Red Wines    Nero d'Avola    Sicily    Italy   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Feudo Maccari Nero d'Avola 2010
Feudo Maccari Nero d'Avola 2010
(search item no. 122991)
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The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $14.99

Winemaker's Notes:

With a dark red ruby color, this wine shows expressive red berry aromas with herbal and fruity notes. On the palate, the flavors are structured and given balance by bright, cleansing acidity, a characteristic of Nero d'Avola grown in this area.
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About Feudo Maccari:

The Feudo Maccari lies just over a mile from the sea, and basks in a dry, sun drenched climate verging on torrid in the summer months. Mediterranean winds moderate the climate and aerate the clusters, and some irrigation is required during the hot, dry season. The vineyards lie 240 feet above sea level on southerly exposed slopes, and the predominant volcanic soil profile is mixed in a few areas with white sand and chalk deposits. The Nero d’Avola vines are trained on trees in the traditional Sicilian manner, with the other varieties to more conventional systems. The first vintage of Saia, composed entirely of Nero d’Avola, is in the 2002 vintage; experimentation continues with other varieties.

The diversity of the estates’ soil and climatic conditions dictates that cultivation and winemaking follow the demands of the environment and pursuit of quality. Yields are restricted, and at harvest the clusters are handpicked, sorted, destemmed, and put into a conveyer-belt apparatus which breaks the skins rather than crushes the berries. Fermentation takes place in a combination of temperature controlled stainless steel and lined open-top fermentors with maceration periods appropriate to the varietal in question followed by natural malolactic fermentation in tank. Cooperage consists primarily of 225-liter barriques with some capacity in 500-litre tonneaux, and is of new and one year’s use; length of oak contact depends on both the wine and vintage, but generally lasts for a period of twelve to eighteen months. A first blending of lots takes place when the wine is placed in barrique; a second at the first racking. The wines are then bottled with minimum intervention.



Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Terrazas de los Andes Reserva Malbec 2010
Terrazas de los Andes Reserva Malbec 2010
(search item no. 121960)
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PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 92 points
2009 Tasting Panel rating: 90 points
2008 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2005 Wine & Spirits rating: 90 points
2004 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The Terrazas de los Andes Reserva Malbec expresses aromas of freshly crushed violet flowers that envelop a deep core of jam preserves and ripened plums typical of Mendoza´s Vistalba region. The palate contains racy notes of violet and graphite followed by mouthfuls of dry cherries and fresh berry fruit. The luscious mid-palate, gives way to powdery tannins and a delicate herbal blend-infused finish that adds to complexity.
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About Terrazas de los Andes:

At the end of the 1950s, the famous French Champagne house, Moët & Chandon, realized there was an enormous potential for growth in South America. They sent their wine analyst, Renaud Poirier, to study the possibility of expansion. Monsieur Poirier finally proved that Luján de Cuyo, a region within the province of Mendoza, was the best place for the birth of fine wines. In 1960, Chandon Argentina was established, the first subsidiary of Moët & Chandon outside France.

To make the Terrazas de los Andes wines, Chandon Argentina took the initiative to restore this building, located in the heart of Perdriel and at the foot of the imposing Cordón del Plata (a section of the Andes Mountain Range).

In the past, Chandon Argentina made only sparkling and generic still wines, however at the beginning of the '90s fueled by a political system more orientated towards an international market, a varietal wines project was born, to which Terrazas has now become the reality. Situated in Perdriel there is an old Spanish style winery that was used by Pedro Domecq to create his brandy. Renaud Poirier asked Domecq if he could use his equipment to make the first experimental vintages, between 1957 and 1959. Thirty years later Terrazas de los Andes was born, a tributary of Chandon Argentina dedicated exclusively to the production of varietal wines.



Red Wines    Zinfandel    Sonoma County    California   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Four Vines The Sophisticate Zinfandel 2010
Four Vines The Sophisticate Zinfandel 2010
(search item no. 124239)
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Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $19.99

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

Winemaker's Notes:

Of Four Vines' single-appellation Zinfandels, The Sophisticate best exemplifies its nickname: elegant in balance, refined tannins, and a charismatic rich berry profile.

A hearty addition of Petite Sirah and a splash of Syrah build on the juicy middle and brooding fruit tones. Aged in small French and American oak barrels for 14 months, this rustic country appellation shows surprising style and grace. Dark garnet in color with a nose of licorice, smoked meat, blackberries and chalky minerality with intriguing oak notes of cinnamon and butterscotch. On the palate, intense boysenberry flavors, supple tannins, a hint of vanilla and a great palate stain will keep you interested from start to finish.

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About Four Vines:

In 1994 Four Vines Winery kicked into gear featuring eclectic, appellation-specific Zins, and one kick-ass no-oak "Naked" Chardonnay. They named their Zins Biker, The Sophisticate and Maverick. Rich, succulent, fruit-generous wines that pair incredibly well with food. The winery relocated to Paso Robles where they began experimenting with Rhone varietals; bigger, headier wines that are positively explosive in flavor and form. No matter the wine, Four Vines has always brought a refreshing, irreverent attitude to the industry. Today, the winery sources fruit from all over the state of California and crushes mainly on the Central Coast and in Sonoma County. This allows grapes to arrive at their peak of cool morning temperatures to the crush pad. It all starts in the vineyard…don't let anyone tell you anything else. In late 2010, Derek Benham acquired Four Vines from its founders and moved the winery operations back up north to Sonoma County where it originally started. Four Vines is now in a position to reach its full potential as a category leader in Unoaked Chardonnay and Zinfandel. The story continues...


Red Wines    Syrah/Shiraz    Chile    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Lapostolle Cuvee Alexandre Syrah 2010
Lapostolle Cuvee Alexandre Syrah 2010
(search item no. 123407)
green wine
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Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $22.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2008 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2005 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2003 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2001 Wine Spectator rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Ruby red color. Intense ripe fruit with cacao aromas and spices such as black pepper, anise and cardamom. On the palate, there is a nice fruit expression with velvety tannins and refreshing acidity. This Syrah also has a long lasting finish.

An ideal companion for game and lamb well seasoned dishes.

My Notes:

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About Lapostolle:

Lapostolle was founded by Alexandra Marnier Lapostolle and her husband Cyril de Bournet in 1994. The Marnier Lapostolle family, founders and owners of the world-renowned liqueur Grand Marnier, is famous for producing spirits and liqueurs, but the family has also been involved in winemaking for generations. In creating Lapostolle, the family has pursued the same uncompromising approach to quality that make Grand Marnier a global success. Its objected is as simple as it is ambitious: to create world-class wines using French expertise and superb terroirs of Chile. Today, Lapostolle owns 370 hectares in three different vineyards and produces a total of 200,000 cases spread over Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Carmenere and Syrah. Lapostolle is distributed in more than 60 countries around the world.


Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Maipe Reserve Malbec 2012
Maipe Reserve Malbec 2012
(search item no. 123988)
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The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The nose reveals dried plum and dark fruits, exotic spices, with hints of violet and chocolate. Round and fleshy, with enticing crushed plum and boysenberry fruit enlivened by a liquorice snap note. Fresh acidity lies buried on the medium-weight, juicy finish.
My Notes:

About Maipe:

Produced in the Luján de Cuyo subregion of Mendoza by the Pelizzatti family, Maipe wines are an expression of the deep rich soils and a commitment to excellence by the young winemaker, Liliana Iannizzotto, and consultant Alberto Antonini.

"Alberto Antonini (think Altos Las Hormigas) is a consultant at Maipe which in and of itself is an indicator that the winery is focused on quality." - Wine Advocate (Dec 08)

The wines are produced from grapes grown in Agrelo and Luján de Cuyo, in the foothills of the Andes Mountains, at an altitude of 3,000 feet above sea level. Agrelo is a cool climate region in Argentina’s premier grape growing area. Each bottle captures the expression of the grape variety, showing its adaptation to the local soils and climate. The vineyard is planted with 18 hectares of Malbec and 32 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon. The soils are deep and textured, which facilitates plant development and confers great body and structure to the wines. Classified among the best areas within the province of Mendoza, year-long sunny and dry conditions permit almost organic viticulture practices. Its outstanding feature is a great daily thermal amplitude, with mild days and cold nights that allow a particular richness of polyphenols that improve the wines’ flavors and color.

Maipe was the Lord of the Winds for the ancient Andean people. Argentineans still invoke his name to clear the skies after a heavy rain or to temper the summer heat. These wines, children of the Sun and the Winds, are produced from grapes grown at the foothills of the Andes Mountains at an altitude of 3,000 feet above sea level. The intense color and aromas capture the expression of the soils that gave them birth.



Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    South Africa    South Africa   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Glenelly Grand Vin de Glenelly 2007
Glenelly Grand Vin de Glenelly 2007
(search item no. 109191)
boutique wine
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The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $24.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Grand Vin de Glenelly is the estate's signature red blend. It exhibits great intensity and complexity, with finegrained tannins that are firm yet elegant. The rich, savory character of Shiraz is enhanced by lush, concentrated flavors of blackberry, cherry and cassis, supported by floral tones and notes of tobacco and spice.

44% Shiraz, 31% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 1% Petit Verdot

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About Glenelly:

Located on the southern slopes of the Simonsberg, Glenelly is owned by May-Eliane de Lencquesaing, Bordeaux doyenne and former owner of Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande. Struck by the tremendous potential of South Africa's terroir and the beauty of the country, Mme de Lencquesaing decided to embark on a French adventure on African soil. She purchased Glenelly in 2003, and subsequently planted 66 of the property's 128 hectares to vineyards. The first estate-grown fruit came on line in 2007, and Glenelly's state-of-the-art winery building was completed in 2009. The wines are fermented naturally and made with as little intervention as possible, seeking to achieve the perfect balance of French style and South African terroir.


Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Hahn Estates Meritage Red Blend 2012
Hahn Estates Meritage Red Blend 2012
(search item no. 128669)
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PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $15.99

Winemaker's Notes:

This wine shows a brilliant violet color in the glasss, transitioning to ruby-purple at the edges. Prevailing initial fragrances of cassis and crushed blueberries are quickly followed by a silky impression of vanilla and cedar. This wine is richly textured and integrated on the palate, showing exotic undercurrents of baked blackberries and licorice. A touch of acidity balances a plush mouthfeel segueing into the the fine grained tannins on the finish.

Blend: 35% Merlot, 34% Malbec, 27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Petit Verdot

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About Hahn Estates:

The spectacular beauty of California's Central Coast is probably the best-known region in all of California for its unique lifestyle. Monterey County's dramatic ocean scenery, historic communities, artistic culture, verdant pine forests, and bountiful agriculture have beckoned adventure-seekers, seafarers, artists, writers and vacationers for over 100 years. And the 99 miles of breathtaking Pacific coastline is something no other California county can boast.

The wind and fog interact with solar radiation to slow grapes' ripening, producing up to two months longer growing season than in warmer grape growing regions. These conditions create fruit with more varietal intensity, flavor, depth and structure, and thus, exceptional wines. In German, "Hahn" means "Rooster" and for this reason a rooster embellishes the Hahn Estates label, honoring the Hahn Family’s European Heritage. With an inspiration to raise Monterey wines to the highest level, the wines of Hahn Estates are created with a philosophy that all great wines are special – akin to the region they were grown in. The Hahn wines celebrate everything that is Monterey – unique in thought, style and setting.



Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    Columbia Valley    Washington   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Browne Family Vineyards Red Blend 2010
Browne Family Vineyards Red Blend 2010
(search item no. 123680)
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Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $21.99

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

Winemaker's Notes:

This Red Blend is introduced with aromas of ripe blackberry and a hint of cedar-box. The Malbec adds blueberry and raspberry, while the Cabernet adds a dense core of dark cherry. Petit Verdot contributes a touch of spice with rounded structure of soft tannin. The wine has a long, inviting finish.

Blend: 45% Malbec, 43% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot

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About Browne Family Vineyards:

The Browne Family wines were developed to showcase the high quality Washington wine that their world class growers and winemakers produce. Browne Family has been a work in progress for the past fifteen years from the development in the vineyards to selecting the winemaking team that understood their vision of what a great wine meant. The finished product is a wine that over delivers. Browne is the family name and with it comes a responsibility for quality, craftsmanship and commitment now and in the future.


Red Wines    Malbec    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Dona Paula Estate Malbec 2011
Dona Paula Estate Malbec 2011
(search item no. 122098)
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Tasting Panel rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $15.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 James Suckling rating: 93 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2006 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Intense violet color. On the nose, aromas of black fruits, violets and spices. Mineral and graphite notes. Great balance and freshness in the mouth, with good concentration and medium structure. Soft tannins and persistent finish.
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About Dona Paula:

Located in Ugarteche, Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza Argentina, Dona Paula is an estate winery, producing wines from Dona Paula's own vineyards in the winegrowing regions of Mendoza. Dona Paula's history began in 1990, when a period of exhaustive research on the different Argentinean terroirs and their potential to fully express each varietal began. Dona Paula acquired its first vineyard in 1997 in Ugarteche, Lujan de Cuyo, a region in the foothills of the Andes Mountains that is famous for its Malbec. In 2002, Dona Paula began exporting into the US, UK and the Netherlands, and is now one of the leading Argentinean wineries that exports premium wines; with 97% of the winery's production exported to more than 60 countries.


Red Wines    Other Red Blends    Rioja    Spain   
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Date Printed: 12/25/2014
Palacios Remondo La Montesa 2008
Palacios Remondo La Montesa 2008
(search item no. 117613)
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The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 12/25/2014: $17.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 91 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2010 International Wine Cellar rating: 90 points
2009 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2009 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 87 points
2006 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
2005 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2004 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Rubyred in colorwith an amaranthine halo, renowned winemaker Alvaro Palacios describes this wine as containing complex aromas of syrup-covered cherries, fresh nectarines, quince paste and delicate notes of wood, white pepper and flint. On the palate the wine is unctuous and voluminous with soft tannins that are presented over a foundation of mixed berries, hints of white pepper, blood oranges and dark chocolate. Meant to enjoy now or age up to 10 years, this wine is very versatile and pairs well with almost any type of cuisine.
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About Palacios Remondo:

Bodegas Palacios Remondo is based in Alfaro in the Rioja Baja. This old family firm has been revitalized by the arrival of Alvaro Palacios who has already made his name, starting from scratch, with his extraordinary Priorato wines. He is now intent on bringing the family Rioja company into the front line. The wines are made from their own vineyards, a rarity in the Rioja region.

Palacios is deeply committed to organic viticulture and natural winemaking practices, such as use of organic fertilizers in the stone-covered, clay soils. All wines are unfiltered and clarified only with egg whites, no exogenous yeasts or commercial compounds are added to the wines and sulfites are kept to minimum levels. Total respect for his vineyard and its surrounding environment results in wines – La Montesa, Propiedad, Plácet Valtomelloso and La Vendimia – that express the true nature of the estate’s soils.