A few holiday indulgences to ponder, for yourself, for a gift, for whatever reason you want. They are a bit outside of our normal offerings but totally worth every penny. It seems if ever there was a time to pamper and indulge oneself, this is it! See the bottom of the offering for special mixed case and four-pack offers! Enjoy, because if ever there was a time to say it, you deserve these…
* * * * * * * * *
2012 LUCIEN BARROT Chateauneuf du Pape
$41.95 bottle/ $226.00 half-case/ $402.00 case
This was an incredible surprise at last Friday’s Rhone Valley tasting! I hadn’t had Barrot’s decidedly old school Rhone wines for a few vintages, but when one of the wines I was going to slot in as a bonus pour at our tasting turned up out-of-stock this was a last minute sub. And thank the wine gods for that! This was AWESOME, for me easily the wine of the night, one of the best Chateauneufs I’ve had in years with everything that is satisfying about the glorious vineyards that surround the village of Chateauneuf-du-Pape. The head spinning aromas and flavors were pure Provence. Deeply pitched sweet blackberry, freshly ground pepper, minerals, smoke, roasted meats, smoke, garrigue, and that beautiful Rhone funk on its broad, expansive palate, all of it letting you know the Barrot’s make wine on their terms, not to please some faraway critic. The finish just lingers on and on, taking your senses on a trip to someplace very, very pleasant. I can’t begin to tell you how impressed I was by this classic bit of Provence. Obviously a great wine now, but given 5-10 years in my basement I know my patience will be well rewarded! It’s not cheap, but an astonishing value for its type. Here’s a little bit more love: “Spicy, floral red fruits on the fragrant nose. Sappy and appealingly sweet, offering fresh raspberry and cherry flavors and a touch of peppery spices. Closes silky, sweet and long, with zesty lift and smooth tannins. This is a far more polished wine than I’ve come to expect from the property, whose wines have often been downright feral over the last couple of decades. Nicely done. 92 points.”– Vinous
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
2010 MOCALI Brunello di Montalcino
$53.95 bottle/ $291.00 half-case/$517.00 case
You know why people freak out over great Brunello di Montalcino? Do you know why the sangiovese grape hits its absolute peak in the vineyards that surround the hilltop village of Montalcino? THIS is why! An absolutely sensational bottle of Brunello that as mind-altering as it is now will easily see much improvement over the next 10-15 years. Seems everyone is in agreement on this beauty as well…
“This is Mocali’s top shelf wine. The 2010 Brunello di Riserva Vigna delle Raunate shows a higher dose of power and overall determination compared to the annata versions of this single-vineyard Sangiovese. That extra year of aging before the wine is released as a Riserva has gone a long way to flesh out and build the momentum of this brawny Brunello. Because the bouquet is so forceful, the mouthfeel feels weightless and streamlined in comparison. That contrast makes this wine very interesting. I would suggest opening this bottle after 2018. 95 points.” –Wine Advocate
“Black cherry and black currant flavors take on underbrush, mineral and tar notes in this powerful, concentrated Brunello. Balanced and densely structured, with a fresh, lingering aftertaste of sweet ripe fruit and wild herbs. Best from 2018 through 2035. 94 points.” –Wine Spectator
“The 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva Vigna delle Raunate is a very nice wine. Sweet tobacco, cedar, scorched earth, spice, pepper and leather are some of the many aromas and flavors that make an appearance. Deceptively medium in body and translucent, the 2010 Riserva packs a serious punch, with savory, peppery notes that add attractive aromatic overtones throughout. 93 points.” -Vinous
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
2013 OBSIDIAN RIDGE Cabernet Sauvignon “Mayacamas”
$32.95 bottle/ $177.00 half case/ $316.00 case
I would love to be that guy who is able to afford to drink those $60+ bottles of California cabernet. However that is not the case and it doesn’t seem to be changing, but I have to say now that I can access this incredible bottle of Napa cab I really don’t care if I am “that guy”. Every time I try this beautifully made bottle of classic California Cab I am struck by the quality here. From higher elevation vineyards in the Mayacamas Mountains that run along the west edge of Napa Valley, this is true Californian “mountain fruit”. That means no gushing fruit like so many from the overheated valley floor. The Molnar family’s Obsidian Ridge vineyard sits at 2,640’ with relatively steep slope allowing for warm days and cool evenings. That’s what really got me here. Loads of warmly ripened cassis, plum blueberry, smoke, and spice, but balanced beautifully by the tannins and acids that come from the temperate evenings as the heat drains down the mountainside. This is truly as good as any $50-$80 California cabernet I’ve had recently, and that perfect fruit/tannin/acid balance means this will be an awesome cellar candidate over the next 5-15 years. This family seems to be doing everything right, down to the fact that own their own cooperage in Hungary where they make their own barrels! It is not often that Napa Cabernet (especially one with “Mayacamas” attached) and value are linked, but this is that rare, and delicious, exception!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
2013 BOEDECKER CELLARS Pinot Noir “Athena”
$33.95 bottle/ $183.00 half-case/ $325.00 case
I was picking up some of our Buckman Wine Pinot Noir from Athena Pappas over at she and husband Stewart Boedecker’s Boedecker Cellars in NW Portland a couple of weeks ago and she was kind enough to bestow a bottle of her 2013 “Athena” Pinot Noir on me. She said she thought it might be something I’d like, and I have to say she vastly underestimated what I think of this vintage of her namesake pinot. This is tremendously good Oregon Pinot Noir. Absolutely pitch perfect in almost every way from this under appreciated vintage, sandwiched as it is between the much more consumer friendly years of 2012 and 2014. It has incredible purity to its fruit, that classic Oregon strawberry and spice wrapped around silky tannins and elegant acid structure that are just now barely shedding some youthful assertiveness. Medium bodied with fantastic persistence, this obviously its all my pleasure centers now, but in 5-8 years I think it has the potential to become an Oregon classic. So well done here!!
“The 2013 Pinot Noir Athena includes 35% whole cluster grapes and matured for nine months in 40% new oak. It has a crisp, brambly redcurrant and cranberry-scented bouquet that handles the oak well. The palate is medium-bodied with ripe succulent red berry fruit, fine tannin and a crisp, slightly tarry finish. Overall, this is an excellent 2013 Pinot Noir – great value to boot. Bravo! 92 points.” -Neal Martin/Wine Advocate
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
FUTURE HAPPINESS CASE: Buy a mixed box of 3 bottles each of the above 4 wines for $390.00 (our normal 20% full case discount!) and look forward to years of good living to come!!
FANTASTIC FOUR: OR treat yourself to a four pack of one bottle each and take 10% off the per bottle price. A bottle each of the best of all worlds for just $145.00!!