La Clarine Farm Sierra Foothills "Jambalaia Blanc" 2015 - NATURAL WINE
Country: USA / Region: CALIFORNIA / Appellation: EL DORADO COUNTY-SIERRA FOOTHILLS / Varietal(s): VIOGNIER+MARSANNE+ALBARIÑO+PETIT MANSENG --- Looking at this wine, you'll notice some sediment, a bit of haziness to it, what is it hiding? You'll have to take a sip to find out. Some of what you'll discover is what has not been done to this wine, which happens to be quite a lot. Here's owners Caroline Hoel and Hank Beckmeyer own partial list: "... no yeast, sulfur dioxide, oak chips, enzymes or concentrates in the cellar, and no chemicals, fertilizers or tillage in our vineyard." They let fermentations occur spontaneously in this blend of southern & southwestern French grapes (viognier, marsanne and petit manseng, along with Spanish native albariño). The resulting wine is one you'll want to spend some time with, exploring its various nuances. The nose hits you with intense perfumed, rich exotic fruit, then the palate turns it all around; you get dry, restrained, delicate, savory notes. A unique, satisfying blend of crisp pineapple, thyme, candied ginger, fresh mint, Meyer lemon zest, and orange honey with racy acidity and a luxurious floral finish make this an unforgettable aperitif or dinnertime companion. Why not get a chunk of aged Gouda made from a small farmer-run dairy and a fresh baguette, and sit back for a leisurely communion with this most wondrous libation?
Hervé Villemade Cheverny AOP 2016 - NATURAL WINE
Country: FRANCE / Region: LOIRE VALLEY / Appellation: CHEVERNY AOP / Varietal(s): PINOT NOIR+GAMAY --- Hervé Villemade is an old-school Loire vigneron, hailing from several generations of vignerons that farmed the vineyards around Cellettes. Domaine du Moulin encompasses 22 hectares of vineyards spread out over the Cheverny and Cour-Cheverny appellations, where Hervé took over the family winemaking duties from his father in 1995. Hervé began transitioning away from conventional farming in the late 1990s, feeling that the wines weren't as good as they could be. Inspired by the wines of Marcel Lapierre and Clos du Tue-Boeuf, as well as a severe allergy to sulfur that he developed around the same time, he converted to organic farming in 2000 in order to get the high quality grapes needed for low sulfur and sulfur-free vinification. After a few years of organic farming, he noticed a distinct difference in quality, confirming his belief, and has made natural wines ever since. Fermentation is done with native yeast in large wood or stainless steel, avoiding heavy-handed new oak. This delightful blend of pinot noir and gamay is hard to put down! Juicy and light on its feet, the gamay brings lively freshness and red berry fruit, while the pinot contributes silky texture and the faintest hints of licorice and smoke. The combination is precise, elegant and refreshing – light in body, with shades of herbs, black cherry and plum. Great with seared albacore or poulet en cocotte (chicken roasted with bacon and potatoes).
Fattoria Selvapiana Chianti Rufina DOCG 2015 - CERTIFIED ORGANIC
Country: ITALY / Region: TUSCANY / Appellation: CHIANTI RUFINA DOCG / Varietal(s): SANGIOVESE+CANAIOLO+COLORINO+MALVASIA NERA --- Selvapiana is a traditional Tuscan estate situated east of Florence in the Chianti Rufina appellation. Nestled in the beautiful Apennine foothills, it comprises 600 acres of vineyards and olive groves, and boasts 181 years and five generations of experience in producing the classic wines of the region. Now managed by the sister/brother team of Silvia and Federico Giuntini A. Masseti, along with consulting enologist Franco Bernabei (who has been with the estate since 1978), the winery's focus remains on producing wines of longevity and expression. Rufina is notable for its unique clay limestone soil, as well as its proximity to the Apennines, which provides longer ripening fruit with freshness and finesse. This Chianti Rufina is made with 95% sangiovese and a 5% blend of canaiolo, colorina, and malvasia nera. All estate fruit is cultivated with organic methods and vinified separately, and fermentation takes place with only indigenous yeasts. The result yields delicate aromas of subtle herbs and spice, and an elegant palate of red cherries, licorice, and plum. Round smooth tannins and hints of smoke, earth, and minerals add interest on the finish. Bright, mouthwatering acidity makes this a winner for the table – try it with sausage and beans, Pecorino cheese, or roast lamb with rosemary and garlic.