TASTE WITH TIM GAGNON FROM SELECTION MASSALE
We're pleased to welcome Tim Gagnon from Selection Massale to pour an array of French, Corsican, and Canadian (yes, Canadian!) wines today!
Clos Marfisi "Grotta di Sole" Patrimonio AOC 2016
Country: FRANCE / Region: CORSICA / Appellation: PATRIMONIO AOC / Varietal(s): VERMENTINO --- A breathtaking Mediterranean island (off the west coast of Italy, just north of Sardinia), Corsica has a winemaking tradition that's over 2,500 years old, but only recently gaining popularity here in the US. Patrimonio is the largest appellation of Corsica, covering 400 hectares with half owned by the two largest producers, and the other half split amongst 30 smaller growers. Clos Marfisi is one of those small family estates, now run by brother and sister Mathieu and Julie, the fifth generation of winemakers to do so. Clos Marfisi’s vineyards (which Mathieu and Julie's father Touissant planted about 40-50 years ago) rise from the Mediterranean on steep slopes that shimmer white with large chunks of broken limestone. Additionally, the estate remains planted to local grape varietals and has never been touched by pesticides or herbicides. This impressive commitment to organic viticulture continues today, and the 2018 vintage will be certified Bio. In the cellar native yeasts spark fermentation and sulfur levels are kept to a bare minimum. 100% vermentino, this delectable white is pale straw colored, with enticing aromas of white flowers, citrus, unripe stone fruits, and a touch of honey. Bright, refreshing citrus on the palate mingles with white peach flavors, mouthwatering acidity and minerality that goes on forever. A winner with anything from the sea, try this with grilled branzino or a lobster boil!
Pearl Morissette Niagara Vineyards Riesling "Cuvée Sputnik" 2016
Country: CANADA / Region: ONTARIO / Appellation: NIAGARA PENINSULA VQA / Varietal(s): RIESLING --- World-class wines from Ontario, Canada?! Enter winemaker François Morissette, who's delighting palates and blowing minds with his sophisticated offerings in an uncompromising quest to make wine that speaks strongly of terroir while transcending boundaries. In his words, “I don’t make wine for Ontario, I make wine for the world." Classically-trained, François spent a year in his early 20s working for Domaine Alain Gras in Saint-Romain, learning about the traditional winemaking methods of the region. He returned to Quebec and worked towards becoming a sommelier (while building some of the most ambitious wine lists in Quebec and Ontario), before the lure of the vineyards pulled him back to France to pursue winemaking full time in Burgundy. After 7 years in the Côte d'Or, he decided to make his own wines, not in France, but on the Niagara Peninsula, utilizing hand-harvested grapes with native yeast fermentation and minimal filtration and sulfur usage. Partnering with Mel Pearl, a Toronto developer, Pearl Morissette became a reality and after waiting almost a year to get our hands on the delicious results, we're excited to taste them with you! "Cuvée Sputnik" is 100% riesling, and displays lovely transparency and delicacy. Inviting aromas of tropical flowers, fresh limes, and spice yield to a gently-textured palate that finishes with a lengthy kick of zesty salinity. An energizing aperitif, this also complements seafood such as snapper with tomatillo and lime.
Pearl Morissette Niagara Vineyards Pinot Noir "Jeunes Vignes" 2016
Country: CANADA / Region: ONTARIO / Appellation: CREEK SHORE VQA / Varietal(s): PINOT NOIR --- This "Young Vines" pinot noir brings a rock and roll mentality to the table! Hand-harvested from the Home Farm vineyard, this bursts with classic pinot noir aromas of fresh cherries and cracked pepper. Exuberently juicy with savory, dark spices and suave tannins, this handsome northern stranger is one you'll find hard to put down! Open this with just about anything- from wild Atlantic salmon to ham and butter on baguette!
Maison Blanche "Le Colombier de la Métairie" Montagne St. Emilion AOC 2014 - CERTIFIED BIODYNAMIC
Country: FRANCE / Region: BORDEAUX / Appellation: MONTAGNE ST EMILION AOC / Varietal(s): CABERNET FRANC+MERLOT --- Nicolas Despagnes comes from a family of vignerons with winemaking roots that go back three centuries. The estate was planted in 1875, and encompasses 40 hectares in Montagne, Saint-Emilion. Nicolas has been farming organically since 2006, and worked tirelessly to obtain not just organic certification (Agriculture Bio and BioCoherence in 2008 and 2010, respectively) but biodynamic certification by Demeter in 2013. His approach in the cellar is similarly respectful and straightfoward, with native yeast fermentation and very little sulfur added. 60% cabernet franc, 40% merlot, this cuvée rests for 15 months in a combination of cement vats and barrel. Young, fresh, and supple, this is old-school Bordeaux at heart, dark and seductive with black currant, plum, earth, tobacco, and leather nuances. Open now with wild mushroom poutine or age for 3-5 years.