Kathy & I enjoy entertaining friends at our home. Often on these occasions we end up drinking wines from my personal collection, many of which are from my home country of Italy. I want all our guests at Café Aura to have the opportunity to experience these wines. The list we have put together represent some of the highest rated wines from Italy, France and the United States. And what better to enhance a special evening with friends and family than a great bottle of wine.
RP: ROBERT PARKER
JS: JAMES SUCKLING
WS: WINE SPECTATOR
BH: BURG HOUND
WA: WINE ADVOCATE
|119||Domaine Louis Jadot, Puligny - Montrachet 2017 Exhibits attractive aromas of ripe citrus fruit, fresh peach, orange blossom and chalky soil tones, followed by a medium to full-bodied, satiny and succulent palate with good concentration and a penetrating finish. BH 92||115|
|120||Domaine Matrot, "Les Chevalieres" - Meursault 2019 A mineral Meursault white that is rich, fine, and elegant with a great balance. The aromas of mature Chardonnay are balanced with the minerality of the soi. WS 92, BH 91||125|
|121||Domaine Francois Carillon, "Champ-Gain" 1er cru, Puligny-Montrachet 2018A cool and airy mix features notes of various white orchard fruit and acacia blossom aromas that are laced with subtle hints of exotic tea and citrus rind.BH 93||175|
|Napa Valley Cabernet & Bordeaux Blends|
|510||Anderson Conn Valley “Eloge” 2016 Dense, layered and super-expressive. Black cherry, plum, cloves, licorice, chocolate and espresso. RP 97||165|
|511||Cardinale, Cabernet 2016 This captivating red impresses in its firm grasp of complex herb and spice. Sage, clove and woody tannin grip a core of currant, cranberry and high-toned red fruit, the texture dusty and lengthy. RP 97||475|
|512||La Jota "Howell Mountain" 2016 Blackberry, rosemary, subtle Asian spice, and a hint of Petit Verdot that rounds out the flavors. RP 97, WS 94||250|
|514||Beaulieu Vineyards "Tapestry" Reserve 2017 A soft and velvety red with chocolate and currant character. Medium to full body, creamy tannins and a fruity finish. Extremely polished and approachable. Shows the dusty character of the harvest. JS 92||140|
|515||Dominus, Yountville 2018 #1 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2021 With its remarkably complex nose, Dominus is an utterly seductive wine. It displays red and black fruits and an ethereal aroma of deep cherry, warm citrus and marzipan. RP 99, JS 100||475|
|516||Dalla Valle 2016Crushed blackberries, wild blueberries, kirsch and black cherries with touches of fragrant soil, cassis, tobacco leaf, candied violets and espresso. Medium to full-bodied.RP 97, JS 95||325|
|517||Dalla Valle "Maya" 2016 Floral and red fruit layers--kirsch, red currant jelly, black raspberries, lilacs, red roses and lavender--with achingly beautiful wafts of cigar box, pencil lead, camphor, cinnamon stick and forest floor. Medium to full-bodied.RP 100, JS 99||495|
|518||Robert Mondavi "The Reserve", To Kalon Vineyard 2016 Rich, powerful and voluptuous, the 2016 oozes with class from the very first taste. The flavors are deep, dark and boldly sketched in this sumptuous, beautifully resonant Cabernet.RP 96||225|
|519||Grigich Hills Estate Cab 2016 Entices the senses with layers of complex flavors that continue to evolve in the glass and on the palate. Aromas of black currants, violets, and plums.JS 93||125|
|520||Ghost Block Estate Cabernet, Oakville 2017/19 Entices the senses with layers of complex flavors that continue to evolve in the glass and on the palate. Aromas of black currants, violets, and plums.WS 93||125|
|524||Opus One, Oakville 2018 Restrained in style, without the vivid punch typical of the vintage, but the gently mulled currant, cherry and bitter plum flavors are well-delineated and persistent, thyme and tobacco leaf notes play a prominent role. There's a racy beam of acidity piercing through it all and a lingering iron note on the finish. RP 98||475|
|521||Cade "Howell Mountain" 2018 Explodes from the glass with notes of raspberry coulis, black cherry, cedar, cocoa nib, boysenberry, mint, graham cracker, and a hint of lavender, rose, and bay. The palette follows with bright flavors of red cherry and strawberry jam before tertiary elements of coffee, dark chocolate, and fresh plums take over. JD 95||195|
|522||Quintessa, Rutherford 2018 This is beautifully polished with firm, dusty tannins to the blue fruit, as well as chocolate and cedar character. Some much earthier character, too, from mushrooms to bark. Forest flowers. Perfumed. It's full-bodied with round tannins and a soft, creamy finish. Attractive at the finish. JS 99||245|
|523||Phelps Insignia 2016 Elegant and complex with a supple, creamy texture and bold tannins, this latest vintage offers luscious ripe plum and blackberry character with hints of roasted coffee and dark cherry throughout the palate.RP 99||375|
|Large Format Bottles|
|523||Jordan Vineyards, Alexander Valley 2006 Intense aromas of cassis, black currants, blackberries and ripe cherries with a lovely floral note. The palate is rich and seductive, exuding blackberries and cassis interwoven seamlessly with fine tannins from new French oak barrels.WS 92||325|
|513||Dominus 2017 MagnumVery intense aromas of fruit, yet complex subtlety. Blue fruit, licorice and blackberries with flowers and perfumes. Full-bodied, round and chewy with black tea, currants and hints of leather and incense. Coffee undertones.
|541||Produttori del Barbaresco Riserva “Montefico” 2015 Full body vintage with ripe red fruit, solid tannic structure, good drinkability solid structure, intense minerality, spicy fruit, slow maturing tannins.RP 95, WE 96||165|
|542||Produttori del Barbaresco Riserva "Montefico" 2017 Ruby red. The nose is rich, spicy with red fruit notes like clove, raspberry and red cherry. The wine is full-bodied with solid structure, intense minerality and slow-maturing tannins.RP 94, WE 95||165|
|543||Produttori del Barbaresco Riserva "Rabaja" 2017There is purity and definition to the rose, cherry, strawberry and spice aromas and flavors in this red. Draped on an elegant profile, with a terrific mineral underpinning. Harmony and finesse renders this red approachable now.
|573||Massolino, Barolo "Bussia" 2017Camphor, wild berry, new leather and blue flower aromas emerge on the nose of this savory wine. Full-bodied and delicious, the structured palate delivers succulent Marasca cherry & baking spice.
RP 92, WE 95
|565||Podero Aldo Conterno, Barolo 2016A fresh and elegant red, showing aromas and flavors of cut hay, strawberry, cherry, iron, eucalyptus and tar. Lithe and intense, with a long, savory aftertaste.
|551||Altesino, Brunello di Montalcino 2017 Brilliant ruby-red color, this classic Rosso offers sumptuous aromas of ripened blackberries and dark cherries. On the palate, the wine is generously well-rounded and rich with fruit-forward notes complimented by hints of leather and mesquite.RP 94, JS 95||115|
|554||Il Poggione, Brunello di Montalcino Riserva "Vigna Paganelli" 2016 Intense ruby red, elegant nose with notes of red fruit, leather and spices; persistent, balanced flavour, with a long and seductive finish. RP 96, WS 96||165|
|575||Martinozzi, Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 2015 Black-cherry and blackberry aromas with minerals and fresh flowers, following through to a full body with firm, silky tannins that are polished and intense. RP 93, JS 95||145|
|555||Marchesi Mazzei, "Philip" IGT 2015 Deep, dark purple in color. Intriguing black cherry, balsamic herbs, coffee, and lightly toasted oak. Harmonious flavors of dark fruit, dried flowers, chocolate and vanilla. Exotic, complex character, full bodied. JS 94||105|
|560||Argiano, Solengo IGT 2014 This is elegant, with well-integrated structure framing black currant, black cherry, violet, leather and tobacco flavors. Stays long and resonant on the finish, where a touch of oak spice shines through.JS 92, RP 91||125|
|561||Antinori, Tiganello IGT 2018 A big, lush style, this red delivers pure aromas and flavors of black currant, cherry, violet, flint, tobacco and baking spices. This is supple, yet backed by a firm, dense matrix of tannins.RP 98, JS 96||225|
|563||Fattoria Le Pupille Elisabetta Geppetti, Safreddi IGT 2017Deep ruby color with purple reflections. It shows pronounced flavors of black fruits like blackcurrant and black cherry along with spicy aromas of cloves, cinnamon and licorice. The palate has a generous velvety texture with round tannins and a return of the fruit for a long and persistent finish.
RP 97, JS 97
|564||Felsina, Fonatalloro IGT 2018 A tight, fresh Fontalloro with dark cherry, chocolate and toasted oak. Some walnut, too. It's full-bodied, yet polished and structured. RP 95, JS 95||135|
|570||Antinori, Guida al Tasso, 2018 Beautiful center palate of fruit here with ripe and silky tannins that are resolved and fine-grained. Full-bodied, polished and ever so refined. RP 98, JS 98||148|
|562||Tenuta San Guido, Guidalberto IGT 2017 This beautifully balanced wine is strongly marked by sweet black Merlot fruit character, impressions of ripe, concentrated berries in the aroma offset by restrained notes of spice vanilla and cedar. JS 94||125|
|574||Tenuta San Guido, Sassicaia 2018 The palate is lifted and bright, the finish is polished and long, and the wine skips over any heaviness on the mid-palate. The bouquet is especially intriguing with a very lively plummy fruit element that is enhanced by baker's chocolate, pepper spice, iron ore, caramel and pie crust. RP 97, JS 98||375|
|571||Ornellaia, Bolgheri Superiore 2018With its usual deep ruby-red colour, Ornellaia 2018 features a lively and intense aromatic expression, a distinctive mark of the vintage. Red fruits, citrus notes, hints of liquorice and Mediterranean scrub combine to form its profile.
JS 97, RP 95
|572||Gaja, Ca' Marcanda Promis 2017Fresh and juicy, with notes of red and black fruits--raspberry, wild strawberry and mulberry. Creamy, firm tannins. The finish is sapid with a smoky and spicy character.
|257||Mastroberadino, Taurasi Riserva 2014 Deep ruby red in color, this wine gives off a full, complex and intense bouquet redolent of tobacco, cherry, violet and berries. The Radici Taurasi Riserva is enveloping, elegant and persistent, with background notes of plum, bitter cherry, strawberry jam and black pepper. RP 93||115|
|251||Montevetrano, Colli di Salerno 2017 Deep ruby-red in color, aromas of blackberries and spices complement undertones of black currants, licorice, tobacco, earth, and leather. Elegant with fine-grained tannins and a rich, silky texture.JS 96||125|
|253||Masi, Amarone Costasera 2015This opens beautiful to reveal violets, blueberries, licorice, citrus, oyster shell and orange rind. So velvety and polished, but with real depth and structure. Medium-to full-bodied with delightful fruit and a long finish.
JS 95, RP 943