SAUER GRAPES WINE DEALS 9-13-21
1) Champagne Nomine Renard Brut N.V.: $57.99 A fresh and elegant Champagne, with lots of minerality and citrus fruits aromas. Ideal for Aperitif or to combine with fresh fish or smoked salmon. Champagne for celebration! 40% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir and 30% Pinot Meunier 75% of wine from 3 years old and 25% of reserve wine 6 villages in the heart of Coteaux du Petit Morin, Côte de Sézanne and Vallée de la Marne.Wine Spectator 91 points “Firm and focused, with a rich, smoky hint of toasted brioche carried on a lively bead and layered with more subtle notes of white peach , spun honey, lemon confit and pastry.”
2) Champagne Nomine Renard Brut Special Club 2012: $108.99 Blend: 45% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Meunier, 25% Pinot Noir, 4 villages in the heart of Coteaux du Petit Morin and Sézanne : Villevenard, Etoges, Allemant, Broyes. Limited production of 5 000 bottles. Soil: Clay limestone. Vineyards: 30 years old. Growing vines is working with the environment all year around. Therefore we are naturally involved in sustainable viticulture, which requires special attention to our land, to preserve its biodiversity and the quality of soils. Vinification: Alcoholic and malolactic fermentation in thermoregulated stainless steels tanks Tartaric stabilization at -4°C during 12 hours and filtration on Kieselgur. Ageing: 60 months on lees. Dosage: 9g/L
3) Pine Ridge Chenin Viognier Sparkling: $18 Brand new! Crisp, bright, and vivacious, Sparkling CB+V is an aromatic wine boasting a bouquet of pear, green apple, and honeydew melon complemented by lime, nectarine, lemongrass, and apricot. The entry is bright and fresh, exhibiting flavors of green apples, lemon, lime, and lychee. The wine has beautifully balanced, crisp acidity, with a refreshing and slightly creamy note on the midpalate. The fine bubbles lift the aromas and flavors and carry them to the finish.
4) Gilbert Picq Chablis 2019: $34.99 Winemaker notes: Normally this comes from 12 parcels and is invariably chock full of flinty seashell essence, making it a quintessential Chablis.
5) Jermann Pinot Grigio 2019, Fruili: $21.99 Winemaker notes: Pinot Grigio from Pinot Grigio grapes, fermented as a white wine. It has an intense straw-yellow color; its aroma is intense, full and fruity, with excellent persistence. Its taste is dry, velvety, and particularly well-orchestrated for its full body. To be paired with fish soups, chargrilled seafood and various dishes based on field mushrooms and porcini mushrooms. This wine is wonderful with squid ink lasagnette pasta and crayfish sauce.
6) Tuck Beckstoffer 75 Wine Company Cabernet Sauvignon 2019: $18.99 Grown in Mendocino and Lake Counties, this Cabernet is filled with aromas of fresh cherry and cinnamon. On the palate, its silky smooth with notes of strawberry and blackberry, culminating in a long, lingering finish with just a hint of dark chocolate from a year spent aging on French oak.
7) Mastroberardino Greco di Tufo 2019, Campania: $21 Producer notes: “Fresh and lively, this Greco di Tufo sees only stainless steel to preserve its ripe fruit flavors. Straw yellow. Complex aromas of citrus fruits, peach, pineapple, apricot and lime. Structured and elegant on the palate, with lovely minerality. Pair with fried seafood and baked fish, chicken and grilled vegetables. Alcohol 12.5%.”
8) Enrique Foster Finca Los Altepes Single Vineyard Malbec 2017, Mendoza: $23.99 WE 90 pts. Dark berry aromas are moderately reduced, leaving notes of olive and iodine on the nose. A full but fresh mouthfeel and spicy, lightly herbal plum and berry flavors work towards a finish that shows salty overtones and a little wildness befitting a vineyard-designated wine. Drink through 2023.
9) Harken Barrel-Fermented Chardonnay 2020, CA: $13.99 Winery: Oaky, Buttery, and Bold. Harken Chardonnay is 100% barrel fermented to create a rich Chardonnay with a classic profile of tropical fruit and Bosc pear alongside warm oak aromatics.
10) Vineyard 7&8 Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, Spring Mountain District: $185 Winemaker notes: The 2017 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon has developed into a beautiful wine, showing vibrant blackberry, currant, cassis and espresso, Great tension, and a beautiful finish.
11) Tyler Pinot Noir 2019, Santa Rita Hills: $37.99 Winemaker notes: Comprised predominately fruit from the Santa Rita Hills and the balance from Santa Maria Valley. Only the highest quality fruit is used from exceptional parcels around the County. Extremely mineral. Crushed rock, bright cherry, wet earth, game.
12) Coster dels Olivers 2018, Priorat, Spain: $22.99 A new custom cuvée for Eric Solomon. Coster dels Olivers is a blend of 60% Carinyena, 30% Garnatxa, and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon grown on slate soils by the Sangenis family of Porrera. A combination of younger vine fruit, a relatively cooler northwestern exposure of the vineyards, a high percentage of Carinyena, and 12 months of aging in well-seasoned French and Hungarian oak barrels, ensures a brighter and juicier style of Priorat made for immediate enjoyment.
13) Mastroberardino Mastro Aglianico 2019, Campania: $20.99 Winemaker notes: Ruby red. This fresh, youthful red has notes of strawberry, cherry, blackberry and violet flowers. The palate is smooth, medium-bodied, with red fruits on the palate and a fruity finish. Pairs well with a variety of light appetizers, fresh tomato sauce-based dishes and roasted chicken.
14) Galil Mountain Winery Blanc de Noir 2020, Galilee: $21 100% Grenache. A refreshing wine with a pale greenish color. With a velvety texture, the wine displays characters of rose and peach blossom, sour cherry, and a hint of fresh grass. Characteristics of the red Grenache variety are preserved in this invigorating spring-like wine.
15) Boomtown Syrah by Dusted Valley 2018, Columbia Valley: $17.99 Winemaker notes: Washington State Syrah has it going on. The Boomtown Syrah has classic notes of blueberry, juicy black raspberry along with subtle hints of herbs de Provence. To sum it up; new world fruit meets old world complexity. Blend: 96% Syrah, 4% Petite Sirah.
16) Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon 2018, Columbia Valley: $199.99 Paul Golitzin, Director of Winemaking, comments: We are thrilled to announce the release of our 2018 Quilceda Creek Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. This vintage is very special to us, as it marks our 40th vintage of producing Cabernet Sauvignon! Each bottle is adorned with a commemorative foil to celebrate this historic occasion. The 2018 growing season started out with one of the warmest Mays on record, advancing the spring bloom. June, July and August were quite warm, then temperatures cooled off in September creating ideal conditions for perfect final ripening. Layered, rich and intense black and blue fruits are found in this wine, with nuances of violets, black truffle, graphite and Valrhona chocolate. This wine is amazingly pure and silky, with an ethereal texture. 100% Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from our Champoux (90%) and Mach One (10%) vineyards.
Decanter Review, Score: 100 Pts.
International Wine Report Review, Score: 98 Pts.
Wine Advocate Review, Score: 98 Pts.
JebDunnuck.com Review, Score: 98+ Pts.
JamesSuckling.com Review, Score: 98 Pts.
17) Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona Brunello di Montalcino 2016, Montalcino, Tuscany: $64.99 Winemaker notes: Ruby red verging on garnet. The bouquet is intense, fruit-forward, spicy and floral with hints of red berry fruits enriched by delicate spicy notes. Warm, soft and very well balanced on the palate; well-structured with soft tannins and long aftertaste. Great companion to roasted and stewed game meat. Excellent with mature cheeses and traditional hand-made pasta featuring red meat and game ragout.
18) Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona Pianrosso Brunello di Montalcino 2016, Montalcino, Tuscany: $89.99 98 points James Suckling “Lots going on here with black plums, ripe cherries, cedar, smoke and cocoa on the nose. Ash, chocolate, crushed walnuts and some praline. Mushrooms. This has firm, ripe tannins and a full body. Flavorful and juicy finish. Very structured.” (10/2020)
19) Italics Cabernet Sauvignon 2016, Coombsville, Napa: $89.99 Italics Proprietary Red Wine opens with cassis and raspberries. The mid-palate is rich and creamy, tempered by a fruit-based acidity. The mouthfeel has a graphite texture, intermingling with the mid-palate and delivering length and density to the finish. As a Bordeaux blend, it combines the softness of Merlot with the intensity of Cabernet Sauvignon, and seasoned with trace amounts of Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc to give it layers of fruit and complexity. This wine will exceed your expectations, opening up beautifully, and delighting your senses.
20) Andrew Will Two Blondes Vineyard 2016, Yakima Valley, WA: $64.99 This has a higher percentage of Merlot then typical in this blend because it was a great vintage for this varietal. When we create this blend, we do not have a set formula, we are looking for the wine that best shows off the vineyard for that vintage. Merlot is an early ripening grape and when the conditions and timing are right, you can get ample phenolic ripeness while maintaining freshness and elegance. Even though this was a warm vintage, Two Blondes is a cooler site, and this blend shows off this terroir in comparison to our other blends from warmer sites. The 2016 Vintage in Washington State started out quick during the spring, but in early June the weather returned to normal and thus lead to a start date of September 12th for picking. Harvest continued until October 25th with Cabernet Sauvignon from Two Blondes vineyard coming in. Right away we saw the high potential of the fruit and how this vintage would end up being another great vintage for us. Composition: 60% Merlot, 16% Cabernet Franc, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Malbec.
21) Domaine de la Prebende Beaujolais Rose 2020: $16.99 Domaine de la Prébende produces a deeply mineral Beaujolais from a predominantly clay and limestone terroir, a rarity in a region dominated by granite soils. “Une prébende” essentially means “a tax,” and the domaine sits on the location where monks used to collect taxes from the villagers. As Ghislaine Dupeuble puts it, “Monks didn’t like to own low end vineyards!” The Prébende Beaujolais cuvée, “Anna Asmaquer,” is named for Ghislaine’s great grandmother, who married Jules Dupeuble in 1919. The family wanted to add her name to the label because it was Anna who managed the vineyards and winemaking—she is the true source of inspiration for what has become Domaine de la Prébende today. The Anna Asmaquer Beaujolais is an old vines blend with profound minerality, a bright wild berry nose, and possesses typical Beaujolais finesse. The grapes are harvested manually and vinified completely without SO2. The wines are not chaptalized, filtered, or degassed and only natural yeasts are used for the fermentation. La Prébende crafts one of the best Beaujolais AOC values available today. Plenty of fruit, but more savory, rose at the dinner table style. (But also so many flowers, so much peonies.)
22) Rodney Strong Rockaway Cabernet Sauvignon Single Vineyard 2015, Alexander Valley: $64.99 ($74.99 at one of the largest retailers in the nation!) Winemaker notes: The 2015 Rockaway has wonderful concentrated flavors of dark plum and red currant with notes of tobacco and leather. The earthy minerality of the wine is balanced out by notes of baking spices with a rich, complex structure and a long lingering finish. Enjoy this wine now or cellar it for enjoyment in 8 to 10 years.
23) FEL Pinot Gris 2018, Anderson Valley, Mendocino: $27.99 Winemaker notes: Pinot Gris is a lovely expression of Anderson Valley’s cool-climate terroir, simultaneously rich and unctuous but with a tremendous brightness and refreshing acidity. Our Anderson Valley Pinot Gris is made from a blend of fruit from three vineyards located in the warmer end of Anderson Valley that is better protected from the ocean breezes, giving the wine its rich tropical notes.
24) Mer Soleil Pinot Noir 2017, Santa Lucia Highlands: $29.99 Winemaker notes: It was only natural that Mer Soleil would make a Pinot Noir in addition to their Chardonnay. The Santa Lucia Highlands is well-known as the perfect home for both these varietals. Grapes ripen slowly, enabling us to make wine of heightened complexity, with layers of aromas and flavors. Mer Soleil is named after the two forces of nature – the sea and sun – that shape this singular character, and they are every bit as powerful in creating their Pinot as their Chardonnay. With the alluring color of dark plums, this wine features scents of ripe cherries with cocoa, pomace, blueberry, toasted wood and a soft, powdery whiff of old-fashioned lipstick. The palate is all about texture – entry is soft, with a round, complete quality. Flavors of cherry cobbler mingle with cola notes and hints of anise. Tannins are structured yet extremely fine, providing a lush, lingering mouthfeel. On the finish, a wisp of acidity adds balance and freshness, a reminder of this wine’s origins in a cool, coastal region of California.
25) La Sirena Aviatrix Red Blend 2017, Amador County and Napa Valley: $47.99 Heidi Barrett is an absolute legend of a winemaker, but it turns out she’s also a pretty awesome mom. Aviatrix is a collaboration with her two daughters, winemaker Chelsea Barrett and La Sirena Marketing Director Remi Barrett. This blend of 51% Petite Sirah, 47% Syrah and 2% Cab Franc sourced from Amador County and Napa Valley is a wonderful example of the power achieved by combining forces. Black cherry, dusty tannins, noteworthy complexity, and a luxurious impression that truly over delivers.
And for the famous Domaine Romanee Conti: Only one bottle of each available:
26) Domaine Romanee-Conti La Tache Grand Cru Monopole 2018: $4199.99
27) Domaine Romanee-Conti Richebourg 2018: $3499.99
28) Domaine Romanee-Conti Grand Echezeaux 2018: $1999.99
29) Domaine Romanee-Conti Echezeaux 2017: $1849.99
30) Domaine du Bouchot Pouilly-Fume Caillottes 2019: $37.99 My wine rep writes: “That Pouilly Fume! I was blown away. Again, not a category I usually dive head first into. This is young-ish kid taking over vineyards that were already organic, now biodynamic. Soils are super chalk, crazy to see in pictures. elevage is all stainless, which surprised me. I assumed it would have some neutral wood because it is not all wound up and punchy like other Pouilly Fumes. It actually has some texture without oak flavor. So much fun to drink too.”
31) Benedicte et Gregoire Hubau Chateau Moulin 2016, Canon Fronsac: $34 A Kermit import. My wine rep writes: “My kind of Bordeaux, for what that is worth as I don’t drink a ton of the category. Pretty classic stuff, it just has more energy and freshness than most of the BDX I taste. Basically merlot on clay and limestone, fermented in vat then aged in used barrique for a year. So as I said, pretty classic elevage. So attractive to me as a more lifted version though. Nothing sticks out, but you name things for a few days. Those violets and just fresh fruits though. This is the BDX I want on my table with a roasted chicken tonight. “
32) Quintarelli Giuseppe Primofiore 2018, Veneto: $75 From the famous Quintarelli Giuseppe! Winemaker notes: This red is the exception to the rule at Quintarelli. It is aged for only two to three years—as opposed to seven—and only the Cabernet is partially dried. The Corvina and Corvinone are pressed directly after harvest. The resulting Primofiore, which translates to “first flower” because it is the youngest red-wine release every year, is the freshest rosso of the bunch. 50% Corvina and Corvinone, 50% Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc.
33) Damilano Barolo Cannubi 2016: $85.99 If there were a Grand Cru classification in Piedmont similar to Burgundy, there is no doubt the Cannubi vineyard would be one of the few that would merit the distinction in Barolo. The most famous site in the region, it has been mentioned in ancient documents since the 1700s. The oldest preserved bottle in the Langhe area is found in Bra, owned by the Manzone family and bearing the words “Cannubi 1752”, the proof that this vineyard was already praised before the appearance of the word Barolo. It is the only terrain in the entire district of Barolo production containing Tortonian and Helvetian soil, belonging to two different geologic areas. The high sand content conveys intense fragrances to the wines, with clear fruited notes of cherry and plum, and herbal notes of tobacco, rose, and violet. The alkalinity and strong calcium content confer a final touch of finesse and elegance. Despite the high percentage of sand, and grades of loam and clay, the potassium, magnesium and microelements give it an intense and bright color, as well as high polyphenol concentration.
The Damilano family boasts a long-term presence on the Cannubi hill, owning about 2 hectares and leasing about 8 hectares. These 10 hectares are at an average elevation of over 900 feet with fruit planted as far back as 1935. With the total size of Cannubi a mere 38 hectares, Damilano farms more than a quarter of the total vineyard acreage, making it one of the largest producers of wine from this famous vineyard. The Damilano family has been farming in Barolo since 1890 and the property is now run by the fourth generation, brothers Guido, Mario, & Paolo Damilano.
98 POINTS – JAMES SUCKLING
DAMILANO BAROLO CANNUBI 2016
“The fruit feels so comfortable here, in the ripe-red zone; it ranges from cherry kernel to chocolate-coated red plums to glazed cherries. Integrated hints of bark and sandalwood. Full-bodied with strapping tannins and muscular, imposing structure and power. Notwithstanding, everything is in striking balance and delivered with remarkable precision and grit. Drink from 2026.”
“The Damilano 2016 Barolo Cannubi shows depth and a profound nature. This is the DNA of the Cannubi cru, maybe the most celebrated in the appellation with mildly compact, well-draining sandy soils (actually, a mix of 45% sand, 35% silt and 20% clay, to be precise). These conditions contribute to the dark concentration and the firm textural support found here. These assets are particularly apparent in this classic vintage. Dark fruit and dried cherry cede to earthy truffle and licorice. Of these various single-vineyard expressions, the tight tannins on this Cannubi definitely suggest a long drinking window. This wine is my favorite in this flight from Damilano, and this vintage of 40,000 bottles is distinguished by its sheer excellence.”