Red Wines    Bordeaux Red Blends    South Africa    South Africa   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
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 8/23/2014: $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

My Notes:

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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    Sangiovese    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Canonica A Cerreto Chianti Classico Riserva 2007
Canonica A Cerreto Chianti Classico Riserva 2007
(search item no. 120584)
The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $19.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Deep ruby red with purple hues and garnet rim; ample, complex, persistent and elegant bouquet with dark berry aromas complemented by fresh, sweet spices, underbrush, leather and tobacco; full-bodied with tightly knit, sweet tannins, soft texture, fresh balsamic acidity.
My Notes:

About Canonica A Cerreto:

The first cellar was built one thousand years ago by monks from the Cathedral of Siena. It remained intact through the centuries, a testimony to the continued importance of wine at the Canonica a Cerreto. Very few changes were made by the Bishops who owned and resided at the Canonica (Rectory) for three centuries.

In 2003 we decided to build an entirely new cellar in order to provide us with the best conditions for winemaking and aging. Though it is true that the quality of the wine is born in the vineyard, it is also true that nowadays the benefits of a modern cellar, maximizing hygienic and working conditions, are essential if the wine is to express the soil and vines from which it comes.



Red Wines    Rhone Red Blends    Languedoc-Roussillon    France - Other regions   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Gerard Bertrand Syrah-Carignan Minervois 2008
Gerard Bertrand Syrah-Carignan Minervois 2008
(search item no. 120396)
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Wine Spectator rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $15.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Its complex aromas of black fruit (black olives, blackberry) are developed due to the controlled extraction process during vinification. Its great fresh elegance and its rich, and full aromatic range (prune, roasted coffee, blackcurrant) gives this wine a unique well structured style.

Blend: 50% Syrah, 50% Carignan

My Notes:

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About Gerard Bertrand:

Gerard Bertrand was born and raised in the South of France. Making wine with his father, Georges, since the age of 10, Gerard Bertrand offers the full range and diversity of wines from the region – red, white, rose, varietal, appellation, estate, still, sparkling, and dessert.

Every wine evokes the image and emotions from the South of France; "Art de Vivre" – the "art of life." Committed to producing quality wines of great value, Gerard is hands on in every facet which bears his name… and has been fortunate to receive great accolades from World Wide press reinforcing his dedication.

"I welcome all to experience the South of France; here at Chateau L'Hospitalet or at your own home or favorite restaurant."



Red Wines    Zinfandel    Sierra Foothills    California   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Terra d'Oro Zinfandel 2009
Terra d'Oro Zinfandel 2009
(search item no. 116733)
Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $13.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 88 points
2007 Connoisseurs' Guide rating: 88 points
2005 The Wine News rating: 89 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
1999 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
1996 Wine Enthusiast rating: 86 points

Winemaker's Notes:

The 2009 Terra d'Oro Amador County Zinfandel is a compelling wine that exhibits the classic style of Sierra Foothills Zin. The wine displays vibrant aromas fresh briar patch, blackberry, spicy clove, allspice, and hints of mocha. The ripe, fresh fruit nose follows through on the palate with flavors of juicy wild berries, plum and black cherries. The wine;s full, rich mouthfeel is balanced with well integrated tannins. Notes of white pepper spice linger on the finish. This Zinfandel shows the unique characters that are found in Amador County and cries out to be served alongside a juicy, grilled rib-eye steak!
My Notes:

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About Terra d'Oro:

For more than 150 years, fortune seekers have been lured to California's rugged Sierra Foothills. Though they once came for the gold, these days they come for the wine—Terra d'Oro, to be more specific. Handcrafted from some of Amador County's most historic vineyards, Terra d'Oro wines are rich indeed, full of the character and intensity that perfectly captures the essence of this "Land of Gold."


Red Wines    Nebbiolo    Piedmont    Italy   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Pelissero Barbaresco Nubiola 2008
Pelissero Barbaresco Nubiola 2008
(search item no. 118567)
The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $28.97

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2009 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 93 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 92 points

Winemaker's Notes:

This has an intense ruby red color, with both fruity and floral notes, from the ripe red fruit to herbs. Soft, tasty, velvety at the same time, leaving a note of sweetness and roundness typical of ripe grape with a slightly dry and astringent closure that distinguishes the Nebbiolo.
My Notes:

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About Pelissero:

Azienda Agricola Pelissero is a family-run vine-growing estate located in the district of Treiso, in the heart of the Barbaresco zone. Many gradual changes have been performed by the successive generations of the Pelissero family, who transformed their business from grape growing and selling begun by Giovanni Pelissero, into winemaking of all their estate-grown grapes.

The first bottles of our own wine date back to 1960 and were produced by Luigi Pelissero, whose work was followed by his son, Oenologist Giorgio who after finishing his studies, decided to work full time at the winery. The Pelissero family takes care of all the winery work; from pruning the vines to marketing the wine.

The estate consists of twenty hectares of vineyards which yield a total of 80,000 to 100,000 (depending on the year) bottles of wine, namely Dolcetto d'Alba from two vineyards (Munfrina and Augenta), Barbera d'Alba Piani, Barbaresco, Barbaresco Vanotu, Grignolino, Favorita,Freisa and Nebbiolo.

It takes passion, commitment to the land and hard work in the vineyards and cellar, to always endeavour to make high quality wines, the only way we know to get real satisfaction. Research in the vineyards and, successively, in the cellar never stops here, and we hope that this will bring about further improvements on our wines.



Red Wines    Sangiovese    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Poggio San Polo Rosso di Montalcino 2010
Poggio San Polo Rosso di Montalcino 2010
(search item no. 115442)
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Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $19.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points

Winemaker's Notes:

Brillant ruby red in hue. The nose unfolds to reveal aromas of small fresh berries and a trace of maraschino cherry, melded with hints of blackberries and black cherries and followed by a hint of vanilla. It is a very fragrant wine of good intensity, warm and supple, with a medium-structure and balanced tannins. On the palate, the wine is suitably dry and sinewy, yet fresh with a persistent aromatic finish.

It naturally accompanies typical Tuscan cuisine with its bold, authentic flavors, such as pasta and risottos made with mushrooms or truffles, pork, grilled meats and medium-flavored cheeses.

My Notes:

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About Poggio San Polo:

The vineyards at San Polo were planted between 1990 and 2000 with the goal of making the highest quality Brunello di Montalcino. With an altitude of 1350 feet above sea level, their southern facing vineyard receives optimal sun exposure and is the highest in Montalcino. The vineyard also has natural terraces facing the stunning Sant’ Antimo Valley and is entirely dedicated to Brunello di Montalcino.

In 2007, Marilisa Allegrini and Leonardo Locascio purchased the property, and with together with winemaker Nicola Biasi adhere to meticulous vineyard management, including environmentally sound and sustainable agriculture, and extremely low-yield crop management (approximately 2 tons per acre). The vines are traditionally trained according to the spurred cordon method, with south/south-east exposure. After being harvested, the grapes receive a long maceration in stainless steel at controlled temperatures (82-86° F) and are then immediately transferred to French barriques (10 months for the Rosso, 18 months for the Mezzopane, and 24 months for the Brunello).



Champagne & Sparkling    Non-Vintage    North Coast    California   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut
Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut
(search item no. 6609)
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Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $21.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Stylistically, Mirabelle Brut resembles some of its French cousins with its elegant, toasty aroma which leads into crisp and complex flavors on the palate. It is impossible to mistake Mirabelle's Northern California heritage - the freshness mid-palate continues through to the finish. Mirabelle Brut is a unique blend of hand-harvested bunches of Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino county Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Mirabelle pairs well with shellfish, light appetizers or hearty, vegetable-based soups.

The non-vintage Mirabelle combines the bright, vibrant fruit of the 2002 vintage with the equally dynamic wines of vintages past. Complete with a green apple and jasmine fragrance, filled out by tropical fruit notes, the aromas merrily greet you from the glass. The bright citrus entry on the palate gives way to subtle honey and caramel, with just a hint of fresh cream to balance the zesty acid. Mirabelle, as ever, demonstrates the illustrious combination of yesterday and today, with age enhancing youth and freshness complimenting the more complex characters.

"Big, buttery aromas of baked apple, lemon curd, nutmeg, malt and bread dough. A whiff of buttered toast leads to balanced flavors of citrus, white flowers and butterscotch. Citrusy, nutty finish refuses to fade."
-Wine News

Hugh Davies, President and Winemaker of Schramsberg, is devoted to carrying on his parent's vision: to create America's premier sparkling wines. Our winemaker's passion for constant refinement of vineyard sources and winemaking techniques is captured in each bottle. The resulting refinements to our original vision are evident each year in our new releases. We invite you to share in this American tradition by enjoying our proudly crafted sparkling wines.

My Notes:

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About Schramsberg Vineyards:

Focused on Schramsberg's top Chardonnay barrel and tank lots, and aged for seven years prior to release, J. Schram is the winery's signature Brut sparkling wine. Jack and Jamie Davies revived the historic vineyards and cellars in 1965, with a mission to produce California's first world-class sparkling wines. Today, led by their son Hugh, Schramsberg's team continues with this commitment to quality and innovation. Schramsberg also produces the J. Schram Rose, Reserve, Blanc de Blancs, Blanc de Noirs, Brut Rose, Cremant Demi-Sec and J. Davies Diamond Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon.


Red Wines    Barbera    Piedmont    Italy   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Poderi Oddero Barbera d'Asti Vinchio 2008
Poderi Oddero Barbera d'Asti Vinchio 2008
(search item no. 121727)
collectible wine

Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $14.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Intense ruby-red color, over time taking on elegant garnet tinges; red fruits, bitter cacao and coffee bouquet, which becomes spicy and gamey with ageing, a characteristic of the sandy and calcareous soil of Vinchio. Full-bodied, with a dry taste, emphasized by the backbone and dense texture; full of character.
My Notes:

About Poderi Oddero:

This winery was founded in 1878, in the area of Santa Maria, a hamlet of La Morra. It is one of the oldest producers of Barolo, a family that has kept the distinctive traditional style of winemaking for over a century. Over the generations, the Oddero family has gradually expanded its vineyards to today's impressive 60 hectares, many of which lie in the illustrious Barolo vineyards of Brunate, Rocche di Castiglione, Villero and Mondoca di Bussia. Since 2001, with the help of young and talented winemaker Luca Vaglio, Oddero winery has become one of the leading producers in Barolo.


Red Wines    Sangiovese    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Frescobaldi Castiglioni Chianti 2011
Frescobaldi Castiglioni Chianti 2011
(search item no. 120201)
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James Suckling rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $14.99

Winemaker's Notes:

Castiglioni Chianti is a deep ruby red with purplish highlights. Notes of small red-berry fruits like mulberry and currant insinuate themselves on the nose, while the ripe plum is perfectly in tune with fragrant violet and geranium. The palate is smooth, warm and elegantly balanced. A long, harmonious finish, good persistency, with a lightly spicy aftertaste.

Blend: 90% Sangiovese, 10% Merlot

My Notes:

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About Frescobaldi:

The Marchesi de' Frescobaldi is one of Italy's oldest wineries, with a history dating to the 1300s. The family has included medieval knights, bankers, lawyers and patrons of the arts. The Marchesi de' Frescobaldi is one of the most significant wine producers in Italy, with nine estates—and roughly 2,500 acres—in Tuscany. The family has been growing wine since the late 19th century, when they became the first in Tuscany to import and plant French vine cuttings. Because they have been producing wines for more than 700 years, to experience Frescobaldi is to glimpse the history of Florence, from the Middle Ages to the present day.

Wine Spectator has ranked many of their offerings in the 90s and their wines are consistently listed in the magazine's Top 100 Wines of the Year, encouraging wine enthusiasts from around the globe to become familiar with some of Italy's finest wines.



Red Wines    Sangiovese    Tuscany    Italy   
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Date Printed: 8/23/2014
Fonterutoli Chianti Classico 2009
Fonterutoli Chianti Classico 2009
(search item no. 113728)
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Wine Spectator rating: 92 points
Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
PRICE ON 8/23/2014: $25.99

ratings pedigree (past vintages):
2011 Vinous / Antonio Galloni rating: 92 points
2011 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2010 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2010 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2010 Decanter rating: 90 points
2008 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2008 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2007 The Wine Advocate rating: 92 points
2007 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2007 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points
2006 Wine Spectator rating: 90 points
2005 The Wine Advocate rating: 90 points
2004 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
2002 Wine Spectator rating: 89 points
2002 Wine Enthusiast rating: 89 points
2001 Wine Enthusiast rating: 91 points
2001 The Wine News rating: 91 points
2000 Wine & Spirits rating: 94 points
2000 Wine Enthusiast rating: 93 points
1998 Wine Enthusiast rating: 86 points
1997 Wine Enthusiast rating: 90 points

Winemaker's Notes:

#49 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2011

A smooth wine with an elegant body. This wine has dark berry and fresh spice flavors, plus an intense, smooth taste.

My Notes:

Additional wines from Castello di Fonterutoli:

About Castello di Fonterutoli:

Castello di Fonterutoli, source of some of Italy's most prestigious wines, is an historic property embracing an entire tranquil, centuries-old hamlet just south of Castellina in Chianti, in the heart of Chianti Classico. The estate has been in the hands of the Mazzei family – devoted to winemaking for 24 generations – since 1435 and is today led by Lapo Mazzei and his sons, Francesco and Filippo.

This dynamic family has carefully safeguarded the inherent beauty and rich heritage of Fonterutoli, while simultaneously implementing measures to ensure cutting-edge quality in the vineyards and cellars. An exciting example of this dedication to quality is the in-progress construction of a stunning new cellar that operates via gravity and clean energy, and has already been defined as "the most impressive in the entire Chianti region" by Steven Spurrier of Decanter Magazine.