Staff Favorites - Melissa Smith

Melissa Smith
Melissa Smith  | Send Email  |   Subscribe to My Sommelier Service
Growing from a Redwood City sales position in 2009, to the company sake buyer in 2011, and then to the Head Sommelier in 2013 my love of wine spreads the gamut from mineral laden Sancerres to California Zinfandels aged over 20 years, Urban wines to classic Bordeaux, and 99% of the spirits that we carry. As a CIA trained chef I spent 15 years in some of the top kitchens in the country until my love of wine won out and I transitioned to the wine industry in 2004 where I began utilizing my skills as an instructor, a writer, and a restaurant consultant after passing the introductory level exam of The Court of Master Sommeliers. In 2010, I developed the first iPhone app for wine pronunciation, the Enotria Guide. In 2011, I became one of the few certified Sake Sommeliers in the country through the Sake Education Council. Outside of K&L I run private and corporate wine and spirits events around the Bay Area, consult on private cellars, and attempt to write professionally.


Reviews

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2011 Domaine Delarche Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru
Review Date: 2-28-2014
I've gotten away from opportunities to drink Grand Crus on a regular basis, so having a bottle of this to try was a rare treat that I am eager to repeat. There is soft oak on the nose and palate, great acidity, and well integrated minerality with banana and lemon cream playing background roles. This wine has serious aging potential, but I wouldn't stop you from opening a bottle tonight.
Price: $89.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2008 Sesta di Sopra Brunello di Montalcino
Review Date: 2-27-2014
~Personal Sommelier Selection~ A young(ish) Brunello that is drinking surprisingly well already! Great structure,dark fruits married with savory notes of leather, earth, and spice. I'm thinking that braised beef shortribs with Parmesan loaded polenta and roasted heirloom carrots would be perfect with this.

2010 Sequana Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir 375ml
Review Date: 2-27-2014
~Personal Sommelier Selection~ Absolutely bursting with rose and crushed cherries with a distinctive SLH Pinot structure, bright and refreshing, and very well made. The fact that it comes in a screw top half bottle only extends the possibilities for this winner. Spring is upon us, picnic season is right around the corner, camping (or glamping for some of us), and if you think you can keep your mitts off of it, this would make a killer stocking stuffer. This wine has me wanting to make a savory version of a cherry shortcake. Maybe whipped goat cheese on mini black pepper biscuits, with macerated cherries, and pistachios roasted with rosemary and a touch of artisan sea salt from Jacobsen.
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart WE 92 BC 0

2011 Hendry "Block 7 & 22" Napa Valley Zinfandel
Review Date: 2-27-2014
~Personal Sommelier Selection~ Zinny, high alcohol, but balanced with nice acidity. I want this wine chilled with sauce smothered barbecue ribs and corn bread on a picnic bench. Unbeatable finger-licking, thirst-quenching, summer meal wine.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart W&S 96 BC 0

2011 Domaine Stéphane Magnien Bourgogne Passetoutgrains "Cuvée Densité"
Review Date: 2-27-2014
Perhaps one of the denser Bourgognes I've tasted, but thoroughly enjoyable. Concentrated fruit with mouth watering acidity,
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Evening Land Vineyards Pouilly-Fuissé
Review Date: 2-27-2014
An intriguing palate with nice acid and a great texture. Evening Land has branched out from their humble Sonoma roots, to Oregon, and now the Cote d'Or.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart W&S 91 BC 0

2011 Domaine Champy Pernand-Vergelesses "Clos de Bully" Rouge
Review Date: 2-27-2014
Foresty, with an oaky nose, and dried black berries. I would pair this with game.
Price: Hidden View Price BC 0

2011 Château de la Charrière Beaune "Vieilles Vignes" Domaine Yves Girardin
Review Date: 2-27-2014
Perhaps my favorite of the 2011 Charriere. Black berry brambles, slate, Fall leaves, clean finish. This is a great food wine, and it would be hard to find something that this would not go well with.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Cave des Coteaux du Lyonnais Fleurieux Coteaux de Lyonnais "Village de l'annee"
Review Date: 2-27-2014
Bright, zesty nose, framboise mixed with savory notes, and very mild tannins. At only 12% alcohol this is a fun, easy drinking wine.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Poggiarellino Rosso di Montalcino
Review Date: 2-27-2014
~Personal Sommelier Selection~ Although tasting very New World in style, this reminds me of why I fell in love with Sangiovese early on in my wine discovery. Black cherries, with a touch of sweet pipe tobacco. Great complexity for such an inexpensive wine.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2009 Tronquoy-Lalande, St-Estèphe
Review Date: 2-21-2014
Soft and supple with toasty vanilla.

2009 Trébiac, Graves
Review Date: 2-21-2014
Pretty nose with green pepper and gravely notes. A great buy!
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Fombrauge, St-Emilion
Review Date: 2-21-2014
Soft, supple, ripe fruit, medium plus tannins, and overall seamless. Quite a pleasure right out of the gate.

2011 Larcis-Ducasse, St-Emilion
Review Date: 2-21-2014
Great wine with nice complexity. Sweet ripe fruit with a hint of mint that mingles on the nose as well as the palate.

2011 Pape Clément, Pessac-Léognan Pre-Arrival
Review Date: 2-21-2014
Pape Clement has not been a disappointment. The 2011 is rich and concentrated with great depth; flashy but fully enjoyable.

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More Favorites

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2011 Eyrie Vineyards "Estate" Dundee Hills Chardonnay ($23.99)

2013 Bedrock Wine Company Sonoma County Sauvignon Blanc ($23.99)

2010 Te Whare Ra (TWR) Syrah Marlborough New Zealand ($29.99)

2011 Spreitzer Winkeler Jesuitengarten Riesling Spätlese (end of vintage) ($23.99)

2011 Stein "Blauschiefer" Riesling Trocken ($16.99)

2011 Hirsch Lamm Grüner Veltliner Kamptal ($54.99)

2011 Hirsch Heiligenstein Grüner Veltliner Kamptal ($23.99)

2011 Umathum Zweigelt Burgenland ($19.99)

2010 Moorooduc "Robinson Vineyard" Chardonnay Mornington Peninsula Victoria ($54.99)

2010 Moorooduc "Devil Bend Creek" Chardonnay Mornington Peninsula Victoria ($24.99)

2011 Brooks Willamette Valley Pinot Noir ($21.99)

Moet & Chandon "Impérial" Brut Champagne ($37.99)

2011 La Gatta Moscato d'Asti ($10.99)

Pierre Paillard Grand Cru Brut Champagne ($39.99)

Bruno Michel Premier Cru Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($39.99)

1999 Fugue de Nenin, Pomerol ($29.99)

Bulleit Rye Whiskey 750ml ($21.99)

2011 Les Clos Perdus "Le Rouge" Vin de Pays des Côtes Catalanes ($13.99)

George Dickel No. 8 Tennessee Whiskey 750ml ($14.99)

Zwack Unicum Liqueur 1L [cannot ship] ($26.99)

Campeòn K&L Exclusive Blanco Tequila 750ml ($29.99)

2011 Erik Banti "Carato" Toscana ($7.99)

2012 Ermacora Pinot Bianco Colli Orientali del Friuli ($15.99)

2011 Casa Ferreirinha "Papa Figos" Douro ($14.99)

2011 El Libre Malbec Mendoza ($9.99)

2012 Viña Cobos "Felino" Merlot Mendoza ($16.99)

2011 Alto los Romeros Pinot Noir Reserva Valle Central ($11.99)

2010 Seven Hills Columbia Valley Merlot ($21.99)

2011 Rieflé "Bonheur Convivial" Pinot Noir ($17.99)

Mount Gilboa Barbados Aged Pot Still Rum 750ml ($30.99)

Piper-Heidsieck Brut Champagne ($29.99)

2006 Piper-Heidsieck Brut Champagne ($59.99)

Piper-Heidsieck Rosé Sauvage Champagne ($49.99)

Charles Heidsieck "Brut Reserve" Champagne ($49.99)

Charles Heidsieck "Rosé Reserve" Brut Champagne ($69.99)

2000 Charles Heidsieck Brut Champagne ($89.99)

2013 Fabre Montmayou Rosé Mendoza ($7.99)

2011 Conte di Gropello Brachetto d'Acqui ($13.99)

2010 Correggia "Marun" Barbera d'Alba ($32.99)

2012 Unti Vineyards "Cuvée Blanc" Dry Creek Rhône Blend ($24.99)

2011 Dragonette Cellars Central Coast Grenache ($36.99)

2011 Dragonette Cellars "Seven" Central Coast Syrah ($37.99)

2013 Dragonette Cellars Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara Rosé ($19.99)

2004 Billecart-Salmon Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($169.99)

2010 Adega Pena Das Donas "Almalarga" Godello Ribeira Sacra ($17.99)

2011 Domaine de la Noblaie Chinon ($16.99)

2012 Lafond Sta. Rita Hills Chardonnay ($18.99)

2011 Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Chardonnay ($19.99)

2012 Tablas Creek "Côtes de Tablas Blanc" Paso Robles White Rhône Blend ($24.99)

2012 Matanzas Creek Sonoma County Sauvignon Blanc ($15.99)

1997 Potensac, Médoc ($26.99)

2009 Brown Rouge, Pessac-Léognan ($39.99)

2010 de Gironville, Haut-Médoc ($14.99)

2009 Mylord "Cuvée Milady" Bordeaux ($12.99)

2010 Troplong Mondot, St-Emilion ($179.99)

2010 Pichon-Baron, Pauillac ($224.99)

2011 Cantemerle, Haut-Médoc ($34.99)

2011 Clos des Papes Châteauneuf-du-Pape ($99.99)

2011 Alain Voge "Vieilles Vignes" Cornas Pre-Arrival ($69.99)

2011 Chante Cigale Châteauneuf-du-Pape ($32.99)

2008 Paul Jaboulet Aîné "Incognito H" Côtes du Rhône ($39.99)

2012 Mas del Périé "Les Escures" Cahors ($16.99)

2010 Jean-Louis Denois Grande Cuvée Limoux ($14.99)

2009 Bodegas Sierra Salinas "Puerto Salinas" Alicante ($14.99)

2011 Shafer "Red Shoulder Ranch" Carneros Chardonnay ($54.99)

2011 Shafer "One Point Five" Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon ($79.99)

2011 Foxglove Central Coast Chardonnay ($11.99)

2010 Dashe "Florence Vineyard" Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel ($31.99)

2010 Guardian "Gun Metal-Connor Lee Vineyard" Columbia Valley Red Wine ($42.99)

2010 Veedercrest North Coast Cabernet Sauvignon ($24.99)

2012 Hobo "Branham Vineyard" Rockpile Zinfandel ($24.99)

2011 Corvidae "Rook" Columbia Valley Red Blend ($13.99)

2011 Calder Wine Company Napa Valley Charbono ($19.99)

2012 Waxwing "Spring Hill Vineyard" Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($34.99)

2011 Obsidian Ridge "Obsidian Ridge Vineyard" Red Hills Lake County Cabernet Sauvignon ($25.99)

2012 Sarapo "Donato Lot 4" Sonoma County Pinot Noir ($19.99)

2012 Kalinda "Cuvée Reserve" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir ($24.99)

2006 Launois Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($49.99)

2011 Torbreck "Juveniles" Grenache-Shiraz-Mourvedre Barossa Valley South Australia ($18.99)

2011 Limerick Lane Russian River Valley Zinfandel ($29.99)

2011 Limerick Lane Russian River Valley Syrah/Grenache ($31.99)

2009 Aldo Conterno "Colonnello" Barolo ($129.99)

2008 Bruna Grimaldi "Camilla" Barolo (damaged labels) ($29.99)

2009 Cantine Ascheri Barolo ($29.99)

2009 La Massa "Giorgio Primo" Toscana ($69.99)

2011 Bibi Graetz "Soffocone di Natale" Toscana ($34.99)

2010 TorCalvano Vino Nobile di Montepulciano ($18.99)

2011 Riecine Chianti Classico ($23.99)

2008 Masi Brolo di Campofiorin Oro ($19.99)

2011 Jacques Bavard Saint-Romain Blanc "Sous le Château" ($32.99)

2011 Jacques Bavard Monthelie Blanc ($29.95)

2002 Lopez de Heredia "Viña Tondonia" Reserva Rioja ($41.99)

2012 Kalinda Santa Ynez Valley Sauvignon Blanc ($12.99)

2009 Clarke (Baron Edmond de Rothschild), Listrac ($24.99)

2011 Château de la Charrière Savigny-les-Beaune Blanc "Vermots Dessus" Domaine Yves Girardin ($23.99)

2011 Domaine Champy Beaune 1er Cru "Aux Cras" ($34.99)

2011 Château de la Charrière Santenay 1er Cru "Clos Rousseau" Domaine Yves Girardin ($24.99)

2011 Château de la Charrière Bourgogne Rouge Domaine Yves Girardin ($15.99)

2009 Capbern Gasqueton, St-Estèphe ($24.99)

1991 Cambus 21 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Whisky 750ml ($109.99)

BenRiach 12 year old Single Malt Whisky 750ml ($44.99)

Mezcalero Release #7 San Juan del Rio 750ml ($75.99)

Tequila Tapatio 110 Proof Blanco 1L ($39.99)

2006 Marguet Pere et Fils Grand Cru Brut Champagne ($49.99)

2005 Launois "Spécial Club" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne (ships as 1.5L) ($59.99)

2007 Viader Napa Valley Proprietary Red ($114.99)

2012 Hanzell "Sebella" Sonoma Valley Chardonnay ($34.99)

2011 Green & Red "Chiles Canyon Vineyard" Napa Valley Zinfandel ($19.99)

2010 Amici "Reserve" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($59.99)

2010 Whitehall Lane Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($29.99)

2011 Alexander Valley Vineyards "Wetzel Family Estate" Cabernet Sauvignon ($16.99)

2011 Tablas Creek "Esprit de Tablas" Paso Robles Rhône Blend ($54.99)

2011 Tablas Creek "Esprit Blanc de Tablas" Paso Robles Rhône Blend ($36.99)

2012 Patz & Hall Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($37.99)

2012 Patz & Hall Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($32.99)

2011 Raventos i Blanc "de Nit" Rosé Conca del Riu Anoia ($22.99)

2011 Algueira Merenzao Ribeira Sacra ($39.99)

2012 Carlos Diaz "Estrela" Ribeira Sacra ($14.99)

1982 Marques de Murrieta Reserva Rioja (slightly torn capsules) ($199.99)

1982 Bodegas Riojanas Monte Real Reserva ($119.99)

1964 Faustino I Gran Reserva Rioja ($199.99)

2012 Te Whare Ra (TWR) Pinot Noir Marlborough New Zealand ($26.99)

Ferreira "Duque de Braganca" 20-year-old Tawny Port ($54.99)

2009 Vrai Canon Bouche, Canon Fronsac ($26.99)

2010 Beychevelle, St-Julien ($99.99)

2011 Margerum "M5" Santa Barbara County Rhône Blend ($22.99)

2012 Melville "Estate-Verna's" Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir ($23.99)

2011 Hendry "HRW" Napa Valley Zinfandel ($16.99)

2011 Ponzi "Tavola" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir ($23.99)

2012 Chehalem "3 Vineyards" Willamette Valley Pinot Gris ($18.99)

2010 Cédric Parpette "Montmain" Côte-Rôtie ($49.99)

2010 Bosquet des Papes "À la Gloire de Mon Grand-Père" Châteauneuf-du-Pape ($99.99)

2006 Domaine de la Vieille Julienne Châteauneuf-du-Pape ($79.99)

2012 Domaine de Pouy Côtes de Gascogne Blanc ($9.99)

2011 Fort Ross "Fort Ross Vineyard" Fort Ross-Seaview Chardonnay ($34.99)

2011 Arterberry Maresh Dundee Hills Oregon Chardonnay ($24.99)

2012 Envolve Winery Sonoma Valley Sauvignon Blanc ($16.99)

2011 Tatomer "Vandenberg" Santa Barbara County Riesling ($22.99)

2012 Truchard Carneros Chardonnay ($26.99)

2011 Joseph Swan "Hawk Hill Vineyard" Russian River Valley Chardonnay ($39.99)

2010 Wynn's "Black Label" Cabernet Sauvignon Coonawarra South Australia ($39.99)

2010 Dalwhinnie "Moonambel" Shiraz Pyrenees Victoria ($49.99)

2011 Oakridge Local Vineyard Series "Denton Vineyard" Chardonnay Yarra Valley ($24.99)

2011 The Winery of Good Hope "Vinum" Bush Vine Chenin Blanc ($15.99)

Bruno Michel "Les Roses" Brut Rosé Champagne ($49.99)

2007 Michel Arnould Vintage "Carte d'Or" Brut Champagne ($49.99)

2010 Domaine Galévan "Esprit Devin" Côtes du Rhône-Villages ($19.99)

2012 Bench Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($19.99)

2011 Columbia Crest "H3" Horse Heaven Hills Washington Cabernet Sauvignon ($10.99)

2012 Ferrari-Carano Sonoma County Fumé Blanc ($12.99)

2007 La Lecciaia "Manapetra" Brunello di Montalcino ($39.99)

2012 Viñedos Culturales "Ramblis Arco" Alicante ($24.99)

2012 Anselmo Mendes Alvarinho "Contacto" Minho ($19.99)

2010 Correggia "Val dei Preti" Nebbiolo Roero ($32.99)

2011 Cyprus Russian River Valley Chardonnay ($21.99)

2010 Robert Mondavi "To Kalon Vineyard - Monastery Block" Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon ($199.99)

2011 L'Aventure "Côte a Côte Estate" Paso Robles Rhône Blend ($79.99)

2010 Knez Winery "Demuth Vineyard" Anderson Valley Chardonnay ($34.99)

2010 Porter-Bass Russian River Valley Chardonnay ($32.99)

2010 NXNW Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($19.99)

2011 Chehalem "INOX" Wilamette Valley Chardonnay ($15.99)

2012 Ancient Peaks/K&L Wine Merchants Paso Robles Zinfandel ($19.99)

1989 Uitvlugt 23 Year Old Duncan Taylor Single Barrel Cask Strength Guyana Rum 750ml ($159.99)

2011 Vinos Ambiz Malvar Sobremadre ($24.99)

2010 Louis-Antoine Luyt "Pais de Quenehuao" Maule Valley ($19.99)

2005 La Rioja Alta "Viña Arana" Reserva Rioja ($26.99)

Osocalis Rare Alambic Brandy 750ml ($42.99)

Osocalis XO Alambic Brandy 750ml ($105.99)

2005 Pierre Moncuit Blanc de Blancs Brut Champagne ($54.99)

Pierre Moncuit "Cuvée Pierre Moncuit-Delos Grand Cru" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($39.99)

2004 Pierre Moncuit "Cuvée Nicole Moncuit Vieilles Vignes" Grand Cru Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne ($74.99)

2010 Montrose, St-Estèphe ($249.99)

2010 Léoville-Barton, St-Julien ($139.99)

2009 Angélus, St-Emilion ($349.99)

2009 Les Forts de Latour, Pauillac ($269.99)

2010 Sandro Fay Valtellina Superiore Valgella Carteria ($29.99)

2010 Sandro Fay Valtellina Superiore Valgella Ca' Morei ($29.99)

2012 Bethel Heights "Estate" Eola-Amity Hills Pinot Blanc ($16.99)

2011 Martinelli "Moonshine Ranch" Russian River Valley Pinot Noir ($69.99)

2004 Heitz Cellar "Martha's Vineyard" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($149.99)

1991 Spottswoode Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon ($109.99)

2011 Francois Villard "De Poncins" Condrieu ($74.99)

2011 Bodegas Casa Juan Señor de Lesmos "Cuarteto" Rioja ($9.99)

2001 Malescasse, Haut-Médoc ($21.99)

2010 Potensac, Médoc ($29.99)

2010 Haut de Poujeaux, Haut-Médoc ($18.99)

2010 D'Anice Blanc, Bordeaux ($14.99)

2012 Waterkloof "Circumstance" Sauvignon Blanc Stellenbosch ($16.99)

2011 Waterkloof "Circumstance" Chenin Blanc Stellenbosch ($16.99)

2010 Waterkloof "Circumstance" Cabernet Sauvignon Stellenbosch South Africa ($24.99)

Campo de Encanto Pisco de Peru 750ml ($35.99)

Diplomatico Reserva Exclusiva Rum 750ml ($35.99)