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Staff Picks


Ken's Picks

Kanonkop Kadette Cape Blend W.O. 2020 14% abv.  Stellenbosch, South Africa

Tasting Notes: Stellenbosch is a wine region steeped in history; French Huguenots established vines there in the late 1600's. The Kadette Cape Blend is a real South African expression of a Bordeaux blend: Its recipe: 43% Pinotage, 33% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc. Deep red brick in color, it displays aromas of black plums, sage, cola, and toasty oak. On the medium full palate: red currants, smooth texture, blackberry, and medium roast coffee. Tannins are medium grippy. Medium short finish. Very good quality for a very good price. Pair with roasts, grilled meats, stews, casseroles. Drink now- 2028.

Price: $22.99 750 ml


Ken's Picks

Argento Single Vineyard Malbec 2019 15% abv  Finca Agrelo, Mendoza, Argentina

Tasting Notes: Bodega Argento is dedicated to naturally organic and sustainable wine making. The Malbec was fermented in stainless steel, after which 25% of the wine was aged in oak, the remaining in concrete vats for 10 months. It is very extracted: the glass-staining eye is opaque red/black. Aroma is big and full: ripe fig, plums, dates, black coffee, tar. The palate: full and complex, with dates, plums, black cherry, black coffee confirmed. Tannins medium grippy but not out of place, finish long and warm. This wine has real good "stuffing" (as Jancis Robinson might say)! Vegan Friendly. Pair with burgers, grilled beef, other hearty foods. Drink now, cellar for 2-3 years.

Price: $32.49 750 ml


Ken's Picks

Lodi Estates Merlot 2021 14%abv.  Lodi, California

Tasting Notes: Although Lodi is in California's Central Valley, its climate is more Mediterranean than the hot, dry semi-arid climate you might expect. This is thanks to the many rivers which run through the AVA and the creeks, estuaries and bays into which they flow. Merlot, an early budding grape, does well here in the reliable warmth. This wine is dense garnet in color. It has a layered aroma of black currant, garrigue, plum, and vanilla. On the palate, good complexity, with black currant, blackberry, espresso with cream, and oregano notes. It has good structure: tannins present but smooth, plush mouth feel but not jammy. A real nice surprise. A perfect match for bison burgers! Drink now-2026.

Price: $19.99 750 ml


Ken's Picks

Famille Sichel La Dame D'Angludet 2019 13% abv  Margaux, France

Tasting Notes: The Sichel family renamed this wine (the so-called 'second' wine of the domaine) from La Reserve D'Angludet to better honor the women who have contributed directly or indirectly to the history of the property since the 12th century. Deeply aromatic, it expresses layers of cherry, black currant, black licorice, plums, and violets. Upon first sip, the palate shows a smooth texture, with currant, black olive, dried dates, and truffle . Tannins are supple; the finish is long and complex. It offers the best quality for price in the entire Margaux appellation. This wine can be consumed now and will deliver an exceptional experience, but it can be cellared for a number of years. Pair with all sorts of cuisine: hearty vegetarian casseroles, roasted meats/fowl, chateaubriand.

Price: $51.99 750 ml


Ken's Picks

Casa E Di Mirafiore Barbera D'Alba Superiore D.O.C. 2016 14.5% abv  Alba, Piedmont, Italy

Tasting Notes: Barbera often gets relegated to second status behind the more famous Nebbiolo (which makes Barolo), but this expression is distinctive and full of character. It has a deep barn red color with orange/sepia rim. Aromas of thyme, sage, roasted plum, black licorice, black cherry, and black currant waft out of the glass. The palate is round, showing black currant, dried dates, black olive, and plums, with hints of cinnamon and orange peel on a medium long finish. Tannins have had time to integrate. A big, bold (yes, I said it!) Barbera, it is reaching its full maturity. Buy a few and drink them now-within the next couple years. Pair with all kinds of savory dishes: lasagna with red sauce, casseroles, pizza, pasta.

Price: $27.99 750 ml


Ken's Picks

Bottega Vinai Muller Thurgau D.O.C. 2022 12% abv.  Trentino, Italy

Tasting Notes: The grape varietal Muller Thurgau, Switzerland born and German raised, has been much maligned because of historical associations with bland, off-dry German white wines, so prevalent in the 1970's under the moniker of Liebfraumilch. However, under the careful watch of Bottega Vinai, and grown in high altitude vineyards on the Brentonico Plateau, this grape takes on verve and character. A very light straw color with green tints, it has aromas of white peach, sage, citrus, and bergamot. The palate is light, with crisp acidity, jicama, lemon zest, and a good mineral line. Quick finish. Drink now. Bring on the raclette, the classic cheese fondue, creamy vegetable soups (cream of celery comes to mind), fish dishes.

Price: $20.99 750 ml


Ken's Picks

Luis Pato Baga Vinho Espumante Brut N/V 12.5% abv  Bairrada, Portugal

Tasting Notes: Baga is a dark-skinned grape variety used to make red wines in the central coast of Portugal. Notable for the thickness of its grape skin in proportion to the size of the small berries, its name means "berry" or, better, "droplet", although neither of these terms capture the tannic, astringent nature of many wines made from Baga grapes. Because of its nature, it is ideally suited for the production of sparkling wine. Luis Pato, wine maker extraordinaire, has crafted an exceptional spumante from this varietal. A stunning sockeye salmon pink, it expresses cherry, raspberry, and cold cream on the nose. The palate begins with an explosive, dense, and frothy mousse, followed by a persistent and fine bead. Flavors: notes of roasted cherry, orange peel, plum, pear, and brown butter. This is a very elegant alternative to champagne (this wine is fermented in stainless steel before dosage and secondary fermentation in bottle for 9 months). Serve with appies, charcuterie. Drink now.

Price: $22.99 750 ml



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