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Today we feature Greek wines from Douloufakis, Zidianakis and Thalassinos in Crete, Tatsis in Macedonia, Zafeirakis in Thessalia and Troupis in Arcadia as well as new arrivals from Austria and Germany. Newcomers from our friends in France include new cuvées from the Clos du Gravillas in Minervois, Guillemot-Michel in the Maconnais and the delicious organic Burgundies of Céline Perrin in Ladoix.
Of course there are returning favorites from the Loire Valley, too numerous to mention.
And we have to include Eric Asimov's "For Thanksgiving, Twenty Under Twenty," many of which were found on our shelves...
And please join us this afternoon, 4 - 6:00pm to taste staff sugestions for Thanksgiving!
Situated in the heart of the wine-growing zone of Crete, in Dafnes of Heraklion, on hill slopes at an altitude of 350 - 450 meters. The terroir of the Dafnes region is characterized by limestone soil and has a long viticultural history since the Venetian rule in Crete. Dafne is the name of the winery's village as well as the laurel tree the nymph Daphne was transformed into after rejecting Apollo's advances (hence the laurel leaves on the label). Douloufakis is one of the oldest wineries on the island and certified organic. Their Vidiano explodes with aromas of white flowers, herbs, pears, citrus and wet rocks. The palate is medium bodied, citrusy & herbal with ripe pear and a slightly bitter, mineral, long finish. For lovers of Assyrtiko and Albarino. Serve with pork roast with leeks or octopus with chickpeas and peppers. Giselle Hamburg
From a family owned winery up in the hills behind the capital Heraklion in Crete, "Semissis" (meaning "ancient gold coin") is a blend of two aromatic white grapes, Malvazia and Vilana. As per the winery: " Semissis was one of the gold coins of Byzanteum; 2 Semissis were worth one Nomisma, just like the two exquisite varieties in this wine". Malvazia has an intensely fruity character and the Vilana which is extremely rare, is referred to as the Queen or Riesling of Cretan white varietals bringing high acidity and floral aromatics. After fermentation in stainless, the wine stays on the lees for 4 months before bottling. The result is a golden blend of jamine and ripe peach, a pure delight! Giselle Hamburg
Is it an Orange wine? Is it a Rose? It has 3 hours skin contact and 9 months on the lees in amphora...but from a pale red grape called Liatiko (the main red grape of Crete). Hence the name given to the winemaker by his neighbors: Little Troublemaker! New young blood Isidoros is shaking things up on the Sitia plateau in Crete above the main Capital of Heraklion up in the mountains. Grown on shale and limestone soils at 800m elevation from ancient 100-200 year old vines, they are hand harvested at dawn to avoid the heat and wild fermented. Unfined and unfiltered. after it's 9 months in amphora, it spends another 10 months in bottle with minimal addition of sulfites. Regardless of what you call it, it busts a move right out of the glass full of herbs, rocks and orange zest, tart pomegranate and sheer delightful caprice...Little Troublemaker!!! Giselle Hamburg
Hailing from Thessaly in the foothills of Mount Olympus. Microcosmos is made from younger vines at an altitude of 300m on extremely flinty soils with native yeast fermentation aged in stainless steel tanks. Aromas of white rocks, citrus and herbs confirm a juicy yet vibrant palate with medium body and flavors of citrus, green apple, flinty minerality and green herbs. A perfect winter weight white with plenty of lift to cut through fatty dishes; for lovers of cool vintage white Rhones and Burgundies.
A newer release from Christos Zafeirakis, Prologue is a sparkling rosé made with the traditional method and is a 50/50 blend of Limniona and Assyrtiko. Clocking in as an Extra Brut with 4 grams dosage after spending almost 2.5 years on the lees. Showing a pale salmon robe, Prologue is super zesty and bright with notes of citrus, wild strawberries and yeasty brioche underscored by a cool minerality and long finsh with a lively mousse. An ethereal yet laser focused sparkler capable of giving your well known rose champagnes a serious run for the money; perfect for Thanksgiving dinner! Giselle Hamburg
From Goumenissa in central Macedonia, the ancient capital of Macedon and birthplace of Alexander the Great. One of the first Greek wineries to convert to organic viticulture in the 90s. They release their appellation Goumenissas with significant bottle aging for a true representation of the wine as it should be enjoyed unfined and unfiltered with minimal sulfur at bottling.. A blend of 80%Xinomavro and 20% Negoska, the nose is redolent of tomato leaf, wet earth, black cherries and a touch of black pepper. High acidity and structure from the Xinomavro paired with the higher alcohol yet soft tannins from the Negoska dances on the tongue like a gymnast flipping through the air. For lovers of Nebbiolo & Tuscan Sangiovese. Pair with local dishes like roast pork with leeks & mushrooms as well as wild boar with chestnuts and olives.GH
100% Moschofilero from central Arcadia in the Peloponnese, home to the god Pan (as pictured on the label) along with dryads, nymphs and other spirits. This is a brand new cuvee of a couple of hours skin contact, fermented in a concrete egg, bottled unfined and unfiltered. The wine has an ever so slightly peachy appearance and displays aromas of crushed herbs along with the grape's classic floral notes. GH
Ulli knocks it out of the park again with this breathtakingly ethereal "Feinherb". Weihwasser means Holywater and Holy Moly is right; almost imperceptibly off dry clocking in at 11.5%, it wafts slightly saline lemonade, white flowers and pear on the nose. Flavors of wet rocks and honeydew underscored by herbaceous spearmint dance above the lithe body with a long, elegant finish. Dangerously gulpable so buy two for your next picnic! Giselle Hamburg
Incredible gold medal awarded 1er Cru single vineyard Sylvaner from it's home in Franken from one of it's most heralded producers Burgerspital making wines since 1316 !!!!! Need more encouragement because not familiar with Sylvaner? Found mostly in Alsace France, there is a healthy smattering in Germany, Austria & Luxembourg but as far as Germany is concerned, Franken reigns king. Lively herbaceousness with citrus, a crunchy minerality and elegant salinity perfect for all Chablis and crisp, mineral white wine lovers! GH
A new side project between Kolfolk winemaker Stefan Wellanschitz and his US distrubutor Winemonger, Felix R&B is a liter full of Rotburger (aka Zweigelt) with a dash of Blaufrankish (hence the name R&B). Surprisingly structured for both Rotburger and liter sized bottlings, R&B is the ultimate fall weather party red with beautiful notes of red berries and brambly forest floor. Sunday football tailgate BBQ? Check! Thanksgiving dinner? Check! Bingeing the new Netflix miniseries The Fall of the House of Usher? Check!!! At this price, you can't afford not to check it out! Giselle Hamburg
40% Grüner Veltliner, 35% Müller-Thurgau, 25% Riesling. Sourced from multiple tiny parcels across the Vogelwaide parcels in the western Wachau. Whole-cluster, fermented and aged in a mix of stainless steel and neutral oak. ‘Balztanz’ is a cuvée name that winemakers Daniel and Michael describe as ‘the mating dance of the bird world,’ and it’s used for their lighter-bodied, more expressive or easygoing wines. The birds on the label are also non-native to the Wachau valley, indicating that this is a cuvée for which the duo purchases a small amount of fruit to augment their tiny-parcel, steep slope estate fruit. Unfined and unfiltered showing a hazy straw hue, the wine is at once savory and delicate, herbaceous and green tree fruit, mineral yet ripe, It definitely doesn't drink like a typical Wachau white and that is a good thing. I tried it for the first time over a year ago at the newly opened Koloman restaurant in NYC. The Wine Director, Wachau native Katja from a wine growing family gave me the skinny on the dynamic duo and ever since then, I've been determined to bring them in to a wider public. I hope you will take a chance on these experimental newcomers from quite a conservative region! Giselle Hamburg
Birgit is a fearless winemaker not afraid to resurrect long forgotten or no longer cultivated varietals in her region of Carnuntum such as Harslevelu or Pinot Noir. The latter needs no introduction but does in her region as the grape's fickleness requires more care than the native easygrowing Zweigelt does. This is her new release of her 100% Pinot Noir aptly called "Diva". I will let her words describe her intentions and this cuvee best: " With Pinot Noir I am immediately reminded of a Diva - a female deity who is extremely talented, with finesse and self confidence. If as a winegrower you wrongly understand her, then you produce a simple red wine but if you accept her identity, then you get a Pinot Noir that "sings" and deeply touches you." . This Diva hails from an old single vineyard Rosenberg from Dijon clones. 30% whole cluster and foot stomped by Birgit's own feet! (She may be petite but has hobbit feet size 41!). Upon tasting, we were all struck by it's effortless elegance and balance of beautiful berry fruit and lush yet structured body with a persistent finish. We even drew parallels with Clos des Lambrays and Chambolle Musignys. Do not miss this opportunity to try this very Burgundian alternative! Giselle Hamburg
The Unexpected. A surprising full dry white wine--fresh but mineral and very complex Grenaches (plus a bit of Maccabeu) fermented and aged (10 months) on lees in 500L barrels. Floral, herbal, stone, white peach, dried pear aromas. The palate is dense and mineral with more stone flavors than fruit, with a beautiful finish. Forceful enough to enjoy with good canned sardines, mackerel or veal blanquette, a rare match for organic goat cheese, surprising with Apple Crumble!
Ancient grapes Piquepoul gris, Terret gris and Carignan blanc. Our newest quest, to find the true Languedoc white Wine. Plantation sourced from a conservatory of lost pink varietals in the Minervois. Plus a newly acquired Carignan Blanc vineyard. this elegant and complex wine opens with aromas of hazelnut, white peach, lime flower and minerals with a hint of spice. The palate is silky and dense with stone, citrus, white peach and pear, finishing with citrus, mineral, melon and earth notes with terrific length. Beautifull now, we suspect this will age gracefully. Pair with any full-flavored fish or ceviche, white meats and mild cheeses or just sip and enjoy.
Celine Perrin's 2022 Bourgogne Rouge is a delightful wine showing a bright red/garnet color with floral high-toned cherry, strawberry and raspberry aromas. From 70 year-old Pinot Noir vines in and around Ladoix. There is sappy cherry fruit on the palate with plum skin, citrus, earth and mineral flavors that continue in the refreshing finish. This is a remarkable value - a beautiful, refreshing light-bodied Pinot Noir with gorgeous fruit, purity and length!
The Perrin Hautes-Cotes de Nuits is from vines in and around Ladoix, including the "Clos des Fourches," a tiny parcel above Nuits-Saint-Georges 1er Cru "Clos de la Marechale." Another wine that yielded major dividends over the course of a few hours, this started out all cherry skin and white pepper. But with time in the glass, the fruit turned juicy and round and the white pepper subsided, showing allspice, black pepper and a dusty and compelling mineral note with raspberry, cherry, licorice, and violet. Again, terrific value here.
The Perrin Ladoix "Briquottes" is from another part of the quarries that used to cover this slope, just below the 1er Cru "Les Grechons" - the stone was cut into "briques" that were wrapped in paper and put between the bed covers in the winter. Beautiful garnet color with purplish reflections. On the nose, the bouquet opens with very floral, bright red fruits (raspberry, strawberry, blackcurrant) and jam. On the palate, we find an elegant light body with all the finesse of the fruits with silky tannins and a chalky texture with a bit of earth and minerals, finishing with firm acidity and sappy berry fruits. This red Ladoix will go well with beef, poultry and game birds, served a bit cool. Delicious now but best 2025 - 2030.
The Perrin Aloxe-Corton "Les Boutieres" is from a parcel at the southern tip of Aloxe-Corton, bordering Chorey and Savigny-les-Beaune. The name refers to an ancient road that continued up though Savigny and Pernand-Vergelesses used by mule-drivers carrying "boutes' - goat-skins filled with wine, (sometimes from Etruria and Campania (!) as early as the 2nd century BC). One of the best known village level Aloxe sites, these vines are planted in quite deep clay soils full of iron oxide (red mud that sticks to your shoes). This is a classic Boutieres, with vivid red fruit and a meaty salty character somewhat obscured at present by vigorous tannic structure. The color is quite dark, deep ruby, garnet, it has aromas of small red fruits (raspberry, strawberry, cherry) and black fruits (blackcurrant, blackberry). Its accents intensify with air: jams and fruits in brandy, pistachio, prunes, truffle, cinnamon. It's by no means unapproachable but 4-6 years in the cellar will bring everything into high definition. Serve with red meats, grilled or in sauce, roasted poultry, game, without forgetting soft and washed-rind cheeses: Epoisses, Ami du Chambertin, Livarot...
This excellent parcel is a continuation of the Corton hill, adjacent to the Corton 1er Crus. The Perrin "Joyeuses" shows a brilliant garnet with purplish reflections. Raspberry, cherry, candied or brandy and ripe fruit fill the bouquet. We also encounter spicy notes (clove), coffee or cocoa. On the palate, we find all the finesse of the fruit aromas with good structure and just the right amount of tannins. Serve with jambon cru, rabbit, beef, and feathered game and mild-flavored cheeses such as Vacherin, Reblochon, Cîteaux, etc. Best after 4 to 6 years in the cellar, but delicious now as well.
This "poil dur" is wagging its tail again in 2022, showing the ripeness and balance of this good vintage in the Loire Valley, with juicy aromas of blackberry, rose, spice and citrus. It's Gamay with a bit of Cabernet Franc in this vintage, with an extra layer of ripeness, and nice density of bright blackberry fruit, a bit floral and spicy. Quite refreshing with good length of lush berry fruits and citrusy acids in the finish. Serve a bit cool with charcuterie, chicken and pork - just delicious! David Lillie
This is a light and lovely expression of Pineau d'Aunis from Pierre-Olivier Bonhomme, from vines near the Cher river on clay with silex in organic and biodynamic farming. Aged in old futs and demi-muids, bottled without filtration, minimal SO2. The 2022 shows a pretty light red color with subtle aromas of ripe raspberry, citrus, white pepper and violets, really pretty. A touch deeper than the 2021, it nonetheless delivers on the Pineau D'Aunis promise of peppery and bright rustic flavors. Lip-smacking acidity and a beautifully refreshing finish of minerals, earth and pretty red fruits. This is a delightfully refreshing version of Pineau d'Aunis - serve cool!
The Chevalerie "Galichets" vineyard is on mid-slope Turonian limestone with clay and alluvial sand and gravel topsoil, rich in silex; the vines average about 60 years of age - similar to the "Chevalerie" parcel but a bit lower on the slope, giving a wine that is more open and easy for early drinking. The 2015 vintage is excellent, with a bit more ripeness and lower acidity than 2014, while retaining the core of minerals and acidity always found in the Chevalerie wines. The aromas of black raspberry and blackberry fruit are ripe and floral. The palate is dense and silky, very mineral with ripe red and black fruits and a clean vibrant finish. Still quite youthful, but drinking beautifully now. David Lillie
A delicious, mineral-driven Pet-Nat from Pascal Potaire, "Les Capriades" is all Chardonnay in the '22 vintage. Touraine's limestone soils are on full display in this bottling. Aromas of crushed seashells and lemon zest will have you craving oysters on cue. The body is crackling with vibrant, tart acidity and a crunchy mineral texture that ushers the citrus notes over to a beautiful sweet note that rounds everything into a powerful finish. A wonderful, complex and delicious wine that we highly recommend.
Pierre Morin makes this lovely red Sancerre from a small parcel in Bue on Kimmeridgian "terres blanches" soils. The 2019 "Bellechaume" is a beautiful glass of Pinot Noir with a unique mineral backbone imparted by the Kimmeridgian soils. The aromas are of ripe black cherry and berries with earth, bitter chocolate, citrus and minerals, quite complex and Burgundian. There is delicious ripe cherry on the palate, which is sapid and long with lovely earth and mineral notes.Fuller bodied and structured from the hot vintage. This is delicious now, especially with some aeration, but will obviously drink well for another 5 to 8 years. Enjoy!
100% Melon de Bourgogne. Briords is a 3-hectare lieu-dit in the cru of Château Thébaud. These vines are the estate's oldest plot, planted from massale selection 60-70 years ago. The sandy clay soils are rich in granite de Thébaud, a type differing from granite de Clisson in in its higher feldspar and clay content; it is cooler, holds water well and ripens the fruit more slowly. The farming is certified-biodynamic and the vineyard work including harvest is manual. 2022 was a vintage of heat and sunshine but with frost in the spring that lowered yields. Much needed light rains in August enabled the grapes to ripen properly, and an early harvest brought in perfectly ripe fruit with somewhat lower acidities than usual. The 2022 "Briords" showed beautifully last winter in Angers - wonderfully elegant and round with terrific density and length. - vivid aromas of dried pear, bitter lemon, anise and herbs with surprising hints of exotic fruit backed with earth and mineral notes. The aromatic ripeness is more restrained on the palate which shows beautifully supple and dense pear and ripe apple fruit with adequate acidty, quite round and ripe, and finishing with nice grip and mineral flavors that linger on the palate. This is a beautiful "Briords," reminding me of 2009 - irresistible now and over the next 8 to 10 yeaars, but not for long-term aging. Of course serve with oysters and grilled fish, this full-bodied Briords wil also accompany lobster, scallops, chicken and white meats. Highly recommended! David Lillie
(NY Times Thanksgiving pick) This is our favorite value red in the store. A medium-full bodied red, with nice blackberry fruit and smooth tannins. A blend of Aragones (Tempranillo) and Castelao, wild yeast fermentation, and farmed sustainably.
The 2021 is a NY Times Twenty Under $20 for Thanksgivng - Sorry NYTimes, there's no more 2021, the juicy and delicious 2022 will have to do!
(NY Times Twenty Under $20 for Thanksgiving) Made from organically farmed vineyards on the edge of the Touraine territory, this racy and energetic Sauvignon Blanc is the baby brother to the Foucher Sancerre Le Mont. Yet another astonishing Loire value from Maison Foucher.
(NY Times 20 Under $20 for Thanksgiving) Broadside is a project of very talented winemaker Chris Brockway. The Cabernet is fermented with wild yeasts and aged in barrels. The resultant wine is remarkably fresh and full bodied with an interesting spicy character and plenty of bright, tangy dark fruit.
We're extremely happy to have the wines of Guillemot-Michel back at Chambers Street! Along with Jean and Gautier Thevenet, and Julien Guillot at Vignes du Maynes, they are making white Burgundies with more depth and minerality than anything comparably priced in the Cote D'Or. The cool, low-yielding 2021 vintage takes us back to the style of the superb old-fashioned Macon wines of Jean Thevenet at Domaine de la Bongran. The 2021 "Quintaine" shows a lovely bright gold color with aromas that open with o hint of botrytis, followed by very floral ripe, slightly honeyed exotic fruits, with earth and mineral notes, just beautiful! The palate is ripe and generous but dry, with cool acidity and perfect structure. White and yellow fruits, citrus and minerals coat the palate leading into another hint of botrytis in the long finish. Serve this gorgeous wine with full-flavored fish dishes, chicken and white meats, goat cheeses or just sip and enjoy. Warning! This is not a bland, acidic, light-bodied Macon Chaardonnay - it's a remarkably complex, full-bodied, slightly botrytized wine with fabulous density and length....
Arnaud Lambert is based in Brézé, in the heart of the Saumur appellation. He makes a series of excellent still and sparkling wines from Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc planted in quite porous chalk soils mixed with clay and sand. He has been certified organic since 2012. His sparkling wines are a perpetual source of incredible value and this latest edition of the Cremant de Loire from Brézé is no different. 75% Chenin and 25% Chardonnay, this is all Meyer lemon and peach pit earthiness on the nose, with little bits of dried honeycomb around the edges. More stone fruit on the palate, with toasted hazelnuts and Melba toast in the finish, with lovely salty mineral notes. This is terrific for the price. Drink up and open a second. Sam Ehrlich
The Pierre Morin Vieilles Vignes cuvée is very ripe, complex and just the paradigm of Sancerre on the nose. On the palate it is concentrated, tight and profound with a perfect mosaic of fruit and mineral tones and an exquisite finish.
(60% Pinot Noir, 40% Gamay grown on sandy clay and flint soils over limestone in Cellettes, Chitenay and Fougères sur Bièvre, AOC Cheverny; 15-day whole cluster fermentation, aged in old barrels) 2022 is another great vintage for this light and lovely Cheverny Rouge from Hervé Villemade, similar to 2018 and 2020 but perhaps a bit brighter, really lovelu! Slight reduction then very pretty aromas of plum, strawberry and blood orange with rose and white pepper; tart cherry and chalky raspberry/strawberry fruit on the palate, light but sappy and long with earthy citrus and berry fruits in the refreshing finish. This is a delightfully natural thirst-quenching red - serve cool with any chicken or pork dish, charcuterie and mild cheeses. DL
(NY Times Thanksgiving pick - 48 btls arrive Tuesday 11/21) This is the twelfth vintage of the Hubert family's "Blanc Bonhomme" - the vines are now 17 years old, certified organic and Biodynamic. The grapes are hand-harvested in the early morning, pressed gently, fermented with native yeasts and the wine is aged partly in new oak, mostly in cement vats. Only about 650 cases are made. In 2020, Le Blanc is 45% Sauvignon Blanc, 45% Semillon, and 10% Colombard, and shows elegant pear, lemon, herbal and dried flower aromas, with pear, citrus and chalky mineral flavors on the palate. At 12.5% alcohol, the 2021 is lighter and brighter than the previous 3 vintages and it really shows the terroir with crisp acidity, lovely white fruit, a hint of dried pineapple, light oak and stony flavors in the finish. Really a lovely, balanced and food-friendly wine - serve with anything from oysters to grilled fish to roast chicken.