Value in Saint-Emilion: 2010 Chateau Montlisse

Prices in Bordeaux have never been higher, fed by increasing global demand, particularly from China. We’re always looking for value in Bordeaux, and we often find it in second wines of famous vineyards, or secondary properties from famous winemakers. These wines command much more reasonable prices, but are still the products of masterful winemakers and excellent terroir.

Violets and Cinnamon: Grand Cru Burgundy

Of the four vineyard levels in Burgundy, “Grand Cru” is the highest. Reserved for the top 1.3% of vineyards, the classification represents the finest Burgundy has to offer. The town of Gevrey-Chambertin is known for deep and powerful wines, owing their richness to the high level of clay in the soil. The Grand Crus of Chambertin are some of the darkest and longest lived wines in Burgundy.

New Cabernet Sauvignon. $15.95

Cabernet Sauvignon is the world’s most widely planted grape. It’s grown everywhere — from Bordeaux to Brazil to British Columbia — and comes in a wide variety of textures and expressions. Cabernet Sauvignon is a cross, likely spontaneous, between Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon blanc — a gift from the winemaking gods.

2002 St. Emilion Grand Cru

The effect of time on wine is one of the culinary world’s great magic tricks. Timing and conditions are crucial, and with patience and cellar space in short supply, well-aged wines are increasingly rare. Older French wines in the US have often been stored poorly, or have changed hands so many times they include layers upon layers of markups.

Pure Old-Vine Grenache.

Grenache is France’s second most planted grape. Found mostly in the South, as the primary grape in most Chateauneuf-du-Pape and Côtes du Rhône, grenache vines can also live well past their 100th birthday. With age comes lower yields and higher quality.