Staff Favorites - Diana Turk

Diana Turk


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2020 Ducru-Beaucaillou "Croix de Beaucaillou," St-Julien
Review Date: 11-28-2023
Wow! Lovely aromatic nose with hints of menthol and violets, with a soft fruity palate and long finish. The legendary "cailloux" or pebbles, in the property's soil really come through in the glass. This is an elegant, classic St-Julien and, considering its provenance, a killer value.

2020 Famille Ravoire "Pierre de Fontval" Cairanne
Review Date: 11-28-2023
Another value from Rhône AOC Cairanne! Mushroom and cinnamon come through on the nose, followed by plummy fruit and spice on the palate, with grippy tannins through the finish. This is a bombastic red, but food-friendly and well-priced, making it an easy choice for a weeknight.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

Gosset "Grande Réserve" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-16-2023
$50 for a Grande Marque? Incredible! While I typically choose grower-producer Champagnes (especially since K&L's Direct Import program is so strong), this Gosset Grande Réserve Brut is always welcome, and even feels like a bargain, considering the quality of grapes and the house's history (which dates back to 1584!). A blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir (from Grand Cru village Aÿ), with a touch of Meunier, this nonvintage release includes about 20% reserve wines, solera-style blended, and spends six years on the lees. If you're after a big name that delivers, make sure Gosset is on your list.

2022 Holus Bolus Santa Barbara County Syrah
Review Date: 10-16-2023
Cool climate Syrah from Santa Barbara County, with olive and black pepper notes and a rush of deep berry fruit, Holus Bolus is always a favorite of staff and customers alike, and this 2022 release is just as sophisticated - yet crowd-pleasing - as ever. Meticulous and limited production make this stunner tricky to keep in stock, so get it while you can!
Price: $37.99 Add To Cart

2020 Domaine Tatsis Limnio Macedonia Greece
Review Date: 10-16-2023
I can't get enough of this chillable red! Deep berry fruit and savory, peppery notes are perfectly balanced by graceful acidity and a nimble quality that makes Domaine Tatsis' Limnio (that's the grape, farmed biodynamically and certified organic!) both a winner with food and enjoyable anytime.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

2021 Sigalas "Aa" Assyrtiko/Athiri Santorini Greece
Review Date: 10-16-2023
Hailing from one of the most famous producers in Santorini, Sigalas' "Aa" (Assyrtiko and Athiri blend, get it?) is a classic. Fragrant right out of the glass, the 2021 release has everything you want in a crisp Greek wine: incredible minerality, lifted citrus notes, a snap of salinity, plus enough weight on the palate to feel like a serious wine. This balanced beauty is begging for food, thanks to an herbaceous nose, lively acidity, and super dry finish, but is still light and fruity enough to enjoy on its own. Don't miss out!
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2022 Akra Chryssos Santorini Greece
Review Date: 10-16-2023
If there was such a thing as "Grand Cru" in Santorini, this concentrated Akra Chryssos Assyrtiko blend should be it. Citrus fruit and laser-focused acidity shine throughout, balanced by an easygoing finish. The island's volcanic soil adds minerality, and while there's plenty of lift, it also shows texture on the palate, and herbaceous notes that reminded our staff of the best Grüner Veltliners. Stunning.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2022 Domaine Nerantzi Assyrtiko Serres Greece
Review Date: 10-16-2023
Greek wines are having a moment right now, and Domaine Nerantzi's lively Assyrtiko proves why. This fresh white showcases both juicy fruit and the region's calcareous soil, and feels much more expensive than it is. Complex fruit, good tension, with a weighty mouthfeel and dry, almost earthy finish, this 2022 is a minerally dream; a great way to dip your toe into Grecian waters.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2022 Domaine Papagiannakos Savatiano Old Vines Markopoulo Greece
Review Date: 10-16-2023
We went big on Papa G's delicious Savatiano and it was worth it. Domaine Papagiannakos' Old Vines release is a refreshing, lightly floral white wine that has all the hallmarks of your favorite Muscadet: super dry and value-priced. Try this new K&L darling while it's still under the radar.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

Damien Hugot Grand Cru Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 09-15-2023
By bringing this grower-producer into the fold of our Direct Import Champagnes, buyer Gary has completed a vision of K&L carrying Chardonnay from every Grand Cru village in the Côte des Blancs—an incredible feat! Damien Hugot grows this prized varietal on 50-year-old vines from just eight hectares in the northern villages of Chouilly and Cramant, with vineyards that include the renowned Mont-Aigu. This racy blanc de blancs will age beautifully and reward patience. Drinking now, there is the expected chalky minerality but also a richness through the palate that belies its 7g/L dosage, with brioche notes and a hint of nuttiness. Impressive.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

2020 Dominique Portet "Fontaine" Cabernet Sauvignon Yarra Valley Victoria
Review Date: 09-04-2023
Your new under-the-radar pick! Minty up front, with eucalyptus notes jumping out of the glass, there is no doubt that Dominique Portet's Fontaine Cabernet Sauvignon hails from Australia. The 2020 release shows off delicious currant and berry fruit and Yarra Valley's cold climate acid, and somehow feels substantial but lifted. This is a light, focused, value-driven stunner with depth. Sneak Fontaine into a dinner party and shock everyone that your food-friendly winner is barely twenty bucks.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

2020 Fromm "The Curation" Pinot Noir Marlborough
Review Date: 09-04-2023
A blend of Fromm's best barrels, this juicy Pinot Noir is aged in new French oak, but you'd barely know it. The 2020 is earthy with herbal notes and spice, with dark fruit through the palate and a super dry finish. Tannins are perfectly integrated, providing a silkiness to the mouthfeel that lingers through the substantial finish. I normally consider NZ reds to be on the lighter side, but this heady release is moody and complex, with just enough lift to stay bright. It's not just a clever name: this truly feels like a thoughtful Curation.

2022 Fromm "Pinot Naturel" Pinot Noir Marlborough
Review Date: 09-04-2023
High-toned blueberry fruit shines in this "natural" Pinot Noir, fermented with wild yeast and aged in old Burgundy barrels. Fromm is a go-to New Zealand producer for K&L, and this non-interventionist beauty is an elegant yet earthy, very welcome addition to their lineup.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

2021 Domaine des Niales Rhedon-Marin Mâcon-Villages Vieilles Vignes
Review Date: 08-20-2023
How is this Mâcon-Villages Direct Import staple still under $15?! Vivid and complex, Domaine Des Niales Rhédon Marin's Vieilles Vignes Chardonnay shines with green pear, ginger, and citrusy lift. At once easygoing and bright, the 2021 release is sourced from 45-year-old vines, lending depth to this wine that defies its value-focused price. This sophisticated white would be equally at home poolside or on your holiday table. Try it by the case!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club


2022 Domaine Gérard Tremblay Petit Chablis
Review Date: 08-20-2023
When you're ready for the leanest, brightest, most seashelly expression of Chardonnay you can get for under $20, this is it. Fruit is minimal, though green apple and citrus are present. The acid is intense but welcome, and will be great with food. Domaine Gerard Tremblay's Petit Chablis will benefit from more time, but this salty 2022 release can certainly be enjoyed now. Try it with a summer sunset.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

Pierre Mineral Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-19-2023
Not-so-secretly made by legendary producer Philippe Gonet, this Pierre Mineral estate-grown Champagne is composed of 60% Pinot Noir, 30% Chardonnay, and 10% Meunier. It ticks so many boxes: elegant, crisp, balanced, subtly yeasty, and priced to party. Pierre Mineral shows delicate bubbles, impressive minerality, plus that coveted toastiness–all for $35. Wow.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

2022 TWR (Te Whare Ra) Rosé Marlborough
Review Date: 08-14-2023
The 2022 TWR rosé is the dark horse of our summer wine lineup, poised to overtake even some of our French favorites. New Zealand may not be as well known for rosé as Provence, but Te Whare Ra's lively, crushable Marlborough Pinot Noir will have you seeking out more from the Southern Hemisphere. This release is bright with strawberry and guava fruit, underscored by zippy acid and a hint of fresh mint. The palate has structure, but still feels lean and easy, with a long finish. Sourced from a single vineyard, yet priced under $20 (unheard of for a wine of this quality!), this dry rosé is your summer champion.

Michel Arnould "La Grande Cuvée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-02-2023
The decadent, complex Michel Arnould "Grand Cuvée" Brut is the creamiest of their lineup, featuring a toasty hazelnut note and a crisp finish, which balances well with the richness and weighty texture of the palate. The rounded style of this release make it instantly accessible, while bright cherry fruit adds just the right amount of lift. North-facing slopes in Verzenay ripen Pinot Noir beautifully, but maintain a snap of acidity that pairs well with sushi, and the raciness here cuts through anything with ponzu sauce. This is easily one of my favorite Pinot-based Champagnes in the store, and a killer value.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2022 Proprietà Sperino "Rosa del Rosa" Piemonte Rosato
Review Date: 07-31-2023
Proprietà Sperino's rosato never lets you down! While Piedmont's Nebbiolo-based rosés sit a bit outside the cheap and cheerful French category, this release is just as bright, albeit more structured, with vivid acid and a lovely citrusy, almost orange peel pithiness. The 2022 Rosa del Rosa is a perfect pairing for BBQ favorites, but would also be welcome to enjoy on its own as a poolside sipper.
Price: $23.99 Add To Cart

2012 Malleret, Haut-Médoc
Review Date: 07-31-2023
What a find! This delicious, complex Bordeaux hits so many different notes: smoky nose, dusty cocoa powder and cassis fruit through the palate, white pepper spice, and a woodsy finish. A steal for under $15, Malleret's 2012 release has bottle age, Haut-Médoc quality, and food-friendly appeal, with a level of sophistication unheard of at this price point.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

2014 Alexandre Le Brun "Cuvée Revelation" Extra Brut Champagne
Review Date: 07-23-2023
This is an exceptional Champagne, perfect for wine fans who are looking to level up. 100% Meunier may not be on everyone's list, but Cuvée Révélation is a unique experience not to be missed. This opens with beautiful floral notes and spicy ginger, with some stone fruit and toastiness on the palate. It is layered and nuanced, finishing with a snap. There's lively acid and enough body to pair this vivid 2014 release with food, but it would be just as easy to drink as a more-interesting-than-usual aperitif. Alexandre Le Brun is one of our smallest Direct Import Champagne producers, and the attention to detail and quality here is unbelievable. Cuvée Révélation is a sophisticated grower option that never lasts long in stores—enjoy it while you can!
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

2021 Domaine du Vieil Orme Sauvignon Blanc Touraine Blanc
Review Date: 07-18-2023
Domaine du Vieil Orme's crisp 2021 ticks all the boxes: family-owned domaine, Loire village, sustainably farmed, and terroir-driven. This expression of 100% Sauvignon Blanc is our answer to customers looking for Sancerre-lite: a minerally, bright, value-driven alternative to pricier French wines. It's alfresco drinking perfection for under $15!
Price: Hidden View Price

2018 Cheval Noir, St-Emilion
Review Date: 07-17-2023
We are so lucky to have undercover Angélus in our lineup! Renowned for their spectacular cellar in Bordeaux, négociants Mähler-Besse are a symbol of quality on any label, but this takes things a step further. Château Cheval Noir is a beautiful release from their own winemaking estate in St-Émilion, crafted under the expertise of oenologist Hubert de Boüard, co-owner of Château Angélus. The 2018 feels powerful, yet clocks in at a balanced 13.5% abv. Earthy on the nose followed by kirsch and plum fruit, there is luxurious depth to the palate with a wonderfully soft finish. The staff was blown away by Cheval Noir; all Bordeaux fans should have this on their list.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2004 Les Hauts du Tertre, Margaux (1.5L)
Review Date: 07-17-2023
While not known as a powerful vintage, this 2004 is singing, with lively cherry and dark plum fruit, a velvety mouthfeel, and seamless tannins. Les Hauts Du Tertre is a classic elegant Margaux with enough woodsy Cabernet Franc in the blend (20%) to add interest to an otherwise smoooooth experience. And this release is aging beautifully, especially in its value-priced magnum bottling. Do not miss it.
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart

Louis Roederer "Collection 243" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 06-24-2023
A plush yet lively iteration of Roederer's NV (also known as multi-vintage) cuvée, 243 is showy from the start, leaping out of the glass with pear and green apple fruit, tempered by classic chalk. The number refers to its place in the House's history: this is the 243rd blend released since Roederer was established in 1776. With air, white floral aromatics give way to honey, creating a layered feel. The bubbles in my glass seemed more bombastic than previous releases, adding even more texture. 2018 was a warm year, and that is apparent here, but a saline backbone keeps the ripe intensity in check. 243 is an energetic, thoroughly enjoyable Champagne experience.

2021 Clos de l'Anhel "Les Terrassettes" Corbières
Review Date: 06-23-2023
An under-the-radar staff pick, Sophie Guiraudon's Les Terrassettes is my favorite of the Clos de L'Anhel lineup. Striking on the nose, notes of wet earth and spice mingle with berry and darker plum fruit, with good weight on the palate and a lighter finish. Peppery Syrah and juicy Grenache each come through, but the star of this release is jewel-toned Carignan, sourced from old vines and farmed organically. Bonus points for a female winemaker, and taking care to produce wines with minimal intervention. If you haven't tried anything from the Corbières appellation, let this be your introduction.
Price: Hidden View Price

2022 Terra Santa Île de Beauté Rosé Corsica
Review Date: 06-23-2023
Cheap and cheerful! Bright with gummy peach fruit tempered by a welcome saline note and sparkling acidity, the 2022 Terra Santa Corsican Rosé is everything you want in a lip-smacking summer sipper.
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart

Lini "Labrusca" Lambrusco Emilia Bianco
Review Date: 06-23-2023
Hyper-fragrant apple and pear fruit shine in this rarer white Lambrusco made from 100% Salamino grapes. Crafted by traditional producer Lini, this is a refreshing, perfectly fizzy release using the Martinotti (also known as Charmat) method. Labrusca Bianco is a clean, bright sparkler with a dry finish.
Price: $15.99 Add To Cart

2019 Domaine Zafeirakis "New Age - Young Vines" Limniona Tyrnavos Greece
Review Date: 06-23-2023
The crushable, chillable red of the summer! Greek wine is having a moment in 2023, and this lively 100% Limniona proves why. Featuring grapes grown in flint-heavy clay soil and fermented with indigenous yeast, the 2019 strikes a delicious balance between easygoing berry fruit and food-friendly acid. Fans of Mencía and Gamay should absolutely not miss this release, but there's something for everyone in Domaine Zafeirakis' nimble, value-priced beauty.
Price: Hidden View Price

2011 Doisy-Védrines, Sauternes
Review Date: 06-23-2023
What a value! A full 750 ml bottle from a top vintage for barely $50? Incredible. Complex with beeswax and traditional honey notes, plus fragrant apricot fruit and tons of citrusy lift, the 2011 Doisy Vedrines goes beyond dessert wine. This is a layered Sauternes that will please sophisticated Bordeaux fans as well as anyone looking for a delicious sweeter option.

2021 Tan Fruit (Arterberry Maresh) "Cuvée Tan Fruit" Willamette Valley Chardonnay
Review Date: 06-23-2023
Woodsy on the nose, with hints of stone fruit and all the bright acid through the palate that you'd expect from Arterberry Maresh, the 2021 Tan Fruit shines with cool climate appeal. There's enough oak and richness to win over California Chardonnay drinkers, too. This is one of my favorite Willamette Valley producers, and I love having more releases on our shelves.
Price: $34.95 Add To Cart

2016 Duluc de Branaire-Ducru, St-Julien
Review Date: 06-19-2023
The second wine of Branaire-Ducru, this value Bordeaux is super approachable, opening with a beautifully aromatic nose, notes of leather, cherry fruit, and an almost root beer quality. The midpalate is velvety, but there's a satisfying tannic bite to the finish that will stand up to food. We also have this wine in a 375ml size from the great 2009 vintage, so you can't go wrong with either option.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2020 Andrew Murray "Tous les Jours" Santa Ynez Valley Syrah
Review Date: 05-22-2023
Andrew Murray's Tous Les Jours has consistently been a go-to red for us, but the 2020 is especially impressive. Dark berry fruit with a touch of anise spice, subtle cherry cola, and a lifted finish make this release irresistible. All that sophistication, plus it's a killer price! Take this energetic Syrah to your next BBQ and be prepared for compliments.
Top Value!

2019 Château de Montfaucon "La Côte" Côtes-du-Rhône
Review Date: 01-25-2023
Wow, just when I thought beloved Direct Import Montfaucon couldn't get any better, they release this sophisticated Rhône gem. Lovely violet aromatics give way to bright berry fruit through the palate, followed by a rich finish. It's a classically bold style that still feels nimble, with enough crowd-pleasing versatility to pair with almost anything. We've long been recommending this producer in our Hollywood store (in fact, it was a fellow staff member who turned me on to La Côte), and I'm thrilled to welcome the elegant 2019 into the fold.
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

Pierre Mineral Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 12-29-2022
Incredible with food, this Pierre Mineral rosé is a workhorse, pairing well with anything from fried chicken to caviar, potato chips to canapés. I even served it with great success to a Super Bowl crowd, though it’s elegant enough for a romantic Valentine’s dinner. Vivid and chalky with a beautiful delicate pink color, this special Direct Import sparkler is a bright, linear brut style made from all estate-grown fruit from some of the most coveted crus of Champagne, here just in time to celebrate.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Gilbert Jacquesson "Cuvée Tradition" Blanc de Noirs Brut Champagne
Review Date: 11-10-2022
How is this Champagne only $25? While previous releases were dark and rich, with cherry fruit and considerable length, the most recent bottle I tasted showcased that same complexity, but with added lift. White floral and honeycomb on the nose, the smell is reminiscent of Los Angeles in the summer, with jasmine notes leaping from the glass. The fruit – 100% Pinot Meunier – is full bodied with a hit of spice, the palate weighty but fresh all the way through to a toasty finish. It took a bit of time for Champagne Club favorite Jacquesson "Cuvée Tradition" to develop, but whoa, it was worth the wait.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

Bollinger "Special Cuvée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 06-22-2021
Bollinger’s classic release, the "Special Cuvée", is one of my first choices when looking for a grande marque, since it offers both the prestige name and relative value—the quality feels higher than many fancy brands at a similar price point. On any given day, the wine has a quicksilver character about it: nimble and bright enough to cut through fried foods, yet lush when complementing more classic pairings such as seafood. Founded in 1829, Bollinger clearly cares about luxury and detail at every level. Yet the house itself is set among its own vineyards in the unassuming village of Aÿ. For the "Special Cuvée", 80,000 magnums are disgorged by hand! Wines are aged at least three but often five years (more than the appellation’s required fifteen months). Bollinger only seems expensive if you haven’t seen the care that goes in to making it.

Laurent-Perrier "La Cuvée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-27-2020
Wow! This is everything I love about Laurent-Perrier's classic brut, just amplified. More chalky Chardonnay and an extra year on the lees give the La Cuvée boosted minerality and complexity. It still shows the easygoing apple fruit of the original, with a sophistication that belies its great price point.

Laurent-Perrier "Cuvée Rosé" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 07-22-2020
It can be tricky to define pricey Rosé Champagne as a "bargain," but when one considers just how much care goes into each bottle of Laurent-Perrier, it suddenly seems underpriced. Made with extended maceration and using the more difficult saignée method, their Cuvée Rosé is special. Deep red berry fruit shines through the lifted palate, with both richness and minerality coming through to the clean finish. This is a substantial rosé – great with food – yet elegant with tiny bubbles and a citrusy freshness. The fact that the bottle is gorgeous and the house pedigree dates back to 1812 only adds to the glamour of this lovely, high quality Pinot Noir Champagne.

Montechiara Prosecco
Review Date: 03-31-2020
This is it: the Prosecco your toast has been dreaming of. Subtly sweeter than Brut but not overwhelmingly so, the Extra Dry style of Montechiara is the perfect cocktail base - pair it with Aperol for spritzer magic! Once you experience the value and versatility of this bella little workhorse, you'll want to buy a case and celebrate.
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart

Bollinger "Special Cuvée" Brut Champagne Magnum 1.5L
Review Date: 02-04-2020
Just when I thought I couldn’t love Bollinger Special Cuvée any more, this magnum came into my life. While I have always appreciated the Bollinger process of hand-riddling their larger format, and it’s clear that bigger bottles age a bit more slowly than 750ml and 375ml, I hadn’t given much thought to the taste differences between sizes. This was a revelation. I shared a 1.5L bottle at brunch recently, and the laser-like acidity and steely brightness were opposite the more oxidative, rounded style expected of Bollinger. While the texture and leesy character were apparent, the magnum showed a freshness and nimble quality that paired perfectly with any food we tried. It was the opulent character of Bollinger, amplified and tempered by raciness. Awesome.

Egrot Brut Champagne
Review Date: 12-03-2019
Don't let the new label fool you! This release was formerly called Elisabeth Goutorbe, named for the pedigreed winemaker who has charmed guests at many a Champagne Tent Event. She's ventured out on her own and while the name and packaging underwent a makeover, what's inside the bottle is as impressive as ever. Crisp with red cherry Pinot fruit, this is both chalky with elegant mousse, and shows complex leesiness tempered by bright acid and structure. This nonvintage release is drinking beautifully now, and the price - especially for Aÿ - is nearly impossible to beat.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Damien Hugot Rosé Extra Brut Champagne
Review Date: 11-29-2019
I’m excited to welcome another stellar Côte des Blancs winemaker into our Direct Import family! Damien Hugot is a producer who grows Chardonnay on 50 year-old vines in the villages of Chouilly and Cramant, with vineyards that include the coveted Mont-Aigu area. This rosé is almost completely Chardonnay (93%) with a tiny amount of red wine from Monthelon blended in. (That 7% Pinot Meunier, by the way, comes from the same village as another favorite DI producer whose name you might recognize: Alexandre Le Brun.) The wine features super concentrated fruit and a tight focus – you know this is Chardonnay from the laser-like acidity, but it’s wrapped in a thoroughly gulpable package of red berry notes. This release was one of my favorites from our annual staff Champagne Summit, and is sure to please anyone looking for a bright yet easygoing option that packs a punch.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

K&L Logo 6-Bottle Tote - Black (2979)
Review Date: 11-01-2019
There was brief period when these were out of stock, followed by a time when they were just plain Burgundy variety, but now they're back in full force, and with the K&L logo to boot! These are environmentally friendly and handy for carrying 6+ bottles. Thanks to the supportive plastic insert on the bottom, and cloth dividers, it is possible to carry a varying number of bottles with success. These totes are better than your average wine carrier, and will save you the ten cent bag fee. What's not to love?
Price: $4.99 Add To Cart

Pierre Péters "Cuvée de Réserve" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 10-29-2019
Finally, we have enough of this in stock to stack! A classic grower-producer based in the esteemed Grand Cru village Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Pierre Peters really exemplifies the style of Côte des Blancs Champagne. This elegant Cuvée de Reserve Brut is 100% Chardonnay, aged 24 months of the lees. It is sleek and racy, with vivid acidity, chalky minerality through the palate, and a super long finish.

J. Lassalle "Cachet d'Or" 1er Cru Brut Champagne
Review Date: 09-24-2019
What a lively, historic Premier Cru grower-producer Champagne! A classic blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Meunier, the J. Lassalle "Cachet Or" is still made using a traditional wooden press, and aged three years on the lees! A lot of work goes into this tiny production (farmed from just 16 hectares on clay and limestone soil in Chigny-Les-Roses), which features three generations of women at the helm. This release sings with tangerine and orchard fruit, tempered by a slightly herbaceous, almost camphor, nose and a chalky finish. There is subtle toastiness from the lees, but mostly this is easygoing, bright Champagne – my notes literally read “crushable.” I can’t wait to enjoy a bottle al fresco as summer heat gives way to fall.
Price: $38.95 Add To Cart

Paul Bara "Réserve" Brut Grand Cru Champagne
Review Date: 09-24-2019
An exceptional value for fans of Bouzy Pinot Noir, Paul Bara’s Réserve Brut Champagne exemplifies the rich, powerful style for which this Grand Cru village is best known. In fact, Paul Bara himself wrote the history of Bouzy, and his tiny production (10,000 cases) is all top quality fruit. His daughter Chantal is making the wines now, and her deft winemaking style stays true to Paul’s vision. This release is 80% Pinot Noir, 20% Chardonnay, and shows bright berry fruit on the nose with a tight, racy core of acidity. This is a food-pairing dream, with enough body to stand up to heavier, less traditional choices and a brightness that keeps it light enough on its feet to be served as an aperitif. Stunning.

Launois "Veuve Clemence" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 09-24-2019
This is my favorite Launois Champagne for blending value and artistry. The Veuve Clemence takes everything that's gorgeous about the Cuvée Reserve and elevates it: delicate bead, a steely core, estate-grown Grand Cru Chardonnay from the legendary village of Mesnil, chalky minerality. It gets four, nearly five years of aging on the lees (versus the Reserve's three) and is sourced from older vines. This is a powerful, almost vinous Champagne, with an added toastiness from the lees that you don’t get from younger Blanc de blancs. But fear not if you’re a fan of brighter wines: Veuve Clemence dazzles with laser acidity and vivid lemon fruit, tempered by textured mouthfeel and a clean finish. It is absolutely worth the extra ten dollars to taste this beauty.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

Bollinger "Special Cuvée" Brut Champagne 375ml
Review Date: 08-13-2019
Subtly richer than the standard 750 ml bottle thanks to advanced aging through a larger bottle-opening-to-surface area-ratio, the 375ml format of Bollinger’s classic release, the Special Cuvée, is one of my go-tos when looking for a Grande Marque. The half bottles are drinking perfectly now and the wine shows a quicksilver character: nimble and bright enough to cut through fried foods, yet lush when complementing classic seafood dishes. Bollinger somehow offers both the big name and relative value - the quality feels higher than other prestige brands at similar price point. Make your next picnic luxurious!

Tamagawa Kinsho "Heart of Gold" Daiginjo Sake (720ml)
Review Date: 06-28-2019
What an incredible experience! We were lucky enough to taste with expert Kerry San and Tamagawa Kinsho’s Philip Harper, the first non-Japanese sake master. Philip’s sakes are elegant but verge on non-interventionist: perfect for those interested in the natural wine movement. The cleanest option in his range, Heart of Gold is bursting with melon fruit and fresh salinity, with an underlying earthiness, bordering on umami character. The silky texture will impress up front, but it’s the quality and creativity behind the brewery that will keep me coming back. This is easily one of my favorite sake discoveries.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

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