Ruby Wines, Inc.

Ruby Wines is a family owned and operated fourth generation company. Our mission is to supply superior customer service and top rated products to our growing list of customers in Massachusetts. Although we have a comprehensive portfolio of wines from around the world, our greatest asset is our employees. The Ruby Wines team is highly educated and can guarantee you the best service in the field. Thank you for choosing Ruby Wines - four generations of success!

Ruby Wines distributes to Massachusetts businesses with a valid liquor license.

August 1st, J. Lohr kicked off the #YouKnowJLohr Seven Oaks campaign.  The Seven Oaks campaign runs in tandem with the #YouKnowJLohr Riverstone campaign for the month of August, before taking center stage for the remaining campaign months of September and October.   As a reminder, #YouKnowJLohr is an integrated sales and marketing campaign that includes video, social media and Web advertising, complemented by trade and consumer print advertising, POS and branded merchandise.   

At the core of the campaign are three consumer videos, which all include cameo appearances by J. Lohr family and winemakers.  All videos are now available on YouTube, as well as the LohrStyle video page and trade site.  They will be publicized on multiple advertising and third-party partner sites, such as Wine Enthusiast, Sunset and Food Republic, throughout the next 90 days.  Need a teaser to watch the videos?  

 Video 1: Biggest adult fear? Navigating the wine aisle! Luckily, our heroine in “The Struggle is Real” has J. Lohr Estates Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon on her side. She only wishes that dating could be this easy.

 Video 2: When it comes to romancing his better half, this burly construction worker in “Pairing Game Strong” has a zesty secret weapon up his sleeve. Thanks to J. Lohr Estates Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon, umami has met its match.

 Video 3: “Wine Wingman” captures that magical moment at a restaurant when our nervous bespectacled hero has to reach for a truly impressive bottle of wine. Fortunately, he knows the power of J. Lohr Estates Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon.

  We hope that you continue to enjoy this light-hearted and fresh campaign, which stresses the reliability and quality behind J. Lohr for over 40 years.  Do “watch the story unfold” at ~ be sure to spread the word with colleagues, family and friends by sharing the video links and liking/sharing/commenting on the videos on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram!

Wine Advocate press: 54 of 57 wines received 90 points or above.  Jeb Dunnuck’s reviews:

SIXTO: "Focusing on higher elevation sites and old, abandoned Chardonnay vines, these Sixto releases are made by the team at Charles Smith/K Vintners. They're the finest expressions of Chardonnay coming out of Washington today." - Jeb Dunnuck

K VINTNERS MILBRANDT SYRAH: "Probably the greatest vintage of this cuvee to date, the 2014 Syrah Milbrandt Vineyard is 100% Syrah, fermented with 100% whole clusters, that spent 15 months in 20% new French oak barrels and puncheons. This beauty is overflowing with notes of cassis, caramelized meats, licorice and spice, which gives way to a full­bodied, concentrated, superbly textured Syrah that can be enjoyed today, or cellared for a decade." - Jeb Dunnuck

Letter from Charles Smith


Food and Wine in a fantastic article that explains why Shacksbury canned cider is distinct from other canned ciders.

Fleur Pinot Noir 89pts Best Buy

Martin Ray Stags Leap District Cabernet 92ptWS

Reviews from BevX-  Rumson’s Grand Reserve was also featured as the Beverage of the Week.

New York, NY, (August 20, 2015) – The Fifty Best, rating the finest in wines and spirits, has once again shined its spotlight on aged rum.  The Fifty Best recently hosted an Aged Rum Tasting, where 30 contenders were evaluated for the distinguished “Best Aged Rum” awards for 2015.

 The Fifty Best is very pleased to announce that Rumson's Rum was awarded a Gold medal.

Using professional criteria, the pre-qualified panel of judges blind-tasted the rums and rated them individually on a 1-5 point scoring system with 5 being the best. After tallying the scores, medals were awarded based on the judges' impressions.

As an FYI - Rumson’s is entered in the San Fran World Spirits Competition (all expressions and packaging 3/17), the Ultimate Spirits Challenge (all expressions 3/7) and Rumson’s Spiced and Coffee are entered in the Fifty Best (waiting for results, event was 1/21, Rumson’s Rum and Rumson’s Grand Reserve Rum were entered in the Fifty Best last year) 

Wine Spectator mention of 2014 Saracina Unoaked Chardonnay

Saracina Chardonnay Mendocino County Unoaked 2014
88 | 1,652 cases made
From the Fetzer family, this unoaked white reflects a knack for quality at a good price. In this version, zesty fruit is front and center.

Tapping the Potential of Wine in Kegs-(Click for full article) Restaurants and wineries increasingly see wine on tap as the future of by-the-glass service. 

Shacksbury was named one of the Cider Journal's Top 10 this year:

If you click on the Classic, it has a fabulous description of the cider that is worth noting.

And Forbes' Top 12:

Top 10 WA wineries to watch.  From the WS Top 100 issue.

Top 10 WA wineries to watch.  From the WS Top 100 issue.

December 2015 issue of Wine Spectator “Austria’s Heartland of Quality” article will feature the 88pt, ‘Top Value’ Pratsch Grüner Veltliner 1L 2014.




POMELO Sauvignon Blanc California 2014
Score: 90 WS

Graceful, offering fragrant orange blossom, ruby grapefruit and white peach flavors that are fresh and lively, set on a light, lithe body. Appealing pops of lime zest and passion fruit show on the long finish.
Drink now. 38,000 cases made.—M.W.

Good Food Awards - Eden Ice has 3 in the finals
The Good Food Awards announced 2016 Finalists today.
- Sparkling Dry
- Sparkling Semi-Dry
- Brandy Barrel-Aged Heirloom Blend Ice Cider

Here's the total list. Nice to see friends Eve's, Foggy Ridge, Finn River and Shacksbury on there too!

Also check out this well-written article by Sabine Hrechdakian “Cider Dialogues” in 

November 2015 Newsletter with coverage of Montcalm Portfolio Tasting

The Wine Stalker article: Lieb Cellars Pinot Blanc

2013 Tosalet Priorat 90 Points Wine Spectator

2013 Tosalet Priorat 90 Points Wine Spectator


Thursday, November 19, 2015

 Join Shacksbury co-founder David at the Tip Tap Room and try a flight of four Shacksbury ciders on draft. It'll be a delightful evening. If the Royals win the ALCS, the first round will be on him.

 Draft list:

2014 Lost and Found (1 of 2 kegs ever made)

 Check out our Feature in October's Boston Magazine about the Lost Apple Project and Lost and Found cider.

 Later event: November 21
Tasting at The Vin Bin in Hopkinton, MA

Wine Spectator 90 Point Score for our 2013 Tosalet Priorat

Subject: J.Lohr New Fall Video Release: Entertaining Through the Seasons

Greetings, all,

The crisp fall air might be inspiring you to get into the kitchen and try a new dish.  We have you covered!

With only a dozen ingredients – and most in the easy-to- prepare savory rub for the pork loin – our Roast Pork Filet will become your go-to favorite for fall gatherings with family and friends.  In our latest Entertaining Through the Seasons video, Cynthia Lohr and Jeff Meier share their thoughts on this pork loin dish that pairs beautifully with our 2012 J. Lohr Fog’s Reach Pinot Noir.

We invite you to watch the video, filmed at the Sunset headquarters in Menlo Park, at

Eagle Glen 2013 Napa Valley Cabernet

Middleton Harvest Report 2015

Jayson Woodbridge of Hundred Acre and Layer Cake lives life on his own terms

Lieb Cellars 2013 Pinot Blanc Named Top 12 Wine in America by

WSJwine from the Wall Street Journal


CUTCHOGUE, NEW YORK – September 29, 2015 – Lieb Cellars is thrilled to announce that its 2013 Reserve Pinot Blanc has been chosen as a winner of WSJwine’s prestigious “Annual Dozen” Tasting.  The WSJwine Annual Dozen is a huge invite-only blind tasting held each year to discover some of the best wines in America. Lieb’s Pinot Blanc is the first ever dry wine from Long Island to win. 


“We were excited when invited to enter but figured it’d be an extreme long shot upon hearing that the judges would be tasting over 400 wines this year,” explained Lieb Cellar’s general manager and certified sommelier Ami Opisso.  “When we received the note saying that our Pinot Blanc had won, we were literally jumping and screaming.”


Annual Dozen is in its sixth year and is widely considered to be one of the definitive tastings of American wines.  The wines are rigorously blind tasted by a panel of experts including world-renowned wine writer and critic Hugh Johnson.  Over 400 wines were tasted.  Twelve were named the best and will be available for sale as a set at in October.


Its signature wine, Lieb Cellars has been crafting beautiful Pinot Blancs since 1999.  Winemaker Russell Hearn describes the wine’s style as “Clean, bright and mineral-driven with subtle citrus fruit notes.”  While sweeter, rounder expressions of Pinot Blanc are more common, Lieb’s signature dry, fresh style is meant to complement their local fresh shellfish cuisine.   


Opisso added, “We’ve known for years that we have something truly special with our Pinot Blanc.  It’s incredible validation to know that these judges agree and a testament to the overall quality of Long Island wines.  We’re no longer ‘up and coming’.  Our wines have arrived.  They’re some of the best in the country.”    

Here’s an article on on Hazell and LIOCO Hanzell

Galloni Scores for LIOCO






Antonio Galloni VINOUS

January 2015
LIOCO stands out for wines that deliver pure pleasure. Every glass seems to call for
another in these superb, impeccable whites and reds. Best of all, pricing remains
exceedingly fair for the quality that goes into the bottle. -- Antonio Galloni
89 pts. 2013 Sonoma County Chardonnay - The 2013 Chardonnay (Sonoma County) is
absolutely delicious. Apricot pit, peach, honey, mint and chamomile flesh out in a bold, racy
Chardonnay to drink now and over the next few years. Once again, LIOCO delivers superb
value with the Sonoma Coast Chardonnay.
93 pts. 2013 Estero, Chardonnay - Lemon peel, white flowers, white pepper and mint open up
in the 2013 Chardonnay Russian River Estero. The flavors are bright and lifted, with gorgeous
textural depth and balance. Drink this mid-weight, energetic Chardonnay over the next handful
of years. This is an impeccable, beautifully balanced Chardonnay from LIOCO.
92 pts. 2012 Demuth Vineyard, Chardonnay - The 2012 Chardonnay Demuth Vineyard is laced
with nectarine, orange blossom, spices, mint, chamomile and lightly honeyed notes. Oily and
beautifully layered throughout, the Demuth offers a marriage of fairly overt flavors in a midweight,
resonant style that is hugely appealing
91 pts. 2012 Hanzell Vineyard, Chardonnay - Succulent yellow peaches, apricots, graphite,
smoke and honey are some of the notes that blossom in the 2012 Chardonnay Hanzell
Vineyard. This is the most boisterous and exuberant of the 2012 Chardonnays from Lioco. The
fruit was picked in mid-August, which helped preserve a measure of freshness.
92 pts. 2013 Laguna, Pinot Noir (March ‘15 release)- The 2013 Pinot Noir Laguna is bright,
floral and lifted, with striking inner perfume, lovely purity and impeccable overall balance. Red
and purplish toned fruits, lavender, mint, hard candy and white flowers grace the crystalline
finish. Drink this md-weight Pinot over the next few years. This is one of the best wines readers
will find for the money.
92 pts. 2012 Klindt Vineyard Pinot Noir - The 2012 Pinot Noir Klindt, from gravelly soils in
Anderson Valley, is hugely appealing. Dark and virile in personality, the 2012 offers lovely midpalate
depth and resonance supported by beams of tannin and acidity. Hints of cedar, tobacco,
game and earthiness add nuance and contribute to the wine's dark personality. Its attractive,
mid-weight personality notwithstanding, the Klindt remains a bit rough around the edges, but
that is not enough to meaningfully detract from the pleasure it provides. Readers can look to a
number of years of fine drinking here.
94 pts. 2012 Saveria Vineyard, Pinot Noir - Sweet tobacco, mint, graphite, lavender and sage
lift from the glass in the 2013 Pinot Noir Saveria. Dark, juicy and pliant, the 2012 impresses for
its balance and pure nuance. There is an element of intrigue that elevates the Saveria and
keeps all of the sense deeply engaged. The 50% whole clusters add dimensions of complexity
in a striking Pinot that delivers the goods big time.
91 pts. 2012 Hirsch Vineyard, Pinot Noir - The 2012 Pinot Noir Hirsch is pretty and open, with
good immediacy and intensity. Crushed flowers, red stone fruits and spices open up nicely in a
Pinot that shows good overall complexity. As good as the 2012 is, it is also pretty clear these
are not the very best blocks off the property. Here, too, 2013 will be the last vintage for the
89 pts. 2013 Indica Carignan - The 2013 Indica, 100% Carignane from Mendocino County, is
fabulous. Silky, racy and textured, the 2013 impresses for its pure exuberance and pedigree.
Punchy red stone fruits, pomegranate, wild flowers and sage meld into the vivid, savory finish.
Best of all, the Indica is a superb value. I have to say, this is one of my personal favorites in the
Lioco lineup. The 2013 was done entirely in neutral oak, which really allows the purity of the fruit
to shine through.

Bepi Tosolini Amaro Presentation (Italy)

Impact’s Domestic Wine “Hot Prospects” Reveal Crop Of Fast-Rising Standouts

With the U.S. market’s domestic wine category in growth mode, the segment is seeing its fair share of standout performances, and this year’s Impact “Hot Prospects” list highlights some of the best. The roster—which includes a total of 29 domestic wine brands—is especially diverse this year, boasting seven Washington state entries, as well as an Oregon offering, a sangria and even a specialty wine-based cocktail. A wide range of price points is also represented, from entry-level offerings like Bronco Wine Co.’s Green Fin, which plays in the $5 range, all the way to super-premium players like Deutsch Family Wine & Spirits’ Joseph Carr.

To qualify as Hot Prospects, wine brands must have posted 15% depletions growth in the previous year while also showing consistent growth in the preceding two years. Volumes must reach at least 50,000 cases but not more than 250,000 cases. New products can qualify as Hot Prospects if they pass the 50,000-case mark in their first year.

Top performers on the domestic wine Hot Prospects list include a variety of accessibly priced premium brands, including The Wine Group’s Cocobon and Terlato’s Seven Daughters, among others. Other 100,000-case plus honorees include DFV’s Belle Ambiance and HandCraft brands, Myx Beverage’s Myx Fusions specialty wine cocktail and Diageo’s The Great American Wine Co., all of which have been on the market for a relatively short period of time.

With Washington’s star rising quickly, the state’s outsized presence on this year’s lineup comes as no surprise. The Washington winners were led by E.&J. Gallo’s Columbia brand, followed closely by Precept Wine, which earned Hot Prospects honors for four brands: Radius, Canoe Ridge, Waterbrook and its 3-liter bag-in-box range House Wine Box.

1 oz Aria Portland Dry Gin

1 oz Lecompt Original Calvados

½ oz Sommer Fleur de Sommer

½ oz Boissiere Sweet Vermouth

Stir with ice and strain into a chilled coupe glass, garnish with a lemon twist

Get Ready for World Sake Day with Tozai

Learn to sell Tozai like a pro with Monica Samuels

As World Sake Day approaches on October 1st, check out what's new with Tozai and get a refresher on each sake with Monica's video. Learn how to pitch each product to best highlight the authenticity and quality of this premium Japanese sake.

Download our new Tozai Cocktail Recipe Cards and Sake Infographic below. Stay tuned for more exciting and educational sake materials from Vine Connections!

Click here for NEW Tozai Cocktail Recipe Cards

Click here for the Vine Connections Sake Infographic

We are extremely proud to inform you that Ferrari has been awarded Sparkling Wine Producer of the Year at The Champagne and Sparkling Wine World Championships 2015, the most important international competition dedicated to sparkling wines. Ferrari excelled over two other finalists, the Champagne houses Charles Heidseick and Louis Roederer.

Ferrari Perlé 2006 Trentodoc also won as Best Italian Sparkling. Altogether, our Trentodoc wines won 9 Gold Medals and 8 Best-in-class Awards.

In Tom Steveson’s words “Ferrari may have set e record that will never be matched, let alone bettered” (The World of Fine Wines Issue 49 2015).

Following the details of the prizes:

2015 Trophy Winner

Sparkling Wine Producer of the Year


 This is how Tom Stevenson announced the Sparkling Wine Producer of the Year Trophy: "It is in recognition of the most successful wine producer in the competition. There were three producers in contention and I really am glad there was a clear winner."

 National Champion

Best Italian Sparkling Wine 2015  

Ferrari Perlé 2006 Trentodoc (Magnum)

“Super-toasty and super good! Restrained but stunning toasted-coffee nose, seriously good, rich, caressing and creamy palate of great freshness and complexity. Superbly balanced, with great acidity marking its long and lingering finish. So classy! Wonderful!”

 2015 Best in Class Winners


Ferrari 2006 Perlé Brut (Magnum)

Trentodoc Nv Blend

Ferrari NV Maximum Brut (Magnum)

Trentodoc Blanc de Blancs

Ferrari 2006 Perlé Brut (Magnum)

Trentodoc Blanc de Noirs

Ferrari 2007 Perlé Nero Brut

Trentodoc Library Vintage

Ferrari 1995 Giulio Ferrari Riserva del Fondatore Brut (Magnum)

Trentodoc NV Magnum

Ferrari NV Maximum Brut (Magnum)

Trentodoc Vintage Magnum

Ferrari 2006 Perlé Brut (Magnum)

Trentodoc Vintage Rosé

Ferrari 2007 Perlé Rosé Brut (Magnum)

You can see the complete list of the awards by visiting the official web site of the CSWWC

Abacela partners- This is standout news-Each year, the editors of Wine Enthusiast honor the individuals and companies that have made outstanding achievements in the wine and beverage world.

Abacela has been nominated for a 2015 Wine Star Award, one of 5 wineries nominated for American Winery of the Year. The winners will be announced in the Wine Enthusiast’s special “Best of Year” issue.

Congratulations to Earl and Hilda Jones and the Abacela home team! And thanks to our distributor partners who carry the remarkable Abacela story, and wines, to their customers. Salud!

American Winery of the Year -NOMINEE

Abacela (Roseburg, OR)
When husband-and-wife team Earl & Hilda Jones planted Oregon’s first commercial Tempranillo 20 years ago, it was arguably the most important viticultural innovation since Pinot Noir was introduced 30 years earlier. Tempranillo has since become the signature grape for many Southern Oregon wineries, but Abacela continues to lead the way with Albariño, Dolcetto, Grenache and several Portuguese varieties.

Calera Points

Charles Smith "A Reason To Believe"

Calera Accolades

Double Canyon Horse Heaven Hills Cabernet 2013

Colle Massari Rigoleto Montecucco Rosso 2013  90pts WS

Pendulum Red Blend 2013 89pts WE

New York, NY, (August 20, 2015) – The Fifty Best, rating the finest in wines and spirits, has once again shined its spotlight on aged rum.  The Fifty Best recently hosted an Aged Rum Tasting, where 30 contenders were evaluated for the distinguished “Best Aged Rum” awards for 2015.

 The Fifty Best is very pleased to announce that Rumson's Super Premium Aged Rum was awarded a Gold medal.

Using professional criteria, the pre-qualified panel of judges blind-tasted the rums and rated them individually on a 1-5 point scoring system with 5 being the best. After tallying the scores, medals were awarded based on the judges' impressions.

Charles recorded this fantastic video at the opening of Jet City last month. 

Winemaker Charles Smith Opens Jet City, An Urban Winery in Seattle

Bethel Heights Pinot Noir 2012  92pts WS

Browne Family Vineyards Scores

Wine Spectator: Winemaker Charles Smith Opens Jet City, An Urban Winery in Seattle

Washington vintner Charles Smith flung open the 21-foot-tall doors of his Jet City winery to the public Saturday. Billed as the largest urban winery on the West Coast, Jet City occupies a 32,000-square-foot former Dr. Pepper processing plant in the Georgetown district of Seattle. The runways of Boeing Field stretch south, directly across the street.

“Buying this building was purely about winemaking,” Smith told Wine Spectator. Smith’s K Vintners and other high-end bottlings will be produced here beginning with the 2015 vintage. “Before, we were making wine in three different facilities in Walla Walla. I’ve always needed to consolidate everything I was doing in Walla Walla, and then I realized it made sense to move it all to Seattle, where we could reach 100 times the number of people we could in Walla Walla.”

Several dozen Seattle-area wineries, including some of the best in the state, truck grapes over the Cascade Range to turn them into wine. Smith joins a list that includes Baer, Betz, Cadence, Domaine Ste. Michelle, Efeste, Gorman, Januik, Quilceda Creek, Sparkman and Andrew Will. Wine Spectator has the full story.


La Posta Named Year's Best Brand for Value

Wine & Spirits Magazine

Vine Connections and Laura Catena are proud to announce that La Posta has been named one of the year's 'Best Brands for Value' in the June 2015 issue of Wine & Spirits Magazine. La Posta Fazzio Malbec is featured throughout the magazine - the 2013 vintage received 90 Points with "plenty of the variety's signature bright, spicy ripe cherry favors, with the plush texture that only Malbec can achieve."

See all La Posta scores here.

CANOE RIDGE Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills Reserve 2012

90pts WS Broad and spicy, with loamy earth and apricot overtones to the cherry and toast flavors, coming together on the firm, finely wrought finish. Best from 2017 through 2022. 9,500 cases made. —Harvey Steiman

Martin Ray Chardonnay 2013  92pts WE

Angeline Sauvignon Blanc 2014 90pts WE

  2013 Merrill Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 91pts. by Rich Cook of  Gold Medal Winner in 2015 North of the Gate Wine Competition 89pts. in 2015 San Diego International Wine Competition


2013 Merrill Russian River Valley Pinot Noir

91pts. by Rich Cook of 

Gold Medal Winner in 2015 North of the Gate Wine Competition

89pts. in 2015 San Diego International Wine Competition

Torii Mor Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2012 90pts WS

Amador county and Jeff Runquist Article

Casey Flat Ranch Sauvignon Blanc 2013  90pts WS

Great article about Armagnac and Château de LAUBADE in the Four Seasons Magazine that was published in November.

Waterbrook Sauvignon Blanc Columbia Valley 2013
88pts WS  “Light and refreshing, with grapefruit and floral flavors singing brightly and lingering well. Drink now. 2,500 cases made.” –HS

Food & Wine Best 50 wines under $15!

2012 K Vintners Syrah Millbrandt Wahluke Slope        92 points

(vinified with 50% whole clusters; 40 days on the skins): Saturated bright red-ruby. Wild aromas of tart crushed cherry and game. Intensely flavored and light on its feet; spreads out subtly to coat the palate with sour cherry and earthy mineral flavors. Finishes juicy, firmly tannic and long, leaving the mouth vibrating. Charles Smith does virtually no racking for his Syrahs but does do a bit of lees stirring. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2012 K Vintners Viognier Columbia Valley        91 points

 (vinified with wild years; no malolactic fermentation; aged for 11 months in neutral oak): Bright, light yellow with green reflections. Sexy aromas of peach, apple and flowers. Sweet peach, nectarine and orange peel flavors are nicely framed by ripe, harmonious acidity. Boasts terrific fruit concentration and thrust and finishes with noteworthy length. Delicious right now, and there’s no reason to wait. An excellent value in Viognier. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners Clifton Hill Syrah Wahluke Slope       92 points

(from a very warm west-facing site at lower elevation; 50% vendange entier and aged in 25% new oak): Less primary than the Millbrandt on the nose, offering soil-driven scents of smoke, forest floor and bloody steak. Then sweet, sappy and youthfully imploded, showing excellent energy to its cherry, spice and smoked meat flavors. This savory wine is most impressive on the back end today, with the very long finish displaying excellent structure and grip. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners The Creator River Rock Walla Walla Valley91+? points

(13.5% alcohol; a 70/30 blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, co-fermented—whole berries for the cabernet and whole clusters for the Syrah—and aged in 70% new French oak for 26 months): Deep medium red. Aromas of raspberry, roasted herbs and beefsteak tomato, with a floral element emerging as the wine opens in the glass. In a savory, very dry style, offering noteworthy energy to its raspberry, black olive and mineral flavors. Seemed to gain in sweetness and pliancy with air. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners The Hidden Syrah Northridge Vineyard        93+? points  

Bright red-ruby. A sexy balsamic note adds interest to the aromas of raspberry, red licorice, menthol, mint and minerals; the most complex of these Syrah samples to this point. Suave and round on entry, then utterly seamless in the middle, boasting a rare combination of intensity with delicacy and power with restraint. Flavors of pie cherry and granite are complicated by a saline quality. Finishes with lovely lingering perfume and terrific energy and lift. I’d love to check back in on this Syrah in about eight years. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners The Deal Syrah Sundance Wahluke Slope  92+? points

Bright, saturated ruby. Lovely floral lift to the aromas of black raspberry, white pepper and smoke. In a juicy, elegant style, with nicely integrated acidity and a very fine-grained mouthfeel. Extremely young and still tightly coiled, but boasts the balance and depth of flavor to age gracefully and gain in complexity. Very promising, lightly stony Syrah. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners MCK Motor City Kitty Syrah Washington State          91 points       

(from Yakima Valley vines planted near Snipes Mountain): Bright dark red. Classical northern Rhone Syrah aromas and flavors of raspberry, smoked meat and black olive tapenade. Sweet, pliant and deep, offering noteworthy fruit intensity. Finishes with ripe, dusty, slow-building tannins and lovely length. A very good Syrah value. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners Syrah River Rock Walla Walla Valley            90 points      

(made from Entav clones; vinified mostly with whole clusters): Dark, balsamic aromas of olive, mocha, smoke and earth. Surprisingly sweet on the palate, with a flavor of caramel oak dominating today. Not yet particularly complex or elegant, this Syrah will need some time in bottle to expand. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

2011 K Vintners The Beautiful Syrah Walla Walla Valley        91+? points  

(13.5% alcohol; blended with 4% Viognier; the Syrah comes from Tablas Creek; vinified mostly with whole clusters and aged in 30% new French oak): Good dark red. Savory, soil-driven aromas of raspberry, olive and pimiento. Densely packed and sweet if a bit youthfully bound-up, showing lovely floral lift to its red berry and saline flavors. Less floral and complex than the 2010 version was at the same stage but this needs time. -- Stephen Tanzer, Dec 2014

A to Z Wineworks is one of Oregon's most admired companies!
(click on above for harvest video link)

Selected by local CEOs, A to Z Wineworks is recognized as one of Oregon's ten most admired companies by the Portland Business Journal in the Agriculture category.

"A to Z Goes BCorp: Oregon Winery Commits to Responsible Practices"
Wine Spectator - Environmental Section
9/30/14 Issue & Online

The Oregonian 2014 TOP WORKPLACES
A to Z Wineworks named #4 Top Small Business Workplaces and Best in Category for Top Leadership 9/2014

Amy Prosenjak has been named President of A to Z Wineworks AND CFO of the year - honoree by the Portland Business Journal. Amy has served our fast-paced organization as Controller, Chief Financial Officer and, most recently, Chief Financial and Operations Officer. Her leadership in these roles over the past seven years has seen our family-owned company grow from 100,000 cases to 300,000 cases with distribution in all 50 states
and 18 export markets.

 A to Z Wineworks Oregon Chardonnay:
America's Best Selling Chardonnay
Four Time Best Buy & Top 100 Value Pick
Wine & Spirits

A to Z Wineworks Oregon Riesling
Top 100 Best Buys 2014
Wine Enthusiast

 2014 harvest

"An amazing year. Perfectly warm summer temperatures, no bad weather "curveballs" like last year and very little disease pressure. As a result, the state's growing regions, from Mosier in the Columbia River Gorge to Medford in Southern Oregon, are producing big yields of beautiful, beautiful grapes. The quality is off the charts."

- Sam Tannahill
Founder, Director of Viticulture & Winemaking

The earliest harvest since 1992 with great flavor development, ripeness and perfect sugar levels balanced with beautiful acidity. "We're picking what we want, when we want it." "Perfect fruit we are only removing the stray leaf or two on the sorting line." "This harvest is shaping up to be one of legend."


Kung Fu Girl on Wine Spectator's "Top 100" List

The 2013 Kung Fu Girl Riesling made Wine Spectator's list of "Top 100 Wines of 2014" for the second year in a row! With 91 points, this single-vineyard Washington state Riesling has now been named "Best Value" five years in a row from Wine Spectator. In addition to the announcement of the score for the Kung Fu Girl, the 2013 Boom Boom Syrah and the 2012 The Velvet Devil Merlot also received 90 points and the 2013 K Vintners Art Den Hoed Viognier received 91 points. Updated POS (shelf talkers, case cards, etc) have been added to the trade section of our website. For the link to the full list of the "Top 100" wines, please click here

 Charles Smith Named "Winemaker of the Year"

Earlier this month, Charles received the coveted 2014 Wine Star Award for “Winemaker of the Year” from Wine Enthusiast, joining past winners including legendary winemakers Michel Rolland, Alvaro Palacios, and Olivier Humbrecht. Charles is the first to receive this award, not only in Washington State, but in the Pacific Northwest. This is Charles’ third nomination for Wine Star’s “Winemaker” category, and his first win. He has also earned global acclaim being named “Winemaker of the Year” by Food & Wine in 2009, and by Seattle magazine in 2010. Currently, Charles is the only person to have won “Winemaker of the Year” by both Food & Wine and Wine Enthusiast. For a copy of the feature, please click here

 SIXTO Chardonnays in Wine Spectator

In the December 15th issue of Wine Spectator, Harvey Steiman focuses on the rise of Washington Chardonnay-only projects in his article, "Washington's Sleek New Whites." Noting that Washington is  "a state where big red wines are king," he features three top producers, including Charles, who "are seeking to upgrade Chardonnay's image in Washington." After a look at various Chardonnay vineyard sites in Washington, Harvey adds, "Charles Smith, Brennon Leighton and Andrew Latta, the winemakers responsible for SIXTO, sought less-familiar sites for their single-vineyard bottlings." For the full write up on the wines, please click here.

 Wine Spectator's Top Washington Wines

Also in last month's Wine Spectator, Harvey Steiman notes the "Top Wines" and "Top Value" from Washington state, with three wines from our team. The 2011 K Vintners "The Beautiful" Syrah received 95 points and is listed on "Top Wines." For "Top Values," both the Charles Smith Wines 2012 The Velvet Devil Merlot and the Charles & Charles Post No. 35 Cab-Syrah blend received 90 points. For a copy of this feature, please click here.

 Cooking with ViNO on Huffington Post

Charles filmed a fun cooking demo with Potluck Video and Huffington Post which was featured earlier this month. The task was to help viewers understand how to cook with wine and some helpful tips - plus a demo of one of Charles's favorite recipes, Chicken Saltimbocca with our ViNO Pinot Grigio. To watch the video, please click here


93 Masút 2012 Block 6 (Mendocino County). Sometimes, a wine has such a distinct individual personality that it stands out from the crowd, and this brilliantly focused Pinot is one of those. There’s a light touch of really sophisticated, subtly spicy French oak, but a crystal-clear raspberry fruit character energizes the aromas and flavors. It’s medium-to-full bodied, but not at all heavy. It’s hard to imagine tiring of this. Editors’ Choice ,Wine Enthusiast December 2014 Issue.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

California’s Hahn Sees New Upscale Focus Pay Off

Soledad, California-based Hahn Family Wines, one of the Central Coast’s premier vintners, says it’s seeing growth pick up this year following a strategic decision to ramp up efforts on its premium-and-above portfolio. The company’s Hahn Winery tier ($14-$18) earned Impact “Hot Prospect” honors for a 2013 performance in which it grew 16% to 221,000 cases, representing a near-doubling in volume since 2010.

Company chairman Philip Hahn told SND progress is continuing for the Hahn Winery line this year. “Our three biggest sellers for Hahn Winery are Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet. But our fastest grower right now is our GSM blend, which we created specifically for restaurants and higher-end bars and gastropubs. It’s been a big hit by-the-glass in the on-premise, priced around $10-$12.” Hahn Winery is expected to be at about 240,000 cases for 2014, and is advancing toward the company’s goal of 300,000 cases within the next few years.

Another focus brand for the winery is its luxury Hahn SLH range, sourced from its Santa Lucia Highlands estate vineyards and including Pinot Noir ($35) and Chardonnay ($25). In the six months through September—the first half of Hahn Family’s fiscal year—SLH, which was repackaged earlier this year, grew depletions 27%

Hahn’s upscale Central Coast Cabernet Sauvignon brand, Smith & Hook ($25), is also on the upswing. Sourced from Paso Robles, Arroyo Seco, San Antonio Valley and Hames Valley, Smith & Hook’s depletions are up 30% year-to-date. The current strong showings for Hahn SLH and Smith & Hook follow up on a previous fiscal year in which both brands doubled in size.

Altogether, Hahn’s luxury portfolio—which includes SLH, Smith & Hook and single-vineyard brand Lucienne ($50)—grew its share of the company’s production to 30% last fiscal from 16% a year earlier. Hahn added that the winery’s super-premium offerings are continuing to make gains on-premise, with SLH and Smith & Hook deriving about 60%-70% of sales on-premise, compared with about 50% for Hahn Winery.

Waterbrook High Scores
Charles Smith - Wine Enthusiast 2014 Winemaker of the Year

The Irishman Founder’s Reserve scored 92 Points and was noted as a “2014 Best Buy”.

Wine Enthusiast Expert Kara Newman described Founder’s Reserve as light and easy-drinking, this blended Irish whiskey features aromas of apples, pears and fresh-cut grass. On the palate, look for vanilla and salted caramel, with a moderately spiced finish showing allspice and clove.— (12/1/2014) — 92

Bastille 1789 scored 91 Points and was also noted as a “2014 Best Buy”.

Kara Newman described Bastille 1789 as a smooth, elegant whisky offers bold, fruity aromatics, with just the faintest suggestion of smoke. On the palate, smoke is evident from the first sip, gentle but persistent, floating over vanilla and almond flavors. That long exhale of smoke continues into the fade, alongside a burst of dry cigar box spice and burnt orange peel.  — (12/1/2014) — 91

Riesling Columbia Valley Kung Fu Girl Evergreen 2013 – 91 POINTS 
Merlot Columbia Valley The Velvet Devil 2012 – 90 POINTS
Syrah Columbia Valley Boom Boom! 2013 – 90 POINTS
Viognier Yakima Valley Art Den Hoed 2013 – 91 POINTS

Waterbrook Merlot 2011  90pts WS

J.Lohr Falcon's Perch Pinot Noir 2012  92pts WE
Chateau Julien Cabernet 2012  90pts World Wine Championships

Amazing Blackwell Rum plug by Mario Batali and Jimmy Fallon last night!

VALLE DELL'ACATE reviewed on the website

-       Tanè Sicilia IGT Red 2010                                93 points

-       Rusciano – Syrah Sicilia IGT 2011                     92 points

-       Il Moro - Nero ‘Avola Sicilia IGT 2011                91 points

-       Cerasuolo di Vittoria DOCG Classico 2011         93 points

-       Il Frappato – Vittoria DOC 2013                         91 points

-       Bidis Sicilia DOC Chardonnay 2012                   92 points

-       Zagra Sicilia DOC Grillo 2013                            91 points

-       Insolia – Vittoria DOC 2013                               90 points

End of September Press Round Up

Wow, what a month! Thanks to our all of our distributor and importer partners, our great sales team, and our amazing office and winemaking staff for what has been an epic few weeks. When we received the issue of Wine Spectator with the Charles Smith featurewe knew the story was going to be great- but did not expect the full impact and level of awareness it would bring to the company. The snowball effect (hell, let's call it an avalanche) with press opportunities following that story will keep us all very busy through next Spring - which is never a bad thing. Thanks again for everyone's hard work and here's to a successful OND!  -Madeline

 Wine Spectator Feature

In the October 15th issue of Wine Spectator (which hit news stands a couple weeks ago), Harvey Steiman gives us an 11-page feature on Charles Smith titled, "Marching to His Own Drummer." In summary, he notes, "Although all of the Charles Smith bottlings rely on traditional winemaking, winemaker Charles Smith's public persona and business approach defy convention." With a series of old and current images of Charles and the winery, Steiman really gets the story right. "He started from scratch with a line of bank credit; a series of smart business moves; brilliant labeling and marketing strategies. Along the way, business and personal relationships ran aground. But mostly, Smith has produced a stunning array of wines with personalities as bold as the guy who makes them," he said. For the full PDF of the article, please click here.

 Vintages Magazine

The September LCBO in-store magazine features both the Chateau Smith on the cover as well as a few key images and the history of Charles and Charles Smith Wines. Titled "Charles Smith: A Rock-Solid Reputation," the article adds "The wine world's very own rock 'n' roller has a story that reads like a Cameron Crowe script." Crowning Smith as one of the Wine Pioneers, the article also features the Boom Boom Syrah. For a copy of the feature, please click here

 Wine Spectator & Eater Wine Wire

Last week, Harvey Steiman's blog post, "Charles Smith Plants His Flag in Seattle," which was a follow-up to his Wine Spectator article, announced our plans for a winery and multiple tasting rooms in the neighborhood of Georgetown, just ten minutes south of Seattle. Partnering with Olson Kundig architects again, Harvey added, "The new winery should be ready for the 2015 vintage. It will continue to make all the high-end wines for K Vintners, Charles Smith and the new Sixto Chardonnay project." As a team, we were very excited to have the move officially announced. Eater's Wine Wire picked up the story as well. Please click here for the article - and see below about our video for the Georgetown announcement. 

 Seattle Met Magazine: Best Washington Wines

The latest Seattle Met Magazine features 100 of Washington's Best Wines - and we were honored to snag 4 of the awards, including The "13 Top Wines in Washington" which featured the 2012 K Vintners "The Boy" Grenache, and "The Top Ten Washington White Wines" with the 2013 K Vintners Art Den Hoed Viognier. In the "Taste the Place" category, the 2011 K Vintners "The Creator" Cab/Syrah was featured and the 2012 Charles & Charles Post No. 35 Red Wine was highlighted as a "Value Pick" for the Red Blends category. For a copy of this feature, please click here.

Wine & Spirits Magazine Unveils the 2014 Top 100 'Wineries of the Year' leading up to the 11th Annual Top 100 Tasting Event

Bethel Heights, Concha Y Toro, Dominus, Iron Horse, L'Ecole, LIOCO, Storybook, etc.

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