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- Collector's Corner: Yes
- Item #: i_200580Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 98 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 98 POINTS - "Only the second time this cuvee has been 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2016 ERA is a blend of all the single vineyards and what Jean considered the best wine. I can't argue with him. This wine offers awesome notes of crème de cassis, crushed violets, crushed rocks, hints of mountain scrub brush, and lead pencil shavings. Deep and full-bodied, it has sweet tannins, no hard edges, and a great, great finish. There are 900 cases of this brilliant wine which will benefit from 2-3 years of bottle age and cruise for two decades."
- Item #: i_200590Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97 POINTS - "Very deep purple-black in color, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Helena Dakota Vineyard has a compelling savoriness of char-grilled meat and roasted nuts on the nose with a core of creme de cassis, violets and crushed plums plus a touch of garrigue. Medium-bodied and tautly structured with firm, fine-grained tannins and seamless freshness, it has a incredible depth of primary fruit and earthy layers, finishing with incredible length and a lovely mineral hint. 432 cases produced."
- Item #: i_201190Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96Vinous Media: 92ROBERT PARKER 96 POINTS - "Very deep purple-black in color, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Helena Montana Vineyard gives up notes of coffee grounds, chocolate box and warm blueberries with hints of black currant cordial and blackberry pie, plus touches of tar and black soil. Medium-bodied and totally laden with tightly packed fruit layers and great tension, it has a very firm frame of grainy tannins and epic length. 847 cases produced."
- Item #: i_201230Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 94ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "Arietta's 2014 Merlot Hudson Vineyards is gorgeous. Surprisingly, it is also richer, deeper and more pedigreed than the Quartet and Cabernet Sauvignon in this vintage. Exquisitely layered and supple, the 2014 possesses striking depth to match its creamy, inviting personality. Layers of plum, black cherry and mocha built into the supple, inviting finish. Naturally, the 2014 is quite young. It can be enjoyed today, but readers who appreciate the complexity that develops only in bottle will have to be patient."
- Item #: i_201610Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 92Jeb Dunnuck: 92 PointsANTONIO GALLONI 92 POINTS - "The 2015 Chardonnay (Russian River Valley) is gorgeous. Supple, lush and inviting, the 2015 is a fabulous introduction to the Arista wines. Lush and tropical, with fabulous freshness, the 2015 is terrific. Candied lemon peel, white flowers, chamomile and white flowers add lovely shades of nuance throughout. The Russian River Chardonnay is rich and opulent, but not at all heavy."
JEB DUNNUCK 92 POINTS - "The appellation blend from winemaker Mike Courtney, Arista's 2015 Chardonnay Russian River Valley is a beautiful, classic Russian River Valley Chardonnay. Buttered orchard fruits, orange blossom, and white flower notes flow to a rich, concentrated, layered white that has nicely integrated acuity, no hard edges, and a clean finish. This cuvee spent 12 months in 25% new French oak (the balance in stainless steel), and it should drink nicely for 4-6 years."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "The 2015 Chardonnay Russian River Valley offers up gregarious tropical and citrus fruit notions of guava, grapefruit and lemon tart with suggestions of allspice, fresh ginger and baking bread. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is laden with tropical and spicy layers, featuring a lively line of freshness and finishes on a savory note. 578 cases were made."
- Item #: i_203380Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97 POINTS - "This estate blend from Howell Mountain was formerly known as "Obsidian." Composed of 74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Petit Verdot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 4% Merlot and 4% Malbec, the 2015 Proprietary Red Estate gives a deep garnet-purple color and aromas of spiced blackberries, fruitcake and plum pudding with suggestions of Indian spices, earth and underbrush, plus a touch of violets. Packed with rich, opulent fruit in the full-bodied mouth, it has a solid, fine-grained backbone and plenty of freshness, finishing long and multilayered. 500 cases were made."
- Item #: i_201600Bottle Size: 750mlLast year we attended the inaugural Sonoma County Barrel Auction. This was an event where wineries from throughout Sonoma County gathered to showcase wines that they have not bottled before, and to keep their wines unique, they don't plan on bottling them again! Last week we showcased the unique Pinot Noir from Patz & Hall, perhaps the best Pinot Noir they have ever made. This time, it's an amazing Syrah & Cabernet Sauvignon blend from one of our favorite Sonoma County producers...Arrowood!
Arrowood Winery is pure Sonoma. The winery's influence in the region endures since the first wines were made three decades ago. Created exclusively for the Sonoma County Barrel Auction, Winemaker Kristina Weerner selected the top lots from the vintage to craft a unique blend of Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. The Syrah comes from the Russian River Valley's acclaimed Saralee's vineyard. It is not uncommon for Arrowood's Syrah from this vineyard to score in the "outstanding" range with famed critic Robert Parker, and the Syrah for this blend was co-fermented with Viognier, which actually makes the wine darker and gives it more aromatics and texture. With that, they blended in 30% Cabernet Sauvignon from the Smothers-Remick Ridge Vineyard, a phenomenal property that sits roughly 600 feet above the valley floor in the northern Sonoma Mountains. It features 18 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon divided into 11 distinctive blocks that mirror the terroir. Known for its small, flavorful berries, this mountain site produced balanced wines with refined tannins. In the end, Kristina decided the best wine was blended of 70% Syrah and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon...and that's what we have here!
Only 10 cases were bottled, and you can't get this wine at the winery, even if you're a member of their wine club! This is a gorgeous red blend, and it displays a lovely ruby/garnet color with aromas of freshly crushed cherry, raspberry, red currant, strawberry shortcake, vanilla, and hints of oak. After a short bit of time to breathe, aromas of smoke, Asian spices, and grilled meat begin to emerge. On the palate, the subtle hints of spice continues, along with black fruit, black cherry, a briary quality, cured meat, and plum. The finish is fairly long, with pronounced tannins that give a nice frame to the wine. Absolutely delectable, this is a wine that can easily be enjoyed now, but will continue to develop nicely in the cellar for another 7-10 years!
- Item #: i_102127Bottle Size: 720mlWINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS This medium-sweet NV Dassai Migaki 23 Enshinbunri Junmai Daiginjo is too clean, with untraceable floral and fruity scents. To me, the first impression is more like a glass of mineral water. Enshinbunri means filtering by a centrifuge machine, and Asahi Shuzo is said to be the first company in Japan to use one. It seems that almost nothing is left in this sake, but if one wants to understand clean means for Japanese sake, just try this one. Clean and delicate on the palate, it is the purest sake I have ever tried. Rice: Yamada Nishiki. Alcohol: 16%.
The nose on this limited released New Year’s Nama is an amazing array of honey dew melon, cherry, and soda pop aromas. This is an extremely expressive and wonderful sake and everybody should taste this brew at least once in their life. Basically it is the raw or unpasteurized version of their 23% milled Daiginjo that is so very layered and fun. Talk about smooth but with a sneaky tingle, which means it’s alive! Juicy, bright and elegant this sake drinks like a festive occasion. There are bright fruit elements of cherry and melon mixed with powder sugar and vanilla hints. Each sip is a palate dance and the rhythm of this sake is so bright and so fun. If you can dig deep enough look for a nice yeasty vein that reminds you that this sophisticated sake is unpasteurized and super duper premium!
- Item #: i_200845Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96-98ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 96-98 POINTS - "A barrel sample (aging in about 70% new oak), the 2017 Chardonnay Larry Hyde and Sons Vineyard opens with a gloriously gregarious, exotically scented nose of gingerbread and lemongrass with a core of pineapple, green guava and mango plus a hint of honeycomb. The palate is big, rich, super opulent and sexy with fantastic texture, concentration and seamless freshness, finishing long."
- Item #: i_200610Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97-100ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97-100 POINTS - "The first vintage of this wine, the 2017 Chardonnay Powder House (a barrel sample) comes from eight acres of what are now estate vines planted in 2013, to Hyde Old Wente and Mt. Eden clones on Goldridge soils. The vineyard is located in downtown Forestville, right across from the high school. The aromas charge out of the gate exhibiting energetic ripe peach, grapefruit, green tea and sea spray notes with touches of candied orange peel, ginger ale and lemon butter. Full-bodied, very refreshing and beautifully creamy in the mouth, it has layer upon layer of citrus and spice flavors, finishing with amazing persistence."
- Item #: i_350182Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 100WINE ADVOCATE 100 POINTS - "The 2005 Ausone is a perfect wine of the vintage. It displays crushed rock, spring flowers, blueberry and blackberry fruit, a full-bodied mouthfeel, stunning purity and richness, and perfect harmony among all of its component parts (acidity, tannin, wood, alcohol and extract). Still youthful, but oh, so promising, this wine should be set aside for another decade and drunk over the following 50-75 years. Drink 2025-2100."
- Item #: i_202630Bottle Size: 750mlWine Spectator: 95If you have ever thought about venturing into Oregon Pinot Noirs, now is your time! And if you are an Oregon Pinot Noir zealot, now is your time! 2015 is going down in the record books as one of the best vintages in the history of the state, with warm weather throughout most of the growing season, and the sun shining bright during harvest. The wines are forward, inviting, complex, and nuanced. Located in the Ribbon Ridge sub-region of the Willamette Valley, Beaux Freres is planted on steep, contiguous southward facing hillsides of Willakenzie soils, comprised of old marine sediment. With a focus on biodynamic farming, the vines are planted at high density and some vines on the property are 30 years old, with several being own rooted!
WINE SPECTATOR 95 POINTS - "Offers impressive presence and polish, with a multilayered, complex core wrapped in rich, expressive blueberry and cherry flavors, accented by savory spice and espresso details. Builds depth as this dances toward refined tannins. Drink now through 2025. 2,700 cases made."
- Item #: i_206730Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94+Vinous Media: 95+ANTONIO GALLONI 95+ POINTS - "The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Mythicus, Blankiet's 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, is another strong wine. Restrained and polished, but with plenty of supporting tannin, the 2014 is shaping up to be another strong wine. Today, the Mythicus is not as different from the Proprietary Red, but it is also tightly wound following its recent bottling. I expect the 2014 will blossom with time in bottle."
ROBERT PARKER 94+ POINTS - "A limited production cuvee (175 cases), the 2014 Mythicus is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon. Deep, rich and silky, with soft tannins but, surprisingly, not the depth of the Proprietary Red, this is still an outstanding wine, made in an elegant style with plenty of silky tannins as well as lots of blackcurrants, licorice, cedar and spice box. This medium to full-bodied wine should drink nicely for the next 15 or more years."
- Item #: i_206950Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96ANTONIO GALLONI 98 POINTS - "I was blown away by the wines I tasted with Claude and Katherine Blankiet, and their new winemaker, Graeme MacDonald. The late Denis Malbec, along with his wife, May-Britt, did so much to dial back some of the excesses of the estate's earlier wines. In just his first vintage, MacDonald has taken over a very delicate situation and put his personal stamp on the wines. One of MacDonald's first decisions was to bottle the 2015s, which were made by Malbec, about two months earlier than had been the norm previously. The shorter amount of time in barrel seems to give these wines quite a bit more fruit intensity and fewer oak influences."
"The 2015 Proprietary Red is a model of total elegance and finesse. Lifted and aromatically expressive, but also quite deep, the 2015 is another wine that is surprisingly fresh and vibrant. Aromatically expressive and nuanced, the 2015 is silky and plush on the palate, yet also remains remarkably tight on its feet. This is one of the most exquisitely beautiful, riveting wines I have tasted from Claude and Katherine Blankiet."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 96+ POINTS - "A Bordeaux blend of mainly Cabernet Sauvignon with smaller portions of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, the 2015 Proprietary Red Paradise Hills Vineyard sports a deep garnet-purple color and is profoundly scented of crushed blackcurrants and blackberries with fragrant menthol, tilled soil, pencil shavings and Indian spice notions. Medium to full-bodied and tightly knit at this youthful stage, it has a solid frame of ripe, fine-grained tannins and plenty of freshness, finishing long and lively. It really needs another 2-3 years in bottle to really strut its stuff, then should drink beautifully for the next 20+ years."
- Item #: i_376954Bottle Size: 750mlPalo Cortado is a very special wine, both elegant and unique, which comes from certain Jerez wines which are particular for their fermentation and ageing in oak barrels where their atypical characteristics were developed: elegant in the nose and full in the mouth. One of the classic Palo Cortado from that time is that which we find in our Palo Cortado Tradición VORS; a subtle, delicate wine, which, after losing the flor, has finished its ageing process in contact with the oxygen. With an average of 32 years of age, it is the subtlest and youngest of our dry wines.
- Item #: i_208830Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96Vinous Media: 96ANTONIO GALLONI 96 POINTS - "As it often is, the 2014 St. Eden is a showy, racy wine. A rush of dark red cherry, plum, mocha, espresso and grilled herbs gives the wine its opulent, flamboyant feel. Even so the St. Eden shows the natural restraint and mid-weight structure of the year."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 96 POINTS - "Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2014 St. Eden offers up expressive crème de cassis, black cherry compote and blueberry pie notes with hints of cedar chest, baking spices, menthol and pencil lead. Full-bodied, tightly packed, taut and muscular, it has a solid structure of firm, grainy tannins and lovely vivacity coming through on the long, earthy finish."
- Item #: i_208710Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 98+Vinous Media: 97ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 98+ POINTS - "The 2014 Vecina displays a deep garnet-purple color and has a broody, baked blueberries, cassis and anise-laced nose with suggestions of garrigue, dusty earth and bay leaves. Full-bodied, rich, spicy and powerful in the mouth, it offers a lot of latent layers and promises great, great things to come with an incredibly long, layered finish. It needs a bit of time but should cellar beautifully for a good 25 years+."
ANTONIO GALLONI 97 POINTS - "One of the most expressive wines in this range, the 2014 Vecina is powerful, dense and explosive. Despite its obvious intensity, the 2014 has quite a bit of detail and nuance. Time in the glass unleashes the wine's natural intensity, volume and power. The huge, savory and mineral-drenched finish only adds to the wine's immeasurable beauty."
- Item #: i_204410Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96+Vinous Media: 95ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 96+ POINTS - "Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2014 Melbury is profoundly scented of crushed plums, black cherries and cassis with hints of dark chocolate, black pepper, black soil and licorice plus a hint of iron ore. Full-bodied, rich and earthy in the mouth, it has a lovely fine-grained but firm backbone with plenty of freshness, finishing long and peppery."
ANTONIO GALLONI 95 POINTS - "The 2014 Melbury is bright, perfumed and wonderfully lifted in the glass. Soft, silky tannins add to the wine's considerable appeal. Medium in body and gracious, the 2014 is absolutely exquisite today. Sweet red cherry, plum, rose petal and mint grace the supple finish. This is a super-refined wine from BOND."
- Item #: i_204440Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96Vinous Media: 96+ANTONIO GALLONI 96+ POINTS - "The 2014 Quella is showing beautifully. Floral and savory overtones give the wine its energy and tension. The 2014 has really come along over the last six months. Today it is vibrant and full of life, with an understated sense of power that is compelling. The 2014 has developed very nicely since I last tasted it, but it still has room to grow."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 96 POINTS - "Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2014 Quella is scented of blackberry preserves, fruitcake and crushed rocks with hints of cigar box, dried Provence herbs and Indian spices. Medium to full-bodied, it has a firm backbone of grainy tannins and great freshness lifting the black fruit and earth layers, finishing on a lingering mineral note."