FrontRunners: From the Robb Cellar

  • Photo by Cordero Studios/www.corderostudios.com
    Lamborn Family Vineyards 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon and Michele Chiarlo 2007 Barolo Cerequio Photo by Cordero Studios/www.corderostudios.com
  • Photo by Cordero Studios/www.corderostudios.com
    Lamborn Family Vineyards 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon and Michele Chiarlo 2007 Barolo Cerequio Photo by Cordero Studios/www.corderostudios.com
  • Photo by Cordero Studios/www.corderostudios.com
  • Photo by Cordero Studios/www.corderostudios.com

    Established in 1956, Pied­montese wine producer Michele Chiarlo is a relative newcomer in comparison to such notable neighbors as Giacomo Conterno, which was founded sometime in the 17th century. Yet its eponymous owner has championed the rigorous fruit selection and exacting cellar practices that yield the superior wines for which Piedmont is renowned today. Chiarlo incorporated his father’s estate in Calamandrana into the new enterprise, which initially focused on the production of Barbera. Beginning in the late 1950s, however, the label’s portfolio expanded to include wines from the prestigious Barolo region, where the Nebbiolo grape often achieves profound concentration. The Michele Chiarlo 2007 Barolo Cerequio, named for the fabled vineyard in Langhe from which its fruit is sourced, is radiant crimson in color and blossoms with aromas of red currant, cranberry, ripe cherry, and truffle. On the palate, deep, minty minerality and hints of leather emerge. ($103) www.chiarlo.it

     

     

     

    The story of Lamborn Family Vineyards begins like a Dashiell Hammett novel and ends like a script by Earl Hamner. In 1971, Oakland, Calif.–based private detective Robert Lamborn—whose credentials included security clearance with the CIA—decided to give up his career of intrigue for a simpler way of life. He purchased a 25-acre parcel on Napa Valley’s Howell Mountain and convinced his son Michael to purchase a neighboring 15-acre plot. Together, they planted Zinfandel on the property and, in 1985, released their first wine, a Zinfandel. In 1997, Heidi Barrett, renowned winemaker for Screaming Eagle, brought her unique talents to the equation, and today, the estate’s 1,000-case average annual production includes some of the region’s most stunning Cabernet Sauvignon. The Lamborn Family Vineyards 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon is velvety in texture; its vibrant blackberry and cherry fruit is accented by hints of marzipan, toffee, and toast. ($100) www.lamborn.com

    From Around the Web...
    Riedel Vinum Extreme Rosé Provence Glass, $69 for a set of two
    An exquisite new way to enjoy rosé, just in time for summer…
    These blends of rare old malt and grain whiskies elevate the art of blending to new heights…
    Glenmorangie Bacalta
    This limited edition from the legendary distillery is destined to become a collector’s item…
    Photo by Damion I. Hamilton
    Cuban cigar legend Montecristo turns 80 with a big party at Harvest Inn by Charlie Palmer in Napa...
    The 2006 Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs is “an all-Chardonnay cuvée, in the style our ancestors created,” says  Taittinger
    A classically trained artist, Vitalie Taittinger is furthering her family’s traditions in Champagne…
    5 Superb American Whiskeys
    These top non-bourbon made-in-America spirits showcase the freedom of whiskey distilling in the U.S...
    Puebla ($85)
    Mezcal is gaining in popularity and entering the premium market…
     Hochstadter’s Family Reserve Straight Rye Whiskey ($200)
    This premium rye whiskey is an homage to pre-Prohibition spirits…
    Nikka Coffey Malt Japanese Whisky ($75)
    This Japanese whisky uses Scottish barley in its malting…
    Legacy Collection from the Macallan in Lalique sold for $993,000
    The Macallan and Lalique Legacy Collection sets a world record for a single whisky lot at auction…