Friday Sips

Today July 14 from 1:30 - 6:30
Bonjourrrrrrr, you cheese eating surrender monkeys! Break out the cheese, smokes, baguettes and of course French wine! Oui, it's Bastille Day and we are throwing down with five wines from five different French growing regions.

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2015 Clos De La Roilette Fleurie
$19.99 btl./$239.88 case

If you have been afraid of Beaujolais in the past, you need to stop being a Beaujolais-hater and try the real thing. Hell, even the American wine writers are on board with enthusiasm. Check out the Vinous 92 point review for this wine from a producer who happens to be one of my all-time favorites in the entire region!

‘Deep ruby. Heady red and blue fruit, potpourri and fruitcake aromas show excellent clarity and pick up a minerally nuance with air. Combines power and finesse with a deft hand, offering palate-staining black raspberry and boysenberry flavors that spread out slowly on the back half. Shows real intensity and a suave floral pastille quality on the youthfully tannic finish, which leaves a sappy blue fruit note behind. – 92 POINTS, VINOUS’

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2014 Grossot Chablis Premier Cru 'Fourchaume'
$27.99 btl./$335.88 case

Jean-Pierre Grossot is the prototype Chablisien farmer who, along with daughter Eve, produces immaculate wines from this vaunted area of precise, pure white wines. Owning 32 acres (25 in AOC Chablis and 7 spread out over three different Premiers Crus) this producer has converted his vineyards to organic and harvests everything manually bringing forth Chardonnays that are brilliantly detailed.

One of the larger Chablis vineyards, Fourchaume sits on the right bank of the River Serein in close proximity to the Grands Crus vineyards. Fourchaume is one of the warmer sites of Chablis and often attains some stone fruit and ripe citrus to go along with the classic lemon and pronounced minerality. The 2014 reveals some perfumed stone, musk, saline, tangerine and undertones of spicy earth. With age, more richness and minerality will develop. Listed at 13% alcohol, Jean-Pierre states that it is 12.7, very impressive due to the site, vintage as well as one-fourth being elevated in older barrels. Nice core of fruit here, but they never interfere at all with the classic flinty character of the wine. The finish builds plenty of electricity and has good outward qualities. Drink this beautifully defined Chablis through 2023+.

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2016 Chateau D'Oupia
Minervois Rose
$11.99 btl./$143.88 case

Everyone seems to just love Southern French Rose wines these days. Here is a fun quaffer that is perfect for this weekend's (and hopefully the rest of this summer's) great weather.

Made with a blend of Syrah, Grenache & Carignan, this rose is thirst-quenching stuff! Not a hint of sweetness in this bone dry offering that is quite froggy. We say froggy, not only because it's oh-so-French, but because the aromas leap from the glass! Smoke, strawberries and subtle herbs dominate the nose while the palate is lifting, refreshing and full of zest and zing. Drink it on the porch with friends; however, it will also go well with grilled prawns or vegetables as well.

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2012 Chateau Gaillard
Saint-Emilion Grand Cru
$27.99 btl./$335.88 case

One of the hidden gems of Saint-Emilion, Catherine Papon-Nouvel is very meticulous with all of her wines and the flagship wine amazes year-in and year-out. Situated on the lower half of the slope below the historic village of Saint-Emilion, Chateau Gaillard possesses 20 hectares of vines and is neighbors with Chateau Canon-Gaffeliere.

Upon visiting and tasting back in May, we really concluded that Catherine’s 2012 is a big overachiever in a vastly underrated vintage. With this wine, think of listening to U2’s ‘With or Without You’, it is a slow seductive, but mighty build. Surging, pristine aromas that are streamlined and very sultry are on display as soon as it is poured. Quite flirtatious as it unfolds. Chocolate, blueberry with ample undertones of turned earth. Generous, very poised and personable, picking up classic structure and stoutness on the middle and back end. Well-integrated spice and coffee bean tones from thoughtfully placed oak but planes out into more mineral and has serious persistence. Accessible now with lamb chops or a nice filet of beef in a sauce but no problem for this to age well through 2026.

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2014 Domaine Du Pesquier
$21.99 btl./$263.88 case

Prototypical Provençal farmers, the Boutiére family of Domaine du Pesquier have been bottling Gigondas under their own label since 1965. Fourth generation Mathieu Boutiere is now in charge and is killing it with his wines. We have been buying, selling, cellaring and drinking these wines since the 1995 vintage and always give them our highest recommendation, but this is the first time we have ever offered the Vacqueyras.

Very different from the Gigondas, the small 2-acre plot is located north of the village in the Dentelles and is a blend of 60% Grenache & 40% Syrah. My recent notes: ‘Terroir laden, distinct for vintage and one sees the portrait of the site. Fills in more and more as it opens yet has so much enchantment. Generous black and blue fruit with plenty of penetration, succulence and savory flavors. Lovely chime and persistence with some sneaky backbone behind the curtain’. Step it up with some more serious dishes or elaborate grill preparations and drink over the next 5-8 years.