This Christmas shopping season is in full swing. Binny’s staff will be put to the test everyday to help customers find exactly what they are looking for. Our staff will all hear the same questions and requests; I need a $50 bottle of Cab. Do you have any $25 White Zinfandel’s?
I love when I get this request. I need a wine for someone who has a huge cellar. What do you get someone who has the Silver Oak, Opus One and Insignia? Below are some selections of lesser known whites and reds. The quantities are limited and are not at every store.
White Wine Selections:
If you have a friend who enjoys the big name Chardonnay’s, this will be right up their alley. For a white wine, this is built to age. After 7 or 8 years this gets to be great. I’ve had a few older vintages of this wine, and it was a wonderful experience.
2007 Shafer Chardonnay- $45.99
This is a uniquely styled Chardonnay from the Red Shoulder Ranch in Carneros. This does not go under any malolactic fermentation. It is a great food wine, and has crisp acidity. It’s aged in 40% new French oak and takes on some vanilla characteristics. This is a favorite Chardonnay.
For the Champagne drinker, this is an incredible bottle of bubbly made from 100% Chardonnay. It has notes of green apple, brioche and vanilla. The mouth feel of this bubbly is the best thing about it. It wakes up your tongue and the finish doesn’t really finish.
2003 Chateau d’Yquem- $150 (375ml)
This 98 point, Wine Spectator rated Sauternes is the king of dessert wine. In great years, this wine will age 100+ years. There are reports of the 1811 vintage still drinking well. The 2003 is no slouch and the person you are giving it to will probably hug you. This wine is liquid gold.
Red Wine Selections:
This comes from a single vineyard in Yountville in the central Napa Valley. It was a privilege to taste this wine two times this year and how it quickly evolved over 6 months. It contains 51% Cabernet, 46% Merlot and 3% Cab Franc, and there were only 650 cases produced. This wine is someone who is swimming Insignia and Opus. It’s full bodied, balanced and complex. What more could you ask for?
Here’s another single vineyard, Napa Valley Cabernet. The buzz for 2007 Napa Cabernets is that it’s going to be a good year. Every 2007 Napa red I had was great in my two visits this year. This wine has not been rated yet, but when it does, I’m guessing it is going to be 95 plus points. Get it while you can and hold it for 10 years.
2006 Alto Moncayo: $42.99
This is one of my favorite Spanish wines and drinks a lot better than it costs. The grapes in this come from near 100 year old Garnacha vines. When the vines get to be that old, they produce a lot less fruit and thus, more intense fruit. It has a nose of raspberry liqueur, vanilla and baking spice. In the mouth, full bodied, extremely ripe and it has a long balanced finish. This is my favorite wine in the store under $50.
2003 Chateau Pavie: $235
This right bank Bordeaux received high marks from all the major critics. This is a great buy from a great vintage in Bordeaux. This will drink well for a long time to come.