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K&L Staff Recommendations
92 points James Suckling: "There's a purity of fruit here with intense blackberries, blueberries and citrus rind on the nose. Full body, delicate tannins and a long and delicious finish. So savory and beautiful. Made from biodynamically farmed grapes. Drink now." (9/2013)91 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Chianti Classico Querciabella has that extra bit of depth, creaminess and mid-palate pliancy missing in the 2010, all while maintaining plenty of brightness, freshness and Sangiovese character. Freshly cut roses, sweet red berries and a hint of spices are woven into the exceptionally elegant, refined finis ...Read More »
95 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Cellar Selection* Fragrant and balanced, this structured wine opens with an alluring fragrance of red rose petal, black raspberry, leather and spice. The ripe, savory palate delivers mature black cherry, balsamic notes, subtle oak and a touch of vanilla, all supported by a firm, tannic backbone and fresh acidity. It’s already fabulous but hold for complexity. Drink 2016–2026." (12/2014)92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Barbaresco Gallina is perfumed and layered with bright red fruit at the core. You can feel the heat of the 2011 vintage, but not in a distracting or diminishing w ...Read More »
Meaning "middle son," "Moliss" is a Piedmontese word, not Italian. This is one of two single vineyard Barberas produced by Agostino Pavia and his sons Giuseppe ("Pino") and Mauro, of which total production is less than five thousand cases. Made from old vines and aged in large Slavonian oak ovals, which impart subtle oak aromas and can add texture when new, "Moliss" is stylistically similar to a traditional Asti but cleaner and much more concentrated. Importer Oliver McCrum writes: "Barbera d'Asti used to have a reputation for having acidity like that of... Read More »
The Santoleri vineyards date back to 1968, though the same family has been farming the property since 600! Located at the base of the 2,000 foot Maiella Mountain in the Apennines. Its altitude and proximity to the Adriatic Sea are ideally suited for growing grapes. The vineyards are farmed without the use of pesticides, mineral fertilizers and other invasive products. From the importer: "Ruby red robe with violet hues. Intense aromas with notes of black cherry, balsamic and licorice. Fresh and vigorous on the palate, typical of a young Montepulciano, wit... Read More »
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "Complex aromas of red rose, tilled earth, red berry, black pepper, balsamic notes and a whiff of barnyard lead the nose on this structured wine. The juicy palate features ripe black cherry, crushed raspberry, white pepper and a hint of mocha alongside fresh acidity and firm but polished tannins. Drink 2016–2026." (12/2014)91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Ornella Pelissero’s 2011 Barbaresco Bricco San Giuliano shows some of the heat of the 2011 vintage but does so with an irresistible level of moxie and charm. You get generous servings of ripe cherry and raspberry with lingering tones of ...Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
97 points James Suckling: "This is fabulous Barolo with burnt orange, blackberry, meat, earth, and fresh herb. Full-bodied, round and velvety. So flavorful and crazy. Drink now. Why wait? But it will age wonderfully." (9/2015)
Inventory: Main Warehouse
95 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Geremia, the estate's Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend, offers tons of energy to balance its dark, inky fruit. Lavender, menthol, melted road tar, sage, crème de cassis and grilled herbs are some of the many signatures. The ripeness and raciness of the year come through in spades, yet there is an element of pulsating intensity in the glass that plays off the more overt elements nicely. This is another superb showing from Rocca di Montegrossi." (9/2015)93 points James Suckling: "A soft and rich Super Tuscan with lots of juicy and ripe fruit. Very reminiscent of the New World ...Read More »
Sandro Fay has been producing wines in Valtellina for the past 40 years, and is dedicated to single-vineyard expressions of this unique and historic terroir. Upriver from Lake Como, near the Swiss border, the Valtellina DOCG sits in a narrow valley that runs east/west at the base of the alps, which protect its sunny climate. The signature grape is Nebbiolo, known locally as Chiavennasca. Fay's Costa Bassa vineyard is located in the village of Teglio and is designated as "Valtellina Superiore," one of the finest terroirs in the appellation. In this cooler... Read More »
93 points Wine Spectator: "Marked by ripe cherry, strawberry, floral and tar flavors, this red is graceful and detailed, with the fruit intensity persisting on the finish. This is well-integrated, and just needs time for the tannins to soften. Excellent length." (5/2015)92 points James Suckling: "Aromas of dried berry, lemon peel and plum follow through to a medium to full body, fine tannins and a bright finish. Bright and delicious. I like both the 2010 and 2011 at the same level but for different reasons. Better in 2015." (12/2014)90 points Antonio Galloni: "The Produttori del Barbaresco's 2011 Barbaresco presents an intriguing combin ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
96 points James Suckling: "There is a purity of fruit in this young Tuscan red, with flowers, citrus fruit and currants. Full body with firm, silky tannins that are ultra-fine and wonderfully polished. The structure builds to a racy finish. This is a Bordeaux blend that is all in harmony. Give it time: the tannins and fruit will melt together." (11/2013)94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Oreno wraps around the palate with gorgeous resonance and silkiness. Mocha, cloves, leather and dark spices all add nuance to a core of voluptuous, racy fruit. This is a typical 2011 long on texture, resonance and early app ...Read More »
92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright red. Captivating, extremely intense aromas of flinty red cherry and raspberry, lifted by violet and mineral notes. Sappy, floral fruit shows lovely sweetness and energy thanks to well-integrated acidity and spicy mineral lift. Dense, chewy and saline on the brisk finish, featuring youthful, building tannins. Made from vines between 75 and 100 years of age, this is a star in the making--a truly great Passopisciaro and the best wine in this year's releases of Sicilian wines from the talented Andrea Franchetti. 92(+?) points." (3/2014)90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Pas ...Read More »
92 points Antonio Galloni: "The grapes are selected from vineyards located in Castiglione Falletto, Monforte, Barolo, and Novello, from vines ranging in age from 7 to 35 years old. Fermentation occurs in stainless steel over 15 days, with daily cap submersion for extraction of flavor and color. The wine is then aged for 24 months in casks. The wine was blended in stainless steel tanks 8 months before bottling." (9/2014) Jancis Robinson: "Pale ruby with orange tinges. Classic Nebbiolo nose yet closed and with the merest hint of oak. Compact and fresh fruit on the palate with a proper load of firm, ripe ...Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "The aromas are enchanting with cardamom, ivy and dark fruits. Subtle and fascinating. Full body, round tannins with a complex aftertaste of ash, smoke, light jam and orange peel. Silky. Intense chalk." (10/2014) Wine Spectator: "Tangy dried cherry and cranberry fruit is layered with aromatic herb and woodsy spice in this well-knit red, with light tannins and a subtle finish of fresh earth and smoke. (Web-2015)"
From the winery: "The grapes used to produce this wine come from the best vineyards in Belvedere Ostrense and San Marcello in the province of Ancona. Ruby red colour. Distinguished floral scent, of rosehip and spices. Full, elegant, medium bodied flavour, which enhances aromas."
40% Refosco, 40% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon.
96 points James Suckling: "This is so refined and polished with dusty tannins and shaved-chocolate and dried-berry character. Full-bodied but fresh and lively. Long, long finish. Trudy and Sting's best wine ever. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Sangiovese. Made from biodynamically grown grapes. Very drinkable now but better in 2017." (10/2014)91 points Wine Spectator: "Violet, black currant and boysenberry flavors highlight this fruity, supple red, showing abundant support from well-integrated tannins and lively acidity. Fine length. Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Drink now through 2022 ...Read More »
Wine & Spirits: "Tarry upfront, with scents of green figs and herbs, this is a savory montepulciano that’s ready to serve with a steak." (6/2015) Wine Spectator: "Balanced and fresh, with light tannins framing the tangy mix of wild berry, damson plum and fresh forest flavors. Drink now. 8,000 cases made. (Web Only - 2015)"
Inventory: Redwood City
95 points James Suckling: "Captivating aromas of blueberries, raspberries, violets and orange peel. Full body with crazy tannins." (9/2013)94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Giorgio Primo is just as beautiful today as it was last year, even if it has barely budged since then. Blackberry jam, spices, licorice, smoke and new leather meld together in a seamless voluptuous wine endowed with superb depth and pure textural richness. The oak still needs time to integrate, but there is a lot to look forward to here." (9/2014)91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Giorgio Primo is the latest edition of one of my favorite Tuscan blends. Cabernet S ...Read More »
92 points Antonio Galloni: "Tobacco, dried herbs, hard candy, leather, rose petal, earthiness and spices are all laced together in the 2011 Uvaggio. In this vintage, the Uvaggio is dark, rich and textured, with a little more amplitude than normal and a little less freshness, both of which make me thing it is best enjoyed sooner rather than later. Over the last year, the 2011 has put on considerable depth, which, along with the natural richness of the year, results in an Uvaggio that is unusually generous. What a gorgeous wine this is. The 2011 is 80% Nebbiolo and 20% Vespolina, wit ...Read More »
Azienda Agricola Barone Cornacchia was esablished in 1577. Now organically farmed from stony calcareous soils, this 100% Montepulciano d’Abruzzo displays a deep ruby color with a perfumed and plummy bouquet. The rounded and intense palate shows persistence and fine tannins, and should pair well with grilled meats, pasta, and hard cheese.
94 points James Suckling: "A gorgeous and flavorful white with sliced mangoes, apples and lemons. Full and fresh with a long, long finish. Full of character. Always one of the best wines of Italy. A blend of sauvignon, chardonnay, ribolla gialla, malvasia Iastriana, and picolit. Screw cap." (12/2013)91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Vintage Tunina is a blend of Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Ribolla Gialla, Malvasia Istriana and Picolit that shows impressive density and integrity. The wine feels silky smooth and pleasurable on the palate, imparting stone fruit, preserved lemon and sun-ripened Golden Delicious appl ...Read More »
90 points Wine Spectator: "A modern style, with black cherry, black currant and tobacco notes enhanced by oak spice. Vibrant and balanced, featuring fine tannins that still need to be absorbed. The spice elements echo on the finish. Best from 2016 through 2024." (8/2014) Jancis Robinson: "Cask sample. Very dark ruby. Focused oak and fruit nose. Supple dense fruit with a firm tannic frame. Only a tiny bit astringent on the finish, but will mellow out with more bottle age." (2/2014)
95 points James Suckling: "The blackberry, currant, nutmeg and chocolate aromas follow through to a full body, with velvety tannins and lots of savory fruit. Some balsamic and citrus fruit underneath it all. Needs a little time to soften. Pure Sangiovese. From organically grown grapes. Better in 2016." (9/2014)95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Flaccianello della Pieve is 100% Sangiovese aged 24 months in new French oak and two months in large oak cask. I’m not sure how Fontodi does it, but this edition of Flaccianello is simply beautiful. It is a seamless expression with lingering tones of red cherry, coff ...Read More »
98 points James Suckling: "This smells like great Burgundy with strawberry, flowers and hints of incense. Full body with wonderful, ultra-refined tannins and amazing depth and length. So layered and so fine. It goes on for minutes. Magical red. Better in 2017." (10/2014)
According to Wine Advocate: "Poderi San Lazzaro is one of my very favorite estates in the Marche. The wines are rich, layered and always loaded with personality." (2/2013)
Wine Spectator: "An elegant, light-bodied red, presenting ripe and juicy black cherry fruit and hints of grilled herb and fresh, loamy earth. Offers a snappy finish, with light grip. Drink now. 8,000 cases made. (Web Only - 2015)"
95 points James Suckling: "A very exciting and subtle red with tar, licorice and dark berry character. Full-bodied, yet subtle and balanced. Lovely density and freshness. Better than 2010. Drink or hold for many years." (4/2015)94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Barolo Ginestra Vigna Casa Matè has retained greater freshness than the Gavarini. At the same time, the flavors are dark, bold and intense throughout, with gorgeous balsamic-inflected overtones that add nuance. In 2011, with sugars mounting, Gianluca Grasso chose to pick the Ginestra before the Gavarini, which is not the norm here. As a result, the ...Read More »
94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Barbaresco Asili captures the pedigree of this great site. Freshly cut flowers, sweet red berries, mint and cinnamon all resonate in an impeccable, silky Barbaresco loaded with class. A translucent, crystalline wine, the 2011 impresses for its balance and overall harmony. What a gorgeous wine this is. (AG)" (10/2014)
Jancis Robinson: "Mid ruby with orange tinges. Quite subdued on the nose and pretty closed on the palate. Aeration shows just a hint of oak. Tannic finish with considerable power behind it and very long and youthful." (5/2014) James Suckling: "A lightly chewy wine with blueberry and milk-chocolate character. Light body, fresh finish. Screw cap." (3/2015) Wine Spectator: "Round and smooth, with light-grained tannins underneath sweet cherry and berry notes. Anise and tobacco accents chime in as this ends with refinement and moderate length. Drink now through 2018. (Web Only - 2014)"
Here's a delicious Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend from cntral Italy's Lazio. It's self-described by the winery as "a red wine with an intense ruby color and bold and persistent aromas that recall black fruits like blackberry and blueberry, accompanied by scents of spice and an elegant vanilla note, along with an austere one from bottle aging. The mouthfeel is balanced, persistent and quite elegant."
95 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* Fresh scents of just-picked rose, bright red berry, baking spice, leather and an earthy hint of game unfold on this stunning wine. The full-bodied palate offers juicy mature cherry, crushed raspberry, licorice, carob, chopped wild mint and clove alongside firm, velvety tannins and bright acidity. Gorgeous!" (11/2015) 91-93 points Antonio Galloni: "Striking aromatics and bright, finely sculpted fruit inform the 2011 Barolo Vigna Lazzairasco, an utterly beguiling wine that constantly changes in the glass. There is an element of mystery that is both compelling and that al ...Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "A new wine from the estate of Nipozzano with pretty blueberry and light vanilla character. Full-bodied, chewy and rich with a long, lightly austere finish. Wonderful depth of fruit. From the oldest vines on the property and aged 24 months in barrel. Needs a year or two more of bottle age to soften: Drink in 2016." (10/2014)93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Dark red. Refined aromas of dark red cherry, blackcurrant, lavender, sage, rosemary and tobacco on the multidimensional nose. Textured, pure and classy, with very long, mineral-driven dark red berry and cherry flavors framed by noble, s ...Read More »
From an "agriculturally self-sufficient" wine farm that include orchards and pasture, just a few miles outside of Roma along the Appian Way. The winery's note: "This has a straw-yellow color with golden reflections. The aromas are intense and elegant and range from floral scents to those of tropical fruit, together with notes of golden delicious apple and banana. The flavor is balanced, piquant and very elegant."
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Costa d'Amalfi Tramonti Riserva Quattro Spine is a blend of Aglianico, Tintore and Piedirosso from old vines. This is a beautiful and delicious wine with a untamed and rustic personality. The highly distinctive bouquet shows dark berry, bramble, grilled herb, candied cherry and balsam notes. Background tones of tar and licorice also appear and contribute to the uniqueness of this wine. The Aglianico component adds a firm vein of tannins at the back. I'd be very curious to try this wine three to five years from now. (ML)" (4/2015) K&L Notes: If you've ever be... Read More »
94 points Antonio Galloni: "Grasso's 2011 Barolo Gavarini Vigna Chiniera captures the essence and personality of the year in its inviting, radiant personality. Bright red stone fruits, crushed rocks, pine, mint and flowers are all lifted and aromatically expressive in the glass. The Gavarini is already quite open and inviting. I imagine it will offer a wide window of pure drinking pleasure over the next 20 years or so. This is a striking Barolo from the Grasso family. (AG)" (3/2015)94 points James Suckling: "A wine with lots of berry and chocolate character plus hints of walnuts. Full body, soft and velvety t ...Read More »
The grape is called Timorasso, and in case you didn't know, it's a local white grape that had pretty much disappeared off the wine map of the world, and certainly would have if it weren't for the likes of a handful of Piedmontese vintners bent on saving the region's lesser known wine styles. Not to use a much relied upon cliché, but this one really has to be tried to be believed. Complex doesn't even begin to describe the myriad of aromas and flavors: roasted nut, apricot, orange flower blossoms, river bed rock, ginger, vanilla ice cream.... All this in ... Read More »
Inventory: San Francisco
Decanter World Wine Awards 2014 Commended this red, describing it as having "fleshy jammy red fruit on the nose. The palate of red fruit is rich supple and prolonged."
95 points Antonio Galloni: "Another gorgeous wine, the 2011 La Ricolma wraps around the palate with fabulous depth and richness. Dark red and black-toned fruit, cloves, menthol, spices and licorice meld together in a supple, radiant wine endowed with notable depth and nuance. Lavender, jasmine and a host of floral notes add gorgeous perfume on the finish. Of all the San Giusto wines, Ricolma seems to get the least attention, but it can be superb, as it is again in 2011." (9/2014)94 points Wine Spectator: "A cool reserve lends a fresh feel to the pure cherry and blackberry flavors in this dense red. Taut, focu ...Read More »
This classic blend of 40% Corvina, 20% Corvinone, 20% Rondinella and 20% other grapes, including Molinara, Dindarella and Croatina from Valpolicella. A low-alcohol red, as the winery describes it: "Its deep ruby red colour, the fruity flavour that reminds us of cherries, wild cherries and plums, its pleasant sapid and harmonious taste, gives us the opportunity of defining this wine as being modern, youthful and ready to drink."
92 points James Suckling: "Floral with ruby stone and fresh strawberry on the nose. Hints of pine nut and hazelnut with fresh strawberry jam accompany silky tannins. Good structure. Better in 2016." (10/2014) K&L Notes: While 2010 was a glorious vintage in parts of Tuscany and created an incredible Vino Nobile di Montepulciano from TorCalvano, the 2011 might be even better. Whereas the 10 had all the sweetness of fruit from the warm vintage, the 2011 showcases that fruit more subtly, leading into more complex flavors of leather, spice, and even fresh pine nut. Vino Nobile di Montepulciano ofte... Read More »
93 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Chianti Classico Riserva Le Baroncole is a great example of the year. Dark red and black fruit, smoke, tobacco and licorice wrap around the palate in a racy, voluptuous Chianti loaded with pure class and pedigree. Hints of game, tobacco and cedar add nuance on the finish. (AG)" (9/2014)92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Good bright medium red. Pungent, wild aromas of redcurrant, sweet spices, underbrush and flint. Silky and fine-grained, with heady minerality and floral character energizing the redcurrant and dark red cherry flavors. Finishes with suave tannins, noteworthy intensi ...Read More »
97 points Antonio Galloni: "A vivid, beautiful wine, the 2011 Pergole Torte is superb. Warm, early-maturing harvests often attenuate the differences between sites, but not here. The old vines weathered the heat better, resulting in a wine that is very much in line with the past, but with more body, amplitude and resonance. Rose petals, bright red stone fruits and mint are some of the many notes that grace the super-expressive finish. The 2011 spent one year in French oak barrels and a second year in cask. (AG)" (9/2014)95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Le Pergole Torte is a stunning expression from the hear ...Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "A red with attractive currant, blueberry and spice character on the nose and palate. Full body, very silky and polished tannins and a ripe and rich finish. Shows the ripeness of the vintage. Yet this remains fresh and bright. A Bordeaux blend with a touch of Sangiovese. Drink or hold." (8/2015)
Inventory: Main Warehouse
95 points Antonio Galloni: "Kirsch, rose petal, pomegranate, exotic spices and mint are woven together in a fabric of notable class in the 2011 Tignanello. An exotic wine that captures the essence of the year, the 2011 is endowed with magnificent complexity, nuance and class. The silky, polished finish makes the 2011 incredibly appealing today, but the wines from this site have always aged very well. The 2011 is going to need time to shed some of its baby fat, but it will always remain extroverted and racy to the core. I can't wait to see how the 2011 ages. (AG)" (9/2014)95 points James Suckling: "Ruby, rose, ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
91 points Wine Spectator: "Black cherry, sweet spice, toast, cedar and bell pepper aromas and flavors highlight this smooth red, showing fine intensity and a long, new oak—infused finish. Drink now through 2018." (2/2014)90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Bolgheri Rosso Adeo is a 60-40 blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The bouquet definitely underlines the Cabernet component with distant layers of rosemary oil and wild herb. Spicy oak tones of cinnamon and clove add density and heft to the palate. The tannins are long and tight. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2019. (ML)" (8/2013) James Suckling: "This is a Bordeaux blend w ...Read More »