Celebrating 22 years as Raleigh's
longest running independent wine store,
Looking for a special bottle for a gift or wines for a celebration, special dinner or just to add to your collection? We not only have excellent value wines, we also stock an extensive selection of collectible and hard to find wines from the United States, Europe and Southern Hemisphere. Our selections change often and highly allocated wines sell out quickly, so check back for updates. Here are some recommendations:
New Collectible Bordeaux!
Chateau Montrose 2014; Saint-Estephe
Blason D’Issan 2015; Margaux ($56.99)
“The 2015 Blason d'Issan is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40%
Merlot cropped at 40 hectoliters per hectare and represents 45%
of the total crop. It has a bright, quite vivid bouquet with
perfumed dark cherry and blueberry scents, a hint of pencil lead
in the background. The palate is medium-bodied with a
mineral-driven opening. Harmonious in the mouth and disarmingly
silky in texture, do not let its second wine status get in the
way of noticing the structure towards the finish. This is a very
well-crafted Blason d'Issan that follows their very fine
deuxième vins in both 2010 and 2012. Drink 2019-2030.” 89-91
points, WA #224.
Chateau Léoville Poyferré 2014; Saint Julien ($125.00)
“The Château Léoville-Poyferré 2014 is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon,
35% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot picked
between 1 and 14 October, a little later than some of its Saint
Julien neighbors. It has one of the most opulent set of
aromatics of the appellation, with crème de cassis, boysenberry
jam and macerated small dark cherries - an extravagant bouquet
in the context of the growing season. The palate is full-bodied
with great density and power. There is a lot of weight in this
Saint Julien, spicy in the mouth with a healthy pinch of white
pepper towards the finish that feels long in the mouth, although
I would like to see more finesse coming through by the time of
bottling. As usual, this is one of the most decadent Saint
Julien wines, but one that is well-crafted by Didier Cuvelier.
Give this several years in bottle. Drink 2021-2040.” 91-93
points, WA #218.
Lions de Btailley 2014; Pauillac ($59.99)
“The 2014 Lions de Batailley was the first vintage albeit one produced in
a small quantity as a test, according to proprietor Philippe
Castèja. It has an attractive bouquet with dense blackberry,
crushed strawberry, bay leaf and cedar scents that unfold nicely
in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp tannin,
grippy in the mouth with good density and freshness on the
graphite-tinged finish. Frankly, it is as good as some of the
Grand Vins from the 1990s. Drink 2018-2028.” WA March 2017.
Chateau Batailley 2014; Pauillac ($79.99)
“The 2014 Batailley has an attractive bouquet, lilting scents of
redcurrant and raspberry coulis, quite floral and very precise.
The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, good depth and
body, rounded for Batailley and less austere than usual. It
feels closed towards the finish, tight-lipped, but there is
certainly grip and presence here. It will require several years
in bottle before it can show its true potential, but there is a
sense of class to this Batailley that I suspect will become more
evident with maturity. Tasted twice with consistent notes. Drink
2022-2045.” 91+ points, WA March 2017
Chateau de Pez 2016; Saint-Estephe ($65.99)
“The 2016 de Pez appears to be benefitting from a long-term replanting
program at the estate. This is a blend of 53% Merlot, 42%
Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.5% Petit Verdot and 1.5% Cabernet Franc.
The IPT is quite high at 80, and there is 13.9% alcohol. It has
a pure and comely bouquet with black cherries and blackcurrant
pastilles, just a touch of crushed violets that emerge with
time. The palate is really quite lovely: very well balanced with
a fine line of acidity, quite saline in the mouth, perhaps the
finest tannic structure that I have encountered during many
years of tasting this Saint Estèphe, with a long persistent
finish. Maybe this is the "dark horse" of the appellation this
year. Drink 2022-2050.” 92-94 points, WA #230.
Chateau Pape Clément 2011; Pessac-Léognan ($175.00)
“The 2011 Pape Clement, a blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, was aged 18 months in new French oak before being bottled unfiltered. Absolutely profound, with a complex bouquet of mulberries, black cherries, black currants, graphite and subtle smoke and burning ember-like aromas, this is a true super-star of the vintage. It represents a remarkable achievement by the winemaking team of Bernard Magrez. Full-bodied, rich and multidimensional, this wine clearly transcends the entire vintage. It should age effortlessly for 25 years. Drink 2014-2039.” 96 points, WA #212.
Podere Il Carnasciale "Il Caberlot" 2015
We are excited for the unique opportunity to offer one of the rarest wines in Italy! Until 2005, one Tuscan wine had existed in name only for American wine lovers. Bottled exclusively in magnum, only two enotecas (out of a thousand or more) in Tuscany get any. And restaurant allocations have been limited to the likes of Florence’s Il Cibreo, and Paris’ 3-star L’Ambroisie. Members of Florence’s elite Teatro del Sale can buy one magnum per year, a privilege handed down from generation to generation. Now a limited number of 750ml's of the 2015 vintage have been released and are available for the first time in North Carolina.
The wine is Il Caberlot, and its fascinating story doesn’t end with its scarcity and desirability. It, and its second label Carnasciale, are the only wines in the world made from a mysterious clone discovered four decades ago near Verona. Named “Caberlot,” the grape has characteristics of both Cabernet and Merlot—hence its name. Caberlot’s discoverer—agronomist Remigio Bordini—has allowed the vine to be planted just one place outside his nursery: at Il Carnasciale, which lies atop a rocky, south-facing bluff that towers above Tuscany’s Arno river. Famed enologist Vittorio Fiore discovered this providential site in 1986. To limit yields, Fiore advised the vineyard’s owners—Wolf and Bettina Rogosky—to plant at a then-revolutionary 10,000 vines per hectare and to prune to a mere five clusters per plant. As if to presage Il Caberlot’s future, the Rogoskys buried a bottle of Sassicaia under the first vine.
Il Caberlot boasts an extraordinary perfume, sleek texture and great elegance. Boasting nuances of Graves, Pomerol, and Il Carnasciale’s unique terroir, it ranks among the planet’s most singular wines. And from the first vintage, 1988, Il Caberlot has been a huge cult wine in Europe, its scarcity driven by nature and the vineyard’s size of less than an acre. Wolf Rogosky passed away in 1996, but Bettina has carried on the work with her son, Moritz, and her winemaker, Peter Schilling. With time, more vines have been planted, but production remains miniscule. The wine is still bottled by hand, and is held for two years before release. Bettina Rogosky hand-numbers each label.
The wine is 100% Caberlot, aged 22 months in new French barrique and then 18 months in bottle before release. Dark garnet red in color, this amazing wine exhibits notes of blackberries, cocoa, licorice and dark spices, balanced with fine tannins and a core of firm acid, leading to a long yet balanced finish. This is the proverbial iron fist in a velvet glove, with an aging potential of 25+ years. ($189.00 net/750ml).
Kalin Cellars are among the most age-worthy wines crafted in California, and these library releases straight from the winery are living proof. CLICK HERE for more info about Kalin and their collectible wines.
Would monsieur care for another bottle of Chateau Latour?
Don't be a jerk like Navin - enjoy the unique tasting experience of well aged wines!
2001 LIVERMORE VALLEY SEMILLON ($47.99)
The grape source is the Wente Estate Vineyard located near Livermore. The vines were planted in the 1880s from the original Chateau d'Yquem cuttings brought to this region by Charles Wetmore. The soil is thin, iron-rich clay, underlain by 20-30 feet of gravel subsoil.
The grapes (80% Semillon and 20% Sauvignon Blanc) were hand-picked and sorted, crushed and pressed. The juice was fermented in French oak barrels for ten months. The wine was racked, clarified by bentonite fining, and bottled without filtration in August 2002.
The potential of Semillon to produce superior dry white wine has not been realized in California due to overproduction caused by heavy soil types found in many grape growing regions. The low yields due to deep gravel soil, ninety year old vines and a perfect climate for this variety, ensures that Wente Vineyards produces wines of depth, complexity and style. Our experience with Semillon suggests that this wine, like the best white Graves, will be capable of attaining great age and distinction. We believe that Semillon can produce wines which are fully comparable to the highest levels of quality realized in dry white wines regardless of the grape variety involved. Semillon is the perfect accompaniment to salmon and highly seasoned cuisines such as Southwest, Chinese, Thai, Nuevo Latino, etc.
1995 CUVÈE D SONOMA COAST CHARDONNAY ($47.99)
The grape source is Dutton Ranch one of the pioneering vineyards established on the Sonoma Coast near Graton. The vineyard is surrounded by Gravenstein apple orchards and is planted with several low-yielding, Burgundian clones of Chardonnay. The cool and foggy coastal climate, combined with limestone and shale sub-soil, results in yields of 1-1/2 to 2 tons per acre of exceptional quality fruit.
The grapes were hand picked and sorted, crushed and pressed. The juice was fermented for eleven months in new French oak barrels. The wine was racked, clarified by bentonite fining, and bottled sur lie in August 1996.
Dutton Ranch produces Chardonnay that exhibits exceptional breed and refined fruit complexities. The scent and flavor of this wine emanates from the surrounding Gravenstein apple orchards and is reminiscent of caramelized apple tart, ground cinnamon, roasted almonds, etc. The unusual structure of this fogscape wine combines power, richness and a fruit-acid freshness that demands sustained bottle development.
This wine has been bottled without filtration to retain the essence of individual vineyard and vintage characteristics. With bottle age, unfiltered white wines will develop a light deposit and should be served with care.
2000 CUVÉE DD SONOMA PINOT NOIR ($47.99)
The grape source is Demostene Ranch located in the Alexander Valley. The vineyard is the oldest Pinot Noir plantation in this region, and was established with a clone which produces small berries and low yields. The soil is a mixture of clay, silt and limestone. The vineyard is dry farmed and within one mile of the Russian River.
The fully mature grapes were hand-picked, sorted, and crushed. The must was fermented on the skins in wooden cuves for three weeks. The cap was punched down by hand three to four times each day. The must was pressed, settled and transferred to fifty percent new French oak barrels. Following the completion of malolactic fermentation, the wine was bottled without racking, fining or filtration in April 2002.
Demostene Ranch traditionally produces intense wines which possess exceptional fruit definition, combined with a richly textured palate and great length of finish. The particular vineyard characteristics are reminiscent of violets, wild red fruits (cassis and cherries), exotic oriental spices, sous-bois, etc.
"There are very few wineries in California where you can say that the original wine owners and winemaking staff are totally intact and have been, in this case, since 1978. The estate was founded by John Shafer and run with great precision by himself and more recently by his son Doug and Elias Fernandez. The team has been working together for 38 years since the first vintage in 1978. Six years earlier in 1972, John Shafer bought the property and established the vineyard in the hillsides of Stags Leap. They produce about 30,000 cases of wine – all of it noteworthy. Their Cabernet Sauvignon is true first-growth quality and their Rhône Ranger wine made from Syrah and Petite Sirah, called Relentless, is about as profound as you can get from those varietals." Robert M. Parker, Jr.
Note: We have back vintages of Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet including 1995, 1999 and a vertical of 2002-2007. Inquire about availability and pricing at email@example.com
Shafer "Relentless" 2015, Napa Valley ($97.99 net) - Relentless is a wine that originates in a rugged, sloping vineyard planted within the chaparral foothills of the Vaca Mountains, along Napa Valley’s arid, cooler southeast corridor. For more than a decade this site has produced a consistently rich, elegant proprietary blend of Syrah and Petite Sirah. ($97.99 net)
“The first pour offers an endlessly rich density of meaty, smoky, black fruit aromas while the wine saturates the mouth with deep flavors of black licorice, bramble fruit, black pepper, allspice, bacon, and char. All of this opulence is energized with underlying acidity and bound together with structured, ripe tannins built for very long term ageability.” — Shafer winemaker Elias Fernandez
Shafer One Point Five Cabernet 2016, Napa Valley ($99.95 net) - "Made of 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon One Point Five Stags Leap is very deep purple-black in color and gives up intense Black Forest cake, black berry pie and blackcurrant cordial scents with hints of licorice, eucalyptus, espresso, tar and chargrilled beef. Full-bodied, it packs the black fruit preserves flavors and earthy accents into the palate, with a firm frame and great freshness on the finish. Drink 2019-2045." 95 points, WA October 2018.
Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet 2013, Stags Leap District ($299.00 net) - "The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select will probably hit the magic three-digit score, but it is a more backward style of wine, although probably even more concentrated than the 2012, and that’s saying something. Fabulous potential of 30-50 years is evident in this profound bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon that is inky blue/black to the rim and offers up notes of charcoal embers, scorched earth, blackberries, cassis, blueberries, a hint of coffee, and background barrique smells. Massively concentrated but incredibly elegant and poised, this is a wine of great energy and vibrancy. It is fabulously deep, built like a skyscraper, and set for an incredibly long life. Try not to consume a bottle for at least another 4-5 years and then watch the magic unfold. Drink 2020-2071." 98+ points, WA #227.
“The 2014 vintage opens
with an aromatic wave of deep, intense fruit and spices such as
black plum, blackberry pie filling, cassis, and anise, along
with nutmeg, dark toast, and dried rose petals. The energy in
the nose is just as dramatic in the mouth with open, beautiful
ripeness, mocha, briar fruit, pomegranate, baking spice, and
ripe tannins that collectors will recognize as offering the
promise of sensational things to come in the cellar.”
— Elias Fernandez, winemaker
We have back vintages of Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet including 1995, 1999 and a vertical of 2002-2006. Inquire about availability and pricing at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Ultimate Attorney Gift from Shinas Estate!
Shinas Estate is situated in the
northwest region of Victoria. This region is known for
its Mediterranean-like climate, classic wines and great
food. The first vines were planted in the region in 1886
and by 1898 vine planting commenced on the estate. With
eight generations of grape growing and wine producing
experience, as well as George Shinas' passion for
perfection, he draws on time honored traditions to
produce premium hand crafted wine.
Who is this George Shinas character? None
other than your standard night court judge by evening
and winemaker turned partying rockstar by day/weekend.
The honorable George Shinas is truly the international
man of mystery especially when partnered with his
dynamic duo brethren and de facto winemaker, Stephen
Black of Small Gully.
All three together in a black 3 bottle gift tote for a special price of $74.99!
Shinas Estate "The Guilty" Shiraz 2016
- This estate bottled Shiraz started from a single
vineyard that's first plantings date back to 1898 and it
has the concentration and power to prove it. The Guilty
is a monstrous, intense Shiraz that will fool nobody for
Hermitage. That said, it has quickly developed a cult
following across the country that even Chave would be
jealous of. Average vine age 55 years; aged 20 months in
neutral French barrique. - Winemaker notes. ($23.99)
Shinas Estate "The Verdict" Cabernet
2014 - This has a dark plum color with a
slight crimson hue. It showcases aromas of ripe
blackberries, vanilla and dark chocolate leading into a
palate packed with riveting flavors of black cherry, red
plums, and ripe strawberries. With a solid-built frame
of tannin and crisp acid, the wine manages to find
balance with the equitable amount of plush texture. Aged
24 months in French and American barrique. - Winemaker
Shinas Estate "The Executioner" Shiraz/Cabernet/Viognier 2015 - ‘Executioner’ is the Judge’s take on a ‘reserve’ wine. This is the fourth release of this hedonistic concoction. Made up of the oldest Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon plantings on the estate vineyard with a splash of Viognier. This is power, pure power. A wine of awesome splendor that is sure to please the palates of even the most discerning consumer. As the Judge has said, “it’s not for the fainthearted and if you drink a bottle of the Executioner and drive, you will surely come before the Judge.” Who needs ‘The Prisoner’ when you have ‘The Executioner?’
The color is opaque and burgundy to brick red, suggesting a lot of extraction and a little maturity in barrel. The nose suggests softness and richness, with a loamy herbal aromas that developed into dark berries and mocha. The palate shows red cherry/berry fruit and a nice hit of spice. The weight of the wine is thick without being heavy. 55% Shiraz - 43% Cabernet Sauvignon - 2% Viognier; aged 33 months in seasoned French & American barriques. - Winemaker notes. ($29.99)
The Barrett family first purchased the Montelena Chateau and Estate vineyard in 1972, believing it would produce grapes of superior quality like the great First Growth vineyards of Bordeaux. Knowing that it would take nearly five decades to prove, they cleared and replanted the vineyard, outfitted the Chateau with modern winemaking equipment, and assembled a team to oversee the vineyard and winemaking. Now, nearly 40 years into the 50-year plan, their theory is proving to be a solid one. A distinctive thread runs through the wines from this estate. Year in and year out, even with differing growing seasons, that perfect often elusive combination of earth and berry, fruit and mineral flows through these wines and is the hallmark of the Montelena Estate vineyards.
We are pleased to offer
the following library releases direct from
the winery's cellar, where the wines have
been stored since bottling:
"A big wine from the Barrett family (14.2% alcohol), this 2003 exhibits earthy black currant fruit, the restrained but intense Montelena style, full body, good richness and impeccable balance, purity and density. The color is a healthy dark ruby/purple and the wine shows lots of cassis. In spite of the restrained aromatics, the palate is rich, full-bodied, substantial and persuasive. This 2003 is approachable now, but it will be even more gorgeous 15, 20 and 25 years from now. This is a heritage wine from this great estate in northern Napa Valley." 94+ Wine Advocate, June 2013.
98% Cabernet, 2% Cabernet Franc. Aged 22 months in 100% French oak, 25% new. $149.00 net.
"The 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon at age ten is still a young, vibrant, dense ruby/purple -colored wine with lots of classic cassis fruit and a touch of earth undertones. It offers relatively soft and silky tannins by the standards of Montelena, but they’re there. It is full-bodied, rich and impressive. Cabernet Sauvignon from the northern end of the Napa Valley in Calistoga tends to be the St.-Estèphe of Napa. This wine is certainly one of the great ones. Forget it for another 3-4 years and drink it over the following 20-25." 93+ Wine Advocate, June 2015.
"Good deep ruby-red. Complex aromas of currant, licorice, graphite, bitter chocolate, smoked meat, tobacco and brown spices. Began juicy, penetrating and quite youthfully unevolved, but aeration brought a suppler, rounder texture and more generosity to this impressively structured wine. Complicating notes of bitter cherry, menthol and minerals. This will require a good eight to ten years of aging but the substantial tannins are sweet and lush. Very long, pure and powerful on the finish." 93+, International Wine Cellar May 2008.
98% Cabernet, 2% Cabernet Franc. Aged 18 months in 100% French oak, 28% new. $149.00 net.
"Montelena’s 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate wraps around the palate with serious depth. Even with all of its intensity, the 2009 has a silkiness that makes it incredibly delicious at this early stage. Red berries, flowers, tobacco and sweet herbs all flesh out on the generous, radiant finish. While many 2009s are a bit tight today, Montelena’s 2009 Estate is showing very nicely, although it is keeping some cards close to the vest. I imagine the 2009 will start to enter its prime drinking window around age 8-10 and drink well for at least another decade beyond that. Anticipated maturity: 2017-2029." 93+ Wine Advocate, Dec 2012.
98% Cabernet, 2% Cabernet Franc. Aged 22 months in French oak, 34% new. $149.00 net.
El Nido, El Nido 2013; Jumilla, Spain - "The top of the range 2013 El Nido boasts a whopping 16% alcohol with lowish acidity. The blend is reversed from its sibling Clio, in this case mostly Cabernet Sauvignon with some 30% Monastrell, and similarly finishes its fermentation in barrique where it undergoes malolactic and 23 months aging. The nose is dominated by ripe black fruit and plenty of spices and smoky notes from the oak, but does not show any herbal aromas so often found in Cabernet. The creamy oak seems to be more present with time in the glass, and I think it is still very young. The Cabernet can ripen nicely in Jumilla, in fact you have to be careful not to go over the limit. The palate is full-bodied, with dense sweet fruit and plenty of dusty tannins, with nice balance in an XL way. It has a lot of everything and it should develop nicely in bottle. This is a particular style, for the fans of soft, ripe and generously-oaked reds, very good in its style. Better to leave it in bottle for a while and enjoy with powerful food. 6,000 bottles produced and bottled in September 2015." 94 points, Wine Advocate #225. ($129.00 net)
"El Nido, El Nido 2014; Jumilla, Spain - Glass-staining purple. Explosive, alluring scents of blueberry, boysenberry, pipe tobacco, licorice and vanilla bean. Lush and broad but juicy and firmly built, with suave candied dark fruit flavors accented by sexy floral and Asian spice qualities. Finishes broad, juicy and impressively long, with echoing boysenberry and spice notes. Pair with, rice, pasta, (noodles, spaghetti, macaroni), vegetables, mushroom, stewed meat, sausage, pork, roast meat, red and/or white meat with sauces, grilled meat, short or medium cheeses." - Winemaker notes
"The 2014 El Nido is 70% Cabernet Sauvignon from 35-year-old vines and the rest Monastrell from ancient vines fermented in the same way as Clio, starting in open-top, 4,500-liter stainless steel tanks with neutral yeasts and finishing in brand-new French and American oak barrels, where it also goes through malolactic. Aging in those new barrels lasted for almost two years. This is always quite ripe, and the Cabernet never shows any pyrazines or herbal aromas; there are plums, blackberries and a balsamic touch. This is full-bodied, powerful, concentrated and generously oaked. This is in line with the same vintage of Clio and has the same differences with the 2015 vintage, which feels a lot more balanced. 6,000 bottles were filled in September 2016. Drink 2018-2024." WA #234. ($129.00 net)
El Nido, El Nido 2015; Jumilla, Spain - "Following the style of the Clio from the same vintage, the 2015 El Nido is a powerful, ripe and concentrated blend of Cabernet Sauvignon with 30% Monastrell aged in a combination of French and American oak barrels for 23 months. It's bottled with 16% alcohol, not a shy wine but not one that shows heat, as it keeps the balance in an XL way. It feels concentrated, powerful and young, but the oak is surprisingly more integrated than in the 2014. As it happens with many wines, this is not for everybody, as it has a marked style, but for those who like this profile, this could very well be the finest vintage of El Nido to date. It can be had with powerful food, but it should be better with a few years in bottle. 5,500 bottles were filled in September 2017. Drink 2019-2030." 95 points, WA #234. ($129.00 net)
El Nido, El Nido 2016; Jumilla, Spain - "The eponymous 2016 El Nido is a blend of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon with 30% Monastrell, the reverse percentages of Clio. The vinification and élevage are the same: it starts in stainless steel with neutral yeasts and finishes in French and American oak barriques, where the wine matured for some 23 months. I was quite pleasantly surprised by this 2016, as I expected a weaker wine that would show the élevage more, but I found a juicy palate and the oak was quite integrated. The tannins are fine-grained, and the palate reveals flavors of sweet spices and dark chocolate. This is not that far from the 2015. I tasted from two bottles—one just opened and one that had been uncorked 24 hours before—and the wine showed better after 24 hours, which gave me an idea about how the wine can (slowly) evolve in bottle. And you can decant it in advance if you want to drink it now. 5,500 bottles were filled in September 2018. Drink 2020-2028." 95 points, WA #242. ($129.00 net).
"Orin Swift is the brainchild of a brilliant young man by the name of Dave Phinney. His Midas touch with grapes from seemingly anywhere in the world, is unusual, but the brilliance of the wines, his creativeness and unparalleled blending talents have built an incredible portfolio right out of the gate. He only started Orin Swift in 1998 and just recently sold it to the huge Gallo enterprise. Readers looking for personality filled wines of considerable character and complexity need to check out the Orin Swift offerings. They are not shy wines in any respect, but the quality is obvious, and if you are like me and believe that a wine is to be judged on just how delicious it is, you will be as impressed as I have been with the Orin Swift products." Robert M. Parker, Jr.
Orin Swift Mannequin Chardonnay 2016; California - "The 2016 Chardonnay Mannequin has delicate peach blossoms and ripe pears notes with hints of ginger, freshly baked bread and allspice. Full-bodied with a seductive oiliness to the texture, it fills the palate with spicy pears plus savory/toasty nuances, finishing long and perfumed. 8,100 cases produced." 91+ points, The Wine Advocate March 2018. ($34.99)
Orin Swift Papillon Red 2015; Napa Valley - "Very deep purple-black colored, the 2015 Papillon Proprietary Red features expressive crème de cassis, mulberries, plum preserves and chocolate box notes with wafts of underbrush, dried herbs and Indian spices. Full-bodied, rich, opulent and spicy in the mouth, it has a velvety texture and seamless freshness, finishing long with a lively pepper and herbs lift. 16,200 cases produced. Drink 2018-2034." 94 points, WA March 2018. ($74.99)
Orin Swift Palermo Cabernet 2015; Napa Valley, CA - "Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2015 Palermo Cabernet Sauvignon (mainly Cabernet Sauvignon with splashes of Merlot and Malbec) opens with notions of crushed red currants, blackberries and mulberries with touches of Indian spices, sandalwood and menthol. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has a wonderfully spicy undercurrent with loads of red and black fruits and a chewy frame, finishing long and perfumed. 24,000 cases produced. Drink 2018-2028." 91 points, WA March 2018. ($54.99)
Orin Swift Machete Red 2016; California - "Made of Petite Sirah, Syrah and Malbec and aged for ten months in 40% new French oak, the deep purple-black colored 2016 Proprietary Red Machete sings of crushed black raspberries and warm blackberries with hints of bay leaves, tilled soil and garrigue. Full-bodied, firm and grainy, it has a lively line and tons of evocative black fruit and sautéed herbs layers, finishing long and earthy. 25,000 cases produced. Drink 2019-2030." 90+ points, WA January 2019. ($52.99)
Orin Swift Abstract 2017; California - "The 2017 Proprietary Red Abstract is made up of Syrah, Petite Sirah, Grenache and Zinfandel, aged eight months in 30% new French and American oak. It has a deep garnet-purple color and features black cherries, fresh black berries and redcurrants with touches of mossy bark, black pepper and garrigue. Full and firm, with a wonderfully rounded texture, it offers loads of black fruit and peppery layers, finishing long and earthy. 38,000 cases produced. Drink 2019-2026." 91 points, WA January 2019. ($39.99)
Orin Swift 8 Years in the Desert 2017; California - "A blend of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Syrah and Grenache, aged eight months in 30% new French oak, the deep garnet-purple colored 2017 Red Blend 8 Years in the Desert bursts forth with blackberry pie, warm cassis, licorice and raspberry pie with touches of tree bark, garrigue and potpourri. Full-bodied, rich and jam-packed with opulent berry preserves and exotic spice layers, it has a velvety texture and wonderful freshness, finishing very long. 39,400 cases produced. Drink 2019-2030." 95 points, WA January 2019.
More about Orin Swift
Wines and Dave Phinney at