- Item #: i_249330Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 96 PointsWhile on our annual winter trip to the Napa Valley in 2013, we were invited to the "kick off" for a new winery named Pulido-Walker, and the first of their three single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignons. That wine was the single best wine we had on our entire trip!
Pulido-Walker is dedicated to the perfection of every element needed to craft exceptional single-vineyard designate Cabernet Sauvignon. Proprietors Mark Pulido and Donna Walker grew up in pharmacy families, and this early common experience is integral to the Pulido-Walker philosophy. Their scientific backgrounds make Mark and Donna precise, inquisitive, and detailed; they know that perseverance and attentive observation yield results worth waiting for. Few people have the commitment or the endurance—never mind the conviction of their principles—to completely reframe the experiment mid-stream.
Their winemaker is the highly sought-after Thomas Brown, who also crafts the high scoring and incredible wines at Schrader, Maybach, Outpost, and others. He has been in Napa since 1997, where he began his career at Turley Cellars and now makes wines for select premium labels. Over the last decade, Thomas has received not just one but eight 100-point Wine Advocate Parker scores to go along with two 100-point awards from Wine Spectator. Beyond generosity and roundness in tannins, his wines have few common traits and are very individual. Pulido~Walker's Cabernet Sauvignons promise to be among his most distinctive.
"What separates the best valley floor sites from good valley floor sites is their ability to drain," explains winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown. Panek Vineyard blankets a rocky, gently sloping knoll in the shadow of the Mayacamas Mountains along the old Napa River bed wash. The loamy soil, with its highly compacted alluvial deposits of gravel, provides optimal drainage. The valley basin is also more temperate than the hillsides surrounding St. Helena, making it ideal for slower ripening and full development of flavors. These elements coalesce in low yields of reliably superb fruit.
JEB DUNNUCK 96 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Panek Vineyard comes from a site in St. Helena and offers a darker, savory style as well as plenty of blue fruits, violets, tobacco, and damp earth. With bright acidity, a silky, elegant texture, and terrific purity, it's a more vibrant, juicier, fresher wine than the Melanson Vineyard. Give bottle 2-4 years and drink over the following two decades."
ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Panek Vineyard is gorgeous. Bright red cherry, sweet tobacco, mint and rose petal notes give the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Panek Vineyard a level of brilliance that sets it apart from most other Cabernets being made off this site. Plush, elegant and sensual to its core, the 2016 is a winner from Pulido-Walker and winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown."
- Item #: i_252240Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 97+ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97+ POINTS - "The 2016 Proprietary Red Wine is blended of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot and 1% Carmenere, with all fruit coming from the Quintessa estate, and it aged for 20 months in 73% new French oak. Very deep purple-black in color, it comes bounding out of the glass like a pedigree pup with exuberant notions of crème de cassis, warm blueberries and black cherries with hints of redcurrants, kirsch, candied violets, crushed rocks, cigar box and fallen leaves plus a waft of truffles. Full, rich and beautifully laced with layers of floral notes and fragrant earth, the profound black and blue fruits build slowly in the mouth, achieving great energy and depth with a beautiful velvety frame, finishing long and perfumed."
- Item #: i_254620Bottle Size: 750MLRidge has made the Geyserville as a single-site Zinfandel in every year since 1966. The grapes are grown in three adjoining vineyards on a defined stretch of gravelly soil approximately one-and-a-quarter miles long and a half-mile wide.
A blend of 68% Zinfandel, 18% Carignane, 12% Petite Sirah, and 2% Alicante Bouschet, the wine had a dark ruby color and aromas of ripe black cherries, plum, sweet oak, mint, and gravel earth. Rich bramble fruit entry, round and supple tannins, refreshing acidity, and layered complex fruits in a long finish.
- Item #: i_242830Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96+Jeb Dunnuck: 95 PointsANTONIO GALLONI 96+ POINTS - "Mondavi's Cabernet Sauvignon The Reserve To Kalon Vineyard is fabulous. Rich, powerful and voluptuous, the 2015 oozes with class from the very first taste. The flavors are deep, dark and boldly sketched in this sumptuous, beautifully resonant Cabernet. The tannins will need time to soften, but I can't imagine readers opening bottles anytime soon. The 2015 Reserve is one of the very finest wines I have tasted from Robert Mondavi Winery."
ROBERT PARKER 96+ POINTS - "Composed of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon To Kalon Reserve features a deep garnet-purple color and wonderfully expressive nose of creme de cassis, preserved plums and black forest cake with hints of cigar boxes, aniseed, dark chocolate and forest floor. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated in the mouth, the ripe, opulent black fruit is well supported by velvety tannins and plenty of freshness, finishing long and spicy."
JEB DUNNUCK 95 POINTS - "A blend of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, 2% Petite Verdot, and 2% Cabernet Franc, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon The Reserve To Kalon Vineyard is about as perfumed, upfront and sexy as they come. Sporting a ruby/plum color and a terrific bouquet of black raspberries, cedary spice, toasty oak, flowers and incense, it hits the palate with loads of sweet fruit, an undeniable opulence, ripe tannin and a great finish. It's an approachable 2015 that's going to evolve gracefully for another two decades."
- Item #: i_256770Bottle Size: 750mlThe Louer Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is filled with layers of juicy dark red fruit and dark chocolate with touches of toasty oak. Velvety tannins from 24 months of 100% New French Oak create a Cabernet Lovers.
- Item #: i_274520Bottle Size: 750MLWine Enthusiast: 96 PointsWINE ENTHUSIAST 96 POINTS - "This is an extraordinary wine, both mouthfilling in texture and intricate in flavor. A light amber color leads to a profusion of subtle spice and apricot aromas backed by enticing ginger, raspberry and citrus nuances on the palate. The flavors grow richer and deeper with each sip, carried by a very fine bead of effervescence and subtle acidity."
- Item #: i_258370Bottle Size: 750MLWine Spectator: 91James Suckling: 91Wine Enthusiast: 93 PointsWINE ENTHUSIAST 93 POINTS, WINE SPECTATOR 91 POINTS, JAMES SUCKLING 91 POINTS
This 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_259000Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 92Wine Spectator: 92Jeb Dunnuck: 93 PointsJEB DUNNUCK 93 POINTS - "The 2016 Zinfandel Cortina offers more complexity in its earth dark fruits, underbrush, Caramelized cherries, and spice. Rich, medium to full-bodied, with ripe tannins and a solid sense of purity and freshness, this is a classy yet pleasure bent Zinfandel that will keep for a decade."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 90+ POINTS - "The 2016 Zinfandel Cortina is medium ruby in color and youthfully coiled on the nose, taking its time to release scents of sliced nectarine, rhubarb, boysenberry and blueberry accented by dried flowers, warm earth, garrigue and loads of spiciness. The palate is still tight and reticent to show its juicy fruits. It has a soft texture and very pleasing, juicy acidity, finishing long. I suspect this will reward another couple of years in bottle. 2,458 cases produced."
WINE SPECTATOR 92 POINTS - "Brooding and appealingly briary, with dark cherry, fresh sage and smoked pepper flavors that persist toward broad-shouldered tannins. Best from 2020 through 2027. 2,458 cases made."
- Item #: i_259955Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 92 PointsThis is the latest release for an exciting 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.
JEB DUNNUCK 92 POINTS - "Moving to the reds, the 2017 TD-9 Proprietary Red Blend is mostly Merlot yet includes 22% Malbec and a small amount of Cabernet Sauvignon. Deep purple-hued with sweet aromas of jammy blackberries, spiced cherries, herbes de Provence, and dried flowers, it is a wonderfully textured, medium to full-bodied, balanced red with sweet tannins and a great finish. It's going to evolve nicely for 10-12 years."
- 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: 750mlJeb 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: 92Jeb 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_268440Bottle Size: 750MLFor three generations the Talley family has farmed in Coastal San Luis Obispo County, a tradition that began in 1948 when Oliver Talley founded Talley Farms and started growing vegetables in the Arroyo Grande Valley. After witnessing the success of winegrowing in the neighboring Edna Valley, Oliver's son, Don Talley, became convinced of the potential for growing high-quality wine grapes on the steep hillsides above Talley Farms. He planted a small test plot in 1982 on the west hillside of the Rincon Vineyard. In 1986 Don made 450 cases of wine, which sold out very quickly. Production increased over the next five years, until 1991, when a new winery was built at the foot of their Rincon Vineyard. Today, Don and Rosemary Talley's son, Brian Talley, runs the business after developing a passion for wine when he worked in a wine shop while attending UC Berkely.
The Talley family has a commitment to high quality and long-term sustainability which are the two principles that guide Talley Vineyards' farming decisions. Their vineyards are SIP Certified (Sustainability in Practice) by the Central Coast Vineyard Team. Biologically based farming techniques and integrated pest management practices are employed throughout the vineyards. To improve soil conditions, prevent erosion and provide fertility, cover crops are maintained in all vineyard blocks. No herbicides are used.
ANTONIO GALLONI'S VINOUS MEDIA 93 POINTS - "Deep glistening ruby-red. Vibrant, sharply focused aromas of cherry, potpourri and Asian spices are lifted by a smoky mineral flourish. Broad and concentrated on the palate, offering raspberry, bitter cherry and spicecake flavors that show impressive energy and focus. Rich yet lively in character, finishing with strong, spicy drive and fine-grained tannins that come in late. 26% new French oak."
JEB DUNNUCK 92 POINTS - "The appellation release, the 2017 Pinot Noir Estate is all estate fruit that spent 15 months in 35% new French oak. Beautiful notes of red currants, raspberries, spring flowers, and ground herbs notes all emerge from this medium-bodied, fresh, racy effort that has bright acidity, fine tannins, and a great finish. This vibrant, age-worthy effort will keep for over a decade."
- Item #: i_268420Bottle Size: 750mlRosemary'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.
- 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_270380Bottle Size: 1.5LWine Advocate: 95+ROBERT PARKER 95+ POINTS = "Tor Kenward is using his vast experience in the wine industry and impressive palate to find exceptional terroirs and produce fascinating wines that merit serious attention. His winemaking guru is Jeff Ames, who makes his own wines under the Rudius label."
"The 2014 Proprietary Red from Oakville is 44% Cabernet Franc, 44% Petit Verdot and 12% Cabernet Sauvignon. This is a fabulous wine and a creative blend from Kenward. With a fabulous nose of forest floor, white flowers, licorice, incense, blackcurrant and blueberry fruit, this deep, sumptuous, full-bodied wine has fabulous intensity, low acidity and finely grained, integrated tannins. There is not much of it, but it is a beauty. It can be drunk now or cellared for another two decades."
- 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_270050Bottle Size: 750mlA blend of 45% Viognier, 45% Marsanne, and 10% Roussanne, Treana Blanc is a stunning example of a new world Rhone blend with aromas and flavors of pineapple, dried apricot, peach and Clementine orange that combine with floral notes of honeysuckle and elder flower. Sweet notes of marzipan, honey, graham cracker along with cinnamon and vanilla round out this complex, full-bodied and racy wine.
- Item #: i_287800Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93Vinous Media: 93ANTONIO GALLONI 93 POINTS - "These are the first wines from Christian Moueix's property in Oakville. In 2008 Moueix bought the Schmidt Ranch, which lies on the southeastern edge of Oakville, next to Vine Hill Ranch and Missouri Hopper. From what I have gathered, the Schmidt Ranch was once considered part of the Missouri Hopper vineyard. More recently, the fruit had gone to Swanson. The Ulysses Cabernet Sauvignon is made at Dominus (there is no winery on the property) by Tod Mostero and the team at Dominus. The wines I have tasted so far reveal the distinctly ferrous, savory and tobacco notes that are typical of this sector of Napa Valley, with less of an emphasis on fruit. Compared to Dominus, Ulysses is a warmer site, so the tannins here tend to be a bit creamier than those at Dominus. These three wines certainly point to a very bright future."
"The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon is the first commercial release from Christian Moueix's Oakville property. Sensual and alluring, yet with striking depth, the 2012 is full of sweet red cherry, raspberry jam, wild flowers, all pushed forward in a sexy, layered Cabernet Sauvignon that delivers terrific depth for a wine from this generally uneven vintage. Sweet floral and spiced notes add lift on the finish. I imagine the 2012 will reward readers with a good two decades of fine drinking."
ROBERT PARKER 93 POINTS - "I had the privilege to taste this new estate vineyard wine from Christian Moueix several months before the 2012 would be released. Moueix purchased the old Schmidt Ranch, which is just to the north of his iconic Napanook vineyard. The AVA is different, as he is on the southern border of the Oakville appellation. This is pure valley floor soil with great drainage, just to the south of Martha's Vineyard and the famous To Kalon of both Mondavi and Andy Beckstoffer. Several vintages have been made, but not yet released. The first official release is the 2012. This is a completely different style of wine than those produced at Dominus. While the property is much smaller (40 acres vs. the very large Napanook vineyard), a similar élevage is employed, with 40% to 50% new French oak, and bottling after the wine spends 20 months in wood. Moueix told me that the site, even though it is so close to Napanook, is warmer in the summer by several degrees and colder in the winter, Additionally, the soils are deeper. What Moueix has done is produce a wine that is in complete contrast to Dominus. The wines of Dominus are known for their silky complexity, and even though there is virtually no Merlot in any of the top vintages, they always have an almost Pomerol-like lushness and opulence. Ulysses, on the other hand, is a Napa version of a first or second growth Pauillac. The crème de cassis, the licorice, the purity and the graphite notes are present in all three of these vintages, just in varying degrees."
"The 2012 Ulysses (800 cases) is 95% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest other Bordeaux varietals. A structured, dense purple wine that displays plenty of cedar wood, crème de cassis, licorice and graphite, the wine is full-bodied, rich, backward and dense, but beautifully pure fruit and an almost Pontet-Canet-like purity and density are hallmarks of this brilliant wine. Forget it for 4-5 years and drink it over the following 20-25."
- Item #: i_287830Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 96Vinous Media: 95ROBERT PARKER 96 POINTS - "I had the privilege to taste this new estate vineyard wine from Christian Moueix several months before the 2012 would be released. Moueix purchased the old Schmidt Ranch, which is just to the north of his iconic Napanook vineyard. The AVA is different, as he is on the southern border of the Oakville appellation. This is pure valley floor soil with great drainage, just to the south of Martha's Vineyard and the famous To Kalon of both Mondavi and Andy Beckstoffer. Several vintages have been made, but not yet released. The first official release is the 2012. This is a completely different style of wine than those produced at Dominus. While the property is much smaller (40 acres vs. the very large Napanook vineyard), a similar elevage is employed, with 40% to 50% new French oak, and bottling after the wine spends 20 months in wood. Moueix told me that the site, even though it is so close to Napanook, is warmer in the summer by several degrees and colder in the winter, Additionally, the soils are deeper. What Moueix has done is produce a wine that is in complete contrast to Dominus. The wines of Dominus are known for their silky complexity, and even though there is virtually no Merlot in any of the top vintages, they always have an almost Pomerol-like lushness and opulence. Ulysses, on the other hand, is a Napa version of a first or second growth Pauillac. The crème de cassis, the licorice, the purity and the graphite notes are present in all three of these vintages, just in varying degrees."
"The 2013 Ulysses is absolutely mind-boggling, as so many wines from this vintage are. Gorgeous blueberry and blackberry fruit, along with the telltale cassis and floral notes, jump from the glass. Again, this is Pauillac-like, with some cedar wood and subtle barrique smells. Again produced nearly all from Cabernet Sauvignon, the wine is full-bodied, powerful, rich and long, with slightly sweeter tannins than the 2012. Production in 2013 was 960 cases, and Moueix told me that the entire growing season averaged about two and half weeks ahead of schedule from bloom break to harvest. This is a prodigious effort and will certainly stand as the great Ulysses of the first trio to be released. I suspect it will be drinkable in 3-4 years and keep for 30 or more, given the Moueix track record."
ANTONIO GALLONI 95+ POINTS - "These are the first wines from Christian Moueix's property in Oakville. In 2008 Moueix bought the Schmidt Ranch, which lies on the southeastern edge of Oakville, next to Vine Hill Ranch and Missouri Hopper. From what I have gathered, the Schmidt Ranch was once considered part of the Missouri Hopper vineyard. More recently, the fruit had gone to Swanson. The Ulysses Cabernet Sauvignon is made at Dominus (there is no winery on the property) by Tod Mostero and the team at Dominus. The wines I have tasted so far reveal the distinctly ferrous, savory and tobacco notes that are typical of this sector of Napa Valley, with less of an emphasis on fruit. Compared to Dominus, Ulysses is a warmer site, so the tannins here tend to be a bit creamier than those at Dominus. These three wines certainly point to a very bright future."
"Gravel, smoke, graphite, savory herbs, tobacco and iron are some of the signatures in the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon. A typical wine from the eastern sector of Oakville on the border with Yountville, the 2013 is loaded with feral, savory notes, while the expression of blue/blackish fruit lies a bit more in the background. In 2013, the main signature is an expression of structure that is both vertical but also incredibly insistent through to the finish. In other words, this is a super-classic 2013 built for the cellar."
- Item #: i_271000Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97 POINTS - "The 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from a vineyard south of Pritchard Hill overlooking Oakville Cross Road, aged for 30 months in 100% new French oak. Very deep purple-black in color, it sings of fragrant blackcurrants, wild blueberries and black cherries with touches of Indian spices, menthol, chocolate box and violets plus a touch of smoked meats. The palate is full, rich, concentrated and seductive, with a firm yet velvety structure and seamless freshness, finishing long and spicy."
JEB DUNNUCK 94-96 POINTS - "Tasted out of barrel, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate sports an inky color as well as terrific notes of creme de cassis, smoked herbs, licorice, scorched earth, and spice. Full-bodied, opulent, and concentrated with a terrific texture, it's going to age beautifully as well."
- Item #: i_270700Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97+ROBERT PARKER 97+ POINTS - "This winery, one of the gems of the Kendall-Jackson portfolio of boutique wineries, debuted in 1998 and has been hitting on all cylinders since. I suspect top priority is given to Bordelais winemaker Pierre Seillan's choice of the finest fruit he can find from Jackson's holdings in Alexander Valley, Chalk Hill and Knights Valley."
"The 2014 La Joie has a spicy black purple color and a big, sweet kiss of camphor, black truffle, pen ink, blackcurrants and unsmoked cigar tobacco, followed by layers of fruit and glycerin in an opulent, beautifully savory, pure and multidimensional wine. The final blend Seillan produced in 2014 was 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. This is a compellingly great effort once again. It should be given 2-5 years of bottle age, then drunk over the following three decades."
- Item #: i_270980Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 98ROBERT PARKER 98 POINTS - "This winery, one of the gems of the Kendall-Jackson portfolio of boutique wineries, debuted in 1998 and has been hitting on all cylinders since. I suspect top priority is given to Bordelais winemaker Pierre Seillan's choice of the finest fruit he can find from Jackson's holdings in Alexander Valley, Chalk Hill and Knights Valley."
"The 2014 Le Desir (53% Cabernet Franc, 21% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Malbec) has an inky purple color and a sweet kiss of chocolate, black truffle, forest floor, black raspberry and black currants. Opulent, but again structured and super-dense and pure, this is another massively concentrated wine meant for the long haul (and for our grandchildren). Give it 4-6 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 35-40 years. Remarkably, Pierre Seillan told me that 2014, while a drought year, was not actually that hot in the micro-terroirs he was working, but in terms of quality, it turned out to be the most surprisingly positive vintage he’s ever witnessed."
- Item #: i_271190Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 97+ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 97+ POINTS - "The deep garnet-purple colored 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate issues forth with a bombastic nose of creme de cassis, plum preserves, blueberry pie and Indian spices with touches of earth, tobacco, meat and wood smoke plus a waft of cedar. Full, rich, concentrated, very firm and grainy, it's lively and packed with fruit, finishing layered and long."