CELEBRATE OUR 12TH ANNIVERSARY HERE THIS SATURDAY!
WE'RE POPPING SOME CHAMPAGNE AT OUR TASTING 3-6PM!
August 18th was a Friday in 2006 when we first opened our doors; in a blink of an eye, it's now 12 years later! Our heartfelt thanks to all of you for your continued support, and to everybody out there who has moved on but were here with us through the years. What a rich and gratifying experience this has been... we look forward to many more years sharing wine, food and life with you.
Larmandier-Bernier "Longitude" Champagne AOC Premier Cru Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut NV - BIODYNAMICALLY GROWN / LOW INTERVENTION
Country: FRANCE / Region: CHAMPAGNE / Appellation: CHAMPAGNE AOC / Varietal(s): CHARDONNAY --- Champagne Larmandier-Bernier is a star among Côte des Blancs producers. The Larmandier and Bernier families have both had a long history in the Champagne region, dating back to the French revolution, but it was not until the marriage of Philippe Larmandier and Elisabeth Bernier in 1971 that Champagne Larmandier-Bernier was established. The small house today is helmed by Pierre and Sophie Larmandier, who own just under fifteen hectares in some of the finest villages on the Côte des Blancs: Cramant, Chouilly, Oger and Avize (all Grand Crus), as well as in the fine Premier Cru village of Vertus. Pierre took over the family estate in 1988, and by 1992 he began to move the family’s vineyards over to organic and then to biodynamic viticulture by 1999. In the cellar, that approach continues, with only indigenous yeasts used for fermentation, producing the most natural and terroir-specific wine possible. An important note is that all of the Larmandier-Bernier wines never receive more than five grams per liter of sugar (versus other houses' Brut bottlings that can go up to twelve grams per liter). This puts Larmandier-Bernier's Champagnes in the category of Extra Brut, outstanding for their purity and minerality. 100% chardonnay, this Blanc de Blancs comes from vineyards grown on the Côte des Blancs: Vertus, Oger, Avize, Cramant, which form a line close to the 4th meridian, hence the name, "Longitude." The word also rightfully hints at the length and pure, mineral-driven style of these terroirs, where the chalk lies close to the surface. The base wine makes up approximately 60% of the blend and is fermented in stainless steel tanks, while the remaining 40% is reserve wine aged in a combination of large, old oak foudres and neutral Burgundian barrels. That chalk influence leads to powerful results, with intense focus and depth, an array of citrus flavors with hints of baking spices, and explosive acidity and complexity on a dazzling mineral finish. A true classic, pair this with fried oyster po-boys, fish and chips, or triple crème cheeses!
CVNE "Monopole Clásico" Blanco Seco Rioja DOCa 2014
Country: SPAIN / Region: RIOJA / Appellation: RIOJA DOCA / Varietal(s): VIURA+PALOMINO FINO --- White Rioja? Why yes! CVNE (Compañia Vinícola del Norte de España) is a 119 year old company, now known by its initials. Whereas once Spanish whites were ignored in favor of the full-bodied reds of the region, happily, today the tide is turning. The Monopole "Clásico", back after a 40 year hiatus, is the rebirth of an old favorite. Once a staple across Spain for generations, and one of CVNE's main wines, it fell out of fashion in the 1970s and ceased production in the 1980s. Fresh, fine, and bone dry, this wine had the peculiarity and originality of having some barrel ageing with a percentage of Sherry wine (with written permission from the Rioja appellation.) The Sherry added structure to the Rioja white, while they both integrated harmoniously in barrel and later in bottle. When the decision was made to begin making the Clásico again, none other than Ezequiel Garcia, CVNE winemaker from the 40s until the 70s, was invited back to produce the wine again. Relaunched in celebration of CVNE's centennial (it was registered in 1914), this wine is a tasty throwback. It is predominantly viura, fermented in concrete and stainless steel, and aged in used 300-500 liter vats and botas. The viura is then topped up with Manzanilla sherry purchased from the Hidalgo family of Sanlúcar de Barrameda. A truly unique, complex nose of pear, apple, white currant, chamomile, and sea spray yields to dried fruits, baking spice, and more salinity on the palate. Elegant acidity keeps this far from cloying territory, while those earthy, nutty Sherry notes linger appealingly on the finish. Serve with tortilla española (potato tortilla), salt cod or rosemary-grilled pork chops.
Holloran Pinot Noir Eola-Amity Hills La Chenaie Vineyard 2013 - CERTIFIED BIODYNAMIC
Country: USA / Region: OREGON / Appellation: EOLA-AMITY HILLS / Varietal(s): PINOT NOIR --- In the words of Bill Holloran, he doesn't grow grapes, he "grows great wines." Believing strongly that the character and quality of finished wines are directly related to how the grapes are grown, he practices what he preaches, using both organic and biodynamic techniques in his vineyards and cellar. Holloran Vineyard Wines was established in 1999 by Bill and his wife, Eve, when they produced their first vintage out of a converted horse barn on their West Linn, Oregon property. This lovely pinot noir showcases the Le Chenaie Vineyard, located near Salem, Oregon, in the Eola-Amity Hills appellation. It consists of 103 acres of which 18 are planted to vines with a further eight in the process of being planted. Here, Holloran grows pinot noir, riesling and tempranillo on volcanic soils with an elevation between 460-585 feet. Pinot noir from La Chenaie is known for its intense aromatic profile, featuring dusty red cherries and bright high-toned floral notes. On the palate, it is beautifully focused, with elegant red fruit flavors and subtle spicy accents. Mouthwatering acidity mingles with ripe tannins on a finish that displays impeccable balance and length. A wonderful match with roasted beets, grilled chicken, and steamed red potatoes.
Frank Cornelissen "Munjebel" Etna Rosso DOP 2016 - BIODYNAMICALLY GROWN / LOW INTERVENTION
Country: ITALY / Region: SICILY / Appellation: ETNA ROSSO DOP / Varietal(s): NERELLO MASCALESE --- Frank Cornelissen owns 19 hectares of vines quite high up on Mount Etna. The son of a wine broker from Belgium, Frank has been immersed in wine his entire life. His family is not Sicilian, so choosing to settle in the North Valley of Mount Etna was a deliberate choice, based on the incredible diversity of volcanic soils of the region, and its potential to make wines of outstanding complexity and distinction. Frank was equally attracted by the nerello mascalese grape, Etna's primary varietal. He produced his first wine in 2001 when he started with only 0.4 hectares of vines, and remains obsessive over details in an effort to make wines that truly express terroir. Meticulous in the vineyard, Frank works without the use of herbicides, pesticides, or any other chemicals. He occasionally uses biodynamic treatments, but doesn't follow the usual biodynamic calendars as he feels his vineyards have their own unique schedule! In the winery his work follows the same philosophy of using what nature provides him. There are no industrial yeasts, sulfites, or anything else added to the wines. All of the wines are fermented in small, neutral tanks and no wood is used in the cellar in order for all the wines to express their specific territory to the full extent. Striking a fine balance between fruit expression and dynamic minerality, Frank's nerello mascalese combines the tannic backbone of fine nebbiolo with the lush red fruit and delicate aromas of great pinot noir. "Munjebel" is produced from a selection of his best parcels, as well as vineyards designated specifically for this cuvée. 100% nerello mascalese from 60+ year old vines, a gorgeous tapestry of dark cherries and raspberries mix with dried herb, crushed stone, and fresh cut flowers on the nose. Vivid flavors of fresh red fruit dance alongside more mineral streaks on a palate that remains elegant and focused. Serve alongside classic Sicilian fare like pasta alla norma (pasta tossed with slow-roasted spiced eggplant and ricotta in tomato sauce).