Last updated 11 October 2013
Red By The Glass
Altos Las Hormigas, Malbec, Mendoza, 2011 … 11 / 44
Aromas of ripe red and black fruits, amalgamated with chocolate, coconut and vanilla. A nicely balanced palate, supported by firm tannins on the long, fine finish.
Page Springs Cellars, Vino del Barrio, 2011 … 11 / 44
Spicy on the nose, like red plums dusted with black and red pepper. Fine tannins and fresh acid provide a backbone for the cherry and raspberry flavors. Hints of pepper, nuts, and toasted oak add complexity.
Jim Barry, ‘The Lodge Hill’, Shiraz … 2010 10 / 40
Vibrant purple hue. While elegant, there is a powerhouse of dark fruits, chocolate and toasty oak; medium to full-bodied, young, brash and refreshing, the finish is long, juicy, generous and even a little spicy.
Ballentine, ‘Maple Lane’, Old Vine Zinfandel, Napa Valley, 2006 … 9 / 36
Full on the palate with a nice, silky tannin and creamy texture, and intense finish. Notes of tobacco and black tea. The finish maintains a melange of raspberry, cherry, and rose petals.
Lot 11, ‘The Magician’, Red Blend, 10 40
A blend of Cabernet Dorsa, Maxime Rouge, Drunkenfelder, Petite Sirah, Shiraz, Petite Verdot. Ripe black cherries mingle with traditional dark red fruits, smoky oak and exquisite spices. This wine is complex. Its flavors will linger and yet it is crisp, surprisingly fresh and easy to drink.
Sans Leige, ‘Groundwork’, Grenache, Santa Barbara County, 2010 … 11 / 44
Raspberry liquor, crushed rose petal, ground clove and sage. On the palate the wine shows classic cool climate flavors of fresh-tilled earth, sea breeze, black licorice and blueberry with lasting dusty tannins
Au Bon Climat, Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara County, 2011 … 12 / 48
Bright, Burgundy style with good ripe fruit, balanced acidity and mellow tannins. Berries with hints of anise and freshly cut grass. Nuances of clove mingle with raspberry in an elegantly structured balance.
Atlas Peak, Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, 2009 … 15 / 60
Rosehip, black cherry and black currant, with deep wood and vanilla spice. Complex, but balanced, this is a great representation of a true Napa Cab.
Sutcliffe, Merlot, Napa Valley/McElmo Canyon, 2010 … 13 / 52
This bright Merlot smoothly balances summer and spring fruit with soft tannins and notes of chocolate and black cherry. 90 points, Wine Enthusiast. Youthful and energetic with good acidity and structure.
Ca del Re, Barbera d’Asti, 2010 … 9 / 36
A gentle but well balanced profile with a dancing movement between tannin and acidity. Good fruit with a bit of damp earth. Raspberries and orange blossom come through, mingling with light spice.
Soter ‘Planet Oregon’, Pinot Noir, Dundee Hills, 2011 … 11 / 44
Tony Soter’s project to promote sustainable farming and carbon accounting. A lovely, garnet color. Soft flavors of raspberries and cherries, tinged with a suggestion of sweet spices and dried herbs.
Honoro Vera, Garnacha, Calatayud, 2011 … 8 / 32
Ripe cherry red in color with a garnet rim. Intense nose dominated by ripe fruits, raspberry, blackcurrant, balsamic sensations and with minerals and spicy aromas.
Varichon & Clerc, Blanc de Blancs, Loire Valley, Brut … 32
This blend of Chardonnay and Chenin Blanc is an amazing value for its quality. Light, clean, and refreshing, with notes of green apple and dried peach with a touch of cream.
Tendil & Lombardi, ‘Blanc de Noirs’, Brut Champagne … 85
Pear and toasty leis on the nose, with notes of anise and dried rose adding complexity. Dry and gripping on the palate, offering firm, refreshingly bitter redcurrant and tropical orchard fruit flavors, with a hint of blood orange. Uncompromisingly racy, firm bubbles with very good finishing clarity and bite.
Charles Ellner, ‘Cuveé Reserve’, Brut Champagne … 99
Lightly honeyed, with a smoky base note, this finely balanced Champagne offers refined texture and flavors of apricot, black cherry, brioche, and candied orange. Hints of anise and ginger echo on the finish.
Belstar, Prosecco, DOC Brut … 8 / 32
Delicate pear and melon flavors with a touch of honey and soft, Springtime flowers.
Gruet, Brut Rosé … 10 / 40
Lovely and bright with a floral bouquet. Hints of strawberry, raspberry, and sour cherry. The nose follows through on the palate, staying crisp and delicious.
Hook & Ladder, Russian River Valley, 2012 … 44
Crisp like a White Burgundy. Rich bouquet of apple, honey suckle, and notes of orange blossom, followed closely by strong golden apple and citrus flavors. Bright lemon complements the light oak finish.
Ghostwriter, Santa Cruz Mountains, 2010 … 66
With great dryness, minerality and acidity, this marches to a different beat from today’s rich, oaky style. It’s austere, with suggestions of citrus fruit and flint. It exhibits great structure and complexity.
Davis Bynum, Russian River Valley, 2011 … 68
Aromas of apple and pear with hints of vanilla and lemon grass, all wrapped in subtle oak nuances. On the palate, there are nice citrus and apple characteristics, with a creamy and full mouth feel, all while maintaining crisp freshness and a long lingering finish.
Lewis Cellars, Napa Valley, 2012 … 110
Showcasing the opulence, balance, and complexity of an outstanding vintage, this Chard is remarkably ripe and saturated with pear, stone fruit, and soft minerals. Shot through with a bit of toasty oak, caramel, and brioche, there is a fantastic balance with body. Sumptuous texture and beurre blanc dominate the mid palate, and native acidity brings length to a lustrous finish.
Errazuriz, ‘Wild Ferment’, Santiago, 2010 … 40
The palate features apples, pears and spices and bright acidity that balances the lush and creamy texture.
Evening Land, Bourgogne Blanc, 2012 … 66
This is a classic white Burgundy. Think: Macon. Crisp with good acidity and lightly nuanced with creamy notes of summer orchard fruit and Meyer lemon. There is a striking finish of minerals and slate.
Tamarack Cellars, Columbia Valley, 2011 … 48
Zesty bright fruit and a hint of fine grained French Oak.
Browne Family, Columbia Valley, 2011 … 88
Rich yellow in color, the 2011 Browne Family Chardonnay displays aromas of Meyer lemon candy, honey flower and vanilla cream; jasmine and wet stone are also evident. A full bodied Chardonnay due to nine months on leis, poached orchard fruit, citrus oil and toasted sugar flavors persist throughout.
Yangarra Estate, Shiraz, McLaren Vale, 2010 … 40
Oozes of prune and blackberry emerge with illusions of confection. Dark juniper tannins entwine themselves, blending fruit with leather. Smells of rain in a quarry persist, but stone fruits add balance.
Yangarra Estate, Old Vine Grenache, McLaren Vale, 2011 … 52
Soft and elegant, with cooler, white pepper coming through the fruit. Bright cherries and raspberries blend with tobacco, chicory, and hints of licorice. The tannins match the acidity, staying fine and delicate.
Yangarra Estate, ‘Cadenzia’, GSM, McLaren Vale, 2007 … 55
49% Grenache, 36% Shiraz, 15% Mourvedre. Dark in color with intense perfume and elegance. On the nose, a mix of beetroot, cherries, and caramel. The flavors are lush with dark fruits and smooth tannins. Notes of boot polish, dark chocolate, flint, and dried lavender come through.
Ballentine, ‘Pocai Vineyard’, Napa Valley, 2008 … 36
This estate Merlot is blended with a little Cabernet Sauvignon in a Bordeaux style, coming from the heart of California. It is bright with rounded tannins, concentrated fruits, and hints of tobacco and old leather. Great with food; this wine will brighten your night.
Miner, Stagecoach Vineyard, Napa Valley, 2008 … 95
Heady and complex aromas are very beckoning. Plums, raspberries, dark hints of cacao and a bit of black olive are complemented by aromas of vanilla, cedar, and hints of smoke. Very nice structure, with great and lengthy integration.
Robert Foley, Napa Valley, 2010 … 115
Dark ruby color introduces a ripe medley of blueberry and blackberry pie aromas. Ripe berry flavors that introduce mocha, with vanilla and espresso nuances that linger through the finish.
Sutcliffe, ‘Signature Merlot’, 2008 … 70
This unfined and unfiltered Merlot shows rich-ripened fruit, subtle earthiness, with solid tannins and acidity. A very balanced and delicious Merlot from John Sutcliffe’s personal grapes on his estate.
Novelty Hill, Columbia Valley, 2010 … 52
95% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc. Inviting aromas of cherry, vanilla, and dark chocolate. Medium to full bodied on the palate, with a core of bright cherry and raspberry. An elegant, supple, and balanced merlot with bright acidity and soft tannins.
Hobo Wine Company, Alexander valley, 2011 … 50
Ripe cherry-like fruit, sweet and tart, with a hint of red bell pepper. Characteristic of a classic Cab, with good structure and tannins that add to the black fruits.
Justin Vineyards, Paso Robles, 2011 … 65
Clear, bright and fun, with medium body. Red and black cherry mixes with cinnamon, cedar, and hints of chocolate. Well balanced, and not weighed down with heavy oak, the finish is long soft tannins.
‘Volunteer’, Napa Valley, 2009 … 70
The 2009 Volunteer Cabernet is of a medium density, with hints of cherry, cranberry, toasted vanilla and subtle tannins.
Marshall Family, Cabernet Franc, Napa Valley, 2011 … 80
The wine has aromas of French vanilla, cherries, berries, and cedar. The Cabernet Franc is rich and full in the mouth with a velvety finish. This wine taste like bittersweet Chocolate, berries, tobacco and coffee.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, ‘Canyon Of The Ancients Vineyards’, 2009 … 75
With two years in oak and one year in bottle prior to release, the depth and elegance is prominent. A restrained nose, tight structure, and massive tannins blend with perfect fruit.
Renegade Wine Co., Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, 2011 … 36
95% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Malbec, 1% Petit Verdot. This certainly drinks like a Washington Cab, with lots of red and black fruits, scents of loamy minerality, and fine-grained tannins with good acidity.
Revelry, Columbia Valley, 2010 … 38
The 2009 Columbia Valley Cabernet is a blend of Seven Hills, Pepper bridge and Doval vineyard, complimented by just a touch of Weinbau Vineyard Cab Franc. The wine has a graceful complexion on the palate, with a pleasant depth and structure through the finish.
Tamarack Cellars, Columbia Valley, 2009 … 55
Carob, cocoa powder, pistachio and almond extracts, cassis and cherry dominate the show, with hints of fruit pit bitterness and skin tartness enhancing the stimulation derived from a long, luscious finish.
‘Januik’, Columbia Valley, 2010 … 82
Dense and full-bodied. Packed with cassis, black cherry, and cocoa with warm vanilla notes in the nose. Supple tannins with strong rich texture that linger across the palate, imparting a long, polished finish.
Andrew Murray, ‘This is E11even’, Santa Maria Valley, 2012 … 42
From a hillside vineyard, this pure, authentic Pinot Noir is nicely balanced and fun. The alcohol is moderate, the body is medium with a wonderfully soft finish, and the acidity is still there, but harmoniously in check. The result is a melodious, clear, Californian Pinot.
Pali Wine Co., ‘Riviera’, Sonoma Coast, 2010 … 45
Light ruby in color, with a lovely nose of cherry, cranberry, blackberry, and gunpowder. Rich and layered, with powerful flavors of black cherry, blackberry, sassafras and spice. Raspberry flavors linger over earthy, rustic tannins that lengthen with time.
Elizabeth Rose, Yountville, Napa Valley, 2010 … 50
Straight to barrel after press giving the wine a wonderful wisp of smoke from the oak influence. The wine is engaging with dark and earthy mushroom notes as well as cherry and a small hint of spice.
Lioco, Sonoma Coast, 2010 … 78
We love this wine for its purity of fruit. There is no heaviness from over-ripeness, no oak. Aroma of black cherry, iron shavings and dried porcini. On the pallet, Bing cherry, dried orange peel and all spice.
Row Eleven, Russian River Valley, 2009 … 85
Red cherries, lighter smoke and hints of bacon with all the finesse and elegance expected in Russian River Pinot Noirs. This wine is delicate but complex, with lots of spring and summer fruit, and youthful energy.
Calera, ‘de Villiers’, Mt. Harlan, 2010 … 105
Brilliant and dark-hued, this Pinot effuses playful, bright aromas of blackberry, licorice, mineral and just a hint of sweet oak. The wine is deep and smooth, with dark spice and persistent cherry-like fruits. Fine grained tannins offer a graceful structure and juicy finish.
Hirsch Vineyards, ‘San Andreas Fault’, Sonoma Coast, 2010 … 135
Upon opening, dark fruits, pomegranate, figs, orange blossom and bergamot on the nose. Evolving with time to show dried and fresh flowers, cherries and forest floor. On the palate, taut acidity, supple tannins and the restrained fruit of a cool vintage.
Marshall Family, ‘Fox In The Hen House’, Los Carneros, 2010 … 150
On the nose, you get distinctive aromas of tobacco, light mushrooms, house-cured bacon, French vanilla, and bright young fruit. Flavors of raspberries and Cola explode as you take your first sip, peppery and in charge. Vanilla, truffles, cocoa, and darker fruit pull your attention in, but as you finish, it softly blends with your food leaving you with a memorable impression. Edgy, yet delicate.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, Pinot Noir, Los Carneros, 2011 … 70
Bright, young and smooth, with nuances of white plum and strawberry. Farm style Pinot with pepper.
Soter Vineyards, ‘North Valley’, Willamette Valley, 2010 … 66
Red fruits are predominant showcasing wild cherry, raspberry and Marion berry with intriguing savory undertones hinting at tarragon and clove. Bright acidity preserves the wine’s inherent sleekness and overall charm.
The Eyrie Vineyards, Dundee Hills, 2009 … 90
Light reddish-purple in the glass. Aromas of herbs and oak dominate the fruit at present. The wine balances out, crisp and juicy on the palate, with a delicate core of tasty red cherry and bright strawberry fruit, finished with supple tannins and a savory, light herbal tone.
The Eyrie Vineyards, ‘Black Cap’, Dundee Hills, 2010 … 125
This Pinot Noir brings together fruit from Eyrie’s Sisters vineyard as an exploration in soil composition, this vintage brings together the Dundee Hills and the Amity-Eola Hills with fruit sourced from the Cattrall Brothers’ vineyard. This wine is exquisitely balanced with equal parts ripeness, spice, and bright depth in flavor.
The Eyrie Vineyards, ‘Marguerite’, Dundee Hills. 2000 … 185
Quintessential David Lett at his best, and named for his granddaughter. Fresh and sophisticated, when the wild roses and blackberries are in bloom. Dried wild rose petals, blackberry blossoms, and a sprinkle of field dust on berry leaves draws you in. The color is deceptively light, with big, round flavors of cherries, white raspberry, white pepper, and orange blossom mixed with dusty, rain-soaked earth.
Soter Vineyards, ‘Mineral Springs’, Yamhill-Carlton, 2008 … 185
Suggestions of plum, raspberry and black cherry are intermingled with hints of sandalwood, Herbes de Provence and more exotic Asian spices. Seamless tannins are punctuated by juicy acidity. On the palate, the wine is layered, bordering on opulent. The savory, ripe, spicy dark fruit flavors persist into a lengthy, velvety, textured finish. This Pinot will leave you with a permanent impression.
Amalgama, Red Blend, Cachapoal Valley, 2011 … 28
The amalgama, or blend, combines delightful flavors or raspberries, black fruits, and spice with a lush mouth feel and a long, balanced finish.
Errazuriz, Merlot, Santiago, 2009 … 36
Vibrant cherry-red color. On the nose, black and red and spiced notes such as pepper, cloves, and a hint of smoke. Moderate structure with a fruity profile and well-expressed acidity.
Errazuriz, Reserva Carmenere, 2010 … 36
Herbal, cedar and blackberry-rich. Full-bodied and smooth with a savory, chewy note. Dry, but not overly tannic, this wine has bright fruit that comes through the earthy minerality and vegetation of the terroir.
Errazuriz, Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, 2009 … 36
Aromas of red and black fruits, sour cherries, blackberries, plums, and strawberries mingle on the nose, with notes of liquorice, tobacco, nutmeg, and dark chocolate. Subtle hints of rosemary and dill lend complexity. Surprisingly soft tannins, followed by the harmony of refreshing acidity and berry flavors.
Chateau Teysier, ‘Pezat’, Bordeaux Superieur, 2010 … 46
This has a well defined nose with baked red cherries, a touch of briary, and a hint of chalk dust. Simple on the palate, nicely balanced, crisp blackerry follows through, with a touch of pepper on the finish.
Dave Phinney, ‘Fittings’, Grenache, 2011 … 70
A delicious creation of Orin Swift’s Dave Phinney. This 100% Grenache has a light copper color with bright ruby reflections. Subtle aromas of peppered fruit blend seamlessly with tobacco and old saddle soap. Tastes of summer fruit come through for a fantastically refreshing finish.
Mongeard-Mugneret, Vosne Romanée, Burgundy, 2010 … 135
Supple, rich, and graceful. Bright flavors of spring fruit with chalky minerality and a bit of flint. Flavors of orange blossom gracefully mingle with the terroir, leaving a lasting and delicate impression.
Chateau Laforge, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, 2010 … 140
92% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc. The six-hectare vineyard of the Saint-Emilion Grand Cru uniquely draws together the three terroirs of the Saint Emilion Appellation. Around ninety percent of the vineyard is composed of old-vine Merlot with the rest being Cabernet Franc. Elegant and memorable.
Chateau de Beaucastel, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, 2008 … 235
Dark cherry red color, with deep minerality. Plum, dark stone fruits echo on palate, where the nose has an integrated brightness, with a bit of toasty oak. Light tobacco hints on the nose come through on the aftertaste, finishing with a well-incorporated impression. Deep, and representative of Rhone, France.
Matsu, ‘El Picaro’, Old Vine Tempranillo, Toro, 2009 … 38
Deep, vivid, crimson-purple in the glass. Aromas are of ripe blackberries and raspberries, with subtle hints of fresh cocoa. The palate is boly yet supple, with ripe tannins and a mineral grip.
Atteca, Old Vine Garnacha, Calatayud, 2010 … 52
Deep, bright ruby. Intense red and dark berry aromas are complemented by potpourri and smoky herbs. Broad, palate-coating dark fruit flavors become brighter with air and show a distinctly spicy character.
Matsu, ‘El Recio’, Old Vine Tempranillo, Toro, 2009 … 72
A deep cherry color, high lamina, with violet colored notes in its border. Thanks to the barrel aging the wine acquired a very intense nose with mature black fruit aromas, well integrated with the toasted, spiced and smoked notes.
Matsu, ‘El Viejo’, Old Vine Tempranillo, Toro, 2009 … 138
The best example of the range of Matsu, a wine that seeks to convey the result of a serene nature. Aromatic, intense, ripe, with spicy notes. Slightly toasted, the has dark cherry aromas with perfectly integrated tannins.
Canale, ‘Intimo’, Cabernet Sauvignon, Patagonia, 2011 … 28
Full bodied with a remarkable elegance, harmony, and a long finish. Intense ruby color. The nose is rich with red currant, eucalyptus, and black pepper.
Fournier, ‘Urban Uco’, Blend, Cafayate, 2012 … 36
50% Tempranillo, 50% Malbec. It has a lifted, floral bouquet with dark cherries, mulberry, and a touch of black currant pastilles. The palate is medium-bodied with firm, slightly dusty tannins. it is very harmonious and fresh with vibrant blackberry, bilberry, and crushed stone.
Zolo, Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Mendoza, 2009 … 48
Powerful and complex with a concentrated nose of black currant and plum, ending in a nuance of vanilla and chocolate. Full bodied with a remarkable elegance, harmony, and a long finish.
Altos Las Hormigas, ‘Reserva’, Malbec, Valle de Uco, 2009 … 66
Ruby-red and deep. Great spicy lift to aromas of blackberry, anise, and Venezuelan dark chocolate. Pure and focused, with intense dark berry flavors with solid acidity and balanced tannins. Finishes strong.
White By The Glass
Fabre Montmayou, ‘Rosé’, Mendoza, 2013 … 9 / 36
Provencal rosé, quite dry, but with a wonderful balance of fruit and floral. Not too sweet with good acidity and a crisp mouth feel. Well balanced and wonderfully refreshing.
Page Springs Cellars, Vino del Barrio Blanca, 2011 … 11 / 44
A French styled blend, the Chenin Blank brings out a soft buttery side that has a surprising acidity and balance of floral and citrus flavors. Sauvignon Blanc and Gewurztraminer add complexity.
Sans Liege, ‘Groundwork’, Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara County, 2012 … 11 / 45
Vibrant and cool, like a English garden impossibly bloomed in winter. A fresh nose of tangerine, lemon grass, Bosch pear, and passion fruit leads to a brightly spiced, mineral laden palate of fresh thyme, anise, wet flagstone and lemon oil, it finishes with pleasantly trill acidity much like nibbling a Meyer lemon.
Santa Luz, ‘Alba’, Chardonnay, Central Valley, 2012 … 9 / 36
A wonderfully crisp Bordeaux-styled Chardonnay. Ripe fruit and moderate acidity, and just a hint of French oak. Tropical flavors make this enjoyable with chicken, fish, or a cheese plate.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, Chardonnay, McElmo Canyon, 2012 … 13 / 52
This Chardonnay was barrel fermented with 100% malolactic fermentation. This wine was barrel aged in French oak for 7 months. This is well balanced Chardonnay that shows the high quality fruit, oak, and long mouthfeel one would expect from Napa.
Chateau Teyssier, ‘Pezat’, Bordeaux Blanc, 201 … 9 /36
100% Sauvignon Blanc, this is truly representative of a crisp, dry, French white. It has a flinty mouthfeel, textured, with good acidity. Crisp fruits dance on the palate leaving you refreshed, but also wanting more.
Josef Leitz, ‘Leitz Out’, Riesling, Germany, 2012 … 9 / 36
Sweet but not too sweet; aromatic, crisp, and clean. This Riesling has great acidity and minerality that balance out the sweeter tropical side from rich light fruits.
Anselmi Friuli Latisana, Pinot Grigio, 2011 … 8 / 32
Lean and crisp with good mineral and balanced acidity. Citrus and stone fruits, with minerals on the finish.
Cantine Gini, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, 2011 … 9 / 36
Nice lemon coloring, pale and shimmering. The nose is light and refreshing. Good mineral quality, along with soft floral notes and a little bit of green youth. Apricots, green apple, and pear. Dry with medium body and backed with nice, crisp acidity.
The Ned, Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, 2012 … 8 / 32
A nose of nettles and grass leads to generous gooseberry flavors with a smoky herbal twist on the palate. The stony terroir gives the wine a subtle gun flint minerality which delivers extra complexity.
The Eyrie Vineyards, Pinot Gris, Dundee Hills, 2011 … 10 / 40
An impressively complex dry wine that goes through 100% natural malolactic fermentation and is aged for a full twelve months sur-lies before bottling. Crisp and dry with good acid and great minerality.
Varietal Whites and Blends
Fournier, ‘Urban Uco’, Torrontes, Cafayate 2012 … 30
The palate is very well balanced, with an understated taste of dried apricot and a touch of dried ginger. Nicely perfumed, this wine is very harmonious, with great purity towards the finish. Excellent.
La Sirena, Moscato, Napa Valley, 2008 … 65
Floral and tropical aromas and flavors in a crisp yet perfumed dry style. Simply delicious!
Sans Liege, ‘Cotes-du-Coast’, Paso Robles, 2011 … 66
43% Viognier, 23% Roussanne, 22% Marsanne, 12% Grenache Blanc. Wafts of cloved oranges and dried thyme. Spices of cream, cinnamon flan, and organge marmalade are brought out with hints of poached apples. Finish, lime zest, grated fennel, and cilantro press themselves into your memory.
Cade, Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley, 201 … 78
Notes of tropical fruit and lemon zest greet your palate with a clean, refreshing finish. As the first organically farmed, LEED Gold Certified Winery in Napa, Cade takes pride in not just thinking green, but also acting green. Hints of Granny Smith apple on the palate echo their mission.
Errazuriz, Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc, Valle de Casablanca, 2012 … 44
Energetic and young, with an Old World’s soul. Tropical citrus blended seamlessly with a flinty minerality. Somewhat tart, but well balanced and great with food. Not too sweet, but not dry.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, Riesling, McElmo Canyon, 2011 … 48
A crisp, vibrant Riesling that goes well on a hot summer day with cheeses, seafood, or just about anything that needs a little acidity. Wonderfully balanced with great minerality.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, Sauvignon Blanc, Palisade, 2011 … 52
Soft fruit melds into subtle caramel, then into bright lemon-lime, with intermittent wet stone on the finish. Very much a Bordeaux White, this Sauvignon Blanc has an Old World feel, while keeping a brightness usually only found in New Zealand.
Tenuta di Tavignano, ‘Villa Torre’, Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi, 2010 … 36
Deep yellow with copper aging around the edge. Rich, complex bouquet has oatmeal, honey, and poached- fruit nuances. Full-bodied, rich and dry, yet soft in the mouth. Great length and harmony.
Vipava 1894, ‘Populus’, Pinot Grigio, 2011 … 28
Bright, with lots of Canary melon on the nose. On the palate, stony, fleshy fruit, with a bit of pear and apple. Chalky gravel tends toward the mature finish.
Shaya, Verdejo, Segovia, 2010 … 38
The nose is refreshing and very lively, with white flowers, yeast, green apple and a touch of fennel. On the palate it is well structured with good acidity, fresh and slightly sharp, with a finish comprising hints of lime, sour apple and more fennel.
‘Nisia’, Verdejo, Rueda, 2011 … 40
Notions of caramelized white citrus and tropical fruit blossoms, along with a naked, natural texture blend together with complex softness. Acidity stays through the finish, making for a terrific dry white with loads of personality and complexity.
Illahe Vineyard, ‘Estate’, Grüner Veltliner, Willamette Valley, 2011 … 48
Aromas and flavors include grapefruit, honey, white pepper and radish. It is a dry wine in the restrained style that is typical of its name.
The Eyrie Vineyards, ‘Original Vines’, Pinot Gris, Dundee Hills, 2011 … 78
An homage to the original Pinot Gris vines planted in the New World, this cuvee presents the character of the grape varietal and the vintage in startling clarity. Completely natural and untouched, it is a spectacular example of Pinot Gris. The wine tastes and smells as true as a grape plucked fresh off the vine. Crisp, with a flinty minerality. This is a special and deep white wine.
Syrah ~ Shiraz ~ Petite Sirah
Ballentine Vineyards, ‘Fig Tree Vineyard’, Petite Sirah, Napa Valley 2009 … 40
Flavors of cherry and boysenberry throughout with a mild vanilla and sage undertones.
Copain, ‘Tous Ensemble’, Syrah, Mendocino County, 2010 … 56
A lighter, bright Syrah with an energy well of spring fruit. This bottle has pleasant hints of chalk amidst a mouthful of dark, ripe fruit. Though the wine may see the inside of a barrel, it is refreshingly free of oak flavors and heavy tannins.
Sans Liege, ‘The Prophetess’, Santa Barbara County, 2010/2011 … 106
70% Syrah, 30% Mourvedre. In the quilted heat of summer, there is one place of solace. Its banks are downy with herbs, berries, flowers and ferns. You are met with the scent of blackberries, fennel, Jeffrey pine, English strawberries and wild rose. A cocktail of sweet spice: charred cherry, cinnamon stick, clove oil, fresh basil and tobacco all leaping to your eager senses, relieving you the burdensome world above.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, McElmo Canyon, 2009 … 65
Tiers of black cherry, ripe plums, and dark chocolate, with soft cinnamon on the finish. All the depth one should expect from this wonderful grape, tempered by elegant structure and a surprising brightness.
Waters Winery, ‘Loess’, Syrah, 2010 … 128
Aromas of cocoa-dusted chocolate truffles, Bing cherry and blackberry cobbler draw you in while nuances of leather, hickory and violets provide intellectual satisfaction. Velvety black fruit coats the tongue with opulent freshness, backed up by dark cocoa. Fine tannins with a lengthy finish.
Oakville Winery, Napa Valley, 2011 … 60
Powerful structure that is sweet on the front palate and spicy on the back. Black currants, wild cherries, and a melting essence of dark cocoa emerge, finishing with a note of vanilla and cracked pepper.
Stuhlmuller, Alexander Valley, 2009 … 65
Lush flavors of black raspberry, strawberry, red currant, vanilla, coffee and sweet baking spices, this is an inviting expression of Zinfandel. Good acidity gives this wine elegance and a nice refreshing lift.
Peter Franus, Napa Valley, 2010 … 72
Red raspberry, lavender, white pepper, clove, ginger, anise and ripe plum notes. The mouth is voluptuous, seductive and lush with a low tannin profile. There is a soul and personality.
Brazin, Monte Rosso Vineyard, Sonoma Valley, 2009 … 82
This full-bodied Old Vine Zin packs quite a wallop. On the nose, intense blackberry and cinnamon spice. The palate follows through with jammy plum and dark cherry notes, with a signature black pepper favor of the terroir. Firm, ripe tannins offer plenty of grip, and the finish is long and balanced.
Smith-Madrone, Spring Mountain District, Napa Valley, 2007 … 95
Deep and dark, almost inky black in color. There is a heady aroma of black currants, blueberries, cedar, cassis and just a hint of cigar box.
Paul Hobbs, ‘Crossbarn’, Napa Valley, 2010 … 100
Elegant Cab with enticing aromas of blackcurrant and bittersweet chocolate. Deeply garnet-hued with silky tannins providing and soft texture, though firmly structured. Integrated oak, warm spices, and a rich palate of cassis and blackberry, framed with notes of graphite. Balanced acidity brightens the finish.
Hidden Ridge, ‘55% Slope’, Sonoma County, 2008 … 120
Deep concentration and plush velvety texture. accents of nutmeg, followed by cascades of red cherry, currant, and black raspberry. Layered aromas of a blackberry cordial, cedar, chocolate and brown sugar, with hints of black tea and bay laurel. Full bodied and rich, and abundant soft tannins. Red currants, sour cherry, blueberry jam and boysenberries with cinnamon and cocoa powder.
Vineyard 29, ‘Cru’, Napa Valley, 2010 … 129
Primary aromas of dried red currant, ripe blackberries and chocolate give way to layers of fresh tobacco, dried lavender, and warm cedar. A generous palate offers roasted coffee, mocha, brambly black fruits, and a touch of black pepper that all slips seamlessly into a long supple finish. Stunning in mouthfeel, this profoundly textured wine will leave you wanting more.
Philippe Melka, ‘CJ’, Napa Valley, 2009 … 135
Elegant and youthful, the CJ is a combination of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from diverse vineyard sites around Napa Valley. This gives the wine a broad expression that immediately captures the senses with ethereal aromas of spiced black cherry, sweet black currant purée, and crème de cassis. Tobacco, graphite, and a stream of mineral-rich acidity keep the wine in balance. Beautiful and unique.
Ghost Block, ‘Oakville Estate’, Napa Valley, 2010 … 150
Elegantly balanced and structured. Bright floral aromatics, such as rose petals and tobacco. A full-bodied cabernet that attacks with loads of dark berry fruits, cocoa and nutmeg. The palate is supported by the lasting finish of black cherries and coffee.
Miner, ‘Oakville’, Napa Valley, 2009 … 155
This quintessential Cabernet Sauvignon shows impressive depth and refinement with generous layers of black fruit flavors accented by hints of dried herbs, mocha, and cedar against a backdrop of plush tannins.
Robert Foley Vineyards, Napa Valley, 2009 … 165
Well-defined aromas and flavors of ripe cherry, Loganberry and vanilla flood the palate. Full bodied but carefully balanced, each taste lingers on and on with seamless texture in a very long finish.
Justin Vineyards, ‘Isosceles’, Paso Robles, 2010 … 175
85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc, 7% unfiltered Merlot. Bright, with a deep ruby core. Rich and aromatic, with dark fruit, licorice, and subtle notes of toasted cedar. Full bodied with black cherry and complex spice. Mineral flavors and eucalyptus shine through in this classic Bordeaux blend.
World’s End, ‘Good Times, Bad Times’, To-Kalon, Napa Valley, 2009 … 275
Structurally, this Cab is near perfect, with sturdy yet supple tannins. Bright youthful acidity helps bring up the flavors of dark blackberry jam, chocolate, currant and crème de cassis. Hints of white chalk soften the fruit and balance out the terroir driven flavors of a classic Napa Cab.
Lewis Cellars, ‘Reserve’, Napa Valley, 2010 … 298
Fragrantly ripe black and blue fruits are enhanced with molasses, clove and creamy oak spices. Brightly focused on entry, a fleshy, almost kirsch-like quality develops mid-palate with smoky mineral notes. Rustic power develops at the finish with a flourish of fine tannins and malt chocolate.
Araujo, Eisele Vineyard, Napa Valley, 2008 … 450
89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.6% Cabernet Franc and 4.4% Petit Verdot. Ruby-red. Reticent but pure aromas of black cherry, black tea and flowers. Densely packed and youthfully tight, with juicy, high- pitched flavors of sweet dark fruits, leather and licorice.
Dos Cabezas, ‘El Norte’, GSM, Cochise County, 2009 … 60
Blended of mostly Syrah, this Rhone styled wine is spicy and jammy. Good acidity and structure.
Dos Cabezas, ‘El Campo’, Pronghorn Vineyard, Sonoita, 2009 … 80
Dusty cherries mingle with late citrus blossoms on the nose. A blend of mostly Mourvedre, and Tempranillo with Petite Verdot, Grenache, Syrah, Aglianico and Roussane.
Sutcliffe, ‘Field Blend’, McElmo Canyon, 2009 … 60
The Field Blend gives the true taste of Colorado. Boasting forward fruit of black cherry and blueberry, followed by fresh leather and structured tannins, this wine is built for food.
Sutcliffe Vineyards, Cinsaut, 2011 … 70
Fragrant red currant, pomegranate, and damson plums engulf the senses. A full mouth feel with crisp acidity and a long lingering finish round out the experience.
Sleight of Hand, ‘The Spellbinder’, Columbia Valley, 2011 … 50
50% Merlot, 27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Malbec, 9% Syrah, 2% Sangiovese. The fresh red and black fruits are buoyed by bright acids that are the hallmark of the cooler 2011 vintage in Washington State. This wine is crafted with the idea that wine is meant to be paired with food and shared with friends.
Hedges Family Estate, ‘Red Mountain’, 2011 … 55
Flagship wine of the estate, it displays dense color, firm tannins, and well-defined acidity. Bordeaux style.
Payne Winery, ‘Cub’, Yakima Valley, 2011 … 90
Cub is a blend of three classic Rhone varietals: Mourvedre, Grenache, and Syrah, all lovingly grown on a single vineyard in Washington’s Yakima Valley. In its youth, its tendency is to exhibit an earthen and animal-like character, backed by a juicy and playful core of fruit.
Long Shadows, Pirouette’, Walla Walla, 2009 … 130
57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 13% Cabernet Franc, 3% Malbec . Vibrant aromas of black cherry, violets, and incense that leap from the glass. Ripe currant flavors, hints of black olive, roasted coffee bean and vanilla nuances provide layers of depth, with excellent structure and polished tannins contributing to its lengthy finish.
Lioco, ‘Indica’, Mendocino, 2010 … 45
A field blend of Carignan, Petite Syrah, and Grenache harvested on one day, co-fermented in an open top vat, and put into neutral oak. The wine is all about fresh-picked blue fruits, violet liqueur, and damp earth—delivered in a lithe, 12.5% frame.
Beckmen Vineyards, ‘Cuvee Le Bec’, Santa Ynez Valley, 2011 … 50
46% Syrah, 36% Grenache, 11% Mourvedre, 7% Counoise. Abundant layers of blackberry jam, strawberry-rhubarb, plum, pomegranate, cherry, mocha, garrigue, sweet licorice and leather, all with a great balance between tannins and acidity.
Stratton Lummis, ‘The Riddler’, Napa Valley, Lot 3 … 62
Lot 3 is a five-blended mystery. Enjoy a silky smoothness not found in some Napa Reds. Cassis, plums and violets mix with other dark fruit flavors and a touch of oak to bring you endless fun, pleasure, and of course, mystery. Super smooth with soft tannins and well balanced flavors.
‘Sexual Chocolate’, Various Regions, 2011 … 66
Mostly Syrah and Zinfandel. From the guys who brought your daughter home late, Sexual Chocolate is a true California Red, blending old vine Zin from Napa with Syrah and Petite Sirah from northern Cali. The Zinfandel presents a rich, warm feel that could be confused with biting into a chocolate covered cherry, while the Syrah adds a finish that does not linger after the party is over. The Petite is blended perfectly to display aromatic of magic and love. Sexual Choclate pairs well with late nights, friends, and a second bottle of Sexual Chocolate.
Robert Foley, ‘Griffin’, Napa Valley, 2010 … 90
Black currant and allspice flavors with a big mid-palate. The gentle grip of fine tannins lingers for a long while. This blend is 52% Merlot, 32% Petite Sirah, 14$ Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Syrah, and 1% Petit Verdot. Foley reminds us that a winemaker’s dream is to be artistically free to combine characters into wine that is purely hedonic and non-compliant with varietal regulations, but still something special.
Sans Liege, ‘En Gedi’, Grenache, Santa Barbara County, 2010 … 96
A dark, penetrating and dancing wine the 2010 En Gedi is a testament to the deep power the vineyard holds. Scents of violet, soft leather, raspberry coulis and fresh hewn redwood circle around a velveteen palate of dried cherry, Chambord, thyme and seared bread with brooding, black tannins. A wine to be had at the moment of insight into a lifelong riddle.
Sans Liege, ‘The Adversary,’ Mourvedre, Paso Robles, 2009 … 96
A brooding, concentrated effort, the Adversary opens with rustic scents of Spanish chorizo, blackberry jam, fresh tilled soil, cedar and campfires at dusk. The palate is pure and focused with flavors of cherry skin, fresh fig, herbs de Provence, and hookah tobacco with rocky tannins that reach as far as the eye can see.
Rodney Strong, ‘Symmetry’, Meritage, 2010 … 98
75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Malbec, 10$ Cabernet Franc, 2% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot. Symmetry is at once rich, harmonious, and elegant. This wine stays in balance from the moment you take in a dark fruit nose with a bit of spice, all the way until the lengthy finish with incorporated and soft tannins. Rich and powerful.
Bell, Claret, Napa Valley, 2009 … 105
Rich fruit enhances the bouquet and the entry of the wine onto the palate. Dark berry flavors linger on the palate, with a cocoa finish. Soft on the approach, the tannins build up on the back palate, yielding an approachable and delicious Claret.
Cantine di Indie, ‘Polpo Rosso’, Sicily, 2012 … 36
This is an unoaked. smooth, medium-bodied wine with generous notes of dark berries and mild tannins.
Mocali, ‘I Piaggioni’, Rosso Toscano, Montalcino, 2011 … 40
‘I Piaggioni’ is a deep, dark, ruby-red wine with aromas of sweet oak on the nose, balanced with ripe fruit, chocolate and vanilla. On the palate it is round with good intensity; notes of fruit and wood are equally displayed with a touch of liquorice on the finish.
Mauro Molino, ‘Dimartina’, Langhe Rosso, 2011 … 42
A great red blend from Piedmont, this wine offers up generous fruit mixed with spice in an approachable style. On the nose, underbrush berries, with supple, full red fruits coming through on the palate.
Antico Sigillo, Primitivo di Manduria, Puglia, 2011 … 45
Pleasant, full and balanced flavor that is velvety and delicate. It has a bright, fruity, raspberry-like aroma and distinctive hints of brandied cherries. Light and peppery with a touch of heat.
Ocone, ‘Apollo’, Aglianico, 2007 … 50
Fully organic, this wine is 100% Biodynamic with beautiful aromas of fully blossomed flowers and berry fruits lead to brimming dark fruits, cherries, and earthy spiciness on the palate.
Sottimano, Nebbiolo, Langhe, 2010 … 65
Deep brilliant red, with an intense, persistent nose of fruits and spices. Hints of dried rose, cherries, and tobacco. On the palate, notes of violet, mint, and fresh, vibrant fruit. Good body with refined tannins.
Seghesio, Barolo, 2009 … 78
Sweet aromas reminiscent of plum, fennel, rose petal, and forest woodland. The wine’s heavenly scents carry through on the palate, providing plenty of mid palate appeal and nuanced flavors to savor a good long while. Elegant, but with a healthy dose of firm ripe tannins.
Mauro Molino, Barolo, 2008 … 92
This fantastic red is both fresh and chewy, medium body offering cherry, licorice, tar, and soya flavors. Balanced Old World tannins softly mingle with peppery heat. Complex and stable, don’t miss this wine.
Mocali, Brunello di Montalcino, 2008 … 120
The aromas of this wine are lovely. Pretty flowers, crushed red cherries, and hints of anise and earth are blended together with layers and balanced transition. On the palate, this wine is elegant and refined. It is balanced with a solid core of bright earthy berries, sweet tobacco, dried herbs. The acidity complements the ample, but un-intrusive tannins.