Leeu Passant Dry Red
36% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Cabernet Franc and 31% Cinsault
Western Cape (13.5%) No one could accuse this wine, released for the first time in 2015, of being unambitious, but it’s quite a début. Inspired by the Château Libertas wines of old, it’s a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Cinsaut, showing impressive, stony precision, notes of spice, dark tea and reduction, a hint of graphite and a taut, lingering finish. 2019-30 - Tim Atkins 94 Points
36% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Cabernet Franc, 31% Cinsault. Cinsault comes from the two oldest registered red wine vineyards: Wellington (117 years old) and Franschooek (91 years old), while the Cabernet Franc comes from high up in the Helderberg and the Cabernet Sauvignon from bush vines lower down the Helderberg. The new oak portion was fermented in upturned 500 litre barrels to achieve better integration. Floral, perfumed and beautifully aromatic. Very fine, a bit peppery and juicy, slightly grippy red cherry and raspberry fruit with some nice spiciness. Juicy, pure and fine with lovely precision. Jamie Goode 95 Points
A complex nose of white nectarine, marzipan, citrus peel and pineapple upside down cake with a full palate, offering nuanced flavors of Asian pear, lemon curd and Calimyrna fig.
The Bien Nacido Vineyard is located in the Santa Maria Valley on the South Central Coast of California, just east of Santa Maria. The topography of the valley features transverse ranges with an east/west orientation, opening up to the Pacific Ocean. The climate is strongly influenced by the ocean providing ideal temperate growing conditions for Chardonnay. Early spring warming, mild summer temperatures and late arriving cold fall temperatures provide a long growing season for the development of rich color along with concentrated and complex flavors.
This wine from the historic vineyard is light in color but not shy on the nose at all: lime blossoms, lemon curds, honeysuckle and lemon-lime soda all leap from the glass. The palate combines chopped dill and dewy herbs with green fruits, from pears to kiwi to lime peels, all presented with a lot of briskness. 93 Points Wine Enthusiast
Abeja Chardonnay Washington State 2013 is 100 percent Chardonnay
This Chardonnay has the essence of a freshly baked lemon meringue pie, green apple, and Bartlett pear. It is both dense and bright, with a hint of vanilla and cinnamon coming from its time in barrel. Aromas are so much related to experiences. It is a wine that is in the traditional Abeja style, with superb polish, complexity, and balance, yet with a light touch at 13.5 percent alcohol.
"Supple, ripe and complex, with layers of pear, floral, tangerine and a note reminiscent of freshly ironed clothing. Fine acidity carries this through to a refreshing finish. Drink now through 2020. 919 cases made. –HS"
- Wine Spectator (November 15th, 2015), 91 pts
"Abeja’s 2013 Chardonnay offers clean, crisp notes of apple blossom, white flowers, citrus and brioche. Fermented and aged in barrel (40% new), it has a solid mix of richness and freshness, is beautifully balanced, and will drink nicely for 2-3 years. - Jeb Dunnuck"
- The Wine Advocate (erobertparker.com, June 2015), 91 pts
"A blend of top sites Celilo and Conner Lee, this appealing wine displays aromas of candy corn, corn silk and chamomile. The stone-fruit flavors are elegantly styled, showing a sense of restraint and balance that carries through the lingering finish."
- Wine Enthusiast (September 1st 2015), 91 pts
Pure, powerful and polished, the Wall Road shows immense aromas of black currant, blueberry, blackberry preserves and hints of sweet dark herbs. The palate is fully developed and well-structured with firm yet ripe tannins and layers of dried red fruits and currants. There is a forest and sweet herb quality that hints at the signature terroir of this Mountain gem. The finish is long and lingering and lifts the layers of fruit on the palate perfectly.
Vintage Notes – An unseasonably warm start to 2015 brought early bud break and bloom for Napa Valley. Vines began to show fatigue as they entered their fourth year of drought, resulting in lower crop yields than years prior. Unexpected heat meant an early harvest for the valley, one of the earliest on record. Ripened fruit proved to be of tremendous quality, while Cabernets are deep and decadent in color with great balance in tannin.
Wall Road Vineyard – This three-acre gem is located at the northern tip of the Mount Veeder AVA, due west of Oakville and the To Kalon vineyard. True to the Veeder AVA, this site delivers both the power and elegance we strive to achieve in our Mountain Cabernets. The elevation, slope orientation and well-drained soils yield fully ripened small berries with concentrated flavor.
Mount Veeder AVA – Known for its acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon, this illustrious appellation produces graceful, expressive and world-renowned wine. Limited by nature, Mount Veeder’s rugged mountain terrain, high elevation and cooling influence from the San Pablo Bay allows for a long growing season that returns low, sought after yields. This results in powerful fruit with distinct berry flavors.
"This is some very serious stuff. Aromas of tar, vanilla and cloves. But the fruit is delicious with notes of boysenberries, blackcurrants, oranges, lavender, herbs and baking spices. The palate's rich and warming but also calm and composed. Layers of blue fruit, ripe yet integrated tannins, a fine line of acidity and a long finish. The broader style remains so elegant. Drink in 2022."
- James Suckling (May 2018), 95 pts
Colmant Brut Chardonnay is made from 100 percent Chardonnay (Franschhoek and Robertson).
15% of the base wine has been barrel fermented.
Ageing: This wine spends a minimum of 45 months on the lees at a consistent temperature of 14C before degorgement.
Tasting: Delicate light gold color with a lime-green hue. The nose is fresh, lemony and floral with notes of green apple, followed by yeasty and biscuity aromas brought by the lengthy maturation on the lees. Very fine bead of bubbles with a persistent mousse. Opulent on the palate, this wine shows a harmonious balance between fresh zestiness, mineral complexity and a warm breadth of leesy creaminess. It promises to develop great texture over time.
Drinking tips: Ideal with pan fried scallops or line fish "au beurre blanc", it is also the oyster's best friend and will enhance the flavors of parmesan, asparagus, artichokes, parma ham,…
"The core of this wine, which subsequently spent 52 months on lees, comes from the 2015 vintage and shows the ageing potential for which Colmant bubblies are famous. Savoury, fresh and intense, with plenty of colour, added complexity from reserve material, notes of aniseed and citrus peel and a fine, refreshing finish. 2021-25"
- Tim Atkin (South Africa 2020 Report), 93 pts
There are many alternatives to Champagne, and South Africa is no exception with some fine “Method Cap Classique.” Jean-Philippe Colmant hired winemaker Nicolas Follet to create a small range of impressive sparkling wines; they eschew malolactic fermentation and practice extended lees aging.- NM" - eRobertParker.com (Issue #196, August 2011), 92 pts
A blanc de blanc with the heart of Chardonnay, the NV Brut Chardonnay has focused citrus tones on the nose with notes of yellow pear and green apple. The oak is subtle here, with a solid beam of acidity through the mid-palate. The wine is thoughtful and focused, and the finish leaves my mouth watering; there is serious acidity here, and they are doing it right. Colmant is the little guy doing some really great things— quietly focused wines, with serious aging potential. Keep this small producer on your radar. I expect nothing but great things in years to come from JP Colmant and his new winemaker, Paul Gerber, formerly of Le Lude. - Anthony Mueller"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #245, October 2019), 91+ pts
"Pale straw with a ï¬ne bead and scents of biscuit and lemon zest. The NV Brut is richly ï¬‚avorful and full, a complete wine with a long ï¬nish. Tasted blind, it can easily be mistaken for good quality Champagne. Spends 4 years on the lees; 15% of the base wine is fermented in barrel. Disgorged 9 months ago. A blend of Robertson and Franschhoek grapes from the Colmant vineyard."
- I-WineReview 92 pts
"Our favorite Colmant sparkler by far, this blanc de blancs would easily pass for good quality Champagne. It’s pale straw with a fine bead with biscuit and lemon aromas. Very flavorful and complex on a rich palate with a persistent finish, it’s 100% Chardonnay, 15% barrel fermented, and spends 4 years on the lees. RS 5 g/L"
- I-WineReview 92 pts
Fullerton Bennett Vineyard Pinot Noir (magnum) is made from 100% Pinot Noir - 8 years old
18 months in 5% new French Oak and 95% neutral French Oak
Bennett Vineyard is grown in sedimentary Bellpine soil. A new and exciting site in 2015, this hidden jewel of a vineyard produced a graceful Pinot Noir and it is bottled exclusively in 1.5L and 3L magnums. The quality and value of this wine combine with the large format bottles to create an ideal wine for the upcoming fall and winter holiday seasons. Whether shared at your table or gifted to family or friends, this unique bottling is sure to please.
Aromas of cherry and raspberry fold into layers of rhubarb, clove, and pipe tobacco. The lengthy, mineral-driven palate showcases the captivating elegance of Pinot Noir.
Upon arrival, the grapes were immediately de-stemmed into open-top fermenters. Following a seven-day cold soak, the wine started fermenting slowly at a cool temperature. To manage extraction, we utilized one to two punch-downs and one pump-over per day, with two rack- and-returns at the beginning and middle of fermentation. Following two days of seling, the wine was racked to barrel and aged for 18 months in 5% new French oak and 6 months in tank prior to being bottled.
While this wine displays the poise, structure and minerality that have become hallmarks of our Conner Lee Vineyard Chardonnay, the warm vintage has also delivered alluring orange spice and tropical flower notes that accentuate the lovely depth and richness.
This vivid chardonnay comes from Conner Lee’s prized 1989 and 2005 ‘clone #95’ blocks—both planted with ungrafted vines in sandy-silt soils. While it displays the poise, structure and minerality that are hallmarks of Conner Lee, the warm vintage has also delivered alluring orange spice and tropical flower notes that accentuate the lovely depth and richness. On the silky palate, layers of zesty citrus mingle with chamomile, hibiscus and honeysuckle, resulting in a wine that effortlessly combines power and grace
The Buty Winery Estate
Pronounced "Beauty", Buty winery was founded in 2000 by owners Caleb Foster and Nina Buty, inspired by a decade of vintages from Washington and overseas. An artisan producer, Buty creates vineyard designated chardonnay, a crisp white blend and nuanced red blends—including Rediviva, Washington’s pioneering blend of syrah and cabernet sauvignon. The Rediviva of the Stones will be grown from the 2008 plantings at Rockgarden, their organic Estate vineyard in the cobblestones of Walla Walla.
Since the spring of 2001 they have worked with Californian consultant Zelma Long. Zelma’s multiple decades of worldwide winegrowing and winemaking offer a great breadth of wine and vine knowledge and a “whole business” perspective to Buty.
The philosophy of winegrowing and winemaking at Buty is one of balance, artisanship and enjoyment, as we aim to capture the essence of the grape in bottle.
The Buty Winery Vineyard
Caleb and Nina purchased 10 acres of apple orchard in Milton-Freewater in late 2006. In 2008, they organically prepared and planted Buty’s Estate, Rockgarden. The famous cobblestones section of the Walla Walla Valley appellation is located in the southeast part of the valley. In the 5% highest elevation of the cobblestones, this Grand Cru section has been the most prized farming section since the Walla Walla Valley was settled over one hundred years ago. Grand Cru is defined and set apart from its neighbors by location, history and consistently superior wines. We waited years to buy only here. Anywhere else further out in the cobblestones would have been a compromise. Developing the Estate with one wine in mind—the Rediviva of the Stones—we have densely planted clones of syrah, cabernet sauvignon, grenache, mourvèdre, marsanne and roussanne.
The Columbia Valley Appellation wines are sourced from six great estate grown vineyards. Caleb’s experience making wine from Champoux and Conner Lee Vineyards spans 16 vintages since 1992. All winegrowing stages are all maintained to Buty’s specific goals from pruning to shoot positioning, prevéraison cluster thinning, water and pest management, and the day and the time of harvest. They exclusively harvest by hand and hand berry sort on a shaker table before fermentation.
Dark and chocolate, spiced with pretty notes of allspice and clove, this wine is round and rich, bursting with ripe berries, combined with an earthy complexity and a velvety finish.
Made from 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 29% Cabernet Franc
The wine spent 22 months on 75% new French oak with the remaining 25% second vintage French oak. Select barrels from the best forests of Taransaud, Boutes, Quintessance, and Vicard cooperages.
A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (60%), Cabernet Franc (30%) and Merlot, this wine seems a little green out of the gate, with aromas of herbs, cocoa, vanilla, black licorice, woodspice and black fruit. The fruit flavors display the warmth of this region, with the tannins providing some heft, stretching out over time. - Wine Enthusiast 91 Points
Tamarack Cellars’ 2011 Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Reserve is an outstanding blend of 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot and 29% Cabernet Franc that spent 22 months (each variety is kept separate until 12 months after the harvest) in 50% new and 50% once-used French oak. Classically styled, with lots of smoke tobacco, licorice and blackcurrant aromas and flavors, it has everything in the right place, in the right proportions, and is incredibly enjoyable to drink. Enjoy this medium to full-bodied, moderately tannic, balanced beauty over the coming decade, although it will probably last longer. - Robert Parker Wine Advocate 91 Points
Dr. Leimbrock Estate Riesling is made from 100 percent Riesling.
Typical Riesling, fresh and fruity, easy drinking. Grapes come from Brauneberger Juffer and Juffer-Sonnenuhr - one of the most prestigious vineyards in the Mosel winegrowing region. The vineyard faces south and provides the best conditions for growing Riesling.
Pairs well with barbecue meats, pasta dishes.