A look back at the week that was
This week, we took a peek under the hood of IWM and got a glimpse at the secret wine cellar where your IWM wines live, breathe, and age in temperature-controlled splendor. And Stephane Menard made a compelling case for enjoying the 2013 Le Volte, Tenuta dell’Ornellaia‘s “second” wine, early and often. This under-the-radar Super Tuscan is under $30 and completely delicious!
Garrett Kowalsky confessed that the first wine he fell in love with was a Bruno Giacosa Barolo, and he picked two wines to testify to the longevity of his passion. John Camacho Vidal explains the secrets of enjoying mature wines, selecting two beautifully aged Barolos for you to try. Michael Adler alerts you to a hard-to-find, little-known Burgundy producer, François Gay, by selecting a dynamic duo from this overlooked estate. And it’s no secret that Chablis is perfect for summer; Crystal Edgar picks a pair from William Fevre.
Cheers to your beautiful wine secrets–may you share them with the people you love!
Two expert selections from Crystal Edgar
We are all very excited here to welcome the 2014 whites from William Fèvre! Tis the season to bring out the crisp whites and I have some great bottles here for any wine lover. This is serious Chablis with fine pedigree, William Fèvre is recognized as one of the best producers in all of Chablis, sitting in the same league as Raveneau and Dauvissat and offering a range of distinguished premier and grand cru bottlings. Fèvre works forty acres of grand cru vineyards and another thirty acres of premier cru, all of which deserve attention. All fruit is harvested by hand and great caution is taken to ensure that the wines are precise, textured and mineral-driven with great structure and racy acidity. Fèvre works every vintage to find just the right balance between richness and minerality, and as these 2014 wines illustrate, Fèvre hit the bulls-eye!
Fèvre crafts some of the most exciting whites we receive each year, and if you have been keeping up with our offers for Burgundy’s 2014 vintage, this vintage is beyond exciting. Here are a few premier cru offerings that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys great white wine. These satisfy serious thirst while going easy on the pocketbook.
This vibrant white offers loads of citrus, green peach and minerals with hints of almond and chalk on the finish. Saline minerals and citrusy acidity make this ’14 Chablis ideal to pour as an aperitif or with fresh or grilled oysters. Deriving from William Fèvre’s 4.3 acre parcel of Montmains, which faces southeast and sports emblematic Chablis soils rich in minerals and fossils, this wine vinifies in a combination of stainless steel oak barrels (30-50% used); the wine also ages for 10-15 months in a combination of in French oak barrels and stainless steel before bottling. Supple, structured and vibrant, this Chablis is very food friendly and nicely age-worthy.
This premier cru is consistently one of my favorite as it adds lovely white floral notes on the notes and palate with added stone fruit character. Slightly more complex and concentrated than the Montmains this can stand up to a range of fresh and grilled seafood, poultry, goat cheese, prosciutto and other salted finger foods. Deriving from a fine eight-acre parcel of Fourchaume 1er Cru that directly abuts the grand cru Les Preuses, Vaulorent is considered the “baby grand cru” at Fèvre, and it consistently outperforms grand crus that cost many times as much.
A look back at the week that was
We kicked off the week with a look at the other great product from Italy–olive oil. Remembering her time in Italy, Janice Cable talked about why olive oil is good for your heart, both literally and metaphorically. Sean Collins enjoyed an under $30 Aldo Conterno wine, and you bet your corkscrew it was delicious. And John Camacho Vidal went to Umbria, where he toured the iconic Paolo Bea estate–and got to meet Paolo himself!
Crystal Edgar looked forward to spring with two white Burgundies from Michel Niellon; these Chassagne-Montrachet bottlings will make you feel like flowers in bloom! Garrett Kowalsky also selected white wines to hurry spring’s arrival, but he chose bottles from Antinori’s San Giovanni della Sala and Burgundy’s Bachey-Legros. And Camacho Vidal dove into Chianti Classico, explaining the region’s DOCG laws and picking two favorites, La Maialina and Castello dei Rampolla.
Here’s to faith in warm weather and enjoying the wine you love, no matter the season!
Two expert selections from Garrett Kowalsky
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a little about Italian wine royalty and the house of Antinori. Today I wanted to take a peek at one of the revered estates of Burgundy and a family that traces its roots in the region back to the 1760’s. More than five generations later, the estate was purchased by François Lamarche, and since 1986 we have seen vintage after vintage of remarkable wines. François passed in 2013, and the property is now in the talented hands of his daughter Nicole and niece Nathalie. Located in the village of Vosne-Romanée, Lamarche maintains a handsome holding of 22 acres of vineyards. This is a remarkable amount of land when you consider the how properties and plots have been divided over the years, especially in vineyards as acclaimed as those in Vosne. Below are two ways to introduce yourself to both the simplicity and the majesty of Domaine Lamarche.
When many people think of the first wine or introductory wine of a property, they usually do not expect something this good. To start, the average age of the vine is 30 years old. Most properties I know around the world would be using vines aged 5-10 years in their first wines, not ones of this maturity. Cool and expressive fruit splashes across the palate and the mid-weight structure is both attractive and welcoming. This is the perfect wine to take out with friends while indulging in some meats and cheeses. Drink now until 2020.
La Grande Rue is a 4-acre monopole owned by the Lamarche family—it’s an almost unheard of amount of property, especially when you consider that it abuts the legendary Romanée-Conti vineyard. This wine is among the elite Pinot Noirs in the world, and it manages to display opulence and elegance, structure and seduction. To drink it now would only offer you the tiniest glimpse into the magic, but wait at least five years and you’ll have a memory making wine on your hands. Drink 2017 to 2030.
A look back at the week that was
We kicked off the week with a new post in our series on Italian red wine grapes, this one looking at grapes from Dolcetto (the “little sweet one”) to Grignolino (“many pips”). Learn more than you thought you would by checking in on this multi-post extravaganza. On Tuesday, Stephane Menard explained why every day is a good day for Prosecco, and he explores an authentic $22 bottle from Col Vetoraz to show why. And Francesco Vigorito talked tannins–what they are, how they work, and why wines with sturdy tannins are his favorites.
Crystal Edgar chose her expert selections of Alain Burguet Burgundies because Burgundy is like Manhattan–it’s all about location, location, location. John Camacho Vidal looked to southern Italy for his expert picks inspiration, and he selected two wines from Campania that are insanely good. Michael Adler looked even farther afield; journeying to Argentina’s Patagonia region, Michael picked out a pair of Bodega Chacra old-vine Pinot Noirs that proves Francesco right and poses a challenge to Crystal.
However you do it, learning is fundamental, and learning about wine is the most fun of all. Cheers to you and what’s in your glass this weekend!keep looking »