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Here’s Where To Buy The Wines That Are Regularly Being Shipped Into the NBA Bubble

Ever since LeBron, D-Wade, and Carmelo became aficionados, NBA stars have enjoyed a steadily deepening relationship with wine. At this point, there are some serious wine connoisseurs in the league — both on the court and in the front offices. Steph Curry has a private label. So does CJ McCollum. Pelican’s small forward Josh Hart has created a “J Hart Cellars” Instagram account.

This love of wine runs so deep that it quickly seeped deep into the NBA Bubble down in Florida. Last month, ESPN reported that several players had cases of wine and even wine fridges shipped to their isolated, temporary homes. Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum basically converted his hotel room into a de facto wine cellar by keeping his room temp at around 60°F when he was in the room and closer to 50°F when he wasn’t there. All of this to keep his 80-plus bottles of wine at the right temp for storing and, of course, enjoying. That may seem like a bit of an extreme, but McCollum knows his stuff and has impeccable taste. His McCollum Heritage ’91 is perpetually sold out.

So what’s did people sip back when the NBA Bubble was a little more crowded? We did some digging and found some seriously hardcore bottles floating around Orlando. Good news — they’re not all inaccessible. There are a fair number of bottles that you can actually get your hands on without destroying your bank account. Naturally, there are also plenty of bottles in the Bubble that cost a month’s rent to drink. Below, we collected ten NBA Bubble bottles that range from completely affordable to “you need a million dollar a year contract to think about buying regularly.”

Cheurlin Champagne Brut Speciale

ABV: 12%
Region: Champagne, France
Average Price: $45

The Wine:

The NBA has pulled this bottle officially for birthday celebrations in the Bubble. The sparkling wine also happens to be the wine of Hall of Famer and former persona non grata of the Dream Team, Isiah Thomas.

The juice is 70 percent Pinot and 30 percent Chardonnay grapes. It’s aged for up to three years in Champagne, France and has been winning awards since 2017 for its exceptional quality.

Heitz Cellar 2013 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

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tonight’s vino choice for @jhart 🍷#bubblewine

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ABV: 14.5%
Region: Napa Valley, California
Average Price: $50

The Wine:

This bottle popped up on Josh Hart’s side Instagram handle which, as we mentioned, is solely devoted to the wine he’s drinking in the Bubble (and beyond) throughout the week.

This Napa classic is a solid and very well-respected cabernet. The juice is considered a prime example of how good Napa cabs can be when done well. It’s also a bottle that’s not outlandishly expensive. This is probably the best bottle to try if you want to drink along with your favorite ballers.

Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey 2017 St. Aubin “Cuvée Marguerite”

ABV: 13%
Region: Burgundy, France
Average Price: $65

The Wine:

NBAbubblelife has been giving IG followers an inside view of the Bubble’s fishing trips, barbershop visits, bowling lanes, and wine nights. This re-post from a Josh Hart cellar dive faturing some seriously stellar French wines.

This French heavy-hitter is an equal measure blend of grapes from each Les Combes, en Créot, and Les Perrières plots in Burgundy. The wine is then barrel-aged in 350-liter (92-gallon) barrels. The expression was named after vintner Pierre-Yves Colin’s grandmother, Marguerite, who passed away right before the 2016 frost (the beginning of the picking season).

Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

ABV: 14.5%
Region: Napa Valley, California
Average Price: $90

The Wine:

Evidently, Boban Marjanovic sent Tobias Harris this bottle for his birthday just in case that bottle of bubbly the league sent wasn’t enough.

This is probably the most easily “gettable” wine on the list, especially if you’re on the West Coast. The juice is a mix of Cab grapes from eight areas of Napa which dials in the terroir and local-feel of this wine.

Yao Ming Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

ABV: 14.6%
Region: Napa Valley, California
Average Price: $100

The Wine:

Royce O’Neale started off his Friday night right with some red in a paper cup from Yao Ming’s California operation.

Eight-time NBA All-Star Yao Ming’s wine is another classic California red from Napa. The wine is a blend of 90 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, five percent Merlot, three percent Cabernet Franc, and two percent Petite Verdot grapes. The wine is then transferred to French oak where it spends 18 months mellowing.

Château Léoville Poyferré 2010 St-Julien

ABV: 14%
Region: Bordeaux, France
Average Price: $160

The Wine:

Back in the Josh Hart Cellars, we had to ping a couple of more of these bottles. So here we go.

This big wine from Bordeaux scores damn near perfect numbers from professional wine reviewers. It’s a blend of 56 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 34 percent Merlot, seven percent Petit Verdot, and three percent Cabernet Franc. The bottle is expected to age for up to 30 to 40 years before it peaks (that’s sometime between 2040 and 2050).

Domaine Coffinet-Duvernay Chassagne-Montrachet 1er Cru ‘Les Blanchots Dessus’

ABV: 13%
Region: Burgundy, France
Average Price: $195

The Wine:

This white is 100 percent Chardonnay hand-harvested from the lower sections of limestone-rich rolling French hills. The winemakers take their time and utilize old school oak barriques for fermentation with little to no fussing. The wine is then aged for 15 months in oak.

Rhys Vineyards Skyline Vineyard Santa Cruz Mountains Pinot Noir

ABV: 14%
Region: Santa Cruz, California
Average Price: $180

The Wine:

Hart also posted that he, JJ Redick, TJ McConnell, and Doug McDermott were getting down on the next two bottles on this list.

This much-beloved wine takes a very unique approach to the process of grape to glass. The Skyline Vineyard in the Santa Cruz mountains is very rocky terrain — adding a unique terroir to the fruit. Then, the wine is fermented in whole clusters. That means the grapes are kept intact with their, well, cluster — stems and all — without going through a destemming contraption. This is believed to add more tannic notes and structure to the final product.

Château Pape Clément Graves Pessac-Léognan 2009

ABV: 14%
Region: Bordeaux, France
Average Price: $240

The Wine:

This is another investment bottle that won’t really peak for another ten years or so. The wine in the bottle is a blend of 50 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 45 percent Merlot, and five percent Cabernet Franc, placing it squarely in the classic territory of reds from Bordeaux.

Masseto Tenuta dell’Ornellaia

ABV: 14.5%
Region: Tuscany, Italy
Average Price: $600

The Wine:

According to ESPN, this bottle was sent to every team as a gift — which is a hell of gift. A bottle of Masseto is very much a show-off bottle of wine, even in the NBA Bubble.

This 100 percent Tuscan Merlot is often called the perfect expression of that grape in the world. If you have $600 (or much more) to test that theory, let us know if this really is the best Merlot out there.

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