Author Archive: Steve Pinchuk

Illahe is coming!

ILLAHEHEADER_famownedIllahe Vineyard was purchased in 1999 and first planted in 2001 with 22 acres of pinot noir. Today it is a 52-acre vineyard with seven varieties and 44 acres of pinot noir. When it is completely planted, we will have 60 acres under vine. Illahe Vineyards also uses estate fruit from the Glenn Creek Vineyard in West Salem.

illaheAt Illahe, the goal is to make wine as naturally as possible from the soil to the bottle. This requires working by hand on small lots with age-old techniques and materials.

Our focus is to make and grow quality pinot noir and white wines that express the vintage and their varietal characteristics. We don’t use enzymes or additives, and we don’t fine or filter our pinot noir. Some of our lots are made entirely by hand with no electricity or mechanization. We use a gentle wooden basket press, and age our pinot noir in French and Oregon oak.

Click here for the tech Sheet on the ‘Estate’ Pinot Noir

Click here for the tech Sheet on the ‘Bon Sauvage’ Pinot Noir

Click here for the tech Sheet on the ‘1899’ Pinot Noir





Champagne Forget Brimont


Maison Forget-Brimont’s vineyards cover 18 hectares that are for the most part located on the terroirs of the communes of the Montagne de Reims: Mailly-Champagne and Verzenay for the Grand Crus and Chigny les Roses, Coulommes la Montagne, Ludes, Montbré, Sermiers, Taissy and Villers-Allerand for the Premier Crus. This 6th generation estate started by Louis Forget, planted their first vineyards in the beginning of the 19th Century while the brand was established in 1920. It then became known as Forget-Brimont in 1978. Pinot Noir reigns supreme in this area. This wine is made from primarily Estate fruit from those Premier Cru vineyards but they also purchase some fruit from other Premier Cru growers and Grand Cru growers in order to make small quantities of Grand Cru Champagne. A true artisanal grower/producer with enough vineyards to supply year round continuity of Brut NV Premier Cru.


The Brut is a blend of 40% Pinot Noir, 40% Pinot Meunier, and 20% Chardonnay, with between 20% and 40% of reserve wines to ensure consistency.  A pale golden color. It has a delicate nose, very fresh, with lovely complexity. Fresh and supple on the palate, the first impression is of fresh green apples with a hint of white flowers and hazelnuts. The complexity is driven by the use of multiple vintages, multiple varietals, and extended aging of reserve wine components.


The Rosé Premier Cru is a blend of 40% Pinot Noir, 40% Pinot Meunier, and 20% Chardonnay, where like the Brut NV, between 20% and 40% of reserve wines are used to ensure consistency.  An elegant salmon color. It has a very fresh nose and fine, persistent bubbles. Lovely intense aromas give it a positive first impression in the mouth with flavors of mulberry, raspberry, and red currant.

More information is available by clicking here

Both wines were awarded 91 points by the Wine Spectator, and are in good supply.




Carino Rosso di Toscana

“Carino” means Lovely, beautiful, pretty, and/or lovable in Italian.


Carino Rosso di Toscana is a new red wine made by Paolo Masi from the award winning Renzo Masi winery in Rufina.  This wonderful wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sangiovese and Syrah.  This is a true Super Tuscan,…. At a Super affordable price. Carino Rosso– the Lovely red!  We think you will love this wine too!  More info?  Click Here

Escudo Real Vinho Verde is here!!!

We are very excited to announce the arrival of our newest product from Portugal.  Meet Escudo Real Vinho Verde





Escudo Real WHITE is bright and citrusy, due to its natural acidity. With dominant apple and grapefruit aromas and a splash of green, herby notes, Escudo Real brings the fun and the flavor.  Produced with Arinto, Trajadura & Loureiro grape varieties and at 9.5% alcohol, this baby is ripe for the picking.

Click here for the tech sheet.

Vintage Imports visits Piemonte!



Getting the grand tour of Rivetto Vineyards with Enrico Rivetto…



A visit to Cantine Povero with Alessio Povero

Croatina Vineyard

and through the vineyards..

La Morra

Highest elevation in Barolo..La Morra

Group Shot1delicious

Tomato, capers, hazelnuts, olive oil…Michelin Star Restaurant Giardino da Felicin, Monforte, Barolo….one of our favorite dishes from the trip

beachRivetto and team

Paddle boating with Enrico Rivetto in Varigotti

Because Water is Boring!

image4There are a few essential items that one must pack to make that Saturday afternoon bike ride in the woods a success.


  • Machete to clear a path when the trail ends.
  • Poison Ivy Skin Cleanser
  • All in one bike tool kit
  • Light weight, unbreakable, single serve, ready-to-go-super premium Sauvignon Blanc

The Nano from Sileni Estates……. Because water is boring.


Lucas & Lewellen continues to impress!

llwine-logoLouis Lucas, a third generation grape grower, and Superior Court Judge Royce Lewellen met in 1975 through the Santa Maria Wine & Food Society . Louis was a well respected grower who had been supplying premium wine grapes for reputable Napa and Sonoma wineries for decades. Royce Lewellen was a passionate wine enthusiast with a vision for the future of the Santa Barbara County wine industry.

Over the next twenty-five years, the Lucas and Lewellen families would grow in a deep friendship that would serve as the foundation for Lucas & Lewellen Vineyards, a Solvang, California based winery with four hundred estate acres situated among three of Santa Barbara County’s separate and distinct climate zones, three major wine labels, two popular tasting rooms in downtown Solvang, and a state of the art winery.
Lucas & Lewellen Vineyards has a distributor presence in 25 states and 14 countries.

August 2015 Wine Enthusiast has awarded the Lucas & Lewellen Goodchild High9 Pinot Noir 2013 93 Points!  Click below for the review.

lucas n lewellen goochild pinot noir 13 we 93

Davis Estates Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 scores Big in Wine Spectator!

Davis Estates was founded with the purchase of a 155 acre property in 2011 by Mike and Sandy Dadavevis. The original winery dated back to 1900 (burned down in 1946). The property has changed significantly since the Davis Family took over ownership and is currently still being developed with a completion of the various winery projects estimated to be in early 2016. This ambitious project of restoring the historic barn, developing the hospitality center, cave, offices and winery is certainly not a typical retirement project! Eleven acres of vines are planted on site – mostly to Cabernet Sauvignon with smaller blocks of Petite Sirah and Cabernet Franc. Mike owns additional land on Howell Mountain, in the Carneros (source of their Chardonnay) and a small piece of producing vineyard land in Rutherford. Davis Estates is the culmination of a life long dream. Here the vision is carved from this historic site as an estate winery focused on wines of the highest pedigree.

click below for the review:

Davis Est. Cab 12 WS 91