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Xurxo Alba does it all! A miniscule amount of red wine is produced in Rías Baixas (it is hardcore Albariño and crustacean country!) and even less of it comes to our shores. Fans of red wines that taste like acid, rocks, and dirt will be delighted by O Esteiro Tinto, Xurxo's blend of (roughly equal parts) feral and earthy Caiño, austere and mineral Espadeiro, with the brambly bright berries of Mencia. This is an exhilarating wine of a terroir that we rarely experience through red wine. Ariana Rolich
A refreshing introduction to the rare and complicated red grape Juan Garcia, coplanted on granitic sandy soils with (the almost as rare and complicated variety) Rufete and a number of other varieties in the village of Fermoselle, located in the Arribes del Duero National Park on the Spanish side of the Portuguese border. Alvar de Dios is a serious young winemaker from the south of Toro, who is actively exploring the neighboring Arribes region and all the vibrant varieties that straddle the Portuguese border. Savory, funky black currant, wild blueberry, and lavender aromas waft onto the brightly acidic palate of sultry florals and spice, with crushed blackberry, bramble, bitter herbs, and dark, mineral earth. Delicious with burgers and poultry, earthy root vegetables, salty charcuterie, and even chilled alongside tuna or squid with oregano and citrus. Ariana Rolich
A burst of flamboyant flavors, Tío Uco is an exciting young wine from an exciting young winemaker! A native of southern Toro, Alvar de Dios honed his skills working with Fernando García at Bodegas Marañones (a longtime Chambers Street favorite) before returning to Toro to farm family vineyards and acquire others. Tío Uco comes from 25 to 40 year-old, organically farmed vines of Tinta de Toro on a variety of terroirs (clay, limestone, sand, and gravel), destemmed and raised in neutral oak barrels. Aromas are wild and heady, full of fermenting berries, black cherry compote, incense and clove, with a jazzy, light spritz upon opening, dissolving into the fun and full-flavored palate of cassis, cranberry, cola, umeboshi salt plums, balsamic, wild rose, and bitter herbs on the finish. Substantial and spicy, but light on its feet, this is a lovely Toro for everyday drinking pleasure. Ariana Rolich
Multi-talented vigneron Fredi Torres turns grapes to mouth-watering potions across such diverse regions as Montsant, Priorat, Ribeira Sacra and Emporda. La Deva is a single vineyard in the Montsant, composed of Grenache with some Carignan and Macabeo. Intoxicating aromas of ripe raspberry, funky berries, floral lavender, and tea leaf, with a mouth-watering and silky palate of ripe strawberry, black cherry, fresh green herbs, lavender, blue flowers and peppercorn. Serve with a chill with anything from the grill. Ariana Rolich
An utterly delicious bargain, made of 95% Tempranillo and 5% Viura from Artuke's organically farmed family estate in the Rioja Alavesa. Made in the traditional, refreshing (pre-barrel aging) style of Rioja, whole cluster fermented and raised in concrete tanks for a pure, juicy, floral, and thirst-quenching young red that begs to be chilled and downed over lunch (or on the couch). Alluring wild rose and ripe cherry aromas and flavors, with crushed red and purple berries, soft earth, wild green herbs, salty licorice, and cherry cola. Keep a bottle chilling in the fridge to pair with everything from pizza to paellas! Ariana Rolich
Provence, eat your heart out. This pale, refreshing rose is 100% Listán Negro from Lanzarote in the Canary Islands, grown at the bottom of painstakingly-tended hoyos (the local name for the craters dug into the crunchy, black topsoil that coated the island of Lanzarote following a series of volcanic eruptions that started in 1730). One vine is planted at the bottom of each hoyo, which protect the plant from Lanzarote's relentless trade winds, along with stone walls of volcanic rock rimming the hoyos to prevent the sandy soil from blowing onto the vines. (In reality, the walls are constantly blown down and rebuilt. This is high-maintenance viticulture!) Bermejos' visionary winemaker, Ignacio Valdera, produces crystal-clear expressions of this unique and mystical vinescape. The rosado is pale, dry, and refreshing, with flavors of salty citrus, grapefruit, cherry skins, blood orange, rhubarb, and brine, with ash, orange oil and grapefruit rind on the finish. Complex yet crowd-pleasing. Ariana Rolich
Borja Perez is the talented young winemaker behind the Ignios Origenes label, descendant of many generations of Tenerife grape growers, who aims to preserve tradition and terroir while breaking the mold with unique volcanic wines. Artifice is his line of refreshing and inexpensive wines made from purchased grapes, farmed and picked to Borja's exacting standards, made with native yeasts and minimal sulfur additions. The tinto is made from Listán Negro, the workhorse variety of Tenerife, in this case harvested for freshness, displaying defined, lifted flavors of wild purple berries and florals, peppery, ashy volcanic earth, and lots of juicy acidity. Ariana Rolich
2015 Poula was made in the old style of the village of Albares ("My neighbors love it!" winemaker Germán Blanco proclaimed), composed of Garnacha Tintorera, Mencía, Portuguesa (Trousseau), and 40% white grapes Jerez (Palomino), Godello, Doña Blanca, foot-trodden in stone lagars and raised in amphora for 12 months. Poula is the only Casa Aurora wine made from a blend of parcels, most of which are too tiny to vinify on their own (they are listed on the front label). Lively, joyful, teeming with mouth-watering scents and flavors of wild berries, fermented grapes, mountain herbs, silky florals, and a pleasing tickle of tannin. Serve chilled. Ariana Rolich
Castellroig is one of the few Cava producers working with organic methods (not certified), harvesting by hand, and even fermenting with native yeasts. They have a remarkable understanding of their vineyards and have mapped out every shift in terroir on their property; this fanatical approach to quality shows in the bottle. The focus of this cuvée is Xarlel-lo, a favorite amongst Cava grapes for its refreshing mineral qualities and notes of mountain herbs. A light-on-its-feet bubbly for everyday occasions.
Tinc Set is organic and biodynamically farmed Xarello and Parellada, two of the great local grapes of Penedès. Calcareous and clay soils speak loudly through tiny firm bubbles, with vibrant flavors of golden pear, green apple skins, crisp peach, salty yeast, and crunchy mineral length. Exuberant and fresh, with creamy, earthy underpinnings, vinified and bottled with no added SO2. Tinc Set is a perfect late-summer apéritif, alongside grilled oysters, egg dishes, or nutty, raw milk cheeses. Ariana Rolich
A fascinating pét nat from a field blend of ancient Catalan varieties Sumoll, Roigenc, Mandó, Cannonnau, Monica, Torbat, Parellada and Xarello planted on calcareous-clay soils in 2006. Winemaker Toni Carbó farms his vineyards organically and biodynamically in Penedes, the heart of Cava country - but don't expect Cava from this bottle! Pale peachy gold, with gentle bubbles, tart acidity, and refreshing spring water minerality accompanied by delicate flavors of peach skins, grapefruit pith, and not-quite-ripe tropical fruit like mango and guava. A thirst-quenching aperitif and delightful pairing for shellfish, smoked salmon, pasta with pesto, and charcuterie. Ariana Rolich
Fragrant and fresh, inexpensive and certified organic, Vegas Altas white is one of the most complex and delicious Spanish values in recent memory. Inviting and dry, medium weight, with flavors of crisp ripe pear, green melon, lavender, almond, and apple blossoms, this is our first experience with Eva de Los Santos, a local grape from Extremadura (the dramatically beautiful region bordering Portugal in western Spain). Enjoy with seafood, fish in sauce, poultry, cheeses, and vegetarian meals. Ariana Rolich
El Altar is a singular Garnacha, from old vines planted on granitic sandy soils with large chunks of quartz, north-facing at 800 meters near the town of El Barraco in the Sierra de Gredos. Daniel Ramos is one of a handful of Gredos producers with a formidable understanding of and respect for the profound and varied terroirs of the region. In a region full of brilliant Garnachas, El Altar is particularly purely red-fruited, from one of the coolest parts of the region, with strawberry, cherry, red currant, and raspberry preserves, interwoven with rock rose, bergamot, resinous thyme, wild flower honey, and rainwater.Ariana Rolich
Tasting this wine for the first time, I was immediately fascinated (and hooked). The Gredos Mountains, west of Madrid, are home to the most awe-inspiring and balanced Garnachas in the world. Power, perfume, tannin, and acid meet subtle layers and terroir-expression in this unique, high-altitude region that is largely unknown to wine lovers, but will be acknowledged one day soon as the source for the world's highest expressions of the Garnacha grape. Del Tiemblo Los Chorrancos is a fierce and floral cuvée from a north-facing schistous vineyard (with some granite) at upwards of 900m altitude in Avila's Alberche River Valley. Aromas are deep, floral, and botanical, with cherry blossoms, roses, resin, lavender, and sweet clover honey. The palate is anchored by rich tannins, acidic spine, and gripping mineral depth, with shimmering raspberry, rich kirsch, rosemary, and savory forest floor. This wine is sure to change the way you think about Garnacha. Ariana Rolich
Winemaker Daniel Ramos said that when he and his wife drink a bottle of Pizarra, they frequently open it 3-4 days in advance. Only made in exceptional years, Pizarra is 100% Garnacha from a 60-100+ year old vines on south-facing slate/schist vineyards at 900-975m (3000 feet) elevation in the town of Cebreros. It is brawnier and darker than Ramos' Chorrancos cuvee, with sappy wild berries, sandalwood, and musky citrus oils alongside subtle oxidative notes, spicy wild "garrigue" of lavender, and thyme (which coincidentally grow around the vineyard), and a clear core of slatey minerals. An exceptional wintry Garnacha for roasted meats and root vegetables. Please decant! Ariana Rolich
Nicolas Marcos comes from a winemaking family in Toro but found himself drawn to the polar opposite, cool northern coastal region of Cangas in Asturius, where very old vines of Mencia and autochthonous varieties like Carrasquin, Albarin Blanco, Verdejo Tinto, and more cling to steep, rocky slopes of slate and quartz. Farming is biodynamic and the wines are alive and exciting. The Cadario cuvee is cool and exotic, with broad, brambly black fruit and soft mulberry, with deep and dark minerality like crushed coal, with an acidic rush and bright blue and purple florals. Ariana Rolich
*This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.* A perfect year for Els Jelipins, the 2010 is earthy and a touch feral, with abundant raspberry and cranberry fruit, accented by tea leaf (Earl Grey), and burdock root.
2011 Els Jelipins has taut tannins and delicate angles, tender strawberry and cranberry fruit, lime zests, and sweet florals.
The Espelt family has been growing grapes for centuries on the sandy granite, limestone, and slate soils of Empordà. In the early 2000s, they began bottling under their own name, resulting in some of the best values coming out of Catalonia. Espelt's vineyards are certified organic and dedicated primarily to native varieties like Lledoner (Catalan Grenache) and Carinyena. This wine is 100% Garnatxa Blanca from 50 year-old vines, fermented and aged for 3 months in neutral French oak barrels. Medium bodied, with pure, fluid flavors of white peach, lemon-lime, tropical fruit, and golden apple, flecked with white pepper and silky florals, anchored by a firm mineral spine. Fresh and versatile. Ariana Rolich
Ester Nin and Carles Ortiz combine rigorous biodynamic farming, prime terroir in Porrera (one of the two coolest villages in the Priorat), and an oddity - Cargnan Blanc - to achieve this eleagant outlier among Priorat whites. Unusually lithe, clear, and cool-tempered relative to the big, sometimes boozy whites of the region, with heady aromas of wild herbs, lemon balm, mustard flower, kefir lime, citrus peels, and white pepper. The palate is supple, long, and mineral, one of the most restrained and pretty Priorat whites to date, displaying delicate tropical and tree fruits with bitter piths, mineral earth, and sea salts. Pair with rich seafood and herbed poultry. Ariana Rolich
It is a rarity to find Ribeiro wines from organically farmed vineyards. Liliana Fernández and Iago Garrido's 2.5 hectares of native Ribeiro varieties are Demeter certified Biodynamic! Ollos de Roque is a deep, minerally, and herbaceous white, a combination of 80% Treixadura, 10% Albarino, and 10% Godello, planted in decomposed granite soils on southeast-facing slopes, and raised in amphora. Ariana Rolich
Xavi Soeanes' organically farmed, unadulterated Ribeira Sacra wines (non-DO) rank next to our favorites from Silice and Laura Lorenzo for clarity of expression and purity of process. BRZ is a veritable ode to Brancellao, a native red grape of Galicia that gives freshness and complexity to many of our favorite Mencia-based blends from Ribeira Sacra. Pradio's Brancellao is planted on sandy soils over granite at 300m altitude in A Peroxa. Aromas of sweet, breezy florals, waft into the delicately built, acid- and mineral-driven palate of tart cherry, tea leaf and spicy hibiscus.
This incredible bargain is a full-bodied blend of bush-trained Bobal with a splash of young-vines Cabernet Sauvignon from 1000 meters up in the Utiel-Requena region of Spain. Dense and layered on the palate — rich cherry, tart plum, and ripe raspberry fruit, with velvety tannins, soft earth, and a hint of violet flowers. Certified organic. Ariana Rolich
Graciano in the Ribera del Duero? Goyo thinks it was planted by accident, after the farmer received Graciano cuttings instead of Tinto Fino. We're all for a happy accident if it leads to a wine this delicious! From 35 year old vines planted on red sands with river stones at 850 meters. A dense and vivid blue/purple hue in the glass, full and fun on the palate with deep, driving acid buffered by ripples of floral black and purple berries, salty plum, black pepper, and purple florals. Cellar with abandon or drink now with venison or lamb. Ariana Rolich
Borja Pérez González's complex and beautiful Ignios wines are proof that the future is very bright for this remote but prolific winegrowing region. Listán Negro is ubiquitous in the Canaries, yet Ignios is not like any of the others. From a striking single vineyard, one-half hectare of vines flanking a banana plantation close to sea level, the grapes are harvested to retain freshness, fermented in stainless steel with native yeasts, and raised in a mix of French oak barrels. Aromas are cool and exotic, more herbal than spicy - sour cherry, dusty rose, hibiscus, smoky tea, dried herbs and funky earth. Tart and juicy, broad but refreshing and light/medium-bodied, flavors are a delicious, palate-soaking tangle of fruit, musk, and earth: red plum, sour cherry, red beets, lime rinds, dried herbs, brine, and ash, with a smoky mineral finish. Serve with a chill and prepare to be awed. (Tasting note is from 750ml.) Ariana Rolich
Listan Negro is ubiquitous in the Canary Islands, but Ignios' rendition is unique. From a one-half hectare, 30-year-old single vineyard planted on iron-rich clay loam on a coastal banana plantation, the 2015 is tart and salty, with herbal raspberry and reductive aromas feeding into flavors of sour cherry, plum peels, red beets, salty soy, pepper, iodine, and smoky, funky earth. This wine evolves wonderfully with air as well as age in bottle. Decanting recommended. Ariana Rolich
As the sun goes down and the fogs roll over Tenerife, there is no better pleasure than to sip a glass of Ignios Marmajuelo alongside local shell fish and fresh mojo (Canarian pesto made of herbs, garlic, and plenty of vinegar - email us for recipes!). Marmajuelo plantings are rare. In 2011, Borja Perez Gonzalez recuperated two tiny 20-year-old parcels, perched above the Ignios Baboso vineyard, amounting to a mere 700kg of grapes. The wine is equally unusual, combining forceful salty and savory volcanic island elements - ocean air and smoky soil - interwoven with juicy (dry!) tropical fruits, accented by mellow notes of banana leaf, lemon balm, green almond, and aloe, with long, ashen mineral notes on the finish. The complex braid of flavors is lifted by invigorating acidity. This Marmajuelo displays significant natural tannin and viscosity, endearing it to adventurous cooks in search of special white wine pairings. Ariana Rolich
Vijariego Negro (aka Sumoll) from a single vineyard at 780m on volcanic sandy loam in the foothills of Mount Teide, abandoned at a young age, but meticulously resuscitated by winegrower Borja Pérez González. 2015 is an elegant, floral, and approachable vintage for this typically dense and structural mountain wine. Aromas of rose, orange honey, grapefruit, and cherry blossom accent flavors of black cherry, tart raspberry, orange peel, salty brine, watermelon rind, black tea, and bitter sandy earth, with buoyant acid, moderate tannins, and pleasing length. A brilliant introduction to the complex Ignios reds, delicious paired with lamb burgers, confit, and spicy fare. Ariana Rolich
La Vizcaina is a project from Raul Perez that focuses on vineyard sites around his hometown of Vatuille de Abajoin northern Castilla y Leon. The “La del Vivo” blanco is made from Godello sourced from two single vineyards planted in 1940 and 1925, one on clay and one on sand. 80% of the grapes are fermented and raised in large oak barrels for a year, while the remaining 20% is vinified on the skins in amphorae, where it ages for a year, before both cuvees are blended together. On the nose this wine is meaty, smoky, like rendered lamb fat. Underlying notes of pine cones, lemon, grilled lemon and hazelnuts. The palate is rich, with medium acidity and a long, persistent finish. Grilled citrus is even more present, along with a strong note of wet stones and wet earth. A faint whiff of dried white flowers and chamomile rounds out this complex white. Oskar Kostecki
This is serious Rioja: no new oak, extended pre-release bottle aging, and exquisite vineyard sites (for the Tondonia, vines dig deep through fine-grained alluvial soils overlooking the Ebro River that were first planted almost 140 years ago). Don Rafael López de Heredia y Landeta founded Lopez de Heredia in 1877, and the wines continue to serve as a benchmark for the region (the family business is now led mainly by his grandson Pedro, and great-granddaughter Maria Jose). The bodega comprises four distinct vineyard areas and extends to a total of 170 hectares, with Tondonia being the largest and most famous of the holdings. Jancis Robinson considers 2004 "a very good year, with wines that should last well," and the Tondonia Reserva is certainly that: powerful, lean, and layered with gorgeous, generous fruit and all the cigar box, cedar, and leather notes a lover of classic Rioja could wish for.
A blend of 65% Tempranillo, 25% Garnacha and small amounts of Mazuelo and Graciano, with three years in barrel and extended bottle age prior to release, the very good 2008 vintage has yielded a classic and satisfying Cubillo. Ripe, forward aromas of black cherry, blueberry sap, and raspberry, with tarragon, sweet black licorice, leather, and peppery earth; the palate is initially quite juicy with blackberry flesh and skins, tart black plum, and tangy acidity, opening with air to reveal sour cherry, plum skins, subtle herbal and smoky flavors, and soft sweet leather. Ariana Rolich
La Asperilla is an 80 year-old, .5 hectare majuelo (small family vineyard) in Penafiel, Alfredo Maestro's home town in the Ribero del Duero. A placid parcel of 80 year-old vines within view of the castle of Penafiel, La Asperilla is composed of clay and sandy soils, planted to Tempranillo (around 80%) with Garnacha, Bobal, and white grapes Albillo Mayor and Moscatel (and more). The vineyard is horse-ploughed and organically farmed; the grapes are co-fermented and aged in a large chestnut barrel (a traditional vessel in the area). Heady florals (violets, soapy white lily, piquant lavender) and resinous herbal garrigue fill the nose alongside cinnamon sticks, fresh vegetal stalks of rhubarb, and damp soil; the palate is a cool pool of pink and purple berries, with crunchy red delicious apples and skins, a scratch of sandy tannins, birch bark, almond oil, cherry cola, chewy wheat berries, cinnamon, and clove. An informal poll of Alfredo Maestro's biggest fans might reveal that Asperilla is his best wine yet! Pair with lamb, like they do in Penafiel. Ariana Rolich
Fermented with natural yeasts, raised in stainless steel and bottled with no sulphur, Lovamor is a free expression of the intense natural energy which shapes the rugged land of the Duero region. Made from the indigenous white grape Albillo Mayor (not to be confused with Albillo Real, the great white grape of the Gredos) and harvested from many high altitude majuelos of varying soil compositions, the wine, which spends six days macerating on its skins, is robust, dense and tannic, showing earthy, austere notes of celery root, apple skins, sea salt, bright, tangy lemon, and the slight bitterness of freshly husked young walnuts. Sydney Snyder
The 2015 vintage of Alfredo Maestro's Almate might be the most delicious yet! 100% Tinto Fino (Tempranillo), organically farmed, primarily from high altitude vineyards in Valtiendas, near Maestro's home town of Peñafiel (the heart of the Ribera del Duero). Fermented with whole clusters in stainless steel, bottled with no SO2 additions whatsoever; aromas of wild berries, plum, bramble, and herbs open up into sweet and spicy black licorice, and blackberry sap. Juicy, jubilant wild cherry and red berry flesh fill the mouth, with bursting acidity, ripe and rustic tannins, dark earth and tobacco notes, and a very long finish. Outrageously good and unusually complex at this price point, Almate is a perfect pairing with lamb. Ariana Rolich
Maisulan is 100% Tempranillo from organically and biodynamically farmed vineyards around the village of El Villar in the Rioja Alavesa. Aromas of dusty purple berries and plums, rose hips, and tendrils of sweet smoke combine on the dense, full-flavored palate of wild cherry, dense boysenberry and raspberry, with red apple skins, spicy cinnamon, gritty tannins, and a long finish of savory minerals and smoky earth. Affordable and versatile. Ariana Rolich
La Movida Laderas is a steep plot of 70-year-old Garnacha vines planted on rocky schist soils, 958 meters above sea level on the mystical south-facing slopes of Cebreros in the Gredos Mountains. Too precariously steep, rocky, and jagged to be plowed either by animals or machines, the vineyard is fragrant and wild, full of fennel, lavender, clover, poppies, and roses, with rows of quartz rocks ringing the vines, crickets chirping, and vultures soaring in wide circles in the sky above. With miniscule yields of .5kg of fruit per vine, it takes two plants to produce one bottle of wine. Aromas erupt from the glass: lavender, resin, black cherry, spicy cranberry, and crumbly warm earth. Intense Garnacha fruit fills the palate with crushed red raspberries, red currant, and crisp cranberry, with tingly young tannins, exotic sandalwood, and dense, dark schistous minerality. The intensity of these flavors is balanced by sizzling, high acidity that characterizes red wines from the Gredos Mountains . This is a beautiful and rare wine, pulsating with the raw wild force of the mountains. 1000 bottles produced. Ariana Rolich
Combate Pink is an addictive, fuschia-hued, slightly off-dry rosado of Garnacha from Maldivinas' prime vineyards in Cebreros, the heart of the Sierra de Gredos. Two-thirds of the fruit comes from vineyards on schist and one-third from granitic soils. The perfumed nose of hibiscus, wild flowers, and damp brown earth continues onto the wild, juicy palate of strawberry preserves, raspberry patch, and black tea. Lots of bright, tangy acidity is present to balance the rich, wild fruit and the touch of sugar that remains in the wine. An explosively delicious rosé for sipping and an inspired pairing for any cured or smoked pork products, dark poultry (like duck), Chinese fare, cheeses, and fruity or chocolatey desserts. One barrel produced. Ariana Rolich
Las Machuqueras is a single vineyard of Listán Blanco from the stunning southern zone of La Palma island, Fuencaliente, where Victoria Torres' winery is located. Half of the vines are 40 years old and half are over 100 years old, trained mere centimeters from the ground in long, snaking rows. Ten months on the lees in stainless steel tank and large chestnut foudre gives a gracious texture to this spirited and aromatic rendering of a typically reticent grape. Anise, orange oils, sandalwood, and rich stone fruit aromas fill the nose; flavors are deep, an electric core of acid and mineral ash, encircled by exotic notes of cinnamon, roasted fennel and cumin seeds, ocean brine, citrus leaf and tarragon, with bitter, salty, and herbal length that resonates for minutes after each sip. With air, it develops a soft, lilting saltwater texture: like ocean water lapping onto your taste buds. A magical vintage for Machuqueras. Ariana Rolich
This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.
This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.
Ismael Gozalo's MicroBio cellar in the the tiny town of Nieva (Segovia) is lined with vessels of every kind, filled with a dazzling range of Verdejo wines from his family's organically farmed vines, some up to 200 years old. Correcaminos is the entry-level wine for MicroBio, but chances are still good that you've never tasted Verdejo this genuine, fresh, textured, and downright gorgeous. Swirls of citrus -- lemonade, lime zest, orange blossoms -- dance with lemon balm, sea salt, minerals. Consume Correcaminos closer to room temperature for the full experience! Ariana Rolich
No one understands the Verdejo grape as well as Ismael Gozalo, and no one makes more beautiful and unusual Verdejo wines. Nieva York is a Pet Nat made exclusively for our market (please note the cheeky amalgamation of the Manhattan Bridge with the Aqueduct of Segovia). Aromas of sea salt and lemon blossoms, followed by a buoyant, cloud-like palate of fun, fluffy fizz grounded in herbal, earthen notes, lemon balm and chalky minerals. One of my favorite Spanish Pet Nats to date! Ariana Rolich
An eye-opening blend of 70% Pansa Blanca and 30% Pansa Rosada from 75-year-old vines planted on on the granitic "sauló" soils of Alella, north of Barcelona, just one kilometer from the coast. Intense, exotic aromas of coriander, white flowers, aloe, and mint float from the glass, followed by a bold, mineral bolt on the broad, textured palate, with refreshing notes of citrus, sea brine, Asian pear, fruit blossom florals, and salty, savory earth. We are occasionally asked the difference between wines from old vines and wines from young vines. Concentrated, mouth-filling, multi-dimensional, yet defiantly weightless, Peça d'en Blanch demonstrates the difference in every sip. Ariana Rolich
Before joining forces with Rubén Díaz to start RuBor, Orly Lumbreras was making wine solo in some of the Sierra de Gredos' most extreme and awe-inspiring vineyards on granitic soils around the austere mountain town of Navarredondilla. He is still producing Punto G, which was his first wine, made from 70 year-old Garnacha at 1,100 meters altitude, fermented with whole clusters with native yeasts, and raised in used French oak for six months. Fuller, more dense and brawny than Groove, with many years of life ahead, Punto G displays luscious dark cherries, ripe berry skins, and savory black currant fruit, full of rich earth, dried oregano, and notes of sweet spice. The complexity of this wine builds with hours and days of air. Yearning for stewed lamb or grilled steak on a cold night is activated! Ariana Rolich
Quinta Milú offers unrivaled quality, value, and sheer deliciousness among affordably-priced Ribera del Dueros. For this cuvée, German Blanco thoughtfully combines fruit from ten high altitude, organically farmed Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) vineyards averaging 45-50 years old in the village of La Aguilera. The wine displays the fresh side of Tinto Fino, with juicy purple berry and earthy plum, vivacious acid, and just the right amount of tannin to make it a perfect pairing for casual weeknight meals. Ariana Rolich
Pepe Raventos stepped outside of the Cava appellation in 2012 to create the Conca del Riu Anoia designation, which is committed to prioritizing the area's indigenous varieties, estate fruit, longer elevage, and biodynamic methods. The de Nit rosé was the first Conca wine and continues to sate and impress us with its lively aromas of pert pink lemonade, tart cranberry, and a hint of pepper; the palate is dry and elegant, with refreshing, bright acidity, flavors of strawberry seeds, musky ripe raspberries, and orange zests, flanking the complex saline and mineral core, stemming from Raventos' calcareous soils, rich with marine fossils. This is an incredibly versatile rose sparkling wine for apéritifs, snacks, richer seafood, and spicy fare. Ariana Rolich
Protocolo Zero is RuBor's first "vin de coupage," or blended wine, named for the absence of protocol in approaching each vintage. "Solo sensaciones fugaces" - only fleeting sensations - determine the contents of the wine, which is 100% Albillo Real, the great white grape of the Gredos Mountains. Rubén and Orly explore a wide range of expressions between their two old-vine Albillo parcels - La Peguera and SADE - through strategic harvest dates, skin contact, and vinification style. Protocolo Zero allows them to marry the fresh, youthful, and bright wines with rich, spicy, and aromatic ones, in proportions of their choosing. This succulent white explodes with exciting granitic texture and length, with flavors of Bosc pear, butterscotch, musky peach, minerals and a hint of fresh ginger. Pair with roasted poultry, seafood stew, chicken liver mousse, or pâtés and cheeses. Seriously delicious on its own as well! Ariana Rolich
Protocolo Zero is RuBor's first wine from a blend of vineyards -- an exuberant and supple Garnacha, with exotic perfume of rose, raspberry, hibiscus, cinnamon, and resinous herbs wafting from the glass. Spicy raspberry and stewed strawberry fruit share the stage with honeyed wild flowers, deep mineral earth, and fine tannins that stick to the tongue. This wine continues to open for days, taking on rich chocolate-raspberry, blackberry liqueur, tobacco and earth with tart skins of black cherry and cranberry and crunchy berry seeds. The Sierra de Gredos' trademark acidity and minerality are energizing foils for this extravagantly delicious and affordable, full-bodied red. Ariana Rolich
Orly Lumbreras of RuBor Viticultores described Groove as "un cañón" in its youth. With a little bit of time in bottle, it has mellowed into a veritable laser beam! This is singular Garnacha, utterly fabulous, from a single vineyard that inspired the partnership between Ruben Diaz and Orly Lumbreras in the first place. 50-year-old vines with southeast exposition on very fine granitic sandy soils at 900m altitude (the highest granitic vineyard in Cebreros, a village known for old-vine Garnacha on steep, schistous slopes). High-toned with intense, almost vertical acidity, taut black cherry, herbal black raspberry and purple berry fruit, chewy dark cherry skins, rhubarb, pink peppercorn, lots of violet, lavender, and rose florals, hints of thyme, and a taut, long, granitic mineral force. A wine to observe and celebrate over many years. Ariana Rolich
A fresh and pretty entree into the world of RuBor Viticultores, our good friends Ruben Diaz and Orly Lumbreras, this is 100% Chasselas from two small plots of 70+ year-old vines on decomposed granite soils in Cebreros, the heart of the Sierra de Gredos. With 3-4 days of skin contact, then raised entirely in stainless steel with occasional batonnage, this is a new experience of Chasselas. Bright and salty, fresh and expressive, with subtle stone fruit, white grapefruit pith, orange blossom, beeswax, and crunchy minerals, with a tickle of tannin from time on the skins. An irresistible choice for adventurous apéritifs and fresh seafood! Ariana Rolich
Lovers of white Rioja, Jurancon Sec, and Bordeaux Blanc will swoon over this unique (and uniquely delicious) white Priorat. Sara Perez and Rene Barbier Jr are the team behind the delicious and popular Venus La Universal wines from the Montsant. Both are Priorat natives and, as children of the great Jose Luis Perez of Mas Martinet and Rene Barbier of Clos Mogador, heirs to winemaking history. It was very exciting to taste a pair of Priorats from their "Sara i Rene" label that illuminate the influence of amphora aging on Garnatxa-based wines, a practice enjoying a resurgence in the region. Exotic, rich, and wild, the Partida Bellvisos Blanco is 90% Garnatxa Blanca and 10% Trepat Blanc (only 2 hectare of which are known to exist in Spain), fermented in locally-made, unlined amphora and raised partly in 15 year old 600L foudre before being moved back to amphora to complete its elevage. Full, sultry fragrances of elderflower, butterscotch, chlorine, jasmine and sweet golden fruit perfume the creamy, nutty, oxidative palate of orange, tamarind, almond oil, and tangy apricot peel; a voluptuous wine, perforated by tensile tannins. Ariana Rolich
Silice Viticultores is a partnership between super-talented winegrower Fredi Torres and brothers Carlos and Juan Rodriguez, who are dedicated to shining light on the power of the steep and mighty Ribeira Sacra region to produce complex and luscious red wines without excessive intervention. Farming is organic and biodynamic, with no additives or manipulation in the cellar (beyond tiny amounts of SO2), which sets Silice apart in a region where chemical farming and acidification of wines are commonplace. Primarily Mencia, with Merenzao, Albarello, Garnacha Tintorera, and some white grapes, from multiple small vineyards on slate and granite slopes in Amandi averaging 60-80 years old. Aromas of sweet smoke and tangy wild berries, herbs, and damp earth meet a juicy, mid-weight palate of tart cranberry, wild cherries, sour plum, cedar smoke and blueberries, with wild thyme, purple and blue florals, and salty, funky soil. Lovers of Pinot Noir and Cru Beaujolais in search of some Spanish sun, spice, and soul need look no further. Ariana Rolich
Suertes del Marqués' entry level white is a delicious introduction to the authentic, terroir-driven wines of the historic Valle de la Orotava, located on the slopes of Mt. Teide in the north of Tenerife. Trenzado (named after the local vine training system - el cordon trenzado, or "braided cordon") is 95% Listán Blanco, with small amounts of Pedro Ximénez, Gual, Marmajuelo, and more, from five vineyards, made in a combination of concrete and used oak vessels. Grapes from certain vineyards receive a week of skin contact, for a subtle and structured palate that combines fresh musky stone fruit with tart, savory tropical notes and abundant saline and volcanic mineral character. Drink with seafood dressed with garlic and herbs. Ariana Rolich
Siete Fuentes is the village red of Suertés del Marques, assembled from dozens of small parcels spanning various altitudes and terroirs in Tenerife's historic Valle de la Orotava. A fresh and fabulous introduction to the taut, pure side of Listán Negro from volcanic soils, the 2015 vintage displays savory aromas and a lifted, focused palate of juicy, muddled purple berries, herbal berry seeds, sweet and earthy smoke, pert florals, balsamic notes, and a complex bitter ash element that winds through the fruit and lasts on the finish. If I were teaching a class on Canary Island reds, this wine would be Exhibit A. It's also terrific when you need a red wine to pair with fish. Ariana Rolich
As with most serious rosés, Roc d'Aubaga is really coming into its own with some time to evolve in the bottle. Dominik Huber of Terroir al Limit continues to defy expectations with bold, unique, yet relatively light wines from the sun-baked Priorat, famous for dense and powerful reds. Roc d'Aubaga is a whole cluster co-fermentation of Grenache Noir, Grenache Gris, and Grenache Blanc, with aromas of red currant, wild rose, and hibiscus, flowing onto the subtle yet exuberant palate of wild cherry and creamy berries, with watermelon pith, cherry pits, rose hips, tea leaf, chiseled minerality, fresh acid, and lots of length. Technically a clarete (blend of red and white grapes), this is a beautiful all-season rose, shining with richer duck dishes as well as grilled shrimp and summer vegetables. Ariana Rolich
Dominik Huber is a bold and innovative force in the Priorat today, challenging convention and expectations with his steady progress toward lower alcohol and extraction in his fascinating single-vineyard/village/variety bottlings for Terroir Al Límit, centered around his adopted home town of Torroja. Huber's new label, Terroir Historic, offers a macro view of the Priorat by combining fruit from organically-farmed vineyards all around the Priorat's nine villages into a regional wine. Vinification is simple and traditional with whole cluster, native yeast fermentations, six months in large concrete tanks and a minimum of SO2. The white is Garnatxa Blanca and Macabeu, from both young and old vines and a mix of Priorat terroirs. Fiesty and bright, with orange rind, bee pollen, honey, and a hint of petrol on the nose; effusive tannins frame the medium-bodied palate, with orange oil, watermelon rind, apricot, and salty mineral notes. An incredibly interesting and delicious wine that will change the way you view the Priorat. Ariana Rolich
Priorat natives Sara Perez and Rene Barbier Jr. balance freshness with great complexity in all of their wines for Venus La Universal. Upon first sip of "La Solucio" rosé, we were hooked! A blend of red and white grapes from the Montsant -- Garnacha, Carignan, and Syrah, plus Macabeu, Garnacha Blanca, and Garnacha Gris -- are pressed all together, co-fermented, and aged for approximately 10 months in very old barrels before bottling. Pale, twinkling, rosy coppery peach in the glass, with orange peel, cherry, and watermelon; textured with tender tannins and lots of length, supporting sultry apricot, wild berries, bitter citrus, creamy florals, and salty mineral and earth tone. It will only get better with some age, so don't be afraid to stock up. Ariana Rolich
This wine is in the warehouse and will not be available for pick-up or delivery until after Labor Day.
Zorzal takes the Graciano grape to new heights with this inexpensive but outrageously delicious 35-year-old, organically-farmed vines in Spain's Navarra region (Rioja's overlooked neighbor). This is a generous, crowd-pleasing, and thirst-quenching red on the fuller side of medium-bodied. It is pretty and perfumed, with flavors of juicy purple plum, ripe red raspberry, and dark cherry, violet flowers, soft funky earth, spearmint leaf, cinnamon spice, smooth tannins, rich texture, and just enough acidity. Unfined, unfiltered, and fermented with native yeasts. Ariana Rolich
Viña Zorzal offers some seriously delicious wines from old vines for very little money (as fans of their delightful red Graciano can attest). This one honors the traditional wine of the Navarra region - rosado of Garnacha. The 2016 is lighter and fresher than ever, while retaining traditional deep hue and Garnacha spice! Fragrant red currant, raspberry, and pink peppercorn aromas lead to crunchy cranberry and strawberry fruit flavors, with zesty pink grapefruit and tropical and herbal undertones on the finish. The label features a popcorn kernel pattern because Xabi Sanz of Zorzal recommends it as an accompaniment to popcorn and a movie. We look forward to giving that pairing a try! Ariana Rolich