Graileys Welcomes Cherie Melka of Melka Wines!

What a whirlwind it has been at Graileys so far this year. Earlier this week, we welcomed in Cherie Melka of Melka Wines, and wife of rockstar winemaker Philippe Melka, who came by to share with us their personal Cabernet project and showcase the stunning 2014 Melka Jumping Goat Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon! The wines were multifaceted, rich and powerfully structured and each wine has a lengthy life to look forward to. Check out the lineup below and grab a few of the flagship Jumping Goat for the deepest parts of your cellar and load up on the CJ Cabernet and make it your go-to Cab! These are no-fail Cabernets to please all crowds. Take a look at our tasting notes below and grab what you fancy. kim@graileys.com

 

2017 Cherie Melka

 

2013 Melka Mekerra Sauvignon Blanc- $114.95/btl- 94AG- “Round, Voluptuous, Inviting.” If you want a serious white wine of “real personality and class”, Melka’s Sauv Blanc is perfect for you. Exotic fruits, dense spice, luscious texture and full-bodied, this is not your typical crisp and crunchy porch-pounder Sauvignon Blanc. 

 

2014 Melka CJ Cabernet Sauvignon- $74.95/btl | 94RP-  We had a good run with the 2013 and the 2014 delivers that much more! Stock up on this beauty, soft and silky tannins here makes for an easy everyday drink. This has been one of our go-to Cabs at Graileys and I cannot stress enough that this is a great one to have on hand at all times.

 

2013 Melka Mekerra Proprietary Blend- $149.99/btl | 94RP- Killer Right Bank Blend, the Cabernet Franc really shines in this one and was my personal favorite from the lineup. Powerful, Dense, Concentrated, yet beautifully approachable with plush textures- you’re going to love it’s floral and chocolaty notes here. It’s absolutely stunning. Only 425 cases made of this beauty!

 

2013 Melka Metisse Jumping Goat Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon -$164.95/btl | 95AG- This one hit all the right spots for me. Vibrant and fully loaded with rich flavors, infinite layers, commanding structure, with wonderful richness that we all crave in a killer Cab.

 

2014 Melka Metisse Jumping Goat Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon- $164.95/btl | 96RP- This is only for the strong and one to lay down in the cellar and forget about it for a few decades.  Snag a case if you want to be knocked to your knees by this dense, multidimensional hell of a Cab. Even with its refined tannins, this is a beast and is glorious now, but will only get better as each decade passes. I look forward to the day I revisit this wine 30 years later.

 

2012 Melka CJ Cab, in MAGNUM- $134.95/1.5L- 6 MAGNUMS Available!!  This is a no brainer to please any crowd. Grab this magnum, grab your friends and fire away. It’s an absolute steal for the quality you are getting in the bottle.

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A Night with Bordeaux Royalty

Last week we were honored to host Bruno Borie of Second Growth Classified Bordeaux Ducru Beaucaillou and what an epic night it was! For a night this grand, we brought in Royal Chef Darren McGrady to prepare a fabulous meal to pair with these incredible wines and this was one of the best meals we’ve yet to experience from the Royal Chef. A marvelous time was had by all and we thank our members and the guests who took part in this amazing wine dinner.

 

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The lineup for the night:

JM Labruyere Prologue Brut Champagne

2014 Chateau Ducluzeau

2012 Croix de Beaucaillou

2010 Croix de Beaucaillou

2006 Ducru Beaucaillou

2005 Ducru Beaucaillou

1985 Ducru Beaucaillou

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The 1985 Ducru Beaucaillou stole the show! Beautifully complex and with excellent length, the 1985 grand vin was ready to roll straight from the bottle, got better with an hour in the decanter and at the end of the night, it was straight up righteous. Wonderfully expressive aromas and a palate as lively as its nose, notes of perfectly preserved blackberry, red currant and dried rose melted with dried tobacco, eucalyptus, dried bay leaves and turned soil. Softened leather, a touch of black pepper, elegant florals, a silky texture and a finish to remember, this was the jewel of the night.

 

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Of the two younger grand vins: 2006 and 2005, the 2005 took the lead with more approach-ability with powerful fruit, multiple dimensions of earth, deep minerals and dense spice.

 

 

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Of the two wines from younger vines: 2012 and 2010 Croix de Beaucaillou, the 2012 Croix de Beaucaillou was bright and fruit forward but the 2010 Croix de Beaucaillou was ABSOLUTELY STUNNING! The wonderful 2010 vintage made a great impression to this second wine. It was powerful and compelling. This is the wine you want in your glass as an everyday wine, but could be poured to impress for any special occasion.

 

 

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Final Night of the Graileys Wine Voyage 2017

Our final dinner of the trip was a great occasion! Our location was superb; we sipped under the stars on the upper deck before heading down for more of the same at dinner. We tasted 2013 Futo OVSL and also 2010  Robert Foley Howell Mountain Cabernet. Both wines were is a great spot with gorgeous dark fruit and mouthcoating texture. The 2013 Futo OVSL was a little more vibrant early and was as smooth as silk on the palate evolving beautifully as we drank it over dinner. The 2010 Foley was majestic from the moment we opened it! These were both big wines with lots of stuffing but also came across with elegance and balanced as the night wore on. All in all this was just a  killer trip, sun, fun and wine, lots of it!  -Simon Roberts

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Casino, Piano Bar and a Jeroboam of Taittinger- Graileys’ Wine Voyage Adventures Continue!

After leaving the tiny island of Saba the Graileys crew had dinner on the upper deck. This 2013 Favia Cerro Sur paired with Dover Sole was the start of a great meal…

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This 2013 Cerro Sur was a big hit at the table with its signature toasty oak flavor and generous fruit.

After dinner the crew gathered for drinks and watched the sun go down as we left yet another stunning Island.

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The next morning we woke up to brilliant sunshine, a day of fun at the beach on the island of Nevis was followed by afternoon drinks and swimming off the boat on the aft deck.

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The sun went down and this beauty sailed past…

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Dinner this night had all the Graileys crew in the main dining room. It was a battle between Ivan and I once again, a magnum of 2002 Chateau Forts de Latour  versus a magnum of Two Worlds Shiraz/Cabernet from Bob Egelhoff. This, again, was a close call but I have to say the Two Worlds showed a lot more fruit than the brooding Bordeaux, nearly a split decision once again. Bill spiced the night up with a Jeroboam of Taittinger Brut Champagne that had us all rocking and heading up to the Casino and Piano bar to finish another great night off.

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Tomorrow we hit Tortola and Norman Island…

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-Simon Roberts

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Cheers from the Graileys Caribbean Wine Voyage

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Day one of Graileys at sea.

A champagne reception in the library aboard Sea Dream 1 kicked off what is turning out to be a great trip. We drank Taitinger Rose along with a magnum of 1996 Bruno Paiilaird blanc de Blanc. As this wonderful Yacht slipped the dock, we sailed out of St Thomas harbor and started our Caribbean adventure.

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Night 2 and we got into the swing of things with a a Cabernet versus Bordeaux tasting. Served on the open deck under the stars  we drank 1989 Cos D’Estournel from Magnum versus and 1999 Araujo. The Californian just edged this flight. Ivan had stored this wine well since he bought it and it was drinking perfectly.  The Cos d’Estournel came a very close second in the show of hands, again, this was drinking right where it would be.

 

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Next flight was a Jerobaum of 2000 Pichon Baron which was just singing. It had some stiff competition with the 2001 Foley Claret that was also showing well but as the night wore on the Pichon grew into a great wine that just kept getting better. Among these amazing, powerful Cabernets, Dr. Richebourg, in his generous nature, opened a bottle of 2008 DRC Grand Cru Grand Echezeaux and it was absolutely stunning with infinite layers and exceptional depth.

Night 3 and we hit a killer restaurant in St Barths. On the rocks at Eden Rock was one of the best settings yet for a Graileys tasting. The  Ceviche was paired with a 2013 Hubert Lamy St Aubin that was pure class in a glass. I had the veal and we drank 2010 Reserve de La Comtesse and a bottle of 2003 Vega Sicilia Unico that were both excellent now but have killer long lives ahead of them. The view and the pics speak for themselves…

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-Simon Roberts

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Kicking Off the New Year with a Bang!

Wow what a whirlwind January was! Filled with great friends, new friends, some of our favorite wine personalities and plenty of amazing bottles of wines in between, we started the new year off strong with wonderful tastings of great bottles of wine. All of the wines from our three past tasting events are available for sale. I have the highlights with full tasting notes down below. If you are interested in any of the wines we have featured or would like to know more, please reach me directly at kim@graileys.com.

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We kicked off the year with a visit from our dear old friend D’Lynn Proctor of Penfolds and a couple of bottles of Grange and what a night it was! As D’Lynn and our valued members gathered around the tables, we poured an incredible lineup of Penfolds from the always-reliable, great value Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz to two powerful vintages of the one of the most iconic wines of the world: Penfold’s Grange. Both flirting with perfection, the 2010 ($699/btl) and 2012 Grange ($699/btl) were blockbuster beasts that could knock over skyscrapers had they the chance. The ’12 Grange was more generous in fruit while the ’10 is still completely bullet proof, showing us the maximum power that South Australia and the team at Penfolds are capable of. Rich in blackberry, plum and blueberry fruit while dense notes of coal, licorice and tar paint a thick layer right on top. The tannins grip to the tongue is as powerful as Zeus’ grip to his lightning bolt. Wow! what a spectacular treat to be able to host D’Lynn and try these two vintages side-by-side.

 

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Once again, it was a full house for our annual Robert Foley tasting and Bob was an incredible host as he went over the wines of the highly anticipated, newly released 2013 vintage. As usual, there were plenty of delicious bottles to go around the tables and satisfy everyone’s guilty pleasure but the one that stood out to us the most was the 2013 Foley Claret!! ($134.95/btl) His signature notes really shown through lavishly in this bottle with ultra-rich textures, explosively ripe, juicy dark berry fruit and seamless layers of warm vanilla, dense spice and plus violets. For any Cabernet enthusiast, the 2013 Foley Claret is an easy win!

 

Allegrini

We had the pleasure and honor to host an Italian matriarch: Maralisa Allegrini, of the most acclaimed winery in north east Italy and Italy’s 2016 Winery of the Year: Allegrini! As our beloved members sat for dinner with Maralisa, sixth generation of the Allegrini legacy, we poured a grand flight showcasing not only the beautiful wines of Allegrini but also her Super Tuscan project: Poggio al Tesoro. My wine of the night just so happened to be from this estate: the 2009 Poggio al Tesoro Bolgheri Superiore Dedicato a Walter ($109/btl)- pure Cabernet Franc with supple tannins, compelling notes of ripe red berries, rose and wild spice and great length. The 2012 Allegrini Amarnoe Classico ($59.95/btl) was a hit as well with wonderful approachability, freshness in red and black fruit, soft textures and elegance.

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Good On Ya Monday

You never know what is going to happen at Graileys and that is exceptionally true on Mondays. Last night we were honored to host the one and only, Mrs. Philly- Mum to Dr. Richebourg, and our beloved Good Ole’Boys Monday night crew and boy did it turn into a quiet Monday into a night that sets the new year at a very high standard. To kick off their visit, Dr. Richebourg opened a bottle of 1969 Remoissenet Chambolle Musigny because that’s what you do when your Mum is in town and this particular bottle was holding on strong with dried wild berry fruit, dusty minerals, dried clay and potpourri.

As usual, on a laid back Monday night with the boys, only the best bottles were opened and there were plenty of great bottles on the table. But there were a few that really stood out far above the rest and is much worthy of being on the blog. These three aged Bordeaux were so f** good, I just have to share my experience with you…

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1982 Palmer- Opened by The Most Interesting Man In The World, the ’82 Palmer was my wine of the night!! Everything in the bottle last night was showing at the highest level. Absolutely seamless from start to finish. The dark berry fruit was beautifully preserved and wonderfully complimentary to its multiple layers of compost, charcoal, dense baking spice and wild violets. Along with its compelling flavors, the elegant texture was the epitome of finesse that had me seduced. The finish could have lingered on, but I was too entranced with the mid-palate to even notice at the time. Absolutely gorgeous! If Palmer’s ’82 is like this beauty, I would kill to get my hands on the legendary ’83.

1986 Margaux- The Good Doctor graciously opened this magical bottle and holy smokes the ’86 Chateau Margaux is on fire and I can now say that I have fully lived!! I know, I hadn’t claimed it as my wine of the night, solely due to the fact that it needed more airtime. The ’86 Margaux has so much to give!!! Amazing broad shoulders, round mouth-coating texture, near-brooding dense purple and black fruit, infinite layers of rich earth, sweet cigar and spice leading into an ever haunting finish. I was blown away at first taste and highly regret not dedicating my entire night around this mighty glass.

1978 Leoville Las Cases- The ’78 LLC was alive and at its apex with ridiculously explosive tones filled with dried earth, truffle, dried tobacco, dense forest floor, dried wild purple florals, clay, cedar, bay leaves; this bottle was ON! It wasn’t the most seamless wine from the vintage, but it was drinking like a champ and every layer, every element was thoroughly enjoyed.

 

 

 

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Graileys Holiday Party 2016!

Wow, what a dynamic year 2016 was!! Now that the new year is in and we are all officially back in the grind at Graileys, I would love to share the best moments from our spectacular Graileys Holiday Party! Some of our beloved members were missed but overall we had a terrific turnout and the night couldn’t have been more fantastic!

 

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Exactly like last year, Simon and Greg set up the wines for the grand blind tasting. There were two white wines and four red wines for our members and sommeliers to swirl, smell, sniff and swish as they needed to determine the five major points of the wine: the country of origin, region, grape varietal, vintage and finally, the producer or the name of the wine. The member that marked the highest points was awarded one year free membership at Graileys!!

 

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And the winner of the Graileys Holiday Party Blind Tasting 2016 goes to…. drum roll please…..

The Waco Natural!! 

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This isn’t his first win at a Graileys blind tasting, you might remember his triumphant bottle at the Bordeaux Show Me tasting last year as well and with no formal training, his palate is on point!! The wines were somewhat tricky and he crushed it on the holiday blind tasting!! He has a natural gift and was clearly well awarded this festive night!

 

 2016 Graileys Holiday Party Blind Tasting Lineup

1. 2012 Patrick Piuze Val de Mer Valmur Grand Cru Chablis

2. 2012 Favia Suize Viognier

3. 2012 Perrot Minot Gevrey Chambertin

4. 1996 Scarpa Barbaresco

5. 2002 Mayacamas Cabernet Sauvignon

6. 2009 Quinalt l’Enclos, St. Emilion

 

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The ’96 Scarpa La Bogliona Barbera d’Asti is a favorite gem with silky textures, beautiful dry fruit, light spice and sophistication while the ’04 Messorio was ultra ripe and explosive! The ’64 Ruffino Chianti Riserva Ducale was a surprise still holding on to its last leg with elegance.

 

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Out of the Rhone varietal bottles that were opened, to my palate the star of the night was the 2009 Auguste Clape Cornas and ’96 Chave Hermitage!! The ’09 Cornas is still in its primary level with glorious black and purple fruit, insane spice, fresh cracked black pepper, a bloody beef roast and was absolutely seductive while the ’96 Chave Hermitage showed its power in a more mature way with beautiful dried black fruit, plums, dried rose petals, smoke, forest floor and full board of fine charcuterie.

 

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As always in such grand occasions, the Bordeaux were banging! The ’78 Haut Brion was ridiculously delicious and showing beautifully at its second peak but the ’88 La Mission Haut Brion was in full meaty form! The deep earth and minerals were stunning while the preserved black berry and currant seamlessly intermingled within the layers of baking spice, charcoal, compost and oak. Its finish could lead on for days if you let it. The annual bottle of 1990 Haut Brion was also killing it by the end of the night! After about forty five minutes in the glass, the ’90 HB woke up with maximum glory with gorgeous chunky gravel, seductive ripe fruit, dense complex spices all wrapped up in a velvety coat that followed into a long lasting finish. Overall it was an epic time as always and a night that will be remembered as one of the most festive events at Graileys!

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Knockout Deal on 98Pt Gran Reserva Rioja- 6pk Wood Cases

I can’t believe we are almost to the end of 2016! It has been a wonderful, wild and memorable year to say the least! To end the year with a bang I have a rocking Gran Reserva Rioja deal from the top of the Rioja quality hierarchy! I absolutely love Gran Reserva Rioja like this that is released at 10 years of age with sweet, soft mature red fruits, tertiary spice, tobacco, and leather notes and absolutely pure, mature tannins that go down so smooth! The 2007 Marques de Murrieta “Castillo Ygay” Gran Reserva Especial is an absolute knockout! In 2007 the estate dropped half of the fruit to make an extremely dense and complex old vine cuvee that merits your attention! We managed to take down a handful of beautiful 6 Pack Wooden Cases of this beauty for 30% less than the release price! Take advantage of this banging blue-chip Gran Reserva today for this great deal!  This beauty is still a baby, but it’s extremely long in the mouth with depth and tannins that should melt in a couple of years and drink great for 3 decades. Cheap it is not, but very good value it is, for the quality it delivers. In Napa this sucker would be over $300! For those that love rich wines with oak this is the perfect high quality Spanish red to be your bridge into the Old World. Snag a case and be blown away! I know you will love every sip my friend!  Cheers!

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2007 Marques de Murrieta 
Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial

Graileys Price: $79.95 per bottle

James Suckling 98: The aromas of this show an amazing freshness of flowers and herbs such as lavender, rosemary, and violet. Then it goes to raspberry, candy and currants. Black licorice too. A truly great wine on the nose. Full-bodied, racy and linear. So polished. It’s like a red ruby. 86% tempranillo and 14% mazuelo in the blend. For release in September 2015. Great length and future. Give it three years or so. Or decant two hours in advance.

This is always one of my favorite top quality wines from Spain and it deserves a place in your cellar! Grab a six-pack OWC for your collection, but-act fast! Happy New Year! -kim@graileys.com

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Reload the ‘Golden Bullets’ for New Year’s Eve! Great Deal on Krug Halfsies

Hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend full of fun, family and good times! We got exactly what we asked for from Santa Claus this year at Graileys: a new stack of Krug Grande Cuvee Champagne in half bottles! We were in need of these delicious ‘Golden Bullets’ after we slugged down our initial supply in record time this year! Now just in time for New Year’s Eve and the NFL playoffs we have the best price you will ever find on NV Krug Grande Cuvee! This Spring we had the privilege of hosting Olivier Krug, the 6th generation director of Krug, for an amazing release dinner of his superlative 2002 vintage and people are still talking about it! For the money, the best wine of the night was the Krug Grande Cuvee! Mr. Krug had such a great time he made us a killer deal on these addicting half bottles! This Krug Grand Cuvee half bottle has everything: rich notes of toasted bread, hazelnut, brioche and honey with hints of apples still on the tree, flowers in bloom, ripe and dried fruits, almonds, marzipan, gingerbread, sweet spices and savory complexity. It has exceptional freshness in the mouth, with rich and tangy flavors of lemon and green apple enhanced on the long finish by its fine and elegant bubbles! A true masterpiece! Drink this out of regular white wine glasses or Burgundy stems and let the good times roll! Heed my advice and take advantage of this killer deal to stock up on this nectar of the Gods! You will not regret it!

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NV Krug Grande Cuvee Half Bottles

Graileys Price: $69.95 per bottle 

Wine Spectator 95: This mouthwatering Champagne shows a lovely sense of finesse, with firm acidity deftly married to a rich profile of crème de cassis, toasted brioche and lime blossom, accented by hints of café au lait, singed orange peel and exotic spice. Long and plush on the finish. Disgorged 2014. Drink now through 2024.
Grab a case for this ridiculous deal and enjoy these badass bubbles over New Year’s Eve or during your next Dallas Cowboys’ playoff tailgate or watch party!  These bubbles are in house and they will sell out quickly- act fast to grab yours!  Thanks and have a great day! -kim@graileys.com

 

 

 

 

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