Stay Connected
What We're Drinking

 

Bruno Michel "Blanche" Brut Champagne $34.99One of our best non-vintage Champagnes, this organically grown blend of half each Chardonnay and Meunier comes entirely from Bruno Michel's estate. It has been aged for six years on the lees and shows wonderful natural toasty quality as well as incredible vibrance! This was the big hit of our most recent staff Champagne tasting and we think you will love it too.

Recent Videos

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 KLWines.com or follow us on Facebook.  

 

Free Spirits Tastings at K&L! Now that we have our license for spirits tastings in Redwood City and San Francisco, we’re excited to host regular free spirits tastings in those locations.  Check the Spirits Journal for an updated tasting schedule.

All tastings will feature different products from the Spirits Department and take place on Wednesdays in Redwood City and San Francisco. Visit our events page on Facebook or the K&L Spirits Journal for more information.

>>Upcoming Special Events, Dinners, and Tastings

See all K&L Local Events

Archives

Entries in direct imports (29)

Thursday
Sep222011

Iberian Wine News: Miguel Merino and Bodegas Puelles 

By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member

 

Exciting week, let's get to it.... 

 

1)  DI's! Direct Imports!  Direct from the farm to our stores to your cellar!

Well, the unthinkable is happening this week:  we are actually receiving a container from Europe on time in 2011!  And not just any container.  We are introducing our first two purely direct (unbrokered, visit the folks, shake hands, agree to be partners) wines which we have worked with in Spain.  They are both Rioja producers  and I'd love to introduce you to them.

 

Miguel Merino is a bodega, the man behind the bodega, as well as his son Miguel who - you guessed it - also helps out at the bodega.  Located in the beautiful town of Briones in Rioja Alta, Miguel Merino describes his wines as "updated classics."  The classic component would include very well situated, mature vines planted in calcareous clay in a cool part of the D.O.  These roughly eight hectares of vines are cultivated organically, still plowed by horse, and owned both by Miguel and a close friend of his.  "Updated" likely refers to Miguel's penchant for used barrels (used meaning 2-4 years old, not 2-4 decades old), coopered from a blend of French and American oak.  The wines taste like Rioja but are less marked by wood than many examples of both the traditional and more modern styles.  All of the Miguel Merino wines should age quite nicely.  I really look forward to turning people on to these wonderful wines.

 

Bodegas Puelles is a winery located in Abalos, another small Rioja Alta town, and it is run by Jesús Puelles and his brother.  Jesús works the vineyards, his brother handles the cellar.  Their vines are also farmed primarily organically, with a minimum use of treatments and naturally growing cover crops utliized between the rows.  They face north towards the majestic Sierra Cantabria mountains - they are very, very close affording the visitor quite a view.  Though we currently only carry a wonderfully bright and satisfying 07 crianza along with what is perhaps my favorite unoaked white rioja, we hope to bring in a few more wines from these folks; these wines are seriously good values.  And, if you are ever visiting in Rioja, the Puelles family runs a lovely inn with a few rooms offering beautiful views of their vines.  I hear that Jesús is quite the host, and having spent a brief amount of time with him, I do not doubt it.

 

2008 Miguel Merino "Viñas Jovenes" Rioja Alta - $19.99 

 

2005 Miguel Merino Reserva Rioja Alta - $29.99 

 

2004 Miguel Merino Gran Reserva Rioja Alta - $39.99  

  

 2009 Miguel Merino Mazuelo de Quinta Cruz Rioja Alta - $24.99 

 

2009 Bodegas Puelles Blanco Rioja - $11.99 

 

2007 Bodegas Puelles Crianza Rioja - $15.99

 

 
2) Txakoli Tasting this Friday!
 
Cold Basque white wine - does it get any better on a Friday??  There will be some fresh 2010 Isastegi cider as well.  Apples never tasted so good.
 
Friday, 9/23/2011 5pm-6:30pm $5

 

TXOX! (if that's a new expression for you, you'll learn all about it on Friday)

 

3) Non-DI Spanish Wine of the Week

In a world where commodity wines with goopy textures and sweet oak flavors tend to garner much of the attention, it provides some level of comfort that affordable, rustic wines of character such as this one still exist.

 

 

 

 

 

Hasta la proxima semana....

-Joe

*** 

Joe Manekin is the K&L Buyer for the wines of Spain, Portugal, and South America. He is committed to supporting the hard-working folks out there making honest wines that show a sense of place. When he is not at K&L, Joe enjoys cooking, traveling, supporting his friends at Terroir, doing occasional PR, booking and recording work for reggae band JohnStone, and writing for his wine, food and music blog, Old world Old School (www.oldworldoldschool.blogspot.com).

Thursday
Sep222011

Wine of the Week: 2009 Domaine Anne & Arnaud Goisot Bourgogne Côtes d'Auxerre Pinot Noir ($12.99)

The Goisot Burgogne is back! I love the Goisot wines for their purity, and at such a great price their Côte d’Auxerre Pinot is a wine you should buy by the case. It opens up as soon as the cork is pulled. The nose is fragrant with cherry and strawberry aromas, and the palate is filled with beautiful cherry fruit. It has an elegant mouthfeel and finishes with some soft tannins. This is a lovely Pinot Noir for only $13! - Steve Greer, K&L Staff Member | 9-16-2011

Côtes d'Auxerre is the northerly region in Burgundy adjacent to Chablis where the cool climate and Jurassic limestone terroir combine forces to produce light-bodied, perfumed, low-alcohol (and thus very food-friendly) wines. Light, bright, and fresh, the 2009 Goisot Bourgogne Côtes d'Auxerre Pinot Noir ($12.99) -- a K&L Direct Import -- is an exceptional example of the quality and value that can be found there.

Made from 30+ year old vines, this unoaked Pinot Noir presents textbook Côtes d'Auxerre red berry and earth spice aromatics. The palate is lively and fresh but not austere, showing just-ripe fruit flavors with spicy licorice accents, thanks to the excellence of the 2009 vintage. While sometimes the red wines from this region can be quite high in tannin and lacking in fruit (after all, Auxerre is one of the most northerly sites for red wine production in the world!) there was enough sunshine in 2009 to produce the body to balance the tannins and acidity. Enjoy this charming light-bodied wine young with a variety of foods (coq au vin or bœuf bourguignon are recommended) or hold for up to 10 years and savor it with gamier dishes -- pheasant, wild duck, rabbit -- or with a creamy brie cheese.

 

***

Step It Up!  K&L's Steve Greer  has come a long way since his days of drinking Blue Nun in the '80s.  Based in Hollywood, Steve specializes in Bordeaux, but has a soft spot for fun, food-friendly wines of all shades, especially when the price is right. Could your own collection or wine buying strategy use some improvements?  Join the K&L Personal Sommelier Service for customized monthly wine selections and service with Steve as chosen sommelier (did we mention it's free to join?) or visit the K&L Staff Review Page to browse recent wine reviews by Steve and the K&L staff.

Thursday
Jul282011

Wine of the Week: 2010 Weingut Allram Grüner Veltliner (1L) $10.99

Pick up a bottle of the 2010 Weingut Allram Grüner Veltliner (only $10.99 for a liter!) for your next garden party. In stock now at K&L Q: What has the snap of Sauvignon Blanc, the fleshiness of Chardonnay, and is guaranteed to please lovers of both while perfectly complementing the season's fresh green beans, peas, and peppers?

A: 2010 Weingut Allram Grüner Veltliner (1L) ($10.99)

Unoaked and sealed with a crown-cap, the 2010 Allram Gruner Veltliner (a K&L Direct Import) comes in a liter-sized bottle and is about as lively, fun, and fresh as the popular Austrian white wine can get.  The nose is textbook Gruner: filled with spice and white pepper, snap pea and grapefruit. It is sleek, focused and juicy owing to the wonderful bright acid structure of the vintage. 4th generation winemaker Michaela Haas, along with her husband Erich, took control of the family's 15 hectare estate in 1992 and today produce wines wines from some of the top sites in the Kamptal.

"The Allram Gruner is exactly the kind of wine I look forward to drinking over the summer. Bright and refreshing, this wine has a hint of spice, a crisp mouth feel and a brilliant clean finish. Pair with light summer dishes, or Asian inspired cuisine, or just a Tuesday night." -Kyle Kurani, K&L Staff Member (7/22/2011)