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Masi Ripasso & Oregon PinotSpecials, Andrew Will Cab & Red Burgundy, Cool As A Fan Whites - Gruner & Ribolla

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Vintage 2019 marks the penultimate Clos de la Brosse Saint-Amour. We just received word that 90-something Gerard Lebeaupin has decided to hang up the wine boots and fully retire so this and 2020 will be the last versions of this great value Cru Beaujolais. From a miniscule clos with 95+ year old vines and with obsessive farming, Gerard Lebeaupin's winemaking techniques are from a couple of generations ago, he still uses the wooden grate punchdown system (think of a French Press), and the results are superb.

The 2019 Saint Amour is old vine soul at its best. Seamless and pleasing, this red delivers a luminous presence of creme de framboise, pronounced smoked earth, anise and undertones of strawberry and cinnamon-stick. Resoundingly vivacious, this gem is a total eruption of flavors that cascade through the mouth. Finishes lengthy and full of spice, but fills in beautifully with sultry fruit that energizes and stains the palate. The classic pairing would be roasted chicken with mushrooms. We also recommend going outside the borders and having it with Indian or Moroccan cuisine as well as grilled fish.

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[reg. $19.99]
SPECIAL - $13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

An exquisite special because the importer wants to move boxes! This wine put the term Ripasso on the map in 1964. In fact, Masi trademarked the name in 1988 at which time other Valpolicella producers screamed and of course, sued. In turn, Masi has removed it from the label. These days, the Boscaini family does not label it as such, it can legally be termed as Valpolicella Ripasso (why bother when Campofiorin is the more important name). This definitely isn't your is not your grandpa’s light and fruity, 3:00-in-the-afternoon version, this is serious business!

The 2018 vintage adds an extra level of aromatics and smoothness and possesses alluring spice and plenty of chutzpa. Full of flavor but completely dry with great balance and finesse from the high-toned fruit makes this an extremely food friendly and complex bottle of red wine. Enjoy with braised and hearty meat dishes, burgers, nutty cheeses & anything with stewed or roasted veggies.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Cabernet Franc with sass & soul! When poured in the glass, the hue of purple is stunningly gorgeous and equally gorgeous are the aromas! One of the icon estates from an appellation that is not widely known in America, Saumur-Champigny, Domaine Filliatreau makes exquisitely detailed and pure expressions of Loire Valley Cabernet Franc.

La Grande Vignolle is a single cru site that is perched on a chalky cliff and possesses energetic, calcareous soil. 2018 is both aromatic and sturdy possessing generous red and black fruits, Indian spices, energetic stony character with submerged but noticeable fennel and allspice notes. Symbiotically balanced red raspberry fruit in the mouth, with savory spices and herbs, and great supporting structure on the finish, lots of brightness and dimension carries over to the soulful finish. A wonderful wine that is a true taste of France. I love this wine now but knowing the backbone and structure that is there, it will easily age through 2025+.

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[reg. $46.99]
SPECIAL - $27.99 BTL./$167.94 - SIX PK

More and more as we are seeing new arrivals of 2019 Oregon Pinot Noirs, we notice that these are true to form Pinot Noir lover’s Pinots. Jacques Lardiere and Louis Jadot arrived in 2013 and have quickly risen to First Division status and their entry level wine will make any true Pinot lover swoon.

From Resonance estate vineyard along with their estate Decouverte vineyard then augmented with a dollop of top Willamette sites, this wine a stunner and is one a top value. Very botanical with smoke, jasmine, rose, turned earth and underlying red berry it's a restrained beauty that reveal itself further as it aerates in the glass. In the mouth, it is seductive with winter fruits, promising underlying succulence and lots of movement. The finish builds and gains substance and persists and lingers. A steal of an Oregon Pinot Noir that should be consumed through 2029.

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$23.99 BTL./$287.88 CASE

Cool as a fan, the white wines of Friuli always steal my heart, however, those made from the Ribolla Gialla grape can cause love at first sight. I Clivi is a superb producer and always one of purity and with a sense of the land. Initially thought to be a descendant of the Greek grape Robola, this was disproved in the late ‘00s. It is now thought that it is truly native to the Collio region of Friuli and Brda in Slovenia as documents from a notary show it mentioned in 1289.

The newly arrived 2019 has a rich and forward nose of tangerine, white flowers and enhanced by forthright minerality. This seamless beauty coats your mouth with rich flavors that are kept in perfect balance by lightning-crisp acidity and minerality derived from an alchemy of ancient vines planted in marlstone and sandstone soils. This wine screams for seafood, in particular simple preparations of crab, shrimp, and even halibut. Nothing brings a bit of sunshine quite like a little Ribolla Gialla.

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$29.99 BTL./$359.88 CASE

Continuing our cool as a fan white wine adventure, we move into Austria and specifically the Wachau region and one of its oldest and prominent yet forward thinking producers. 2000 years in existence, this is Austria’s oldest winery and with biodynamic principles and impeccable farming, some of the world’s most impeccable dry white wines emerge from this estate. If you enjoy things like Friuli, unoaked White Burgundy and dry Alsace wines, you'll dig this offering.

Hefeabzug translates into aged on the lees and this dry white explodes with character. Billowy notes of mango, mandarin and Meyer lemon offer the perfect blackboard for this powerful terroir to present itself. We called this wine a "stealth cobra" because of the fact that it puffed itself up, filling our glassed with sun-kissed yellow fruit then strikes back on the finish with precision-like minerality and insanely defined texture. This impressive effort is a hedonistic exercise in Austrian sensuality and will compliment smoked fish, Indian food, especially dishes based around chicken or vegetarian fare, seared pork chops with a fruit compote sauce or crab/lobster.

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$8.99 BTL./$107.88 CASE

From Lomardy, this perennial excellent buy is on form yet again with the 2018 vintage. Vibrant aromas of brambly berry, violet, dusty earth and a hint of cocoa fully entice. Bright and fresh with a soft texture and a lingering classic almond aspect intertwined with kirsch finish. A fun and flavorful weeknight wine with antipasti.

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$34.99 BTL./$419.88 CASE

After a decade or so of making terrific Cabernets from a blend of vineyards and labeling it as Columbia Valley, Andrew Will winemaker Will Camarda decided that 2017 and the terrific quality was the time to start labeling the Cabs with their own sites. Whether it is Champoux or this Two Blondes Cab, the differences are immense.

Two Blondes vineyard is located in Zillah and is owned by the Camardas and a partner. Planted in 2000, the steadiness of growth at this site has led it to become a crown gem in the area. In true Andrew will fashion, this is full-bodied, yet maintains vibrancy without ever becoming burdensome coating the palate with velvety dark plum, raspberry, warm spice and chocolate covered cherry flavors. What is most notable is that even though this is decidedly decadent, the elevation and vibrancy in the middle palate and complex potpourri of aromas that come from this magnificent Yakima Valley site. Here, the nighttime temperatures allow for longer, slower fruit maturation in the initial material, which follows through to delicious juice in the glass. This red begs for braised oxtail, slow-roasted leg of lamb or beef tenderloin. A steal given that it comes from one of Washington’s vanguard producers. Drink over the next 8-12 years.

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$79.99 BTL. - 18 btls available

Burgundian to his core, Philippe Cheron hit the vineyard lottery when he inherited old vineyards from his grandparents that were leased by other luminous producers and when the leases were up, Philippe reclaimed the sites and we are all the better for it.

The French term 'ouvree' refers to the amount of land one person could work in a day. This became a standard unit of measurement in Burgundy. Because of the Napoleonic inheritance laws and centuries of exchanging of vineyards, it is the norm for Vineyards to be chopped into micro-parcels too small to vinify as separate wines. Such is the case with this wine. The majority comes from lieu-dits of Condemennes and Clos de L’Orme along with nine other parcels with the majority being 60+ year old vines.

Prominent sexiness in a bottle it commences with class and aromatics immediately – almost Valhrona-soaked strawberries. Aromatic herbs and underlying floral traits. Nice energy but a seductive dance is going on here. Cinnamon-spice, sleek red tones. Compact core that develops more and more coverage as it moves towards back. Deft, charming, fine, long finish, this is a sensuous Chambolle-Musigny immersion course. Very charming even in its youth, I recommend holding it until 2024 and drinking through 2035+.