Once a largely mail-order, wine club-only winery (my uncle introduced me to these guys way back in the day), they’ve still relatively new in their distribution to Missouri. This entry-level Napa Valley cabernet is a blend of 94% Cabernet and 6% Merlot that spends a healthy 26 months in French oak and clocks in at 14.5% abv. Sourced from vineyards in Oakville, Yountville, and Atlas Peak, it pours a deep, dark ruby hue.
On the nose, I get floral notes, with both red (cherries) and black (currant) fruits and hints of cedar box. It’s quite pretty and elegant. On the palate, this is medium in weight with a silky, svelte texture but firm, fine-grained tannins. Black cherry, spice, dried flowers, creamy currant, and subtle oak.
This is a really pleasant, elegant, easy-to-like Cabernet that’s quite approachable and enjoyable now, but I think it will gain complexity with another few years in bottle. Still, there’s no need to wait if you’re looking for something to drink tonight. This will please a broad range of palates, and the price is right. In fact, when you consider that this was primarily wine-club-only for a good while, and that you’re getting delicious, balanced Napa Cab for under $50.00…it’s really kind of a steal!!
This one gob smacked me! That’s not easy to do and, honestly, I went into tasting this with a rather dour and not-particularly-friendly-towards-the-brand mentality. Yeah, I’ll say it. I. Was. Wrong. Guys, don’t tell my wife I said that…I’ll never live it down. There wasn’t much of this to go around, but I bought all they would give me and have ordered more. Even better? We’ve got the exclusive on this wine, at least for the time being…the only other accounts to get any in town were two high-end restaurants, who each took a case (it’s not on their list yet, so I’ve been asked not to name them, but these guys know wine!). The long and the short of it? I simply don’t remember tasting any sub-$15 Cabernet with this kind of quality in a long time!
We have been waiting for the right vintage to make a straight Cabernet Sauvignon and decided that the small, concentrated berries this vintage made it the perfect year to start. All the fruit for this wine comes from sustainably farmed Goose Mountain vineyards which is a spectacular vineyard contiguous with the renowned Red Mountain AVA (though we think our fruit is better!). The higher elevation and steeper slopes mean cooler nights and poorer soils relative to Red Mountain, which is ideal for world class grape growing. The Cabernet Sauvignon was de-stemmed and then fermented with native yeast, followed by the wine being on its skins for 35 days (fermentation being about half that time). We make this wine without any intervention to preserve the honesty and integrity of the fruit and place. We had access to some beautiful Goose Mountain Syrah that we thought would add complexity and spice. We fermented the Syrah with native yeast and whole cluster and blended it together with the Cabernet Sauvignon right before we blended and moved all the wine to old barrels. In the barrels, we were looking to soften and concentrate, not to add toast and vanilla thus the choice of used neutral barrels. The resulting wine has intense black currant, espresso, black olive, and dusty herbs with broad shouldered structure.”
This wine just delivers so much for the price. It’s 95% Cabernet and 5% Syrah (which the purist in me would usually decry) but it shows plentiful red fruit on the nose with just a hint of pyrazine and the palate is lush, peppery, and lightly herbal, with plentiful rich red fruit and a seductive softness, but enough structure and complexity to hold everything together nicely. There’s a reason Wine Enthusiast named this a Best Buy!
“The Bolt is made predominantly with fruit from own-rooted vines growing at approximately 1,200 feet above sea level in the Goose Mountain block of Goose Ridge Ranch. It is graceful and balanced, with juicy acidity, sturdy tannic structure and restrained alcohol. With its aromas and flavors of Bing cherries, salted black licorice, orange blossoms, freshly cut grass and a savory note of pan-seared steak with fresh rosemary, this is a stunning value.” 92pts, “Best Buy” Wine Enthusiast
We’ve got a case on the shelf, and a 3cs stack here in store, and the only other place you’ll be able to find this is on a couple high-end wine lists (soon) here in town. I’ll say it again? Cab deal of the year? We’re at the end of Q1, and this is for sure the forerunner at this point!
There were only 12 bottles of this for the whole state, from what I was told, and we received one!! Not only that, we’ve got a fantastic price on it!
Here’s what the producer has to say about it:
“Introducing the 2022 release of The Bootleg Series by Heaven’s Door. Featuring rare and unreleased whiskeys, each annual release features one of Dylan’s paintings on a hand-made ceramic bottle in a bespoke leather case. The fourth annual Bootleg release, The Bootleg Series Vol. IV featured a wheated bourbon aged for 11 years, finished in Islay Scotch casks, and then bottled with a proof of 111.0. The ceramic bottle for Bootleg Vol. IV features Lighthouse in Maine, 2017 by Bob Dylan inside a handmade leather journal. The brand’s previous Bootleg Vol. III release was recognized by The Robb Report as “One of the Best Bourbons of the 21st Century.”
This is one for the adventurous bourbon drinker, as the smoke from the nearly year-long finishing period in Islay casks adds complex, interesting, and unusual (for bourbon) flavors to the final product. However, reviews seem pretty positive overall, with most noting that the balance of smoke and traditional, sweet/toasty/vanilla/caramel wheated bourbon flavors actually work very nicely together and create something somehow more than the sum of its parts. Me? I won’t know, cos this be crazy expensive. But for the bourbon collector (or Dylan fan!) looking for something unique, this is sure to please! And my rep told me there were only 12 bottles for the whole state, so we’re lucky to get one! If this is your jam, come on down and see us…you’re not likely to find a better price anywhere!
This is one that almost never makes it to the center of the state, but we managed to snag a case! For those of you not familiar with Aecht Schlenkerla, they’re perhaps the best-known and one of the most-respected brewers of Rauchbier (literally, ‘smoke beer’) that is the specialty of the German city of Bamberg, in the Bavarian region of Franconia. What gives Rauchbier its unique, super-savory, almost meaty smokiness (think bacon and barbecue and campfire, but in beer form!) is the fact that historically the malt for the beer was smoked over beechwood logs to dry it, similar to how some Scotch is made with peat-smoked malt.
Ok, enough of the history lesson. This special version is brewed specifically to commemorate the Lenten season and is made with a split base of smoked and unsmoked malt, for a little bit more subtlety. It’s also canned unfiltered…a real treat. Here’s what the brewery says:
“Fasting was already being practiced by the Romans in ancient times. The Christians adapted this ritual as a 40-day preparation for the Easter celebration. According to the principle ‘liquida non frangunt ieiunium’ (liquids do not break the fast), the monks in the middle-age monasteries prepared a richer and more complex beer for the time of lent. Following this tradition, Schlenkerla Lentbeer is brewed with a blend of non-smoked pale malt and Schlenkerla Smoked Malt. Served unfiltered and with a higher malt concentration than the classic Marzen smoked beer, it has the ‘Brotzeit’ (German for afternoon snack) already added, just as the monks would have savored it in the past.”
I’m gonna be honest, I don’t buy a lot of cream liqueurs personally. Don’t get me wrong…I drank a lot of Bailey’s on ice in my 20s. And there are some really fun, unique examples out there (Amarula, for example, or the amazing Calvados-based cream liqueur we recently brought in that’s also currently in my fridge). But this one I’m gonna have to snag a bottle of. It’s that good.
When the rep brought this to me yesterday he pitched it as “literally, this tastes like a melted chocolate bar.” Sure it does, bro…sure it does. So I opened it. And it didn’t smell like chocolate liqueur…or fake, imitation chocolate the way that some cocoa liqueurs do. It smelled like a high-quality, melted chocolate bar. Ok. Your move, mate. Surely, it can’t taste as good as it smells.
Ok, so I’m 0-for-2. This stuff is really, really good. It’s luscious, creamy and, most importantly, perfectly natural-tasting. It’s something akin to some Belgian “dark milk” chocolate (I still wish I could find the stuff my wife brought me home from France years back!) slowly melting in your mouth, with very subtle hints of vanilla and spice. The liqueur itself is “a blend of Licor 43 and sustainably sourced cocoa”. What’s it like? Here’s how the producer describes it:
“The texture of milk chocolate adds depth to the entire taste experience. The complexity of this product can be even better appreciated by letting the liquid slowly pass through your palate and ensuring it is nice and chilled, reminding us of the adventure of melting a chocolate in your mouth and discovering what’s inside.”
Seriously, over ice, with coffee, in a wide variety of cocktails, or in deserts (this is how I’m going to use it first!) this stuff is golden. For those of you (and there are many!) lamenting the fact that Godiva Milk Chocolate has been discontinued, I’ve got your new fix for you! Come check it out here, as this isn’t widely-available yet! I was shockedhow much I liked this, and my assistant manager says she can’t wait to mix it up in a Espresso Martini…it seems like everyone who tasted it was impressed!
And so are we! After a couple of weeks of near radio silence (we lost free access to Mail Chimp and my lovely, extremely patient wife and I had to enter in all 500+ email recipients’ information by hand into the new system), we’re BACK! We figured we’d kick things off by releasing some special whiskies for sale, including some allocated stuff! Check ’em out!
Rebel 10yr Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Bourbon-“Aged in charred oak barrels for 10 years, this bourbon boasts a unique flavor profile specific to each batch. It’s one-of-a-kind, just like the rebels who drink it. Tasting Notes: Hints of caramel and citrus on your first sips. But continue drinking and it morphs into a velvety oak flavor with unabashed spice.”
$95.99/bottle (This ten-year wheated bourbon DOES qualify for the Whiskey Wednesday discount…we have 2 bottles in stock!)
Henry McKenna Bottled-in-Bond 10yr Old Single Barrel Bourbon-“This high proof, Bottled-in-Bond Bourbon was named for Henry McKenna, the Irish immigrant who adapted his family’s whiskey recipe to work with the grains he found in Kentucky. Henry McKenna is one of the longest aged Bottled-in-Bond whiskeys available today, resting in the barrel through 40 Kentucky seasons. Critics agree that this is perfectly balanced Bourbon. Color: Warm golden amber…Aroma: Vanilla, caramel, oak, and a light herbaceous note…Taste: Smooth oak, sharp spices, honey, and sweetness…Finish: Long, sweet, and spicy.”
$64.99/bottle (This DOES qualify for the Whiskey Wednesday discount…we have 4 bottles in stock!)
Old Pepper Finest Kentucky Oak Bourbon-“For this special bottling, we have taken a fine, straight bourbon and given it a secondary finish in heavily toasted barrels made from staves of the Finest Kentucky Oak. Unlike the average whiskey barrel, which has its staves air-seasoned for six months prior to assembly, the staves for these barrels were air-seasoned for 18-24 months. This overall process results in more flavor being released in the oak, which in turn is imparted into the already matured whiskey, creating a full-bodied and complex whiskey bottled straight from the barrel – uncut and unfiltered.”
$74.99/bottle on sale from. This DOES NOT qualify for Whiskey Wednesday discount (we only received a 1-bottle allocation!!) but we do have a fantastic price on it!
George Dickel Bottled-in-Bond 13yr Old Tennessee Whisky-This bottled-in-bond Tennessee whisky is (in my opinion) one of the best values in American whiskey available today. The Cascade Hollow Distillery utilizes the classic Tennessee charcoal mellowing technique and this whiskey is produced from a mashbill of 84% corn, 8% rye, and 8% malted barley before slowly aging for a long thirteen years. We sold out of this almost immediately the first time through, and have been allocated a second case which we were crazy excited to get!
$51.99/bottle (FOR A 13 YEAR OLD WHISKEY!!)…This DOES qualify for the Whiskey Wednesday discount!!At the request of the distributor, we actually put this on the shelf!!
Old Elk Wine Cask-Finished Bourbons-Ok, so here are the two I would buy if given the chance! The single-barrel version of one of these bourbons (the Sherry cask) was widely proclaimed the second favorite (and not by a wide margin) after Blanton’s at a high-end private bourbon tasting I was asked to conduct a couple weeks back. These are not easy to get (we had to pull them from out of market, actually) but well worth the search. Old Elk’s bourbons use malted barley as their main “character” grain and it makes them both unique and fantastic, and this is especially true when paired with dessert wine-cask finishing in Port and Sherry barrels. Scotch whisky makers have utilized this for a long time, but it’s still fairly unusual in bourbon. We have six bottles of each, and they’re delicious!
$92.99/each bottle…These DO qualify for our Whiskey Wednesday discount (we have six bottles of each in stock!!)
MINI RAFFLE OPPORTUNITY!!
Now it’s time for something fun! I know I’ve had several of you kind of bummed out that we haven’t been doing any mini drawings or raffles lately, and I just wanted to address that briefly. The simple truth is that sadly (but perhaps not unexpectedly) allocations are even more limited this year than they were last year (or the year before that). Combine that with the fact that I blew through all of my saved-up inventory that I’d been slowly accumulating over a year and a half’s time for this past December’s raffle, and now I have to start building again from scratch. All of that being said, y’all are right, and just because we can’t do much doesn’t mean we should just give up, am I right?
We’ve put together a few highly-allocated bottles for a little “Wednesday Raffle”…best of luck to you all!
With that in mind, we’ve got three special bottles (one of them very special!) that I wanted to raffle today. We’re gonna handle this one just a bit differently, so check out the fine print below!
This one’s simple! If you’re interested in a chance to snag one of these bottles, all you have to do is email me (at email@example.com) and choose a number between 1 and 20. The first four people to guess the number I’ve picked will get the chance to buy a bottle. The first person to guess the correct number will get first choice, the second person to guess the correct number gets second choice, etc. Only one guess per customer, and bottles will need to be picked up by the end of the day (either by the winner themself or a proxy). If you’re the chosen but the only bottle(s) you want are already gone, there’s obviously no requirement to purchase anything. Winners will be contacted by email (or phone, if I have your number handy). Prices are as follows: Dickel Collab = $119.99, Michters 10yr = $154.99, EH Taylor = $45.99, and Blanton’s = $64.99 plus tax.
Please note: due to their extreme scarcity, these bottles are not available for the Whiskey Wednesday discount, but you won’t be overcharged on them…that we promise you!
That’s all there is to it! It’s been a slow, cold, dreary week so far, so why not come on down for Whiskey Wednesday (and check out our newly re-set Bourbon, Rye, and Scotch/Irish set!) grab a fun bottle, and maybe even snag something extra special!
So, so excited to get a bottle of this! We’d actually put in for a couple 100pt bottlings from Vérité, but stock was extremely slim (a couple of bottles of each wine) by the time we got a shot at ’em, so we were fortunate to score even a single bottle. It’s not cheap by any means, but it is special! This is the absolute jewel in the crown of the Kendall-Jackson portfolio, and one that serious California collectors will not want to miss!
Vérité is the brainchild of the legendary Jess Jackson, and today is managed by long-term vigneron Pierre Seillan and his daughter, Helene. Here’s a bit about the producer.
“Jess Jackson (1930–2011) was already the founder of one of the most successful family-owned wine companies in the United States when he met Pierre Seillan during a visit to France in the 1990s. A true visionary, Jackson’s lengthy career, which spanned more than 30 years, was driven by a passion for producing extraordinary wine from California’s best vineyards. Jackson had longed to create a wine that would be just as good as the world’s best wines and was confident that the terroir in Sonoma County had that potential. A friendship developed between the Jackson family in California and the Seillan family in Bordeaux. When Pierre Seillan visited California in 1997, he too saw the potential and did not hesitate when Jackson asked him to come to Sonoma County to realize this dream together. And so, Vérité was born.
With more than 50 ‘micro-crus’ across four appellations, Vigneron Pierre Seillan carefully crafts each blend of Vérité. This mosaic of micro-crus provides Seillan with the palette of aromatics, flavors, textures and structural elements he needs to craft the wines of Vérité. Each micro-cru is harvested and fermented separately, then aged in French Oak barrels of various custom toasts. Seillan carefully tailors his winemaking techniques and oak regimens to the personality of each lot, providing him with hundreds of unique components he can use to create the architecture of the final blends of La Muse, La Joie and Le Désir.”
This wine is composed of 90% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Malbec, focusing on the Merlot grape that, in the Right Bank regions of Bordeaux, make some of the most expensive (and highly-prised) reds in the world. Think of this as a sort of Sonoma version of Pomerol, if you will! And check out this press!
“A blend of 90% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc and 4% Malbec, the 2018 La Muse was matured 16 months in 100% new French oak barrels. Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the nose delivers a powerful perfume of cherry pie, blackberry preserves and baked plums, followed by suggestions of red roses, cast-iron pan, underbrush, and unsmoked cigars, plus wafts of licorice and oolong tea. Medium to full-bodied, the black fruit and exotic spice layers flow so gracefully over the palate, textured by plush tannins and lifted with seamless freshness, finishing epically long and achingly fragrant. The intensity and complexity of aromas and flavors—all waltzing in captivating harmony—cannot fail to make your head spin in the best possible way. Electrifying.” 100pts Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
“Checking in as 90% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, and 4% Malbec that was raised in new French oak, the 2018 La Muse reveals a dense purple hue to go with plenty of black cherry and currant fruits as well as cedar pencil, graphite, dark chocolate, and smoked tobacco. Ripe, full-bodied, and brilliantly balanced on the palate, with both elegance and incredible opulence, it’s a hypothetical mix of Châteaux Canon and Lafite. This masterpiece of a Merlot can be drunk any time over the coming 20-30 years. Give bottles an hour in a decanter if drinking any time soon.” 99pts Jeb Dunnuck
We only received one bottle and we’ve got it at a fantastic price. Please note: this wine is not eligible for the 10% (15% on Thursdays) six-pack wine pricing, as we’d be losing money on the sale. We do have about the best price you’re likely to find anywhere, however ($339.99 on sale)!
Please contact me via email or text if you’d like to reserve this bottle!
I had to do a double-take when I saw this deal! Granted, 2017 was by no means a perfect vintage (drought and high temperatures ran rampant in Tuscany) and the wines certainly aren’t the equals of the blockbuster 2015s and 2016s, but there were a lot of estates who managed to produced balanced wines with plenty of freshness in spite of the conditions. Here we have an incredible closeout deal on the 2017 vintage of Gaja’s (of high-priced, high-scoring Barolo fame) Montalcino estate: Pieve Santa Restituta.
Here’s a bit about the wine itself:
“Part of the grapes from Rennina and Sugarille vineyards are blended with those from Torrenieri, in the north-eastern area of Montalcino. While the soil in Rennina and Sugarille is clay-calcareous with high amounts of galestro, the ground in Torrenieri is a mixture of clay, tuff and sand. The grapes from the different vineyards ferment and macerate separately for around three weeks. After 24 months of ageing in oak, the wines are blended and then aged for another six months in concrete vats. The 2017 Brunello shows intense and bright color. From the glass rises initial notes of dried rose petal and hawthorn, followed by blackberry and white pepper. The entrance is juicy with black cherry and quince. The texture is smooth and lush with velvety tannins and vibrant acidity. The wine is elegant with a lingering finish.”
This wine usually goes for $80-120, but we got an unbelievable deal on it, as the Gaja portfolio has switched to a different distributor and the old vendor needs to move out old stock. This vintage hasn’t been rated (from what I can tell)but reviews seem to suggest that it’s probably best to drink now (with a good decant) and over the next 5-7 years, rather than needing to be (or benefiting from) long-term aging.
Snap this up while it’s available (we only received 6 bottles!) and pair with Parmesan-crusted steak medallions, rustic rigatoni with sausage and mushroom, or heck, decant and serve it with a wood-fired pizza for a special middle-of-the-week treat!
Only $39.99/bottle on closeout (regularly $80-120/bottle). We only received 6 bottles, and have already sold one…check this out in our Italian section!
Check this out! Spring may be just around the corner (so they tell us), but it’s blustery and unpleasant as heck out there today…in other words, it’s still perfect weather for beers like these!
Not only were we lucky enough to get a bit of extra Parabola 2023, we also snagged a case of Firestone Walker Anniversary Ale XXVI, and a single 12-pack case of the highly-allocated Surly Barrel-Aged Darkness. These are all up front and I don’t expect them to last too long, so swing on down and grab a couple for this cold, blustery week!
Surly Barrel-Aged Darkness-Darkness is a beer that earns its reputation. Malty and intense yet velvety smooth, our Russian imperial stout’s yearly release is a de facto holiday, and not just because it’s Halloween. It also plays well with others. It’s a perfect candidate for barrel-aging, which can accentuate all the aspects that make the original Darkness so noteworthy. Pick the right barrel to add even more flavor and aromatic elements and you end up with something remarkable. 2022 Barrel-Aged Darkness is that kind of beer. Hops: Warrior, Amarillo, Simcoe. More of an aromatic hop presence than other Russian imperial stouts, although more subtle in this edition thanks to the readily apparent bourbon notes. Malts: 2-Row, Simpson’s Golden Promise, Crystal, Dark Crystal (the malt, not the movie, Jim Henson is not affiliated with the Surly Brewing Company), Oats, Black Malt, Chocolate Malt, Roasted Barley. Special Guest: Belgian Dark Candi Sugar. ABV: 12%.
Firestone Walker XXVI Anniversary Ale-Our collaboration with local winemakers dates back to 2006, when Matt was tasked with creating the inaugural Anniversary Ale to mark Firestone Walker’s 10th anniversary year. Ever since, the Anniversary Ale blending session has become an annual summer rite at the brewery. “I’m not aware of any other beer that is blended like this, from so many distinct components,” Brewmaster Matt says. “That’s why we bring in the winemakers—they are, by nature, practicing experts in the art of blending.” Final Blend = Parabola – Russian Imperial Stout – Aged in Bourbon Barrels (32%), Velvet Merkin – Milk Stout – Aged in Bourbon Barrels (32%), Bravo – Imperial Brown Ale – Aged in Bourbon Barrels (24%), Heavy Things – Barley Wine Made in Collaboration with The Bruery – Aged in Brandy Barrels (6%), Helldorado – Blonde Barley Wine – Aged in Bourbon Barrels (4%), Wheat Wine -Strong Golden Barley Wine Co-Fermented with White Wine Grape Juice – Aged in Bourbon Barrels (2%).
Surly 2023 Parabola Imperial Stout–This year’s release was aged in 8-year Blanton’s and 12yr Weller Wheated Bourbon barrels!!
Really, really excited to see this one drop unexpectedly! We don’t see the Orphan Barrel whiskies come through very often and this one has some serious age on it! This is the third and final (and oldest) entry in the Muckety-Muck series, and is sure to be a collectible! Check out this 26-year-old single grain Scotch whisky, aged in ex-boubon casks.
Here’s a bit about this whisky from the producer:
“The Port Dundas Distillery was established in 1810 and gave the world two centuries of exceptional whisky. Although Port Dundas closed its doors in 2010, there are rare remaining stocks that provide a glimpse into the past of one of Scotland’s most respected distilleries. This 26-year-old whisky is one of those rare remaining stocks and is the third release in the Muckety-Muck series – a masterful blend that pays homage to the previous releases yet possesses a distinct profile on its own.”
“The aroma starts with a burst of caramel, fudge and baked sugar, backed by hints of fresh fruit and berries. On the palate, butterscotch vanilla combines with notes of toasted oak and a light fruity taste to carry through the finish.“
This is extremely limited, and we’ve got a hot price on it, so don’t snooze if this is something you’re after. Ask for it behind the counter in Wine and Spirits!
$259.99/bottle (on sale from $299.99!)…Please note: with our aggressive pricing on this bottle, and the fact that it’s highly-allocated, it does not qualify for the 10% “Whiskey Wednesday” discount.