July 27th 2023 Newsletter - The Grape Tray

July 27th 2023 Newsletter

We have two bottles of this gem arriving today. If you would like to taste this wine next week at VRW respond to this email with YES!

Wine Advocate 98 Points
2017 Hundred Acre Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Ark Vineyard

Deep garnet-black colored, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Ark Vineyard unfurls sensuously from the glass with provocative scents of baked black cherries, plum preserves and crème de cassis, with emerging suggestions of fragrant earth, black truffles, Chinese five spice and dusty soil. Full-bodied, rich and oh-so-spicy on the palate, it has a rock-solid backbone of grainy tannins and lively acidity supporting the opulent fruit, finishing very long and exotic. This is a surprisingly decadent and powerful expression of 2017! $680


On deck for wine tasting next week at VRW:

2021 Rombauer Proprietor’s Selection Carneros Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: Expressive and concentrated aromas of grapefruit and lime sorbet with hints of clove are present in the glass. It is rich and intense on the palate with sweet peach, clove, and freshly baked pastry flavors. There is a bright refreshing acidity that gives way to more stone fruit flavors that continue to build on the very long and concentrated finish. $80

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


Taste 2018 B Side North Coast Chardonnay, 2021 Caymus California Cabernet and 2021 Caymus Napa Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Thursday, July 27th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

Tasting Panel 91 Points
2018 B Side North Coast Chardonnay

Opulent aromas of chamomile, buttered pecan, and lemon chiffon make an outstanding first impression. The palate does not disappoint: Rich with honeyed pear tart and bright lime, its plump body is balanced out by its fine acid structure. Aged 12 months in French oak. $20

2021 Caymus California Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: A small, inaugural release from Caymus Vineyards, this wine is a California-appellation Cabernet Sauvignon – supple, dark and rich, bearing the signature hallmarks of Caymus. It is sourced from sites throughout the state which feature climatic conditions, soils and topography that are ideally suited to Cabernet. This project stems from excitement over California’s diverse vineyard land, often in lesser-known areas, with the potential to produce exceptional Cabernet. $65

2021 Caymus Napa Cabernet

Producer Notes: Caymus has a signature style that is dark in color, with rich fruit and ripe tannins – as approachable in youth as in maturity. Since its founding in 1972, Caymus has become renowned as a consistent leader in the production of Napa Valley Cabernet. Grapes for this wine are farmed in a range of Napa’s sub-appellations – from Coombsville to Calistoga – with fruit from the valley floor creating lushness and the hillsides providing backbone. Diversification enables us to make the best possible wine in a given year, featuring layered, lush aromas and flavors, including cocoa, cassis and ripe berries. $90


James Suckling 99 Points * 2020 Lynch Bages Pauillac Bordeaux

A beautifully layered red with blackcurrant, hazelnut and lead-pencil character and fine, velvety tannins. Full-bodied and reserved. It’s like a tightly knit ball of polished tannins that are cashmere in texture. So very long and impressive. Give this time. A terrific Lynch. $150 (Arrives GT August 2023)

2022 Ghost Block MorgaenLee Sauvignon Blanc

Winemaker Notes: Beautiful aromatics of grapefruit and white peach jump from the glass followed by subtle tropical fruit notes of guava and papaya. $25 (Arrives GT this afternoon)

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 Spectator 94 Points * RÉSONANCE Pinot Noir Willamette Valley 2021

Precise and elegantly structured, with detailed raspberry, savory tea and crushed stone accents that gather richness and tension toward refined tannins. Drink now through 2031. 10,870 cases made.—T.F. $40 Internet Price $32.99 (Available GT and VRW)

Wine Spectator 92
Diatom Chardonnay Santa Barbara County 2022

Offers grilled pineapple, white peach and lemon blossom flavors that are robust and effortless on a sleek, juicy frame, with fresh-cut green apple, tarragon and sea spray notes emerging on the mouthwatering finish. Drink now. 17,000 cases made. $25 Our Price $21.95 (Available GT)

2021 Rochioli Russian River Estate Pinot Noir

Winemaker Notes: This Estate is a blend of our many different vineyard sites, with fifty-six percent Little Hill, sixteen percent from Sweetwater, sixteen percent from West Block, eight percent Big Hill, and four percent East Block. This full bodied wine is complex and rich with the typical Rochioli character and the Classic Russian River Valley charm. Aged in French oak for 15 months, the wine displays a full body and silky texture finish, with a balanced structure. $100 Our Price $89.99 (Back in stock GT 7/28/23)

Wine Spectator 95 Points
Pol Roger Brut Champagne Cuvée Sir Winston Churchill 2013

An expressive Champagne, with ripe and juicy pineapple, cassis and apricot fruit flavors married to notes of brioche, saline, lemon curd and honeysuckle. Backed by a spine of fresh acidity, this is well-cut and harmonious, with the fine and creamy mousse carrying the flavor range on the lasting finish. Drink now through 2035. 600 cases imported. $400 Our Price $293.95 (Available GT and VRW)


Taste Pinot Noir: 2021 Evening Land Seven Springs, 2021 Wayfarer WF2 Fort Ross Seaview Sonoma and 2019 Wayfarer Sonoma Coast Wayfarer Vineyard at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $15 per person.
Friday, July 28th. Available 12:00 noon -5:45 PM

Wine Spectator 94 Points
EVENING LAND Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills Seven Springs 2021

A lovely, delicate Pinot, with aromas of fresh violet opening to elegantly multilayered raspberry, guava and forest floor accents, which glide on the graceful finish. Drink now through 2031. 3,388 cases made. —Tim Fish. $45

2021 Wayfarer WF2 Fort Ross Seaview Sonoma Pinot Noir

Winemaker Notes: The 2021 jumps from the glass with notes of fresh rose, black currant, blackberry, blood orange, crushed earth, soy sauce, allspice and strawberry fields. A linear palate focuses on freshly picked strawberries and blackberries at the peak of ripeness, layered with decadent dark chocolate mousse. There is a beautiful persistence to this multifaceted Pinot Noir.

Wine Advocate 95 Points
Wayfarer Sonoma Coast Wayfarer Vineyard Pinot Noir 2019

The 2019 Pinot Noir Wayfarer Vineyard comes from all 11 clones grown on the Wayfarer property. Medium ruby-purple in color, it has broody aromas of blood orange, iron, rhubarb and cranberry sauce with notes of dusty earth and dried herbs. The palate manages incredible intensity, lift and expansive flavor layers with a very long, juicy finish that continually calls you in for another sip! $90


Taste Pride Mountain Chardonnay and Cabernet at Vintage Reserve Wine (VRW) for $20 per person.
Saturday, July 29th. Available 12:00 noon -3:45 PM

2021 Pride Mountain Chardonnay

Winemaker Notes: Our string of fresh exuberant chardonnays continues with the glorious 2021 vintage. Soaring aromatics of mint, sage, lemon peel, beeswax, white pepper and rain on pavement complement the classic fruit flavors of crisp apple and pear. This wine is filled with verve and energy from start to finish, possessing rounded luxuriance in the attack and an exciting crispness that builds with each second in your mouth. A beautiful wine that is precisely the chardonnay we want to be making. $48

2020 Pride Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon

Winemaker Notes: This wine exudes elegance and inner beauty. The seamless texture has enough weight to speak of its mountaintop origin but is more about creamy, silky, enveloping pleasure with not a single component out of place. The comforting flavors of black cherry, ripe plum, licorice, spice and cocoa are uplifted and made intriguing by aromatics of sweet tobacco, sandalwood, black pepper and lavender. This gorgeous cabernet simply resonates charm today and will age gracefully for decades. $78

Vinous 93 Points
2019 Pride Mountain Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon is a classic Pride wine. Effusive aromatics meld into a core of dark blue/purplish fruit. Medium in body, but with terrific depth, 2019 has a lot going on. This is an especially refined vintage for the Cabernet Sauvignon. All the elements are so nicely balanced. Cedar, tobacco, licorice and dried herbs linger. $86


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

Back to Our Blog

Are you 21 years old, or older?