Every year at this time I like to send out a reminder to my customers that wine makes the perfect gift. I’ve actually never met anyone who was disappointed by receiving a bottle of wine for a gift, and would have rather had a pair of socks or a fruitcake instead!
With gift giving season upon us, I have to sound the alarm that there is really not much time left to shop for these great wine gifts – especially if you are shipping them!
I do ship – and all over the country. There of course are some “no no” states like Massachusetts, but for the most part I can ship wine to your client, friend or family member in most places.
You should be aware of some issues.
1. Weather – it will get cold. If you wait too long and the week you want to ship is really cold, I won’t send the gift. Wine can turn into a Popsicle.
2. Timing – many people use their vacation days around the holidays, and many companies have additional days they are closed. To make sure you get the wine to your client, get it there early!
3. Correct addresses – this is always a huge problem each year – make sure your client or friend hasn’t moved!
4. Company protocol – some corporations don’t allow employees to receive gifts. Ask first and save yourself the expense of sending it to someone who won’t receive it.
5. I’m a one man show! – while I would like to clone myself, I don’t have the means. Having said this, if you let me know you need a gift early, I can make sure I have a gift description ready with the gift – this will make it even more special! With an advanced phone call, I can even have it all ready for pick up, already charged and ready to go out the door in a matter of seconds.
This goes for everything in the next month and a half. If you are in a huge hurry, and most of us are, then give me a task ahead of time, and I will make sure you are in and out quick.
I appreciate everyone’s continued support during this time and look forward to seeing you during this fun and festive season!
Just to get you thinking about some gift ideas, I wrote about a few special things that I have received in limited quantities that would make a great gift!
One last quick note – I will be closing the store tonight at 5:30 PM to host an underground dinner. Back to regular hours tomorrow – sorry for the inconvenience.
2007 BENOVIA PINOT NOIR “COHN VINEYARD”
What do you give the New World Pinot Noir fan that has everything? One of the 12 bottles of Cohn Vineyard Pinot Noir that came into Illinois this year!
Benovia is a rockstar Pinot Noir producer based in the Russian River Valley. They happen to own the famous Cohn Vineyard!
The vineyard is located high atop a mountain just outside of Healdsburg. It was originally planted in 1970, making it some of the oldest Pinot Noir vineyards in California. Producers like Williams Selyem and Kosta Browne gained fame with their wines from this vineyard.
2007 was a spectacular vintage for Pinot Noir in Russian River Valley, and this is no exception. Loaded with complex aromas of black cherry, flowers and herbs on the nose. There is amazing depth on the palate with waves of red fruits like raspberry and cherry, just a hint at tannin, and a really long finish that will keep you coming back for more.
This is a wine that certainly can be approached now for drinking but it will also age through 2017.
$69.99 BTL. / ONLY 11 BOTTLES AVAILABLE
2006 DOMAINE FRANÇOIS BERTHEAU CHAMBOLLE-MUSIGNY “LES CHARMES,” PREMIER CRU
Oh, so you have one of those clients – a big “Burg-hound.” Sourcing top-notch Premier Cru Vineyard wines from Chambolle-Musigny, can be difficult, but I have just the right gift for you.
Imported by Kermit Lynch, Bertheau has never been a huge household name in the Burgundy world. Over the years they haven’t been reviewed much, but for those like me who have tasted them with some bottle age, we can attest to their greatness.
This Chambolle-Musigny based domaine make very traditionally styled wines. High in acidity but packed with complexity, this is a gift for a collector with some patience.
“Les Charmes” is one of the great Premier Cru sites in Chambolle-Musigny, and the 2006 vintage from this vineyard is really beautiful stuff. This will definitely put a smile on the lucky recipients face!
“Youthfully yeasty and pungently herbal notes mingle with those of sour cherry, holly, and citrus oil in the nose of the Bertheau 2006 Chambolle-Musigny Les Charmes. Smoked meat joins the aforementioned elements on the fine-grained, refreshing palate, and the flavors take a dark turn with the arrival of black pepper, fresh ginger, forest floor, moss, and game notes as it heads into a long, savory and piquant finish. There is just a faint hint of heat hanging about the finish here. The Bertheaus harvested in the low-to-mid 12s but routinely chaptalize, in this vintage around one degree. This should be worth following for 6-8 years. 91 Points, Wine Advocate.”
$89.99 BTL. / ONLY 10 BOTTLES AVAILABLE
1999 NIKOLAIHOF RIESLING “STEINRIESLER”
Trying to give a gift to the ultimate wine nerd? Here is the wine for you!
Hands down this is one of the 10 best wines I have tasted all year!
I was really fortunate to be invited to Charlie Trotter’s for a special luncheon to celebrate wine importer Terry Theise’s new book release. Chef Trotter being the gracious host that he is opened a few bottles of this wine which was originally gifted to him by Mr. Theise. All I can say is wow and thank you!
Nikolaihof is located in the Wachau region of Austria. They are one of the elite producers of Austria, and my personal favorite. They also happen to be the oldest producer in the Wachau, and have been farming organically for almost four decades!
In 1999 Nikolaihof decided to try something different and put in to cask a Federspiel level Riesling from Vom Stein. So why not labeled so? This isn’t any normal Vom Stein Riesling Federspiel – instead the wine was kept in cask for over a decade before bottling it this year!
This is mature Riesling – so complex that there is no use even describing it. I’ve been daydreaming about it since that lunch. Buy a bottle for yourself, and your client!
$74.99 BTL. / 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE
2006 GIACOMO GRIMALDI BAROLO “LE COSTE”
Got an Italian enthusiast on your hand? Barolo is the way to go.
This Barolo comes from the famous Le Coste vineyard in the commune of Barolo. While it is a very small vineyard site, you probably will recognize some of the names of the five different producers who own vines there – Giuseppe Rinaldi, Luciano Sandrone, Damilano, and the featured producer today, Giacomo Grimaldi.
While the Barolo commune is known for a sturdier style, “Le Coste” is known for its elegance.
Grimaldi owns a sweet spot of the vineyard with his vines running from the top to bottom of the vineyard, sandwiched between Sandrone and Rinaldi’s vines.
With Grimaldi’s slightly modern approach to winemaking, and his penchant for low yields this is a Barolo that while it can age, is something that can be opened and enjoyed – an important thing to consider when giving a gift.
This is an excellent price for a Barolo from a vineyard of this quality.
$62.99 BTL. / $755.88 CASE
2005 TERRA DE VEREMA PRIORAT “CORELIUM”
Want to impress someone with a really rich and complex red from Spain? Priorat is a good way to go, and this very small production Priorat from Terra de Verema is really, really impressive.
Priorat is one of the most gorgeous wine regions in the world. High elevation, with steeply plummeting vineyards made of primarily slate soil, make for a sight to be seen.
I visited Priorat in June, and all I can say is – man do I love Carignan! In this region the grape is a noble varietal, particularly when the vines are old.
Terra de Verema is a new project between Ramon Farre Marti and well-known winemaker, Ester Nin. The focus of the estate is on Carignan, and two wines are produced featuring this varietal.
“Corelium” is the top wine made from 90% Caringnan and 10% Grenache. The vines have an average age of 70 years. The wine was aged for one year in French oak barrels.
“The 2005 Corelium is 90% Carinena and 10% Garnacha from a single vineyard with vines ranging from 70-100 years. The wine spent 16 months in 300-liter new French oak. A glass-coating purple-hue, the nose exhibits wood smoke, slate, spice box, floral notes, wild blueberry, and black cherry. Dense and rich with a liquid minerality on the palate, this plush, lengthy wine will unfurl with another 4-6 years in the cellar and drink well through 2025. 95 Points, Jay Miller, Wine Advocate.”
$87.99 BTL. / $527.94 SIX-PACK CASE