Staff Favorites - Kirk Walker

Kirk Walker

Reviews

2019 Torres "Pago del Cielo - Celeste" Tempranillo Crianza Ribera del Duero
Review Date: 11-28-2023
Vibrant, bold, spicy, and polished. That is what this wine is in a nutshell. This Crianza delivers a very elevated expression of Ribera del Duero. What do I mean by that? There is no rusticity here. Bold, yes. Rich, yes. Spicy, yes. Oaky, yes but. This has that Spanish oaky spice, you pull the cork, and you know that this wine comes from Spain. However, the spice is fine, a perfect mix of sweet and savory, spice that speaks more to the French oak that was used than the American. That oak has focused and polished this wine. It frames the aromatics. The layers of spice bring extra dimensions to the dark cherry and blackberry fruit. The high elevation of these vineyards helps maintain the freshness to this wine. The quality of the fruit is striking, it tastes like fruit that was picked at that almost perfect point of ripeness where it is not too sweet nor too tart. On the palate the oak has softened the tannins, they are polished and fine, they are present but not intrusive. That oak also imparts a subtle cacao note that lingers along with the soft tannins bringing a touch of decadence to the wine. For all my talk of oak, because it is used very deftly here, this is a wine that is about fruit. The dark, delicious Tempranillo that is sourced at the boundaries of the Ribera del Duero.

2022 Laberinto "Arcillas de Laberinto" Riesling Maule Valley
Review Date: 11-20-2023
98 points is a score that makes you pay attention. Best white wine of the year. That is not something to ignore either. Tim Atkin MW is not well known here in the states. He is a MW and a journalist that has focused on the regions where the broader wine journalism world was not. In this case Chile. He has a unique perspective on the regions that he covers because he travels there every year. Spending weeks in the country traveling to wine regions region tasting and talking with the producers. And he has been doing this for well over a decade. There is no other English language reviewer who so comprehensively covers the regions that he focuses on. I feel that a little extra bit of context on Tim Atkin MW was needed for this wine, it is Riesling. The wines from Laberinto are incredible. Their Sauvignon Blanc is dollar for dollar one of the best expressions of that varietal in the world, and it is a unique expression. The vineyards of Laberinto are uniquely located in the foothills of the Andes Mountains close to lake Colbun. The soil here is stony and volcanic. It is relatively cool and has large nighttime temperature swings. It also receives high UV in the Southern Hemisphere. It turns out that this is a special place for growing grapes. It also helps that Rafael Tirado is a very gifted winemaker. Riesling from the Andes, what is it like? It is aromatic. The nose is a complex mixture of stone fruit (both ripe and just underripe), citrus (flowers and zest), a delicate floral lift and pronounced mineral element. It is pronounced but composed, it smells amazing and It made my mouth water in anticipation. The wine makes a big impact on the palate, it almost hits like a full-bodied white, expansive, and filling, but it is only medium bodied. The flavors are more dynamic and complex than the nose. The minerality, which is present but not dominating, seems to pull all the fruit and floral tones towards the finish and spin them off into shifting eddies of flavor. There is a lot going on here, however this is not a contemplation wine. There is a hedonistic side to this, that first sip demands a second and then it is off to the races. I stop and slow down, because that is who I am, but it simply tastes good, and you want more. It is a special wine, especially when you think about how far it is from all the classic sources for Riesling.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2020 El Enemigo Chardonnay Mendoza
Review Date: 11-19-2023
A K&L Favorite. This wine does the impossible. This is rich, full, textured, and has beautiful ripe fruit notes. It is also crisp, vibrant, balanced with minerality, and a savory note. AND it is reasonably priced. There are other wines out there that can do what this wine does, but at least 5X the price. And this is not a one off, this has been this way for years! This is a Unicorn of a wine that hides in a place where most people do not look for Chardonnay, the foothills of the Andes. This is a buy-a-case kind of wine. A perfect wine to open for when you have company, it is for those people who like big CA Chards and those terroir hounds that talk about rocks and minerality.

2014 Bodegas Riojanas "Monte Real" Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 11-17-2023
Bold, dark fruited, spicy, and earthy. Polished. Polished is the best way to start describing this wine. This is a medium full bodied that does not have edges but lots of character. The nose is full of dark cherries, black berries, and plums. Then comes the spice, a good mix from the Tempranillo and the oak. The oak presents like cedar and balsam, fine, complex deep and intriguing. There is that earthy leather thing, Polished tannins. This is Tempranillo and it definitely has some tannic umph, but these tannins glide across the palate. It is as if they lubricate the wine! The flavors are like the aromas but with the spice toned down, the exotic wood notes get played up, with a clean, damp soil note, with a pinch of tobacco and leather. The fruit is more vibrant on the palate than the nose, with a little more cherry. This wine feels elevated, it might not be the most powerful Rioja, but the mouthfeel and complexity and the lack of rusticity brings this wine to the next level. This wants red meat, rack of lamb, prime rib, grilled steak, even stew. The only thing this wine requires is about 30 minutes to open up.

2021 Morandé "Grand Reserve" Sauvignon Blanc Casablanca Valley
Review Date: 11-13-2023
The aromatics are classic Sauvignon Blanc, lots of citrus, some gooseberries, a hint of tropical fruits with that classic pyrazine element. With this wine it has a hint of jalapeno but there are layers of herbs too, it has a savory element that balances the fruit. The aromatics are charming, complex and speak to not only the quality of fruit but also the winemaking, with the concrete and large neutral oak both of which add subtle layers. There is a lot happening on the nose, but the palate takes this wine to another level. It is like the transition from black to color in “The Wizard of Oz.” The flavor pops! Holy moly is what I wrote in my notes, except this note was giving a PG edit. The flavors here are very intense, yet the wine is 12.5 alcohol and calling it medium bodied is being generous. The flavors range from citrus to tropical, but not juicy over-ripe tropical, it is that just-about ripe, where there is still a little green note to it. It is crisp and dry but not tart and it has an exceptionally long, persistent finish that has a minerality to it. Not that limestone, silex that comes to mind with Loire Valley Sauvignons, the granitic clay soils give this wine a different minerality, it reads more like volcanic, island minerality than what I think of as granitic. This wine makes you pay attention to it, and then it leaves you craving for more. Or in my case craving Mediterranean food. Pick your favorite country's dish, as long as it has lots of herbs a citrus, I am thinking about Persian kebabs! This is unlike any other Sauvignon Blanc that we have in the store. Cool, mineral, complex, and low alcohol with intensity and persistence. This is a wine that if it came from another country, you would be happy paying twice the price for it and would still think it a deal.

2020 Casa Castillo "La Tendida" Jumilla
Review Date: 11-05-2023
Nuanced and elegant. These are two words that are not typically associated with the Varietal, except those are the first that jumped to my mind. It is vibrantly colored and aromatic, again challenging the expectation for a varietal that is best known for adding color and tannin to blends or for the brooding reds of Bandol. There is nothing in this wine that speaks of power, it is elegant and supple. It could be the percentage of Garnacha in the blend, but this is 85% Monastrell. The tannins are sleek, there is enough acid to give tension but not an edge and persisting berry fruit. There is a fine minerality that appears on the long finish, which is surprising to find in a wine at this price point. This is a Rhone blend, but it speaks more to the elegant expressions of Cote Rote than to anything from the Southern Rhone, not to mention most other wines from Jumilla. Casa Castilla has been redefining that region’s potential for the last two decades and this wine is a marvelous example.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

2021 Falua "Conde Vimioso" Branco Tejo
Review Date: 11-02-2023
I am extremely excited about the wines from Portugal. There is so much good wine, and so many new regions, and varietals to explore. I know that this dates me, but it really reminds me of what was happening in Italy in the late ‘90s and early 00’s, except that in Portugal they winemakers have 20-30 years of knowledge and expertise that didn’t exist back then. The Vimioso Branco is a perfect example of this. This comes from the Tejo region; it is not a region that most wine drinkers have heard of. It is a blend of Arinto, Fernao Pires, and Verdelho again, a bunch of new names for most people except for those who have already started exploring the wines from Portugal. New names hopefully translate into new experiences and that is just what this wine does. It has a moderately aromatic nose, it starts off with the usual suspects of white wine, apple, pear, citrus, with a little bit of lemon curd and then some faint wet rocks in the background. With a little time, the fruit characters darken, it takes a subtle exotic twist, with a new layer of intriguing aromas, that suggest herbs, and flowers, and green leaves, and more crushed stones. The palate is a surprise. The flavors steer more towards heirloom apples and citrus zest than anything exotic. The surprise comes from the body of the wine, not the flavors. This is a medium bodied wine with 12.5% alcohol, but it feels fuller and much more intense than you would expect. But that is the fun part, what were we expecting? We don’t know any of the major players in this game, that is why this is so much fun! It gets even better, there is a surprising amount of intensity and persistence to this wine, especially when it comes to this price point, something that I have been hesitant to bring up. This wine is an incredible value. The fruit and exotic floral, herbal tone linger over that wet stone minerality on the crisp, mouthwatering finish. This wine has elements that will appeal to most wine drinkers; there is good fruit, crisp acidy, intensity, minerality and most importantly it has its own unique character. This is after all a wine made from unfamiliar grapes grown in an unfamiliar territory. It is delicious and it not only wets the appetite for a meal but for discovering more of what Portugal has to offer.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

2009 Bodegas Riojanas "Monte Real" Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 10-17-2023
There are not a lot of wine regions where you can get old school wines. We talk about old-school Bordeaux, Burgundy, Napa Cab’s and even German Rieslings, but there are very few examples of those wines on the shelves anywhere, let alone here at K&L. Things change, the depth of modern knowledge in both winemaking and viticulture has vastly improved, the demand for certain styles has changed and frankly climate change. There are so many reasons for old school wines not to exist that it seems crazy that it is a significant portion of Rioja’s market. This is a perfect point of entry into this 2009 Gran Reserva. This is a classic, old-school Rioja. Bodegas Riojanas is one of the producers who “modernized” Rioja back in the late 19th century. They helped to create the style of wine that is now considered the old-school. The same family has been shaping these wines ever since. What is old school? With Rioja it is very easy to define, it is long aging with at least three years spent in oak, and that oak must be American. It is on that last piece where this wine has a nod to modernity, it is also aged in French oak. But as soon as you crack open a bottle, you know that this is old school. It is spicy, earthy, savory in a way that it could only be traditional Rioja. Before we get into that I think it is important to quickly point out that this is a single vineyard wine. The “El Monte” vineyard is an estate vineyard that is located outside of the village of Cenicero. While it might not be as famous as Haro, Labastida or San Vicente it has some of the best terroir in the region. Located south of the Ebro River, the soils here are stony with calcareous clay. The vines are planted in the traditional goblet style and only Tempranillo is used for this wine. This wine is in a sweet spot right now, it has just settled into itself, everything is harmonized and the fruit is vibrant and fresh. It does need a little time to open up, only about 15-30 minutes. I imagine the wine a little like someone when they wake up in the morning, it is all there, but a little wild and out of control and needing a few minutes to compose itself. With a little time, the aromatics are focused, the savory edge that the American oak gives the wine has been subdued and the spicy French oak plays a more prominent role. Framed within that bouquet of oak is a soft earthy tone and deep, mellow cherry fruit. On the palate this wine is composed and elegant. It is full bodied and has plenty of tannins, but they are very fine and polished, they are ripe and long and work with the wine's fresh acidity pulling this wine through to a long finish. The core of this wine is the fruit, that mellow cherry note shines, is softened with a dusty earthiness and plays against its limestone minerality. The spice starts to build towards the finish but it is always composed. This is an incredibly composed wine, not the most powerful Gran Reserva on the shelf but what it lacks in obvious power it more than makes up for in finesse. Gran Reservas have traditionally been the ultimate wine that a producer will make, their special occasion wine, this definitely fits that bill. What is most striking with this is how good it is now but how its structure speaks to the future of this wine. I have been fortunate to try wines from this vineyard from the 60’s, and I am not saying that this wine will live for another 50 years, I am tempted to put this away and see what it will be like in 20 and I will not be surprised if it does go for a lot longer than that.
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2009 Bodegas Puelles Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 10-10-2023
Puelles has quietly been one of the big hits of our direct import program. As a Rioja producer, Puelles wine making styles range from modern to traditional, it is with their Gran Reserva that they are the most traditional. Nothing to me says old school more than having your current release being almost 14 years old! They are the producers who are tremendously more famous, Gran Reservas and significantly younger. This is where Rioja shines. 2009 was a very good vintage, powerful and fresh, a great vintage for this style of wine. Their vineyards are in an incredible terroir, surrounding the village of Abalos. Located on the North side of the Ebro River and at elevation approaching the foothills of the Sierra Cantabria. The soils here is calcareous clay, their vines have an average age of 40 years. This Gran Reserva is 95% Tempranillo with the rest being a blend of Graciano, Garnacha and Manzuelo. It spent two years aging in oak, a mixture of French and American. It was then bottled and then rested in the winery until release. Several things stand out to me with this wine, and it is a show of the strength of Rioja. It is the spice, that mixture brings a depth and breadth that you cannot get from just using one or the other. That mix of sweet and savory spices not only lifts the aromatics brighting the fruit tones, but it also darkens it with a savory twist. Added to that is the bottle age which has started to mellow the tannins, there are still plenty there, but they have a nice polish to them that pulls the wine towards its finish. Here is where the terroir really speaks, there is a fine earthy minerality that lingers just under the fruit, and it lingers and lingers which gives the fruit one last moment to shine. This is a special occasion wine, it delivers that quality, but it is not priced as such, so this is an everyday luxury.
Price: $25.99 Add To Cart

2019 Cal Besso "lo Cirerer" Montsant
Review Date: 10-03-2023
Cal Besso is K&L’s first direct import for Montsant. They are a small family producer located just South of Priorat. They make clean, uncomplicated, but not simple, wines that express the diversity of the region. If there I had just one wine to use to introduce you to the wines of Cal Besso, this is it. “Lo Cirerer” or “the cherry tree” is the perfect wine to get someone excited about this small family project. This is a wine that exceeds its appellation, all their wines do but this does it in a way that is easier to communicate in writing. The wines of Montsant are best known for being Garnacha blends. An easy way to think about it is that Montsant is to Priorat, like Cotes du Rhone is to Chateauneuf du Pape. I like that because the main varietal (for the most part) in all those regions is Garnacha. Montsant has a reputation for being easy to drink value wines. While this wine is both of those, it is also more. It starts with the blend, while most of this wine is Garnacha and Carignane there is also Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Tempranillo. These are all familiar varietals in Catalonia, and we regularly see a little Merlot and Cabernet in Priorat, the Tempranillo jumps out to me when listed and in the wine. It somehow gives this Spanish wine (it is really a Catalonian wine but that is a tale for another time) a little more of a Spanish twist, and I love it. It brightens the wine, it enhances the “cherry tree” of it, there is more fruit and there is a little more spice. A little of that spice comes from the oak aging but there is a soft, dusty Spanish spiciness to this that you do not get when it is all Garnacha and Carignan. It is medium bodied and very easy to drink. The Cabernet and the Tempranillo bring a little more vertically to this wine, a touch more structure without imparting too much tannin. The Merlot and Cabernet add a little tobacco and a darker fruit tone to the mid palate. OK, how do these pieces all fit together? Deliciously. This is a medium bodied red with a mix of dark and red cherry fruits on the nose, backed with hints of plums and a mellow spice on the back end. There is a sneaky richness to this, the longer it is opened, the more weight and texture it takes on, the tannins are mellow and there is just enough acid to leave it dry and clean on the finish. This is an any occasion red wine, just as happy being drunk in the afternoon as it is at the dinner table.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart

2017 Cal Besso "la Prunera" Montsant
Review Date: 10-03-2023
The Plum Tree is a blend of Samso (Carignan) and Garnacha Peluda, a mutation of Garnacha; peluda refers to the hairs on the leaves. This is a Garnacha variant that is more commonly seen further west in the Terra Alta region, but here it represents the oldest vines in the vineyard, at over 80 years. The wine is aged in new and used French oak, styled to be more intense and full, a little more like Priorat. The fruit is dark, dare we say plum-like, and the palate is concentrated and full. There are floral notes, spices, and minerality (not slate, but calcareous).
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2021 Descendientes de Jose Palacios "Pétalos" Bierzo
Review Date: 08-29-2023
Bierzo has always been one of my favorite regions in Spain. I love Mencia, the main red varietal planted there. There really is nothing else like it in the world. I love that it comes from an almost forgotten corner of Spain, the place where Castilla y León meets Galicia. It is in isolated mountain valleys where the Romans mined for gold and the Cistercian monks chose to isolate themselves and make wines. It is a region with steep hillside vineyards, with old vines. But what I love the most about the region and its wines are the aromatics. It is savory. The first thing that jumps out at you is the fruit, but it is not something that is easy to put your finger on berries, pluots, cherries and plums. The more you dig into the fruit, the further away it moves, and what starts to come into focus are wild mountain herbs and flowers, mixed with sun warmed leaves, bark, moss, stones, and soil. There is so much more to this wine than fruit, but it never vanishes, the fruit is the medium for those other aromas. I cannot get enough of it, I could almost be content just smelling it, almost. For as much as I love the nose, the palate of this wine is awesome. The aromas and the flavors are in perfect sync. There is a modest amount of tannin, it is polished giving the wine just enough umph. As they fade, they merge into the fresh acidity giving the wine a dynamic energy and then a lingering stony minerality. The fruit and the savory flavors are balanced but lean a little more to the fruit, this is not a wild rustic wine. The is good depth and persistence to it, more than the price point would suggest. It speaks of wild and untamed landscapes but there is a ripe, clean, and polished quality to this wine that makes it very accessible.

2020 Catena Zapata "DV Catena - Tinto Histórico" Red Blend Mendoza
Review Date: 08-17-2023
Two of Argentina’s biggest exports are Tango and Malbec wine. What is interesting about both is that they were not widely accepted and embraced within Argentina until they were embraced elsewhere in the world, and now both Tango and Malbec are inseparable from the idea of Argentina for Argentines and everyone else in the world. Why am I mentioning this? The Tinto Historico is a historical style of wine that would have been drunk in Buenos Aires in the 20’s, 30’s and 40’s, at the time in the city when Tango was as big there as Jazz was in the United States. This brand and wine were created in homage to the winemaker's grandfather, Domingo Vicente (DV) Catena. This style of wine is what he was most famous for, not Malbec, well, it is Malbec but that is not what was important. He was famous in Buenos Aires for his lush and rich wines. This is mostly Malbec, 78%, the balance is Bonarda and a little Petit Verdot. The Bonarda brings a little more dimension to the midpalate, a darker cherry fruit tone and easy tannins. That extra little something in this wine is the Petit Verdot, it brings additional layers to the already aromatic Malbec as well as some lush tannins, bringing a little bit of rich structure to the wine. The nose is dark-fruited, mostly cherries but some darker berries. It has a lift to it, both Malbec and Petit Verdot have a floral component to them, and there is just a suggestion of spice that comes from the oak barrels that it is aged in. The palate is lush and round, all the varietals working together to make it mouth-filling with just enough tannin to give it substance without imparting any astringency. The flavors are fresh and dynamic, mostly cherries with layers of dark berries and spice. It is all too easy to drink, this does not require anything but something to drink it from but is enough here to make it easy to pair with a wide range of foods, I am still in summer mode, so my thoughts go straight to the grill…..

2018 Black Slate "Escaladei" Vi de la Vila Priorat
Review Date: 07-01-2023
This is back in stock, and at a better price than before! I love these wines. They are the perfect introduction to one of the most amazing wine regions of the world. They are priced for easy exploration and more importantly everyday consumption. Even before the creation of the “Vi de Vila” system (The Priorat appellation designation of single villages) the Black Slate wines have offered an affordable glimpse into the unique and diverse terroirs of this Mountainous wine region. <>This is a Priorat with great balance. It is not of the traditional descriptors for the region, but this wine shows the direction that most of the producers are heading. The tannins are polished, you notice them but they are not a distraction. It is medium full bodied and effortless. It has good acid, but it does not stand out at all. The aromatics and flavors are predominantly dark red fruits, with dusty herbal notes, a faint spice, and that Priorat earthiness. With time the fruit tones blossom, bringing more clarity and diversity, they range from cherry, to plum and pluots with just a hint of a marionberry. The wine finished with the sensation of fruit and mountain herbs lingering over stones, classic Priorat. <>Escaladei is a Village that is located in the Northwestern edge of the appellation. The region takes its name from the Priory Cartoixa d’Scala Dei which was founded here in the 12th century. This is one of the more isolated subregions, it lies within the Montsant National park, you can see why the monks went there to seek isolation. The soils here are a mix of the classic Llicorella slate but there is limestone there too. That limestone shows through with the brightness of flavors and aromatics as well as its distinct minerality on the finish.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2022 Laberinto "Cenizas de Laberinto" Sauvignon Blanc Maule Valley
Review Date: 05-11-2023
This is from a vineyard planted around a pre-alpine lake in the foothills of the 2nd tallest Mountain range in the world. Planted in soils that are a mix of igneous intrusive and extrusive origins (granite and volcanic ash). Just on the rocks and where the vineyard is located, I am curious about this wine, and I have been drinking it for about a decade. It is unlike any other expression of the Sauvignon Blanc. There is nothing crazy or innovative with the winemaking here. The grapes are farmed organically, there is 4-6 hours of skin contact before fermentation in Stainless steel and then aged on the fine lees for another six months. It is the terroir. Where else in the world are you finding Sauvignon Blanc grown in soils like this? This wine tastes like no other Sauvignon Blanc in the world, and year in and year out it has a similar character. This is a special wine from a special place. And the best part is it does not have that “special wine” price. This is available to all of us! I love this wine before I even open the bottle. What makes this a great wine, not just an intellectual curiosity, is that it is straight up delicious. This wine delivers cool and focused on the nose. It is restrained; hints of fruit, hints of minerality, hints of herbs. It is a calm lake that gives you no suggestion as to how deep it is. That first sip reveals the depth of that lake. It is medium bodied and concentrated. It is dry and mouthwatering but not tart. It has great intensity and persistence yet comes across as restrained. The fruit is subdued but present, guava, lime and lemon. There is a minerality to this wine, it is not driving like limestone and silex of Sancerre, it is subtle and persists with a quiet background note that lingers behind it all. This could be my favorite bottling yet; it tastes so good and it takes my imagination soaring trying to describe it (you are getting a drastically edited version here). This is a wine that exceeds my expectations for it, and those are very high and the more that I think about it, it is on my short list of the best white wine in the store at $25 and under.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2018 Proelio "Vinedos Viejos" Garnacha Rioja
Review Date: 04-27-2023
Garnacha always is second fiddle in Rioja. Tempranillo is the first. Tempranillo is the red grape that most people associate with Spanish red wines. Garnacha, well … most people think of it as a French varietal first, it is a classic “Rhone” varietal. However, it is from Spain originally and its presumed birthplace is down the Ebro River from Rioja. I love being able to champion Garnacha. And with this wine it is easy to do so. Just on paper it is irresistible to me. This is a wine that was made to highlight a treasure, 80+ year old vineyards. Hand harvested, native yeast fermentation, aging in large oak barrels, sourced from many tiny plots. What is not to like? What gets me even more excited is where in Rioja those vineyards are. They are on the North facing slopes of the Sierra de la Demanda. These are sites that have been historically used to create Rose and white wines. The most widely planted grapes here are Garnacha and Viura, and the vineyards are located at higher elevations than those North of the Ebro River. The soil here is unique to the region as well, an iron rich clay. It gives this wine a subtle savory quality. There has been more expansion in this region as increasingly producers are looking for cooler sites to deal with climate change. I love this and I have yet to taste it! This wine is bright and dark. It is rich and fresh. It is complex and it just keeps on getting better as the wine opens. I love the first sip, but that last half glass leaves me wishing I had more! The fruit tones start like late spring/ early summer - all strawberries and raspberries and with time it turns to autumn with pomegranate and dark cherries. There is a fresh herbal tone and an aromatic lift that is almost floral, but not. The oak gives it a very subtle spice and just a hint of balsam and exotic woods. The fruit pops on the palate, it jumps out, but it is not over ripe, there is just a hint of a tart edge. Right behind that fruit is an earthy savoriness. It is clean and not funky. It has a distinctive (it is not like any other Garnacha from anywhere that I have tasted) sense of terroir. It has weight but the freshness keeps it lively and not heavy. The tannins are very fine, present to give some structure but seamlessly integrated into the wine. It has a charming finish with that dark red fruit that plays against earth spice. I cannot get enough of this wine. It is a Rioja that does not require a meal, but it will complement almost everything. What a wine!

2021 Gaupasa Garnacha Navarra
Review Date: 04-21-2023
Navarra Garnacha. Dark, deep cherry tones backed by wild dark berries with just a hint of dustiness (just like you would when foraging for wild berries - not all of them make it home before they get cleaned!). This is an easy drinking everyday red. Dark cherry fruit, medium bodied, just a touch of tannin and a hint of earthy intrigue. This is made in a minimal intervention style, but it is not “wild.” Simple and tasty. Topa!
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart

2021 Gaupasa Garnacha Blanca Navarra
Review Date: 04-21-2023
Juicy, zesty, mineral. Of all the “Rhône” white varietals Garnacha Blanca is my favorite. Now the most expensive versions of Roussanne and Viognier are unbelievably good, they are also exceptionally expensive. Garnacha Blanca is not a “Rhone” varietal, it is Spanish, but that is not the point. This varietal delivers at all price points. It delivers cool orchard fruits accented with sweeter citrus tones. The palate is juicy, there is a hint of citrus zest, and it has surprising persistence for the price point. It finishes dry and crisp with a dusting of minerality. Clean and quite easy to drink. Txin Txin!
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart

2014 Pedro Martinez Alesanco Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 04-13-2023
This is a Gran Reserva that really stands out from all others on our shelves. The main reasons for this is the varietal composition, it is 50/50 Tempranillo and Garnacha. I cannot think of another Reserva nor Gran Reserva that has that much Garnacha in it. The only other aged Rioja that has a similar blend is the La Rioja Alta Ardanza, and that is a Reserva, and it usually has 20 - 30% Garnacha in its blend. It should not be a surprise that this would have so much Garnacha in its blend, all of the fruit for this wine is sourced around the village of Baderan and it is famous for its Garnacha. What does the Garnacha bring to the party? Fruit, freshness, and easy tannins. All of which really bring an extra something to this wine. At almost nine years old the fruit aromas are still fresh and lively. The dark fruits are framed by that classic Rioja oaky spice, leather and earth tones. I love that the winery went out of the way to tell us how many days they aged the wine before release (1077 days in barrel and 1220 in bottle!). The Tempranillo drives the structure as does all of those days aging in barrel and bottle, but with 50% of this wine being Garnacha there are fewer tannins to start off with which gives this wine a softer touch. The flavors on the palate start with a pure dark cherry fruit and then it starts to darken with time in glass. Beneath the fruit are subtle spice and chocolate tones. The finish is long and clean, with a moderate amount of oaky spice and earth. This is built like an old school Gran Reserva but most of the oak that it saw was French so it has a softer, more subtle Rioja feel. This wine is very satisfying to drink, it has the poise and presence for a special occasion but it is just as comfortable with a casual weekday meal. A Delicious Rioja that shows a slightly different expression of what the region has to offer, I love wines like this.
Price: Hidden View Price

2018 Prado Rey "Valdelayegua" Crianza Ribera del Duero
Review Date: 04-07-2023
Rich, bold, and Spanish. These are the first things that come to mind when I smell this wine. The next thing I pick up is that this is Tempranillo. There is something so pure to the expression of Tempranillo from the Ribera del Duero. It is dark and intense, with an earthy purity to it. The fruit stands out and it is backed by an earthy intrigue and spice. Ribera del Duero has more in common with Bordeaux and California Cabernet than it does with Rioja. The Valdelayegua easily agrees with the previous sentence. Just in the way that the fruit smells, this Tempranillo is ripe and bold but leaner than Cabernet. It is drier, there is a little more structure, but that makes sense from where this comes from. It is very continental, and it is easy to imagine how those extremes help shape the character of this wine. Speaking of this wine, it is sourced from a single vineyard from the Northwest corner of the Prado Rey estate. As a person who loves history, it is almost impossible not to get excited about this estate's connection to Queen Isabella. Queen Isabella! This wine is super charming. It is full bodied, structured, and dry but not aggressively so. The oak is clean and integrated. It is less oaky than many CA or French wines, it helps with a touch of spice, the texture and the framing of the aromas and flavors. The wine is very well balanced, it is clean and has a nice finish with a little earthiness which the bright fruit tones linger against. I love that this wine is unmistakably from the Ribera del Duero, but it can be used interchangeably at the dinner table with any other full-bodied red from around the world.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2022 Allan Scott Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough
Review Date: 03-15-2023
Here is another New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc that has managed to set itself apart in the category. I am hard pressed to find a Sauvignon Blanc from any other country that is this good at this price. This is a really good Sauvignon. It is bright and crisp, with just enough of a tart edge. The fruit tones are bright and pure, lots of citrus (lemon, lime, and a little grapefruit zest) and just the faintest green tone, just a hint of herbs, nothing else. This wine has surprising intensity and a clean, fruit driven finish that makes you want more. Here is another over performing wine from New Zealand.
Price: $13.99 Add To Cart

2018 Artazu "Pasos de San Martín" Navarra
Review Date: 02-12-2023
This wine has so much going for it, that it is a challenge for me to know where and how to start. I love wines like this. - The most important thing is that it is exceptionally delicious, but that is a non-starter. - It offers an incredible value, but that value requires some additional context. - It also presents the opportunity to further explore the world of wine. - This is a Garnacha that is from a special and unique place. I cannot think of any other region known for Garnacha, Grenache, or their blends that have a similar climate nor soils to where these grapes are grown in Navarra. OK, so where is Navarra? Navarra is located North and East of Rioja. The vineyards are located in the Northernmost part of the Ebro River valley. It is a large region, with five subzones. What makes this a special location, it is essentially located in a break between the Basque mountains, which help define the Northern boundary of Rioja and the Pyrenees. This “gap” brings more cooling Atlantic influence to the Navarra than Rioja. The climate here is Mediterranean, but cool. It benefits not only from the Atlantic Ocean but the elevation of the vineyard, around 600m, and its proximity to the Mountains and the Ebro River. - Artazu considers the Pasos de San Martin a “village” wine. The fruit is sourced from a vineyard near the village of San Martín de Unx. This doesn’t carry the same impact for most consumers as saying that this is a wine from Savigny-les-Beaune or Occidental. Spanish winemakers know their terroirs. The modern wine industry, in most regions, was built on creating large volumes of wines that were blended from vineyards throughout the region, that is especially the case with Artuzu, the facilities where this is made was the site of a former co-op. It is the current generation of winemakers who know that their wines have to be more specific inorder to be in the same conversations with more established wineries and wine regions. - Now is the perfect moment to mention who owns Artazu. It was founded by Juan Carlos López de Lacalle, the same person who founded the Artadi in Rioja. Artadi is one of the most important Spanish wineries founded in the last 40 years. They showed the world that Rioja and Spanish wine in general was capable of being so much more than the traditional red wines that have been aged in oak for a long period of time. They brought a degree of modern winemaking to the region, techniques that were being used in Napa and Bordeaux, but with an eye to accentuate the fruit and polish it with restrained use of oak. Their wines have an international appeal but they are expressive of Tempranillo and their terroir. These are the wines that first help me understand the differences in Rioja terroir, they are unmistakably Alavesa. They were one of the first producers to market an array of single vineyard wines. And their wines are always well received in the press. Their success allowed them to in a relatively short period of time increase their prices. Today their pricing is comparable to some of the most sought after Burgundy producers. - With that said I can now get to my point and start to try this all together. Artadi makes wines on a completely different level than the vast majority of Rioja. The vast majority of the production of Rioja is in the hands of several very large producers. It is made on a very large scale, and made to be sold at a very low price point. In 2015 Artadi stopped using the Appellation of Rioja. They no longer wanted their wine to be associated with the bulk made inexpensive wines of the region. They chose to leave the single biggest brand in all of Spain. What those chose to put on the label is Alava. They are promoting the region from where their wines are grown, but it is not an Appellation in itself, legally it is Spain. I love Spanish wine but it can be a little complicated, there is no simple comparison that I can come up with to further illustrate this. Rioja is a wine region that covers 4 separate autonomous communities in Spain. Each of these have their own distinct cultural identity, the Basque community, with its own language and cultural traditions is fiercely independent and proud. Artadi is promoting themselves and their home. So it makes sense that they are starting to do that same work with their project in Navarra, Artazu. Narvarra is just as old of a wine making region as Rioja but it has not had the same degree of success. By making the Pasos de San Martin village wine, they are building a regional identity. And the quality of this wine will definitely put this village on winelovers maps. - Finally the wine itself. The vineyard is over 40 years old and is planted in the traditional bush vine style and is farmed organically. The soils are calcareous clay, and its climate is Atlantic Mediterranean. This is unmistakably Garnacha, but as I have said, it is unlike any other Grenache in the store. It is fermented in open topped wooden tanks, with native yeast, it then undergoes malolactic fermentation and aging in 500L French oak barrels for only about a year. There are a couple of things that you notice as you pour yourself a glass, the color and the aromatics. The color is saturated and vibrant, and the aromatics jump out of the glass. With just that, before you even pick up the glass you can tell that this wine will be special. Vibrant is a perfect word to describe this. The nose has great intensity. It is bright berries, but there is something a little darker to it, wild strawberries, wild blueberries. It is not feral but it is not cultivated either. Behind the fruit are wild herbs and spice, not garrigue, these are herbal tones that speak of Mountains instead. It is pretty lifted and inviting. The palate delivers. It is here more than the nose that reflects the site more, it pops. There is good acid here and structure, things that are normally not used to express Garnancha, this is from a very special place! There is a tension here that almost speaks to Pinot Noir and a concentration that speaks to Syrah but somehow it still comes across as only Garnacha. The fruit tones on the palate is just a little brighter than those on the nose and the spice and herbal tones give it subtle depth. It is intense without coming across as edgy in any way and it finishes long, with great persistence and brightness. You cannot help yourself from going back and taking another sip. This is a standout bottle of Garnacha that way over performs for the money. I am immediately drawn to comparisons to Priorat and Chateauneuf du Pape, and to me at this price point, this wine leaves both of those regions in the dust. They just cannot do what this wine does at the price point. Here is where the value is, Navarra is not considered the same as either of those two regions. We are getting world class wine making here, from relatively old vines, an opportunity to explore someplace new and delicious wine. Grab some glasses and friends and enjoy.

2022 TWR (Te Whare Ra) Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough
Review Date: 01-20-2023
This is another great offering from “TWR”. Over the last several years they have consistently made some of the most delicious and intriguing Sauvignon Blancs from New Zealand. This year is not an exception, and it could be the best yet. This is a wine that will surprise you, first and foremost is the color. It looks like spring water. Now that could be seen as a detractor by some but I think it perfectly sets the stage for this wine. How? The wine has a cool purity to it that you would expect from an alpine stream (at least for me). The nose is cool, bright, and focused. With guava, grapefruit oil and an unexpected green note. It is not that pungent bell pepper thing, it is not a defensive smell, it is a complex, living, exotic green. Not quite tropical but a dense layering of many types of vegetation. I know I am confusing the matter with this but the nose is incredible, if it were not I would not struggle to describe. On the palate this wine has a similar trajectory. Cool, complex and intriguing. It has good concentration and mouth watering acidity. The fruit is mostly citrus, there is a subtle minerality, and a subtle phenolic thing that adds a touch of texture to the long finish. This will make for a wonderful aperitif but I will shine at the table with a meal.

2020 Bodegas Lanzaga (Telmo Rodríguez) "Corriente Bueno de Diario" Rioja
Review Date: 01-08-2023
Lanzaga makes incredible wines. I always have lots of thoughts about these wines so I am going to start off with a quick elevator pitch for this wine - old vine field blend Rioja, that is mostly Tempranillo, with Garnacha, Graciano and some white varietals too. The wine is aged in old oak, barriques and foudre. The fruit is ripe and pure, with dark fruits that speak of the Tempranillo and Graciano. The wine is framed with the light spice of oak. It smells, tastes and feels like Rioja but without the heavy American oak stamp that is associated with Rioja. It has an easy structure and freshness of a wine that was crafted to be consumed everyday, whether dinner is a hearty stew or simple roast chicken. It finishes clean, with a subtle earthiness that can only come from RIoja. This is just honest good wine that is easy to drink. - - Ok this won’t take too much time to read.Telmo Rodriguez and his partner Pablo Eguzkiza have for the last 30 years been working to bring to light, and to the market, wines from forgotten regions of Spain. These projects have helped invigorate the Spanish wine industry. I might be obsessed with all of these projects, but that is a tale for another time, this is a story of Rioja. I am definitely obsessed with their Rioja project Lanzaga. They started this before Telmo went back to work with his family at their estate, Remelluri. Lanzaga is a project that has one foot in the past and the other in the future. Their wines are a delicious way to see one of the most famous wine regions in the world in a new way. (That is why I am obsessed). There are two parts to the historical side of Lanzaga, the first are the vineyards. This project started, in part, as a way of securing old vineyards around the village of Lanciego, in the Alavesa subregion. These are old bush vine vineyards that are typically a mix of red and white varietals. The second part is to make traditional styles of wine, wines that were made before Rioja was an internationally known region. Wines that people of that region would have been drinking, not wines for the export market. Now I love that style of Rioja, those are the wines that planted the seeds for my love not only of Rioja but Spanish wine. But I do love history, I love stories, and I love wine, so I am kind of in the bag for a project like this. There are two “historically” styled wines in the project, the first is the LZ. This is a wine that we have been selling for years at K&L. That is a wine that sees no oak, it is an incredibly polished “farmer” style wine, something that almost everyone who grew grapes would make for themselves. The easiest way to think of that wine is like Cru Beaujolais meets Rioja. The Corriente is all Rioja, this is a wine that sees oak, you do not have to bring in any other wine region from Europe to help describe this style, this is Rioja. Now is where I can introduce the winery's vision of the future and it is directly connected with the past. It is the fruit. All of Lanzaga’s wines have a bright purity to them. Why save old vineyards, if you are not going to treat the fruit as cleanly and gently as possible? The project was created to showcase and show off one of the classic historic sites of Rioja, “terroir” is shown through transparency. I love classic Rioja; earthy, leathery, spicy, with their spectrum of drying fruits. Those are the wines that I think of first when I think of Rioja. They speak of the region, undoubtedly, but it can be hard to taste the subregional or village level differences of terroir in them. This was made with the intention of putting the fruit first. It is not a fruity or fruit forward wine, but the fruit shines and calls attention to itself, not something that most RIojas do. The next thing that demands attention is the oak, it is present with a fine subtle spiciness, it is Rioja after all, but you have had any number of wines that are oaky and intrusive, this is not one of them. Beneath that fruit and spice is the dirt, it is clean, not funky, with just a little bit of that elevated limestone quality and a soft stoniness, but these are elements that enhance the fruit and do not call too much attention to themselves. Balance, that is what is needed for everyday wines, and it is all too easy for me to get caught up in a wine and lose sight of that. This wine is capable of teaching a lesson, and I love it for that, but it allows for us to get there, if we even want to, on our own terms. This is a fill the glass and relax kind of Rioja, that sometimes uses big words to make sure you are paying attention. Thanks for indulging me if you got this far, cheers!
Price: $18.99 Add To Cart

2020 Bodegas Lanzaga (Telmo Rodríguez) "LZ" Rioja
Review Date: 09-27-2022
The quality of the wines is undeniable, but the Lanzaga wines are a challenge. In fact, the winery was established as a challenge to the status quo in Rioja. Their best wines are not aged for a long time in oak and barrel, they spend just over a year in giant barrels and are vineyard focused, tiny parcels of extremely old bush vines that are a mix of varietals (think a cross between Barolo and Chateauneuf du Pape, and they are ready to go up against the best bottlings of both appellations). The entry level wine, the LZ, is made in the style of wine that was made before modern Rioja was created, before the Bordelais came with their small oak barrels and new blending regimes, it is partial carbonic and no oak (it is unpretentious, delicious, and incredibly versatile). Then there is the Lanzaga, the wine that I should have been talking about the entire time. This wine easily meets the definition of a Reserva (12 months in oak, 6 months in bottle and released 3 years after harvest). It drinks like a Reserva, it is a Reserva in all but name, because this project is about challenging the DOC. We consumers are caught in the middle of a political argument. OK, so how is it different from most Rioja Reservas? It is from only old bush vines that are around the village of Lanciego, on the North side of the Ebro River in the Alavesa subzone. There are white grapes blended in, just like they used to be in Rioja. The wine is aged in large neutral oak foudres and a few standard French oak barrels. This wine is not about the oak the way that some Riojas can be, it is not an integral part of the wine, it gives it a subtle frame and you can feel how it is used to temper the tannic structure of Tempranillo. But what stands out the most with all the wines from Lanzaga is the fruit. These are fruit first Riojas not oak first. There is a very pure black fruit to these wines, a delicious mix of ripe and fresh black and blue berries. The wine is long and intense, with very polished tannins that give the impression of the wine gliding across the palate all the somehow keeping the wine on your palate at the same time. The wine has an incredible finish, it is effortlessly powerful and long. Deep fruit tones that are backed by dusty mineral earthiness and restrained oak spice. The is all charm up front, you immediately like it but the back end of this wine is special, it builds and lingers and honestly finishes in a way that wines that are twice the price do not. I will put some in my wine locker, want to know what this wine will be like in 5-10 years, if I take it home, I doubt that it will see 2024.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart

2010 Bodegas Casa Juan "Señor de Lesmos" Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 06-13-2022
Now this is a special occasion wine that needs no special occasion! Gran Reserva is a special style of wine, they are not made every year because not every year does the wine have the ability to spend the time in oak to qualify for the category and come out the other side as not too oaky. This wine, at 12 years old, has come out the other side of the time in oak and additional time in bottle like it was nothing! What do you mean? There is a crazy amount of still fresh dark berry fruit to this wine. It takes a second to find it, you have to look past the ridiculous complexity of the spice, mixed fresh and dried herbs, leather, exotic woods to find it but it is there, and once you find it it just grows and grows and grows. What a nose! There are only a handful of wines from around the world that can offer such an aromatically complex nose, and not at this price point! It is on the palate that you get a sense of the age of the wine. It is in the softer tannins, the round mellow settled in thing that happens with older Rioja. It has an ease to it, you can tell that it does not want to try and impress you. You get it or you don't, that's fine with it. There is still a freshness to the dark berry fruit too. It is medium weight, mellow and complex. This is a wine for hanging out and nibbling on some cheese or a really great simply prepared cut of meat.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2018 Bodegas Casa Juan Señor de Lesmos Crianza Rioja
Review Date: 06-08-2022
This is the little wine that can. I know that just about every bottle of this Crianza that is purchased will be consumed within a short period of time of that purchase, but I want to tell you, that this “simple” wine has tons of aging potential. During the COVID lock down I discovered a 2009 bottle of this wine lost in my collection. The wine was awesome! It still had great fruit, spice and liveliness. Now I am not going to tell you to buy a case and hold onto it for 8 years, but I will not talk you out of it either. The 18 is delicious. It is a classic Lesmos from a classic vintage. The blend is the same as it always is 85% Tempranillo with the remainder Manzuelo. It was aged for 14 months in oak, then blended and bottled. This has that great mix of dark and red fruits, spice, and a subtle but distinctive earthiness. There is enough tannin and acid to give it poise but not enough to require time or very rich food (not that either would be a bad call).
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2020 Michelini i Mufatto "GY" Tupungato Mendoza
Review Date: 06-08-2022
While Malbec is the undisputed varietal champion of Argentina. In the past the one grape that they would most regularly blend with it was Cabernet Sauvignon. That makes sense, that is the undisputed varietal champion of the world. Things are slowly changing in Argentina, and Michelini i Mufatto and one of the wineries that are spearheading this change. What is it? Using Cabernet Franc. This is the most exciting varietals in Argentina right now, especially in the Uco Valley. It excels in the same conditions that Malbec does. So what does it bring to the party that the Sauvignon doesn’t? Less tannin, a little more acid, and a little more of that tobacco/ herbaceous notes. When they are blended together the wine has a touch more tannin, part of the charm of Malbec is the soft tannins, so a little extra tannin helps frame the wine but doesn’t interfere with the overall softness of the wine. What is the most interesting to the wine nerd in me is how the aromatics work together. The floral aromatics of the Malbec, subdues the herbaceous qualities of the Cabernet Franc. It changes it into more of a mountain herbal tone. The fruit tones have a very similar quality. Lots of black berries, plums, and dark cherries. There is a unique earthiness to this wine that speaks to the appellation. Gualtallary is a very special place in Mendoza. It has a very unique soil, there is a lot of limestone and Calcium Carbonate covered stones in the soil. That also gives the wine a little extra aromatic lift and an additional fine minerality on the finish. This wine is delicious, it also has a sneaky complexity to it. This wine is more serious than such an easy drink should be. For me Cabernet Franc has become Malbec's most exciting dancing partner and this wine should get you just as excited about that pairing
Price: Hidden View Price

2015 La Rioja Alta "Viña Ardanza" Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 02-23-2022
La Rioja Alta is old school Rioja, not just because the winery was founded in 1890. It is old school in that from the beginning the wines from Rioja were blends, not just of varietals, but of regions. The Ardanza, which is named after one of the five founders of the winery, has always been a blend of Tempranillo and Garnacha. The Tempranillo from sites in the region of Rioja Alta (now that’s not confusing) and the Garnacha from the Rioja Oriental (even more confusing). It is old school in that it only uses old American oak barrels to age its wines, and even more old school in that they age the wine for longer than required for their classification, for 2015 the Tempranillo spent 36 months in oak and the Garnacha 30 months. To be a Reserva it must spend at least 12 month in oak. After blending it is bottled and then they hold onto it for almost 2 more years. Only in Rioja, I love it. 2015 marks the occasion when the winery made a concession to modernity, they started using an optical sorter. They are now even more meticulous with their old fashioned way of making wine. The Ardanza is only released in very good years and 2015 fits that description perfectly. This was a farmers vintage, a warm Mediterranean vintage where the vines were allowed to ripen the grapes slowly with no weather or disease/pest pressures. This is classic Ardanza. It is a shade brighter, it has more richness and polish than the 2012. The nose is deep and complex. It is at that perfect point where the fruit is fresh but it is just starting to take on suggestions of maturity. It has that wonderful earthy, leathery, spice that great Riojas have. The fruit on the nose is mostly red berries with hints of blue and black berries. The palate is rich, round, and balanced with mellow tannins that give just enough structure but do not intrude. The flavors reflect the aromas but with the fruit at the center. The fruit is just at the point where it is starting to show maturity, fresh berries interacting with mulled fruit and fruit leather. The round texture has a youthful juiciness but there is a settled maturity to it too, I love the contrasts. The finish is long and complex with a mineral tinged echo of the nose. If that was not enough the wine brightens and becomes more youthful the longer the bottle is opened. This is a wine for now and cellar.

Alvear "1927" Pedro Ximenez Solera Montilla-Moriles (375ml)
Review Date: 10-04-2019
I’ll admit I am a little biased but this could be one of the best dessert wines that we have for sale, especially for the money. We have sold these wines for years, they are great. But like all things wines, we tend to look for all things new, so we end up forgetting. Then we meet them again, with a few more miles (who am I kidding many more miles) down the road. This wine was a revelation. It smells like dessert. Not the bright fresh fruit of other dessert wines. This is holiday bake sale kind of dessert. Molasses and fudge and spices with toffee and caramel. Rum cakes, sticky toffee pudding with concentrated dates and fig thing too. The kid in me is totally satisfied. Then comes savory intrigue. This is not all sweetness. There is tobacco and dried leaves (it makes me think of jumping in piles of leaves, dried leaves). Just enough to layer all of the goodness that came before it. And that is just the nose! Too many words, I know, stay with me, or skip to the end, there is a twist. On the palate it is sweet, its PX, but surprisingly (not the twist) is that it is not cloying. The aromas make you think that your tongue will be coated in syrupy goodness. It isn’t there is a freshness to this, the acid focuses all those great aromas/flavors across your tongue and leaves your mouth watering for more. Classically drunk by itself after dinner or on top of vanilla ice cream, but I want chocolate pecan pie, a la mode. The twist, here it is, is that what this wine made me think of when tasting it was Amaro liqueurs. This is kind of like a non-bitter Amaro. The complexity and the sweetness balanced with savory tones and the higher alcohol it is not too far of a reach. This has tons of cocktail applications. Being oxidized and fortified sealed the deal for me. This is a dessert wine that you do not have to rush to finish. A little is all that you need and it will not fall apart after you open it. Like I said, this could be the best dessert win in the store.

Launois "Quartz" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 08-23-2018
It is hard to choose a favorite Launois wine. All of them are so good. What makes the Quartz stand out, other than it being unique in that it has few ATM's of pressure in the bottle, is the brightness of the fruit. There is a dazzling purity that make you want more and more! The mousse is soft and you couldn't guess that there is less pressure, and the finish is terrific. Grab some while we still have it.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

San Venanzio Fortunato Brut Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Superiore
Review Date: 08-08-2018
Clean pear fruit backed with a hint of minerality. There is way more wine in this bottle of bubbles than you would expect from a Prosecco at this price point.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart

Ariston Aspasie "Réserve" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 07-29-2011
This is the go to value Champagne here at K&L. Dry, toasty with subtle fruit notes. Everything you want from Champagne except for the price tag!
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

La Petite Marquise Crémant de Loire Brut Rosé
Review Date: 12-28-2010
Party bubbles. A touch darker than you'd expect. Dark fruits fine bubbles and a crisp finish.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

Antech Brut Nature Blanquette de Limoux
Review Date: 12-28-2010
Super dry bubbles. This does more than flirt with being austere. That being said, "thank you mistress, may I have another?"
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

Ariston Aspasie "Brut Prestige" Champagne
Review Date: 11-26-2010
This is the best incarnation of this cuvee that I have tried. From the 2002 vintage, this old vine cuvee offer more power and length that you typically find in Champagne at this price point. Red Pinot fruit and toasty yeast play out on its great finish.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Ruinart Brut Rosé "2nd Skin" Champagne 750ml bottle (ships as a 1.5L due to shape of bottle)
Review Date: 10-06-2010
This is no ordinary rose. Yes, it is beautifully colored, has a great mouse, and is just too easy to drink but there is something else going on here as well. In one word, complexity. This is like drinking beautiful sparkling Burgundy. Wonderful aromatics, multidimensional fruit, a round, generous mid-palate and great length, this is more than special occasion Champagne, this is indulgent, you deserve it, treat yourself (family and friends optional) Champagne!

Sorelle Bronca Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Extra Dry
Review Date: 06-23-2010
This is the best off dry Prosecco in the shop, quite possibly the best Prosecco! Clean and pure with just a hint of spice and the right touch of sweetness. This is the perfect wine for almost every occasion!
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart

Sorelle Bronca "Particella 68" Prosecco
Review Date: 12-17-2009
This is the best Prosecco that we sell. Period. It has a richness on the mid-palate that you typically do not find, but more importantly the flavors are pure, clean and delightful. An open bottle is an empty bottle.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

Launois "Cuvée Réservée" Grand Cru Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 07-09-2009
It is hard to miss this wine with its great packaging, but more importantly it is the juice between the bubbles. Ever since I started working for K & L, first bottle I took home was this wine!, I have been a big fan. Broad rich on the palate with a great bead. The flavors lean towards white Burgundy, what's not to like?
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

La Caudrina "La Selvatica" Asti
Review Date: 07-09-2009
This is the best Asti I have ever had! It is happy in a glass. Text book Muscat aromatics but softer, prettier, almost elegant. Perfumy but in a sofisticated way. Light round and soft on the palate with a delicate sweetness. I have drunk more of this just by itself, it never seems to last until the cheese or dessert course!
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart