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Staff Favorites - Neal Fischer

Neal Fischer
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Reviews

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2009 Ardmore 10 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-03-2019
I really dig this bottling, but it's definitely a departure from the core lineup of distillery releases (which have changed somewhat over the last decade). There's smoke, but it's subdued (and quite different in character from the whiskies of Islay). It's malty, earthier, woodier smoke. What comes through on the K&L single cask bottling is a load of fruit and medicinality. Apricot and cherry come out of the glass with heady herbs. The palate has green chili pepper, sooty fire ash, peach, and cherry. Spice builds and builds through the palate, and with subsequent sips. Water brings out more barley notes that remind me of the classic Ardmore style, while a little more sweetness and creamy vanilla also emerge.
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart

1997 Benriach 21 Year Old "Chieftain's" K&L Exclusive Single Rum Barrel Finish Cask Strength Unchill-filtered Speyside Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-03-2019
This whisky is light and bright and full of tropical notes. For a 21 year old this Scotch is surprisingly fresh and lively, and the core characteristics of BenRiach's spirit marries quite well with the rum cask it was matured in. Waves of vanilla meld with macadamia nut, banana, and pineapple. The palate has great salinity and mixes with the vanilla notes to taste like a cookie crumble crust. More fruits come through with gentle spice and new leather. Lovely
Price: $169.99 Add To Cart

1995 Caperdonich 24 Year Old "Chieftain's" K&L Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Unchill-filtered Speyside Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-03-2019
Caperdonich has had an odd, jerky history. Opened in 1898 by William Grant it closed almost immediately and remained that way until reopening in 1967. Sadly, it ceased operation yet again in 2002 and was subsequently demolished. It's a shame because these can be really tasty whiskies. This 24 year old bottling we currently have from Chieftain's is dark, weighty, and bold. There seems to be a lot of Sherry influence here with scents of praline nuttiness and dried fruits of plum, fig, and cherry. There's also a nice element of wood polish that imparts the feeling you're enjoying this dram in an old British drawing room. The varnish notes are more pronounced on the palate with oak spice. The dark fruits come back through in the midpalate with the addition of a citrus twist, continuing on to the medium-length finish. I'm not sure how much stock the current owners are sitting on for future releases, but after nearly twenty year being gone you might want to get your hands on this before Caperdonich becomes a unicorn bottle.
Price: $399.99 Add To Cart

1998 Glenburgie 21 Year Old "Old Particular" Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-02-2019
The whisky in this bottle dates back to before the Glenburgie distillery was completely rebuilt in 2003-2004. Very fruity, floral, and leathery right off the bat. There's a good amount of playfulness here which makes for a fun dram. I pick up a lot of red fruits (fresh and dried), then spice, wild flowers, and gentle caramel. Citrus and cream then green apple come next. The palate is still very fruity, but increases dramatically in malt character and oak spice. The addition of water enhances this dram nicely, adding elements of buttered bread with berry compote.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart

1988 Bunnahabhain 30 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 12-02-2019
This year's Old Particular Bunnahabhain selection for K&L is less Sherry-driven than our 2018 cask. An elegant Scotch, the nose opens with light honey, lanolin, and herbal tea. Peaches, chamomile, and salted caramel come through with more nosing. On the palate, the lanolin melts to beeswax and more exciting spice comes to the foreground with cinnamon and black pepper. Lemon skins and sea salt present themselves next. As it moves to the finish, this Scotch gets more mineral-driven and grassy.
Price: $349.99 Add To Cart

2007 Glenlivet 12 Year Old "Signatory Unchillfiltered Collection" 1st Fill Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-29-2019
Butter. Scotch. Butterscotch. The sherry influence is powerful here, but not in the same way as our last Glenlivet single cask. The nose drips with butterscotch, honey, dark caramel, saltiness, and dried fruits. Red fruit flavors come out more on the palate with a little tobacco and spice box, too. With a few drops of water, the sherry flavors come out even more, if you can believe it. This Scotch is a totes sherry bomb, made for lovers of that style.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

2007 Dailuaine 12 Year Old "Old Particular" Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-29-2019
Here's my Holiday gift to myself for 2019. Andrew and David picked a lot of great single barrels for our Scotch program this year, but this is one of the more unique casks, I feel. While Dailuaine isn't bottled as a single malt very often, it can fall into a fairly typical Speyside character of fruit and sweetness. This 12 year Old Particular bottling, however, packs an umami punch. There are a lot of savory and spicy notes which combine with cocoa scents that nearly give the impression of Mexican mole sauce. In the background there are dark honey notes and a little orchard fruit, but the savory side is the star. On the palate this Scotch is even more spicy and fun with notes of leather and English Breakfast tea. Adding water brings out a little more fruit character and brown sugar, but the spice stays strong. Check this one out.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

Còdigo 1530 K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Anejo Tequila (750ml)
Review Date: 11-29-2019
Truth be told, I don't usually crave Anejo Tequila. I find that the barrel often dominates the base spirit, and some of them are frankly cloying to my tastebuds. This new single barrel we got of Codigo is a wonderful exception for me. This tequila is not dominated by flavors of caramel, wood, or Bourbon notes like many Anejos. Instead, we have in our glass a nice array of spices, soft wood aromas, and excellent agave character. The woody elements are reminiscent of cedar, pine, and cigar box. I pick up bold pepper notes, cayenne, and mace. There's also still a touch of fruitiness and something like menthol and other herbs coming through as well. If you're looking for an Anejo that's off the beaten path and is elegant yet still robust, then this is for you.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart

1995 Allt-a-Bhain 23 Year Old "Old Particular" K&L Exclusive Single Refill Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Light, bright, and fruity! Allt-A-Bhainne is part of the foundation of the Chivas Regal blend, but it really shines on its own. This Speyside single malt is quite estery with tons of fresh aromas and flavors. Lemonhead candies, peach, and cherry hit me first, followed by some buttery vanilla wafer cookies and clove. There's also some nice pine forest notes in the background. On the palate, spice cuts through the fruit and comes in waves, combining with a cocoa element that reminds me of mole chocolate. There's great oak, cedar, and pine wood flavors that blend nicely with the bolder spice, then cooling menthol.
Price: $119.99 Add To Cart

1979 North British 40 Year Old "Old Particular" Single Refill Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-23-2019
Brandy-like on the nose at first, this bottling from North British is quite delicate given its 40 years of age. Crisp green apples, light apricot, cherry, and cream drift to the nose. More florality develops with continued swirling and sniffing. The palate is even more intensely fruity with an apple medley and red berries. There's a little sugar cookie sweetness with soft vanillas melding with the fruits then becoming more leathery, oaky, and bold into a long finish.
Price: $299.99 Add To Cart

1995 Clynelish 23 Year Old "Signatory Vintage Black Label" K&L Exclusive Single 2nd Fill Sherry Butt #11239 Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-19-2019
There is SOOOO much going on in this Scotch. Looking at the deep mahogany color, I was worried that the Sherry barrel would have too much of an affect on the spirit. Luckily, this was a refill Sherry but and my fears were unfounded, because this is a damn beautiful whisky. Dark honey and nougat aromas start the lips smacking in anticipation. Then more austere and savory aromas emerge and meld with the sweeter components. Earl Grey tea, cedar shavings, espresso, and some umami meatiness. There's nuttiness that combines roasted almonds and pecan pralines. There is also some of the signature spiciness that Clynelish often has with dusty black pepper, cayenne, clove, and some menthol too. This is easily one of the best drams I've had all year.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

Tamdhu 19 Year Old "Old Malt Cask" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-18-2019
Tamdhu has long been a workhorse distillery for a number of notable blended Scotches, and it only started putting out its own distillery bottlings this past decade. I've been a fanboy for years now after finding a couple independent bottler releases back in the day, so I was very happy that K&L got hands on this 19 year old through the Old Malt Cask collection. Cookie crumble aromas expand into buttered graham cracker crust territory on the nose. Syrupy cherries and lemon curd add to the fun, while a little leather and earthiness gives weight and depth. The more I sniff the glass, the more my nose is confused about whether this is buttery rich or citrusy bright. And I love being confused like this. The palate has a bit more pepper and nuttiness folding into the flavors set off from the nose. The finish has a beautiful spice that builds in warmth and keeps going and keeps going...
Price: $79.99 Add To Cart

Glengoyne 21 Year Old "Old Malt Cask" K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-18-2019
Glengoyne is another under-the-radar favorite here at K&L (our erstwhile assistant manager, Cameron Price, even made the journey there and got to blend his own personal bottling that was quite a tasty gem). Glengoyne has the claim to fame as the only distillery in Scotland that distills its malt in the Highlands but matures its whisky in the Lowlands. Factoids aside, this Old Malt Cask bottling we picked up exclusively for K&L is a beautiful and friendly Scotch. The nose has light caramel, peaches, and marzipan. It's never cloying, but maintains strong and inviting scents/flavors of fruits and nuts. There's a touch of spice, but it definitely errs on the side of a light buttery desert. An exceptional after-dinner dram.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Littlemill "Old Malt Cask" 29 Year Old K&L Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 11-18-2019
Littlemill was Scotland's oldest licensed distillery, so expertise and quality can be guaranteed in their output. Sadly decommissioned in the 1990s and then lost to fire in 2004, bottles from this distillery are now treasures and time-capsules of a forgotten era in Lowland whisky-making. Leather and honey melts into toffee brittle. There's a light orchard fruit component to the nose that gets bolstered by beautiful sharp spice of cayenne, white pepper, and mace. Spice, wood, and vanilla hover in the air above the glass. The palate is zippy and tongue-tingling with bold spice and bright citrus freshness. The body is light, but there's still a rounded soft texture that's fun to roll around the mouth. The flavors stay bright and get more tropical into a medium-long finish.
Price: $249.99 Add To Cart

2018 Bonny Doon Vineyard "Le Cigare Volant - Cuvee Oumuamua" Monterey County Rhône Blend
Review Date: 11-12-2019
Bonny Doon's Le Cigare Volant is a great, fun red Rhone-inspired blend. It's vibrant in its fruit character of mixed berries, but there are more layers going on here. I like the earthy tones that border on savoriness grooving into deeper spicy notes. I'm happy the winery brought Le Cigare Volant back into its repertoire, and at this price it's a new go-to weeknight red in my house.
Price: $19.95 Add To Cart

2017 Oakridge "Henk Vineyard - Block 864" Pinot Noir Yarra Valley Victoria
Review Date: 11-12-2019
I'm usually a big fan of Oakridge Pinots and this new bottling we got in from the Henk Vineyard is no exception. The nose opens with inviting floral aromatics, forest floor rancio, and spiced blackberry jam. The palate presents more tart berries and white pepper that transitions to white pepper with a little green leafiness. The finish is long with lingering cherries and baking spice.

2012 Nicolas Maillart "Franc de Pied" Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
The interesting name refers to the exceptional fact that this is a rare Champagne grown completely on vines with their original French roots - meaning that these vines are ungrafted because they escaped the scourge of phylloxera with the help of the extremely sandy soils on this site. It’s 100% Pinot Noir, 100% barrel fermented, and 0 dosage. The nose is fresh with ripe pear and orange blossom. The palate offers deeper complexity with baking spices, salty minerality, and fizzy lemon drops.
Price: $109.99 Add To Cart

2012 Nicolas Maillart "Les Chaillots Gilles" 1er Cru Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
This offering from Maillart is 100% barrel fermented and there’s no dosage (but you wouldn’t know that from the creamy richness in this Champagne). The nose presents fresh Granny Smith apples, stewed pears, baking spice, and light floral notes. The palate has a beautiful fruit-and-floral balance. This slips into a very creamy character with savory spices into a long satisfying finish.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Nicolas Maillart "Platine" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
Maillart makes Platine with 78% Pinot Noir, 16% Chardonnay, and 6% Pinot Meunier. It is 40% barrel fermented, and the wine spends 4 years on the lees. This is a bright and zippy Champagne with big-time citrus, focusing particularly on grapefruit elements. The palate has a great, full mouthfeel plus a decadent creamy toastiness. Notes of stone fruit emerge with cherry and peach. Another wonderful direct import for K&L here that matches complexity with bargain pricing.

2009 Alexandre Le Brun "Cuvée Dilection" Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
Dilection is made from 85% Chardonnay and 15% Meunier from the oldest vines in Champagne post-phylloxera (circa 1910). Beautiful fruit jumps from the glass as raspberry, red apple, and fresh lemon. The palate holds great minerality with more red fruit character that fades into a long, dry and tart finish.
Price: $58.99 Add To Cart

2007 Alexandre Le Brun "Cuvée Fascination" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
This Champagne is all Chardonnay and comes from a single plot in the Monts Aigu parcel of the Grand Cru of Chouilly. The nose floods with rich brioche, cream, crushed autumn leaves, and Bartlett pears. The palate offers the same richness but matched with a grapefruit acidity. This is a great food Champagne.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Trudon "Cuvée Magnificence" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
A tribute to wisdom through patience, Trudon’s Magnificence is composed of 60% wines from 2010 aged in oak barrels and 40% wines from 2011 in stainless and spent 6 years on the lees. For Champagne with this much age, the nose is airy, light and delicately floral. The palate presents sharp with lemon pith and apple skins. As expected for wine of this age, there are impressive savoy brioche notes, and the creamy texture on the palate is a luxury.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart

2012 Trudon "Cuvée Instantannée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
Instantannee keeps the 70% Meunier of the Emblematis, but with a remaining composition of 20% Pinot Noir and 10% Chardonnay. It’s almost shocking how different these two wines are though! While the Emblematis is soft fruits and savory characteristics, Cuvee Instantannee crushes it with huge citrus. Tangerine, lemon, and orange blossom with a nice little kick of green apple too. The palate begins with grapefruit then manages to get richer with further sipping without ever losing that mineral line of acidity. Quite complex and infinitely pleasurable.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart

Trudon "Emblematis" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
Emblematis is a supple yet subdued Champagne. It’s made with 70% Meunier and 30% Pinot Noir, and with 60% blocked malolactic fermentation the wine takes on a very creamy texture while retaining a lot of fresh fruit. Notes of pear, light baguette, berries, and yellow apple. The mouthfeel is so rounded and full, and there’s an elegantly earthy character that comes back to the soft fruits for the finish.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

Lanson Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
The Lanson Rose starts out as the same wine as the house’s Black Label, but then they add 7% Bouzy Rouge still red wine of Pinot Noir to get the Rose effect with luscious dark fruit elements. This wine is very aromatic with deep floral notes, soft raspberries, and zippy citrus. On the palate there’s strawberries fizzling into lemon curd that lasts into a long finish.

Lanson "Black Label" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 10-18-2019
Using no malolactic fermentation, you get a lot of fresh fruit from this sparkler and all the creaminess comes from time spent aging on lees and extensive backstock of reserve wines going into this cuvee. The nose has pretty citrus, poached pears, and a lovely toastiness. The palate has brisk acidity, fresh pear, peach, yellow apple, and chalky minerality.

Maker's Mark 46 K&L Exclusive "Barrel #5" Private Select Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 10-12-2019
This was such a fun project, and I'm glad that Maker's Mark invited Andrew and I to blend not just one, but TWO batches of Private Select for K&L. It was amazing how different the bourbon could be with slight changes to the stave additions. So it isn't too much of a surprise that Andrew's barrel is vastly different from mine. The Neal barrel is clearly superior, but this barrel of Andrew's is really killer too. When I sip this I think to myself that this is classic Maker's Mark... but greatly intensified. Luscious caramel spills out of the glass with apricot and a little buttered popcorn. There's very soft baking spices with a bit of coconut coming from the high amount of baked American oak staves that give Andrew's batch its central character. This decadent bourbon is a sweetie, but it ain't a pushover.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

Maker's Mark 46 K&L Exclusive "Barrel #6" Private Select Kentucky Bourbon (750ml)
Review Date: 10-12-2019
Ahhh, the austere and amazing Barrel 6 (a.k.a. The Neal Barrel)! This was such a fun project, and I'm glad that Maker's Mark invited Andrew and I to blend not just one, but TWO batches of Private Select for K&L. It was amazing how different the bourbon can be with slight changes to the stave additions. So, it isn't too much of a surprise that my barrel is vastly different from Andrew's. This blend that I concocted makes use of a high proportion of seared French cuvée staves and toasted French spice staves. The extra toast and focus on French oak more than American gives this bottling a truly robust woody snap and a big, spicy bite. If Andrew's batch is like classic Maker's Mark, brilliantly intensified, then the Neal barrel is like Maker's Mark's edgier older cousin who got kicked out of school as a teenager. Cinnamon cooked in butter, baked clove, and fresh pepper hit the nose first. The scents get darker and spicier with more nosing with additions of powdered cocoa. On the palate, there's molasses and burnt sugar, then tannic oak spice. Toward the finish, coffee and more savory elements emerge. This bourbon is bold and beautiful.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

2003 Glen Scotia "Malts Festival 2019 Limited Edition" Rum Cask Finish Peated Campbeltown Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 10-11-2019
Bountiful butterscotch and wisps of earthy smoke characterize this tasty Scotch. Glen Scotia is one of only three operational distilleries in the Campbeltown region, and I'm very happy they're carrying on the tradition and keeping distillation alive in this historically important area in Scotland. Of course, none of that history matters much if the whisky isn't good, and thankfully this bottling is great. The peat is very moderate (unlikely to scare away too many folks) and exquisitely proportioned with the influence of the rum cask finishing. Tropical aromas of freshly-opened vanilla bean morphs into salted caramel that then becomes rich butterscotch. Scents of buttery dessert biscuits topped with pepper-peach jelly make my mouth water. The palate has more dessert flavors without becoming cloying at all. Then that peat comes in, yet it always stays in check and never dominates the other flavors. It's earthy, robust, and leathery with just a little medicinality. The rum and peat continue to roll over each other again and again on the palate, and it seems like there's just no stopping this Scotch. There's not really a finish in a sense because the whisky just melts into the tongue and stays with you.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

2013 Sbragia "Godspeed Vineyard" Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 10-08-2019
When Robert Parker drinks this wine and says it's a once in a lifetime vintage for Mount Veeder, you sit up and take notice. This smashing Napa Cab grows on steep hillsides at high elevation on volcanic soils. The nose boasts bramble berries, cedar wood, cigar box, dry earth, powerful floral notes, and licorice. The palate touts tart cherries, dark vanilla, cassis, and blackberry compote. This wine has exceptional structure and balanced tannins. It's beautiful now, and it will age exceptionally well.

2015 Matias "Sierra Mar Vineyard" Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir
Review Date: 10-08-2019
This Pinot benefits from the vineyard location, one of the highest sites in the Santa Lucia Highlands, where hills channel wind and fog to keep the area much cooler than the surroundings. On the nose there is a dramatic spice profile and loads of dried red fruits. This wine is bright, fresh, and crunchy. The palate piles on cherry, raspberry, subtle citrus, black pepper, a touch of leather, and tapers to an herbal and floral-forward finish. A concentrated and lovely offering from the folks at Brack Mountain Wines.
Price: Hidden View Price

2014 Bunnahabhain Staoisha Heavily Peated 4 Year Old "Signatory Unchillfiltered Collection" Dechar/Rechar Cask Strength Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml)
Review Date: 09-24-2019
Alright, Staoisha, you got my number. I know it might not be for everyone (just the fact that it's heavily peated implies as much), but I'm all about this Scotch! Smoldering fire embers, toasted cedar planks, iodine, and a scent of just-overcooked bacon. Then more nuance develops as lighter elements emerge: grilled peaches, buttery kettle corn, and (surprisingly) wild flowers linger on the nose and manage to shine through all that smoke. The palate has a nice balance of smoked sweet and savory elements, including well-toasted baking spices, but even fresh flavors such as Granny Smith apple. This one will wallop you, but you'll love it for it all the same.
Price: $69.99 Add To Cart

2016 Sidewood Shiraz Adelaide Hills South Australia
Review Date: 09-10-2019
The Sidewood wines are some of our new favorites at K&L. The winery is certified eco-sustainable, and that combined with their meticulous viticulture practices and unique terroir in Adelaide helps them craft lovely wines. Their high elevation gives them an especially cool climate and their vineyards are located on sites of various loamy geologies. Sumptuous red fruits loll out of the glass with raspberry compote, brandy cherries, and dried cranberries. There are warming baking spice aromas that hint toward more savory notes, but it doesn't quite hit the typical meaty character that Aussie Shiraz can. On the palate, the red fruits darken and gain depth. Soft peppercorn flavors emerge and a rich floral character comes out as well. The herbal notes and well-balanced acidity keep the wine wonderfully balanced all the way into the soft tannin and dusted cocoa finish.

New Riff Bottled-In-Bond Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
Balsa wood, incense, and musky cologne emerge from the glass. Cinnamon, clove, and other earthy spices come to the fore and dominate the nose of this bottled-in-bond Bourbon that's woody and peppery enough to make one wonder if it's a Rye. There's just enough caramel to keep things in Bourbon territory though with freshly sliced vanilla bean and nutmeg creeping in and making the nose a bit more rich and voluptuous. It's woodier on the palate with more bold spice character as well. This is definitely a great whiskey for lovers of high-rye Bourbons.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

New Riff Bottled-In-Bond Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey (750ml)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
This bottled-in-bond no chill-filtered Kentucky Rye has a gorgeous and incredibly aromatic nose. It's so floral at the start, but not without spicy and fruity notes. This is a bit of a slow-burner rye, where you almost expect it to be a softy push-over, but rest assured that this grows bolder the more you sniff. After the fresh-cut flowers, apple and cinnamon come out strong. But for me, it's not like a friendly baked apple pie - no, this is fresh ground cinnamon powder dashed onto just-cut green apples. This is intense. There's more spice on the palate that lights you up without blowing your head off. Charred oak meets fresh cut wood with incense before getting spicy again with a dose of cooling mint to spare your tongue from the burn. This is a fun little trip of a rye.
Price: $44.99 Add To Cart

2015 Chateau Ste. Michelle "50th Anniversary Edition" Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (1.5L)
Review Date: 08-20-2019
Bold fruit without becoming jammy, this 50th Anniversary Cab rocks blueberry, blackberry, leather, and pepper on the nose. The fruit is concentrated, intense, and dark. The palate is very dry with dehydrated cherries. curry spice, and black licorice. Decanter gave this 93 points, and this wine will pair perfectly with duck, grilled meats, strong cheese, or dark chocolates.
Price: $19.95 Add To Cart

2004 Krug Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
According to the folks at Krug, the 2004 vintage is an underrated standout for Champagne because the weather made grapes that were quite fresh, with the Chardonnay yields becoming especially beautiful and elegant. The nose is wonderfully zippy with scents of fresh Meyer lemon, Bartlett pear, and yellow apples. The bright fruit finds balance with toasted brioche, light caramel richness, and shortbread cookies. The palate is vibrant with bright lemon acidity and tart Granny Smith apples. There’s a good helping of salinity as well, but the lively acid and fruit keeps this Champagne crisp and fresh tasting. This will definitely be a great contender for extensive aging, capable of cellaring for a couple decades.

Krug "Grande Cuvée" 167 Ème Édition Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
With their Grand Cuvee series, Krug tries to make the fullest and most quintessential expression of Champagne, and part of their philosophy embraces that cuvees can evolve and change with the additions of new vintages to the blends. The 167 Eme Edition lives up to the Krug ideals with complex mixtures of bready and fruity notes that span the range of what Champagne is capable of becoming. Freshly baked apple tart jumps out of the gate before the wine heads in an even more bready direction of brioche, lightly buttered toast, nuttiness, and baking spices. The palate is a little yeasty which transitions into chalky minerality. Then more fruit notes emerge like bright lime and lemon zest with a touch of something more tropical plus savory spices. Exquisite.

Chateau de Bligny "Clos du Chateau Bligny" 6 Cépages Brut Nature Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
If you consider yourself a Champagne aficionado or a Champagne nerd (like most of us at K&L) then this offering from Bligny needs to be on your radar. The “6 Cepages” moniker refers to the fact that with this bottling Bligny blends Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Meunier, Arbanne, Meslier, and Pinot Blanc in even proportions. Fortunately, you don’t need to be a hardcore nerd to enjoy this bubbly at all. The nose is exotic and intoxicating with notes of tropical flowers, brioche, spicebox, fresh ginger, and heavy cream. The palate is also supple and spicy with a lot of minerality, baked apple, and mandarin orange all heading into a crazy long finish.
Price: $99.99 Add To Cart

Laurent-Perrier "Grand Siècle" Iteration #24 Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
Iteration #24 of the Grand Siecle blends Laurent-Perrier stocks from their 2007, 2006, and 2004 vintages. The nose is so beautiful and delicate with soft floral notes like a breeze through a field of wildflowers, refreshing lemon-lime zest, and minerality of chalk and sea salt. Given how dainty the nose seemed, the palate’s bold and cutting acidity took my breath away. In addition to the acid, the citrus gets creamy like lemon meringue pie, with stone fruit and interesting smoky nuances.

Laurent-Perrier "Grand Siècle" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
Grand Siecle is always an impressive way that Laurent-Perrier shows off its mastery of cuvee style Champagnes blending a small number of beautiful vintages with elegance and skill. The Grand Siecle is intensely aromatic with pear, a great yeasty/toasty profile, lemon, and spicy undertones. The palate is elegant in its subtle complexity. It’s very floral and classically fruity, and it’s clean with great texture.

2007 Thiénot "Black Ball" Blanc de Blancs Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
This Champagne is composed of juice from all old vine Grand Cru grapes on property that used to belong to Krug right in the Cotes de Blanc… so you know they’re working with great land and great fruit. The nose is earthy, almost a little sandy toned, but there’s also good fresh fruit here with scents of citrus peel and Golden Delicious apples. The mouthfeel is soft and supple with a great apple/pear balance that becomes more intense in fruitiness and even borders on tropical flavors before coming to a gradual vanilla finish.
Price: $59.99 Add To Cart

2008 Lanson "Gold Label" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
This Lanson Gold Label is 53% Pinot Noir and 47% Chardonnay with no malolactic fermentation. The nose is very chalky with some flintiness, but there’s still a lot of bright fruit. This combines nicely with more savory aromas and herbal notes. The palate is unexpectedly racy following the nose with more minerality and very bright fresh lemon acidity.
Price: $89.99 Add To Cart

2012 Franck Bonville "Pur Mesnil" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
More Grand Cru glory from Bonville, this Champagne begins with fresh brioche bread then moves to pear and yellow apple. There’s also great minerality with a flinty, slightly smoky aroma casually hanging out in the background. The palate has snappy acid with flavors of grapefruit and citrus pith, ending on a lightly floral potpourri.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

2012 Franck Bonville "Pur Avize" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
Wow, there is a LOT of fruit going on here! The nose erupts with apple, pear, nectarine, and white raspberries. More nosing reveals scents of raw dough and soft lemon. The palate is very zippy at first, but quickly becomes gentle again and the fruit medley from the nose returns quite friendly and docile, finishing with flavors of fresh apple skins.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

2012 Franck Bonville "Pur Oger" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 08-16-2019
This 100% Chardonnay bubbly is all estate grown, Grand Cru, and stainless steel fermented. What starts with light yeast and soft toast scents slides into a bright nose with floral notes, fresh pears, and a mix of stone fruits. The palate has balanced acid that never cuts to aggressively with a lot of minerality, lavender, soft fruits, and a saline finish.
Price: $64.99 Add To Cart

2018 Kalinda Anderson Valley Pinot Noir
Review Date: 08-16-2019
K&L continues to source quality wines for the Kalinda lineup, including this newest red that’s both organic and biodynamic (and quite tasty too!). This 2018 Pinot Noir melts with soft cherries, black- and raspberries, underbrush, pepper, and yet the nose stays light and easy. The palate is leafy, bright, and spicy with a touch of perfume coming through on the back end.
Price: $29.99 Add To Cart

Wine Club

$24.99

2015 Farella Estate Coombsville Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 08-16-2019
This is a deep, dark, heavy Cabernet fit for your next Goth party with a nose of intense baking spice, black fruit, and heady floral aromatics. The palate smacks of blueberry, bramble berries, graphite, spicebox, and strong tannic grip. Beautiful and focused, with 95 points from Vinous.

2014 Immortal Estate (Hidden Ridge) "Slope" Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon
Review Date: 08-16-2019
This wine, getting 95-97 points from Parker, is big on stewed fruits of plum and blackberry compote, hefty oak, toasted spices (clove, star anise), and a measured hand of perfumed floral notes. The palate is high-toned, nice’n’juicy, and finishing with some crispy spice. It’s got luscious texture and density made of pure decadence.

2014 Jonata "Todos" Ballard Canyon Santa Ynez Valley Red Blend
Review Date: 08-06-2019
Jonata is the undersung side project from the folks producing Screaming Eagle, so if you don't know Jonata yet, then you owe it to yourself to start paying attention to this label. The "Todos" red blend is Syrah-dominant, with all the power one might expect from that. There's big spice on the nose of black pepper and chili, with a good slathering of black fruits. On the palate the fruit notes come more distinctly into focus with tart cherry, blackberry, blueberry, and quince. But this is no juicy pushover: the palate rounds out with savory meaty qualities, a lovely line of salinity, and more bold spice. A standout for sure.

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