The Grape Tray

December 18th 2019 Newsletter

2016 Kennedy Shah Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: Rich and finely textured with concentrated and pure flavors of dark currant and red fruit that are well structured. Offers firm tannins and minerality with a savory finish. $20 Liquidation Price $10.95 (Limited to stock on hand)

Vinous 93 Points
2017 Saumaize-Michelin
Pouilly Fuisse Vignes Blanches

The 2017 Pouilly-Fuissé Vignes Blanches has a very seductive, generous bouquet of precise, intense white peach and white chocolate aromas. The taut, linear palate is well balanced with a fine bead of acidity and a vibrant, energetic finish that shimmers with nervosité. What’s not to like here? Nothing. $40 Our Price $34.99

James Suckling 93 Points
2016 Tamber Bey Rabicano Red

An impressive blend of 69 per cent cabernet sauvignon and 22 per cent merlot with touches of malbec, petit verdot and cabernet franc, that delivers focused dark-fruit aromas, ahead of a core of ripe blackcurrants that surround a smooth, central core of plush, fine tannins. Balanced and flavorful. Drink or hold. $70 Our Price $57.99

2018 Duckhorn Napa Sauvignon Blanc

Winemaker Notes: This vibrant Sauvignon Blanc begins with enticing aromas of lemongrass, lychee, passion fruit, melon and pineapple, followed by hints of white nectarine and lime. On the juicy palate, a subtle viscosity is perfectly balanced by refreshing acidity that adds precision to the citrus and tropical fruit flavors, while driving the wine to a bright, zesty finish. Blend: 85% Sauvignon Blanc, 15% Sémillon. $29 Our Price $23.99

Domaine Jean Vesselle Brut Reserve Champagne

Producer Notes: Estate-owned vineyards are located in and around the village of Bouzy. Soils are the classic, chalky terroir of the Montagne de Reims. 15-30 year old vines and hand-harvested. Fermented on indigenous yeasts in temperature-controlled, stainless steel tanks. Aged for three years in bottle. Dosage less than 11 grams/L. TASTING IMPRESSIONS: Blond toast, red apples and wildflowers; silky and long. Red berries, minerals, a hint of white pepper. 80% Pinot Noir and 20% Chardonnay. PAIRING SUGGESTIONS: As an aperitif; or with soft, creamy cheeses. $50 Our Price $42.99 (Grape Tray email subscriber price $35) Delicious! (Grape Tray email subscriber price $35) Delicious!

Wine Advocate 93
2015 Secret Indulgence Tarot
Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

Blended of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon with smaller portions of Petit Sirah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, the 2015 Tarot Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon has a deep garnet-purple color and exuberant nose of warm plums, crushed cherries and crème de cassis with touches of Indian spices, fragrant earth and violets with a waft of lavender. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated, it fills the palate with black berry and earthy layers, finishing with the lovely velvety texture paving the way. $45 (Back in stock)

Antonio Galloni, Vinous 95 pts
DuMol 2016 Pinot Noir
Ryan Widdoes Vineyard Russian River

The 2016 Pinot Noir Ryan Widdoes Vineyard is one of the most distinctive wines in this lineup. Soaring, perfumed aromatics and bright, red-toned fruit give the Widdoes much of its multi-faceted profile. Red berry fruit, blood orange, mint and floral overtones build as this striking, deeply expressive Pinot shows off its unmistakable pedigree and pure class. $90

2017 Biale BLACK CHICKEN Napa ZINFANDEL

Winemaker Notes: Sourced from the same family vineyard that Aldo, Nonna, Bob Biale and the Biale family have farmed their whole lives, with additional grapes from our neighboring winery vineyard. The Oak Knoll winegrowing region is prevalent in this wine with its ripe aromatics and juicy acidity. The nose is full of vibrant Bing cherries, raspberries, cinnamon, white cake, fresh purple flowers, subtle dried herb and toasty brown spices. The entry is bright and gives way to supple, round tannins. The lovely finish is the signature of this elegant and remarkably balanced Zinfandel. $49

2016 Levendi Stagecoach Napa Cabernet

Winemaker Notes: A big, robust classic Cabernet Sauvignon, with cassis and mocha. This wine shows the characteristic briary Atlas Peak attitude. Brambly flavors with intense notes of new leather and sweet black cherry jam. Soft, ripe mountain tannin on the finish as proof of provenance, with an expandingly rich palate. $84 Our Price $71.99 (Back in stock 12/19/19)

2017 Carlisle Derivative

Winemaker Notes: Pale yellow-gold. Quince, grapefruit, quinine, and a vague suggestion of freshly mowed oats all make an appearance in the moderately intense aromas. Medium-light to medium bodied, flavors of white grapefruit, lemon pith, and flint. Finishes quite energetic with plenty of verve and cut. If your tastes in whites lean towards big and/or oaky and/or buttery, steer clear of this wine. But if you enjoy the crispness and acidity of Loire whites, Albariños, perhaps even the whites of Savoie, then this should be right up your alley. Enjoy from release through 2026. $28

Wine Spectator 97
CASTELLO DI VOLPAIA
Chianti Classico Riserva 2016

Enticing aromas of black cherry, black currant and violet are allied to flavors of iron, wet earth and spice. This is loaded with fruit, vibrant acidity and well-mannered tannins. Shows terrific harmony now, yet possesses the structure to age. The long, mouthwatering finish extends the dark fruit and minerally elements. Best from 2021 through 2040. 6,000 cases made, 3,300 cases imported. — BS $40 Limited

Wine Advocate 97-99
2016 Domaine du Clos de Tart Clos de Tart Grand Cru

The 2016 Clos de Tart Grand Cru was assessed from a blend of all the component parts (except the young vines) that I previously tasted separately, as I have done over the last decade. The final blend will be 80% new oak, whereas my sample contained 100%, although this was discrete and enmeshed with the fruit. It has a fascinating bouquet, much more nuanced than those from a decade ago, dark fruit, a little earthier, with the stem addition lending it more freshness and even, dare I say, slightly green—and I mean that in a very positive sense. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp acidity, a core of slightly candied black cherry and blackcurrant fruit framed by quite “strict” tannin and a fresh, marine-influenced, brine-tinged finish that lingers long in the mouth. There is a sense of harmony and completeness here that, even over 20 years tasting at this address, I have rarely encountered. You can just feel the frisson in this wine. One of the finest wines from the Côte d'Or in 2016. It's that simple. $627 Our Price $598.99


Back to Our Blog