- Item #: i_215480Bottle Size: 750mlANTONIO GALLONI 90 POINTS - "The 2016 Chardonnay (Santa Barbara County) is a terrific appellation level wine from Ryan Deovlet. Bright and delineated, with plenty of citrus character, the 2016 offers lovely persistence and class, especially at this level. The 2016 is a blend of 55% Sanford & Benedict and 45% Zotovich fruit."
- Item #: i_215530Bottle Size: 750mlANTONIO GALLONI 92 POINTS - "The 2017 Pinot Noir (Santa Barbara County) is bright, lifted and absolutely delicious. Sweet floral notes and bright, red toned fruit give this gracious, ethereal Pinot tons of class. This is an impeccable wine in its peer group. Deovlet's appellation wines are often overachievers, as is very much the case here."
- Item #: i_214330Bottle Size: 750mlAnybody who has walked into our store asking for a great Cabernet recommendation has sure heard us talking up the Desparada wines from winemaker Valia Esh. Valia is a lady who has managed to understand winemaking quicker and with more detail than many other winemakers...to a point where others are jealous! This year's Soothsayer is comprised of 44% Barbera, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 16% nebbiolo from Spanish Springs, Star Lane, Luna Matta, and Chelle Mountain.
- Item #: i_215515Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 93Jeb Dunnuck: 93 PointsDierberg has been on a roll the past few years! Other wineries have sourced fruit from this prominent vineyard and received high scores for their superbly crafted wines. Dierberg still sells much of their fruit, but they have begun to keep some of the better sections for themselves. That being said, their own label hasn't skipped a beat, and is receiving the same high scores as their customers!
Located 13 miles from the Pacific Ocean in one of the coolest wine-growing corners of California's Central Coast, Dierberg Vineyard is on the western edge of Santa Barbara County's Santa Maria Valley appellation, which is world-renowned for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Their vineyard is planted to newer "Dijon" clones, as well as other "heritage clones"; heritage clones whose roots go back to the Burgundy area of France, offering a clonal diversity unlike almost any other Pinot vineyard in California.
JEB DUNNUCK 93 POINTS - "Moving to the reds, the 2016 Pinot Noir Dierberg Vineyard comes from the estate vineyard in the Santa Maria Valley and was 75% destemmed and aged 10 months in 25% new French oak. Ruby/purple-hued, with notes of raspberries, Asian spice, forest floor, and crushed flowers, it's medium-bodied and has a rounded, elegant texture, beautiful purity, and a great finish. It's a clean, classy, impeccably put together Pinot Noir to drink over the coming 7-8 years."
ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 93 POINTS - "The 2016 Pinot Noir Dierberg Vineyard aged 14 months in 35% new French oak. It's medium ruby with wonderful, layered perfume: dried rose petals, crushed herbs, woodsmoke, cranberry sauce, warm earth, red cherry preserves and hints of raspberries and orange peel. Light to medium-bodied, it offers delicate, layered intensity, a sturdy frame of grainy tannins and seamlessly woven acidity, finishing very long. Lovely! 1,700 cases produced."
ANTONIO GALLONI 92 POINTS - "The 2016 Pinot Noir Dierberg Vineyard is plush and inviting, with soft curves and plenty of immediacy. Dark red/purplish berry fruit, lavender, spice and rose petal all meld together in this attractive, fruity Pinot. Supple and forward, the 2016 will drink well pretty much upon release. The 25% whole clusters are not especially evident, at least not today."
- Item #: i_222650Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 92Bill Wathen and Dick Dore have been making wine together since 1985, when they founded Foxen Winery & Vineyard at the historic Rancho Tinaquaic in northern Santa Barbara County. Since that time, their dedication has remained the same - the creation of very small production, sustainably-farmed, vineyard-focused wines using a "minimalist" approach to winemaking. Foxen is named in memory of William Benjamin Foxen, an English sea captain and Dick's great-great grandfather, who came to Santa Barbara in the early 1800s and purchased the Rancho Tinaquaic. Captain Foxen adopted the distinctive "anchor" as his cattle brand, which became the trademark of the winery. Foxen is at home on the history Rancho Tinaquaic with its solar-powered winery, tasting room and 7200 "shack."
- Item #: i_247750Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 92 PointsThe soils of Kick On Vineyard are composed primarily of ocean floor sandy loams. Because it is the most westerly vineyard in the area, it is perhaps the most maritime of all vineyards in this growing region. With the Pacific coastline only miles away, a constant maritime influence results in wines of crisp acidity, bright fruit and an inherent balance. This soil stresses the vines somewhat, resulting in grapes of greater flavor and concentration. While the yields tend to be low to moderate, the concentration and extraction of the grape materials tends to be intense and quality-driven.
JEB DUNNUCK 92+ POINTS - "The medium-bodied, vibrant 2016 Pinot Noir Kick On is another age-worthy effort that has everything in the right places. Perfumed notes of mulberries, dried flowers, strawberries, and menthol, medium body, bright acidity, and fine tannins all make for a beautiful Pinot Noir that will benefit from short-term cellaring and keep for a decade."
ANTONIO GALLONI 92 POINTS - "The 2016 Pinot Noir Kick On Ranch is another pretty and highly expressive wine in this range. Done in a slender, slightly nervous style, the 2016 is built on expressive aromatics and notable persistence, with the fruit lying more in the background. It will be interesting to see if this reticent, tightly wound Pinot gains a bit more flesh with time in the bottle."
- Item #: i_249690Bottle Size: 750mlJeb Dunnuck: 95 PointsAnybody who has been in our store asking for California Chardonnay recommendations has surely heard us mention the wines of Peake Ranch. This producer has previously been on our domestic "Top Wine" list in 2018, and judging by the newly released 2017 Santa Barbara County Chardonnay, there's a good chance that they will be on the list this year!
Peake Ranch is a boutique, family-run winery owned by John and Gillian Wagner. Like all of us who have visited Santa Barbara County, the couple fell in love with the beautiful countryside and the friendliness of the people. They purchased Peake Ranch with a vision of building a winery and a house on the property, and producing extraordinary wines. They also bring a humbleness and sense of humility, which is honestly quite refreshing, considering that in only their third vintage, they began to receive rave reviews from the top critics!
Located on the eastern end of the Sta. Rita Hills AVA on Santa Rosa Road, Peake Ranch is a 105-acre parcel with 50 acres of vines. The plantings are all along a hill that exposes the vines to the cool air that comes off the Pacific and into the Santa Ynez Valley. The combination of various facing slopes, coupled with the exposure to varying degrees of the cool wind give the vineyard a diversity of fruit flavor profiles, resulting in more complex wines.
The winemaking team consists of Paul Lato and Wynne Solomon. Paul has nearly two decades of experience, has earned critical acclaim with top critics (as high as 99 points), and has placed his eponymous line of wines in top restaurants in the United States, Europe and Japan! Wynne studied Wine and Viticulture at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, and began making wine with Stephen Ross Winery in the Edna Valley before moving down to the Sta. Rita Hills to continue pursuing cool climate winemaking with Melville Winery. She joined the Peake Ranch team in 2018, worked with Paul Lato in blending the 2017 vintage, and made the 2018 vintage hand in hand with him. Her vision for Peake Ranch is to focus on the unique attributes of this area while emphasizing balance in Californian wines.
This Chardonnay is comprised of the Peak Ranch Estate Vineyard, coupled with Chardonnay from the famed Sierra Madre Vineyard in the Santa Maria Valley. Sierra Madre is comprised of sandy, well-drained soil, and the Chardonnay planted here takes advantage of sunny days and cool night to become both fully ripe and at the same time retain a high level of acidity.
JEB DUNNUCK 95 POINTS - "An up and coming estate readers need to check out is John and Gillian Wagner's Peake Ranch. Located on the eastern/southern side of the Sta. Rita Hills, they produce a stunning array of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Syrahs. Prices haven't caught up with quality, so these are still screaming values."
"A stunning value, the 2017 Chardonnay Santa Barbara County comes from the Sierra Madre and Peake Ranch vineyards and was barrel fermented and aged 18 months in 50% new French oak. It offers a rich, powerful, quintessential California bouquet of orchard fruits, toasted spice, grilled bread, and white flowers. It's a ripe, sexy, yet flawlessly balanced effort that stays balanced, pure, and lengthy. It's a smoking value even at the $40 price point."
- Item #: i_251370Bottle Size: 750mlOn the nose this wine offers aromas of cherry cola and freshly picked wild strawberries with a lingering scent of lightly oiled rosewood. On the palate it shows the classic Santa Maria sandalwood spice, mixed with ripe red and black cherry, strawberry and huckleberry.
- Item #: i_257860Bottle Size: 500mlAn amazing late harvest Roussanne from the Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard. Clocking in at only 9.2% alcohol, only 4 barrels of this wine were produced. This wine displays notes of creme brulee, honeysuckle, bearclaw, mandarin orange, honeyed apricot, spiced apple cider, brown butter, and a refreshing rosewater finish.
- Item #: i_268290Bottle Size: 750mlWine Advocate: 92ROBERT PARKER'S WINE ADVOCATE 92 POINTS - "The 2016 Chardonnay Estate spent 11 months in 38% new French oak. It has an open nose of ripe peach, apricot, toast, gunflint and pie crust with dried chamomile and honey-drizzled apple slices. Medium-bodied, it offers concentrated stone fruit and honey-nut character in the mouth, with seamless acidity and a long, textured finish. 1,100 cases produced."
- Item #: i_295720Bottle Size: 750ml2016 is the first year of fruit off the hillside planted Grenache at Zotovich Vineyards. Picked in late October, this wine was slow ripening, and as such, shows a lot of depth throughout. A voluptuous nose of raspberry and cream continues to a body of bright red fruit with enough tannin to give the fruit structure. The finish sees the fruit and tanning meld together to create the feeling you just took a bite of fresh raspberry cake. It was aged in 100% neutral French oak puncheons, and only spent 8 months in barrel before bottling to retain its freshness.
ANTONIO GALLONI 94 POINTS - "The Grenache is a new wine for Zotovich starting with the 2016 vintage. Intensely aromatic and expressive, the 2016 possesses tremendous fruit purity and tons of complexity, all of which comes through with notable energy. This is an impressive showing, to say the least."