© 2024 WYPR
WYPR 88.1 FM Baltimore WYPF 88.1 FM Frederick WYPO 106.9 FM Ocean City
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Shopping Lists

Cameron Knowlton/flickr

Al and Hugh review their favorite wines from this year, which would be great for gifts. 

Bargain Chardonnay 

Dom. des Herbauges '15  ** $  (Loire Valley easy drinker)

William Hill Chardonnay North Coast '14 **/12  $  (Good California chard)

Mid-Range Chardonnay 

Landmark "Overlook" Chardonnay '15 **1/2  $$ (Very classy)

Ferarri-Carano Chardonnay '15 $$  **1/2  (Powerhouse Chardonnay)

Italian Value  

Crossarola Valpolicello Ripasso '15  **1/2 $  (VALUE)

Italian Splurge

Cesari "Bosan" Valpolicella Ripasspo  ***  $$  (Super Valpo)

Favorite Alsatian

Domaine Sipp-Mack wines, riesling and pinot gris *** $$ (Fabulous quality, great winemaking)


Domaine Sipp-Mack Riesling Grand Cru Rossaker  *** $$


Frei Brothers Reserve Zinfandel, Dry Creek '15 **1/2 $$  (Big zin from a classic zin region)


Yalumba "Museum Reserve" Muscat NV  *** $ (Fabulous bargain for a great Aussie dessert wine)

White wine value

Simonsig Chenin Blanc, South Africa '14 ** $

Maryland wines

Old Westminster Chardonnay '16 **1/2 $$  (very Burgundy-like)

Black Ankle Terra Sol dessert wine '16 *** $$$ (Late harvest Gruner Veltliner)

Big Cork Cabernet Franc '15  *** $$  (Big deep red, fabulous quality)


Guillaume Conet Rosé, Tavel '16 **1/2 $$  (Fruity, finesse, fine)

Long Meadow Ranch Rosé of Pinot Noir '16 ** $$ (Supple, graceful flavors)

French Value 

Chateau Massiac Minervois '13  **1/2  $  (Earthy, deep)

Chateau Mignan Minervois '14 **1/2 * (Rustic charm)

Ch. Laudac Bordeaux Superieur '14  *** $ (Great VALUE in Bordeaux )


Cambria Viognier Tepusquet '15 **1/2 $  (Juicy, refined, tasty)      

Al Spoler, well known to WYPR listeners as the wine-loving co-host of "Cellar Notes" has had a long-standing parallel interest in cooking as well. Al has said, the moment he started getting serious about Sunday night dinners was the same moment he started getting serious about wine. Over the years, he has benefited greatly from being a member of the Cork and Fork Society of Baltimore, a gentlemen's dining club that serves black tie meals cooked by the members themselves who are some of Baltimore's most accomplished amateur cooks.
As General Partner of Clipper City Brewing Company, L.P., Hugh J. Sisson is among Baltimore's premier authorities on craft brewing and a former manager of the state's first pub brewery, Sissons, located in Federal Hill. A fifth generation Baltimorean, Hugh has been involved in all aspects of craft brewing.