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A Phenomenal Release from Oregon's Beaux Freres Winery!

In 1986, winemaker Michael Etzlel came across a prime piece of property in Oregon's Willamette Valley. Through a partnership with his brother in law, renowned wine critic Robert M. Parker, Jr., and Robert Roy, the dream was realized, and Beaux Freres was born. This trio strives to produce high quality wines from the Pinot Noir grape, following classical Burgundian grape growing practices.

Even though Robert Parker never reviews these wines, other publications have; and the wines have garnered exciting reviews! The wines sell out each year, so if you're into high quality, low production Pinot Noir from one of Oregon's better producers, then don't hesitate!


Winery Notes - Pure, classic Beaux Freres with everything in beautiful poise. Our first tasting revealed an enthralling wine, opening like floodgates toward the sublime – a freshly cedar-oiled grandfather clock, a favorite Musigny, blood-orange dark chocolate candies, or perhaps something unique and lovely from your own memory bank. The texture is refined, the tannins well integrated, and the entire wine deeply intricate and harmonious.

WINE SPECTATOR 95 POINTS - "Remarkably and seamlessly complex, with a polished and refined core wrapped in silky raspberry and blueberry flavors, accented by savory spice and orange zest hints. The long finish builds toward polished tannins. Drink now through 2025."


Glenfiddich Goes The Rum Cask Road For Its Latest Scotch Whisky!

The Glenfiddich Experimental Series, as we saw last year with the popular Winter Storm whisky that was finished in ex-Canadian ice wine barrels, is a line extension which gives this Scotch whisky distillery some room to tinker around with. Another bottling is now hitting retail, this time taking smoky spirit and finishing it in ex-rum barrels.

The new Glenfiddich Fire & Cane, according to those behind it, brings together "smoky whisky" and non-peated malts that had been aging in ex-bourbon barrels and finishes the mixture in ex-Latin rum casks. The resulting 43% ABV expression has what's described as "campfire smokiness and toffee sweetness" and is non-age statement in nature.

"This new single malt truly encapsulates the spirit of experimentation," said Brian Kinsman, Glenfiddich Malt Master, in a prepared statement. "We started with a question – what would happen if we did something with peat that we had not done before? The answer is an unconventional and unexpected whisky, one that is truly surprising. During the tastings, some experienced the unusual smoky notes, while others tasted toffee flavors – this phenomenon can be attributed to the Scotch spending three months in sweet rum casks. It's a bold combination, which I'm sure will appeal and intrigue single malt enthusiasts as well as those looking to try something new and different."


Fire & Cane comes in a special bottle whose glass changes from a black/brown base to clear when displaying the enclosed golden colored whisky. It is set to price around $50, and you’ll find some official tasting notes below for your consideration.

Nose: Billowing soft peat notes, like distant smoke on the wind. Rich sweet toffee with zesty fresh fruit notes and spiciness.

Taste: Like a Highland peat campfire, with oak notes and toffee. Sharp green fruit, sweet baked apple and soft smoke.

Finish: Lingering smokiness and sweetness


Sensational High Scoring Red!

The wines from Domaine de Bila Haut are undoubtedly some of the greatest values coming out of France. In a region increasingly known for producing crowd-pleasing wines at fantastic prices, these stand out. This is a project from well-known Northern Rhone producer Michel Chapoutier. The Chapoutier team takes full advantage of the abundant sunshine and lower land cost of the Roussillon to deliver an incredible value.

The deeply fruited Rhone blend, L'Esquerda delivers the goods with lush, perfectly ripened grapes showing off what this legendary producer is capable of. L'Esquerda showcases the stunning quality of the 2016 vintage with uncommon depth and complexity. The Wine Advocate awarded this a potential score of 96 Points and stated "there are not many values like this out there today."

This outstanding wine is based on Syrah and Grenache grapes sourced from granitic soils. The term, "L'esquerda" is derived from Catalan and means "the fault in the rock." The result is a faithful expression of the personality and identity of a region which provides great pleasure.


This wine from Bila Haut by Chapoutier is a no-brainer which over-delivers at a fantastic price. It is a great wine to stock up on and would make an excellent purchase by the case.

WINE ADVOCATE 94-96 POINTS - "Sporting a deep purple—almost blue—color, the sensational 2016 Cotes du Roussillon Villages Lesquerde. l'Esquerda has a northern Rhone-like minerality as well as notes of classic black and blue fruits, crushed flowers, ozone and licorice. Made from 60% Syrah and 40% Grenache, all from granitic soils, it's a rich, structured, full-bodied and age-worthy red that will drink nicely through 2026. The quality of this release continues to soar and there are not many values like this out there today."


Liquid Air Conditioning in a bottle! A cool white for hot nights

Looking for a gluggable, chuggable, carefree sipper to get you through the hot August days and a long Indian summer? Did we mention it's also Certified Organic and comes in a Liter bottle?

Try this.

The Hofer HUM 2017 Gruner Veltliner was an instant hit in late Spring when we first introduced this dry white to our customers. It shows well with pear, lemon, and then a spicy endnote, which, in Grüner Veltliner, is often described as white pepper. It matches well with fish, chicken, dishes with tomatoes and spicy foods. It was perfect this summer for a dinner served with fresh sauteed fava beans. This wine also drinks amazingly great on the second day after being opened.

Gruner Veltliner is Austria's signature white grape, and has become increasingly popular in the United States in recent years. It has become the love of the Sommelier set, making its way onto restaurant wine lists because of its food pairing versatility. The 2017 Hofer is clean, bright, sunny, has sound complexity and is all of $15.99 — and that's for a Liter (1L), which is one-third more than a standard bottle of wine (750 ml). But honestly, this is a serious white wine that we wouldn't mind paying $25 for, since it effortlessly punches above its class. It also makes for a light quaffer at 12.5% alcohol.

The Bioweingut H. & M. (short for Hermann and Maria) Hofer from Auersthal, Weinviertel, is one of the pioneers of organic agriculture. Since the 1990s, cellar master Hermann Hofer manages his vines according to organic biological guidelines, since 2001, he operates a controlled organic agriculture by the group Bio-Ernte, whose standards exceed EU guidelines for organic grape growing.


Wine reviewer, Stephan Reinhardt for The Wine Advocate is also a fan of the Hofer winery and writes - "Based in Auersthal, just 20 kilometers away from Vienna 's northern suburbs, Weingut H. und M. Hofer farms 20 hectares of vines, mostly Gruner Veltliner (53%). Seventy percent of the production is white and all of the vineyards are cultivated organic in a fairly dry microclimate and on loess soils. Hermann Hofer aims to produce "unique and distinctive wines" that reflect their soils, the climate and the vintage, as well as the people who manufacture them. The winemaking is rather conventional. The handpicked grapes are pressed after some hours on the skins, fermented in stainless steel and result in classic Weinviertler wines. The Veltliners are especially worth a try. They are very clear and fruity, fresh and well structured, and finish with a stimulating minerality. These are serious wines with food that do not cost a fortune, rather the opposite."

$15.99 1000ml [307464] HOFER 2017 GRUNER VELTLINER "HUM" ORGANIC

High Scoring Customer Favorite Back in Stock!

Our best-selling French Chardonnay is back in stock. Domaine Lafage's Novellum has become a huge hit with our customers who crave its delicious taste at a price that’s hard to believe.

"A sensational wine that will compete with wines five times the price." Jeb Dunnuck, Wine Advocate

"I've raved time and time again about the quality -and value - coming from Domaine Lafage's Jean-Marc Lafage." Robert Parker

"Buy it." Jeb Dunnuck, Wine Advocate

Domaine Lafage is on amazing roll where everything they touch seems to turn to gold. Creating custom cuvees with its importer Eric Solomon, they are producing absolutely gorgeous wines. Lafage first came upon our radar with Bastide Miraflors, Narassa and Tessellae which have been huge hits with our customers. We recently emailed out the previous vintage of Novellum Chardonnay and our customers went nuts for it. We really enjoyed that wine, but this wine is even better!

Both Robert Parker and Jeb Dunnuck of the Wine Advocate have high praise for the wines of Domaine Lafage including Novellum Chardonnay. It is remarkable for Dunnuck to state that Novellum competes favorably with wine selling for more than $50.00 per bottle! Even more noteworthy is his comparison of Novellum to boutique Sonoma producer Mark Aubert. Aubert crafts amazing and very expensive wine available only to his mailing list customers.

The beauty of Novellum is it combines the perfectly-ripened fruit and richness you might find in a high quality California Chardonnay with the brightness and minerality you expect in Burgundy. This combination makes it the perfect crossover wine which appeals to those who enjoy either California or French Chardonnay.


This is an excellent "Everyday Drinker" that you can open up during the week to enjoy with dinner or serve with confidence at parties, knowing all in attendance will be happy. Domaine Lafage's Novellum is a delicious wine, which would 

make a terrific case purchase. And as the review from Wine Advocate simply says, "Buy it!"

WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "A sensational wine that will compete with wines five times the price, the 2016 Novellum Chardonnay is the real deal and actually reminded me of a Chardonnay from Mark Aubert in California's Sonoma County. White peach, crushed rocks, spice and brioche notes all emerge from this medium to full-bodied Chardonnay that has depth, layered texture and length. Buy it."


Our Best Value French Rose!

August in North American culture has traditionally been a time for summer vacations and overall heat in terms of weather. We'll see if it beats the sweltering temps we felt in July this year. One way to bolster defense against the dog days of summer is to enjoy the right wine-- and do we have the perfect pour for these heated times-- Think Pink!

We know you know about dry French roses from the South of France because we have to order more and more each year. These clean, crisp, dry rose wines have helped to change the perception of all pink wines-- these are not White Zinfandel from the 1980s! They are ideal companions to summer foods, warm nights and good company. This wine, the De Chansac 2017 Rose from the Pays d'Oc appellation in Languedoc-Roussillon, hit all the right buttons when we tasted it against a strong field of other dry roses and thirst-quenching wines in late July.


The vines used for De Chansac are located in the northern mountains of the Pyrenees and the Cevennes. The Mediterranean Sea in the south offers hot and dry summers, with various terroirs. The soil is dense which gives perfect medium-bodied fruity wines. The grapes are harvested at night when the temperature is cool, in order to prevent oxidation. The juice is directly pressed for an elegant pale color. Low temperature fermentation enhances the aromatic profile. The wine stays on its fine lees at least two months and is stirred periodically, offering a smooth texture.

Made from 100% Cinsault, De Chansac has a nose filled with soft, ripe orchard fruits. White peach and melons lead to a touch of cream, citrus, mixed tropical fruits and a hint of spice. The flavor profile reflects the nose well, leading with a lush texture layered with tropical fruits and stone fruits, peach and pear, with light acidity keeping it lively. The finish reiterates the ripe fruits, finishing with a flourish of flavor and texture. Enjoy with tapas, fish, fruits and cheeses, good friends and the warmth of the sun.

$9.95 750ml [351112] DE CHANSAC 2017 ROSE CINSAULT IGP PAYS D'OC

Fantastic Summer Wines Under $20!

Txakoli is Summer! Light, crisp, & spritzy wines of all hues, these are your wines of choice to chill down and help cut through the warm days and evenings; to sip when you're picking out your pintxos (Basque finger foods) in San Sebastian, at an izakaya (Japanese small plates) restaurant, or at home with your own favorite appetizers.

The vines that are made into Txakoli (chah-koh-lee) wine grow like little trees among the rolling hills that flow into the moody Atlantic ocean of Northeastern Spain. For generations, the Ameztoi (ah-mess-TOY) family has made their wine around the fishing town of Getaria, near San Sebastian. Just as this Basque country has had its own culture for many centuries, it has its native grapes like Hondarrabi Zuri and Hondarrabi Beltza that make distinctive, authentically regional wines. The main lineup of Ameztoi family Txakoli (white, rose, and red) all share in common a very light body with refreshing acidity & natural spritz left over from fermentation.

These are wines that inspire us to get out there and enjoy the day as it passes into they say in Basque country, "Aurrera Txalupa!" (onward, the boat!).



Grape: Hondarrabi Zuri

A wine that captures mornings on the coast. Lightly fizzy, with citrus like lime, tart apple, a cool herbal note like mint, and even a minerality reminiscent of the briny Atlantic breezes. Serve with grilled or tempura squid, Caesar salad, chilled mint & pea soup, and ceviche.

Suggestion: Keep this one chilled around 45F, or about 30 minutes in an ice bucket.

$19.98 750ml [377777] AMEZTOI 2017 TXAKOLI



Grapes: Hondarrabi Zuri & Beltza

A Summer afternoon picnic on the a glass! Refreshingly light & fizzy like the white, but with a subtle taste of candied red fruit. The quintessential wine to have with a fresh berry salad.

Suggestion: Perfect around 52F, or about 20 minutes in an ice bucket.

$19.98 750ml [380464] AMEZTOI 2017 ROSE TXAKOLINA RUBENTIS



Grape: Hondarrabi Beltza

They managed to bottle Summer evenings in Basque country. A gentle spritz, a touch more body, flavors of raspberry & candied strawberry, a slight crushed rock minerality with hints of iron, and gentle tannins; a refreshing wine to chill well and pair seared tuna steak, carpaccio, grilled chicken liver, and grilled fig wrapped with pork belly.

Suggestion: Aim for 55-59F, or 10-15 minutes in an ice bucket.

$19.95 750ml [383294] AMEZTOI 2017 TXAKOLI "STIMATUM" RED

Magnificent, High Scoring and Highly Recommended!

Come by Hi-Time for our limited-time collection from boutique winery, Lisini, a founding member of Tuscany's Brunello scene! Their flagship 2013 Brunello received 96 points from Wine Spectator, with a "Highly Recommended" endorsement!

Their style is rooted in tradition, making use of cement vats in which to ferment the wine, and large, neutral oak vats in which to age it. And that makes perfect sense, as the Lisini-Clementi family have owned the land since the 1500; and Elina Lisini, who ran the estate until 2009, was an early president of Montalcino's wine-governing body, the Consortium of Brunello.

"Given the cult status and high demand of Lisini Brunellos, these bottlings easily put to rest the idea that what people really want is a little Merlot blended into their Brunellos. Rather than overoak, overextract, or overripen, the firm prefers to craft its classic offerings with the denominations tried and true winemaking methods." – Kerin O'Keefe, Brunello di Montalcino

There are several expressions of their Sangiovese to explore, two of which come from that spectacular 2015 vintage we mentioned last time!


The first level is the most "modern" of their wines: made from the youngest Sangiovese vines, the juice is treated gently with cool temperatures & unoaked; the resulting wine is driven by fresh red and black cherry, with an appetizing nuttiness reminiscent of walnut and a subtle dried herbal quality to the tannins. While the 14% abv provides a vinous warmth, the body is lightened up by a bright acidity; the final result is the "sunlight held together by water" that Tuscan native Galileo Galilei wrote of. It's a supremely accessible and uncomplicated style of wine for Montalcino. This is the wine you serve lightly chilled (58-60)F.

$17.95 750ml [305856] LISINI 2015 "SAN BIAGIO" TOSCANA IGT


The next level up is sometimes called a baby Brunello, as it is made with many of the same vines, just aged for less time.

INTERNATIONAL WINE REPORT 93 POINTS - "The 2015 Lisini Rosso di Montalcino is an absolutely brilliant showing in this vintage. Gorgeous aromatics of cherries and red plums are woven together with leather, spices, tobacco, floral and a savory edge, which all come together gracefully in the glass. This Rosso possesses a medium-plus body and is beautifully balanced with a lovely velvety texture, which expands through the lingering finish. While this will be accessible immediately upon release, it also possesses the potential to evolve for up to a decade. Overall, this is a magnificent Rosso, which easily delivers the quality of a well-made Brunello."

$24.98 750ml [302649] LISINI 2015 ROSSO DI MONTALCINO


The most traditional and of Lisini wines, their Brunello is aged for 4 years in large, neutral oak vats. A Hi-Time Favorite!

WINE SPECTATOR 96 POINTS 'HIGHLY RECOMMENDED' - "Exuding cherry, strawberry and floral flavors tinged with iron, earth and spice notes, this ripe red is elegant in profile, tightly wound and deftly balanced, ending with a kick of fruit, spice and mineral elements."

$49.98 750ml [301011] LISINI 2013 BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

First Rum in History to Win the Supreme Champion Award at the ISC!

Foursquare 2005 has become the first rum brand in history to win the Supreme Champion award at the International Spirits Challenge.

The Supreme Champion award was presented to representatives of R.L. Seale & Co, owners of Foursquare Rum Distillery at the 2018 ISC Awards Dinner on 12 July at The Gibson Hall, London.

Foursquare Rum Distillery produces its own range of rums which won three gold medals and two trophies at this year's ISC, as well as the overall Supreme Champion award.

The Awards Dinner was attended by representatives of the brands which entered the competition, and the judges from every panel across the ISC as well as industry leaders in every category.

Now in its 23rd year, the ISC receives more than 1,500 entries from more than 70 countries making it one of the biggest tasting awards in the world.

Pieter de Bod, KWV master distiller, said - "KWV has been entering the International Spirits Challenge since 1997 as we regard it as one of the most prestigious competitions of its type."

"The rigorous judging process is second to none and it is a remarkable achievement to garner ISC trophies and medals as this signals not only supreme quality but also consistent dedication to the craft of creating world-class spirits." - Shay Waterworth, Drinks International

Foursquare Rum Distillery is located on a former sugar plantation that dates back to 1636 within the tiny Caribbean island of Barbados. Founded by the Seale family, distilling operations and blending are currently directed by Richard Seale, 4th Generation Trader/Distiller. We are huge fans of Richard Seale's rums and were not surprised when we heard about his distillery’s latest triumph at the prestigious International Spirits Challlenge.


Tasting Notes from - "In the glass we are presented with an orange/golden brown rum with a very slight haze to it (only lightly filtered perhaps?). The nose is familiar. Lovely spicy bourbon casks – white pepper, lime zest and a touch of ginger and nutmeg. This is balanced by a really beautiful sweetness – vanilla and milk chocolate. You would never guess this was such a potent rum at 59% ABV. Tropical fruits are revealed on further nosing with hints of coconutand banana. Notes of chewy sugary toffee.

It will remind you of other Foursquare rums – could I pick the 2004 and 2005 apart from nosing? Possibly, but only in a side by side testing. If I was handed this and told it was the 2004 I would only quibble if I had just finished a 2004.

I tend to end up talking about balance a lot when I review Foursquare rums. Particularly those like the 2004 or Rum Sixty Six that do not have any second maturation. This is a rum blend of Pot and Column distillation which has been aged and carefully managed in the tropics for over 12 years. This shines through in the rum's profile. The nose is pretty much perfect, as an example of Bajan rum. No hang on – it is perfect."

$69.99 750ml [113625] FOURSQUARE SINGLE BLENDED D-2005 750 12YR 118PF

A Beautiful 94 Point Pinot Noir Under $20!

The name Martin Ray resonates deeply in the history of California Winemaking. Martin Ray was a pioneer, dedicated to crafting single varietal, region specific wine from 1943 through 1972 in Saratoga, the heart of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Mentored by Paul Masson, he took a burgundian approach to his winemaking and developed what is now one of the most historical properties in California, known as Mount Eden.

Nearly twenty years later, Courtney Benham stumbled upon 1500 cases of Martin Ray wine in a San Jose warehouse. Recognizing his good fortune, and his intent and drive to produce terroir driven wines, Ray's historical significance and philosophy resonated with him. Courtney purchased the brand, and since 1990 has been committed to the production of artisanal wines worthy of the Martin Ray name.

Carefully chosen from various vineyards throughout the Russian River Valley and Carneros, this wine's largest components are grown only feet from the river itself, coming from Ricioli and Foppiano Vineyards. Building on a strong base from these vineyards, the wine is focused with fruit from a few select vineyards around the winery's home on Laguna Road, as well as Sangiacomo Vineyard in the Carneros appellation. The grapes were fermented separately in small open-top fermenters with gentle punch-downs. The fermentations were carefully maintained at moderate temperatures until dry, when the must was basket-pressed then pumped into barrels for completion of malolactic fermentation. Lots were aged for eleven months in new premium French oak barrels, along with more nuanced 1-2 year old barrels.


This Pinot Noir exemplifies the expectations of what savvy consumers have come to look forward to from classic Sonoma County Pinot. The nose has notes of ripe elderberry, black cherry, aromatic wild rose, and spicy cola, with slightly earthy undertones. French oak barrels lend support with hints of creamy vanilla and toffee without overpowering the juicy, fruit-forward palate.

JAMES SUCKLING 94 POINTS - "A subtle and rich Pinot with dried-cherry and strawberry character. Medium to full-bodied and firm, silky tannins that are extremely well-integrated in the palate. Lovely finish. Drink or hold."

$19.95 750ml [239885] MARTIN RAY 2016 PINOT NOIR SONOMA COUNTY