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K&L Staff Recommendations
1977 Taylor Vintage Port $199.99
1963 Dow's Vintage Port $299.99
1977 Graham's Vintage Port $149.99
90 points Wine & Spirits: "This estate-grown blend of loureiro and alvarinho has clean flavor and depth in 2015, its ripeness captured in tart green pear and sweeter lime flavors. There’s a salty snap to the fresh finish, delicious with pan-roasted sea bass or most anything else from the sea. A steal at the price." K&L Notes: A perennial staff and customer favorite, this Vinho Verde continues to deliver the goods, the fizzy, citrus-drenched, delicious goods. If you're looking for a poolside, picnic, or patio sipper, this wine never disappoints.
Produced from Loureiro and Pederña grapes grown in the granitic soils of the Vinho Verde region, the Santola (or as we here are calling it, "the crab wine") is a delicious, spritely and refreshing white. It doesn't get much more traditional, thirst-quenching or seasonally perfect then this wine. Delicious, low in alcohol, slightly fizzy and way too easy to drink!
Delicious as usual, this mouthwatering Vinho Verde is 100% Alvarinho based. A combination of ripe golden stone fruits and fruit cocktail aromas lead to a rich, yellow and gold-fruited palate. Rich and with real flavor authority, the wine still shows loads of freshness and a nicely dry finish, perhaps a bit more so than the ebullient nose might suggest. The grapes are organically grown in the Vinho Verde sub-region of Melgaço and Monçao on granite soils. This expressive, more serious style of Vinho Verde is delicious as an aperitif or accompanied by your ... Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2015 Alvarinho Contacto is all Alvarinho and comes in at 13% alcohol. It is dry and unoaked, sourced from vines averaging 15 years in age. If I wasn't quite as thrilled with the 2013 and 2014, this vintage is letting it all hang out. Richer than its Muros Antigos sibling, if you're wondering, this has mouth-coating fruit and beautiful structure. It tightens with air on the finish, showing fine tension. Give it some air and it demonstrates transparency and refinement, too. Its broad, classic flavors roll over the tongue. The fruit is delectable. It is ...Read More »
Wine Spectator: "Great nutty aromas come from the glass and follow into the palate of this sweeter style of white Port. It is rich, packed with almonds and a tangy orange zest edge." (8/2010)
94 points James Suckling: "A gorgeous tawny with dried figs, caramel, dried raisins and coffee beans. Full-bodied, sweet and delicious. This shows such length and beauty. I love the crème caramel and cooked apple tart on the finish. Some pecan pie. Crazy." (10/2015) 93 points Wine Spectator: "*Top 100 Wines of 2013* A complex and full-bore tawny, with deep, intense flavors of orange cream, glazed apricot, baked peach and roasted pineapple that are balanced by concentrated chocolate and toffee notes. The bright finish is filled with spice and supported by fresh acidity." (10/2013) K&L Notes: Graham's was founded in 1820 in... Read More »
Hot new Vinho Verde region find! To be precise, this is actually labelled a Vinho Regional from the Minho; a wine can only be labelled Vinho Verde if it is 100% Alvarinho from the sub-zone of Melgaço, which this is not. Quinta do Regueiro makes great stuff though. Flavors of ripe yellow fruits show hints of ripe apple and red bananas - those delicious, sweet/tangy smaller bananas, not the regular ones we all grew up with. This is mineral as well, a touch smoky, just a delicious, textbook Alvarinho blend. (Joe Manekin, K&L Portuguese and Spanish wine buye... Read More »
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Lucid dark ruby color, the Bin 27 has a sweet nose of raisin and fig, complemented by copious dark cherry and black plum. The palate is sweet and spicy on the entry with that fig motif continuing with plush dark chocolate infused black fruit. The finish is short and abrupt, but there is a lingering peppery note to keep customer satisfied. The Bin 27 forms a perfect introduction to the delights of Port. (NM)" (2/2013) Wine Enthusiast: "Full, rich and fruity wine, enticingly aromatic, with strawberry fruits and an easy, just tannic edge. The wine is soft, ripe, the fruits fin ...Read More »
Produced in the Portalegre area, which lies in the north of the Alentejo DO, this red wine has the delicious approachable fruit I expect from Alentejo, with lots of unexpected freshness as well. The granitic terroir here produces a savory wine with flavors of mixed berries, a plummy richness and terrific balance. Touriga Naciona, Trincadeira, Aragones and Alicante Boucschet. (Joe Manekin, K&L Portuguese & Spanish wine buyer)
91 points James Suckling: "A balanced, fresh style of red with fine tannins, dark berries and hints of hazelnuts. Medium body, delicate tannins and a clean finish. A blend of grape varities from the region. Excellent value for an outstanding Douro red – a real deal." (10/2015) 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Vertente is Niepoort's familiar Douro blend, sourced from a combination of younger (with Niepoort, that means about 25 years) and older vines. Startlingly open and expressive, this shows little sign of a problem in this difficult vintage. Exuberant and tasty, it also evolves into something more seriou ...Read More »
95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2001 Vinha Do Fojo (Quinta Do Fojo) is an old vines field blend aged for 12 months in French oak (60% new, the rest used). Of the Vinha do Fojos here this issue, this is arguably the best and the best balanced, although the 1996 is drinking much better now. That said, this is still a powerhouse in an old school style. One of the problems in evaluating these (especially when young) is that the tannins can be hard and overwhelm the wine. I took a cautious approach and was too stingy initially. This time it also had a couple of days open, which helped. ...Read More »
Adega Cooperative de Monçao is a long running, well respected co-op in the area of Monçao and Melgaço. This 100% Alvarinho bottling shows rich stone fruits with very good purity and minerality. Soft, a bit frothy and delicious, this traditional Alvarinho-based Vinho Verde hits the spot.
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "The wine is rich, ripe and fruity with good acidity as well as a bite of spirit and old-wood aging. It is well balanced, keeping the freshness of a 10-Year-Old while also showing good signs of its wood aging. Just what a 10-Year-Old should be." (12/2014) 90 points Wine Spectator: "This has a zesty, sweet floral aroma, with delicate, well-spiced flavors of apple tart, flan and cocoa powder. The plush, mouthfilling finish of cream, vanilla and raspberry is fresh and balanced. Drink now." (12/2010) Jancis Robinson: "What handsome squat bottles Graham's tawnies come in... Very pale rose red. Light, rather ...Read More »
90 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* Don’t let the medium you—that’s how this is supposed to look. Malmsey is the sweetest of the Madeiras, and this one is intensely sweet, yet also lemony-tart at the same time, with flavors of black walnuts, molasses and coffee." (11/2006) Wine Spectator: "Smooth and lush, with loads of glazed apricot, maple, vanilla and cream flavors. Fresh, focused finish." (11/2006) K&L Notes: Cossart Gordon, founded in 1759, is a Bual specialist, only bottling Madeiras from this noble grape variety known for producing slightly spicy and medium sweet styles of Madeira. This example s... Read More »
What a fantastic, lighter traditional red from this Vinoh Verde cooperative in Monçzo. A blend of Alvarelho, Pedal and Vinhao, this lovely light bodied red is fizzy, with pretty dark cherry fruit, damson and violet notes Dry, original and lovely red. 10.5% ABV
Wine Enthusiast: "A dry wine, firmly tannic, although also with acidity and black currant fruit. Spices and licorice add interest, while the tannins finish this attractive wine." (12/2011) Wine Spectator: "Lots of sweet dark plum and sweet cherry flavors dominate, with plenty of milk chocolate. Clean and balanced on the straightforward finish." (12/2010) K&L Notes: From the Producer: "Six Grapes is one of Graham's original Port marques. It is a big-hearted wine, sourced from the same vineyards (essentially Quinta dos Malvedos and Quinta das Lages) that contribute to Graham's famed Vintage Ports in 'decl... Read More »
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "Always great, this is softer, less intense than in the past. But there is still great richness, and power as well as smoothness, burnt caramel blending well with the spirit, and finishing with its inimitable fresh acidity." (11/2007) 92 points Wine Spectator: "Rich, smooth and polished, exhibiting an array of dried apricot, pear and guava flavors that are accented by plenty of apple wood smoke notes. The lush finish surges with mineral, along with hints of peat and ginger cream. Drink now. 300 cases imported." (12/2010) Jancis Robinson: "Lovely complexity of a 20 year old - citrus and nuts and still a ...Read More »
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Branco Reserva Planalto (Casa Ferreirinha) is a white bargain even though it is a mass-market wine (about 125,000 cases). It is an unoaked blend of 35% Viosinho; 15% each of Malvasia Fina, Gouveio, Códega and Arinto; and 5% Moscatel. This shows good purity of fruit, a lovely, fresh feel, some viscosity and some precision. It hangs together well and drinks great. This is a very good vintage for it. (MS)" (8/2015)
Produced from Baga and Touriga Nacional grapes from different vineyards in Beiras, Luis Pato's entry-level red is loaded with character and offers terrific value as well as some really distinctive, specific flavors. The Bairrada and Beiras regions are cool, and the climate is influenced by the Atlantic. Soils are composed of clay with interspersed limestone. There is an acidity and tannic structure that is quite different from the rich, ripe wines of its more famous, warmer, northerly neighbor, the Douro. Luis Pato is making some of the most interesting ... Read More »
100 points James Suckling: "I found a bottle of 1977 Fonseca in my cellar - probably my last. It was absolutely gorgeous. I gave this fortified wine a perfect score in its youth and I think it has finally evolved into its perfection as a mature vintage Port. Here is the tasting note. 1977 Fonseca Vintage Port: This is in total balance now with such harmony. What amazing aromas of berry and flowers. Full and sweet, the tannins are complete dissolved. The fruit is perfect. This goes on for minutes. Drink now. But it will go forever." (8/2013) 100 points Wine Spectator: "What a Vintage Port. Dark ruby center, with ...Read More »
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "This rich wine is balanced and ripe, with spice, sweet sultana and raisin fruitiness and a light shot of acidity. The aftertaste brings out fresh red fruits that are cut by the spirit and acidity to leave a full feeling in the mouth." (12/2014) 91 points Wine Spectator: "This is filled to the brim with rich dried fruit and spice flavors, including apricot and mango, with vibrant white chocolate and hazelnut notes. The finish is sumptuous. Drink now." (12/2010) K&L Notes: I think we have found a new favorite, not only in the 10-year Tawny category, but possibly in our entire fortified sweet wine ... Read More »
96 points Wine Spectator: "Very elegant, with notes of tobacco and cedar to the lush butter cream, ripe pear and dried apricot flavors. Seductive tropical fruit and spice notes linger on the endless finish, revealing citrusy hints. Drink now." (12/2015) 95 points Wine & Spirits: "So mellow and round, this is easy to knock back. But consider what’s behind all the heady, delicious flavor—how the juiciness is perfectly integrated into the fresh scents that somehow lasted through five decades of aging in Taylor’s lodges in Vila Nova de Gaia. Those scents range from green almond to green fig and tobacco leaf. The ...Read More »
Maritávora's White Port is a blend of selected young ports and composed of traditional varietals: Gouveio, Donzelinho, Viosinho and Malvasia Fina. After blending, the Port is aged in large oak vats called "tonels" to preserve the ripe and fresh fruit aromas and flavors. It is ready to drink now, and makes an excellent aperitif or digestive.
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "This is a serious wine from Aveleda’s estate in Bairrada. With its bold, tarry tannins and solid structure, it’s a wine that combines longevity and impressive fruit. Mineral, structured and concentrated with big black-fruit flavors and a dry, solid core, it’s destined for long aging." (6/2015)
Wine Enthusiast: "***Best Buy*** This is a friendly fruity wine that has a soft texture and bright acidity...with citrus and white fruit flavors that are so fresh. Drink now. (RV)" (2/2016) K&L Notes: Located in the UNESCO heritage site of Evora, Cartuxa is a fully functional farm. Grape growing and winemaking are just a few of the farming activities in which they engage. Their EA white shows rich yellow fruits with a creamy texture and terrific balance. Antao Vaz, Roupeiro and and Arinto grapes.
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "***Editors' Choice*** The Historic Series are simply great Madeiras at reasonable prices. The Charleston Sercial is the driest of the collection, offering nutty aromas tinged with honey, caramel and maple syrup. Dried figs, honey and candied citrus flavors mark the palate, which is wonderfully smooth. The long finish features racy yet balanced acidity. (JC)" (11/2006) 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Medium amber. Gingerbread, orange zest, clove, blond tobacco and honey on the nose. Spicy citrus and poached pear flavors are lifted by zesty acidity and show a gentle smoky quality on the ba ...Read More »
Quinta do Romeu tends towards a lighter touch, with less oak and extraction than many of its peers. All of their plantings are massale selections. Their is a lot of quartz and granite on their organically cultivated property, which along with the very high elevation (some of the highest in the Douro) lends great freshness and elegance to their wines.
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* Slightly richer than the Charleston Sercial, the Boston Bual boasts knockout aromas of toasted nut oil, orange peel and hints of dark honey or maple syrup. Despite the extra weight and sweetness, it's not cloying at all the finish is mouthwatering and long. (JC)" (11/2006) 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Light, bright amber. Deep aromas of cherry pit, candied orange, toffee and molasses, lifted by a note of dried rose. Chewy in texture, with dry-edged nut and burnt orange flavors, a touch of molasses sugar and good back-end grip. Quite sweet but the wine's acidity adds ...Read More »
91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Alvarinho Primeiras Vinhas sees a bit of wood (about 15% of the juice was in used barrels), but you'll hardly notice. The point here is to display the producer's "First Vines" from the Quinta, some 40-years-old. It is very dry and comes in at 13% alcohol. Showing a little green in its youth, this is most notable for its tightly-wound demeanor and its fine tension on the finish. It is essence of Alvarinho. The wine seems graceful and perfectly balanced, yet gripping on the finish (MS)" (3/2016) 90 points Wine Enthusiast: "Ripe while still so fresh, this is a tangy, citrus-fla ...Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "'Black' is a new blend produced from classic varieties that do not make it into the Quinta do Noval vintage. There are ripe blackberries, tar, smoke and orange liqueur on the nose that takes time to open. The palate is medium-bodied, very sleek on the entry, fleshy black fruits, sloe, spice and just a hint of white pepper, leading to a very focused finish. Drink now-2020. Tasted April 2010. (NM-Wine Journal)" (3/2010) Jancis Robinson: "This is made from Quinta do Noval's younger vines. The back label urges us to serve it chilled as an aperitif or with dark chocolate at any ...Read More »
Quinta do Crasto is one of the pioneering wineries in the Douro. Along with other "Douro boys" producers they have been working hard to focus on farming their single quintas and marketing themselves as well as their region as an area capable of producing delicious, distinctive wines. Rich, dark fruited aromas, with hints of candied violet and camphor, lead to a similar palate. which, in the relatively fresher 2013 vintage, also shows some crisp red fruits. This is a delicious Douro red to introduce anyone to the charm of the Douro valley.
Located in the drier Douro Superior, Quinta do Romeu is a family owned quinta that grows organically cultivated grapes and olives. Their wines are intense yet graceful; while they are certainly full of fruit they do not have quite the high impact in terms of extract and oak that perhaps define some others who are working hard to continue to put Portuguese red wines on the map. While 2012 was a very warm, dry vintage (even in the Douro where they are used to warm and dry), Quinta do Romeu managed to produce this lovely, brightly fruited red. It's a great ... Read More »
95 points Decanter: "Traditionally the preserve of Portuguese-owned houses, colheita has been colonised by Taylor’s after its takeover of Krohn in 2013; just 2,000 bottles of this were made. Lifted caramel aromas with a hint of butterscotch. Suave, rich, spicy flavours – quite sweet but stops just short of cloying on the finish. Supremely fresh, delicate length. Remarkable wine at 50 years old." (12/2014) 95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "I allowed my glass of 1964 Taylor’s Very Old Single Harvest Port a couple of hours to open up in the glass, monitoring its evolution along the way. It is not a shy or retirin ...Read More »
90 points Wine Spectator: "Light-footed, showing a note of wild herb to the well-burnished flavors of baked peach, apricot and ripe citrus, with a long and full aftertaste of mint, caramel and white chocolate. (Web-2013)"
Inventory: San Francisco
Sourced from older vines in the Cima Corgo and Baixo Corgo regions of the Douro, this red blend is fermented and in stainless steel vats. This field blend of Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca, Tinta Roriz, Tinta Amarela, Tinto Cão, Sousão, Tinta Francisca, Touriga Nationa is an incredibly food-friendly wine brimming with inviting notes of cherry, blackberry and baking spice.
91 points Wine Spectator: "This is a big glass of young Port . It's got grip. Intense grapy, berry and violet aromas and flavors. Full bodied and medium-sweet with plenty of tannins and a fruity but tannic finish. Best after 2006. 3,000 cases made. (JS)" (2/1999) K&L Notes: Agua Alta is a single-quinta bottling which represents an important terroir for the Churchill estate. It would be included in the estate's vintage port in declared vintages, but is special enough to bottle separately in non-declared vintages.
97 points Wine Enthusiast: "Inky purple in color, this youngest Taylor vintage Port boasts a floral, wonderfully open and appealing bouquet, backed by layers of rich fruit. What makes this wine extra special is the seductive texture—somewhere between creamy and syrupy—and ample length. (JC)" (2/2007) 96 points Wine & Spirits: "The 2003 vintage surrounds Taylor's classically hard-core iron grip with fruit that's generous, succulent and rich. The aromas of violets and spice seem to rise out of a blast of black rock, the muscular tannin inseparable from the fresh fruit. Though the ripeness and richness of the vin ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
95 points Wine & Spirits: "People in Douro argue over the optimal age for a Tawny. As an outsider, it’s easy to know it when you taste it. There’s no mistaking the freshness in this wine, though it lives mysteriously in complete harmony with its aged character, provoking an immediate sense of pleasure (the yum response) followed by an extended moment of meditation. Are you tasting dried cherries? Smelling the scent of mushrooms in the forest? The fresh zest of an orange or the mineral sense of tannins turned to silk? Whatever that fragrant, delicate thing may be, it’s likely to ca ...Read More »
Jancis Robinson: "Black cherry, velvety tannin, violet fragrance. Very supple indeed - absolutely ready to drink now. Lovely persistence." (5/2015)
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* An elegant tawny, perfumed with soft tannins and a good edge of wood acidity and spirit. The wine is dry, densely flavored, tasting mature, showing a good balance between young sweetness and age, with everything well integrated. (RV)" (12/2008) 91 points Wine Spectator: "This has a bright aromas, with notes of lemon zest and flavors of apricot, peach tart and caramel. The long finish echoes the fresh fruit, with lots of butterscotch and nut notes. Drink now. (KM)" (12/2010) Jancis Robinson: "Much paler than the 10 Year Old, like the skin of Victoria plums. Gentle apricot aroma. This i ...Read More »
91 points Wine & Spirits: "Light amber-tawny in color, this wine is delicately balanced between freshness and age. There’s brisk, tart peach flavor along with more mature tones of pale berries and woodsy mushrooms. Hints of tobacco smoke add to the wine’s elegance." (12/2015) 91 points Wine Spectator: "Well-honed, with a touch of sweetness to the plush flavors of butterscotch, pear tart, almond and vanilla. Orange peel and dried ginger accents emerge on the seductively spicy finish." (9/2015) Jancis Robinson: "Restrained and delicately spiced on the nose. Tight and dense but still has a lightness of touch on the finish, which is ...Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
97 points Wine Spectator: "Good ruby color still. The nose is fresh, with lots of crushed berry and plum, with a hint of piecrust. Full-bodied, with firm tannins and a caressing texture. This delivers loads of complex fruit and spiciness. Medium-sweet. A beauty. Will improve for decades, but why wait? (Web-2008)" 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "This house must certainly be the Latour of Portugal. Their ports are remarkably backward yet still impressive when young. Of all the vintage ports, those of Taylor need the longest time to mature and even when fully mature seem to have an inner strength and firmness that ke ...Read More »
93 points Wine Enthusiast: "A complex, wood aged wine, this 20-year-old has a perfumed, dry style. Walnut and spice flavors blend together with the spirit and mature acidity. It’s rich, with just the right amount of age." (6/2012) 93 points Wine Spectator: "Rich, with a spicy nose, this offers flavors of fig, dried apricot, mango and ginger. Complex and elegant, delivering concentrated crème brûlée and tropical fruit notes that linger on the vibrant and buttery finish." (2/2014) 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Tasted at Taylor’s tawny seminar in London. The 20-Year Old tawny is initially a little reticent on the nose, mellow and refined with s ...Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The NV 10 Year Old Tawny Port was bottled in 2014 with 105.23 grams per liter of residual sugar. Easily the 10 with the most weight in the Fladgate group's lineup this issue, it is a rather powerful 10 year old Tawny with plenty of pop, the biggest and baddest of the trio (Fonseca, Croft and this). There is very fine concentration of flavor for a 10 year old Tawny. If I had a quibble, the alcohol shows at times, especially early on and rather notably when drunk a little too warm. (Around 60 degrees Fahrenheit is a lot better than room temperature most of ...Read More »
94 points James Suckling: "Beautiful now. Shows lots of dried fruits and Christmas cake character on the nose and palate. Medium sweet. Full-bodied with loads of flavor and an intensely flavorful finish. Perfect to drink." (8/2013) 93 points Wine Spectator: "Deep garnet. Very pretty plum and berry aromas, with hints of honey and toffee. Turns to custard. Full-bodied, sweet and fresh. Firm tannins, with elegance and balance. Will age for a long time, but ready. Generous, but subtle. (Web Only-2008)" 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "This house makes rather restrained yet rich, flavorful vintage port and a very good tawny called Nimrod. Their vin ...Read More »
93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Medium amber with a green rim. Aromas of burnt orange, tobacco, toffee and herbs, with a hint of potpourri adding an exotic component. Broader and deeper than the Charleston, offering sappy orange marmalade, chestnut honey and toffee flavors underscored by tangy acidity. Shows a sweet, nutty quality on the smoky, gently spicy finish. I like this wine's heft and thrust. (JR)" (6/2011) K&L Notes: These are the most affordable, representative examples of classic Madeira available. A collaboration between the importer and Barbeito's Ricardo Diogo Vasconcelos Freitas, th... Read More »
94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Saturated ruby. Brooding blueberry, cassis, licorice and mineral nose complicated by a whiff of smoked meat; easy to pick out as Taylor in a blind grouping. Very concentrated, palate-saturating black cherry and black raspberry flavor. Thick and round but vibrant and delineated. Impressive extract. Explosive finishing fruit goes on and on. A very powerful port, but much more accessible early than a classic vintage Taylor. (ST)" (4/1998) 92 points Wine Spectator: "**Ranked #10 of Top 100 Wines of 1998 -- and Cellar Selection** A big, voluptuous wine--decadence in a bottle. Sports a b ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The unoaked 2014 Verdelho V (the Verdelho from Madeira), sourced from 10-year-old vines, is enticing in this fairly cool year. It is a fine bargain. With a touch of green up front, this has good concentration for the level and it should hold nicely for several years. I generally recommend drinking these young and fresh because that is what they do best, but winemaker Sandra Alves said to me that a 2004 recently showed great. This vintage, also, is one that provided very nice acidity. (MS)" (8/2015)
Inventory: San Francisco
Jancis Robinson: "Black fruit confection - jammy, sweet, slight burn but there's plenty of substance and volume in support. (RH)" (5/2015)