Herman Story descendant 3 barrel production

Giovanni Grandinetti worked his way up the wine ladder, learning the wine trade literally from the ground up.  He operated the crushpad, worked the vineyards, cleaned the barrels, etc.  But it was not until he started working for some smaller, boutique wineries that he found his passion – making wine.  He went back to school to expand his wine education and landed a job at Herman Story, where he is still the #2 guy behind Russell From.  Russell took him under the wings and guided him to his own label “Lost Blues”.Lost Blues 2013 “Walking Boss” Syrah Paso Robles
Retail 47.00 – GGWC 43.99
Use code LOSTBLUES upon checkout

This wine is a real stunner sourced from two amazing Paso Robles vineyrads (Terra Bella & Shadow Canyon).  This wine excels from the minute you pull the cork.  Gorgeous, bold aromas jump out of the glass upon impact.  This full-bodied youngster shows full-bodied richness with a silky and elegant texture.  The wine is loaded with intense black stone fruit, violets, and a touch of meatiness, anise and hints of dark chocolate.  This wine could benefit from a good decanting.  I’d suggest to open it in the morning when you brew your pot of coffee and enjoy at night, or double decant aggressively a good 2 hours before dinner.  This wine is hard to resist now and will only evolve into its next phase with some time in the bottle.  Only 3 barrels (70 cases) were produced.

Click here or on the links above to order!

Philippe Melka’s Hot New Cab-vaganza – Includes FREE SHIPPING!

When you have two of the best people in industry at the helm, you can only expect the best of the best.  Philippe Melka (winemaker) and Jim Barbour (vineyard manager extraordinaire) have turned the old Long Vineyards (remember this great vineyard site from some years ago?) into a top notch Cabernet producer.  Gandona(humble man in Portuguese) is rooted in tradition and a passion for transforming land into something extraordinary. It’s born from an estate that rests upon a sloping hillside high above the beauty of Napa Valley and Lake Hennessey – its vineyards, carved from the steep terrain and planted in four blocks, each possess their own distinct personality.

The site of Gandona Estate had its beginnings (just) a few years earlier, when in 1862 Daniel K. Dille homesteaded the property, located just downhill from Pritchard’s future home. California had just experienced the silver rush and Napa County had recently been formed. Here, Dille worked as a laborer and maintained the land. The property sold several times throughout the years until the Bob Long family purchased it in 1966 and planted the site’s first vineyard. In 1977, they entered the wine business in earnest and founded a small winery called Long Vineyards. Sandi Belcher (Arns) produced great Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and a late harvest Johannesburg Riesling from the estate. In 2006, Manuel Pires and his wife, Cristina, purchased an estate on Pritchard Hill and began development of what would become Gandona Estate.

Gandona 2013 “Encosta” Cabernet Sauvignon, Estate Pritchard Hill Napa Valley
Retail 98.00 – GGWC 94.99
Use shipping code ENCOSTA13 upon checkout

Encosta (“slope”) Cabernet Sauvignon originates from the steeply terraced hillsides of the Gandona Estate and its terra cotta-colored, volcanic soil.  The 2013 vintage is a wine celebrating the very soul of hillside fruit capturing the essence of the vine’s interaction with earth and sun. It opens with aromas of bright red cherry and cranberry with underlying notes of cassis and tobacco.  On the palate, the wine shows a juicy, full mouth feel reminiscent of fresh black and ripe cherries. Rounding out the mid-palate are finely grained, sweet mountain tannins that reveal a beautiful marriage between them and well integrated oak.  The lingering finish is laced with nuances of rich cocoa powder and supported by a strong acid backbone demonstrating a wine worthy of aging.

Robert Parker 94 Points: “The 2013 Gandona Vineyards Encosta Cabernet Sauvignon, a blend of 97% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Cabernet Franc, is an all estate wine made by Philippe Melka. This wine is on a fast evolutionary track, with complex notes of cedar wood, licorice, blackcurrants and tobacco leaf, all from a medium-bodied wine with light tannin, luscious fruit and a delicious, supple mouthfeel. Drink it over the next decade.”

Grand Re-Opening and High-End Cabernet Tasting!

No need to drive to Napa in this stormy weather. Just come to Golden Gate Wine Cellars instead.

Check out our newly remodeled store, and experience a phenomenal selection of hard-to-find Napa Cabernets!


Join us TODAY from 1-5 PM
2337 Ocean Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94127
High-End Napa Cabernet Tasting
$15.00 per guest

Seven Barrel Exquisite Syrah by Pax Mahle

Pax Mahle has been at it for a few decades now.  It started out on the East Coast as a sommelier.  After taking a position as a wine buyer on the West Coast, it did not take long for the winemaking bug to hit him and that was the end of one career and the beginning of a very interesting new one.  The Barrel & Ink venture is unique as each varietal is made by a different winemaker. For instance their Cabernet is made by Aaron Pott.  Only 175 cases of this great Syrah were produced, which was sourced from two well-regarded vineyards Griffin’s Lair and Alder Springs, both sources of tremendous wines.

Barrel & Ink 2013 Syrah
Retail 42.00 – GGWC 39.99
Use code INK13 upon checkout

This wine explodes from the start.  Loaded with bright and bold blue and black stone fruit, a touch of lychee and fresh flowers jump out of the glass.  On the palate this youngster will blow you away with a Cote Rotie like quality and flavors of exotic fruit.  The Wine is rich, full in body and very complex awith layer upon layer of lush fruit that is well-refined.  The finish is long and complex and not too tannic for such a bold wine.  The 2013 Barrel & Ink is a blend of 85% Syrah and 15% Grenache. Sadly only 7 barrels were produced, so this wine will go fast!

Click here or on the links above to order!

Petite Sirah Stunner, 94 Points ONLY 5 CASES ALLOCATED!

The new wave of Petite Sirah winemaking going on these days is drawing attention and changing the way this grape is regarded. Surging forward is the recognition by winemakers, insiders, wine judges and critics that Petite Sirah is a time-tested noble grape that is truly deserving the status as a classic California varietal.  Robert Biale has been producing this varietal for years, and I would say that this might be the best one he has ever produced.

Robert Biale 2012 Petite Sirah Thomann Station, Napa Valley 
Retail 56.00 – GGWC 53.99
Use code BIALE upon checkout
OK to mix and match with Biale Zinfandel

Another great undertaking by Biale. The 2012 “Thomann Station”offers up dark, rich, concentrated fruit. The aromas are ripe black currents with hints of sweet vanilla. The palate has a soft entry with flavors of dark plum and currents that leads to a long supple finish.

Robert Parker 94 Points: “One of the classics from Biale is their 2012 Petite Sirah Thomann Station Vineyard, a vineyard that was planted and managed by the Martini family. The color of the 2012 is a dense ruby/purple, and the wine exhibits pure blueberry and black raspberry fruit, a full-bodied mouthfeel, stunning richness, depth, and intensity, and a majestic finish. Drink it over the next 10-15 years.”

Click here or on the links above to order!

Golden Gate Wine Cellars is remodeling!

News Flash:

Golden Gate Wine Cellars is remodeling our store
to make it “earthquake safe.”

On TUESDAY and WEDNESDAY we are offering 10% OFF on ALL wines
in preparation for remodeling work.
Use code 
REMODEL10OFF upon checkout.
This code cannot be used with other discount codes.

The grand re-opening will be on Saturday January 23rd.
We will celebrate with a High-End Napa Cabernet Tasting 
that you will not want to miss!

FYI, All of my existing solid redwood wine racks are for sale!
If you are interested in sprucing up or expanding your wine cellar, be sure to call me ASAP!

Aaron Pott & Michel Rolland’s Inaugural hot new 2012 Cabernet

Jericho Canyon was created some 25 years ago by Marla and Dale Bleecher, but it was not until they hired “hot shot winemaker” Aaron Pott and the in-demand consulting winemaker Michel Rolland that the winery received some notice from the wine world.

From the Winemaker:  The Chimera is a mythical beast enjoying the wings of Pegasus, the body of a lion, the tail of a serpent, and the fire breathing head of a dragon. OurChimera is a proprietary blend harnessing the individuality and strengths inherent to each of our estate grown Bordeaux varietals; the result is a wildly imaginative, dazzling representation of the property.

Jericho Canyon 2012 “Chimera” Cabernet, Napa Valley
Retail 120.00 – GGWC 109.99
FREE SHIPPING on 4 or more bottles
Use code JERICHO upon checkout
Benefitting from 2012’s near perfect growing season, Aaron Pott, & Michel Rolland gently guided the fruit for the inaugural Chimera into a flawless release.  The wine has an intense dark color with stunning aromatics of black cherries and blackberries jumping out of the glass accompanied by hints of fig, vanilla and a touch of dark cocoa beans. On the palate this complex wine serves up a dose of black stone fruit, figs, crème brulee and a whiff of cedar and earth.  The lush palate leads into a long intense finish with velvety-like tannins.

Tiny producer wins blind tasting

Our Tasting Group lined up an amazing lineup of hard-to-find Grenaches:

  • Carlisle (Rossi) 93 WS
  • Keplinger 93 WS
  • Saxum (James Berry) 93 WS
  • Outpost 93 Galloni
  • Alban 94 Galloni
  • Sanguis (Verve) 93 Galloni
  • Limerick Lane 94 Galloni
  • Samsara 93 Galloni
  • A Tribute to Grace 93 Galloni
  • Draognette (Sebastiano)


Two brothers (John & Steve Dragonette) teamed up with their good buddy Brandon Sparks-Gillis to pursue their live-long dream to make wine.  They gained valuable experiences at wineries like Sine Qua Non, Torbreck, Fiddlehead Cellars before they started this awesome venture.  Over the past couple of years the press has been (rightfully so) generous to these three great guys.  They source from some of the most sought after vineyards in Santa Barbara, Santa Rita Hills & Santa Ynez. This bottling was sourced 100% from John Sebastiano’s vineyard in the Santa Rita Hills.

Dragonette 2013 Grenache “John Sebastiano” Santa Rita Hills
Retail 44.00 – GGWC 39.99
Use code DRAG13GREN upon checkout

On the nose, this Grenache displays its cool climate origins, with high-register red fruits, such as ripe raspberry, strawberry and loganberry mingling with complex smoky earth notes, pine and herbal notes of fresh thyme, rosemary, mint, and oregano.  On the palate the wine is energetic and lively, as red fruits (strawberries, pomegranate) mingle with citrus notes of blood orange, orange peel and fresh herbs (thyme), anise and tar.  The wine has great lift from fresh tannins and ample, mouth-watering acidity and minerality (stones and seashells), and it finishes with great length and freshness.

Superb Pinot Noir

Originally making wines on California’s Central Coast, Ken Wright saw the unique potential for winemaking in Oregon’s Willamette Valley while visiting friends in the 1980s. The different terroirs reminded him of Burgundy, and he packed up his family, belongings and 10 barrels of wine, and moved there in 1986 to focus on vineyard designate bottling. Ken’s pioneering spirit led him to open Ken Wright Cellars in historic Carlton, Oregon, in the 1990s, where he produces many different single-vineyard Pinot Noirs to best convey the distinct characteristics of each location. His deep understanding and appreciation of the Oregonian geology have earned him a cult following.

Ken Wright 2014 Pinot Noir “Savoya” Yamhill/Carlton, Willamette Valley
Retail 63.00 – GGWC 59.99
Use code KENWRIGHT upon checkout.

This is a big, burly yet extremely elegant Pinot Noir.  Bold, bright deep red and black exotic aromas jump out of the glass. Reminding me of some Russian River DuMol wines.  This Savoya greats you with hints of spicy aromas of ripe blackberry, raspberry and strawberry jam notes on the lush palate. This youngster is loaded with bright fruit, good acid and a touch of subtle oak spices and a whiff of espresso beans and tobacco.  This wine evolves with time in the glass with even greater intensity on the long finish.

Click here or on the links above or call 415-337-4083 to order!


Kenefick Ranch Winery and Vineyard is owned by retired San Francisco neurosurgeon Dr. Thomas P. Kenefick, and his two children Caitlin and Chris Kenefick. In 1978 Dr. Kenefick acquired a 125-acre vineyard property next door to the Eisele Estate (Araujo, now owned by Chateau Latour). This vineyard was head pruned and dry farmed with old Italian varietals. Over the next 20 years these were replaced with Bordeaux varietals on vertical shoot positioning and drip irrigating for higher quality grapes. 95% of the grapes are sold to various wineries and only small quantities are produced from the estate.

Kenefick Ranch 2012 Cabernet Franc “Caitlin’s Select” Estate
Retail 55.00 – GGWC 49.99
FREE SHIPPING on 6, use code KEN12CF upon checkout

Notes of dark cherry, underlining baker’s chocolate and strong currant notes greet the nose out of the glass. Raspberry preserve, custard and creamy notes are supported by a well rounded tannin profile and finished by integrated red cherry notes mingling with the French Oak spicy notes. Only 350 cases produced.

Click here or on the links above or call 415-337-4083 to order!