Red Wines    Barbera    Barossa Valley    Australia   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
St. Mary's Bells & Whistles Red 2004
St. Mary's Bells & Whistles Red 2004
(search item no. 113991)
The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $9.99

Winemaker's Notes:

The Bells and Whistles is a blend made from 55% Cab/Sav, 20% Shiraz, 15% Cab Franc and 10% Merlot grapes grown at St Mary's vineyards. The palate is balanced with a rich smooth persistence.
My Notes:

About St. Mary's:

St Marys is a boutique, family owned, premium red wine producer. With one basket press and all fruit being pressed through it ensures a softer and more traditional character to each wine.

Estate grown grapes only are used in the production of all St Mary's wines. Small batches of hand picked grapes are fermented in open vats,hand plunged and intensively monitored. The ferments are then Basket Pressed and barrel matured in climate controlled storage before being bottled on premises.



Red Wines    Sangiovese    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Santa Cristina by Antinori Sangiovese 2009
Santa Cristina by Antinori Sangiovese 2009
(search item no. 109404)

PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $14.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2000 The Wine Advocate rating: 86 points
1999 Wine Enthusiast rating: 86 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Ruby red color with an intense bouquet of cherry and raspberry fruits, along with hints of violet and tobacco. Smooth and well-structured on the palate with delicious tannins and a persistent finish.

Blend: 85% Sangiovese, 10% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon

My Notes:

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About Santa Cristina by Antinori:

Combining Italian soul with new world flavor and vitality, the Santa Cristina line combines maximum quality with value. These extremely versatile wines are made for everyday enjoyment, whether served by themselves or with virtually any food.


Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Napa Valley    California   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Merryvale Starmont Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
Merryvale Starmont Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
(search item no. 102674)
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $22.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2005 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Voluptuous aromas of cassis, black cherry, vanilla bean and cedar leap out of the glass. Typical of the 2007 vintage, this wine is drinking very nicely in its youth and should age gracefully for many years. Our favorite pairings include roasted meats or a Kobe Beef Burger.
My Notes:

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About Merryvale Vineyards:

Merryvale Vineyards is a family-owned Napa Valley winery dedicated to passionate winemaking and the fine art of living well. For the past 25 years Merryvale has been turning exceptional Napa Valley grapes into world class wine. Merryvale is world renowned for rich, powerful Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay, the iconic Bordeaux-style red blend, Profile, and our everyday drinking, fruit driven brand, Starmont. Merryvale's historic building was the first winery built in the Napa Valley after the repeal of Prohibition in 1933, and has become a must see attraction for visitors to the valley.

Merryvale is committed to protecting and preserving the environment through conservation, renewable energy and sustainable farming practices at our three estate vineyards. Merryvale has received Napa Green Vineyard, Napa Green Winery and Bay Area Green Business certifications.



Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Bodega TuKma Malbec Reserva 2008
Bodega TuKma Malbec Reserva 2008
(search item no. 108069)
boutique wine

The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $18.29

Winemaker's Notes:

In the glass its almost-black purple color catches one's eye immediately. Out of the glass waft aromas of black pepper, stewed plums, and black olives. On the palate it surprises, unlike any other Malbec, with flavors of roasted meat, plums, and a slight spiciness that keeps it interesting. The oak is well integrated, lending a nice roundness to the wine. Pair it with roasted meat, especially venison or lamb, and let it work its magic.
My Notes:

About Bodega TuKma:

Cafayate, Salta, in Argentina's northern reaches, showcases landscapes as mystical as they are majestic and carries the legacy of the Incan empire as much as that of geological distinction. Every bottle of wine produced here holds some of Incas’ ancient spirituality; every vine still feels their touch in the earth. In homage of this area’s first inhabitants, who called their chief "Tukma" and their land "Tukmanao," this new project, with vineyards situated among the mountains and red desert on the border between Salta and Tucumán (just outside of Cafayate) reflects their heritage in its name.

Master local winemaker and Torrontés specialist, Jose Luis Mounier, crafts wines that could only be made by one who deeply understands this unique land. The vineyards are completely unique: "Los Tolombones", situated in Tolombón at 1,700 meters above sea level, and "Los Angastacos", in Angastaco at 1,990 meters above sea level, which total 15 hectares of vineyards under production. Bodega Tukma also owns vineyard land in Colalao del Valle, Tucumán province, and in Huacalera, province of Jujuy, this latter at an incredible 2,700 meters above sea level, considered to be the highest altitude vineyards in Argentina. Although the vines are as old as 38 years (in the case of the Torrontés), this is only the second bottled vintage of Tukma wines.



Red Wines    Syrah/Shiraz    Barossa Valley    Australia   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Cimicky Trumps Shiraz 2008
Cimicky Trumps Shiraz 2008
(search item no. 102441)
screw cap wine

Australian Wine Companion rating: 94 points
The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $21.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Australian Wine Companion rating: 94 points
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2006 Australian Wine Companion rating: 94 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

2008 in the Barossa will be remembered as a difficult year due to a heat spike during vintage. Daily monitoring of fruit quality and flavor development was extremely important. Smart canopy management resulted in good, albeit extremely limited, quality.

It was once the tradition of a small group of Barossa pioneers to retreat to the cool stone depths of an old vineyard cottage. Here they would while away many hours playing cards and drinking wine away from the critical eyes of puritanical souls. The cottage still stands among the vines that produce this wine, a flavorful, aromatic drink that always 'comes up trumps!'

My Notes:

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About Cimicky:

Czech immigrant Karl Cimicky founded Karlsburg Winery in 1973. In the early 90’s Karl's son Charles began to take a keen interest in winemaking and the ‘good’ wines started turning into awesome wines. In addition to top of the line fermenters and barrels, Cimicky also has an estate bottling line, something of a rarity in Australia, allowing him to personally control all facets of production. Charles Cimicky produces rich, voluptuous, generous wines with superb balance. Apart from minor drip irrigation in January and February, the vines are dry grown, cover-cropped and organically fertilized. Now in his late forties Charles Cimicky is one of the most quality-driven, meticulous winemakers in South Australia.


Red Wines    Rhone Red Blends    Languedoc-Roussillon    France - Other regions   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Gerard Bertrand Tautavel Grand Terroir 2007
Gerard Bertrand Tautavel Grand Terroir 2007
(search item no. 108399)
has fluid
has fluid 360

Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $14.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Wine Enthusiast's 2011 Wine Star Award Winner: European Winery of the Year

Blend: 50% Grenache - 35% Syrah – 15% Carignan

Tautavel produces a wine with exceptional style and a bouquet of ripe fruit (blackcurrants, blackberries), crystallized fruit and spices. The wine offers depth on the palate and a pleasant sweetness ccompanied by ripe tannins with spices lingering on the finish.

My Notes:

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About Gerard Bertrand:

Gerard Bertrand was born and raised in the South of France. Making wine with his father, Georges, since the age of 10, Gerard Bertrand offers the full range and diversity of wines from the region – red, white, rose, varietal, appellation, estate, still, sparkling, and dessert.

Every wine evokes the image and emotions from the South of France; "Art de Vivre" – the "art of life." Committed to producing quality wines of great value, Gerard is hands on in every facet which bears his name… and has been fortunate to receive great accolades from World Wide press reinforcing his dedication.

"I welcome all to experience the South of France; here at Chateau L'Hospitalet or at your own home or favorite restaurant."



Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Clos de los Siete Super Red Blend 2008
Clos de los Siete Super Red Blend 2008
(search item no. 104349)
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $16.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2009 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2009 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

A collaborative project by seven producers under the banner of Michel Rolland, this is a blend of composed of Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah. Very dark in the glass, this is not a shy wine.
My Notes:

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About Clos de los Siete:

In 1998, oenologist Michel Rolland and Jean-Michel Arcaute decided to go into business. The proposition involved Argentina - a country that offered space, the possibility to plant without restriction and the potential to produce a quality wine from fine soil at an excellent price.

Their arguments were strong enough to unite seven investors, who were themselves all wine-growers, to the remarkable viticulture project in the province of Mendoza: Catherine Péré-Vergé, owner of Château Monviel at Pomerol; Laurent Dassaut, owner at Saint-Emilion; Bertrand Otto, representative of La Compagnie Vinicole E. Rothschild; and Bertrand Cuvelier.

The new venture would be at Vistaflores, an estate covering 847 hectares of vineyards, in the commune of Tunuyan, a desert plain rapidly gaining international acclaim, located 80km south of the city of Mendoza. Divided into seven Bodegas, the group was named Clos de los Siete (Vineyard of the Seven) and is as ‘new world’ for the French as it’s possible to be.



Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Other Spain    Spain   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Celler Besllum  2008
Celler Besllum 2008
(search item no. 109964)
The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $16.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Besllum has a deep dark color with aromas of blackberry, blueberry, exotic spices, lavender, mineral, and pain grille. Concentrated with a full body and flavors reminiscent of sweet fruit. There is just enough acidity to carry the flavor through the long, supple finish.

Composition: Carinena 45%, Garnacha 45%, Syrah 10%

My Notes:

About Celler Besllum:

Joan Carles Estivill is the third generation from his family to be tending to their family vineyards. The vineyards are located in Cornudella del Montsant, the highest village in the appellation. He is passionate about his vineyards and he only founded his bodega after the region received denomination of origin status. He leaves the wine making skills to his young winemaker, Ramon Valls, and his boutique bodega only produces about 5,000 cases per year. Joan Carles developed a circular metal retainer that he puts around each of his old vines to provide a trellis effect for the vine. He finds that the retainer helps the grapes remain very small for better concentration. Joan Carles also lets the grass grow in the vineyards to absorb the spring rains in order to further stress the vines. Besllum means "a ray of bright light coming through a small opening in a dark background."


Red Wines    Barbera    Piedmont    Italy   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Renato Ratti Barbera d'Asti 2009
Renato Ratti Barbera d'Asti 2009
(search item no. 113532)
has fluid
has fluid 360

Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Intense red, with a bouquet of ripe fruit and an undercurrent of spices, such as pepper. Flavorful, pleasing and elegant with good persistence.

This is a wine suited for first courses and red meats.

My Notes:

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About Renato Ratti:

Located halfway up the hill dominating the principal valley of Barolo, buttressed by steep slopes lined by orderly vineyards, lies a precious jewel from the 15th century: the Abbey of Annunziata.

As the monks historically produced wine from the grapes of the surrounding hillsides, today, remembering their lessons, incomparable wines are produced.

From the 100 acres of vineyards, the Renato Ratti winery produces around 150,000 bottles from the traditional denominations of the area: Barolo, Nebbiolo d'Alba, Barbera d'Alba, Dolcetto d'Alba.

The modern and innovative philosophy of vinification introduced since the 60's by Renato Ratti, is today in the hands of his son Pietro and his nephew Massimo Martinelli.



Red Wines    Syrah/Shiraz    McLaren Vale    Australia   
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Date Printed: 12/18/2014
Angove Family Winemakers McLaren Vale Vineyard Select Shiraz 2007
Angove Family Winemakers McLaren Vale Vineyard Select Shiraz 2007
(search item no. 106229)
screw cap wine

Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/18/2014: $14.97

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 Wilfred Wong of Wine.com rating: 90 points
2012 Australian Wine Companion rating: 90 points
2010 Australian Wine Companion rating: 90 points
2008 Australian Wine Companion rating: 91 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2002 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The deep opaque black inky color suggests a brooding wine, and the spicy licorice and pepper on the nose follow up first impressions well. The low crops from this very difficult year have released a deep and very intense wine, speaking of the region and variety eloquently. This wine is great to enjoy now but will age gracefully for many years.
My Notes:

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About Angove Family Winemakers:

The Angove family company, Angove's Pty. Ltd., ranks among Australia's largest privately owned wine companies and stands as one of the few with strong interests in distilling as well as grape growing and winemaking.

His early experimentation with vines, winemaking and distilling, led to the establishment of a proud family business. Dr. Angove's initial plantings at the township of Tea Tree Gully in the Adelaide foothills were the forerunner of one of the largest vineyards in the southern hemisphere - the magnificent Nanya Vineyard at Renmark in South Australia's Murray Valley.

Since World War II, the company has steadily expanded its operations and structure. Their Renmark facility has grown to become a major winemaking and distilling enterprise, with storage capacity for more than15 million litres of wine and spirit. In 1947, Thomas William Carlyon Angove, grandson of the founder, took the helm as Managing Director, beginning a new era in development.

In 1983, the fourth generation of the family took control, when John Carlyon Angove succeeded his father as Managing Director of the company.

The success of the Angove's identity owes a great deal to a pioneering spirit. The same urge that drove Dr. Angove to leave his home in Cornwall and emigrate to Australia is evident in many of the developments the company has taken since.