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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.

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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.

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Entries in Loire Valley (5)

Friday
Dec052014

Exploring Loire - Cheverny

 

The Loire Valley’s vast geographical and climatic diversity makes it one of the most eclectic wine regions in the world. Unfortunately, it’s a region often underrated, underappreciated and under explored by the modern consumer. Some wine lovers get stuck at Sancerre or Vouvray, failing to explore the more than 80 different appellations that provide opportunities for every palate. It has long been one of my favorite regions and exploring its numerous unique appellations has been an adventure. This week we tasted wines from Cheverny and Cour-Cheverny, some of  the most obscure wines of the Loire Valley. While Cabernet Franc and Chenin Blanc tend to dominate in the Loire, the Cheverny often blends varieties like Pinot Noir, Gamay, and Côt (Malbec) for the reds, and Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Menu Pineau for the whites. The exception being Cour-Cheverny, which exclusively uses the ancient white grape of Romorantin. The region is tiny, with around 330 hectares of vines in Cheverny and a mere 48 hectares in Cour-Cheverny, meaning production is small and the amount reaching the US markets is even smaller. That’s why when I inevitably find a bottle I love, I buy more than one and save it for a few years to come. I hope these tasting notes will encourage you to adventure into the unknown and explore the lesser known appellations of the Loire Valley.

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Wednesday
Oct262011

Too Expensive for a White Wine? The Dagueneau 2009's Are Here!

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Silex" Pouilly-Fumé By: Eric Story | K&L Loire Valley Wine Buyer

Don’t let yourself be fooled. Ask any winemaker and he/she will tell you that the process of making white wine is by far one of the most difficult things a winemaker can do. To create white wines that are considered world class and some of the most prestigious wines to ever be bottled is quite a feat indeed. 

This is what happens with Sauvignon Blanc at Domaine Didier Dagueneau in France's Loire Valley. Didier's son Benjamin took over for his father’s untimely death back in 2008. Since then he has not only filled the huge shoes that his father left behind, but has begun lacing up a bigger pair. This kid is frustratingly talented (I say that because he is younger than me) and is making legendary wines from the place where he was born, raised, respects and is proud to show off.

Here is a quick rundown of the different cuvées:

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Silex" Pouilly-Fumé ($109.99)

Produced from vines ranging in age from 15-50 years old planted high on the slopes of Saint Andelain (the highest village in the Pouilly-Fume appellation) and only from vineyard plots that have an extremely high content of silex. The vines are cropped to produce much lower yields than most. The juice is then barrel fermented and then aged in the famous Dagueneau cigar barrels. Since there is a much lower clay content in the soils, this wine is typically much more austere in its youth and needs a fair amount of time to come into itself. This is considered the Domain’s top wine and often referred to as their “Grand Cru”.

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Buisson Renard" Pouilly Fumé ($89.99)

Produced from vines from a single plot located mid-slope on the southwest side of Saint Andelain. The soil here is a nearly perfect and harmonious mixture of clay and silex. It is barrel fermented and aged in mostly neutral 450 and 600 liter barrels. This site was formally known as Buisson Menard until a French journalist committed the mistake of calling is Buisson Renard and it has been known as such since.  

 

 

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Pur Sang" Pouilly-Fumé

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Pur Sang" Pouilly-Fumé ($79.99)

This is made mostly from a south/southwest vineyard site called “La Folie” which is located just north of Saint Andelain. There is a very small percentage of silex here but the soils are deep and contain rich clay with some chalky limestone. The wines are then treated very much in the same way as the “Silex” cuvée. This is typically the most popular cuvée from the domaine.

 

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Blanc Fumé de Pouilly"

2009 Domaine Didier Dagueneau "Blanc Fumé de Pouilly" ($64.99) 

This is the “entry level” cuvée – if there is such a thing. Produced from younger vine plots not actually on the hill of Saint Andelain. The entire purpose of this wine is to show off the pure expression of Sauvignon Blanc from the typical Pouilly Fumé terroir. Always a good showing of up front minerals and citrus with plenty of supporting weight coming through the finish.

 

Friday
Aug192011

Wine of the Week: 2006 Jo Pithon "La Croix Picot" Savennieres ($14.99) 

This stunning Savennieres has been cellared in a temperture controlled warehouse and is drinking at its peak. Available for $14.99 at K&L while supplies last! We were thrilled to get ahold of the last of the 2006 Jo Pithon "Les Bergères" Anjou Blanc  earlier this year, which disappeared like hotcakes once word spread of the dissolution of the Jo Pithon label.* So, when some 06 Savennieres became available (one of the last wines he produced), we grabbed all we could! This stunning Chenin will not stay in stock for very long, though...

"Savennieres is traditionally the longest lived expression of dry Chenin Blanc in the Loire Valley of France. Jo Pithon was forced out of his property by some unscrupulous double dealings with his business partners and the 2006 "La Croix Picot" Savennieres ($14.99; previously $34) was one of the last wines he produced. Full of honeycomb, spice and apple skin notes, this stunning 100% Chenin Blanc has a medium to full bodied texture with vibrant underlying acidity. It has been cellared in a temperature-controlled warehouse and is drinking at its peak." -Keith Mabry, K&L Staff Member (08/18/2011)

*NOTE: Jo Pithon continues to make great wines in a partnership with his son-in-law under the Pithon-Paille label.