Maître de Chai logo from "The Wine Press and the Cellar" by Emmet Rixford in 1883

New Arrivals and Returning Favorites #3: The Loire (of course), Cider, Vermouth, Mt Etna, Maître de Chai and More!

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"These are the times that try men's souls" wrote Thomas Paine in 1776, and things certainly seem that way today - so get out and vote, be part of the solution, keep your mask on, and at the end of the day, enjoy a glass of wine...

Wines from the Loire Valley will always cheer us up and this weeks new arrivals include Menu Pineau, Pineau d'Aunis and Romorantin from our friends Pierre-O Bonhomme and Hervé Villemade, plus More Muscadet, and Cabernet Franc for sure...

We are thrilled to get a new batch of wines from our friends on the West Coast, Maître de Chai, who despite an incredibly difficult year and continuing to worry about the impact of wildfires, have managed to persavere and bottle up some very tasty and very affordable wines for you. The Red Table Wine was an instant hit with our staff; refreshing, juicy, a little herbaceaous, it should definitely be your new go-to for an easy dinner pairing.

We also have some fantastic vermouths back in stock! Locally made, Little City Sweet and Dry Vermouth are unique and delicious; switch up your next at-home martini or manhattan with these! One of our favorite sipping vermouths, the MUZ from Partida Creus has returned and it is just as funky and delightful as the last batch!

Ready for a big red from the Rhône? Returning for fall are great values from Cornas - the 2017 Dumien-Serette "Vieilles Vignes Patou," and from Chateauneuf-du-Pape - the delicious 2016 Chapelle St. Theodoric  "les Sablons," not to mention our favorite Côtes-du-Rhônes from Charvin and Creve Coeur!

 

 

Maître de Chai 2018 Clements Hills Red Table Wine

As the name suggests, this is designed (and absolutely succeeds) as a perfect companion to your dinners at home, of which we are enjoying a lot of these days. This is their first blended wine and it hits all the right spots. A mixture of Grenache and Barbera, with a bit of Zinfandel and Cabernet blended in for backbone. The grapes are destemmed, fermented with native yeasts and then aged in neutral barrels for a year and a half. On the nose are perfectly ripe black cherries, squashed raspberry, star anise, and rosemary. The color is a light, transluscent ruby, but on the palate is more body and concentration that it would lead you to believe with notes of juicy red plum, cranberry, and a slight grip of tannin to keep you from drinking the whole bottle in one go. Michelle DeWyngaert

  • red
  • 11 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Low Sulfur

Maître de Chai 2019 Calaveras County Rorick Vineyard Chardonnay

Maître de Chai sources this beautiful Chardonnay from the Rorick Vineyard in Calaveras County of the Sierra Foothills AVA. Way up at 2000 ft above sea-level, Matthew Rorick farms these 45-year-old vines on steep slopes of blue limestone and schist. The farming is done organically and the wines are made with native yeasts, fermented in and aged in neutral barrels for 11 months. The 2019 vintage is a little riper and and more fleshed out than the previous vintage but still maintains a core of crisp acidity. On the nose are ripe and baked yellow apples, fresh hay, sweet herbs, and a bit of salty buttermilk. As the oak is neutral it merely acts to soften the edges and brown the orchard fruit notes a bit for a decidedly old-school California Chardonnay. Michelle DeWyngaert

  • white
  • 31 in stock
  • $24.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Maître de Chai 2017 Lodi Stampede Vineyard Zinfandel

One of the first wines I ever loved was old-vine California Zinfandel, so I was very excited to taste this expression from Maître de Chai. The Stampede Vineyard was planted in the early 1920s with own-rooted Zinfandel on decomposed granite. Inspired by the wines of the famous Ridge Vineyards, this bottling is a field blend of mainly Zinfandel, with a bit of Mission and Carignan. The fermentation is done with 50% whole cluster bunches in open-top neutral oak and then aged for one year. The wine is a classic Zinfandel mix of fresh, ripe, and also dried red plum and raspberry. The tannins are present and driving, but not aggressive, well balanced by its fresh acidity, and a peppery finish. This wine will be excellent with flavorful game meats, and I look forward to trying it again in several years to see how it has progressed. Michelle DeWyngaert

  • red
  • 6 in stock
  • $36.99

  • Low Sulfur

Floral Terranes 2019 Catskills & Taconic Mountains Upland Moraines Still Cider

For this batch of Floral Terranes still cider, Erik Longabardi and Benford Lepley headed upstate to Livingston Manor and Hillsdale, to collect apples from higher elevations with a mix of wild trees and some from an organically farmed orchard. The juice is fermented and then aged in neutral barrels until bottling. This cider is simutaneously rustic and elegant, like a barn dressed up for a wedding. There's notes of standing in the orchard, fresh leaves and bark, and white flowers and linen. It's lean and crisp on the palate, perfectly dry and with just a bit of grippy tannin on the finish. Michelle DeWyngaert

  • Cider still
  • 9 in stock
  • $27.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Little City Vermouth Dry Vermouth 375ml

This is an entirely hand-crafted, locally made dry Vermouth from Will Clark of Little City. What started out as a hobby in his living room has grown into a full-fledged operation supplying bars, restaurants, and retail stores. The base wine for these aromatized, fortified spirits is actually made from 100% Cayuga White, a hybrid grape designed for the cold winters of the Finger Lakes, which is then blended with 38 macerated grasses, botanicals, barks, and berries. Notes of almond and chamomile on the nose with yellow apple, with a more savory palate of dried herbs, dried chamomile, and celery salt on the finish. I love how flavorful and a little vegetal this blend is, making it truly worthy of a wet martini (the best way to drink a martini, in my humble opinion). Michelle DeWyngaert

  • vermouth
  • 9 in stock
  • no discount
  • $21.99

Little City Vermouth Sweet Vermouth 375ml

Created in Harlem and bottled by Finger Lakes Distilling, this is a great Sweet Vermouth that straddles feeling classic and modern. The base of both the sweet and dry Little City's is the hearty Cayuga White, a hybrid grape found in the Finger Lakes which lends these Vermouth's  a brighter acidity. The Sweet Vermouth is blended with 53 botanicals, many of them the usual suspects such as gentian, juniper, cinnamon, and orange peel, but with a few more interesting additions like black sesame, black walnut leaf, and grapefruit peel. In order to keep the integrity of these flavors, heat is never used, only maceration until it reaches the perfect balance. Michelle DeWyngaert

  • vermouth
  • 6 in stock
  • no discount
  • $21.99

Bellegrave 2010 Pomerol

This is an outstanding Pomerol from Chateau Bellegrave, which was in conversion to organic certification in 2010. While it shows the depth and structure of this excellent vintage in Bordeaux, the wine is surprisingly supple and forward, making it a delicious wine for current drinking. The aromas are ripe and rich with black fruits, cassis and blackberry with sous-bois, cocoa, spice and floral notes. The palate is firm but round, deep and elegant with complex fruit flavors backed by earth and mineral notes with good freshness and silky tannins. Decant this lovely wine  a few hours in advance if possible or cellar for five to fifteen years

  • red
  • 11 in stock
  • $64.99

  • Organic

Bellegrave 2015 Pomerol

75% Merlot and 25% Cabernet Franc coming from hand harvested vineyards (35-60 year old vines) in the revered region of Pomerol. The estate has long dismissed the use of chemicals but has recently transitioned to biodynamic methods. Wine has been aged in French oak, with 1/3 being new, 1/3 being old, and the last 1/3 being from the producer’s previous vintage.

  • red
  • 11 in stock
  • $67.99

Bellisle Mondotte 2010 Saint-Emilion

This fantastic organically-farmed Saint Emilion is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc, fermented in concrete tanks for 25 days and then aged for 22 months in first- and second-use barrels. With a beautiful minerality of clay and limestone, the wine shows the finesse and elegance of a great vintage. The bouquet is complex with dark berry, prune, plum, dry tobacco, cedar, violet and herbal notes and the palate is luscious with supple tannins, good acidity and a lingering finish. A delicious wine at a great value to drink with brisket, roasted lamb and hamburgers. You can also cellar the wine for several years (+7 years) if you would prefer to consume it later. Caroline Coursant   

  • red
  • 12 in stock
  • $46.99

  • Organic

Lamy, Hubert 2016 Chassagne Montrachet Concis du Champ

When I speak with Burgundy growers about their peers and whose work they admire and find inspiration in, the name Olivier Lamy comes up almost without exception. A relentless innovator and workaholic, Olivier makes remarkable wines. He has pioneered a number of viticultural techniques in Burgundy over the last twenty years, including experimenting with high-density planting (up 40,000 vines per hectare) and the adopting of a pruning model traditionally used in the Loire Valley (designed to reduce the amount of scar tissue on the vine and better protect it from wood diseases). While best known for Saint Aubin, he makes lovely Chassagne-Montrachet and Santenay as well. Concis du Champs is a parcel at the bottom end of the slope, with more clay, from 15-year old vines and aged in 600-liter barrels, virtually none of them new. From the very small but brilliant 2016 vintage. 

  • white
  • 10 in stock
  • $99.99

  • Organic

Luneau-Papin 2018 Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Vera Cruz

Vera Cruz is a new cuvée from Luneau-Papin, from 40 year-old vines on a terroir of schistes and gneiss "a deux micas" in Vallet, farmed with organic and biodynamic methods. A wine of terroir rather than fruit, even in the ripe 2018 vintage, the wine shows elegant aromas of pear, peach, grilled almond, stone and citrus. The palate is dense and very mineral, showing more flavor of earth than fruit, with a lovely finish of stone, minerals and white fruit, apricot and zesty lemon that coats the palate. Perfect now with fine oysters, grilled dorade, sole, cod and scallops with lemon. Or cellar - this wine should be very interesting in 5 to 15 years. Label inspired by Mondrian and the varied terroirs of Muscadet.

  • white
  • 11 in stock
  • $20.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Ecu (Fred Niger) 2018 Muscadet Sèvre et Maine Granite

Guy Bossard is one of the heroes of French viticulture, having rejected modern chemical farming upon assuming the family estate, becoming certified organic in 1972, then progressing to Biodynamic farming in 1996. And this in a region where there was little recognition or financial reward for his intense work and the higher quality of his wines. Guy has been an inspiration for many growers in the region and  the estate continues under the capable and imaginative direction of Fred Niger van Herck.  The Domaine de l'Ecu  "Granite" is always one of the most distinctive of Muscadet, with the Melon de Bourgogne coming from 50-year-old vines in a parcel of stony soils on "granite a deux micas." On the nose, the minerals are boldly pronounced, with notes of almond skins, cantaloupe, Meyer lemon, and sea spray. The palate is a fine mix of lemon zest, saline stones, some under-ripe pear, and white flowers. A gorgeous wine to pair with oysters (of course), langoustines, or Coquille Saint-Jacques. JDC

  • white
  • 3 in stock
  • $24.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Bonhomme, Pierre-Olivier 2019 Vin de France La Tesniere Pineau D'Aunis

This is a bold expression of Pineau d'Aunis from Pierre-Olivier Bonhomme, from vines adjacent to Clos Roche Blanche on clay with silex in organic and biodynamic farming. Aged in old futs and demi-muids, bottled without filtration, minimal SO2. Don't be afraid by the 14.5% on the label, but do be aware of a level of volatility upon opening, and more deep, black fruit intermingling with the typical lifted and herbal overtones associated with Pineau D'Aunis. With air, some of the VA blows off and the wine begins to hit a sweet spot, so do give it some time for best results. 


  • red
  • 13 in stock
  • $29.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Bonhomme, Pierre-Olivier 2018 Vin de France La Tesniere Blanc (Menu Pineau)

This is an incredibly compelling, unique white from Touraine highlighting the lesser-know grape varitety, Menu Pineau. The 'La Tesnière' white is a blend of 75% Menu Pineau and 25% Chenin Blanc, from a parcel adjacent to the famed Clos Roche Blanche. A beautiful golden color in the glass with notes of grapefruit, daffodil, yellow peach, and marzipan on the nose. The palate is bright and refreshing, but Chenin's often bracing acidity is softened by the Menu Pineau, and the finish has a lingering stony texture. Michelle DeWyngaert

  • white
  • 17 in stock
  • $30.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Pépière 2019 Vin de Pays du Val de Loire Côt "La Pépie"

100% Cot (Malbec) grown on rocky, granite-rich soils. The grapes are harvested by hand, destemmed and crushed, with only the free-run juice used for the wine. It is fermented spontaneously with indigenous yeasts, followed by around five months of aging in stainless steel. The 2019 Cot shows lush blackberry aromas with earth and spice. Without influence of oak, this is pure Malbec, with good structure and elegant black fruit. The moderate alcohol (12%) contributes to making this a versatile and refreshing red to serve with charcuterie, roast chicken, pork dishes and mild cheeses.

  • red
  • 3 in stock
  • $16.99

  • Organic

Villemade, Herve 2019 Cheverny Blanc

Cheverny Blanc is best of both worlds in white wine. With this blend you get bright, crisp acidity from the Sauvignon Blanc, and a richer, rounded mouthfeel from the Chardonnay. The bulk of Villemade's Cheverny Blanc comes from  vineyards in the town of Cellettes; farmed organically by Hervé. The wine is fermented and aged in neutral foudre and bottled with very low levels of sulfur. The nose is herbaceous and floral with notes of Meyer lemon peel, green apple and white flowers, and the palate shows a snap of green apple, with a softer, rounded finish of orange peel and yellow peach. A great food-pairing wine! Michelle DeWyngaert

  • white
  • 29 in stock
  • $20.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Villemade, Herve 2018 Vin de France Orbois

Hervé Villemade has been working his family's vines in Cellettes since taking over from his father in 1995. Today, the estate represents about 22 hectares of organically farmed fruit within the Cheverny and Cour-Cheverny AOCs. Hervé makes seriously soulful wines, with minimal or zero SO2. Our tasting with him in Angers last winter was fantastic and one of the standouts was this vibrant new cuvée of Orbois (Menu Pineau) made from 50 year old vines on clay and flint. 2/3 direct press, fermented and aged on the lees in 20hl concrete eggs, 1/3  macerated for 15-20 days, fermented and aged on the lees in a small concrete egg. The wine shows the bright herbal, citrus, almond and pear fruit of this unusual grape, with great purity and length - just delightful! Serve with grilled fish, roast chicken with herbs, goat cheeses. DL

  • white
  • 11 in stock
  • $24.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Filliatreau 2019 Saumur-Champigny La Grande Vignolle

100% Cabernet Franc. The six-hectare Grande Vignolle lieu-dit sits on a chalk cliff on calcareous clay soils, set back from the Loire River on a high plateau. The vines are 35-40 years old and lie at the northern limit of the Saumur-Champigny appellation. The fruit is hand-harvested, destemmed and fermented with natural yeasts in steel tank, with a maceration of approximately 2 weeks. The wine is aged in steel tank and is bottled unfiltered. Always a juicy and delicious Saumur-Champigny, the 2019 Grande Vignolle shows the maturity  and weight of this dry and sunny year in the Loire. The wine shows aromas of ripe black raspberry and strawberry fruit liqueur with floral and earthy notes, quite pretty!  The palate is vibrant with firm acidity below round lush berry fruits, quite dense and sapid with a refreshing, bright finish. This is a great charcuterie pairing or with grilled chicken and pork and soft cow cheeses - enjoy it now served a bit cool and cellaring of five to eight years would be interesting. David Lillie

  • red
  • 12 in stock
  • $20.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Da Ros, Elian 2018 Côtes du Marmandais Le Vin est Une Fête

Le Vin est une Fête is a signature cuvée by Elian, a tribute to the delicacy of Abouriou (its local nickname is “early gamay” even if it has nothing to do with the gamay grape) and the elegance of Cabernet Franc which he considers the "Pinot Noir from the South West", supplemented with Merlot. Coming from richer and loamy soils on gray marl, the Merlots and Cabernets are de-stemmed to keep their juicy fruit expression while the Abourious are vinified in semi-carbonic fermentation, all in concrete tank. Thanks to a short maceration (10 days), a very gentle extraction and a precise aging in old Provençal foudres for 10 months, the wine has a real gulpability without being simple.  Keep 3 to 5 years without a problem. 40% abouriou, 40% cabernet franc, 20% merlot.  Pascaline Lepeltier.

  • red
  • 3 in stock
  • $19.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Vino di Anna 2017 Vino Rosso Qvevri

From high altitude Nerello Mascalese, vines ranging from 60 to 100 years of age. Typically there is a small amount of Nerello Cappuccio and Grenache included in the cuvee. The grapes are destemmed and put in Georgian qvevris (sizes between 1500 and 800 litres) that are buried on the estate.

  • red
  • 6 in stock
  • $36.99

Vino di Anna 2019 Vino da Tavola Bianco Palmento (Etna)

A field blend of hand harvested grapes, grown organically on the north side of Mount Etna. A portion of the grapes were macerated on the skins, while the rest were pressed and put into stainless steel tanks. Anna Martens and Eric Narioo began making wine together more than a decade ago, and now own vines that range between 60 and 100 years of age. Always full of character.

  • white
  • 11 in stock
  • $26.99

Trediberri 2019 Dogliani Bricco Molea (Dolcetto)

Dogliani is a small town south and west of Barolo, which gives its name to a DOCG wine zone – a ‘Dogliani’ must be made from Dolcetto (life was a little simpler for everyone when the wines were called “Dolcetto di Dogliani”, but the marketers won that conversation). The zone of Dogliani, is considered the best area for Dolcetto (which not so long ago was more expensive than Nebbiolo) where Dolcetto was historically given the best sites, whereas in Barolo and Barbaresco Dolcetto is generally relegated to lesser positions in the vineyards – “Bricco”, as in Bricco Molea, means the top part of the hill, which receives the most sun and ripens best.

There are plenty of contemporary Doglianis that are an attempt to make what Italians call ‘important’ wines, and thus are dark, extracted, and often oaky; Trediberri’s Dogliani is a more traditional style, intended to be fresh and lively, a wine for food, for every day, to open a meal, to drink while your Barolo ages. But this is no simple wine, and it has remarkable aromatic complexity with bright current-like fruit, white flowers, chalk, and a deep savory aspect – altogether mouth-watering. It’s very appealing on the palate, light-midweight and with the fruit in balance with chalk, and expressing a strong sense of place. From vines that are 50-70 years old; fermented in concrete for about 10 days, and aged in a combo of concrete and steel. A killer Dolcetto!  Jamie Wolff

  • red
  • 2 in stock
  • $17.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Dumien Serrette 2016 Cornas "Patou" Vieilles Vignes

"Patou" is a vineyard in the southern portion of Cornas with vines planted from the 1920s to the 1990s on granite soils, tended organically but not certified. The grapes are mostly de-stemmed, fermentations are with wild yeasts and the wine ages for approximately 2 years in 3 to 7 year-old barrels. This is thoughtful, spot-on Cornas at an accessible pricepoint. The nose shows game meat and plenty of spice and smoke that open into notes of macerated blackberries and pepper. The palate is medium-bodied and spicy, also improving with air towards wild berries and granitic spice. Very tasty, and very drinkable, especially with a bit of air. Ben Fletcher

  • red
  • 5 in stock
  • $38.99

  • Organic

Chapelle St. Theodoric 2016 Chateauneuf du Pape Les Sablons (Arrives 11/3)

Chappelle St. Theodoric - a project of winemaker Bapiste Grangeon and Peter Weygandt - has quickly become one of our favorite Southern Rhône producers. The domaine is comprised of two parcels of Grenache vines (each ranging in age between 50-100 years): La Guigasse, a soil of pure sand, and Le Grand Pin, a terroir of pure sand at the top of Pignan - and famously neighboring Château Rayas. "Les Sablons" is Grenache from both parcels, which sees whole-cluster vinification, and aging in demi-muids. The 2016 is a bolder and richer vintage than most: it will still carry the aromatics and floral traits of Chapelle St. Theodoric's wines, yet with beautiful undercurrents of black raspberry, red flowers, fresh red cherry and a long finish of cassis and bright plum. An elegant wine that can be aged for quite some time, or enjoyed now after an hour decant. JDC 

  • red
  • 27 in stock
  • $49.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Charvin 2018 Côtes-du-Rhone Le Poutet (Arrives 10/30)

(Our last delivery sold-out immediately - it's back!) The Laurent Charvin "Le Poutet"  is made from average 50 year-old vines (some are 90 years-old!) of 80% Grenache with Mourvedre, Syrah and Carignan in vineyards that abut Chateauneuf-du-Pape - Maucoil in the northwest and Campovin and Boislauzon in the northeast. The soils are sandy clay/limestone with galets stones. The grapes undergo a 15 to 20-day whole bunch fermentation with daily pumping-overs, the wine then spends 18 months in concrete vat and is bottled unfined and unfiltered. The resulting wine is equal to many Châteauneuf-du-Pape, offering complex aromas of garrigue and spicy red fruits with the structure to evolve and drink well over ten to fifteen years. The 2018, tasted with Laurent Charvin in January, 2020, was  quite remarkable with gorgeous floral aromas of strawberry and blackberry and vibrant, supple black fruits on the palate with round juicy tannins - delicous already but with enough brightness and structure to provide beautiful drinking over the next ten years. This is truly "gouleyant" and should be purchased by the case - at $19.79 per bottle it's a sensational value!  David Lillie

  • red
  • 10 in stock
  • $21.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Albamar 2019 Rias Baixas Albariño

Xurxo Alba is making a number of expressions of Albariño and other local Galician grapes in Cambados, in the Rías Baixas DOC in Galicia. His farming and winemaking are innovative and experimental, as he pursues organics and biodynamics in this challenging climate, ferments his wines exclusively with native yeasts, and adds little to no sulfur during production. This is an extremely Atlantic-influenced area, and the wines show that influence clearly. The entry level cuvée is made from grapes sourced from multiple sites with mainly sandy soil. The fruit from each parcel is vinified separately (some in stainless steel, some in barrels) gaining structure and complexity of flavor from six months spent on the fine lees. 2019 was a difficult vintage (late summer rains on the coast) that ended up producing beautiful wines with lots of very pretty structure and texture. This is a very good, classic expression of Albariño with plenty of saline minerality and joyous notes of stone-fruit and sea air. Ben Fletcher

  • white
  • 35 in stock
  • $24.99

Albamar 2016 Rias Baixas O Esteiro

O Esteiro is a blend of Caíño, Espadeiro, and Mencía from vineyards along the Atlantic coast in Rias Baixas, farmed organically by Xurxo Alba. Although Rias Baixas is better known for Albarino, this is a refreshing red, perfect for the summer. On the nose, it is exceedingly mineral and saline with delicate red fruits, while the very light bodied palate shows bolder berry notes alongside tons of refreshing, salty minerality and structuring acidity. With a little chill this is perfect for these warmer days. Ben Fletcher

  • red
  • 21 in stock
  • $34.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Partida Creus NV Catalunya Massís de Bonastre MUZ 1L Vermouth

One of the most exciting and tasty discoveries from a recent visit to Partida Creus was this delicious, funky Vermouth called Muz. Made with their red grapes this time around, and macerated with a mixture of local herbs, it's way too easy to drink, and should be great for mixology, though I can't attest, as I just drink it with a chill and smile. We look forward to the release every year. Please, don't hold onto this too long after opening, and only store in the fridge: this is unfortified, unsulfured vermouth.  Eben Lillie

  • vermouth
  • 3 in stock
  • no discount
  • $29.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Ambrositsch, Jutta 2018 Wiener Gemischter Satz Kosmopolit

Jutta Ambrositsch tends a modest 4 hectares of vines from around 10 different small parcels within the city limits of Vienna. Continuing a longtime Viennese tradition, she produces several Gemischter Satz wines, which are white blends from local grapes. The 2018 Kosmopolit is lovely, subtly floral with a touch of density and white stone fruit. A real treat and a great fall white! For those interested, the wine is truly a Gemischter Satz with dozens of varieties from several sites, all harvested on the same day by two different teams, and co-fermented. Here's the rundown of info on the parcels:

a) Stammersdorf (young vines): Grüner Veltliner, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay

b) Sievering (young vines): ten rare, old varieties, planted seven years ago.

c) Preußen: 25% Riesling, 25% Zierfandler, 25% Welschriesling and 25% mixed varieties.

d) Mukenthal (old vines): ten rare, old varieties, planted in 1970.

e) Plagen: many different types of Veltliner (Grüner, Roter, Frühroter, Brauner,...) a very steep site surrounded by forest.

  • white
  • 14 in stock
  • $22.99

Jurtschitsch 2019 Kamptal Mon Blanc

A new arrival from Alwin and Stefanie Jurtschitsch in the Kamptal, 'Mon Blanc' is a blend of Riesling, Grüner Veltliner, Gelber Muskateller and Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc) from the Loiserberg vineyard (cooler site, glimmerschiefer and loess, certified organic since 2009). About two weeks of skin contact, spontaneous fermentation in open-top wooden vats, aging is in 600L old oak barrel, the wine is unfined and unfiltered with a small amount of SO2 added only at bottling. The 2019 was stricking, really a stand out white with chamomile and stone fruit on the nose (peach/apricot), and beautifully integrated tannic structure from skins. Behaves very much like a medium/full bodied white, but has the notes of skin contact wine with the additional grip and convincing dryness. 

  • white
  • 22 in stock
  • $24.99

Weingut Harm 2015 Wachau Riesling Durnsteiner Kellerburg

Maria and Andreas Harm make wines in the Wachau and Kremstal in Austria. Their estate was only started in 2010, so they are definitely a new name in this iconic area, but are already producing beautiful, balanced wines from some famed sites. Vineyards were always farmed organically, with Biodynamic certification coming in 2019, and the wines are fermented with native yeast. Kellerberg is a 15 hectare site of sandy loess over gneiss and quartz, and arguably the most prized site around the town of Dürnstein. The 2015 has the boldness associated with the Kellerberg site, balanced by moderate alcohol (13.5%), low RS and good acidity. It's definitely Riesling, but doesn't scream petrol, has some ripeness, but the mineral finish keeps the wine fresh with lifted notes of crisp orchard fruit as well. It seems from recent tasting that the wine should still have a nice life ahead of it, though it is certainly enjoyable now. 

The winery itself is located just outside of the Wachau, so the Harm wines from the region can't carry the designations from the three-tier Vinea Wachau system (Steinfeder, Federspiel, or Smaragd). I suppose this would technically be a Smaragd (top tier), as alcohol % for Federspiel (middle tier) is only from 11.5-12.5. Though I cant find analysis online, residual sugar seems well below 9 grams (the limit for Smaragd), and it's certainly age-worthy, as the 2015 is still youthful from tasting in 2020.   -Eben Lillie

  • white
  • 5 in stock
  • $36.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic

Wenzel, Michael 2018 Neusiedlersee-Hügelland Franky 'Wild & Free'

A new addition to the Wild & Free line-up from Michael Wenzel, this is majority Blaufrankisch with a touch of Pinot Noir. 1/3 of the grapes go through carbonic maceration, helping its bright red fruit and zippy acidity, and giving the wine a very fresh and easy attitude. It's a very clean wine, and perfect for lunch, which seems to be a bit of the inspiration for Wenzel when he made this wine, in homage to the light fruity wines his grandparents used to make. 4mg SO2 at bottling (10mg is considered a miniscule addition, so this is very LOW so2). 

  • red
  • 11 in stock
  • $23.99

  • Organic
  • Low Sulfur

Wenzel, Michael 2019 Neusiedlersee-Hügelland Furmint Aus dem Quartz

Michael Wenzel is one of the few winemakers left in Austria making dry Furmint (a grape usually found in noble sweet wines of both Austria and Hungary). His father, Robert, brought Furmint clippings from Hungary back into his family's hectarage in the mid-eighties. Michael continues to plant vines and has been looking for ways to adapt the grape to the current terroir of Rust. So far the results have been (for us) a benchmark example of the variety. Scents of quince, white blossoms, apples, nectarine and herbs waft from the glass readily; the palate is powerfully concentrated with stone fruit and quince balanced with crystalline acidity. Fantastic! -CB

  • white
  • 28 in stock
  • $27.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur

Wenzel, Michael 2019 Neusiedlersee-Hügelland Vododoo Child Wild & Free

The Wenzel wine that first caught my attention, Michael's 2015 Pinot Gris 'Wild & Free', did so because it was a complex, natural wine that was both fun and sophisticated; food-friendly but stood well on its own. For the 'Wild & Free' line of wines, grapes are hand-harvested, and spend between 10-15 days in contact with the skins before pressing. Wines age in neutral barrels. This skin contact Pinot Gris is a lovely hibiscus hue in the glass, with beautiful floral scents, deep, umami notes of umeboshi plum mixed with sour cherry, blood orange, raspberry, wild strawberry, and red grapefruit zest. Medium-bodied with the lightest tannic tack and bright acidity—elegance and drinkability! This would be a great bottle to take you from hors d'oeuvres all the way through the main event this holiday season. Cari Bernard

  • white
  • 2 in stock
  • $37.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • No Sulfur

Chignard 2018 Fleurie Les Moriers

This Beaujolais comes from one of the best sites in Fleurie; 'Les Moriers,' which borders Moulin-à-Vent. The vines are now nearly 70 years old which creates incredible concentration of flavor in the grapes. The fermentation is very traditional with whole-clusters held in vats for a week before pressing creating brightness in the wine and highlighting the floral and fresh fruit aromas that Gamay from Fleurie is famous for, while maintaining the rich, tannic structure that you see from Moulin-à-Vent.

  • red
  • 5 in stock
  • $26.99

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Pepiere 2019 Vins de France Cabernet Franc "La Pépie"

100% Cabernet Franc from the Pépière 10-hectare "home" vineyard in Clisson, where the rocky, granite-rich soils yield top-tier Melon de Bourgogne; the black grapes are in a section with a gentle slope and southwestern exposure. As with the Côt, the Cabernet Franc is harvested by hand, destemmed and crushed, with only the free-run juice used for the wine. It is fermented spontaneously with indigenous yeasts, followed by around five months of aging in stainless steel. This is a dark Cab Franc, with a black center. The fruit on the nose is burly, with a deep cherry and plum and an accent of smoke. The palate is lead by a tone of crush, dark rocks, with flavors of cherry, blackberry and salt. Virtually none of the "green" qualities that same associate with Loire Cabernet Franc, and I enjoyed focus on fruit. Structurally, there is a bit of flesh around a zippy middle. David Hatzopoulos

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $16.99

  • Organic

Vino di Anna 2017 Vino Rosso (Etna) Palmentino

Produced in a 250 year old Palmento, the traditional winery building found on Etna famrs. This is a blend of mostly Nerello Mascalese on the northern face of Etna. There are typically white grapes included in the cuvee. The fruit comes from vines ranging in 60 to 100 years of age.

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $24.99

Creve Coeur (Pablo Hocht) 2019 Côtes du Rhône

This beautiful Cotes du Rhone from Pablo Hocht at Creve Coeur is made from 60 to 70 year-old vines of Grenache, with an interesting mix of semi-carbonic and traditional fermentations with whole-cluster and de-stemmed grapes with no pigeage. The 2019 shows a beautiful melange of ripe black cherry, black raspberry and blueberry lifted by floral, citrus and spice notes. The palate is ripe and supple with ripe cherry and spicy blackberry with bitter chocolate and minerals, quite delicious, and with a long finish of refreshing, velvety fruit. This is a real crowd-pleaser and a great value!  David Lillie

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $13.99

  • Organic
  • Biodynamic
  • Low Sulfur