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This is stunning, delicate rosé from the North-West Coast that showcases what the mountainous terroir of Columbia Gorge has to offer. This bottle comes from the certified organic Oak Ridge Vineyard in Washington and is made with 100% Pinot Noir. The south-facing slopes at Oak Ridge sit at 1400ft elevation on prehistoric volcanic soils, which give this rosé its uniquely stony, mineral quality. The grapes are gently pressed whole-cluster and then fermented and aged in neutral barrels. A beautiful rose-gold color with aromas of fresh, beginning of summer cherries, strawberry patch, and crunchy rhubarb. On the palate this rosé has a medium to light weight with tart and fresh strawberry, pink grapefruit, wet stone, and salty rhubarb for days! Michelle DeWyngaert
A classic Cabernet Sauvignon for lovers of Napa wines! Blended from vineyards throughout the Napa Valley appellation for balance, this vintage is comprised of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot. The nose is deep and intense with stewed blackberry, plum, and eucalyptus and French vanilla and cinnamon from their use of 50% new French oak. The palate is rich and voluptuous, with those stewed black fruits, and the freshness of raspberry and red plum. An excellent pairing for the classic American steak dinner! Michelle DeWyngaert
55% Zinfandel blended with Carignane, Petite Sirah, Mourvedre, Alicante Bouschet, Grenache, Syrah, Barbera and a touch of whites for aromatics from old vine plantings (up to 100 years old) around Sonoma County, fermented with native yeasts in stainless steel and raised in a nice bit of French oak for a bold, bright-fruited, silky, and satisfying wine that is unbeatable at this price.
This is a rosé of terroir; intense and earthy. Bloomer Creek Vineyard is lovingly cared for by Kim and Debra Engle using organic methods, no herbicides, and no irrigation. The blend for 'Half Moon' is 90% Pinot Noir and 10% Cabernet Franc for that touch of herbal savoriness. The Pinot Noir spends six hours on the skins and is then blended with the Cabernet Franc. The juice is fermented in stainless steel and then bottled unfined, unfiltered, and with just a dash of SO2.
A native of Oregon, but thoroughly inspired by Burgundy, winemaker Doug Tunnell has been farming his 40 acre estate vineyard strictly organically for the last 25 years, and more recently certified Biodynamic. This bottling is a selection of barrels from various plots throughout his vineyard to get a true representation of the vintage each year. This years "Select" Pinot Noir has a beautiful nose of fresh roses, stems and all, red currant, raspberry, and juicy pomegranate. Indeed this is very Burgundian in style with just a bit more focus on the fruit. The wine is fresh and lively; for me it conjures a crisp, fall, afternoon. Michelle DeWyngaert
Broadside is a project of very talented winemaker Chris Brock. The Cabernet is fermented with wild yeasts and aged in barrels, 10% of which are new. The resultant wine is remarkably fresh and full bodied with an interesting spicy character and plenty of bright, tangy dark fruit.
It's easy to love this gulpable, peppery red blend from Broc Cellars! Chris Brockaway makes a wide range of California wine but the common denominators are that they must be made without additives (other than a small amount of SO2 as necessary), always fermented with indigenous yeasts, using grapes from vineyards that do not use synthetic chemicals (many of them certified organic), and of course they must be delicious. This years 'Love Red' is 77% Carignan from 70 year-old vines partially de-stemmed, 15% Valdiguié, and 8% Syrah, both whole-cluster. The wine is aged in neutral barrel and concrete and bottled with just a minimum of SO2. The nose is spicy with stewed black cherry, and on the palate lots of bright acidity, red currant, cherry juice, and just a little tannin to give it some grip with a bit of dried earth on the finish. Perfectly pleasant in every way. Michelle DeWyngaert
Let's be honest, who doesn't love rosé? There is a lot to love about this plush, summery rosé from Broc Cellars. Chris Brockaway makes a wide range of California wine but the common denominators are that they must be made without additives (other than a small amount of SO2 as necessary), always fermented with indigenous yeasts, using grapes from vineyards that do not use synthetic chemicals (many of them certified organic), and of course they must be delicious. The blend comes from the Ricetti, Rosewood, and Wirth Ranch vineyards in Mendocino and Solano Country Green Valley and is 80% Valdigue, 14% Zinfandel, and 6% Trousseau. This year's rosé is a deep salmon color, bursting with notes of ripe, juicy strawberry and watermelon with a salty, savory finish and plenty of acidity that keeps this sunny Mendocino wine from becoming too fruity. Michelle DeWyngaert
The Abbey Ridge Vineyard sits at one of the highest elevations in the Dundee Hills at ~600ft. These 40+ year-old vines are farmed organically and without irrigation; relying instead on cover crops to maintain the moisture/health of the soil. 2017 was a very successful and classic vintage for Oregon with no disease pressure. The winemakers describe this wine as having both rose petal and red fruit aromas as well as more savory notes of salumi, black pepper, and olive.
From the folks who run Hobo Wine Co., here we have the delicious new vintage of one of our favorite inexpensive Cabernets from California! Tart blackberry and ripe cassis mix with herbal hints and wildflower on the nose while broadly gracing the firm, rich, powerfully tannic palate. Sourced from many lesser known but sustainably or organically farmed vineyards throughout Sonoma county. Aged for nine months in neutral oak barrels.
Cooper Mountain Vineyards started in 1978 when Dr. Robert Gross and his wife, Corrine, planted the first Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vines in the unique soils of Cooper Mountain in the Chehalem Mountains of Oregon's Willamette Valley. Today, the estate has more than 100 acres dedicated to organic and biodynamic farming and winemaking. This Pinot Noir is refreshing and ripe, with brambly raspberry and cherry fruit, baking spice, and earthy flavors.
Cathy Corison's wines eschew the bold, heavy-handed flavors and dollops of massive French oak embraced by her Napa Valley counterparts, instead focusing on teasing deeply concentrated, ripened fruit from the deep, stony alluvial soils of her vineyards in Rutherford and St. Helena. With dark fruit and violet notes, this Cabernet is nothing short of impressive with allusive black cherry and black tea flavors, and meaty undertones. A quintessential example of power intersecting with elegance.
'Entre Nous' is a blend of fruit from La Colina Vineyard in Dundee Hills and the Four Winds Vineyard in the McMinnville Coast, all 100% Pinot Noir. This blend brings the ripeness and juiciness of the more inland vines, and the lift and elegance from the coastal influence. A small portion of new oak barrels and the rest neutral, frames this wine with a touch of baking spice, nothing dramatic, that will only continue to integrate as it ages. The nose has a beautiful floral, rose water aroma with notes of freshly picked white cherry, raspberry, and a sense of the volcanic soils that line the Willamette Valley. The palate is perfectly clean, almost austere with powdery tannins, but balanced by ripeness and power from the La Colina fruit. Michelle DeWyngaert
The Vineyard Select bottling is designed as the perfect "bistro blend" from Dashe Cellars. The 2017 is a blend of 80% Zinfandel, 9%Teraldego, 5% Tannat, 3% Mourvedre, and 3% Petite Sirah from vineyards throughout Sonoma, Contra-Costa, and Clarksburg. Each variety is vinified seperately and then aged together for 14 months in 100% used French oak barrels. This wine is everything you want from California Zinfandel without being too jammy or overpowering. The wine is juicy and fresh while also having enticing notes of forest floor and dried herbs. Michelle DeWyngaert
This is the newest release of Dashe's Vineyard Select, meant to be a food-friendly, "bistro wine". The blend is 80% Zinfandel, 9% Teraldego, 5% Tannat, 3% Mourvedre, and 3% Petite Sirah. The fruit for this bottling is sourced from a variety of vineyards Sonoma County, Contra-Costa, and Clarkesburg to create the perfect balance of ripeness and complexity. Each variety is fermented separately then aged for 14 months in 1-year-old French oak. Though I have not yet tasted this vintage, the Dashe wines have been a staple at Chambers Street for their consistently tasty Zinfandel. Michelle DeWyngaert
A beautiful example of Pinot Noir from the Demeter certified Johan Vineyard in the Willamette Valley. Exposed to cooling winds from the Van Duzer Corridor, it is the last picked of the Day Wines giving it a delicate freshness. The grapes are left 25% whole cluster during fermentation and then the juice is aged for 19 months in 15% new French oak, the rest neutral. This wine feels like Oregon to me. There is a perfect balance of richness and concentration to the flavor, while still showing enticing notes of fresh soil and dried herbs. The nose is a mix of fresh and stewed raspberry, rosemary, anise, and rose petals. The palate is plush with structured tannins that leaves me to believe that this will age nicely over the next several years. Michelle DeWyngaert
Drew Family Cellars was established in 2000 with a mission to create age-worthy, cool climate California Pinot Noir. They settled in the coastal appellation of Mendocino Ridge and planted their own estate in what was once an orchard, at 1250ft elevation. This bottling is a blend of fruit from their organically farmed estate and lots from like-minded farmers at the Valenti, Fashauer, Perli, and Wendling vineyards. The grapes are fermented with 20% whole-cluster bunches and aged in 10% new French oak, with the rest in neutral oak barrels. The nose is fully ripe, wild cherry, with a bit of stewed red fruit, licorice and dried herbs. The proximity to the coast and the abundance of fog keep the acidity well balanced with the richness of the fruit and that kiss of new French oak. MichelleDeWyngaert
A perennial favorite that we always wish there as more of, is this 100% Gamay from Edmunds St. John. The rosé is sourced from the Witter's Vineyard which lies on volcanic clay-loam, and the Barsotti Ranch which is on sandy, decomposed granite. The Witter's fruit brings a more aromatic perfume and lushness to the blend, while the Barsotti fruit brings its signature minerality and structure with a hint of iron on the nose. The grapes were destemmed and pressed into stainless steel where it stayed on the lees for a couple of months before bottling. Consistently delicious year after year! Michelle DeWyngaert
This is a juicy, incredibly drinkable expression of Cabernet Franc from the Finger Lakes! Sourced from Elizabeth's Vineyard on plots of thin loam over shale which gives the wine a lush, silky texture. The grapes are foot-stomped and then fermented whole cluster before being pressed and moved to old French oak barrels. The wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered after one year in old oak, and 10 months in steel, with just a small amount of SO2 added. On the nose are ripe blackberries, plum, and a bit of balsamic, and the on the palate are fresh and stewed raspberry, fresh rosemary, and soft soil. This wine will be excellent with burgers or wood-fired pizza slathered with tomato sauce! Michelle DeWyngaert
Let me start by saying this is not your parent's Zinfandel. This is a delightfully refreshing, 100% carbonic maceration of Zinfandel from the high elevation, Baldinelli Vineyard in the Shenandoah Valley. The vines here are roughly 30 years old, grown on sandy-loam soils, which comes through on the palate with powdery tannins. The wine is fresh and tart with notes of cranberry and fresh raspberry and savory qualities of salty black olive with just pleasantly grippy tannins to give this lighter red a nice back-bone. Serve this wine with a bit of a chill and pair it with a range of grilled proteins that will benefit from this juicy red.Michelle DeWyngaert
Drinking a Pinot Noir from Eyrie Vineyards is all the proof you need that these wines of the Willamette Valley deserve a place on the world's list of the most expressive and age-worthy wines. This single vineyard bottling from Roland Green stuck out the most to me in a tasting of five different Eyrie Pinots for its intense and captivating aromas. The Roland Green vineyard is positioned at about 550ft elevation planted over 30 years ago on rich volcanic soils, and like all their vineyards, the vines are own-rooted, non-irrigated, and certified organic. The nose is a powerful blend of ripe red and black cherry, tree bark and damp moss, a bit of salt and on returning to the wine, a touch of something smoky, like peat. The palate is concentrated with flavor and acidity. A beautiful wine that I cannot wait to revisit! Michelle DeWyngaert
Inspired by the wines of the Jura, Jason Lett decided to plant the first Trousseau vines in the Willamette Valley in 2012 and has farmed them organically ever since. The result is this beautiful, delicate and earth-driven wine. The grapes are destemmed and the juice is aged in 500L neutral puncheons, and then left unfined, unfiltered, and without sulfur at bottling. I love the light, coppery rose color of this wine and the nose of fresh soil, geranium and river rocks. The palate is lean and refreshing, but gentle tannins give the wine just enough structure. Michelle DeWyngaert
Folk Machine is a project from winemaker Kenny Likitprakong devoted to fun, food friendly wines from the Central Coast of California.This Pinot Noir is where Folk Machine all began and is composed from fruit from Mission Ranch and Ceder Lane Vineyard in Arroyo seco, Brosseau Vineyard from Chalone, and the Tom Ritchie Vineyard from the Sonoma Coast. The coastal influence that unites them all makes for a lighter, fresher style of Pinot Noir, clocking in at ~13% ABV. The wine is fermented spontaneously and kept on the lees for extra creaminess and then aged in oak barrels at least two years old for nine months. Pleasurable and easy-drinking, this Pinot Noir shows notes of bing cherry, ripe raspberry, and bit of soft, fresh herbs. Michelle DeWyngaert
I can't say that I've had much Syrah from Willamette, and indeed the Havlin Vineyard is relatively young (planted in 2009), but I'm already intrigued to find more. The vineyard is 100% dry-farmed and LIVE sustainable certified. The soil here is silt loam over ironstone bedrock, which not only helps keep the yields low on these younger vines, but also imparts a distinct mineral backbone to this wine. 20% whole cluster in the fermentation, aged for 18 months in neutral French oak, and then bottled with just a bit of SO2 in accordance with Mike Hinds' minimalist philosophy. The nose is rich with a touch of dark, bitter chocolate, and the palate presents a really beautiful, concentrated texture with black pepper and dried herbs. Perfectly savory, this wine is calling to be paired with something roasted. Michelle DeWyngaert
The 'Cotillon' red blend is the Frenchtown Farms' ode to classic Cotes du Rhone wines. Sourced from the organically farmed David Girard Vineyards at 1400ft elevation in the Sierra Foothills on well-draining volcanic soil. This wine displays the benefits of the extreme diurnal temperature shifts by being both beautifully ripe, and also full of vibrant acidity. The blend is 70% Mourvedre, 20% Grenache, and 10% Syrah all left whole-cluster, then foot-stomped and aged in old French barrels for 8 months. The nose is a an enticing mix of bright, maraschino cherry, juicy, red plum, and a savory meatiness with soft, fresh herbs. This will be perfect with Mediterranean fare or anything stewed with herbs de Provence! Michelle DeWyngaert
This cuvée is meant to be an overview of what the Santa Cruz Mountains have to offer, and is sourced from three different vineyards: 40% Upper Block Amaya Ridge, 35% Aptos Creek, and 25% Smith Road. While the blend varies a little vintage to vintage, the wine shows consistency in its expression of classic Santa Cruz restraint. Fine cranberry fruit with a hint of some baking and savory spices, this Pinot is finely structured, with delicate tannins and a fine acid backbone. Open and inviting now, this wine will also benefit from a few years of cellaring. Excellent with roast chicken, lobster rolls, or miso-broth ramen, this will work just as well without food, as it is aromatic and mesmerizing as a standalone experience. 600 cases produced. Andrew Farquhar
Hirsch Vineyards was established in 1980 on the true Sonoma Coast. These were some of the first vines planted this far West in what is now the Fort Ross-Seaview AVA. These vineyards run along the San Andreas Fault which means an abundance of different soil types contribute to complexity of these vines. This is the bottling that founder, David Hirsch, calls 'the Hirsch Hirsch' as he believes is it most representative of their unique terroir. Because of the diversity of soil types and aspects, each vineyard block is farmed and vinified separately, though all using biodynamic practices since 2014.
It is Mimi Casteel's incredible dedication to 'regenerative agriculture' that makes this wine from the Willamette Valley so special and sought-after. Her farming practices go beyond organics and work to actively restore the health of the soil and the land surrounding the vineyard, creating a living, breathing ecosystem. She believes, and I can't help but agree, that this unlocks more flavor and complexity in the grapes because more nutrients and biodiversity is available to the vines. Positioned along an east-facing slope of the Eola-Amity Hills, the Hope Well vineyard experiences an intense diurnal shift that helps maintain freshness even in this warmer vintage. This year she destemmed the grapes completely, with very gentle extraction, and then aged the wine in 10% new French oak, with the rest in neutral barrels for 10 months. Michelle DeWyngaert
Of all of the Kelley Fox Pinot Noirs that I have had the pleasure of tasting, this bottling is the most ethereal. The Star of Bethlehem Flower Block is positioned one acre behind the Maresh house where a famed cherry tree once stood and has since burned down. It is now the only block on the vineyard where the Star of Bethlehem Flower will grow, hence the name, and there is indeed something more floral to this bottling. The vines here are own-rooted Pommard clones, planted in 1991, tended lovingly with biodynamic practices by Kelley. As with all of her wines now, it is fermented whole cluster and aged in neutral barrels. The nose is delicate with notes of rose water, fresh raspberry, red currant, and soft sweet herbs, and the palate is bright with gentle tannins. If you're opening this now, it will do well with some air by decanting it an hour early. Michelle DeWyngaert
I am really enamored with this single-block bottling from Kelley Fox! The Maresh vineyard was planted in 1970 and is prized for its biodiversity; home to several kinds of fruit trees, an array of wildlife, and an abundance of cover crops. The Royal Ann block runs along a row of 100 year-old Royal Ann cherry trees and borders the Star of Bethlehem Flower block. Fermented ~50% whole cluster, and then aged in neutral French oak for about a year. This wine seems to defy physics by being both rich and opulent and also crystalline and vibrant. It has a beautiful floral quality on the nose, with notes of pomegranate and white cherries, intertwined with fresh rosemary and crushed rock. The palate is a bit riper with silky texture and notes of bitter-sweet amaro on the finish. This is a definitely a bottle to cellar, but pretty captivating already. Michelle DeWyngaert
'Wabi-Sabi' refers to the creation of something beautiful from things that are imperfect in some way. This red blend from Populis is an attempt to do just that with an unconventional mix from Mendocino of Carignane, Syrah, and Zinfandel made from 20-70 year-old vines. The grapes are partially destemmed and then aged in a mixture of polyethelene tanks and neutral oak barrels. Eben described this wine as "cheerful, a touch spicy, medium bodied and smooth with just a slight bit of tannins. Good with a slight chill but not too cold."
One of the first wines I ever loved was old-vine California Zinfandel, so I was very excited to taste this expression from Maître de Chai. The Stampede Vineyard was planted in the early 1920s with own-rooted Zinfandel on decomposed granite. Inspired by the wines of the famous Ridge Vineyards, this bottling is a field blend of mainly Zinfandel, with a bit of Mission and Carignan. The fermentation is done with 50% whole cluster bunches in open-top neutral oak and then aged for one year. The wine is a classic Zinfandel mix of fresh, ripe, and also dried red plum and raspberry. The tannins are present and driving, but not aggressive, well balanced by its fresh acidity, and a peppery finish. This wine will be excellent with flavorful game meats, and I look forward to trying it again in several years to see how it has progressed. Michelle DeWyngaert
Dollar per ounce this is one of the best values for Napa Valley fruit that you can find! Steve Matthiasson is a dedicated organic farmer and low-intervention winemaker. This is old-school California Cabernet Sauvignon at its finest. The blend for 2016 is from six different Napa vineyards; 85-90% Cabernet Sauvignon with a small percentage of Petit Verdot, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc. The wine is gently extracted with minimal pump-overs and fermented at a low temperatures. It is aged for 20 months in mostly used and less than 20% new French oak which adds just a touch of baking spice to the aroma and a silky texture to the tannins. This wine has a beautiful nose of freshly cut cedar, ripe purple plums, a touch of graphite and black tea, and the palate brings just a squeeze of lemon, fresh potting soil, savory herbs and raspberry. All signs lead to this being incredibly age worthy, but if you can't wait to open it, I recommend decanting for at least an hour. Michelle DeWyngaert
This is the ultimate bistro wine! Pour yourself a glass, close your eyes, and you're suddenly in a little French, or perhaps based on this blend, Italian bistro. This years "Tendu" is 47% Aglianco, 42% Montepulciano, and 11% Barbera from the Windmill Vineyard in the Dunnigan Hills AVA. Fermented in stainless steel, aged in neutral barrels, and then bottled with no additives and no sulfur, just pure, juicy goodness. Super pretty on the nose with violets, dried and fresh raspberry and purple plum. On the palate is a just the right balance of acidity, structure, and concentration with a dark, rocky finish. This is will be an excellent pairing for a wide range of savory fare from burgers, to stews, to roasted veggies! Michelle DeWyngaert
Sean Minor is a negociant production working with high quality vineyards throughout the central and north coast of California to create fresh, easy drinking, great value wines like this classic California Pinot Noir. Fermented with 100% de-stemmed grapes to emphasize the ripe fruit and aged in oak barrels to give it those quintessential sweet oak spices.
Richard Luftig, one of New York's best sommeliers, has made a Cabernet known for phenomenal quality and price: Pied a Terre Cabernet! Always one of our best-selling American reds, 2015 is a deep, ripe, and focused vintage for Pied a Terre. This is a fantastic Cabernet Sauvignon that has classic California character but more structure and reserve than a lot of riper wine. The tannic structure is tightly woven, with fine acid backbone and lush cassis, blackberry, and slightly redder berry fruit. This is a California Cabernet meant to be consumed with food, and will pear excellently with New York strip steak, pork loin, or coq au vin. Andrew Farquhar
Porter Creek offers the best of the Russian River Valley and proves why this AVA became so popular. The Estate bottling of Pinot Noir comes from their steep hillside vineyards farmed biodynamically by Alex Davis and family. The grapes are left about 20% whole cluster and then gently pressed, with punchdowns by hand, and then aged in oak barrels, ~25% new barrels are used to add a little "salt and pepper" as Alex would say. Though the nose is beautiful, it's all about the texture with this wine; silky and sensuous, with concentrated flavors of stewed cherry and blackberry, dried herbs, and forest floor, seasoned with clove and finishing with a lick of salty licorice. Drink this with roasted or seared salmon, or wild mushrooms to bring out the umami qualities of the wine! Michelle DeWyngaert
A classic example of Sonoma County Zinfandel. Aromatically, it has explosive cherries and berries, and on the palate it is rich and textured on the finish. Produced from hillside grown vines and blended with 5% Carignane for texture and overall harmony.
This is a truly unique expression of Zinfandel. It's not flashy, or bold, it embodies freshness and minerality (not words we generally associate with this grape). The Sky vineyards sit way up at 2100ft elevation on Mt. Veeder with 14 acres of Zinfandel, and a few of Syrah, on red clay soils. The vines are tended with only organic treatments, an abundance of cover crops, and no irrigation. Everything in the cellar is done by hand, fermented in open-top bins with native yeasts, punched down three times per day, pressed through an old basket press and aged in neutral oak barrels. All of that cool mountain air brings plenty of bright acidity to this wine with notes of fresh raspberry and blackberry, a touch of fresh herbs and white pepper. The palate has a beautiful, powdery texture from the clay soils, lifted by the wild, brambly fruit. Michelle DeWyngaert
The Estate bottling from Stolpman showcases a blend from each of the vineyard blocks. It's a real blessing to have complete control over their fruit each year and continue their commitment to dry-farming even in drought-ridden California. Their aim is to create a rich, concentrated wine without becoming jammy or viscous. The grapes are vinified 50% whole cluster in open-top fermenters and then aged in neutral barrels. The nose is unmistakably California Syrah with classic notes of cracked black pepper, fresh violets and rosemary, laid over stewed plums and ripe black cherries. The palate is rich with silky tannins giving it a gentle but firm backbone and a peppery finish. Michelle DeWyngaert