Cellar Notes | WYPR

Cellar Notes

Wednesday at 4:44 pm and Friday at 5:44 pm

Cellar Notes is made possible by Bagby Restaurant Group.

Archive Prior to 2014

• Unoaked Chardonnay:  Chamisal Chardonnay, Central Coast '12  $17

• Chardonnay:  Jordan Chardonnay, Russian River Valley '11  $31

• Bargain Cab Sauv:  Sean Minor Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa '11   $20

• Splurge Cab Sauv:  Mt. Veeder Cabernet Sauvignon '11  $50

• Bargain Pinot Noir:  Meiomi Pinot Noir, Sonoma '12  $19

• Splurge Pinot Noir:  Belle Glos, Monterey '12   $46

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Chateau De Jacques Moulin a Vent '11 **1/2 $$
(Brilliant wine from Beaujolais's most distinguished village.)

Chateau de Jacques Morgon '09 **  $$
(Beaujolais's biggest cru wine, a very fruity, mature wine.)

Domaine Franck Besson "Note Blanche" '11 ** $$
(Very rare white Beaujolais, closely related to the standard red version.)

Les Freres Perraud Brouilly, "Vielle Vignes" **1/2 $$
(Tons of bright fruit, cherry and strawberry, great balance and depth.)

Domaine de la Bonne Tonne, Morgon '11  **1/2  $$
(As close to strawberry wine as you can come, informal and delicious.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Merlot - 12/3/14

Dec 3, 2014

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Matanzas Creek Merlot, Bennett Valley 2007  * $$
(Well-made, but underwhelming; fails to impress.)

Cline Estate Merlot, Sonoma Coast 2012 **  $
(Well-made, and captivating, a very good entry level merlot with aspirations.)

Sterling Vineyards Merlot, Napa Valley 2011 **1/2  $$
(Allow one hour for breathing;  intriguing, tasty, likeable.)

Cameron Hughes Lot 356 Merlot, Chalk Hill, Sonoma County 2010 ***  $$
(A superb merlot, bursting with exotic aromas and flavors.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Trimbach Riesling (yellow label) 2011 *** $$
(Just a superb Alsatian riesling at a very good price.)

Trimbach Pinot Gris "Vendage Tardive" 2000 *** $$$
(Current release of this great dessert wine, amazingly concentrated.)

Trimbach Pinot Gris "Reserve" 2011 ** $
(Very good price for a reserve quality pinot gris; try with lobster.)

Trimbach Pinot Blanc (yellow label) 2011  ** $
(Light, delicate but complex pinot blanc with real character.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Here's a shopping list for very good Thanksgiving dinner wine choices:

Best sellers:  Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling and Gewurtztraminer  less than $10.

Same idea, only classic:  Trimbach Gewurtztraminer, 2011

Schloss Vollrads Riesling Spatlese, 2012

Two Pinot Noirs:  Meiomi Pinot Noir, North Coast 2013

La Crema Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast 2012

Al's Favorite, Zinfandel:  Kenwood Jack London Zinfandel, Sonoma Mountain 2011

Ravenswood County Designated Zinfandels (Lodi, Napa, Sonoma)

Fritz Zinfandel, Dry Creek Valley 2012

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Franciscan"Equilibrium" White Blend, Napa, 2013 * 1/2 $$
(An interesting blend of sauvignon blanc, chardonnay and muscat.)

Franciscan Chardonnay, Napa, 2012 ** $
(Super value in classic Napa Valley chard.)

Franciscan Chardonnay "Cuvée Sauvage" Napa/Carneros 2012 **1/2 $$
(Pricey but worth it, made with wild yeast fermentation.)

Franciscan Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa 2012 **1/2  $$
(A very consistent winner, everything you could ask for in a good cab.)

Franciscan "Magnificat" Meritage, Napa 2011 *** $$$
(A true reserve quality cab blend with great complexity, texture.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Taltarni Taché Sparkling Wine, Victoria  *1/2  $
(Bone dry rosé sparkler with good flavor.)

Taltarni Three Monks, Victoria 2011 ** $
(Very nice cab/merlot blend for near-term drinking.)

Taltarni Three Monks Fumé Blanc, Victoria 2011 ** $
(Good value in a very meaty, full throated sauvignon blanc.)

Taltarni "T Series" Shiraz, Victoria 2006  **1/2  $
(Super value in a very nice shiraz that is fully mature.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Bonterra Viognier, Mendocino 2011 * $
(Simple, lightweight vigonier.)

McManis Viognier, California 2012 ** $
(Very good entry level viognier, true to form and affordable at $12.)

The White Knight Viognier, Clarksburg 2013 **1/2  $
(Very well made viognier at a very reasonable price.)

Desert Wind Viognier, Columbia Valley, Washington 2011 *** $$
(Very classy, very refined, very well made.  An excellent wine.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Rigo Nebbiolo d'Alba '10  $$  *1/2 - **
(A lighter nebbiolo, but  decant and let it breathe for two hours.)

Banfi Chianti Classico Riserva '10 $$  **
(A good if not spectacular Chianti, full of traditional character.)

Villa Puccini Vino Nobile de Montepulciano '09 $$   ** 1/2  
(Medium bodied, graceful, very flavorful, very classy.)

Zonin Valpolicello Classico Ripasso '11 $ **1/2
(Wine of the week!  A fabulous wine, buy by the case!)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Cambria Benchbreak Chardonnay, Santa Maria Valley, 2012 $$ **
(Very nice large-scale California style chard.)

Cambria Katherine's Vineyard Chardonnay $ **1/2
(Hugh loves this big French influenced chard, at a great price...bargain!)

Cambria Julia's Vineyard Pinot Noir, Santa Maria Valley 2012  $$ **
(Blend of vineyards, good well-structured pinot noir.)

Quality key:  * = good decent beer  ** = very good beer   *** = superb beer

Fuller's London Porter  ** 1/2
(A very complete porter, correct in all aspects and satisfying.)

Innis & Gunn Scottish Porter, oak aged  **
(Very tasty, but maybe too much of everything.)

McEwan's Scotch Ale **1/2
(Big, rich, complex thirst quenching, a classic.)

Samuel Smith Taddy Porter *
(A trifle thin, but a good effort, serve on the warm side.)

Darwin's Original Flag Porter **
(Very good porter, medium weight, complex and smooth.)

Many of these fine beers can be purchased at Wine World.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Montes Alpha Cabernet Sauvignon, Colchaugua Valley '09   $$  **1/2
(A dandy cab, with a lot of class and correct varietal character.)

Los Vascos Cabernet Sauvignon, Grande Reserve, Colchagua '11  $  *1/2
(No more than competent cab sauv at a good price.)

Norton Malbec, reserva, Mendoza '11  $$   **
(Refined malbec, well made at a affordable price.)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Thevenet et Fils "Virée Clessé" white, 2005  $$  *
(Not quite the star of the show.)

Carillon Bourgogne Blanc, 2012  $$ **    
(Good structure, nice flavors, worthy value at $21.)

Domaine Guyon Haute Cotes de Nuits 2009  $$ **
(Very good value in red burgundy, from a somewhat unreliable appelation.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.

**Governor's Cup Winner - Bordeleau Cabernet Sauvignon "Amarone" 2008

Best Red Belnd - Little Ashby 2011

Best White - Old Westminster Albarino 2013

Best White Blend - Rockland Farms "White Oak" 2013
(Vidal Blanc 75% Chardonnay25%)

Best Off-dry - Linganore Traminette 2013

Best Rosé - Port of Leonardtown Chaptico Rosé 2012

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Williamsburg Winery Act XII Chardonnay, Virginia 2011 $  *1/2
(Classic East Coast chardonnay.)

Williamsburg Winery Cabernet Franc, Hennings Statute, Virginia 2010  $$  **
(Full bodied, dark, with pronounced cedar notes.)

Williamsburg Winery Virginia Trianon, red blend, Virginia 2012 $$ **1/2
(Resembles the Cab Franc, only moreso.)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Le Provencal Rosé, Côtes de Provence 2013  *  $
(Pale pastel pink, pleasant picnic wine, grenache dominates.)

Ch. Pigoudet "Insolite" Rosé, Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence 2013  **  $$
(Despite pale color, loaded with flavor, cab sauv based, very well made.)

Ch. La Mascaronne Quat' Saisons Rosé, Côtes de Provence 2013 **  $$
(Very pale but full bodied, loads of red fruit and peach flavors.)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Frei Brothers Reserve Zinfandel, Dry Creek 2012  **1/2   $
(Textbook Dry Creek zin, restrained scale, deep flavors, lovely aroma.)

Rosenblum Zinfandel "Old Vines", Sonoma 2009  **  $
(Big, juicy, rich zin, a well behaved fruit bomb.)

Buehler Vineyards Zinfandel, Napa Valley 2011  **1/2  $$
(Perfect Napa zin, with sturcture, deep flavor, restrained scale.)

Brazin Old Vine Zinfandel, Lodi 2010  **1/2   $
(Shamelessly big and rich, a hedonist's delight.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Domaine Dupeuble Beaujolais Blanc 2012  *1/2 $$    
(A very rare wine, informal chardonnay, very nice.)

Sylvain et Alain Normand Macon-La Roche-Vineuse 2012  **  $
(Good buy in a spicy, mineral Macon.)

Fabrice Larochette, Chat. Chaintré Macon-Chaintré 2102  **  $
(Attractive peach, pear and mineral notes, well made, good value.)

Louis Jadot Macon Villages 2012 *1/2  $
(A very good value in Macon chard, from a reliable producer.)
        
Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

**Wines are line priced at $20

House Swine Chardonnay, Santa Barbara 2011 *1/2  $$
(Classic Santa Barbara chard, creamy and loaded with good fruit.)

House Swine Zinfandel, Paso Robles 2011  **1/2  $$
(Superb zin, big but not massive, very complex and rewarding.)

House Swine Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara, 2010 **1/2  $$
(Very Burgundian in style, supple, complex, graceful, impressive.)

These wines have been released in Maryland, and are available.  If you want to try them, contact your local wine merchant.

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

4 Vines Naked Chard "Unoaked" Santa Barbara 2012   **  $
(Great value in complex unoaked chard.)

4 Vines "Truant" Zinfandel "old vines," California 2011  ** $
(Fruity zin with good flavors, excellent with barbecue sauce.)    

Sean Minor Chardonnay, Central Coast 2012 **  $
(Very good for the money, style and flavor.)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine
        
Open Range Red Wine, California 2010  *1/2  $  
(well balanced, informal, a pizza wine)

Austin Hope "The Troublemaker", California, NV  **1/2   $
(A very good bargain for a masterful blend.)

Ch. Ste. Michelle "Indian Wells" Red Blend, Columbia Valley 2010  **1/2 $
(A classy, well sculptured red based on merlot, excellent value.)

Milbrandt Vineyards "Brother's Blend", Columbia Valley 2011 * $
(Cotes du Rhone like, rustic and simple, good burger wine.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

La Crema Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast  2012 *1/2  $$
(Light, fruity, rounded, good every day pinot noir.)

La Crema Pinot Noir, Monterey, 2012 **  $$
(A bigger, earthier pinot noir with good complexity.)

Wild Ridge Pinot Noir, Sonoma Coast 2011  ***  $$
(Impressive, full bodied, well balanced, nuanced.)

Champ de Reves Pinot Noir, Anderson Valley 2011  *** $$
(Very complex, great body, very elegant.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

William Hill Chardonnay, North Coast 2012 * $
(Nice basic chard, nothing fancy.)

Landmark Vineyards Overlook Chardonnay, Sonoma County 2011  *1/2 $
(A touch of complexity, good mid-level chard.)

St. Supery Estate Chardonnay, oak-free, Napa ** $
(Very nice, idiosyncratic chard, seems "German" in style.)

Arrowood Chardonnay, Sonoma County 2010 **1/2  $
(One of the classics, a steal at this price.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Byron Chardonnay, Santa Barbara '12  *  $
(Very nice entry level chardonnay, good value.)

Byron Pinot  Noir, Santa Barbara '12  *  $$
(Very good varietal character, great value.)

Byron Chardonnay, Santa Maria Valley '11  *** $$
(Creamy, rich, well balanced, textbook chard.)

Quality key:  * = good decent   ** = very good    *** = superb

Schniederweisss clear whiskey , Germany 1/2*  
(A curiosity)

Mackmyra "The First Edition", Sweeden *
(Decent)

Penderyn, Wales 1/2*
(Scotch-like, big rich flavor)

Reisterbauer, Austria 1/2*
(Bourbon-like, uninspired)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Whispering Angel, Cotes du Provence 2013 *1/2 $
(A charming well structured delicate rosé.)

Domaine de Corbillieres Rosé, Tourain 2013 *1/2 $
(Big soft rosé with nice fruit flavors.)

Commanderie de Peyrosol Rosé, Provence 2013 ** $
(Quintessential French rosé.)

La Manarine Rosé Cotes du Rhone 2013 * $
(Fuller bodied, with a bitter finish.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Punta Final Malbec, Mendoza '12  *1/2  $
(Very nice entry level malbec.)

Punta Final Reserva Malbec, Mendoza '11  **1/2 $$
(Dynamic, hedonistic, very impressive and satisfying.)

Enamore Malbec, Mendoza '11  *** $$
(A co-production with Allegrini of Italy, robust, very impressive.)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Cline Syrah, Sonoma County 2009 ** $
(Very good value for a luscious red.)

Zaca Mesa Syrah, Santa Ynez Valley, 2008 **1/2 $
(Australian influence, has some age on it already.)

Corvidae "Lenore" Syrah, Columbia Valley 2009 ** $
(A good example of cool-country syrah.)

Earthquake Syrah, Lodi 2006 **1/2 $$
(A great California syrah with tons of flavor.)

Many of these fine wines can be purchased at Wine World.  See sponsor tab.

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Ponzi Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley '13 *1/2 $
(Very good value in a Ponzi staple,  bright, elegant, crisp)

Ponzi Reserve Chardonnay, Willamette Valley '12 **  $$
(Subtle, firm, complex and delicate; typical quality Oregon chard)

Ponzi Pinot Noir, "Tavola" '12  ** $$
(Lean, balanced with good falvors)

Price key:  $=less than $20  $$= $20-40   $$$=$40-60  $$$$=above $60
Quality key:  * = good decent wine  ** = very good wine   *** = superb wine

Blanck Pinot Gris, Alsace 2011  **1/2 $$
(Dense, earthy, off-dry, almost majestic.)

Blanck Pinot Blanc d'Alsace 2011 ** $
(One of your better pinot blancs, with earthy citrus notes.)

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