The Grape Tray

June 22nd 2018 Newsletter

Double Gold WSWA and Gold Los Angeles International Wine Competition

Winemaker Notes: A bright and shiny pink rosé with hints of rose gold. Fresh and youthful aromas of wild strawberry, white blossoms and raspberry with hints of white pepper from the Syrah grape. Juicy and well-structured, this dry rosé offers tart cherry and floral notes with minerality and some spice on the finish. 45% Grenache Noir, 35% Cinsault, 15% Syrah and 5% Rolle. $23 Our Price $14.95

2016 Morgan Twelve Clone SLH Pinot Noir

Winemaker Notes: This special wine demonstrates the power and finesse of Pinot Noir from the Santa Lucia Highlands. It displays aromas of dark cherry, saddlewood, and sweet herbs. Flavors of wild cherry are complemented by notes of toasted oak and raspberry. Perfectly poised with fresh acidity, this wine is incredibly food-versatile. It is a wonderful accompaniment to roast chicken and grilled salmon, as well as almost any duck, beef or lamb preparation. $35 Our Price $28.99

Wine Spectator 90
Clos des Lunes Lune Blanche 2015

Very flattering mirabelle plum, white peach and yellow apple fruit flavors are backed by a hint of anise on the juicy, forward finish. Lovely hedonism here. Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc. Drink now. 5,833 cases made. –JM $22 Our Price $19.45 (Arrives 6/27/18)

Wine Advocate 86
2015 Albert Bichot • Bourgogne “Secret de Famille”

The 2015 Bourgogne "Secret de Famille" comes from fruit sourced from around the Côtes de Nuits as usual. I have to say, I appreciate the joie-de-vivre on the simple nose that bounds along with black cherry and cranberry aromas. The palate is sweet and ripe on the entry, but there is also good acidity here and a dash of black pepper enlivening the finish. Enjoy this over the next couple of years. $23 Our Price $18.65

Wine Advocate 93+
2015 Familiar Air Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Composed of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot, 4% Syrah and 3% Petit Verdot, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon displays a deep garnet-purple color and fragrant notes of red roses, red and black currants, menthol and violets with touches of cinnamon stick and forest floor. Medium to full-bodied, muscular and with a firm backbone of ripe, grainy tannins, the finish is not just persistent, it is thought-provoking and refreshing such that it keeps you coming back for more. Although it is drinking well now, it should have more to give with 2-3 years in the cellar and continue to give pleasure over the following 15 years. $85

Wine Spectator 90
TURLEY Zinfandel California Juvenile 2016

This is loaded with pepper and smoky sweet anise flavors. The raspberry flavors take on tannins toward the finish. Best after 2019. 15,000 cases made. –TF $20 Our Price $24.99

2017 Lewis Napa Sauvignon Blanc

Like the Florida Keys our 2017 Sauvignon Blanc is a string of tropical island delights filled with ripe guava, citrus and sandalwood spice. Fleshy yet focused with limoncello, key lime pie and a trace of toasty oak, the wine has an athletic nature with notes of mineral and mango rind framing the finish. $38 (Arrives 6/27/18)

Wine Spectator 93
SHAFER Cabernet Sauvignon
Stags Leap District One Point Five 2015

Strikingly complex and engaging, offering tiers of flavor, including dark berry, cedar, graphite and oak, presented in a style that lets the elements speak through the tannins. Drink now through 2030. 9,000 cases made. –JL $95

2014 Vice Versa Le Petit Vice Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley

Made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from acclaimed vineyards in the Napa Valley, the 2014 Le Petit Vice is a true testament to the 2014 vintage; full-bodied, layered and refined. Offering complex aromatics of plum, red cherry and cassis, with subtle hints of licorice, black tea and thyme. It's rich mouthfeel excites the palate while maintaining a beautiful balance of ripe fruit and acidity. With integrated fine tannins, the 2014 Le Petit Vice rolls like a wave into a seemingly never-ending finish. This is a wine to treasure and share for years to come. $75

2013 Heitz Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: Our 2013 Napa Valley Cabernet is a knockout from a vintage that has been declared a modern classic. One sniff, and anticipation takes hold. Beautiful aromas of vine-ripened blackberry contrast perfectly with spicy notes of nutmeg. There is a luscious weight and texture to the wine, but also a racy edge of well-balanced acidity on the palate. This is an extraordinary Cabernet - powerful, yet elegant, with all the wonderful aging potential you've come to expect from Heitz wines.$55 Our Price $44.95

Wine Advocate 94
2010 Chateau Montelena Cabernet Sauvignon Estate

Medium to deep garnet in color, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is a little mute at this stage, offering up glimpses of crushed blackberry, red plums and wild blueberries notes with touches of pencil shavings, dried Mediterranean herbs and forest floor. Medium-bodied, it has a velvety backbone and mouth-filling red and blue fruits, finishing long and earthy. Drink 2018 – 2040. Market Price $110-$155 (4 bottles available at $125/bottle. Please email

Wine Spectator 94
TOR Chardonnay Napa Valley Carneros
Torchiana Beresini Vineyard 2016

Showing flashes of jazzy oak around a core of zesty green apple, pear and melon flavors, this white gains depth and persistence as it sails along on a long, persistent finish. Drink now through 2022. 375 cases made —J.L $65

Vinous 92 pts
Mendel 2014 Unus Malbec

(aged for 16 months in all new French oak): Bright dark ruby. Deep, brooding aromas of blackcurrant, boysenberry, licorice, espresso and sweet oak, all lifted by violet and minerals. At once powerful and seamless, with harmonious acidity providing terrific definition and lift to the densely packed flavors of dark berries, flowers, licorice and spices. A more vibrant and penetrating wine than the 2015 Mendoza Malbec, conveying an impression of chalky energy. Finishes long and lively, with firm tannins to support a graceful evolution in bottle. $48 Our Price $38.95

Wine Advocate 97
2004 Dominus Estate Proprietary Red

Like so many 2004s, the 2004 Dominus is a full-bodied wine showing brilliantly at age ten, with loads of complex cedar, kirsch, Christmas fruitcake, black currants and spice box. It has a creamy, opulent texture, but remains light on its feet. This sexy wine is showing exceptionally well and is best drunk over the next 10-15 years. Not one of the longest-lived wines from Dominus, but it is certainly at a wonderful point in its evolution right now. Market $175-$325. (4 bottles available at $175/bottle. Please email

Wine Spectator 91
WITHER HILLS Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2017

Honeysuckle, peach cobbler and Key lime pie notes are aromatic, lush and expressive, set on a crisp, sleek frame, with plenty of juiciness and refreshment, finishing with a dash of grapefruit zest. Drink now. 32,000 cases imported.—M.W $14 Our Price $10.95

 Wine Spectator 92

A smooth, polished style, offering black cherry, black currant, earth and mineral aromas and flavors. Dense and vibrant, with a lingering aftertaste of black fruit and mineral. Excellent length. 700 cases imported Best from 2021 through 2033.—B.S. $38 Our Price $35.99 (Back in stock)

Wine Spectator 94
Knights Valley 2015

Remarkably complex and nuanced, with a firm mix of cedary oak and mocha notes and tight dark berry, anise, gravel and spice flavors, finishing long and persistent. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petit Verdot. Best from 2021 through 2032.—J.L. $225

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