This latest Up From The Cellar includes a bevy of terrific wines as well as plenty of miscellaneous new releases from California and France.
On the new release front, some highlights would be the Beau Marchais Pinot Noir releases from Adam Lee and Philippe Cambie. Coming from single vineyards in the Santa Lucia Highlands and the Sta. Rita Hills, these are beautiful, complex, and satisfying Pinot Noirs well worth checking out. I was also able to look at recently bottled wines from Ledge in Paso (highly recommended) as well as Williams Selyem, Pax, Hanzell, Beaux Freres, Flaunt, Diatom, and a few others.
Looking at wines from France, the report includes Philippe Cambie’s Calendal releases, which were missing from my Southern Rhône report this year, as well as the wines from Escaravailles in Rasteau, an estate which consistently turns out outstanding wines. Another noteworthy project I was able to taste is Odyssée, which is a special project of Pierre Graffeuille, the director of Léoville-Las-Cases in Bordeaux. The wines are a blend of Bordeaux and the Rhône Valley, and the quality is sky high. There’s also a small vertical of sweet wines from Chateau Climens, located in Barsac. Lastly, Saint-Damien from Gigondas, Tardieu-Laurent, Lafage (Roussillon), Mas des Volques (Southern Rhône), Ferraton, Vincent Ravaut, Michel Noëllat, and a handful of others are all in the report.
On the older wines front, the report includes loads of older Bordeaux, a handful of red Burgundies, some incredible Côte Rôties, and some Cali gems. I continue to purchase as much as possible, with the goal of filling out the database and giving as much drinking insight as possible. We’ll do our best to include additional older vintage retrospectives going forward as well.
A new addition is the first inclusion of any spirits in our database with the reviews on the new releases from Old Carter Whiskey Co. Not only does Mark Carter turn out incredible wines under his Carter releases in Napa, he makes some great Whiskeys under his Old Carter Whiskey company. While we’ll never focus on spirits on the site, I personally drink plenty of Bourbon and Whiskeys over the winter months and I’m happy to include recommendations when I can.
As always, thanks for reading!