Staff Favorites - Alex Schroeder

Alex Schroeder

Reviews

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Canard-Duchêne "Authentic" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 10-04-2017
The Authentique Rosé from Canard Duchêne has a soft, rich strawberry and raspberry fruit profile offered by the great Pinot Noir from the Montagne de Reims. The texture is lush and round, complemented by chalky minerality and kept in balance by refreshing acidity on the back end.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Canard-Duchêne "Authentic" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-04-2017
Canard Duchêne has experienced a renaissance of sorts since being purchased from Veuve Clicquot by Champagne Thienot in 2003, more than doubling sales since the purchase. The clear reason is the higher quality of the product. Made predominantly from Pinot Noir, the grape of Ludes, on the Montagne de Reims, the Authentique shows powerful, rich red-fruited flavors with a hint of Meyer lemon sweetness. The texture is brimming with minerality and a lively acidity.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

2004 Krug Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-04-2017
The latest vintage release from Krug since the legendary 2002 release is a different animal altogether. It comes from a vintage that fully benefited from the poor crop output of 2003, using the unspent energy for amazing crop yields across Champagne in 2004. It offers fineness, intensity, complexity and real aging power. Upon its release, some 13 years after production, it is vibrantly youthful and fresh, with nuanced notes of citrus, yeasty toast, saffron and dried apricots. This will go for many more years.

2014 Hyot, Côtes de Castillon
Review Date: 09-28-2017
Bright flavors of bramble, black raspberry, spice, violets, leather and oak. Very smooth tannic profile and enough acid for structure and freshness. It's tasting great now, but in 5 to 10 years it will be singing!

2010 Gulfi "Nerosanlorè" Nero d'Avola Sicilia
Review Date: 09-27-2017
I literally wrote “Wow” in my tasting notebook for this wine. On the nose, mature fruit notes like dates, raisins, and dried cranberries with roses. On the palate, there’s serious structure and freshness with plush, smooth tannins.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
VN 95

Charles de Cazanove Brut Champagne
Review Date: 09-27-2017
Very impressive Pinot dominant blend at a great price. The fruit comes mostly from the famous Montagne de Reims, where Pinot reigns supreme. It has beautiful, soft red fruit like cherries, strawberries, blood orange and marmalade that mingle perfectly with the toasty yeast. The fruit pops with vibrant acidity and the rich texture keeps you reaching for more.
Price: $26.99 Add To Cart
WS 92

Charles Heidsieck "Brut Reserve" Champagne
Review Date: 09-27-2017
In a lineup with 12 other Grand Marques, Champagne Charlie was at the top of my list of favorites. The Brut Reserve uses up to 20-year-old reserve wines for 40% of its blend and combines the flavors of fresh stone fruit and pears with quince and dried apricots for a rich, but ultimately refreshing and vibrant profile.

Taittinger "La Française" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 09-27-2017
This is one nonvintage brut from a Grand Marque that is well worth the money. The blend is 40% Chard, 35% Pinot, 25% Meunier and spends nearly 4 years on the lees in stainless steel. The result is vibrant, pure flavors of apples and pears with an underlying toastiness that accents the fruit.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart
RP 91 WS 90

Real McCoy 12 Year Old Single Blended Barbados Rum (750ml)
Review Date: 09-27-2017
Transparency is becoming a powerful factor in consumer decisions in the spirits world, and Real McCoy Rum has embraced this. Made using the pot and column stills at Criterion, then aged 12 years in charred Bourbon barrels, this has a beautiful amber brown color and a clean, smooth flavor profile of wet brown sugar, vanilla, caramel and slight grassy spice. It is bar none unmatched for smoothness.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2012 Silver Oak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 09-07-2017
The Silver Oak Napa Cabernet Sauvignon is a testament to the quality Napa wines can achieve with precise winemaking and the pristine fruit of the Valley. It showcases ripe, savory red currant, cherry and raspberry fruit flavors with slight thyme and rosemary herb elements. The French oak is well integrated and lends a subtle spice profile to the elegant wine. The tannins are still strong, and combined with the great acid, will help this bottle age beautifully for years.
Price: $114.99 Add To Cart
WS 90

1996 Tamdhu 20 Year Old K&L Exclusive Old Particular Single Barrel Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 09-02-2017
On the nose, there are aromas of freshly squeezed apples with cracked wheat, wild honey, and floral notes. On the palate there is sweet honeyed cereal, barley, vanilla toffee and baking spices like clove and cinnamon. This is very intensely flavored and complex with a wonderful round texture that will have your palate begging for another sip.
Price: $79.99 Add To Waiting List

2016 Loyasson, Bordeaux
Review Date: 08-23-2017
The Bordeaux region is flexing its value wine-producing muscles with this gem that is absolutely delicious and only $10.99. It has a complex and tasty flavor profile with notes of smoky game, herbs, red fruit and licorice with a great balancing acid and nice earthy spice on the finish. This would make for a great house wine and can proudly be shared with guests.
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart

2014 St Estephe de Calon-Ségur, St-Estèphe
Review Date: 08-23-2017
This is a ludicrous value in great reds. This third label of Calon Segur has flavors of black cherries and candied strawberries with very smooth rich fruit. It is medium bodied with great tannins and acid, drink now or lay down for a few years!
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart

2005 Langoa-Barton, St-Julien
Review Date: 08-23-2017
The nose on this wine is powerful and quite compelling! Honeyed toast, black cherries, cola berry and leather, all integrated wonderfully. This is a powerful wine from a great vintage, don’t feel obligated to drink it now, it has plenty of aging potential left in it!

2004 Langoa-Barton, St-Julien
Review Date: 08-23-2017
This is a great candidate for Steak and Claret night this week. The 2004 is right on point with a great perfume on the nose, then great minerality, black cherries and minty herbs on the palate. The acids have softened a bit and the oak has perfectly integrated with the fruit. You do not need to wait on this one, it is in a perfect spot right now.

2014 Langoa-Barton, St-Julien
Review Date: 08-23-2017
Black cherries, cola berries, minty herbs and anise make for an amazing flavor profile and long finish on this powerful and elegant claret. It is certainly a pleasure to drink right now, but it has the structure and acidity to age gracefully for, oh, a few decades or so. Wines this good usually cost a lot more.

2007 Haut-Bailly, Pessac-Léognan
Review Date: 08-23-2017
What a great price for a wine from this level of producer! The Pessac-Leognan powerhouse makes long lived claret, and the 2007 is in a good place. It is brightly fruited with cherry and red currant flavors, a little game and earth, and great sweetness of fruit. The acid would go with a rich steak perfectly.

1989 Port Dundas 28 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Grain Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 08-11-2017
Who says grain whisky isn't for connoisseurs? The aromatics on this long-aged grain whisky from Port Dundas are surprisingly delicate and fruit-oriented, with added notes of exotic spice and very subtle creme brulée from the oak. No need for ice or water here. Despite a 50% abv, it goes down as smooth as any 40% abv blend, with a more complex flavor profile. A no-brainer for the price.
Price: $69.99 Add To Waiting List

Krug "Grande Cuvée" 164 Ème Édition Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
Not at all a surprise, this edition of the Grande Cuvée based on the now legendary 2008 vintage is stunning. Saffron, pears and brioche, thrilling acidity and precision rarely seen in lesser champagnes make this a must-buy for collectors and connoisseurs.​

2006 Bollinger Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
When you’re on the market for a rich rosé, how can you go wrong with a barrel fermented gem from the decadent 2006 vintage? This one from Bollinger is superbly executed, with notes of roses and strawberries, and oxidative richness and toast from the barrel. Spectacular stuff.
Price: $119.00 Add To Cart
DC 94 JG 92

2004 Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
I love when back-vintages of Champagne show up in our warehouse, all aged and more ready-to-drink than ever! This Grand Cru charmer from 2004, a classic vintage in every right, is in a beautiful spot right now. It is displaying beautiful chalkiness, meyer lemon notes, pear and a very subtle, intriguing toast. This is a delicate and subtle bottle of bubbles, worthy of a discerning palate.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
VN 92 WS 91

2006 Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
For those who enjoy a more decadently-styled Champagne, 2006 is your vintage. This Grand Cru offering from Laurent Perrier is a richer and rounder style, with pear, apple and lemon flavors, a lavish mouth feel and lovely toastiness.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
WS 92

2007 Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
This ten year old vintage offering from one of my favorite Grand Marques is drinking great! Made entirely from Grand Cru Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, it has a complex, rich flavor profile of green apple, pear, bing cherry and toasty brioche. The balance is on point, making this one of the most immediately-drinkable vintage champagnes available.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart
JS 92

Trudon "Rosephile" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
This is a beautiful rosé champagne from the Marne region in Champagne. It has very pretty, delicate flavors of white cherry and strawberry, highlighted by creamy chalkiness and racy acidity. A delightful addition to our import portfolio at under $35.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart

Trudon "Emblematis" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
Our latest direct import from the Marne is true to the style of the region, with Meunier dominating the blend followed by Pinot Noir. This Blanc de Noir showcases real exoticism and spice, with pear, apple and cherry flavors and a rich, decadent texture. The finish just stays and stays. Another sub-$30 Champagne miracle from our direct import program.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

Le Brun de Neuville "Authentique" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 08-09-2017
I fell instantly in love with LeBrun de Neuville’s “Authentique” Rosé. The blend, two thirds Chardonnay and one third Pinot Noir, has the best of both worlds: rich and vibrant red fruit flavors along with soft delicate notes of flowers and stone fruit. The acid keeps the blend energetic and the chalkiness of the Sezanne area it is grown in is undeniable.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2016 Les Vignerons de Fontès "Prieuré Saint-Hippolyte" Languedoc Rosé
Review Date: 08-08-2017
The depth and vigor of this Languedoc rose are seriously astounding for under $10. Rich flavors of cherries, strawberries and watermelons with a round creaminess are amplified by a precise and lively acidity. This, as in years past, is undoubtedly one of the best deals you will find anywhere in roses.
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart

2014 Quintessa Rutherford Bordeaux Blend
Review Date: 08-04-2017
Make some room in your cellar for this spectacular Rutherford blend. Premium Napa blends are made for aging, and this one will do so beautifully. At this early stage in its long life, you will taste powerful, fresh black fruit and violets, minerally graphite, peppers and anise with just a hint of menthol. The tannins are perfectly extracted to be powerful but silky as they drift across the palate, and the acid balances and heightens all the flavors on the back end. Truly a wine that matches the stunning aesthetics of the winery itself…which is impressive.

2014 Turnbull Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 07-13-2017
Made from equal parts Calistoga and Oakville fruit, this cab has everything people dish out the big bucks for in Napa: beautiful ripe dark fruit flavors of black currants, cassis, and mulberry with graphite notes and plenty of cocoa and tobacco. Tannins are powerful but silky and integrated, and the great acid gives the rich fruit a refreshing edge. This is one of the best values in the Valley!

2008 Le Brun de Neuville "Grand Vintage" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 07-05-2017
Bright and poised pear, apple and lemon zest fruit flavors with a voluptuous mid-palate texture and just a hint of red fruit from the Pinot Noir on the back end. The acidity, like every vintage 2008 Champagne I’ve had so far, is electric and stimulating, amplifying the fruit flavors for an almost never-ending finish. Incredible value from this grower champagne from what is quickly becoming a legendary vintage.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2014 Joseph Phelps Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 06-20-2017
This vintage is stellar. It is sourced from the same vines as the ultra-premium Insignia and aged on a unique regimen of half-French, half-American, half-new oak barrels. It has perfectly ripened fruit with expressive flavors of blackberries, plums, violets, black pepper, mocha, licorice and black tea leaves. The tannins are smooth yet powerful and the great acidity ensures that this gem will age beautifully for years to come.

2014 Joseph Phelps "Freestone Vineyards" Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir
Review Date: 06-20-2017
The 2014 Joseph Phelps Freestone Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir was showing great during our recent buying trip to Napa Valley, when the K&L team had the privilege to talk with Will Phelps, grandson of Napa Valley icon Joseph Phelps and current executive manager of the Joseph Phelps estate. Phelps explained how they picked from two different plots with different levels of sun exposure to create a complete and complex Pinot profile. Fresh, crunchy, ripe red fruit like raspberries, strawberries and plums with savory elements of spicy earth, forest floor and a touch of salinity make for a beautiful, well-crafted and powerful Sonoma Coast Pinot.

2015 Flowers Sonoma Coast Chardonnay
Review Date: 06-20-2017
You have to take note when a premium winery like Flowers releases a biodynamic/organic Chardonnay from my favorite appellation for the varietal, Sonoma Coast. This is a beautiful wine that is at once creamy and toasty, refreshing, and full of secondary flavors of spices like clove and cinnamon from 11 months in 35% new French oak. Have this gem with some roasted chicken and fennel.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart
VN 91 WE 91

2005 Bodegas Puelles Gran Reserva Rioja
Review Date: 05-31-2017
I know calling this wine the best value in our store would be a bold statement, but it’s one I’m prepared to stand behind. It spent two years in barrel, another decade in bottle and it is showing its age beautifully. From a particularly warm vintage in Europe, the fruit is rich and layered but still retains its freshness and vibrancy with a bright acidity and smooth, integrated tannin. It has savory notes of mushroom, forest floor and crushed gravel and that wonderful perfectly integrated Puelles oak profile. Nothing compares at this price point.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$16.99
RP 90

2010 Famille Perrin "Domaine du Clos des Tourelles" Gigondas
Review Date: 05-30-2017
A back vintage from one of my favorite southern Rhone appellations by the renowned producer of the Beaucastel line? I had a feeling this would be good, and it is! The richness of the vintage is evident with robust, savory, ripe strawberry and raspberry jam flavors, with fully integrated wild herb and garrigue notes. It has great weight and richness on the palate and just the right amount of acid to cut all that rich fruit. A+ for style, structure, drinkability, and further aging potential.

Glenmorangie "Bacalta" Private Edition Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 05-10-2017
The latest in Scotch innovation from Glenmorangie is Madeira-cask aged, in casks that they sourced which were filled with Malmsey Madeira and then seasoned in the sun for two years themselves. Talk about quality control! This is beautiful whisky, both in appearance and flavor profile. At the base, there is a viscous creamy maltiness with dried apricots, almonds and honeycomb flavors in the background. The finish is fresh and fruity, and rounds out the richness perfectly. Very fun bottle of whisky!
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart
WA 91

Fallet-Dart "Clos du Mont" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-09-2017
This is a wine for true Champagne lovers. The fruit comes from a site distinguished for its quality by clergy members back in the 8th Century (much like the vastly more expensive Clos du Mesnil). Aged on the lees for over 12 years, the juice comes from two great, and by now beautifully-aged, vintages: 1999 and 2002, both barrel fermented. This is very vibrant yet precise, with stone fruit, lemon and tropical notes, a creamy butteriness and rich honey notes. The finish is incredibly long, with tantalizing minerality. Unbelievable quality at what amounts to a bargain price.
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

2008 Fallet-Dart Vintage Brut Champagne
Review Date: 05-09-2017
This latest champagne drop has our staff and customers loudly buzzing. From one of our top grower imports and from easily the best vintage of the last couple decades, the ’08 Millesime from Fallet Dart is 70% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir from the estate’s best parcels, aged 8 years on the lees! Lemon meringue, nectarine, and pear fruit flavors are intense and amplified by the vintage’s hallmark acidity, while beautiful and fully integrated toasty lees add depth and complexity. At sub-$40, it seems too good to be true, which means it will probably disappear pretty fast.. Grab yours!
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

2015 Mas Karolina Côtes Catalanes
Review Date: 05-05-2017
Beautifully crafted southwest French blend! The Grenache lends very clean and fresh blue and black fruit: plums, blackberry, and blueberries; while the acid from Syrah rounds out the richness and also lends a touch of elegance reminiscent of more expensive wines. Great direct import value for your everyday enjoyment!
Price: Hidden View Price
RP 90

2015 Mas Karolina Côtes Catalanes Blanc
Review Date: 05-05-2017
If you enjoy the great white wines of the Rhone Valley and other southern French regions, then put this direct import on your shopping list. It is full of beautiful tropical and stone fruits: pineapple, nectarines, lemon and mango with a great, rich texture from very limited aging in huge oak foudres and a nice, long finish.
Price: Hidden View Price

Laurent-Perrier "Grand Siècle" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 04-26-2017
The Grand Siècle (literally “Great Century”), is named after the age of King Louis XIV of France, and represents the awe and splendor that was known under his reign, during which Versailles was built. One of my absolute favorite prestige cuvées, it is composed entirely from Grand Cru sites, blended from three great vintages, then aged on its lees for the entirety of a decade. Wow. Made from 55% Chardonnay and 45% Pinot Noir, it has quince, green apple and citrus fruit with honey, almond and biscuit notes from the long aging. It has delicious toasty yeasty character and vibrancy from the great acid. This should be in every Champagne lovers cellar, ready for that perfect, or any, Champagne moment!

2015 Domaine Les Pins "Les Rochettes" Bourgueil
Review Date: 04-19-2017
I’ve been drinking “Les Rochettes” for awhile. It’s such a great representation of Bourgueil at a killer price, but this vintage is something special. 2015 is by now well known for its warmth and ripeness across France, and it has imparted “Les Rochettes” with structure and personality like never before. The riper phenolics highlight flavors of violets, cranberry, stewed bell peppers and herbs while the tannins provide more grip and structure, giving the impression of a wine at a much higher price-point. If you enjoy Cab Franc, this is one value wine not to pass up.
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart
WE 91

2015 Crystallum "Peter Max" Pinot Noir Hemel-en-Aarde Walker Bay
Review Date: 04-11-2017
The “Peter Max” Pinot Noir is fermented over an unusually long four weeks using minimum extraction methods. The result is a wine with power, concentration and elegance. It’s full of savory fruit flavors like cherry, raspberry and strawberry with strong herbs and tea leaves. It’s sexy and luscious while retaining great acid structure from the cooler climate of Walker Bay. A wonderful wine for the money.

2015 Crystallum "The Agnes" Chardonnay Hemel-en-Aarde / Overberg
Review Date: 04-11-2017
This great Chardonnay is entirely barrel fermented, but its richness (and it is rich) is mostly lees based since they only use 10% new oak. There are vibrant tropical flavors of melon and citrus, a rich creamy texture from the lees and time in barrel, and a well balanced cool climate acid to keep it fresh. Great example of Walker Bay Chardonnay from South Africa.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart
ST 92

2015 Baron de Montfaucon Côtes du Rhône Blanc
Review Date: 04-11-2017
Another knock-out from one of my favorite direct imports. Wine has been made at the Chateau de Montfaucon since 1520, and that kind of legacy results in superbly crafted blends year after year. This Cotes du Rhone blanc is no exception. The mostly Clairette blend has a viscous tropical fruitiness with a nice floral undertone from the Viognier. Great acid and mineral keep it fresh on the finish which is precise and lingering. One of the very best deals in white in the store. ​
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart

2014 Fonreaud, Listrac
Review Date: 03-31-2017
Beautiful dark fruit, blueberries and blackberries with cedar, earth and nice gritty tannin. This is great Bordeaux, and at this price it makes a great house red to keep on hand!
Price: $12.99 Add To Cart

2009 Bois-Malot, Bordeaux Supérieur
Review Date: 03-29-2017
If you enjoy steak & claret regularly like I do, an affordable Bordeaux from a great vintage and producer like this is a godsend! It is classic Bordeaux in structure, with supple red fruit with a touch of savoriness, and the soft ample tannins typical of the vintage. Claret drinkers could definitely benefit from having a case of this quality everyday Bordeaux around.
Top Value!
Price: $10.99 Add To Cart

2016 Kalinda Reserve North Coast Sauvignon Blanc
Review Date: 03-01-2017
Great Sauvignon Blanc sourced from the California North Coast and made by a high caliber, well known Napa producer. The fruit is rich and poised, with lemon, melon, tangerine and gooseberry flavors, a refreshing acid zip and great balance. This can be used either an elegant poolside sipper or the perfect accompaniment to a seafood feast but at this price you’ll probably want to grab a case to keep on hand this summer.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$14.99

Le Brun de Neuville "Authentique Assemblage" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 03-01-2017
In a direct import program that boasts hundreds of stunning grower-producer Champagnes at incredible values, the “Authentic Assemblage” from Le Brun de Neuville belongs near the top of the list not just in terms of value for the price but in overall quality. It boasts a rich, decadent style that comes from aging on its lees for five years under cork instead of bottle cap, a practice still used by only a tiny percentage of producers in Champagne. This allows for micro-oxygenation, which gives the wine a rich, rounded texture that perfectly balances out the crisp chalky minerals and the rich flavors of nectarine, honeysuckle, brioche and clove. The fact that it is available under $35 is a Champagne miracle.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart
WE 92 WS 90

Jacopo Poli Sarpa di Poli Con Tubo Grappa (750ml) (Cannot ship- in store pick up only)
Review Date: 02-23-2017
When I started working in the wine industry, I managed a store owned by a Greek family in Texas. Every year they would visit the mother country and bring back a true cornucopia of artisanal Greek paraphernalia: Kalamata olives, feta cheese, dried figs and wild oregano, olive oil and candied fruits. What I most looked forward to, though, was the grappa that an uncle made that came to me in a big plastic soda bottle. This stuff was the elixir of the gods. When I quickly and inevitably ran out I could never find a commercially available substitute…until I tried Jacopo Poli’s Sarpa di Poli. See, this grappa is made with as much care and in equally small batches in Schiavon, Italy as the Greek grappa that came in the soda bottle. It’s made from the pomace of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon and has deep penetrating aromas of jasmine, sweet pear, green fruits, coriander and anise. It’s bone dry and super clean on the palate but maintains that rich flavor profile for over a minute on the finish. I love all the spirits of the world, from rich Highland Single Malts to funky agricole Rhums, but when all is said and done, nothing is as exciting and satisfying for me as an artisanal grappa like this.
Price: $52.99 Add To Cart
WE 98

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