The Golden Age for Liquid Gold: Santa Barbara County Chardonnay

On a recent two-day jaunt through Santa Barbara wine country the team and I visited several producers who we believe are among the most exciting in Southern California. Our tastings confirmed that the wines from these producers are in fact drop-dead gorgeous.

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Rhône School: St-Joseph

Today, it’s widely known that some of the best Syrah and Grenache on the planet come from Rhône, but do we really understand why? This line of inquiry led us, meaning Keith and I, to create Rhône School, your biweekly-ish dive into the Rhône, region by region, rock by rock, with a blog-toothed comb. First stop: St-Joseph.

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Champagne Summit Kick Off—Featuring Billecart-Salmon

Recently, we kicked off our annual Champagne Team Staff Summit with a wonderful sushi dinner hosted by Billecart-Salmon and Mr. Clement Calleja. It was wonderful to spend an evening learning about these fabulous Champagnes and having the opportunity to try them all with food and over time. We checked in on most of the range.

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Gary Westby
Le Gallais—A New Direct Import Find from Champagne

I never imagined that we would direct import a producer whose entire production comes from one of the blessed Clos of Champagne. This past March, on my spring trip to the region, I had the chance to go to the other side of the wall of the Clos Boursault to visit Charlotte Le Gallais and her father. After months of waiting, the wines have finally arrived at K&L.

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Gary Westby
When Word Gets Around Quicker Than I Can Blog

This week, we’re hosting Hélène Garcin-Lévêque in Hollywood for a special in-store tasting and then three-course pairing dinner at Michelin-starred Kali. But word got around! I’d planned to let readers know about the event in this post, so you could run out and buy tickets, but they’ve already sold out! So, instead, I’ll introduce you a bit to her and to her wines, and encourage you to bring home a few bottles for yourself so you can get to know her style. If you would still like the chance to meet her, you can get on the waiting list

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Kate Soto
Damien Hugot—New Grand Cru Direct Import!

It tickles me a little to write that Damien Hugot is our new producer from the Grand Crus of the Côtes de Blancs. His family has been growing grapes in Champagne since at least 1660, and probably before that. He has an incredible collection of vineyards, almost entirely in the Grand Crus of Chouilly and Cramant, the two northernmost villages of the Côtes de Blancs.

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Gary Westby
Visiting Sancerre

Sancerre is the quintessential paradise of country France. It is only two and a half hours from Paris by car, but it might as well be on another planet. This is a peaceful place that runs at French small-town pace. I can’t recommend a vacation here highly enough and wanted to share some of the highlights of my ten days there.

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Gary Westby
Newsletter, Italian Style

Italy! The food, the landscape, the films, the fashion—and the wine! There’s much for a wine lover to swoon over in this land that was once named Oenotria by the Greeks for its many vines. Our Italy newsletter showcases some of the best and brightest on our shelves. Join us this Saturday as we celebrate a festa d’Italia in all three stores. Cin Cin!

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Champagne Tasting with the Stars

I am extremely fortunate that our Champagne tastings attract a really fun and diverse group of people. All ages (you were born in 1998, what?!) and incomes, as well as localities. (“We came in from the wilds of Walnut Creek.”) I’ll be seeing a couple of hundred of you on October 20th at the Champagne Tent Event. (Remember to hydrate!)

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On the Trail
Kumeu River: A Wine Not to Forget

This past weekend, we tasted wines from Australia and New Zealand in all our stores. Although Kumeu River didn’t make the lineup this time around, I couldn’t help but add it to the current conversation. Gracing my table several times this summer, the Kumeu River Chardonnays have been some of my favorite whites to break out over dinner. These wines, which have often gone head to head with (and been victorious over) some very serious white Burgundies, are beautiful, vivacious wines that are fantastic with food, and a great value for the quality.

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Megan Greene