What’s New?

Please use comments here to alert everyone to interesting wines you’ve seen at which stores, but which have not yet been reviewed.  Please post any tasting notes in Guest Contributions, or as a comment on a main-page review, as comments here older than six weeks or so will be deleted.

You can check out what reviewers have at home to review at this sub-blog:

GrossOutWine Review Queue

3,465 thoughts on “What’s New?

  1. Seedboy

    Tierra y Mar Russian River Valley Zinfandel 2014, Oakland store, $4.99. This wine was given to me as a sample. It is a good example of a traditional RRV zin: red fruit, good acidity. Does not show its 16.8% alcohol. I will buy more of this.

    Reply
  2. Zoel

    ’15 Elkfield PN (Khoury Family Label) – $4 in SRosa – tried this tonight after the meh/fail on the Khoury Estate…as David Byrne would say, “Same as it ever was”. Very similar profile to the Estate bottling – somewhat thin and fruity without much oomph. Wife detected some off-odors, and poured hers out. Dang, always hoping for a great $4 btl of PN…not this time. Big time pass on the Khoury boat, IMHO. 80 pt vino here.

    Reply
    1. BargainWhine Post author

      Thanks for your notes on this one. We’ve had a number of $3 Pinots lately. The Elkfield and the Gabi are apparently not good, but “The Show” is supposedly not bad for the price, and there’s a Chilean one that looks like it ought to be good, but I’ve heard nothing about it so far.

      Reply
      1. GOwinelover

        For what it’s worth, I’ve had The Show’s 2012 Cab and it was good for the price ($4 on clearance at Cost Plus World Market, not $13 on Wine.com). I would think their Pinot would be at least drinkable.

        Reply
        1. BdB

          I have plenty of nice bottles but went through the cheaper ones so that’s what I buy now, for everyday. I’ve had two of the Show Pinot Noir and liked it quite a bit. I plan to buy more if I can. Paid 3$ for them, a nice bargain.

          Reply
  3. Zoel

    Well, this blog has been pretty quiet of late…in the Santa Rosa store, picked up two bottles of Pinot Noir from Khoury – but under 4 different labels/names (only the fine print told of the original source). Names include “Elk Field Vineyards”, Khoury Estate, and two others I didn’t get. Don’t know what’s behind the name (famous winery in Lebanon, probably relatives in Mendocino). Opened the ’15 Estate Pinot ($5) last night, and retried tonight. Simple floral aromas on the nose, very light on the palate. Some nuances of good fruit, but pretty thin for my tastes. Not much depth here…didn’t gain much overnight, either. Nothing offensive but nothing compelling, either. A pass for me, 84-85 pt range.

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      There sure have been a mess of those wines. I have liked these wines in a low expectations way but did taste one that was worse than the others. Pale green label. Don’t buy it.

      Reply
  4. DavidLikesWine

    Some interesting goodies at the Palo Alto GO today:

    2010 Quinto dos Avidagos “Vista de Regua” Duoro Reserva – $6.99 / $19.99
    – 40% Touriga Nacional, 30% Touriga Franca, 25% Touriga Roriz, 5% Tinta Barroca

    2012 Clos la Chance Estate Zinfandel, Central Coast $4.99 / $16.99

    2015 Midsummer Cellars Grenache Rose, $4.99 / $21.99 (I’ve enjoyed previous vintages of this wine from GO in past years)

    2014 Clayhouse “Adobe White” Paso Robles white blend, $1.99 / $11.99
    – 40% Viognier, 36% Grenache Blanc, 24% Sauvignon Blanc, lots fermented separately in stainless steel, aged on the lees, blended, and allowed to marry for 2 months prior to bottling. Snapped up one of these to try. Cheaper than 2BuckChuck…

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      The Rose is disappointing compared with the prior vintages, which I liked. However I cannot remember why I was disappointed with it. The Adobe White is a nicely made wine and that price is ridiculous. Its flavors are dominated by fruity central coast Viognier and is not my ideal style but what a bargain.

      Reply
  5. seedboy

    I’ve bought a couple of interesting looking wines at the Oakland store. One is a Glen Fiona Syrah, I want to say 2013. The other is a nebbiolo made by Leonetti in Washington. I forget the vintage. It cost $7.99. Do any of you in the Pacific NW know anything about these wines?

    Reply
    1. RB

      Are you sure that second one isn’t from Leone? I’d be shocked to see anything from Leonetti at GO (do they make a Nebbiolo?) But we have seen stuff from Leone recently. The Glen Fiona Syrah has also been hanging around here for a bit and I swore I’d seen someone comment on it here, but I couldn’t find anything.

      Reply
        1. BargainWhine Post author

          I quite liked that Leone 2009 Nebbiolo. It’s definitely a New World wine, but I thought nicely done. In the store, I put up a sign, “If you’re looking for a nice medium-weight Pinot Noir, try this instead.” It doesn’t have the strawberry / raspberry aspect of Pinot, and it’s a little more leathery / earthy, but it’s otherwise very much like a good CA Pinot. It went very well with salmon.

          Reply
    2. michael

      I pulled one of the Leone wines I bought from 4th ave Seattle(Michella Rosa – Super Tuscan style) and no-where does it have Leonetti in any size print so who knows. I don’t remember them ever having a Nebbiolo from Leone but I could be wrong(they had Dolcetto and Primitivo also).

      The Glen Fiona Syrah was ok but not great at least the bottle I had. I don’t have any notes for it but the Mourvedre(maybe the same vintage – not sure) was way better, bigger body, more flavor and structure etc etc. And the Viognier(2014) was great for the price they were offering($4.99).

      Reply
    3. Anthony

      Leonetti wines start at about $100 a bottle and go up from there. Believe me, they have no second label and you won’t see any at GO. Actually, I’ve done construction work on the cave at their winery which, vineyards and all, is located barely outside the suburbs of Walla Walla, WA. Kind of surreal setting for such an acclaimed winery. Anyway as for Leone, a brief search indicates they are- or maybe were- located in Zilla, WA. Their most recent Facebook post is a couple years old. I haven’t seen the Nebbiolo. I have tried the rest and think the Miscella Rosso is the best. Barely in my usual price range for GO wine, but a good value.

      Reply
  6. permiesworld

    Did anyone try this yet: Quinta Nova De Nossa Senhora Do Carmo Colheita Douro 2010

    http://www.wine-searcher.com/find/quinta+nuova+de+nossa+senora+carmo+colheita+douro+portugal/2010

    It’s a blend of Touriga Nacional (one of my favorite wine grapes ever) Touriga Franca, Tinta Roriz and Tinto Cão.

    It’s $6.99 normally about $20/bottle (which is about average store price for a decent but probably not exceptional T. Nacional blend).

    I picked up the only 2 in our store, so I’m just curious if anyone else has tasted it.

    Reply
  7. BargainWhine Post author

    Yesterday at Richmond, a Loire Sauvignon (Blanc) showed up, 2015 “Privilege” from Drouet Freres, $6.

    Reply
      1. BargainWhine Post author

        Although I was tempted, I hadn’t planned on opening it tonight, but since you asked…🙂 The wine has a nice nose and delicate flavors of gooseberry, yellow / white melon, slight fresh herbs, and a nice minerality / drying bitterness. Very dry and pleasantly crisp. It’s a little on the lighter side as far as intensity goes, and it’s not very complex, but the flavors are classic and its elegance is lovely.

        The Richmond store got 4 cases, and as soon as I saw it, I asked the store owner / operator to order more if it was still available, so we’ll see if more shows up tomorrow.

        Reply
  8. Anthony

    At So. Tacoma GO:
    Facelli late harvest Moscato and late harvest Riesling. Both $4.99
    Tried them both: fine examples, no obvious flaws, great value if you like dessert wine.
    At Lakewood, WA. GO:
    Tipping Point Chardonnay 2013; $5.99 Didn’t try it; description sounds typical butterball & tree fruit flavors.
    Albertone vino rosso 2013 $9.99. Online reviews not favorable.
    OPN pinot noir willamette valley 2013 ( Walnut City Wineworks) $6.99. Surprisingly good; definitely a repeat buy. Hard to find an inexpensive and inoffensive pinot noir.
    El Negociante pinot noir $5.99. Didn’t try, no info.
    Leone Miscela Rossa 2009 Columbia Valley $7.99. Italian style red blend. No proper tasting notes, sorry. But I keep buying it 😋 so apparently I like it. Actually my favorite right now. Even though I’ve got a fair bit of the Facelli reds. Full mouthfeel, well balanced IMO. Not elegant but very satisfying.

    Reply
    1. RB

      Thanks for the notes, Anthony. Are there any of the Facelli reds still hanging around in the Tacoma area? I might be passing through this week and would love to grab a few more bottles.

      Reply
      1. Anthony

        I don’t think there is any left that I’ve seen. One place you might check although it’s a bit out of the way is the Bonny Lake GO. They have a nice wine section, but I haven’t been there lately.

        Reply
  9. Seedboy

    2 wines from Oakland today.
    Altes Garnatxa Negra (Grenache) 2012 from Spain. Imported by Eric Solomon, a respected importer from that part of the world. 4.99. Screwcap. Varietally proper and not overdone, no obvious oak. I like the Girard wines more (oh, not the rose, it is too simple and fruity) but you should give this a try.
    Vigilalance Petite Sirah Lake County Red Hills 2011. A lot of fine tannin that will resolve. Does how show a lot of fruit but does show some structure. Just appeared today so might have been discombobulated by shipping.

    Reply
      1. JoelA

        I second the motion on the grenache. Good acid, concentrated red fruit flavors (said to be from about 100-year-old vines), good finish and a good price.

        Reply
        1. BargainWhine Post author

          Another Spanish Grenache arrived Friday, from Priorat. Pretty label. Bought a bottle but haven’t opened it yet.

          Reply
          1. seedboy

            I think I bought a bottle at the SF store today. Beautiful bottling. I hope it evolves because the bottle I opened was an oaky mess
            On the other hand the David Girard Coda Blanc is a nice crisp white wine with good but not big flavors

            Reply
  10. Anthony

    At the Auburn,Wa. store:
    House of Independent Producers (Hedges Family) 2013 Chardonnay, Columbia valley, sagemoor farm, dionysius vineyard, $5.99
    Cameron Hughes Lot 489 2013 Triage Columbia Valley white blend $3.99

    Reply
      1. Anthony

        I did buy it. Fairly simple sweetish flavors. Not really a fan but fine on a warm evening with an ice cube in it. I wouldn’t really call it dry but maybe just not enough acidity to balance it. Cheap though, good for an inoffensive sipper. The unoaked Hedges Chardonnay was much better.

        Reply
  11. JoelA

    At Oakland, Red Lava tempranillo (forgot which vintage) and 2013 petite sirah, $ 7.99 each. The folks there like both

    At Berkeley – the store is CLOSED. R.I.P.

    Reply
      1. JoelA

        I’m not crazy about American attempts with tempranillo so I picked up a bottle of the petite sirah to try (next week).

        Reply
        1. Seedboy

          The oak becomes less obnoxious the second day but the wine is fuzzy still. Buy a bottle of the David Girard Grenache instead and save $3

          Reply
  12. BargainWhine Post author

    Usually when I stop by the Oakland store, I think there wasn’t much need for me to do so, that we had everything interesting at the Richmond store. Last night, however, I picked up a couple more Spanish wines imported by A W Direct (previous recent examples here), this time both Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y León: Entre Suelos 2012 Tempranillo for $5 and Tridente 2013 Tempranillo for $7. They both have labels with sort of flashy graphics, and the Tridente in particular has a heavy bottle. Also, I got a bottle of Apremont Vin de Savoie for $6, a white wine I hadn’t heard of before, made in the foothills of the French Alps, from Jacquère, a grape I had never heard of.

    Reply
    1. Zoel

      I picked both of these up as well, and left a review in the Guest section a few days ago…the EntreSuelos was quite nice, deep and well-structured even after two days open. The Tridente was also very good, typical solid Temp at a great price. Still waiting to open the Apremont…

      Reply
  13. DavidLikesWine

    Some goodies at Palo Alto today, some of these are Palo Alto only as they bypassed the warehouse and went straight there.

    2011 Rustenberg “Five Soldiers” Chardonnay, Stellenbosch, SA – $7.99 / $49.99
    WE / WS / RP all give it 90 pts. K&L still has it for $20.00. A CellerTracker reviewer said he just had the ’05 and it’s still holding up nicely. I bought 4 bottles, and there are about 2-3 cases left.

    2014 Chateau La Savuageonne (Gerard Bertrand) “GMW” Rosè – $9.99 / $49.99
    This is the big brother of the “Wild Woman” rose that was so good. Plot by plot selection (65% grenache, 25% mourvedre, 7% vermintino, 3% viognier), barrel aged 6 months. Joe got 10 cases, 7ish cases are left. I don’t drink a ton of rosè but took the plunge at the thought of a side by side comparison with the “Wild Woman” to occupy a warm Saturday evening.

    2015 Impuls Riesling $3.99 / $14.99

    2012 Fossa Mala Pinot Grigio, Friuli $4.99 / $22.99
    This looked really intriguing. Would love to hear thoughts on this if someone has had it.

    2013 Purple Star Riesling, Columbia Valley $2.99 / $11.99

    2010 Shingleback “Davey Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon, McLaren Vale $9.99 / $21.99

    There were also 4 bottles left of a 2008 Rustenberg Cabernet for $19.99 (SRP $79.99), but I passed. That’s a lot of GO dollars.

    Reply
  14. permiesworld

    I stopped back by the local GO to pick up a couple more bottles of the David Girard El Dorado Grenache. It’s weird, I paid $4.99 last time but the sign now says $9.99. So not sure what the price is on that one (does anyone else know?). I also picked up the 2013 David Girard Tryptich (Syrah/Grenache and I don’t know what the other wine is, in the blend) for $4.99 (SRV Is $14.99-$24.99). They also had the Coda Rouge ($SRV $30) there, as well as the Mouvedre ($SRV 34). I didn’t have great phone service in the store though so I couldn’t research those. I wrote down the vintages but apparently lost the paper somewhere between the store and here.

    There was also a Chalk Hill (not the brand label…I lost that with the paper…just the location) Sangiovese that looked nice.

    Several of the wines are $9.99. I remember when that used to be out of the ordinary for GO, so it surprised me. There was a Vino Rosso Albertone 2013 (IIRC) for $9.99 but I couldn’t find any information on it. Whether or not it was Alberone or ? It was a pretty bottle/label but I didn’t pick it up. If anyone has any info on this one though, I’d be interested in knowing.

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      Those Chalk Hill wines are made by (or attributed to) Chateau Diana, a suspect maker. I hear that the Petite Sirah is good, though, if given a mess of air. I would love to find the Girard Mourvedre. $9.99 sounds like the price that should be charged for the fancy David Girard Syrah that GO has.

      Reply
      1. permiesworld

        ok, thanks for the info on the Chalk Hill wines. Glad I didn’t buy it without researching first!

        I should have picked up the Mourvedre. If it’s comparable to the Grenache it should be very nice.

        Reply
        1. seedboy

          About a year ago earlier vintages of some of these wines appeared at the GO including the Coda Rouge blend and the Mourvedre. I bought a lot of this including half a case of the Mourvedre. I should find and open one.

          Reply
          1. permiesworld

            I did pick up one bottle of the Mourvedre. The Grenache was only $4.99 so I bout a couple more bottles of it..but since I won’t be trying the Mourvedre until it cools down (it’s almost 100F here for the next week or so), I didn’t want to buy a lot.

            Reply
    2. Expat

      I got the Albertone and should have listened to the warning voice in my ear when I read that the harvesting/winemaking process was the same as an Amarone. Still,I thought an Italian wine might not be too sweet but to me this was almost a dessert wine. Very fruity, heavy and sweet, at least for my palate. I took one sip, corked and fridged it. I needed something substantial for a pan fried rib eye so I opened a petite syrah from Wolff in Edna Valley here in San Luis Obispo.

      Reply
        1. Expat

          It’s possible my palate was overly sensitive to sweet the other night but I really don’t think so. BTW, did you see the Montemaggiore 2011 Syrah (Dry Creek, Sonoma) in your area? I think that is really good if you like dry wines.

          Reply
          1. BargainWhine Post author

            Hi PW and Expat. First, I quite liked the Albertone. I thought that, after a couple hours’ air, it opened up into an elegant and nicely delineated wine. I wished it could have been a little more complex, but it was silky like Amarone, and was of course cheaper than a real Amarone. (I suppose I should get the Gaetano Amarone, $14, that people — including Seedboy — tell me is good, in order to compare what you get for your money in each.) Also, I second Expat’s recommendation of the Montemaggiore Syrah. A little farther down in that comment thread, DavidLikesWine also liked this Syrah.

            Reply
            1. Expat

              Full disclosure – I gave this wine no time to breathe and I wanted a dry, structured red to go with a rich steak, so I didn’t really evaluate it fairly. I’ll check it out again but I’m sure it will be on the sweet side for me.

            2. permiesworld

              Thanks BW. Given your second comment to Expat, it’s probably more sweet that I would like as well. I do think I’m going to have to go back and pick up one of the Mouvedre though. Maybe one of the Coda Rouge. There weren’t many of that one there though, just a couple of bottles so it might be gone.

  15. Zoel

    ’12 Castilla y Leon EntreSuelos – $6 in Oakland – thought this was a pretty solid wine, bought along with a number of Spanish players as they were well-stocked in Tempranillos. Decent structure, dark fruits, nice finish…not a raging buy but certainly worth the tariff…88 pt.

    Reply
  16. JoelA

    Stopped today at the Oakdale store on the way home from Yosemite. A pretty good selection including some that have vanished from shelves in the East Bay. Also the 1980 Tuke port. Picked up a bottle of the tre Amici Barolo and another winery’s Barbaresco.

    Reply
      1. seedboy

        I’ve tasted two bottles of the Barolo. It tastes like a real Barolo, although one not made in the traditional style (meaning, it is not super tannic and expresses more fruit). A friend tasted one he was not happy with, there might be bottle variation.

        Reply
  17. BargainWhine Post author

    Three new Portuguese reds from Vista da Regua showed up yesterday: the 2013 “Vinho da Familia” for $4, the 2013 “Caráter” for $5, and the 2009 “Vinhas Velhas” (Old Vines) for $8. The latter I thought was pretty good: ripe, slightly tangy, darker red cherry, red roses, blackberry / slight blueberry, black earth, thicker tannins on the finish. Slightly syrupy but elegant and delineated, and a nice amount of balancing acid. Not an amazing bargain but good for the price. I got a bottle of the “Vinho da Familia” to try later. Here is a page with more info:
    http://www.sfwe.com/vista-da-regua-details

    Reply
    1. Zoel

      I tried the ’09 VV and thought it was excellent! Didn’t get any syrupy-ness (adj?), but thought it was a well-made and nicely structured wine. It was a big bargain to my palate, will buy again…90 pts.

      Reply
  18. Ashlander

    A couple of new David Girard reds in Medford. The most intriguing of which is a 2011 “Okei-San” 2011 Syrah. I think the list price is around $75.00. $9.99 at GO. Here is a link to a beautiful story about the wine:
    http://www.davidgirardvineyards.com/index.cfm?method=blog.blogList&fromDate=10%2F01%2F2014&ToDate=10%2F31%2F2014

    Another mystery is that the winery website lists the 2010 as the current offering, but the story in the link above references the 2012.

    The also had a 2012 El Dorado Grenache. I am going back to the store to pick up a bottle of each.

    I did a quick search but didn’t see anything on Grossout for either wine. Please let me know if you have any info about them.

    Reply
    1. Seedboy

      Oakland now has three Girard wines. 2011 and 2012 Grenache and a Grenache Rose. Not all of these are on the floor. I have a bottle of each red and will comment shortly. Meanwhile that store also has two NE Italian whites, Eugenio Collavini Ribolla Gialla and a Friulano, both 2013, $3.99. Both are sound, balanced white table wines that seem to have a lot of flavor bound up in them that is not really expressing, maybe because of travel.

      Reply
      1. seedboy

        The two reds are clean and correct and not jammy, indeed they are on the more delicate side. No detectable wood. Nice balance.

        Reply
          1. seedboy

            These wines actually tasted better left on the counter for two days. Strawberry and blackberry fruit came out, elegant in the mouth

            Reply
            1. permiesworld

              Our Grenache didn’t make it to day 2 or 3. lol It went perfectly with our meal. It’s not complex (to me) but there’s some fruit, some spice, some alcohol heat and it’s not sweet. The body wasn’t too heavy so it works for a hot day (something I’ve really been struggling to find this year…a decent summer red). I will be picking up some more. Wish I could find the others.

            2. seedboy

              The Oakland store either does not know, or does not care, that they have two different vintages of this wine and only the 2012 is out on the shelf. The rose is still on the pallet.

  19. permiesworld

    Anyone try the 2012 Stalking Horse Syrah (Barossa Valley)? I went looking for the 2006 Belle Vallee wines that someone spotted in Grants Pass, OR but had no luck in any of our stores. I did pick up a bottle of the Stalking horse though. It rates at 91 but that is so subjective…I’d rather hear a taste profile. It says $14.99-19.99 SRV so if it’s good, $5.99 isn’t bad value.

    Picked up some more of that Ziobaffa prosecco. The new owner of the Corvallis store said that he got 15 cases of it and is down to less than one. It blew out so fast.

    Reply
    1. Eugene

      The Eugene store has the Stalking Horse and the 2006 Belle Vallee port of pinot noir. Having said that, I still have some of the port from last time around; it has a lot of bottle sediment and seems to be aging unevenly and not very well.

      Reply
      1. Seedboy

        When I see “pinot port” I think about all of these over ripe high alcohol pinots that have been produced here in California the last few years.

        Reply
        1. permiesworld

          I do not like high alcohol pinot…I honestly never thought I’d like the “port” (I’m still of the opinion that it should be called fortified wine, since it wasn’t made in Portugal…). But the 2005 was pretty amazing. I was sitting here hoping that my last two bottles are ok and not aging poorly, like another posted mentioned. It’s just like nothing I’ve tasted before. Maybe I just like the taste of the PN Brandy that they used (also something I’ve never tasted before). It was a special wine. I’m busy this week but hopefully later in the week I can get over and pick up a bottle of the 2006 and see how it compares.

          Reply
    2. seedboy

      That prosecco has sold out at most of the stores I haunt. Oakland still has some, they sell cases of it every day though. There is also a Tuscan red (tastes like a blend) and a Puglia Pinot Grigio from the same label, both from organically grown grapes, both $2.99 each. The :PG is pretty good, maybe just a small bit sweet though. The red is no big deal but a nice little wine for the price point.

      Reply
    3. Jerry

      I don’t recall the vintage, but I had a few bottles of stalking horse syrah. Great buy for the money. I think it was barrel aged for at least 12 months. Typical stray spice and good finish. Would definitely buy again.

      Reply
    4. Ashlander

      I haven’t tried the prosecco, but have one in the fridge. I liked the Pinot Gris and the Tuscan red. Very drinkable for the price.

      Reply
  20. DavidLikesWine

    A couple interesting new finds at the Palo Alto store today:

    2013 Visitation Petite Sirah, Chalk Hill $5.99 / $21.99
    2013 Kendric Vineyards Sangiovese, Reward Ranch Vineyard, Shenandoah Valley $5.99 / $24.99 (Seedboy, is this the one you had?)
    2012 Pocketwatch (Robert Oatley Wines) Cabernet, Central Ranges, Australia $3.99 / $13.99
    2011 Mission St. Vincent Bordeaux Reserve $9.99 / $27.99 (a new MAX Beverage wine, at least to me)
    2012 Gauthier Select Vineyards Riesling, Highlands River Road Vineyard, SLH $5.99 / $24.99

    I picked up the Riesling and the ’08 Kendric Syrah that’s been staring at me the past few weeks and will report back.

    Reply
  21. RB

    At the Lacey store: 2014 Facelli ‘Private Reserve’ Merlot, Columbia Valley, $6.99
    http://facelliwinery.com/2Wines2014MerlotPR.tmpl
    This Woodinville winery recently closed (or is in the process). According to the following article they were planning to bottle some remaining 2014 barrels before closing, so this must have been one of those runs:
    http://www.nwnews.com/index.php/local/news-features/12695-facelli-winery-closing-after-27-years
    Winery price is/was $40

    Reply
    1. rgardner2

      On Facelli Winery, I’ve managed to pick up a few (Tacoma 6th Ave and 56th St, nada at Lakewood but their shelves haven’t been stocked past few days, lots of empty spots). Interesting article posted above on the closing. I found it was for sale for $500K, no takers.

      The winery as it was going out of business at 30% off, or 50% off a full case – so $45 = $22.50 to $31.50

      2014 Cabernet Sauvignon $7/45 12 cases to 6th Ave, I got two cases. http://facelliwinery.com/2Wines2014CabernetPR.tmpl
      2014 LH Syrah 375 ml $6/30 56th
      2014 LH Moscato 375ml (not cloying) $5/15 56th
      2014 LH Riesling 375 ml $5/15 56th

      I haven’t seen the Merlot and don’t have time to go to Lacey ($30), hope to see the Barbera (had a great one from Bernard Griffin last year at the tasting room).

      Link to all their (former) wines http://facelliwinery.com/1Wines.tmpl +

      On the Cab, tight, tannic. 8% Syrah. Dionysus and Conner Lee Vineyards. I had to use Vinturi (time constraint, could have decanted). Blackberry, plum. Needs a few years. Best WA Cab I’ve had from GO since the (2005?) Waterbrook Reserve CS years ago. Needs a few years. But drinkable now at $7, will be better cellared a couple of years.

      Reply
        1. D. Dobbs

          Stopped in the Lynnwood store on a whim today and lucked into several cases of the Facelli Cabernet. More exciting for me, the store also has a few cases of the 2014 Columbia Valley late harvest Riesling, 2014 Columbia Valley late harvest Syrah and the 2014 Columbia Valley late harvest Moscato. I bought 4 bottles of each along with a half case of the Cab. Will open and taste through each next week and make cellaring determinations. Thanks for all the wonderful posts and insights. This site is one of my daily visits. I so appreciate your help and advise, all y’all.

          Reply
    2. Anthony

      I liked the merlot; spicy, approachable. Cab is more tightly wound. Agree these need more time. The late harvest Syrah is too sweet and unstructured for my taste. Doubt that these will last in my house long enough to reach their potential but well worth the money now .

      Reply
  22. Expat

    There was a smattering of Bonarda wines at GO a couple years back. I got some that I really liked but haven’t seen any for awhile. Shame because I like the grape from both hemispheres. I haven’t really experienced a “Charbonarda” similar to Pinot Noir. The examples I’ve had are much more like an elegant Petite Sirah or even similar to Teroldego. Turley’s was from the Tofanelli vineyard which apparently doesn’t sell it anymore in order to make their own. In my neck of the woods Fratelli Perata makes a spectacular one from their estate vines in Paso. Hopefully more acres will get planted and the existing ones won’t get ripped out.

    Reply
  23. seedboy

    I was at the Berkeley store today. 20% off on most items and the store is cleaning out. Not 20% off on beer or wine. Wine is not being re-stocked, except that they did add some cases of the organic Prosecco.

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      Monday the Berkeley store was pretty much empty. They had put beer and wine on sale for 20% off but there was not much wine left.

      Reply
  24. DavidLikesWine

    A couple new ones at Palo Alto over the weekend:

    2008 Kendric Vineyards Syrah, Shenandoah Valley (5.99/21.99)
    2012 Gauthier Select Vineyards Zinfandel, Los Chamizal Vineyard, Sonoma Valley (5.99/43.99)

    I had to give the zin a try, but didn’t have time to give it a full chance last night. Pop and pour over maybe 30 minutes in the glass. Initial impressions are that this is a big, structured zin. Tannic, but not unpleasantly. A bit of heat. But some really great bramble fruit and spices (bottle says clove and white pepper which seemed spot on). Lots going on when it hits the palate, but disappeared a bit on the finish. By the end of the glass though, it seemed like things were coming around and some of the heat was blowing off (only 14% abv). Vineyard is 40 years old, head trained vines, only select blocks contracted. Seems like theres some potential here, and we’ll see how a day has mellowed things out later this evening. Anyone else had this?

    Reply
    1. Zoel

      Had the GG Zin tonight…very Napa-style, which surprised my friends as they’re so used to Dry Creek big/bold fruit. This is more restrained, nice balance and opened up over time. Spice, slight bramble, tasty. Also had the SB, will post separately. Zin is a good value, 90 pt zin in my book…

      Reply
        1. Zoel

          Gauthier Sav Blanc (2013, methinks, and $6?) – tasted at group picnic, so sketchy notes…decent but unremarkable. True SB varietal character, Napa-style, but fruit was just ok vs others. Classic “meh”, 85 or so pts.

          Reply
          1. BargainWhine Post author

            Hi all. Yesterday, I opened a bottle of the Gauthier 2013 Sauvignon Blanc, Block House Vineyard, Napa Valley, 13.9% ABV. I thought it was pretty good for $5, but I agree it wasn’t that exciting. I thought the yellow fruit (lemon, melon) was pretty good if not very complex, nice acid, and very nice minerality. Today it was very similar, perhaps more acid.

            Reply
        1. Expat

          My thoughts exactly, P-dub. I purchased a bottle based on this review and some info on the bottle talking about making a “classic zin”. I used to love Zinfandel in the early 90s, then the jam wars started.

          Reply
      1. glpease

        I agree. I was once a real zin lover, but when the arms race began, I lost interest. I mean, there was a time when nicely structured and delicious zins were almost commonplace. Today, they’re a rarity, and BW knows just how hard it is to sell me on one. There are lots of markers that will find me returning the bottle to the rack, and the word “jammy” sends me screaming from the store. But, somehow, he managed to get my attention with this one, and I found it to be a real treat. It’s not quite “old school,” but it’s well balanced, nicely put together and interesting, full of many of the lovely aspects of a good zinfandel, without the turn-offs that plague too many of them today. I’d buy a few more, for sure. It develops nicely over a couple hours. Bonus points for the fact that the other half of the bottle still tasted quite lovely on the second day with nothing but a glass stopper installed in the bottle to keep the moths out. I’d drink this over the next three to five if I could keep my hands off of it before then.

        Reply
          1. Expat

            Interesting article. It does fall into the pattern of using reviewers’ scores as some sort of ultimate measure of validity. For example, the writer states that over the last several years critics have ranked the higher alcohol, heavier wines (picked at a higher brix) highest for all varietals therefore it has made sense to make wines in that style. I understand the trend, and consumers gobbling up this style of wine, but that is not an objective standard of quality. It’s purely subjective but from a financial standpoint I understand why wineries follow the money. I personally think the result is generally unbalanced, food un-friendly wines but this writer seems to marginalize people like me as the irrelevant fringe.

            I realize I am in the minority and it’s why medals and high scores mean virtually nothing to me (besides the fact that medals are given out like participation awards). In fact, when I see a winery touting its medals it’s usually a turnoff. One of my favorite wineries, Caparone, passes on submitting their wines to reviewers or entering them into competitions. Their classic approach wouldn’t be appreciated and they don’t need validation from reviewers – they get it from their customer base and restaurants that understand the value of this style of wine.

            Ok, I’ll stop ranting.

            Reply
            1. seedboy

              I guess it does not surprise me that the reviewers give high scores to these wines: if you’re tasting 30 wines at 10 am you’re going to pick the ones that stand out, rather than the ones that are subtle.
              You all know my preferences. That said I’ve been on the mailing list for Turley zin for more than 15 years and still buy and drink them; as my taste preferences have evolved, they have begun making more balanced wines.
              What I am seeing, though, is a backlash against those wines, by consumers and some winemakers.

            2. glpease

              You and I are both in that same minority, then, Expat. The trend towards “bigger is better” affects many things, and wine has been no exception. I don’t exactly blame wineries for pandering to the tastes of those who keep them in business, but it’s not a trend I appreciate, nor one I support. We have to acknowledge that the preponderance of wine buyers are more into being “impressed” than they are searching for subtlety and elegance. (What happened in the cigar world is another fine example of this phenomenon. Stronger, longer, fatter became the watchwords that drove the industry, and those very things are also what led me to run, screaming in horror, abandoning my post as associate editor of a cigar publication.)

              Big, brawny, jammy wines are impressive to most people. They offer all they have in the millisecond it takes for the aromas to reach the olfactory bulb, the initial taste to stimulate the palate, and require little engagement beyond that. They offer no challenge. They’re the Fruity Pebbles of the wine world, and people, in vast numbers, seem to dig them. I do not. Conversely, the best wines of the world would not find much of an audience with the average buyer.

              So, the finest wineries with loyal, high-end clientele can maintain a certain quality profile and stay in business well enough, but the rest have to figure out how best to compete for the increasingly scarce dosh of the mainstream, and if jam sells, the shelves will be stocked with jars of the stuff.

              Okay. I’ll stop ranting, too…

            3. DavidLikesWine

              Expat, your response prompted me to check out the Caparone website. Looks like a fantastic winery! Thanks for the tip. Their prices are outrageously low.

          2. Expat

            Great description of this phenomenon glpease. I went through a phase where I liked the fruity pebbles wines but I think it was largely the novelty of them. Also, it seems that in the last decade or so wines have become treated like cocktails – a pre-meal drink often consumed by itself. In that context a dry, subtle, balanced wine with firm tannins is anachronistic.

            After a few years the novelty so-called big wines wore off for me, I got tired of getting plastered by the time dinner was ready. At the same time I was exposed to some outstanding French wines from my brother in law who would bring stunning ones to family events. My palate developed as my knowledge grew about European wines and old world vs. new world styles. At times I would come across wines that would remind me of some of favorite wines from the early 90’s in the bay area – Ridge, Santa Cruz Mtn Winery and others that I cut my teeth on and loved. It was like re-discovering an old friend. That is why I was attracted to this Zin, hoping it’s like the ones Ridge does, and will post my comments after trying it. I want to enjoy a Zin again.

            BTW, Seedboy, I was on Turley’s mailing list years ago but drifted away from the ripe style of wine before they adjusted to what they were doing. I used to love Turley and honestly I’m sure I would still enjoy a glass today. I do think their mailing list is a bit of a racket. I was on the “wait list” initially then was accepted to the mailing list where I was allowed to buy an allocation of wine. My allocation would grow the more wine I bought. I tip my hat to their marketing skills. They restricted supply and made people thrilled to be allowed to pay high prices for their product. I’m curious what their wines taste like now. I’m not far from the Turley in Templeton and will have to pop in and taste again. It’s been years.

            Reply
            1. seedboy

              Their pricing is the same as it was when I started. The old vine is still $25 a bottle. There are a number of wines in the $30 to $45 range but again, their prices haven’t risen.

            2. Expat

              I’m surprised they have been that stable. I used to like their Petite Sirah’s a lot. Big but with serious backbone. One of those PS (Napa Library?) and some of their higher end Zins were well above $50 in 2005. Turley was where I was introduced to Charbono and now it’s one of my favorite varietals. It was actually one of their less expensive wines back then at around $25-$30. Do they still do one?

            3. Darrell

              Charbono is a distinctive wine when well made and I don’t understand why there isn’t more of it made here. I prefer it to Petite Syrah. It used to be Argentina’s most prevalent grape until Malbec took over.

            4. seedboy

              No more Charbono. They still make a few Petite Sirahs. They make a sauvignon blanc that is winery-only and a white zin that I understand is delicious but I’ve never been able to get.

            5. flitcraft

              Here’s a question for Darrell: I’m pretty unfamiliar with Argentinian wines, but when I was visiting Brazil, I had a couple Malbec-Bonarda blends that were nice. (I think that’s an aka for Charbono…) I got the impression that the Bonarda sort of softens and rounds out the Malbec, but I never had a pure Bonarda, so I could be wrong. Still, if it is a soft Merlot-ish grape, why isn’t it being imported into the US? Seems like it would be a hit. (BTW, Brazil makes some red wine, but if there’s any that’s drinkable, we didn’t happen to find it.)

            6. seedboy

              Bonarda = Charbono. The Berkeley store might still have some half bottles of Argentinian Bonarda.

            7. Darrell

              Flit, I haven’t tried a Bonarda from Argentina or Brazil, but know that it was once was popular in Argentina and I understand why. My experience is with the grape in CA with Inglenook being the first which didn’t impress like their CS. Have had a couple since other wineries have grown it, but the eye opener for me was a 1970 home bottling or winery experiment (Sterling) made by Ric Forman via Darrell Corti of Corti Bros. Wouldn’t doubt he got some of Inglenook’s grapes for the wine through Tom Ferrell, Inglenook winemaker. Got two bottles and had the first in the late ’70s and it reminded me of a PN which reinforces your statement of softness of the grape, at least in Brazil. The second bottle got buried and too lazy to dig it out until recently. It’s sitting in the “to drink” rack and most likely will be over the hill. I don’t know why the wine isn’t being imported. Could be the lessening of the acreage of the grape. Even here, it isn’t a popular varietal. Somebody has to find the right climate possibly.

        1. BargainWhine Post author

          Gauthier_2012_ZinfandelI’m very late to add my thoughts on this Zin, but here goes. I agree with the comments about nice ripe fruit of boysenberry / blackberry / plum and the wine’s balance and structure. For me, personally, however, I didn’t like it because it never lost it’s slightly tarry sourness, even from the saved screwcap bottle. However, I’d guess that after a couple more years of age, this wine would be very good.

          Reply
      2. Expat

        Finally opened the zin. It was more restrained than a lot of modern zins but still too sweet for my tastes. It’s a quality wine but just not the profile I like.

        Reply
    2. Expat

      David, Caparone is great and they charge way less for their wine than they could or perhaps even should. They do no marketing and dumped going to retail years ago so they run really efficiently. They have a loyal mailing list and sell to distributors who sell to high end restaurants. Their wines age really well – I had one of theirs from the 80’s recently and it was ethereal. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

      Reply
  25. seedboy

    Mommessin Cuvee Saint Pierre Grenache Cinsault rose 2015, Oakland, $3.99 or maybe a dollar more? I think of this producer as the Burgundian maker of Clos le Tart but they are a player in southern France (should we be suspicious of their low end red Burgs?) This wine is really good. Bright fruit, good acidity, dry, fresh, a bit of minerality/grippy tannin. There is a lot of summer ahead of us and the Gerard roses are gone.

    Reply
    1. JoelA

      No need to be wary. Momessin is a long-time Burgundy negotiant that also owns the Clos le Tart. Some of their Burgundies have been decent but I haven’t had any for some years.

      Reply
    1. seedboy

      Thanks for posting the link. I actually bought a bottle of that because of the reference to organically-grown grapes. I like it and would buy a mess of it if I were a caterer. It is just a tad sweet but is not as sweet as some, and actually has some minerality and acid.

      Reply
      1. permiesworld

        Thanks Seedboy. I wondered. It didn’t really give a taste profile. I appreciate the info. Good to know about the minerality and acidity. I’ve got it chilling. Will try it soon.

        Reply
          1. permiesworld

            I concur with your assessment. It is fruitier (it’s not really sweet to me but it is fruitier than the Kirkland Prosecco…Fruili, that I buy), lots of apple coming through, but it does have a nice minerality coming through as well. I am going to pick up some more. I think it’s a very good buy. We both like it a lot.

            Reply
            1. permiesworld

              That was interesting. I admit, I’ve never seen a good cheap Barolo though. But for the last 4 years, we’ve purchased the Kirkland prosecco. I remember watching a Costco special a few years ago and they talked about their private label wines. Usually they are amazing buys (I don’t always agree on the quality though but many of them have passed muster…) and like this one, they probably are “cents on the dollar” in comparison. It’s definitely not a $6.99 Prosecco, IMO. For the last 4 years they’ve done a very good job sourcing it. But yes, I’m sure that it probably has some impact on the grower. I see it similar to someone like Cameron Hughes. Buy in large volume and pay less for better quality.

  26. seedboy

    I’ve visited the Grass Valley, Auburn, Oakland and Berkeley stores in the last two days. I think they have stopped stocking wine at Berkeley.
    Other stores have lots of new wines. Many wines by Gauthier including a 2012 Santa Lucia Highlands riesling and a 2012 Sonoma County Chamizal Vyd zin. The riesling is a bit off dry but nicely balanced, no petrol. The zin started out an oaky mess but fills out nicely, balanced, not jammy. Tasted with a couple of wine professionals we drained the bottle quickly. These wines were no more than $6.99.
    Auburn only had a nice prosecco made with organically grown grapes for $3.99. Better than usual, this wine actually has minerality in addition to some fruit, a bit sweet but not cloyingly so.

    Reply
  27. seedboy

    Yesterday I was in the Berkeley store. One long-time employee, Tang, told me that store closes August 20. Next week all stuff except beer and wine 20% off. Week after that, wine and beer 20% off.

    Reply
  28. flitcraft

    What’s new in the greater Seattle GO’s? Pretty much nothing. None of the wines being discussed by California folks have turned up at any of the three GOs in this area that I check on. And nothing of interest that hasn’t been mentioned, either, unless you count the Passo Cale Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, which at 13.99 is out of my range for taking a flyer on.

    So, since nothing new has turned up, I thought I’d mention for the Seattle folks that there is still some of the D’Aquino Valpolicella and Amarone di Valpolicella at Crown Hill, with the bizarro world 14.99 price for the simple DOC Valpolicella and 6.99 for the Amarone. (!) I couldn’t keep myself from asking the wine guy at Crown Hill about this–obviously they’re mismarked, and I don’t want to take advantage of a clear mistake price. But he assured me that the prices are ‘right,’ and I will confirm that the ordinary DOC Valpolicella is selling at the same inflated price elsewhere in the Seattle area. (Or probably not selling, since there’s little reason to spend that kind of cash on a relatively no-name DOC Valpolicella when you can get one from a better winery for less at your local wine-shop. The shelf-tag claims that retail on this one is 24.99, but that would be flat out highway robbery…) Even after my inquiry as to whether perhaps the prices were incorrect, the wine guy insisted that they’re right, suggesting that the 2004 vintage on the Amarone is why it’s so cheap. Maybe so, but I found it well worth the tariff and in no way over the hill.

    So, if you’re in the area and want to try a nice little Amarone at a steal of a price, check it out. But I can’t recommend the DOC Valpolicella, since I haven’t tried it, given the exorbitant price.

    Reply
      1. flitcraft

        More evidence that there’s some kind of system wide price screw-up in the Seattle area. Oh, well, their loss, our gain.

        Reply
  29. Rocky

    David, please do let us know about the ’09 Arrowhead – I tried the ’07 and found it tired and over-the-top, a bit like prune juice now but it may have had potential some years back?

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      I’m also curious about the ’09. I loved the ’06, but did think that the ’07 was rather over-the-top for my tastes. The Barbaresco is not very good, but the Barolo with the same brand is really good.

      Reply
      1. DavidLikesWine

        I’ll elaborate more on a “guest contributions” note, but I think this is absolutely fantastic. It’d be interesting to compare with the ’07 which seems to be a love it or hate it kind of wine. But for me, this is two thumbs up and a repeat purchase.

        Reply
        1. seedboy

          It genuinely tastes like Barolo. It is a little more accessible for a young wine than a traditional barolo would be but not at the expense of balance or structure. I plan to buy a few of them.

          Reply
  30. DavidLikesWine

    Went back today for more bottles of the High Flyer Chardonnay. Consumed the first bottle over 3 days and it was fantastic to the last drop. Still about a case and a half there, methinks the airplane label is scaring people off or the 2011 vintage, but fear not, there’s good juice in there that still has plenty of life left.

    Also new out on the shelves:
    2013 Conte di Santa Chaira Amarone $19.99 / $39.99
    2012 Tre Amici Barbaresco $15.99 / $29.99
    2014 Roxy Ann Sauv Blanc, Single Vineyard, Rogue Valley, Oregon $5.99 / $19.99
    2009 Arrowhead Mountain Vineyards Zinfandel, $8.99 / $21.99.

    The Zin makes a fantastic presentation in the burgundy bottle, a la Manzanita Creek “Stealth” or some of the Turley wines. I think I remember reading that the ’07 was making the rounds, but this was the first I’d seen or heard of the ’09. A bottle happened to make it’s way into my basket and I shall report back.

    Reply
  31. DavidLikesWine

    Had the chance to swing by Palo Alto yesterday, and there’s some new stuff on the floor:

    2012 Titan Cabernet Franc, Columbia Valley – $7.99 ($24.99)
    2012 Casa De Arcilla (Clayhouse) Tempranillo, Paso Robles – $3.99 ($12.99)
    2011 High Flyer Chardonnay, Sierra Madre Vineyard, Santa Maria Valley – $5.99 ($19.99, $28 from winery website)
    2014 Gerard Bertrand Vin Gris Rose Magnum – $5.99 because why not buy a magnum of good Rosé for $6?!

    I picked up the Chardonnay, being familiar with High Flyer wines and having loved everything I’ve had from them. This did not disappoint. Intensely flavorful without being overly rich. Doubt there is much if any malolactic fermentation on this wine, but some nice barrel spice and oak notes. Tropical fruit, something almost like white cherry, then more apple / citrus as it warms. Joe only got 2 cases of this, and, I admit to calling to reserve 3 more bottles before posting this review. My favorite GO chardonnay I’ve had.

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      I bought a bottle of the Tempranillo, having loved the Grenache Blanc from this label. The Tempranillo, not so much. Good fruit and no detectable oak, both good things, but it lacks acidity and tannin and therefore structure/complexity. Certainly worth $3.99 but I’ll not buy more of it.

      Reply
  32. jimvan49

    Riesling alert – In Eureka store today, a 2015 Dr. Kaufmann Rheinhessen Riesling said to be between medium dry and medium sweet. I picked it up because 2015 is getting rave reviews as a German vintage. 10.5% alcohol and $4.99 a bottle. Will try it later tonight.

    Reply
    1. jimvan49

      It is worth trying for the nose alone. Complex aromas of many tree fruits (think apple, peach, apricot and others in a complex interplay). It is quite quaffable. Good acidity. It is fun to drink – a touch of bitterness in the end adds interest as well. Worth the price – not a new world riesling by any means (i.e. not heavy at all), it invites quaffing with its juicy flavors, acidity and low alcohol.

      Reply
        1. BargainWhine Post author

          This Riesling has been at the Richmond, CA, store for a couple months or so. I think there only about 6 bottles left.

          Reply
  33. DavidLikesWine

    Had the chance to drop by Palo Alto today:

    They’ve got a new Bonny Doon syrah, the 2014 “Syrah Cuvee Splendide” for 11.99 (29.99 srp) which looks pretty good. The Romero Sempre Vive Blue Heron Vineyard Napa Red blend is on the shelf at 19.99. Looooots for rose, nothing new that hasn’t been reported yet, but everything is there in good quantity. Lots of the 2011 Paripaso Chardonnay, still at $1.99.

    Joe said they’re supposed to be getting in a pretty eclectic mix being closed out from Epic, a pretty big distributor. Wines will range from 5.99 – $20+, will post as soon as I get more info on what’s coming in.

    Reply
    1. seedboy

      The guys at the Oakland store love that Bonny Doon syrah. Odd, that would seem to be a current release; the winery website shows no vintage of this wine, which has been made multiple vintages.

      Reply
  34. RB

    At the Olympia store:
    2013 Stone Cap Rose, Columbia Valley, $2.99 (value label for Goose Ridge Vineyards)
    2011 Fuse Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa, $10.99
    http://www.winemag.com/buying-guide/fuse-2011-cabernet-sauvignon-napa-valley
    2008 Soli Pinot Noir, Bulgaria, $4.99
    Took a chance on this last one (because why not?) and I liked it. A little brown mixed in with the red colorwise. It is a lighter style that opened with some nice cherry flavor and an extended finish. After about an hour some rich blackberry flavors took over. Not a lot of acid.

    Reply
  35. rgardner2

    Been traveling, didn’t have time to hit a SoCal GO.
    Anyway, at Kennewick GO they have started a small WA Wine section (yeah! Yakima/Union Gap puts apple labels in front of WA Wines). I see the Titan CF others have mentioned, and 2011 GARD (circle over the A) Grand Klasse Riesling Lawrence Vineyards $6.99 (about $30, Columbia Valley). Checking it on Vivino, over 20 reviews and over 4.5 rating. I don’t think I’ve seen any GO wine over 4.5 on Vivino, so of course I bought some.

    Reply
  36. inthewinecountry

    Stopped in this weekend at the Grass Valley GO just did a store remodel and the wine section is looking nice. They have new coolers that are open without doors, not too energy efficient. I like that they now have a larger selection of ciders, still not quite as big as the Auburn store though.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s