2016 Westwood Annadel Gap Estate Syrah

2016 Westwood Annadel Gap Vineyard Estate Syrah

WESTWOOD

2016 ESTATE SYRAH
ANNADEL GAP VINEYARD

2016 Westwood Annadel Gap Estate Syrah
Westwood spares no expense in both farming and winemaking, and the level of care is obvious in their wines. Their vineyard is one of a handful of Demeter-certified Biodynamic vineyards in North America, and Philippe Coderey, a legend in organic and biodynamic viticulture, farms it. Westwood’s winemaker is Philippe Melka, whose vast experience includes winemaking at Bryant Family, Quintessa, Hundred Acre, and Dominus. In a word, their Syrah is riveting, so don’t miss it. 
 
Westwood’s Estate Syrah arose from the cool, wind-swept Annadel Gap, located between Mt. Hood and Sonoma Mountain. The 2016 vintage is deep, rich, and profoundly layered with classic notes of smoked meats, bacon fat, ripe berries, and wildflowers. 
 
Philippe and his winemaking team paid attention to every detail and picked each clone at the pinnacle of ripeness, before being carefully sorted by hand and fermented in individual lots. The wine was gravity-fed into French oak barrels, where it spent the next 16 months developing on the lees.
 
WESTWOOD
2016 ESTATE SYRAH
ANNADEL GAP VINEYARD
Retails at: $82
 
 
 
“Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2016 Syrah Annadel Gap Vineyard has evocative scents of warm black plums, wild blueberries, Sichuan pepper, smoked meats and violets. Full-bodied and packed with rich, ripe black fruit flavors, it has a firm backbone of rounded tannins and just enough freshness, culminating in a long peppery finish.” 91 Points
 
 
 
“Outstanding Syrah in a rich, complex style. It is full bodied, supple in texture, and intensely flavored (blackberry, black licorice, cedar, pepper, violet, cassis, toasty oak), with good balance and a very long finish. Lightly tannic, warrants aging. Great Value. ” Exceptional | Very Highly Recommended 5 Stars
 
 
 
“2016 was truly a phenomenal vintage and it delivered everything we love in a great Syrah from the Annadel Gap. With gorgeous notes of blackberries, freeze-dried blueberries, smoked meat, and a core of cherry liqueur. As the 2016 Westwood Estate Syrah continues to open, a juicy wash of salted violets, black pepper, and blueberry cedar linger for a long and complex finish.”
2017 Luke Goldschmidt Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

2017 Luke Goldschmidt Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

LUKE GOLDSCHMIDT

CABERNET SAUVIGNON 
2017 ALEXANDER VALLEY

2017 Luke Goldschmidt Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley is celebrated for producing value Cabernets with a bold structure, mouth-quenching acidity, and intense dark fruits that are age-worthy and can be captivating on release. Nick Goldschmidt has produced some brilliant examples over the years, and he’s well-versed in the region, having made SIMI wines since the early 90s. Luke Goldschmidt is a partnership between Nick and his son Luke, and like his father, Luke has vast experience making wine all over the world from Chile, France, Spain, Argentina to New Zealand. At $22, this wine is rocking.
 
The 2017 vintage is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from low-vigor vines, yielding just 3.5 tons per acre of highly concentrated berries. The wine is deep and rich on the palate, and layered with red and black fruits, cocoa, cherry pipe tobacco, and dried herbs. 
 
Nick and Luke fermented this release in a combination of French, American, and Hungarian Oak barrels, which added compelling spice notes and vexations of toasty oak. Just like in previous Goldschmidt Cabernets, this beauty out-performs others at double its price.
 
LUKE GOLDSCHMIDT
CABERNET SAUVIGNON 
2017 ALEXANDER VALLEY
Retails at: $25
 
Your Price: $22
 
 
“Nicely focused red cherry and red raspberry aromas. Loaded with red berry fruit flavors with a touch of caramel, dark chocolate, and toasty oak. Full and well-structured from the long hang time. The texture is smooth and the mouth medium bodied. White pepper and spice in the finish with long and supple tannins.”
2018 Kanzler Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

2018 Kanzler Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

KANZLER

2018 PINOT NOIR
RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY

2018 Kanzler Russian River Valley Pinot Noir
Kanzler was first to plant grapes in the Sebastapol hills Southwest of the town of Sebastapol, where the well-drained Goldridge soils and fog blanket from the Pacific turned out to be ideal for Pinot Noir grapes. Their vineyard quickly caught the eye of Kosta Browne, who made a single-vineyard Pinot from their vineyard for nearly 20 consecutive vintages. Kanzler’s own 2018 Russian River Pinot is primarily Estate fruit and includes almost 25% fruit from Walker Station Vineyard, which was a source for Paul Hobbs for years. At $60, this is one of the finest domestic Pinot Noirs that I’ve tasted.
 
Kanzler set out to make the best Pinot possible from their Estate. To meet their goal, they exercise everything from meticulous farming to double-hand sorting. They also utilize partial whole-cluster fermentation for added depth. Their winemaking is gentle, precise, and skilled, and the results are simply stunning. 
 
The 2018 Russian River Valley Pinot is from 65% Estate fruit, blended with sites sharing similar, and complementing qualities. The wine balances penetrating and remarkably detailed fruit with silky tannins and fresh acidity. It’s my go-to wine in the shop to grab to take to dinner, and one of my favorite Pinots that I’ve tasted this year.
 
KANZLER
2018 PINOT NOIR
RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY
 
Your Price: $59.99
 
 
“The 2018 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir wine is opulent and rich while still displaying great freshness. The classic silky Pinot texture is more chocolate mousse than heavy whipping cream, and the tannins show enough grip to hold and frame the wine without being bitter or obtrusive. The high percentage of once-used barrels imparts a subtle oak characteristic that enhances and compliments the fruit and spice character. After opening for several hours, exotic sweet-spice notes reminiscent of liquors in the Vin Santo or Fernet range begin to appear, further enhancing the intrigue and complexity of this Pinot Noir.”
2014 Valdez Zinfandel St. Peter's Church

2014 Valdez Zinfandel St. Peter’s Church

VALDEZ

2014 ZINFANDEL
ST. PETER’S CHURCH 

2014 Valdez Zinfandel St. Peter's Church
California Zinfandel comes in many different styles, ranging from intensely jammy to concentrated and brawny, over to linear, elegant, and balanced. Valdez falls in the brawny, solidly-built category with a deep core of fruit, unending depth, and escalating persistence. When we sold out of the winery’s value-priced Sonoma County Zin, we filled the void with their 2013 St Peter’s Church Vineyard, and now that that’s gone, here’s a chance to order their 2014 at a price that’s way too good to pass up… 
 
The Valdez family are some of California’s most sought after wine growers, farming for top producers like Aubert, Kistler, Paul Hobbs, and many others. Their St Peter’s Church Zinfandel is simply one of the best Zins produced in California, which is why their 2013 earned a spot on my top 5 wines list in 2018. 
 
Carved from one of Sonoma county’s most exceptional vintages, the 2014 Valdez St Peter’s Church Zinfandel hails from a 5-acre vineyard in Alexander Valley that’s planted to nearly century-old vines. At our price, this is one of the best Zins that I’ve tasted, period… 
 
VALDEZ
2014 ZINFANDEL
ST. PETER’S CHURCH
Retails at: $45
 
 
 
“This focused, penetrating zinfandel flaunts intense flavors and aromas of rich Bing cherries, concentrated cranberry, and black currants with hints of Spring flowers, bakers chocolate and black olives. The amazing balance of flavors makes your palate thirst for more after every sip of this beauty.”
2016 Joseph Jewell Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

2016 Joseph Jewell Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

JOSEPH JEWELL 

2016 PINOT NOIR
RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY

2016 Joseph Jewell Pinot Noir Russian River Valley
There are many reasons why Joseph Jewell Pinot Noir is the only wine that I’ve featured on my top-five-wines of the year list more than once. The most distinctive trait that’s become a hallmark of this wine is the satiny texture and weight on the palate, which is sublime. Every time I taste it, I’m perplexed that a wine we can offer at this value price can taste like it costs more than double. 
 
Joseph Jewell marries fruit from renowned sites Hallberg, Floodgate, and Bucher Vineyards. Williams-Selyem and Gary Farrell Pinot fans likely recognize these sites as being spectacular.  
 
On the palate, the 2016 vintage is full, rich and opens up to a basket of black cherries, ripe raspberries, black tea, and blue violets. The wine team elevated it for around 11 months in French oak, and then it blossomed generously over the last three years in the bottle.
 
JOSEPH JEWELL 
2016 PINOT NOIR
RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY
Retails at: $40
 
 
 
“Doubling down on the extreme quality that Joseph Jewell Russian River Valley Pinot Noir has produced in previous vintages, the 2016 sets an all new high water mark. The alluring nose has the most beautiful blend of pomegranate, red pie cherries, mixed florals and hints of spice. The mesmerizing mouthfeel has a supple, satiny texture, along with a mouth-filling explosion of ripe black raspberries, sweet red plums, tart cranberry, cherry cola, chamomile tea and asian spice. The rich, supple texture and concentrated flavors are perfectly balanced by a mouth-quenching freshness that leaves me begging for another sip. I am seriously sitting here shaking my head and trying to remember if I have ever had as great a wine at this low price. Don’t think so.” 98 Points, Kevin M. Vogt, Master Sommelier
2016 Waterfall Proprietary Red Old Vine Cabernet Franc Sonoma Valley

2016 Waterfall Proprietary Red Old Vine Cabernet Franc Sonoma Valley

WATERFALL 

2016 PROPRIETARY RED
(OLD VINE CABERNET FRANC)
SONOMA VALLEY

2016 Waterfall Proprietary Red Old Vine Cabernet Franc Sonoma Valley
At $23, we knew Waterfall’s 2016 Red would be an instant hit, and based on the torrent of re-orders and glowing feedback, we were right. After all, it’s made by Helen Keplinger, whom you might recognize from her work at Bryant, Carte Blanche, and Grace Family, and even at the winery retail price of $42, a wine of this caliber would make anyone do a double-take. At $23, very few can compete.
 
Waterfall’s 2016 Proprietary Red is composed of 100% Cabernet Franc, and Helen crafted it from ancient 80-year-old vines. On the palate, the wine is stunningly balanced, finely detailed, long, and expansive. 
 
This beauty comes from the incredible 2016 vintage, bringing a supple and inviting style that envelopes your palate with rich, enchanting flavors, silky tannins and perfectly ripened dark berries. At this price, you can’t have too much of this in your cellar. 
 
WATERFALL 
2016 PROPRIETARY RED
(OLD VINE CABERNET FRANC)
SONOMA VALLEY
Retails at: $42
 
Your Price: $23
 
 
“Polished textured with melted tannins. Balancing acidity with aromas of raspberry pie, blueberry and strawberry jam combined with nuances of rose petal and violets + spicy notes on the finish.”
2016 Radio-Coteau Pinot Noir La Neblina

2016 Radio-Coteau Pinot Noir La Neblina

RADIO-COTEAU

2016 PINOT NOIR
LA NEBLINA

2016 Radio-Coteau Pinot Noir La Neblina
Radio-Coteau has always been a brand for those “in the know,” and their name is a French colloquial expression that suggests “word of mouth,” which is how most find out about their brilliant wines. Their Pinot Noirs are captivating, compelling, balanced, and individualistic, and their flagship Pinot is named La Neblina, which is Spanish for “fog.” It’s sourced from five fog-laden vineyards in Western Sonoma County. When you learn about these vineyards and who created this wine, the 95 point score shouldn’t come as a surprise. 
 
The 2016 La Neblina comes from Radio-Coteau Estate, Hallberg, Dierke, Alberigi and Laguna Vineyards, and perfectly laces together each organically farmed site. On the palate, the wine has lovely weight and compelling layers and nuances that let you know you’re into something extraordinary.
 
The winery believes winemaking is a team effort, and Eric Sussman leads the orchestration. He brings diverse experience from Yakima, Washington, to Burgundy, Bordeaux, and over to the Russian River, where he was the assistant winemaker at Dehlinger before launching his brand. Here’s a chance to try the flagship, and at a fantastic price… 
 
RADIO-COTEAU
2016 PINOT NOIR
LA NEBLINA
Retails at: $55
 
 
 
“Named for the coastal fog that rolls in at night to blanket western Sonoma, this wine blends fruit from five sites, including Eric Sussman’s Radio-Coteau estate in Occidental, and Hallberg, Dierke, Alberigi and Laguna, all of them farmed under organics. It seems to capture coastal energy with lovely density to its flavors of red raspberry and pomegranate, powerful and bold, refreshingly ripe and succulent. There’s a lot of vibrato to the flavors, a harmonic intensity that makes it thrilling to drink now and suggests a long life ahead.”  95 Points
 
“The 2016 Pinot Noir La Neblina is supple, open-knit and absolutely delicious. Understated and gracious, with lovely fruit purity, the 2016 has quite a bit to offer. Sweet red cherry and plum fruit are nicely pushed forward. Succulent and inviting, the 2016 will drink well with minimal cellaring.”  92 Points
 
“Fermented with a touch of stems, it spent 16 months in one-third new French oak. Bright raspberries, citrus, and spring flowers notes as well as a hint of wild strawberry all emerge from the glass. This vibrant, pure, racy Pinot Noir has high yet integrated acidity, a beautifully chiseled, crisp style, and a great finish.”  91 Points
2015 Katherine Goldschmidt Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley

2015 Katherine Goldschmidt Crazy Creek Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley

KATHERINE GOLDSCHMIDT 

2015 CRAZY CREEK
CABERNET SAUVIGNON 
ALEXANDER VALLEY

2015 Katherine Goldschmidt Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander ValleyAsk me “What’s the best Cab under $20?” and I can honestly say that I haven’t found one that I like better than Katherine Goldschmidt’s 2015 Crazy Creek. When you take a closer look at the vineyard, it’s easy to see why. For years, fruit from Crazy Creek went to Simi for their Reserve Cabernet ($75), and in 2016 Silver Oak recognized the significance of this site and added it to their holdings. The days of finding a Cabernet from Crazy Creek at under twenty bucks are soon to be a thing of the past, and with a 94 point score on top of everything else, you may want to double down, or better… 

Crazy Creek Vineyard got its name from the seasonal creeks that furcate the land, and the earth beneath results from hundreds of thousands of years of erosion. Before they replanted the vineyards in 2017 and 2018, the older, low vigor vines produced tiny yields of Cabernet with more power and depth than what’s typically found in the region.  
 
The 2015 vintage releases a dense core and remarkable palate presence and saturates your palate in an abundance of chocolate-covered cherries, roasted coffee, and black currants. This wine perfectly expresses just how inspiring Cabernet Sauvignon can be from Alexander Valley, and it does so at a price that will make you smile. 
 
KATHERINE GOLDSCHMIDT 
2015 CRAZY CREEK
CABERNET SAUVIGNON 
ALEXANDER VALLEY
Retails at: $24
 
Your Price: $19.99
 
 
 
 
“Named for Goldschmidt’s middle daughter, the wine’s grapes hail from Crazy Creek, a vineyard known to produce some iconic wines. Big, bright, blue fruit notes on the nose are meaty, with a chocolate espresso twist and dry tannins showing on the palate. It’s a little masterpiece with a dark chocolate finish that way over delivers on price-to-quality.”  94 Points
 
 
 
 
“Rich and robust with aromas of black cherry, black tea, dark spices, and mocha. Bold and structured showing ripe black currant, cherry, and plum flavors. Very smooth, soft, and supple finish.”
2018 Hunter Glenn Chardonnay RRV

2018 Hunter Glenn Chardonnay RRV

HUNTER GLENN

2018 CHARDONNAY
RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY

2018 Hunter Glenn Chardonnay RRVWhen you find a tiny producer making stratospherically high-quality wines from great vineyards, AND, they price them like they’re making them for friends and family, enjoy it while you can… Hunter Glenn sources their 150 case production Chardonnay exclusively from the Starscape Vineyard, located near icons Ritchie and Kistler. The Vineyard was previously known as Floodgate, and Gary Farrell fans likely recognize it. At $30, this micro-produced Chardonnay is ridiculously good. 

The Shifflett family’s home ranch neighbors icons Dominus and Trethefen in Napa Valley, but they source their grapes from Starscape for their Chardonnay. The Vineyard’s maritime influence and Pájaro Clay Loam soils make it perfect for ripening Chardonnay to the peak of perfection. 
 
Proprietor Jeff Shifflett isn’t just a talented grower, but he’s also a gifted winemaker. Jeff worked harvest in Australia before spending time at both Cakebread and Elyse. His Chardonnay has vibrant, opulent fruit that is perfectly balanced, and an absolute joy to drink. 
 
HUNTER GLENN
2018 CHARDONNAY
RUSSIAN RIVER VALLEY
 
Your Price: $29.99
 
 
 
 
Sunny pale yellow in color, with aromas of crisp, sweet apples and wet river rocks. A vein of minerality runs from the nose through the palate, supporting a creamy mouth of subtle tropical fruits combined with lemon curd and stone fruit. A pleasing, lingering finish is ripe, without being any bit oakey or buttery. This is the Chardonnay for everyone!” 
2016 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley

2016 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley

SILVER OAK

CABERNET SAUVIGNON
2016 ALEXANDER VALLEY 

2016 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander ValleySilver Oak has dominated the space for high-quality domestic American oak-aged Cabernet Sauvignon over the past four decades. They’re one of the most recognizable names across the globe in premium level Cabernet Sauvignon from the New World, and the upcoming release of the 2016 vintage epitomizes the distinctive Silver Oak style that’s made them so revered.  

Lauded as one of the original Cult Cabernet Sauvignons in the New World, Silver Oak carved out a category with their distinctive style. It’s hard to argue with the results which resonate deeply within their fan base. In a stellar vintage like 2016, many of those qualities that make Silver Oak so distinctive become even more enhanced. 
 
Arriving from the remarkable 2016 growing season, Silver Oak aged this vintage for 24 months in American white oak barrels before spending more than a year in the bottle. The 2016 brims with concentrated dark fruits, vanilla, crushed herbs, fresh dill, and Kalamata olives. 
 
SILVER OAK
CABERNET SAUVIGNON
2016 ALEXANDER VALLEY
 
 
 
 
“Our 2016 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is ruby in color with a magenta rim. It has an enticing nose of cassis, blackberry, vanilla, sage and spearmint. Upon entry, this wine builds from potpourri and bramble to a bright pop of raspberry on the mid-palate. A juicy finish with chewy tannins and a medium length, it will provide drinking pleasure through 2042 with proper cellaring.”