Best of Show — Country Vintner 2011

Posted on Mar, 23. 2011 by

Categories: Wine

I went to the annual Country Vintner trade tasting yesterday — they’re one of largest wine distributors in the state of Virginia and their selection is a fantastic fit for our customer base. They offer special pricing in concert with the show — incremental discounts of 20% or more for purchases made within the next 24 hours. After tasting through nearly a hundred wines, I wanted to act quickly to pass along a few of the high-end wines that really stood out for me where the additional discounts can really add up:

Vajra Barolo Albe, 2006, Barolo, Italy
This is a wine that was featured in the Piedmont tasting back in December, and while we sold a fair amount, I still don’t feel like it got its due. Tasted again yesterday this is sensational, and Parker’s score of 91 points might be one or two points light for my taste. This is what approachable Nebbiolo is all about, the dried cherry flavors predominating, with the contrasting bright floral notes and tarry underbelly that I find intoxicating in Barolo. If you want to wrap your mind around how awesome and enjoyable Barolo can be without breaking the bank or having to lay things down, this wine is for you. A spectacular value…
Member Price: [private_member] Grand Cru: $23.22 • Premier Cru: $24.28 [/private_member]
Retail Price: $35.00
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Stolpman Syrah Hillsides 2008, Santa Ynez, California
While we haven’t featured many California Syrahs at the Wine Guild, I have been a huge fan of the varietal for years and absolutely love these wines when they’re executed well. Stolpman has been producing Rhone varietals in what’s traditionally been Pinot Noir country near Santa Barbara for 20+ years (selling their grapes to people like Manfred Krankel of Sine Qua Non, who has made a several 98-100 point wines with them), but only recently began bottling their own juice. The Syrah Hillsides is their premier wine that includes only the best grapes, and the wine consistently receives 93-95 point scores from Parker. The 2008 has not been reviewed yet, but I found it simply incredible, with huge fruit, great complexity, and yet fantastic balance — this is a 95 point Parker wine if I’ve ever seen one. And the price cannot be beat…
Member Price: [private_member] Grand Cru: $36.42 • Premier Cru: $38.08 [/private_member]
Retail Price: $48.00
Buy Now!

Alessandria Barolo Monvigliero 2005, Barolo, Italy
I tasted at the Alessandria estate during my trip to the Piedmont back in November, and we featured the lovely 2005 Barolo San Lorenzo during the Piedmont tasting event we did in December. At yesterday’s trade event I got to taste a different vineyard designate (the 2005 Monvigliero), which I thought was phenomenal, with great power and structure to go with the soaring aromatics (Parker score 92 points). I think I actually prefer it slightly to the San Lorenzo, but whatever the case a vineyard designated Barolo with great reviews at this even-more-discounted price is an outright steal…
Member Price: [private_member] Grand Cru: $34.22 • Premier Cru: $35.78 [/private_member]
Retail Price: $53.00
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Forman Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, Napa Valley, California
Ric Forman is a genius, having made a top-flight Napa Cabernet for more than 30 years. He owns a small estate, and uses very traditional vinification — the result is one of Napa’s best Bordeaux blends, with the ability to age for 20 years or more. While his Parker scores are consistently in the mid-90s, he still finds a way to stay under the radar with prices that are reasonable (for the quality). His 2007 Cab got another 95 point score from Bob, and given the quality of the vintage, is drinking better early than any wine of his I’ve had in 10 years. I haven’t yet touched the 2006 Forman I bought last year, but I’ll be ponying up again as this stuff is incredible, classic and ageworthy…
Member Price: [private_member] Grand Cru: $65.02 • Premier Cru: $67.98 [/private_member]
Retail Price: $85.00
Buy Now!

We’ll have a couple more Show wines with less expensive prices to offer in the next week or two, but don’t miss the chance to maximize the savings afforded by the annual event on these exceptional selections — this is a good a deal as we’ll ever get on some crazy-good wines.

But remember — we need your orders by end of business today to secure these prices, so don’t delay…

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