Hot Sheets

Gramcercy Cellars Syrah, Gaja & WhiteBurgundy Specials, 96 pt. Barbaresco Asili, Bubbles, NZ Sauvignon & more

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$13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

One of my favorite value driven Cabernets, this fabulous wine from Chile brings it every year. In the local Mapuche language, Calcu means ‘magician’, and indeed, owner Ricardo Rivadeniera and winemaker Rodrigo Romero have created a magical value Cabernet Sauvignon from the distinctive flavors of Chile's Colchagua Valley.

Straight out of the chute, this wine emits nothing but goodness. Chock full of deep cassis and mocha tones along with underlying mineral, cedarbox and nutmeg all which carry over into the mouth. Full-flavored, quite extensive for a mere 13 bucks and nicely lingering. Drink now and over the next 3-4 years.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

A bit of clamor over the Oregon 2016 vintage is commencing. Along with Cameron and Evesham Wood, Ayres is a pinnacle producer making fine Oregon Pinot Noir for 20 dollars a bottle. Winemaker Brad McLeroy cut his teeth working all aspects of the wine industry, beginning as a retail specialist turned cellarmaster under Veronique Drouhin at Domaine Drouhin for more than six years.

Knockout nose that comes in waves as the wine is swirled in the glass. Sensuous floral tones, a combination of red and black fruits, herbs and transparent red earth tones reveal themselves nicely, but there is a bunch more just waiting to come out with a little time. In the mouth, the wine is somewhat like an Italian plum, exploding with ripe dark fruit and then gaining structure and grip on the brilliantly focused and extending finish. instantly, one can figure out that 2016 is a pretty superb vintage. Very drinkable now and no problem for this wine to age 4-6 years, too. Kudos to Brad McLeroy for making a kickass Pinot Noir and resisting the temptation to increase his prices.

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[reg. $17.99]
SPECIAL - $13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

When it comes to white Burgundy there is an abundance of excitement as well as pleasure that is derived from the wines from this region. Chateau de la Greffiere is a producer who we have featured for many years that I have been able to sell this wine at a price that qualifies, dare we say, as an everyday Burgundy.

The name of the village, La Roche Vineuse means vinous rock, due to the bevy of limestone in the vineyards, and this wine is a magnificent expression of its origin. Sous le Bois, translating into under the woods where this parcel is located, has 30-year-old vines and the wine elevated in one-fourth neutral barrels and the rest in stainless steel, it shows blazing, pure scents of lemon, green apple and stony mineral. Zippy flavors dominate, but there is also nice expansion and zing. 2016 provides lots of nervosity, which allows it to be a perfect match with shrimp or lighter fish dishes.

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[reg. $49.99]
SPECIAL - $36.99 BTL./$443.88 CASE

A legend in Barolo and Barbaresco, Angelo Gaja has been making wine in Tuscany for 20+ years as well. Nineteen ninety-six brought the acquisition of the Ca' Marcanda property on the Tuscan coast regions of Maremma and Bolgheri.

Here is a chance for a limited time to experience one of these wines without taking out a second mortgage. 55% Merlot, 35% Syrah and 10% Sangiovese is the usual assemblage and vintage 2015 is extremely good, on the lines of 1997 or 2007. Very glitzy as is always the case with this wine, endless rivers of luscious blackberry and blueberry fruit combine with Tuscan herbs, red licorice, underlying cocoa and allspice tones that gleam from the glass and follow into an irresistible texture that is palate-filling all while submerging the tannins. Drawn out, nicely formed and very drinkable over the next 10-12 years.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

No particular reason, but It has been quite a while since I have featured a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. This one more than makes up for this oversight and then some. Located in Marlborough on the South island, what attracts me most to Spy valley is the true family commitment and craft that goes into making their wines and their Sauvignon is one of the Kiwi nation’s finest.

Extroverted and exuding confidence, this bright Sauvignon checks in at 12% alcohol (at least that’s what the label reads, but what does that really mean?) and a bombardment of indulgence soars from the glass. Mango, lime, fresh mint and subtle herbs dominate and follow over to a texture that is bracing yet has nice fullness and vivacity. One to pair with Asian chicken or fish preparations and you can highlight it with a touch of spice.

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$11.99 BTL./$143.88 CASE

Eating cookies is always comforting and so is drinking Chianti, especially when it is at this price. When was the last time that you actually had a good $12 Chianti?? This area has sadly become more expensive, and even worse, more globalized and reactionary. Too many times Chianti at this level doesn't taste like Chianti, but more like any red wine could come from anywhere. When you taste this, you will see our excitement because this is 'reale Chianti'.

A lilting nose that displays roasted Tuscan herbs and spices pleasant surround traditional high-toned red cherry notes and hints of earth. Flavorful, dry and vibrant with plenty of ripe red fruit along with the textbook wild red earth characteristics that are a definite throwback. At this price, this is a fantastic everyday Chianti, but do have it with food. Versatile stuff that can pair with pastas, pizza, grilled meats, grilled fish and what the hell, cookies, too.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

...And now on to the bubbly portion of the show and a bit of a trip of nostalgia for me. Now as many of you know, I am not just here to be sentimental, and even though I came up through the wine business admiring Sparkling Vouvray, it still has to be first and foremost about quality. Bernard Fouquet’s entire range of Vouvray are always impressive but there was something charismatic when I sampled this for the first time last week.

100% Chenin Blanc and 100% dry, this bubbly deal possesses a frothy mousse along with aromas and flavors of lemon, bright quince, yellow apple and subtle chalk and biscuit. The length is extraordinary for fizz from this appellation. Drink scads of bottles of this jumping grape as an aperitif, with Ceviche, or sushi.

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$59.99 BTL. - LIMITED!

A mere 347 cases of this limited, single vineyard gem from one of Walla Walla’s Syrah Saints is available and if you love wines from Gramercy, I recommend you email quickly. Forgotten Hills Vineyard is located at the base of the Blue Mountains and Gramercy Cellars has been utilizing fruit since the inception of the winery. Coming from a very cool climate, this Syrah shows Northern Rhone influence but the stony aspect of the basalt and climate accentuates the wine and site’s individuality.

One of the most exemplary Washington Syrahs that I have had recently and tasting is believing. Classic aromas of white pepper, red currant, red berries, smoked meat, roses and a hint of the stone-laden earth that is to come. In the mouth, this provocative and poised wine hits you with dazzling scents of cherry, black currant, and pepper flavors. Outstanding extension and excellent structure, this young pup will benefit from some quiet time in the cellar and will be at its best from 2020-2033. A phenomenal wine from one of what I think is one of the Walla Walla region’s most dandy vineyard sites.

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$74.99 BTL./$899.88 CASE

Gotta love library selections and especially ones from Grand Cru vineyard sites. The Produttori Asili Barbaresco always ages at a glacial pace and always delivers. 2008 was absolutely towering for this site and has received numerous accolades including a sizzling one from Antonio Galloni from Vinous

‘One of the absolute highlights in this portfolio of utterly amazing wines, the 2008 Barbaresco Riserva Asili possesses marvelous depth and richness, but also little of the early approachability and sexiness of Asili. With time in the glass, the wine's inner perfume gradually emerges, but ultimately this is a Barbaresco to bury in the deepest corner of the cellar. Once again, the Produttori have done a fabulous job with the Asili. The 2008 has nerves of steel and a huge, never-ending finish. It is by far the most imposing and structured Asili I have ever tasted from the Produttori. – 96 POINTS - VINOUS



This Friday November 17 from 1:30 – 6:30

The gestation period is now over! Several of our new arrivals from my yearly visit to France have now arrived. Drop by this Friday to taste four scrumptious reds that we have been impatiently waiting to land. Bordeaux, Madiran, Cru Beaujolais and a 16-year-old Chateauneuf will all be flowing!


2012 Domaine Sergent Madiran ‘Fut de Chene’
2001 Galet-des-Papes Chateauneuf-du-Pape ‘Tradition’
2014 Chateau Les Petites Blaye Cotes-de-Bordeaux
2016 Clos de la Brosse Saint-Amour