The Grape Tray

May 28th 2021 Newsletter

Vinous 91 Points
2019 Frescobaldi Ammiraglia Alie Rose

The 2019 Rose “Alie” Ammiraglia from Frescobaldi is an alluring blend of Syrah and Vermentino, displaying a pale pink color in the glass, while wafting up with zesty citrus, savory spice, brush and crushed sea shell minerality, as if you really can smell the seashore off the Tuscan coast. Silky textures give way to a mix of orchard fruits, soft and round yet perfectly framed by brisk acidity, as it sizzles with salty tension, just begging you to take another sip. $20 Our Price $17.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 92 Points
MARGERUM M5 White Margerum Estate Vineyard Los Olivos District 2019

Mouthwatering and vibrant, oozing with perfectly ripe white nectarine, Casaba melon, mango and dried pineapple flavors, with hints of candied ginger on a fresh, fleshy body. Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Viognier, Roussanne and Picpoul Blanc. Drink now. —M.W. $29 Internet Price $19.99 (Arrives VRW this afternoon)

2017 Joseph Carr Carneros Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: The bouquet is intensely aromatic and features notes of ripe peach and lemon. Flavors of toffee and almonds emerge on the palate, bolstered by lively acidity, a creamy mouthfeel, and a long finish. $22 Our Price $15.99 (Available GT and VRW)

2019 Montecillo Rias Baixas Albarino

Winemaker Notes: An attractive, pale lemon color with touches of green. Very elegant nose, with wine flavors such as jasmine and orange blossom followed by notes of sweet apple and dried herbs with a saline background. In the mouth it is rich and full of flavor, with a glycerine texture. It is marked by lively acidity that envelopes the notes of flowers and citrus mixed with aromatic herbs. Full-bodied, long and balanced. $20 Our Price $15.95 (Arrives VRW this afternoon)

Wine Advocate 92
2017 Anne Gros & Jean-Paul Tollot Minervois Les Fontanilles

The 2017 Minervois Les Fontanilles—a blend of Syrah, Grenache, Carignan and Cinsault—comes from a cool, north-facing plot surrounded by garrigue. The wine is medium to full-bodied and supple, with the red-toned fruit picking up hints of resinous herbs, like rosemary and bay leaf, on the finish. Half of the wine was aged in barrel, half in tank, but the wood isn't particularly prominent, maybe just adding a touch of roundness around the edges and hints of cedar and vanilla on the nose. $33 Our Price $26.99 (Available GT)

Jeb Dunnuck 92 Points
2017 Stack House Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Made by Anna Monticelli, the 2017 Stack House Cabernet Sauvignon checks in as 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot, and the balance Cabernet Franc. Coming 90% from mountain fruit and brought up in 85% new French oak, it's one of the best values in the vintage and has beautiful cassis, toasted spice, gravelly earth, and hints of graphite. It's beautifully done, medium to full-bodied, and textured, and drinks way above its price point. Anna commented that this was the finest vintage of this cuvée she’s made. $35 Our Price $28.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Enthusiast 92 Points
RD Winery 2019 Fifth Moon Grüner Veltliner (Edna Valley)

Crisp aromas of Pink Lady apple slices and Mandarin peel show a touch of green herbs while remaining clean on the nose. The palate is zesty and fresh, showing firm kiwi and crisp lime flavors. $25 Internet Price $19.99 (Available GT)

Jeb Dunnuck 96 Points
2017 Cade Howell Mountain Cabernet

Coming from estate fruit on Howell Mountain and made from 88% Cabernet Sauvignon and 4% each of Malbec, Petit Verdot, and Merlot, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate offers a darker, more mineral-driven style compared to the Napa release. It has beautiful blackcurrant, cassis, forest floor, graphite, and tobacco leaf-like aromas and flavors. Deep, full-bodied, beautifully polished and elegant, it's another remarkable effort from this team. As Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon goes, it's a brilliant value! Internet Price $110 (Available GT)

Wine Advocate 95+
2016 La Gaffeliere St Emilion

Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the 2016 La Gaffeliere opens with compelling wild blueberries, freshly crushed plums and kirsch scents plus hints of garrigue, underbrush, rose hip tea and pencil lead. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is wonderfully elegant with a soft, velvety texture and seamless freshness carrying the multilayered fruit to a long finish. $93 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Advocate 92+
2015 Tolani Valdisante

This Tuscan blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Sangiovese and 5% Cabernet Franc is all about richness and fullness, with 18 months in French oak affording it expansive notes of spice and tobacco. The 2015 Valdisanti is a very nice red to enjoy with a nice plate of your favorite grilled meats. $35 Our Price $26.99 (Back in stock GT and VRW this afternoon)

Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points
2014 Courier Grenache Carignan

The 2014 Courier is slightly more Burgundian than the 2013 yet offers similar notes of crushed flowers, bouquet Garni, game, leather, and assorted red and black fruits. It is silky and seamless on the palate, with beautiful tannins. It’s another Cotes Catalanes to enjoy over the coming decade. $30 Our Price $21.99 (Available GT)

Wine Spectator 94 Points
CASTELLO ROMITORIO
Brunello di Montalcino 2016

A core of pure black cherry marks this compressed red, which is fresh and balanced in its rigid way, with wild thyme, rosemary, iron and tobacco flavors. The aftertaste lingers with the fruit and balsamic elements. Best from 2025 through 2048. —B.S. $75 Our Price $60.99 (Available GT)

Wine Spectator 94 Points
SHAFER Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District One Point Five 2018

Quite lush in feel, with creamy waves of plum sauce, melted black licorice, açaí berry reduction and sweet toast rolling through, laced with subtle alder and bay leaf notes and ending with a sanguine hint amid the fruit. The buried structure will carry this in the cellar as well. Drink now through 2032. —J.M. $98. Internet Prices: $97/750ml and $55/375ml. (Available GT and VRW)

Today’s Wine Tasting at VRW $10 per person (Limited seating inside)

Friday’s Tasting, 5/28/21 (3:00 PM-5:30 PM): 2019 Lewis Barcaglia Lane Chardonnay, 2018 Far Niente Estate Cabernet and 2015 Phelps Insignia Proprietary Red

Wine Tasting notes available on instagram: vintage reserve wine and www.vintagereserve.biz

Saturday, 5/29/21 Wine Tasting at VRW $15 per person (Limited seating inside)

Saturday Tasting, 5/29/21 (1:00 PM-3:30 PM):

The choice is yours! From the following list, you can select which wines you would like to taste:

Wine Spectator 92 Points
Domaine Carneros Brut

Sleek and steely, with precise lemon, fresh ginger, blanched almond and strawberry flavors that build richness on a long finish. Drink now. 32,500 cases made. $37

Wine Spectator 94 Points
MERRY EDWARDS Sauvignon Blanc Russian River Valley 2019

This white offers a complex mix of lime sherbet, makrut lime leaf, lemon curd and orange blossom flavors that are fragrant and complex on a fleshy, succulent frame, with notes of nectarine and ripe Crenshaw melon. Harmonious, with a fresh thread of acidity on the finish. Drink now. —M.W. $36

Wine Advocate 97 Points
2018 Corra Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon coming from 46% Pritchard Hill, 46% Rutherford and 8% Oakville. Deep garnet-purple in color, it jumps from the glass with exuberant scents of blackcurrant preserves, blackberry pie and blueberry compote plus compelling wafts of menthol, fragrant earth and red roses in the background with suggestions of cedar, pencil lead and truffles coming through with further swirling. Wow—the palate is big, rich and concentrated, delivering a rock-solid backbone of firm, super ripe tannins and tons of freshness supporting all those decadent black berry layers, finishing long with lots of mineral and floral sparks. 300 cases were made. $150

2017 Vineyard 29 Cru Napa Cabernet

Winemaker Notes: The 2017 CRU Cabernet Sauvignon offers fragrant violet and perfumed aromas along with cocoa powder, chocolate covered blueberries and crème de cassis on the nose. Full bodied, mouth-watering acidity, a touch of fresh tobacco leaf, hints of wet slate, and a dark blue and black fruit-driven profile fill out the mid-palate and lead to juicy, supple, fine grain tannins and a long, drawn out finish. Composition: 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot, 2% Malbec $65

2019 Far Niente Napa Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: Aromas of melon, sweet citrus and white blossom floral layered with notes of flint, yeast and sweetly toasted oak. A smooth and focused entry is followed by a silky midpalate with ripe flavors of honeydew and lemon, supported by just of touch of wet stone, yeast and toasted hazelnuts. The finish is long and structured with citrus rind and mouthwatering acid. Internet Price $60

Vinous Media 94 Points
2016 Piancornello Brunello di Montalcino

The 2016 Brunello di Montalcino is a fruit-focused and high-energy effort, lifting up with a spicy and slightly exotic display, showing sour cherry, wild strawberry, savory herbs and hints of animal musk. It’s silky in texture with fleshy red berries further excited by juicy acids, giving way to salty minerals and pretty inner florals. Tannins saturate through the finish, yet this remains balanced throughout with a resonating note of black licorice. The 2016 Piancornello is very impressive. Well done! $47

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) www.vintagereserve.biz 559-878-3953
Tuesday-Friday 12 Noon-6:00 PM
Saturday 12 Noon-4:00 PM


The Grape Tray (GT)
6023 N. Palm Avenue Fresno, CA 93704
Opus One Center (NW Corner Bullard and Palm)
www.grapetray.com 559-226-6828
Monday-Friday 10:30AM-5:30PM
Saturday 10:30AM-4:00PM


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