Renegade Holiday 2020 Newsletter



2018 Danilo Thomain Petit Rouge (Italy, Valle d'Aosta, Enfer d'Arvier) $36
We thought this had disappeared for the season, then magically 2 additional cases arrived at our front door. A stunning wine grown in the shadow of the French Alps in the region of Valle d'Aosta. If you've had it we expect you'll be ordering more. If you're curious, this is THE wine to try this holiday season.

2018 Merry Edwards Sauvignon Blanc (Sonoma, Russian River Valley) $48
California's iconic Sauvignon Blanc brings back memories of Summers on the Russian River drifting past tiny towns like Rio Nido, Monte Rio, Duncan Mills, Jenner. As for today's wine:
The aroma is compelling, virtually reaching out and grabbing your attention. Yellow peach, melon, guava and crisp Fuji apple are accented with hints of tropical mango and pineapple. Lime and orange blossom lend citrus notes.
The rich palate coats the tongue with hints of Creamsicle and Ruby Red grapefruit. Refreshing acidity and a mouthwatering finish cap the sensual experience of this exceptional Sauvignon Blanc. Delightful now, with bottle age, this wine will be a knockout!

2018 San Guido Guidalberto Toscana IGT (Italy, Tuscany) $55 (on sale from $70)
We have enjoyed this wine vintage after vintage. The 2018 is exceptional.
Made with 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot this wine is positively stellar. Fresh, vibrant and nuanced with a rush of black cherry, plum, spice and a positively elegant finish.
Veuve Clicquot chose Yayoi Kusama, a Japanese contemporary artist who works primarily in sculpture and installation, but is also active in painting, performance, film, fashion, poetry, fiction, and other arts, to design their 2012 La Grand Dame. If you're not familiar with Yayoi Kusama do a Google search. She's a force!
As for the Champagne:
Fine and graceful, the bubbles dance across the palate with its bright, well-defined freshness and detailed flavors of Mandarin orange, toast point, creme de cassis and minerally oyster shell. Subtle in its intensity, with all the pieces seamlessly knit into an elegant whole.
A very limited edition ($250)

Champagne Le Mesnil Champagne Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut (France, Champagne)
$99 – 1.5 Liters (Magnum!).

This particular cuvee is made by blending various parcels of Grand Cru Chardonnay grown in Le Mesnil sur Oger. The wines used are specially selected for their finesse and ethereal qualities which give the wines their complex and mouth-waterring flavours. This seductive Champagne is a reflection of the house style of Le Mesnil and is perfect throughout a meal, from aperitif to dessert and indeed at any time of the day or night.

2017 Le Pianelle Coste della Sesia Al Forte (Italy, Piedmont, Northern Piedmont, Coste della Sesia) $38
Oh this is lovely. A blend of Nebbiolo 70%, Croatina 20% and Vespolina 10% planted on dark volcanic soil. Black cherry, juniper, menthol, spice and licorice all literally jump from the glass in this racy, potent, exotically beautiful Alto Piemonte red. Wow do we love Northern Piedmont.

2018 Anne Sophie Dubois Fleurie Les Labourons (France, Burgundy, Beaujolais, Fleurie) $42
We sold out instantly when this wine was announced in our previous newsletter. The good news is this: the wine is back in stock.
One of the best Beaujolais' of the year.

We have this epic Champagne on-sale for the holidays!
What is usually a $200+ dollar bottle of bubbles, we have
on sale for $150 until we're sold out (it's usually $200 but we just mentioned that).
This is a vintage to enjoy now and for the next 10-12 years.
At this price we deem it Outstanding!

Two new wines from Gravner have arrived. And Wow! They sat on the counter for a day and nearly sold out so we feel fortunate that we were able to order another six pack of each.
We have yet to dissect either wine but what a review from Jancis Robinson:
2011 Ribolla: "Lustrous amber. Deep and compact with enormous depth, but at the same time still a little tight on the nose. Bread crust, acacia honey and savoury, saline notes. Very tightly knit apricot and spice palate, and still very compact but with a fine, persistent thread of acidity running all the way through the wine. Lots of super-fine tannins like a wall-to-wall carpet for the still-compact fruit. A Ribolla Gialla monument. ($88)
2011 Bianco Breg: A blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Riesling. There are no reviews as of yet and again, we haven't had the 4 or 5 days to explore this wine as of it. However, if you know Gravner, and have tasted this wine from 2010, 2009, etc, it is always an expression of love and devotion. ($118)

2010 Domaine de Chevalier (France, Bordeaux, Graves, Pessac-Leognan)

What an epic vintage 2010 was in Bordeaux and this is one of our all-time favorite wines from Domaine de Chevalier.
Drinking perfectly now with a touch of air. 63% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot. Red and black fruit, freshly turned earth, rose petals, crushed stone, elegant, structured. Rewarding!

2015 Le Ragnaie Brunello di Montalcino V.V. (Italy, Tuscany, Montalcino)

This is THE place you want to visit when you're in Montalcino. They have a beautiful 'farmhouse' for guests, a gorgeous tasting room and of course stellar wines.
This wine is everything you want out of classic Tuscan Sangiovese. The wine’s full-bodied palate is loaded with smooth flavors of dark red berries, bitter dark chocolate, forest floor, dried thyme, and hints of baking spice.
This is their top cuvee; rare and exciting. Decant in the morning for a pleasurable dinner experience.

2019 Domaine Yves Cuilleron Syrah (France, Northern Rhone, Vin de Pays des Collines Rhodaniennes) $22
Yves’s Syrah, “Les Vignes d’à Côté,” hails from a variety of parcels in the northern reaches of Saint-Joseph, in and around his home village of Chavanay. The sandy soils from this part of the appellation imbue the wine with an elegance and lift which harmonize beautifully with the signature varietal notes of smoked meat, cracked black pepper, and fresh leather. Very expressive.

2016 Castello di Verduno Pelaverga 'Sciopel' Brut Rose (Not France, Champagne but
Italy, Piedmont, Alba)

This might be the most fun one can have with sparkling wine. The grape is Pelaverga from Alba. It's typically a fresh, lean, spicy, engaging red wine. In its sparkling form, and to date this is the only one we've ever had, it has charisma and charm. Racy, a force of tiny bubbles, beautiful notes of cranberry, pomegranate, cherry. Super-refreshing. Simply delightful. It's for the wine geek in all of us. And for those curious about great sparkling wine outside of France.
Oh... and a delightful pairing with charcuterie.

2016 Au Bon Climat Pinot Noir Know Alexander (Santa Maria Valley) $58
Perhaps the best vintage of this wine we've ever tasted. It has enormous potential. Our experience was sipping the wine after it had been open six hours.
Rich and powerful, this well structured wine has a dark ruby hue as well as a beautiful nose of cherry, dried cranberry, earthy forest floor, ground herbs, smoked earth.  Named after Jim Clendenen's son.
96 points Antonio Galloni

Bresca Dorada Mirto di Sardegna (Italy, Sardinia)

Mirto is Sardinia's classic liqueur and digestivo. The Sardinian myrtle berries are hand-harvested in December, then infused into neutral grain spirit for several months. Wild honey is added as the sweetener. Spicy and sweet, with earthy herbal notes. A very distinctive, attractive, after dinner sipper that relaxes and invites beautiful dreams.

2018 Ridge Chardonnay Estate (Santa Cruz Mountains) $58.50
This Charonnay from the Monte Bello vineyard is a vivid example of the wines created at this legendary winery.
This is a sensuous wine with beautiful notes of ripe apple, yellow plum, citrus blossom paired with honeysuckle and bright acidity.
The perfect paring? Steamed mussels with garlic crostinis. It's not always about the turkey.

Domaine de Montbourgeau Cremant du Jura Brut Zero (France, Jura) $28.50
It’s rich and creamy, yet precise — bone dry and still rounded and lush. It has pleasant rustic apple fruit balanced by fierce cold-climate acidity, with hints of cashew and herbs — it would be hard to distinguish this from Champagne in a blind tasting (it's even a bit chalky!) A seriously distinguished bubbly — at a house price.

2018 Herman Story Syrah Nuts and Bolts (Santa Barbara County) $55
For many, Nuts & Bolts functions as the Herman Story Gateway Drug. Each vintage delivers a Syrah of exceptional structure, body and power. Nuts & Bolts is built of the most opulent, expressive Syrah barrels in the cellar.
Treat yourself.

We have an exciting line-up of Tawny Ports from Taylor-Fladgate in stock.
This style of Port is fully matured in seasoned oak casks each holding about 630 litres of wine. Here, over many years of ageing, the wine gradually takes on its characteristic amber ‘tawny’ colour, slowly developing the complex mellow flavours and the smooth luscious palate which are the hallmarks of Tawny Port.
Taylor Fladgate 10 Year Old Tawny is a superb example of the aged tawny style. Mellow and elegant, combining delicate wood notes with rich aromas of mature fruit, it is bottled for immediate drinking ($35)
In the 20 Year Old Tawny, the fruit has mellowed further than in the 10 Year Old, and the spicy, nutty aromas of ageing are more powerful and intense ($58)
The 30 Year Old Tawny Deep, old gold colour with hints of dried fruit and honey offsetting the rich nutty aromas. Lush, silky richness with an elegant, slightly austere quality which is quite distinctive. Subtle dried fruit flavours underly, exotic layers of caramel and nuts culminating in an endless finish ($150)
Taylor Fladgate 40 Year Old Tawny is a very rare old tawny blend, produced in limited quantities.
Decades of evaporation have concentrated this extraordinary wine to an exceptional density, with a powerful nose of dried fruit, honey and a touch of spice. Impressions of nutmeg, roasted coffee and an intense nuttiness converge both in the bouquet and on the palate. The wine’s rich, intense, voluptuous, almost viscous texture culminate in a finish of incredible length ($250)

2019 Yann Bertrand Beaujolais Oh!... (France, Burgundy, Beaujolais) $40
This juicy Gamay from Yann Bertrand is one of our favorite wines to drink. Notes of juicy cherries, wet earth, and white pepper dominate the wine’s complex yet easy-drinking palate. Fruit is carbonically macerated, aged for six months in concrete, and bottled in conjunction with the lunar calendar. ‘Oh!’ pays homage to Jules Chauvet and his pioneering of natural wine in Beaujolais.

2018 Centopassi Sicilia Argille di Tagghia Via (Italy, Sicily) $24
100% Nero d'Avola grown at 500m above sea level on clay soils. Fresh and fruity, with an intense ruby ​​color. Well-integrated tannins and peppery notes with plum and cherry accents and a long and memorable finish.

2018 Dominique Piron Morgon Cote du Py (France, Burgundy, Beaujolais) $28
“The extinct volcano that makes up the famous “Côte du Py” lieu-dit in Morgon boasts Beaujolais’ oldest soils and fourteenth-generation winemaker Dominique Piron expresses it as he only knows how: This is age-worthy, terroir-heavy Beaujolais at its most profound.”
—Ian Cauble, Master Sommelier


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