White Wines    Chardonnay    Carneros    California   
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Date Printed: 10/22/2014
Rombauer Chardonnay 2008
Rombauer Chardonnay 2008
(search item no. 100108)

PRICE ON 10/22/2014: $31.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2002 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1997 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
1996 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
1995 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
1994 Wine Spectator rating: 93 points
1993 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Rombauer Vineyards' Carneros Chardonnay has earned a reputation for being the benchmark California Chardonnay and the 2008 vintage continues that tradition. Delicious with intense pear, pineapple and tropical fruits, balanced with creamy, toasted vanilla. Refined acidity and hints of apple linger on the finish. Our favorite pairing for this wine includes grilled salmon or chicken with mango salsa, seafood pasta, crab cakes and arugula salad.
My Notes:

Additional wines from Rombauer Vineyards:

About Rombauer Vineyards:

Rombauer Vineyards was founded in 1982 by Koerner and Joan Rombauer and sits on a tree covered knoll overlooking the Napa Valley. The winery features caves that extend for over a mile into the hillside. The caves provide a constant temperature and humidity which result in optimum conditions for aging our wines.

Rombauer wines are consistently ranked high in the wine trade journals. Many of the finest restaurants throughout the country include Rombauer wines on their list and feature them by the glass. The joy of wine is something that's important to Rombauer. Whether you are a collector of fine wines or like to have wine with food, wine is something that truly should be enjoyed. Rombauer Vineyards puts a lot of hard work and tender care into making drinkable wines. And because wine is a simple product to enjoy, emphasis is given to taking the mystique out of enjoying fine wines.

Our emphasis on the joy of wine comes from the heritage of the Rombauer family. Koerner's ancestors made wine in the famous Rheingau region in Germany and his great aunt, Irma Rombauer, wrote the book The Joy of Cooking. Hence our focus on wine as complements to good food and good friends. Every family member is actively involved in the day to day operation of the winery from selecting grapes for the winemaking process and getting the wine to market.



White Wines    Chardonnay    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 10/22/2014
Chalone Estate Chardonnay 2007
Chalone Estate Chardonnay 2007
(search item no. 101938)
Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 10/22/2014: $29.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
1999 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#29 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2009

Our 2007 Estate Chardonnay is a true expression of Chalone's unique terroir capturing the very essence of our vineyard with toasty aromas of hazelnut, stone fruit, white pear and a unique minerality. On the palate, there is a bright acidity that mingles with flavors of fleshy pear, apricot, a bit of apple and is marked by Chalone's distinctive minerality which comes from our vineyard's unique limestone and decomposed granite soils.

My Notes:

About Chalone Vineyard:

Perched high on the western slopes of the remote Gavilan Mountain Range on Mount Chalone, 1,800 feet above California's Salinas Valley, Chalone Vineyard represents a singular convergence of terroir and winemaking. Originally planted in 1919, the vineyard's ability to yield benchmark Chardonnay was discovered when Chalone Wine Group co-founder, Dick Graff, made his first vintage there in 1966. The time-honored Burgundian techniques he introduced complement the fruit's character to create the bouquet and flavors that are Chalone Vineyard Chardonnay's hallmarks. Chalone Vineyard's other estate-grown wines are equally distinctive. Chalone also produces Pinot Noir, Syrah, Pinto Blanc and Chenin Blanc.


Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 10/22/2014
Monte Antico Rosso 2006
Monte Antico Rosso 2006
(search item no. 100357)
green wine
screw cap wine

Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/22/2014: $8.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 James Suckling rating: 90 points
2008 James Suckling rating: 90 points
2007 James Suckling rating: 90 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2000 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#61 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2009

The blend, albeit varying slightly depending on vintage conditions, is 85% Sangiovese, 10% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon. The best selections are blended and aged 1 year in oak (80% in Slavonian barrels, 20% in barrique) + at least 6 months in the bottle, achieving a graceful balance of voluptuous berry tones and flexible yet sturdy backbone. Dark ruby in color, its bouquet of leather, earth, herbs, black cherries, licorice and plums is confirmed on the medium to full-bodied palate – round, spicy, elegant, attractively fruity and extremely versatile with any fare from pasta or risotto, to meat, fowl and cheese. Moreover, the Empsons' judicious pricing policy makes it "consistently one of Italy's better values". Food-friendly, pocket-friendly, all-around simpatico.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Castello di Monte Antico:

About Castello di Monte Antico:

Neil Empson and renowned oenologist Franco Bernabei conjunctly orchestrate this all-Sangiovese varietal from Tuscany's very finest vineyard sites. Having access to the region's top crus and ideal microclimates means they can pick and choose according to harvest conditions, achieving consistent excellence with each vintage.

The superlative characteristics of chosen locations and strict quality parameters make for the wine's depth, structure, character and longevity.

Terrain includes compact, very fine-textured limestone, at an altitude of 400-450 meters above sea level; rocky, clayey/calcareous areas, also at altitudes around 400 meters; and clayey/siliceous/calcareous soil, at an altitude of 250-300 meters: a cross-section of Tuscany's best.



White Wines    Chardonnay    Central Coast    California   
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My Rating (circle) :
Date Printed: 10/22/2014
Chalone Estate Chardonnay 2007
Chalone Estate Chardonnay 2007
(search item no. 101938)
Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 10/22/2014: $29.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 87 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2000 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
1999 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#29 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2009

Our 2007 Estate Chardonnay is a true expression of Chalone's unique terroir capturing the very essence of our vineyard with toasty aromas of hazelnut, stone fruit, white pear and a unique minerality. On the palate, there is a bright acidity that mingles with flavors of fleshy pear, apricot, a bit of apple and is marked by Chalone's distinctive minerality which comes from our vineyard's unique limestone and decomposed granite soils.

My Notes:

About Chalone Vineyard:

Perched high on the western slopes of the remote Gavilan Mountain Range on Mount Chalone, 1,800 feet above California's Salinas Valley, Chalone Vineyard represents a singular convergence of terroir and winemaking. Originally planted in 1919, the vineyard's ability to yield benchmark Chardonnay was discovered when Chalone Wine Group co-founder, Dick Graff, made his first vintage there in 1966. The time-honored Burgundian techniques he introduced complement the fruit's character to create the bouquet and flavors that are Chalone Vineyard Chardonnay's hallmarks. Chalone Vineyard's other estate-grown wines are equally distinctive. Chalone also produces Pinot Noir, Syrah, Pinto Blanc and Chenin Blanc.


Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 10/22/2014
Belguardo Serrata Maremma 2005
Belguardo Serrata Maremma 2005
(search item no. 98213)
green wine

Wine & Spirits rating: 94 points
PRICE ON 10/22/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2004 The Wine News rating: 90 points
2003 Wine & Spirits rating: 93 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The pioneering Mazzei family, owners of Chianti Classico's highly esteemed Castello di Fonterutoli, took the helm at the Belguardo estate in Maremma, Tuscany in the 1990s after recognizing the potential for superb quality winemaking in the local terroir. In the years since, the Mazzeis have established a name for Belguardo among the top producers in this exciting, fast emerging wine region.

Hand harvested grapes undergo temperature-controlled fermentation and maceration for 16-18 days. The resulting wine matures for 12 months in French and American barriques, 30% of which are new.

Ruby red in color, and aromatic, with scents of ripe cherries, raspberries and vanilla. Full-bodied, soft and well structured, with flavors of wild berries, spice and herbs.

"This edgy, almost sanguine blend is grown in a rocky mix of limestone and sandstone soils on the coast near Grosseto. While the wine's naturally brisk acidity shows the cooling influence of the coastal air, what's most striking is the savory, elegant feel of the tannins. At once powerfully mineral and smooth, they frame deep flavors of dried porcini, ripe cherry and fresh sage in a way that feels vibrant and firm. The complexity is here to age this for a decade, although it would be irresistible now with roast leg of lamb."
Wine & Spirits
Best Buy 94/100

My Notes:

About Belguardo:

The pioneering Mazzei family, owners of Chianti Classico’s highly esteemed Castello di Fonterutoli, took the helm at the Belguardo estate in Maremma, Tuscany in the 1990s after recognizing the potential for superb quality winemaking in the local terroir. In the years since, the Mazzeis have established a name for Belguardo among the top producers in this exciting, fast emerging wine region.

The Belguardo estate is located on the hills between Grosseto and Montiano, about six miles inland from Italy’s west coast. It comprises a total of 70 hectares (173 acres), including 32 hectares (79 acres) of specialized vineyards, making it one of the most important estates in Maremma.

Belguardo’s logo is fashioned after a geometrical symbol sketched by Leonardo da Vinci, which represents a union between precision and perspective. It is emblematic of the Mazzeis’ commitment to combining Maremma’s exceptional growing conditions with the family’s centuries of winemaking expertise to yield concentrated, complex wines that are extraordinarily elegant and aromatic.