This year, Dad isn’t interested in another toy to help tackle yard work. He doesn’t want cologne, and although he’s grown fond of gardening lately, he isn’t quite ready for a monthly subscription of estate-grown olive oil for dressing up his daily salads. The right gift this year, particularly as the last couple of months have seen the world sheltering-in-place—is wine.
Dad needs wine to replenish his rapidly depleting stash, but not just any wine. He needs deeply interesting, brooding, powerful, and expressive wines. Wines with personality and style. Wines with the ability to reveal nuances in the glass, and gain in complexity over time in the bottle.
We hand-selected these 7 wines from our wide-ranging portfolio that fit the bill. These are the best wines to buy (and have shipped to dad) in time for Father’s Day.
2017 FOLEY ESTATES BARREL SELECT PINOT NOIR, STA. RITA HILLS
A fabulous wine from a terrific, cooler vintage in the Central Coast, this barrel-select Pinot Noir was aged 18 months in 100% new French oak, delivering a powerful Pinot Noir with all the ripe, deep-dark fruit notes that are hallmarks of the Sta. Rita Hills AVA. Black cherry fruit is supported by a framework for muscular tannins from the French oak, and lush, juicy, red berry fruit tinged with black pepper, cedar spices, and Madagascar French vanilla bean, finishing long with pipe tobacco and black tea notes.
2017 THREE RIVERS SVELTE BORDEAUX, COLUMBIA VALLEY
One of the top producers in Eastern Washington, just a 15-minute drive west of Walla Walla, this Bordeaux-style wine is a classic blend of all five Bordeaux varieties, combining 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Malbec, 20% Petit Verdot, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 10% Merlot into a richly expressive wine featuring black cherry, espresso bean, and cassis notes with firm, ripe tannins, and gently soft acidity. This is a sleeper thanks to the elite fruit sources, which come from iconic sites such as Seven Hills, Bacchus, and Wahluke Slope.
2018 CHALONE VINEYARD ESTATE CHENIN BLANC, CHALONE AVA
Within the Chalone AVA, the Chenin Blanc vines from a tiny site, less than 4-acres, were originally planted in the early 1900s by Frenchman Lucien Charles Tamm, making this 100% Chenin Blanc a piece of living history. There was no one better than Tamm to plant this Chenin, a grape which finds its spiritual home is France’s Loire Valley. We recommend this for dads who are on the fence about white wines because it’s a surprising white, loaded with ripe tropical fruit notes that are framed by a lovely wet river-stone minerality. It’s like going tubing down a river with a mimosa in hand—surely an exciting prospect for most dads.
2017 LANGTRY DOUBLE BARREL AGED PETITE SIRAH, GUENOC VALLEY AVA
This Inky black, glass-staining love-letter from estate vines planted in Lake County, north of Napa Valley, is built for dads who love a good brown spirit to cap off the knight. It’s called “Double Barrel Aged” because it was first crafted in wine barrels, then aged an additional 9 months in Bourbon barrels! This is the first release of this wine, and one whiff delivers enticing sweet aromas of caramel and vanilla, followed by a rich core of dark fruit, cloves spices, and chocolate-covered raspberries. So, dads, light a fire if it’s a cool summer night, put the scotch in the cupboard, and pop open a bottle of this red while you contemplate your next around-the-house project.
2015 KULETO ESTATE CABERNET SAUVIGNON NAPA VALLEY
Our Kuleto estate enjoys a unique perch along the eastern edge of the Napa Valley, nestled amidst the hills overlooking Lake Hennessey and Rutherford. This classic Napa beauty is loaded with classic blackberry fruit, black cherry, pipe tobacco, graphite, crushed herbs, and mocha. A mouth-filling Cabernet with loads of blueberry fruit preserves, purple florals, and herbs redolent of green tobacco, all supported by round, grippy tannins. Recommend a good 15-25-minute decant to let the wine open up.
2016 SEBASTIANI CHERRYBLOCK CABERNET SAUVIGNON, SONOMA VALLEY
The flagship wine of Sebastiani, with most grapes for this Cabernet plucked off the original Old Vines block of Cabernet Sauvignon, which was planted in 1961. This is what we call an “instant classic.” Aged for 14 months in mostly new French oak barrels, its a wine that has caught the attention of critic Robert Parker’s venerable publication, The Wine Advocate, which found an “intensely scented” wine full of “cassis, baked black plum, blueberry coulis and red cherry preserves with touches of allspice, incense, cedar, dried leaves and warm earth plus a streak of graphite,” in an impressive 94+ point review. We think dads will find it simply—delicious. It’s certainly a keeper, so, if you’ve got the cellar space, we suggest buying at least six bottles to enjoy some now, and some down the road.
2016 FIRESTONE VINEYARD THE CHAIRMAN SERIES MERLOT, SANTA YNEZ VALLEY
Firestone is practically synonymous with Santa Ynez Valley wine country. After all, it was the first estate established there and boasts 325 acres of world-class vineyards planted just 26 miles from the Pacific Ocean, which ushers in crisp, cooling breezes on a daily basis, creating a uniquely long growing season. This “Chairman Series” Merlot is just that—designed for the Chairman of the Board, the head-honcho, the leading man. Even if mom truly runs the household (obviously she does), this richly expressive wine will at least make dad feel like Chairman for a day. Aged 20 months in French, Hungarian, and American oak of which one-third is new, this is a heavenly glassful of plum and espresso bean notes with boysenberry fruit and tobacco-tinged fine-grained cedary tannins.