A brief mid-week newsletter for you!
As a reminder, Easter is coming up and many customers have special requests for wines for their family gathering. With some advanced notice I can pair wines for you holiday dinner or you can stop by to pick up some wines that are in stock.
In other news, I’m getting close to my annual wine trip. This year from May 8th through May 22nd I will be traveling to Austria and Italy to expand my knowledge, meet with winemakers, and taste upcoming vintages of wines. My store will maintain part-time hours, which I will notify you about on an upcoming newsletter.
Thanks for all your support,
2009 DOMAINE DU GRAND CRÈS MUSCAT SEC
Easter is almost here, and I’m starting to get pairing questions about ham and turkey. While a dry Gewürtztraminer may be a natural pairing, other varietals exist that mimic some of those floral and rich characteristics.
One such delicious wine that will sure to please at your Easter dinner is this dry Muscat from the Western Languedoc.
You will hear more in the coming weeks about Domaine du Grand Crès, a small estate in Corbières that I had the pleasure of visiting last summer.
This wine is made entirely from Muscat Petits Grains. The fruit is sourced from a elevated vineyard on clay and limestone soil. Fermented and aged in tank, the malolactic is blocked to retain freshness.
Muscat is very aromatic, and this doesn’t differ. Great nose combining flowers, white peach and spice. A rich style of Muscat on the palate, with lots of spice, lychee, and apricot on the long, slightly bitter and fresh finish.
This will stand up to the salty quality of ham, and both white and dark meat of turkey or chicken. It is also delicious as an aperitif or with a variety of appetizers.
$14.99 BTL. / $179.88 CASE / 4 CASES AVAILABLE
2008 CC: WINES CABERNET SAUVIGNON
I ran into Richard Betts last week at a tasting and he made me try this wine. It is his newest project, which is simply a négociant business where he is purchasing wine from an undisclosed “fancy” winery in Northern California.
Why all the mystery? Well, sometimes fancy wineries don’t want to sell off their wine or grapes. It hurts the ego and the marketing plan to sell something for less than what their normal bottle goes for – and in this case that is over $200, per bottle that is!
So their Richard was, not able to tell me much about it, seemingly with a bag and van nearby if he slipped up on his disclosure agreement.
I’m very happy I tried it because this is a ridiculously good Cabernet Sauvignon at a fraction of a price of what it was intended to be. So it may be a story lacking in facts, but if you drink Cali Cab and you want a house red at a fair price, then really you should be buying this by the case!
$21.99 BTL. / $263.88 CASE
2009 VINCENT DAUVISSAT CHABLIS
I only got one case this year of the always delicious AC Chablis from famed producer Vincent Dauvissat.
What do I love about Vincent Dauvissat’s wine? Their purity coupled with the fact that they are easily accessible in their youth make them real winners. They also happen to be some of the most complex Chablis around and do age well, but in this case, the AC Chablis screams “drink me!”
Ripe notes of orange and lemon citrus and spice on the nose. This leads into a bright, citrus-focused mouth full of goodness. Simply delicious and nutritious.
$32.99 BTL. / 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE
2009 VINCENT DAUVISSAT CHABLIS “LA FOREST,” PREMIER CRU
For those collectors of all things Chablis, the “La Forest” from Vincent Dauvissat is one of the most beautiful expressions from that famed Premier Cru vineyard. It is also the most “Grand Cru” like of from the vineyards on that side of the river.
Compare this with some other Dauvissat Premier Cru Chablis and you will notice each year, this is his ripest and usually most complex Premier Cru. 2009 is no different. Really brilliant nose with hints at pineapple, white peach, spice and an underlying hint of grilled nuts that will fully emerge with time. The palate has good weight, while retaining the fresh and mineral identity of Chablis.
This is a steal for a great Premier Cru Chablis of this quality, and with only 12 bottles available it usually doesn’t last past the email.
$49.99 BTL. / 12 BOTTLES AVAILABLE
2006 ERMITAGE DU PIC SAINT LOUP “GUILHEM GAUCELM”
In how many appellations in the world do you get to say that one of its greatest wines is now available and for less than $50?
That is the beauty of the Languedoc, and one of the reasons why I’ve been such a big proponent since my trip there. Rhône varietals are awesome – almost all of my customers love them. The wines of the Southern Rhône Valley have gotten really expensive, and frankly a little boring.
On the other hand you have many different exciting terroir in the Languedoc. In the Eastern Languedoc you have the great appellation of Pic Saint Loup. Taking its name from the mountain, here you have many higher elevation vineyards, composed from various soil types with that big nighttime cool down, a pre-requisite for a great wine.
Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup is one of the most prodigious producers in the region, and recently I scored a small allocation of their top wine called “Guilhem Gaulcem.” From the top vines of the estate, this is a blend of 50% each Syrah and Grenache. The vines are very old, and the yields are microscopic, between 10 and 20 hl/ha.
The aromatics on this wine are spectacular, full of bright raspberry notes and spice. Full-bodied yet a discreet elegance to the fruit and herbs gives it great complexity. A wine that can be decanted and enjoyed now, or aged over a decade. Under 3,000 bottles produced, and only 84 came to Chicago – so secure yours today!
$46.99 BTL. / $563.88 CASE