Wine of the Month
WINEs OF THE MONTH – Holiday Favorites
November 29, 1017- January 9, 2017
Are you wondering what goes great with your Holiday meal, or what would make a great gift for family, friends or even the boss? We have a list of hand-picked selections to make your dining and gifting a little bit easier. With festive traditional favorites like Champagne, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir to some exotic European delights, there is sure to be a fantastic fit for every palate. From us to you, we wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!
Veuve Clicquot Gold Label Reserve Brut Champagne
Regular $89.99 WOTM $59.99
The 2008 Vintage Brut is one of the rare vintage Champagnes of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin and it follows the earlier releases of 1999, 2004 and 2012. Disgorged in March 2015 with eight grams dosage, the bright colored 2008 has a very clear, fresh, pure and intense, as well as complex nose, with brioche, biscuit and prominent Chardonnay aromas. Pure, dry, straight and elegant on the palate, this is a refreshing and lifted, but also complex and expressive Brut. It also has tension, grip and a stimulating salinity in the finish. This Champagne is an excellent choice to serve with your holiday feast, a toast to family and friends, or a wonderful stocking stuffer for a loved one or a boss! Comprised of 60% Pinot Noir, 35% Chardonnay and 5% Meunier.
93 points Wine Spectator 2008
Zotovich Santa Rita Hills Estate Chardonnay
Reg $36.99 WOTM Special $37.99
The Zotovich vineyard is in the sweet spot in Santa Rita Hills made famous by a handful of cult wines and a Hollywood flick. Santa Ynez Valley is the broader AVA but the unique situation by the coast and the bowl created by the surrounding mountains keep the temperatures more moderate. Zotovich is meticulous about their fruit, and spare no expense to cull all but the best clusters, or even parts of a cluster. Clonal selection was made based on achieving ripeness in this cooler zone. The fruit is harvested earlier than some parts and the livelier acids are indicative of this style of winemaking. The Zotovich Estate Chardonnay is a slightly leaner style that is well aligned with foods, seafood in particular, but lends to many culinary treats. Enjoy this zesty Chard after a half hour to an hour of air to let this youthful gem loosen up.
91 points Jeb Dunnuck 2015
WesMar Pinot Noir Russian River
Reg $45.99 WOTM Special $37.99
Kirk and Denise grew up in Pinot country, along with a pretty impressive mentor (Denise’s father is Ed Selyem of the original cult winery Williams & Selyem) and after being immersed in the craft, decided to branch out on their own. The resemblance to the old school W&S wines is palpable, and the finesse and charm they coax out of their wines is refreshing. There are different schools of thought when it comes to Pinot, there is the delicate and seductive style and there is the thick, chunky, sweet and extracted genre that makes one wonder if some Syrah mistakenly fell into a vat. Old school aficionados tend to think Pinot should taste of the place, not manipulation and formulation to achieve uniformity. WesMar is an exercise in location, fruit expression and individuality. The wine is what the grapes give, no manipulation or intervention. Ample raspberry, plum, baking spices and integrated tannins combine to provide a restrained and enjoyable red suitable for your holiday meal. It isn’t heavily filtered, so set it upright for a day and if you can, afford it a gentle decanting.
The Hilt Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills
Reg $44.99 WOTM Special $34.99
How is this for pedigree – This Hilt Pinot Noir is inspired by several remarkable vineyards of Santa Barbara county, Bentrock, Radian, Sanford & Benedict and Bien Nacido. The vine ages range between 8 and 44 years. Dark and seductive, the nose boasts vibrant notes of herbs, black pepper and chocolate covered cherries. The palate jumps out with sumptuous blackberry flavors, black raspberry, toasted spice, dried flowers and a touch of. Soft and fragrant fruit lingers on the acid-driven finish alongside gentle, chalky tannins.
93 points Antonio Galloni – Vinous 2014
Montecastro Ribera del Duero
Reg $24.99 WOTM Special $19.99
It is well established that Ribera del Duero over-delivers time and time again. Not pretentious, just outright attractive, balanced and fulfilling. Rioja gets a lot of fanfare, but many find the slightly leaner style from Ribera del Duero slightly more enticing. Tempranillo is a glorious grape, pretty much wherever it comes from, with terrific purity, exceptional balance and ample structure without harsh tannins. What more could one ask for? Montecastro is a group effort, complete with several well established winemakers and vineyard managers replete with Masters degrees in agriculture, oenology and soil science. The team has come up with a fabulous new world wine that has plenty to offer. Chock full of superbly ripe and silky fruit, framed in by soft sweet oak, and mild but firm tannins. Montecastro is going places, and with well trained and educated team in place, the sky is the limit.
91 points Robert Parker 2013
Casanova di Neri Brunello di Montalcino White Label
Reg $64.99 WOTM Special $58.99
This Italian gem is the #4 rated wine from the Wine Spectator top 100 of 2017. Brunello’s popularity has gone through the roof since the great 2010 vintage and the beat goes on with the 2012. The winery’s passion and love for the land and their own distinctive Sangiovese joined together to make a wine that stands out for elegance, finesse, high quality and long ageing potential. Casanova di Neri is truly one of the stars of Montalcino, exemplified by the manic care throughout the process of vinification by owner/winemaker Giacomo Neri. The winemaking style is impeccable and elaborate with a higher degree of texture and richness on the pallet, which opens to thick layers of dark fruit, mocha, spice and leather. A note of blackberry compote adds softness and sweetness. If you have the patience, give this wine a few more years to flesh out and integrate. If you don’t, decant it first. Enjoy!
95 points Wine Spectator 2012
Vietti Barolo Castiglione
Reg $54.99 WOTM Special $49.99
Vietti is a traditional tried and true Piemonte producer that has a rock solid portfolio of wines that continues to impress. The Barolo Castiglione is a workhorse wine that brings Nebbiolo to the forefront and makes these typically rugged and tough as nails wines more approachable in their youth. Old school Barolo is a wine you could almost pass on to your heirs, but new winemaking techniques and the urge to bring these wines to a willing fan base has changed some minds. The Castiglione is almost more precocious than the vast majority, almost an oxymoron, but it does have a dense core of fruit, with good intensity, polished tannins and some of your textbook rose petal, herb, dare I say creosote or balsamic notes that are characteristic of the grape and the region. This wine, opened a bit in advance will delight new and experienced Nebbiolo fans alike, and will tame a roast, game, or even some hard aged cheeses.
93 points James Suckling 2012 & 2013
Gallo Winery Estate Cabernet Sauvignon Northern Sonoma
Reg $79.99 WOTM Special $69.99
You know Dicken’s “A Tale of Two Cities” – well here, we have the tale of one winery with two distinct personalities. Gallo may be known for its inexpensive line of wines, but there is the Gallo that can go head to head with some of the best wines produced in Napa and Sonoma Valleys. Grapes for this wine were selected from the Alexander Valley, a phenomenal, warm-clime region in Northern Sonoma with a unique soil series ideally suited to developing complex Cabernet Sauvignon fruit. The 2012 vintage in northern Sonoma County was generally warm, a nice change from 2011, with idyllic conditions paving the way for full ripeness and the development of complex flavors. Beautifully crafted, showing excellent structure, dense, concentrated fruit and firm yet fine, lush tannins. The bouquet offers terrific extract, aromas of graphite, blackberry, licorice, vanilla, and blackcurrants. The core of currant, blackberry and wild berry fruitiness pushes through with ease, giving this a long, powerful finish. Best from 2017 through 2030.
93 points Robert Parker 2012