1st Bottle Red: Penley Estate Francis, Cabernet Franc, Coonwarra, Australia 2019

For the wine snob: Penley Estate is located in the center of Australia’s most famous Cabernet region: Coonawarra. Continuing a family tradition that spans five generations. Penley Estate’s 240 acres of vineyards were planted atop Coonawarra’s “terra rossa” soils with the aim of producing terroir-driven wines with distinctive regional character, and is now regarded as one of the region’s leading Cabernet and Shiraz producers.

For the rest of us: 100% Cabernet Franc. Youthful, modern and vibrant, this unoaked Cabernet Franc is driven by a fragrant fruit profile. Bursting with complex whole bunch characters, violets, Turkish delight and spice. The palate is juicy and delicious, with a textural framework of tannin supporting the core of intensely flavored fruit. A generous and flavorsome wine for any occasion.

1st Bottle White: Txomin Etxaniz, Blanco, Txakolina, Spain 2019

For the wine snob: Txomin Etxaniz is owned and was founded by the Txueka family. One of the most historic and important families in this region, there is primary source documentation proving that the family has been producing wine near the town of Getaria since 1649, around when the town was founded. The slopes that the vines are planted on are incredibly steep, so where pergolas cannot be used, the family plants on trellis. The winery and vineyards are only located 100m from the Atlantic, so precipitation levels are extremely high. The must is fermented in stainless steel with indigenous yeast at very low temperatures to retain a small quantity of dissolved CO2.

For  the rest of us: All indigenous grape varietals, this green-hued straw color wine  sharply focused on the nose displaying vibrant citrus zest, quince and floral scents and a chalky mineral overtone. Dry and nervy on the palate, offering juicy lemon, green apple and honeysuckle flavors and a spicy touch of ginger. Displays firm tension and spicy cut on the finish, which hangs on with strong, mineral-driven tenacity.

2nd Bottle Red: Cruse Wine Co. Monkey Jacket Red Blend 2019

For the wine snob: The flagship wine of Cruse Wine Co. is the red blend Monkey Jacket (the name inspired by an old, British sailor song). This wine embodies all the things Cruse Wine Co. is meant to be, as it’s a blend of Valdiguie, Carignan, Tannat, St Laurent. The 2019 Monkey Jacket has the highest percentage of Valdiguié ever at 53%. This results in a wine with impressive vibrancy but exceptional seriousness driven by the blend of varieties from vineyards carefully selected and located in Mendocino, Napa, Sonoma, and Suisun counties. Fruit is destemmed into an open concrete tank. Fermentation occurred spontaneously with manual punchdowns. After 7 days on skins, the wine was lightly pressed and moved to older French oak barrels and a few puncheons. Malolactic occurred naturally with the wine receiving a light sulfur addition immediately before bottling. Like all of our wines, it was bottled without fining or filtration.

For the rest of us: The wine has a bright ruby rim, with rich burgundy hues and a youthful, serious nose of crushed strawberries, bramble, and bass notes of olive and leather. The palate is late summer in California, sunny and dry, with integrated and confit’d fruits. The finish is clean and lingering with a bit of raspberry and rhubarb and fine dusty tannins.

2nd Bottle White: Emilie Beyer, Pinot Blanc, Alsace, France 2019

For the wine snob: The Alsace region where this comes from is one of France’s most unique viticultural regions. This hotly contested stretch of land running north to south on France’s northeastern border has spent much of its existence as German territory which is why it has a strong Germanic influence with their white wines. Emile Beyer is a family estate located in the heart of the Alsace wine region. The firm of Emile Beyer is under the guidance of Christian Beyer, who represents the 14th generation of the Beyer Family of wine growers in the charming village of Eguisheim, the birthplace and very heart of Alsace wine production.

For the rest of us: 100% Pinot Blanc, this is Soft and delicate, refined floral notes, lite honey suckle, white blossom, It combines freshness and suppleness balanced by a pleasing acidity with hint of minerality that brings it all together.

Reserve Bottle Red: Camigliano Brunello di Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy 2016

For the wine snob: 100% Sangiovese, Famous for its bold, layered and long-lived red, Brunello di Montalcino, the town of Montalcino is about 70 miles south of Florence, and has a warmer and drier climate than that of its neighbor, Chianti.  The winery, which was purchased by Walter Ghezzi in 1957, a courageous and enterprising businessman from Milan with a passion for Tuscany, has undergone an intense and radical improvement in recent years with arrival of son Gualtiero. The vineyards, have been chosen through a careful analysis of the terrain and clonal selection by agronomic experts coming from different Italian universities.

For the rest of us: The Camigliano 2016 Brunello di Montalcino offers a more robust bouquet compared to its peers, with its dark and saturated fruit. Black currant, raspberry and boysenberry flavors are shaded by woodsy, wild herb, menthol and graphite notes in this distinctive red. Expressive, if not the harmony of its peers, shows some fierce tannins flexing their muscles on the chewy, astringent finish.

Reserve Bottle White: Domaine Drouhin Vaudon Chablis Premier Cru 2018, Chablis, Burgundy, France

For the wine snob: The Moulin de Vaudon, the property of Joseph Drouhin, is an 18th Century watermill straddling the Serein River, close to the Grand Cru vineyards of Chablis. Flowing gently past hillsides covered with vineyards, the river has always been closely identified with Chablis and its region. Because of its unique location at the heart of their 38 hectare vineyard estate (95 acres), the historical watermill is the headquarters of the Drouhin Domaine in Chablis. This wine comes from grapes exclusively harvested on the Drouhin Family Properties. These vineyards are mainly situated in the Valley of Vauvillien, not far from the Grand Crus, between the Premier Crus of Montée de Tonnerre and Mont de Milieu.

For the rest of us: 100% Chardonnay, this is a dry and fruity wine, easy to drink. Its color is pale gold with greenish hues. Very fresh aromas reminiscent of citrus (lemon or grapefruit); small pleasant touches of fern or coriander are found as well. On the palate, dry and fruity, with mineral notes. This one has a pleasant and long aftertaste that lingers.

2nd Reserve Bottle Red: Enfield, Tempranillo, Shake Ridge Ranch, Amador County, California 2015

For the wine snob: The Tempranillo comes from a young block of head trained vines planted at an elevation of 1800 feet on a northern facing slope that softens the direct afternoon sun. The densely rocky soil contains a mixture blue schist and quartz, bringing a deep brooding stoniness to the wine, while the warm days and cool nights protect the freshness and juiciness of the fruit. Shake Ridge has perhaps best been described as a small village of vineyards rather than one contiguous site. Planted throughout 40 acres of rolling hills, each little parcel has a different slope, aspect and soil profile creating many different microclimates within the same vineyard.

For the rest of us: Brilliant red in color, the nose leads with muddled raspberries, rose petal, savory roasted chestnuts and warm biscuits with cinnamon and brown sugar. Bone dry on the palate, red strawberry fruit is supported by a backbone of black cherry, espresso and marzipan, lingering fresh sarsaparilla root and mouth- coating granitic tannins.

2nd Reserve Bottle White: Ridge Estate Chardonnay, Monte Bello 2019, Santa Cruz Mtns, California

100% Chardonnay,  Hand-harvested estate-grown Monte Bello vineyard grapes,  whole-cluster pressed,  fermented on the native yeasts, full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria. Ridge produced its first chardonnay in 1962 from fully-mature vines planted in the late 1940s on the Monte Bello estate vineyard. Production never exceeded ten barrels. This vintage season was helped by significant winter rain that restored groundwater on Monte Bello Estate. Cold spring weather delayed bud-break and bloom. Summer fogs further slowed ripening. Picked in early October, each parcels’ juice fermented in separate barrels. This year’s Estate Chardonnay was assembled in late July and returned to older barrels and tank for continued settling. Showing appealing fruit, it will be most enjoyable over the next seven years.

Pale, sun-bleached straw color with aromas of fresh lemon zest, green apple, wet stone, and honeysuckle flowers. Full bodied and a creamy texture on the palate with juicy acidity, notes of salinity, and citrus blossom and pineapple on the finish.