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Hidden Gem: Stonestreet Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

On October 20th we will have a special guest at our Adams Street store in Carmel. Shannon Wildenradt from Jackson Family Wine will be handing out samples of Stonestreet, Cambria and Carmel Road products, along with educating guests about their various wines. This week we would like to highlight the highly acclaimed, Stonestreet Monument Ridge Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 from the Jackson Family Wine collection.

Tucked away in the valley of the Alexander Mountain Estates, the Cabernet Sauvignon is sourced from vineyards along the ridgeline of the mountains that run through the land. Because of the proximity to the mountain crest, this provides wide varieties of soils ranging from those exposed to sun and others exposed to the breeze. This variety of soil forms a perfect environment for Cabernet grapes.

The 2009 Monument Ridge embodies an elegant vintage wine. Aromas of violet, blackberry and blueberry explode from the glass. Hints of ginger, black pepper and wet black slate are also present in the scent. On the palate you can expect a rich taste, with a refreshing flair. A long and dry finish completes this wine with a lingering currant punch.

After purchasing Stonestreet 2009, we recommend letting it age a couple of years to intensify the overall rich, red taste. As for food pairings, we suggest pairing the Cab with a tender filet mignon or juicy Angus burger.

As for acclamations, Monument Ridge was given a 93 points rating by Wine Enthusiast for its “structural integrity, and elegant feel on the mouth.” Wine & Spirits, rated high with 92 points for “black cherry and chocolate depths and a dense, juicy silken cabernet.” Richard Parker gave 92 points also, saying “dark cherries, mocha, plums, spices, mint, minerals and graphite are woven together in this effortless, totally captivating wine.” Lastly, Antonio Galloni from Vinous says “it impresses for its nuance, clarity and precision” and gave the wine a 92 point rating.

Get your hands on this great hidden gem at your local Payless Liquors store or if you would prefer, reserve a bottle here on our website. And look forward to Shannon Wildenradt’s visit on October 20th in Carmel at our Adams Street!

It’s All in the Grapes

Are you looking for a new wine to enjoy with friends and family? This week we will be featuring a new wine in our stores that would be perfect for any occasion. Although the name translates to Champs Elysees in French, Campo Eliseo comes from a highly respected region of Spain—rather than the famous avenue in Paris.

Campo Eliseo comes from Toro, which is a wine region in Castilla y Leon located in northwestern Spain. Castilla y Leon is known for producing some of the world’s most powerful red wines. Toro, meaning “bull” in Spanish, is a fitting symbol for the robust red wines of Campo Eliseo. And the name is actually meant to pay homage to those brave and virtuous men of Greek mythology.

A partnership between winemaker Michel Rolland and his wife and wine innovator François Lurton was formed to produce the Campo Eliseo wines. When forming their collaboration, both parties agreed that Spain would be best location for the vineyard, because of its great potential. The team is part of a coalition, headed by Diageo Chateau & Estates to seek out the best wines from some of the most important wine regions throughout the world.

To insure perfection, the Rollands and Lurton hand-selected five Spanish winemakers to develop their product. All of the wines are 100% Tinta de Toro (Tempranillo) and belong to Spain’s luxury tier. The tempranillo grapes used to make the wine are some of Spain’s most famous native fruit. They are vibrant, aromatic and offer a spicy, red savor. The grapes come from 50- to 75-year-old vines. Rigorous soil-cultivation work on the vineyard is done to insure favorable product.

The wine we are featuring this week is the 2008 Campo Eliseo. The 2008 bottle has been aged for 16 months in French oak casks. A bright ruby-red color, it embodies a generous open bouquet of dark cherry, raspberry and thyme. Hints of plum, coffee and blackberry add to the overall rich, yet balanced taste. Campo blooms brightly on the finishes with a touch of spice. Right now it’s delicious, but age won’t do any harm to this timeless red wine.

The 2008 Campo Eliseo red wine is one of notable mentions. The Wine Spectator awarded it 94 points, which is a great compliment.

Embrace you inner matador with this delectable red wine. Campo Eliseo can be enjoyed by wine lovers who appreciate top-quality Spanish wines. Stop by one of our 22 locations and pick up a bottle or reserve one with us online.

Hidden Gems at Payless

We’re all looking for buried treasure. Whether it’s playing the lottery or binge watching Antiques Roadshow, everyone dreams of hitting the motherload and never working again. We can’t promise you expensive jewels or pricy coin collections at Payless Liquors, but we do have a few hidden gems we’d like to share with you!

In the next few months, we’d like to share a few rare products from our Payless vaults (yes, we have vaults; they’re hidden). At Payless Liquors, we want the customer to be king. That’s why we’re sharing 2005 George De Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon with you first!

George De Latour is unsurprisingly named after its founder, a Napa Valley original who started his Rutherford vineyards over a century ago. The same grapes are now sent to a state of the art winery, where Beaulieu Vineyard produces this company’s flagship wine.

The current run of these wines are quite good, but we think the 2005 George De Latour is a hidden treasure you will only open on a very special occasion. In a series of wine reviews, expert taster S.H. from Wine Enthusiast had this to say about 2005 George De Latour: “This is one for the cellar and will age for at least a decade and probably far longer.” But enough about history and ratings. Let’s get to the wine!

After popping open this bottle, you will get the strong scents of blackberry, plum and oak. The last is from the barrel aging of this wine. The body of George De Latour is medium-full bodied, and great for heavier meals. The coloring is that of black cherry and grapes, and the pour gives off hues of red and pink, hinting at the complexity here.

The first taste you will get from this vintage is that of blackberry, black cherry and mocha. There are more subtle hints of black licorice and vanilla, which come from the aging process. If you’re looking for a simpler wine, you will not want the 2005 George De Latour. This is a complex, concentrated wine with multiple layers. However, the vanilla and mocha compliment the fruity, strong blend quite well.

If you looking to pair this vintage with food, keep in mind the body and aroma as well as the taste of this wine. You’re looking for slightly heavier foods, because lighter fare will be overwhelmed. For a tasting I would suggest heavy, creamy cheeses like Brie. If you’re pairing this with a full meal, you cannot go wrong with filet mignon!

If you’re in the mood to go treasure hunting, I couldn’t suggest a better prize than the 2005 George De Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. Please contact us if you’re interested in reserving a bottle. The price is $103.99. I do not think they will last long!