, precise, and passionate. These words describe Hanjörg Rebholz and his wines perfectly. He reminds us a lot of Franconian vintner Paul Fürst, and both men are revered highly by winemaking colleagues throughout Germany. Each has a self assur... Read More »
Kermit Lynch has called André Ostertag a revolutionary winemaker, saying: "There is poetry to Ostertag’s practices. He looks for the nuance of terroir rather than the typicity of a grape varietal. In an act of rejection against the official classifications dictated by the A.O.C., he made up his own categories: Vins de Fruit that express fruit character rather than that of a specific vineyard site, Vins de Pierre reflecting the terroir from which they originate and Vin de Temps that rely on time and weather to encourage the development of botrytis. He fer... Read More »
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "Rich and aromatic notes of fresh and baked red apples perfume nose and palate. They appear with equal expression on the juicy, soft but defined palate. This is full fruited and textured, ringing with soy spice and lemony freshness. The savoriness of the midpalate echoes long after the last drop. (AK)" (8/2016) Jancis Robinson: "(RS 2.4 g/l. Sweetness code 1 = technically dry or tastes dry.) Pale gold with even a slight hint of pink? Creamy and really delicately scented. A hint of blossom. Much more concentrated than I expected from the nose and more full-bodied than the alc ...Read More »
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Pinot Blanc Estate Grown comes from vines planted in 1992 at Bethel Heights. It has a well-defined nose that demonstrated a little more delineation than the 2015 Pinot Gris tasted alongside. The palate is fresh and crisp with a citrus-driven opening...A pleasant drop of white Oregon wine...(NM)" (6/2016)
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* Harmonious and beautifully balanced, this brings intensity, depth and detail to its layered and ripe tree-fruit flavors. Added notes of lemon zest and a dollop of honey keep the interest level climbing. (PG)" (10/2015) Wine Spectator: "Bright and sleek, with pretty pear and floral flavors on a tangy frame. (HS, Web-2015)"
Wine Enthusiast: "A very light yellow-plum fruitiness colors nose and palate of this fresh, easy and soft white. Plummy friendliness is matched by equally sunny lemon freshness, resulting in a balanced, fruity, easy-drinking wine. (AK)" (8/2016)
2012 Vignalta Manzoni Bianco ‘Agno Casto’ Riserva Vignalta The indigenous Veneto variety Manzoni Bianco was created in the 1930s by Professor Luigi Manzoni of the enology school in Conegliano by crossing Pinot Bianco with Riesling. Fermentation for stainless steel; Aged 10 months in steel tanks and 6 months in bottle
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The pale yellow 2014 Pinot Blanc Nature'S displays clear, bright and fresh pear, apple and citrus aromas on the nose. Crisp and straight on the palate, this is a linear and bone dry Pinot Blanc with a grippy finish. Not much meat on the bones which are obviously made from limstone. (SR)" (9/2015) K&L Notes: Organically farmed from vineyard plots around Ribeauvillé.
92 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* Deep and rich in this landmark Oregon vintage, this Pinot Blanc abounds with flavors of buttered pears, toast and vanilla custard. The texture and balance are spot-on, and the wine is flat-out delicious. (PG)" (2/2016) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Pinot Blanc Estate, which went through full malolactic, has a light but attractive bouquet with yellow plum, melon and waxy scents that are nicely defined, but will clearly need a couple of years to develop. The palate is well balanced with a slightly waxy texture, a touch of lemongrass, pralines and a little marzi ...Read More »
Vignobles des 2 Lunes -- or "Vineyard of the Two Moons" -- produces organic and biodynamic wines in Alsace.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2015 Giovanni Pinot Blanc is supplemented by Chardonnay and Pinot Gris (20%) from vines planted between 1980 and 1983. It has a clean and pure bouquet with lime flower and white peach scents. The palate is balanced with a soft entry, smooth with a waxy texture, perhaps needing just a little more fruité on the spicy finish. (NM)" (6/2016)
92 points James Suckling: "This is very tight and steely with sliced lemon, apple and pear. Full-bodied, dry and beautiful." (9/2015) Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Pinot Blanc Mise du Printemps -- a ripe and fruit-intense yet refreshing blend of Auxerrois and Pinot Blanc, grown in the plain between Wintzenheim and Turckheim -- is a pretty dry, grippy, uncomplicated but characterful white to match spring dishes. White peach and flower aromas on the aromatic nose lead to a soft first impression on the palate, but the wine soon reveals its creamy intensity, power and stimulating freshness. This is an open- ...Read More »
93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "'Pinot Blanc shows the potential of the Wachau,' says Rudi Pichler, when he served his 2015 Weissburgunder Smaragd Kollmütz. This is pure, intense and refreshing wine with a pretty prominent mineral acidity that makes this a rich and vital Wachau Pinot Blanc that has nothing to do with Burgundy, but rather Champagne. Great purity and lingering salinity. From gneiss soils. (SR)" (6/2016)
Inventory: San Francisco
Wine Spectator: "Light-footed and fresh, with lemon zest and Thai basil accents to the Honeycrisp apple, stone and blanched almond notes. Open-knit finish. (AN, Web-2016)"
90 points Wine Enthusiast: "A squirt of fresh lemon extends from nose to finish on this bright, vivacious Weissburgunder, or Pinot Blanc. Dry and medium bodied, it's concentrated in crisp red apple flavor. The finish is refreshing, marked by a touch of bitter tea tannins. (AI)" (2/2016)
Producer Note: "Fulfilling aromas and flavors of fresh pears, apricots, casaba melon and a hint of mineral-like complexity complimented by tart notes of kaffir lime. Though this wine sees no oak, it has a slight essence of yeasty toast. It starts lively on the palate then evolves into a round lengthy mouthfeel with a bright, refreshing finish. It is incredibly complex in its natural simplicity. This Pinot Blanc only comes in half-bottles and magnums, because you should either start with it or party with it!"
88-90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Due to be bottled in December, the rarely seen 2013 Nuits St Georges la Gerbotte has a perfumed white peach and apricot blossom-scented bouquet that is well defined and vigorous. The palate is rounded and generous on the entry with light honeyed tones, with hints of caramel toward the finish, where I would like to see a little more acidity. Let’s see how this turns out once in bottle." (12/2014)
Inventory: Main Warehouse
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2015 Im Sonnenschein Weisser Burgunder GG offers a very clear, intense and ripe-fruit aroma of stewed apples and stomped potatoes with butter. Round, intense and smooth on the palate, this is a full-bodied, complex and very elegant Pinot Blanc. It is piquant and fruit-intense with a long and grippy finish. Ripe stone fruit flavors in the aftertaste. Bottled in May 2016. After 2014, Hansjörg Rebholz has again bottled a great vintage. His 2015 series is outstanding and a benchmark collection. His selective harvesting has come close to perfection over ...Read More »
While the most famous of Germany's white wines is indoubtably Riesling, the terroir and climate of the Rheinhessen is also suited to the production of crisp, delicious Pinot Blanc ('Weissburgunder' in German). Husband and wife Julia and Johannes Landgraf are the winemaking team behind Becker-Landgraf, continuing in the tradition of two winemaking families but with an emphasis on natural, minimal intervention winemaking. This 100% Pinot Blanc is all hand-harvested from top vineyards around Petersberg in Gau-Odernheim. It is raised in wood and made in an e... Read More »