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James Cluer

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WHY START A CELLAR? There’s something magical about going down to a wine cellar and rummaging through stacks of dusty old bottles. After lengthy deliberations with yourself, you select the perfect bottle, and then emerge victorious to rapturous applause from your thirsty friends. It’s great fun to have a stash of wine. It’s one of the pleasures of life. Each bottle has a story to tell. Some might have sentimental value, others are kept for a special occasion, and hopefully most of them have increased in value. Yes, you can potentially make big bucks on wine as an investment, but that’s another story. The main reason for cellaring wines is to allow them to improve in quality. Over time some wines can develop amazingly complex bouquets and flavors. Great wine needs time to evolve and mature, and it is only with cellaring that fine wines show their true pedigree. Sadly,…

Opus One A Brief Look at their Origins It began with Château Mouton Rothschild winemaker Lucien Sionneau and Robert Mondavi’s son Timothy who made the partnership’s first vintage at the Robert Mondavi Winery in 1979. The following year the partners officially announced their joint venture. In 1981 a single case of the joint venture wine sold for $24,000 at the first Napa Valley Wine Auction – the highest price ever paid for a California wine. The following year Robert Mondavi and Baron Philippe de Rothschild began label design. The partners agreed to choose a name of Latin origin for the joint venture, allowing for easy recognition in both English and French. Baron Philippe announced his choice, “Opus,” a musical expression denoting the first masterwork of a composer. Two days later he proposed an additional word: “Opus One”.

Hollick 2009 Hollick, 2009, Shiraz Wrattonbully, Australia Ian Hollick is regarded as one of the finest producers in Coonawarra, one of the prestigious growing regions in South Australia.…

Gewurztraminer Gustav Lorentz, Grand Cru Altenberg de Bergheim, 2010 Alsace, France Gewurztraminer reaches its pinnacle of quality in Alsace. And since 1836 Gustav Lorentz has been producing some of the finest examples. When harvested from a top site, such as this Grand Cru vineyard, and the yields are kept low, you can produce one of the world’s most heady and exotic wines. The perfume is so intense, the fruits so tropical and spicy, and the palate so dense and layered. The trademark aromatics of Gewurz are amongst the most beautiful in wine. What is especially interesting is that the wines drink perfectly when just a few years old, but the best can age for a decade of more. The density of the stone fruit, pineapple, and lychee flavors are counterbalanced by a subtle yet bright acidity, creating the perfect balance. We invite you to discover this fine white wine from…

WINE REVIEW Semillon: McWilliams, Mount Pleasant, Elisabeth, 2006, Hunter Valley, Australia McWilliams Mount Pleasant Winery was rated 5 stars by the leading Australian wine critic, James Halliday. In this small region, just a few hours north of Sydney, one of the world’s very best white wines is produced. It is a well-kept secret. And it’s called aged Hunter Semillon. What is staggering is the longevity of the wines. A top Semillon, such as this, can age for 20-40 years, and some only hit their peak well into that period. Semillon is a white grape that you mainly find here and in Bordeaux, for fine wine. It is picked early, fermented in stainless steel tanks, and then bottled in the Spring after the vintage. It is unoaked. But then the magic begins. When the winery finally releases the wine at 4 years of age it starts to show its beauty. Notes…