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K&L Staff Recommendations
91 points James Suckling: "This is a soft and fruity red with dried berries and hints of fruit cake. Full body, ripe tannins and a delicious finish. An opulent and pleasing wine." (12/2013) Wine Spectator: "Integrated mocha and tar accents enrich dark plum, black licorice and olive paste notes in this elegant red, structured by fine tannins and juicy acidity. Drink now through 2018." (12/2013)
91 points Wine Spectator: "A pretty red, elegant and detailed, evoking flowers, strawberry, raspberry and white pepper aromas and flavors. This is very harmonious, with the structure and length to develop well. Drink now through 2020." (2/2014) K&L Notes: From the winery: "The Langhe DOC Nebbiolo is produced from the youngest vines, 20 years old on average, located part in Castiglione Falletto and part in Serralunga d'Alba. All the sites have a south and south-west exposure and the vines could be destined to the production of Nebbiolo for Barolo. Every year, however, Luigi uses these grapes no... Read More »
The Tralivio is made in a clean crisp style from some of Sartarelli's oldest vines. Antonio Galloni says, "When the mood strikes for Verdicchio, Sartarelli is often one of my go-to houses. The wines are loaded with varietal character, while the different bottlings are usually nicely differentiated and articulated."
94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Le Serre Nuove dell'Ornellaia comes across as tight and shut down today. There is plenty of depth in the glass, but less of the appeal I saw just a few months ago. The high tannins of the vintage and the relatively large amount of Petit Verdot (14%) are both very marked at this stage in the wine's life. Readers holding the 2011 are best off cellaring their bottles for at least another 1-2 years. The 2011 Le Serre Nuove is a powerhouse. (AG)" (9/2014)94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "A gorgeous wine, the 2011 Bolgheri Rosso Le Serre Nuovo dell-Ornellaia (57% Merlot, 17% Cabernet S ...Read More »
Wine Enthusiast: "This is a creamy and very well-executed blend of Chardonnay and Ribolla Gialla that opens with exciting aromas of stone fruit, citrus and honey, plus tiny touches of candy and butterscotch (a common aromatic characteristic of Ribolla Gialla)." (12/2012) Wine Spectator: "A crisp white, with a smoky base and hints of yellow apple, star fruit and almond. Tangy finish. Chardonnay and Ribolla Gialla. (Web-2013)" K&L Notes: This blend of 65% Chardonnay and 35% Ribolla Gialla is light, crisp, and citrusy with great minerality. An outstanding value!
Azienda Agricola Barone Cornacchia was esablished in 1577. Now organically farmed from stony calcareous soils, this 100% Montepulciano d’Abruzzo displays a deep ruby color with a perfumed and plummy bouquet. The rounded and intense palate shows persistance and fine tannins which pairs well with grilled meats, pasta, and hard cheese.
90 points Wine Enthusiast: "A blend of Nebbiolo, Vespolina and Croatina, this opens with a medley of aromas that include ripe berry, underbrush, truffle, menthol, leather and spice. The firm palate delivers crushed black cherry, game, grilled herb, ground pepper and a balsamic note. It still has youthfully assertive tannins that need to unwind and soften. Drink 2016–2026." (3/2015) K&L Notes: Paolo de Marchi, the owner of Isole e Olena, Paolo has always dreamed of restoring his family property (he's acutally Piemontese) and bringing back the winegrowing tradition of Lessona in Alto Piemonte. I... Read More »
96 points James Suckling: "This is so refined and polished with dusty tannins and shaved-chocolate and dried-berry character. Full-bodied but fresh and lively. Long, long finish. Trudy and Sting's best wine ever. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Sangiovese. Made from biodynamically grown grapes. Very drinkable now but better in 2017." (10/2014) K&L Notes: This is the winery owned by famed musician Sting.
Inventory: Main Warehouse
92 points Antonio Galloni: "The grapes are selected from vineyards located in Castiglione Falletto, Monforte, Barolo, and Novello, from vines ranging in age from 7 to 35 years old. Fermentation occurs in stainless steel over 15 days, with daily cap submersion for extraction of flavor and color. The wine is then aged for 24 months in casks. The wine was blended in stainless steel tanks 8 months before bottling." (9/2014) Jancis Robinson: "Pale ruby with orange tinges. Classic Nebbiolo nose yet closed and with the merest hint of oak. Compact and fresh fruit on the palate with a proper load of firm, ripe ...Read More »
96 points James Suckling: "There is a purity of fruit in this young Tuscan red, with flowers, citrus fruit and currants. Full body with firm, silky tannins that are ultra-fine and wonderfully polished. The structure builds to a racy finish. This is a Bordeaux blend that is all in harmony. Give it time: the tannins and fruit will melt together." (11/2013)94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Oreno wraps around the palate with gorgeous resonance and silkiness. Mocha, cloves, leather and dark spices all add nuance to a core of voluptuous, racy fruit. This is a typical 2011 long on texture, resonance and early app ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Decanter World Wine Awards 2014 Commended this red, describing it as having "fleshy jammy red fruit on the nose. The palate of red fruit is rich supple and prolonged."
92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright red. Captivating, extremely intense aromas of flinty red cherry and raspberry, lifted by violet and mineral notes. Sappy, floral fruit shows lovely sweetness and energy thanks to well-integrated acidity and spicy mineral lift. Dense, chewy and saline on the brisk finish, featuring youthful, building tannins. Made from vines between 75 and 100 years of age, this is a star in the making--a truly great Passopisciaro and the best wine in this year's releases of Sicilian wines from the talented Andrea Franchetti. 92(+?) points." (3/2014)90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Pas ...Read More »
91 points James Suckling: "A beautiful red with plums, flowers and hints of cedar. Full body, round tannins and a fresh finish. Balanced and delicious. Drink now." (9/2013)91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright medium red. Deep, penetrating aromas of red cherry, raspberry, crushed blackcurrant, violet and minerals. Silky and pure, with harmonious acidity providing focus and precision to the ripe, sweet raspberry and currant flavors. Finishes with lovely perfume, polished tannins and a sweet note of maraschino cherry. One of the finest entry-level Chianti Classicos of 2011." (9/2014)90 points Wine Enthusiast: "This structured wine opens w ...Read More »
95 points James Suckling: "Captivating aromas of blueberries, raspberries, violets and orange peel. Full body with crazy tannins." (9/2013)94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Giorgio Primo is just as beautiful today as it was last year, even if it has barely budged since then. Blackberry jam, spices, licorice, smoke and new leather meld together in a seamless voluptuous wine endowed with superb depth and pure textural richness. The oak still needs time to integrate, but there is a lot to look forward to here." (9/2014)91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Giorgio Primo is the latest edition of one of my favorite Tuscan blends. Cabernet S ...Read More »
97 points James Suckling: "A gorgeous, sleek wine with super-polished tannins and fabulous fruit. It's full but so refined and sexy. It goes on for minutes. Really fine. What a wine. This Bordeaux blend from here is the best ever. Better in 2016 but great now." (10/2014)
Inventory: Main Warehouse
Jancis Robinson: "Magliocco. Deep ruby with the beginning of orange on the nose. Pretty nose of oak and leafy fruit and already a little mature. Still a bit closed on the fruit on the palate and the tannins and acidity make it a little austere. Long perfumed finish with hints of oak. (WS)" (10/2013) K&L Notes: The 2011 Cantine Viola Rosso is 100% Magliocco from Calabria, and sees no wood aging at all, just fermentation in stainless steel and then bottle age. The wine’s aromatics are untamed; it smells of wild brush and roasted meats and while those aromatics are profound they seem to ... Read More »
Inventory: Redwood City
94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Barbaresco Asili captures the pedigree of this great site. Freshly cut flowers, sweet red berries, mint and cinnamon all resonate in an impeccable, silky Barbaresco loaded with class. A translucent, crystalline wine, the 2011 impresses for its balance and overall harmony. What a gorgeous wine this is. (AG)" (10/2014)
According to Wine Advocate: "Poderi San Lazzaro is one of my very favorite estates in the Marche. The wines are rich, layered and always loaded with personality." (2/2013)
Sandro Fay has been producing wines in Valtellina for the past 40 years, and is dedicated to single-vineyard expressions of this unique and historic terroir. Upriver from Lake Como, near the Swiss border, the Valtellina DOCG sits in a narrow valley that runs east/west at the base of the alps, which protect its sunny climate. The signature grape is Nebbiolo, known locally as Chiavennasca. Fay's Costa Bassa vineyard is located in the village of Teglio, designated as "Valtellina Superiore," one of the finest terroirs in the appellation. In this cooler, sub-... Read More »
From an "agriculturally self-sufficient" wine farm that include orchards and pasture, just a few miles outside of Roma along the Appian Way. The winery's note: "This has a straw-yellow color with golden reflections. The aromas are intense and elegant and range from floral scents to those of tropical fruit, together with notes of golden delicious apple and banana. The flavor is balanced, piquant and very elegant."
Wine Spectator: "Balanced, featuring a core of black cherry, aromatic herb, crème de cassis and wild strawberry fruit, with hints of gumdrop and smoke. Fresh. (Web-2013)" K&L Notes: Verona is a city with history, culture and excitement all wrapped into one. The province of Veneto, in fact, is surrounded by attractions and theme parks, to meet the desires of all, couples, families and groups of friends. We say this because if you like this wine, you can stay at the property. Musella is an historic estate on the northeast outskirts of Verona, just 15 minutes drive from the centre. Hugh... Read More »
Meaning "middle son," "Moliss" is a Piedmontese word, not Italian. This is one of two single vineyard Barberas produced by Agostino Pavia and his sons Giuseppe ("Pino") and Mauro, of which total production is less than five thousand cases. Made from old vines and aged in large Slavonian oak ovals, which impart subtle oak aromas and can add texture when new, "Moliss" is stylistically similar to a traditional Asti but cleaner and much more concentrated. Importer Oliver McCrum writes: "Barbera d'Asti used to have a reputation for having acidity like that of... Read More »
96 points Antonio Galloni: "Blackberry jam, cassis, grilled herbs and melted road tar meld together in the 2011 Solaia. Another super-exotic, racy 2011 from Antinori, Solaia is supremely beautiful. Mocha, espresso and sage are some of the many notes that add complexity. Hints of white truffle, lavender, smoke and licorice are laced into the exotic, racy finish. In 2011, Solaia has a dollop more of Cabernet Franc in the blend, added to give the wine a touch of freshness. Ripe and flashy to the core, the 2011 needs time to lose some of its youthful exuberance. At times, the 2011 coul ...Read More »
93 points James Suckling: "A new wine from the estate of Nipozzano with pretty blueberry and light vanilla character. Full-bodied, chewy and rich with a long, lightly austere finish. Wonderful depth of fruit. From the oldest vines on the property and aged 24 months in barrel. Needs a year or two more of bottle age to soften: Drink in 2016." (10/2014)93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Dark red. Refined aromas of dark red cherry, blackcurrant, lavender, sage, rosemary and tobacco on the multidimensional nose. Textured, pure and classy, with very long, mineral-driven dark red berry and cherry flavors framed by noble, s ...Read More »
95 points Antonio Galloni: "Kirsch, rose petal, pomegranate, exotic spices and mint are woven together in a fabric of notable class in the 2011 Tignanello. An exotic wine that captures the essence of the year, the 2011 is endowed with magnificent complexity, nuance and class. The silky, polished finish makes the 2011 incredibly appealing today, but the wines from this site have always aged very well. The 2011 is going to need time to shed some of its baby fat, but it will always remain extroverted and racy to the core. I can't wait to see how the 2011 ages. (AG)" (9/2014)95 points James Suckling: "Ruby, rose, ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse
98 points James Suckling: "This smells like great Burgundy with strawberry, flowers and hints of incense. Full body with wonderful, ultra-refined tannins and amazing depth and length. So layered and so fine. It goes on for minutes. Magical red. Better in 2017." (10/2014)
This classic blend of 40% Corvina, 20% Corvinone, 20% Rondinella and 20% other grapes, including Molinara, Dindarella and Croatina from Valpolicella. A low-alcohol red, as the winery describes it: "Its deep ruby red colour, the fruity flavour that reminds us of cherries, wild cherries and plums, its pleasant sapid and harmonious taste, gives us the opportunity of defining this wine as being modern, youthful and ready to drink."
94 points Wine Enthusiast: "This gorgeous wine opens with fragrances of blue flower, moist earth, leather and ripe berry. The delicious palate delivers succulent black cherry, cinnamon, white pepper and balsamic herbs alongside smooth, silky tannins. It’s already delicious now, but hold for complexity. Drink now–2026." (9/2014)
Inventory: Redwood City
90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Bright red. Fragrant aromas of red cherry, minerals and flowers. Then bright and fresh on the palate, with pure red berry and cherry flavors that last and last on the clean, smooth finish. Zippy acidity and lingering minerality give this wine added punch. A traditionally styled, well-made Rosso di Montalcino." (10/2013) K&L Notes: Winemaker's Notes: Dark red ruby with garnet red shades. Ethereal smell and intense complex bouquet. Full bodied with poweful structure and balanced tannins. Perfect with typical Tuscan dishes such as pappardelle, polenta, salami, seaso... Read More »
40% Refosco, 40% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon.
97 points James Suckling: "Glass-staining, with plum, hints of anise, red flowers, gravel and dark olive. Layered, complex and hard to resist. Full-bodied. Perfectly integrated, melted tannins. A real triumph. Greatest Lagrein out there. Drink now." (10/2014) K&L Notes: #10 James Suckling's Top 100 Italian Wines of 2014; November 11th, 2014. Named for the bedrock on which the vineyards stand, this Prophyr bottling is 100% Lagrein selected from three different parcels of vineyard which are all nearly 100 years old. The grapes were manually harvested and again hand-sorted before being slowly fe... Read More »
94 points Antonio Galloni: "The 2011 Carbonaione is another gorgeous wine in a line of successful vintages that goes all the way back to 1992. Blackberry jam, cloves, menthol, licorice, new leather and sweet spices flesh out in a voluptuous, racy wine that beautifully expresses the personality of the vintage. Today, the 2011 is rich, layered and voluptuous to the core. It is also incredibly primary. Readers who want to experience the 2011 in its full glory will have to wait at least a few years, but there is little question the 2011 is a worthy follow up to the epic 2010." (9/2014)94 points James Suckling: "W ...Read More »
92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Costa d'Amalfi Tramonti Riserva Quattro Spine is a blend of Aglianico, Tintore and Piedirosso from old vines. This is a beautiful and delicious wine with a untamed and rustic personality. The highly distinctive bouquet shows dark berry, bramble, grilled herb, candied cherry and balsam notes. Background tones of tar and licorice also appear and contribute to the uniqueness of this wine. The Aglianico component adds a firm vein of tannins at the back. I'd be very curious to try this wine three to five years from now. (ML)" (4/2015) K&L Notes: If you've ever be... Read More »
92 points James Suckling: "A stylish Syrah with spices, dried meats and ripe fruits that follow to a full body, with silky tannins and a fruity finish. Drink or hold." (7/2013) Wine Spectator: "An elegant yet well-toned red, offering a core of blackberry fruit, tinged with iron, sanguine and pepper accents. Balanced and moderately long. Drink now through 2018. (Web only 2014)"
94 points James Suckling: "Wonderful aromas of freshly sliced coastal rosemary and currants follow through to a full body, with integrated tannins and a fine finish. This shows so much finesse and beauty. But there is a solid backbone of tannins and length. Reminds me of some of the underrated Sass of the 1980s such as 1982, 1983 or 1987. Try after 2018." (5/2014)94 points Wine Enthusiast: "Aromas suggest blackberry, cedar and Mediterranean scrub. On the palate, notes of tobacco, licorice, exotic spice and cranberry accent the juicy black-cherry core. It’s well balanced and elegant, with silky tannins. Drink ...Read More »
Terre di Balbia is a small estate in Altomonte, a small village in Calabria--the toe of the Italian boot. The 52-hectare estate is a collaboration between famed Friulian winemaker Gianni Venic and importer Silvio Caputo, a native Calabrian. The pair produce just two wines focused on utilizing indigenous grapes, though they have to have the grapes transported up to Venica in Friuli because there was too much red tape involved in opening a winery in Calabria (oh, Italian bureaucracy). This, the Balbium, is made entirely of Magliocco, and is wonderfully sur... Read More »
The Santoleri vineyards date back to 1968, though the same family has been farming the property since 600! Located at the base of the 2,000 foot Maiella Mountain in the Appenines. Its altitude and proximity to the Adriatic Sea are ideally suited for growing grapes. The vineyards are farmed without the use of pesticides, mineral fertilizers and other invasive products. From the importer: "Ruby red robe with violet hues. Intense aromas with notes of black cherry, balsamic and licorice. Fresh and vigorous on the palate, typical of a young Montepulciano, wit... Read More »
Anna Maria Abbona is a Dolcetto specialist in Dolgiani, a sub-region of Piedmont where Dolcetto is the star, not content to play backup to Nebbiolo or Barbera. All of the best sites in the area are planted to Dolcetto, producing wines that are deep, concentrated and complex. Abbona uses micro-oxygenation, oak and picking for phenolic ripeness to keep Dolcetto's aggressive tannins in check.
97 points Antonio Galloni: "A vivid, beautiful wine, the 2011 Pergole Torte is superb. Warm, early-maturing harvests often attenuate the differences between sites, but not here. The old vines weathered the heat better, resulting in a wine that is very much in line with the past, but with more body, amplitude and resonance. Rose petals, bright red stone fruits and mint are some of the many notes that grace the super-expressive finish. The 2011 spent one year in French oak barrels and a second year in cask." (9/2014)95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2011 Le Pergole Torte is a stunning expression from the heart of ...Read More »
Inventory: Main Warehouse