From K & L Wine Awards
2006 Achával Ferrer Malbec Mendoza (Argentina) $19.99
From 100% malbec grown in Vistalba, at 980 meters above sea level. Intense, pure, full of black fruit flavors and young aromas, this Malbec emphasizes the soul of Malbec, the undisputed king of Argentine reds. The wine was aged during 10 months in oak barrels, 95% French and 5% American. Nevertheless, special care is taken to preserve the necessary balance between wood and fruit without losing its spontaneity. Non clarified and unfiltered.
2004 Doisy Daene “Grand Vin Sec” Denis Dubourdieu $14.99
First made in 1948, it is the first dry white wine to be made in Sauternes. Aged on the lees for added complexity. 100% sauvignon blanc. According to Robert Parker: “…one of the finest dry wines of the region, Doisy-Daene Sec,a full and refreshing, vibrant, fruity, and-best of all-very inexpensive white wine.” (Bordeaux book, 1998)
Fleury “Carte Rouge” Brut Champagne $29.99
This is a real deal Champagne from Courteron, a village in the Aube department of Champagne, closer to Chablis than the city of Reims! Their methods are as Burgundian as their location, they are biodynamic, the strictest form of organic viticulture. This obsession with quality shows through in the wine, it is the most exciting all pinot noir Blanc de Noir in our stock. The dosage is very low, and this is one of the driest Champagnes we have, but it has a wonderful black cherry fruit quality that reminds us that it is all Pinot! It is long and refreshing and very well balanced. (Gary Westby, K&L Champagne and Sherry Buyer)
2000 Joseph Swan “Frati Ranch” Russian River Zinfandel (Was $30.00 elsewhere) $19.99
If you took a poll of all the K&L employees and asked them what their favorite Zinfandels are, Joseph Swan would be one of the top 2 or 3 on everyone’s list. The Joseph Swan Winery has been making top notch zins since 1968 when Joseph Swan, one year earlier, purchased a small farm on Laguna Road near Forestville that was planted to 13 acres of old zinfandel. Without any formal training Joe became a well respected and influential winemaker mentoring many new up and coming winemakers. One of these winemakers is Rod Berglund, the current winemaker at Joseph Swan Winery and Joe’s son in law. Rod assisted at Swan in 1987, which happened to be Joe’s last vintage, in 1989 Joe passed on but left a huge legacy behind. Rod has continued to make wines in the style that Joe championed: enough structure and framing to alow a wine to age for years, fruit driven but not sweet, overflowing with spice and minimal oak influence. The 2000 Frati Ranch is a perfect example of that, with its dusty earth nose and powerful sense of place. This smells nothing like so many of the candied, fruit bomb zinfandels that are so prevalent today. Another way the Frati sets itself apart is with its marked tangy acidity, this bright and lively zin betrays its age with fresh, lip smacking black raspberry and strawberry fruit. There is still plenty of structure here to allow the wine to develop even further, but this old-school zin is tasting so good now it would be hard to wait. Enjoy!
2005 Kaesler “The Bogan” Shiraz Barossa Valley South Australia $51.99
96 points Robert Parker: “Aged in new and one-year-old American oak, and made in a completely different style, the 2005 Shiraz The Bogan (from 25- to 105-year-old vines) is a dense purple-colored effort displaying an exuberant nose of toast, blackberries, cassis, cherries, and damp earth. It is full-bodied and powerful with fabulous purity and texture as well as a blockbuster finish. This is a classic example of Barossa Shiraz at its finest. Enjoy it over the next 12-15 years.” (10/06)
2005 Morgan “Twelve Clones” Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir $24.99
91 points Wine Spectator: “Aromas of smoky raspberry, dill, sage and cedar carry over to the palate, where they’re deep, concentrated, focused and persistent. The tannins are ripe and firm, ending with a mix of cedar and dusty berry. Drink now through 2011.” (6/15/2007) The wine shows a medium garnet color with good clarity. The nose and palate show blackberry, cranberry, hard spices and the mineral notes of the appellation. The wine is medium to full in body and the softly integrated tannins segue into a long and balanced finish.
2004 Roshambo “Justice” Dry Creek Valley Syrah (Was $22 elsewhere) $15.99
92 points from Wine & Spirits Magazine: “A bit dense when first opened-mostly a jampot of red berries with oak adding spice and tealike tannins-this gains stature with air, the tannins conforming to the fruit; the flavors playing out in layers of oolong tea and strawberry, spicy, cool and round. Decant a bottle in the afternoon to serve with lamb kabobs that evening.” (10/06) Summer is upon us and one of the best things about summer is that we can all dust off the Bar-B-Q and start grilling. All those various meats, or veggies if that’s your thing, slathered in sauce and spice need something to accompany them and this wine is perfectly suited for that purpose. Instanly the wine sings with its black pepper and smoke, this is unmistakably syrah. With its plush, mouthfilling blueberry fruit framed with a velvety grip this is crowd pleasing stuff. (Bryan Brick, K&L)
2001 Santa Rita Casa Real Cabernet Sauvignon (Chile) $34.99
94 points from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (where they list the estimated retail price at $55-60): “It seems clear that Santa Rita Casa Real is one of Chile’s benchmark wines.” (Scored in the review of the 2002 vintage; June 2007) 92 points Wine Spectator: “Very dense, with espresso, bittersweet dark chocolate, dark currant and tar flavors buttressed by thick, loamy tannins…” K&L Wine Merchants’ Chip Hammack describes it as: “Loaded with blackberries, cassis and a dusting of cherries, Santa Rita’s Casa Real Cabernet is one of the best price-to-quality ratio reds in the world. It coats your mouth with a voluptuous texture and lingers on the finish for half a minute. The balance is superb making it very easy to enjoy now. Add in the proposition that this wine will improve with age and it’s simply irresistible.”
2005 Vinedos Y Bodegas Pablo Menguante Garnacha $7.99
90 points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate: “Vinedos y Bodegas Pablo is a family-owned estate, founded in 1760, emphasizing the use of indigenous varietals and biodynamic farming. This is an impressive portfolio from top to bottom. For starters is the unoaked 2005 Menguante Garnacha produced from 80-year-old vines. Purple in color, it exhibits a fragrant nose of kirsch and blueberry. Medium-bodied, this wine is packed with ripe fruit and layers of flavor all the way through to the finish. This awesome value can be likened to a Cotes du Rhone on steroids.Kudos to the Pablo family! (02/07)
2006 Watershed Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon $12.99
A blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon is one of the classic Margaret River wine styles. The wine displays aromas of lime blossom, lychees and gooseberry. On the palate citrus and tropical fruit flavors continue, balanced by a crisp acidity level. A pleasant wine to drink on its own but also a suitable companion with food, particularly Asian cuisine. Enjoy this wine in its youth or alternatively cellar for up to three years.