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K&L Staff Recommendations
93 points James Suckling: "A fruity, delicious red with sliced-plum and lemon-rind character. Full body with light tannins and a flavorful finish. I like the traditional, honest character here. Drink now." (10/2014)92 points Wine Spectator: "Aromas and flavors of eucalyptus, wild sage and pine mingle with cherry, tobacco and earth notes in this complex, structured red. Balanced, long and built for the long haul. Drink now through 2024. 26,000 cases made." (10/2014)91 points Antonio Galloni: "Monsanto's 2011 Chianti Classico Riserva fleshes out beautifully in the glass. The flavors are bright, lifted and beautifully focused throughout. S ...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 »
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 »
91 points James Suckling: "This is a soft and fruity red with dried berries and hints of fruit cake. Full body, ripe tannins and a delicious finish. An opulent and pleasing wine." (12/2013) Wine Spectator: "Integrated mocha and tar accents enrich dark plum, black licorice and olive paste notes in this elegant red, structured by fine tannins and juicy acidity. Drink now through 2018." (12/2013)
40% Refosco, 40% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon.
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)"
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
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 »
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 »
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.
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."
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 »
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 »
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, designated as "Valtellina Superiore," one of the finest terroirs in the appellation. In this cooler, sub-... Read More »
97 points James Suckling: "Glass-staining, with plum, hints of anise, red flowers, gravel and dark olive. Layered, complex and hard to resist. Full-bodied. Perfectly integrated, melted tannins. A real triumph. Greatest Lagrein out there. Drink now." (10/2014) K&L Notes: #10 James Suckling's Top 100 Italian Wines of 2014; November 11th, 2014. Named for the bedrock on which the vineyards stand, this Prophyr bottling is 100% Lagrein selected from three different parcels of vineyard which are all nearly 100 years old. The grapes were manually harvested and again hand-sorted before being slowly fe... Read More »
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
96 points Antonio Galloni: "Blackberry jam, cassis, grilled herbs and melted road tar meld together in the 2011 Solaia. Another super-exotic, racy 2011 from Antinori, Solaia is supremely beautiful. Mocha, espresso and sage are some of the many notes that add complexity. Hints of white truffle, lavender, smoke and licorice are laced into the exotic, racy finish. In 2011, Solaia has a dollop more of Cabernet Franc in the blend, added to give the wine a touch of freshness. Ripe and flashy to the core, the 2011 needs time to lose some of its youthful exuberance. At times, the 2011 coul ...Read More »
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 »
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)"
Wine Spectator: "Balanced, featuring a core of black cherry, aromatic herb, crème de cassis and wild strawberry fruit, with hints of gumdrop and smoke. Fresh. (Web-2013)" K&L Notes: Verona is a city with history, culture and excitement all wrapped into one. The province of Veneto, in fact, is surrounded by attractions and theme parks, to meet the desires of all, couples, families and groups of friends. We say this because if you like this wine, you can stay at the property. Musella is an historic estate on the northeast outskirts of Verona, just 15 minutes drive from the centre. Hugh... Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
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 »
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 »
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 »
93 points James Suckling: "A soft and rich Super Tuscan with lots of juicy and ripe fruit. Very reminiscent of the New World with its fruit-forward character. Full body, velvety tannins and a flavorful finish. A Napa-inspired blend of Merlot and Cabernet sauvignon. Drink or hold." (8/2015) K&L Notes: "Geremia" is a Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon blend from Marco Ricasoli-Firidolfi, an organic grower in the Chianti Classico region. From the winery: "It ages exclusively in medium-toast barriques from Allier for about 24 months, after which it is bottled without filtration and bottle aged for anot... Read More »
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."
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)
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)
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 »
96 points Antonio Galloni: "Sandrone's 2011 Barolo Le Vigne is sweet, silky and exceptionally polished in the glass. Sweet floral notes, bright red berries, subtle spices and mint are all laced together nicely in the glass. Le Vigne is a blend of fruit from multiple vineyard sources. This is the first year in which Villero is part of the blend. (AG)" (3/2015)94 points James Suckling: "A wonderfully tight and polished young red with dark berry, plum and citrus character. Roses too. Full body, firm tannins and a bright finish. Better in 2017." (4/2015)94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Barolo Le Vigne is an opulent and shapely wine with ...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 »
Since Enzo Boglietti assumed control at his family domain, he has pushed quality to near Barolo’s summit. Despite spectacular vineyard holdings, the family had sold the entire production in bulk prior to 1991. Perhaps inspired by local leaders, Elio Altare and Roberto Voerzio, young Enzo set out to maximize the potential of his vineyards. Boglietti brings to his Barbera the same voluptuous house style as his Baroli.
Inventory: Redwood City
92 points James Suckling: "Beautiful purity of fruit to this with dried-strawberry, flower and cherry character. Full to medium body, fine tannins and a fresh finish. Lightly chewy, which gives tension to the wine. Better in 2016." (12/2014)91 points Antonio Galloni: "Bright red cherries, pine, spice and mint are some of the notes that jump from the glass in the 2011 Barbaresco Vallegrande. Floral and lifted in the glass, the 2011 stands out for its nuance and delineation. In this vintage, the Vallegrande retains its essentially perfumed, mid-weight personality. (AG)" (10/2014) K&L Notes: This vineyard was previously labe... Read More »
94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Montevertine is gorgeous. A rich, textured wine, the 2011 hits the palate with exuberant dark fruit, spices, new leather and tobacco. This is a decidedly rich, layered Montevertine, with darker fruit than normal and plenty of richness, all of which means it will drink well pretty much right out of the gate. Montevertine fans looking for a wine to drink without waiting too long will flip out over the 2011. Drinking window: 2018 - 2031." (9/2014)94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 IGT Montevertine (Sangioveto, Canaiolo and Colorino) is enormously silky and smooth with a supe ...Read More »
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A pure expression of Chardonnay, the oak-aged 2011 Falesia is a creamy, buttery wine with roasted pineapple, vanilla, canned peach and flinty mineral. The structure is not too big and that’s ultimately what helps this wine feel balanced in the mouth. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2015. (ML)" (8/2013)
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 »
97 points James Suckling: "A gorgeous, sleek wine with super-polished tannins and fabulous fruit. It's full but so refined and sexy. It goes on for minutes. Really fine. What a wine. This Bordeaux blend from here is the best ever. Better in 2016 but great now." (10/2014)92 points Wine Enthusiast: "This full-bodied blend of 50% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Cabernet Franc offers aromas of ripe black-skinned fruit, crushed Mediterranean herbs, scorched earth and tobacco. The dense palate doles out black cherries, red currants, cedar, anise and mocha alongside ample, velvety tannins. Drink 2016–2021. ...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."
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 »
92 points James Suckling: "Pretty focus to this excellent 2011 Barbera with sliced peaches and blueberries on the nose and palate. Full and fresh." (12/2013)
92 points Wine Spectator: "Fresh and expressive up front, where pure black cherry and wild strawberry notes are layered with dried herb, star anise and smoky mineral accents. This elegant red displays good drive through to the lingering, lightly chewy finish. Drink now through 2024. 40 cases imported." (6/2014)
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 »
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."
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."