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Eagle Rock, CA 90041 (directions)
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Newsletter Archive

Visions of Spiked Sugarplums

Visions of Spiked Sugarplums

***PLEASE, call ahead for multiple gift basket orders to avoid long waits!!!!***


HOLIDAY HOURS: Christmas Eve 10am-4pm, ClOSED 25th and 26th, New Year's Eve 11am-8pm


We will be having our regular Friday tasting this week but due to the fact that we can't predict what wines will still be around on that day, you'll have to take your chances!   Click here for details  


     There are only a few days of shopping left and you're using your car as a battering ram around town, someone is on the radio completely bastardizing your favorite Christmas song, your kid sees two Santas across the street from each other and begins to cry bloody murder at the horrible truth, and a mall elf cusses at you under his breath for not moving out of his way faster....when will it all end?  In 5 days....when hopefully you will be sitting in a warm place , laughing with family and friends, about to eat a feast.  That's where we come in (not literally....we won't barge in on your meal...not this year anyway).


Here are seven sweet ways to end your meal with a gulp and a moan and a groan:


Chateau Richard Saussignac Cuvee Tradition 1998, France     $18.99/500ml btl

So, you can either go out and spend $150 on a half bottle of Chateau d'Yquem Sauterne, or look to Sauterne's neighbor, Saussignac, to find a fantastic deal on a dessert wine.  Richard Doughty was brought up in Windsor by his English father and French mother. He trained at l'Ecole de Viticulture et l'Oenologie in Sauternes and bought his 13.5 hectare domaine in 1987. Château Richard, in Monestier, lies within the small appellation of Saussignac south of the Dordogne. He produces his red, white and sweet wines entirely organically, using traditional Bordeaux varietals for the Bergerac blends. The Saussignac has a long fermentation in new 500-litre barrels followed by 18-months' aging.   Honeysuckle and peaches.  End of story.


Pillitteri Estates Vidal Icewine 2002, Canada     $34.99/200ml btl (w/ gift box)

From the world's largest estate producer of icewine comes this decadent bit of luxury.  First of all...what is Icewine?  Harvest of the Icewine grapes occurs when temperatures have reached -8*C or colder. When pressed, these hand picked, naturally frozen grapes yield a juice with an intense concentration of sugars, acids, flavors and aromas.  The yield, however, is far lower than for most wines, requiring ten times more grapes per bottle. The resulting wine is high in natural sugar, low in alcohol, has an amazing acidity level, and is intensely sweet and flavorful.  This particular icewine is made from 100% Vidal and tastes like......victory.  Try it with foie gras and achieve nirvana (guaranteed).  Limited availability!

Quinta de Heredias Ruby Special Reserve Porto     $20.99/750ml btl

92 pts - Robert Parker

The Quinta Heredias is located between the Távora and the Rio Douro river in Portugal.  It is made with a blending of different vintages, some of it is matured for 5 years in oak and chestnut vats to gain complexity and the rest is matured in vats to keep freshness and fruitiness.  Blackcherry, vanilla, earth, spice, and a long, long finish.   Try it after a meal with a chocolatey dessert or a cigar.....or both.


Yalumba Antique Tawny Port        $17.99/375ml btl

96 pts - Robert Parker

90 pts - Stephen Tanzer

You can smell this one three feet from the glass.  The original Port made four decades ago was blended from old-vine varieties such as Shiraz, Grenache, Mourvèdre and Muscadelle. Since 1985, Portuguese fortified varieties Touriga, Tinta Coa and Tinta Molle have contributed additional complexity to the blend. The grapes are fermented on skins for several days to extract flavor and body then fortified with brandy.  Try this one with Pecan Pie or just have it instead of cereal in the morning.  It's just fantastic. Limited availability!


Croze Cabernet Sauvignon Port 2004, Suisun Valley, California     $19.99/375ml btl

Winemaker Gary Wooton (Smith Wooton wines....Cab Franc...MMMmmm) blends Cabernet Sauvignon with oak-aged Cognac in ths Cabernet Sauvignon Port.  Rich, dense blackberry flavor and aromas fills the mouth and nose and lingers until tomorrow on the tongue. Only 92 cases were produced.  This is a truly unique one for any port connoisseur.


Gianpiero Marrone Moscato d'Asti 2005, Italy      $22.99/750ml btl

White peaches, flowers, apricots, melons -- that's what you're getting here wrapped up in a fizzy package.  Plainly put, this is the best Moscato d'Asti we've ever had.  Franco Piccinelli, Italian author and journalist, describes it well here:

“ It is the prince of sweet white wines, preserving the aroma and taste of the golden grapes of a variety which represents the highest quality level in Piedmont. Imitated but never equalled. Essential for desserts, with low enough alcohol for a child to sip*. It was traditionally served to guests , in houses in the country, as an afternoon snack with biscuits and cakes ”.

*The Italians are so much classier, huh?  All I ever got as a kid was a sip of Schlitz.


Have a Safe and Happy Christmas,

John and Jen




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