The Grape Tray

September 13th 2022 Newsletter

Save the date for Staglin Family Vineyard Wine Tasting next week at Vintage Reserve Wine!
Thursday, September 22, 2022
We will taste the 2021 Salus Napa Chardonnay, 2019 Salus Napa Cabernet, 2018 Estate Cabernet and 2019 Estate Cabernet.
Hollis Nelson, Staglin Family Vineyard California Sales Manager will be at VRW to walk us through the new releases.

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Taste Delamotte Brut Champagne and 2017 Kathryn Hall Napa Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Tuesday, September 13th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

Wine Advocate 90 Points
Delamotte Brut Champagne

The latest release of Delamotte's NV Brut is especially charming, bursting with aromas of crisp orchard fruit, peach and freshly baked bread. Medium to full-bodied, pillowy and enveloping, it's a fleshy, giving wine that's ample and pliant, with a pinpoint mousse and a nicely defined finish.

Wine Advocate 94-96 Points * 2017 Kathryn Hall Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

A barrel sample of 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Merlot, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Kathryn Hall is opaque purple-black colored and bursts flamboyantly from the glass, revealing notes of spice cake, potpourri, Ceylon tea and incense notes over a core of black currant cordial, black forest cake and baked blackberries with a waft of dusty soil. The palate is full, rich, spicy and seductive with a velvety texture and seamless freshness, finishing long and perfumed. $200 Our Price $154.99

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Taste Sauvignon Blanc: 2020 Astrolabe Kekerengu, 2019 Grieve Double Eagle and 2019 Arkenstone Howell Mountain at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Wednesday, September 14th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

Wine Spectator 93 Points
ASTROLABE Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough Kekerengu Coast 2020

There's beautiful precision to this white, which offers yuzu, pomelo and Fuji apple flavors that are crisp and focused, with notes of green tea and white pepper, plus a hint of crunchy sea salt that lingers on the fresh finish. Drink now. —M.W. $25 Our Price $18.99

Wine Enthusiast 92 Points
2019 Grieve Double Eagle Sauvignon Blanc

From the producer's Lovall Valley estate, this white is given time in mostly concrete egg, with a small amount of French oak influence. Richly textured and complex, with a velvety mouthfeel and ample ripeness, it shows dense layers of anise, apple and pear. $48

Wine Advocate 95 Points
2019 Arkenstone Estate Sauvignon Blanc

The 2019 Sauvignon Blanc Estate is composed of 94% Sauvignon Blanc and 6% Semillon. The nose features notes of fresh peaches and green guava with hints of struck match and honeysuckle, plus a waft of elderflower. Medium-bodied, elegant and refreshing, it coats the palate with stone and tropical fruit layers, with a long minerally finish. $125

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Taste 2019 Valley Ghost Napa Cabernet and 2019 Ghost Block Oakville Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Thursday, September 15th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

2019 Valley Ghost Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: This is a one-time only special bottling whose grapes were sourced from the old vines of the Rock Cairn Vineyard. Aromas and flavors of cassis, black cherry and anise. Notes of plum and clove on the finish. $45

2019 Ghost Block Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: Our 2019 vintage embodies the beauty of Oakville, with lovely aromas of blackberry and ripe plum along with sultry tones of dusty earth and leather with hints of sweet bay leaf and baking spices. On the palate, alluring layers of cassis, boysenberry and black cherry are met with subtle notes of tobacco leaf. The refined, beautifully integrated tannins create a harmonious experience that fills out your palate completely ending with a long elegant finish that leaves you with one word...exceptional. Internet Price $75

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Wine Spectator 94 Points
DETERT Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville 2019

Purely rendered, with a gorgeous beam of cassis and plum fruit driving from start to finish. Features flashes of violet, anise and black tea as well as an underpinning of warm earth, all allied to nicely coiled energy. The beautiful fruit takes a two-song encore as a final statement. Best from 2023 through 2036. —J.M. $100 (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)

2021 Long Meadow Ranch Rutherford Sauvignon Blanc

Winemaker Notes: An excellent Rutherford growing season produced lovely uniform Sauvignon Blanc fruit that allowed for a relatively brief harvest period and resulted in an outstanding wine full of concentration and complexity. A mouthwatering acidity adds energy to elegant aromas of lemongrass, grapefruit, Bearss lime, honeydew melon, and kiwi that were retained in the precision of a slow cold fermentation. $25 Our Price $19.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Advocate 95 Points
2018 Hayfork Field Select Cabernet Sauvignon

A blend of 89% Cabernet Sauvignon and 11% Petit Verdot, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Field Select was aged for 20 months in oak, 90% new. Deep garnet-purple colored, it charges out of the gate with exuberant notes of baked black plums, Black Forest cake and mulberries plus suggestions of fragrant earth, Provence herbs and tree bark. The palate has a firm backbone of grainy tannins and lively acidity framing the full-bodied, muscular black fruit, finishing long with a lifted perfume. 100 cases were made. $125 (Available GT)

Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points
2019 Hourglass Blueline Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2019 Blueline Cabernet Sauvignon is another stunning wine in the lineup. Revealing a deep purple hue as well as beautiful cassis and blue-tinged fruits, it has lots of violet and lead pencil notes, medium to full body, perfect balance, and incredible tannins. A blend of 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot, 3% Malbec, and the balance Cabernet Franc and Merlot, it's going to deliver the goods for upwards of two decades. $150 (Available GT)

Wine Spectator 95 Points
TURNBULL Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville Reserve 2019

Delivers a lovely burst of pure, unadulterated cassis and cherry puree, with hints of violet, singed vanilla, loam and anise. A subtly inlaid graphite spine carries the finish. Beautifully proportioned. Accessible now, but there's no rush at all. Drink now through 2036. —J.M. $95 (Available GT)

2021 Staglin Family Salus Napa Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: The 2021 Salus Chardonnay provides an adventure for the senses. It welcomes with perfectly ripened citrus, delicate florals, and limestone minerality. The expressive aromas deliver baked pear tart, a hint of fresh nutmeg and twist of Meyer lemon. The palate showcases juicy apricot, brûléed white grapefruit drizzled with fir honey, and the surprising texture of silky mango. The richness of sun warmed fruit is beautifully balanced by acidity focusing the entire experience. Each sip induces a longing for another. $60 (Arrives GT 9/14/22)

2019 Staglin Family Salus Napa Cabernet

Winemaker Notes: Welcome to High Definition Cabernet – the 2019 Salus is a generous and deliciously detailed display of exuberant dark fruits dynamically supported by a range of floral, earthy and herbaceous characters. Lifted floral notes slide into resinous rosemary underlain by tilled earth and powdered porcini mushrooms complexed with a puff of gunpowder, graphite and criollo cigar wrapper. Bursting blackcurrant and ripe raspberry deepened by crushed cacao nibs and fresh licorice root

envelop the palate before sliding silkily through a delightfully delineated and lengthy exit. The hint of grip and grit on the finish portends a rewarding and delicious life for this wine. $115 (Arrives GT 9/14/22)

Wine Enthusiast 95–97 Points (Barrel Sample)
2019 Chateau Kirwan Margaux

With its new cellars, the estate is performing at top speed and this vintage keeps up the fine track record. Firm tannins and beautifully perfumed fruit are blending together to give a wine that has style as well as structured fruitiness, with all the elegance of great Margaux. Think long-term aging for this wine. ROGER VOSS. $60 (Available GT)

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Taste 2021 Riverain Gamble Ranch Sauvignon Blanc, 2019 Figgins Figlia Proprietary Red and 2019 Peter Franus Mount Veeder Brandlin Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Friday, August 16th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

2021 Riverain Gamble Ranch 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. $38

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

Wine Spectator 94 Points
Peter Franus Cabernet Sauvignon Mount Veeder Brandlin Vineyard 2019

Dense yet defined, with sappy kirsch, blackberry and boysenberry reduction laced with licorice snap, violet and apple wood notes. The long finish has heft but is very well-detailed, with an iron accent chiming in. One for the cellar. Best from 2024 through 2038. 270 cases made. $85

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Taste 2020 Aperture Sonoma Sauvignon Blanc, 2019 Turnbull Napa Cabernet and 2016 Eisele Altagracia Cabernet at (VRW) for $15 per person.
Saturday, August 17th. Available 12:00 noon -3:45 PM

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. $40

James Suckling 92 Points * 2019 Turnbull Estate Napa Cabernet

A sold and structured cabernet with blackberries, blueberries, currants and some walnuts. Full-bodied with firm, fine tannins and a long finish. Very attractive now, but it will age nicely. $55

Wine Advocate 95 Points
2016 Eisele Vineyard Altagracia Cabernet Sauvignon

The Altagracia is produced almost exclusively from estate fruit this year and was bottled at the end of June 2018. Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon Altagracia comes bursting forth with vivacious black cherries, blackberries, wild blueberries and cassis notes with touches of cinnamon stick, cloves, forest floor, violets and dusty earth with a waft of violets. The palate is medium to full-bodied, firm and grainy with loads of iron and mineral accents, finishing long and perfumed. $130

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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 12:00 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)
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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