Ribbon Ridge Pinot Noir
Gleaming Gruner & Ventoux Value
Ridge Petite Sirah

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$17.99 BTL./$215.88 CASE

60% Grenache 40% Syrah, the compelling Rhone red always rocks the house. Formerly known as Cotes-de-Ventoux, Ventoux is the region characterized by alternating hills and valleys that closely surround Mont Ventoux and extend back to the Dentelles de Montmirial. Many youthful producers are changing the image of this region in small increments, fighting against the local co-op menace and putting forth excellent wines that really are reflective of their varying terroirs.

The word Terrasses comes from the Latin word terras, which literally means, "lump of earth". This flavorful yet tender wine exudes the personality of Provence. Aromas of lavender, smoke, thyme and pepper lead into a deceptively deep textured wine with substance and soul. A fine all-season selection that works well with slow-roasted lamb or stews in winter as well as grilled fare in summer. Enjoy this savory Southern French treat over the next 3-4 years.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

From Austria, specifically the Weinviertel region located in the NE corner on the border of both the Czech Republic and Slovakia, the white wines from this region are regarded as Austria’s spiciest. Ingrid Groiss is a young talent and one who is following her vision and making some of Austria's coolest and most intriguing wines.

Symmetrical, sleek, athletic and energetic with mineral soaked lime and peach-pit aromas and flavors, the mineral intensity turns to a crisp, peppery, anise and fresh mouthfeel that instantly coats and cleanses the entire palate. Try this delicious Gruner with everything from salad, artichokes, blanched asparagus and grilled prawns all the way to pork chops with a fruit preparation.

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$23.99 BTL./$287.88 CASE

Like many other Ribera del Duero estates, Finca Villacreces is quite young on paper. In 2004 after being purchased by the Anton family, they revitalized the vineyards all while ending long term contracts to which fruit was sold to other producers. Located in a very respectable neighborhood, this site is bordered on one side by Vega Sicilia and the other Pingus. Not too shabby of an address and one hell of a value.

For this 100% Tempranillo, the robust nature of the fruit is massaged into a structure that seduces the palate, caressing the tongue with an almost velvety texture. The presence of coolness, fresh-cut flowers, mineral, and creamy marionberry permeate from the glass. Texturally, this is typically formidable yet it is succulent, tender and chock full of exotic spice. Refined and gorgeous now, it will easily develop for 7-8 years as well.</div>

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$31.99 BTL./$383.88 CASE

The region of Carmignano is to Bolgheri what the latest fashion trend is to innate style. When you've got it, you've got it and you don't have to follow drinking trends or trends at all because you are the one setting the pace. Located northwest of the city of Florence, unofficially the region is noted as being the first "Super-Tuscan" since Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot & other Bordeaux varietals have always been permitted for blending with the native Sangiovese.

The recently arrived 2020 is a Tuscan treasure that if it were in Bolgheri would be five times the price. A mighty blend of 70% Sangiovese, 20% blend of Cabernet Sauvignon & Cabernet Franc with 10% Merlot, it is packed and laden with wild cherry and berry scents that rule the day along with penetrating smoke, sage and sandalwood undertones. Lavish, deep, yet tenderly balanced this is extremely fine. Succulent, flavorful and owning an exacting and extensive finish for a wine at this price. A candidate for cellaring for 10-12 years however, it is going to be difficult to be patient because it is so enchanting even at an early stage.

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$29.99 BTL./$359.88 CASE

After retiring from Chehalem, Harry Peterson-Nedry could not stay put and along with his daughter and former Chehalem winemaker Wynne, they started a small but rather prolific operation based around their namesake Ridgecrest Vineyard and upper tier RR Label.

Planted in 1982, Ridgecrest Vineyard was the first to be planted in the now uber-famous Ribbon Ridge appellation. The 2019 is magic as it should be due to the brilliance of the vintage. An achingly beautiful Pinot Noir possessing enticing and beautifully aromatic aromas of crushed black raspberry, violet and cinnamon that shines brightly from the glass. Texturally, the wine is stylish and refined with an abundance of penetrating fruit along with sneaky structure. The finish is suave and understated with a hint of allspice, red earth and cocoa from oak. A mouth filling Pinot, this selection will pair wonderfully with chops and will drink and develop wonderfully through 2030.

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$26.99 BTL./$323.88 CASE

After World War II (as well as previous eras that Friuli was occupied by various empires), it was Livio Felluga who was one of those responsible for restoring viticulture to the region. Up until his passing in 2016 at the age of 102, he was a tireless promoter of the region and their superb wines and compelling story continues with subsequent generations.

Pinot Grigio from Friuli is quite a different animal from other regions in Italy (or Alsace). There is often more material and the wines fan across the palate very well. There is pinot gris/pinot grigio, then there is Livio Felluga, and this wine is utterly sublime. Brilliantly focused aromas of baked apple, mineral and stunning spice lead into a texture that is rich and dense, but very relaxed and regal. Broad strokes of definitive Friuli terroir are blatantly present throughout and especially on the long and graceful finish. This wine really stands up in the glass and is a magnet for salmon.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Walla Walla based Isenhower has been churning out terrific wines since their inception in 1999. We have experienced many delicious values and this certainly includes their Cabernet that comes from throughout the Columbia Valley.

Red plum, red currant and blackberry fruit spun with maple, spice, tobacco and a touch of toast coming from a thoughtful use of French oak build up as soon as it is poured. Plenty of power without lacking the signature smoothness that Isenhower is noted for; there is abundant "silky grip" and a roundness on the palate, which carry over nicely to a lingering, well-honed finish. Quite a steal for 20 bucks!

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$39.99 BTL./$479.88 CASE

This is Pure Wine Fury and a selection from Ridge that we do not get to offer to the entire list all too often. From 1972 through 1992, Ridge produced a Petite Sirah that was regaled over by fans who have long followed this famed California producer. In 2009, it re-emerged with plenty of gusto and we are proud to have it alongside their hallowed Zinfandel blends.

Unblended, the 2019 is 100% Petite Sirah and varietally strong in all facets. Ballsy might be the best description here. Packed, stacked, lots of black fruits, brambly herbs and spice, olive, licorice and underlying minerally tones. Mouth filling, savory, ample fruit and plenty of vibrancy keeps it in balance. Drawn-out, peppery and very lingering, enjoy it over the next 10-15 years.

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$8.99 BTL./$107.88 CASE

From the Estremadura region of Portugal and comprised of Castelao, Camarate, Tinta Miuda and Touriga Nacional, all native Portuguese varietals and at $8.99, what the hell are you waiting for!

Hearty, luscious, spicy, tangy aromas and flavors all provide delicious depth of fruit. A great all-around, anytime red that should be ordered by the bottle and especially by the case if you are having a gathering and need to please a bunch of palates.

Profound Arneis & Sicilian Values

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$19.99 BTL./$119.94 - SIX PACK

There is Arneis then there is Almondo Arneis. Sometimes one visits a wine region and tastes many great wines but there are always eye-opening, tuning fork moments. Two offerings that we love and have been impatiently waiting to share with yinz all are these outstanding Arneis wines. The Roero is famous for this grape and most of it is grown in a specific area of the region. While so much is good, I quickly discovered that Domenico and his sons Federico and Stefano are making white wines from this grape that are extraordinary and very special indeed. All of the property is within the village of Monta and is at the highest point of the Roero giving extra oomph, dimension and nervosity.

Bricco Ciliegie is a site that has sand but what makes it very individual is the presence of limestone with some clay. Blitzing mineral and energy present with underlying scents of lemon and apricot and gentle touches of saline. The entry is round and expansive then picking up nerve and livewire character that lifts the wine and fills the mouth with joy. Kisses of honey and fennel beam on the finish, but what really sets it off is the stoniness and brilliant persistence. Again, I cannot say enough just how excited I am to feature this. Dungeness crab is finally available and it will work with it very well along with scallops or seabass. For the adventurous cook, try with a seafood risotto with asparagus.

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$26.99 BTL./$161.94 - SIX PACK

A recent addition to the Almondo range is this ‘Super Arneis’. From at just over 1000 feet, this single parcel on the Bricco Ciliegie hill this white wine wine not only has depth it also has tension and a kaliediscope of aromas, plavors and detail. Simply put, this may well be the finest Arneis I have ever tasted.

One of the definitive benchmarks of the region, the new 2020 is quite mineral-driven, ripe and stunningly balanced with an underlay of blood orange, lemongrass, and starfruit on the nose. In the mouth it is dazzling, dry and brisk, but with no shortage of depth and flavor. A fantastic white for simply prepared cracked crab or other seafood dishes, especially seared tuna in an Asian prep or fried calamari although if one really wanted to indulge some hedonistic fantasy, it could make for an expensive deck wine because it is so easy to drink on its own.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

Owned by famed Sicily producer Tasca D’Almrita, Sallier de la Tour is an estate located in the northwest corner of the island and is home for clean, modern-style wines that reflect the soul of Sicily. Known as Ansonica in Tuscany, this grape thrives beautifully in Sicily and delivers white wines that are seen in many of the region’s trattoria and osteria restaurants.

Sallier de la Tour’s version is very classic, unoaked, clean and crisp. Lemon, orange, white flowers, seashells and subtle almond tones lead into a zesty and exhilarating texture that quenches and floats through to the luminous, sneaky-long finish. A perfect seafood wine, enjoy it with anything from mussels to grilled swordfish.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

Like the white wine, the Nero D’Avola is an excellent choice to enjoy for a weeknight dinner. Aged in 70% stainless steel tank and 30% used barrels, this wine just wants to please.

An extremely extroverted red tipple, aromatic tones of red plum, violet, clove and thyme lead into ripe and full flavors that show lovely purity and spice without having any of the overripe prune-laden rusticity that can often be associated with the old-style wines of Sicily. Lots of succulence on the finish, pair this wine with pasta alla Norma, chicken cacciatore or lightly cooked, fresh tuna with a tomato-Sicilian olive preparation.

Bordeaux & Friuli White Wines
Icon Chianti & Value French Reds

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2020 Rocca di Montegrossi
Chianti Classico
$23.99 btl./$287.88 case

As I gaze out my window looking at the sun shining on the church parking lot by my house, I am trying to think when the last miserable version of this wine was unleashed. Maybe 2002?? Over twenty years, this wine continues to marvel and remains one of the top and best buys in all of Chianti Classico.

Marco Ricasoli’s hot streak continues with the new arrival of the impeccable 2020 Chianti Classico. 91% Sangiovese, 7% Canaiolo and 2% Colorino and very classic Chianti and Montegrossi. Powerful yet poised, sporting savory, sumptuous strawberry and Morello cherry along with perfumed herbs, wild spices and underlying floral notes. Like clockwork, it is chock full of flavor and will pair well with tomato-based dishes or roasted meats. Well honed, this beautiful Chianti Classico from such a renowned producer will drink well through 2031+.

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2019 Chateau Bruilleau
Pessac-Leognan (Bordeaux) Blanc
$26.99 btl./$323.88 case

Made from the top area for dry white wine in Bordeaux, pound for pound and value-wise, this was my White Wine of 2022! 65% Semillon & 35% Sauvignon, 12 months in barriques (25% new) and only 800-1000 cases produced. If this wine were from Burgundy, had a hyphen followed by the word Montrachet, it would easily sell for three to four times the price.

Spiced pear, nectarine along with fig, lime and vanilla arriving as it unfolds in the glass. Penetrating, full, creamy and intense with spices, old vine depth and persistency. Very brisk and luminous on the impressively long and luxurious finish. White Bordeaux from this area is very much a tradition but sadly one that is slowly disappearing. Everything involved make it such a joy to see one that is this good that retails for a great price. Drink over the next 6-8 years with lobster, clam chowder or some sort of bisque, dense fish dishes with a sauce and soft-ripened, aged cheeses.

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2020 Jim Barry Shiraz 'Lodge Hill'
Clare Valley
$19.99 btl./$239.88 case

The late Jim Barry gained notoriety for producing one of Australia's iconoclast wines, The Armaugh Shiraz and his children have kept the flag flying. There is good news and bad news regarding Jim Barry's wines. The bad news is that The Armaugh will set you back about $200 per bottle if you could find one. The good news is that Jim Barry produces a number of outstanding values including this scrumptious Shiraz from their home turf of Clare Valley.

An elixir of earthy, briary raspberry, cherry, and blueberry fruit with hints of smoke, woodland spices and black pepper shine on the nose and carry over to a texture that is laid-back, cool and with ample depth and persistence. Well-formed and not even close to being a supercharged, high-octane juice box, enjoy it over the next several years.

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2021 I Clivi Malvasia 'Vigna 80 Anni'
Collio Friuli Bianco
$26.99 btl./$323.88 case

Located in the far northeastern corner of Italy bordering Austria and Slovenia, Friuli can often feel as though it is in its own world. The majority of wines produced in the Friuli region are white and its wine growers are all seemingly mavericks and renegades all lining up to give Rome the double bird.

I Clivi is a small producer who seems to be on everyone's short list of Friuli favorites. Cool as a fan, this estate’s white wines always steal my heart, however, this particular, rare offering (only 250 cases produced) causes love at first sight. From 80-year-old Malvasia vines, this offering is both palate staining, electric and sees no oak in its upbringing. Classically aromatic with notes of ripe mandarin, smoke, minerality, rose oil and anise building as it sits in the glass. Layer upon layer of flavor fill the mouth along with livewire acidity to slice through the depth of these old vines. As the 2021 unfolds in the glass it is clear that this noble white needs a little aeration for all of the levels of complexity to come together so you might want to decant before serving. Enjoy with white meats, roasted poultry and denser fish dishes, perhaps with a little kick of spice.

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2019 Piquemal Cotes-du-Roussillon
$16.99 btl./$203.88 case

The French Catalan region of Cotes-du-Roussillon is located just south of the city of Perpignan in close proximity to the Mediterranean Sea and running down to the Spanish border. Due to the abundance of schist soils, high elevation - and bearing in mind its Catalan roots – Cotes-du-Roussillon is sometimes referred to as France's Priorat.

A classic GSM from one of our favorite producers, the 2019 Rouge reveals Generous and rustic aromas of tea-smoke, blueberry, black licorice, lavender, pepper and subtle cinnamon notes. In the mouth, it is layered, lifting and with plenty of extension. Excellent mouth-filling fruit combined with minerally definition shows why this region is one of France’s most happening. Drink it with an array of dishes from braised venison to a grilled steak smeared with garlic and pepper.

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2020 Terriere Beaujolais-Villages
$13.99 btl./$167.88 case

Two rivers flow through the city of Lyon. but many of its natives will tell you that it is actually three rivers - La Saone, Le Rhone et Le Beaujolais! This is very true as it is one of the main wines served in the various eateries in this city known for its gustatory delights.

Undoubtedly, this is one of the steals of Beaujolais, especially given the region’s current popularity and price increases. Silky and smooth with notes of fresh summer berries, minerals and dried rose petals. This four-chord melody turns into a full-on sonata in the mouth with alluring depth from 70-year-old vines that happen to come from a specific lieu dit vineyard in the Cru of Regnie. Very long and very classic Beaujolais, this wine is a photo of diversity when it comes to food pairings. This wine will be featured in this week’s Friday Tasting.

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2016 Evesham Wood Pinot Noir
Le Puits Sec
$46.99 btl. - VERY LIMITED

Last year we offered and sampled the library release of this five star Eola-Amity estate’s 2014. For early 2023, next up from the library is the insane 2016. Since the mid-eighties, Evesham Wood is one of Oregon’s small but mighty producers. Founded by the late Russ Raney Evesham is owned and manned by Erin Nuccio (who worked alongside Russ for over a decade), these wines remain some of our finest.

Possessing plenty of substance and starting to really reveal its inner beauty after six years, the single vineyard 2016 shows 100% of Pinot Noir's sultry side on both the nose and the palate. Resounding floral aspects abound - roses play with lavender and mingle with red fruits, underlying red earth and smoke. The texture is lacy, finesseful and smoothly mouth crawling from start to finish. Long and engaging, even more starts to come out as the wine unfolds in the glass. A wow wine with fantastic follow-through as well as ample Eola-Amity backbone to allow for further development. Drink this killer Pinot Noir over the next decade.

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2018 Saint-Siffrein
$45.99 btl./$551.88 case

Located in the northern sector of Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Saint-Siffrein has been making wine since 1860 in the outskirts of Orange. Organically farmed vineyards within the lieus-dits of Cabrieres and Palestor, a mosaic of soils highlighted by clay, limestone and portions of large galet stones make for wines that are velvety beasts.

Vintage 2018 is a blend of 55% Grenache, 25% Mourvedre, 15% Syrah & 5% Cinsault then aged 75% in 4500-liter barrels and 25% in tank. Amorous, vivacious and time-honored Chateauneuf aromas prevail from the moment it is poured. Aromatic tea-smoke, rose, cherry-pit, licorice, white pepper and rhubarb shimmer and then follows through to a velvety, well-sculpted, smoothed-out texture that extends and persists. Very lovely at age five and it will continue to drink beautifully for another eight-10 years.