The Grape Tray

November 9th 2021 Newsletter

Taste 2016 Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet This Week at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $10: Taste the 2016 Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet and 2017 Stack House Napa Cabernet.

Available all day during operating hours Tuesday, 11/9 – Thursday, 11/11/21.

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

2016 Silver Oak Alexander Valley
Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: Our 2016 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is ruby in color with a magenta rim. It has an enticing nose of cassis, blackberry, vanilla, sage and spearmint. Upon entry, this wine builds from potpourri and bramble to a bright pop of raspberry on the mid-palate. A juicy finish with chewy tannins and a medium length, it will provide drinking pleasure through 2042 with proper cellaring. $90

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WOW-59% Off!
2018 Sextant Central Coast Zinfandel

Winemaker Notes: Dark in color and brooding on the palate our 2018 Central Coast Zinfandel explodes with brambly boysenberry and black cardamom on the nose. Rich, full tannins give this wine weight and texture while bright acidity adds balance to this vibrant wine. Dark fruit flavors of plum, black cherry, and wild fig add a juicy core to the mid-palate leading to a luscious finish highlighted by sweet vanilla and hints of clove. $18 Our Price $7.45 (Arrives GT 11/11/21)

James Suckling 91 Points
2019 Kali Hart Chardonnay

Aromas of honeysuckle, white nectarine, cooked apple, mango and vanilla. It’s full-bodied, ripe and creamy. Rich, fruity finish. Drink now. Screw cap $17. Our Price $14.99 (Available GT)

Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
2018 Hartford Court Velvet Sisters Anderson Valley Pinot

Coming from the Anderson Valley, the 2018 Pinot Noir Velvet Sisters has textbook savory, herbal, mineral style as well as wonderful darker cherry and exotic blueberry fruits, medium to full body, loads of floral and violet nuances, no hard edges, and a great finish. It's up-front and fruit-forward, yet it has plenty of tannins as well as remarkable purity and freshness. Drink this singular Pinot Noir over the coming 7-8 years. $70 (Arrives 11/10/21)

Wine Spectator 92 Points
Sean Minor Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2019

Rich and toasty, with hints of cedar bark to the dried red fruit and berry flavors that are well-knit. The creamy finish is long and plush, with accents of hot stone and cooking spices. Drink now through 2026. $25 Our Price $16.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Antonio Galloni, Vinous 95 Points
Rocca di Montegrossi 2016 Geremia

The 2016 Geremia is a total knock-out. An exotic mélange of sweet dark cherry, plum, chocolate, licorice, spice and menthol races out of the glass. The 2016 is deep, dense and full of character. It is also easy to drink with minimal cellaring. Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon work so well here in the way they express richness and structure, all with a real sense of Tuscan raw power. $60 Our Price $49.99 (Available GT)

Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
2016 Col d’ Orcia Brunello di Montalcino

The 2016 Col d’Orcia Brunello offers notes of pine resin, black cherry, and dried strawberry aromatics. The palate is concentrated and compact, with dried tomato leaf bitterness and tobacco. The structure is not shy, with a rich core of fruit, bold tannin upfront and just as much acidity to match. This is a bold wine for the 2016 vintage, packed with sun-kissed warmth. It commands time in the cellar, so drinking is recommended over 2026-2041 $60 Our Price $46.99 (Back in stock GT)

Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points
2018 Flowers Camp Meeting Ridge Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

Coming from the Fort Ross-Seaview appellation, the 2018 Chardonnay Camp Meeting Ridge is more mineral-laced, with a touch of marine-like iodine in its orchard and citrus fruits. Nicely textured and medium to full-bodied, with bright acidity, it's going to benefit from a year (or two) in bottle and should keep for a solid 7-8 years or more. $85 Our Price $78.99 (Available GT)

2016 The Mascot Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: The Mascot is a Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon made from distinct hillside vineyards; specifically the younger vines of BOND, Harlan Estate, and Promontory. It started out as a small project shared among the family, winemaking team, and close friends. Drawing fruit from blocks of recently replanted vineyards, The Mascot shares a glimpse into the evolution of its parent estates: a youthful snapshot of their future.

Aromas suggest cool, fragrant mists, an intermingling of bright fruit with gentle florals, and traces of fresh, wild herbs. A sip reveals a polished core—a soft, inviting texture bonded by strength. These playful curves resolve towards an elevated finish, as well as light, colorful notes that dance on the palate—and entice the imagination. $150 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 95 Points *BOSQUET DES PAPES Châteauneuf-du-Pape Chante Le Merle Vieilles Vignes 2019

Steeped plum and cherry compote notes are the main marker here, though chestnut, sweet bay, singed alder and tobacco flavors all make their presence known. Tar and licorice root accents underline the finish, giving this a toothy, old school edge. Rock solid, throwback-styled Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre. Best from 2024 through 2038. —J.M. $89 Our Price $69.95 (Available GT

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Wine Tasting at VRW $15 per person (Indoor seating for 30 people) Must be 21 or older to attend.

Friday Tasting, 11/12/21 (3:30 PM-6:00 PM): 2018 Hartford Court Velvet Sisters Anderson Valley Pinot, 2016 Altamura Napa Cabernet and 2019 Familiar Air Napa Cabernet.

Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
2018 Hartford Court Velvet Sisters Anderson Valley Pinot

Coming from the Anderson Valley, the 2018 Pinot Noir Velvet Sisters has textbook savory, herbal, mineral style as well as wonderful darker cherry and exotic blueberry fruits, medium to full body, loads of floral and violet nuances, no hard edges, and a great finish. It's up-front and fruit-forward, yet it has plenty of tannins as well as remarkable purity and freshness. Drink this singular Pinot Noir over the coming 7-8 years. $70

Wine Spectator 94
ALTAMURA Cabernet Sauvignon Napa 2016

Steeped Black Mission fig, plum and blackberry flavors are melded to warm fruitcake, dark licorice and Turkish coffee notes. Despite the profile, this is defined, with a subtle sanguine hint adding detail on the seductive finish. Drink now through 2030. 3,000 cases made. — JM $120

Wine Advocate 95 Points
2019 Familiar Air Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon and 11% Malbec. Deep garnet-purple colored, it bursts with gregarious notions of stewed black plums, black cherry preserves and wild blueberries with hints of violets, fallen leaves, cinnamon stick and tapenade. Full-bodied, rich and concentrated, the palate is packed with expressive, juicy black and blue fruits, finishing very long and very fragrant. $90

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Saturday Wine Tasting at VRW $15 per person (Indoor seating for 30 people) Must be 21 or older to attend.

Saturday Wine Tasting, 11/13/21 (1:00 PM-3:30 PM): 2018 Ramey Russian River Chardonnay, 2018 Ehlers Estate Napa Cabernet and 2019 Lail Blueprint Napa Cabernet.

Wine Advocate 93 Points
2018 Ramey Russian River Valley Chardonnay

The 2018 Chardonnay Russian River Valley has aromas of citrus peel, quince and almonds with a unique, super-spicy undercurrent. The medium-bodied palate offers intense, ripe fruits in a seamless, silky package, and it finishes long and lush. 13,340 cases produced $42

Wine Spectator 93 Points
EHLERS ESTATE Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2018

Really solid, this red has a brambly edge, with plum, blackberry and red currant preserve notes showing good energy, thanks in part to a buried sassafras streak, all backed by a roasted apple wood- and licorice snap-fueled finish. Drink now through 2030. 2,541 cases made. — JM $72

Wine Advocate 92-94 Points
2019 Lail Blueprint Napa Cabernet

The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Blueprint has a deep garnet-purple color and sings of wild blueberries, Morello cherries and red and black currant jellies with touches of dried mint, chocolate box and cedar chest. Medium to full-bodied, the palate bursts with crunchy black fruits, supported by fine-grained tannins and bold freshness, finishing long and lifted. A barrel sample, 2,000 cases will be made. $90

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 1:00-6:00 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 10:30 AM-5:30 PM
Saturday 10:30 AM-4:00 PM


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