March 16th 2023 Newsletter - The Grape Tray

March 16th 2023 Newsletter

On Deck for wine tasting next week at VRW:

2021 Roar Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir

Winemaker Notes: Fruit-driven and wrapped in leather and sagebrush, this blend melds elements from all of our vineyards. This approachable Pinot integrates the best of north and south within the Santa Lucia Highlands. $55

Wine Spectator 96 Points
LOUIS JADOT Corton Pougets Domaine des Héritiers 2020

Intense and tightly wound, this red is firmly structured and energetic, featuring cherry, strawberry, stone and spice flavors, with the acidity and tannins lending support for future evolution. All the components are there, this just needs a few years to knit together. Best from 2027 through 2045. 258 cases made, 129 cases imported.—B.S. $150


WOW-72% Off!
Wine Enthusiast 88 Points
2020 Domaine du Salut Graves Bordeaux Blanc

Softly textured and with a gently ripe character, this wine is well crafted. Still young with a tangy texture, the wine needs a few months to bring out the balanced freshness. Drink from 2023. ROGER VOSS. $18 Our Price $4.95 (Arrives GT 3/17/23)

Vinotemp N'FINITY MAX Wine Cellar with stainless steel door for sale.
Purchased new for $2300 and the cabinet is in excellent condition. The cooling unit needs to be repaired or replaced. 155 bottle capacity. Asking price $600. Please call George at 559-696-2046.

Wine Spectator 93 Points
STAGLIN Chardonnay Rutherford 2020

Floral and expressive, with honeysuckle, peach blossom and honey-drizzled dried pineapple flavors on a sleek, supple frame. Packs vibrant acidity, which brings the flavors to life and adds freshness and focus. Drink now. —M.W. $150 (Available GT)

2021 The Prisoner Sonoma Coast Pinot

Winemaker Notes: A mix of Russian River and Carneros AVAs produces this classic Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir with notes of ripe cranberry, pomegranate, and cherry with clove spice. The palate is driven by rhubarb and cherry with an underlying minerality and spice, which culminates with soft tannins and an elegant, balanced acidity. $50 Our Price $47.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Decanter 93 Points * 2019 Barnett Spring Mountain District Cabernet Sauvignon

Expressive dark fruit, graphite and cigar box aromas. Pure, rich and fresh palate of ripe blackberries, chalk-like minerality, earth and pops of mint and thyme. Fine-grained tannins and tangy blood orange-like acidity persist to a cocoa-dusted finish. $80 (Arrives GT 3/17/23)

Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points
2019 Stewart Tartan Napa Proprietary Red

Checking in as a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, and the balance Malbec and Petit Verdot, the 2019 Red Blend Tartan is one heck of an impressive red blend, as well as a smoking value. Cassis, sappy herbs, chocolate, and spicy notes all give way to a round, medium to full-bodied, expansive beauty with remarkable purity and freshness. Drink it over the coming decade. $50 (Back in stock GT this afternoon)

Jeb Dunnuck 98+ Points
2019 O'Shaughnessy Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain

The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is an incredible wine, and it flirts with perfection. Full-bodied and concentrated, it has flawless balance and elegance as well as just textbook Howell Mountain notes of blue fruits, cassis, violets, graphite, and background oak. I love its tannins, it has remarkable purity of fruit, and a great, great finish. It has some appeal today yet deserves 4-5 years of bottle age and should have over two decades of longevity. $110 (Arrives GT this afternoon)

Wine Spectator 92 Points
Moët & Chandon Brut Champagne Impérial NV (2022) Magnum

An elegant version, fine and creamy in texture and backed by lively, orange peel acidity. A streak of smoke-tinged minerality underscores flavors of almond madeleine, poached pear, anise and preserved lemon. Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay. Drink now. $160/magnum. Our Price $134.99/magnum (Available GT 3/17/23)


Taste 2021 Bernardus SLH Pinot, Austin Barrel 21 Cabernet and 2020 L’Aventure Estate Cuvee at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Thursday, March 16th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

2021 Bernardus Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot

Winemaker Notes: Our 2021 Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot Noir exhibits all the characteristics that have demonstrated the superb quality of this special viticultural region. The aromas display bright ripe cherry, plum, strawberry aroma, along with subtle hints of French oak notes. The palate is very rich and expressive of intense red fruit flavors and spice notes supported by a long, silky finish. This is a wonderful example of the widely recognized quality of this unique growing region! $45

Austin Barrel 21 Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: True to Paso Robles’ signature style, this fruit forward Cabernet Sauvignon has enticing aromas of dark fruit, fresh vanilla bean and hints of coffee. On the palette, the dark brooding fruit flavors are balanced with savory notes of black pepper, baking spices along with a touch of tobacco to add warmth and dimension. Lovely notes of sweet oak, lively acidity & fine dusty tannins complete this wine, making it the perfect Cabernet Sauvignon to enjoy daily. $20

Wine Advocate 99 Points
2020 L'Aventure Winery Estate Cuvée

A blend of 45% Syrah, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Petit Verdot, the 2020 Estate Cuvée is another outstanding wine from L'Aventure in the challenging 2020 vintage, offering singular concentration and elegance. Deep ruby-purple, it has a pure core of cassis and slowly unfolding accents of licorice, cured meats, tobacco leaves, cedar and truffle. Full-bodied, juicy and alluring, it floods the mouth with layers of blue fruit, floral perfume and spice. It is supported by powdery tannins and boasts a tremendously long, detailed finish. $120


Taste 2018 The Paring Red, 2019 Goldschmidt Hilary Oakville Cabernet and 2019 Sojourn Oakville Cabernet at (VRW) for $15 per person.
Friday, March 17th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

Antonio Galloni, Vinous 90 Points
2018 The Paring Red

The 2018 Red is a joyous, vibrant red. Succulent dark cherry, leather, chocolate, tobacco, spice and cedar complement a core of super-ripe dark berry fruit. Bold and exuberant to the core, the Red has so much to offer. Pretty earthy and savory notes lend tons of aromatic nuance. Best of all, the 2018 is an insane value. $25

2019 Goldschmidt Hilary Oakville Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: Purple edges lead to a bright red garnet hue. Delicate aromas of strawberry with hints of plum and raspberries. Sweet vanilla opens up on the mouth with highlights of caramel. Essence of mineral and graphite show on the length of the mouth mingling with more vanilla and pomegranate in the finish. $50

Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points
2019 Sojourn Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville

The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville is sunny with cassis, violet candy, and sweet tobacco. The palate is full and reveals a gripping structure that lifts cleanly off the palate. Black plum and graphite fill out the mid-palate, with dried herbs on the finish. Hold 2-4 years and drink 2024-2032. $90


Taste 2022 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc, 2018 Odette Adaptation Napa Cabernet and 2020 L’Aventure Cote at Cote at (VRW) for $15 per person.
Saturday, March 18th. Available 12:00 noon -3:45 PM

2022 Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc

Winemaker Notes: Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc put New Zealand on the map with its captivating flavor. Their signature style is famous for its vibrant nose, mouthwatering palate and long finish. Stone fruit and citrus stand out, while minerality (think rain on river stones) provides balance. $40

2018 Odette Adaptation Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: The 2018 Adaptation Cabernet Sauvignon is opaque purple in color, presenting notes of wild blackberries, luxardo cherries, plums, crème de cassis with hints of fresh spring flowers. This full-bodied expression displays beautiful ripeness with elegant, very fine, well integrated elegant, fine tannins and a gorgeous silky texture. Built for near term appreciation and long-term potential, this forward, upfront, and approachable style can be enjoyed over the next decade+. $80

Wine Advocate 98 Points
2020 L'Aventure Winery Côte a Côte

The 2020 Côte a Côte is a beautiful blend of 45% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 25% Mourvèdre and one of the most successful wines I tasted from the challenging 2020 vintage. Deep ruby-purple, it offers pure aromas of blackcurrant, boysenberry, tar and pipe tobacco, continually unfolding with each return to the glass. The full-bodied palate offers wave after wave of perfumed fruit and tremendous spicy accents. It's powerful yet harmoniously structured with powdery tannins and seamless acidity, and it offers a very long, detailed finish. $105


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
Tuesday-Friday 10:30 AM-5:30 PM
Saturday 10:30 AM-4:00 PM

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