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Matteo Correggia Roche D'Ampsei Nebbiolo 1997 ~$75 2/24/07
With layers of earth, pebble, leather and dried red berry on the nose with a concentrated palate of
red berry, moderate tannins and good acid and a moderately long finish, this Nebbiolo based
Roero red could hold its own to any "classified" piedmont Nebbiolo.
Sonnwendberger Kirchengarten Riesling TBA 1971 ~$120 2/17/07
Caramel fruit tart, dried apricot and honeysuckle aroma and flavors with a long finish. Thirty five
years old but still with a lot of life - like Sophia Loren in her matured prime!
Heitz Martha's Vineyard Cab Sauvignon 1982 ?gift? 2/17/07
Dried cranberry and currant on the nose with a balanced palate though with a very short finish. if
you have in your cellar, plan on drinking soon as it's fading fast.
Aubert Lauren Vineyard Chardonnay 1994 ~$70 2/17/07
With a nose of lemon peel, candied citrus and mineral but with rich buttery palate, this
Chardonnay had the nose of a Chablis but the unmistakable palate of CA chard. Very good with
cilantro and garlic roasted King crab and roasted shrimp and feta orzo salad. One of the few CA
chards worth the high price.
Michel Dervin Champagne Brut NV ~$25 2/17/07
With a nose of lemon curd and a rich mouthfeel of brioche and citrus tart, this NV for < $30 was a
winner for all tasters involved. Grab it from K & L Wines when it's available.
Caymus Napa Valley Cab Sauvignon 1989 ~$35 2/10/07
A delicate nose with dried currants, eucalyptus and candied fruit though a little short on the
palate with fast fading dried fruit flavors. Very short finish, seems several years past prime.
Chateau Leoville Barton St Julien 1995 ~$55 2/5/07
With hints of currants and dried red fruit on the nose, this Bordeaux was still very tight. Good
concentration on the palate but the firm tannins still need several years to settle.
Beaulieu Vienyards Napa Valley Tapestry 1997 ~$28 2/3/07
Concentrated ripe red fruit with hints of vanilla and oak. Medium bodied with good fruit on the
palate and a moderately long finish. Better than the 1994 or 1995 vintages.
Palmina Santa Ynez Valley Nebbiolo 2003 ~$42 1/23/07
Concentrated red cherry and Asian spice on the nose. Just as concentrated on the palate... then
those firm tannins kick in. This big boy should rest for another 5 to 7 years - as the tannins
mellow, the fruit should still be present.
Raymond Henriot Champagne Brut NV ~$28 1/20/07
Loads of red fruit on the nose with a hint of lemon curd. Good body with ripe fruit and a luscious
mouthfeel. Perfect with oysters on the halfshell and ahi/natto sushi!
Four Vines Paso Robles The Peasant 2004 ~$30 1/13/07
A blend of Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre and Counoise, this concentrated red makes Zinfandel seem
watered down. Mouthfilling black and red fruit, mouthcoating tannins and a very long finish.
Agrapart Champagne Blanc de Blanc NV ~$30 12/31/06
With a citrusy, creamy nose and rich mouthfeel, another great Chardonnay sparkler from a small
Livio Sassetti Brunello di Montalcino 1995 ~$80 12/21/06
Though it seems pricey, this was the bottle price at Vino Italian Wine Bar and Tapas. The nose was
like picking fresh strawberries as you stooped over the earth. On the palate was dried red berries
and leather with a hint of mushrooms. This was one of the best red wines that I had in 2006!
Pierre Gimmonet Champagne Blanc de Blanc NV ~$38 12/16/06
Made exclusively from chardonnay, it had the mouthfeel of an aged white burgundy and a very
good long finish.
Cattier Clos du Moulin Champagne Tete de Cuvee ~$49 12/16/06
A golden hue with a fine mousse. A nose with lots of citrus and brioche. Medium bodied with a
medium finish. Though it's more chardonnay in character, it's a 50-50 blend with Pinot Noir.
Merus Napa Valley Cab Sauvignon 2003 ~$110 12/2/06
Currants and ripe dark fruit with hints of vanilla on the nose. After decanting, the wine didn't
open up until 3 hours later with concentrated red fruit, moderate tannins and a very long finish
Parusso Barbera d'Alba 2001 11/29/06
Ripe red cherry with a hint of spice and earth. A medium bodied red that would pair nicely with
grilled chicken or veggies.
Carlisle Sonoma County Syrah 2002 ~$30 11/28/06
Very dark ruby, almost black in color. Spicy nose with lots of concentrated red & black fruit. Still
with palate strippin' tannins so would hold for another 5 years.
Georges DuBoeuf Beaujolais Nouveau Villages 2006 ~$11 11/23/06
Vibrant cherry, raspberry and cranberry fruit with good acidity. Not as good as last years version
though still great with Thanksgiving fixins'
Illuminati Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2005 ~$13 11/14/06
Made from the Montepulciano grape in the region of Abruzzi, this table red had a lot of
cherry/berry/raspberry with just a hints of raisin not unlike a very ripe Zinfandel. Great with
anything barbecued and at this price, you can afford several bottles.
The Sisters Napa Valley Cab Sauvignon 2003 ~$45 11/14/06
The Jones Family Cab made from younger vines. Loads of currant and a touch of sage with firm
yet yielding tannins. Needs to sit for a year or serve with grilled, minted lamb chops or wild boar
Luisin Langhe Maggiur Piedmont Nebbiolo 2004 ~$20 11/12/06
Made in the same region and from the same grape as Barolo and Barbaresco, this full bodied red
with dark cherry and a touch of licorice and new leather was perfect with a grilled veggie
panzanella with grilled Portuguese and kim-chi sausage. Also only 1/4 the price of its famous
Brewer Clifton Central Coast Pinot Noir 2004 ~$50 11/4/06
From the Clos Pepe vineyard, the nose is like a spice cabinet with cinnamon, clove, anise and
licorice along with sweet red fruit and a rich balanced palate. Would love to try it again with
braised short ribs in Asian spices.
Diebolt Vallois Champagne Brut NV ~$35 10/29/06
Not technically a grower-producer but a very small label champagne with BIG taste. With a nose
of apples, citrus and brioche and a rich mouth filling palate - almost like an aged vintage
champagne, this is now my favorite non-vintage Brut champagne.
Bressler Napa Valley Cab Sauvignon 2002 ~$80 10/22/06
Currants and dried herbs on the nose with a moderate concentration of red fruit. A little lighter
than the 2001 but still a very good Cab.
Rene Collard Champagne Brut 1985 ~$70 10/22/06
With a rich golden color and fine mousse, it had a nose of freshly baked pie filled with lemon curd
and candied orange peel with just a hint of truffles. Mouthfilling with dried fruit, nuts and spice
with a long finish.
Klosterkeller Siegendorf Austria Pinot Blanc 1976 ~$100 10/13/06
Purchased at a fundraiser auction for Hawaii Public Television, this 30 year old gem of a wine had
a fragrant nose of baked apricots and peaches with the same flavor sensations along with nice
caramel undertones. The acid balanced the subtle sweetness and finished moderately long.
Delamotte Champagne Rose NV ~$53 10/11/06
Fine mousse and a strawberry nose with hints of lemon curd. Nice body and a long finish. Paired
nicely with a Cajun smoked salmon spread.
Oroya Spain Blended white 2005 ~$12 10/7/06
Made from Airen, Macabeo and Muscat by Japanese wine maker Yoko Sato in Spain, this refreshing
blended white wine is marketed specifically for sushi. While I still think that sake is the best
partner for sushi, this affordable white should complement any spicy Asian cuisine.
Clarendon Hills Moritz Vineyard Syrah 2003 ~$70 9/30/06
Concentrated red and black fruit with hints of olive and pebble. Mouthfilling, almost a chewy
wine with balancing tannins and a very long finish. Needs at least 5 years to settle.
Blankiet Napa Valley Merlot 2002 ~$90 9/24/06
Ripe red fruit, cherry with hints of mocha, dried orange peel and dried herbs. Very balanced on the
palate with silky tannins and a moderately long finish. The Merlot I'd drink daily if I were on the
Forbes 400 list.
Rosato di Palmina Santa Barbara Blend 2005 ~$25 9/20/06
A blend of Dolcetto (50%), Nebbiolo (30%) and Barbera (20%) from the Central Coast vinified
as a splendid rose wine. Loads of strawberry and cherry on the nose with a touch of mineral and
light refreshing finish. The perfect catch-all summer or barbecue wine that pairs with
Mediterranean, veggie, pork, poultry, lean meat dishes. A percentage of sales also goes to breast
cancer research so also morally satisfying!
Vietti Piedmont Roero Arneis 2005 ~$15 9/16/06
Slightly under ripe white peaches, honeydew and white flowers perfume this refreshing white wine
that paired nicely with shoyu poke, Marcona almonds and fig caponata. A perfect summer white
with a light body and short finish.
Nora Rias Baixas Albarino 2004 ~$14 9/16/06
Green apples and peaches on the nose with lively citrus overtones and mineral undertones. Packed
with vibrant acidity, this lively white would complement most seafoods and paired perfectly with
Sandgrube Kremstal Gruner Veltliner 2004 ~$15 9/16/06
Melon, apples and flowers on the nose with a moderate body and fine medium short finish. Perfect
with broiled oysters with spinach and Newburg sauce.
Treanna Central Coast Viognier/Marsanne 2002 ~$22 9/7/06
Baked pineapple and peach on the nose with lush, ripe stone fruit on the palate. This medium gold
white pairs nicely even with barbecue - probably better with roasted pork loin though!
Saxum Central Coast Syrah 2004 ~$45 9/4/06
Concentrated fresh red & black fruit with hints of stone and wet concrete. Surprisingly, though
it's a very concentrated wine, it's not heavy at all. Finely integrated tannins and a long finish.
Guado al Tasso Super Tuscan Cab/Merlot 1997 ~$75 8/26/06
Hints of dried red fruit, earth and light roasted coffee. Currants, mocha and dried herbs though
still overshadowed by the still youthful tannins and a long finish. Will wait another 3 to 5 years
before uncorking another.
De Venoge Champagne Brut 1990 ~$42 8/26/06
Medium gold with a fine mousse with a nose of lemon curd and baked apple. Mouthfilling with
essences of candied fruit and a long finish. Sixteen years old though certainly not on it's last legs!
Jones Family Napa Valley Cab Sauvignon 2002 ~$85 8/20/06
Thirty minutes after decanting, raspberry and dried cranberry with hints of thyme & marjoram and
subtle oak with a hint of vanilla on the nose with moderate body and sweet fruit with moderate
tannins and a moderate finish. Drinkable now or in the next 5 to 7 years.
Masumi Nanago Dai-Ginjo ~$55 8/13/06
With a fragrant bouquet of litchi and lime juice coated papaya and a full mid palate with a
pleasing balance of acid and sweetness, this daiginjo sake can be sipped on its own or paired with
your favorite sushi - especially natto & maguro barazushi with hints of fresh shiso!
Novy Santa Lucia Syrah 2003 ~$28 8/11/06
A nose full of smoky ripe red fruit, plum and dried cranberry with a hint of molasses on the tail.
Mouth filling, concentrated fruit with a moderately long finish. Perfect for your next barbecue or
braised short ribs. About $10 less in the states (I paid the Hawaii premium for new wines offered
Cavallotto Langhe Pinot Nero 2004 ~$19 8/7/06
A white Pinot Noir from one of my favorite Italian producers. A rich nose of mineral, stone fruit
with a hint of spice along with a full mid palate and a moderately long finish. Tasted blind, you
may think this is a white Burgundy - just as good at one-fifth the price. One of my favorite
whites under $20.
Marquis Philips 9 Shiraz 2004 ~$32 7/29/06
Concentrated ripe red fruit with a hint of mineral and roasted meat, this full bodied red benefits
from grapes normally used in Marquis Philips Integrity label but sadly, the union of Sparky &
Sarah Marquis and Dan Philips no longer exists. Get this full throttle red as soon as you can!
Zenato Lugana San Benedetto 2004 ~$12 7/26/06
Made purely from Trebbiano (one of two white grapes allowed in Chianti), this very food friendly
white wine has light lemon-citrus aromas with hints of stone fruit and light mineral. While it's
not a wine to sip alone while listening to the Three Tenors, I haven't had any food that disagrees
with it (from Gardetto's Snak-Ens to baked crab dip with foccacia).
Beckman Vineyards Santa Ynez Valley Syrah 2001 ~$28 7/26/06
Cherry and ripe red fruit nose with slight smoked meat. Full and rich on the palate with a
moderate finish. Begs to be paired with barbecue!
What I've recently tasted...