Stags’ Leap 2018 Napa Valley Viognier is a delight. I have to admit, Viognier is an interesting critter–it ranges from tangy and crisp to creamy and spicy. Stags’ Leap Viognier displays zingy acidity and crispness with layers of citrus and peach. Fresh, clean fruit notes come right to the top in this terrific white. 32.00
Stags’ Leap 2018 Napa Valley Chardonnay delivers immediately with a crazy quilt of aromas that are repeated on the palate: lemon/lime, tropical fruit and rich, but subtle vanilla/caramel. Not your grandmother’s Chardonnay. 32.00
A terrific Zin might make some people think of cigars. Not me–I’ll take the Zin–especially this one–and leave the cigar. Comprised of Lodi Zin with a bit of Petite Syrah, Petit Verdot, and a splash of Cabernet Sauvignon, there is no way Cigar Zin is not going to be a big guy. Sure enough, it weighs in at a hefty 15.4 abv. Full-bodied and layered with mouth-watering dark fruit, Cigar carries through with graceful power. And yes, there should be a picture of steak somewhere on the label. 20.00
Bodegas Williams & Humbert may not be a household name in this country, but if you want to discover what great sherry should be, Williams & Humbert Dry Sack 15 Year Solera Especial and “Don Zoilo” Pedro Ximenez would be a hell of a good place to start.
Dry Sack 15 Year Solera Especial is a medium sweet sherry made using the Solera method–a time-honored method of blending tiers of sherry barrels of different ages–in this case with an average age of 15 years. Time works its magic to produce aromas and flavors of raisins, figs, nuts, and vanilla. Makes a great aperitif. 17.00
If Dry Sack makes a great aperitif, “Don Zoilo” Pedro Ximenez 12 year-old sherry is the ideal dessert wine. Rich and sweet, Don Zoilo lingers on the palate with lingering and complex flavors of raisins and figs. 29.00
A To Z is a Cracker Jack Oregon winery that takes its wines seriously–but likes to have some along the way–hence, Bubbles sparkling Rose. Bubbles 750ml bottle comes with a bottle cap top, or in handy 250ml cans. Both are just made for taking along with you. Bubbles is happy marriage of Pinot Noir with a splash of Chardonnay for good measure. Party wine for sure. 20.00
Beaulieu Vineyard is one of California’s oldest wineries–and it wears its age well. Whether it’s the entry level BV Coastal brand, or BV’s premium labels, you get a lot of bang for your buck.
BV’s Tapestry Reserve Red Blend Napa Valley and BV Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley will hold their own with some of the best old world offerings.
BV’s Tapestry Reserve Red Blend Napa Valley, 2016 is a Bordeaux style blend–a magical five-varietal blend–a Tapestry of aromas and flavors, seamlessly woven together. Look out France, BV has your number. 65.00
BV Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, 2016 is an American Classic. 97% Cabernet Sauvignon, with just a dash of Petite Verdot, George de Latour is the sort of bottle you you can stash for years–or as long as you can keep your hands off it. WA gave this vintage 97 points–not surprising. What a gem–and gems don’t come cheap. 145.00