Friday Feature 06/24/16: The New 6 for $70 Something Sampler!

It’s the last Friday of the month, and that means time to introduce my latest edition of the 6 for $70-Something Wine Sampler!

If you haven’t heard of it, this is Chicago and the Universe’s best-value wine sampler. 6 bottles, chosen by yours truly, with seasonality and value in mind. I taste a lot of inexpensive wine, sort out the massive amounts of average and bad, and bring you the most delicious wines available.

This month’s sampler is truly outstanding and includes some wines that we bring in directly to the store just for you! There are three white wines, one rosé and two reds. A couple of the wines are being offered at very special prices through the month of July.

I’m proud to say that for $79.50, you won’t be able to buy 6 better value wines anywhere!

The sampler is in stock and ready to pick up!

Keep these wines in mind for your July 4th parties!

Have a great weekend,
Craig

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6 for $70-Something
Ameal
2015 Quinta do Ameal Loureiro, Lima, Portugal

This past week I was speaking with a journalist for an upcoming article on Portuguese wines. He asked me what Portuguese wine was most well-known? My answer centered on three of Portugal’s most famous wines, for better or for worse: Port, Mateus Rosé, and Vinho Verde.

Later in the week, Vinho Verde was in the headlines, in an excellent article written by Zachary Sussman for PunchDrink.com . You should read the article for yourself, but it spoke to the two faces of Vinho Verde.

The first, the light, spritzy, low-alcohol style that typically lines the shelves of grocery and convenience stores alike.

The other face is equally as refreshing, but is a more naturally made, more cared for wine, and ranges in style depending on the sub-region and varietal.

Today’s wine, Quinta do Ameal was mentioned in the article for being a leader in quality in the Lima sub-appellation of Vinho Verde.

For over three years, Perman Wine has been championing the magnificent work that Pedro Araujo, owner of Quinta do Ameal has been doing with the Loureiro grape. We introduced this wine to many of our customers and many across the country. We’ve written about the producer countless times.

While I am not a believer in the usage of press or scores as a singular sales tool, I do want to mention that the 2015 vintage of Ameal was recently highlight in Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate, by Mark Squires who covers the Portuguese wine world. In it, the 2015 vintage of Ameal was given 94 Points, one of the best reviewed wines in the entire article. This is a big deal for Quinta do Ameal. It signifies that the work they are doing to show the other face of Vinho Verde has been validated.

Simply put, this is one of the best value white wines you will taste this year. It is made entirely from the Loureiro varietal, grown on the granite soils of the Ponte de Lima sub-region. It explodes out of the glass with aromatic notes of lime, lemon peel, grapefruit, white flowers and mineral. It is bright and juicy in the mouth, with a core of fruit and texture that will surprise those who are used to the typical no-weight Vinho Verde. The finish is complex, long and utterly delicious.

This is a wine that you will have a hard time resisting now, but it will gain in complexity for over a decade in bottle.

A truly amazing value – get some before it disappears!

$15.00 BTL. / $180.00 CASE

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RabasseCharavin
2014 Rabasse-Charavin “…la suite” Vin de France

It’s back, and just arrived. I’m always really excited when the new vintages from Domaine Rabasse Charavin, one of the top producers in the village of Cairanne in the Southern Rhône, arrive!

These are wines that have never had a huge name in the United States, largely because about 50% of the wines are sold out of their cellar to regular customers. A small amount does make it into the United States, and I first tasted the wines back when I was living in Portland, Oregon.

What I’ve always known and enjoyed about the wines are their uncompromisingly traditional style. The Couturier family works with a lot of old-vines and always very low-yields. The wines are fermented and aged typically in concrete vats, and as a result are always very slow to unwind.

This Vin de France called “…la suite” is a wine that I perennially use in my samplers. It is the type of red you want to drink during the summer with grilled foods. A blend of Grenache, Syrah, Cinsault and Mourvèdre, cropped at 30 hl/ha, and vinified in concrete vat.

A vibrant red berry-scented nose, mixed with freshly cracked pepper and herbs leads into a medium-bodied mouthfeel, with flavors that mirror the aromatics. It maintains a freshness that keeps you coming back, glass after glass.

Fire up the grill, pop some bottles of “…la suite” and your day will have gotten a whole lot better!

$13.00 BTL. / $156.00 CASE

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DareiReserva
2011 Casa de Darei “Lagar de Darei Tinto Reserva, Dão, Portugal

ATTENTION – You know this wine, you love this wine, and now its time to move to the next vintage. In order to do so, I’ve decided to clear some room. This wine which normally retails for $19 is being featured for the month of July for $15!

For those of you who don’t know the wines of Casa de Darei, a brief primer. Located in the Dão region of Northern Central Portugal, Darei, owned by the fantastic Ruivo family, is quietly making some of the regions best wines.

What makes the Dão such a fantastic region is two fold. The first part has to do with its geography and climate. Protected by mountains, its lack of influence from the sea makes it a warm region, particularly in the day and late afternoon. Its elevation, gives it a huge diurnal temperature shift, bringing cool air in the night, and allowing it to have that rare combination of richness and freshness. The second important part of the Dão, is its largely granite-based soil, which brings an mineral inflection to the wines.

Make no mistake about it, this four-grape-blend of Touriga Nacional, Jaen, Tinta Roriz and Alfrocheiro is a full-bodied red. Yet its exuberance is also accompanied by earth notes and elegance.

It is a wine to drink now alongside grilled red meats, but you can also stash a case of this to drink over the next 10 years. Please don’t miss the opportunity to try this fantastic red. For those that have tried it and come back for more, stock up because the 2012 will return to its regular price.

$15.00 BTL. / $180.00 CASE – NORMALLY $19, SPECIAL PRICE GOOD THROUGH JULY

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MassoneGavi
2014 Stefano Massone “Masera” Gavi, Piemonte, Italy

Year in and year out this is one of the best values from the appellation of Gavi in Piedmont, Italy. In the province of Alessandria, the Cortese grape varietal is at its best in the poor calcareous soils of the Gavi region.

Established in 1975, the Massone family has focused on Cortese, today producing three white wines from different vineyards in their region. “Masera” has always produced a white wine with beautiful and delicate citrus fruit and mineral. An ideal white wine to just relax and have a glass of or to drink alongside simply prepared shellfish or white fish.

As the distributor moves into the new vintage, he has offered the 2014 to us at a fantastic price for the sampler. If you love Gavi, and you should, take advantage of this price now. Just 10 cases are available.

$10.50 BTL. / $126.00 CASE – PRICE GOOD THROUGH THE MONTH OF JULY

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SaimaRose
2015 Casa de Saima Rosé, Bairrada, Portugal

Our third and last Portuguese wine of the sampler. We are so excited to have the newest release of this fantastic Rosé from Bairrada producer, Casa de Saima.

Those that made it to the tasting at the store when Graça Miranda and José Romeu from Saima visited, got a sneak preview of this absolutely electric Rosé.

I say electric because you’ve never seen a color on a Rosé like this. Its almost florescent!

The truth is, the Portuguese really don’t produce that much Rosé outside of the large scale producers. Yet Saima is very proud of their Rosé made from the classic grape varietal of the region, Baga.

This is one of the most complex, yet quaffable Rosé we have tasted all year. Big bright dark cherry notes mingle with herbs, finishes with vibrant acidity.

Rosé is such a great wine for pairing with many types of food, but this one wins in terms of its ability to work with everything, including foods with high spice levels.

Can’t wait for you to try this!

$12.00 BTL. / $144.00 CASE

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liquiereBlanc
2015 Château de la Liquière “Les Amandiers” Blanc, Languedoc, France

Every Spring/Early Summer you can expect to see the new vintage from stalwart Faugéres producer Château de la Liquière on these newsletters. What is great about Liquière is their ability to deliver excellence, and still provide wines of great value to include in our samplers.

Since you know the story about the Vidal family and their amazing property in the Faugères appellation of the Languedoc, we will focus today on the wine at hand.

“Amandiers” is one of the value ranges at Liquière. The white wine version is a blend of 30% Roussanne, 25% Grenache Blanc, 20% Terret, 10% Viognier, 10% Bourboulenc and 5% Marsanne. Say that ten times, real fast!

Grown on the classic schist soil of the region, the grapes are hand picked, gently pressed, and fermented in stainless steel at a cool temperature. The wine does not undergo malolactic fermentation, which helps retain some of the freshness.

This has lovely delicate floral and stone fruit notes, with good freshness and mineral on the finish. It is an excellent wine for cow or goat milk cheeses, but also is a perfect summer white as it stands up to grilled fish and shellfish. A great Rhône varietal value.

$14.00 BTL. / $168.00 CASE

Posted in Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters

Friday Feature 06/17/16: The New 6 for $70 Something Sampler

I’m excited to present the latest edition of my Six for $120-Something sampler. One of two monthly samplers that I offer at Perman Wine, the $120-Something, like its younger brother the $70-Something, is a terrific way to explore the world of wine, all at great prices.

Since we live our lives seasonally, the samplers do as well. As we have moved firmly into summer, this months sampler features one white wine, one fizzy white wine, one bubbly white wine, a dry Rosé, and two fantastic reds for the grill.

We have many customers who have signed up to have this delivered to their house each and every month, and others who simply stop by anytime in the coming month to pick one up. The choice is yours.

I’ve got a great line-up for you this month, and they are in stock and ready to pick up!

Have a fantastic weekend and Happy Father’s Day to all the Dad’s out there!

Cheers,
Craig

6 for $120-Something Sampler
MatelloWhistling
2014 Matello “”Whistling Ridge” White Wine, Willamette Valley, Oregon

First I’ll own up to winemaker of Matello and Goodfellow Family Cellars, Marcus Goodfellow as being one of my long-time, good friends. Then I’m going to tell you the un-biased truth, this particular wine is one of Oregon’s absolute “must try” white wines.

Inspired by the master winemaker Marcel Deiss from Alsace, this white wine, all fruit from the Whistling Ridge Vineyard is a co-fermented blend of Riesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir and Gewürztraminer.

Fresh and aromatic, with gorgeous citrus and orchard fruit notes, mineral, and a seamless texture. It is one of the most versatile food pairing wines that I know of. Don’t miss this! Only 90 cases produced!

$27.00 BTL. / ONLY 48 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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LiquiereVV
2014 Château de la Liquière Faugères “Vieilles Vignes,” Languedoc, France

Making a return to the Perman Wine line-up is a winery from the Faugères appellation in the Languedoc that offers exceptional wines at incredible prices.

The Vidal family owns 60 hectares of beautiful vineyards in Faugères. They’ve been making wines in the region since the 1700’s. Today they are known as one of the top producers of the appellation.

You can’t talk about the region without mentioning the large deposits of schist soil. Faugères is all about schist.

This wine is a classic representation of what that soil can bring. A blend of 40% Carignan, 40% Grenache, 10% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre, all from old-vines grown on schist. It is a full-bodied red, with rich dark and red fruit notes, spice and great length.

Decant this wine, put the decanter on some ice for a few minutes to enjoy at cellar temperature, and grill some red meat! It’s a great combination. For those who like to find values to cellar for a few years, this will enjoy a decade evolution in bottle.

$19.00 BTL. / $114.00 SIX-PACK CASE

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AmeztoiTxak
2015 Ameztoi Txakolina, Getariako, País Vasco

Ask any person in the food and wine industry what their drink of choice is in the summer, and 7 times out of 10 someone will mention Txakolina.

The frothy, high acid, white wine that comes from the beautiful Basque country in the North of Spain has producing this wine for many years. In the last decade, its exploded in the US, with parties devoted to it, You Tube videos showing it being poured out of a Porrón from great heights, and who knows in the future, it may even make a rap video.

Speaking of rap, the guy with the most street cred in the world of Txakolina is Ignacio Ameztoi. His winery in the Getariako sub-region has for a long time produced arguably the greatest interpretation.

The 2015 Ameztoi Txakolina is made from 90% Hondarribi Zuri and 10% Hondarribi Beltza. Fermented in stainless steel tank and bottled with residual carbonic acid, this wine has a natural spritz when poured.

It’s ultra-light, super zingy, with lime and mineral notes. I will caution you that a bottle of this is likely to disappear in just a few minutes. Which means you should never just have 1 bottle. Stock up today before it disappears, it will be the life of your summer party.

FYI – we sell Porróns for $20 and you should own one. It is the adult version of a beer bong.

$20 BTL. / $240.00 CASE

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SaimaEspumante
2014 Casa de Saima Espumante Bruto, Bairrada, Portugal

I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again, the Bairrada region of Portugal produces likely the best value, Champagne-method sparkling in the world.

This Atlantic-influenced region grows indigenous varietals to produce their sparkling wine. Grapes like Maria Gomas and Bical are often used in its production.

Today we are excited to announce the new arrival and vintage from Graça Miranda of Casa de Saima. A small family winery in Sangalhos in Bairrada, one of the specialties of the house are their two different sparkling wines.

This one is made from those aforementioned varieties, produced in the Champagne method, with secondary fermentation in bottle and aging on its lees.

It is a bright, fresh, citrus dominated sparkling wine, with just the right amount of mineral and leesy aromas and flavors. This is great to just sip on all by itself, but also can pair well with food. Traditionally in Bairrada it is served alongside Leitão, the suckling pig of the region. A good article about Leitão here.

Every household should have some of the Saima Espumante on hand for everyday bubbly drinking!

$15.00 BTL. / $90 SIX-PACK CASE

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RussoEtna
2014 Girolamo Russo “‘a Rina” Etna Rosso, Sicily, Italy

One of my favorite Italian wine regions is that of Etna Rosso. So many fascinating and delicious wines are being produced in a region that over two decades ago was relatively unknown.

Giuseppe Russo is one of the rising stars of the Etna Rosso appellation. A former pianist, he took over some of his family’s vineyards in 2005. The vineyards are located on the North side of Etna, near the town of Passopisciaro. He works organically in the vineyard, and is focused on allowing his hard work there shine brightly in the wines.

‘a Rina is the starting point for tasting at Girolamo Russo, 94% Nerello Mascalese and 6% Nerello Cappuccino from younger vines in the zones of San Lorenzo, Feudo and Calderara Sottana.

While there is an elegance within this wine, this classic Etna Rosso pairs beautiful fruit alongside tannin, herbal notes and spice. It is a wine for the table, a perfect pairing with grilled meat, whether it be lamb chops or a dry-aged ribeye. Decant this for an hour before you enjoy. It is a terrific value!

$24.00 BTL./ $288 CASE

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AcusticRosat
2015 Acústic Celler Rosat, Montsant, Catalunya

Our friend Albert Jané of Acústic Celler was just in town, and we had a great tasting with him at the store. Albert, a long time friend, has really established himself as one of the top producers of Montsant in Catalunya. If you don’t know where Catalunya is, it is the region that encompasses Barcelona. I’m told that it is part of Spain, but every time I say that around Albert, he promptly corrects me and tell me that its not Spain, its Catalunya.

Whatever the case may be, the wines of Montsant are based around the Grenache and Carignan varietals. So is this Rosé or Rosat in Catalan, is a blend of predominantly Carignan and Grenache from the old-vines that typify the region.

That is why Albert decided to produce wine in Montsant, he sought out the beauty of the old and wise vines that had been planted by generations before.

Today they give us a truly spectacular Rosat. I love this for its ability to deliver pretty cherry and wild strawberry notes, but with a texture that allows it to work with a wide variety of food, and a freshness that keeps you coming back for glass after glass. This is Albert’s best Rosat to date, and you are going to want to try it. You will be back for more. I guarantee!

$18.00 BTL. / $216.00 CASE

Posted in Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters

Friday Feature 06/10/16: Old School Bordeaux from Maison Blanche and Clos du Jaugueyron

I have a really exciting Friday Feature for you today. For the first time ever, I have a guest writer on our Friday Feature!

I was introduced to today’s wines by Nadim Audi, who works for Selection Massale, a rising star in the import world. Nadim asked me to taste some of the new arrivals of Bordeaux that they were importing. I was really impressed by what I tasted.

Normally, I would take it from there and write a glowing newsletter, but being that he had just traveled to Bordeaux, and seemed extra inspired, I asked him to give us his thoughts on the producers and wines.

The commercial aspect of the Bordeaux world, makes it a turn off for someone like me, who enjoys the romantic side of wine. I want to buy wines made by vigneron who produce with both terroir and their own personal taste in mind. Wine that is manipulated for a particular market, or to attain a score doesn’t motivate me.

That is why these wines are so important. They are from people who are passionate about their place, are farmers at heart, and produce wines that warm the soul.

They are also incredibly delicious!

Whether you are just discovering or giving Bordeaux another chance, or have been drinking the wines for decades, these are worthwhile purchases.

Have a great weekend,
Craig

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All hail our guest writer, Nadim Audi from Selection Massale:

It’s weird for a guy who grew up on sulfur free Gamay to be writing about Bordeaux. It took me a minute to get there. Those of us who came of age during the early days of the natural wine movement had to learn the difference between a wine that tastes like earth and a wine that’s just plain dirty. Some of us still don’t make the distinction.

But for those who sorted it out, the path clears up. You want something that tastes like earth and fruit. So you start drinking good Beaujolais. You eat steak often, so you become a sucker for Chinon and Bourgueil. Maybe you get a taste or two of Clos Rougeard. Then the lightbulb goes on. Bordeaux was here the whole time.

“I keep trying to find Bordeaux that tastes like the wines used to before the 80s,” Craig said to me while we were tasting the wines. “These do.” Here are two different approaches to what making old-school Bordeaux could mean. Michel Théron at Clos du Jaugueyron owns 7 hectares of vines and is surrounded by neighbors 10 times his size. Maison Blanche is a more traditional estate on its history and scale.
MaisonBlanche
Maison Blanche

Nicolas Despagne comes from a long line of vignerons, and when the time came to split the family’s properties between he and his siblings, Nicolas decided to focus on the more humble terroirs of Montagne St. Emilion rather than chase after his family’s more prestigious holdings. This is a traditional Bordeaux domaine which has been around since the 1870s, and owns 40 hectares of vines in Montagne St. Emilion. Nicolas has been farming organically since 06 and has been fully converted to biodynamic farming in 2011. He prefers to speak of ‘traditional farming.’In the cellar, the wines – about 60/40 cabernet franc and merlot – are fermented naturally in cement vats lined with glass before being racked in barrels. That’s pretty much it. They see very little new oak. These are real throwback Bordeaux, lively and vibrant at 12.5% alcohol. The wine on offer today is the 2012 Le Colombier de la Métairie, which is Maison Blanche’s second label. These are meant for earlier drinking than the ‘grand vin’ but a recent experience with an 07 shows the wines can age very gracefully.

2012 Maison Blanche “Le Colombier de la Métairie” Bordeaux
$26.99 BTL. / $323.88 CASE

ClosDuJaugueyron
Clos du Jaugueyron

Michel Theron wasn’t supposed to be making Haut-Medoc. Originally from the Languedoc Roussillon, when he went to Bordeaux to study winemaking in 1998, the plan he had in mind was to go back to the family estate and take over. It never happened. Instead, he fell in love with a Bordelaise, and in 1994, the couple produced their first wine from a small parcel in Cantenac they bought in 1993.

Today the estate has developed to a little over 7 hectares in Arsac, Cantenac, and Margaux. Classic Medoc soil with a lot of small gravels and sand, Michel is a firm believer in organic/biodynamic viticulture, converting officially with the 2008 vintage. The vineyards are plowed, the ecosystem is taken care of, and Michel has never used synthetic products in the vineyards.

The gravels and sandy soil of Macau, with very little clay, tend to bring very mineral, terroir driven fruits, while the Terroir of Arsac, with more clay, tend to bring more fruits. Michel is here to make sure the balance between the terroirs make sense in the wines. The end result is Classic, age worthy, Traditional Medoc of a kind we had previously been disposed to think was extinct.
We are very glad that Michel has proved us wrong on that point, because these are some of the most exciting wines we work with, and among the group of wines that we drink the most of ourselves.

The Margaux “Nout” sees a little more wood and is mainly Merlot from young vines in Macau, a fresher Margaux. The Clos du Jaugueyron is the most important wine Michel makes. Long, complex, probably indestructible, it is a wine that is true to the traditions of Margaux; without the Chateau owner, the cellar master and the army of workers. And without all the chemicals.

2012 Clos du Jaugueyron “Nout” Margaux
$54.99 BTL. / $659.88 CASE

2012 Clos du Jaugueyron Margaux
$105.99 BTL. / ONLY 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

Posted in Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters

Friday Feature 06/03/16: 2014 Spring Releases from Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey, hard to find wines of Cédric Bouchard, Cameron, Cappellano, Foillard and more!

I’m so excited for today’s newsletter.

First, some big news on the logistical front.

I am thrilled to announce our partnership with the newly launched UberRush. This is a door to door delivery service, kind of like Uber for your booze!

Here is how it works. You call in or email an order, give me a delivery address, and I contact UberRush on your behalf. It immediately gives me a locked in price quote when I type in the address. After completing our transaction, in just minutes your wine will be on the way to you. It will text you when its in route. Next thing you know, you meet your wine at the door. It’s that easy.

This is a game changer in my opinion.

Going to a BYOB and want your wine and beer to meet you there? Check!

Need some wine on a Saturday? Before it was expensive and subject to the whims of a dinosaur-like, not-to-be-named courier service.

Above all, it works with your busy lifestyle and allows us to offer delivery any time we are open.

This is not a replacement for our trusty courier Dennis. If you have a big order, or need the wine lugged up to your office or residence, UberRush is not the answer.

So keep the Perman Wine / UberRush combo in mind for your last minute delivery needs.

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Another reason for the excitement is based on all the incredible, rare, and delicious wines I am offering on today’s Friday Feature!

This time of year, so many new wines arrive that I can’t keep up in my communication of these to you.

Today’s Friday Feature focuses on many of our most rare recent arrivals. Due to the amount of wines we are offering, I’ve kept descriptions brief.

Many of these wines are in such limited quantities that they will sell out quickly.

Please let me know if you have any questions on these world-class offerings.

Hope you have a great weekend!

Craig

pycm
Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey

Pierre Yves Colin is garnering a lot of attention in the Cotes de Beaune, and the excitement surrounding his wines is palpable. His name is now uttered in the same hushed breaths as Roulot, Coche & Lafon. In 2005 he split from his family’s domaine, taking with him his 6ha inheritance. The Colin-Morey label also includes purchased fruit from Puligny-Montrachet as well as some Bienvenues-Bâtard-Montrachet & Bâtard-Montrachet.

Pierre Yves has evolved dramatically as a winemaker since his departure 11 years ago. In response to the growing concerns over prematurely-oxidizing white Burgundies, he has stopped all battonage (lees stirring) and the cellar is not heated to hasten the malolactic fermentations. He is utilizing less new oak, bigger casks (350 L pieces versus the traditional 228 L barrique) and the wine goes through longer elevages (time in barrel). Finally, the bottles are sealed with wax that has not been treated with peroxide.

Now, about Saint-Aubin. This is a village that sits directly behind and to the west of Chassagne and Puligny-Montrachet. To proclaim that it is the same due to its proximity is overstating the situation, but to ignore it’s great value would be dismissive. The Colin family, from whom Pierre-Yves is descended, owns quite a nice chunk of Saint-Aubin. And Pierre-Yves’ lawful inheritance included several hectares of 1er Crus in this relatively ignored village. Saint-Aubin makes up 60% of his total production. The rows that Pierre Yves owns are optimally situated upon hillsides, and the resulting wines are stunning.

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2014 Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Bourgogne Blanc

The fruit comes from outside Puligny & Saint-Aubin, a fantastic entry into this producer’s style.

$43.99/BTL.
15 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2014 Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin ‘Le Banc”

A single vineyard that continues up the valley from Les Castetes, sometimes called “Le Ban”.

$58.99/BTL.
6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2014 Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin ‘Les Combes 1er Cru’

25 ha vineyard south of Chassagne, mineral driven with good richness.

$64.99/BTL.
8 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2014 Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin ‘Champlots 1er Cru’

A steep, south-west facing vineyard overlooking the village of Gamay. This plot is farmed mainly by the Colin family.

$68.99/BTL.
6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2014 Pierre-Yves Colin-Morey Saint-Aubin ‘En Remilly 1er Cru”

This may be the most well-known vineyard in all of Saint-Aubin and considered, critically, to be the best. It is the closest to Le Montrachet and in possession of steep, stony soils. This is one to lay down for a few years.

$77.99/BTL.
6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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bouchard

Cédric Bouchard Champagne

One of the top 5 producers in Champagne today. I don’t think there are many winemakers in the world more meticulous than Cédric Bouchard. The idea is simple: one grape, one terroir from a single vintage. That is what Cédric does. If anyone believes that Champagne from the Aube, can’t be as good as one from Le Mesnil, Ambonnay or any other village in the heart of Champagne, then they haven’t tried Cédric Bouchard. With only around 15,000 bottles produced per year, these are allocated in bottles and not cases. Do not miss these!

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2013 Cédric Bouchard Champagne “Roses de Jeanne – Val Vilaine”Blanc de Noir

100% Pinot Noir planted on Kimmeridgian soil. “Val Vilaine” is always expressive in its youth, and is the one in the line-up that you can pop and drink right away.

$58.99 BTL. / ONLY 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2008 Cédric Bouchard Champagne “Roses de Jeanne – Côte de Béchalin” Blanc de Noir

100% Pinot Noir from the vineyard of Côtes de Béchalin.” This has the longest time on its lees of all Bouchard’s Champagne, a total of 80 months. The 2008 is spectacular and accessible if drinking now.

$89.99 BTL. / ONLY 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2011 Cédric Bouchard Champagne “Roses de Jeanne – Les Ursules” Blanc de Noir

100% Pinot Noir, the most well-known of the lieu-dit because it was the first under the Roses de Jeanne label. 35+ year-old vines, 28 months on its lees. Most importantly a wine to give some time to. If drinking now, please decant, otherwise hold from 2018-2025.

$89.99 BTL. / ONLY 18 BOTTLES AVAILABLE
BALLERS INQUIRE INTO MAGNUMS

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2011 Cédric Bouchard Champagne “Roses de Jeanne – Presle” Blanc de Noir

You’ve never seen it, I’ve never seen it. Brand new wine made entirely of Pinot Noir from 10 different Burgundian clones, vines which were planted in 2007. 3 years on its lees. Stunning now, but please hold for another couple years, drinking from 2018 – 2023.

$125.99 BTL. / ONLY 6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2011 Cédric Bouchard Champagne “Roses de Jeanne – Les Hautes Lemblée” Blanc de Blancs

If your a Blanc de Blancs enthusiast, loving all that is Chardonnay from Champagne and haven’t tried this single vineyard from Bouchard, you are missing out. Mineral inflected, and wonderfully elegant. Decant if drinking now, but best from 2020-2030.

$114.99 BTL. / ONLY 6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2011 Cédric Bouchard Champagne “Roses de Jeanne – La Bolorée” Blanc de Blancs

If you haven’t discovered Pinot Blanc from Champagne, then this is a must try. Easily one of my favorite Champagnes, and difficult to put into words how good it is. I was lucky enough to try a 2007 in April at the winery, and it was mind blowing. Give this time in bottle, you can decant one now, but best to drink 2020-2030.

$147.99 BTL. / ONLY 6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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Cameron

2014 Cameron Pinot Noir “Ribbon Ridge,” Willamette Valley, Oregon

We are super fortunate to be the exclusive retailer of Cameron Winery in the Midwest. If you’ve ever been to Oregon you know the cult-like status of these wines within the state. So much so that, I’ve begged owner/winemaker John Paul for years to give me some for my deserved customers.

We’ve typically only received in the past Arley’s Leap, and the two top Pinot’s from Clos Electrique and Abbey Ridge. Those aren’t at everyday prices – but 2014 Ribbon Ridge is.

All the Pinot comes from Alan Foster at Foster Farms in the Ribbon Ridge AVA of the Willamette Valley.

It offers a mixture of dark and red fruit notes, underly earth and spice notes and a really long, complex finish. You can drink this now, but it can evolve for 10 years in bottle.

At $28.99 this is a steal. It will sell out quickly, or at least should!

$28.99 BTL. / ONLY 60 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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Thibaud

2014 Thibaud Boudignon Savennières “Les Fougerais,” Loire Valley, France

Every April when I travel to France I pay special attention to what is hot in the wine world. When you visit top restaurants, and wine shops all through the country and see one or two wines that everyone has, despite their limited nature, you know its worth checking out.

Such was the case with this wine from Thibaud Boudignon, a young superstar in the Loire Valley making wines from Anjou and Savennières.

This Chenin Blanc was one of the best wines I tasted in France, and I spent a week visiting the best of Champagne and Burgundy!

It strikes the perfect balance, between the intensity that Chenin can get in Savennières, the mineral notes that come along with its schist soil origins, and the freshness that Chenin from the region brings.

A wine to decant and drink now, or to drink over the next decade. Easily one of the best Savennières I’ve had in a long time.

$49.99 BTL. / $599.88 CASE

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Foillard

Jean Foillard Morgon

In wine-geekdom circles, one of the Kings of Beaujolais. Highly sought after, and deservedly so. Age-worthy Morgon.

2014 Jean Foillard Morgon “Cuvée Corcelette”

80 year-old vines planted on sandstone. Aged in a combination of used oak and founder. Rich but with an underlying elegance. Drink now – 2025.

$39.99 BTL. / 10 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2014 Jean Foillard Morgon “Côte de Py”

From 10 to 90 year-old vines planted on a mixture of Schist, Granite and Manganese. A wine with some serious, underlying structure. One of the most famous Cru’s for its ability to age. Decant and drink now, or hold through 2030.

$39.99 BTL. / 8 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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Cappellano

Cappellano

Cappellano is on my short list of the greatest producers in the Barolo region of Italy. The winery is tiny, not so much bigger than my store. It’s limited production, roughly 10,000 bottles of total production, is quickly snapped up by enthusiasts of the region. Yet, ultimately what makes this winery so special is their vineyards, the majority of the Cappellano vines sit in the Gabutti cru, one of the best of Serralunga d’Alba and Barolo in general. Piedmont enthusiasts should not miss these.

2014 Cappellano Dolcetto d’Alba

Dolcetto is thought of as the “everyday” wine in Piedmont. This is one of the best Dolcetto you can get your hands on. From the Gabutti vineyard, it has some serious beauty and power to it.

$35.99 BTL. / ONLY 4 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2011 Cappellano Barbera d’Alba “Gabutti Vineyard”

Barbara from the Gabutti vineyard, and it really takes on that character with its extended aging in barrel and bottle. On the structured style of the grape varietal. An amazingly complex Barbera.

$48.99 BTL. / ONLY 6 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

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2012 Cappellano Nebiolo d’Alba

Cappellano primarily grows in Serralunga, but this Nebbiolo comes from the nearby village of Novello. This Nebbiolo is one that can be approached early, decant and drink now, and it will also age for a decade.

$48.99 BTL. / SADLY ONLY 1 BOTTLE AVAILABLE

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2011 Cappellano Barolo “Pié Rupestris”

An exceptional single vineyard Barolo from the Gabutti vineyard. True to the nature of Serralunga, this isn’t a shy wine, its brooding in its youth, somewhat “sauvage.” With time, it reveals its beautiful red fruit, fennel and truffle aromas and flavors. The 2011 does open with decanting, even in its youth its worth checking in. But we all know that patience is rewarded and ultimately you can drink this over 2 decades. One of the best.

$93.99 BTL. / ONLY 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE

Posted in Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters

Shabby-Chic Wine Pairing of the Week: Fried Chicken & Clos Guirouilh “La Peirine” Jurancon Sec ‘13

Ah, the joys of fried chicken! Simultaneously crispy & juicy, one bite usually sends me into a “Jaws” like feeding frenzy ending with bare bones & crumpled napkins. What wine works with this favorite finger-licking food? Why not one that’s crispy & juicy in it’s own right!

Just over the border with Spain, nestled among the French foothills of the Pyrenees, is the A.O.C. of Jurancon. Vines of Gros & Petit Manseng dominate the high altitude vineyards, many of them trained on pergolas so that strong dry winds keep the grapes healthy. This is where Clos Guirouilh makes their sensational “La Peirine” cuvee of Jurancon Sec. Elevation, calcium rich soil & exposure to the warm wind called the Foehn allows their grapes to achieve maximum ripeness without sacrificing crisp acidity.

The flavors of the 2013 “La Peirine” flirt with the entire spectrum of tree fruit. From crisp green apples to juicy pears, this Jurancon Sec is like a stroll through a late summer orchard. The rich savory qualities of a good piece of piping hot fried chicken provide the perfect foil for the fresh flavors of the wine. So, what are you waiting for?!? Come on by the shop and pick up a bottle, head to your favorite chicken joint, roll out the picnic blanket & pray for a summer full of such simple pleasures. -ZM

Clos Guirouilh “La Peirine” Jurancon Sec 2013- South West France

$27/BTL

Posted in The Wine Wire

Friday Feature 05/27/16: The New 6 for $70-Something Sampler!

Hello and Happy Friday!
Magic and Kareem, Jordan and Pippen, Batman and Robin, Beavis and Butt-Head, Eric B. & Rakim, Simon & Garfunkel, De Niro and Pacino, Bert & Ernie.
These are some of the greatest duos of all-time.
One duo that I personally believe deserves to be on that list, is Craig & Sheb.
Over the past 3 1/2 years, Shebnem has been an integral part of the Perman Wine team. Sadly for all of us, her time at Perman Wine is soon coming to a close.  Next Thursday, June 3rd will be Sheb’s last day at the store, making this her last Friday Feature.
It is difficult to explain in words what Sheb has meant to the store and me personally. She invested herself in my business, and as a business owner, that is the best you can hope for. Even more importantly, she took great pleasure in promoting wines that we both shared a passion for. Her dedication and service to you, our fantastic customers, is something that I know she also took great pride in.
I can’t thank Sheb enough for all that she has done!
I know she has plans to stay active in the wine community, consulting and writing about wine. It will be exciting to see what is to come.
As for the store, I’m back to where I started, manning the ship all by myself.  I’ve got a lot of exciting plans in the works for the store, so stay tuned!
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In other news, please note Perman Wine Selections will be closed this Monday, May 30th for Memorial Day. 
Have a great holiday weekend,
Craig (and Sheb for the next few days)

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6 for $70-Something
2015 Château de la Liquière Faugères Rosé “Les Amandiers”- Languedoc, France
We have re-upped on our yearly allocation from Château de la Liquière, and are excited to feature the 2015 in our sampler this month. This is a beloved producer who work in the village  of Faugères, a stony (schist if you will) appellation just northwest of beziers, in the Herald hills.  It is part of the overarching Côteaux du Languedoc appellation, but because of these special soils, the wines from this area have the right top bear the name of the village on the label.
Chateau de la Liquiére is a beautiful 60 hectare domaine, the family has been producing estate bottled wine long before many in the region did (viticulture in the Languedoc was often cooperative or negociant driven). The family has a great commitment to the environment and farm organically. The produce rosé, white and red wine.
The Amandiers bottlings are from younger vines on the estate. The rosé is comprised of 50% Cinsault, 35% Mourvèdre and15% Grenache and the wine is result of the direct press method, fresh dry and fruity all at once, the epitome really, of everything you would want in a Southern French rosé.
$14.00/BTL.- $168.00/CASE OF 12
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2014 Paolo Scavino Langhe Rosso- Piedmont, Italy
Us wine nerds are really a piece of work.
We find ways to qualify all types of wines, sometimes labelling them with strange terms like “unicorn wine,” “special occasion wine,” “porch pounder,” and more.
Which brings us to this fantastic value from one of the best estates in Barolo, Paolo Scavino.
The 2014 Scavino Langhe Rosso without question falls into the category of a “lunch wine.”
Let’s define. A lunch wine is not fussy.  It is a wine that you pair with anything, drink out of any vessel, enjoy amongst laughs with your friends or family, and in the end, finish the bottle in seemingly record time.
This is that.  A blend of young vine fruit, Barbera, Dolcetto, Nebbiolo, from the vineyards of Paolo Scavino.  It’s not fussy, its just delicious, as one would expect from any wine from the Scavino family!
With our local distributors new direct relationship with the wines of Scavino, the current price makes this one of the best value red wines that we can think of.
$11.00 BTL. / $132.00 CASE OF 12
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2014 Quinta de Chocapalha Arinto- Lisboa, Portugal
In almost every part of the world, and almost every culture, when the weather warms up we as human beings flock to water.  The beaches, the sea, lakes, are such an important part of our summertime.
This is no different in Portugal. In fact, the Portuguese feel an incredible connection to the sea.  They were amongst the first great sailors of the world, and they are blessed to have so much of their country within a quick drive of the coast.
The sea also has a huge connection with wine.  Wine growing regions, in close proximity to the sea have unique soils, wind, and other factors that directly influence the flavor of the wine.
Which leads me to our featured Portuguese wine of this months sampler.  Quinta de Chocapalha is the first wine estate that Craig ever visited in Portugal. It is located a little over an hours drive north of Lisbon, in the appellation of Lisboa, and more specifically the sub-region of Torres Vedras.
The hills surrounding Alenquer are home to the vineyards of Quinta de Chocapalha, and from them they make a wide range of white and red wines.
The white grape varietal most associated with this area is Arinto.  It is an aromatic grape varietal, that will appeal to those looking for a dry, crisp white wine.  Chocapalha, and their winemaker Sandra Tavares, produce a style of Arinto that is both refreshing and complex. In fact this is a white wine that benefits from a year to two years in bottle, as more of the mineral / sea spray components come out after that period of time.
This is a great white wine to simply just sip on, but it also paris well with simply prepared grilled or roasted fish.  It is yet another fantastic Portuguese value.
$13.00 BTL. / $156.00 CASE OF 12
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2014 Fattoria Villa Ligi Bianchello del Metauro “Albaspino”- Marche, Italy
I’m not sure about you, but there are places in the world that I visit that always feel like home, each and every time I’m there.
One such place for me is the region of the Marche in Italy.  Our good friend, Alberto Taddei, winemaker of Selvagrossa in Pesaro has been my personal guide to the region.  Several years ago, Alberto, my friend Huge and I were having lunch at one of our favorite restaurants in the area, Osteria da Gustin in the village of Bargni. It was that day that I truly fell in love with the area, and in particular the white wines of the tiny appellation of Bianchello del Metauro.
The Biancame grape or Bianchello as its locally called grows in the hills West of the cities of Fano and Senigallia, along the Metauro river. There are only 204 hectares in total in this appellation, so little of the wine makes it out of the region.
To introduce you to the grape, we’ve sourced this tasty example from Fattoria Villa Ligi, a producer located in the village of Pergola.  Owned by Franco Tonelli, they focus on the local appellations of Pergola Rosso and Bianchello del Metauro.
“Albaspino” is made entirely of Bianchello, from vines planted in 1980. The grapes are gently pressed and fermentation and aging is done in stainless steel tanks.
The result is a perfect summer white, aromatic with notes of citrus peel and lemon, and vibrant on the palate with lots of bright acidity, more citrus and hints at herbs. Definitely a “porch pounder,” so drink this one by the bucket load!
-Craig
$13.00 BTL. / $156.00 CASE OF 12
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2013 Weintut Köfererhof Kerner- Alto Adige/Valle Isarco, Italy
You might think we have gone a little Köfererhof kookoo, in the last few months, but when the wines were moving from one distributor to another, we were offered very attractive pricing and we simply couldn’t resist. We have always been fans of this high-quality producer in the far northeastern corner of Italy. So this is the third (and last) offering we have from Köfererhof.
We are also kookoo for Kerner, another one of the Riesling hybrids created in the early 1900s. Kerner was named for Dr. Justinius Kerner who practiced medicine in Würtemberg (Swabia!), recommended a glass of wine a day to ward off disease, and was a prolific writer of drinking songs and a celebrated poet. He later went blind but hopefully not because of rabid wine consumption!
Kerner does not have quite the acidic punch of Riesling, and often has a lovely, creamy texture, punctuated by citric fruit and a hint of peach or nectarine. The wine is certainly fruity, but technically dry. It has a great affinity for those difficult to pair pan-asian foods like Indonesian  or Thai, and compliments beautiful the salty, sweet and sour flavors one often finds in these types of cuisines. Of course, you can serve more Germanic fair, like bratwurst, other sausages, or potato salad tossed in a bright, mustardy vinaigrette and have no complaints either.
$15.00/BTL.-$180.00/CASE OF 12
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2011 Château Nicot Bordeaux Rouge- Bordeaux, France
We know it is easy to think of Bordeaux as a “wintery” kind of wine, in the on-a-bearskin-rug, curled- up-by-the-fire sense of the word, and maybe yes, that would be a great time to pop open an aged Paulliac and some other sort of treasure. But not all Bordeaux are built and structured. The right bank can home to some lighter, fresher red wines,  and Bordeaux, with it’s punchy acidity and mineral driven palate, can definitely be a great candidate for the patio and BBQs.
Chateau Nicot is a relatively small affair (in the context of the region anyway) with 85 hectares in Bordeaux and Cadillac. The Rouge is composed of 2/3 Cabernet Sauvignon and 1/3 Merlot, and aging happens in stainless steel as well as used barrique. This is made in a clean, supple style, with bright, plush red fruit and that graphite/cedar quality that is so particular to Bordeaux.
You can put a slight chill on this and it will be a great friend to your grilled steaks.
$12.00/BTL.-$144.00/CASE OF 12
Posted in 6 for $70-Something, Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters, Newsletter

Friday Feature 5/20/16: The New 6 for $120-Something Sampler!

Hello & Happy Friday!
It’s the second to last Friday of the month and that means time for a new edition of the Six for $120-Something Sampler.
This is an absolutely lovely sampler. From the Greek Islands, to South Africa, Catalonia the Loire valley and the Southern Rhône Valley, we have searched high and low for the best wines we can find to make this six pack varied and complex.
Come in and get yours soon! A few of the items are limited this month, so email if you know you need this one in your possession.
Have a Great Weekend,
Craig & Sheb
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2014 Domaine Zafeirakis Malagousia- Greece
It’s simply impossible to call any country with as rich of a history in wine as Greece, a trend. What one can correctly say is that Greece is having a revival.  There’s no holy ghost spirits or anything like that, its not that kind of revival.  We are talking about the kind of revival that sees a country that was more focused on quantity over quality, reverse that and come to work with the same mindset of top quality as any producer in more famous regions of the world.
“Domaine Zafeirakis represents one of the most exciting new Domaines of Greece. Nestled in the foothills of Mount Olympus, in the region of Thessaly, Christos Zafeirakis has built a winery both in honor and continuation of the four generations of winemakers in his family that preceded him. Having an impressive resume including completing his oenology masters degree at the University of Milan and consecutive years of work in Tuscany, Piedmont, and Alto Adige, Christos returned to Tirnavos and immediately started to set new standards by creating the first organic vineyard in the area in 2005. As if that weren’t enough, he extended the family’s holdings to 8 hectars and worked tirelessly to reintroduce the obscure native varietal Limniona which was nearly extinct due to the phylloxara epidemic 80 years prior.
Zafeirakis’s obsession is first and foremost with the soil. The area of Tirnavos has high clay deposits which dominate the overall terrior. Various vineyards like Palaiomilos (old mill) have sand and flints along with the clay, while his Kampilaga vineyard is more fully clay with calcium concentration and a high amount of trace elements due to the fact that this area had once had an ancient river run through it. Throughout the year the vineyards are carefully and rigorously cultivated. Every season is important whether it be winter pruning or summer harvest. Technical choices are always made with respect to the environment and guided by the quality objectives year after year.
Christos Zafeirakis’s wines are all certified organic. Spontaneous yeast fermentation is a must, whether th

e vinfication is happening in stainless steel or in the 3000L Austrian fermentors he employs for his reds. Additionally an intensive selection massale is taking place at Domaine Zafeirakis, and he continues to refine the clonal selection through this process to raise the bar of his wines year after year.”
We are huge fans of the grape varietal, Malagousia. This example from Zafeirakis hails from the Tirnavos area, grown on clay soils with a high concentration of flint.  Fermented and rested in stainless steel tanks, this wine is all about the fruit and the flint.  Beautiful aromatics of white flowers, orange zest, and lemon. On the palate, it has good freshness, lots of salty/mineral notes and good concentration.
We encourage you to join the revival and drink some Malagousia.  It’s delicious!
$17.00 BTL. / $204.00 CASE OF 12
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2013 Paolo Scavino Langhe Nebbiolo- Piedmont, Italy
We are so excited that the wines of Paolo Scavino are back in Chicago that to celebrate, both samplers this month will include a wine from this legendary producer.  If you are unfamiliar with the winery, it is located in the village of Castiglione Falletto in the Barolo appellation of Italy. They make a wide range of single vineyard Baroli, from some of the top Crus, as well as a range of excellent everyday wines.
This wine in particular, made entirely from Nebbiolo, is one of the best values to come out of the entire region. The Scavinos are using “grapes coming from sites which enhance the more ethereal Nebbiolo aromatics and structure.” In other words, they want this wine to offer the consumer something that they can enjoy on the younger side.
They achieve this and more.  Pretty aromatics combining floral, red fruit and fennel notes.  Medium weight, with soft tannins in the mid-palate, a continuation of the red fruit and a long, harmonious finish.
Even though this is accessible Nebbiolo, it doesn’t hurt to decant this for a half hour or hour before serving.
Such a fantastic expression of Nebbiolo, and it needs to be mentioned that now this is directly imported into the Chicago, they are now even more incredible values.
Don’t miss this!
***Those of you who pre-ordered Scavino last year through us- the wines are all in. We are in the process of contacting you by email, but feel free to reach out or stop by to pick your order up.***
$21.00 BTL. / $252.00 CASE OF 12
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2007 Olga Raffault Chinon “Les Picasses”- Loire, Valley France
This bottle is for those of you that love Cabernet Franc and like it to be earthy, a “little dirty” and firmly entrenched in the old world.
Olga Raffault is a storied property in Chinon, run for years by the meticulous Olga (and now by her granddaughter, Sylvie). “Les Picasses” is a particularly well-exposed vineyard, whose soils are composed of limestone and clay. The vines are 50+ years old. It is a wine that we have loved for any years, but it is ALWAYS better with a little age on it, which is why we are excited to have found a few cases of 2007 at the warehouse.
The wine is aged in older wood vats and not overly-extracted. One thing you must be comfortable with are the aromatics, which have strong equine propensities. Another word for this might be barnyard or sometimes people even say funk. If you rode horses at anytime in your life, the smell reminds of the deep warm, nutty smell of the mane, mixed in with a little hay. If you didn’t ride horses, it should be said that these are nice smells but still on the horsey side.
Anyway, enough with the equine stuff. Fruit-wise this is all cherries and plums, with their skins, and tender yet taught acidity backs up a medium-bodied concentration. It really is a tremendous wine, especially at this price. And it’s drinking very well, right now! Unfortunately, we did not get much.
$22.00/BTL.
SAMPLER ONLY.
 
***If you would like to try and get more, email us and we will let you know if there is any left over at the end of the month.
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2012 Celler Pardas “Collita Roja” Penedés, Spain
If you have been a customer of PWS for a time, you probably understand our affection for the region of Catalonia. Some of our favorite Catalans are Ramon Parera and Jordi Arnan, childhood friends who came together later in life to build the estate they now call Can Comas.
If you have been to many vineyards as we have, you begin to notice some differences between those that are farmed organically and those whose viticulture serves a more commercial purpose. The vineyards at Can Comas are teeming with a variety of wildflowers. Butterflies flit between the vines, all matter of beetles and other crawlers can be seen scuttling in the soils. Birds swoop in, happy for such an abundance of lunch.
The team at Pardas works with indigenous grapes of the region, and none is more rare than the grape which makes up today’s offering, Sumoll. Although the variety may have originated in Jerez, today there remain only about 260 hectares, all in Catalonia. Ramon has explained that the grape is fickle and difficult to work with, yet he and Jordi feel an obligation to keep it around. They respect the heritage, and feel that sometimes even difficult things are worth fighting for.
The wine that comes from Sumoll is incredibly complex. medium-bodied and imbued with a nervy kind of acidity. It also reveals a richness of cherries, white pepper, earth and violets.
This wine is the perfect accompaniment to the typical cuisine of Catalan: grilled lamb, braised pork, roasted potatoes and of course, anything with chick peas in it.
$29.00/BTL.-$174.00/ SIX PACK CASE
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2014 BLANKbottle Winery “Epi” – Elgin, South Africa
“What was your favorite wine from the trip?” This is a question we get asked all the time after our travels.  Usually there is no one “wine of the trip,” instead a small handful of wines we can’t wait to sell once we get back home.
Such is the case with this wine, a beautiful white wine from South Africa.  Craig’s trip to South Africa was eye opening, and in particular his visit with Pieter Walser of BLANKbottle.
We’ve written about this winery a couple times already this year, so we won’t bore you with all the details.  What you need to know is that Pieter sources grapes from several parts of South Africa and lets the grapes and their place inspire the wine.  Pieter doesn’t put any information on what is in the bottle on his labels, hence BLANKbottle.  He wants you to taste them without any preconceived notions and let the wine speak for itself.
That is how Craig tasted this wine, blind, without any knowledge of the place or the grape.  What he admired about the wine was the way that it combined texture with freshness, fruit with spice. It is a complete wine, and a difficult one to blind.
“The reveal” was a white wine made entirely from Semillon growing in Elgin, notably the coolest region in South Africa, more known for apple production than wine.  “Epi” is made very naturally, no sulphur on the juice before fermentation, no addition of enzymes or acid, natural yeast, and aging in old oak barrels.
This is really crowd pleasing style in that it offers texture with freshness, citrus with apple and spice notes.  It is a very food friendly wine as it can pair with seafood and well as meat like chicken and pork.
Don’t miss this crazy good wine!
$22.00 BTL. / $264.00 CASE OF 12

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2015 Domaine de Fenouillet Ventoux Rosé- Southern Rhône Valley, France
The Ventoux is a large swath (or pool if you will) encompassing 51 communes just south of Gigondas and Vacqueyras in the Southern Rhône Valley. This is part of the same alluvial plane that formed Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Unlike Chateauneuf-du-Pape, the Ventoux makes  gallons of white, red and rosé wines that are delicious and affordable for everyday drinking.
Unless you are living under a rock (or a galet in this case- don’t mind us just a little wine humor there), this IS the official summer of rosé, and although I think we said that last year, we are rescinding our statements from 2015.
This Rosé is vinified partially by direct press and partially by “saignée”, the juice is naturally clarified, and afterwards the wine ferments at a cool temperature, and then it is aged on the fine lees for four to six months before bottling.  It is a blend of 50% Cinsault, 40% Grenache and 10% Syrah, all of which is planted to soils of clay, limestone and silex.
This is the kind of placid, French Rosé you might think of when you are considering a lazy afternoon, perhaps with a plate of crudité or some lovely cheeses.
$15.00/BTL.
SAMPLER ONLY
***If you would like to try and get more, email us and we will let you know if there is any left over at the end of the month.
Posted in 6 for $120-Something, Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters, Newsletter

Friday Feature 05/13/16: Domaine Les Poëte-Loire Valley

Domaine Les Poëte
Before we get started telling you about Domaine Les Poëte we have to apologize.  Life is super busy right now, and for this write-up, we are going to use the importer’s notes. They are well written, and help introduce you to this wonderful Domaine.  You will see quotes around text from the importer and then a couple of glowing, motivational words from yours truly.
“Guillaume Sorbe is the Loire Valley’s newest young star. In 2007, he began his domaine in the Cher producing white, rosé, and red wines from the Touraine, Quincy, and Reuilly appellations. 
Guillaume comes from a family of viticulturalists and his father had vineyards in Quincy and Reuilly, but after it became apparent that his sons had no interest in continuuing the family domaine, he sold the vineyards in 2001. It was during this time that Guillaume was working in some of France’s finest restaurants both as a cook and a sommelier, but eventually he says “the soul of a winemaker awoke in me”. He went to Beaune to study viticulture and oenology determined to return to the Loire valley and piece together a domaine of his own. 
In 2007 after completing his studies he began to look for vineyards and soon found a plot of very old gamay vines on the right bank of the Cher river. He began here and has slowly patched together a tiny domaine today of more than 25 single plots that he farms himself biodynamically. Only 4.5 hectares total are put into production here so quantities are extremely small. 
Precision, freshness, and delicacy are the pursuit here and Guillaume believes that terroir is the most important thing, often citing his motto “moins mais mieux” – “less but better”. Each of his 25 parcels is vinified separately and an assemblage is done before bottling. Working this way is much more labor-intensive, but it allows Guillaume greater control over the final blend where he can create an expressive palette using just the “colors” he desires.”
Our big take away from tasting the wines, is their intensity and density, while at the same time displaying the freshness that you desire from the wines of the Touraine region. They are really fantastic!
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2013 Domaine Les Poëte Reuilly Blanc
Reuilly is an underrated appellation for Sauvignon Blanc.
Guillaume’s Sauvignon vineyards are on the left bank of the Cher river in the villages of Reuilly, Chéry, and Preuilly.  Because he works with various plots, there is great diversity in the soils including clay, limestone, limon and gravel.
“After being harvested by hand, the grapes are pressed and fermentation is carried out in stainless steel tank. After fermentation, 1/3 of the wine is aged in neutral 600 liter barrels while the remaining 2/3 is aged in stainless steel. After 12 months, the wine is blended and stays in tank another 2 months before bottling.”
It is also important to note that this comes from grapes cropped at 30 to 35 hl/ha. While that may not mean much to the layperson, they are the type of yields you would find from the world’s finest, and most expensive wines.  As a comparison, take the yields of Sancerre which can often run up to 60 to 65 hl/ha.
Beautiful aromatics of citrus peel and mineral, this Sauvignon has weight and some structure that many of you won’t have ever had in a Sauvignon.  This is fruit and mineral driven, with no green notes, and a really pure, lengthy finish.
This outstanding Sauvignon is going to challenge your preconceived notions of the variety.  And that is a good thing.
$24.99 BTL. / $299.88 CASE OF 12

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2013 Domaine Les Poëte Reuilly Rouge

Do not miss this absolutely outstanding Pinot Noir from Reuilly.  Probably the best we’ve ever had.
Like the Sauvignon, this comes from various plots in the aforementioned villages.  The Pinot Noir is planted in a mixture of clay and limestone with rocky topsoil.
“All the Pinot Noir is hand harvested and sorted by hand. In 2013 Guillaume elected to de-stem 100%, but in some years he will utilize some percentage of whole clusters. It is macerated for 8 days with no punching down. The only form of extraction is gentle pump overs. Only natural yeasts are allowed here and fermentation is carried out in stainless steel tank. After fermentation, 2/3 of the wine is aged in neutral 600 liter barrels while the remaining 1/3 is aged in stainless steel.” 
Cropped at an astounding 25 hl/ha, that is a full 10 hl/ha less then the minimum allowed for Grand Cru Red Burgundy.  We are certainly not comparing this in style to those, but just take note when looking at this price that the cropping equivalent is 5 to 30+ times more expensive in Burgundy.
This is really pure and beautiful Pinot Noir.  It sports a pale, delicate color, and offers hints of cherry skin, flowers and mineral on the nose.  Wonderfully balanced on the palate, it is silky and light, but yet with a great core of fruit and baking spice.  This is the type of wine we could drink all day.
Easily one of our new favorite Pinot Noir.  An incredible value!
$26.99 BTL. / $323.88 CASE
Posted in Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters, Newsletter

Friday Feature 05/06/16: 2014 Releases from Thomas Pico and Domaine Pattes Loup

Domaine Pattes Loup
Thomas Pico is a great example of the younger generation of Chablis and its impact on the region and how it is perceived.  Thomas grew up in the wine business, but started on his own in 2005.  His initial vineyards are located in Courgis, on the outskirts of the appellation. Over the years he has grown his domaine slowly, which now includes over 15 hectares of vineyards.  Thomas works organically in the vineyard, only uses natural yeast, and uses stainless steel and oak depending on the cuvée.
This all leads back to my first statement about the younger generation and their impact on the perception of the region.  Producers like Thomas, like Athénaïs from Château de Béru, and a few others have proved to the consumer that great Chablis can be produced throughout the region and not just in the vineyards with the names we all know.  The world is shifting in this region, and there has never been a better time to drink Chablis.
Don’t miss these 2014s from Pattes Loup!

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2014 Domaine Pattes Loup Chablis “Vent d’Ange”
Simply put this is one of, if not the best value in Chablis right now!
A fantastic introduction to Pico’s clean, sleek style.This particular bottling sells out very quickly every year.
Beautiful purity of fruit, with citrus peel, saline and mineral emerging from the glass.  Weightless in all the best ways, this really wakes up the palate sip after sip.
We received a woefully small amount and this will disappear fast at this price. Chablis everyday? Seems like a good idea to us!
$25.99 BTL. – $311.88/CASE OF 12
LIMITED

 

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2014 Domaine Pattes Loup Chablis “Beauregard” 1er Cru
Not a well-known Premier Cru, Beauregard sits in the village of Courgis on Kimmeridgian soil.
It is a wine that needs evolution in bottle to coax out its beautiful minerality and shy personality.
Once it evolves, it adds weight, and incredible complexity.
This is worth holding on for a few years drinking from 2020 to 2025.
A ridiculous value for this quality.
$42.99 BTL.
VERY LIMITED

 

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2014 Domaine Pattes Loup Chablis “Butteaux” 1er Cru
Butteaux is one of the more well-known Premier Cru, sitting on the West side of the river near Montmains and Forêts. It too is on Kimmeridgian limestone but has a very different feel and personality to the Beauregard.  We find it a bit weightier with lots of citrus, mineral and spice.
This too is worth holding on to, drinking best from 2020-2025+.
Another ridiculous value for this quality.
$42.99 BTL.
VERY LIMITED
Posted in Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters, Newsletter

Friday Feature 04/29/16: The New 6 for $70-Something Sampler

This week’s Friday Feature announces the newest 6 for $70-Something sampler.
For those unfamiliar with our sampler, once a month we put together a group of six bottles with season in mind, a kind of best of the best in value wine. The six bottle assortment always lands in between $76 – $79.  All the wines are available by the bottle, but we encourage you to stock your wine rack up for the month and try the whole sampler.
This month we have a truly spectacular lineup from around the world.  We hope to see you soon!
Have a great weekend,
Craig & Sheb

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6 for $70-Something

2013 “Rufo” Tinto from Quinta Vale D. Maria – Douro, Portugal
People ask us all the time, “can I get a good bottle of wine for $15 and under.”
The answer is of course yes, albeit it is getting more difficult to find. The first way to ensure great wine at a great price is to search for a winery that really cares about what they do.  A true insider tip is to look for some of the leading wineries of their respective regions and seek out the value wine in their range.  Almost every top producer has a great value as a type of “business card” to introduce everyone to what they do as a winery.
The “business card” of Quinta Vale D. Maria, one of Portugal’s truly top wineries is a line of wines called “Rufo.”  While the fruit for the wine may not come entirely from their estate, the Van Zeller family relies on their family network to provide them with good quality grapes from three different sub-regions of the Douro.
We’ve featured previous vintages of “Rufo” Tinto on our newsletter before, and are excited to introduce the excellent 2013 vintage.  It is a blend of Touriga Franca and Touriga Nacional, co-feremented in stainless steel tanks and aged in 2nd, 3rd and 4th use oak barrels for 1 year before resting in tank for an additional year.

A superb vale for a Douro red, this jumps out of the glass with blackberry, plum aromas, a seamless and silky texture, and a long, balanced finish.  Try this alongside some grilled lamb chops.   


$15.00 BTL. / $180.00 CASE


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2015 Fattoria Poggerino “Aurora” Rosato – Tuscany, Italy
We are one of only two accounts in Illinois (and possibly the US) to receive the fantastic Rosé from one of our absolute favorite Chianti Classico producers, Poggerino.
As a recap, Poggerino is located in the village of Radda in Chianti Classico.  One of the key elements to quality at this estate is the location of the property, high elevation, with a large swath of “galestro” the local rock strewn through the carefully farmed vineyards.  Winemaker Piero Lanza is one of the most dedicated farmers we know, and it is important to note that this Rosé is produced with Sangiovese that could very easily be made into a more expensive red wine.
True to form, this Rosé is a labor of love from Piero Lanza, and is very unique in its production.  Half of the grapes are harvested the last week of August / first week of September, a type of green harvest.  Alcoholic fermentation begins with natural yeast and proceeds at a cool temperature.  At the end of September/ early October, when the main harvest begins, the second portion is made as a saignée, bleeding the vat, and then combining it with the ongoing fermentation of the first portion.
This is quickly becoming one of our favorite Rosé.  Hints at watermelon rind, strawberry and orange on the nose.  Medium weight, with a really juicy, fresh fruit component and a long, balanced finish.

This is a Rosé you are going to want to stock up on!  We only received 20 cases, so taste soon and come back for more.  It is a fantastic value! 


$15.00 BTL. / $180.00 CASE


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2013 Weingut Köfererhof Müller-Thurgau – Alto Adige, Italy
For years, the mystery surrounding the origins of this grape have plagued scientists both near and far. Created by a 19th century scientist named Dr. Müller (no surprise there) thought he was crossing Riesling with Sylvaner, but later a theory was put forward that it was a Riesling and Chasselas cross, however, a final, definitive analysis revealed that the grape was indeed, a Riesling and Madeleine Royale cross, and a grandson of northern Italy’s Schiava.
Now that your brain is super tired from reading that, its time to tell you why Müller Thurgau should become your new best friend this summer. In the hands of a great producer like Köfererhof, this aromatic varietal is a fantastic aperitif wine.  I’ve had the pleasure to visit Köfererhof in the gorgeous Isarco Valley, at the most Northern part of the Alto Adige region.  A very small producer, making only about 70,000 bottles in total per year, they are considered one of the best producers of the entire Alto Adige.
The 2013 Müller-Thurgau is stunning.  Gorgeous aromatics of white flowers, lychee and citrus peel.  This wine has terrific texture, it really glides across the palate, delivering more citrus flavors and hints of plum and spice.
Not only does it deliver on its own, this is one of the most versatile food pairing wines you will find.  It can really stand up to meat such as chicken and pork, and even work against spicier foods.

The distribution of this wine changed hands in Chicago recently, and this is being offered at a much lower price than normal.  Please don’t miss the chance to stop up on some of this benchmark Müller-Thurgau.   


$15.00 BTL. / $180.00 CASE


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2013 Xavier Clua “El Solà d’en Pol” Blanco – Terra Alta, Spain
There is no doubt that Catalunya is one of Spain’s most prestigious wine growing departments.  Yet when you quiz both the general public and industry folks about the wines of the area, Cava and red wine from Priorat and Montsant are the most publicized and talked about.
While they are deserving of their acknowledgement, there is so much more to Catalunya.  We here at Perman Wine love to share and talk about the great white wines of the area, including the appellation of Terra Alta.  Located just south of Montsant, the region takes its name from its high altitude and placement in the mountains.
Xavier Clua grew up in the region and the wine business, before embarking on his own project over a decade ago.  He owns 10 hectares of vines in the region and produces white, rosé and red.
“El Solà d’en Pol” is a white wine made from predominantly Grenache Blanc with a little Viognier and Muscat.  It is an aromatic white, perfect for “porch pounding” or enjoying along simply prepared shellfish.  The 2013 is in a really beautiful place right now, so get ready for this to be a new favorite this Spring and Summer.
$12.00 BTL. / $144.00 CASE


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2011 Santa Lucia Castel del Monte Nero di Troia ‘”Vigna del Melograno” – Puglia, Italy
Castel del Monte is one of the more important wine zones of Puglia, situated in the hilly part of Puglia (southern Italy, the heel of the boot) where the grapes are granted a bit more protection from the relentless, Mediterranean sun.
The variety that makes this wine is called Nero de Troia, a dark-skinned flavorful red grape that unfortunately has been supplanted by more recognizable varieties such as Aglianico & Montepulciano.

This is a lot of wine for the money; and the the kind of  voluptuous, bone-warming red you sometimes desire. The vines here are 18 years old which is quite mature for the region and this adds to the depth and quality level.

$11.00 BTL. / $132.00 CASE
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2014 Padrillos Malbec – Mendoza, Argentina
Our old friend the Padrillos Malbec is back!
While Argentina continues to be known for great value Malbec, we’ve seen a rise in prices over the last few years leading us to the difficult task of finding good examples for under $15.  Luckily this wine made by Ernesto Catena, of Catena family fame continues to over deliver for the price.
Malbec sourced from various vineyards in the Uco Valley that are fermented in stainless steel and aged partially in stainless steel and also French and American oak for 8 months.

The result is a, dare I say, balanced example of the variety with a mixture of red and dark fruits, flowers and spice.  A super silky texture lends itself to drinking on its own, but of course this varietal is best known to be consumed alongside grilled red meat. 


$11.00 BTL. / $132.00 CASE
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Posted in 6 for $70-Something, Friday Feature, Friday Features/Newsletters, Newsletter