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K&L Staff Recommendations
"Year in and year out one of our best values is Pinot Noir. If you don't believe me, just ask any K&L customer." (Illya Haase, K&L Staff Member) This wine comes to us from Sonoma County's Martin Ray Winery, owned by Courtney Benham (creator of the Blackstone brand). This multi-county blend of Pinot Noir has been well-received in recent years, maybe not tipping the point-scales over 90, but earning consistent praise for the solid varietal character it delivers for a modest price.
According to the winery: "The 2014 California Sauvignon Blanc has aromas of pineapple, ripe stone fruit and citrus. The wine fills the palate with bright fruit flavors and a round fullness, finishing with crisp, refreshing acidity. Throughout California, the 2014 growing season produced one of the best vintages to date. A dry winter followed by light spring rains and a warm, temperate summer caused fruit to mature slightly faster than normal resulting in optimal ripeness with a good balance of sugar and acidity in time for harvest. The warmer tropical a... Read More »
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "This winery deserves kudos for their remarkable cuvées of Fumé Blanc, all of which qualify as values. A fabulous bargain, the 2013 Fumé Blanc Sonoma (25,000 cases produced) is not put through malolactic, 70% is aged in stainless steel and 30% in older oak. It offers flowery, perfumed, melony, caramelized grapefruit and citrus notes, medium body, exuberant, fresh, lively fruit, and outstanding purity as well as texture. (RP)" (12/2014) Vinous: "The 2013 Fume Blanc is a pretty, aromatic white to drink now and over the next year or two. Green apple, pear and jasmine a ...Read More »
Wine Enthusiast: "*Best Buy* This wine has a strong layer of spicy oak from the first sniff through the lingering finish. Deep, ripe black cherry and blackberry flavors fill in the palate, and the full body of moderate tannins creates a mouthfeel that’s plush." (7/2016) K&L Notes: Producer notes: "Dark garnet in color with a bouquet that is full of dark berry fruit, such as Blueberry, Blackberry and Black Cherry. Oak aging has contributed just a hint of smoke to the nose. The round, creamy wine delivers an abundance of the fruit flavors promised by the olfactory. The fruit and oak are... Read More »
Wine Spectator: "Key lime, melon and lime zest flavors are crisp and juicy, with a touch of white flowers on the light, clean body. Intense, balanced and refreshing. (MW)" (2/2016)
89 points Wine Spectator: "*Smart Buys* An appealing touch of coconut water adds some richness to the peach, melon and citrus flavors, with accents of floral, citrus zest and mango. Drink now." (11/2015) Wine Enthusiast: "This white is quite tropical, with a hot, spicy note of jalapeño. Light in terms of texture and body, it finishes with a suggestion of orange peel and mango." (12/2015)
Qupé owner Bob Lindquist has been working in the Central Coast vineyards since 1975, while the winemaking trade in the area was still in its infancy. He worked for Jim Clendenen (who would later found Au Bon Climat) at Zaca Mesa Winery and founded Qupé in 1982. From the winery: "This full bodied red is made from grapes sourced from cool and warm climate vineyards. The cool climate components bring spice, freshness, acidity and lower alcohol, and warm climate components provide the deep, forward fruit. Because the wine is nicely balanced it is very enjoya... Read More »
From Napa's Mason Cellars, Pomelo is the fun, fruit-labeled and no-fuss screw-cap wine fit for casual spring and summer occasions. The crisp rosé is made from Grenache and Syrah in the southern Rhone style.
Wine Enthusiast: "Dried lemon, sliced pineapple, ripe yellow apples and a squeeze of lime show on the light nose of this bottling from the Gallo family. The palate is juicy and showy, but not overbearing, with sliced apples, a pinch of salt and nectarine flavors trending toward tropical edges. (MK)" (4/2016) Wine Spectator: "Simple and easy-drinking, with light-weight fig, melon and butterscotch flavors. (JL)" (6/2016)
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "One of the first releases since Charles Banks invested in Bob Lindquist's pioneering brand, this wine shows Japanese apple, lemon blossoms, lightly browned butter and a touch of tropicality on the nose. Still a bit wound up, the wine conveys potential length, with green-apple skins, nectarine flesh, cement-like minerality and a chive herb lift. (MK)" (6/2016)
From the Winery; The founders of Grayson believe that we can put to work our Napa Valley winemaking skills to create some of the highest quality wines at the by-the-glass price point. We believe that decades of Napa winemaking experience will allow us to create a better bottle of wine at a better price point than what’s generally in the market today. Our wines are carefully crafted by Larry Levin, who is among the most experienced winemakers in the Napa Valley. He has covered the globe by making wine in New Zealand, Chile, and Australia across all price... Read More »
From the winery: "For three decades, we’ve crafted flavorful Chardonnay grapes from the Edna Valley into award-winning wine. Our Edna Valley Vineyard Chardonnay displays an attractive bouquet of quince, pear, ripe apple, apricot and light pineapple, with underlying brown spice notes of cinnamon and clove. A fresh mouthfeel, hints of vanilla and a bright acidity combine to form a long, pleasing finish in this medium-bodied wine."
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Beach wine alert — Pinot in a can! For everyday drinking, JackHammer is your go-to Pinot Noir. Founded by California wine industry veterans Stephen Dooley and Sandy Garber with the express purpose of making delicious wine that won't break the bank. Juicy, fruity, and not to be missed!
Wine Enthusiast: "This stainless study shows crisp and ripe yellow apple flesh, with white rock and slate minerality. Apples, from Golden Delicious to red, also dominate the flavor profile...(MK)" (5/2015) Wine Spectator: "This offers a mix of citrus-infused green apple, pineapple and mango notes, presented in a fresh, snappy style, with flavors that linger on the finish. Drink now through 2019. (JL)" (6/2015)
Sourced from cool Central Coast sites, this refreshing Chardonnay exhibits ripe pear, apple, and tropical citrus aromas and flavors, with delicate floral highlights and mineral undertones. It is full and round, with a juicy core of fruit and mouthwatering finish. It makes a thirst-quenching aperitif and will complement a variety of foods.