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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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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.

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Entries in Spain (41)

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
Aug252011

Wine of the Week: 2009 Burgo Viejo Rioja ($9.99)

The 2009 Burgo Viejo Rioja ($9.99) is one of our favorite young Riojas we have yet to taste this year -in stock now at the K&L near you and available online at KLWines.com!

We love Rioja. The wines are so versatile: they are generally sufficiently fruit forward to drink upon release, often times structured and serious enough to age, and amongst the most food friendly reds around. But the unoaked wines are not without merit as well. Especially for summer drinking, where fresh fruit expression often trumps oak derived nuances.

Based in the Rioja Baja town of Alfaro, Burgo Viejo consists of six families pooling together their vineyards and resources to produce very good wine. In the 2009 Burgo Viejo Rioja, Tempranillo forms the backbone, bolstered by Garnacha and Mazuelo (Carignane). This wine is all red macerated cherries, with excellent purity, texture and character, no doubt due in part to the malolactic fermentation and ageing taking place the old fashioned way, in concrete vats. This is undoubtedly one of my favorite young Riojas I have yet to taste this year. (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish wine buyer, 8/22/2011) 

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Friday
Mar042011

It's About Damm Time!

It's been a long time coming, but Estrella Damm Daura Gluten-free Lager is now available at K&L for for only $1.99 per bottle! In Gluten-Free Drinking, posted on Uncorked last July, I wrote that while there are a growing number of gluten-free beers made from alternative grains available on the US market, the few that actually taste like beer were at the time still trapped in Europe.

Well, while GF drinkers in Germany and Italy have been enjoying a variety of gluten-free beer options for quite some time, select US markets, and most importantly, all you gluten-free K&L customers, are finally able to find out for ourselves what the two-time award-winning *World's Best Gluten Free Beer* tastes like.

The 140-year-old Estrella Damm group of Barcelona-based S.A. Damm, one of Spain's most prestigious beer companies, partnered with the National Scientific Research Council to develop the technology to remove gluten from their barley-based beer to a guaranteed level of below 6 ppm (anything below 20 ppm is considered Celiac-safe by the FDA). They named the resulting Lager Daura.

The four-packs of these modestly priced lagers ($1.99 per bottle!) weren't even "officially" in stock the week before President's Day Weekend last month, when I snatched them up to take on the most important of beer road tests: the après-ski. In hot tub, recovering from a truly epic day of snowboarding (anyone in the Sierras that weekend knows what and which day I'm talking about), the crisp, malty, utterly beer-like taste of Estrella Damm Daura was, well, pretty damm great.

While I certainly do appreciate the GF beers out there made from alternative grains like sorghum, millet, and corn (Bards comes to mind as a standout in the category) I've asked around, and all of my gluten-free friends and neighbors who've tried the Daura, including the GF gals behind the SF-based glutenfreegluttons.com agree--it's the real thing.

It's made from barley and tastes like beer.  Pure and simple.

Buy Estrella Damm Daura Gluten Free Lager ($1.99) on KLWines.com!

Chiara Shannon