Leschi Market’s monthly Wine Newsletters always includes two special features: Staff Selections and Best Sellers. The first, Staff Selections, consists of favorite wines that the staff is currently excited about, new arrivals to the wine aisle, or old favorites that deserve remembering. Many times, customers find a particular steward whose palate matches theirs, making the “monthly picks” more of a shortened, condensed personal shopping guide. The second feature is the Best Sellers List, a very straightforward list of the previous month’s best-selling wines by number of units sold, broken down by different parameters: Red, White, Bubbles, Rose or Greater than $20, for example. Personally, I’ve always viewed the Best Seller list as the Customer Selections list. Fun, right? A newsletter that features both employee favorites alongside customer favorites!
Love is in the air all month long, and what better way to celebrate than compiling many of our favorite wines. Following is a Top-10 List from the last several months, combining Staff Picks and Customer Picks, to create Wine We Love. Pablo Picasso may have said, “Love is the greatest refreshment in life,” however, this list may challenge that!
2016 Quilceda Creek Red Wine “CVR” Columbia Valley ($55.99)
“A combination of all our vineyard sites and represents a great value. It is the best version of this wine to date displaying highly aromatic black and blue fruits with nuances of anise, smoke, forest floor and minerals. This blend of 87% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot will be best enjoyed over the next 15 years.” ~Paul Golitzin, Director of Winemaking.
2017 Sarrazin Bourgogne Rouge Vieilles Vignes ($21.99)
“The finest wines from the Cote Chalonnaise are known for their effortless beauty, delicate aromas, fruit-driven flavors and silky textures. The winery’s family history of growing grapes in this valley dates back to the seventeenth century.” ~Winemaker notes.
2016 Querciabella Toscana Mongrana ($21.49)
Lovely aromas of plums, cherries and currents with a hint of flowers and undertones of dried flowers. Full body, round and silky tannins with a bright, fresh finish. A blend of Sangiovese, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. Biodynamic and Vegan.” 95 points, James Suckling.
2017 Rainoldi Alpi Retiche Nebbiolo ($19.99)
Early drinker produced with Nebbiolo grapes coming from the vineyards of the DOC area, vinified as a whole together with other grapes gently pressed for must. It is characterized by utter freshness, fruitiness and rich aromas. Mellow, round taste, recommended with starters, first courses and fresh uncured cheeses. An instant Leschi Best Seller!
2018 St. Cosme Côtes du Rhône ($13.99)
“Lively savory, lavender, cherry and black currant notes mix in this friendly, open-knit wine, which reveals a tug of dark earth at the end. Drink now through 2020. Smart Buy.” ~Wine Spectator, 89 points.
2017 Glaze Cabernet Sauvignon Ross Andrew Winery ($13.99)
“Rich, lush, and delicious. This wine blends the power of Red Mountain Cabernet with the perfect amount of Merlot, Petit Verdot and Malbec, resulting in layers of enjoyment. A fantastic everyday wine, but also big enough for your dinner party.” ~Winemaker notes.
2017 àMaurice Cellars Chardonnay Conner Lee Vineyard ($29.99)
“Hand-picked, hand sorted and whole cluster pressed at our winery in Walla Walla. The end result is rich and creamy with well-integrated French Oak. The lively bright acid makes the mouth water for more.” ~Winemaker notes.
2018 Domaine Paul Cherrier Blanc Sancerre Loire Valley ($20.59)
“Sancerre Blanc is sleek and crisp, with citrus, mineral and herbal aromatics and a good backbone of acidity. The soils in and around the village of Verdigny consist of a mixture of marl and gravel which produces elegant, well-balanced wines with a good fruit character. Stainless steel tanks. Sancerre Blanc is a joyful, lively wine.” ~Winemaker notes.
2019 Bodega Garzon Reserve Albarino Uruguay ($18.69)
“Pale yellow with greenish reflections, this Albarino is intense in the nose with peach and citrus. The freshness and minerality in the mid-palate are superb. Remarkable acidity and a round, crisp finish.” ~Winemaker notes.
2018 Pascal Jolivet ‘Attitude’ Sauvignon Blanc Loire ($13.99)
“Made with the same attention to detail as Jolivet’s great Sancerres, this wine is made from grapes grown outside the appellation. The wine offers expressive floral and fruit aromas, freshness and minerality in the mouth. This is textbook Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire.” ~Importer notes.
Kenneth Benner, a Seattle area native, is a trained chef and has worked in such restaurants as Barbacoa, B.O.K.A. Kitchen + Bar, and Dahlia Lounge. Ken is the wine buyer at Leschi Market. He has a passion for learning, a meticulous palate, and a tenacity for searching out the best for his customers while offering some of the most highly coveted wines in the area. His wine column is intended to inspire and explore new choices in wine, learn about wine with his readers, and share his knowledge and experiences in the wine world. Check out the latest at www.LeschiMarket.com or request to be added to email updates or send questions, comments, or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org and follow the wine department directly on twitter at twitter.com/leschimarket.