James's Picks

Products Recommended

Vallana Campi Raudii 2010

Vallana Campi Raudii 2010

Comprised of 90% Nebbiolo with Uva Rara and Vespolina, Vallana Campi Raudii 2010 is the perfect example of a wine that over delivers for the price. At $20 retail, this gem from Alto Piemonte comes right out of the gate with bright red fruit, tar, leather and rose. The acidity and current structure provide some insight into this wines ageability; 15+ years. Enjoy now or cellar for the next two decades.

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Domaine Henri & Gilles Buisson Saint-Romain “Sous La Velle” 2015

Domaine Henri & Gilles Buisson Saint-Romain “Sous La Velle” 2015

Produced from the estate’s oldest vines, Domaine Henri & Gilles Buisson Saint-Romain “Sous La Velle” 2015 delivers on every level. Whether you’re a novice or expert in the world of Bourgogne, this wine is difficult to pass up at $25. This organically produced Chardonnay has it all: White flowers, bright citrus, minerality (Chalk, Limestone), and a touch of oak on the finish. Enjoy this amazing value over the next several years.

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Deadwood Tumblin’ Dice 4yr Bourbon Baytowne Private Selection

Deadwood Tumblin’ Dice 4yr Bourbon Baytowne Private Selection

Age: 4yr
Mash Bill: 60% Corn, 36% Rye, 4% Malted Barley
Proof: 109.4

Dave Schmier is constantly proving that age doesn’t matter when it comes to his brand. Although this is MGP sourced, what truly matters is the palate of the individual making the selection. When tasting through a lineup of barrel samples, a clear winner stood out. The nose consists of toffee, vanilla and black tea. On the palate: Caramel and vanilla up front, followed by cherry cola, spice and oak on the finish. The alcohol is well integrated. This high-rye bourbon can go toe to toe with whiskeys twice it’s age. Excellent value at $50.

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Domaine d’Espérance Bas-Armagnac 2001 Baytowne Private Selection

Domaine d’Espérance Bas-Armagnac 2001 Baytowne Private Selection

Age: 18yr
Grape Variety: 100% Baco
Proof: 100.8

Since being restored in the 1990’s by Jean-Louis and Claire de Montesquiou, Domaine d’Espérance has been releasing some of the best value Bas-Armagnac on the market. The vibrant and unique taste profile can be attributed to terroir (Fawn Sands) and the Gascony oak used in the aging process. Nose: Candied red fruit, citrus peel, butterscotch and a hint of oak. The palate is fruit forward with strawberry and candied fruit (Twizzlers) , minerality (iron), with a dessert-style finish. Enjoy after dinner or on a cold night.

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Amy’s Picks

Products Recommended

Heidi Schrock & Sons ‘Muskateller’ 2020

Heidi Schrock & Sons ‘Muskateller’ 2020

Cold patriarchal land.
A beacon of hopeful change;
Papaya and chive flower.

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R. Lopez de Heredia ‘Vina Bosconia’ 2008

R. Lopez de Heredia ‘Vina Bosconia’ 2008

Epic Rioja:
Mercedes gently raises
World class aging wines.

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Milam & Greene ‘Port Finished Rye’

Milam & Greene ‘Port Finished Rye’

Rye whiskey made by
Three ladies. Cherry, dark choc.
Go read Heather’s book.

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Privateer ‘Killjoy’s Last Cut’

Privateer ‘Killjoy’s Last Cut’

Calvados apple
Brandy cask softens the rum.
The blend: Maggie’s last.

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Drew's Picks

Products Recommended

Fanny Fougerat – Petit Cigue
Cognac, France

Fanny Fougerat – Petit Cigue
Cognac, France

Fanny Fougerat is the only woman producing her own Cognac, and the results are truly singular. An expression of terroir, every barrel is bottled without fining or filtration and with absolutely no additives. Extended lees aging produces flavors that are rich, delicate and NUANCED. Her entry level Petit Cigue is full of orchard fruit and citrus with a zesty, tangy, smooth mouthfeel and a long finish. This is Next-Gen Cognac, better for nights out on the town than for sipping by the fireplace.

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2020 Can Sumoi – Xarel-lo
Penedes, Spain

2020 Can Sumoi – Xarel-lo
Penedes, Spain

You don’t see a lot of mono-varietal Xarel-lo so naturally I was curious. This new collaboration from Pepe Raventos – a dope Cava producer – and his childhood friend, Cesc Escala, hails from the Serra de l’Home mountains in Penedes. I’m made to wonder why we don’t see more still wine made from Xarel- lo! This personifies seaside white wine; salty, fresh, textural, mineral, crisp with enough stone and citrus fruit to round out the palate. Easier to drink a bottle than a glass.

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2019 Jochen Beurer – Silvaner Alte Reben
Swabia, Germany

2019 Jochen Beurer – Silvaner Alte Reben
Swabia, Germany

A former BMX-champion making non-interventional wine from unheralded grapes in an unknown region of Germany… Jochen Beurer’s wines spin my head. He has joined a group of new wave, punk-rock German producers making Silvaner. Though Silvaner is a less revered grape, in the right hands it can be, well, “what Chardonnay should be.” This has loads of ripe fruit with citrus undertones and a rich, textural mouthfeel - deliciously creamy and razor crisp. It hits on ALL levels. My only hesitation about this is that I want it all to myself! So…DO NOT BUY THIS. THE SILVANER REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE TELEVISED.

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Igarashi Shuzo - Koten Terranzen
Saitama, Japan

Igarashi Shuzo - Koten Terranzen
Saitama, Japan

Igarashi Shuzo takes advantage of the soft, rich water from the Arakawa and Tone rivers to produce stunning Junmai. They’ve also joined an emerging trend -- aged sake. Known as Koshu, this defies conventional wisdom that you should drink sake ASAP. The Terranzen has been aged for over 3 years, producing a richer, nuttier sake. There is still intense umami, but with lots of sweet cedar, toffee, hazelnut and coffee bean. It’s an interesting, savory delight, perfect as a digestif or simply to take your palate on an adventure.

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Nikki’s Picks

Products Recommended

The Breakfast Gin

The Breakfast Gin

A unique amalgamation between traditional distilling botanicals (juniper, citrus) and Earl Grey tea resulting in a flavor which evokes both nostalgia and a peculiar desire to read the morning paper. There is a distinct maltiness that provides this gin with a bit more body and a bit less heat, specifically marketed for its ability to perform in cocktails. Though I might not encourage splashing this into your Sunday brunch mimosas, there’s no rule that says you can’t spice up your morning cup of tea! Any drink that compliments these botanicals rather than contrasting with them is ideal, so grab your honey and lemons and go nuts!

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Grand Mayan Tequila Blanco

Grand Mayan Tequila Blanco

First, to address the elephant in the room - yes, the bottle is cool as hell, I know. Each one is crafted at the hands of local artisans in Mexico City, resulting in very slight yet very unique differences between each one. However, is the tequila itself good as hell? In a word, yes! This tequila is composed of lowland agave and triple distilled, resulting in a product that is much more restrained and understated than most other silver tequilas. Although there is nothing wrong with adding this bottle to your repertoire of margarita and tequila & tonic go-to’s, I would suggest first experiencing the subtle and nuanced flavors this spirit has to offer on its own!

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Enlightenment Wines Night Eyes

Enlightenment Wines Night Eyes

Bright, herbaceous, and funky! This bottle took my preconceived notions about mead (cloying, syrupy, dessert-style) and promptly tossed them out the window. Night Eyes is completely dry, and the fruit presents itself more akin to that of a kombucha. The apple and cherry components definitely take a front seat, though the addition of wild herbs help balance out the fruitiness and provide a spicy, aromatic quality. It is pet-nat style, the effervescence creating a refreshing contrast to similarly styled meads. A great bottle for the fall season, and even the label is admittedly a little spooky.

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Meinklang Roter Mulatschak

Meinklang Roter Mulatschak

Perhaps one of my absolute favorite wines in the store! Not only is this an extremely refreshing, approachable, and versatile wine but it also hails from a winery recognized for its palatial sustainability practices. The Meinklang farm is a family operation that boasts an impressive 4k+ acres of certified organic and biodynamic land. Their herds of cattle, along with many other animals, assist in creating their own not-so-little ecosystem - thus the endearing motif of cows that appear on the labels! Each vintage is crafted with care and precision, resulting in unique and delicious wines that you truly feel good about drinking and supporting (if you like this, try the Prosa rosé next!!).

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Andy’s Picks

Products Recommended

Bedrock Zinfandel 2018

Bedrock Zinfandel 2018

Big, Bold & Jammy!

This treat from California will NOT let you down. Pair it with a ribeye cooked rare and a loaded baked potato. Finish the night off with a cigar by the fire place.

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Black Button Bespoke Cream

Black Button Bespoke Cream

Move over baileys. There is a new cream in town. From Rochester, this treat is rich and chocolaty with a hint of caramel. Pour a glass into a travel mug and take the kids trick or treating. This is dessert in a bottle.

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Bob’s Picks

Products Recommended

Southern Belle Jumilla Red Wine 2019

Southern Belle Jumilla Red Wine 2019

Southern Belle is a red blend made up of Monastrell and Syrah grapes from Jumilla, Spain. It is the first wine to be Bourbon barrel age finished and is finished in barrels that formally contained the famous Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon. At $20 this wine is an incredible value and with a label designed by James Jean. It makes a great gift for any occasion. Pair it with BBQ meat or aged cheese (2 of my favorites). At 14.5% the dark color and rich flavor is also perfect for sipping at a summer campfire or in front of a fireplace on a winter evening.

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Stellum Single Barrel Pick Bourbon

Stellum Single Barrel Pick Bourbon

Stellum Spirits was launched in 2021 by the master blenders behind Barrell Craft Spirits. It is meant to be a consistent and affordable everyday drinker. Our bottle is a Single Barrel store pick and was one of the first single Barrels available from Stellum in NYS. Coming in at $39 and 107.5 proof this is one of the best bourbon values in the store. Hints of Vanilla, Carmel and oak on the nose with all of that along with baking spice and cinnamon on the palate.

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Sam's Picks

Products Recommended

Mount Veeder

Mount Veeder

Mount Veeder is traditionally known for a high-level of quality and consistency and is a favorite of many wine critics. The winery produces one of the best wines from this unique Napa sub-region for an affordable price. A few months ago, I enjoyed a 2007, which was a perfect example of Mt Veeder wines’ longevity and quality. This is a wine you can drink now or store for many years!

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Hess Collection Allomi Cabernet

Hess Collection Allomi Cabernet

The Hess Collection Allomi Cabernet is a high-quality Mt Veeder wine. It is a favorite of wine writers who give it high ratings year after year. This 2018 vintage was awarded the Wine Enthusiast Editor’s Choice. The Allomi is a medium-to-full-bodied wine with soft tannins that can be enjoyed now or well into the future. A high-quality wine at a reasonable price!

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Rory’s Picks

Products Recommended

Kilchoman Sanaig Scotch

Kilchoman Sanaig Scotch

Kilchoman cannot do anything wrong in my book but remain under the radar in comparison to other well-known Islay distilleries. Their base expression, Machir Bay is stellar but the Sanaig is the expression I find myself reaching for the most. Its Sherry influence marries with peat smoke to create an amazing dram. Nose: Peat smoke, soft fruity sweetness with caramel and vanilla. Palate: Hints of plum, cherry, and toffee mix with peat smoke and dark chocolate into a long warming finish.

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Balcones Lineage Texas Single Malt

Balcones Lineage Texas Single Malt

Texas-based Balcones are creating whiskies that exhibit Scottish influence and technique but bold and original flavors. Lineage offers heavy oak influence but nearly tropical notes with a bit of spice. A dram that’s not quite like anything I’ve ever tasted but still is a great way to introduce someone to what American Single Malts can be. Nose: Malt, stone fruits bordering on tropical, vanilla, and a bit of cinnamon. Palate: Malt, stone fruits, toffee/ butterscotch with a long malty finish.

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