Waterfront Restaurant Wine List Review

Waterfront Restaurant and Cafe

Embarcadero, Pier 7

San Francisco, CA 94111

P: 415.391.2696

www.waterfrontsf.com

 

Waterfront Restaurant Wine List Review

This us an update to our review from January 2012.  The mercury is starting to rise and the Waterfront Restaurant is in a fantastic setting with a very well priced wine list.  If you are looking to have a meal, and wash it down with a couple of REASONABLY PRICED glasses / bottles of wine while you gaze out at the Bay, then this is a great place to get reacquainted with.

As with all VinoServant reviews, you will see the price at the restaurant followed by the mark-up over retail, and if applicable, a rating from one of the publications listed below (Veuve Clicquot, Brut, Yellow Label, Non-Vintage | $76 | 1.9x | WS 90 | TP). Mark up of 1.9x translates into a retail price of $42 a bottle, Wine Spectator rated this wine 90 points and it is one of our Top Picks at Waterfront Restaurant.

 

Connoisseurs’ Guide  – CG | James Suckling – JS | VinoServant Top Pick – TP | Wine Advocate – WA | Wine Enthusiast – WE | Wine Spectator – WS | Wine & Spirits – W&S | Wilfred Wong – WW

 

Top 20 Wines at Waterfront Restaurant

 

Veuve Clicquot, Brut, Yellow Label, Non-Vintage | $76 | 1.9x | WS 90

 

2010 Foxen, Santa Maria, Chenin Blanc | $36 | 1.8x | WE 93

2010 Provenance Vineyards, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc | $36 | 1.8x

 

2009 Chalone Vineyard, Estate, Central Coast, Chardonnay | $40 | 1.7x | WS 88

2010 Rombauer, Carneros, Chardonnay | $52 | 1.7x | WS 91

2009 Frank Family Vineyards, Napa Valley, Chardonnay | $52 | 1.7x | WS 88

2009 Kistler, Les Noisetiers, Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay | $65 | 1.3x

 

2009 Rancho Sisquoc Winery, Santa Barbara, Malbec | $36 | 1.4x

2008 Duckhorn, Paraduxx, Napa Valley, Zinfandel Blend | $65 | 1.5x

 

2008 Russian Hill, Russian River, Sonoma, Pinot Noir | $40 | 1.1x | CG 90

2007 Navarro Vineyards, Anderson Valley, Mendocino, Pinot Noir | $42 | 2.2x | WS 87

2006 Fort Ross, Sonoma Coast, Pinotage | $45 | 1.6x | WS 89 | TP

2009 Emeritus, Hallberg Ranch, Russian River Valley, Pinot Noir | $55 | 1.2x

2009 Flowers, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Noir | $65 | 1.4x | W&S 93

 

2007 Rombauer, Napa Valley, Merlot | $53 | 1.6x

2008 Shafer, Napa Valley, Merlot | $66 | 1.5x | WS 92

2008 Duckhorn, Napa Valley, Merlot | $70 | 1.4x | WE 92

 

2008 Joseph Phelps, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $76 | 1.6x | WA 90

2006 Silver Oak, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $120 | 1.3x | WS 88

2007 Opus One | $200 | BELOW RETAIL | WA 95

 

 

VINOSERVANT’S TOP WINE VALUES AT WATERFRONT RESTAURANT

 

Sparkling Wines

5 selections that range in price from $32 to $76


Roederer Estate, Brut, Anderson Valley, Non-Vintage | $40 | 2.2x | WS 89

Veuve Clicquot, Brut, Yellow Label, Non-Vintage | $76 | 1.9x | WS 90 | TP


White Wines

44 selections that range in price from $32 to $72

 

2010 Foxen, Santa Maria, Chenin Blanc | $36 | 1.8x | WE 93 | TP

2010 MacMurray Ranch, Russian River, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Gris | $36 | 2.0x

2010 Cline, Marsanne, Rousanne | $36 | 2.1x | WW 89

2010 Zocker, Edna Valley, Gruner Veltliner | $36 | 2.0x

2010 Truchard, Napa Valley, Rousanne | $38 | 2.0x

2010 Cambria, Santa Maria, Viognier | $40 | 2.0x

2010 Qupe Bien Nacido Cuvee (Viognier / Chardonnay) | $40 | 2.1x

 

2010 Frog’s Leap, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc | $36 | 2.2x

2010 Provenance Vineyards, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc | $36 | 1.8x | TP

2010 Matanzas Creek, Sonoma County, Sauvignon Blanc | $36 | 2.0x | WA 89

2010 Cakebread, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc | $46 | 1.8x | TP

2010 Duckhorn, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc | $50 | 1.8x

 

2009 Chalone Vineyard, Estate, Central Coast, Chardonnay | $40 | 1.7x | WS 88 | TP

2009  Clos du Bois, Calcaire Vineyard, Sonoma, Chardonnay | $42 | 1.8x

2009 Ferrari-Carano, Tre Terre, Chardonnay | $42 | 1.7x

2009 Hess Collection, Suskol Vineyard, Napa Valley, Chardonnay | $44 | 2.4x

2009 Foley, Santa Rita Hills, Chardonnay | $52 | 2.2x

2010 Rombauer, Carneros, Chardonnay | $52 | 1.7x | WS 91 | TP

2009 Frank Family Vineyards, Napa Valley, Chardonnay | $52 | 1.7x | WS 88 | TP

2009 Paul Hobbs, Cross Barn, Sonoma Coast Chardonnay | $52 | 2.0x | WA 91

2008 Grgich Hills, Napa Valley, Chardonnay | $55 | 1.6x | IWC 90 | TP

2009 Ramey, Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay | $56 | 1.7x | IWC 91 | TP

2009 Kistler, Les Noisetiers, Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay | $65 | 1.3x | TP

 

 

Red Wines

49 selections that range in price from $36 to $200

 

2009 Jacuzzi Vineyards, Carneros, Barbera | $36 | 1.8x

2009 Rancho Sisquoc Winery, Santa Barbara, Malbec | $36 | 1.4x | TP

2008 Stags’ Leap, Napa Valley, Petite Sirah | $50 | 1.7x

 

2008 Ridge, Lytton Springs, Zinfandel | $60 | 2.1x | WA 93

2008 Duckhorn, Paraduxx, Napa Valley, Zinfandel Blend | $65 | 1.5x | TP

 

2008 Russian Hill, Russian River, Sonoma, Pinot Noir | $40 | 1.1x | CG 90 | TP

2009 Acacia, Carneros, Pinot Noir | $42 | 2.1x

2007 Navarro Vineyards, Anderson Valley, Mendocino, Pinot Noir | $42 | 2.2x | WS 87 | TP

2006 Fort Ross, Sonoma Coast, Pinotage | $45 | 1.6x | WS 89 | TP

2009 Foley, Santa Rita Hills, Central Coast, Pinot Noir | $50 | 1.7x

2009 Emeritus, Hallberg Ranch, Russian River Valley, Pinot Noir | $55 | 1.2x | TP

2008 Etude, Carneros, Pinot Noir | $62 | 2.1x | WA 91

2009 Patz & Hall, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Noir | $62 | 1.8x | WS 89

2009 Flowers, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Noir | $65 | 1.4x | W&S 93 | TP

2008 Goldeneye Winery, Anderson Valley, Pinot Noir | $80 | 1.6x

2009 Sea Smoke, Southing, Santa Rita Hills, Pinot Noir | $110 | 1.4x | JS 92 | TP

 

2007 Rombauer, Napa Valley, Merlot | $53 | 1.6x | TP

2008 Shafer, Napa Valley, Merlot | $66 | 1.5x | WS 92 | TP

2008 Duckhorn, Napa Valley, Merlot | $70 | 1.4x | WE 92 | TP

 

2008 Robert Mondavi, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $40 | 2.1x | WA 89 & WS 89

2008 Sterling Vineyards, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $44 | 2.3x | WS 87

2009 Hess, Allomi Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon | $44 | 1.6x

2007 Jordan, Alexander Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $72 | 1.8x

2008 Joseph Phelps, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $76 | 1.6x | WA 90 | TP

2008 Groth, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $80 | 2.1x | WS 87

2009 Caymus, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $90 | 1.5x | WS 91

2006 Silver Oak, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $120 | 1.3x | WS 88 | TP

2007 Robert Mondavi, Reserve, Cabernet Sauvignon | $130 | 1.5x | WA 95 & WS 95

2007 Beringer, Private Reserve, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon | $140 | 1.6x | WA 97 | TP

2009 Caymus, Special Selection, Cabernet Sauvignon | $150 | 1.5x | WS 93

2007 Opus One | $200 | BELOW RETAIL | WA 95 | TP

 

Sparkling Wines

5 selections that range in price from $32 to $76

 

Roederer Estate, Brut, Anderson Valley, Non-Vintage

Retail Price: $18 at K&L Wine Merchants & $19 at Artisan Wine Depot

  • $40 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.2x

89 points Wine Spectator: “Crisp and refreshingly minerally, offering tart Gala apple and lemon aromas and focused flavors of yeasty citrus and anise. A hint of cherry lingers on the finish. Drink now through 2013.”


Veuve Clicquot, Brut, Yellow Label, Non-Vintage

Retail Price: $42 at Multiple Locations

  • $76 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.9x | TOP PICK

90 points Wine Spectator. The Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label has hints of toast and biscuit that accent lightly honeyed flavors of quince, apple blossom and peach in this fresh and balanced Champagne.

89 points Wine Enthusiast: Ripe, mature, easy Champagne, maintaining the Clicquot style of bottle maturity, with toast, sweet pastry and a rich, full-in-the-mouth character of white fruits. The finish is relatively soft. R.V.


White Wines

 44 selections that range in price from $32 to $72

 

2010 Foxen, Santa Maria, Chenin Blanc

Retail Price: $20 at The Cellar Online

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x | TOP PICK

93 points Wine Enthusiast: This is always one of the best Chenin Blancs in California, and Foxen’s 2010 is one of their best ever. With plenty of new French oak and some serious weight and depth, it has the texture of Chardonnay, and even some of the tropical fruit. But there’s a white flower and green apple note that’s unique, as well as brisk, bright acidity. S.H.

 

2010 MacMurray Ranch, Russian River, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Gris

Retail Price: $16 at Varmax Liquor Pantry & $20 @ the Winery

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.0x

Winemaker’s Notes: MacMurray Ranch Sonoma Coast Pinot Gris possesses an expressive fruit-forward character, exhibiting rich aromas of fig, white peach, and pear. These specific flavors and aromas are able to develop based on the longer hang time and exposure to sunlight. After six to eight months time in bottle, the brigh aromas and complex varietal characters of citrus, fig, and spice add both weight and interest to the wine. The flavors of peach, spicy pear and citrus meld together in a rich core, developing a round mouth feel which complements its crisp, clean finish. Alcohol 14.8%.

 

2010 Cline, Marsanne, Rousanne

Retail Price: $17 at Bevmo

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x

89 points Wilfred Wong: Exotic and enticing, the tropical fruit, honeyed ’10 Cline Marsanne Roussanne plays ripe and round on the palate; ripe peaches abound nicely in the finish.

 

2010 Zocker, Edna Valley, Gruner Veltliner

Retail Price: $18 at the Wine Merchant & FineWineHouse.com

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.0x

Winemaker’s Notes: Rich and round but with great acid structure, this wine is steely and has good minerality. It has a bit of an earthy characteristic, a note of white pepper, and flavors of ripe melon and fruit cocktail.

 

2010 Truchard, Napa Valley, Rousanne

Retail Price: $19 Average Price Wine – Searcher

  • $38 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.0x 

Winemaker’s Notes: Rich, floral aromas of pineapple, honeysuckle, and fresh apricot; highlighted with brioche, and vanilla.  The mouth has a creamy texture, layered with flavors of nectarine, melon, and Meyer lemon.  Firm acidity provides a lengthy finish of citrus, mineral, and spice. Alcohol 13.9%.

 

2010 Cambria, Santa Maria, Viognier

Retail Price: $20 @ the Winery

  • $40 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.0x

Winemaker’s Notes: The 2010 Viognier has intense aromas and flavors of citrus blossom, lime, clove, cardomom and passionfruit. The superb balance, concentration and crisp acidity continue from the mid-palate into a bright and long finish.

 

2010 Qupe Bien Nacido Cuvee (Viognier / Chardonnay)

Retail Price: $19 Average Price Wine – Searcher

  • $40 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x 

Winemaker’s Notes: 50% viognier & 50% chardonnay from the Bien Nacido Vineyard. This wine blends exotic floral and peach aromatics from ripe viognier enhanced with tart green apple and lively acidity of early picked chardonnay. This is a delicious, quaffable wine that’s a great foil for Asian flavors and satisfying on its own as an aperitif.

 

 

2010 Frog’s Leap, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc

Retail Price: $16 at K&L Wine Merchants

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.2x

Winemaker’s Notes: Grown in the heart of the Rutherford appellation the 2010 Frog’s Leap Sauvignon Blanc alludes to its storied region with aromas of wet stone, peach blossom and Meyer lemon zest. Across the palate the varietal’s fruit character moves forward with more citrus and a touch of stone fruit all supported by the wine’s minerality and crisp, bracing acid. This refreshing wine has a lingering finish that is sure to satisfy on a warm summer’s day, or with an array of dishes from pan roasted Petrale Sole to a few simple slices of Chèvre. Alcohol 12.8%.

 

2010 Provenance Vineyards, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc

Retail Price: $20 at Wine.com

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x | TOP PICK

Winemaker’s Notes: Napa Valley’s 2010 vintage will be remembered as having the latest onset to harvest in several decades. We picked our first Sauvignon Blanc after Labor Day, about two weeks later than average. The growing season got off to a late start when cold, wet soils in March and April delayed budbreak. The above-average rainfall and cool temperatures persisted into May, followed by a mostly cool, foggy summer that slowed fruity maturity. But just as we started worrying that the grapes would never ripen, Mother Nature surprised us with heat spells to boost the grapes’ flavors and sugar levels. Tom reports that the grapes’ quality was “as good as it gets.” Alcohol 14.1%.

 

2010 Matanzas Creek, Sonoma County, Sauvignon Blanc

Retail Price: $16 at Safeway & $20 at Wine.com

  • $30 at Fume Bistro & Bar | 1.7x
  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.0x

89 points Wine Advocate: The 2010 Sauvignon Blanc is a pretty, well-articulated wine that shows the greener, grassier side of Sauvignon. Bright citrus, grapefruit, lime, mint and white flowers emerge from the glass in this focused, energetic Sauvignon. The 2010 was mostly aged in steel, although a small percentage of the wine was aged in foudres. This is a terrific effort from Matanzas Creek. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2014.

Winemaker’s Notes: Translucent, pale straw color. Nose: An intensely perfumed fresh bouquet of bright pink grapefruit and passion fruit combined with tropical notes of pineapple guava. Flavor: Emulating the nose, the palate of bright grapefruit and lime flavor carries a hint of dry oregano and white peach accompanied by a soft, round mouth feel resulting in a medium bodied, fresh food-friendly wine.

 

2010 Cakebread, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc

Retail Price: $25 at K&L Wine Merchants

  • $46 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x | TOP PICK

Winemaker’s Notes: Due to the coolness of the vintage, our 2010 Sauvignon Blanc is especially fresh, crisp and vibrant, offering bright honeydew melon, pink grapefruit, gooseberry and vanilla aromas and rich, mouthwatering, citrus, nectarine and melon flavors. An ideal apèritif wine, it also beautifully accompanies a wide and diverse range of foods, from shellfish and lighter seafood dishes to roast chicken, Caesar Salad and pasta primavera. Enjoy it over the next 1-2 years.

 

2010 Duckhorn, Napa Valley, Sauvignon Blanc

Retail Price: $27 at K&L Wines

  • $50 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x

Winemaker’s Notes: Duckhorn’s 2010 Sauvignon Blanc reflects the winery’s passion for Bordeaux style blends, integrating 25% Semillon, fermenting a small amount of the wine in barrel, and aging sur lie. The result is a Napa Valley SB with a New World-meets-Old World charm. Tropical fruit aromas and flavors are supported by accents of flint, lees and spice. Its round on the mid-palate, but with refreshing acidity, too. Try it with a fig or date salad with goat cheese and mizuna.

 

 

2009 Chalone Vineyard, Estate, Central Coast, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $24 at Wine.com

  • $40 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x | TOP PICK

88 points Wine Spectator: Pure, clean and distinctive for its touches of mineral and wet rock built around ripe pear, melon and floral notes. Ends with a clean, subtle, lingering finish. Drink now. 17,000 cases made.

Winemaker’s Notes: Capturing the distinctive characteristics of our unique terroir, our Estate Chardonnay holds fragrant aromas of ripe pear, green apple, hazelnut, vanilla and baking spice. Bright fruit flavors glide across a lithe and supple midpalate, balanced by toasty oak and a creamy texture. The vineyard’s limestone soils leave a distinct footprint with a crunchy rock minerality that persists through the middle and holds the finish. The fine balance of vibrant acids with weightier oak influences makes an excellent match to rich, creamy foods such as soft cheeses and chicken dishes with heavier sauces. Alcohol 14.5%.

  

2009  Clos du Bois, Calcaire Vineyard, Sonoma, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $23 at Wine.com 

  • $42 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x

Winemaker’s Notes: The full-bodied 2009 Calcaire, brilliant silver straw in hue, has intense aromas of apple blossom, pear, and integrated oak spice, with hints of vanilla and crème brûlée. Bright, vibrant flavors of pear, apple and soft citrus over a core of minerality are layered with touches of brown spice and nuances of cream. This delicious Chardonnay has a rich, silky texture and long finish and is blessed by balanced acidity and structure, which will allow it to develop additional complexity with bottle age.

This rich, full-bodied Chardonnay calls for scrumptiously prepared, equally rich seafood dishes, with buttery, creamy pastas and earthy mushroom-infused food. Alcohol 14.5%

 

2009 Ferrari-Carano, Tre Terre, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $24 Average Price Wine – Searcher

  • $42 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x

Winemaker’s Notes: A delicious, medium-bodied wine with aromas and flavors of Meyer lemon, pears, green apple, peach, marshmallow, fig and brown sugar. A wine with bright fruit and nice acidity, the Tre Terre Chardonnay has nutmeg, creamy butter and oak spice nuances that linger on the finish.

 

2009 Hess Collection, Suskol Vineyard, Napa Valley, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $18 at K&L Wines

  • $44 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.4x

Description from K&L: Based on fruit from Hess’s Su’skol Vineyard, the wine is aged for nine months in 22% new French oak with partial malolactic fermentation. The resulting wine is rich, with honeysuckle, apple, pear and stone fruit aromas and flavors. Spicy, with a viscous mid-palate and a lingering finish.

 

2009 Foley, Santa Rita Hills, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $24 at Vintage Fine Wines & $30 @ the Winery

  • $52 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.2x

Winemaker’s Notes: The initial scents of butter and toast give way to pineapple, white peaches, pears, nutmeg, vanilla and slate. On the palate the flavors are full, powerful and commanding. The finish is long and firm with traces of oak spice and minerals. The finish is lively thanks to the wine’s low pH and firm acidity. It has enough body to stand up to a wide array of foods and the balance to drink well on its own.

 

2010 Rombauer, Carneros, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $30 at K&L Wine Merchants

  • $52 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x | TOP PICK

91 points Wine Spectator: This ripe, exotic style boasts gobs of fruit but also a measure of finesse. Ripe, sweet-tasting flavors of pear, fig and tangerine are intense and focused, leading to a long, clean, lingering finish. Drink now through 2017. 70,000 cases made. –JL

Winemaker’s Notes: Golden yellow color with a pale hue. Seductive aromas of peach, melon, and citrus are balanced with honeysuckle and vanilla. On the palate, flavors of pears, peaches and melons are backed with lively acidity. A nice touch of vanilla-scented oak provides an added flavor dimension. The creamy palate has a lingering finish of melon and citrus fruit with a satisfying buttery complexity.
Our favorite pairing for this wine includes scallops in a cream sauce, pasta carbonara, chicken risotto and Cornish game hen.

 

2009 Frank Family Vineyards, Napa Valley, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $30 at Mission Liquor & Wines

  • $52 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x | TOP PICK

88 points Wine Spectator: A bright version, featuring ripe, rich notes of citrus, pear, apple and honeysuckle. This is full-bodied, ending with a delicate aftertaste. Drink now through 2015. 15,310 cases made. –JL

 

2009 Paul Hobbs, Crossbarn, Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $25 at K&L Wine Merchants

  • $52 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.0x

91 points from Robert Parker: A stunning bargain is the 2009 Chardonnay CrossBarn, which was aged in 75% stainless steel, was put through 100% malolactic, and 15% was barrel fermented in order to provide a subtle hint of spice. Made in a steely, Chablis-like style, it offers up full-bodied tropical fruit notes intermixed with hints of honeysuckle and crushed rocks. Drink this 4,000-case beauty over the next several years. (Feb. 11)

 

2008 Grgich Hills, Napa Valley, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $34 at K&L Wines

  • $55 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.6x | TOP PICK

90 points IWC: Bright yellow with gold and green highlights. Musky white peach, hazelnut, ginger and floral honey on the nose and palate. Offers a sexy sweetness on entry, then shows moderate density but good lift in the middle. Intriguing soil tones contribute to an impression of subtle complexity. Gained in weight and harmony as it opened in the glass.

 

2009 Ramey, Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $32 at JJ Buckley

  • $56 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x | TOP PICK 

91 points IWC: Greenish yellow. Smoke-accented aromas of pear skin, honey and iodine, with a floral nuance picking up strength with air. Sappy and broad, with deep, stony orchard fruit flavors and notes of chamomile and saffron. Offers an intriguing mix of depth and vibrancy and finishes with solid grip and spicy persistence. Give this a little air if you insist on drinking it now.

 

2009 Kistler, Les Noisetiers, Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay

Retail Price: $50 at Pismo Wine Shop

  • $65 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.3x | TOP PICK
  • $75 at Zuni Café | 1.5x
  • $76 at Los Altos Grill | 1.5x

Winemaker Notes – Kistler Chardonnay is made using traditional French techniques, with the winemaker himself performing the cellar work on the wines. Kistler Chardonnay has a distinct character. It is completely barrel-fermented using indigenous and cultured yeasts, is aged in 50% new French oak barrels unracked and in contact with all its fermentation lees, has undergone a malolactic fermentation, receives minimal handling and processing, and is bottled unfiltered and, generally, unfined after 11-18 months of barrel age. Our low-yielding (pruned and thinned to yield about two tons per acre).

 

 

Red Wines

 49 selections that range in price from $36 to $200

 

2009 Jacuzzi Vineyards, Carneros, Barbera

Retail Price: $20 @ the WInery

Rating: See comments below

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x

Winemaker’s Notes: Jacuzzi Family Vineyards Barbera is crisp and vibrant with lively raspberry and cherry character along with complex tobacco notes. Alcohol 14.5%

 

2009 Rancho Sisquoc Winery, Santa Barbara, Malbec

Retail Price: $20 at East Beach Wine Company & $30 @ the Winery

  • $36 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.4x | TOP PICK

Winemaker’s Notes: Violet in color with a nose that is like having dessert as the first course! Fresh pie crust, black cherry and blackberry pie with light hints of currant. But what sets this Malbec apart is the almost milk chocolate velvet that surrounds each stage of it’s profile. The lush finish brings out more distinct and completely integrated oak. Alcohol 13.8% -Alec Franks

 

 

2008 Stags’ Leap, Napa Valley, Petite Sirah

Retail Price: $30 at K&L Wines

Rating: See comments below

  • $50 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x
  • $55 at EPIC Roasthouse | 1.8x

Winemaker’s notes: The wine is deep purple, almost aubergine black in color. Vivid notes of pepper and raspberry and a floral note introduce this bold Petite Syrah. The palate follows with blackberry and earth notes of notes of dry leaves and forest floor that lead into a black fruit finish. Firm, chewy tannins indicate the massive power and aging potential of this wine with juiciness that makes it an excellent match to rich foods.

 

2008 Ridge Vineyards, Lytton Springs, Zinfandel

Retail Price: $25 Empirewine.com & $33 Pismo Wine Shop

  • $60 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x

93 points Wine Advocate: Striking, intense black cherry and blackberry fruit with some spice and earth jump from the glass…Dark ruby with a nice tannic overlay, the wine was aged 15 months in American oak. Spicy, impressively rich, with good acids and loads of concentration, this is a beauty to drink over the next 5-7 years.

 

2008 Duckhorn, Paraduxx, Napa Valley, Zinfandel Blend

Retail Price: $40 at Napacabs & $45 at Beltramo’s

  • $65 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.5x | TOP PICK

Winemaker’s Notes: 68% Zinfandel, 24% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot and 1% Cabernet Franc. Aromas are dark and brambly, with raspberry jam, black cherry, cedar and dark chocolate notes, as well as subtler hints of pepper, cinnamon, clove and molasses. Offers abundant chocolate-covered black cherry and dark fruit flavors with sophisticated accents of dried sage and tobacco leaf.

 

2008 Russian Hill, Russian River, Sonoma, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $36 at JJ Buckley 

  • $40 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.1x | TOP PICK

90 points Connoisseurs’ Guide: If sturdy and structured in a way that is wholly in keeping with the Russian Hill style, this well-extracted Pinot is the deepest, most generously filled of the bunch. It is a big wine to be sure, and it is presently a bit tight-fisted, but it is carefully focused and shows more than enough fruity potency to hold it in good stead for the five or so years of cellaring that its slightly sinewy style warrants.

 

2009 Acacia, Carneros, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $20 at K&L Wines

  • $42 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x

Winemaker’s Notes: Bright and silky, our 2009 Pinot Noir Carneros shows off red Bing cherry and Burgundy plum aromas, with hints of red rose and sweet spice. Smooth, fine-grained tannins support the elegant, red-fruit flavors through the lingering, vanilla-nuanced finish. Vibrant acidity nicely balances this medium-bodied wine, making it an excellent pairing with salmon as well as with pork, poultry and red meats. Alcohol 14.4%.

 

2007 Navarro Vineyards, Anderson Valley, Mendocino, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $19 Release Price Wine Spectator

  • $42 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.2x | TOP PICK

87 points Wine Spectator: A subtle, juicy wine, with delicate wild berry, cranberry and floral notes that are ripe but still offer a refreshing element. Smooth and detailed, with pretty spice notes that accent the finish. Drink now through 2012. 4,082 cases made. –MW

 

2006 Fort Ross, Sonoma Coast, Pinotage

Retail Price: $28 at K&L Wines – SOLD OUT

  • $45 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.6x | TOP PICK 

89 points Wine Spectator: Smoky, savory herb, blackberry and currant fruit is complex, rich and layered, tight and structured, ending with firm tannins. Drink now through 2014. 733 cases made. –JL

Description from K&L: Forget everything you think you know about Pinotage – the Fort Ross version stands in a class all its own. This unique blend of pinot noir and cinsault thrives on the chilly Sonoma Coast, developing complex aromas and flavors that enchant from the get-go. Ruby-hued with aromas of mulberry, roses, black tea and spice, the wine opens up on the palate with layers of briar fruit, plum and root beer. Its firm acidity, ripe tannins and tight-knit character will help it develop over the next few years, but it can easily be enjoyed now with hearty fare.

 

2009 Foley, Santa Rita Hills, Central Coast, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $25 at K&L Wines & $34 at Wine.com

  • $50 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.7x

Winemaker’s Notes: Rich, concentrated, dark, black fruit opens to aromas of sandal wood and toasty oak. The palate displays blueberries, blackberries, marionberries and spicebox. This is a rich, fleshy wine held together with a solid backbone of silky tannins and firm natural acidity. It pairs beautifully with duck, turkey, grilled chicken and tuna or salmon.

 

2009 Emeritus, Hallberg Ranch, Russian River Valley, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $44 @ the Winery

Rating: See comments below

  • $55 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.2x | TOP PICK

Winemaker’s Notes: The cold 2009 spring caused the vines to set a smaller–than–normal crop, but the subsequent cool growing season was ideal for Pinot Noir. We saw flavors develop slowly, in balance with tannins and sugar, resulting in more medium–bodied wines than the 2008s, with less alcohol than any of our previous wines. The wine has great depth, dark crimson color, and notable intensity —reminiscent of our 2007s. Overall, we are pleased with the deep colors, variety of flavors, great balance, elegant style, and rarity of the wines. It is rich without being heavy, and embodies what I am looking for in a Pinot: power and finesse. Dare I say iron fist in a velvet glove.

 

2008 Etude, Carneros, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $27 at Mission Liquor & Wines, $30 at Pismo Wine Shop & $33 at Woodland Hills Wine Co.

Rating: Robert Parker 91

  • $62 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x

91 points Wine Advocate: The least expensive offering, the 2008 Pinot Noir Estate exhibits copious aromas of forest floor, strawberries, black cherries and hints of Allspice and herbs. Medium-bodied, beautifully textured and complex, it is ideal for drinking now and over the next 5-6 years.

Winemaker’s Notes: The Etude Pinot Noir Carneros Estate hails from our vineyard tucked away in the far northwest corner of the Carneros appellation. Unlike customary Carneros acreage, which is largely uplifted bay bottoms with soils composed of clay, the soils on the Etude Estate site are variations of volcanic origin. They are well-drained, rocky upland soils. Combining these soils with the extreme western location closer to the Pacific Ocean makes this site a decidedly distinct destination.

True ruby in color, the 2008 Pinot Noir bottling offers aromas of strawberries and sous bois mingled with aromatic woods. Hints of sandalwood and cedar on the nose are followed by elegant fruit flavor on the palate. Berry, plum and a cherry core introduce the wine. The saturated cherry and confiture notes are rounded out by brown spice, clove and oak toast on the finish. A lushness arises from the warmer growing season, creating a lively and defined Pinot Noir with freshness and length. Alcohol 14.1%.

 

2009 Patz & Hall, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $34 at K&L Wine Merchants

Rating: Wine Spectator 89 

  • $62 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x

89 points Wine Spectator: This fresh, vibrant red offers ripe blackberry, wild raspberry, sage and black licorice notes. This is full-bodied, spicy and firming, with the flavors gaining depth on the finish, where the tannins are rustic. Drink now through 2018.” (09/11)

Notes from K&L’s site: By focusing exclusively on Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Patz & Hall has become one of the stand out names among California wineries intent on stealing a bit of Burgundy’s thunder. This new release exhibits aromas of strawberry, cherry, cranberry and Kirsch that are echoed on the palate alongside notes of Asian spice. The tannins are broad and muscular, adding mouthcoating richness and vibrant intensity. Lush and compelling now, but with a depth and structure that bodes well for extended aging.

 

2009 Flowers, Sonoma Coast, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $45 at K&L Wine Merchants

Rating: Wine & Spirits 93

  • $65 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.4x | TOP PICK

93 points Wine & Spirits: This is consistently on of the most restrained and delicate pinots you’ll find in California. A blend from far-coast sites, in 2009 this is 30 percent from Flower’s Sea View Ranch, plus fruit from the DZ and Peterson vineyards and other western Sonoma sites in the Sebastopol and Occidental areas. It’s long on strawberry- and cranberry-scented fruit, layered withe the complexity that far-coast pinot can attain, a complexity that seems to be tied to the acidic, ridge-top soils where conifer forests once thrived. The structure leaves room for food, like grilled fennel sausage.

Winemaker’s Notes: Bright ruby color with violet hues on the rim. Blackberry and briar patch come forward in the initial aromas and evolve into high-toned cherry and bergamot orange. Flavors of dried black cherries and savory herbs complement the bright acidity and supple tannins which frame a lingering and silky finish. Alcohol 13.6%.

 

2008 Goldeneye Anderson Valley Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $45 at Napacabs $55 at Wine.com

  • $80 at Waterfront Restaurant – 1.6x

Winemaker’s Notes: With excellent weight, a succulent texture and beautifully balanced acidity, this Pinot Noir reflects the depth and diversity of great Anderson Valley winegrowing. The nose offers a sophisticated medley of aromas, including cranberry, anise, chocolate-covered cherry, toasty oak, truffles and wildflowers. On the palate, it is ripe, round and complete, with layered fruit flavors and barrel char notes that echo the complex aromatics. Alcohol 14.5%.

 

2009 Sea Smoke, Southing, Santa Rita Hills, Pinot Noir

Retail Price: $80 at Napa Valley Wine & Cigar

  • $110 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.4x

92 points James Suckling: Pretty aromas of ripe strawberries and citrus character. It shows a beautiful purity of fruit on the palate with very fine tannins and a long silky finish. Pretty acidity too. Firm. Better in 2014.

 

2007 Rombauer, Napa Valley, Merlot

Retail Price: $32 at Wine.com

Rating: See comments below

  • $53 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.6x | TOP PICK

Winemaker’s Notes: The cooler climate of the Carneros region allows us to produce a Merlot which is true to the varietal’s characteristics. The longer growing season allows the fruit to reach maturity slowly, giving us fruit which is soft and elegant, yet rich and full flavored. Alcohol 14.4%.

 

2008 Shafer, Napa Valley, Merlot

Retail Price: $44 at K&L Wines

Rating: Wine Spectator 92 | Drink now to 2016

  • $66 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.5x | TOP PICK

92 points Wine Spectator: Elegant and focused, with black cherry and toasty oak aromas that lead to supple red currant, spice and herb notes. Finishes with firm but ripe tannins. Drink now through 2016. Alcohol 15.3%.

Winemaker’s Notes: The lengthy spring and summer offered seemingly endless stretches of warm, sunny days and cool nights. A gentle heat spell warmed up our vineyards in early September at exactly the right time to usher in the harvest of gorgeous fruit.

2008 Merlot has a lively, perfumy nose that begins the moment the bottle is opened – delicious aromas of red cherry, raspberry, red plum, cherry kirsch. In the mouth are rich, juicy, palate-enveloping flavors of pure red and black fruit, red licorice, and hints of mint and toasted almonds. The tannins are round and smooth and part of the long, pleasing finish. Alcohol 15.3%.

Blend: 80% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Sauvignon

 

2008 Duckhorn, Napa Valley, Merlot

Retail Price: $50 at K&L Wine Merchants

  • $70 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.4x | TOP PICK

92 points Wine Enthusiast: Shows the soft, mellow feeling a fine Merlot should possess, although it’s certainly tannic enough, in the Duckhorn style. However, the tannins are intricate and accessible, and frame lush cherry, red currant, licorice and cinnamon spice fl avors. Hard to resist now, and should hold over the next four years.

Winemaker’s Notes: The 2008 growing season has produced a particularly complex and complete expression of Napa Valley Merlot, combining bright, lifted red fruit elements with darker, more extracted layers. This depth is on display in the aromatics, where notes of Asian spice, red currant, plum and blueberry crisp are supported by a subtle streak of earthiness. The palate is both velvety and balanced, with flavors that echo the aromas. These flavors are held together by granular tannins and accented by oak-inspired notes of molasses and nougat. 86% Merlot, 9.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.5% Petit Verdot and 1% Cabernet Franc. Alcohol 14.5%.

 

 

2008 Robert Mondavi, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $19 at Napacabs & Safeway

Rating: Robert Parker 89 & Wine Spectator 89

  • $40 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x

89 points Robert Parker: The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa, Mondavi’s least expensive Cabernet Sauvignon, is 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc and other grapes. It has a healthy deep ruby/purple color, with a pleasant nose of black fruits intermixed with hints of charcoal and spice, delicious, sweet fruit, medium body, and nice suppleness and flesh. Given that discounters will probably price this wine in the low twenties, this could be an outstanding bargain. It is no doubt a tribute to the talents of their director of winemaking, Genevieve Janssens. Drink it over the next decade.

Winemaker’s Notes: True to the varietal and the region, this powerful, concentrated Cabernet Sauvignon opens with aromas of juicy black cherries and Italian plums, seamlessly transitioning to flavors of ripe dark fruit. Its rich, fleshy texture, lengthy finish, and impeccable balance impart a regal maturity to this wine that belies its true age. 85% Cabernet Sauvignon; 7% Merlot; 5% Cabernet Franc; 2% Syrah; 1% Petit Verdot. Alcohol15.3%.

 

2008 Sterling Vineyards, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $19 at Napacabs & Safeway

  • $44 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.3x

87 points Wine Spectator: Smooth and supple-textured, with pleasing plum and black cherry fruit that’s engagingly easy to drink, maintaining its fruit purity. Drink now through 2018. 74,000 cases made. –JL

 

2009 Hess, Allomi Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $28 at Wine.com

  • $44 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.6x

Winemaker’s Notes: The 2009 Allomi Cabernet Sauvignon is a full-bodied wine with rich flavors of blackberry and currant paste. Aging in American oak barrels for 16.5 months (25% new) brings a toasty nose of vanilla and nutmeg. The jammy entry of dark fruit carries through a wellbalanced mid into fine-grained tannins in the finish. Blend: 91% Cabernet Sauvignon and 9% Petite Sirah. Alcohol 14.4%.

 

2007 Jordan, Alexander Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $33 at Rye brook Wine & Spirit Shop & $45 at K&L Wines

  • $72 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.8x
  • $75 at The House of Prime Rib | 1.9x

Winemaker’s Notes: A seamless wine, the 2007 Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon exudes beautiful, dense, blackberry aromas that echo through the mid-palate. The mouthfeel is silky-smooth with soft, round tannins accented by a vanilla quality from aging one year in primarily French oak barrels. Enjoyable now or worthy of cellaring through 2020.

  

2008 Joseph Phelps, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $40 at Artisan Wine Depot & $53 at Wine.com

  • $76 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.6x | TOP PICK

90 points Wine Advocate: The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon is an impressive version. Their 1975 Cabernet Sauvignon is still alive at age 35. The 2008’s dense ruby/purple color is followed by an attractive bouquet of crème de cassis and charcoal. Revealing full-bodied richness and lots of depth, it is one of the finest regular Cabernet Sauvignons Phelps has made in many years. The tannins have sweetened over the last year and this impressively endowed effort, while approachable now, should age for 20+ years.

Winemaker’s Notes: The 2008 Cabernet reveals aromas of plum and blackberry intertwined with graphite, forest floor, dark chocolate and curry notes. The fruit and spice carry through on the palate adding to the multilayered texture of this wine. Supple, integrated and age-worthy tannins create a long, lush finish. Alcohol 14.5%.

 

2008 Groth, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $37 at K&L Wines

  • $79 at The House of Prime Rib | 2.1x
  • $80 at Waterfront Restaurant | 2.1x

87 points Wine Spectator: Offers savory berry and herbal notes. In some ways this is more complete than the Reserve, with a fleshier texture and less dryness. Drink now through 2016. 20,000 cases made. –JL

Winemaker Notes: The Cabernet Sauvignon fruit is grown on our Estate controlled vineyards, in the Oakville AVA, in the heart of the Napa Valley. The Oakville District is renowned for its Cabernet Sauvignon and produces wines that are full, lush and very elegant.

The 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon is big and lush with huge gobs of fruit in the aroma and flavor. The texture of the wine is soft and supple, typical of Cabernet Sauvignons grown in our area of the Oakville AVA.

Menu suggestions: “A slab and a Cab”, Dennis Groth recommends you drink his Cabernet Sauvignon with steak. Alcohol 14.9%.

 

2009 Caymus, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $60 at K&L Wine Merchants

Rating: Wine Spectator 91

  • $90 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.5x

91 points Wine Spectator: “Supple and creamy-textured, with mocha, ripe plum and cherry flavors that show touches of tobacco, espresso and underbrush. Full-bodied, gaining tannic traction on the finish, elegant and readily approachable. Drink now through 2018.

 

2006 Silver Oak, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $90 at Wine.com

  • $120 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.3x | TOP PICK

88 points Wine Spectator: The unmistakable signature of vanilla bean and coconut scents fold in nicely with taut yet supple tiers of cedar, black cherry, currant and berry jam notes. Full-bodied, ending with firm, structured tannins. Drink now through 2018. 34,500 cases made. –JL

Winemaker’s Notes: The 2006 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is a complex and refined wine that develops beautifully in the glass to reveal multi-layered nuances of aromas. It has a dark ruby color and an enticing nose of cassis, black truffles and violets. On the palate, the wine has an elegant attack and bursts with flavors of fresh forest fruit, potpourri and Asian spices. It has a long finish with smooth well-integrated tannins. With proper cellaring it should give drinking pleasure through 2026.

Our 2006 Napa Valley, a blend of wine from vineyards throughout the appellation, is 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. We blended the vineyard lots in early 2007 and transferred the wine to 100% new American oak barrels for aging. Blending prior to barreling allows us to achieve a balance of the wine’s primary elements, such as fruit and tannin, before they are influenced by oak. The wine was then aged in barrel for approximately 25 months and another 20 months in bottle to harmonize its components before release. Alcohol 14.1%.

 

2007 Robert Mondavi, Reserve, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $85 at Belmont Wine Exchange & Rye Brook Wine & Spirit Shop

  • $130 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.5x

95+ points Wine Advocate: The full-bodied, powerful, pure 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve is another outstanding effort revealing notes of spring flowers, toasty oak, creme de cassis, licorice, and graphite. One would have to go back to the 1990, 1991, 2001, or 2002 to find a Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve this impressive. The 2007 should evolve for 20-25 years.

95 points Wine Spectator: A wonderful expression of stylish Cabernet that’s ripe, fleshy, complex and layered, highlighting ripe currant, wild berry and blueberry, with touches of cedar and cigar box. The flavors gain traction on the finish. Drink now through 2022. 9,590 cases made.

Winemaker’s Notes: The 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve carries the full classic aromas of crème de cassis, licorice, and cedarwood with layers of spice, camphor and roasted herbs. On the palate, the wine reflects the very expressive terroir of the To Kalon Vineyard with ripe blue and black fruits—mineral-laced dark berries and powerful, integrated tannins for which this vineyard is known. The lush aromatics and well developed flavors are wrapped in firm, velvety tannins, giving the wine an exceedingly long, aristocratic finish. Alcohol 16.0%.

 

2007 Beringer, Private Reserve, Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $89 at Wine.com

Rating: Robert Parker 97

  • $140 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.6x | TOP PICK

97 points Robert Parker: One of the finest Private Reserves made over the last two decades, this phenomenal wine is obviously still an infant in terms of development, but it exhibits a dense purple color as well as an extraordinary nose of blackberries, white chocolate, licorice, tobacco leaf, smoky barbecue, charcoal and a burning ember-like note reminiscent of a Graves from Bordeaux. A dense, luscious, full-bodied, opulent style, with sweet tannin, this locked and loaded, intense, full throttle Private Reserve should be accessible in 5-6 years and last for 25-30. Alcohol: 14.6%

 

2009 Caymus, Special Selection, Cabernet Sauvignon

Retail Price: $100 at K&L Wines

  • $150 at Waterfront Restaurant | 1.5x

93 points Wine Spectator: Temptingly rich and layered, with complex mocha, plum and wild berry fruit that’s spicy and aromatic. Full-bodied, gaining depth and turning ever more elegant and detailed, with tannins that give this traction. Drink now through 2019.

 

2007 Opus One

Retail Price: $205 Average Price via Wine – Searcher & $269 at SF Wine Trading Company

  • $200 at Waterfront Restaurant | BELOW RETAIL | TOP PICK

95 points Wine Advocate: Two of the strongest wines ever made at Opus One, the 2007 has terrific black currant fruit, licorice, incense, and subtle smoke, an opulent, even voluptuous mouthfeel, dazzling purity and texture, and a skyscraper-like mouthfeel. This is a sensational Opus One, with sweet tannin and impressive precision and depth. It can be drunk now or cellared for 25+ years.

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