THE CELLAR DOOR'S 'OSCAR WILDE' HOTSHEET
Cameron, BandolSpecial, Collectible Barolo & Brunello, Woodward Canyon & more
2014 WOODWARD CANYON ‘NELMS ROAD’
$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE
Introduced as a second label to Woodward Canyon in 1998, the Nelms Road cuvee of younger vine fruit from many of the same Woodward Canyon sources always provides a delicious experience that can be accessed immediately. 2014 is being touted as quite the head-turning vintage for Washington's wines and this wine will provide a terrific early-drinking opportunity while you wait for Woodward's big wines to come to fruition.
Non-stop vanilla and cocoa notes that are wrapped around buxom black cherry, smoky oak, cola and creamy milk chocolate which all virtually glisten the instant the wine is poured into the glass. On the palate, there is lots of style here with nice flowing dense tones, excellent weight and the typical steadfast, mouth-crawling flavors that one comes to expect in these excellent wines. Layered, forward and accessible; enjoy with a variety of beef dishes and more. Drink through 2021.
2013 BASTIDE BLANCHE
SPECIAL - $21.99 BTL./$263.88 CASE
A definite roll of specials indeed and this Bandol, along with the following wine, are two very savvy red wine buys. Many of you are oh so familiar with the Rose offerings from Bastide Blanche, one of Bandol’s stalwart, apex producers. As is the case with the pink wine, the Bronzo brothers are also at the top of the food chain when it comes to red Bandol producing wines that are utterly magnificent.
72% Mourvedre, 20% Grenache, 6% Cinsault 1% Syrah and 1% Carignan, this is prototype Bandol and an exciting version to put into the cellar or if you use a decanter, one to try early. Vintage 2013 combines an aromatic nose of fresh leather and pipe tobacco with a user-friendly palate of assorted ripe plums, spice and peppercorns. The wine possesses a very long finish even though its tannins are up front yet are fairly well rounded. Nevertheless, it is boisterous wine that requires another year or two of aging. If you really want to experience one early, buy two bottles and serve the first with robust red meat entrees as grilled lamb, sausages or beef kabobs then drink the other bottle in about 5 years.
2014 BERNABELEVA GARNACHA
VINOS DE MADRID ‘NAVAHERROS’
SPECIAL - $15.99 BTL./$191.88 CASE
When I saw this stunning producer’s Garnacha on special, I damn near did a cartwheel...and the 2 cups of coffee this morning didn’t cause it. The source of the Garnacha (Grenache) grape is Spain, specifically Aragon. It is here where ampelographical evidence has traced its DNA roots. Since its first mention in the early 1500s the grape has spread to areas like Chateauneuf, Sardinia, Catalonia, Australia, America and more.
Bernabeleva, meaning the bear's forest, is an exciting Bodega located a mere 50 miles west of Madrid in the foothills of the Sierra de Grados Mountains. Grenache (or Garnacha) is king at this estate and the various elevations and soil-types are what drives each of the estate's wines. The Navaherros cuvee is 100% of today's featured varietal and comes from vines ranging from 40-60 years of age. A spirited, aromatic number and possessing pronounced Mediterranean herbs and spices around dense blackberry, violet and wind-swept minerality. Strong varietal character with harmonious, mouth-watering and concentrated fruit. Impressive spiciness presents itself on the ripe, knife-edge, full finish that is pleasantly structured. Very attractive to drink now, especially with lamb or a beef brisket with a savory sauce.
2016 CAMERON ‘GIOVANNI’
$14.99 BTL./$179.88 CASE
We are definitely convinced that Cameron’s John Paul must have been Italian in a past life, especially when one considers his great record of accomplishment over the last 15 years for what he has done with the Friuli-inspired Giovanni and Giuliano white wines.
2016 is yet another success for Giovanni. This wine provides tantalizing pleasure, never gets cumbersome and best of all, and makes you want to finish the bottle! Made without the use of intrusive oak notes, the wine is loaded with piercing lemon and floral scents with hints of mineral underneath. The warm days of 2016 brings about enough roundness to coat the palate, but it is the blitzing aspects of both the Dundee soil, cool nights and Pinot Bianco varietal are what really allow this wine to shine. Complex and full of joy, this wine is perfect for those who want to serve a local wine with the impending Spring Chinook salmon arrival.
2015 CAMERON SAIGNEE OF PINOT NOIR
$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE
When Oregon wine virtuoso/antagonist John Paul told me that he was doing a Saignee Rose of Pinot Noir that harkened back to the likes of what Bruno Clair or Joseph Roty fashioned in Burgundy, I was sure he took a heroic dose of magic mushrooms. Seriously, back in 2011 when he mentioned that he would be doing his own interpretation and aging it in neutral barrel for 20 months it certainly intrigued me. After tasting last week, it positively wowed me.
Truth be told, the biggest dilemma we will have with this masterful pink wine is how much we're going to hoard for ourselves before releasing it to our friends! Beautifully proportioned and ethereal aromas of smoked raspberry, rose petal, lemon, herbs and seemingly stony character carry over into a texture that has substance, elevation and plenty of burst all the way through the expansive finish. From initially gawking at the color until the last drop when you drain the bottle, it is perfect fodder with grilled tombo tuna or grilled prawns; we cannot wait for you to try it!
2014 J. BOUCHON
‘CANTOSUR’ MAULE VALLEY RED
$11.99 BTL./$143.88 CASE
Lately when it comes to Chilean wines the quality is within the small producers who are utilizing vineyards that aren't on the valley floor and are more focused on quality versus large conglomerates who would rather build some sort of PR-drivel brand. J. Bouchon is one of our favorites who produces lovely wines at extremely fair prices. With the 2014 came a change with the Cantosur, formerly Cabernet, Merlot and Carmenere, it is now built from three of Chile’s signature varietals.
70% Carmenere, 15% Carignan & 15% Pais, and teeming with cherry pit, tea-smoke, raspberry, clove and cinnamon scents follow into a texture that is mellow, smooth and very poised. Excellent depth, body and length belie its modest price point. Drink this delicious blend over the next 2 years with grilled burgers or grilled eggplant for those who do not partake in carnivorous delights.
2012 GD VAJRA BAROLO 'ALBE'
$37.99 BTL./$455.88 CASE
This particular Piedmontese estate is on a big roll right now. Whether it be their super-luxury Barolo from Baudana, the Bricco della Viole or this value-driven Albe bottling, this family seemingly does no wrong with their Nebbiolo wines. The Albe is Vajra’s entry level Barolo and what an entry-level it is!
Made from 3 single vineyards (La Volte, Fossatti & Coste) above the village of Barolo, the magnificent and well-formed Barolo 2012 is kickass and there are some real aspects of drinkability, even early on. Don't be misled, there is a left hook wrapped up in all of this depth and tradition. Big, full and youthful Barolo with sweet aromas of cigarbox, camphor, spun sugar, mushroom, dried flowers, and although layered and lavish, the fruit is red and very detailed in the mouth. Each flavor beautifully delineated and great harmony in the mouth make this Barolo very lovable and ageworthy. Open one up a couple of hours before dinner and have with earthy pasta and meat dishes or hold it until 2015 and drink through 2025. The wine media also now knows what we've known for several years, the 2012 Vajra Albe Barolo has 92 points from The Wine Spectator should you require reassurance from a number.
2006 COL D'ORCIA
BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO
$59.99 BTL./$719.88 CASE
There is something enticing to us about having a Brunello with a touch of age and no longer shredding your palate when you drink it. One of the great things at Col D’Orcia is that occasionally release library wines and we are very fortunate to offer one that at 10 years old is starting to sing yet will continue to develop and go to even greater heights.
Located south of the town of Montalcino in the hamlet of Sant' Angelo in Colle, Col D'Orcia has been an important and well-run Montalcino property for over 30 years. 2006 is a monumental Brunello vintage and this 100% Sangiovese is quite the thrill ride at age 10. Graceful, multifaceted, very perfumy and for being large-scaled, truly maintains class and finesse. Red berry tones attack the palate; impressive persistence and penetrating concentration take hold all while being airy and seamless. Deep and luxurious on the packed finish, the magnitude of this Brunello is endless. Now use your imagination, the future is unwritten. This tastes damn delicious now and will develop even further for another 10-15 years.