White Wines    Sauvignon Blanc    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Frog's Leap Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Frog's Leap Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2010
(search item no. 111266)
Wine & Spirits rating: 93 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $22.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2013 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2011 Wine & Spirits rating: 88 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2002 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Grown in the heart of the Rutherford appellation the 2010 Frog's Leap Sauvignon Blanc alludes to its storied region with aromas of wet stone, peach blossom and Meyer lemon zest. Across the palate the varietal's fruit character moves forward with more citrus and a touch of stone fruit all supported by the wine's minerality and crisp, bracing acid. This refreshing wine has a lingering finish that is sure to satisfy on a warm summer's day, or with an array of dishes from pan roasted Petrale Sole to a few simple slices of Chèvre.
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About Frog's Leap:

Frog's Leap is an iconic California winery dedicated to organic farming, sustainable living and quality wines. Situated in the Rutherford appellation of Napa Valley, Frog’s Leap produces wine under the leadership of John Williams, a former dairy farmer from New York who created the winery in 1981.

John Williams grew up in Western New York and originally attended Cornell University to extend his studies as a dairyman. A fortuitous work-study program at Taylor Wine Company and a few bottles of wine later, John entered the Enology and Viticulture Masters Program at UC Davis. Following Davis, he returned to the Finger Lakes as the start-up winemaker at Glenora Wine Cellars. Taking inspiration from his first Napa Valley winemaking post in the cellars of Stag's Leap, John began making wine commercially in 1981 and named the new operation "Frog's Leap."

Frog's Leap presents a relaxed approach to enjoying wine. An easy hospitality and warm sense of humor is juxtaposed with a more serious sensibility when making wine. Frog's Leap produces some of Napa Valley's finest wines and, undoubtedly, has one of the wine world's best mottos: "Time's Fun When You're Having Flies."

The wines produced range from Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay to Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc. We have quite the line up to offer so we hope you’ll try one of these delicious wines that harmoniously combine quality, sustainability and value.

First certified by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) in 1988 Frog's Leap has been a leader in the industry for over two decades. The winery relies on techniques such as crop rotation, green manure, compost and biological pest control to maintain soil productivity and control pests on a farm. Organic farming excludes the use of manufactured fertilizers and pesticides, plant growth regulators and genetically modified organisms. Organic farming involves mechanical weed control (via cultivating or hoeing) rather than herbicidal weed control.



White Wines    Sauvignon Blanc    Marlborough    New Zealand   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Sauvignon Blanc 2010
(search item no. 106948)
screw cap wine

Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $18.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 James Suckling rating: 92 points
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2011 Tasting Panel rating: 90 points
2009 Australian Wine Companion rating: 94 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2004 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2001 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2000 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 87 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
1999 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

A beautifully pure and lively wine overflowing with aromas of ripe gooseberry and passionfruit with hints of grapefruit, lime and nettle. The wine is concentrated and juicy with vibrant fruit and fantastic mid-palate weight, finishing with crisp acidity. Enjoy now and until 2013.

SERVING SUGGESTION: Grilled fish, tomato, green bean and feta cheese salad.

My Notes:

About Villa Maria:

In 1960, George Fistonich, the son of a Croatian immigrant, founded Villa Maria in Mangere, Auckland. Voted New Zealand's Winemaker of the Year in 1993, George is today the managing director of the Villa Maria Group, which also includes Vidal and Esk Valley Wineries, together forming the third largest wine company in New Zealand.

Winemaker Michelle Richardson has been with Villa Maria since 1992. She has travelled extensively throughout Europe and Australia and in 1991 assisted flying winemaker Hugh Ryman with the French vintage. In 1997, Michelle, like George Fistonich, was voted New Zealand's Winemaker of the Year. Her 1996 wines have taken Villa Maria to new peaks in quality. Michelle is a graduate of the highly regarded Roseworthy College in Australia. She heads the Villa Maria winemaking team.

This team of dedicated vintners has placed its emphasis on high quality and good value. Grapes are either estate-grown or carefully sourced, and the winery was the first in New Zealand to initiate payment for grapes by quality. Villa Maria has won awards for its wines in competitions across New Zealand and Australia and has been honored for its high standards of customer service and environmental responsibility.



White Wines    Sauvignon Blanc    Russian River    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Hanna Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Hanna Sauvignon Blanc 2010
(search item no. 109806)
screw cap wine

Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $17.97

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2013 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2007 The Wine News rating: 89 points
2006 Wine & Spirits rating: 93 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Vibrant straw with a tinge of green. A nose of grapefruit, tangelo, quince flower mint, basil and pear with a mineral note. On the palate: Kiwi, lime zest, with an explosive mid palate of lemon, peach, honey and grass and a bright clean finish.
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About Hanna Winery:

Hanna Winery was founded in 1985 by Dr. Elias Hanna, a world-renowned cardiac surgeon, who was eager to find a place in the country to continue the farming heritage of his upbringing in Syria. In the 1970s he realized his dream with the purchase of 12 acres in the Russian River Valley. Dr. Hanna’s oldest daughter, Christine, now runs the operations of the winery. Hanna owns 600 acres of land in the Sonoma County’s Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and the Mayacamas Mountains, 250 of which are planted.

Under Christine Hanna’s guidance, the winery has evolved into an estate philosophy that blends the viticultural diversity of fruit cultivated in its four vineyard estates in three unique appellations. With the help of winemaker Jeff Hinchliffe, they craft award-winning wines, such as its Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc and Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon.



White Wines    Sauvignon Blanc    Marlborough    New Zealand   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Dashwood Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Dashwood Sauvignon Blanc 2010
(search item no. 108002)
screw cap wine

Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $11.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 87 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points

Winemaker's Notes:

100% Sauvignon Blanc (61% Awatere Valley, 39% Wairau Valley).

Dashwood Sauvignon Blanc is pale straw in color. The nose has stone fruit, citrus and fresh tropical notes that eap from the glass. The palate is expressive with stone fruit, citrus and fresh tropical flavors that linger on through the crisp finish.

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About Dashwood:

The Dashwood brand was developed by Vavasour Wines in 1989. Given the commitment to using the Vavasour brand for wines true to the Awatere Valley, it provided flexibility within the company's portfolio to have the Dashwood range as a blend of fruit from Marlborough's Wairau and Awatere Valleys.

Dashwood wines bring the luscious, clean fruit characters of the Wairau Valley into harmony with the flinty, or mineral, characters of the Awatere (resulting from the comparatively cooler but drier temperatures and slightly less fertile soils). Created by long-standing winemaker, Glenn Thomas, who joined Vavasour in 1988, Dashwood wines are made in an earlier drinking style than those carrying the Vavasour brand and are considered outstanding value for money by wine buyers across the globe.



White Wines    Chardonnay    Russian River    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Sebastiani Russian River Valley Unoaked Chardonnay 2008
Sebastiani Russian River Valley Unoaked Chardonnay 2008
(search item no. 105301)
The Wine News rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $13.97

Winemaker's Notes:

This wine has a beautiful light golden color. The 2008 version shows clove-like spice, green apple and minerality, true to the Chardonnay varietal. Although not overly rich, it has more complexity and texture than most unoaked versions thanks to low yielding Chardonnay vines grown in Russian River Valley. Enjoy with your favorite appetizers at the start of the meal or with sautéed white fish and shrimp salads!
My Notes:

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About Sebastiani Sonoma Cask Cellars:

With over a century of winemaking experience in Sonoma, Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery focuses on crafting small lots of super-premium wines from the great growing regions of Sonoma County, becoming one of California’s most highly praised and awarded wineries for its Bordeaux and Burgundian varietals.

With the spotlight on single vineyards and specific sub-appellations such as Sonoma Valley, Alexander Valley, Carneros and Russian River Valley, Sebastiani produces wine under the Sonoma County, Appellation Selection and Proprietary Selection designations. Founded in 1904 by Samuele Sebastiani, the winery is best known for its Cherryblock Cabernet Sauvignon, one of Sonoma County's most coveted wines. The winery is located just blocks from Sonoma's historic downtown plaza and offers historical tours as well as extensive picnic grounds and hospitality venues.



White Wines    Chardonnay    Russian River    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Frei Brothers Reserve Chardonnay 2009
Frei Brothers Reserve Chardonnay 2009
(search item no. 109591)
Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $22.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 The Wine News rating: 89 points
2005 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
2004 The Wine News rating: 87 points
2003 Wine & Spirits rating: 89 points
2002 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2001 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 86 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
1999 Wine & Spirits rating: 86 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Our 2009 Russian River Valley Chardonnay is soft and complex. It reflects its cool climate source with flavors of green apple, orange zest, and apple pie, which are complemented by buttery and toasty notes. With nutty and rich flavors, the wine finishes with a silky, full mouthfeel.
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About Frei Brothers:

In the late 1880s, an enterprising Swiss immigrant by the name of Andrew Frei gazed upon the rolling hills, gentle streams, and fertile soil of Sonoma County and saw a wine glass of opportunity. By 1890, he was the proud owner of a 344 acre vineyard in northern Sonoma, giving birth to a winemaking tradition that is very much alive today.

Frei didn't waste any precious time once he acquired the land. By 1895, he was producing 20,000 cases of high quality wine that was stored in huge redwood casks.

In spite of a devastating blight of phylloxera, by 1904 the winery had actually increased in size and production. Now in his seventies, Frei turned the business over to his two sons, Walter and Louis. In 1903, the winery was officially named Frei Bros.

The Frei Bros. Winery continued to grow over the years, in spite of disasters such as the one that occurred in 1919, when a curious piece of legislation that came to be known as Prohibition put many an American winery out of business.

Again, the Frei family persevered, and now you can taste the legacy of a great winemaking tradition in Frei Brothers Reserve, a new release that combines the spirit of old world winemaking techniques with grapes that are hand selected from some of Sonoma's finest vineyards.



White Wines    Chardonnay    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Talbott Logan Chardonnay 2009
Talbott Logan Chardonnay 2009
(search item no. 109157)
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
2004 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

This vintage of Talbott Chardonnay, Logan has beautifully balanced fruit and oak, a lush texture and well-integrated acidity. The color is medium-straw with great clarity. On the palate, there are layers of ripe apple, pear and pineapple. There are also notes of vanilla and rich toasty oak that lead to a long finish. We recommend drinking this wine now through 2013.
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About Talbott:

Robert Talbott Sr., his wife Audrey, and their son Robb moved to Carmel, California, in 1950, where they started a luxury tie company. During silk buying trips to Europe for their growing tie business, the Talbotts visited French and Italian vineyards and became interested in fine wines and soon aspired to produce their own California wines, using the Burgundian techniques that they had become passionate about during their European vineyard tours.

They founded Talbott Vineyards in 1982 along with son Robb, with the planting of the 24-acre Diamond T Estate Vineyard and the construction of the first winery in Carmel Valley.

In 1994, when presented with the opportunity, the Talbotts jumped at the chance to acquire the Sleepy Hollow property. With the addition of Sleepy Hollow Vineyard, the Talbotts enjoy the benefits of being a 100 percent estate winery, with direct control of all farming of their vineyards.

Today, Talbott Vineyards produces estate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir under four labels: Talbott, Logan, Case, and Kali Hart. Each line of wine is its own "winery within a winery," with its own distinctive style. The Talbott family plans to keep production small to maintain exacting quality standards and continue to create distinctive handmade wines with intensity, balance, and finesse.



White Wines    Chardonnay    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Hess Select Chardonnay 2009
Hess Select Chardonnay 2009
(search item no. 107035)

PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $10.99

Winemaker's Notes:

This wine also available as part of the Hess and Gourmet Food Pairing Set

Tropical aromas of freshly-cut pineapple and ripe pear. A soft entry of well-balanced fruit and oak persists all the way to a pleasing finish of honeydew melon and crème brûlée.

This wine's natural acidity complements tangy, spicy foods and will offset the richness of creamier dishes. Enjoy with Asian chicken salad, grilled tuna with melted anchovy butter and lemon, or a creamy pasta dish with Portobello mushrooms.

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About The Hess Collection:

The Hess Collection was founded by Swiss entrepreneur Donald Hess, who first purchased vineyards on Mount Veeder in 1978 and began making wine under The Hess Collection label in 1983. In 1986, he began renovation of the historic winery, originally constructed in 1903 by Colonel Theodore Gier. The winery opened to the public in 1989. The Hess Collection has vineyards on Mount Veeder, along with their Napa Valley estate vineyards - Su'skol and Allomi in Napa Valley, and Shirtail Creek Vineyard in Monterey. Each of these vineyards is sustainably farmed in accordance with Donald's philosophy: "Nurture the land, return what you take."


White Wines    Chardonnay    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 10/23/2014
Layer Cake Virgin Chardonnay 2009
Layer Cake Virgin Chardonnay 2009
(search item no. 105964)
screw cap wine

Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
PRICE ON 10/23/2014: $15.99

Winemaker's Notes:

The Virgin Chardonnay is so named because it never comes in contact with any oak. Our fellow wine lovers have expressed our shared interest in getting back to what Chardonnay used to be: Clean, crisp, layered, refreshing fruit, a hint of summer, with none of the overbearing heaviness of oak. If the taste of buttered popcorn is what you crave, you'd do better finding it at the movies than in a bottle of wine.
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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!!