Red Wines    Cabernet Sauvignon    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 11/23/2014
Tilia Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Tilia Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
(search item no. 105748)
screw cap wine
green wine

Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 11/23/2014: $8.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2009 Tilia Cabernet Sauvignon has a dark purple color with ruby red tones. The nose is full of ripe red fruits, sweet spice and a touch of tobacco. The mouthfeel shows red currant and cassis fruit layered with notes of cedar and espresso bean. The finish is soft and sweet, with finely grained tannins adding structure and length.
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About Tilia:

Named after the Tilia (Linden) tree commonly found throughout Argentina’s wine country, Tilia wines possess true varietal character and embody the rural Mendozean lifestyle. For years vineyard workers have used the flowers of the Tilia to make an herbal tea for enjoyment after a hard day’s work. The name Tilia is chosen in honor of this wine country tradition.

The Tilia wines are made at Bodegas Esmeralda, a Catena family winery in the Eastern region of Mendoza that is dedicated to making value wines for the Argentine domestic market. Tilia wines offer a unique combination of fruit sourced from the traditional Eastern region and the dynamic Southern region of Mendoza. The Eastern region of Mendoza enjoys warm, sunny days and cool desert nights. The grapes have very ripe, rich fruit flavors and excellent mid-palate depth and concentration. Bright sunshine and low temperatures of the Southern region lend a cool freshness. The fruit from this area shows clean acid balance and soft, supple tannins.

Tilia is dedicated to responsible use of the environment. The winemaking and viticultural team actively engage in many practices and programs throughout the community to implement sustainability. Water conservation and reuse, minimal use of pesticides and organic fertilization are several examples of the team’s dedication. Furthermore, the entire Tilia viticultural team attends regular sustainability training sessions at the National University of Cuyo and National Agricultural Research Institute. They take this training into the field to share and implement with their grower partners.



Red Wines    Pinot Noir    Marlborough    New Zealand   
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Date Printed: 11/23/2014
Brancott Reserve Pinot Noir 2006
Brancott Reserve Pinot Noir 2006
(search item no. 95084)
screw cap wine

Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 11/23/2014: $22.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2007 Wine & Spirits rating: 91 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Enthusiast rating: 88 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 85 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Garnet red in color, this wine exhibits ripe cherry and spice accentuated with rich plum and savory highlights. It has a rich, sweet approach displaying ripe dark berry fruits, subtle oak spice, velvety tannins and a long, concentrated finish.

This wine's structure and concentration make it an ideal match for a wide range of foods. It will match well with field mushroom pasta or risotto. It also lends itself to rare, grilled red meats or a variety of slow cooked casseroles including game meats, such as rabbit or fowl.

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About Brancott:

The Brancott Winery opened in 1977, making it one of the oldest wineries in Marlborough. From producing one of the world's first grape tipping tanks, the winery has stayed true to its pioneering herigate and embraced innovation. It was one of the first to commercially plant Sauvignon Blanc in Marlborough in 1973, at the top of New Zealand's South Island and has been heavily instrumental in developing the region as one of the foremost viticultural regions for Sauvignon Blanc world-wide. At present, Brancott Estate continues to lead with its innovative winemaking approach and passionate commitment to excellence under the stewardship of chief winemaker, Patrick Materman.


Rosé Wine    Rosé    Argentina    South America   
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Date Printed: 11/23/2014
Crios de Susana Balbo Rose of Malbec 2009
Crios de Susana Balbo Rose of Malbec 2009
(search item no. 100260)
screw cap wine

The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points
PRICE ON 11/23/2014: $11.29

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2012 International Wine Cellar rating: 89 points
2011 International Wine Cellar rating: 88 points
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 87 points
2011 Wine Enthusiast rating: 87 points
2010 International Wine Cellar rating: 87 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 89 points

Winemaker's Notes:

A beautiful, deep, vibrant rosé color. Has a surprising amount of body for a rosé wine, and beautiful aromas of fresh, ripe wild strawberries. On the palate, the flavors of strawberries and young cherries come rushing in, accompanied by some spice notes and a clean, dry finish. This is the perfect chicken wine and a charming companion to mildly spicy Asian cuisine. Keep one in the fridge at all times and you'll always have a delicious wine to enjoy with light snacks and cheeses. Best consumed in its youth.
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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    Pinot Noir    Central Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 11/23/2014
Hahn Estates Monterey Pinot Noir 2006
Hahn Estates Monterey Pinot Noir 2006
(search item no. 100600)
has fluid


PRICE ON 11/23/2014: $13.49

Winemaker's Notes:

The deep but muted ruby hue hints at the silky tannins of this dynamic and multi-faceted wine. The white and black pepper background aromas blend nicely with clove fragrances on the front. Every sip uncovers new flavors and textures. When given time, the wine evolves from edgy to extreme bliss with a tangy burst of fruit and spice, backed by cool-climate acidity that carries each separate flavor component on to the next sip. The structure and balanced acidity of this wine allows the flavors to hang for a moment before it finishes with a light, slow and even departure that leaves the mouth infused with fresh pomegranate flavors.

Serve with baked Halibut on a bed of sautéed Swiss chard and puréed potatoes or, to bring out the spice, try with kicked up Pasta Arrabiata.

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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    Zinfandel    Sonoma County    California   
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Date Printed: 11/23/2014
Ravenswood Old Hill Ranch Zinfandel 2006
Ravenswood Old Hill Ranch Zinfandel 2006
(search item no. 98408)
boutique wine

International Wine Cellar rating: 96 points
Wine & Spirits rating: 95 points
PRICE ON 11/23/2014: $43.98

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 International Wine Cellar rating: 94 points
2010 Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 95 points
2008 Wine & Spirits rating: 92 points
2007 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 96 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 95 points
2007 International Wine Cellar rating: 95 points
2001 International Wine Cellar rating: 94 points
1999 International Wine Cellar rating: 95 points
1999 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
1999 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

This unique vineyard in Sonoma Valley is an extension of the Oak Hill Organic Farm, owned and operated for many years by the now deceased Otto Teller, a sage octogenarian who employed no pesticides or irrigation. The 110-year-old vines are situated on a gravelly, well-drained hill that receive a full share of summer sun as well as cooling breezes. The crop level is seldom higher than one and a half tons per acre, and this scant tonnage - combined with the ideal growing conditions - produces exceptionally intense, spicy fruit.

A longtime favorite among hard-core Ravenswood fans, the Old Hill vineyard was planted in the 1880`s in the Valley of the Moon, just north of the town of Sonoma. This vineyard is like your most comfortable pair of old shoes - unparalleled. It is wonderfully consistent, from year to year, in its ability to please even the most discriminating palate.

Old Hill Zinfandel is Knockout nose combines sappy black fruits, black pepper and spicy, smoked meats; rather Rhone-like. Silky and sweet in the middle but with terrific flavor definition and cut. This has compellingly intense fruit and a very long, juicy, aromatic aftertaste. Would appear to be an outstanding vintage for this consistently excellent zinfandel bottling.

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About Ravenswood:

Fueled initially by the inspiration and winemaking skills of Joel Peterson, aided and abetted by his business partner W. Reed Foster, Ravenswood winery has been dedicated to top quality, hand-crafted wine since the first crush in 1976. Every Ravenswood wine carries a unique vintage and vineyard identity in addition to the intense powerful – gothic – character with which the winery has come to be associated.

A key to Ravenswood’s success is our long-standing relationships with over 60 independent grape growers. Vineyards are chosen for their location, age, yield and special flavor characteristics. At Ravenswood, we are devoted to working with growers who share our philosophy about high quality.

Ravenswood Vineyard Designate wines are made employing what winemaker Joel Peterson refers to as “stubborn and impractical” Old World enological practices. Wines are fermented in small wooden tanks using wild, natural yeasts and punched down by hand three to five times per day. The wines are characterized by intense, spicy aromas supported by rich, berry flavors and long, clean finishes.