100th Private Client Newsletter
“The Best of the Best”
October 31st, 2016 

Our 100th Private Client newsletter could not have come at a better time! Right now we have some of our most in-demand and collectable wines in stock and so we’ve curated here a “Best of the Best” list for you. Act quickly, many of these wines are in short supply.

I’m happy to chat anytime should you have questions about our wines. This list is not exhaustive. We have many, many other wines available, usually 300 or more at once, from $15 to $500, and we are adding new winery partners on a continual basis.

Please visit us on the web for all our products, reviews and catalogues.

I hope to hear from you,


Champagne Vilmart & Cie “Coeur de Cuvée” 2007

$166.95 per bottle, cases of six

3 cases available

Vilmart’s “Coeur de Cuvée” is the best Champagne made by this greatest of “Grower/Producer” Champagne houses. In widely-declared vintage years, it’s a “Top 10” wine in the region along with Dom Perignon and Salon. In non-vintage years, it is the best Champagne made, full stop and 2007 is one of those years. This is rare and exotic. I highly recommend it.

“This expressive version offers a rich tapestry of baked currant, ground anise, clove, kumquat, fruitcake and toasted coconut flavours, framed by fine, crystalline acidity. Shows lovely definition and harmony, with a long, creamy finish. Disgorged April 2014. Drink now through 2029.”

95 points, Wine Spectator, Sept 2015

“Another gorgeous wine, the 2007 Coeur de Cuvée is rich, ample and totally seductive. In 2007, the Coeur de Cuvée is intensely aromatic and highly expressive, with striking textural resonance throughout. Creamy and spherical through to the finish, the 2007 is a model of elegance and sumptuousness. The 2007 can be enjoyed today for its generous personality or cellared for another decade-plus. Disgorged March 2014. 2016 – 2027”

94+ points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, July 2015

Domaine Leflaive Puligny-Montrachet

“Clavoillon” 1er Cru 2014

$174.95 per bottle, cases of 6

“This is indisputably the greatest estate for white wine in the whole world, producing wines that are the utmost in discretion and elegance; profound, long lasting wines full of richly concentrated fruit which for me represent all that is best in white Burgundy”

Clive Coates, Master of Wine

We are beyond honoured to be able to represent Domaine Leflaive and to distribute two of their Puligny-Montrachet Premier Cru vineyard wines. The other we have is 2014 1er Cru Folatieres , of which I have a few cases still available at $244.95 per bottle.

“(Leflaive is the largest holder of Clavoillon with a whopping 4.8 ha parcel that averages 40+ years of age). Relatively firm reduction knocks down the nose and about all that can be said is that the underlying fruit seems ripe. Otherwise the rich, generously proportioned, fleshy and full-bodied flavours are solidly concentrated and a bit more mineral-driven than usual while ending in an intense, attractively textured and impressively lingering finish. This stylish effort displays lovely balance and a fine sense of underlying tension and overall, this is notably more complex than it usually is at this early stage. 2022+”

(90-93) points, burghound.com, Issue 63, June 2016

Domaine Serene

“Evenstad Reserve” Chardonnay 2014

$94.95 per bottle, cases of 6

The “Evenstad Reserve”, named for owners Ken and Grace Evenstad, is the estate’s flagship wine program. It is a blend of vineyards within the Dundee Hills appellation. It is consistently one of the state’s top Chardonnays year-to-year.

“Focused and expressive, this is layered with wet stone, tangy citrus, pear and green guava flavours that swirl through an expansive finish, gaining momentum and extra dimension with each sip. Drink now through 2024.”

95 points, Wine Spectator, Oct 2016

“An explosion of fruit flavours incorporating creamy peach, apple and pear are the highlights, nicely balanced by lemony acids. It seems to gather strength and focus as it weaves through the palate, deliciously framed by toasty oak.”

93 points, Wine Enthusiast, Dec 2016

Pio Cesare “Ornato” Barolo 2012

$129.95 per bottle, cases of 6

A single-vineyard Barolo from three plots of the family-owned Ornato Estate in Serralunga d’Alba. Ornato is one of the top vineyards in the entire Barolo region.

After temperature controlled fermentation, it is aged in medium toasted French oak for 36 months. 70% in new 225 litre barriques and 30% in 2,500 litre casks.

“This is amazingly structured with tight and polished tannins that give this wine superb linear length and balance. Full body, bright and focused fruit. Goes on for minutes. Beautiful now but better in 2020.”

98 points, JamesSuckling.com, March 2016

Fontodi “Flaccianello della Pieve” IGT 2012

$129.95 per bottle, cases of 6

(reservations taken today will be delivered in December)

Flaccianello is simply one of Italy’s greatest wines. A 100% Sangiovese from Panzano’s Conca d’Oro, this is “grand cru” Sangiovese. A reference-point example of the grape.

If you like super-Tuscans you should be buying Flaccianello, it is one of the great values. If you buy Brunello di Montalcinos for their exotic scents and palate presence, you should be buying Flaccianello. There are few wines with their ongoing legacy of “Classic” scores from critics and “Wine Spectator Top 10’s”.

“The 2012 Flaccianello della Pieve, a selection of the estate’s best fruit, presents a darker, more virile expression of Sangiovese. Here, too, the purity of the flavors is truly striking. Cinnamon, cloves, new leather, licorice and plums are some of the notes that soar from the glass. The 2012 is full-bodied and voluptuous, in classic Flaccianello style, but the new French oak is much better integrated than it often is at this stage, the result of a move to lower toast levels over the last few years. This is one of the finest young Flaccianellos I can remember. Simply put, the 2012 Flaccianello is a real stunner. Wow!”

97 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Sept 2015

“In great vintages this is the sort of wine you can drink once and remember forever. It’s often one of the more exotic Sangioveses made – syrupy in texture, tooth-stainingly rich, exceptionally complex, and dappled with uncommon flavours such as ginger, black licorice, persimmon and grapefruit. Most impressive of all is the way the wine explodes with sappy juiciness.”

Karen McNeil, “The Wine Bible” (2015)

Patrick Jasmin Côte Rôtie 2014

$74.95 per bottle, cases of 6

Patrick Jasmin tends his family’s eleven parcels of land in eight lieux-dits, which total only five hectares. The precipitously steep slopes and dangerous terrain means no mechanization of the vineyard can be implemented, so they pick the Syrah and Viognier by hand (and crush by foot!).

Each parcel is vinified separately and then blended. The wine is moved into a selection of barrels of different sizes and ages and after 10 years of use, older barrels are retired. Jasmin’s wines are “classic” Côte Rôtie. No new oak, no heavy extraction. They are perfumed, balanced and the picture of elegance.

“Deep ruby. Aromas of ripe red and dark berries, peppery spices and fresh flowers are backed by a deeper licorice quality. Silky and lithe in character, showing very good energy and lift to the bitter cherry and black raspberry flavours. Becomes sweeter with air and finishes juicy and long, gaining shape and grip from a dusting of fine-grained tannins.”

90-92 points, Josh Raynolds, vinous.com, March 2016

Chateau Montelena “The Montelena Estate” Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 

$144.95 per bottle, cases of 6

($47 per bottle less than LCBO Retail)

Montelena’s “Estate” Cabernet is blue-chip Napa Cab if ever there was one. For over 40 years, this estate wine from Calistoga is a guaranteed home-run. Normally, I would recommend ageing this for a few years before pulling the cork, but 2012 produced such generous, open wines, I would say enjoy some soon and for 20+ years.

This vintage the blend is 98.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1% Cabernet Franc, 0.5% Petit Verdot which spent 24 months in 100% French oak barriques. 30% were first-fill.

“Montelena’s 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Estate is shaping up to be a jewel of a wine. Rich, ample and generous, but very much within the Montelena style, the 2012 captures the essence of the year in its pure resonance and sikiness. Dark red stone fruits, plums, menthol and tobacco with brambly undertones emerge over time, but the flavours are quite primary and undeveloped, all of which bode extremely well for the future. I expected the 2012 will offer a long and broad drinking window of pure pleasure. 2017 – 2042.”

94+ points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Dec 2014

Duckhorn “Three Palms” Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

$149.95 per bottle, cases of 6

Another amazing Calistoga Cabernet we offer is Duckhorn’s “Three Palms Vineyard” 2012 – this is back by popular demand.

The northern Napa Valley is as warm as it gets and the well-drained alluvial soils in this vineyard allow for development of intense, well-balanced Cabernet fruit. This is aromatic, powerful and simply delicious wine.

“The last of the five 2012 Cabernets in Duckhorn’s current release lineup turns out to be the best, and yes, I spit and clear during tastings, so no need to fear a false positive. Artfully blended, it shows blackberry, cassis, pie spice, bay leaf and struck rock on the nose, leading you to a mouth filling palate that showcases berry and dark chocolate over stony mineral and fennel in addition to the nose elements, delivered in a silk textured, lingering impression style. Wonderful wine. Contains 10% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec.”

97 points, Rich Cook, winereviewonline, Aug 2016

Shafer “Relentless” Napa Valley 2012

$149.95 per bottle, cases of 12

Arguably the best Syrah made in Napa Valley is named in honour of Shafer’s amazing winemaker Elias Fernandez. His work ethic and attention to detail is relentless and that is why their Syrah program produces one of Napa’s most singularly memorable red wines. Forget saying “I don’t like Syrah” and consider this “Napa Valley red wine” if that helps. It is one of the most profound and memorable wines I drink each year.

“The 2013 Syrah Relentless might end up being the finest one they’ve ever made. The berries were the smallest they’ve encountered, and they were not the only winery to say that about the 2013 red varietals. A blend of 97% Syrah and 3% Petite Sirah, the wine is opaque black/purple with an incredible nose of subtle wood, charcoal embers, blackberry, blueberry and black raspberry fruit, baking spices, and again, a roasted meatiness with some bouquet garni thrown in the background. The complex aromatics were already starting to roar from the glass, and the wine, enormously endowed, is full-bodied and flawlessly constructed. This is a killer effort that should drink well for 40+ years.”

(98-100) points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Oct 2014

O’Shaughnessy Estate

Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

$164.95 per bottle, cases of 6

“Deep, inky and powerful, the 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is a classic wine endowed with tons of regional character and personality to burn. The inclusion of all seven Bordeaux varieties in the blend adds layers of nuance and complexity. Hints of game, smoke, licorice and dark spices add nuance to a somber, brooding Cabernet Sauvignon that is going to need at least a few years to fully open up.”

95+ points, Antonio Galloni vinous.com, Oct 2015

“The 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is O’Shaughnessy’s largest cuvée of wine, nearly 3,300 cases from her vineyard, with a final blend that is somewhat unusual – 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Malbec, 5% Merlot, 4% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 3% Carménère, and a rather obscure one, 3% St. Macaire. Dense purple in color, with notes of mulberry, blackberry, graphite and spring flowers, the wine has great fruit, a dense, full-bodied mouthfeel, and wonderfully sweet, well-integrated tannin. The acidity is sound, the purity impressive, and the wine long and reassuring. Drink it over the next 20+ years.”

95 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2015

Continuum 2013

(Pritchard Hill Cabernet Sauvignon)

$319.95 per bottle, cases of 6

Tim Mondavi’s name is synonymous with quality and is deeply woven into the modern history of Napa Valley. His estate on Pritchard Hill is producing modern classics, and in 2013 this is, for the first time, 100% estate fruit.

“Impressive purity of fruit and definition with black currant, oyster shell, blueberries and slate. Graphite too. Very complex yet subtle. Full-bodied, very chewy and powerful yet polished and gorgeous. Muscular, well-formed tannins. Electric style. Best ever from here. Drink in 2020.”

99 points, JamesSuckling.com, Jan 2016

“Graphite, lavender, sage, cloves and menthol race out of the glass in the 2013 Continuum, a wine that is just as impressive in bottle as it was from barrel. An intensely saline, mineral-drenched wine endowed with serious depth and precision, the 2013 shines with exceptional structural intensity and power, all that despite just having been bottled. In 2013 the Cabernet Franc is way up, which helps give the wine more aromatic top notes as well as greater overall complexity. Simply put, the 2013 is a real knock-out.”

97 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Oct 2015

Dominus Estate “Dominus” 2012

$349.95 per bottle, cases of 6

**ask me about magnums!!**

“The exuberance and drama in the stunning nose of the dense plum-coloured 2012 Dominus offers up notes of Asian spice, ripe, black currants, kirsch, tobacco leaf and Christmas fruitcake. It is full-bodied and opulent, with no hard edges, a seamless integration of acidity, wood and tannin and a density and richness that are built to go on for 25-30 years.”

98+ points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Oct 2015

“A towering, majestic wine, the 2012 Dominus is a real stunner. Opulent and intense, yet backed up by a classic expression of acidity and tannin, the 2012 hits the palate with considerable richness. Graphite, dark red and black stone fruits, tobacco and incense soar from the glass as this voluptuous Cabernet Sauvignon shows off its irresistible sexy personality. Expressive floral notes add lift on the finish. The 2012 has become a bit more tender than it was last year, which is excellent news for Dominus fans, especially with super powerful 2013s lurking right around the corner. 2020-2040.”

97+ points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Oct 2014

Shafer “Hillside Select”

Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

$426.95 per bottle, cases of 6

If you were to ask me “What was the best cabernet you tried this year?”, my answer every year is almost always “Hillside”. It is 100% Cabernet from one magical “sunspot” of the estate’s Stags Leap District vineyard. It has poise, power, incredible length and intensity. It is an American “First Growth” if you will and one of the greatest Cabernets made anywhere.

“The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is not in bottle, but it looks like another three-digit wine in the making. It tips the scales at a lofty 15.3% natural alcohol, but tasters will never feel any “heat” tasting it. This is a beauty, with crème de cassis notes intermixed with spring flowers, a touch of toasty oak, blackberries, blueberries and cassis, as well as licorice, vanillin and a full-bodied mouthfeel. At this stage, it is more voluptuous and opulent than the 2010, simply because that’s the hallmark style of the 2012. No doubt this is a 30- to 50-year wine if you want to cellar it properly and nibble on it over a long period of time, but it will be much more approachable in its youth than most Hillside Selects tend to be. This is, once again, a fabulous effort.”

(98-100) points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2014

Ovid 2013

(Pritchard Hill Cabernet Sauvignon)

$465.95 per bottle, cases of three

**one time opportunity to reserve, ETA winter 2017**

“The 2013 Proprietary Red, a slightly different blend from the 2012 of 84% Cabernet Sauvignon and 16% Cabernet Franc, is a much smaller production of 350 cases. This wine, which ratchets up the level of intensity, has an opaque purple color and a beautiful nose of blackberry, blueberry and cassis as well as hints of espresso, white flowers, and subtle background toast. The wine hits the palate with a cascade of gorgeous fruit, sweet tannin, great delineation and acidity, and a long, velvety, voluptuously textured mouthfeel. This big, inky, thick, juicy wine should age beautifully for 25-30 years.”

98 points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2015

“A rich, dense wine, the 2013 Ovid is going to need a number of years to open up. Today it is compact and incredibly dense, with superb balance and tons of potential. Already super-intense, it’s hard to imagine what the 2013 will develop into, but it will be something special. Firm beams of tannin provide the backdrop for an exotic concoction of dark cherry jam, spice, plum, mint, iron, smoke and licorice. With time in the glass the 2013 turns darker and more explosive, but it will be some time before it is ready to drink. 2018 – 2033”

98 points, Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, Oct 2015

Chris McLean

direct: 647 955 8872

office: 416 961 2294 x 29