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K&L Staff Recommendations
93 points James Suckling: "A ripe and decadent nose with licorice, sliced mushrooms and blackberries too. The palate is really savory with a tantalizing salty note that really lifts it up. Precise and linear. Beautiful austerity on the finish. Drink now." (7/2016) K&L Notes: 70% Sangiovese, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot
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." (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 delineation and focus here. This a gorgeous La Massa. (AG) ...Read More »
92 points James Suckling: "A super refined wine with sliced berry plus hints of cedar and vanilla. Full-bodied, bright and crisp; lovely finish." (10/2015) 92 points Wine Enthusiast: "Dark berry, underbrush and tobacco aromas lead the nose of this vibrant, structured wine while the palate doles out black cherry, fresh raspberry, licorice and clove. Fresh acidity and supple tannins balance the juicy flavors. (KO)" (9/2015) 92 points Wine Spectator: "*Top 100 of 2016, Smart Buy* This is rich and sumptuous, boasting pure flavors of cherry and raspberry, matched to a juicy texture. There are plenty of tannins neatly folded into the overall st ...Read More »
91 points James Suckling: "What a pretty young Chianti giving you all the cherry and strawberry character you could hope for. Medium body, light tannins and a fresh and bright finish. Drink now" (11/2016)
33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 17% Montepulciano, 17% Alicante.
Wine Enthusiast: "Aromas of dried tobacco leaf, toast, oak and underbrush lead the nose. The bright, approachable palate offers black cherry, espresso and star anise alongside fine-grained tannins and fresh acidity. (KO)" (11/2016) Wine Spectator: "Black cherry fruit is framed by toasty oak in this firm, dense red. Modern in style, with energy and balance, finishing with dusty tannins. Drink now through 2019. (BS)" (8/2016)
This has been the #1 selling Italian wine for more than 2 decades at K&L! You can't get that kind of continued success without a supremely fantastic quality-to-price ratio. The southern Tuscan coast is a breadbasket of winemaking, with stable temperatures and a solid history of quality yet no fame and fortune. Incredibly priced bargains come out of the region, and the proof is in the bottle. This wine is wonderful, soft, forward and easy-to-drink Sangiovese with an enticing mixture of cherry, plum and earth. Eminently drinkable.
Wine Enthusiast: "Fragrant blue flower, tilled soil and wild berry aromas lead the nose. The light-bodied, accessible palate offers tart cherry and a hint of chopped herb. It's fresh and easy drinking, with loose-knit tannins. (KO)" (12/2016) K&L Notes: Affectionately named "Catzilla" by our staff because of the seemingly oversized orange cat adorning the label, the Baccinetti hails from south slope Montalcino vineyards adjacent to Lisini. The Baccinetti family has worked their family farm south of Montalcino since 1935, but 2004 was their first vintage of estate-grown wine. Planted ... Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "Lots of blackcurrants, grapes and lemon zest character. Full body, firm and silky tannins and a long and flavorful finish. It's firm and very tight. Compact structure. Delicious blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, syrah and sangiovese. Better in 2018." (8/2015) 90 points Wine Spectator: "Pure and fresh, boasting black currant and black cherry flavors, with tar and earth details. Lean, almost racy, with vivid acidity driving the long, mineral-tinged finish. Sangiovese, Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. Best from 2017 through 2023. (BS)" (10/2015)
91 points Wine Spectator: "*#25 on Top 100 of 2016, Best Values* Enticing aromas of violet, black currant and rosemary are accented by licorice and tobacco flavors in this fluid and harmonious red, with fine tannins gracing the long finish. Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Drink now through 2022. (BS)" (11/2016)
Erik Banti’s Carato is back! This mini Super Tuscan has a great following at K&L and the new vintage is even better than the last! It’s a Sangiovese-based blend from the Tuscan coast that tastes like it should cost much more because of its full, smooth, flavorful palate presence and excellent balance. A K&L Direct Import that offers you extraordinary value, and at this price you will be saying, "I should buy two!"
90 points James Suckling: "A compacted red with dried-cherry, toasted-oak and coffee-bean aroma and flavors. Full body with firm, silky tannins. Drink now." (2/2016)
92 points James Suckling: "Some dried fruit with strawberry and lemon rind on the nose and palate. Medium to full body. Tangy tannins. Pèppoli is always excellent." (11/2015) Wine Enthusiast: "You'll find aromas of violet, iris, red berry and baking spice on this savory blend of 90% Sangiovese, Merlot and Syrah. The vibrant palate doles out wild cherry, crushed raspberry, cinnamon and a hint of tobacco alongside polished tannins and bright acidity. (KO)" (9/2015) Wine Spectator: "A firm yet juicy red, displaying black cherry and blackberry flavors. The tannins are assertive, so give this air or short-term cellaring. (B ...Read More »
95 points James Suckling: "Aromas of dark chocolate, berries, toasted nuts and vanilla bean follow through to a full body, firm tannins and a juicy finish. Lots of intense, beautiful fruit. Tight, layered red. All there. Better in 2017." (11/2014) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Fontalloro is a pure expression of Sangiovese with fruit sourced from the Chianti Classico area and the Colli Senesi area. It ages in new and once-used barrique for up to 22 months. Aromas flow with authority, spanning a large swath of fruit and oak-related attributes. The best part, however, is the aromatic layering: Slices of br ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
92 points James Suckling: "Aromas of plums and berry with hints of chalk and stone. Medium to full body, chewy tannins and a flavorful finish. Structured. Serious Chianti Classico. Drink or age." (8/2016) K&L Notes: The production potential of Lamole, now a hamlet of Greve in Chianti, was first discovered by the Romans, who established vineyards and olive groves on the high hills they’d recognized as ideal farming country. Indeed, the well-aspected site overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea is characterized by a natural amphitheatre that is protected by Monte San Michele to the north and exposed to l... Read More »
90 points James Suckling: "Lots of nice fresh fruit with strawberry and lemon aromas and flavors. Medium to light body. Clean finish. Drink now" (7/2016) K&L Notes: This blend of Sangiovese and Merlot is concentrated and sexy, with intense notes of forest berries, baking spice, and vanilla. It's deep and round, a perfect match for aged cheeses and roasted meats.
95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Morellino di Scansano Riserva Poggio Valente is a breakthrough wine for Fattoria le Pupille and its talented winemaking team. This is a complete and balanced expression that shows its best side to all the senses: its appearance is richly saturated and bright; the bouquet is intense and complex; and the mouthfeel shows elegance and power. In all, this wine tastes and feels much younger than it really is and I have high hopes for its future aging ability. It shows a great sense of inner energy and liveliness that makes it a pleasure to drink in th ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
This exceptionally small estate sits above Tenuta di Sesta (sopra means "above" in Italian) on Montalcino’s south slope, but with this small bit of elevation you reach an outcrop of galestro, a marine-based exfoliating shale that gives the most profound Sangiovese.
92 points James Suckling: "A Brunello with chocolate, walnut and berry aromas and flavors. Full body with round tannins and a long finish. Citrus undertones. Lively and fun. Drink now." (10/2016) 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Brunello di Montalcino shows aromas of candied fruit and cassis that are tight and precious. This wine does not share the wide and expansive personality of many of the other Brunellos produced in this warm vintage. Instead, this expression is more introspective and timid. Those delicate berry notes are followed by cola, balsam herb and licorice root. The wine is streamlined and sim ...Read More »
97 points James Suckling: "This is amazing on the nose with blackberry, black truffle, dried cherry and hints of tobacco. So complex on the nose. Almost no need to taste it. Full body, soft and velvety tannins, and a persistent, fabulous finish. The mouthfeel is magic." (3/2016) 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2013 Tignanello represents the beginning of a new chapter for Italy's ultimate game-changer wine. The blend remains 80% Sangiovese with 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc but Renzo Cotarella tells me "stylistically-speaking, this is what we wanted to achieve." The winemaking formula remains the ...Read More »
94 points James Suckling: "I have been a fan of Solengo since the mid-1990s. The 2013 vintage shows great generosity in its ripe fruit, with currant and stone character, a firm undertone of tannins and a flavorful finish. Try in 2018 but already very attractive to taste." (11/2015)
Montalcino's most famous single vineyard is the Montosoli hill, Altesino made this name famous when they designated their best Brunello with their northeastern-facing vineyard's name, Montosoli. Nello Baricci and his family have lived and farmed Sangiovese on their southeastern-facing slope of the Montosoli hill since the 1930s. Their wines are pure, supple, lithe and complex; they are full of tobacco, sweet earth, licorice, violets, rosemary and have long and persistent finishes, as evidenced in this fantastic Rosso, meant to drink now and over the next... Read More »
90 points James Suckling: "A soft, velvety red with plummy, juicy flavors. Full body, lovely tannins and a flavorful finish. Drink now." (2/2016) 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The La Fortuna 2011 Brunello di Montalcino reminds us of the elegant and nuanced side of Sangiovese that can be harnessed even in a challenging vintage like this. Despite the warm growing season, this wine shows depth and precision with wild berry tones that are followed by lingering aromas of balsam herb and licorice." (8/2016) Wine Spectator: "Cherry and raspberry flavors are accented by tobacco and earth notes, all wrapped up in dusty tannins. This is bal ...Read More »
Wine Enthusiast: "*Best Buy* Made with 80% Sangiovese, 10% Mammolo and 10% Canaiolo, this offers subdued aromas of red cherry, chopped mint and a hint white pepper. The breezy, easygoing palate shows crushed raspberry and orange zest underscored by lively acidity. (KO)" (6/2016) K&L Notes: There were many highlights during our recent spring travels in Italy, and our visit to Poggio Salvi remains among the fondest. The winery is nestled in a picturesque forested area on the south side of Montalcino where the combination of clay soils and Tyrrhenian Sea breezes create ideal terroir for ... Read More »
Rosso di Montalcino too often sits in the shadow of its much bigger brother, Brunello. But some estates put nearly the care and expense into their Rosso as their big guns, and La Fortuna is clearly an example of this sort of winemaking. Intense in terms of fruit, but showing off admirable acidity, this is spicy, full bodied, dry and rich with a softness hiding amid all that tannic structure. A wine to drink while your Brunello ages, yes, but a quality wine nonetheless. From vines 15-25 years of age, aged for one year in barrique, 6 months of this in Fren... Read More »
91 points James Suckling: "A very ripe, rich wine with cherry-liqueur and salt character. Full body and lots of fruit. A crowd-pleaser – very yummy. Drink now." (2/2016) Wine Enthusiast: "This opens with aromas of toast, prune, scorched earth and chopped mint. The juicy palate offers dried black cherry, star anise and a hint of sweet baking spice alongside supple tannins. Straightforward and already approachable, it will offer enjoyable sipping in the near term. Drink through 2020. (KO)" (3/2017) K&L Notes: The Baccinetti family has worked their family farm south of Montalcino since 1935, but 2004 was their first... Read More »
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Good medium red. Ripe, slightly high-toned aromas of raspberry, chocolate and minerals. Large-scaled, intensely flavored and well-delineated, showing a pronounced flinty aspect to the fresh red and darker berry flavors. Finishes pure and long, with a firm tannic backbone that avoids coming off as dry. (IDA)" (12/2014) Vinous: "The 2012 Rosso di Montalcino is soft, silky and expressive. Floral notes meld into soft red fruit in a pretty, delicate Rosso to drink now and over the next few years. (AG)" (2/2015) Wine Spectator: "Starts out with cherry and earth notes, turning tight and aus ...Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "Gorgeous aromas of blueberries, blackberries and cherries with hints of flowers follow through to a full body, firm and silky tannins and a citrusy finish. Very tangy and lively. Drink now or hold." (8/2015) 93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Philip is a wine with an American spirit. The front label depicts family ancestor Philip Mazzei (1730-1816) but his white wig and demeanor is very reminiscent of the United States founding fathers. The wine is based on Cabernet Sauvignon (with some Cabernet Franc). It offers surprisingly soft and luscious tannins with a bouquet that is enhance ...Read More »
92 points Wine Enthusiast: "Aromas of sunbaked soil, ripe plum, dark spice, chopped herb and a whiff of new leather lead the nose. The smooth full-bodied palate delivers juicy black cherry, mint, licorice and a hint of coffee alongside big, chewy tannins. Drink through 2021. (KO)" (3/2017) 90 points Wine Spectator: "Leans toward the firm side, offering raspberry, strawberry, leather, earth and tobacco flavors. Elegant overall, with fine length. Best from 2018 through 2028. (BS)" (6/2016) K&L Notes: There were many highlights during our recent spring travels in Italy, and our visit to Poggio Salvi remains among the fondest.... Read More »
97 points James Suckling: "A wine with terrific texture and balance. Very polished tannins that are etheral and harmonious. Full-bodied, yet fresh, this is about combining elegance with power. It's so Latour in style. Excellent depth. Better in 2017, but so fine now. Blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot and petit verdot." (8/2015) K&L Notes: From the winery: Oreno, which takes its name from the river that crosses the Ponti estate and the hamlet where the farmhouse is found, is the estate's flagship wine. With ample fruit from the Merlot, structure from the Cabernet Sauvignon, brought together w... Read More »
91 points James Suckling: "A wine with plenty of dried cherry and citrus fruit aromas and flavors. Medium body, slightly chewy tannins and a fresh finish. How Chianti Classico should be. Drink or hold." (10/2015) 91 points Vinous: "The 2013 Chianti Classico is dark, sensual and beautifully layered in the glass. Freshly cut flowers, sweet red berries, mint and cinnamon are some of the many notes that flesh out in a textured, inviting Chianti Classico endowed with notable depth and personality. In 2013, Rocca di Montegrossi's Chianti Classico is especially dark and powerful. (AG)" (9/2015) 90 points Wine & Spirits: "The stony soils ...Read More »
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "*Editors' Choice* Aromas suggesting underbrush, scorched earth, mature black-skinned fruit and a whiff of dried mint jump out of the glass. The big, chewy palate doles out mature Marasca cherry, graphite, chopped herb and dark cooking spice alongside firm, refined tannins. It’s delicious. (KO)" (5/2016) 92 points James Suckling: "This shows lots of mushroom, dried fruit, spice and walnut aromas and flavors. Full-bodied but agile and refined. Pure and balanced. Drink or hold." (10/2015) 91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "I was absolutely impressed with the 2010 Riserva released by Baricci at the same time as this wine. ...Read More »
Wine Spectator: "Ripe cherry and raspberry flavors exude from this rich red, accented by leafy tobacco notes. This is firm too, with a moderately long finish. Drink now through 2019. (BS, Web-2016)" K&L Notes: An absolutely delicious blend, 85% Sangiovese and 15% a blend of Merlot and Canaiolo. The Sangiovese and Merlot are from the estate’s young vines; the Canaiolo is from a 35-year-old vineyard. The grapes are fermented first in stainless steel, then transferred to second- and third-passage tonneaux where they are aged for six to nine months. The 2015 vintage is absolutely spectac... Read More »
95 points James Suckling: "Traditional style Chianti Classico with cedar, dried meat, dark chocolate and tobacco aromas. Full body, silky and polished tannins and a fantastic finish. A wine that shows depth and lots of flavor. Lively acidity too." (8/2015) 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2012 vintage was less problematic in the Castelnuovo Berardenga sub zone compared to other parts of the Chianti Classico appellation. Fèlsina's 2012 Chianti Classico Riserva Berardenga is full, generous and reflects the house style of this celebrated estate. Fruit is sourced from 35-year-old vines and the harvest takes place a ...Read More »
98 points James Suckling: "Aromas of blackberry, burnt orange, licorice and spice follow through to a full body, with super integrated and fine tannins plus a fabulous depth of fruit and center palate. This is a great wine. Drink in 2017." (7/2016) 95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, the 2013 Orma is a delicious wine. It shows a deep, rich color and an opulent style that reflects the generous and sun-drenched growing conditions of this classic vintage. This is a full-bodied Tuscan red that maintains a refreshing sense of elegance and finesse all the while. Blac ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
90 points James Suckling: "A red with plum, chocolate and hints of cedar. Nutty too. Medium to full body. Hazelnut undertones. Savory finish. Excellent value here. Drink now." (10/2014) K&L Notes: Antonio Galloni writes: "Consulting oenologist Riccardo Cotarella is now the man in charge at Fattoria del Cerro and all of the SAI Agricola properties, which includes La Poderina in Montalcino. Although the wines could use a little more polish, these seem like assignments that require a gentle guide rather than a total revolution. If anything these wines need less, not more. The quality of the fruit... Read More »
99 points James Suckling: "Absolutely stunning aromas of nectarine, orange peel, sweet black cherry, plums and flowers. Licorice and mushroom It's full body, with layers of ultra-fine tannins and hints of tangy acidity. Such beautiful length and beauty to this wine. It's powerful and structured yet shows a gorgeous finesse and length. Truly wondrous. So long and refined. The texture is phenomenal." (12/2014) 96 points Wine Spectator: "*Collectible* Effusive aromas of incense, green olive, sweet strawberry and cherry, licorice and leather mark this structured version. The tannins are on the beefy side, but thi ...Read More »
90 points James Suckling: "A wine with lots of berry, vanilla and cream aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, round and savory. Intense new wood but delicious all the same. Needs time to come together in the bottle: Drink in 2017." (2/2016)
91 points Wine Spectator: "Fruit-driven, boasting black cherry and blackberry flavors, shaded by spice and tar. Firm and dry, with fine balance and a long finish. Best from 2018 through 2024. 2,450 cases imported. BS" (10/2016)
92 points James Suckling: "Love the complex aromas of raspberries, strawberries and minerals. Full body with fine, refined tannins with currant, blueberry and cherry flavors wrapped up in the tannic structure. A wine that that will deliver much more in a year or two: Drink in 2017." (10/2015) 91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Castello Banfi has maintained an excellent reputation for consistency over the years. The performance of its base Brunello offers solid evidence of this. If you look back at the scores over the years, you will see less fluctuation between the good vintages and the bad ones. That consistency is ...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) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The Argiano 2012 Brunello di Montalcino does a great job of interpreting the vintage and of showcasing its special microclimate on the southern flank of the Montalcino appellation. Both these elements point to warm-climate Sangiovese. and Argiano accepts that challenge with creativity and expertise. This is a proud expression of the grape with thick texture, deter ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Claudia Ferrero’s small property is situated between Argiano and Banfi’s Poggio all’Oro vineyard in Montalcino’s southwestern corner. This gorgeous Sangiovese is full-bodied and ripe with layers of lush black cherry fruit. On the palate it is lively, balanced and fresh and has a long finish. The perfect match for grilled meats drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.
Vinous: "Crushed flowers, tobacco, worn-in leather and dried flowers are all nicely delineated in the 2014 Rosso di Montalcino. This is an unusually soft, forward Rosso from Uccelliera. (AG)" (2/2016)
95 points James Suckling: "Lovely black licorice, flowers, and ripe fruits on the nose. This is very aromatic. Full bodied but tight..." (1/2011) 95 points Wine Spectator: "Displays complex aromas of blackberry and cherry, with a hint of licorice. Full-bodied, with silky tannins and a delicious finish of wonderful yet subtle fruit. Well-integrated and beautiful. Everything is in the right place. Best after 2011." (1/2009) 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2004 Brunello di Montalcino is simply beautiful. Now that the wine is in bottle it is even better than when I tasted it from barrel. Firm but silky tannins frame a core of ripe dark fruit ...Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
Erik Banti's Morellino di Scansano is primarily Sangiovese with a little Merlot to flesh it out. There's so much to love about this red: its lush and inviting aromas, full and round mouthfeel, and food-friendly structure are just the beginning. Factor in the price and you've got one of the tastiest and versatile red wine values in the store! Ready to drink tonight, this juicy, mouthwatering red is an satisfying on its own, and makes a worthy complement to simple pasta dishes, poultry and soft cheeses. A must try!
96 points James Suckling: "Incredible purity of fruit to this red with plums, cherries and berries. Full body, ripe and silky tannins and a fantastically long finish. Love the bitter-orange undertone to this. Drink in 2020." (11/2016)
Inventory: Main Warehouse
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Sporting a new label design, the 2011 Brunello di Montalcino represents a philosophical divide from previous vintages. In the past, Castiglion del Bosco was focused on soft and immediate Brunellos for near-term consumption. Despite the warm conditions of the 2011 growing season, this wine shows far more elegance, nuance and grace than I expected. This massive property is comprised of various vineyard sites for more blending possibilities. The bouquet is redolent of wild berry, cola and grilled herb. The tannins are silky but long in terms of persistence. ...Read More »
Fattoria Rodano only produces 500 cases of this super Tuscan blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon and 50% Sangiovese. Grapes were hand-harvested from the organically certified Viacosta vineyard which features 35-45 year old vines with a beautifully situated, south-facing amphitheater-like exposure. For a luxurious touch, the wine was aged in 60% new French barriques before bottling.
90 points James Suckling: "A fine and silky red with plum and chocolate character, medium body and a fresh finish. Real Chianti." (8/2016)
96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "I am always such a big fan of Andrea Cortonesi's work. Like his previous releases, the 2012 Brunello di Montalcino shows an uncanny sense of continuity and consistency with past releases. This steady stylistic focus is one of the best reasons to buy Uccelliera Brunello. The wine is dark and rich in appearance. Fruit from this vintage was smaller than usual and Andrea jokes that during the 2012 growing season you could hardly call it "Sangiovese Grosso," the name of the Sangiovese clone used in Montalcino. It is normally characterized by larger berry size ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse