Red Wines    Zinfandel    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Napa Cellars Zinfandel 2008
Napa Cellars Zinfandel 2008
(search item no. 107937)
Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $21.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points
2007 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

87% Zinfandel, 13% Petit Sirah Bright brambly fruit, berry cobbler, and classic Zinfandel spice on the nose are complemented by juicy raspberry, baked cinnamon apples, and dried cherries on the palate. Petite Sirah was added to enhance the color and fill out the mid-palate with jammy flavors. This classic Napa Valley Zinfandel displays firm tannins and nuances of cocoa and spice on the finish.
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About Napa Cellars:

Founded by Rich Frank and Koerner Rombauer in 1996, this warm and casual tasting room is the perfect first or last stop for any visitor to Napa. Conveniently located on Highway 29, the friendly tasting staff encourages wine novices and connoisseurs alike to try their well-worth-the price Napa Valley wines. Napa Cellars winemaker Todd Graff produces a Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, as well as limited amounts of Syrah, Sparkling Rose, Late Harvest Zinfandel and Late Harvest Semillon, all bearing the Napa Valley designation.


Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Pascual Toso Malbec Reserve 2009
Pascual Toso Malbec Reserve 2009
(search item no. 109024)
The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 James Suckling rating: 91 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Fairly round and inviting. Slightly firm around the edges, but there's plenty of fruit here to enjoy. Very sweet but consistent tannins.

Ideal for red meats, pasta and fine fermented or Roquefort cheeses.

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About Pascual Toso :

When in the mid 1880s Pascual Toso set out towards Argentina from its home town, Canale D’Alba, in Piamonte, Italy, he could not have imagined that he would become the founder of a winery, which is today one of the oldest and most prestigious wineries in Argentina.

When he arrived in Argentina, he settled in Mendoza. As he had been closely involved in the development of his family wine business in Piedmont, he promptly saw the promising future for winemaking in the region and decided to use his expertise. Thus, in 1890, Pascual Toso established his first winery in San José, Guaymallén.

At the beginning of the 20th century, he decided to expand his business and acquired vineyards in Maipú. At his estate “Las Barrancas”, he built another winery, “Las Barrancas” (small Canyon) which is dedicated to producing and growing the finest grapes.

In 2001, the Bodega hired as winemaker consultant to Mr. Paul Hobbs for a new high quality wine project. He has been working head to head with our chief winemaker, Rolando Luppino, on the development of premium and super-premium wines. Today, Pascual Toso still makes wines of high quality under the most exigent procedures and rules. The Trophy for Best Argentine Producer awarded by the IWSC (London) in 2007 reflects this commitment to quality.



Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Bodega Norton Malbec Reserva 2008
Bodega Norton Malbec Reserva 2008
(search item no. 108497)
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $18.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2004 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
1999 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
1999 Wine Enthusiast rating: 87 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Deep red color with hints of purple. Expressive on the nose with notes of ripe black fruits, violets, and tobacco. Long finish.
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About Bodega Norton:

Astonished at the features of the place, and pushed by his visionary spirit, in 1895, an English Engineer, Mr. Edmund J. P. Norton planted the first vines importing them from France, thereby giving origin to what was the first winery in the area.

Almost 100 years later, Austrian businessman, Mr. Gernot Langes–Swarovski, travelled to Mendoza and experienced the same fascination for the region beauty, the warmth of its people, and the excellent conditions for vine growing. Supporting his decision in his intuition and in the fact that he was convinced of the high potential the vitiniculture represented in Argentina, in 1989, he acquired the Winery with the following firm aim: to make wines recognized worldwide for their quality. While executing this project, he appointed his son Michael as the person responsible for the management of the company, who, jointly with a team of local professionals started a new phase of investment, revamping and growth.

In that way, the incorporation of top-notch technology together with the knowledge and passion of people, have caused Norton to be the leading brand in exports and one of the country´s most important Wineries.

Our 5 farms have over 1200 ha fit for growing vine, 680 ha out of which are currently cultivated. Over 150 families of vineyard workers live and work there, sharing secrets and experiences from generation to generation. This knowledge and passion for the work, combined with the professionalism of our team of agricultural engineers result in products with excellence.



Red Wines    Tempranillo    Rioja    Spain   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Finca Allende  2005
Finca Allende 2005
(search item no. 104981)
The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $20.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2007 Decanter rating: 92 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2004 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2004 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2004 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2003 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2001 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The wine is stainless-steel fermented for approximately 22 days, then transferred to 98% new French Allier and 2% American Oak barrels, where it undergoes malolactic fermentation. It is then aged for 14 months. The wine is lightly fined, and then bottled unfiltered.
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About Finca Allende:

Records from 1672 prove that the De Gregorio family has been involved in viticulture and winemaking for several centuries. In fact, Nicholas De Gregorio was for almost 40 years the vineyard manager for the oldest winery in Rioja, Marques de Murrieta. He is a zealous defender of the traditional Rioja grape varieties such as Graciano and Malvasia. Miguel Angel De Gregorio graduated from the University of Madrid with degrees in Agricultural Engineering and Enology. He has proven in his short career as winemaker to several other wineries to be an innovator in Rioja. Vineyards are located in Briones, Rioja Alta, on the right bank of Ebro River. Grapes are sourced on the family's estate of 60 acres (25 ha) in Briones. Vineyards are situated on both slopes on the hill. Some vineyards face north/northeast, others face south/southeast. The grapes are multi-clonal selections of old Tempranillo which produce smaller berries and yields. The vineyards are 1,440-1,680 feet in elevation(480 to 560 m). The soil has a top layer of calcareous clay over gravel which dates from the quaternary period, located on the 2nd and 3rd terraces of the Ebro River. The climate is typical of Rioja Alta, continental with Atlantic influences. Rains are normally in the winter and spring, with the prevailing winds from the north/northeast. Therefore, this creates two distinct microclimates for the vineyards because of their different exposures.


Red Wines    Sangiovese    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Il Poggione Rosso di Montalcino 2007
Il Poggione Rosso di Montalcino 2007
(search item no. 103229)
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $28.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 Vinous / Antonio Galloni rating: 91 points
2012 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2011 Vinous / Antonio Galloni rating: 91 points
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 87 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
2008 PinotReport rating: 89 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Younger and more accessible version of Brunello, Il Poggione Rosso di Montalcino is made with carefully selected Sangiovese grapes handpicked from the youngest of estate vines that are at least 15 years old. A "baby Brunello".

This wine has a ruby red color and a nose of wild berry fruit. Velvety and rich on the palate, with great structure and smooth, rounded tannins.

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About Il Poggione:

The Il Poggione estate has been in existence since 1890, and has been owned by the Franceschi family since 1900. The company’s winemaking operations are supervised by Dottore Piero Talenti, who imposes a meticulous three-part selection process – first in the vineyards, second after pressing, and again after fermentation. Piero’s attention to detail in the winemaking process has resulted in the acclaimed Brunellos for which Il Piggione is renowned.


Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Luca Pinot Noir 2008
Luca Pinot Noir 2008
(search item no. 100263)
The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $35.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Beautiful garnet color with aromas of wild strawberries, saddle leather and cola root. A complex Pinot with notes of leather, spice, and cherry/raspberry confiture on the palate. Amazing aroma and finishes with an enjoyable Burgundian bent. Pairs well with foods such as lamb chops, grilled salmon, roasted duck or chicken, and game birds. Pinot lovers may just go ahead and drink it all by itself!
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About Luca:

Laura Catena is a fourth generation winemaker who grew up in a traditional Argentine-Italian winemaking family in Mendoza. Laura splits her time between Mendoza and San Francisco, California, where she is an emergency physician, university professor and occasional tango dancer. Laura had the vision of creating a new breed of Argentine wines: small quantities, artisan quality, and true to their individual terroirs. A pioneer of small-grower relations in Mendoza, Laura's incredible, limited production wines come from some of Argentina's best fruit from low-yield, high-elevation, family-owned vineyards. The wines are named after her children - Luca, Dante and Nicola - and the background of the label is the McDermott coat of arms of her American husband, Daniel McDermott.


Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/19/2014
Catena Alta Malbec 2007
Catena Alta Malbec 2007
(search item no. 105809)
collectible wine

Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
PRICE ON 12/19/2014: $43.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 94 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2009 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
2006 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2005 Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
2005 International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
2004 The Wine Advocate rating: 94 points
2004 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 94 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
2002 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2007 Catena Alta Malbec is a dark, opaque violet color and presents ripe berry fruit and wild flower aromas on the nose as well as cinnamon spice and a touch of citrus. The mouthfeel is full and rich offering a coating sensation, with exceptional weight and concentration but with a soft, supple texture. Mid-palate flavors of cassis and black currant along with hints of chocolate, vanilla and black pepper dance nicely into the lingering finish full of finely grained tannins, minerality and lively acidity.
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About Catena:

Bodega Catena Zapata is one of Argentina's high altitude Malbec pioneers. The Catena family began making wine in Mendoza in 1902. Nicolas Catena, third generation family vintner, was one of the first to see the potential of Mendoza's mountain vineyards for producing high quality Malbec. In 1994, he became the first Argentine to exprot a world-class bottling of Malbec under the Catena label. Nicolas is joined by his daughter, Dr. Laura Catena, in their relentless pursuit of world-class quality from the family's high altitude vineyards. Laura has done extensive work in introducing Malbec and other varietal plant selections, soil and climate analysis, and sustainable practices throughout Mendoza. Head winemaker, Alejandro Vigil, has been at Catena Zapata since 2002 and works with Laura and Nicolas to make wines that express the family's vineyards and palate.