The Grape Tray

February 12th 2021 Newsletter

Wine Tasting
Try before you buy at VRW 2PM-5PM $5
On-Deck for today: 2016 Silver Oak AV Cab and 2017 Ovid Experiment N2.7 Napa Proprietary Red
Next Tuesday, 2/16/21: 2016 Galerie Latro
 Knights Valley Cabernet


Wine Advocate 93 Points
2016 Galerie Latro Knights Valley
 Cabernet Sauvignon

One-hundred percent Cabernet Sauvignon, the deep garnet-purple colored 2016 Latro Knights Valley Cabernet Sauvignon gives up notions of crushed red and black currants, warm plums and baked cherries with touches of garrigue, dusty soil and bay leaves. The palate is medium to full-bodied, firm and grainy with lovely freshness and great intensity in the mouth, leading to a long, purely fruited finish. 1,317 cases produced. $65 Internet Price $49.99. Email subscriber price $32

Tasting Alerts: Instagram-Vintage Reserve Wine
Vintage Reserve Wine Hours
Tuesday-Friday 12 Noon-6:00 PM
Saturday 12 Noon-4:00 PM
Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW)
1552 E. Champlain Drive, Ste 109 Fresno, CA 93720
Via Montana Center (NE Corner Shepherd and Champlain-Two doors south of Big 5) vintagereserve.biz. 559-878-3953


James Suckling 94 Points
2018 Schrader Double Diamond
Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon

An elegant, fruit-driven cabernet sauvignon with notes of red fruit and spices. Fresh herbs, such as thyme. It’s full-bodied and well balanced. The texture is pleasant and smooth with elegant tannins. The finish is long and flavorful. $75 (Available GT and VRW)

In stock!
Wine Spectator 95
FRÉDÉRIC ESMONIN Mazy-Chambertin 2018

Bright cherry and berry fruit introduces this elegant red, along with floral, mineral and a hint of earth notes. It's sleek and tensile, with superb balance and poise. The cherry and strawberry theme continues through the long finish. 75 cases imported. Best from 2024 through 2045. —B.S. $185 Our Price $159.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Jeb Dunnuck’s Top Napa Cabernet Sauvignon under $100. Rated 99 Points!
2018 Bevan Ontogeny Proprietary Red

Winemaker Notes: We have to go back to the 2013 to find an Ontogeny that is this enthralling. The wine’s pedigree is special: Tench, Sugarloaf, Harbison, Wildfoote, Saunders and Sage Ridge. We didn’t grow a single grape specifically to go into Ontogeny. Instead, we selected barrels from our vineyard designates to produce something enchanting, and this wine shows that we accomplished that. It cascades across your palate with seamless ease. Explosive notes of crème de cassis, lavender and huckleberries give the wine a luxurious fruit component. The mouthfeel is all about controlled power, the tannins come in waves, but they hit with incredible grace. $99.95 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 93
ELLENA GIUSEPPE
Barolo del Commune di La Morra 2016

Aromatic, offering floral, licorice, tar and spice notes surrounding a core of cherry. The fruit is more prominent on the palate, where accents of mint and leather also peek through. On the elegant side, with fine balance and length. 500 cases imported. Best from 2023 through 2042. —B.S. $40 Our Price $36.99 (Arrives GT this afternoon)

Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points
2018 Beringer Reserve Chardonnay

The classic Napa release from this estate, the 2018 Chardonnay Private Reserve has lots of beautiful golden apple, caramelized citrus, toasted nut, and hints of acacia flowers. With a rich, textured style, it still stays beautifully fresh, balanced, and layered. It's a brilliant effort. $40 Our Price $33.99 (Available GT)

Wine Enthusiast 96 Points

2018 Mayacamas Mt Veeder Chardonnay

Made from decades-old dry-farmed vines planted to the Wente clone in rocky, volcanic soils, this is a stunning wine, flinty, fleshy and expansive, with undeniable minerality. Lemon zest, meringue and pear contrast against persistent acidity and a lasting briny tone that lifts the palate further. $50 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 95
MAYACAMAS Cabernet Sauvignon Mount Veeder 2014

This packs in a lot of juicy black currant and blackberry paste notes, with lively licorice snap and bramble accents filling the available space. A roasted apple wood accent lends a mouthwatering edge while a tarry echo at the very end adds range and length. Should cruise in the cellar. Best from 2020 through 2045. 4,396 cases made. — JM $125 (Available GT and VRW)

Antonio Galloni, Vinous 92 Points
2019 Rochioli Russian River Chardonnay

The 2019 Chardonnay Estate is a gorgeous appellation-level wine. Bright, floral and finely cut, the 2019 possesses terrific energy and cut, all in a gracious, airy style that is hugely appealing. Lemon confit, melon, dried flowers and a touch of spice linger. The Estate is a blend taken from across the property, and that complexity makes for a highly intriguing wine. $63 Our Price $59.99 (Available GT and VRW this afternoon)

Antonio Galloni, Vinous 93 Points
2018 Rochioli Russian River Estate Pinot Noir

The 2018 Pinot Noir Estate is such a pretty wine. Crushed red berries, rose petal, mint, spice and blood orange infuse the 2018 with tremendous character, especially at this level. A Pinot of precision and nuance, the 2018 Estate brilliantly shows the direction Tom Rochioli has taken his wines in recent years. Readers will find an especially compelling edition of the Estate in 2018. $90 Our Price $79.99 (Available GT and VRW this afternoon)

Wine Advocate 98 Points
2005 Dominus Proprietary Red

This blend of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot (note that rarely is any Merlot utilized at the historic Napanook Estate in Yountville). The alcohol, by California standards, is a relatively modest 14.1%. Blending the best of French savoir faire with the brilliant fruit purity and ripeness of Napa Valley, Moueix has turned in another tour de force that seems far superior today than it did when it was first released. This is one of the vintage’s greatest wines. Dense purple and youthful, with a glorious nose of earth, blackcurrants, sweet black cherries and incense, the oak is pushed way in the background, as it is in all of the Moueix wines, and the result is a wine of terroir, of great originality and authenticity. This full-bodied classic from Dominus can be drunk now, but really won’t hit its prime for another 4-5 years and last at least another two decades or more. Market Price $224-$312 (6 bottles available GT $235/bottle)

Jeb Dunnuck 98 Points
2018 Bevan Sugarloaf Mountain Prop Red

A 50/50 split of Cabernet Franc and Merlot, the 2018 Sugarloaf Mountain Proprietary Red just pops on the nose with its blue fruits, wildflowers, violets, and wild strawberry aromas and flavors. Juicy and full-bodied, it has beautiful fruit, a plush, sexy texture, and notable freshness and purity. $200 (Available GT)


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