Champagne & Sparkling    Non-Vintage    Other Spain    Spain   
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Date Printed: 10/1/2014
Jaume Serra Cristalino Brut Cava
Jaume Serra Cristalino Brut Cava
(search item no. 6619)
has fluid
has fluid 360

Wine & Spirits rating: 88 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 87 points
PRICE ON 10/1/2014: $7.99

Winemaker's Notes:

This fine Spanish sparkling wine is made using the Traditional Method, in which the secondary fermentation producing a sparkling wine's bubbles occurs in the bottle. Its fresh, toasty nose, beautiful citrus, green apple and mineral flavors, supple, lively mouth-feel, and clean, crisp finish make it the ultimate celebratory wine. Enjoy it on its own and with caviar, sushi, seafood, fried foods and Asian dishes

Varietal Blend: 50% Macabeo, 35% Parellada, 15% Xarel-lo<

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About Jaume Serra Cristalino:

The winery behind Cristalino, Jaume Serra, was founded in 1943 by distinguished enologist Jaume Serra Guell. It is located in the Garraf subdivision of the Denominacion de Origen Penedés, the largest wine growing area in Catalonia. Jaume Serra lies within the “El Padruel” estate in the Mediterranean Coastal town of Vilanova y la Geltru, some 50 kilometers south of Barcelona,. Wine making began on this property in 1947. The winery underwent renovations in 1984 and then again in 1997, after the J. García Carrión family purchased the property.

The white varietals of Parellada, Chardonnay, Macabeo and Xarel-lo are grown in Jaume Serra's vineyards situated in the Alt Penedés, a sub region of the Penedés, and are used to produce the area's famous sparkling wines, called "Cava". By law, Cava must be made in the Methode Champenois or Champagne Method. Due to European regulations prohibiting use of that term, Cava is now labeled as Methode Tradicional, which has the same requirements with an added stipulation that cava must age for a minimum of nine months on the lees before release. After researching local yeasts, the Jaume Serra winery has taken the extraordinary step of importing their yeast from Champagne, France in order to impart the finest quality to their Cavas.



Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 10/1/2014
Crios de Susana Balbo Malbec 2008
Crios de Susana Balbo Malbec 2008
(search item no. 98070)
screw cap wine

The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/1/2014: $12.75

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2010 Wine & Spirits rating: 88 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 87 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2006 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The wine has a beautiful reddish/purple color as most good Malbecs do. The aromas are a mix of fresh crushed cherries and toasty/smoky oak—just enough to frame the exuberant fruit. On the palate, the flavors of cherries and spice are obvious, and the jammy fruit quality just keeps coming on strong, with hints of spice lurking in the background. This is a wine that you'll want to buy by the case because it can be consumed at almost any occasion, whether at a fancy dinner party, or just curled up on the couch in front of a movie. Fun and delicious—what more can you ask for?!
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About Crios de Susana Balbo:

After 22 years of winemaking, Susana Balbo has a strong sense of what she wants from her wines. From every harvest, she creates the grandest possible wines under her Susana Balbo label. To achieve this, she makes a rigorous selection of the finest barrels prior to making her final blends, dividing them into the parents (reserve level wines) and offspring or "crios."

Wines under her Crios label display ripe fruit flavors, excellent balance and concentration, and are meant to be enjoyed in their vibrant youth. These wines are produced under Dominio del Plata's code of sustainable agriculture.

Like Susana's own crios (a boy and a girl), they are extremely lovable and fun to be around. The label features a series of three connected and overlapping hands, an image inspired by a Mayan artifact. The artifact illustrates the interconnectedness of every generation, and the irony that we will be both the parent and the offspring at different times in our lives.



Red Wines    Grenache    Other Spain    Spain   
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Date Printed: 10/1/2014
Las Rocas Garnacha 2007
Las Rocas Garnacha 2007
(search item no. 99658)
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 10/1/2014: $11.29

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2009 Tasting Panel rating: 90 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2004 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2003 The Wine Advocate rating: 88 points
2002 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

"There are 18,000 cases of the delightful 2007 Las Rocas Garnacha, a wine sourced from Calatayud vineyards ranging in age from 70 to 100 years. Dark ruby in color, it delivers alluring aromas of spice box, mineral, cherry, and black raspberry. Layered on the palate, it has superb depth, succulent flavors, and a pure, lengthy finish. It will provide pleasure over the next three years. The Las Rocas label has become synonymous with value in recent years." The Wine Advocate
90 Points
My Notes:

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About Las Rocas de San Alejandro:

Las Rocas de San Alejandro is located in the region of Calatayud, about 150 miles northeast of Madrid, and is centered around the rivers of Jiloca and Jalon. Although there are still few wineries in the zone, the ones which are beginning to show with their wines why this region is so special.

Although the D.O. is quite young, vines have been grown in the zone for some time. About one eighth of the vineyard land’s production has been bottled at one of Spain’s best and most progressive cooperatives, San Alejandro. With an abundance of amazing raw material, Eric Solomon was able to commission several bottlings of very old vine fruit into what has become one of the most sought-after estates in the portfolio. Calatayud benefits from a continental climate with vast temperature differences between night and day. Harvests are much later than in other parts of Aragon, and the acidity/maturity/alcohol ratios tend to be more balanced.

As most of the vineyards lie on what was (thousands of years ago) an old river basin, the soil is comprised of brown limestone and loam over slate and gypsum. This particular soil is also ideal for production of olives, cherries, and other fruits. Jean-Marc Lafage (of Domaine Lafage in France’s Roussillon) is responsible for the Las Rocas cuvees.