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Holiday Gift Ideas

December 2019


Greetings to all the ABC Liquors Wine Club members.


The Holiday Season is upon us so here are some gift ideas for Christmas,

Hanukkah or Kwanzaa. I know that I would rather receive a bottle of wine as a present more than anything else, except for a winning Powerball ticket, or lots of cash. :~)


For reds we have the gorgeous 2016 Adriano, Barbaresco “Sanadaive” ($24.99), a single vineyard wine from Piedmont, Italy, made entirely of the noble Nebbiolo grape. This wine received 92 points from the Wine Spectator, whose taster found “cherry, strawberry, rosehip and licorice”. This is a red that can be drunk now or cellared for another 10-15 years for further development. A perfect match to any sort of roast or grilled meats. A steal at this price.


From beautiful Tuscany, Italy comes the incredible 2015 Carpineto, Chianti

Classico Riserva ($23.99), which received 94 points from the Wine Spectator, whose minion found “cedar, thyme and iron” as well as “excellent structure and balance”, which means this one too can age well for another 10 years or so if desired. Perfect for any kind of beef or lamb, as well as birds such as chicken, turkey or duck.


Argentina sends us the amazing 2017 Catena, Malbec “Paraje Altamira” ($21.99), with 92+ Wine Advocate points. Robert Parker’s taster discovered “spicy black raspberry and blackberry” in this red, as well as “finesse, subtleness, harmony, balance and elegance”, wow! Malbec is very popular nowadays and would be a great gift. For roasts and anything with cheese in it.


If you are ready to open up the wallet and really splurge, try the 2016 Domaine de la Charbonniere, Chateauneuf du Pape, “Les Hautes Brusquieres” at $64.99. From the Southern Rhone River Valley in France, it received a grade of 96-98 points from the Wine Advocate, whose taster found “thyme, rosemary, bold cherry” and calls it “seductive” and a “prodigious effort”. For your very best cuts of beef, lamb or veal. For a gift that will make receiver will remember you forever, what about the 2015 Opus One, a red blend from Napa Valley, in California. It received 97+ points from the Wine Advocate, which describes it as having “cinnamon stick, cloves, cherry preserves, redcurrant, blackberry and cigar box” and thinks you can drink it “over the next 30 years”. All that for a mere $331.99.


For whites, try the 2016 Bouchaine, Chardonnay from Napa Valley, $19.99 and 91 points from Wine Spectator. “Apple pastry, peach, quince and tangerine” with a “buttery richness”. For the Pinot Grigio lover, the 2018 Elena Walch, Pinot Grigio “Castel Ringberg” ($25.99) from the Alto Adige in Italy is as good as Pinot Grigio gets.


Finally, what about a great dessert wine? The 2017 Inniskillin Ice Wine, from Canada, made from the Vidal grape, received 94 points from the Wine Enthusiast who found “candied pineapple, peach syrup and apricot jam”. All that for just $59.99 for a 375 ml bottle. :~) To go with dessert or as dessert. We have hundreds more great choices in the store, so pop on in before it is too late!

Best regards,
Dave Cuneo

Wine Manager

Dave Cuneo


Dave was born and raised in New York City, and at age 18 went off to College in Boston, where he earned a Bachelor's Degree in Engineering Science and Applied Physics from Harvard, class of 1976. Immediately after graduating, he entered the U.S. Navy and after getting his commission as an Ensign from Officer Candidate School in Newport, RI, was sent to San Diego for further training. It was there that the wine bug first bit him, and he has been a wine nut ever since.


After three years on a destroyer home ported in Pearl Harbor, HI where most of the wine available was from California, Dave was transferred for a two year tour in the Pentagon and began to explore the wines of Europe available in that great cosmopolitan city of Washington, DC. Although he loves all wine, he has a special passion for the wines of Italy.


After leaving active duty Dave attended the Wharton School in Philadelphia and received an MBA with a concentration in finance, going to work for the DuPont Company in Wilmington upon graduation. He worked for DuPont for fourteen years and a spin-off for another 6 years, all the time exploring more deeply the world of wine. Dave is now retired from both DuPont and the Navy (where he stayed in the Reserves and reached the rank of Commander) and working in the wine business, his true calling!


Nothing pleases Dave more than to share his passion for wine with his customers, and helping them to explore the wide variety of “vino” available in today's marketplace.