Friday Sips

Say 'Hell No' to Nouveau/Turkey Wines Tasting
Today November 16 from 1:30 - 6:30
Always one of our favorite Friday Tastings of the year! Our annual celebration of le vrai Beaujolais which go very well with turkey. Come taste 3 top Cru wines from this hallowed region that aren't eight week old embryos. We’ll also be pouring an excellent white wine to pair with the Big Bird as well.

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$17.99 BTL./$215.88 CASE

Friends don't let friends drink Beaujolais Nouveau! Instead, have them drink REAL Beaujolais made by REAL growers. Authentic Beaujolais Villages and Cru Beaujolais are food friendly wines that are not to be confused with the Olde English 800 of red wine, Beaujolais Nouveau. These traditionally fermented red wines are super-food-friendly and the bottom line is that there is nothing more festive with holiday turkey. The Nouveau phenomenon helped to put this region on the wine map, however it has done a disservice for the growers in this zone making serious wine. Many of the Cru producers do not even put the name Beaujolais on their bottles, simply opting for the name, which helps to separate them from the common plonk that unfortunately prevails too often in this region. Unless you are familiar with wine from the Beaujolais villages of Moulin-À-Vent, Morgon, Fleurie etc., drop your former perception of this region and let's start over. Like a snort of whiskey at 9 AM, these wines are unmitigated eye-openers and they are phenomenal with all of the flavors that are on the plate at Thanksgiving.

Brouilly is a large appellation that surrounds Mont Brouilly. On the large, south side of the Mont, wines that are more “common” are produced. Terrière's vineyards for are located on the much smaller north side of the appellation where there are large amounts of red granite deposits. This area is widely regarded as one of the finest terroirs in all of Beaujolais. After tasting this wine over the weekend and last year in France, Bryan was amazed at the complexity and value of this wine.

Significantly layered and mineral, one immediately recognizes the step-up from Beaujolais Villages to Cru Beaujolais. Creamy raspberry with underlying spicy tones of coriander and pepper shimmer from the glass and carry over to a texture that is agile, snappy and penetrating with a total eruption of persistent flavors and depth that cascade into a long finish. Drink it over the next 5-7 years.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Jean-Paul Brun started Terres Dorées in 1979 with 10 acres of vines in Charnay in the southern Beaujolais, an area that is slightly warmer and more limestone-driven versus the more renowned granite-rich cru villages in the northern Beaujolais. Today, the Charnay estate is around 30 acres, but Jean-Paul now has small holdings within the Cru villages of Beaujolais including this selection.

Cote-de-Brouilly is very, very different from Brouilly. Brouilly surrounds the Mont de Brouilly while the Cote-de-Brouilly is of higher elevation on the ‘mont’ and much tinier in vineyard size. From an extinct volcano and hard soils, Cote-de-Brouilly are always more concentrated than their Brouilly cousins and seemingly possess more spice. Consistently one of the most fragrant wines of the region and made using Burgundian techniques, 2016 brought superb quality. Delicious, complex aromas of strawberries with mineral and subtle notes of tarragon and prominent graham/black pepper spice. Bright, layered peppery fruit and herbs make a wine that's refreshing but worthy of more attention than just casual sipping due to its mouth filling texture that can best be described as a miracle in the mouth! Drink this gorgeous, vastly underestimated offering with roasted turkey that has been stuffed with mushrooms - preferably chanterelles.

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$21.99 BTL./$263.88 CASE

Clos de la Roilette’s vineyard butts up against Moulin-a-Vent, and when boundaries were established in the ‘20s, the landowner at the time was a bit irate. In response, he put a picture of his racehorse, Roilette, on the label. In addition, the wine’s site, Clos de la Roilette more prominently on the label instead of the appellation name, Fleurie. This remains the same today even under the present owner, François Coudert.

We are undoubtedly excited for the 2017 wines from the Beaujolais region of France, alas, the quantities are very small though. Fleurie is often noted as the Queen of Beaujolais with its feminine and sleek qualities. Clos de la Roilette is a different breed and we like to refer to it as the cross-dresser of Fleurie as it takes on many of the more masculine qualities of its neighbor, Moulin-A-Vent. Packed with candied, aromatic morello cherry, red licorice, some spicy earth and violet tones that dance from the glass and seduce the palate with wonderful, layered flavors that drive into a fresh, uplifting and engaging finish. This Autumnal beauty pairs well with grilled sausage, mushroom-laced pasta dishes, baked ham and turkey whether it is roasted, smoked or deep-fried. An amazing deal as it will also age nicely for 8-10+ years and almost become like a fine Pinot Noir. These days, what one gets for $18-$25 in Cru Beaujolais is a much more significant value that just about any Pinot Noir in the world in this price range.

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$23.99 BTL./$287.88 CASE

There really is a correlation when it comes to Ferris Wheels and Riesling - both have significant wimp factors. As the prophetic Funk Master-General himself, George Clinton sez: ‘Freeeee your mind and your ass will follow’! Helmut and Cornelius Donnhoff’s wines are a force of nature from genius terroirists and two of the world's foremost authorities on profound white wine. From top to bottom, Donnhoff produces scintillating white wines and gained fame through their single vineyard wines from the best sites of the Nahe region of Germany.

Explaining the virtues and intricacies of the noble Riesling grape is always one of the most frustrating aspects of my job. Riesling is a varietal that comes in all shapes and sizes and levels of sweetness. These range from some of the most ferociously dry (trocken) and ageworthy versions to some of the sweetest and most sought-after dessert wines in the world and then all points in between. Take pause and notice this wine. Yes, it's Riesling, yes, it's from Germany, and yes, we have to shout about it out to the non-believers: YES, IT IS DRY! The Trocken (dry) category of Riesling has become wildly popular because of its diversity. Like the sweet wines, Trocken is a blank slate for its terroir, but also goes with an abundance of food choices. This wine is a flat out blitzkrieg of character. Prominent lime on the nose along with some saline and subtle spice, too. Very varietal Riesling, quite pungent and tense. Bone-dry, virtual stony citrus that shimmers with the minerality, it has a racy lemon zest, flinty, finish that really goes on. I’m sort of thinking halibut or mussels but this will also work very well with white sausages and its mouthwatering succulence goes especially well the holiday big bird.


The Most Wonderful Day Of The Year!!

Next Wednesday November 21 from 1:30 – 6:30

Statistically the day before Thanksgiving has always been the biggest drinking day of the year and we are all for keeping the numbers at their lofty levels! Come and join us for our favorite in-house tasting of the year which includes the annual pouring of the new releases from Bisci (Verdicchio and Rosso) amongst others that will be poured. Bring your family, bring your friends, hell, bring your dog!!


2015 Bisci Rosso Fogliano
2017 Bisci Verdicchio di Matelica
2015 Bisci Verdicchio di Matelica 'Fogliano'
These are just to start, many other fun and exciting things will be uncorked!
I’m taking requests within reason :-)