October 7th 2022 Newsletter - The Grape Tray

October 7th 2022 Newsletter

On Deck for wine tasting next week at VRW:

Opus One Overture (2022 release)

Winemaker Notes: A timeless expression of our estate vineyards, Overture is full bodied but approachable in its youth. Overture shows generous dark fruit aromas and flavors with a soft, supple mid-palate. $150

Wine Spectator 93 Points
Pahlmeyer Jayson Napa Valley 2018

Powerful and well-structured, with zesty acidity to the dried red berry and currant flavors. Minerally richness lingers into the crunchy finish, with plenty of savoriness. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc and Petite Sirah. Drink now through 2025. 6,100 cases made. $65 Our Price $51.99

Wine Spectator 92 Points
Pahlmeyer Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Jayson 2018

This has a lovely feel, with creamy plum sauce and blackberry compote notes gliding through, gently inlaid with alder, anise and sassafras hints. A subtle loamy edge carries the finish, letting the fruit linger nicely. Drink now through 2028. 4,155 cases made. $100 Our Price $74.99

Wine Spectator 93 Points
Darioush Merlot Napa Valley Signature 2019

A spirited red that's a touch exotic, offering polished yet well-structured black cherry, sandalwood and mocha-espresso flavors that sail toward refined tannins. Drink now through 2029. 1,975 cases made. $74

Wine Advocate 94+
2018 Cliff Lede Napa Cabernet Sauvignon Magic Nights

Blended of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot and 3% Merlot, the deep garnet-purple colored 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Magic Nights prances out of the glass with showy notes of crème de cassis, blueberry coulis and chocolate-covered cherries plus hints of garrigue, pencil lead and beef drippings. Full-bodied, the palate is jam-packed with muscular, energetic black fruits, supported by firm, ripe tannins and seamless freshness, finishing long and savory. $110


2021 Carmel Road Monterey Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: Our Monterey Chardonnay is so rich, it doesn’t need oak. Refreshing acidity, courtesy of the cool climate, heightens the golden mango, tangerine, Asian pear, white flower, vanilla bean and butter cream flavors, leading to a long finish complexed with a hint of yeast from sur lie aging. $18 Internet Price $10.99 (Local GT and VRW customers will receive our instant rebate for a net price of $8.95)

Wine Enthusiast 92 Points
2019 FEL Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

This sleek, well-balanced wine pairs ample, juicy cherry and red-currant flavors with enticing oak accents of vanilla, toasted baguette and cinnamon. It’s smooth, supple and delicious. $44 Our Price $38.99 (Available GT and VRW 10/12/22)

Wine Enthusiast 95 Points
2019 FEL Anderson Valley Savoy Pinot Noir

Handsome black-fruit flavors give a wonderful focus to this concentrated, well-balanced and moderately tannic wine. It's a baritone of deep black cherries that can also hit higher notes of toasted oak, spice and sage. Best from 2025. $80 Our Price $69.99 (Available GT and VRW 10/12/22)

Wine Enthusiast 94 Points
2021 Cliff Lede Napa Sauvignon Blanc

This is an outstanding white blend of 90% Sauvignon Blanc with 9% Sémillon and 1% Sauvignon Vert. Bright and fresh in peach and wet stone, it is nicely textured, with just enough weight and breadth to add complexity and structure. $34 Our Price $29.99 (Available GT and VRW 10/12/22)

Wine Advocate 93+
2021 Dönnhoff Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spätlese

>From very old vines, the 2021 Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spätlese is clear, precise and elegant yet also complex on the nose that offers bright cherry and fruit aromas. On the palate, this is a light, refined and elegant, very delicate and light-footed Spätlese with remarkable finesse and fine phenolic grip. It's stimulatingly saline and grippy on the finish. 8% stated alcohol. Natural cork. Tasted at the domaine in July 2022. $45 Our Price $38.99 (Available GT and VRW)

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 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 93 Points
LUIGI PIRA Barolo Serralunga 2018

There is a good amount of cherry and red berry fruit in this expressive red, along with floral, wild herb and iron notes. Elegant and vibrant, with fine harmony and length. Best from 2024 through 2038. —B.S. $52 Our Price $45.99 (Arrives GT 10/11/22)

Wine Spectator 93 Points
LUIGI PIRA Barolo Marenca 2018

This Barolo flashes its fruity side, with bright cherry and raspberry flavors accented by rose, tobacco and a hint of black pepper. Firms up yet remains vibrant, with a lingering, spicy aftertaste. Best from 2025 through 2042. —B.S. 200 cases imported $78 Our Price $70.99 (Arrives GT 10/11/22)

Wine and Spirits 94 Points
2019 Grgich Hills Estate Napa Chardonnay

When Mike Grgich made the 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay—the white wine that won the Paris Tasting—he used fruit from the Bacigalupi Vineyard in the Russian River Valley. He soon moved into a partnership with Austin Hills, assembling an organically farmed estate that includes 88 acres in Carneros and 163 in American Canyon, the cool, southern districts of the Napa Valley where this chardonnay grows. Now, at 98, Grgich leaves winegrowing to his nephew, Ivo Jeramaz, who produced this complex and compelling wine. Put aside any preconceptions you might have about contemporary Napa Valley chardonnay; consider instead an agriculture that might include native corn (one taster cited the ethereal sweetness of nixtamalized corn) and stone-fruit orchards (a scent of apricots). There’s the smokiness of ancho chile and a scent of woodland mushrooms in the wine’s dark-toned leesiness. Then the layers of flavor last, harmonious and delicious. $50 (Arrives GT 10/12/22)


Taste 2018 Beaulieu Vineyards Tapestry Reserve, 2018 Vineyard 29 Cru Napa Cabernet and 2018 Hundred Acre Fortunate Son The Dreamer Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Friday, October 7th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

James Suckling 94 Points
2018 Beaulieu Vineyards Tapestry Reserve

This is layered, with chewy tannins and attractive blackcurrant and blackberry character. Chocolate and walnut highlights. Full and flavorful, but not heavy in any sense of the word. Cabernet sauvignon, merlot, petit verdot and cabernet franc. Better in a year or two. $65

Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points
2018 Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon Cru Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Plums, Asian spices, tobacco, and lead pencil notes emerge from the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Cru, which hits the palate with medium to full-bodied richness, a beautifully polished, elegant texture, and outstanding length. This is another gorgeous 2018 displaying notable purity, balance, and length as well as richness. It can be drunk any time over the coming 15+ years. $65

Wine Advocate 95 Points
2018 Fortunate Son Cabernet Sauvignon The Dreamer (Hundred Acre)

Coming from a vineyard close to Hundred Acre's Few and Far Between vineyard and planted to 85- to 90-year-old vines, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon The Dreamer is made from around 92% Cabernet Sauvignon with a small proportion of unknown red varieties interplanted. Deep garnet-purple in color, it bursts with flamboyant notes of redcurrant preserves, cassis, dark chocolate, violets and red roses, plus fragrant hints of Indian spices and camphor, with a suggestion of iron ore. The medium to full-bodied palate is fabulously velvety, delivering beautiful freshness and loads of spicy layers, finishing very long. $125


Taste 2019 Sparkman Holler Cabernet, 2019 Dominus Napanook Proprietary Red and 2019 Ghost Block Single Vineyard Yountville Cabernet at (VRW) for $15 per person.
Saturday, October 8th. Available 12:00 noon -3:45 PM

Wine Spectator 93 Points
SPARKMAN Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley Holler 2019

Broad-shouldered and generous, this red layers in deep blackberry and cherry flavors, picking up mocha espresso and dusky spice accents as this moves toward polished tannins. Drink now through 2029. —T.F. $35

Wine Advocate 93 Points
2019 Dominus Napanook Proprietary Red

Exuberantly fruity on the nose, the 2019 Napanook is a blend of 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot and 5% Cabernet Franc. Despite seeing 40% new French oak, what shines on the nose are the ripe cherries, delicately brushed with wisps of tobacco, sage and bay leaf. It's medium to full-bodied, supple and silky in feel on the palate, while the finish lingers easily, adding notes of pencil shavings and mocha. To get this sort of pedigree for less than $100 is a rarity in Napa these days, making it a notable value. $94 Our Price $81.99

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


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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