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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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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 KLWines.com 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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Archives

Entries from November 1, 2011 - November 30, 2011

Thursday
Nov172011

Spanish and Portuguese Wine News 11/16/11: Talking Turkey

By Joe Manekin | K&L Spanish and Portuguese Wine Buyer

Greetings from Iberilandia,

Let's talk turkey.  We've got some new stuff that I think would make terrific turkey day wine.  Also, our last Vibrant Rioja Thursday tasting to look forward to this Thursday in Redwood City.  Finally, we have some new sherries – one everyday Manzanilla as well as a few special occasion/collectible things from Equipo Navazos.

1.) Thanksgiving wines

I have found that Albariño works wonderfully with the Thanksgiving meal.  The wine's ripe, juicy fruit seems to complement nearly everything on the table, and the acidity invigorates your palate and keeps you focused on the most important business of the holiday: eating. 

2010 Carballal Albariño Rias Baixas - $14.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1072339

 

2009 Do Ferreiro Albariño Rias Baixas - $24.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1065195

 

Rioja is my default Thanksgiving red (to satisfy the French side of my euro inclined palate, I'll usually pick a good Beaujolais as well).  There is something about the generosity of Rioja's fruit and the gently balanced acidity which just works great at table, whether you're going Spanish style with lamb and roasted potatoes or American style with turkey and mashed spuds. 

2007 Bodegas Puelles Crianza Rioja - $15.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1072531

 

2001 Señorio de Peciña Reserva Rioja - $29.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1069149

 

2001 Señorio de Peciña Reserva Rioja (1.5L) –  $59.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1079798

 

Finally, my pick for something a bit different.  Think of this as one of Spain's best winemaker's response to Beaujolais.

 

2010 Bodegas y Viñedos Ponce "Clos Lojen" Manchuela - $15.99

 http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1078214

 

2.) New Sherries

How about a fresh, recently bottled Manzanilla?

La Guita Manzanilla Sanlucar de Barrameda - $14.99

 http://www.klwines.com/content.asp?&N=0&Nr=OR%28OutofStock%3AN%2CInventory+Location%3ASpecial+Order%29&Ns=QtySoldLast30%7C1

 

And, some rare, rare wines, for the collector with a sweet tooth.

Equipo Navazos La Bota de Pedro Ximenez #11 Jerez - $79.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1079258

 

Equipo Navazos La Bota de Pedro Ximenez #12 Montilla Moriles - $79.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1079267

 

3.) Vibrant Rioja

Join us in Redwood City tomorrow (Thursday 11/17) for our final Vibrant Rioja tasting (featuring all Reservas and Gran Reservas!) 5-6:30pm. $5 RSVP and/or invite friends, or roll solo - it's going to be well worth the $5.

Saludos,

Joe

---

Joe Manekin

Spanish, Portuguese, Latin American Wine Buyer

K&L Wine Merchants

Ph: 877.559.4637 ext. 2748

joemanekin@klwines.com

Wednesday
Nov162011

Brick on Beer: Two Big Beers and a Lot of Small Ones

By Bryan Brick | K&L Beer Buyer

Hey All,

So yeah, Firestone Walker "XV" Anniversary Ale, California 22oz (1 bottle limit per customer) $22.99 just walked in the door and I believe it will probably walkout just as quickly. Better get your order in now, I have no idea if we will get as much as we had of the XIV at this point, but my feelings are that we probably will not.

Also we just received a nice sized shipment of The Bruery "Four Calling Birds" Belgian Style Dark Strong Ale, California 750ml (3 bottle limit per customer) $11.99, so nicely sized in fact that I’ve upped the allocation per customer from 1 bottle to 3 bottles. Let’s consider this my Christmas present to you!

Plus we just received a ton of new beers from some really cool producers:

AleSmith "Anvil Ale" ESB, California 22oz $4.49

2011 Anchor Brewing Christmas Ale, California (1.5L) $15.99

Birra Del Borgo "Duchessic" Saison with Lambic Added, Italy 12.7oz $11.99

Birra Del Borgo "L'Equilibrista" Bière de Champagne, Italy 750ml $24.99

Birra Del Borgo "Sedici Gradi" Barleywine, Italy 12.7oz $15.99

Birrificio l'Olmaia "PVK" Saison, Italy 330ml $8.99

Bootlegger's Brewery Pumpkin Ale, California 22oz $4.49

Brasserie à Vapeur "Saison de Pipaix" Saison Ale, Belgium 25.4oz $9.99

2010 Brasserie des Franches-Montagnes 'Abbaye de Saint Bon Chien' Swiss Ale, Switzerland 750ml $22.99

Brasserie Dubuisson "Scaldis Prestige de Nuits" Strong Dark Ale Aged in Burgundy Barrels, Belgium 750ml $39.99

Brasserie Dupont "Avec les Bons Voeux" Saison, Belgium 750ml $9.99

2011 Brauerei Hofstetten Krammer "Granit" Eisbock, Austria 330ml $7.49

Caldera Brewing Company India Pale Ale, Oregon 12oz cans $1.83

Caldera Brewing Company Pale Ale, Oregon 12oz cans $1.89

Corsendonk Pater "Abbey Brown Ale" Dubbel, Belgium 750ml $9.49

Domaine Christian Drouin "Comte de Lauriston" Cider, France 25.4oz $10.99

Domaine Christian Drouin "Pays d'Auge" Apple Cider, France 25.4oz $12.99

Domaine Christian Drouin "Poire" Pear Cider, France 25.4oz $16.99

2010 Etienne Dupont "Bouche E. Dupont" Cider, France 750ml $12.99

Etienne Dupont "Triple" Cider, France 750ml $12.99

2011 Goose Island "Pere Jacques" Dubbel, Illinois 22oz $7.99

Great Divide Brewing "Fresh Hop" Pale Ale, Colorado 22oz $7.99

2010 J.W. Lees "Harvest Ale" Matured in Port Casks Barleywine, England 9.3oz $9.49

2010 J.W. Lees "Harvest Ale" Matured in Sherry Casks Barleywine, England 9.3oz $8.99

KleinBrouwerij De Glazen Toren "Cuvee Angelique" Dubbel Speciale Belge, Belgium 750ml $13.99

Klosterbrauerei Ettaler Kloster Dunkel, Germany 500m $4.49

Klosterbrauerei Ettaler Kloster Helles, Germany 500ml $4.49

RCH Brewery "Old Slug" Porter, England 16.9 oz $6.49

Stone Brewing "Vertical Epic 11.11.11" Belgian Ale Brewed With Chilies and Cinnamon, California 22oz $6.99

The Bruery/Dogfish Head "Faster, Bigger, Better, Bolder" Spiced Ale, California 750ml (1 bottle limit per customer) $13.99

Thornbridge Brewery "Bracia" Imperial Stout, England 16.9oz $16.99

To Øl "Black Ball" Porter, Denmark 330ml $5.49

shop them now on KLWines.com 

 

-Bryan

 

K&L Wine Merchants

Redwood City

bryanbrick@klwines.com

(650) 556-2758

Friday
Nov112011

Keith's Burgundy Hotline: Dungeness Crab, Chablis, the world is good.

By: Keith Wollenberg | K&L Burgundy Buyer

Hello Burgundy Lovers,

Another container just landed, with some wines I have been waiting impatiently for.  They are a range of superb Chablis from Jean-Claude Bessin.  He has not had a West Coast Importer, until I talked him into selling us a few cases.  Before he would sell me any wine he wanted to know who I worked with in Chablis, about our stores, what I knew about Chablis, etc. etc.  It was a challenging and rewarding visit.

Our supplies are limited, and these should go quickly, once people taste the wines.  You know I am not prone to hyperbole, but tasting in his cellar last summer was a highpoint of my trip. These are wines of Raveneau or Dauvissat quality.  He works by hand, with no machine harvesting, no herbicides, no pesticides and  use of cover crops. 

Let me make 2 bold predictions:

1)      You WILL NOT be sorry to have these brilliant wines in  your cellar and on hand when crab season starts.

2)      You WILL be sorry later if you miss these wines.  I bought some bottles for my own cellar before I sent out this email.  ‘Nuff said.

Here is what Jean-Claude has to say about his domaine (From an interview in our November newsletter, translated from the French by yours truly)

 

How would you describe your winemaking philosophy?

“The Art of the Vines”:  To be guided by nature.

“The art of Winemaking”: Simplicity.

 

What wines or winemakers helped influence your philosophy?

No one particular wine or winemaker.  We apply all the traditional methods, which we adapt and change according to our sensibilities, staying in tune with nature.

 

How involved in grape-growing are you? Is there a particular vineyard site that excites you year after year?

I am 100% involved in grape-growing, as wine is made in the vineyard.  Each of my vineyard sites reveals its secrets over the years as I work with it in successive vintages.

 

How do you think your palate has evolved over the years? How do you think that has influenced your wines?

The purity of our wines has always been a priority.  When I was younger, I liked wines which were perfumed, with richness and roundness, but today I prefer elegance, finesse and personality in wine.  I leave it to you to taste my wines and tell me how this change has influenced my winemaking!

 

What kinds of food do you like to pair your wines with?

Sashimi of Scallops, Wild Sea Bass ...

 

What changes are planned for coming vintages? Any new (top secret) varietals, blends or proprietary wines on the horizon?

We intend no grand changes, just to continue to work with, and listen to, each vineyard site.

 

Is there a style of wine that you think appeals to critics that might not represent your personal favorite style? How do you deal with it?

No comment.

 

What do you drink when you are not drinking your own wine?

All the good wines!

 

Do you collect wine? If so, what’s in your cellar?

Burgundies, of course, but also the wines of the Loire Valley, Rhone Valley and other regions.

 

What do you see as some of the biggest challenges facing the wine industry today?

I will not venture an opinion on this subject.  I consider myself a craftsman, and feel that the greatest challenge facing small growers (such as I am) is to remain artisanal.

 

These wines are in stock in all locations, and available on  the web  or by phone, while they last. 

 

2009 Domaine Jean-Claude Bessin Chablis "Vieilles Vignes"   $19.99

100% Hand-harvested, all wild yeast fermentations, and a full 18 months of élevage. Reserved with lots of concentration. Made from 45-55 year old vines. Nice minerality, with a bit of floral notes on the nose. Very nice weight on the mid-palate from the old-vine concentration. (Keith Wollenberg, K&L Burgundy Buyer, 03/11) Allen Meadows writes: "A pretty nose of modest Chablis character also features notes of pear, white peach and apricot that lead to rich, generous and relatively full-bodied flavors that possess a seductive texture on the delicious... Read More » 


2009 Domaine Jean-Claude Bessin Chablis 1er Cu "Montmains" $24.99

Very lovely character, with clean, focused fruit and nice minerality threaded behind it. This is very good. It sees some (not much) neutral wood in its élevage. (Keith Wollenberg, K&L Burgundy Buyer, 03/11) Allen Meadows scores this 90 points and writes:"A fresh, elegant and floral nose is nuanced by hints of stone, spice and green fruit that merges into middle weight flavors that possess good richness but also good detail, all wrapped in a delicious, balanced and solidly complex finish." (Burghound, 10/11) 


2009 Domaine Jean-Claude Bessin Chablis 1er Cu "La Fôret"    $26.99

This I thought was truly terrific Chablis, with very, very pretty fruit and wonderful concentration on the palate. Absolutely singing at this juncture. Notes of honey combine beautifully with the minerality here. Has that characteristic of the acidity that makes you r mouth water, quite literally. As Jean-Claude told me: "This terroir typically has lots of freshness and tension, from the limestone rocks in the soil here." " (Keith Wollenberg, K&L Burgundy Buyer, 03/11) Allen Meadows calls this "Outstanding", scores it 91, and writes:"This is a bit f... Read More » 


2009 Domaine Jean-Claude Bessin Chablis 1er Cu "Fourchaume"   $26.99

From several parcels, in the heart of Fourchaume and one in Homme Mort. Open and pretty in character, with lovely floral notes and a rather round character on the palate for a young Chablis. (Keith Wollenberg, K&L Burgundy Buyer, 03/11) Allen Meadows Scores it 91 and writes: "(from a 2 ha parcel in Fourchaume with a small portion in L'Homme Mort). This also displays white orchard fruit aromas with hints of exoticism but here there is more of a floral influence that slides gracefully into rich and big-bodied flavors that possess fine depth and length, ... Read More » 


2009 Domaine Jean-Claude Bessin Chablis 1er Cu "Fourchaume" "La Pièce au Comte"   $31.99

This is Jean-Claude's oldest vines, aged 58-78 years old. It is very, very elegant on the palate with more extract and focus. It also shows terrific poise and energy. Lots of little tine white flowers on the nose, with pronounced minerality and a more powerful finish. Terrific! (Keith Wollenberg, K&L Burgundy Buyer, 03/11) Allen Meadows calls this Outstanding!, scores it 92 and writes: "(Bessin explains that this is essentially the old vines Fourchaume). This appears to have better integration of the wood than is typical at this early stage with a s... Read More » 


2009 Domaine Jean-Claude Bessin Chablis Grand Cru "Valmur"   $49.95

Ok, folks, hold your hats. This is the most concentrated, high-energy 2009 I tasted on my March trip. It comes from the Domaine's oldest vines (more than 80 years, but no one knows how old they actually are!) Lots of energy, lots of tension, more size than any of the 1er Crus, terrific concentration. In a word, superb! (Keith Wollenberg, K&L Burgundy Buyer) Allen Meadows scores this 93, awards a "Sweet Spot" and notes: "A visible if discreet touch of wood allows free rein to the green fruit and spiced pear aromas that complement the rich, serious and... Read More » 

 

A Santé, and enjoy Dungeness crab season, if you are in the right part of the country. 

-Keith

 

Mr. Keith WOLLENBERG

Directeur Commercial Bourgogne

K&L Wine Merchants

http://www.klwines.com

+1-650-556-2724 Direct Line

Keithw@klwines.com