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Phenomenal New Releases from Ojai Vineyards!

The Ojai Vineyard began in 1983 with the dream of producing distinctive California wines using traditional wine making practices learned in Burgundy and the Rhone valley. Twenty-eight years later Adam Tolmach continues to pursue the craft at his artisanal winery in Ojai, California, purchasing grapes from the finest terroirs in the coolest districts of northern Santa Barbara County. His quest to bring together European sensibilities of balance and finesse with the exuberant fruit from coastal California vineyards is expressed in the wines he makes today.

Antonio Galloni raved about his recent visit to Ojai Vineyards noting- "My tasting this year at Ojai was epic. Winemaker/Proprietor Adam Tolmach and Assistant Winemaker Fabien Castel have done a fabulous job with these new and upcoming releases. The highlights are centered among the Pinots and Syrahs.”. A few of us here at Hi-Time Cellars tasted a handful of these bottling’s and we whole heartedly agree with Mr. Galloni!


ANTONIO GALLONI 92 POINTS - "Freshly cut roses, violets, mint, licorice and pine lift from the glass in the 2012 Pinot Noir Solomon Hills. This is the most subtle, understated and perfumed of the Ojai Pinots, much of that a reflection of the sandy soils in this site, yet there is plenty of mid-palate resonance."

$49.95 750ml [247620] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "The 2010 Syrah White Hawk Vineyard tastes like it was made yesterday. The flavors are bold, rich and intense. Here it is the wine's structure and tannin that stand out most. Readers will have to be patient, as the 2010 is going to need at least a few years to fully blossom. When it does, it should be fabulous."

$39.95 750ml [247720] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


ANTONIO GALLONI 95 POINTS - "Black fruit, scorched earth, smoke, tobacco and iron burst from the glass in the 2010 Syrah Roll Ranch Vineyard. A rich, explosive Syrah, the Roll Ranch is not for the timid. The sheer power and intensity of the fruit take hold of all the senses and never let up. This is the only Ojai Syrah that is co-fermented with a dollop of Viognier, which is felt in the wine's perfumed, floral-laced finish. This is yet another gorgeous new release from Ojai."

$39.95 750ml [247700] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Mini-Masterpieces from a Barolo Legend!

Serious Italian collectors can be counted on to ravenously snap up Barolo from the classical and cult producer Burlotto upon release, and then wait, and wait… and wait.  About 10-15 years of cellaring are needed until the Barolo’s massive tannins have subsided and are ready to drink. Though ultimately satisfying, this exercise in delayed gratification is painstakingly longer than some aficionados can tolerate.

What the collectors may know that others may not; is that while waiting for their Barolo to mature, the other wines from Burlotto are wines not to be missed. In fact, they offer an unbeatable trifecta of quality, drinkability and affordability.

Burlotto is a historical winery that goes back to 1850, when G.B. (Giovan Battista) Burlotto founded the winery, in the Piedmontese village of Verduno. Mr. Burlotto’s achievements were only rivaled by Biondi-Santi and Vega-Sicilia, as he gained superstar status in a world dominated by French wines. Among his other achievements, G.B. was the first in the area to bottle his wine (as opposed to distributing by cask) and he also became the official supplier to the Royal House of Savoy, which once ruled Piedmont, as well as becoming “The Only Supplier to the Duke of Abruzzi’s Arctic Expedition to the North Pole.”

Burlotto’s most famous wine is their Barolo Monvigliero, which is made in a unique style as far as Piedmont wines go. The 100% Nebbiolo grapes are pressed by foot and undergo whole-cluster fermentation. The maceration is a jaw-dropping 60 days (21 days usually being the norm), and yet despite it all, the wine is a juggernaut of elegance.  Today, Fabio Alessandria (G.B. Burlotto’s great-great grandson is the winemaker), and continues the family’s old-world method of winemaking.

These are traditional, pure wines for those who love Giacosa, Mascarello and Conterno.


Grown exposed to the Alps winds, this Nebbiolo comes from the coolest growing zone in the Barolo appellation. The Nebbiolo is made from the younger vines (between 10 and 20 years) of the Monvigliero and Acclivi crus.  The difference between the Burlotto Nebbiolo and their famed Baroli is a shorter time in wood. The wine ages for 2 ½ years in Slavonian and Allier large oak casks.

Its vibrant red color is reminiscent of a fine Burgundy, with flavors of Morello cherry, violets, and with medium acidity and palate weight. Lingering notes of wood spice, rose petal, and hint of orange peel on the finish defines it as Nebbiolo. This has enough heft to accompany roasts, but juicy enough for a well-made burger, so it could easily become your house wine, or stow a bottle of this in your cellar for a year and reap the benefits.

$24.95 750ml [301668] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


The 2012 Burlotto Barbera D'Alba comes from various vineyards in the village of Verduno on a mixture of calcareous and limestone soils. Its nose is exotic with a beautifully vibrant bouquet of blackberry, cigar box, and freshly tilled Earth. This medium bodied velvety wine finishes with a bright acids and a persistent finish. The Burlotto Barbera d’Alba is a substantial wine that can be consumed young, but will evolve magnificently in the bottle.

$19.98 750ml [301650] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


A rare bird for us to see, the Rose by Burlotto is comprised of 55 % Nebbiolo, 35% Pelaverga and 10% Barbera. Its color is petal pink with brilliant ruby reflections. The bouquet is fresh, with rose hips, mineral and wild strawberry, The palate is dry but rich with red berry fruit supported by bright raspberry acidity, and smooth sweet light tannins that flowing into a clean fresh berry fruit finish. This is a great wine to pair with a Caprese salad, grilled chicken or just having with cheese and cured meats. Delightful and delicious.

$17.95 750ml [303881] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

An Impressive Lineup of Unbeatable Values!

Two years ago we discovered the Viña Ventisquero line from Chile.  At the time we wrote, “WOW, what a lineup-- pure, multi-layered wines at unbeatable values,” adding several wines across many price points. At a recent trade show, we tasted the full line again and knew it was time to buy up, but this time we were most impressed with “the best of the best” selections from the “Grey” Gran Riserva tier and a few prestige bottlings. Ventisquero owns over 4,000 acres across top growing areas in Chile, from Casablanca, Maipo, Apalta, and more. The “Grey” wines represent the best blocks in the best vineyard from Ventisquero’s vast holdings. Winemaker Felipe Tosso is a star in Chile, but for these higher tier wines benefit from the added assistance of consultant John Duval, famed as the man entrusted to make Penfolds Grange for over 20 years. This collection is impressive and drinks well above their price tags that seem downright modest in the American market.

PLEASE JOIN US AT THE WINE BAR: FRIDAY, JULY 25th! Luciano Fiori Donoso will be visiting from Viña Ventisquero to taste these great wines with you.


The Leyda Valley is a tiny sub-zone inside the coastal San Antonio Valley that developed a reputation a decade ago as the first truly great spot for Pinot Noir in Chile.  The climate resembles Santa Barbara as the cold Pacific waters are just 5 miles away from this vineyard. Look for firm red currant fruit with raspberry, black plum, and blueberry-- pretty Pinot for sure.

$16.95 750ml [383110] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


This is one of a handful of great Carmenere wines from Chile that will turn heads with Cab drinkers.  The Carmenere grape was famously mistaken for Merlot in Chile and planted widely across the country for decades.  This mistake persisted until the 1990s, but Carmenere is tricky and slow to ripen, nothing like Merlot in the vineyard. Ventisquero told us they waited a full month after picking Cabernet to pick their Carmenere.  Their patience with this temperamental grape shows with a bold and fiery wine.  Blackcurrant and blackberry fruit plays off fresh cracked peppercorn, sweet tobacco and black chocolate.

$16.95 750ml [383199] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


Again, the “Grey” Gran Riserva tier from Ventisquero show well above their price point.  It’s rare to say any Cab under $20 requires aging, but this has really benefited from an extra year in bottle.  The 2009 was a huge hit in our store and the 2010 is similarly impressive.  The entry here shows blackcurrant and brambly currant leaf character in a classic Cabernet vein mixed with blueberry, savory herbal spice and warm chocolaty oak.

$16.95 750ml [381544] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

VENTISQUERO “GREY” 2012 “GCM” (Garnacha-Cariñena-Mataro)

The Apalta Valley is a small dog-leg valley branching off the much larger Colchagua Valley, but it may be the most glamorous and desirable region in Chile right now.  Ventisquero’s parcel sits on a slope of exposed granite and river stones directly uphill from the famed Clos Apalta vineyard.  This Grenache-based wine shows the varietal’s core prettiness with pomegranate and exuberant red cherry. Zesty, mouth-filling, and purely delicious.

$16.95 750ml [383522] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


While Ventisquero’s Felipe Tosso and famed winemaker John Duval collaborate on all the Ventisquero wines from the “Grey” label on up, “Vertice” is their special project together.  “Vertice” comes from the steepest, highest two ridges of the Apalta Vineyard and combines equal measure of Carmenere (Felipe’s specialty) & Syrah (John Duval’s signature variety).  The result is a wine that is both inky and immensely full-bodied and graceful with surprisingly pretty notes of violets and boysenberry.  The stony, granite-based soils show most clearly in this wine with a long mineral finish and firm, fine-grained structure.

$34.95 750ml [383113] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


As the former head winemaker for Penfolds, John Duval’s career has been spent making some of the finest Syrahs in the world and “Pangea” is his signature wine at Ventisquero.  The vineyard site is rocky and dramatic, chiseled row by row into the hillside.  The result is another level of winemaking in Chile-- yes, the wine is full and dark; suffused with blueberry, pepper, spice and black olive.  However, the nobility of the Syrah grape is also in notes of dried herbs, dried flowers, delicate red fruit and a haunting prettiness underneath the all that heft.  Some Syrahs miss these subtler notes, but John Duval brings it all together beautifully in this wine.

$54.98 750ml [383377] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

High Score, Low Price and Amazing Quality!

Melville has become a nucleus for Rhone & Burgundy varietals from Santa Rita Hills. Nestled in the heart of Santa Barbara County, Melville has always focused on their vineyards, knowing that the vineyard is where great wine begins! After studying at U.C. Davis, brothers Brent & Chad, who manage the family’s estate vineyards, focused on giving winemaker Greg Brewer (also of Brewer-Clifton fame) the best fruit they could possibly produce. In turn, Greg has crafted wines that receive high scores and rave reviews year-in and year-out…and this year is no different! As always, their Pinot’s are a prodigious effort; medium-bodied & richly nuanced and oh so polished!

Quantity is limited so don't hesitate to order. First come, first served.


ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - “Crushed red berries, mint, flowers and cinnamon lift from the glass in the 2012 Pinot Noir Estate Sta. Rita Hills. This is one of the most polished, refined and aromatically expressive wines I have tasted from Melville. What a gorgeous, radiant and totally sexy wine this is.

$29.99 750ml [241360] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Last Call on a Robert Parker 93 Point Spanish Red!

One of the most sought-after pieces of land in Ribera del Duero, the estate of Villacreces sits next to Vega Sicilia, perhaps (historically) the most famous property in the Spanish region. There is written evidence that the first vines were planted on the estate in the 13th Century. During the 14th Century, it was run by Saint Pedro de Villacreces and, later on, with its perfect conditions for prayer and retreat, it became a monastery. In the 20th Century, the property belonged to a wealthy aristocratic family from Valladolid, who used to spend their holidays and weekends there. In the early 1970s, 100 acres of vineyard were planted, which has now been increased to 150.

In 2003, the Anton family - owners of a Rioja bodega and one of Spain’s most famous Michelin starred restaurants in the Basque country – purchased the estate and invested in revitalizing both the estate and the vineyards. The property is situated at 2,300 feet above sea level on poor soils comprised of lime, gravel, sand and quartz which naturally keep yields low (the estate averages 1.6 tons per acre). The proximity to the Duero river helps protect the vines from and reduce the effects of the frosts that are common in the Ribera del Duero.

Quantity is limited so don't hesitate to order. First come, first served.


ROBERT PARKER 93 POINTS - "This blend of 90% Tempranillo and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon emerges from a vineyard situated adjacent to one of the famous vineyards utilized to produce Spain’s greatest red wine, Vega Sicilia. Made from relatively old vines, the 2012 Pruno is a sexy, opulent, voluptuously textured effort that spent 12 months in two-year-old French oak barrels. Reminiscent of a baby Vega Sicilia, it possesses a dense ruby/purple color as well as notes of high-class, unsmoked cigar tobacco, creme de cassis, licorice, graphite and spice box. Full-bodied, deep, velvety textured, lush and heady, at $20 a bottle, it is another sensational bargain from Eric Solomon. Enjoy it over the next 5-6 years."

$16.98 750ml [381554] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

93-99 Points for L’Aventure’s Paso Robles Masterpieces!

L’Aventure has become one of the superstars of Paso Robles wine country.  Proprietor & winemaker Stephan Asseo uses a combination of time tested techniques along with modern knowledge to create some of the best Cabernet and Syrah blends in the state!  L’Aventure’s soils are calcareous limestone, which is ideal for growing these premium wine grapes, as evident by its neighbors such as Booker and Turley.  This label has been a darling of wine critic Robert M. Parker, Jr. and his publication Wine Advocate, and the reviews for this overachieving winery have just been released!  The Wine Advocate review on the L’Aventure wines state that the wines “have impeccable purity and texture, as well as brilliant overall focus and structure that will allow them to evolve gracefully. Make no mistake about it though, these are all big, ripe wines; I find them utterly compelling and hard to resist.  Again, L’Aventure has garnered some of the highest scores, and we’re happy to offer up this “duo of darlings” to you.

Supplies are very limited so don't hesitate to order. First come, first served.


WINE ADVOCATE 93-95+ POINTS - "Moving onto the 2012 Barrels, which across the board are superb, the 2012 Optimus should certainly match or exceed the incredible 2011. Full-bodied, seamless and downright sexy, with classy berry fruit, licorice, violets and spring flowers, it should be approachable on release and have a decade of longevity. Drink 2014-2022." A blend of 53% Syrah, 38% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 9% Petit Verdot.

$41.98 750ml [236820] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


WINE ADVOCATE 96-99 POINTS - One of the best barrel samples I was able to taste during my trip through the region, the 2012 Estate Cuvee displays incredible purity and elegance with full-bodied richness and depth. A blend of 60% Syrah, 28% Cabernet Sauvignon and 12% Petit Verdot that’s a selection of the top plots of the estate, it possesses brilliant aromas and flavors of cassis, lead pencil, spice box and licorice to so with a seamless, integrated and perfectly balanced palate. Loaded with potential, I can’t wait to taste this from bottle next year! Drink 2016-2032.”

$79.98 750ml [277731] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button 3 Bottle Limit

Another High Scoring Red from Charles Smith!

Growing up just outside of Sacramento, California, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Charles Smith began craving worldly travel at a young age due to his Welsh mother and French father. As soon as he had the chance, Charles decided to move to Denmark. While in Scandinavia, Charles spent the next nine years managing rock bands and concert tours throughout Europe, including the famed Danish duo, The Ravonettes. Wining and dining while on the road became a catalyst for his passion of wine, which ultimately triggered the career he has today.

A self-taught winemaker, Charles is a true artisan and a pioneer in the wine world. In 2008, K Vintners was recognized by Wine & Spirits magazine as one of the “Best New Wineries of the Last Ten Years,” and as “Winery of the Year” in their annual buying guide. In 2009 Food & Wine magazine awarded Charles “Winemaker of the Year” and in 2010 Seattle Magazine recognized Charles as their “Winemaker of the Year.”


WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "We finished the tasting with the two Bordeaux blends. About as sexy and voluptuous as they come in the vintage, the 2011 Merlot Northridge Vineyard gives up loads of plum, violets, cassis, graphite and hints of spring flowers to go with a full-bodied, hedonistically styled profile on the palate. Possessing no hard edges, yet solid concentration and sweet tannin, it will put a smile on anyone’s face over the coming 7-8 years.

One of the highlight (and largest) tastings for this report, the team at K Vintners consists of wild man himself, Charles Smith, and Andrew Latta and Brennon Leighton. Despite the rock star persona, when it comes to the wines, these guys are dead serious, source grapes from some of the top sites, and simply get out of the way once they’re in the winery. All of the single vineyard Syrahs are fermented with native yeasts and 100% whole cluster, and see an extended time in mostly neutral French oak puncheons. Starting with the 2013s, I was able to taste a few from barrel, and they showed plenty of fruit, with ripe, textured personalities. This was a hot vintage, and the style is closer to the 2012s than the 2011s. Moving to the 2012s, these were all still in barrel at the time of this tasting. As with most producers, these are a step up over the 2011s and possesses gorgeous richness while still showing the purity and freshness that’s common in the vintage. The 2011s, which were all tasted out of bottle, come from a cooler, more difficult vintage, yet show solid ripeness and good textures. As a whole, the 2012s are certainly stronger, but these are no slouches either."

$39.99 750ml [234320] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

The Exquisite Wines of Aldo Conterno!

We are excited to be able to offer our Barolo lovers access to the exquisite wines of Aldo Conterno on a pre-sale basis. The Conterno family has been making wine since the 1700’s and Aldo Conterno is regarded as one of the greatest producers of Piedmont. As a young man, Aldo worked with his brother, Giovanni before striking out on his own in 1969. He developed a reputation as an innovator with a focus on quality and attention to detail and passed this dynamism on to his three sons who now run the business

Aldo’s small property on the hill of Bussia in Monforte D’Alba has grown into a marvelous 25 hectare estate. The Aldo Conterno Barolo’s are intense and concentrated examples of perfectly ripened Nebbiolo grapes from superior terroirs, grown at a gentle altitude that allows for optimum finesse. The three top ‘Crus’ on the famed Bussia slope produce the three flagship Barolos of the estate.

ALL the wines in the line-up are wonderful examples of quality Barolo made in an excellent vintage. In fact, 2010 is widely regarded as perhaps the greatest vintage in Piedmont in two decades! The wines have plenty of structure, will benefit from cellaring and are highly collectible. Although relatively young at this point, the balance, concentration and length offer a preview of even greater things to come for those who are patient.

These wines are excepted to arrive in October of 2014. Quantities are limited so don't hesitate to order. First come, first served.

Pre-sale Wines are Expected to Arrive October 2014


ANTONIO GALLONI 93+ POINTS - “The 2010 Barolo Bussia is gorgeous and super-classic in every way. Dark red cherry, plum, spice, new leather and tobacco are some of the many notes that take shape in the glass. The 2010 is a beautiful version of the Bussia, with less of the approachability of some previous vintages, but tons of potential for the future. There is a lot to look forward to here. This is one of the best versions of the Bussia I can remember tasting. The 2010 stands out for its precision and crystalline purity. Readers looking for a great 2010 Barolo that won’t kill the budget should check out the 2010 Bussia. 2020 – 2035”

$71.99 750ml [303990] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


ANTONIO GALLONI 95 POINTS - “The most open of the 2010s, the 2010 Colonnello has a wonderful immediacy to it. Dark cherry, plum, cloves, new leather, menthol and a hint of oak. Firm yet well-integrated tannins provide the backbone for a core of explosive fruit in this racy, extroverted wine. The Colonnello marries the round, supple personality of this site with the classic sense of structure and tannin of the year. If I were going to open any of Conterno’s 2010s before age ten it would be the Colonnello, but even then I would try to hold off. Quite simply, this is one of the very best Colonnellos in recent memory. 2020 – 2030”

JAMES SUCKLING 95 POINTS - "A fabulous nose of minerals, fresh roses, dark fruits. This is full bodied with a powerful structure of gorgeous subtle fruit and polished tannins. Great wine for 2010. Better in 2017."

$129.99 750ml [303649] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


ANTONIO GALLONI 97 POINTS - “Conterno’s 2010 Barolo Cicala boasts razor-sharp minerality and acidity in support of the beautifully delineated, resonant fruit. Rose petals, tar, licorice, dark cherries and tobacco are some of the many nuances that burst from the glass in an exotic, intense Barolo loaded with class and personality. The Cicala is going to require considerable patience, but it is a stunner. Vivid and alive through to the finish, the Cicala is easily one of the wines of this great Barolo vintage. 2025 – 2040”

$129.99 750ml [303288] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


ANTONIO GALLONI 96+ POINTS - “The 2010 Barolo Romirasco stands out for its pure texture and balance. Today the 2010 is a bit compact, but that is not at all surprising given its underlying structure and very recent bottling. Those two factors considered, the 2010 Romirasco is a wine with tremendous future. The style is a little more sensual and less severe than the Cicala, with generally softer contours, all which should give it a slight upper hand in terms of accessibility 2025 – 2040”

JAMES SUCKLING 99 POINTS - "This is a big and powerful wine with incredible depth and power. Full body, with fabulous texture. It lasts for minutes on the finish. It shows dark fruits, hazelnut, chocolate and minerals. This is a monopole vineyard of 3.8 hectares. One of the wines of the vintage. So energetic and tangy. All in the finish. Better in 2018."

$169.99 750ml [303722] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Spottswoode Sauvignon Blanc; Limited and Just Landed!

Last year we got a 2fer on Spottswoode!  Not only did their 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon receive 100 points from esteemed wine critic Robert Parker, but we also finally received enough Sauvignon Blanc to feature them on our own Top Wine list for 2013! This year's release of the Sauvignon Blanc just landed, and when we cracked open a bottle, we think this may be even better than last year's release!

Grapes from Hyde, Inkgrade, Stagecoach, and a handful of other carefully-selected vineyards join Spottswoode Estate fruit in the composition of this wine, a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Sauvignon Musque. Spottswoode's method of fermentation—using a combination of small stainless barrels, French oak and concrete, egg-shaped cuves—means that they manage up to 100 individual fermentations each year. This technique results in a complex, rich, and vibrant wine that stands well on its own, pairs beautifully with food, and is further enhanced with a bit of cellaring.


One of our favorite domestic Sauvignon Blancs at any price point, the 2013 is textured and aromatic, backed up by a wonderful, vibrant acidity. The nose exudes lime zest and lemon pith, along with characters of ripe peach, honeydew melon, and grapefruit, with a touch of vanillin and pear. The palate is long with hints of meringue and brioche, with citrus components in the finish. A beautifully balanced and lovely wine!

$35.95 750ml [262630] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

One of Spain's Best Values at Over 90 Points and Under $20!

The “Dream Team” of the Priorat have done it again... Scoring 91 Points BOTH from Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar, and The Wine Advocate himself, Robert Parker!

2011 Mas d'en Compte Black Slate Porrera is a result of the efforts of  legendary winemaking consultant Philippe Cambie, one of the most sought-after winemakers in the  Rhone, along with negociant Michel Tardieu, of Tardieu-Laurent fame, with an assist by American importer Eric Solomon, who is responsible for helping produce Priorat’s monumental wine, Clos Erasmus --alongside their winemaker, Daphne Glorian (now Mrs. Eric Solomon). With pedigree like this, Black Slate Porrera a screaming deal for under $20.

Black Slate is a blend of 60% Grenache (from 60-year-old vines) and 40% Carignan (from 80-year-old vines) and comes from the Priorat,  a mountainous region in southwest Catalonia, Spain, which can produce  powerful, flavorful red wines. The area is characterized by its warm climate and unique terroir of black slate and quartz soil known as llicorella. This type of soil retains very little water so vines are smaller than usual and produce smaller yields, but the grapes have exceptional concentration and depth.

The dark, lush fruits of Black Slate Porrera are enough to give some Châteauneuf-du-Papes a run for their money-- thanks to the help of Philippe Cambie, who has brought his expertise to Châteauneuf-du-Pape estates such as Clos St. Jean, Domaine Giraud, and Le Vieux Donjon, just to name a few.  In fact, Cambie consults with over fifty clients. This larger-than-life former Rugby player makes extraordinary Grenache blends, with his efforts translating just as well on the southern slopes of the Pyrenees as they do in his old stomping grounds of the Southern Rhone.  Philippe was named Robert Parker's Oenologist of the Year in 2010.

Cambie's partner is Rhône Valley’s famed negociant, Michel Tardieu who is well known for his skill in working with old vine vineyards, producing some of the area’s most profound and complex wines.  His wines display pure fruit power while expressing terroir, making Tardieu one of the most highly acclaimed negociants in the Rhone.

Mas d'en Compte makes wine from  several of the village crus within the Priorat. Our Black Slate offering to you comes from the 2011 bottling from the village of Porrera.

The color of this wine is a deep, opaque eggplant with a purple edged rim.  Black Slate is medium to full-bodied with medium acids.  The wine is bursting with a bouquet and palate of Baker’s Chocolate, savory Santa Rosa plum, and chocolate covered cherries.  The wine is dense  and finishes with tremendous length and a seamless finish.  This is a wine that can be savored on its own or accompanied by a big juicy steak or short ribs.


ROBERT PARKER 91 POINTS - "In spite of the fact that the 2011 Black Slate is produced from 60% Grenache (60-year-old vines) and 40% Carignan (80-year-old vines) aged 12 months in tank, foudre and used barrels, it tastes like a sexy, open-knit, lush, silky Pomerol. Loads of black currant and black cherry fruit, licorice, spice box and Christmas fruitcake emerge from this beautifully rich wine. Medium to full-bodied, heady and succulent, it is best drunk over the next 5-6 years."

STEPHEN TANZER'S INTERNATIONAL WINE CELLAR 91 POINTS - "Opaque ruby. Redcurrant, dried cherry, minerals and licorice on the nose. Rich and supple on entry, then more taut and linear in the mid-palate, with nicely delineated flavors of bitter cherry, cassis, dark chocolate and anise. The finish is focused, smoky and persistent, with fine-grained tannins adding grip."

$17.98 750ml [381825] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

GKG Cabernet, Maybe The Best Wine Made By Orin Swift’s Dave Phinney!

For over four decades, Greg Gorman has continued to master the art of photography. From celebrity portraits and advertising campaigns to magazine layouts and fine art work, Greg has developed and showcased a discriminating and unique style in his profession. Greg’s work documents that peculiar obsession of the 21st century celebrity. One day he received a call inquiring whether or not he might be interested in photographing a project with Dave Phinney of Orin Swift fame. Being a huge fan of Mercury Head, one of their extraordinary wines, Greg was anxious to meet the man behind the juice. He liked the concept for his new wine, Papillon, and from there the collaboration began. Greg and Dave completed the shoot photographing Vince Tofanelli's hands before heading over to Dave's for dinner...you know that label!

The following year Greg approached Dave in regards to helping Greg make his own wine. Dave not only agreed but was very encouraging. Dave really pushed Greg by bringing in all the samples blind and tasting through the different varietals until Greg had found the various components to make his blend.

Now, just before this wine was released, we heard from a few “insiders” that this was the best Cabernet that Dave Phinney has ever produced. That’s a pretty big statement, especially knowing all the wines that Dave has made over the years. So as soon as the wine landed, we opened up a bottle and had the entire attending wine staff taste it. We couldn’t believe it…this is, in our honest opinion, the best Cabernet Sauvignon we have ever tasted from Dave Phinney and Orin Swift Cellars!


A blend of 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc, 1% Merlot, and 1% Malbec, the aromatics offer up a combination of black currant and espresso with an underlying hint of toasted oak. Full bodied with strong flavors of black fruit, currants and cherries flood your palette on entry with further hints of espresso, dark chocolate and plums playing on your mid palette-coating the roof of your mouth with elegant integrated flavors of blackberry and cassis. Great acidity and sweet firm tannins round out a long finish and certainly make this vintage very age worthy. Only 268 cases were produced!

$109.95 750ml [225490] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

An Amazing Italian Red!

The history of the San Leonardo estate weaves across the centuries with tales of courtly marriages, knights and noble lords, medieval warfare, monastic seclusion, trade in exotic silks and more. In AD 588 the Principessa Teodolinda, daughter of the King of Bavaria married Autari, King of the Lombards within the walls of the property-- one of many such stories. Winemaking has always been part of San Leonardo from the beginning, but Bordeaux-style wines based on Cabernet Sauvignon have been the obsession of owner Marchese Carlo Geurrieri Gonzaga for the last fifty years. Is there such a thing as an “old-school” Bordeaux-blend from the Italian Alps? The estate’s flagship, simply called San Leonardo, has made a legendary name for itself in Italy, winning the prestigious Tre Bicchieri award 15 times, nearly every year it has been produced.

The lovely 2009 Terre di San Leonardo that we are offering here is a mirror image of that great wine, made in the tradition of Bordeaux’s second wines. Look for blueberry and black cherry fruit blending smoothly with notes of cedar, forest floor, wild herbs and dried violet. This is not a wine based on extract or power; the fruit retains a savory quality and never turns jammy or liqueur-like. Fans of this great Italian estate will be excited to know that all of the best fruit from 2009 is blended into the 2009 Terre di San Leonardo—there is no flagship 2009 San Leonardo, only a better-than-ever 2nd wine.


Brilliant ruby red, with attractive depth and decent length. The aromas are alcohol and fruit-rich when the wine is young, later mellowing with bottle age into ripe plum fruit layered over a faintly grassy background note. Dry, soft and well-balanced on the palate, it reveals a pleasing bitterish twist in the finish. Good aromatic length.

$15.98 750ml [303611] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Two Fantastic New Whiskies!


As a continuation of its entry into the rye whiskey category, the Jack Daniel Distillery is offering a limited release of Jack Daniel’s Rested Tennessee Rye, a follow-up to its 2012 Unaged Tennessee Rye offering. This marks the distillery’s first barrel-matured expression in the rye category. A one-time offering, Jack Daniel’s Rested Rye is scheduled to be available in select U.S. markets beginning in April.

Jack Daniel’s Rested Rye is crafted using the same Cave Spring water from the Jack Daniel’s Hollow, proprietary yeast and charcoal mellowing process that’s been used in the distillery’s nearly 150-year-old Tennessee Whiskey recipe. The new recipe is 70 percent rye, 18 percent corn and 12 percent malted barley.

“Having spent two cycles of the Tennessee seasons resting in the barrelhouse, we think consumers will be surprised by how much the caramelized wood sugars from our new, lightly toasted and charred [oak] barrels have imparted to the flavor of the rye,” said Jack Daniel’s Master Distiller Jeff Arnett.

$49.99 750ml [102699] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


WhistlePig "100/100" is a 100 proof, 100 percent rye whiskey, aged for at least ten years in new American oak barrels. It was released in the summer of 2010 to great critical acclaim, receiving numerous distinctions such as the "highest ever" designation from Wine Enthusiast Magazine and "highest recommendation" from the Spirits Journal.

These extraordinary honors "humble and set a high bar" for Master Distiller Dave Pickerell who spent over a year on an exhaustive search of North America for the best rye whiskey in the world. Dave feels that "100/100" embodies the perfect combination of proof, purity, and age -- hitting what he calls "the sweet spot" in all three categories. WhistlePig Straight Rye Whiskey is hand bottled at the WhistlePig Farm Distillery in Shoreham, Vermont and is available in a limited quantity.

WhistlePig’s Master Distiller, Dave Pickerell, a luminary in the world of whiskey, is one of the nation’s preeminent master distillers. Before joining WhistlePig, Dave spent 14 years as Maker's Mark Master Distiller in Loretto, Kentucky. However, he has since joined the WhistlePig team in order to create what he regards as his magnum opus: WhistlePig 100% Straight Rye Whiskey. To this end, we are proud to report that our first whiskey, a 10yr old Straight Rye Whiskey, was awarded by Wine Enthusiast its"highest ever" rating for rye whiskey at 96 points. HI-TIME CELLARS BARREL (BIG FAT JUICY PIG) TRAYCE HOLLIDAY

$63.99 750ml [109470] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

A Delicious 90 Point Chardonnay Under $10!

Started in 1984 (Walla Walla's fourth founded winery), Waterbrook is known for fruit-forward, food-friendly wines--primarily Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. With more than 150 combined best buys and critical scores of 90 points or higher, Winemaker John Freeman works with some outstanding vineyards in the Walla Walla Valley and throughout the greater Columbia Valley.

This Columbia Valley wine was selected as our wine of the month almost immediately after showing up on our radar-- as soon as we tasted it, we knew we had the one! The nose is captivating, loaded with tropical fruits, pineapple, butterscotch, lemon curd and a pinch of brown spices. The palate is lush with a rich, viscous mouthfeel leading to, again, tropical fruits, citrus rind, plantain and wood spice, all uplifted with focused acidity. Easy-drinking but fairly serious for such a bargain price, this will ease the heat and pair perfectly with warm-weather meals and gatherings. Whether touring Washington Wine Country or opening a bottle of Waterbrook wine, as Freeman says, "This is what Washington tastes like." Cheers!


WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS - "Vibrant and expressive, balancing complex pear, quince and clotted cream flavors on a pinpoint of bright acidity, with a harmonious finish. Drink now through 2017."

$9.95 750ml [271580] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

One of the “Best Reserva Old Vines” Ever!

Situated on the right bank of the Douro River, between the towns of Régua and Pinhão, Quinta do Crasto has a privileged location in the Demarcated Region of the Douro. Quinta do Crasto has belonged to the family of Leonor and Jorge Roquette for over a century. Their passion for wine making has contributed to Quinta de Crasto´s growing national and international reputation. As the name suggests, this wine is made from old vines with an average age of 70 years, including as many as 30 different grape varieties.

The Douro Valley 2011 vintage is being heralded as the greatest of the last 100 year or more. “I believe it impossible to think of any other wine region anywhere in the world that has produced better wine in this year,” said British wine critic Jancis Robinson.


WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "The 2011 Reserva Old Vines (around 70 years of age on average) spent 18 months in 65% new and 35% used barriques (85% French, the rest American). The used barriques were previously new on the 2010 Reserva Old Vines. About the only bad thing you can say about this is that it is too marked by oak in its youth, but that is always true when it is young. That will become much better in time. Some cellaring will provide additional complexity as well, but it is otherwise quite approachable now even if not showing us all that it has to give. For my money, this is easily on the short list as a contender for “Best Reserva Old Vines” ever, because of its combination of concentration, lift, structure and superb balance. This is not the wine in the lineup that will always make you go “wow.” There is not a hint of bombast. However, it does everything beautifully, and balance is its hallmark. Even as it tightens with air, it proves how harmonious it is, showing off its finesse, crispness and focus. The fruit always seems fresh and lively here, never ponderous. The next day it hardly seemed changed. This should age pretty nicely. If all that is not enough, it is pretty tasty, too, a wine that will be hard to dislike on all fronts. Considering the price point, this is a “can’t miss” buy. There were 93,000 bottles produced. Drink now-2026."

$34.98 750ml [383633] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Duke Bourbon Bottle Signing!

John Wayne was a regular customer at the 'old' Hi-Time (when we had the store on 17th and Irvine), and his son Ethan has carried on the tradition. Ethan got together with four friends (one you may know from his wines-- Jayson Woodbridge of Hundred Acre!) to honor his father is a very special way.

The Style of DUKE Bourbon was inspired by bottles from John Wayne’s personal whiskey collection, preserved for over 50 years and only recently discovered. Meticulously blended to reflect The Duke’s preferred whiskey flavor profile from tasting notes left behind during the time he was planning his own distillery.


Distilled the old-fashioned way; hand crafted in small batches and aged in new hand-built heavily charred American Oak barrels. A selection of 5- to 10-year-old whiskeys are chosen barrel by barrel and blended by hand before the DUKE Bourbon reaches the bottle, and ultimately, you. Celebrate America's independence by toasting one of her brightest stars-- a bigger-than-life icon of the silver screen who like to share a drop of the good stuff with friends and family.

$29.99 750ml [105056] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

A Fantastic High Scoring Malbec!

TintoNegro, meaning “black wine” in Spanish, is meant to celebrate the essence of Malbec in Mendoza. Known for its dark, blackish color, Malbec is definitely a Tinto Negro. TintoNegro wines are meant to reflect the heart and soul of Malbec in Mendoza. The portfolio explores the terroirs of Mendoza where Malbec does best, gradually isolating unique vineyard sites and winemaking techniques which can showcase the heights of concentration and complexity to which Malbec can aspire.

TintoNegro was born of the long time friendship and professional collaboration of Alejandro Sejanovich and Jeff Mausbach, colleagues at Bodega Catena Zapata for almost 15 years. As Wine Education Director for Catena, Jeff traveled the world preaching the gospel of the unique character of  high altitude Malbec from Mendoza, explaining the character and expression of its many different terroirs. As Vineyard Director at Catena, Alejandro had extensive, first hand experience growing Malbec in all of these terroirs, from the fruit driven, easy drinking style of Lujan de Cuyo to the concentrated, complex profile La Consulta. His intimate knowledge of the top vineyards in each region means TintoNegro wines are made from only the best fruit each area has to offer.


WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "The most expensive effort, but still a great value, is the 2012 Malbec Limestone Block. There are 500 cases of this wine that was aged nine months in French oak From a 4,000 foot elevation and very rocky soils, it tips the scales at a boisterous 14.5% natural alcohol. Its inky/blue/purple color is followed by a sweet perfume of crushed rock minerality, acacia flowers, blackberries and cassis as well as a hint of vanillin. This powerful, concentrated, impressively endowed Malbec should drink well for 5-7 years."

$14.99 750ml [381204] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

“Italy's Single Greatest White Wine Buy” Comes Through Again!

Last  year, Ian D’Agata, of Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar gave the 2012 Colle Stefano Verdicchio di Metalica an outstanding score of 94 Points and stated “I think it is probably Italy's single greatest white wine buy.”

Well, the 2013 vintage just landed in our hands. It has not yet been scored, but having tasted last years and tasting this years, we were extremely pleased and delighted. This is a sizzling white hot summer sipper not to be missed!

The Verdicchio from Colle Stefano Verdicchio, has been a mainstay in our cellar for years. This organic white comes from the little town of Matelica is in the Marche region, just east of Umbria. Winemaker Fabio Marchionni took over the family vineyards from his father a few years ago, having just graduated from the new enology school in Ancona and done his apprenticeship in Germany. He keeps yields extremely low, less than forty hectoliters per hectare, and makes wine with painstaking care. You could eat off the floor of the winery (and hygiene is very important when making this kind of white wine).

Using 100% estate fruit, Fabio makes less than four thousand cases of Verdicchio, which he used to bottle, cork and label by hand in his tiny cantina (now he's sprung for a bottling machine). This wine is racy, vivid, and excellent with all kinds of seafood dishes. It is fermented and matured entirely in stainless steel (no oak) and does not undergo malolactic fermentation. His wines consistently win at least two glasses from the Gambero Rosso (since the 2001 vintage) and has twice won a perfect award of three glasses.


This wine is dry and light-bodied with crisp acidity and good structure. This wine is charming on the nose with a bouquet of nectarines, chamomile and lemon blossoms, and equally pleasing on the palate with flavors of white peach, kiwi fruit, and kaffir lime. This wine is vibrant and quenching at every sip with pleasing minerality. The finish is long and enhanced by its lively acidity. This is a wine that would pair well with grilled halibut, salads, or shrimp on the barbie. Delicious!

$15.95 750ml [302261] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Limited Edition Asom Broso Bottles with World Cup Teams!

For a short time we are pre-selling limited edition bottles of Asom Broso Silver and Extra Anejo with the USA, Mexico, Brazil, or Germany World Cup teams on the bottle. Please put the name of the team you would like on the bottle in the customer notes field at check out. Bottles will take 1 week to ship or pick up and are available while supplies last. First come, first served.


Asom Broso El Platino (Silver) -Best served neat and chilled or as the basis for many ultra-premium mixed drinks -Recommended mixed drink: AsomRita MargaritaOpening nose emits zesty scents of fennel, licorice, anise and dried herbs; aeration brings out off-dry elements of milk chocolate, agave juice, olive brine, rye bread and green olive. Palate entry is peppery and astringent then at midpalate flavors of sweet pepper and ripe agave meld. Concludes toasty and mellow.

$35.99 750ml [164455] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Extra aged at least 5 years in French Oak casks - Comparable to an aged Cognac or Armagnac
-Smooth and Mellow, sipping Tequila
-Best served at or below room temperature in a snifter
-Named "Best of the Best" by the prestigious Robb Report.
$159.99 750ml [164347] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

A Fantastic Deal on a High Scoring Red!

Penfolds Bin 28 offers a showcase of warm-climate Australian Shiraz – ripe, robust and generously flavored. First made in 1959, Bin 28 is named after the famous Barossa Valley Kalimna Vineyard purchased by Penfolds in 1945 and from which the wine was originally sourced. Today, Bin 28 is a multi-region, multi-vineyard blend, with the Barossa Valley always well represented. It provides a substantial proportion of the fruit for this vintage.


WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - “Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2010 Kalimna Bin 28 Shiraz presents lovely, expressive blueberry, black raspberry and black cherries notes highlighted by violets, toast, cinnamon stick and touch of mulberries. Full-bodied and rich, the concentrated fruit is framed by medium levels of rounded tannins, crisp acid and a long, classically-styled finish. Approachable now, it will drink to 2020+.”

Sale $19.95 Normally $24.95 750ml [382821] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Robert Parker 94 Points, This is Sure to Fly Out the Door!

Michael Boulac has been making the wines at Pine Ridge for a relatively short amount of time, but in that time, he has brought their Cabernets from one great height to another! He’s smart… smart enough to know that the more work done in the vineyard, the less he has to do in the winery. This densely planted vineyard has been the heart of the winery since Pine Ridge was founded there in a farmhouse in 1978. Yields are kept very small with the help of their soil, which promotes small berries, which correlates to intense flavors! This wine typically sells out year-after-year on its own merit, but earning a score of 94 points from Robert Parker, this is sure to fly out the door!


ROBERT PARKER 94 POINTS - “From the Stags Leap District (the home base of Pine Ridge), the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon is loaded with notes of dark chocolate, spring flowers, black cherries and black currants. This medium to full-bodied, flavorful, pure wine possesses lots of nobility, intensity and richness, but there is not a hard edge to be found in this beauty. For sheer complexity, it is hard to beat. Moreover, it should drink well for 10-15 years.”

$69.98 750ml [251320] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Come Meet Kathie Lee Gifford!

Kathie Lee says, “It’s well-documented that I’m a wine lover so when I started talking to the Scheid family about making a wine, it felt like the most natural thing in the world. I set out to create wines I would want to drink and serve to friends in my home – an elegant Chardonnay like those I tasted in California in the 1970s and an easy-drinking yet balanced Red Blend.” Heidi Scheid of Scheid Family Wines adds, “What we loved about meeting with Kathie for the first time is how down-to-earth and straightforward she is. She was very clear about her aim – to offer ultra-premium wines at an affordable price. The style she was after was perfectly suited to the Monterey growing region and our own viewpoint.”


Kathy Lee Gifford's 2012 Chardonnay is 100% estate grown and hails from the Scheid family’s vineyards in Monterey County. The Monterey growing region is a slice of Chardonnay heaven, with evening coastal fogs that often linger until mid-morning the following day. This natural cooling effect causes a unique lengthening of the growing season, something that winemakers call “hang time”. Increased hang time leads to more intense flavor development and an enhanced richness of the fruit.

Upon arrival at the winery, the grapes were gently whole-cluster pressed, chilled, and racked clean to a refrigerated stainless steel tank. The juice was slowly fermented at a cool temperature to accentuate the aromatic fruit components. About half of the blend was aged in stainless steel in order to retain the bright fruit flavors and crisp acidity. The other half was aged on 100% French oak to bring a rich texture, complexity and just a hint of buttery creaminess.

The 2012 vintage of Gifft Chardonnay exhibits richness, depth and complexity, balanced by a lively acidity and an essential freshness. Featuring the gorgeous tropical fruit flavors that are the hallmark of Monterey Chardonnays, Gifft Chardonnay strikes the ideal balance between rich and refreshing.

$14.95 750ml [225480] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button


The grapes were destemmed, crushed, and fermented in small lots in open top fermenters. To add complexity and retain character, each variety was fermented separately. During the blending process just prior to bottling, the proportion of each varietal was chosen to accentuate the richness of flavor and maximize depth, complexity, mouthfeel and finish. The addition of a small amount of Muscat Canelli and Riesling, which are white wine grapes, may seem a little odd but it is actually a common practice in red blends to bring out the mid-palate and enhance the fruitiness.

The 2011 vintage of Gifft Red Blend is comprised of 10 different varietals, blended to showcase the fully-integrated bright fruit character of each component. With aromas of blackberry and ripe plum and loads of black fruit on the palate, it exhibits a smooth, silky mouthfeel on a mediumbodied, soft round frame with a touch of vanilla and sweet oak.

$14.95 750ml [225460] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Surprise Deal on a Delicious White Burgundy!!!

Christophe Cordier is a whitewine specialist based in Fuisée known for hunting-out old vines and making Mâcon and Pouilly-Fuisée that rival higher-priced whites from the Côtes de Beaune. At a recent trade show, we tasted the 2012 Cordier Bourgogne Blanc Vielles Vignes and came home happy. We thought we had discovered a hidden gem at $18.99 retail and ordered 5 cases right away. We were happier still with the price when it arrived which was significantly lower than expected. We can now offer it to you at $14.95 instead. This delicious white Burgundy shows the added focus and nerve of the 2012 vintage. Burgundy fans know the 2012s are special, but very limited due to series of weather misfortunes in the early season that reduced the yield in the vineyard again and again. This terrific deal can’t last long.


Ripe orchard fruits show immediately on the nose with nectarine and gentle apricot notes complimented by lemon and green apple. The intensity of the 2012 vintage provides a burst of acidity and minerality that has Chablis-like energy. Zesty and delicious!

Sale $14.95 Normally $18.99 750ml [333607] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Orin Swift's "Machete" Returns!

Dave Phinney started crafting wines under the Orin Swift label back in the late '90s starting with 2 tons of purchased Zinfandel grapes. With his hard work, beautiful winemaking and the creation of the “Prisoner,” Dave’s popularity among wine connoisseurs exploded! Well, Dave has done it again, folks; the wine is absolutely stunning!

Petite Sirah may be winemaker Dave Phinney’s favorite grape varietal and wine. He has been growing and making it since the 2000 vintage. Massive and powerful with intense color and structure, a limited release Petite Sirah blend called “Machete” was launched in 2009. Declassified in 2010 and 2011, it has been reintroduced with new packaging for the highly praised 2012 vintage. The label concept has been two years in the making, and is decidedly unique in its various formats.


A blend of Petite Sirah, Syrah, and Grenache, in the glass, deep, dark bluish-red hues can be seen with a band of ruby on the rim. Uplifted aromatics of ripe blackberries, mulled raspberries, acacia flowers, toasty oak, and herbal notes hit the nose in a pronounced way. Offering up robust flavors during the approach, the mid palate is exposed to an unadulterated array of crushed berries, dark chocolate, black fruits, and a tinge of creamy espresso. Finishing with principle, the glossy tannins are in alignment for immediate enjoyment or some time in the cellar too.

PLEASE NOTE: Machete is bottled with 12 different labels...yes, 12. So the bottle you receive may not be the bottle in the picture.
$47.95 750ml [248370] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button