White Wines    Sauvignon Blanc    Columbia Valley    Washington   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Chateau Ste. Michelle Horse Heaven Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Chateau Ste. Michelle Horse Heaven Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2012
(search item no. 126828)
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Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $14.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 87 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2002 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 87 points
2001 The Wine Advocate rating: 87 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2000 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
2000 Wine & Spirits rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points
1999 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1998 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1997 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
1997 Wine Spectator rating: 85 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#68 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2013

This Sauvignon Blanc from our Horse Heaven Vineyard is a crisp, racy style of Sauvignon Blanc with citrus characteristics. We use partial stainless steel fermentation to preserve the Sauvignon Blanc's pure, fresh, vibrant character.

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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    Syrah/Shiraz    South Australia    Australia   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Hardys William Hardy Shiraz 2011
Hardys William Hardy Shiraz 2011
(search item no. 126767)
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Tasting Panel rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $14.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Tasting Panel rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Highly complex sensory impact combining both cool and warm region expressions of the individual varietal aromas and flavours together with subtle secondary winemaking influences

Soft, round and full bodied with rich plum and mulberry fruit flavours, complexed with dark chocolate, vanilla and clove spice. Seamless and well integrated with its firm, chewy tannins, balanced acidity, generous length and warm lingering earthy, chocolate and dark fruit finish.

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About Hardys:

At the tender age of 20, Thomas Hardy, filled with the early pioneering spirit, left his home town of Gittisham, England to carve out his future in the newly established colony of South Australia. Arriving August 18, 1850 Thomas found work tending cattle in the surrounding hills of Adelaide. It was not long before Thomas sought a new challenge and, in an amazing twist of fate that would not be realised for a further 130 years, he moved south to work with a fellow Devonshire man by the name of John Reynell. Helping tend Reynell's recently established orchards and vineyards, Thomas quickly developed a keen understanding for both. This period of his life would serve him well in the years to come. In 1853 Thomas married Johanna and together they purchased a small block of land on the fertile banks of the River Torrens. Thomas' first site was aptly named Bankside.

By 1857 Thomas created his first slice of history by shipping two hogsheads of wine to England. This is commonly applauded as marking Australia's entry into the wine export market. With his Bankside cellars expanding throughout the 1860's towards capacity, Thomas looked again for expansion. He headed south to the now famous wine district of McLaren Vale, adding the struggling property of Tintara to his growing portfolio of wineries and vineyards. It was at Tintara that Thomas Hardy's winemaking genius was to be recognised on a world stage. A gold medal in 1882 awarded at the prestigious International Wine Show in Bordeaux, payed tribute to the man and his ability. In 1889 he experienced further international success with a gold medal at the much heralded Paris exhibition.

Thomas Hardy died two days prior to his 82nd birthday. The world agreed that this man, the founder of Thomas Hardy & Sons, had played one of the most significant roles in the development of the Australian Wine Industry.

In 1982, 129 years after Thomas Hardy & Sons was founded on the banks of the River Torrens, history turned a full circle with the Hardy family purchasing the Reynella based winery of Walter Reynella & Sons.

Thomas' family company moved headquarters from Adelaide to Reynella, converting the Reynell homestead and cellars where Thomas had lived and learned his trade, into the head office. An ironic twist of fate.

Hardys continued to grow and develop throughout the later 20th century culminating with a merger between Thomas Hardy & Sons and Berri Renmano in 1992, forming Australia's second largest wine company.



Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    McLaren Vale    Australia   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
d'Arenberg High Trellis Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
d'Arenberg High Trellis Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
(search item no. 122463)
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Australian Wine Companion rating: 93 points
Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2009 Australian Wine Companion rating: 93 points
2008 Australian Wine Companion rating: 93 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2005 Australian Wine Companion rating: 91 points
2004 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2004 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
1999 Wine & Spirits rating: 89 points
1998 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The nose is fresh and lifted, full of violets and blackcurrants mixing with leafy aromatics and violets. The oak supplies a touch of cedar adding complexity with the typical soulful earthiness of d'Arenberg reds. The palate is textured and lithe, coated by lacy tannins with a core of cassis, licorice and plum fruit mixed with earth, graphite and a mineral tail. It's well weighted, fresh and balanced, inviting now or will reward the patient.
My Notes:

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About d'Arenberg:

One of the undisputed kings of Australian Shiraz and Rhone varietals, d'Arenberg has managed to turn individuality into an art form by doing a whole lot of little things differently. The original vineyards were established by Joseph Osborn in 1912 in the McLaren Vale region of South Australia. A century on, the estate has grown to 345 acres, and the mantle now rests with fourth-generation winemaker, Chester Osborn. By maintaining a focus on traditional winemaking and nurturing their old-vine material, the Osborn clan has successfully established themselves as one of the country's leading producers of concentrated wines that are full of character.


Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Other California    California   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
HandCraft Inspiration Red 2011
HandCraft Inspiration Red 2011
(search item no. 129453)
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PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $11.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Encourage your inner inspirations while savoring a glass of this full-bodied and juicy red wine blend. Rich aromas of spice, blackberry and plum rise temptingly from the glass. On the palate, these jammy fruit characteristics are met by vanilla and a touch of sweetness from the perfectly ripe grapes. Tannins are bold and upfront - the perfect wine to sip on a cold winter's night or alongside some good old fashioned BBQ.
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About HandCraft:

Cheryl Indelicato’s life reflects a joyful meeting of her inspiring, bounteous California home and her cherished Italian heritage.

As part of one of California’s oldest winemaking families, Cheryl has been in the wine industry since she was a little girl, doing odd jobs at the winery and in the vineyards with her siblings and cousins. Today, that group of hard working kids represents the current leadership of DFV Wines: the third generation of the family owned and operated vineyards and wineries.

Originally built on the hard work of patriarch Gasparé Indelicato, the company went from farming grapes to making its first vintage of wine in 1935 after Prohibition ended. “We have such a strong family tradition with wine, and that’s important to me,” Cheryl explains. “My grandfather, Gasparé, learned winemaking from his father. And my Dad and his brothers learned it from Gasparé. I knew I would work toward continuing that legacy.”

Although Cheryl grew up working at the winery, her parents insisted that all of “Generation Three” graduate from college and gather outside experience by working elsewhere for at least three years before coming back to the family business. Taking this sage advice, she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business in 1989 from California State University, Stanislaus and a Registered Nursing degree in 1985.

It did not take long for Cheryl to return to the winery. Launching her official career in 1990, she worked in various facets of the business; from sales and marketing to human resources to public relations and is now proprietor for HandCraft wines.

HandCraft wines provide Cheryl with the opportunity to recreate the fruit forward, delicious wines that she remembered on the family table when she was growing up. A dash of Italian varietals are added to the final wine blends and the result is simply delicious. It’s what makes HandCraft wines easy to enjoy, distinctive and memorable.



Red Wines    Syrah/Shiraz    McLaren Vale    Australia   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
d'Arenberg Footbolt Shiraz 2010
d'Arenberg Footbolt Shiraz 2010
(search item no. 122168)
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Australian Wine Companion rating: 94 points
Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Australian Wine Companion rating: 94 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2008 Australian Wine Companion rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2007 The Wine Advocate 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 Australian Wine Companion rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2005 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2004 Australian Wine Companion rating: 93 points
2004 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2001 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2000 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
1999 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
1999 Wine & Spirits rating: 89 points
1999 International Wine Cellar rating: 87 points
1998 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
1998 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The nose initially displays an enticing mix of red and black fruits. Mulberries, ripe raspberries and blackberries are very pure. Complexity is built through the layers of exotic spice that support this fruit. Nutmeg, cinnamon, clove and anise are all evident. And of course, it wouldn't be The Footbolt with out that generous lick of d'Arenberg earth and game.

On the palate the wine is rich, concentrated and generous. There is an intrinsic warmth to this wine. The dark plummy fruit , leather and cedar notes are inviting, but it is the soil like tannins with a hint of chewiness that pull it all together for a long, gratifying finish.

The Footbolt Shiraz has proven to cellar well for at least a decade and the 2010 is certainly no exception. The minimal intervention methods sometimes result in a harmless deposit in or adhering to the bottle. Decanting prior to serving is recommended to get the most enjoyment from this wine.

My Notes:

Additional wines from d'Arenberg:

About d'Arenberg:

One of the undisputed kings of Australian Shiraz and Rhone varietals, d'Arenberg has managed to turn individuality into an art form by doing a whole lot of little things differently. The original vineyards were established by Joseph Osborn in 1912 in the McLaren Vale region of South Australia. A century on, the estate has grown to 345 acres, and the mantle now rests with fourth-generation winemaker, Chester Osborn. By maintaining a focus on traditional winemaking and nurturing their old-vine material, the Osborn clan has successfully established themselves as one of the country's leading producers of concentrated wines that are full of character.


White Wines    Sauvignon Blanc    Marlborough    New Zealand   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
The Better Half Sauvignon Blanc 2011
The Better Half Sauvignon Blanc 2011
(search item no. 124278)
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Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $11.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Aromas of lime, melon, and guava mingle with herbal notes. Punchy citrus & guava flavors roll out to a long lingering finish. This wine shows great persistence of flavor.
My Notes:

About The Better Half:

George Elworthy, owner of The Better Half Wines, is an accomplished winemaker, having worked with distinguished company at Marlborough based producers Seresin Estate, Cloudy Bay, Allan Scott and Vavasour. He was also the founding winemaker at The Crossings and has been fortunate enough to learn from and experience a number of vintages in Italy. Certainly a career with an arc towards building character, in branching out with the development of his own brand, The Better Half, that wealth of experience is now on the table for the rest of us. The wine has been crafted with grapes sourced from the fairer side of vineyards in the Wairau and Awatere Valleys in Marlborough.


Champagne & Sparkling    Rosé    Alsace    France - Other regions   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Lucien Albrecht Cremant d'Alsace Brut Rose
Lucien Albrecht Cremant d'Alsace Brut Rose
(search item no. 87804)
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PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $19.99

Winemaker's Notes:

The grapes are hand picked. The whole cluster grapes are directly pressed in a pneumatic press with a long and soft pressing, hence the coral/ light pink salmon color. Cremant Rosé is made by the Champagne Methode. The second fermentation takes place in the bottle. Afterwards it stays on its lees for 9 months follow by the remuage and disgorging.

100% Pinot Noir

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About Lucien Albrecht:

The history of the Albrecht family as winegrowers can be traced back to 1425 with Romanu Albrecht, who was established in the town of Thann.

The fifteenth century was golden era for the Alsace wines and it was during this period that the winegrowers guild of Alsace was founded. Each year, the most deserving vinegrower was elected by the guild of the winegrowers as Bangard, a highly respected positions. It was held by 8 generations of Albrecht's, between 1520 and 1698.

Domaine Albrecht experienced a major development under the guidance of Lucien Albrecht, the father of Jean, to become one of the most important in Alsace with holdings in 9 villages surounding Orschwihr. Lucien Albrecht, extended the winery with new cellars and expanded the sales of his wines in bottles. In 1972, Lucien Albrecht was also a pioneer of Cremand d'Alsace. Today the Cremant is one of their specialities and a major part of the business.

150 years were needed to make up the Domaine Albrecht located in the very best Alsace terroirs. Jean Albrecht is now the ninth generation settled in Orschwihr, leading the Domaine.



Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    South Africa    South Africa   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Glen Carlou Grand Classique 2009
Glen Carlou Grand Classique 2009
(search item no. 116240)
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The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $17.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2006 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
2003 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

This is Glen Carlou's signature red wine. Rich ruby red in color this wine has aromas of red cherry with hints of young black fruits and oak. Flavors of black cured cherries, with layers of dark chocolate and tobacco with spice. The tannins are beautifully proportioned with mild toasted almond.

Blend: 43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Petit Verdot, 16% Malbec, 16% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc

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About Glen Carlou:

Glen Carlou was established in 1985, and since 2003, Glen Carlou has been solely owned and operated by Hess Family Estates. Glen Carlou is located in the picturesque Paarl Valley in the Cape Winelands in South Africa. They enjoy a Mediterranean climate of warm, dry summers and cold, wet winters. An exciting variety of slopes and the riches of their soils create unique winegrowing conditions, while judicious vineyard practices ensure the cultivation of healthy flavorsome grapes reflecting the inherent characteristics of their terroir.


Red Wines    Barbera    Piedmont    Italy   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Marchesi di Barolo Maraia Barbera di Monferrato 2011
Marchesi di Barolo Maraia Barbera di Monferrato 2011
(search item no. 119433)
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Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $12.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#66 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2012

The color is a lively and brilliant dark ruby-red. The perfume is fresh and intense with clean scents of wild berries, currants and sour black cherry. A light hint of vanilla and toasted oak. The flavor is warm and robust, full-bodied, pleasant and balanced.

This Barbera's sensory attributes make it an outstanding accompaniment for imposing first courses and main-course, meats boiled or roasted.

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About Marchesi di Barolo:

Setting precedents is a characteristic of Piedmontese winemaking and Marchesi di Barolo, one of the region's premier producers of Barolo, is no exception. In the mid-1800s, Marchesi di Barolo became the first estate in Italy to vinify its red wines in a dry style, a revolutionary concept at the time, but one with enduring and immensely beneficial consequences for the entire Italian wine industry.

In contrast to its noble French counterparts, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir, which flourish in various corners of the world, Nebbiolo rarely thrives outside its native Piedmontese habitat. While relatively resistant to frost, damp and mist, it is highly sensitive to terrain, faring best in the Langhe district's chalky, marly soil of maritime origin.

Producing majestic red wines of phenomenal depth, complexity and longevity, Nebbiolo is the earliest red grape variety in Piedmont to bud and the last to ripen. Its name derives from the early morning mists, or "nebbia," that shroud the lower slopes of the Langhe hillsides during the fall harvest period.

The Marchesi di Barolo estate takes pride in the international reputation it has established for its fine Barolo DOCG and two superb single-vineyard crus, Barolo Cannubi DOCG and Barolo Sarmassa DOCG, all made from 100% estate-grown Nebbiolo grapes.



Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Chile    South America   
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Date Printed: 9/17/2014
Santa Alicia Cabernet Sauvignon Maipo Reserva 2010
Santa Alicia Cabernet Sauvignon Maipo Reserva 2010
(search item no. 114736)
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Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 9/17/2014: $9.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Santa Alicia Cabernet Sauvignon Maipo Reserva is a brilliant and deep ruby red color. Aromas of ripe fruit, bitter chocolate and spices. This wine also has good structure and concentration with round tannins. Pairs well with red meats, barbecue and a large array of cheese.
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About Santa Alicia:

In 1954, on fertile lands close to the capital of Chile, an important politician and businessman, Mr. Maximo Valdes, founded the vineyard "Houses of Pirque". With extensive experience in the wine business, he begins planting Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.

After half a century and four generations, the Valdes family has turned these vineyards in the best example of love for the land, and perfection in the quality of its products.

Today, identified as "Santa Alicia", as a way of honoring the women that in each generation carry this name, the vineyard continues with its tradition of excellence and prestige, expressed in each bottle are the decades of experience, high technology, and the privileged fruit which results from a marvelous environment.