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K&L Staff Recommendations
Poggiarellino is an evolving star in our Direct Import portfolio. From Montalcino, this tiny winery is making superb wines at stunning prices.
91 points Wine Enthusiast: "Focused and balanced, it opens with a fragrance recalling ripe berries, wet soil, red rose, blue flower and baking spices. The spicy palate delivers wild cherry, cinnamon-spice, white pepper, hot red pepper and a mineral note alongside brooding tannins and just enough fresh acidity. Drink 2016–2021. — K.O" (5/2014)90 points James Suckling: "Very pretty, savory Brunello with plums, and hints of jam and balsamic character. Full body with a velvety texture and a long finish. Drink or hold." (2/2014) Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright, deep red. Enticing aromas of raspberry and fresh flowers are lifted by a steel ...Read More »
90 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2013 Chardonnay Pomino Bianco is a gorgeous, bright wine from Frescobaldi's Castello di Pomino. Lemon, jasmine, and sweet white peaches are some of the notes that emerge from an effortless, impeccably balanced wine. A dollop of aromatic varieties adds texture and attractive floral overtones. This is a fabulous value from Frescobaldi. (Antonio Galloni)" (1/2015)90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright pale straw. Lemon, white peach and jasmine on the knockout nose, with an enticing spicy nuance emerging at the back. Fresh and pure in the mouth, offering a lovely fruit/acid balance and ...Read More »
Wine Spectator: "Light-bodied, with a zesty base driving modest notes of green melon, salted almond and pink grapefruit. (Web-2014)" K&L Notes: Pure crystaline fruit with a tautness and elegance that reminds me of great Gruner Veltliner from the Wachau, this is a lot of wine for the price tag. If there was every a region to gauge the incredible transformation of Italian wine from plonk to among the world's best, Soave would be right up near the top, and the Soave of Ca Rugate is a stellar example of why.
Giovanni Blason and his consulting enologist Andrea Rossi have turned this 37-acre property into a juggernaut of affordable quality wines. Giovanni and his wife Valentina own this winery in Gradisca d’Inzonzo, 3.75 miles from the Slovenian border and about 20 miles north of Trieste. This white offers such intense floral aromatics, with, jasmine, elderflowers, and lime blossoms, you'd guess that there would be some correlating sweetness on the palate, but this one from Blason is absolutely dry. Great with cheese!
La Monacesca’s idea for this wine is for a crisp white, fresh and vibrant and the perfect accompaniment to the Marche’s seafood bounty, especially shellfish. The grapes are harvested in the early part of September and then aged for a year in stainless before the wine is bottled. The wine has a super focus, bright and clean with an underlying mineral presence and a long finish. Decant this wine an hour or so, to allow it to open up a bit. Enjoy with your favorite seafood!
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "Spicy and super zesty in the mouth, the 2013 Vermentino di Gallura Superiore Sciala is redolent of white flower, peach jasmine and dried ginger. Vermentino sometimes has a sage-like edginess and this wine delivers that quality in spades. If you like crisp whites to pair with fried fish, this is a perfect choice. The wine rests on its lees for five months with battonage and this process helps to add dimension and thickness on the finish. (ML)" (12/2014)
92 points Wine Spectator: "Cherry, plum, licorice and spice flavors play off the lush texture in this opulent red. The tannins offer support, but are well-integrated, leading to a long, balanced finish. Best from 2016 through 2026." (11/2014)91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "From Podere Pietranera, the 2009 Brunello di Montalcino is a soft and perfumed expression that excels in consistency as it glides so smoothly over the senses. It shows dried cherry and cassis with good balance, finesse and class. The palate shows more firmness and grit with a pinch of sharp Sangiovese acidity on the close. Drink: 2016-2023. (ML ...Read More »
Consistently noted as one of the top producers in Montecucco, Amantis combines a whimsical label with quality, terroir -driven Sangiovese. Also part of the blend is Canaiolo taken from their Le Birbe vineyard. Look for soft strawberry and enveloping cherry in this quality sip from Tuscany.
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 »
Jancis Robinson: "Magliocco. Deep ruby with the beginning of orange on the nose. Pretty nose of oak and leafy fruit and already a little mature. Still a bit closed on the fruit on the palate and the tannins and acidity make it a little austere. Long perfumed finish with hints of oak. (WS)" (10/2013) K&L Notes: The 2011 Cantine Viola Rosso is 100% Magliocco from Calabria, and sees no wood aging at all, just fermentation in stainless steel and then bottle age. The wine’s aromatics are untamed; it smells of wild brush and roasted meats and while those aromatics are profound they seem to ... Read More »
Organically grown Nero d'Avola that's fresh, fruit-filled and affordable. A touch of bay leaf and mint complements the volcanic soil, sweet red fruit and peppery spice on this wine's nose and palate. Delicious!
92 points James Suckling: "This is a wine with dried meats, berries and earth. Full body, velvety tannins and a beautiful fruit intensity. Energetic red. Always an excellent Chianti Classico. Made from organically grown grapes. Drink now." (9/2013) Wine Enthusiast: "This has aromas of ripe berry and toast. The palate isn’t very expressive but reveals new wood, vanilla and chocolate. Give this a few more years to fully develop. Drink 2015–2020." (10/2013) Wine Spectator: "Dense yet medium-weight, with tobacco, briar and leather flavors. More savory than fruity, offering a dry finish. Best from 2015 through 2021. (Web-20 ...Read More »
40% Refosco, 40% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon.
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."
The 2012 Abtei Muri Sudtirol "Weiss" is a blend of 70% Pinot Bianco and 30% Pinot Grigio grown in the village of Appiano/Eppan in a southeast facing vineyard with predominantly gravelly limestone soils at elevations from 1500 to over 2000 feet, with vines aged 20-30 years. The wines from this area exhibit a persistent saltiness to go along with the excellent acidic balance. Winemaker Christian Werth ferments in stainless steel and then ages it for 15 months in large wooden casks with a weekly lees stirring. This wine can age easily for another 5-8 year... Read More »
Muri-Gries Blauburgunder, a.k.a. Pinot Nero, a.k.a. Pinot Noir that looks like Dorothy's ruby slippers shimmering in the glass. It's as enchanting as those special shoes, too, with its crunchy, red-fruited bouquet, herbaceous-earthy palate, and punchy acidic backbone. The Muri-Gries vineyards are on an ideal southeast-facing slope where the soils are calcareous, ideal for racy Pinot Noir. The wine is fermented in stainless steel and then put into large Slavonian oak casks of 30hl to 50hl--you could fit the juice from 13 of California’s standard wine barr... Read More »
The 2010 vintage was outstanding for Marche reds. The core of Sangiovese gives this wine great length and the Merlot gives a supple, up-front richness. The nose shows a lot of complex plum and spicebox and then segues into a bit of leather. On the palate the wine’s richness is immediately evident, and as it lengthens it shows lots of earth and iron. This wine is perfect with any grilled meats or hard cheeses. The winery suggests having it with a boneless leg of lamb stuffed with prosciutto, Pecorino cheese and black truffle.