Champagne & Sparkling    Non-Vintage    Champagne    France - Other regions   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Champagne Krug *
Champagne Krug *
(search item no. 23029)
Wine Spectator rating: 96 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 95 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $148.99

Winemaker's Notes:

"Krug Grande Cuvée is as a symphony, a composition where the instruments all play together, complementing each other in total harmony."
-Henri Krug.

The flagship of the house, Grande Cuvée is imposing in character from the first moment in the glass. The "birth" of Krug Grande Cuvée, through its first fermentation exclusively in small oak casks, ensures the unique personality and dimension that is the Krug Style. The composition of the "cuvée" is a stunning mosaic of flavors where the three champagne grapes, 20-25 growths and 6-10 different years, combine to give Krug Grande Cuvée its complexity, elegance and consistency year after year, blend after blend.

To maintain this consistency, Krug reserves a large selection of unblended still wines from previous vintages blending them with the youngest crop to create a fully balanced taste. These "reserve" wines may represent between a third and a half of the cuvée.

The bouquet is wonderfully creamy, leading to magical combination of weight and balance on the palate. The long, lingering finish is both nutty and toasty, ending with a final flourish of freshness, leaving one longing for more.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Champagne Krug:

About Champagne Krug:

Since 1843, with unique single-mindedness and sense of purpose, the Krug family has proudly cultivated the markedly individual character of their exceptional champagne. Theirs is a living legend, a certain idea of excellence that has been quietly redefined through six generations without a break.

Krug's founder, Johann-Joseph Krug, was a maverick who turned his back on a comfortable position in an established champagne house to strike out on his own. He had not only the vision, but also the talent, to achieve his ambition of creating a champagne with a taste quite unlike any other.

Subsequent generations of the Krug family not merely honored his achievement, but amplified it, bringing genuine pride and passion to their craft. From meticulous grape selection, through the birth of the wine in small oak casks, to the intricate process of "assemblage", followed by long years of aging in the cellars, Krug champagne is the culmination of painstaking care and unrivalled craftsmanship.



Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    North Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
R Wines Red Lion Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
R Wines Red Lion Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
(search item no. 103021)
screw cap wine


PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $10.99

Winemaker's Notes:

A late season heat wave in Napa affected many producers. The vintage offered challenges with tannin balance and the wines were carefully blended to accentuate sweet fruit notes to keep the wines in balance. Wine sourced from cooler North Coast appellations didn't suffer the heat wave to its full intensity.

A tight, reserved bouquet slowly opens to ripe black cherries and a hint of spice. The palate is rich, classic Cabernet cassis and cedar wood, given volume by an elegant tannin structure. A lingering finish with distinct black current notes.

My Notes:

About R Wines:

Based in Australia, R Wines produces wine from vineyards all over Australia including Riesling from Western Australia, Pinot Noir from Victoria, Shiraz from McLaren Vale and the Barossa just to name a few. R Wines was founded in 2005 by partners Dan Philips, and Chris Ringland. Chris is one of world's leading and most gifted winemakers. He leads teams of winemakers and viticulturalists managing vineyards Australia wide. R Wines that make it to the shelf are not merely sound and well-made, but are stylish, compelling, hand-crafted and peerlessly delicious. We believe that what goes on the bottle is as important as what goes in the bottle and work with world-class designers to create innovative, loud, brilliant labels that speak to consumers in ways unique to the wine world. The best Grenache in the world is in Australia. The Chateau Chateau project is a study of the effects of soil and place. Five icon vineyards and one blend with distinct expressions, soils and locations in the Barossa and McLaren Vale. There is no illusion, this project includes the world's best Grenache.


Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Columbia Valley    Washington   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
Chateau Ste. Michelle Indian Wells Cabernet Sauvignon 2008
(search item no. 105035)
Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $17.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2011 Wine & Spirits rating: 88 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2004 The Wine News rating: 90 points
2003 The Wine News rating: 93 points
2003 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The Indian Wells Cabernet is our warm climate ripe, jammy "New World" style of Cabernet Sauvignon. The wine really typifies the Wahluke Slope region with up front, dark fruit aromas and flavors with hints of vanilla. Vineyards in the area are more than a decade old now and showing character and complexity.
My Notes:

Additional wines from Chateau Ste. Michelle:

About Chateau Ste. Michelle:

Founded in 1934, Chateau Ste. Michelle is the oldest winery in Washington with some of the most mature vineyards in the Columbia Valley. The winery combines Old World winemaking with New World innovation and is best known for its award-winning Riesling, Chardonnay, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Chateau Ste. Michelle receives some of the highest accolades in the industry, including "American Winery of the Year" by Wine Enthusiast for 2004 and "2005 Winery of the Year" by Restaurant Wine. In addition, the winery's Eroica Riesling, crafted from a partnership with German winemaker Ernst Loosen, has been named to Wine Spectator's prestigious "Top 100" wines list for five consecutive years.

Chateau Ste. Michelle is one of the few premium wineries in the world with two state-of-the-art wineries, one devoted to whites and another to reds. This dedicated approach to winemaking allows winemaker Bob Bertheau to build winemaking programs to the unique specifications of red and white wines. While all of Chateau Ste. Michelle's vineyards are located on the east side of the Cascade Mountains where the climate is dry and sunny, Bob Bertheau makes the award winning white wines in Woodinville, 15 miles northeast of Seattle. The winery's expansive, 87-acre estate hosts more than 250,000 visitors annually for tours, tastings, dinners and outdoor summer concerts.



Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
W.H. Smith Piedra Hill Cabernet Sauvignon Purple Label 2005
W.H. Smith Piedra Hill Cabernet Sauvignon Purple Label 2005
(search item no. 103511)
boutique wine

Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $38.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Both the color and the nose scream "plums"! Dark intense fruit and jam-packed plum aromas let you know that you're onto something special. On the palate, there is great density to the fruit. The deep blackberry fruit, the bright acidity and the firm tannins spread out all over your mouth.

Food Pairing:
This is a red meat wine! Especially a juicy barbequed steak or grilled Saratoga lamb chops. Really any grilled or smoked foods will work well with the intensity of Purple Label. Don't forget to finish your meal with some dark chocolate – maybe a warm truffle cake.

The Vineyard:
The Piedra Hill Vineyard is becoming synonymous with award winning Cabernet-based wines from Howell Mountain. Bill and Joan Smith own, farm and make wine from this stunning six acre vineyard. The vineyard is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, primarily clones #337, #191, #341, #338 and BV 4, and the other four Bordeaux varieties; Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec and Cabernet Franc. Piedra Hill Vineyard sits above the fog line, so temperatures are, on average, five to ten degrees cooler than on the valley floor. This creates higher natural acidity in the grapes and leads to even ripening of the fruit. The hallmarks of the Piedra Hill wines continue to be intensity of fruit and tremendous balance.

My Notes:

About W.H. Smith:

Luck and timing led Bill and Joan Smith into the wine business: enthusiasm, perseverance, and good advice from a few talented friends facilitated their success as world-class producers. A wrong turn while trying to visit Chappellet Vineyard led Bill Smith to discover and purchase the historic ghost winery, La Jota Vineyard Co., including 40 acres on top of Howell Mountain in the Napa Valley. Two years later, in 1976, Bill and his new wife, Joan, spent their honeymoon planting the first 2 acres of vines, which would grow to 28 acres by 1978. After a few classes in home winemaking at UC Davis, a lot of experimenting, and some priceless mentoring from friend and Howell Mountain neighbor Randy Dunn, the Smith’s produced La Jota Vineyard’s first Cabernet Sauvignon vintage in 1982. With Bill making the wine and Joan responsible for sales and marketing, the couple garnered attention and accolades—including being listed as #2 on Robert Parker’s roster of "heroes" in the December 1994 issue of The Wine Advocate.


Champagne & Sparkling    Non-Vintage    Champagne    France - Other regions   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Reserve
Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Reserve
(search item no. 12927)
has fluid
has fluid 360

Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $38.99

Winemaker's Notes:

It is composed of 20% of the Chardonnay grape variety, for elegance and delicacy, 40% of Pinot Noir, for roundness and structure and 40% of Pinot Meunier for fruitiness.

Pale gold in color, abundance of delicate bubbles.

Floral aromas of fruit with subtle predominance of white fruits: pear, apple, almonds and hazelnuts. Fresh opening, smooth, pleasant and balanced.

Food Pairing: This wine is an ideal accompaniment for Breton lobster and cream sauce, sole morel mushrooms, chicken brochettes with citronella.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte:

About Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte:

Nicolas Feuillatte created Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte in 1976 as an exclusive Reserve Champagne that today remains the guardian of Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte's quality and style. In 1986, Nicolas Feuillatte created a partnership with the Centre Vinicole de la Champagne, the largest association of growers in Champagne, situated in the heart of the vineyards, near the small Grand Cru village of Chouilly on the outskirts of Epernay.

Nicolas Feuillatte Champagnes are the exclusive issue of Premier Cru and Grand Cru vineyards and all cuvees are distinguished by the rich full expression of Champagne's unique terroirs.



Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    Sonoma County    California   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cepages 2006
Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cepages 2006
(search item no. 101294)
collectible wine

Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $36.97

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points
2009 Vinous / Antonio Galloni rating: 92 points
2009 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 94 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 93 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2003 Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points
2002 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
2001 The Wine News rating: 93 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 95 points
1999 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
1998 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
1998 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
1998 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1997 Wine Spectator rating: 96 points
1997 The Wine Advocate rating: 94 points
1997 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
1996 Wine Spectator rating: 95 points
1996 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
1995 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 1996 vintage of this wine was ranked #1 on the Wine Spectator's Top 10 Wines of 1999

This is a classic Cinq Cepages with signature notes of blackberry jam, red raspberry, milk chocolate and violet. The palate offers a rich, dark fruit density surrounded by well-structured tannins. Layers of generous black plum and fresh-picked blackberries combine with notes of black tea and mocha. This wine has beautiful oak integration and a lushness throughout that leads to a lingering finish with hints of blackberry and clove.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Chateau St. Jean:

About Chateau St. Jean:

Chateau St. Jean is a winemaking estate located at the foot of the Sugarloaf Ridge in Sonoma Valley near Kenwood, California. Founded in 1973, Chateau St. Jean has long been recognized as a leader in Vineyard Designated wines. Winemaker Steve Reeder has built a reputation for making wines of power and elegance. With over 20 years of vineyard and winemaking experience, his knowledge of Sonoma makes him a master in highlighting the best of each vineyard. Chateau St. Jean was the first Sonoma winery to be awarded the prestigious "Wine of the Year" award from Wine Spectator for its 1996 Cinq Cepages Cabernet Sauvignon, a Bordeaux-style blend of "five varieties."


Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Other California    California   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Layer Cake Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Layer Cake Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
(search item no. 106993)
screw cap wine


PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $15.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

This wine offers generous aromas of ripe Bing cherries, blackberry, candied violets, cedar, and tobacco, plus hints of minerals and graphite. Sweet, densely packed and creamy in the mouth, but with firm, underlying structure that gives lift to the dark berry, chocolate, and coffee flavors. This is a very lush, soft, complex wine that coats the palate and spreads out on the long, lingering finish.
My Notes:

Additional wines from Layer Cake:

About Layer Cake:

Layer Cake is a wine that was inspired by my Grandfather and Grandmother. Every Sunday, my Grandmother would bake a huge layer cake for dessert. My Grandfather would pour me a little glass of wine and place it at the table for me. He explained wine in terms of that cake. 'The vines,' he would say, 'live in layers of soil just like the layers in Grandma’s cake; each layer bringing a different flavor.' My grandfather taught me that everything in life is about layers and complexity. I loved those words and when I was a cake-focused boy, it made perfect sense… in fact, it still does.

Since those early days I have been all over the wine world time and again. I have tasted thousands of different wines and there are only a few places that haunt me, always come back to mind, occupy my dreams and have drawn me back again to taste some more.

I started Layer Cake because I wanted to make a wine at a price that could be enjoyed everyday with abandon, yet made by hand (not in a giant factory) and made in some special places in the world that I have always loved. The mission was simply to shock people about how good wine could be at a very affordable price.

While the Layer Cake wines were not intended to be compared with Hundred Acre, they are rich and taste like they should simply cost a lot more. This is due to our rigorous fruit selection and small winemaking style. The same team of winemakers that work with me at Hundred Acre, work with me all over the world to craft a rich Shiraz in South Australia, fabulous Malbec in Argentina, spicy old vine Primitivo, aka Zinfandel, in Puglia, Italy, sleek Syrah in the Cote du Rhone, France and of course, some Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Each is very special in its own way and a phenomenal value.

With the making of each Layer Cake wine my Grandfather’s words and my Grandmother’s cakes come back to me. Layer Cake is a simple black and white label with, of course, my Grandmother’s giant layer cake on the front and my Grandfather’s words on the back…ENJOY!!



Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Beaulieu Vineyard Reserve Tapestry 2007
Beaulieu Vineyard Reserve Tapestry 2007
(search item no. 106086)
Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $48.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2009 Vinous / Antonio Galloni rating: 91 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2005 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 92 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2002 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
1999 Wine & Spirits rating: 89 points
1997 Wine Spectator rating: 94 points
1997 Wine & Spirits rating: 87 points
1996 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2007 Beaulieu Vineyard Reserve Tapestry weaves together five classic varietals into an opulent, complex wine. The deep, expressive aromas and flavors offer generous layers of black cherry, briary blackberry and cassis character. Enticing floral, licorice, forest loam and graphite nuances are revealed as the aromas open and the flavors expand across the velvety palate. Tapestry elegantly demonstrates the art of blending varietals to create a wine that combines lush, multilayered flavors with supple, graceful tannin structure.

Varietal Blend: 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Malbec, 1% Petit Verdot

My Notes:

Additional wines from Beaulieu Vineyard:

About Beaulieu Vineyard:

The deep roots of Beaulieu Vineyard were first planted back in 1900, when founder Georges de Latour noticed similarities with his native Bordeaux and declared the Napa Valley ideal for winemaking. Planting vineyards in Rutherford with grafted, phylloxera-resistent French vines, the Cabernet Sauvignon that de Latour crafted from these grapes gave the world a taste of California's promise as a world-class winemaking region. In 1938, de Latour hired the young Russian-French enologist, Andre Tchelistcheff. Today, Beaulieu continues to turn to innovative practices. Most recently, they completed a new state-of-the-art winery within one of their original buildings. The Georges de Latour Private Reserve Winery utilizes the latest technology in combination with time-honored traditions for the production of this exceptional wine.


Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 4/18/2014
Wallis Family  Estate Diamond Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
Wallis Family Estate Diamond Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon 2006
(search item no. 106400)
boutique wine
collectible wine

The Wine News rating: 94 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 4/18/2014: $46.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 94 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2006 Wallis Family Estate Diamond Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon "is a rare find indeed." Made from a blend of the traditional Bordeaux varietals, it has bold aromatic characters of black currants, mouth filling plums, espresso and toast topped off with vanilla bean ice cream notes. This wine has an opulent full bodied character that lingers long after the wine is swallowed. A wine to enjoy immediately or to hold for the next 7 to 14 years.
My Notes:

About Wallis Family Estate:

The project started in 1975 with the purchase of 85 acres on Diamond Mountain, which is southwest of Calistoga, in The Napa Valley. With the land came an original stone house, which was built in 1906, and also lovely old barn built in the late 1800's. The Barn was designed by W.H. Corlett. In 1997 we planted about 13 acres of vineyards. The vineyard is planted in eight distinct blocks on a spacing of 4X7. We are in the heart of The Diamond Mountain District at an elevation 600 to 800 feet.

The varietal selections are Cabernet (five clones), Cab Franc, Merlot, and Petit Verdot. Our plan is to harvest this fruit each year and keep the best for The Wallis Family Estate Cabernet. Each year the percentages will slightly change but it will always be over 75 percent Cabernet. The vineyard is immaculately farmed, and the fruit quality, and finished wine, is superior because of this attention to detail.