This is one of the best weeks in a long time for buying hard to find, less expensive yet highly rated wine. Not only has Calvert Woodley started its annual fall sale but Magruders has stocked wine that almost nobody else has.
1. Columbia Crest Two Vines. This is the wine that the Wine Spectator called the single best red wine value in the world. (I love hyperbole! No, I didn't write this!) $6.99 a bottle at Calvert Woodley-five cases at 2:00PM on the floor.
2. Shotfire Ridge 2003 Shiraz. A real "cult" Australian wine whose 2002 received 94 points from Parker; most of it never showed up on store shelves. The 2003 has NOT been rated yet. Calvert Woodley is running an ad for it but they do NOT have it in stock yet and state that it will be limited. Magruder's on Connecticut Avenue just south of Chevy Chase circle has 49 cases as of 3:00PM. They had fifty but I bought one. Literally they took delivery while I was there. This WILL be gone within a day or two, all fifty cases and I am not exaggerating. $14.99 which is about three dollars off.
3. Morambro Ridge 2002 Shiraz. Another real "cult" Australian wine whose 2002 received 92 or 93 points from Parker and, to the best of my knowledge, never showed up on a shelf anywhere. Arrowine sold about 100 or more cases weeks before they took delivery.
Both Calvert Woodley and Magruder's ordered the 2003. Guess what? They were shipped 2002! Serious. Ten or so cases at C/W and a "stack" five feet high and four feet wide at Magruder's. $15.99 which is what it was SUPPOSE to sell for although a few stores on the internet marked it up and offered it over $20.
4. Allegrini Palazzo (sp?) Della Torre 2000. This is a big red Italian wine from the Veneto from a winery that is famous for its amarone. Year in and year out their Palazzo Della Torre is fantastic and considered by many among the best wine values in the world. This year the brand new issue of the Wine Spectator raves about their 2000 and gives it 91 points. Both C/W and Magruders have it for $15.99. Magruders had at least 40 cases left. List price for this is about $20.
5. Marquis Phillips. Another Australian cult wine whose 2001 and 2002 Shiraz/Sarah's Blend/9 were bought up quickly. This is heavy stuff and not for everyone. You really should let it breath for at least an hour or longer and the #9 shouldn't be opened for a couple of years! But for those who like this style it is phenominal-just phenominal! Their 2003 is allocated in Northern Virginia and gone from most shelves. Magruders has, maybe, 200 cases of the complete line. C/W also has a lot. It is all on sale with the Shiraz and Sarah's Blend going for about $15 and the #9 about $35.
I really like this wine a lot!
With the exception of the first wine all of these could/ even should be put away for a year or two of bottle age. They will only improve.
Also, there may be other stores who just took their own deliveries that I am not aware of. Yet these are the only two advertising them and there were several that I called that do NOT have any of these.
Anyway, everything listed above is a real bargain; I'll bet every single bottle is gone by the weekend!