July 13th 2023 Newsletter - The Grape Tray

July 13th 2023 Newsletter

Wine Liquidation: Local customer is short on cash and needs to liquidate. He is forced to sell below what he paid for the wine.

*Louis Roederer Brut Collection 243 (Six pack case $240 plus tax) 48 bottles available.

*2019 Lancaster Winemaker’s Cuvee (Six pack case $240 plus tax) 24 bottles available.

*Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne Grand Siècle Grande Cuvée Nº25 NV (Three pack case $540 plus tax) 12 bottles available.

Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points
Louis Roederer Brut Collection 243

The NV Champagne Collection 243 Brut is the third release and is based on the 2018 vintage, with the addition of 30% of the perpetual reserve started in 2012 and 10% reserve wine that has been aged in oak. It is ripe and balanced, with yellow flowers, honeycomb, and plum, and it has elegant concentration and underlying tension, precise mousse, and rich salinity, with lingering notes of croissant and delicate smoke. $68

Jeb Dunnuck 93 Points
2019 Lancaster Winemakers Cuvee Cabernet

The 2019 Winemaker's Cuvee is 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 14% Merlot, 5% Malbec, and the rest Cabernet Franc and was aged for 15 months in 50% new French oak. It is rich with aromas of lavender, tobacco, and boysenberry compote and delivers ripe fruit through the mid-palate, with notes of blackcurrant, leather, and baking spice. This red has immediate appeal, but it will continue to evolve over the next 10 or more years. $105

Wine Spectator 95 Points
Laurent-Perrier Brut Champagne Grand Siècle Grande Cuvée Nº25 NV (2022 Review)

Reveals rich and concentrated flavors of pear tart and dried mango, roasted hazelnut and ground coffee, preserved lemon and candied ginger enlivened by a spine of racy acidity and an underlying streak of minerally smoke and brine. Offers a fine and creamy mousse, with pleasing viscosity to the overall impression. Long, spiced finish. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Drink now through 2032. $250

We are selling this wine at liquidation prices and all wine is sold in case lots. Please email stan@grapetray.com if you are interested in purchasing.


Taste Napa Cabernet: 2019 Girard Napa, 2019 Chateau Buena Vista Napa and 2018 Paul Hobbs Coombsville Napa at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Thursday, July 13th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

James Suckling 94 Points
2019 Girard Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

An intense nose with lots of ripe black and blue fruit, vanilla, licorice and a touch of leafiness. Full-bodied and dry with firm tannins and delicious fruit. Creamy and succulent with a touch of minerality. Long chocolatey finish. Light austerity at the end that makes it balanced and fresh. Better in a year or two. $36

James Suckling 94 Points
2019 Chateau Buena Vista Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

Lovely nose of blueberries, currants, hazelnuts and mint chocolate. I like the texture of the tannins, which are plush and smooth, melting into the wine. Full-bodied, creamy and already delicious. Drink from 2023. $45

Wine Advocate 94+
2018 Paul Hobbs Napa Cabernet Sauvignon Coombsville

This is the first vintage for this label. In fact, this replaces the "Napa Valley" label, but since all the wine now comes from the Coombsville AVA (and mostly from their estate), it now carries the Coombsville name.

Deep garnet-purple in color, the nose of the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Coombsville is redolent of Morello cherries, boysenberries and cassis with hints of lilacs, cinnamon stick and dried herbs. The medium to full-bodied palate has vibrant black fruit flavors with a a soft texture and nice tension, finishing with a red fruit lift. 6,677 cases were made. $120


Wine Spectator 94 Points
MARGERUM M5 Santa Barbara County 2021

Structure meets polish in this full-bodied blend, which offers deep blackberry and raspberry flavors that interplay with licorice, smoked pepper and garrigue and finish with well-buffed tannins. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Counoise and Cinsault. Drink now through 2032. —T.F. $30 Our Price $23.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 95 Points
MARGERUM Grenache Santa Barbara County 2021

Sleek and dynamic, with refined raspberry, spiced cinnamon and cured meat accents that sprint toward the long, polished finish. Drink now through 2032. —T.F. $40 (Taste this wine next week at VRW)

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. 1,110 cases made, 600 cases imported. $25 Liquidation Price $14.95 (Limited to 7 bottles in stock at GT) 2020 Vintage only.

Wine Spectator 93 Points
Castello di Bossi Chianti Classico Berardo Riserva 2018

Rich, this lithe and vibrant red has settled in nicely, exhibiting cherry, blackberry, iron, sanguine and woodsy aromas and flavors. Beautifully balanced, lingering with fruit, mineral, savory and spicy notes. Drink now through 2035. 5,000 cases made, 2,000 cases imported. $42 Our Price $26.99 (Arrives GT this afternoon)

Austin Barrel 21 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 (Back in stock GT and VRW)

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 (Available GT and VRW)

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 (Back in stock GT this afternoon)

Wine Advocate 92 Points
2019 Turley Juvenile Zinfandel

The 2019 Zinfandel Juvenile has a medium ruby color and aromas of earth-laced red and black berries. The palate is soft and alluring with a wealth of ripe fruit and juicy acidity, and it finishes long and uplifted. It's a very approachable style this vintage. 15,670 cases produced. CA Market Price $39-$50. We have 6 bottles in stock for $25 per bottle. (Available GT)


Taste 2021 Groth Estate Oakville White, 2020 Dalla Valle Collina Napa Cabernet and 2019 McGah Scarlett Rutherford Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Friday, July 14th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

Wine Spectator 92 Points
Groth Estate White Oakville 2021

Distinctive, aromatic and wonderfully elegant, this white shows details of beeswax, litsea oil and a whiff of smoked sea salt, which adds complexity to the core of tangerine, peach and lemon curd. Long, long finish. Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon. Drink now. 600 cases made. $50

California Wine Advisors 97 Points
2020 Dalla Valle Collina Napa Cabernet Sauvignon

This highly-anticipated boutique Cabernet blend impresses with a silky smooth texture, plush tannins, and seriously delicious, dark fruit that remind us of best-selling trophy wines. We have judged the last ten Collina vintages and this is a strong candidate for the best-ever upon release. Flavors of dark chocolate and espresso lead to seductive layers of tightly-wound fruit complimented by seamlessly integrated French oak. This impressive new offering truly defies its humble price tag and may be enjoyed tonight (decant 1⁄2 hour). Our team rates this a solid 96+ rating now and predict it will evolve into 97 points over the next decade in our judgement. $115

Jeb Dunnuck 93-95 Points
2019 McGah Scarlett Rutherford Cabernet

Beautiful, sweet cassis and blue fruits as well as lots of violet and floral notions emerge from the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon, a full-bodied, rich, concentrated barrel sample with wonderful purity of fruit, a good sense of freshness, and serious length on the finish. This promising, elegant yet powerful wine is going to shine with short-term bottle age and keep for two decades. $70


Taste 2021 Paul Hobbs Crossbarn Sonoma Coast Chardonnay, 2021 Beaux Freres Willamette Valley Pinot and 2018 Faust The Pact Coombsville Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Saturday, July 15th. Available 12:00 noon -3:45 PM

James Suckling 93 Points
2021 Paul Hobbs Crossbarn Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

A crisp and complex chardonnay with sliced apple, pie crust and hints of white peaches. Medium body. Lovely length. Delicious flavors. Excellent complexity. $27

Wine Spectator 94 Points
BEAUX FRÈRES Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2021

Sleek, graceful and elegantly proportioned, with expressive violet, raspberry, guava and black tea flavors that jump out of the glass and gather richness toward polished tannins. Drink now through 2032. —T.F. $75 (Available GT and VRW)

James Suckling 96 Points
2018 Faust The Pact Coombsville Napa Cabernet

This is really something, showing focus and purity that highlights the unique character of this appellation. So much blue fruit, lavender and walnut with some herbal and sweet tobacco undertones It’s full-bodied, yet tight and poised. Lovely quality to the tannins. Exceptional. $125


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

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