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Schneider's on The Hill


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I'm on their e-mail list which announces their various wine sales. you can sign up at www.cellar.com

Here's their latest e-mail with white burgundy closeouts:

Armagnac Special Purchase

Castarede XO Bas-Armagnac............... Reg:$49.99......................Sale:$19.99

Buy a case of 6 bottles for 107.94 (that's 17.99 a bottle for XO Armagnac!!!)

The House of Castarede, founded in 1832, is the oldest of all Armagnac trading houses. It is still family owned and operated with Florence Castarede overseeing the company.

White Burgundy Closeouts!

These wines are all available in very limited quantities, please call us at 202-543-9300 with a CC# to hold them for you.

1999 Comte Philippe Senard Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru..........Reg:$79.99.....Sale:$49.99

A rich and full bodied Corton with depth and flavor.

Only 9 bottles available.

1997 J.M. Boillot Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru...Reg:$89.99.................Sale:$59.99

"Superthick and full-bodied, with nice pear, lemon and green apple vibrancy. Harmonious finish, with a subtle toastiness." Wine Spectator

Only one bottle available.

2000 Domaine Bouchard Pere & Fils Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru.....Reg:$89.99.........Sale:$69.99

"Refined, full of chalky, minerally character, and full-bodied, with vanilla beans, pear tart and toasted oak. Silky finish. Wine Spectator- 94 points. Only 8 bottles available.

1998 Etienne Sauzet Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes Premier Cru...Reg:$79.99.........Sale:$39.99

"The apple and toast-scented 1998 Puligny-Montrachet Les Combettes is a broad, rich, deep, medium to full-bodied wine. This beautifully crafted, mineral, and apple-flavored effort is concentrated, harmonious, and possess an extremely long, subtly oaky finish. Anticipated maturity: 2002 - 2010." Robert Parker - 90 Points

Only 2 bottles available.

1998 Roger Belland Puligny-Montrachet Les Champs-Gains Premier Cru...Reg:$59.99.......Sale:$39.99

Full bodied and racy with rich minerality and complex flavors reminiscent of Corton Charlemagne.

Only 3 bottles available.

2000 Bouchard Pere & Fils Puligny-Montrachet Les Folatières Premier Cru..Reg:$69.99......Sale:$49.99

"Complex aromas of white peach, spices and mint. Very suave and seamless on the palate, but also adamantly dry, with rather subdued flavors of flowers and spices. Richer than the Chalumeau but also subtler and finer. This struck me as more concentrated than the '99 version." Stephen Tanzer 91-93 points.

Only 5 bottles available.

1997 Domaine Fontaine-Gagnard Chassagne-Montrachet La Maltroie Premier Cru....Reg:$59.99....Sale:$29.99

"Clean, medium-bodied and steely, with butter and coconut character, this bursts with crisp fruit and mineral intensity on the succulent finish." Wine Spectator

Only 4 bottles available.

2000 Bernard Morey Chassagne-Montrachet Morgeot Premier Cru...Reg:$59.99.......Sale:$39.99

"The 2000 Chassagne-Montrachet Morgeot has a white flower, vanilla, anise, and spice-scented nose. It is broad, medium-bodied, and reveals loads of earthy minerals, toast, and candied lemons in its fresh as well as persistent character. Projected maturity: now - 2010." Robert Parker 90 points. Only 2 bottles available.

2000 Blain-Gagnard Chassagne-Montrachet Caillerets Premier Cru...Reg:$59.99......Sale:$29.99

Concentrated in flavor, this wine has loads of tropical fruit, honey and lime. Only 165 cases made.

Only 10 bottles available.

1998 Pothier-Tavernier Meursault Les Bouches-Cheres Premier Cru...Reg:$59.99.........Sale:$39.99

Big and rich with fat buttery flavors.

Only 5 bottles available.

1998 Francois Jobard Meursault Charmes Premier Cru...Reg:$59.99.......Sale:$39.99

"Spiced apple with a honeyed richness on the nose. Very rich and tactile; fatter than the Genevrieres, with thoroughly enrobed acidity giving the wine impressive sweetness and generous texture. Thoroughly ripe and long. This is evolving nicely. The crop here was just 20 hectoliters per hectare, vs.. 35 for the Genevrieres, according to Jobard." Stephen Tanzer 89-91 points.

Only 4 bottles available.

1998 Remi Jobard Meursault Sous La Velle...Reg:$49.99......Sale:$29.99

"Chalk and earth make a statement in this white burgundy. Well-made '98, ripe and flavorful, with good pear, citrus, pineapple, honey and toasted oak character. Silky finish." Wine Spectator 93 points.

Only 6 bottles available.

2000 Marquis d'Angerville Meursault Santenots.....Reg:$49.99.............Sale:$29.99

The best producer in Volnay produces a great Meursault!

Only 6 bottles available.

1998 Domaine Laleure-Piot Pernand-Vergelesses.....Reg:$39.99.............Sale:$19.99

Crisp and balanced with bright apple flavors.

Only 7 bottles available.

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Armagnac Special Purchase

Castarede XO Bas-Armagnac............... Reg:$49.99......................Sale:$19.99

Buy a case of 6 bottles for 107.94 (that's 17.99 a bottle for XO Armagnac!!!)

The House of Castarede, founded in 1832, is the oldest of all Armagnac trading houses. It is still family owned and operated with Florence Castarede overseeing the company.

I've drunk a few bottles of the XO-good value. they also sell older bottlings. Ask for Terry who will open moderately priced bottles for you to taste. Rick Gunderson (co-owner with brother Jon) is a nice guy and I've managed to get some good deals by spending 3 figures at a time. They have a warehouse full of older wines which I've visted once-walked away with a 66 Cos for a song for example.

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Clearance Sale at Schneider's...some crazy cheap prices if you want to experiment.

January Clearance Sale!

We have marked down wines in every department to make room for all the new ones that are arriving. Hundreds of wines are on sale at

20%-65% OFF!

We also have greatly increased the selection on our 25%-40% OFF shelf with old and rare wines. The wines are too numerous to list, you have to come in to see them.

Examples of our January Clearance Sale:

Santa Duc Gigondas 2002...............Reg:$29.99.........................Sale:$14.99

"The 2002 Gigondas (80% Grenache and the rest Mourvedre, Syrah, and Cinsault) is surprisingly good. Yves Gras told me that some of his Grenache lots came in at 17%, and he harvested extremely late, trying to achieve as much ripeness as possible. The medium-bodied 2002 Gigondas reveals good depth as well as an attractive attack and a spicy finish revealing plenty of cherry and blueberry fruit. It tips the scales at a whopping 15.6% natural alcohol. It will drink well for 5-6 years." Robert Parker

Cuilleras Cotes du Rhone 2002..................Reg:$11.99..................Sale:$4.99

"Olivier Cuilleras appears to be a serious winemaker capable of doing fine work." Robert Parker

Classic mature Cotes-du-Rhone selected by Bobby Kacher. What a deal!

Warrenmang Estate Shiraz 1999.....................Reg:$59.99.................Sale:$29.99

This is a very rich, full bodied Shiraz with that lovely hint of mint associated with the area of the Pyrenees. It drinks beautifully now.

Manciat-Poncet Macon Charnay 2003.................Reg:$14.99................Sale:$9.99

This lovely White Burgundy has always been a favorite at Schneider's. Full bodied and rich for a Chardonnay from Macon, it offers buttery and mineral flavors. Great Macon under $10 is a real rarity.

Mas de Guiot Cabernet/Syrah Prestige 2003......Reg:$12.99..................Sale:$7.99

Its deep ruby/purple color is accompanied by lovely scents of black cherries, currants, tobacco leaf, and licorice. A delicious wine from the area of Costieres de Nimes.

Rene Mure Pinot Blanc 2002....................Reg:$13.99........................Sale:$7.99

A delightful Alsatian Pinot Blanc with rich body and lush fruit flavors.

Domaine Lalande Chardonnay 2003................Reg:$10.99.....................Sale:$5.99

This wine is a special cuvee produced for (and with the input of) its US importer, Robert Kacher. It is available only in the United States.

This barrel fermented Chardonnay has been a big seller over the years. Rich buttery flavors of pear and apple are balanced and integrated.

Domaine Gournier Merlot 2003..........................Reg:$9.99...................Sale:$5.99

"Produced from 25-year old vines... this 2003 Merlot reveals a nose of candied dark berries. Its jammy, grapy attack offers copious black fruit flavors that dissipate a bit in the mid-palate yet return with a vengeance in this effort’s sweet, ripe tannin-filled finish. Medium-bodied and silky-textured, this is an excellent value to drink over the next 2-3 years." Pierre Rovani

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I have only been a couple of times but was always impressed with the Italian selection.  Nice effort to support lesser known names.  Probably one of my favorite three retail outlets for Italian in the city.

If I may ask, what would be your other two favorites? Thanks.

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If I may ask, what would be your other two favorites? Thanks.

McArthurs has the widest selection but you have to cut thru a lot of collectors stuff to get to the lesser known gems. Tom H is a font of knowqlege when it comes to Italian wines.

Circle is also quite good. Kumar knows his stuff. Very small selection but quite good, especially when it comes to northern reds. Not much excitement when it comes to whites and southern reds.

My recollection of Schneiders was that there was very little dross and lots of good stuff for a small selection.

On reflection, I would have to toss in Arrow as having a nicely quirky selection but it is a little pricy. WHile Ithere is lots to like at Ace, I dont recall being impressed with their Italian selection (while their Single Malts, Alsatian and odd reds from California get me all hot and bothered).

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I went to Schneider's last night for a 2006 Chateauneuf du Pape tasting. I don't get down there often b/c of where I live, but I'm on the mailing list and occasionally a deal will intrigue me enough that I'll stop by. Having just had an incredible wine "moment" with an '89 Beaucastel, I decided I should stop by for the tasting since the '06 Beaucastel was included in the line-up (along with a Pegau, which was drinking very nicely, an Autard, and a La Roquette, the lower label from Telegraph). I really enjoyed chatting with Josh, the owner's son who was doing the tasting and the other tasters there and it was a great opportunity to taste these wines side by side. If I understood correctly, Josh has taken over the mailing list and planning the tastings, which happen every Wednesday and he's been doing some interesting stuff. I was sorry to hear I had missed an "old and rare" themed tasting that happened recently.

Anyway, rambling a bit here, really just wanted to give a shout out. I always have a great experience when I go there and think the tastings are worth stopping by for if you live or work nearby. The store is very small, but they told me they have 3 temperature controlled warehouses so they have a lot of stuff, including a collection of older/rarer finds that are not on the shelves. They also have a friendly relationship with Toscana and if you take a bottle you've purchased at Schneider's along with your receipt, Toscana won't charge a corkage fee. :)

It's also been my go to for cheap, but tasty vodka for my vodka tonics for some time. :)

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I went to Schneider's last night for a 2006 Chateauneuf du Pape tasting

[...]

really just wanted to give a shout out. I always have a great experience when I go there and think the tastings are worth stopping by for if you live or work nearby.

Ditto. I think they're doing a special on some CdP's through the week -- hoping to make a Saturday trip, which is becoming a regular event. I can't tell you how much I love that this is my neighborhood place!

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Popped in today to get a gift card for a friend (fingers crossed that he doesn't check this in the next 70 minutes) and of course spent some time browsing. I think I was asked seven times if I needed help -- which in most places would have been annoying, but here just makes me smile, because I like the folks at Schneider's so much.

Gift card and a CdP, a Savigny-les-Beaune, and something else I forget already successfully acquired, I left. Already can't wait to go back and find something else fun.

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I just find it annoying. It's hard enough to browse in there without them pestering you.

I've had good experiences there and also had them try to oversell me. It might just depend on who's working. I prefer to ask for help, though, rather than to have someone try to push it on me.

While I very much like the store, the level of attentiveness is something I've never managed to negotiate well there.

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The lead liquor salesman at Schneider's is a major pain in the ass; he repeatedly tries to sell me cheap off-brand bottles of booze that I'm sure they either they are trying to unload and/or that he gets a kickback on every bottle he sells. Several times in recent years, while trying to make a choice between gins, he has said to me, "Don't ask me. I don't drink gin." So, yesterday, I went in to buy a bottle of Beefeater's and he immediately tried to steer me to something whose name I didn't recognize but yeah, was cheaper. The kicker was he told me, "it's a whole lot better"--this from the guy who tells me repeatedly he doesn't like or drink gin. When I stuck with the Beefeater's, he said snottily, "OK, if you don't want to save $7.00. Your loss." I suppose I should be glad that he doesn't try to upsell me to more expensive bottles. But the whole behavior, even without those kinds of snide remarks, is insulting. If I didn't otherwise like Schneider's and the rest of the staff so much--and they don't try that crap with me--I'd take my business elsewhere. I can't tell how well he knows his liquor--a few times he has directed me to some quality (and not cheap) bottles I might not have selected otherwise--but simply on overall salesmanship and interpersonal behavior, he's an embarrassment to the business. If there's a Genderson brother within earshot next time he tries this, I'm going to call him out on it.

NOTE: After writing this post, I decided to send a complaint to Schneider's about Richard, the spirits manager. This really was inappropriate and unprofessional behavior, and they need to address it.

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The lead liquor salesman at Schneider's is a major pain in the ass...

This story reminds me of when I was looking for Myer's Dark Brown rum and someone there steered me to Captain Morgan Spiced Rum as the better option--an entirely different and nauseating product that I had not even heard of (I'm obviously not a big rum drinker). Usually I buy wine there and in that area I think their service is first rate.

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Update: Rick Genderson called me to apologize for the manager's behavior, and assured me that they made sure he understood what the problem is and that he wouldn't bother me again. I got the sense that this is not the first that they've gotten this kind of complaint about him.

This story reminds me of when I was looking for Myer's Dark Brown rum and someone there steered me to Captain Morgan Spiced Rum as the better option--an entirely different and nauseating product that I had not even heard of (I'm obviously not a big rum drinker). Usually I buy wine there and in that area I think their service is first rate.

You've gotta be fucking kidding me. Agree on the wine service.

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Update: Rick Genderson called me to apologize for the manager's behavior, and assured me that they made sure he understood what the problem is and that he wouldn't bother me again. I got the sense that this is not the first that they've gotten this kind of complaint about him.

That's good to know.  I'm pretty sure you're talking about the same person I find highly annoying.  And when I said "upsell" above, I'm not even sure, thinking about it now, that the items I was being steered to necessarily were more expensive than what I would have otherwise gotten, but I know I've been pushed to buy larger bottles than I was inclined to buy.  On at least one occasion I caved and now have an enormous bottle of vodka that will last into the next decade.

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Update: Rick Genderson called me to apologize for the manager's behavior, and assured me that they made sure he understood what the problem is and that he wouldn't bother me again. I got the sense that this is not the first that they've gotten this kind of complaint about him.

Although they may not know who I am, I've "known" Rick and Jon Genderson for going on 25 years, and like them both very much - they're always super-friendly to their customers from what I've seen.

That said, Rick is very much of a salesman. I remember very well about twenty years ago, I stopped in for ... something, I don't remember what, but it was a specific thing and it was going to be a quick in-and-out. Anyway, Rick came up to me with a tasting glass of wine, and said, "Here, try this."

I took a whiff, then a sip, and said, "This is a Sauternes."

With this huge, proud, bordering on smug, smile on his face: "Nope! It's a Loupiac!"

(Loupiac is a neighboring commune that has neither the panache nor the price of a Sauternes, so while it was a good guess on my part, it was also a good showing on the wine's part.)

"Wow! That's very impressive," I said (and I was being sincere).

He then looked me dead in the eye, and without even blinking, said:

"Wanna buy some?"

Ugh. Man. That is such an uncomfortable situation. I mumbled something about having plenty of dessert wines already, made my purchase, and politely left, but I still remember the *exact* words of that conversation, probably about two decades later.

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Although they may not know who I am, I've "known" Rick and Jon Genderson for going on 25 years, and like them both very much - they're always super-friendly to their customers from what I've seen.

That said, Rick is very much of a salesman.

I don't doubt that story for a second. I have always found Jon to be their best representative--never pushy, always wanting to see the customer leave happy, and a sincere air of kindness. Rick is a nice guy, too, but much more aggressive.

That's good to know.  I'm pretty sure you're talking about the same person I find highly annoying.  And when I said "upsell" above, I'm not even sure, thinking about it now, that the items I was being steered to necessarily were more expensive than what I would have otherwise gotten, but I know I've been pushed to buy larger bottles than I was inclined to buy.  On at least one occasion I caved and now have an enormous bottle of vodka that will last into the next decade.

This guy has on one visit praised me on a purchase of a particular bourbon, and on the next visit disparaged the very same bottle and pushed another utterly unknown brand on me. It's maddening. I can appreciate it when someone is trying to steer me away from something crappy, but insulting me for buying a quality liquor over something I've never heard of before--and not even asking me how I would be using it or offering me a sample? Totally unacceptable.

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I'm actually a big fan of Schneider's, both for wine and liquor. Their selection isn't as good as Ace for liquor, of course, but given my location on the Hill they're my prefered stop for alcoholic beverages. The wine service is absolutely consistently fantastic, and I'm often turned on to bottles or regions that I otherwise would not have looked at. On booze, while I can't talk about the specific situation  mentioned above, I will say that I've had very good experiences there for a long time. Selection is good, although not great, and I've received generally good recommendations. The main liquor guy does have his pet bottles (and I've found them to be pretty much always the same, Elmer T Lee bourbon, Broker's Gin, etc), and can be a bit short with people, but I've also found him to be helpful when asked, and willing to make special orders when they don't carry something. Just my two cents.

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I'm actually a big fan of Schneider's, both for wine and liquor. Their selection isn't as good as Ace for liquor, of course, but given my location on the Hill they're my prefered stop for alcoholic beverages. The wine service is absolutely consistently fantastic, and I'm often turned on to bottles or regions that I otherwise would not have looked at. On booze, while I can't talk about the specific situation  mentioned above, I will say that I've had very good experiences there for a long time. Selection is good, although not great, and I've received generally good recommendations. The main liquor guy does have his pet bottles (and I've found them to be pretty much always the same, Elmer T Lee bourbon, Broker's Gin, etc), and can be a bit short with people, but I've also found him to be helpful when asked, and willing to make special orders when they don't carry something. Just my two cents.

Totally with you about the store overall; the wine selection is great, well curated. I think that the spirits manager maybe knows his bourbons/whiskeys/cognacs fairly well, as he's directed me to some good stuff there when I asked. But he really doesn't know how to read his customers, and pushes those pet bottles way too readily. He also tends to get kind of pissy when you just browse.

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But he really doesn't know how to read his customers, and pushes those pet bottles way too readily. He also tends to get kind of pissy when you just browse.

This is completely fair and accurate. I was very much against him for many years, but at this point in our relationship we have a good understanding and get along well. So I get the good advice and help, even without asking, and I don't get him pushing the typical pet bottles. Which works very well for me, but I understand that this is not particularly helpful for anyone else going in to the store.

I'll also say that given the amount of space they have, the spirits selection at Schneider's is good. They have a good selection of vermouth, amari, etc, as well as a pretty good selection of the standard items (gin, rum, whiskey, cognac) including some obscure offerings in each of these categories. I do wish they would improve their selection of bitters.

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I don't shop there much anymore as I'm not in the area very often but I got some deals from there back in the day.  The Gendersons (especially Rick) would generally open wines to try but they did push certain types i.e. Australian shiraz so you had to learn how to say no. If you were willing to spend some bucks you could negotiate good pricing.

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We use them for work events.  The staff member who coordinates this doesn't drink.  When the bar at our black-tie dinner was filled with the lowest of the low end stock, I suggested she was being hosed. When the big money folks complained, she listened.  The bar stock has improved, the wines are usually decent and I think it's been at least a decade since someone had to dash out in the middle of dinner because there wasn't enough wine.

I'd bid the whole thing out but my office is over the top loyal.

As an individual, I don't shop there anymore.  Too pricey and too much attitude.

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