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2012 Olga Raffault, Chinon, Les Picasses, Loire Valley, France $26.89
Longtime readers of this column know that traditionally-minded Olga Raffault is not just our favorite producer of Chinon, but of Cabernet Franc grown anywhere in the world. The Les Picasses vineyard is one of the finest in Chinon, thus making it one of the finest Cabernet Franc vineyards in the world. Fifty+ year old vines grown on clay with a limestone base combined with minimalist winemaking give us one amazing Chinon. The 2012 is the densest Les Picasses I’ve ever had. Still, this wine is all about the earthy, minerally side of Chinon; beautiful raspberry fruit supports leather and soil tones, framed by mouth watering acidity and fine-grained tannins. While the 2012 Olga Raffault Les Picasses is certainly very enjoyable to drink now with charcuterie, grilled fatty ribeye or a simple pork shoulder roast, this wine will improve as it ages effortlessly in the cellar through 2040. I've had the pleasure of enjoying the 1978, 1989 and 1995 over the past few years and flipped over all three vintages. I'm very confident the 2012 will join the ranks of the above trio of mature vintages.

Special Price: $26.89 per bottle


2014 Produttori del Barbaresco, Barbaresco “Normale” $32.89 *net
Come and get it!!! Antonio Galloni's review (below) nailed it.  This is one of best versions of this wine I can remember. "The 2014 Barbarescos confirm all the potential they showed as recently bottled wines a year ago. Vibrant, perfumed and beautifully delineated, the 2014s capture the essence of what makes Nebbiolo so compelling. In short, the 2014 Barbarescos speak to the essence of site as expressed in one of the most unusual growing seasons in recent memory...It is a vintage that will especially please readers with classically leaning palates.” - Antonio Galloni, Vinous 10/31/17 "The 2014 Barbaresco is fabulous. Lifted in the glass, with striking perfume and captivating translucency, the Produttori's Barbaresco captures all the elements that make this vintage so compelling. Today, the 2014 is very, very young. What stands out most is its textural finesse and balance. It will be a number of years before the aromas and flavors are fully expressive. The only thing that might come as a surprise is the touch of new cask in this wine. Otherwise, the 2014 is one of the finest editions of the straight Barbaresco I can remember tasting, not to mention a superb example of how magnificent this vintage is in Barbaresco. Don't miss it.” - 93 Antonio Galloni, Vinous & 94 Wine Advocate

Special Price: $32.89 per bottle


2004 Lopez de Heredia, Rioja Reserva, Viña Tondonia $35.99
Lopez de Heredia's Viña Tondonia Rioja Reserva is one of Spain's greatest wines. In fact, if I were to only buy one red wine from Spain, it would be Viña Tondonia. With complexity and longevity that would embarrass most first growth Bordeaux and at about 1/10 the price, this is truly an amazing wine and equally amazing value. Lopez de Heredia is perhaps the most traditional winery in the world with little changing in the way they make wine over the last 130 years. The 2004 Viña Tondonia Reserva is the greatest young Viña Tondonia Reserva Red since the legendary 1994. The nose offers enticing aromas of dried cherries, cigar box, leather and faint vanilla bean. The perfectly balanced and supremely elegant palate is well structured with good acidity and refined tannins that frame the complex flavors of dusty minerals, plums, dried herbs, orange peel and hazelnuts. This wine has amazing depth. As if it matters: 94 Wine Advocate Buy a case and watch it develop and gain in complexity over the next 30 years.

Special Price: $35.99 per bottle


2014 Arterberry Maresh, Dundee Hills Pinot Noir, Maresh Vineyard $57.89
Grand Cru vineyard + some of the oldest vines in the state (44 years old) + superior clones + outstanding winemaker + dream growing season = Insanely great Oregon Pinot Noir. The 2014 Maresh isn’t just one of the greatest Pinots of the Oregon vintage, it competes against the very best of Burgundy in 2014 too. The Maresh vineyard is the most structured of winemaker Jim Maresh’s Pinots and upon opening, the wine is fairly tight, but with aeration begins to open up and suck you in with its beguiling aromatics of old vine Dundee Hills Pommard and Wädenswil fruit, violets and wet forest. The palate will stop experienced tasters in their tracks as it shows gorgeous old vine fruit in a subtle manner that is quite obviously Dundee Hills, but the wine is structured and spherical like a great red Burgundy from Chambolle Musigny. Aged in neutral barrels to allow the fruit and terroir to shine forth, the 2014 Maresh vineyard is still a baby, but already reveals its ultra-pure fruit and white truffle notes along with sneaky concentration and velvety tannins. Amazingly, at this point, the wine is most impressive on the long, long finish - a great sign of its future potential. A wine to drink over the next 20 years. If you care, 95 points Wine Advocate

Special Price: $57.89 per bottle



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