100 Case Blind Tasting Winner!

Grenache is not in everyone’s wine vocabulary and it still confuses many Cabernet and Pinot drinkers.  It is not as bold, bacon-fatty spicy as Syrah, yet it is more elegant and complex.  Last week was one of our last tasting meetings of the year and we decided on Grenache.  We lined up some great wines with an amazing outcome

  • Booker “Ripper” (96 WA)
  • Ojai (94 AG)
  • Beckman “Pursima” (93 WA)
  • Two Hands (93 WS)
  • Tablas Creek (94 AG)
  • Pax (93 AG)
  • Denner (93+ WA)
  • Paul Lato (94 RP)
  • Herman Story (94 AG)
  • Tofanelli

The surprise winner – TOFANELLI!

Vince Tofanelli the man behind many great Zinfandels (his own label, Turley, Neyers etc.) produced 100 cases of an amazing Grenache.  This is only the second vintage, so you might be confused – not Zin, not Petite Sirah!

Tofanelli 2012 Grenache “Estate” Napa Valley
Retail 42.00 – GGWC 39.99
FREE SHIPPING on 6+ Bottles, use code TOF12GREN upon checkout
(can mix & match with Tofanelli Zinfandel)

On the nose you are greeted by bright aromatics of black raspberry, a touch of jasmine and orange blossom notes.  The wine is typical Tofanelli intense, with layered black and red stone fruit, cassis,  a touch of pepper spice and rose petals. Seamless wine that is extremely elegant and complex. An ideal Thanksgiving and Holiday wine – splash decant, but you can lay this wine down for some years to come as well.  Only 4 barrels produced.

Click here or on the links above to order!

Down Under stunner 20% OFF

Last week I enjoyed an afternoon visiting with Donal O’Dwyer who flew all the way from Australia with a few sample bottles of wine!  I tasted his new 2009 Cabernet (400 cases produced), which will be in stock shortly, as well as a latest venture, his 2010 Shiraz (only 100 cases produced) – we are taking orders NOW!

The 2009 Cabernet all estate is by far THE BEST wine he has ever produced, it will put his 2006 vintage to shame!  The Shiraz (sourced from his neighbor’s vineyard) is finger licking good!  Eventually Donal will produce his own “Estate” Shiraz as the vines are still a little young so he is selling that fruit and making trial batches as references for future releases.

O’Dwyer 2009 “Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon, Clare Valley
Retail $75.00 – Retail 65.00
ONLY $59.99 per bottle with FREE SHIPPING on 12!!!!
FREE SHIPPING on 12 or more, use code ODW upon checkout (can mix and match with his Shiraz)

The Cabernet, which I am sipping while writing this note will elevate you to other galaxies.  The nose is gorgeous, amazing black stone fruit jumps out of the glass.  The palate is mouth coating and teeth staining black stone fruit that is very well-balanced and extremely complex.   One would think Napa and Bordeaux visited the Clare Valley!

Lush black currant, with a hint of chocolate and mocha notes lead into a 45 second long crescendo.  The tannins are there, and I suggest decanting this wine an hour or two before consuming.  The 2009 O’Dwyer Cabernet is drinking well now, but can benefit from a year or two in the cellar and will age gracefully for a good 10-12 years.  400 cases were produced and ONLY 50 are coming to the US.  Because of the big following, I anticipate this wine to be sold out before it arrives here!

We are commencing the PRE-SALE offer today.   The wine is NOT YET in stock and is scheduled to arrive late January 2015. Well worth waiting for, really!!

O’Dwyer 2010 Shiraz, Clare Valley
Retail 70.00 – GGWC 65.00, PRE SALE 59.99
FREE SHIPPING on 12 or more – use code ODW upon checkout
(can mix and match with O’Dwyer Cabernet)

The 2010 O’Dwyer Shiraz offers a deep dark purple hue and intense aromatics of black berries and violets with a touch of pepper, tea and bacon fat character.  The wine oozes on the palate, full in body with rich and seductive flavors of black berries, chocolate, creme de cassis, and a whiff of smokiness that lingers on the back palate.  The wine is lush, yet very elegant and intense with silky tannins on the long lasting finish.   Only 100 cases produced, and only 5 are coming to the US!!

All orders received after November 30 will receive a pre-sale price of $65.00 with FREE SHIPPING on 12 bottles. Pre-Sale ends December 12, 2014.

Click here or on the links above to order!

*Free shipping on qualifying orders to a single address within the continental United States. Alaska and Hawaii orders will receive discounted air freight.

Bargain Napa Blend of the week

Chris Corley is a Monticello descendant and of course he was set out to make wine.  He did not always agree with the family practice and decided with the help of his wife “Jules” to create the Jules and Barrelhead winery. The Jules wines are well-made Napa Valley blends under $30.00!  This small production of 48% Cabernet Franc, 44% Merlot, 8% Syrah was sourced from two great vineyards the Oak Knoll District of the Napa Valley. The wine is built on the framework of a bold Cabernet Franc, which provides the structure and depth that is essential in crafting wines that are intended for moderate to long term aging. The secondary layer on this framework is Merlot, which softens some of the edges without compromising the structure. Merlot also contributes a slightly brighter fruit component to both the nose and the palate which nicely balances the darker tones from the other varietals. The tertiary layer is Syrah, which melts over the first two wines, filling in the gaps, deepening the core texture and rounding out the long finish.

Jules 2012 Vin Rouge (Red Blend), Napa Valley
Retail 33.00 – GGWC 29.99
FREE SHIPPING on a FULL case – use code JULES12 upon checkout

On the nose, you’ll find deep black and purple berry aromas, mocha and coffee. There is a subtle beam of lavender and vanilla which gives way to a light toastiness.  On the palate, you encounter a dark rich wine, especially after it is decanted for an hour or so, allowing the tannins to melt a bit. The attack maintains a brightness and vigor, which quickly subsides and softens into a deeply textured rich core. The finish is long with a slight grip of chewy tannin framing a long rich fall off the back of the palate.

Click here or on the links above to order!

*Free shipping on qualifying orders to a single address within the continental United States. Alaska and Hawaii orders will receive discounted air freight.

“The” Pinot of the year – 225 cases produced/ 6 cases allocated

Despite only being six miles from the Pacific, Rice-Spivak is still the most inland of the vineyards Cobb works with. Even so, it’s a very cool site. The 2012 growing season has yielded the finest vintage of Rice-Spivak Vineyard Pinot Noir ever made. While Rice-Spivak’s Dijon and Swan Pinot Noir plantings, northern exposure, and unique volcanic ash-laden soils always produce a complex, aromatic wine with excellent acidity and earthiness, the 2012 has a level of depth and concentration that is remarkable. It also possesses more black fruit and spice layers than we traditionally see from this vineyard, all at a low alcohol level.

Cobb 2012 Pinot Noir “Rice-Spivak” Sonoma Coast
Retail 75.00 – GGWC 69.99
FREE SHIPPING on 6+, use code COBB12RS upon checkout

On impact this wine will surprise you as dark aromas of layered cherries jump out of the glass. The wine is full in body, yet extremely elegant (not delicate). About 1/3 of the wine is whole cluster press and it shows in the flavors on the mid-palate. Gorgeous color and flavors from start to finish. This wine offers stunning black cherry and plum flavors with some savory spiciness on the palate. The tannins are there but not aggressive at all finishing with a silky, strawberry tartness that is very pleasant and appealing. Only 225 cases were produced and I was allocated a mere 6 of them, so HURRY!