Honored to have been named an Importer of the Year for the sixth consecutive year by Wine & Spirits Magazine. See the homage to our producers and partners created when honored for 2017 by both Wine & Spirits and Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
In this Tasting Interview, wine critic James Suckling and Scot Bilbro, winemaker at Marietta Cellars, the two talk vineyards, the dynamic genre of table wines, how these wines are an homage to Scot’s father and more. Suckling expresses surprise that a Californian vine could produce fruit of that caliber and much more!
Cyril Delarue is a sixth-generation Bollinger family member, and great-grand nephew of Champagne icon Lily Bollinger. He is currently in charge of export management and business development at the famed Champagne house.
Born and raised in Reims, France, Caroline Latrive is no stranger to the traditions of Champagne. With decades of enology experience, she leads the charge as Chef de Cave at Champagne Ayala.
Bollinger La Grande Année 2012 has clinched the #10 spot in Wine Spectator’s “Top 100 Wines of 2020,” accompanied by a “Highly Recommended” designation by Champagne reviewer Alison Napjus.
We represent 40 benchmark producers in leading and emerging wine regions across 10 countries and 4 continents.
In 1976 Chateau Montelena put California at the forefront of the wine world. That year a who's-who of the French wine establishment gathered in Paris for a blind tasting of French and American wines. When the scores were tallied, the top-ranking white wine was Chateau Montelena's 1973 Chardonnay. Montelena today continues to be a quality benchmark in Napa Valley, producing some of the finest Cabernet and Chardonnay in California.
For over 37 years, Gary Farrell Winery has crafted small-lot artisan wines capturing balance and stylistic elegance from some of the finest vineyard sites in the Russian River Valley. In 1985, Winemaker Gary Farrell released his 55 cases of 1982 Rochioli-Allen Pinot Noir to widespread critical acclaim. Since that release, the team at Gary Farrell Winery has consistently focused on rigorous vineyard selection, outstanding grower relationships, and superior quality fruit. For the past 8 years, the current owners have been dedicated to enhancing Gary Farrell’s legacy with a single-minded focus on quality.
Started in 1976 by Audrey and Barry Sterling, Iron Horse is a standout producer of Sparkling wine in America. Nestled in the cool microclimate of the Green Valley AVA, Iron Horse’s 300 acre estate is home to 164 acres of vineyard, split evenly between Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The second generation, Joy Sterling and her brother Laurence, oversee the estate, and have dedicated their time and attention to improving vineyard practices, implementing regenerative agriculture and sustainability initiatives, and advocating for their community and the environment.
Starting with only a handful of purchased grapes in 1978, Marietta Cellars has been a standout winery in Sonoma and Mendocino since the very start. Founded by Chris Bilbro, a Sonoma native with winemaking roots dated back three generations, Marietta rose to prominence with its revolutionary Old Vine Red, a California red blend that essentially created the category. The winery has slowly expanded its estate holdings over the past thirty years, evolving into a beacon for high quality, balanced Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, and Rhône variety blends.
Far Mountain is based on the belief that some of the greatest potential for wine in California - and anywhere in the world - exists in remote pockets in the mountains of the Sonoma Valley. The growers they work with have taken decades of risks in both planting their vineyards and the farming choices they make today. The winery's work is to channel the drama of these surroundings into wines that dazzle with energy and stand out immediately. Wines that bring a sheer pleasure in their flavors and textures, as well as unfold slowly, with never ending detail and fascination. It is a specific vision, literally chiselled by the landscape.
Dick and Nancy Ponzi helped put Oregon on the map in the United States and the world. The mantle has been picked up by daughters Maria and Luisa Ponzi, who continue the family history of leadership and innovation in the region and, in the case of Pinot Noir, across the country.
The more you learn about the Guigal family, the more astounding becomes their story. Their wines are the benchmarks for every Rhone appellation, and over the last thirty years they have become arguably the most lauded producer in the world. Year after year the Guigal family produces wines of exceptional quality that in all classes offer exceptional value.
Since its creation in 1946 by Etienne Guigal, the Guigal family has produced a Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The terroirs of Nalys realize a dream spanning three generations to join this leading prestigious and historic appellation. Marcel and Philippe Guigal will bring passion and rigour, their family quality philosophy, and the ambition of waving the flag of Châteauneuf-du-Pape at the very highest level.
Château Minuty is the global leader in Côtes de Provence rosé, and beyond that it can be argued is the most important estate in the history of Provence rosé. The Saint-Tropez based, family owned estate has been, since its founding, one of the quality leaders for the region. Minuty then became one of the most visible producers in the second half of the 20th century, a result of quality production and commercial foresight when no one in the region could imagine the global phenomenon Provence rosé would become. And then in the last two decades, Minuty defined the vision for and led the unbelievable growth in Provence rosé around the globe.
Bollinger is one of the rare Grande Marques that’s still family owned. Known for its rich, elegant and polished style of Champagne, their outstanding wines are the result of rigorous attention to detail and incredibly labor-intensive practices that few houses are willing to undertake. Underscoring its excellence, Bollinger has remained British secret agent James Bond's Champagne of choice since 1973.
Ayala is one of the most exciting stories in Champagne today, almost the definition of a boutique Champagne producer. Independently owned, a small, young and dynamic team handles every step of production from grape reception to labeling in their jewel of a facility with incredible precision, crafting Chardonnay-focused wines that deliver immense pleasure, freshness, and elegance.
Over the last 15 years La Fleur-Pétrus has become one of the most fascinating and, from a quality standpoint, extraordinary stories in Bordeaux. A wine borne of a great historic terroir, that through nurture and creativity has become something greater than perhaps could have been imagined, and a bright shining light of Pomerol.
It is difficult to sum up in a few lines the long and splendid history of the estate. It was already known in the 12th century but there were not yet any vines. In the 16th century the estate anticipated the future development of the Médoc which was to start abandoning the cultivation of cereal crops in favor of vines, and Château Margaux became a high place in the art of growing and making wine.
These 3 estates are run by an extended family and represent in both the past and future an extraordinarily exciting story: estates on the right bank of Bordeaux making utterly authentic, soulful wines, led by a dynamic young generation eager to bring its own perspective and energy.
Chanson is a true mid-size Domaine. Unlike many of their competitors, their wines are produced using the grower model rather than the négociant model. They have extensive holdings of over 111 acres of exclusively Premier and Grand Cru vineyards in the heart of Burgundy. Chanson is obsessed with maintaining a consistent quality level across the entire range. The wines have a seductive and distinctive style due to the rigorous approach to viticulture and vinification.
In two decades of work, Lucien Le Moine has become one of the most talked about Burgundy producers, making some of the most sought after wines from the region. The approach is extreme – two people, together doing everything by hand, working with a dazzling array of Burgundy’s great terroirs.
Burgundy meets the Rhone. An utter respect for tradition, and in some ways a total break. We've watched as Mounir and Rotem Saouma, of Burgundy producer Lucien Le Moine, slowly developed their estate and wines in Chateauneuf-du-Pape, and the results today are too extraordinary and distinct to ignore.
Domaine des Baumard has been planted with vines since 1634, and has remained in the same family since then. In the mid-20th century, however, is when the estate started to build a reputation as one of the greatest white wine producers in the Loire Valley, and the world.
Langlois-Chateau has a rich history as one of the leading producers in the Loire Valley. Their Cremants are produced with standards far beyond the appellation requirements and even beyond Champagne AOC standards. The result is Méthode Champenoise wines of incredible finesse. The still Sancerres are equally notable and are benchmarks for the appellation, with brightness, intensity, depth and minerality.
Masseto is one of the world's iconic wines. Coveted by international collectors and fine wine connoisseurs across the globe, Masseto constantly receives the highest accolades from the most prestigious wine critics in the world, and is a fixture in the international fine wine trade indexes.
Le Macchiole can best be defined as the “Boutique Bolgheri.” The winery is known for its spectacular single-varietal wines, and their signature grape varieties are Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc and work is always conducted with the priority being "the expression of the land." The winery continues to evolve in both the vineyards and in the cellar to allow the soil characteristics from this estate property to be the defining identity in the wines.
Today, Luce goes so much further than was originally envisioned when started as a project over 20 years ago. The estate now has some of the most exceptional vineyards in Montalcino and, as of 2018, a state of the art winery to nurture every step of the winemaking process. The original vision, however, remains the same: to produce a bold and ambitious Super Tuscan that reflects the culture of Montalcino.
The Casisano estate is located in the southeastern part of Montalcino between the St. Antimo Abbey and the Val d'Orcia, arguably the most quintessentially picturesque area in all of Tuscany. Casisano wines are the result of 100 years of passion and a deep understanding of Montalcino, its terroir, and the spectacular wines produced there.
Petrolo is the definition of a cult winery, with an owner and a story that have helped create its legendary status. While the estate's benchmark wine, the Merlot cru Galatrona, deservedly receives fireworks in the press and is part of the history of Tuscany’s quality revolution in the late 1980s and 1990s, the winery's two other standouts, Torrione and Boggina, are an equally thrilling success - Sangiovese from a special and virtually unknown appellation bordering Chianti Classico that today produces wines of distinct regional identity.
Poggio al Tufo is located in Tuscany's coastal Maremma region near Pitigliano, an historical Etruscan city known for its volcanic soils rich in tufo, a specific type of volcanic rock. Poggio al Tufo encompasses 3 estates in different areas of the Maremma, each with its own unique microclimate, but all sharing the influence of volcanic soil and Mediterranean breezes.
Luciano Sandrone is one of the most iconic producers in Barolo, and his story is an extraordinary one. In the bottle, Sandrone’s wines straddle the modern and traditional styles of the region: elegant, attractive and easy to appreciate right from their first years in bottle, but with no less power and structure over time than traditional Barolos.
Attems is one of the most historic producers in the northern Italian region of Friuli, with a winemaking heritage dating back nearly a millennium. Attems wines have a decidedly Friulian character: fresh, full of flavor and elegant, they respect the singularity of the unique terroir of a region ripe for discovery.
Tommasi has always been a standard bearer of the Amarone appellation. Established in 1902 around the family home in Pedemonte in Valpolicella, the winery has grown and expanded into the choicest areas of the region under the guidance of the many generations of the Tommasi family. The winery is known above all for its classic approach to winemaking in Valpolicella, favoring elegance and balance, and paying homage to the winemaking tradition of their home region.
Founded by Abruzzo native Gianni Masciarelli in 1981, Masciarelli and its wines have become the standard-bearer for the Abruzzo region, and an inspiration to all emerging Italian wine regions. After a summer in Champagne, Gianni Masciarelli became convinced that world-class wines could be produced in Abruzzo, and through tremendous vision and non-stop innovation, Masciarelli became one of the most admired wineries in Italy.
Masseria Surani is located in Manduria, one of the most renowned areas in Puglia for the cultivation of the native Primitivo grape. Manduria was first colonized in 700 BC by the ancient Greeks, and Masseria Surani pays homage to the winemaking heritage of the area by producing high quality wines that respect the terroir and tradition of the land on which they are cultivated.
Volcanic wines are currently a hot topic among wine critics and enthusiasts worldwide, and Paternoster is very much of the moment: it is a volcanic wine in the literal sense of the term and stands on an extinct volcano. Paternoster is located in the relatively unknown southern Italian region of Basilicata, on the slopes surrounding Mount Vulture, and has long been considered one of the region’s most important wineries.
Juvé & Camps is indisputably the worldwide leader of Gran Reserva Cava. This family-owned, 100% estate-based producer is revered in Spain for its painstaking focus on quality and sustainability, and its important role within the country’s conversation on fine wine in general. A winegrowing family for over 200 years, in 1921 Juvé started producing the first sparkling wines under their name. They have been pioneers in the viticulture and production of Cava since then and, today, while Gran Reserva only accounts for 2% of all Cava production, it remains the focus of the estate."
Ferrer Bobet is about respect. Firstly, the mutual respect of two friends, Sergi Ferrer-Salat and Raül Bobet and their passion for the world and culture of wine. Secondly, the respect for the long traditions of viticulture and vinification in Priorat and a commitment to the economic and social development of the region. Thirdly, and above all, the respect for the terroir and a dedication to producing wines that reflect the distinctive mineral essence from the land.
Telmo Rodriguez is one of Spain’s pioneer winemakers, advocating native grape varietals tied to the climates and conditions of their sites, and making world-class wines from undiscovered as well as known regions. While Telmo makes rare and limited wines of astonishing character and quality, his everyday wines have been equally praised, and widely recognized for the tremendous value they offer.
One of the oldest port houses, Quinta do Noval is also arguably the greatest. It is unique among top port houses in that most of the ports are made from estate-grown fruit and, notably, all of the vintage Noval wines are from the single Quinta do Noval vineyard.
Seña is the product of two great families, the Chadwicks and Mondavis, and their shared commitment to encapsulate the spirit of Chile, its land, and passion for excellence all within a single wine. The joint venture started in 1995 when Robert Mondavi set out to create the "Opus One of South America." Mondavi enlisted the help of a young and ambitious Eduardo Chadwick to tour the budding Chilean wine country. As Eduardo navigated the mountainous roads of the Aconcagua Valley, showcasing the majestic views of the nearby Andes Mountains, the two men settled upon a stunning hillside estate. The land, in time, would produce a wine that would rise to be welcomed among the world’s First Growths. The name, Seña, means “sign” or “signature” as a manifestation of this shared desire. With the first vintage being produced in 1995, Seña has always been a Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend with a heavy influence of the other classic Bordeaux varietals.
Finca Decero has become recognized not only for having one of the highest quality vineyards in all of Mendoza, but also for catapulting into an elite group of the most highly regarded producers in Argentina. The wines all come from the single Finca Decero vineyard, and the winery’s focus is entirely quality focused – the varietal Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignons they produce can easily be compared to wines selling for twice the price. These are serious wines that moreover showcase the best of Argentina: a beautiful mix of purity and elegance.
Almost since its inception, Dog Point has been recognized as among the very top (arguably the very top) wine producers in New Zealand. Their two very different Sauvignon Blancs, their Pinot Noir, and their Chardonnay are all wines of astounding quality and complexity not just in the context of New Zealand wines, but globally.
Founder Frank Mitolo drew inspiration from his Italian heritage and especially his horticultural background - he is the 4th generation of a family of agriculturists – in starting the company in 1999. In 2001 acclaimed winemaker Ben Glaetzer became a partner, and together Frank and Ben have shared an uncompromising dedication to producing wines that express purity of flavor, show elegance of structure, and maintain a rich, powerful complexity. In a short period of time, Mitolo has become recognized as one of the finest producers in McLaren Vale.
Ginraw is a super-premium gastronomic gin from Barcelona. It's produced with the finest botanicals, individually sourced and harvested fresh and in season from their top growing locations. They use a unique distillation process that combines the traditional method of single batch copper still distillation with the latest gastronomic techniques in low-temperature distillation using a Rotaval. Madness, perfection, talent, gastronomy and soul epitomize Ginraw!
Bonanto is the ultimate aperitivo! It's an entirely new concept inspired by the rich aperitif culture in its home city of Barcelona and across the world. It's disrupting the aperitif category with its innovative and unique style. It has a strong personality but a well-balanced, delicate flavor. It's extraordinarily versatile allowing it to be enjoyed simply on the rocks with an orange twist, with a splash of sparkling wine, soda or tonic, or as the basis for the most cutting-edge cocktails. It's perfect anytime!