Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Columbia Valley    Washington   
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Date Printed: 4/28/2015
Two Vines Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Two Vines Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
(search item no. 111056)
Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 4/28/2015: $8.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2003 Wine & Spirits rating: 86 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Strawberry, cherry and cola aromas and flavors harmoniously flow into the silky and soft palate that culminates into a long velvety finish.

Blend: 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Syrah, 2% Merlot

My Notes:

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About Two Vines:

From vineyard to crush, the Two Vines brand speaks to the method of vine trellising which positions grape clusters for optimum sun exposure. The result is approachable wines of richer flavor, deeper color and brighter fruit expression for popular appeal and immediate enjoyment.

A longtime leader, Two Vines earns consistent "Best Value" and "Best Buy" designations from leading wine publications.



Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 4/28/2015
Felipe Rutini Malbec 2009
Felipe Rutini Malbec 2009
(search item no. 114799)
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 4/28/2015: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2004 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2009 Rutini Malbec has a concentrated nose with elements of wild berries, tobacco and vanilla. The palate is full, with rich black fruit flavors and a long, lingering finish with a touch of black pepper spice.
My Notes:

About Felipe Rutini:

Don Felipe Rutini, an Italian immigrant from the winemaking region of Le Marche, founded bodegas La Rural in 1885. Don Felipe, who came to Argentina with a degree in agriculture from the Real Scuola de Ascoli Pisceno, had his eye on quality from the start. One of the first varietals he planted was Cabernet Sauvignon, in the Maipu vineyard, where La Rural grows Cabernet Sauvignon for Trumpeter today.

Don Felipe sent his six children to study in Italy. The new generation brought back to Argentina the European concept of ‘terroir’. They set out to find the best sites for vine cultivation in Mendoza. In 1925, the Rutinis planted their first vines in Tupungato. But it wasn't until the 80’s and 90’s that the Tupungato Valley would become the "Napa Valley" of Mendoza, with every Argentine and foreign winery investing in Argentina trying to buy land there for vineyards.

For decades, the wines of La Rural have been harbingers of quality in Argentina. Six years ago, Nicolás Catena, the pioneering owner of Bodegas Esmeralda, became a partner at La Rural with Don Rodolfo Reina Rutini, the grandson of Don Felipe Rutini. The winery has undergone substantial modernization and the vineyards have benefited from Catena's outstanding vineyard management team. The goal, as with every other Nicolás Catena project: to produce world-class wines that can stand with the best of the world.



Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    Pauillac    France - Bordeaux   
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Date Printed: 4/28/2015
Chateau Pichon-Longueville Baron  2005
Chateau Pichon-Longueville Baron 2005
(search item no. 96143)
collectible wine
older vintages

Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 96 points
Wine Spectator rating: 94 points
PRICE ON 4/28/2015: $169.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Wine Enthusiast rating: 95 points
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 93 points
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 97 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 97 points
2010 International Wine Cellar rating: 96 points
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 95 points
2010 James Suckling rating: 95 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 98 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 96 points
2009 International Wine Cellar rating: 96 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 95 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 95 points
2008 International Wine Cellar rating: 93 points
2008 James Suckling rating: 92 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2006 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 92 points
2004 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 95 points
2003 The Wine Advocate rating: 94 points
2003 Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
2003 International Wine Cellar rating: 93 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
2002 International Wine Cellar rating: 91 points
2001 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2000 The Wine Advocate rating: 96 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 94 points
1999 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
1998 Wine & Spirits rating: 95 points
1998 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
1996 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
1995 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
1990 The Wine Advocate rating: 97 points
1990 Wine Spectator rating: 94 points
1990 International Wine Cellar rating: 93 points
1989 Wine Spectator rating: 98 points
1989 The Wine Advocate rating: 95 points
1989 International Wine Cellar rating: 94 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 1989 vintage of this wine was ranked #1 on the Wine Spectator's Top 10 Wines of 1992

This wine will delight many a palate. This is a wine with a great aromatic freshness with fine, delicate aromas. A distinctive sensation of fullness on the palate, with great complexity, lots of power and richness, harmoniously combined thanks to the concentrated, mellow tannins. The finish is very, very long, pleasant and full-bodied.

My Notes:

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About Chateau Pichon-Longueville Baron:

Pichon-Longueville is located on beautifully gravelly soil in the southern part of the commune of Pauillac. In 1694, Jacques de Pichon, Baron de Longueville, married the daughter of Pierre de Rauzan, who originally created the property. Their descendants remained deeply involved with making fine wine, and Raoul de Pichon-Longueville built the present chateau in 1851.

In 1988, following an architectural competition organized by the Centre Georges Pompidou, the château and wine cellar were entirely renovated. A spectacular new winemaking facility enables an exquisite wine to be made under ideal conditions.



White Wines    Other White Blends    Other California    California   
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Date Printed: 4/28/2015
Conundrum White Blend 2009
Conundrum White Blend 2009
(search item no. 107270)
screw cap wine


PRICE ON 4/28/2015: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 87 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Conundrum is a true California wine, with grapes sourced from Napa, Monterey, Santa Barbara and Tulare counties. We often hear the phrase "exotic" when described. It's a fitting portrayal; there is no other wine quite like it.

Each lot of wine is treated separately to respect its unique flavor profile. This approach starts in our vineyards and continues in the cellar. We keep some lots in cool-temperature stainless steel to maintain fresh, crisp aromas and fruit flavors; and age some lots in a combination of French barrels.

Floral bouquet nose with a dominance of honeysuckle. Muscat is the defining/alluring factor in the aroma of this wine. Enters round with a Chardonnay weight to it then quickly lightens up to reveal the additional varietals. Sauvignon Blanc adds an herbal element while the Viognier adds a spicy character. The Chardonnay brings weight mid palate and Muscat adds an undeniable honey character to finish things off.

My Notes:

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About Conundrum:

It was the summer of 1989, a year ripe with possibilities and promise. All around the globe, old ways of thinking were giving way to new ideas. In the culinary world, traditional dishes were being reinvented by a generation of chefs who were open to the possibility of exploring adventurous new cuisine. At Caymus, we were similarly inspired to break free of the norm and began to redefine white wine. And in 1989, Conundrum was born.

From our very first vintage we were determined to make a dramatically different white-wine blend that would surpass the scope of single-varietal wines. Just as chefs were exploring the fusion of flavors from classic to contemporary, from east to west, often combining savory, spicy, herbal and fruity flavors in one dish, we explored how non-traditional combinations of grape varietals would work together. We wanted each varietal to be distinctive but still complementary to blend as a whole. After experimenting with eleven different white wines, we chose a select few that we consider the 'key ingredients'. For over twenty years we have continued to perfect the fine art of blending a 'conundrum' of varietals together, to create a remarkably complex, yet harmonious symphony of flavors. More recently we adapted the same approach for the Conundrum Red blend creation when we released the first vintage in 2011.

To make each wine even more complex, we take great care in keeping each parcel of fruit separate throughout the entire winemaking process. As a result, when the time comes to blend the wine, we have a lot of diversity in aromas, flavors and textures to work with. That's when the creative juices begin to flow. The proportions of each varietal vary slightly each vintage, as Mother Nature hands us new "ingredients." But our goal is always the same: a highly styled, complex and delicious wine that is excellent as an apéritif and pairs beautifully with the wide-ranging, global dishes we are eating as chefs and home cooks experiment with new, cutting-edge cuisine.