(Wine Advocate 89points)
The Aligote grape is often marginalized as a quality wine grape, dismissed to being mixed into a Kir cocktail. There are however pockets of producers, especially in Burgundy, that still maintain a high standard for the grape, making them with the same care and effort as they do their Chardonnay based Bourgognes. The grape is naturally lighter on its feet than Chardonnay, and this has the tell-tale aromas of fresh citrus zest and white fruit along with some mineral/wet rock tones. The palate is round without any oak aging, given depth most Aligotes lack thanks to being aged on the lees, and shows off plenty of vibrant complexity while still keeping a fairly light sensation. A great match with lighter fish and poultry dishes.
Regular Price $18.99, $16.14/case
2013 HYATT VINEYARDS MERLOT RATTLESNAKE HILLS
The mantra for Washington State wines is that if you like their style you will LOVE the value they provide. Their environment delivers lots of natural richness thanks to the long sunlight hours during the growing season, followed by the quick move to shorter cooler days towards the end of harvest that can help maintain acidity and/or tannins. This exceptional family owned producer is a prime example with their Merlot (and their Cabernet Sauvignon, which is likely to appear in another Select Six in the near future), delivering all the hallmarks of the state. Immediate dark plum and cocoa tinged black fruit aromas are followed in kind on the palate with a LOT more body and texture than you could hope for from a Californian Merlot at this price. Their is more tannin on the finish than usually found on these sorts of Merlots too, giving it a much lower sense of sweetness and providing lots of backbone to hold up to a meal as well as enjoyed solo.
Regular Price $11.99, $10.19/case
2016 ALAIN de la TREILLE VOUVRAY
We do our very best to maintain a high standard for wines from Vouvray, as there are a lot of wines that traffic on the name but barely hold any resemblance to what Chenin Blanc can and should be. The gulf between what is a 'value' and what is just 'cheap' can be quite wide. Finding this has been a real treat, making it easy to enjoy inexpensive Chenin Blanc again. Pure, beautiful pear and white fruit aromas with just a hint of honey and beeswax that is such a signature of Vouvray, pillowy soft on the palate but not sticky with sweetness as the fine crystalline acidity cuts through the finish. Pretty enough to drink with delicate dishes but enough body to hold up to a honey glazed ham or spicy Asian cuisine.
Regular Price $12.99, $11.04/case
2015 AZ. AG. GAMBA GNIREGA VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO 'LE QUARE'
You hate to describe a wine as good as this as a 'beginner's wine', but people that haven't tried or don't think they like Italian wines need to try good Valpolicella. The region is more famous for their Amarone wines made from dried grapes, white Valpolicella is the wine made from those same grapes before being dried out. An ideal red that provides a much softer texture and profile than usually found in the more famous Italian regions of Tuscany and Piedmont, this is almost fiendishly easy to drink with its minimal tannins and crunchy cherry and blackberry fruit. This is a wine you can pop out at the dinner table and make virtually everyone happy; and if you are interested in keeping Mother Earth happy as well, they are one of the 'greenest' wineries in the Veneto in terms of energy usage and farming practices.
Regular Price $13.99, $11.89/case
2015 KEES-KIEREN GRAACHER HIMMELREICH RIESLING HALBTROCKEN
The 2015 vintage in Germany was among the best in past few decades, not just for the quality but for the QUANTITY of the quality. Almost every winery worth the calling made successful wines up and down the style line, from driest to latest harvest. These are always great vintages for the savvy shopper because even after all the hype from the last two years there will still be a bumper crop of great deals appearing from all angles. This is a quintessential Mosel Riesling from one of the major prototype vineyards; if you Google the Graacher Himmelreich name you will find images off a postcard, the quaint historic riverside town with the impossibly steep vineyard rising behind to the sky. Pure, perfect Riesling flavors of white fruit and hints of petrol, and as a halbtrocken (or 'half-dry') there is just enough fruit on the palate to soften the vibrant acidity without becoming sweet at all. If anything, there is more mint and green herb that shows than sweetness, showcasing the natural complexity Riesling contains.
Regular Price $19.99, $16.99/case
2015 A. BERTHET-RAYNE COTES DU RHONE-VILLAGES CAIRANNE VIEILLES VIGNES
(Wine Spectator 90points)
There seems to be an endless supply of great quality and fairly priced wines from the Rhone year after year as the region enjoys a relatively crisis-free stretch of vintages over the last decade. Which is great with us, as the region also has some of the most diverse wines to offer. There are more grapes allowed for use in the appellation than any other in France, so there is an endless number of blends and ratios to explore from producer to producer. Primarily Grenache (as is the lion's share of Southern Rhone wines) with a healthy chunk of Syrah and Carignan, this is a superior combination of fleshy, full bodied fruit and surprising subtlety, almost worthy of calling it a 'baby Chateauneuf-du-Pape'. Ripe red fruits mingle with Provencial herbs and a slight cured meat gaminess from the Carignan, and a very polished texture considering the intensity, giving the flavors a very luxurious mouthfeel. A robust and enjoyable wine for a Winter's meal.
Regular Price $19.99, $16.99/case
These wines regularly sell for $97.94
For Select Six February they are $83.99
You Save $13.95!
Select Six White (2 of each white) is $88.99
Select Six Red (2 of each red) is $78.99
Pick any three different bottles and get 10% off!