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A Delicious Dry French Rose Under $9!

The rosés are in bloom as summer sets in-- for our wine of the month, we found a fantastic example from Provence that captured our hearts, palates and July's Wine of the Month slot. The vineyard domain Château de Brigue started in 1970 as a family venture. Following the founder Roger Brun's steps, his son Fernand developed the domain and today, the third generation winemakers and brothers Jean-Michel, Christian, Olivier, and Frederic Brun carry on the tradition in this family owned estate of winery, vineyards, and olive grove. Through the accumulated dedication and know-how of each generation, Château de Brigue raised to an institution of superior winemaking and one of the largest family domains in Provence. The domain extends over 120 hectares (300 acres) of vineyards in the heart of sun basked Côte de Provence wine country along the legendary Nationale 7 road, between Aix en Provence, Cannes, and Saint Tropez in the South of France.

CHATEAU DE BRIGUE 2014 COTE DE PROVENCE ROSE

A blend of 35% Mourvedre, 35% Grenache and 30% Cinsault, both nose and palate are chock full of orchard fruit, peaches and apricots. Scents of dewy grass, lanolin and minerally river water add to the stone fruits when nosing. The texture, when tasting, is quite lush and rich but cleans up quickly with excellent acidity. Additional fruit flavors of watermelon and mixed red berries complement the aforementioned tree fruits as a touch of minerality arises in the long, fruit-filled finish. A foil for the heat, a boon to any picnic or poolside snack or celebration, simple and delicious. There are so many reasons why we love dry French rosés and this one showcases a bunch of them.

$8.99 750ml [345014] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

The Perfect 4th of July Cabernet!

Happy 4th of July! Today, we are featuring an Italian wine which celebrates America’s independence. Although the Mazzei family has been producing wines for 24 generations in Chianti, they are perhaps proudest of the mark their ancestors have left on history. Philip Mazzei was a contemporary and close friend of Thomas Jefferson who was known to enjoy fine wine from around the world and wrote extensively about the subject.

When Jefferson wasn’t writing about wine, he penned other significant documents which you may have heard of. Yes, the Declaration of Independence was pretty significant! The great doctrine “All men are created equal” incorporated into the Declaration of Independence by Thomas Jefferson, was paraphrased from the writings of his friend, Philip Mazzei. As they say, the rest is history!

Philip is an extraordinary wine created to honor the memory of Philip Mazzei – a passionate grape grower, forward thinker, and patriot – and highlight the Mazzei family’s special connection to the American people. The label on the bottle really catches your eye and reflects Philip as he appeared during the American Revolution.

This wine is a blend of the finest Cabernet Sauvignon grapes selected from Mazzei’s Tuscan properties. It is silky smooth with abundant, ripe fruit and is in the perfect spot in its evolution for drinking. Enjoy!

 

MAZZEI 2009 PHILIP

WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - "A pure expression of Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2009 Philip does a great job of capturing the power and intensity of the vintage. This lovely expression is infused with dark cherry and oak spice that wrap softly over the palate. The quality of tannin is also nicely evolved at this point with silky finishes and a firm sense of presence and weight in the mouth."

$39.98 750ml [302490] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Pre-Independence Day Supersize Spirit Sale!

As summer officially began last Sunday, June 21st, and with the 4th of July and all the Independence Day barbecues and celebrations coming next week, we knew it was a perfect time to have a sale on some "party size" (1.75L bottles) spirit bottlings. So, we have 3 vodkas and a 100% Agave silver tequila. The sale is good for the three days (June 27-28-29, 2015) while supplies last. No rain checks.

 

MAKO VODKA 1.75L
There are three key elements to Mako's vodka:

Natural Spring Water - We use the purest natural iron-free limestone spring water sourced from deep-earth aquifers formed during the last ice age. Our natural spring water is so pure that it requires no filtration of any type. It takes the purest water to make the best vodka, and we believe our water is a big part of our quality story.

Hand-Selected Grain - We use the finest hand selected American distiller's grains, including midwestern corn, 2-row and 6-row barley. Our grains are finely inspected and selected for the proper quality profile and moisture content. Then, only whole grains are sorted into temperature controlled and air-cooled bins to achieve the optimal moisture content.

Five Times Distilled - We use the purest distillation process available, which is tall column continuous distillation. Our five-column process is unique, as each column is uniquely configured to achieve a distinct distillate profile with our vodka. Our 5 times distilled product is arguably as pure as any vodka you will taste at any price.

Tasting Notes - A pure clean taste. A slightly creamy nose with a velvety mouthfeel. This satiny smoothness yields to a clean refreshing finish."

Sale $8.99 Retail $39.99 1750ml [106783] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

VOLI LEMON VODKA 1.75L

Hand-crafted by their master distiller in Cognac, France, Voli is a delicate blend of superior grade Beauce wheat and natural Gensac spring water that is five-times distilled and non-chill filtered. Voli is an extra smooth vodka with a superb finish. The Lemon Vodka showcases a crisp lemon taste with aromas of lemon zest and lemon chiffon.

Awarded 92 Points and "Best Buy" from the Beverage Tasting Institute. "Clear. Aromas of lemon zests, lemon chiffon, and rain water on a field of grass with a glycerous, off-dry light-to-medium body and a clean lemon rice candy and porcelain accented finish. A very clean, understated, and natural tasting lemon vodka."

Sale $8.99 Retail $39.99 1750ml [106037] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

PUCKER CITRUS VODKA 1.75L

Even a night out on the dance floor with your friends can feel like a day in the summer sun – if you order the right cocktail. Be sure to ask for one made with Citrus Squeeze and you’ll be soaking up imaginary rays in no time. Pucker Citrus Vodka "Citrus Squeeze" is made with vodka distilled four times with natural flavors added. Make your mouth water with the tantalizing taste and aroma of juicy, just-squeezed oranges.

Sale $10.99 Retail $29.99 1750ml [102914] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

EL CHARRO SILVER 100% AGAVE 1.75L

This is a fantastic deal for a 100% Agave Silver Tequila. The name “El Charro” has a strong cultural connotation among Mexicans that no other brand conveys. Literally speaking, it means Mexican Gentleman Cowboy. The Mexican CHARRO, like his American cowboys counterpart, also rides a horse, confronts hostile environments and because of his extraordinary courage and moral integrity he is considered a hero. But the Mexican CHARRO also entails high nobility, elegance and exceptional equestrian artistic talents. CHARRO is the hero of the most popular Mexican epic stories and films.

As for the Tequila? "White crystalline Tequila, amezcalado flavor, carefully elaborated in our distillery with a double distillation process; 100% agave. This tequila is not subjected to any process of aging or maturation rather than a final resting period before being bottled. El Charro Silver is for those who appreciate the distinctive flavor of pure agave without the mixture of other flavors. El Charro Silver real taste and flavor of the blue agave." Find out more at elcharrotequila.com.

Sale $18.99 Retail $29.99 1750ml [105791] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Wines with Altitude!

We recently sat down with Jose Alberto Zuccardi to enjoy his wines and learn more about his family’s winery. We were thrilled as the Zuccardi’s are taking Argentine winemaking to the next level of quality and refinement by pioneering single vineyard, micro-climate wines in the Uco Valley. Looking forward, customers should begin looking for regional bottlings as well as sub-zones and single vineyard designated bottlings from Argentina as indications of quality. Jose Zucardi’s father originally planted vines in the arid Uco Valley in Mendoza, Argentina. The high altitude vineyard at the foot of the Andes was meant to showcase his irrigation system, which he hoped to sell to others in the agricultural business. Up to that point, the area had been inhospitable to most crops, but the experiment proved to be a success as the grapes flourished, producing outstanding, flavorful wines.

Jose made the wines for many years, but now the primary responsibility belongs to his son, Sebastian. Together, they have brought Argentine wines to new heights and received world-wide recognition for their efforts.

To better understand the soil composition for each plot of land, Sebastian dug numerous holes in their vineyards. This information was used to plant grape varieties in the soils best suited for them. The Zuccardi’s attention to detail extends to all areas of their winemaking with results you can taste in the glass.

His passion is evident in the delicious wines he produces and he likes to say, “The identity of a wine comes from a unique combination of vines, climate, soil and people.” We brought in three terrific wines, showcasing different grapes and the Zuccardi pedigree.

“Emma” is named for Sebastian’s grandmother and is made from 100% Bonarda grapes. It displays wonderful complexity and character, showcasing flowers, spice and abundant fruit. It is outstanding.

ZUCCARDI 2013 'EMMA' BONARDA

Deep ruby with purple highlights. The wine is very expressive with notes of flowers, cherries, blueberries and raspberries and pepper. The palate is medium-bodied with velvety tannins and juicy fruit. This wine shows what Bonarda is capable of and is terrific with food.

$33.95 750ml [382508] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

The ‘Tito’ bottling pays homage to Sebastian’s father and is comprised primarily of Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon. This is one juicy, delicious wine which is definitely a crowd pleaser!

ZUCCARDI 2012 TITO RED BLEND

WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "The nose is clean, subtle, and elegant, with well-integrated oak as well as faint notes of spices and smoke. The palate is elegant and the texture of the tannins clearly reflects the chalky origin of the soils. This calcareous blend offers great purity, freshness, and personality. It is drinking well and should also age. Drink now-2019."

$32.98 750ml [382777] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

Last, but certainly not least we brought in the Alluvional Malbec from the famed Altamira vineyard. This is concentrated with ripe, succulent tannins. The calcium carbonate soils impart a creamy textural elegance. This is very refined and Malbec just doesn’t get much better than this.

ZUCCARDI 2011 ALUVIONAL 'ALTAMIRA'

WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "The 2011 Aluvional Altamira is pure Malbec planted at 1,100 meters in soils with big boulders and a high chalk content in Altamira, which produces serious, elegant but a little backward wines. It opens with shy aromas of black cherries and blueberries, ripe, yet terse, vibrant and very harmonious, then moves on to a medium-bodied palate, that is powerful but without showing it in an obvious way. This is a superb example of the character of Altamira through the Malbec grape. Drink now-2020."

$79.95 750ml [382939] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

The 'Utterly Compelling' 99 Point Dominus 2012 Estate Cabernet-Blend!

Dominus Estate is one of the crown jewels of the Napa Valley; dubbed the “stealth winery” by locals for its amazing architecture. Its owner, Christian Moueix (whose family also runs Chateau Petrus, among others), demands the highest standards, and accepts nothing but the best when it comes to the quality of this wine. The grapes are farmed from their Napanook vineyard, a prodigious piece of land that has been envied for over 150 years! This is routinely one of the higher scoring wines from the big publications, and this year’s release is no exception, as it has received 99 points from famed wine critic Robert Parker. This is a trophy wine, a candidate for the cellar, a show stopper, and an exceptional gift!

DOMINUS ESTATE 2012 NAPA VALLEY PROPRIETARY RED

ROBERT PARKER 99 POINTS - "Flirting with perfection, the 2012 Dominus is composed of 93% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc. Five thousand cases were produced, a relatively modest amount from this large vineyard’s big crop. Christian Moueix told me that there was plenty of heat in 2012, but there were no excessive hot spells that can plague Napa Valley vintners during the growing season and harvest. This wine’s opaque plum/purple color is accompanied by a beautiful nose of sweet crème de cassis, a touch of background oak (only 40% new oak is used), spice box, cedarwood, black cherries and a hint of spring flowers. The complex, intense aromatics are followed by a deep, opulent, multidimensional, full-bodied wine with not a hard edge to be found. Everything is seamlessly crafted in this beauty and the vintage’s abundant richness is well-displayed. This 2012 can be drunk in its exuberant youthfulness or cellared for another 20-25 years "

$199.98 750ml [216180] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Our Top 2010 Pre-Sale Brunello is Back in Stock!

Earlier this year, we received our allocation of two terrific Brunello di Montalcino wines from Ciacci Piccolomini and both quickly sold out. We were fortunate to receive another small allotment of each, but certainly not enough to satisfy our customer’s demands. Both wines hail from the epic 2010 vintage and display terrific precision, balance and complexity. Furthermore, they offer tremendous value.

At our first Brunello tasting earlier this year, the “normal” Brunello bottling was a customer favorite and is without a doubt the best ever produced by Ciacci Piccolomini. It is showy and more approachable than many of the Brunello’s we’ve tasted and is already displaying the complexity that makes Brunello so famous.

CIACCI PICCOLOMINI 2010 D'ARAGONA
BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

WINE ADVOCATE 94+ POINTS - "The 2010 Brunello di Montalcino represents a return to the traditional values of Montalcino. The bouquet is buoyant and bright with lingering tones of smoke, ash, balsam herb, licorice and soy sauce. Those kinds of aromas make Brunello such a wonderful wine and thankfully you get them in abundance here. Dry mineral and brimstone also give the wine a sense of focus, sharpness and cleanliness that is very appealing. The close is long, fine and polished. I look forward to retasting this bottle five years from now."

$42.99 750ml [303350] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

The Pianrosso is a star for Ciacci Piccolomini, year in and year out. The wine is fermented in glass-lined cement and stainless steel tanks then aged in Slavonian oak barrels for 36 months. "Pianrosso" is an absolutely gorgeous and rich Brunello, with complex aromas of red fruits, flowers, licorice and spice, that only gets better with age.

CIACCI PICCOLOMINI 2010 PIANROSSO
BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

WINE ADVOCATE 97 POINTS - "Beautiful and delicate from the start, the 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Vigna di Pianrosso impresses for its depth and balance. The wine sees one more year of oak cask aging compared to the base Brunello and you can definitely sense the extra spice on the nose. Those delicate balsam notes of root beer, ginger and rosemary oil are still prominently on display. Rich spice, leather and tar are followed by dark fruit, prune, blackberry and cassis. The finish is graceful and silky, but its length remains impressive. This is a terrific effort that promises a steady evolution ahead."

JAMES SUCKLING 98 POINTS - "Aromas of lilac, dark berry and sandalwood follow through to a full body, with fine tannins and an intense and savory finish. Very intense and very long. Succulent. Amazing balance and depth to this red. It's so beautiful to taste now but it will be much better in five to ten years. A triumph."

$59.98 750ml [301119] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

A Delicious Wine Spectator 'Best Value' Under $10!

The 2011 Cantele Salice Salentino Riserva is an incredible value. Pure Negroamaro (red grape varietal indigenous to the Puglia region, or, ‘heel of the boot’), 100% worth of deep, dark and savory flavors without compromising on those earthy, rustic and meaty characteristics we know to be Salice Salentino (the town within Puglia for which the grape is best known). Originating from vines planted in 1962 and aged for a minimum of 24 months in French barriques. Ideal choice with Pizza, Pasta (red sauce, of course), steak and hamburgers among others.

CANTELE 2011 SALICE SALENTINO RISERVA

WINE SPECTATOR 89 POINTS 'BEST VALUE' - "Juicy flavors of ripe wild strawberry and red licorice mark the start to this light- to medium-bodied red, with supple tannins lending some structure and weight. Savory accents of garrigue, loamy earth and star anise echo on the finish. Drink now through 2025."

$9.98 750ml [301094] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Single Malt Saturday!

With Father's Day on Sunday (tomorrow!), we wanted to highlight a few whiskies that we think are not only exemplary examples of single malt Scotch, but also some of the best deals in whisky (from any country!) on the market today.

 

GLEN MORAY 25YR PORT CASK FINISH #2 750ml D-1987 86PF

A 25-year-old single malt Scotch for two c-notes and a couple of sawbucks is a rarity in the Scotch world-- and that it's a very tasty, Speyside, port cask-aged whisky makes it even more special.

Nose: Experiencing the aroma of this fine whisky is an occasion in itself. The flavors engulf the senses like Scottish mist rolling in over the hills. Layers of vanilla oak are interspersed with sweet aromatic wine, a truly wonderful combination. Dried fruits with a hint of cinnamon spice emerge later. A beautifully balanced and mature nose.

Taste: The initial toffee sweetness is a joy to behold. Warming rich and hugely satisfying. The taste experience continues with port-infused candied dried fruits coming to the fore. The degree of complexity is outstanding; every sip takes you in a slightly different direction. 25 years in the finest ex-Bourbon casks delivers spice and body whilst the finish in Port cask yields complexity and incredible depth of flavor.

Finish: The finish is a trip down memory lane. The subtle sweetness slowly disappears only to be replaced with spice, dates and figs. The flavors lingering on the taste buds are a wonderful reminder of what came before. A truly unique whisky which has matured to perfection.

$219.99 750ml [106858] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

GLENGOYNE 21YR 750ml

We don’t know how but Glengoyne has offered us a phenomenal deal on their precious malts. Rarely will you find a Single Malt Whisky of this age and caliber for under $130. It’s practically unheard of in this day and age. This whisky drinks well beyond the price tag and is sure to impress for a Father’s Day present. Unlike many Scotch Whiskies, Glengoyne does not use peat smoke to dry their barley malt. They instead use simply warm air so as to maintain the true flavor of the barley. The distillation process is a very slow and meticulous one. In fact, it is the slowest distillation in all of Scotland. This would explain half of the Glengoyne slogan: “It’s Worth the Wait.” The more time the liquid spends in contact with the copper in the stills the more unwanted flavors are stripped from the resulting spirits. Only choice barrels previously used to house sherry wines in Spain are used. This makes for a rich & flavorful yet soft and smooth dram. Glengoyne 21 year Old pours a deep copper color and coats the glass with legs for days. Baked apple, rich toffee, spiced Christmas cake and sherry dominate the aroma. The palate starts off with big sherry, honey, oaky tannins and moves into a pleasant warming spice. The finish is long, sherried, spice-laden and dry. Overall a magnificent dram that drinks like a whisky triple its price.

$129.99 750ml [101906] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

GLENDRONACH REVIVAL 15YR 750ml

April 2009 marked the return on the iconic older expressions as part of the GlenDronach core range - including the 15 year old, now under the new name of Revival. Renowned amongst many whisky enthusiasts around the world, this remarkable and full bodied malt is matured for a minimum of 15 years in the finest Oloroso sherry casks. Bottled at 46%, the GlenDronach Revival is non chill filtered and of natural colour. A truly excellent single malt.

APPEARANCE: Deep gold with a lovely mahogany heart. NOSE: Incredible concentration of aromas. Treacle toffee and chocolate orange. Nutty notes and vanilla. PALATE: A very dynamic and full bodied dram. Chewy with coffee, chocolate and treacle scones.
FINISH: A veritable feast to enliven the senses.

$76.99 750ml [168025] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Best Brunellos from the Dream Vintage Under $46!

The 2010 vintage marks an unprecedented year for Tuscany’s much beloved sangiovese-based red, Brunello di Montalcino. Winemakers, the wine press, and seasoned wine professionals unanimously agree that this is the Brunello vintage of a lifetime, even outclassing the outstanding 2006 and 1997 vintages.

The Wine Advocate’s Monica Larner writes of the 2010 vintage, “possibly reaching iconic status. Montalcino has some great wines in store for us and the barrel tasting I did while visiting estates was nothing short of exhilarating. Rest assured: The hype and the buzz … is not hyperbole. Many vintners I spoke with describe it as a ‘dream vintage.’”

Quantities are limited and between the huge scores and epic vintage this wine won't last long. Don't hesitate to order. First come, first served. Click HERE to see all the Brunellos we have in stock.

FANTI 2010 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

WINE SPECTATOR 94 POINTS - "A big, powerful red, with dense tannins and black cherry and blackberry flavors. Balanced in a muscular way, this remains tight and brooding despite the long, fresh finish. Shows potential. Best from 2020 through 2038."

$39.99 750ml [302665] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

ALTESINO 2010 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

JAMES SUCKLING 95 POINTS - "Wonderful decadent aromas of musk, orange peel and plum follow through to a full body, with soft tannins and a long and rich finish. Salty and savory. Layers of gorgeous fruit. Drink or hold."

$45.99 750ml [303352] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

SILVIO NARDI 2010 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

JAMES SUCKLING 95 POINTS - "Aromas of blackberry, stone, slate, oyster shell and truffle, turning to a full body with soft, velvety tannins and a long, long finish. This goes on for minutes on the palate. A savory, gorgeous wine. Drink or hold."

$44.98 750ml [301454] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

CASTIGLION DE BOSCO 2010 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

JAMES SUCKLING 96 POINTS - "Fabulous aromas of oranges, peaches and mahogany follow through to a full body with rich, chewy tannins and a long, flavorful finish. This is dense, tight, powerful, compressed and incredibly structured. Needs four to five years of bottle age to come out of its dormancy."

$39.99 750ml [301774] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

BARBI 2010 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

JAMES SUCKLING 96 POINTS - "Aromas of burnt orange peel and cherry with hints of dried bark and mahogany. Full-bodied and very tight and dense, with a beautiful fruit, tannin and acid balance. Finesse and strength. Best wine from here for ages. Needs until 2018 to show its true quality."

$41.99 750ml [302469] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

LA GERLA 2010 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

ANTONIO GALLONI 95 POINTS - " La Gerla's 2010 Brunello di Montalcino is absolutely delicious. Dark red cherries, plums, mint, smoke, tobacco and licorice flesh out in a wine that offers notable depth, structure and power. The 2010 is medium in body and also quite polished, yet there is a level of inner sweetness and perfume that makes the wine incredibly appealing, even today. Ideally, though, readers should give the 2010 at least a few years in the cellar. The precise, delicate finish is a thing of beauty."

$45.98 750ml [302629] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

A Real Crowd Pleaser Not to be Missed!

Quinta do Crasto has crafted another winner! This fantastic red blend from Portugal is a real crowd pleaser, made in a rich yet lively and accessible style. Coming on the heels of the successful 2011 vintage, this 2012 doesn’t miss a beat. Amazingly, many consumers have yet to catch on to the quality of the world-class wines being produced in Portugal. Perhaps it is because the native grapes used to make these wines are not household names, but they have definitely come to the attention of critics. In fact, Portuguese wines took 3 of the top 4 spots on Wine Spectator’s Top 100 list when it was released last year. This Quinta do Crasto Superiore received a 93 Point rating from Wine Spectator! With wines like this, it won’t take long for consumers to catch on. As for now, these wines continue to be a steal and remain one of the great undiscovered secrets and bargains of the world.

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 do Crasto´s growing national and international reputation.

QUINTA DO CRASTO 2012 SUPERIOR

Deep violet in color. Expressive aromas of vibrant berry fruits combined with subtle hints of fresh spices. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied and displays nice concentration with ripe red fruit including raspberry and cherry, along with notions of cocoa. With time in the glass, the wine becomes more complex and darker fruits, including blueberries emerge. Velvety tannins make the wine accessible now, but also capable of aging for the next 5-7 years. The finish is very long, showing excellent concentration and perfect balance. Simply Delicious! A blend of 50% Touriga Nacional, 25% Touriga Franca, 20% Tinta Roriz and 5% Sousao.

WINE SPECTATOR 93 POINTS - “Well-crafted and suave, with refined flavors of raspberry tart, red plum and cherry pastry, matched to cardamom and savory spice notes. Plush, creamy finish. Drink now through 2022.”

$21.98 750ml [378485] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Last Call on Wine Spectator 'Smart Buys'!

We know our customers enjoy reading publications, in print form or online to further their wine knowledge and help narrow their choices for that special bottle or a good “Everyday Wine.” With that in mind, we looked through a few recent issues of Wine Spectator Magazine to look at some of the wines they designated as “Smart Buys.” We have the following Smart Buys currently in stock at Hi-Time:

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

GODEVAL 2013 VINA GODELLO CEPAS VIEJAS

WINE SPECTATOR 92 POINTS 'SMART BUY'  - "This alluring white delivers a broad range of flavors in a pillowy texture, while crisp, well-integrated acidity maintains the focus. Melon, coconut, spice and smoke flavors mingle harmoniously on the plush palate. The mineral element is fresh and long. Godello. Drink now through 2018."

$17.98 750ml [382688] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

KILLIBINBIN 2013 'SEDUCTION' CABERNET SAUVIGNON

WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS 'SMART BUY'  - "Rich and ripe, with generous flavors of blackberry, plum, tar and spice that glide seamlessly through the polished finish, lingering impressively. Drink now through 2017."

$11.98 750ml [382706] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

ST HALLET 2013 'FAITH' SHIRAZ

WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS 'SMART BUY'  - "Lithe, focused and juicy, with red berry, cherry, tar and gingerbread spice flavors that push through a layer of fine tannins into the long, expressive finish. Best after 2016. 5,000 cases imported."

$12.98 750ml [382949] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

CALERA 2013 CENTRAL COAST CHARDONNAY

WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS 'SMART BUY'  - "Clean, pure and juicy, with a refreshing mix of ripe pear, apple and melon flavors, shaded by a chalky minerality. Offers a long, lingering finish. Drink now. 13,929 cases made."

$16.99 750ml [207710] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button
 

MEIOMI 2013 CHARDONNAY

WINE SPECTATOR 90 POINTS 'SMART BUY'  - "Showcases rich tropical fruit, with dashes of mango, marmalade and honeyed citrus that coat the palate while remaining elegant and delicate."

$18.99 750ml [241500] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Save 25% on a Great Off Season Port Buy!

Summer is always a great time to get discounts on umbrellas, goulashes and snow boards. Unfortunately off season sales on wines are extremely rare and that is why we are so excited about this Taylor Fladgate Quinta de Vargellas offering. Located in the wild and hilly eastern reaches of the Douro valley, the Vargellas quinta (vineyard) has been prized as a source of the finest Portuguese Ports since the 1820s and it has been the crown jewel of Taylor Fladgate’s holdings for more than a century. The property boasts the highest percentage of old vines of any quinta in the Douro, with 60% over 75 years old. Taylor makes their Vargellas bottling only in successful vintages that just don’t quite measure up to the firm’s high standards for production of their flagship multi-vineyard vintage Port. As Port insiders have long known, the better Vargellas bottlings like this gorgeous 2012 surpass most other firm’s declared vintage ports and present a savvy buy at fifty dollars. Of course at our special purchase price of thirty six dollars this Vargellas is a down right steal. As the critic’s notes below suggest, this is a fresh, dare we say, graceful vintage Port with deep, beautifully integrated fruit flavors that can be enjoyed over the near term but are buttressed with of all the right stuff (acidity and tannins) to make “old bones”.

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

 

TAYLOR FLADGATE 2012 QUINTA DE VARGELLAS
VINTAGE PORT

WINE ENTHUSIAST 94 POINTS - "Vargellas is always associated with violet aromas as well as the strength and power of its wines inside a velvet glove. The 2012 is concentrated yet soft and smooth on the surface. It’s fruity and fresh, while brooding with inner strength. Drink now for its fruit; wait until 2021 for its power and longevity." - Roger Voss (4/1/2015)

JAMES SUCKLING 92-93 POINTS - "Typical Vargellas character with flowers such as roses and poppies that turn to dark fruits and spices. Full body, lightly sweet, dusty tannins and a raspberry and blackberry character. Long and flavorful. All in elegance and finesse. Barrel sample." - (9/9/ 2014)

Sale $35.99 Normally $51.99 750ml [325795] Hi-Time Wine Cellars add to cart button

Tops for Pops or Four for Father's Day!

With Father's Day around the corner (June 21st!), we decided to highlight four special drams that will bring a smile to dads everywhere. These three whiskies and one rum are awesome sippers that stand out in their categories.

FOURSQUARE RUM

This is a fine Barbados rum that is aged for 3 years in used Bourbon casks, then for an additional 6 years in used Port wine casks. This is distilled, blended and bottled by R.L. Seale & Co. Ltd, a well-known name in the Bajan (something of, from or relating to Barbados) rum world.

Here's what Ed Hamilton (ministryofrum.com) has to say about David Seale and company: "R.L. Seale & Co. Ltd. is certainly one of the Bajan success stories of this century. The wholly, Bajan-owned rum company, R.L. Seale & Co. Ltd., is the third largest bottler in Barbados. And Mr. Seale is the celebrity you would expect him to be. David Seale’s company is known for the distinctly Bajan products and innovation that have become symbols of the island."

Very limited, each bottle shows its blend number. The nose showcases vanilla, cocoa and hints of pineapple. This is smooth all the way down with predominant flavors of Bourbon followed by a sweet Port subtlety on top of a warm spice, cola nut and brown sugar base. The finish is tasty, long and satisfying.

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AKASHI WHITE OAK JAPANESE WHISKY

The White Oak Distillery is located in the city of Akashi in the Hyogo prefecture. This distillery received its distillery license in 1919 but only really begun using it for whisky in 1984; prior to that it mainly (and still) was used for saké and barley shochu production. Distilling whisky only one to two months a year, production is very small. This is a non-age statement blended whisky, but it is likely around 3 years old and aged in ex-bourbon before finishing in ex-sherry casks.

Tasting notes: Malty, citrusy aroma with scents of black cherry, toffee and oak. Notes of vanilla and pine nuts dominate the soft, full palate, leading to a long, malty finish.

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ROCK HILL FARMS SINGLE BARREL KSB WHISKY

Brief facts: No age statement but estimates range from 8-10 years; 50% ABV (100 proof); distilled and bottled by Buffalo Trace, Frankfort, KY (Mash Bill #2); short supply, but available. Rock Hill Farms is another of Buffalo Trace's fine single barrel bourbons, sharing a mash bill with Blanton's, Elmer T. Lee, Ancient Age and Hancock's Reserve. It's named for a stretch of farmland along the Kentucky River.

The nose shows corn, spice and sweets, including honey and baked goods. Wrapped in aged oak-- spicy, rich and decadent. In the mouth, sweet caramel and honey rest on the tip of the tongue; ripe pears and fruits mingle on the middle of the tasting, while the back of the tongue gets a brown sugar, maple syrup and black pepper sensation. Medium-to-long finish with caramel and vanilla, more oak, tannins.

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BALVENIE CARIBBEAN CASK 14 YEAR SINGLE MALT SCOTCH

Caribbean Cask has been matured in traditional oak whisky casks for 14 years, and then ‘finished’ in casks that previously held Caribbean rum. To create the ideal finish, Malt Master David Stewart filled American oak casks with his own blend of select West Indian rums. When he judged the casks to be ready, the rum was replaced with the 14 year old spirit and the wood was put to work adding the final touches. The result is an exceptional single malt whisky with the traditional smooth, honeyed character of The Balvenie, married with notes of toffee and a hint of fruit, with a warm, lingering finish.

Nose - Rich, sweet and creamy toffee on the nose combines with fresh fruit notes. Taste - Rounded with vanilla and sweet oak notes, with a fruity character that develops with time. Finish - Soft and lingering.

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An Under-the-Radar Gem, 99 Points Under $26!

One of the best things about working at Hi-Time is sifting through thousands upon thousands of wines each year before finally falling upon a real under-the-radar gem. That's exactly what happened a couple of years ago during a trip to Italy when we came upon this incredibly cool wine. We had never heard of Ruche’, but once we tasted it we were stunned; it was unlike anything else we had ever tasted! We brought it into the store and our customers embraced it enthusiastically, turning this little known grape into one of our most popular Italian wines. Before we knew it, we were in the midst of a Ruche’ craze! We’re thrilled to announce the latest vintage of Ruche has arrived and the new vintage is every bit as good as previous vintages if not better!

Ruche produces a wine of character, which is impossible to confuse with any other. It is one of the few aromatic red grapes in the world and its aromas leap from the glass with attractive florals and lavender. The 2013 Ruche di Castagnole Monferrato wine received the coveted Tre-Bicchieri (Three Glasses) award from noted Italian critic, Gambero Rosso as well as a Gold Medal at the Decanter Wine Awards. Italian wine critic Luca Maroni has called this wine, “An absolute masterwork of nature, technique, humanity and pure passion" and gave the 2013 Ruche’ di Castagnole Monferrato a 99 point rating.

For more information on this exceptional grape and wine, please click here to visit our Hi-Time Blog.

MONTALBERA 2013 RUCHE "LACCENTO"

Medium ruby in color. The aromas one encounters are like taking a walk through a farmer’s market and filling your bag with a selection of fresh cherries, blueberries and strawberries. Next come Indian spices such as cardamom and nutmeg followed by a bouquet of violets and roses. On the palate, the wine is delicious and medium-bodied with silky smooth tannins. It pairs well with most foods including the often challenging Asian-inspired dishes and is tremendous on its own.

LUCA MARONI 99 POINTS - "It is thanks to the vintage’s warmth, but also to the reduced yield and the selective viticulture that for its first time the Ruchè donates such a fleshy thickness. Tannins are pronounced enough to evolve those strawberries you get on the nose and to the taste assuming the sublime fleshiness of a blackberry. The aroma’s masculinity increases in volume, no damage being done to the fruit’s wonderful smoothness, striped in sweetness and veins of forest berries which are integral and sharp to the olfaction just like still in the raw. The taste’s balance gives harmonious softness counterpointed by tannic savory and corroborated by mineral salinity. This is truly a wine whose viticultural and oenological value is sublime; it is a naturalistic and technical creation whose analytical merit appeals universally to the senses."

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Caymus 2013 Napa Valley Cabernet is Now in Stock!

Caymus is back!!! The long awaited return of the best-selling Cabernet Sauvignon is finally here. The 2012 (40th Anniversary) vintage was the most successful release in the history of Caymus, receiving accolades from critics and consumers alike. As good as the 2012 vintage was, winemakers in Napa Valley are convinced 2013 is even better and one of the greatest vintages in recent memory. Based on our tasting of the new release, we agree. As an additional bonus, Caymus has merged its traditional label with the beautiful anniversary artwork to create an updated, yet classic looking design. Enjoy!

CAYMUS 2013 NAPA VALLEY CABERNET SAUVIGNON

WINERY NOTES - "The 2013 growing season was another great one in Napa Valley. Our Cabernets are a blend of wines from eight of the sixteen sub-appellations – a bottling that represents complexity through judicious blending. Deep red and opulent in color with the vibrant scent of dark cherry and blackberry, subtly layered with warm notes of vanilla. The palate is explosive, bright and balanced with cassis at the center, with flourishes of cocoa and sweet tobacco."

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Fire Up the BBQ, We Have Your Party Wine Covered!

Marietta Cellars is a family owned and operated winery since its inception decades ago. Its name pays homage to Aunt Marietta, to whom founder Chris Bilbro gives credit for taking him under her wings and teaching him the important things in life—love of family, fishing, hard work and how to cook a mean minestrone! These ethics instilled in Chris were the driving factor in him working hard for decades, starting with grapes sourced from local farmers to where they are today. Chris’ sons Jake and Scot have taken over the duties of working the 30 acres of vineyards and, as the winery has done for many years, Marietta Cellars continues to produce value oriented quality wines.

“Our modern California version of an Old World table wine, Old Vine Red can be enjoyed with food or without, for a special occasion or for simple pleasure. It is a non-vintage blend of mostly Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, and Carignane with small amounts of other varieties included for complexity. Old Vine Red is a delicious, well-made, textured and balanced wine that continues to be amazingly consistent 30 years after the first lot was released.”

MARIETTA NON VINTAGE PROPRIETARY RED "LOT 62"

Tasting Notes - Ripe, juicy fruit and a lush mouth feel are the hallmarks of Old Vine Red, with peppery spice and dusty earth adding an extra level of richness. Moderate but focused tannins ensure this blend will stand up to almost any food.

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We Loved it from the First Scent, First Sip Through to the Lengthy Finish!

The wine we're about to tell you about, which is an incredible Barbera from Monferrato in Piemonte, one that you'll probably see many of the staff taking home, came to be through the machinations of a couple of guys who first and foremost were fascinated by Friuli. We'll come back to this amazing Barbera in a couple paragraphs-- first, we have to tell you about Bobby and Lachlan and their Friulian adventures...

You would be hard pressed to find two people more Friuli-obsessed than Bobby Stuckey and Lachlan Patterson. Even within Friuli their true passion for the region elicits some curious head scratching and warm Italian chuckles from the humble wine-makers and restaurateurs. Tuscany, sure. Rome, of course. But to be a complete Friuliophile?

Yet that is a title they both wear proudly. After working together at The French Laundry, Bobby as a Master Sommelier and Lachlan as a chef de partie, they moved to Boulder Colorado with the dream of opening a neighborhood restaurant. One fateful trip to Friuli, complete with carsickness from the winding roads of the Alps, traditional Friulian fare, and lots and lots of amazing local wine was enough to seal their fate. They came back to Boulder and opened Frasca Food and Wine, a restaurant dedicated to the cuisine and culture of Friuli. Always digging deeper for Friulian inspiration, Bobby and Lachlan travel to the region several times a year, even taking their entire staff along for a week of eating, wine tasting and general Friuli-worship every summer.

It was only natural that when Bobby and Lachlan dreamt about starting their own wine label they looked first to the beautiful whites of Friuli, and Scarpetta was born.

LA SCARPETTA 2013 BARBERA DEL MONFERRATO

Now-- back to this beautiful Barbera. They worked with Fabrizio Iuli in Monferrato, Piemonte, to create this wine. Monferrato is the birthplace for Barbera, and historically unlike the rest of Piedmonte, its top cuvees are frequently Barbera. Hence, for good reason, Barbera from Monferrato is celebrated for its balance of fruit, terroir and acidity. Which may explain why this Barbera was an easy choice for our Wine of the Month 2-- while we tasted a number of solid wines, this was the one that "wowed" us. The nose is full of concentrated, jammy fruits, like a reduction of berries, elevated with incense, cedar, spice, florals and red rose petal. The fruits remain in the mouth with more berries and cherries, a touch of red plum, excellent acidity and a bit of spice and earthy porcini. We loved it from the first scent, first sip through to the lengthy, fruity, spicy finish. Beautiful wine.

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Three High Scoring Must-Haves from One of Our Favorite Paso Producers!

Stephan Asseo, owner and winemaker at L ’Aventure, began his career back in 1982 after finishing his education in Burgundy, France and establishing Domaine de Courteillac in Bordeaux. Within a few years Stephan and family acquired Chateau Fleur Cardinal and Chateau Robin in the Cotes de Castillion, Bordeaux, where he spent the next 15 years honing his winemaking skills. Over time, Stephan had a compelling drive to venture out of Bordeaux where governing laws provide guidelines as to what can and can’t be grown and blended together within a specific area (the Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée or AOC). This drive took him on a quest in search of the perfect soil composition and climate through many winemaking regions such as Lebanon, South Africa, Argentina and Napa before finding exactly what he was looking for in Paso Robles. Stephan immediately "fell in love" with the unique terroir of west side Paso Robles. The rolling topography of the Santa Lucia Mountain Range, the deep calcareous soils, and the maritime influences of the renowned Templeton Gap all combine to produce a world class wine region with the potential to craft some of the world's greatest blends. It is here, in Paso Robles, that Stephan began his adventure, "L'Aventure".

 

L ’AVENTURE 2013 RED PASO ROBLES "ESTATE CUVEE"

EROBERT PARKER 96-98 POINTS - "The 2013 Estate Cuvee is similar to the blend of the 2004 and is 43% Syrah, 42% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Petite Verdot. Dense, concentrated and powerful, it offers knockout aromas and flavors of cassis, black cherries, flowers and charcoal that flow to a full-bodied, seamless and perfectly balanced wine that will have two decade or more of longevity. While I think 2012 was a slightly more successful vintage than 2013 for this estate, this should certainly be up there with the 2012 and it will be interesting to follow the two vintages as they evolve."

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L’AVENTURE 2013 RED PASO ROBLES "COTE A COTE"

EROBERT PARKER 94-96 POINTS - "The 2013 Cote a Cote plays in the same ballpark and offers up gorgeous black raspberry, violets, spring flowers and licorice in its medium to full-bodied, elegant and seamless personality. I love the overall purity here, and while it has loads of fruit, it’s perfectly balanced and has sound underlying structure. It’s another wine that will drink nicely on release, yet also evolve gracefully."

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L ‘AVENTURE 2013 RED PASO ROBLES "OPTIMUS"

EROBERT PARKER 92-95 POINTS - "The 2013 Optimus is the estate’s entry level blend, yet it always drinks well above its price point and is a perfect example of the style of the estate. Decadent black and blue fruits, graphite and smoky nuances all show here, and it has full-bodied richness, sweet tannin and terrific length. It should be another superb vintage for this cuvee, and it should shine on release and evolve for upward of a decade."

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An Elegant and Tasty Wine Spectator 94 Point Italian Red!

Talosa was one of the first wineries in Montepulciano to undertake the quest for fine quality which brought the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano appellation to the heights of Tuscan and Italian winemaking. The vineyards are in one of the most beautiful areas of Montepulciano at an altitude of 350-400 meters above sea level, cultivated with scrupulous care so that the quality of the grapes guarantees that the wines will be worthy of the winery name. The fermenting area is close to the vineyards so that the harvesting and processing procedures can be carried out as rapidly and efficiently as possible.

The Talosa Cellar dates back to the 16th century and visiting them is like stepping back time. The brick passageways contain a series of vaults and niches where the barrels are placed. Visitors to this magical place automatically assume an air of respect or even reverence for the force of history pulsating these walls. The winery applies this same respect and reverence to cultivation of the vineyards and production of the quality wines. Inside the Historic Cellar there are huge oak barrels where Vino Nobile di Montepulciano is aged for two years and three years for the Vino Nobile Riserva.

TALOSA 2010 VINO NOBILE DI MONTEPULCIANO RISERVA

The nose is full of beautiful high-toned fruits, black cherry and black raspberry, red plum and a touch of earth and sandal wood. Tasting, the fruit again stands out as do the integrated tannins--this is balanced, beautiful wine. Red plums, cherries, red currant lead to a mid-palate with earthiness and brown baking spices; tannins and easy acidity keep the wine uplifted. The finish is long, refined with tannins and fruit-filled flavors; elegant, tasty wine.

WINE SPECTATOR 94 POINTS - "Loaded with dark fruit, texture and a dense structure, this is complex, beautifully proportioned and long. Black cherry, blackberry, plum, tobacco and spice notes get a lift from the bright acidity, while the tannins are fine and well-integrated. Best from 2016 through 2030. 1,600 cases made."

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