February 8th, 2019 Newsletter - The Grape Tray

February 8th, 2019 Newsletter

Wine Spectator 94

A polished, sophisticated version, boasting violet, black currant, blackberry, graphite and toasty oak aromas and flavors. Impeccably balanced and approachable now, yet should develop for a decade or more. Petit Verdot and Syrah. Best from 2021 through 2035. 2,500 cases made. –BS $25 Our Price $19.99 (Delicious)

Wine Spectator 95
TENSLEY Syrah Santa Barbara County Colson Canyon Vineyard 2017

Deeply structured yet rich and polished, with smoked meat, huckleberry and garrigue notes that jaunt toward big but refined tannins on the finish. Drink now through 2028. From California.—T.F $42 (Back in stock)

Wine Advocate 91
2016 Hartford Court Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

Medium ruby-purple colored, the 2016 Hartford Court Pinot Noir Russian River Valley reveals lovely crushed black cherries, mulberries and black raspberries notions with hints of candied violets, black soil and iron ore plus a waft of bay leaves. Medium to full-bodied, it fills the palate with black fruit and earthy accents supported by a firm frame of finely grained tannins and finishes with a refreshing lift. 7,500 cases produced. $40 Our Price $29.99

Wine Spectator 95
DENNER Ditch Digger Paso Robles Willow Creek District 2016

A dynamic red impeccably built, precise and expressive. Floral raspberry and crushed stone aromas open to layered black cherry, grilled herb and licorice flavors that build tension toward refined tannins. Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah, Counoise and Cinsault. 1,095 cases made. Drink now through 2026.—T.F. $75 Our Price $69.99

Wine Spectator 92
GEORG ALBRECHT SCHNEIDER Riesling Spätlese Rheinhessen Niersteiner Hipping 2015

Laced with pink grapefruit and peach flavors, this white is sleek and taut, with vivid acidity stretching the finish. Brown spice and slate accents emerge there, along with a lip-smacking feel. Drink now through 2035. 1,000 cases made. –BS $17 Our Price $12.55 (Back in stock 2/18/19)

2017 PONT NEUF “Pont Royal” Chardonnay Russian River

Winemaker Notes: The 2017 Pont Royal reveals a brilliant clarity both in appearance and flavors. Its vineyard character is classic; forward citrus, fresh peach, custard and honied beeswax accents are consistent hallmarks of our Chardonnay. There is a superior silky texture, almost creamy, that is only experienced in Premier and Grand Cru wines in Burgundy. French oak takes a back seat to the fruit, adding nuanced aromas of toasted brioche and fine structure to the wine. We employed 80% new oak from the Vosges forest, contributing the delicate toast and vanilla aromas and playing perfectly with bright citrus fruit. Barrel-fermented, aged on the lees and bottled un-fined and unfiltered, this natural fermentation showcases the vineyard and the vintage. 75 cases produced. $55 (Arrives this afternoon)

Wine Advocate 92
2017 Dr H Thanisch Erben Müller-Burggraef Riesling Bernkasteler Badstube Kabinett

Here comes the first bottling of the new vintage of Thanisch's most successful wine in the US: here is the 2017 Riesling Bernkasteler Badstube Kabinett (AP 04 18). Clear, fresh and flinty on the nose with bright and perfectly ripe fruit aromas, this is a gorgeously lush. light and piquant Kabinett with mouth-filling fruit and lingering salinity and piquancy. Very stimulating, indeed, and super sexy. The wine has nice grip and was bottled in February 2018 with 8.5% alcohol and more than 62 grams of residual sugar. Highly stimulating! The quantity, however, is ridiculously small, with 1,000 boxes that will be exclusively sold in the US and in Canada. $25 Our Price $19.99 (Arrives 2/12/19)

Wine Advocate 94
2014 Hess Collection Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Mt. Veeder

Composed of 81% Cabernet, 16% Malbec and a dollop a Petit Verdot, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Mt. Veeder has a very deep purple-black color and nose of crushed blackcurrants, blackberries and plums with hints of cedar chest, dried Provence herbs, rose petals and menthol with a hint of rare beef. Full-bodied, concentrated and vibrant in the mouth, it has tons of energy framed by grainy tannins and a lively backbone, finishing long and earthy. $65 Our Price $49.95

 PINOT NOIR Russian River

Winemaker Notes: “Le Bruant” is named for our village in the Haute Côte de Nuits of Burgundy, less than a dozen houses gathered around a source which brought delicious water all the way from the Alps. It comes from the gently sloping hills of Goldridge soil in the Martinelli Zio Tony Vineyard where the summer mornings are often foggy. The landscape is gentle and quiet and produces wonderfully elegant pinot noir. The flavors, however, take us back to the hills above Burgundy where the locals hunt pheasant and wild boar and produce the best cassis. “Le Bruant” is the perfect combination of rustic backcountry flavors and the refinement unique to pinot noir. The wine is brilliant ruby and red-violet, in spite of being un-filtered. Sweetly perfumed aromas of Huckleberry and Pomegranate mix with earthy forest floor and intensely pure red fruit flavors. The fine balance of acid and ripe fruit keeps it lively on the palate carrying the flavors to a lingering finish. We recommend decanting at this early stage of development. 50 cases produced. $75 (Back in stock this afternoon)

2015 Bogle Phantom

Winemaker Notes: Phantom, the mysterious apparition of ripe berry and relentless spice, returns to haunt wine lovers. Full of concentration and intensity, this wine will tease, tantalize and linger long after the last sip is gone. Wild berries and black pepper are framed by the influence of oak aging with baking spices and a hint of toasty vanilla. 44% Petite Sirah, 44% Zinfandel, 10% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Sauvignon. $18 Our Price $13.95

Wine Advocate 94
2016 Hess Collection Chardonnay The Lioness Estate

The 2016 Chardonnay The Lioness Estate was barrel fermented and aged for about 16 months before being bottled unfined and unfiltered. It features ripe grapefruit, pineapple and white peaches scents with hints of beeswax, toasted almonds and lemongrass. Full-bodied, concentrated and decadently fruited, the palate features a wonderfully refreshing line of freshness and long, creamy finish. 1,037 cases produced. $60 Our Price $53.99

Wine Spectator 94
SANS LIEGE The Offering Santa Barbara County 2016

Distinctive, refined and well-built, offering expressive black cherry, cigar box, green olive and cured meat accents that build richness on the long finish. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre and Viognier. Drink now through 2026.—T.F $29 (Arrives 2/12/19)

Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
2015 Hartford Court Arrendell Vineyard Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

From the oldest vines planted in the 1970s, the 2015 Pinot Noir Arrendell Vineyard is a perfumed, spicy wine that's just singing on the nose. Ripe cherries, raspberries, candied orange, and exotic spices give way to a medium to full-bodied, supple, seamless Pinot Noir. It has bright acidity, sweet, vibrant, fruit, notable tannin, and a great finish. Like a lot of the wines here, it has the fruit to shine, but this is certainly one of the more structured and tannic wines in the lineup. $90 Our Price $79.99 (Limited)

Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
2015 Torrin The Banshee Paso Robles Rhone Blend

Leading off the Paso Robles Torrin releases, the 2015 The Banshee checks in as a blend of 40% Syrah, 35% Grenache, and 25% Mourvèdre that spent 22 months in a combination of 300- and 400-liter barrels, 35% being new. Rocking levels of black and blue fruit as well as subtle violets, spring flowers, and classic Paso Robles minerality all emerge from this layered, medium to full-bodied effort that shines both for its richness and elegance. Drink it any time over the coming decade. $75 (Arrives 2/12/18)

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