Hot Sheets

The Cellar Door's 'Luminous Wine Thoughts' HotSheet
Nebbiolo & 92 pt. Washington Blend for 20
Iconic Crozes-Hermitage & Champagne
Under-15 values and more

Click to Order
$12.99 BTL./$155.88 CASE

A blend of Sangiovese (40%) and Montepulciano (60%), this bursting red comes from just a few kilometers inland from the Adriatic Sea in the region of Le Marches in Italy.

Savory and tangy scents of raspberry, mineral, smoke, some hints of sage and licorice that surround it. Let's face it; this is not a wine to be confused with Tignanello or a Vietti Barolo instead it is a sheer, joyful, red wine pleasure with smooth fruit, spicy outer edges, displaying nice substance and length and a tasty every evening red. A real find when it comes to the underrated red wines of this region, it can work with so much including seafood.

Click to Order
$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Founded in 1989 and named after his son and nephew, Andrew Will's Chris Camarda, now along with his son Will, is a Washington legend who makes extremely age-worthy wines and is on the pedestal of the state’s early influences such as Leonetti, Woodward Canyon and DeLille. Involuntary Commitment is a relatively new project that is a delicious, fulfilling, classic Washington blend and does somersaults for 20-bucks.

52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Cabernet Franc & 21% Merlot, all aged in neutral French barrels, this fine Columbia Valley blend is about the balance of varietals and place versus that of being a smacked upside the head with jammy fruit and oak. Abundant cassis, blueberry and violet scents along with spikes of cocoa seemingly swirl from the glass. The texture is buxom and creamy with lots of sensuality to it. A mineral underlay and deceptive structure give this wine nice spine and breadth of flavor. Very drinkable now, especially with braised short ribs or a grilled steak, however, given who produces the wine, it wouldn't surprise me if this were to age 5-6 years, too. If a score makes you soar, then this has 92 points from Wine Enthusiast Magazine.

Click to Order
$39.99 BTL./$479.88 CASE - LIMITED

Pound for pound, Graillot's Crozes-Hermitage may well be the finest, ageworthy, grand-scale collectible that you will find. . Since taking over from his father Alain in 2008, Maxime Graillot has maintained the title belt of ‘King of Crozes’ and is in no mood to surrender it any time soon.

2018 is a knockout vintage for this wine and continues the Northern Rhone’s winning streak of top-drawer vintages since 2014. We love to drink wine, but there is something about putting the glass to your nose and just smelling the beauty of a great wine. This is one of those special circumstances! The epitome and apex of Crozes-Hermitage, what sets it apart is the extra level of depth and dimension that makes it stand above the other contenders. Smoky, peppery and chock full of cassis, currants and cracked pepper - lavishly flavored, but very youthful right now. Graillot's wines always provide much sensory overload and while you can have a go at a bottle now, it will ultimately be at its best from 2023 – 2031+.

Click to Order
$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Geographically, the remote Galician region of Monterrei sits right on the border of Portugal and is currently home to some very intriguing and very satisfying wines, both red and white. After toiling in cellars for 15 years, Manuel Guerra Justa is realizing his dream with his own wines from his 8.5 acres estate known as Via Arxentia.

Made from equal portions of the native Godello and Treixadura grapes, subtle aromas of white grapefruit, lemon, ginger, minerals, peach, nutmeg and earth lead into a vinous texture that possesses superb delineation and zestiness. The slow-building finish is very long, subtle, with saline soil tones and terrific grip. This one is too tempting to pass up. Have it with grilled tuna, smoked salmon, or spicy shrimp dishes.

Click to Order
$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Originally, I fell in love with this producer's wonderful white wine, but recently I have taken a real liking to their superbly crafted, unoaked red wine made primarily from Mencia, the same grape that is in Bierzo. Also added are tiny traces of the indigenous Caiño and Souson grapes. Being slightly warmer than Valdeorras and a different soil composition than Bierzo, the sand/slate soils of Monterrei truly make these wines very individual.

This wine makes me want to jump out of my shoes when I smell it! Lively, inviting tones of marionberry, pepper and soft roasted herbs. They all seem to build as the wine opens in the glass and entice you to take a sip, which is pristine, medium-bodied and forward. It also shows wonderful intensity from the use of low-yielding fruit, but is also clean as there is no oak employed in the winemaking process.

Click to Order
$9.99 BTL./$119.88 CASE

Like Malbec, Bonarda's presence Argentina is also very profound. Mentioned in the 19th century it seemingly has always been cultivated and is still Argentina's second most planted varietal. In 2008 it was discovered that the Bonarda in Argentina is actually not Bonarda Novarese, which is from Piedmont but actually Douce Noir, a grape also known as Charbono, and whose roots actually are from France's Savoie region. Still as it has evolved, it is now something very distinctively Argentine and still delicious!

Colonias las Liberas is made by famed Malbec practitioner Altos las Hormigas and savory, frontal red aromas and flavors present themselves straight away and entice you to want to drink it at just about any moment. Juicy and supple, it smoothly accompanies anything from pizza to empanadas to grilled meat or veggies.

Click to Order
$23.99 BTL./$287.88 CASE

In existence for over 350 years, the Thanisch estate is one of the most historic and important in all of the Mosel, particularly in the top-level village of Bernkastel. Badstube would definitely qualify as a top Premier Cru in the area and Thanisch really succeeds with producing epic Riesling wines from this site that is steep and packed with clay and blue slate soils.

A thrill ride from the moment it is poured, this semi-sweet, ethereal Riesling from one of the Mosel's top vineyard sites is achingly beautiful. Peach-oil, wet chalkboard, lilies and satsuma shine on the nose and follow through to a texture that while rich and intense, maintains delicacy and a strong sense of mouth-watering briskness. At 9° alcohol, this is a refreshing and inviting glass of wine pairs well with pork dishes, Thai or Vietnamese cuisine and especially anything done with curries. An outstanding value that will easily age 6-9 years if not longer.

Click to Order
$31.99 BTL./$383.88 CASE

The northern reaches of Piedmont, particularly Gattinara, Ghemme & Lessona, are a force to be reckoned with serious young producers with energetic ideas coming on the scene and delivering some wonderful wines. Tiziano Mazzoni is one such producer who has become one of the standard-bearers of the area. Ghemme's soils come from Alpine, glacial deposits from the ice age and laced with sand and clay.

Forward and aromatic, showing fennel, turned-earth with more and more camphor arriving as it opens. Steely-eyed, assertive tones lurk beneath and add more complexity that will unfold as the wine ages. Wiry, classy entry, drives with nice cushion and well-honed polish and poise as it moves through the middle and on the finish. Firms up and turns inward on the packed, material-laden finish. This will unfold into something really cool. Hold until 2023 and drink through 2029+.

Click to Order
[reg. $179.99]

96 Points – Vinous. The 8,000 case estate of Champagne Vilmart & Cie led by Laurent Champs has widely been regarded as one of the pinnacle Grower Champagne producers period. Strong results soar from these cellars no matter what the vintage, and whenever we have the rare chance to offer a special on the estate’s top cuvee, we certainly take notice. Having sampled this bubbly last week, safe to say it was the best thing that crossed my olfactory senses.

80% Chardonnay, 20% Pinot Noir, fermented and aged in 225 liter barrels, this wine is beyond a mere toasting Champagne. Top pedigree, there is an abundance of flavors that make one think that this may well be Grand Cru Burgundy with bubbles, it's that impressive. Insanely extravagant and grand, the 2012 is a champagne of perfect balance, great staying power and a tribute to what Laurent does in an epic vintage. Accents of lily, honey, brioche and toasted nuts shine within in its powerful bouquet. The taste is crisp, graceful, rich and lasting flavor that recalls notes of saffron and cinnamon. Delicate and enduring effervescence this is luxurious vintage champagne with great aging potential but for those who can't resist, can be accessed early. Usually only about 5000 bottles (not cases!) are made of this top cuvee so if you love Champagne, take advantage.