September 9th 2022 Newsletter - The Grape Tray

September 9th 2022 Newsletter

The Grape Tray will be closed on Monday, September 12th due to major plumbing repairs at the Opus One Center.

Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points
Figgins Figlia Proprietary Red 2019

The 2019 Figlia is a blend of Merlot and Petit Verdot that was raised in a mix of used barrels and oval botti. It has exotic red and blue fruits as well as pretty floral and sappy herb nuances on the nose. These all carry to a medium to full-bodied, pure, seamless, gorgeous Merlot that has silky tannins, no hard edges, nicely integrated acidity, and a great finish. $70 Our Price $61.99 (Available GT)

Wine Advocate 93 Points
2018 Mauro Veglio Barolo

The 2018 Barolo is a blend of fruit from Arborina and Gattera in La Morra and Castelletto in Monforte d'Alba, which are three of the estate's coolest growing sites. You get the smooth or silky disposition of fruit from La Morra blended with the power and precision of Monforte d'Alba. This wine shows nicely in this vintage thanks to dark fruit, tar, smoke and crushed rock. There is a fragrant hint of violets too. This is a production of 30,000 bottles. $43 (Available GT)

James Suckling 94 Points
2017 Pecchenino San Giuseppe Barolo

A rather soft and rich young Barolo with strawberry and floral character and hints of watermelon. It’s full-bodied and layered. Rich finish. So attractive now, but will age nicely. Try after 2023. $60 Our Price $51.99 (Back in stock GT and VRW)

2021 Riverain Gamble Ranch Yountville Sauvignon Blanc

Winemaker Notes: The wine has a wonderful roundness while still maintaining the classic Sauvignon Blanc flavors of gooseberry, lemon, lime and a bit of a fennel note. $37 (Back in stock GT and VRW)

Wine Advocate 95 Points
2006 Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf du Pape

As I stated last year, there is no Hommage a Jacques Perrin in 2006, but Beaucastel’s 2006 Chateauneuf du Pape is performing even better from bottle than it did last year. Its dense plum/ruby/purple color is followed by a big, sweet perfume of black truffles, camphor, earth, incense, new saddle leather, and loads of peppery, blackberry, and herb-infused, meaty, black cherry fruit. Deep, full-bodied, and dense, with sweet tannin, this explosively rich Chateauneuf is a stronger effort than the 2005, 2004, or 2003. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2028. $110 (Back in stock GT this afternoon)

Wine Spectator 93 Points * 2020 MACROSTIE Chardonnay Russian River

Distinctive and aromatic, with jasmine, orange blossom and fresh lime zest flavors that are fragrant and precise, plus terrific intensity and juiciness on a sleek, mouthwatering frame. Features succulent notes of lemon curd and peach at the core. Drink now through 2032. 350 cases made. — MW $38 (Back in stock GT and VRW)

2019 Pont Neuf Le Pont Russian River Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: 

A handsome wine, always rich and assertive, Le Pont Neuf evolves slowly in the bottle with new aromas and flavors emerging as the young wine develops. The tasting experience is one of energy and movement where a subtle hint of one aroma is replaced by one after another as it evolves in the glass. Seductive aromas of honeycomb, crystallized lemon peel, and Freesia are accompanied by a pliant and luxurious mouthfeel. A fine thread of minerality runs through this wine, giving structure and making it fit to age for at least a decade. Le Pont Neuf is a wine that leads to inspired cooking. In Burgundy, we would opt for a creamy lemon and thyme-scented blanquette de veau, roast pork or fine recipes of meatier, flavorful fish. Drink now - 2035. 70 cases produced. $80 (Arrives GT 9/14/22)

Wine Advocate 94 Points
2013 Eisele Vineyard Altagracia Cabernet Sauvignon

Both 2013s are clearly the finest Eisele wines made under the administration of François Pinault and his top lieutenant, Frédéric Engerer, who also runs the show at Château Latour. The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Altagracia is a beauty. Dense, opaque purple, a big sweet kiss of blueberry and black raspberry fruit intermixed with forest floor and violets is followed by a lush, medium to full-bodied wine with terrific concentration, light tannin and an approachable style even for a 2013. It should drink well for 15 or more years. $130 (Back in stock GT 9/13/22)

2019 Ghost Block Single Vineyard Yountville Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: Sourced from our famous Ghost Block Vineyard, the 2019 vintage has bold aromatics of dark cherry, ripe plum and blackcurrant that are met with delicate floral notes of lavender and violet, and finishes with spicy black pepper and clove. On the palate, blackberry, black cherry, and cassis are supported with layers of dark chocolate and cacao and rounded out with herbal notes of bay leaf and tobacco giving the wine stunning richness and depth. Medium to full-bodied with fine grained tannins and nicely balanced acidity create a beautiful long, lengthy finish that shows off the unique terroir of the iconic vineyard from where it originates. $120 (Arrives GT 9/15/22)

Wine Spectator 93 Points
APERTURE Sauvignon Blanc Sonoma County 2020

This white is full of intensity, with chive blossom, melon, tangerine, mango and lemon verbena flavors that show notes of green tea and preserved lemon on the long, complex finish. Drink now. 1,300 cases made. —MaryAnn Worobiec. $40 (Arrives GT this afternoon)

Wine Spectator 95 Points
ULYSSES Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville 2018

Dark and reserved in style, with a core of black currant and blackberry reduction wrapped in singed alder and warm loam. Tightly wound for now, with the fruit held in check, but the underlying structure is polished and there's mineral-laced drive on the finish. Requires patience. Best from 2024 through 2038. —J.M. $199. Internet Price $169.99 (Available GT)


Taste 2018 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir, 2019 Emerson Brown Napa Cabernet Sauvignon and 2018 Plumpjack Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Friday, September 9th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

2018 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir

Winemaker Notes: A tangy fresh cherry nose opens to cocoa, cola, and notes of nutmeg. The juicy lip-smacking entry shows lovely cherry and wild strawberry flavors with gorgeous rose petals and baking spices in the background. Smooth tannin and vibrant acidity make this a perfect wine for food pairings. $35 Our Price $27.99

Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points
2019 Emerson Brown Cabernet Sauvignon Napa

The appellation 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley is a big winner and another remarkable achievement from Keith Emerson. It’s another finesse-driven effort offering beautiful red and black fruits as well as floral, dusty earth, and spicy nuances. Medium to full-bodied on the palate, with silky tannins and a great mouthfeel, I finished my notes with “crazy good at the price.” It will keep for a solid decade, although there’s no need to delay gratification. $50

Wine Advocate 94+
2018 Plumpjack Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville Estate

Composed of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Malbec and 5% Petit Verdot, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate displays a deep garnet-purple color and fragrant notes of Black Forest cake, crème de cassis and wild blueberries with nuances of red roses, Chinese five spice, camphor and black olive plus a hint of charcoal. Full-bodied, the decadently rich fruit has impressive freshness lifting the palate along with firm, finely grained tannins, finishing long and fragrant. $160


Taste 2019 Bouchaine Carneros Chardonnay, 2019 Wine and Soul Douro Pintas and 2019 O’Shaughnessy Napa Cabernet Sauvignon at (VRW) for $15 per person.
Saturday, September 10th. Available 12:00 noon -3:45 PM

2019 Bouchaine Carneros Chardonnay

The orchestration of different yeasts coupled with surlie aging in stainless steel tanks as well as French oak barrels of different ages, toast levels and origins create an array of unique wines. Only the finest wines are combined in late spring into the vibrant final blend, showcasing the best of our estate. You will find layered, lovely aromas of fuji apple, clementines, kaffir lime and jasmine. A rich, yet tangy palate showcases flavors of nectarine, lemon curd and brioche with a long lip-smacking finish. Pair this with a roast chicken, a thick pork chop or just good friends. $36 Our Price $27.99

Wine Spectator 95 Points
WINE & SOUL Douro Pintas 2019

High-toned and floral on the nose, this expressive red offers a lovely core of crushed black and red berry and cherry fruit underscored by a rich streak of loamy minerality. Tightly meshed, with dense tannins providing weight and definition, while accents of garrigue, balsamico and spice box lend fine detail. Like a racehorse at the gate, this is raring to go. Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz and Rufete. Best from 2024 through 2034. 49 cases imported —A.N. $120 Our Price $93.99

Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points
2019 O'Shaughnessy Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley

The base 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley is terrific, and while I don’t know the price, I suspect it’s a great value. Deep purple-hued, with terrific mulled currant and blackberry fruits, it has lots of ripe herbal, chocolaty spice notes, full-bodied richness, sweet tannins, and a great finish. This is pure Napa Valley goodness to drink over the coming 10-15 years. $85


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) 559-878-3953
Tuesday-Friday 12:00 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) 559-226-6828
Monday-Friday 10:30 AM-5:30 PM
Saturday 10:30 AM-4:00 PM

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