Beresan Carménère

Carménère Impulse

Beresan Winery 2013 Carménère, Walla Walla Valley

Fellow wine lovers, Carménère is the legendary sixth Bordeaux grape- rare, and seldom found anywhere, it’s made a home here in Washington State. It used to be that in Bordeaux, France they made wines with some combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petit Verdot, and Carmenère. Then, the vineyards of Bordeaux were infested by an aphid called phylloxera which likes to eat the vines, and they found Carménère to be very susceptible to this bug, making it difficult and expensive to grow. They decided the easiest way around the problem was to rip out their Carménère vines, not because they didn’t like the grape, but because it was too much work. Luckily, both Washington State and Chile are phylloxera free, and Carménère has found a new home in these two regions.

Beresan Winery 2013 Carménère $36.99

Beresan is one of very few wineries in Washington, and the world. to make Carménère. This grape can be a bit of an acquired taste, especially because many iterations are very green, but the Beresan strikes a great balance between Carménère’s spicy spicy tendencies, and nice clean beautiful fruit characters. It still displays some green notes, but they’re in appropriate amounts for those who are accustomed to drinking a spicy Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet Franc.

The grapes are sourced from Summit View Vineyard in the Walla Walla Valley, and aged for 21 months in 20% new oak barrels. The wine is medium-full bodied and ready to drink. It has flavors of raspberry, strawberry jam, blueberry, and licorice, with hints of vanilla, black peppercorn, jalapeno peppers, fallen leaves, and cinnamon.

Beresan Winery Carmenere

Beresan Winery Carmenere

Click here to order the Beresan Carménère

Region: Walla Walla AVA, Washington State Wine

Vineyard(s): Summit View Vineyard
Grape(s): 100% Carménère
Aging: 21 MonthS in 20% New Oak Barrels
Drinkability: Now through 2019
Body: Medium-Full
Drink This if you Like: Spicy Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc
Food Pairing: Herbs Meats
Availability: 3.5 cases

Cheers

Yashar

Disruption Red Wine

Disruption Impulse

Disruption Wine Co. 2014 Red Wine

Fellow wine lovers, sometimes good winemakers are obscured, working in the shadow of their bosses. It’s until they have an opportunity to break out on their own that they start to shine. Andrew Latta spent years working for Charles Smith, crafting some of the most well known wines in Washington State, but not a lot of people knew who he was until recently. He introduced his eponymous Latta Wines just a couple of years ago, and immediately got a bit of press for it. In 2015 he was named as a “Washington’s Game Changer” by Wine Enthusiast Magazine, then in 2016 he was named one of Washington State’s winemakers to watch by Seattle Metropolitan Magazine.  Now he’s launching a second label, with pure pleasure wines and great pricing- Disruption Wine.

Disruption Wine Company 2014 Red Blend $14.99

The Disruption Wine Company red leans towards the hedonistic side of things. It’s big, dense, ripe, and bold. Rather primary in nature, with great purity of fruit, it’s smooth and easy to enjoy. A blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Malbec sourced from quality vineyards Clifton Bluff, Newhouse, and DenHoed, throughout the Columbia Valley. It’s full of dark berry notes, such as blackberries, chocolate covered blueberries, with hints of violets, cedars, and pepper

Disruption 2014 Red Wine

Disruption 2014 Red Wine

Click here to order the Disruption Red Blend

Region: Columbia Valley AVA, Washington State Wine

Vineyard(s): Clifton Bluff, Newhouse, and DenHoed

Grape(s): 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Malbec

Drinkability: Now through 2018

Body: Full

Alcohol: 13.5% by volume

Drink This if you Like: Secret Squirrel

Cheers

Yashar

Avignonesi Vino Nobile

Noble Impulse

Avignonesi 2013 Vino Noblie di Montepulciano

Fellow wine lovers, another flash sale today, with a Sangiovese at 30% off. As with before, please have orders in by midnight tonight. Please note, there isn’t enough time for me to guarantee delivery of this wine before Christmas,
The Avignonesi Montepulciano get 91 points from Wine Spectator Magazine. It’s sourced from Avignonesi’s own estate vineyards in Tuscany Italy, where their vines are as old as old as 40 years. It’s comprised of 100% Sangiovese grapes, aged a total of 18 months, 12 months in French oak barrels, followed by 6 months in Slovenian oak barrels. Similar to a Chianti, the wine shows notes of dried red cherries, hints of tomato vines, oregano and spice, with a bit leather and tobacco, finishing on a bright acidic note.

Click here to order the Avignonesi Vino Noblie di Montepulciano

Region: Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG, Tuscany, Italy

Vineyards: Avignonesi Estate Vineyards
Grape(s): 100% Sangiovese
Aging: 12 Months in French Oak Barrels Followed by 6 Months in Slovenian Oak Barrels
Body: Medium
Alcohol: 14% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Chianti
Press: 91 Points from Wine Spectator
Food Pairing: Roasts, Cassoulets, Tomato Sauce

Cheers

Yashar

Red Car Chardonnay

Sonoma Impulse

Red Car 2012 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

Fellow wine lovers, happy new year! It seems Sonoma has caught my attention as of late, thus we have an outstanding deal on a beautiful Chardonnay today. I found a Chardonnay by Red Car, whose Pinot Noir we so recently enjoyed, which has just a few years of age on it. It’s still rather fresh, but has had the time to build a bit of extra character.

Red Car 2012 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay $25.99 (Regularly $40)

The Red Car 2012 Chardonnay received a score of 92 points from Wine Enthusiast Magazine. They describe it as , “Blended from several amazing vineyard sites, including Ritchie and Hawk Hill… It shines in exotic florals and a creamy mouthfeel followed by a dry, bright finish of fresh-squeezed grapefruit and tangerine. This is one to enjoy entirely on its own or with a myriad of appetizers.”

It’s aged completely in French oak barrels, 10% of which is new, giving it just a smidge of vanilla, toast, and oak flavors, coexisting nicely with hints of butter and smoky flint notes, underneath a layer of lemon custard, white currant, and yellow apple. The coastal nature of this charming wine means that it comes with a lower alcohol percentage of 13.7, while bearing crisp acidity and clean minerality from the mid-palate to the finish.

Red Car 2012 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

Red Car 2012 Sonoma Coast Chardonnay

Click here to order the Red Car Chardonnay

Region: Sonoma Coast

Vineyard(s): Weeks, Ritchie, Hawk Hill, Zephyr Farms

Grape(s): Chardonnay

Aging: 100% French Oak, 10% New

Drinkability: Now through 2017

Body: Medium

Alcohol: 13.7% by volume

Drink This if you Like: Flowers, Failla, La Crema

Press: 92 points from Wine Enthusiast Magazine

Food Pairing: Cheeses

Production: 73 barrels

Cheers

Yashar

Red Car Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Flash Impulse: 30% Off Pinot Noir Today Only

Red Car 2013 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Fellow wine lovers, I have a bit of lead time on today’s flash sale, allowing me to do a more thorough write-up. Coming in at just over 30% off, it’s an excellent Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir which sells on the winery’s own site for $45, but we have it for $29.99 just for the day. All orders must be in by midnight tonight, Friday December 16th, or until it sells out, whichever comes first

Red Car Winery is a newer one, launched around 2000. They take their name from the Red Car Trolleys which once traversed the streets of Los Angeles. They hold the belief that wine should embody the place from which it originates, and this sentiment is summed up nicely in their own words, “Wine is important because it connects us to nature. But to offer meaning beyond itself, a wine has to come from a certain place, not just any place. And the winemaker must stand aside and allow that place to transmit its story without manipulation. This is our never-ending pursuit at Red Car.”

It’s rated 91 points by Wine Enthusiast Magazine, with the following tasting note provided:  “This wine draws from a handful of tremendous vineyard sites, including the producer’s estate, Platt and Clary Ranch, all cool-climate and windswept. It’s a tight, light and minimally messed-with wine…”

At Red Car Winery, they’re believers in cooler climate viticulture, hence their sourcing from the Sonoma Coast. The grapes for this Pinot Noir come from cooler sites which are both at higher elevation and close to the coast, yet the wine is still ripe and luscious- not thin and ultra-light as we’ve seen with many Pinot Noirs lately. It’s fermented with 13% stem inclusion to add some meat and earth notes, then aged in 100% French oak barrels, 10% of which are new. Ripe dark cherry and strawberry jam, hints of rose petals, cedar, dried leaves, just a touch of vanilla, are what drive this wines tasty profile.

Red Car 2013 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Red Car 2013 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Just a few cases are available, and they are first come first serve.

Click here to order the Red Car 2013 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

Region: Sonoma Coast AVA, California
Vineyard(s): Red Car Estate, Platt, Bohemian Station, Falstaff, Riddle Ranch, Hagan, Clary Ranch
Grape(s): Pinot Noir
Aging: 100% French Oak Barrels, 10% New, 90% Used
Drinkability: Now through 2019
Body: Medium
Alcohol: 13.3% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Failla, Flowers, La Crema, Littorai, Patz & Hall
Press: 91 Points Wine Enthusiast

Cheers

Yashar

CasaSmith “Cinghiale” Sangiovese and “Porcospino” Primitivo

Casa Impulse:

CasaSmith 2014 “Cinghiale” Sangiovese and “Porcospino” Primitivo

Fellow wine lovers, for decades now Charles Smith has been one of the most influential entrepreneurs in the Washington wine industry. He launched the ubiquitous label of “House Wine”, which grew so large that he was able to sell it off to Precept Brands in 2007. Also, about a week ago he sold off another handful of labels including Kung Fu Girl, Boom Boom Syrah, and Eve Chardonnay. While selling off his higher volume brands, he’s also been launching smaller ones, and that brings us to his newest venture in Washington wines featuring classic Italian grapes.

CasaSmith 2014 “Cinghiale” Sangiovese $19.99

13.99 Sean Sullivan of Wine Enthusiast Magazine gives it 92 points and suggests that it posses “irresistible charm”. Named for the wild boar of Italy, the Cinghiale Sangiovese is styled after the definitive wines of Tuscany, and will appeal to lovers of Chianti Classico and Tuscan Tuscan wines alike. The fruit is picked from Wahluke Slope and Rosebud Vineyards, both farmed sustainably and located in the Wahluke Slope AVA of Washington State. It’s fermented using native yeasts and 100% whole clusters, then aged for 12 months on lees in 35% new French oak barrels.

The Cinghiale Sangiovese boasts an elegant set of aromas including red berries, hints of anise, and hearty herbs. The palate is medium bodied, in the fashion of its classic italian brethren, and demonstrates flavors of red currants, dried cranberry, and wild strawberry compote, up front. It’s further nuanced by the essence of fennel sausage, rosemary, granitic earth like qualities, and dehydrated flower petals. An excellent dining companion, pairing superbly with dishes featuring tomato sauces. I personally am enjoying it with a homemade puttanesca.

Click here to order the CasaSmith “Cinghiale” Sangiovese

Casasmith 2014 Porcospino Sangiovese

Casasmith 2014 Porcospino Sangiovese

Region: Wahluke Slope AVA, Washington State Wine
Vineyard(s): Wahluke Slope and Rosebud Vineyards
Grape(s): 100% Sangiovese
Aging: 12 Months on Lees in 35% New French Oak Barrels, 100% Whole Cluster
Drinkability: Now through 2020
Body: Medium
Alcohol: 14.5% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Chianti Classico, Super Tuscans
Press: 92 Points Sean Sullivan of Wine Enthusiast Magazine
Food Pairing: Puttanesca, Pasta with Tomato Sauce, Salami

CasaSmith 2014 “Porcospino” Primitivo $19.99

Sean Sullivan of Wine Enthusiast Magazine gives it 91 points, mentioning that it “shows its promise” and has “unabashed appeal”. Similarly, Jeb Dunnuck of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate gives it 90 points and cites it as being “complex” and having “richness, excellent freshness and a great finish”. The “Porcospino” Primitivo is named for the Italian porcupine, and Primitivo is the Italian name for the grape Zinfandel. The fruit is sourced from Northridge Vineyard, which I feel is one of the most underrated in Washington State. Farmed using sustainable practices, and situated in the Wahluke Slope, this vineyard expresses a level of purity- in the fruit which it renders- above most others in the state. That makes it perfect for the often hedonistic nature of a grape such as Zinfandel.

Aged on the less for 12 months in 35% new French oak barrels, it’s noticeably bigger and bolder than the Sangiovese above, if that is your inclination. The nose is an explosion of ripe and jammy fruits, and hints of spices. On the palate it’s medium-full in body, very smooth, and again jammy. There is a plethora of raspberry jam and stewed red cherry, accented by hints of briar patch, cedar, and tobacco. While being big and fruit forward, it’s still very balanced in structure and acidity. A wonderful aperitivo to start an evening with, the Porcospino Primitivo pairs nicely with blue cheeses, cured meats, and antipasto plates.

Click here to order the CasaSmith “Porcospino” Primitivo

CasaSmith 2014 Cinghiale Primitivo

CasaSmith 2014 Cinghiale Primitivo

Region: Wahluke Slope AVA, Washington State Wine
Vineyard(s): Northridge Vineyard
Grape(s): 100% Primitivo (aka Zinfandel)
Aging: 12 Months on Lees in 35% New French Oak Barrels, 100% Whole Cluster
Drinkability: Now through 2019
Body: Medium-Full
Alcohol: 14.5% by volume
Drink This if you Like: California Zinfandel, Italian Primitivo
Press: 91 Points from Sean Sullivan of Wine Enthusiast Magazine
90 Points from Jeb Dunnuck of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
Food Pairing: Blue Cheese

Cheers

Yashar

Kasia 2014 “Open Highway” Syrah

Open Impulse

Kasia 2014 “Open Highway” Syrah, Red Heaven Vineyard, Red Mountain, WA

Fellow wine lovers, Kasia Kim is a Polish national who came to the US in 1997. After 12 years working in the legal field, she was bitten by the wine bug and made it a point to explore the best of what Washington has to offer. She worked for a few top local wineries, including Mark Ryan Winery, before feeling ready to launch her own project. This year she’s debuting her first wines, and I jumped on the chance to meet with her and taste what she’s come up with. In general, I don’t have great expectations from new winemakers- so many of them jump in head first without really having a grasp on the finer points of the craft. It can take several years for a winemaker to find their stride. Thus, I’m pleasantly surprised with today’s red, which knocked my socks off, on the second day of being open.

Kasia 2014 “Open Highway” Syrah $44.99

When I asked Kasia about the name of this wine, she said, “Open Highway came from a line in one of my favorite songs “It’s My Life” by Bon Jovi, which expresses my desire to live in the present, chase my dreams and do things my own way. Also, I see the meaning of the open highway as the freedom to do anything and go anywhere. The road is open, you can go as fast or as slow as you want. No need to take any exits, just go. You ain’t gonna live forever… The dandelion is a symbol of a wish and new beginning.”

The wine is one of the most densely layered I’ve had this year. I opened it at night and felt it was very tight, so I recorked it. Checking back the next day, I found it had opened up to reveal a very dense and complex wine that just keeps on giving. It’s sourced from Red Heaven Vineyard, which I’ve previously mentioned as one of my favorite up and coming sites on Red Mountain. It’s a full bodied Syrah, aged for 18 months in 30% new French oak barrels. It’s a wine I certainly recommend decanting, and it could use a bit more time in the bottle before opening- I’d suggest waiting until we’re a few months into 2017. When it opens up, you get loads of deep dark flavors such as blackberry and black cherry, with hints of smoke, dark chocolate, vanilla bean, and rocky earth. I found Kasia’s Open Highway Syrah to be tremendously pleasing, and I think you will too.

It’s a micro-production wine, with only 100 cases made, making it that much more special.

Click here to order the Kasia “Open Highway” Syrah

Kasia Winery 2014 Open Highway Syrah

Kasia Winery 2014 Open Highway Syrah

Region: Red Mountain AVA, Washington State Wine
Vineyard(s): Red Heaven
Grape(s): 100% Syrah
Aging: 18 Months in 30% New French Oak Barrels
Drinkability: 2017- 2021
Body: Full
Alcohol: 14.7% by volume
Drink This if you Like: Mark Ryan Lost Soul Syrah, Force Majeure, Idle Hands
Production: 100 cases

Cheers

Yashar