We find there are two things that always make wine more enjoyable: food and family. As a holiday that's a combination these two, Thanksgiving is a great stage for wine. We're pleased to give some suggestions for your holiday table this November. We're also offering three Thanksgiving packs at up to 20% off retail.
Light and Dark Syrah: 25% off
In most contexts the words “light” and “dark” are opposites. But in describing wines, “light” usually refers to body and texture, while “dark” indicates the color palate of the flavors. Here’s a wine that’s both “light” and “dark”: light in weight and low in alcohol, but dark and juicy in flavor.
Dry Riesling, and a New Recipe.
Melissa Clark of the NYT Dining section has a video out this week on mussels, and how they’re both cheap and easy to cook. Mussels are a classic French bistro food – a warm plate of moules is among the coziest dishes we know, and it’s perfect for autumn weather.
Roasted Cherries, Dark Chocolate, Sangiovese.
Winemaker Pierro Lanza received some recent high praise from the Wine Spectator, and we’ve heard from stores up and down the east coast looking to stock his Chianti Classico 2010. We don’t have it in hand just yet, but we’ll be sure to let you know when we do. In the mean time, we're busy drinking the 2011 Labirinto.
Uncomplicated Red Burgundy. $19
For us, Burgundy calls to mind the perfectly aged glass of 1er cru Nuits or the elegant sip of Vosne. But we sometimes forget there are well-priced and delicious wines that also come from this hallowed land of Pinot Noir. During the harvest earlier this month, the harvesters drank a lot of a drink called a “communard.” Named for its red (communist) color, it’s a cup of red wine with a splash of crème de cassis.
Polyculture in the Languedoc.
On Thursday we visited our friends at the Mas Foulaquier, a beautiful domaine in the rugged Languedoc. We arrived a few minutes early, and walked out into the sundrenched vineyards. One step into vines was enough to feel the difference. Even a week after the harvest, the vineyard literally hummed with life. Bees, insects, birds, and...
Harvest Blog: Post Seventeen
Only one tasting today, in Pic-St-Loup, an hour and a half drive down into the Languedoc. Our vignerons there are firm believers in biodynamics, and one step into their vineyards is enough to notice its effects. Even a week after the harvest, their vines hum with life - bees, insects, birds and other animals join the gentle wind rustling the yellowing leaves.
Harvest Blog: Post Sixteen
5:35pm; Chemin de la Calade; Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhône Valley | Rainy drive into the Ardèche yesterday, a rural, mountainous region that still feels a bit sauvage. Tasting and lunch with an old acquaintance from Burgundy now making impressive wines here. A stop in Bourg-St-Andèol and then down to Chateauenuf-du-Pape, our home for the next four days.
Black Cherries, Old Vines, and Sea Air.
Carignan is probably the most widely planted grape you’ve never heard of. Today Carignan covers nearly 80% of the Languedoc, the world’s largest wine-growing region. High yields largely explain its popularity – given free rein Carignan can yield 200hl/ha (the maximum allowed in Burgundy is 30).
07 Red Burgundy 1er cru: Advance Order Pricing
Last week we learned of a few cases of 2007 1er cru still in the cellar of the Domaine Pierre Amiot. Finding a cache of older wine at one of our producers always delights us, so before leaving Burgundy on Sunday morning, we stopped by the Domaine in Morey-St.-Denis for samples.
Harvest Blog: Post Fifteen
7:36pm; Tain-l'Hermitage, Northern Rhône | Tasting in Côte Rôtie this morning - deep, inky, dark syrah with lovely fruit from barrels and pleasant black pepper. Also a stunning Condrieu - honey, gardenia, softened citrus. Late morning visit to St. Joseph. Lunch in Chavanay - entrée-plat-fromage-dessert-café.
Harvest Blog: Post Fourteen
10:38pm; Ampuis, Northern Rhône Valley | Cold, nearly freezing morning in Beaune - coffee and breakfast in a cozy cafe. One last drive across the (finally) sunny Côte de Beaune, then back onto the highway headed south. Pickup at the airport, then a drive to Ampuis, at the northern end of the Northern Rhône.
Five-Year-Old Meursault 1er Cru
Micro-terroir. La Paulée is the traditional dinner celebrating the end of each year’s harvest in Burgundy. At the Domaine Michel Gros it was held Friday night, and I had the pleasure of sitting next to Madame Gros, Michel’s eighty-something mother. She regaled us with tales from her 25 years spent as the mayor of Vosne-Romanée, […]
Harvest Blog: Post Thirteen
6:43pm; Hotel Central; Beaune, France | I spent several hours with Michel Gros yesterday afternoon, touring his plots in the Hautes-Côtes de Nuits. The Hautes-Côtes is a region about 5 miles west of the Côte d'Or. Here vineyards mingle with wheat fields, Charolais cattle, and forest across rolling hills dotted with tiny hamlets.
Harvest Blog: Post Twleve
11:15am; Domaine Michel Gros; Vosne-Romanée, France | Last day of harvesting in the Côte yesterday. Morning spent in very cold rain blown almost sideways. Harvested steep, rocky slope overlooking Nuits-St-Georges. By lunch the skies had cleared and the leaves were dry. (Till now I've neglected to mention the amount of cleaning that goes on at the domaine.
Gros Week: Hautes-Côtes Blanc 2009
This week in Burgundy has been a reminder of the number of things that can go wrong in the vineyards. Rot, frost, insects, ripeness, viruses, dampness, and dozens of types of mold – in the end, it’s the weather that seems to be in the driver’s seat. This harvest has been a pretty good one – modest yields, a fair amount of rot, but decent temperatures for picking.