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A highlight of what's new & interesting.
 Meursault-Les-Clous-D
Bouchard Père & Fils, Les Clous Meursault
Vintages No. 661322, $44.95; now available

A subtle and tangy white with sliced apple and honey character. Medium to full body. Medium finish. Drink now.

– 90 Points, James Suckling, jamessuckling.com, June 19, 2015.

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PROPIEDAD-2011
Alvaro Palacios, Remondo Propriedad
Vintages No. 438671, $39.95; now available

The 2011 Propiedad, from the third consecutive dry vintage, is now pure destemmed Garnacha fermented in oak vats and aged in oak barrels for 14 months. It is surprisingly darker than its siblings, with ripe aromas of red and black fruits, fine-grained tannins and good acidity that would require a little bit of time in bottle to get better integrated. 40,000 bottles were produced. Drink 2015-2019.

– 92 Points, Luis Gutierrez, erobertparker.com, Dec. 2013

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 CanellaDOCG
Canella Prosecco Superiore
Vintages No. 435503, $19.95; now available

Much like Champagne, some producers of Prosecco create non-vintage versions and vintage-dated versions, the latter intended to express the characteristics of a particular growing season.

Canella’s 2014 sparkler shows a fresh, fruity bouquet tinged by joyous floral notes, followed by a crisp, focused palate. It will make a lovely party sipper or aperitif, or pair it with shellfish or salads.

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cq5dam.web.1280
Willamette Valley Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir
Vintages No. 974287, $45.95; now available

Elegant, Classic Oregon Wines.

A combination of determination and extraordinary people has brought Willamette Valley Vineyards from an idea to one of the region’s leading wineries, earning the title “One of America’s Great Pinot Noir Producers,” from Wine Enthusiast Magazine.

In 1983, founder, Jim Bernau, purchased the Estate and cleared away the old plum orchard hidden in scotch broom and blackberry vines. He planted Pinot Noir (Pommard and Wadenswil clones), Chardonnay (Dijon and Espiguette) and Pinot Gris.

The approach is to grow, by hand, the highest quality fruit using canopy management and yield balance, and to achieve wines that are truly expressive of the varietal and the place where they are grown. Williamette practice environmentally sustainable farming and were part of the founding of the Low Input Viticulture and Enology Program (LIVE).

Their stylistic emphasis is on pure varietal fruit characters, with attention to depth, richness of mouthfeel and balance. The wines are truly a collaborative effort of the entire vineyard and winemaking staff.

– 90 Points, Wine Enthusiast, October 2015

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 LaNerthe_new
Château La Nerthe, Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2012
Vintages No. 735407; $49.95; now available

Nine Centuries of Rich History.

Since the 12th Century, when the Popes were French, the vineyards of La Nerthe were born, coinciding with the appearance of the vine to Châteauneuf-du-Pape, where Pontiffs established their summer residence.

Certified organic since 1998, there are 13 varieties of the appellation planted here making it one of the largest vineyards of Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

The terroir is exceptional. The majority of the vineyard is spectacularly rocky for some of the high terraces (plâteau of Crau ) and consists of marl and clayey sand strewn with pebbles in the gentle slopes.

Château La Nerthe, Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2012 is juicy with good energy coursing through the core of plum, anise, blackberry and fruitcake flavors, while sweet spice and juniper hints fill the finish. Offers a chewy feel without being heavy. Best from 2016 through 2023.

Score – 91. (James Molesworth, winespectator.com, Sept. 30, 2015)

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 Rustenberg RM Nicholson 2013
Vintages No.  278390; $19.95; now available

The Rustenberg Estate was founded in 1682 and is nestled in the valley of the Simonsberg Mountain in South Africa’s premium wine region, Stellenbosch. Rustenberg’s rich heritage has been informed by many centuries of human influence striving to understand and work with nature to produce wines of distinct character true to their terroir, variety and informed style.

This wine is named after a former owner-winemaker of the estate, the charismatic Reg Merriman Nicholson who lived and worked on the farm for 30 years.  Reg was the ultimate creator of Rustenberg’s famous “Dry Red” wine.

Just as the Dry Red was an unconventional blend, the RM Nicholson is a new world style blend of classic varieties that would typically not be combined. The result is a blend of Bordeaux and Rhone varietals aiming to express the typicity of each vintage, unrestrained by convention to create great wine.

– Winner: Gold Medal, International Wine & Spirit Competition, 2015

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LaMontesa_newsletter
Palacios Remondo La Montesa 2012, Rioja
Vintages No. 674572; $21.95; available October 17, 2015

It has been an amazing year for Alvaro Palacios. His hard work and vision and been recognized with his selection as Decanter Magazine’s “Man of the Year”. He also graced the cover of the October issue of the Wine Spectator, and his famous L’Ermita scored a perfect 100 points.

From his family estate in Rioja Baja this is a departure from most typical Riojas, it’s primarily (80%) garnacha (Grenache) and while it spends a year French oak barrels, it is driven by bright red fruits rather than toasty oak and vanilla.

The 2012 Rioja Crianza la Montesa is a blend of 80% Garnacha, 15% Tempranillo and 5% Mazuelo (Cariñena) from grapes grown in the La Montesa estate in Alfaro, Rioja Baja where the red Garnacha reigns over Tempranillo. The wine is getting lighter and more ethereal, but this ripe 2012 has a heady nose of cherries in liqueur but also black and sour cherries, unnoticeable oak plus just a pinch of dark spices. The palate is soft and silky, with ultra-fine tannins, great acidity and balance. Again, a great showing for La Montesa. This wine is a true bargain… Hard to beat as a great value.Score – 92+ (Luis Gutierrez, The Wine Advocate)

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424911
Bouchard Père & Fils ‘Les Deux Loups’ Blanc 2013
Vintages No. 424911; $17.95; available October 3, 2015

The newly established Coteaux Bourguignons appellation delivers an affordable introduction to the inimitable terroir of Burgundy, demonstrating the consistent quality of the Bouchard Père & Fils. Blended from Chardonnay and Aligoté, this is a fresh and fruity wine with aromas of peaches and pears; lively and smooth on the palate.
Why “Les Deux Loups” (the two wolves)? Before the French Revolution, the king bestowed the office of “Grand Louvetier” (the grand wolf-catcher) on officers to allow them to hunt wolves and protect the local population. Their emblem was two wolf heads placed on each side of the family crest. One of the Bouchard family ancestors, was an official “wolf-catcher”, he was also the mayor of Beaune, the capital of Burgundy.


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734517
Trimbach Riesling 2012, Alsace
Vintages No. 734517; $21.95; available March 21, 2015

#49 on Wine Spectator’s Top 100 of 2014

The piercing acidity and pronounced minerality weave a fine tapestry in this lovely Riesling, supporting flavors of white peach, slivered almond, lemon confit and oyster shell with a long, mouthwatering finish. Drink now through 2024. Score – 91 (The Wine Spectator)

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0399246
Rustenberg Shiraz 2011, Stellenbosch
Vintages No. 399246; $19.95; available February 7, 2015

Rustenberg is a classic old-school Cape estate delivering leaner, tasty and very complex reds. But adjust your mindset to Europe, not Australia for this shiraz. It is tight, savoury, peppery and mineral – very much in the zone for cool (yes cool) Stellenbosch. There is some mid-palate shiraz softness before the finish clamps down. Excellent length. Best now to 2018.” Score – 90 (David Lawrason, WineAlign.com)

Sourced from four different vineyards, the 2011 Shiraz has plenty of natural brambly red and black fruit on the well-defined nose. The palate is medium-bodied with a fine line of acidity, crisp tannins and expressive red berry fruit mixed with spice and cloves on the finish. Delicious! Drink now-2016. ” Score – 90 (Neal Martin, erobertparker.com)

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Todos_newsletter
Jonata Todos 2011, Santa Ynez
Vintages No. 218941; $67.95; available November 8, 2014

The wine business has known its share of mavericks, individuals who pursue the unorthodox, who chaff under dogma and determinedly break the “rules.” Most will flame out, but a very small few will achieve something great and in doing so set new benchmarks.

Such is the case with Jonata, when told by one of France’s most renowned wine experts, Frédéric Engerer of the famous Château Latour, that they should plant asparagus rather than grapes the owners thanked him, and then set about creating something special.

“Todos” means everything and this is a blend of almost every grape type grown at Jonata. In 2010 it’s 78% syrah, 8% Sangiovese, 5% merlot, 3% cabernet sauvignon, 1% viognier, 1% grenache, 1% cabernet franc, 1% petit verdot, 1% sauvignon blanc, 1% Semillon.

… offers up knockout aromas and flavors, full-bodied richness and a seamless, layered profile that is hard to resist. Blackberry liqueur, caramelized beef, chocolate and flowers are just some of the nuances here and this pure, polished 2010 can be enjoyed now or cellared for a decade. Drink now-2020.” Score – 95 (Jeb Dunnuck, The Wine Advocate)

This is a deep black, monumental and very impressive syrah based red brimming with black licorice, ripe prune/fig fruit, meaty notes, brine and black pepper. Almost a sense of molasses as well, and nutty scents mindful of oloroso sherry. It’s very hefty yet vibrant with high acidity and alcohol 14.9%. Saturated, very dense, tannic and structured. Excellent to outstanding length. This should hold a decade with ease.” Score – 93 (David Lawrason, WineAlign.com)

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Rustenberg John X Merriman 2011, Stellenbosch

Finca Constancia 2011, Castilla

Château La Nerthe Châteauneuf-du-Pape Tradition Rouge 2011

Bouchard Pere & Fils Gevrey Chambertin 2011 - January 18, 2014

Alvaro Palacios Camines del Priorat 2011- September 14, 2013

Poderi di Luigi Einaudi Dogliani 2011- June 22, 2013

Beronia Gran Reserva- March 30, 2013

Palacios Remondo 'La Montesa - February 9, 2013

Descendientes de J. Palacios 'Petalos - November 24, 2012

Jonata Todos - November 10, 2012

Bodegas Pedro Escudero Fuente Elvira - September 1, 2012

Rustenberg RM Nicholson - August 18, 2012

Old Pulteney 21 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Pegasus Bay Pinot Noir - March 17, 2012

Writers Tears Pot Still Irish Whiskey

HALL Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, Napa - February 4, 2012

Bouchard Père & Fils Beaune du Château 1er Cru (Domaine), October 1, 2011

Beronia Tempranillo Elaboración Especial 2009, Rioja, August 20, 2011

Alvaro Palacios Camins Del Priorat 2008, May 28, 2011

White Owl Whisky

Bouchard Père & Fils Beaune Teurons 1er Cru (Domaine) 2007

vintages no. 169797; $49.95

“Sexy aromas of red berries, licorice and leather lifted by a floral topnote. Silky-sweet, dense and sappy, with lovely definition and an intriguing earthy complexity. Finishes with late, building tannins.” Score – 90. (Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar, March/April 2009)