The new wines keep coming. The highly acclaimed 2010 Brunelli are starting to arrive and more are on the way. 2010 was one of those too rare vintages when the stars seem to have aligned. The vintage started with cool temperatures and some rain which lengthened the maturation process. Temperature swings between day and night drew out the ripening and allowed the grapes to retain acidity and freshness. The best estates used careful canopy management and selection to produce some of the best wines of the century. And while these Italian gems are flying off the shelves, we do have a few new wines to please your palate while you wait for more Brunelli to make their way to your wine glass.
Here are a few available at select ABC Fine Wine & Spirits locations. Talk to your local wine consultant for help finding these on the shelves.
“The High Valley AVA rises between 1,600 and 3,000 ft. elevation in the Coastal Ranges of northeastern Lake County. Thanks to the high elevation and cool breezes from the oldest lake in North America, it is one of the coolest appellations in Lake County. We run 1,000 head of sheep on these vineyards, composting the weeds into nutrients for the red, rocky volcanic soils. These are intensely flavored grapes, and we craft them into wines that capture the character of this remarkable region.” Winery website; $15 (8381-55)
Freemark Abbey Cabernet Sauvignon Bosché 2010 – Napa, California
“From a well-known Rutherford vineyard, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Bosche Vineyard is a blend of 95% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot aged 29 months in 67% new oak. Backward with a Bordeaux-like framework as well as wonderfully sweet notes of unsmoked tobacco, cassis, fruitcake and cedar, this dense, pure, medium to full-bodied 2010 needs 2-3 years of cellaring and should age for 25+. 90+” Wine Advocate; $85 (2912-55)
“The brilliant 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Sycamore Vineyard (another Rutherford site on Bella Oaks Lane) is a blend of 85.4% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.5% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot aged 28 months in barrel. It boasts an opaque purple color, terrific notes of licorice, creme de cassis, charcoal, forest floor, baking spices and earth, as well as a full-bodied mouthfeel with great fruit intensity and purity. This savory, mouthfilling beauty is best drunk over the next 20-25 years. 94+” Wine Advocate; $85 (2918-55)
Bodega Garzón Tannat 2012 – Garzón, Uruguay
“Ripe plum, mocha and dark chocolate flavors dominate this peppery red. Beef jerky notes show on the finish. Drink now. 86” Wine Spectator; $18 (3800-55)
“WillaKenzie’s most affordable estate-grown Pinot, this opens with a truly lovely bouquet of rose petals, raspberries and dusty chocolate. Soft and smooth upon entry, it’s a light, detailed and sophisticated vineyard blend that spent 10 months in 20% new oak. 89” Wine Enthusiast; $27 (8651-55)
“Light and sleek, with modest pineapple and green apple flavors playing against lively acidity. Drink now. 87” Wine Spectator
“This is a lush and fragrant wine, instantly appealing with aromas of orange blossom and sweet pear. Quite dry and concentrated, it brings further flavors of citrus, grapefruit and lemon rind as it plays out in a lingering, refreshing finish. 92” Wine Enthusiast; $20 (8650-55)
“The 2009 Special Blend Del Fin Del Mundo, a blend of 40% Malbec, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Merlot aged for 18 months in new and second-use French and American oak barrels, seems a little more sophisticated and balanced than its siblings with sweet spices, red and black fruit and licorice aromas, rounder tannins and low-ish acidity. It seems to have the balance to develop some more complexity in bottle, but it is still a question mark. Drink now-2018. 88” Wine Advocatel; $33 (2301-55)
The Laloues are dedicated to careful soil conservation and organic growing. This small plot, 1.0128 hectares, is Kimmeridgian limestone on a steep, 45 ̊ slope. All work is done by hand. The wine is very mineral in style with deep richness, notes of citrus white flowers and vibrant acidity. It’s the perfect match for shellfish. – Brad Lewis; $22 (4213-55)
This is one of Italy’s most unique wines. Made from 90% Carmenère, a clone of Cabernet Franc and 10% Oseleta, a variety native to the Veneto region grown on volcanic basalt soil from 25-year-old vines; the wine is aged 14 months in new French oak and another year in bottle. The wine shows bright ruby color leading to notes of currant, pepper, clove and a touch of vanilla from the oak finishing in ripe tannins. The wine is organic and biodynamic. It matches with the local game of Veneto and red meats. Brad Lewis; $22 (5511-55)
Violet/pink in color, this 100% Syrah Rosé from Casablanca shows lifted notes of strawberry and cherry on the nose with lush flavors of watermelon and raspberries giving way to a lovely raspberry finish. Brad Lewis; $13 (4143-55)
“Taut, focused, light, lively and inviting, with pepper and clove accents around a vivid core of cherry and raspberry fruit, dancing easily through the long and expressive finish. Drink now through 2022. 94” Wine Spectator; $60 (1888-55)
Brad Lewis, ABC Fine Wine & Spirits director of fine wines
With over 40 years’ experience, Brad Lewis travels the world as ABC’s fine wines buyer, selecting wines that must be among the best examples of its type. For more Brad’s Picks click here.