Monday, July 11, 2016 7:22 PM
Saturday, July 2, 2016 6:47 PM
Monday, October 26, 2015 6:15 PM
Tuesday, August 19, 2014 7:15 PM
|As someone who doesn’t travel nearly as often and as far away as I’d like, I find consolation in wine’s ability to transport the taster to its place of origin. Sure, I’ve logged some decent miles for a bloke who doesn’t travel for a living, but I’ve longed for the road (and sky) since early childhood. I began collecting stamps in kindergarten, and by first grade could name every country in South America, including their respective capitals. While in second grade, my favorite thing to do was to accompany my Pop to the runway viewing area at SFO to watch planes take off. My wanderlust is serving me well, learning about the ways of life outside my sphere of influence. One of the mechanisms that I unconsciously have used to push myself to travel more is to collect guides and literature about destinations which I have yet to visit. It worked for Italy. It worked for France. It’s worked for the UK, Turkey, Russia, Denmark, and Austria. A recent glance at my travel lit bookcase reveals one, and only one, travel guide to a destination that I have not yet been: South Africa. In the meantime, while I await the day, I have the wines from Alex Dale to transport me there!
It being summer and all, let’s say that a glass of something chilled has a bit more appeal than a full-bodied, tannic red wine. If you’re a fan of Chardonnay, you might want to grab a seat because we’ve got a deal for you! For the rest of the month, we’re offering crazy prices on cases of Alex Dale’s Winery Of Good Hope 2012 Unoaked Chardonnay. Regularly $13.49 per bottle, full case orders will receive a 20% discount ($10.79 per bottle), and for orders of 2 cases or more, the discount is nearly 35% ($8.95 per bottle)!!! The Winery Of Good Hope is Dale’s entry-level label, a label for which he minimizes costs by not spending money on oak barrels, label art, or marketing. That’s right, NO oak barrels! It’s something that we hear every once in a while; some customers stay away from Chardonnay due to the usual toasted oak regimen. But right there on the label, and obviously in the aromas and on the palate, there is NO oak used for this wine.
Assisting Alex in making the wines is legendary former super-scout for Robert Kacher Selections, Edouard Labeye. In regard to the unoaked Chardonnay, Edouard had this to say, “This unoaked Chardonnay sets out to give you an easy-drinking yet classy wine at an excellent price. With more freshness, elegance and depth than commercial methods customarily permit. No sickly-sweet or artificial flavours. The wonderful citrus zest and mineral tang of its aromatics are bedded in the fruit and seductive texture characteristic of good Chardonnay. This is not a one-glass wonder, but a wine that you can enjoy by the bottle. For those of you who despairingly thought Chardonnay had to taste like butterscotch, this will restore your faith in the beautiful grape.” We have to echo Edouard’s sentiment. It’s a clean, balanced expression of pure Chardonnay. If you keep your expectations in line with its price, the Good Hope Chardonnay is the perfect white wine to load up on to get us through the end of summer (and maybe even to have around for crab season).
|Wait. End of summer? Crab season? Yep, they’re coming. Illustrating once again that time is fleeting. Though I have no immediate plans to travel to South Africa, by virtue of the 2012 Good Hope Chardonnay, I’ll let South Africa come to me! – Peter Zavialoff
Please feel free to email me with any questions or comments about traveling, South Africa, unoaked Chardonnay, the beginning of Football season, or Bordeaux: peter@
Friday, August 16, 2013 8:13 PM
|The Winery Of Good Hope
Alex’s “entry level” label, The Winery of Good Hope offers terrific value for price. Dale minimizes the costs of packaging, releases the wines fresh, and doesn’t use any oak barrels for these wines, hence the low prices. The 2012 Good Hope Chenin Blanc offers up clean aromas of Granny Smith Apple, a hint of mineral, and a kiss of lime. It’s a perfect example of crisp, clean South African Chenin Blanc. The 2012 Unoaked Chardonnay is exactly that, pure fleshy white fruit with a hint of lemon blossom, that has a zippy, lip-smacking finish. The 2012 Pinotage is simply amazing. Forget what you may think of Pinotage. South Africa’s signature red grape, it was created in the early 20th century as a hybrid of Pinot Noir and Cinsault. This one is made with elegance in mind; therefore the fruit is de-stemmed and they only use the free-run juice. Think bright red berries, a hint of smoke, and a bright, fresh finish. This is unlike any other Pinotage you’ve ever had! You can even try this one with a slight chill, it’s a great bbq wine.
The Vinum Africa wines sport an etching that some have called an ancient tribal symbol, but it is just a clever way to write the word, Vinum. This line represents a step-up in quality, as the fruit comes from vineyards in the Stellenbosch region – the cool maritime breezes of this ocean-facing appellation create the ideal environment for growing grapes. Edouard Labeye heads the winemaking team bent on “staying out of the way” and letting the fruit and terroir do the talking. The 2011 Chenin Blanc was all hand harvested and 70% of it fermented on its lees in steel tank. The other 30% is divided among new, 1, 2, and 3-year old Burgundian barrels to give the wine more complexity and a rich texture. It shows aromas of white flowers, crisp limes, and a hint of cinnamon spice. The 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon benefited from an idyllic “Indian Summer” where sugars and tannins ripened just as hoped for. The goal is to combine the structure of Old World Cabernets with the sense of place one finds in Stellenbosch. Deft oak treatment complements the brambly black cherry/blueberry fruit lending a cigar box nuance to the aromas. Earthy minerals appear on the mid-palate, and the finish is lively and complex. Again, for the price, this is pretty fancy stuff – Bravo!
|The 5 above wines are all packaged in screwcap.|
The flagship Radford Dale line sees modern winemaking combined with traditional values and sense of place, creating an exciting line of “some of the finest and rarest gems of The Cape Of Good Hope.” The Radford Dale Black Rock is a Shiraz-dominated blend with a tiny bit of Cinsault and Carignan. Strict grape selection is the key here. Once in the vineyard and again at the sorting table, assuring only the best makes its way into the blend. The aromas are of lavender, blueberries, strawberries, and spice; the mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a smoky earthiness that wraps the package up nicely for the long, balanced finish. The 2011 Freedom Pinot Noir is named as such to both commemorate the 1994 election of Nelson Mandela and the freedom Alex now enjoys without the need to adhere to the restrictions imposed by the EU. Again, grape selection is strict and the hand harvest only occurs at sunrise, before the sun can raise daytime temperatures. The emphasis is on finesse and depth as the extraction is delicate. The wine finishes its fermentation in oak barrel, which imparts complexity and texture. The result is a finely textured, pedigreed Pinot Noir with an excellent mineral backbone, silky tannins, and delectable berry fruit.
|Note: All wines can sort for 15% case discount, mix-and-match. Website will not calculate discount; we will apply it when we process your orders in our shop.|
Monday, February 6, 2012 6:40 PM
Well the normally 28 day long month of February will gain an extra one seeing that 2012 is a leap year. Shoot! If that’s the case, we better pullout the stops for the leap year month’s DD! How about 7 different countries represented by a whopping 17 grape varieties??!! That’s right. Where else are your going to go and get a case of 12 different wines from 7 countries, made up of 17 grapes for such a low price????
Reorder Special !!! 20% off 6 bottles or more of any one regularly priced Dirty Dozen wine! Or 10%/Net Wines – 5%/ Sale Wines
Click here to purchase the Dirty Dozen for $109.
2011 Lyric, Nederburg – $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
Wait! Wasn’t 2011 just over a month ago?! Aha! From the southern hemisphere, make that South Africa’s Western Cape, comes a blend of Sauvignon Blanc (56%), Chenin Blanc (23%), and Chardonnay (21%) … how they arrived at the precise numbers is beyond us, but the wine is great. Think peaches and pineapple, citrus, and maybe a crab salad.
2010 Pedro Ximenez, Falernia – $10.98 net price, $9.88 reorder
Most commonly known for its use in Sherry, the Pedro Ximenez grape was brought to Spain in the 1500’s by a German man named Peter Siemens. Perhaps because Google Translate wasn’t available at the time, they decided upon the Pedro Ximenez name. This one’s from Chile, and is rich, complex, and dry. It will accompany your pork roast perfectly.
2009 Chardonnay, MSH – $9.98 net price, $8.98 reorder
Timing is everything. When the global financial situation took a turn for the worse, a spotlight shone on those producers that were making high quality wine for more than a fair price. Enter MSH. Great balance and weight … and price tag.
2010 Kiralyleanyka, Szoke – $12.98 net price, $11.68 reorder
We can’t resist … this from the distributor – “Yes, I have the Kiralyleanyka and it’s dry. It translates to the ‘Little Princess’ even though large, hairy Hungarian men drink it.” Seriously funny. What we have here is a bright, lively Hungarian native white that will have you closing your eyes and dreaming about a holiday on Lake Balaton with some roasted pike-perch.
2010 Rosé, Domaine Fondrèche – $13.99, $11.19 reorder
“I like a dry Rosé, that’s not tutti-fruiti, you know, like the ones they serve in the south of France.” Generally speaking, that would be what most prospective Rosé buyers say when asking for advice from our staff. The Fondrèche Rosé is EXACTLY that! Made from mostly Cinsault, the wine has a soft, dry, herbal profile that has stunning freshness and a crisp finish.
2010 Gavi DOCG, Ernesto Picollo – $10.49, $8.39 reorder
Wow! 6 perfectly chillable wines from 6 countries! This Gavi from Italia’s Piemonte appellation is the white wine of choice for all of the seafood eating folks living on the Italian coastline from San Remo to Cinque Terre. Think rich, round fruit framed by crunchy minerals propped up by racy acidity. THE perfect pairing for your shrimp scampi.
2009 Cabernet Sauvignon, Mercedes Eguren – $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
And now for the reds … hailing from España’s Castilla region, this Cab Sauvignon has it all going. The aromas scream of black cherries, plums, herbs, and a hint of chocolate. On the palate, it shows great weight and balance without tipping the scales overboard. This is one to be enjoyed with a nice cut of prime rib with potatoes au gratin.
2007 Plaisir 75cl, Roger Sabon – $13.98 net price, $12.58 reorder
Coming from Cave Roger Sabon, the famous Châteauneuf-du-Pape producer, this steal of a deal will not stay on our shelves very long. It is a 2007, though nowhere on the label will it reveal that, but we’re insiders, so we know. Less than half the price of his CdP, Sabon’s Plaisir is all that … 100% pure pleasure. This is one to pour with your cassoulet.
2009 Joven Selectión, Monasterio de Corias – $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
From Asturias in España, this 3 grape blend of Carrasquin, Verdejo Negro, and Mencia delivers top notch quality for a very fair price. Asturias is a champion appellation for yielding wines with light body and racy acidity, which is the perfect combination for the rich, sometimes spicy cuisine from the area. May we suggest drinking with Mediterranean meatballs.
2007 Trassegum, Ch&acic;teau d’Or et des Gueules – $22.99, $18.39 reorder
The diamond of the DD! Diane de Puymorin has hit paydirt (yet again) with her focused 2007 Trassegum. Made from mostly Syrah with equal parts old-vine Mourvèdre and Carignan, this is a wine to be taken seriously. It has a rich, smoky profile with notes of Herbs de Provençe, and a gamey, meaty backbone. Serve with something hearty, like a porterhouse.
NV Owl House Red – $7.48 net price, $6.73 reorder
This Cali non-vintage red is a blend of several varieties, though chiefly comprised of Counoise. Counoise is one of many grapes allowed in France’s southern Rhône Valley to be used in Châteauneuf-du-Pape. An über popular wine among our regular customer base, we find the Owl House a screaming value! Bring one to your next Tuesday night pizza party!
2009 Pinot Noir, Big Vine – $13.98 net price, $12.58 reorder
Coming from an ideal vintage on California’s Central Coast, the 2009 Big Vine Pinot Noir knocks it out of the park for value in a Pinot Noir. Comprised mainly of fruit from the Arroyo Grande appellation, there is also a smattering of Santa Rita Hills fruit which gives the wine the finesse that will make you stop all conversation and quizzically look at your glass saying, “huh?” The wine is bright and lively with just enough cherry cola to balance the earthy nuances. Goes great with pasta.
Check Out Our Complete Inventory at WineSF.com
Reorder Special !!! 20% off 6 bottles or more of any regularly priced Dirty Dozen wine! Or 10%/Net Wines 5%/ Sale Wines