HomeWinesAboutTastingsWine ClubsContact
cart 0 bottles(s)
in your cart.
view cart
fancy pants

Fancy Pants Wines

Feeling flush? Won the lottery? Looking for something special? Our commitment to great value doesn’t stop at a certain price point. Let us make a few suggestions.

Sign up for our not-quite weekly newsletter for updates on new arrivals and special offers.


ADVENTURES IN BYO: Fuleen and Overnoy-Crinquand

BYO nights and restaurants are one of the great not-so-secrets of the New York wine trade. It’s not about avoiding restaurant mark-ups. (We’re in the business so we all understand why a bottle on a wine list costs more than it does in a shop and assuming the list is well thought out and the mark-up doesn’t fall into the evil range, we’re happy to pay up.) BYO is really a way to tap into our own private stashes and share with friends…. Without the hassle of cooking dinner or washing the silverware.

Many of these BYO joints are Chinese restaurants. There tend to be different tribes haunting different places – Grand Sichuan, Peking Duck House and Fuleen Seafood are three that come up often. If you have an eagle eye for your Instagram feed, you’ll be able to spot who’s drinking where even if they’re not “checked in.”

Shitty glassware and an ice bucket that’s literally a bucket (and yes, I feel this is an acceptable, old school use of ‘literally’) are part of the experience. If you’re feeling fancy, you can bring your own stemware, so if you happen to be at one of these places and notice a table in the corner where the bottles outnumber the guests more than two to one and their glassware is way way nicer than yours… chances are good you’ve stumbled upon a hoard of New York wine industry folks having a night out.

Our Sunday man David recently went to Fuleen Seafood (my personal favorite of the Chinese BYOs) for a dinner. After much discussion, I sent him off with a bottle I thought would go particularly well with the restaurant’s salty/savory seafood specialties. Did I pick well? Read below to find out. (Hint: of course I picked well… it’s my job!!)

Distinguished and Surprisingly Versatile

overnoy.jpgFans of wines made from the Savagnin grape love their notes of walnut, salt and orange rind. The Overnoy-Crinquand Savagnin 2010 from the town of Pupillon in France's Jura region has sure possession of these notes. But a recent dinner at Fuleen on 11 Division St. in Chinatown showcased the stunning range of this -- wine, which spends several years aging in old oak barrels before release.

Fuleen - a Chinatown haunt for more than a few local wine geeks - has a generous BYOB policy, an extensive menu, and tasty, affordable food. At $4 each, the fried quail are a steal, particularly in service to the Overnoy-Crinquand. Its notes of toasted brioche complement the quail and the wine's unexpected acidity cleanses the palate between morsels.

But it's with the main courses that the Savagnin shines. Against a dish of shrimp, garlic, peanuts and red and green peppers the wine reveals a slight smokiness and then some honey to smooth the garlic. A plate of eggplant, chicken and salted fish elicits melon and then a little black tea from this wine, and a side of chive stems calls forth a hint of milk chocolate - not kidding, it's in there. The wine's body is never thrown out of balance but oscillates from leaner to more opulent depending on the dish with which it's paired.

There are next-day leftovers of both meals - Fuleen portions are enormous - and wine, which when sampled with an Italian hard cheese reverts to the more expected flavors of walnut and fine honey. A pairing of Savagnin and Comte, the Jura's answer to Gruyere, is justifiably classic, but dinner at Fuleen shows just how much the Overnoy-Crinquand Savagnin 2010 has to offer.

Price: $47.99


THE UNICORN HAS LANDED: Chateau Musar Rose 2012

This exists.

musar rose.jpgAnd no, your eyes do not deceive you. This is an actual bottle of Chateau Musar rose.

It's not the Jeune, which we know and love as the deeply colored $20-ish cinsault-based rose. This is not that. This is it's own thing. A very rare creature...... dare I call it a unicorn?  I had heard of it, glimpsed images of it in the background of photos, perhaps seen it in dreams. But it wasn't until I actually visited the actual cellars of Chateau Musar - and had a very wonderful dinner with my traveling group at the home of the Hochar family, that I actually tasted it. And that was about three years ago, fresh of the plane, in the haze of jet lag... did I really taste it? Or did I just think I did?  Since then, I've asked about it, pleaded for some to make its way to the US market. And now it has..... the unicorn has landed.

Some technical details? It's the same base wine as the whites - made from the mystical old vines of obidah and merwah - with the addition of a bit of cinsault for color and a subtle berry note. It's gorgeously textured and subtly fruited. And given the extreme ageability of the both Musar reds and whites, it shouldn't be a surprise that this is a rose that can age as well. So don't be afraid to hide some away.

Price: $51.99


BOOKS & BOOZE: A Pairing Series

corsican rose.jpgDavid, our Sunday man, is kicking off a series of booze and books pairings. In this case, the booze is a lovely summer rose that we snagged for your late summer enjoyment. Christophe Ferrandis’s Clos Signadore Patrimonio Rosé “A Mandria”. It’s one of those sneaky complex wines we love – subtle fruit, easy to drink without giving much thought… but if you pay attention, you notice the limestone minerality coming through. And (assuming you read French, as well as drink it) you can pair it with Jérôme Ferrari's Le Sermon Sur la Chute de Rome, the seemingly simple tale of a Corsican bar that weaves a story that’s much deeper. Read the full post on Frankly My Dear, our store blog (yes, we’re still keeping a blog.)

Clos Signadore Patrimonio Rosé “A Mandria Price: $29.99



Ganevat label.jpgYeah, yeah, yeah, we know. More Jura. What can we say... it's an obsession. Another Frankly Wines obsession. Enough of an obsession that I generally have good, reliable stock of several producers, but
Jean-François Ganevat isn't one of those producers. We get what we get, when we can. We're never quite sure when, or how much, but we're always happy when it arrives. Like this little somewhat unexpected drop of handful of bottles, from a vineyard in the Arbois that Jean-Francois took over from an older, retiring vigneron. I'm not going to write much because there's plenty already written. If you know the name, you're probably already checking out the selection. And if you don't? Do a quick bit of research and place your orders, because the handful of bottles left won't last long. And I have no idea when I'll get more!

Any questions, send them to christy@franklywines.com. To check out the selection, click here, enter GANEVAT in the producer/vintage/region box, and hit search.

BRING ON THE BUBBLES: The Lovely Little One

George Laval Brut Nature Champagne
laval.jpg(base 2010) 375ml (Champagne, France):

Baby Laval Brut. This is the 2010 base wine, which is a lighter, racier version than the 2008 base baby bottles we had earlier in the year. It’s a younger bottle, so the salinity shines through and begs…. BEGS!! for oysters. (Please, help the bottle out and give it some oysters.) But don’t think this is some too-cool-for-school-so-dry-it-hurts zero dosage bubbly. Laval manages lovely ripe fruit that give his wines a perfect balance of raciness and generosity. (Don’t believe me? Then believe the New York Times which listed Laval as one of its top producers in a recent article about low-/no-dosage champagnes.) This little guy is the perfect bottle if you're having a "just-the-two-of-you" New Year's Eve. Or if you want to keep something in your pocket just for yourself.

SALE Price: $39 (regularly $42.99) (375ml)

We also have the regular size Brut Nature (base 2009) for $84.99. Click here and search LAVAL to buy.


Yum Yum Yum & A Bottle of (Cask Strength) Rum

navazos.jpgNavazos Palazzi 15 Year Old Cask Strength Rum (Spain):

Love at first sip. And what a first sip it was. This is cask strength rum, meaning it's full proof, like 51% abv, pulled straight from the cask. Those casks happen to be old Oloroso casks, which impart a rich, nutty, sherry-like lushness to the rum. The rum itself is from the somewhere in the Caribbean. "Somewhere" being about as specific as it gets. At 5 years of age, it was sent to Sparin where it spent another 10 years in those Oloroso casks. Sipped straight, it's strong stuff. But almost shockingly smooth for such high proof stuff. Take a sip neat, then dilute it with a touch of water for maximum enjoyment of it's crazy cool blend of nuttiness, molassas and Oloroso twang. Read more about it in Jon Bonne's piece in the SF Chronicle.

Price: $159.99 (non-discountable)


Moo Roo Who? Moorooduc:Aussie Chardonnay Gone Good

moorooduc.jpgYou may think you know Australian wine. It’s all either cheap and cheerful critter labels. Or big, brash 100-point trophy bottles. All jammy shiraz and tropical/buttery chardonnay and maybe the occasional cabernet for a bit of variety. Right?

Not so much. OK, maybe much. But not only.

If you know where to look (and my shelves would be a good place to look) you can find bottles that stray way beyond the “sunshine in a bottle’ stereotype. Elegant wine. Subtle wine. Wine with freshness and funkiness – and not a marsupial in sight. Now the wines available in Australia have always been much more diverse that what was ever sold here, but that diversity has only increased. As in California, we’re now seeing new grape varieties, lesser known regions,  a focus on old vine stock, young winemakers moving away from the idea that a wine has to be 100% clean and fruity and hit the right pH level to be “good…”

And with a handful of new importers focusing on Australian wine, if you look, you’ll start to see more of this good stuff over here. And you’ll start to hear about it as wine writers and buyers begin to quietly buzz about what’s happening.

The most recent buzz is from the New York Times. Eric Asimov’s current Wines of the Times piece focuses on Australian Chardonnay. The findings: delicious, drinkable, lively wines that aren’t dripping in oak. Not a surprise for the panel, but if you’re still living in the land of kangaroo juice, give it a read. And note the #1 wine: Moorooduc Chardonnay 2011, Mornington Peninsula. Yup, we sell it. And obviously agree on its general deliciousness. Elegant but not lean, silky textured but not heavy. It gives California Chardonnay at a similar price some serious competition. It’s a wine that deserves to be called lovely. Because it’s just… lovely. Which sounds much better than Moorooduc-y.

Moorooduc Estate Chardonnay 2011 (Victoria, Australia): $34.99

P.S. The NYT piece mentions new guard Mac Forbes and cult classics Giaconda and Vasse Felix. All of these have spent time on our shelves – and will be coming back sometime this fall, so if you’re interested, drop us a note and we’ll let you know when they’re in.



CIDER.... Like You've Never Seen It Before

Orleans.jpgCider is all the rage this autumn. We’ve always stocked some, but this season, grown-up apple juice has finally hit the mainstream. Well, maybe not the main mainstream, but they’re starting to catch on beyond wine geek circles. Don’t believe me? Then check out this week’s New York Times piece. (That best value cider… we love it and have stocked it for at least the last year. It’s even in this month’s wine club!)

So now that we’re having a cider moment, we wanted to highlight one of our favorites: Eden Ice Cider Company’s Orleans Herbal.  This is crazy stuff and it’s like nothing you’ve ever had before. It’s a Vermont-based collaboration between Eleanor Leger of Eden and Deirdre Heekin who owns and runs the nearby osteria pane e salute.  Apples are pressed, the juice is frozen to concentrate the flavors and sugars, fermented dry and then infused with a secret blend of herbs. OK - the secret herbs are anise hyssop and basil. The result is a unique taste of Vermont - like walking through an apple orchard on a brisk spring day with the scent of fresh herbs wafting through the air. Yes, wafting. So let a bit of this waft over to your table this autumn.

Drink it neat and chilled, on the rocks with a twist of lime or a splash of sparkling water, or get all fancy and whip up some cocktails. Think of it as Lillet with a New England accent.

Price: $34.99



navarre PdC.jpgR. Navarre Pineau des Charentes Vieux (Cognac, France): You may not know about Pineau des Charents. But you need to. You really, really need to. Broken down to a simple definition, Pineaux des Charents are basically unfermented grape juice fortified with cognac. But what they really are is magic. Pure, delicious, crazy good magic. They are sweet, but the kick of Cognac gives them a sweet/n/strong attitude that makes them so irresistible. There’s some of the nutty, caramel notes a tawny port, but with of freshness and liveliness that makes them oh, so charming. At around $65/bottle, they aren’t cheap, but if you try one, you’ll understand why one customer said, “I really wish I didn't know these existed.” They’re just that good. You’ll find yourself thinking about them while typing away at your desk, mulling over spreadsheets and the number of emails you need to send (or maybe that’s just me.)

Price: $68.99

Customer Service  |  Deliveries/Shipping  |  Privacy  |  Terms/Conditions  |  Press
Copyright Frankly Wines 2008-2009. All Rights Reserved.
Visa, MasterCard, and American Express
This site is secured by Authorize.Net.

SSL provided by Network Solutions