- Item #: i_258370Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 94Wine Spectator: 92This pioneering Napa Valley sparkling wine house has been on quite a tear lately with their rose cuvees and this edition could be our favorite to date. This rose's multi-faceted palate presents a cornucopia of succulent red summer fruits that are just the thing to complement the salt infused flavors of your Easter ham. Robert Parker really flipped for it as the below review suggests.
- Item #: i_259955Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94This is the premiere release for an exciting new Bordeaux-style blend from Shafer Vineyards; one of the most prized wineries in all of the Napa Valley! TD-9 is a proprietary blend that celebrates a bold move. In 1973, in the space of a few months, John Shafer went from riding morning commuter trains in Chicago to teaching himself to drive a TD-9 tractor in his Napa Valley vineyard. He'd never grown grapes or made wine in his life. That spirit of risk-taking and adventure still guides Shafer today and inspired the creation of this new wine.
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "The 2016 Red Blend TD-9 is blended of 58% Merlot, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon and 16% Malbec. It has a very deep purple-black color and displays ready-for-biz, fragrant scents of warm plums, Black Forest cake and blueberry compote with touches of baking spices, bay leaves and potpourri. Full-bodied with a serious, firm frame of ripe, grainy tannins, the palate delivery loads of black fruit and spicy layers with bags of vivacity and panache."
ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "The 2016 TD-9 is just as impressive from bottle as it was from barrel. Bright floral notes and a rush of red cherry/red plum fruit give energy to this pliant, super-expressive wine. The 2016 has firmed up a bit since it was bottled, so a few more months should do the trick. The blend is 58% Merlot, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon and 16% Malbec."
- Item #: i_262750Bottle Size: 375mlWine Advocate: 96+Vinous Media: 96**Please note, this is a half sized bottleROBERT PARKER 96+ POINTS - "This first-growth estate in St. Helena has produced a 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon that is a blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot. It is certainly one of the wines of the vintage. Gorgeously opaque purple, it offers up notes of spring flowers, blueberries, blackcurrants, some baking spice and graphite. It is full-bodied, concentrated and rich, with layers of fruit. The wine builds and builds on the palate, with a great finish of 45+ seconds. This is a sensational 2014 to drink over the next 20+ years."
ANTONIO GALLONI 96 POINTS - "Spottswoode 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon is striking. Black cherry, plum, graphite, spice and menthol are some of the signatures. Intensely mineral and savory, the 2014 comes across as a slightly restrained version of the 2013. The flavor and tannin profiles are both quite similar, but the 2014 is a bit smaller-scaled in all of its dimensions. That is not a bad thing, as the 2014 will be ready to drink sooner. This is an impressive showing."
- Item #: i_265295Bottle Size: 750mlThis Chardonnay is a story of balance, a delicious intersection of richness and minerality that benefits from the classical standard of viticulture, care of the land, and winemaking that is as relevant today as it was in 1893 when Stags' Leap Winery celebrated its first vintage.
- Item #: i_266520Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 93 PointsANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "Lisa Valtenbergs turned out a superb set of wines at Stonestreet. The Chardonnays are outstanding, but this year, I was especially impressed with the Cabernets, which seem less pushed than in the past. Perhaps that is a reflection of the very high quality of the 2016 vintage, or maybe there is a slight move towards a more nuanced style. Time will tell. Either way, the 2016 Cabernets are fabulous, and also some of the very finest wines I have tasted here."
"The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is a gorgeous entry-level wine in this range from Stonestreet. A whole range of floral and savory notes give the Estate aromatic nuance to play off a core of vibrant red fruit. Medium in body and impeccably polished, the 2016 is flat-out delicious, even in the early going. "
JEB DUNNUCK 93 POINTS - "Moving to the reds, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate (100% Cabernet Sauvignon aged 19 months in 37% new French oak) offers impressive notes of tobacco leaf, damp earth, cedar, and blackcurrants. It's look-alike for a top Bordeaux, has nicely integrated acidity, plenty of tannins, and is going to keep for over a decade."
- Item #: i_266510Bottle Size: 750mlVinous Media: 90Jeb Dunnuck: 92 PointsStonestreet Estate Vineyards stand on the western ridge of the Mayacamas Mountains towering over the Alexander Valley below. High elevations, volcanically derived soils and cooling maritime breezes give us a unique location from which to pursue the quest of mountain winegrowing. Of the 5,100 acres that make up the Estate, only 900 are planted to grapes (235 individual vineyard blocks) while the remaining land retains its natural biodiversity and abounds with streambeds and ancient oaks, providing a habitat to cougars, owls and black bears.
ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "The 2016 Chardonnay Estate is a terrific introduction to the Stonestreet Chardonnays. Citrus, apricot, mint and a dash of new oak add nuance to this finely cut mountain Chardonnay. The Estate Chardonnay is another wine that delivers serious quality for the money. Silky and textured, the 2016 hits all the right notes. What a gorgeous wine it is."
JEB DUNNUCK 92 POINTS - "Stonestreet falls under the Jackson Family umbrella and focuses on higher elevation, mountain sites. The wines, made by Lisa Valtenbergs, are rock-solid across the board."
"The 2016 Chardonnay Estate is another wine sourced from higher elevation sites and was barrel fermented and aged. It offers a classic style in its baked apples, spice, honeycomb, and marzipan profile. Deep, medium-bodied, beautifully balanced, and textured, it's a class act and should keep for 4-6 years."
- Item #: i_275640Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 92Vinous Media: 93Jeb Dunnuck: 91 PointsTablas Creek was founded by the Perrin family of Château de Beaucastel and their importer, Robert Haas. The goal was to produce California's best examples of southern Rhône varietals and Chateauneuf-du-Pape style blends. The partners chose a 120-acre property in the hills of westside Paso Robles for its similarities to Chateauneuf-du-Pape: limestone soils, favorable climate, and rugged terrain. Tablas Creek emphasizes dry farming (no watering) to seek maximum expression from their grapes, and they farm organically. Their signature white is named Esprit de Tablas, and is modeled after the Beaucastel wines from the Rhone Valley.
ANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 93-94 POINTS - "Light green-tinged gold. Mineral-accented tangerine, melon and pear scents on the highly perfumed nose; a floral nuance gains strength as the wine opens up. Vibrant citrus and orchard fruit flavors are joined by bitter quinine and honeysuckle flourishes that build slowly with air. Shows impressive depth as well as nerviness on the finish, which hangs on with strong, mineral-dominated persistence."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "The 2017 Esprit Blanc de Tablas is made up of 68% Roussanne, 17% Grenache Blanc, 7% Picpoul Blanc, 4% Picardan and 4% Clairette Blanche. The nose features honey-drizzled apples, lychee, orange peel and musk with warm hay, crushed stone, quince and pie crust notions. Medium to full-bodied with intense honeyed flavors in the mouth, it has great juicy acidity to counter and a long, gently textured finish. "This is the first vintage of the Esprit de Tablas Blanc to have Clairette and Picardin," winemaker Jason Haas says, "because we wanted to include all the white grapes from Châteauneuf-du-Pape." 2,250 cases produced."
JEB DUNNUCK 91 POINTS - "The 2017 Esprit De Tablas Blanc offers more richness and depth, which is largely missing from many of these wines. White peach, quince, honeysuckle, and hints of stone fruits all emerge from the glass, and it's nicely textured, medium-bodied, has good acidity, and a clean finish. The blend is 68% Roussanne, 17% Grenache Blanc, 7% Picpoul Blanc, 4% Picardan, and 4% Clairette."
- Item #: i_268610Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 93Vinous Media: 95Jeb Dunnuck: 94 PointsANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 95 POINTS - "(aged for 18 months in French oak barrels, 35% of them new) Brilliant red. A suave, expansive bouquet evokes fresh red berries, potpourri, incense and smoky minerals. Sappy, alluringly sweet and light on its feet, offering intense raspberry, cherry and floral pastille flavors that are braced by a suggestion of bitter blood orange. Plays power off delicacy with a sure hand, showing no excess weight but displaying abundant red fruit character. Fine-grained tannins lend shape to a strikingly long, smooth finish that leaves a sexy rose pastille note behind."
JEB DUNNUCK 94 POINTS - "The 2015 Pinot Noir Rosemary's Vineyard is certainly one of the gems in the vintage. Black cherries, underbrush, crushed violets, ample spice and tons of floral qualities all emerge from this beautifully textured, seamless, silky beauty that has building tannin, impressive mid-palate density, integrated acidity and notable length. Aged 18 months in 35% new French oak, drink it anytime over the coming 10-15 years."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - "Pale to medium ruby-purple colored, the 2015 Pinot Noir Rosemary's Vineyard offers up expressive black cherries, mulberries and black raspberry notes with suggestions of violets, baking spices, fertile loam and lavender. Medium-bodied, with a firm backbone of fine-grained tannins and well-integrated freshness, it gives plenty of earthy layers and great length."
- Item #: i_268420Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 94 PointsRosemary's Vineyard is located on a hillside surrounding Rosemary Talley’s home, and is characterized by white, rocky fractured sandstone and loam, with some clay in the subsoil. Rosemary's is steep, very well-drained, and because it is closer to the ocean, slightly cooler. Entirely hand-harvested, this was 100% barrel-fermented and aged for 15 months, yet there is no evidence of heaviness.
ANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 95 POINTS - "(20% new French oak) Limpid yellow-gold. A highly complex bouquet evokes ripe tangerine, green apple, pineapple, Anjou pear and pungent flowers; iodine and fennel accents emerge as the wine opens up. Sappy, penetrating citrus and orchard fruit flavors convey both power and delicacy. Smoky lees and mineral notes build steadily on a very long, silken, finely etched finish that emphatically repeats the floral and pear notes."
JEB DUNNUCK 94+ POINTS - "One of the gems in the lineup is the 2016 Chardonnay Rosemary's Vineyard, which comes from a cool, chalky, shale site in the Arroyo Grande Valley and spent 15 months in 20% new French oak. This medium-bodied, pure, vibrant beauty has everything. Complex notes of white flowers, white peach, honeyed apples, and a distinct salty minerality all give way to a perfectly balanced, layered Chardonnay that's going to continue gaining complexity over the coming 2-3 years and will keep for 7-8 years after that."
- Item #: i_268600Bottle Size: 750MLVinous Media: 94Jeb Dunnuck: 95 PointsANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 95 POINTS - "(5% whole clusters and 30% new French oak) Deep bright-rimmed red. A highly complex, mineral-tinged bouquet evokes candied red fruits, cola, Asian spices, mocha and potpourri. Seamless and sharply delineated on the palate, offering appealingly sweet Chambord, rose pastille and spicecake flavors that deepen on the back half, with no loss of energy. Fine-grained tannins frame a strikingly long, smooth, smoke-accented finish that leaves a juicy raspberry note behind."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93+ POINTS - "One of the standouts is the 2016 Pinot Noir Rincon Vineyard, which comes from a hillside site in the Arroyo Grande and vines planted in 1982. Aged 18 months in 30% new French oak, it's a powerful, opulent wine (especially when compared to the East Rincon release) and has awesome notes of ripe strawberries, red and black currants, spice, and forest floor. Elegant yet concentrated, medium-bodied, beautifully balanced, and with fabulous intensity, drink this gorgeous Pinot Noir any time over the coming decade or more."
- Item #: i_267080Bottle Size: 750mlThis wine is a joint venture of wine gurus from two continents. The blend is a true collaboration of winemakers Bob Bertheau of Chateau Ste Michelle, along with two juggernauts from France, Michel Gassier and Philippe Cambie! They have combined their decades of experience to produce a wine that demonstrates why Washington State is one of the best growing regions in the world for Syrah!
Approximately 22% of the lots were fermented as whole clusters, with the remaining lots fermented as de-stemmed grapes. The inclusion of stems during fermentation contributes earthy, savory aromas and flavors that perfectly complement the pure fruit character of the grapes. To further enhance these complexities, about 20% of the lots also underwent extended maceration. After fermentation, a majority of the young wine was placed into neutral French oak barrels for aging, with the remainder aged in tight-grained new French and American oak barrels. The use of neutral and tighter-grained barrels helps to preserve the unique character of the wine itself. This year the wine is a blend of 90% Syrah, 4% Grenache, 4% Mourvedre, and 2% Viognier.
ANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 90 POINTS - "Bright, full ruby. Slightly reduced aromas of dark berries, dark chocolate and spices; less expressive and wild than the 2015 version was at the same stage. Concentrated, silky and fine-grained, displaying sexy spice and violet lift to the concentrated dark berry and licorice flavors. I find more sweetness and primary fruit character--and more generosity of texture--than in the 2015 version of this bottling. The long finish hints at chocolatey ripeness but also shows lovely violet lift and a fine dusting of tannins. This needs aeration or a year or two in the cellar to shed its reductive quality. (I should note that a second bottle was a bit less generous and sweet.) (14.5% alcohol)"
- Item #: i_268240Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 94To understand the wines made by The Hilt, one might need to come visit the hard and harsh conditions under which they are born. The unobstructed, oceancooled, east-west valley known as Sta. Rita Hills is a difficult yet rewarding area to grow grapes. The Salsipuedes Ranch (which contains three of The Hilt's vineyards) is located in the northern-facing, closest-to-the-ocean, windswept quadrant. These sites are the worst places for a grape grower but the best ones for a winemaker. The ranch is a unique, large and sprawling property that offers a range of altitudes, aspects, soil typesº and microclimates, giving winemaker Matt Dees a patchwork of vineyard parcels from which to select grapes and create wines with distinctive styles. The property, however, does have some aspects that remain consistent: the land has poor soils that force vines to dig deep; there are powerful, whipping winds and a cold maritime climate that allow grapes on the property to ripen slowly and retain acidity despite the warm daytime sun; and the vines on the property are low in vigor, allowing them to produce low yields of concentrated, complex grapes. With these grapes, The Hilt’s Chardonnay earned a whopping 94 point score from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate!
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 94 POINTS - "Showing a touch of brioche in its ripe orchard fruits, toasted bread, sweet peach and white flower bouquet, the 2014 Chardonnay Vanguard is medium-bodied, fresh, layered and focused, with lively acidity and a pure, elegant style. Give bottles a year in the cellar and enjoy over the following 5-7 years."
- Item #: i_276518Bottle Size: 750mlFormerly knows as "Torchiana"
This wine is a barrel selection from three historic Chardonnay vineyards. The Beresini Vineyard's thirty year-old, dry-farmed heritage vines contribute depth and texture, Hyde Vineyard's wind-cooled topography gives minerality and precision and Durell Vineyard adds richness and opulence. The sum of this winemaker's selection is greater than its parts.
The fruit from each of the vineyards were picked separately at their individual optimum ripeness levels and pressed directly to barrel for fermentation relying on the natural yeasts from the vineyard. The small French oak cooperage is a mix of Damy for its contribution of "walking into a Parisian bakery" aromas, Saury for its gentle spice and a little Francois Frere. Malolactics in 2018 took 6-9 months contributing nuanced complexity and textural depth. For this wine winemaker Jeff Aimes selected the most citrus, floral, crisp, mineral barrels and bottled them in early August after 11 months maturation.
A culmination of three wonderful Chardonnay vineyards, the interplay of each vineyard has given a beautifully svelte, balanced and harmonious wine. Elegant fruit flavors of ripe citrus, white flower and minerals are layered with brioche, nutmeg and fresh cream complexities. The palate is exciting, with a juxtaposition of dense concentration and svelte creamy texture, with balancing freshness, crispness and structural tension. Delicious right out of the gate, yet with the substance to develop beautifully over the next 5-10 years.
- Item #: i_273520Bottle Size: 750mlWine Spectator: 94WINE SPECTATOR 94 POINTS - "Shows precision and expression, with refined black cherry and blueberry flavors accented by crushed stone and dark spice notes, building complexity toward polished tannins. Drink now through 2024. 412 cases made. "