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The Freewheel line with a couple of English friends.

It takes a lot of beer to keep the wine business running smoothly. Here in Redwood City, we are very fortunate to have a great English style ale producer right in our backyard: Freewheel Brewing Company. The staff of K&L are fictures at our local pub, and it is a rare moment when one of us isn't there having a pint and a bite of their excellent food. We are also lucky enough to be the first place to offer their bottled beer for sale. If you have never had it, the Freewheel Brewing "FSB" Freewheel Special Bitter, California (500ml) is the benchmark in fresh, balanced, smashable ale. We will do our best to keep some in stock for you, the customer too!

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Tasting with Oliver Krug

Upcoming Events

We host regular weekly and Saturday wine tastings in each K&L location.

For the complete calendar, including lineups and additional details related to our events, visit our K&L Local Events on or follow us on Facebook.  


Visit our events page on Facebook or the K&L Spirits Journal for more information.

>>Upcoming Special Events, Dinners, and Tastings

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« January’s Picks | Main | Live for Tomorrow, Drink Organic! »

Brunello Baby!

MMVI. The New Year dawns and the first opportunity for 2001 Brunello is at hand. Mike Parres and I will be off in a month to get the scoop on the vintage with a power-tasting trip, lambasting our palates to bring back the best for you. One of the most interesting things about Tuscan wines is that you can have multiple opportunities with any given vintage. If you miss a great year in Burgundy it is over and finished. In Tuscany you can get for instance, 2004 Chianti in the marketplace now followed by 2003 Chianti Classico, 2001 and 2002 Chianti Classico Riserva, the 2000 vintage Brunello di Montalcino and finally the 1999 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva. We have already seen the evolution of the 2001 vintage through this series of wines and we’ve had some truly extraordinary wines. The 2001 vintage is not legally for sale until January 1, 2006, and many producers don’t release their wines until late spring or early summer. I’m writing this the 1st of December, so I can’t quote you any prices. But we will start to sell shortly after the beginning of the year on a pre-arrival basis. This year we are going to have first “Tranche” (to borrow from the French) prices and they will be real bargains for those who want to put out their money before the points come out. I’ve tasted many of these wines over the course of the last few years, and I can counsel you on how to prepare yourself. The 2001 vintage is very similar to the 1999 vintage in structure; it is a pure sangiovese vintage, linear, aromatic, balanced, whereas the 1999 vintage was graceful, poised and classic. You could think of a dancer’s or swimmer’s musculature—supple, flowing, powerful yet with poise first. The 2001 is powerful yet not with an exaggerated body builder’s physique. 2001 is classic architecture, symmetry and proportion. In 2001 coiled energy seethes inside. The color suggests density. Aromatics are exponentially amplified. Power oozes from these wines, yet replete with balance, sophistication and a long-lasting finish. Ripe doesn’t describe this vintage. Ripe is a measure of sugar. Like someone reaching his 21st birthday, it tells little of one’s maturity, personality or intelligence. This vintage has matured on the vine, like the instruments in a symphonic orchestra or gemstones with many facets; no one flavor dominates. These wines are a bit cocky. They have swagger, and they demand attention. They will reward cellaring. They will be great. Those of you in and around San Francisco will have a great opportunity to meet and taste with a gaggle (about 10+, tough to get Italians to confirm more than a month ahead of time) of Brunello producers on the evening of Sunday, January 22 from 6 to 8 p.m. $50.00 at our San Francisco store located at 638 4th St. just a block from the train station. Many will have samples of the 2001 vintage as well as their current releases, and it will be an incredible opportunity to meet and learn what these producers are doing. There will be limited space at this tasting so don’t dally! —Greg St.Clair

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