Wednesday, October 31, 2007


There are wines out there that are so sought after, you sometimes doubt if they really exist at all. Lord knows we think some highly touted wineries are the fictional creations of frustrated novelists posing as wine writers.

      Some of these wines do actually exist, but arrive in such small amounts that even we don’t publicize them much. Take, for example the 2003 Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon. If Napa Valley has first growths, this wine is surely one of them. We get a healthy allotment of this wine because we’ve been around a while, but even a healthy allotment is 12 to 18 bottles. Some customers try to get us to hold them for them, but we don’t, although we let those who ask know when it arrives. We don’t post it on our web site, we don’t put it in our catalog (by the time the catalog is in a customer’s hands, the wine will be long gone). It’s a $300 bottle of wine, but we know it’s going to vanish.

      Shafer Hillside Select is one of the wines you have to keep an eye out for, you have to have an idea when it will be released (for future reference, it’s an October release), and then you have to get on the phone and give us a call. Because if you miss it, it’s gone for a year.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


As Americans, we tend to love the maverick—you know, the slightly wacky, shoot from the hip type who forges their own destiny. The world of winemaking, beer-brewing and whiskey distilling are full of these sorts, and we genuinely enjoy their company.

Just to give you an example, we recently received a shipment of Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey and we noticed an odd thing on their labels. Each label is signed by the distiller or assistant distiller who bottled that particular batch of whiskey. The label also has a comments section, and one of them read “listening to Patsy Cline”. Another said “riding in Estes Park”. We wondered about this, so we wrote to the distillery to find out what was up with these labels. Here’s what they wrote back to us:

“Our head distiller, Jake Norris is an avid music fan, so he writes on the label what he was listening to while working in the distillery. His hope is that a consumer could put on the same music, pour a glass and they could share a moment together.

“David Nice, assistant distiller, is a wild man on a fixed gear mountain bike. He will write what he’s planning to ride while in the distillery or even take some labels on his adventures and describe what and where he was riding. Whoever purchases the Estes Park will have a bottle that’s already been on an adventure.”

We thought you might enjoy hearing about what these particular mavericks were thinking when they came out with their one of a kind labels.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Fall is Here!

There is definitely a chill in the air and in a few weeks its time move our clocks back. This week-end we were in the mood for a little window decorating. We usually hire some one to perform this challenging task but we decided to tackle it ourselves, it only took us about 3 hours to do it (not bad for first timers) and we're pretty proud of the end result.