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So why is the 2012 Ladera Cabernet—made from almost entirely from Howell Mountain fruit, from an incredible vintage—sitting pretty at $34.99? I honestly can't tell you. Maybe it's because no one knows how good the Ladera holdings in Howell Mountain are. Or maybe it's the pride that winemaker Jade Barrett takes in making a serious wine for a reasonable price. Or maybe it's because Ladera is an overlooked gem in a sea of Napa alternatives. For whatever the reason, I'm not going to complain. We tasted the 2012 vintage at our staff training yesterday and I was just floored by the quality of this wine. Dark, fleshy fruit cloaked in fine tannins, bits of earth, and in total balance, with enough gusto to go the long haul in your cellar. It's a whole lotta wine for $34.99, and it's made primarily from Howell Mountain grapes, harvested during a great vintage. 

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Entries in Jimenez-Landi (2)

Thursday
Oct252012

Spanish & Portuguese Wine News 10/25/12: The State of Affairs

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

Greetings wine drinkers,

This week has been an inventory counting week, meaning there is not much new stuff.  That said, I did have the opportunity to fully examine the state of the inventory (as well as to listen to Billy Joel's The Stranger; such a classic record and great music to count bottles of wine to, "bottle of red, bottle of white," c'mon it's perfect). I'm happy to report that the state of the Spanish, Portuguese, and South American inventory is strong. There are a few wines which I noticed we still have very small quantities of which you may want to check out before they disappear forever.

2007 Vinya Sanfeliu Tempranillo Costers del Segre - $17.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1062758

Hippy wine. No sulphur added.  When this 100% tempranillo is on its 'A' game, it's delicious.

2009 Jimenez-Landi "El Reventon" Garnacha vino de la tierra de Castilla y Leon - $69.99

2009 Bernabeleva Garnacha de Viña Bonita Vinos de Madrid - $49.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1077415

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1107183

Having recently visited both of these bodegas (and in Bernabeleva's case, the vineyards as well) I can confirm what I suspected earlier: these are among the best wines in all of Spain right now. All garnacha, all whole cluster; garnacha made by people who want to take grenache back to its rightful place, where clairty, terroir expression and energy dominate. Fans of Rayas, Vieux Donjon, Eric Texier...take note.

2009 Vera de Estenas "PG" Madurado en Barrica Bobal Utiel-Requeña - $14.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1064681

Rustic, gritty wine from a pretty fierce, rustic grape.  Bobal can be fairly high in acid and tannin, though this expression does have some tasty fruit to balance things out. Very interesting wine for the price, not for the fruit fanatics but rather for the "make mine traditional" crowd.

*Lots of goodies coming in next week: a large spread of Lopez de Heredia wines - including current release of the '91 Tondonia Blanco Gran Reserva and one of my all time faves, 1981 Bosconia Gran Reserva. Also, some killer wines from Vega de Ribes in the "garraf" sub-zone of the Penedes.

Saludos,

-Joe

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Joe Manekin

Spanish, Portuguese, Latin American Wine Buyer

K&L Wine Merchants

Ph: 877.559.4637 ext. 2748

joemanekin@klwines.com

 

Thursday
Jul192012

Spanish & Portuguese Wine News: World Class Grenache from Jimenez-Landi

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

Hi all,

Some pretty amazing garnacha based wines are coming from the D.O. of Mentrida, just outside of Toledo, Spain. While it may not be garnacha weather for some of you, for anyone in SF and in the cooler coastal areas most evenings are fair game for these surprisingly elegant wines.  And, for the rest of you, these wines are so good that you might just want to claim a few before cooler Fall weather arrives; I seriously doubt we willl have any of these left by then.

Daniel Gomez Jímenez-Landi studied winemaking at university in Madrid, and he has quickly become, along with the likes of Marc Isart (Bernabeleva, see other K&L garnacha emails), one of the hottest young Spanish winemakers out there.  Together they are proving that high end Spanish wines need not be: 1.) Traditional, long established Rioja 2.) Heavily marketed, carefully concocted soulless corporate juice or 3.) Over priced, overripe cult wine from Rioja, Ribera del Duero or Priorat. 

Rather, Jimenez-Landi makes wines that he wants to drink.  And, judging by these wines, I would imagine that he wants to drink good Burgundy, traditional Barolo, cru Beaujolais, Loire red, etc.  In other words, not the usual Spanish references for world class wine, and in turn these are not your usual high end Spanish wines.  They have great acidity and finesse, tons of character, and are made with some techniques more commonly found across the border in France:  whole cluster fermentations, long, cool macerations, a purposeful reduction in the use of sulphur in the cellar, ageing in more neutral, larger wood.  These are some of Spain's best wines right now, and in my opinion easily join the ranks of our very best grenache based wines in the store.

2009 Jimenez-Landi "Pielago" Garnacha Mentrida - $34.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1107179

2009 Jimenez-Landi "Cantos del Diablo" Garnacha Mentrida - $69.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1107184

2009 Jimenez-Landi "El Reventon" Garnacha vino de la tierra de Castilla y Leon - $69.99

http://www.klwines.com/detail.asp?sku=1107183

Un saludo,

Joe

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Joe Manekin

Spanish, Portuguese, Latin American Wine Buyer

K&L Wine Merchants

Ph: 877.559.4637 ext. 2748

joemanekin@klwines.com