We interrupt this summer time to bring you … wait. It’s almost August. These are truly the dog days of summer. We all need to just chill.I don’t want to interrupt anybody’s summer. Relax. Have fun. Visit with friends. Visit with family. Travel. Repeat.This is what August is all about. No need for any deep thinking here. When I come home from work and start prepping dinner on a summer evening,I want something cool and crisp in my glass. Sure, I would love some Burgundy, but that’s special wine.Burgundy is better suited for companyand more special an occasion than Monday night dinner prep. In order to have this bottleproperly chilled by Monday night, I need to bring it home when I leave work on Saturday.The wine that I keep grabbing each Saturday so far this summer?The 2015 Les Tours from Domaine La Hitaire.

 

 
Do you remember Domaine de Pouy? Many of us have fond memories of Domaine de Pouy and the affordable quaffability it provided. I’ve heard many customers romanticize about how it “got me through grad school,” or “just pairs with everything.” Anya even served it at her wedding and also informed me that it was the cornerstone of The Dirty Dozen, as it was a consistent component during the DD’s early days. The Les Tours from Domaine La Hitaire is essentially the same wine as the Domaine de Pouy. Both labels are owned by the same family, formerly run by Yves Grassa, and are now in the hands of his two sons Rémy and Armin. Both wines are blends of Ugni Blanc, Colombard, and Gros Manseng. Both wines are delightfully light and crisp, and they both have that kiss-of-honey finish. They are the same wine.
 
 
Historically, the Gascogne region produces distillates,and the Grassa family’s bas-Armagnac is prized for its quality. The family thought high enough of the quality of their grapes to make wine from them as well, and what a service they have provided for us! Every now and then I peruse the wine selections when I’m shopping at supermarkets and grocery stores. In general, I haven’t found anything below $10 per bottle that give me any reason to revisit. That is why I’ve been leaving with a bottle of Les Tours every weekend. It’s a no-brainer white. It’s not an interruption; it’s delicious, inexpensive, and low in alcohol (10.5%).
 
 
Call it coincidence, but this coming Monday is the first of August. How kind of the calendar makers to give us back to back 31 day months in summer. However you plan to spend August 2016, we hope it is full of wonderful moments, great meals, your favorite people, and memorable wines. Please excuse this interruption. I tried to be brief. I could have just said, “2015 Les Tours from Domaine La Hitaire. It’s $9.17 per bottle by the case. It’s light, crisp, and delicious.” Happy summer! –Peter Zavialoff
 
Please feel free to email me with any questions or comments about Domaine de Pouy, wines from southwest France, summer plans, or the upcoming football season: peter@wineSF.com
Everyone is talking about Bordeaux, or so it seems. Parker released his reviews for the 2012 vintage on Friday, essentially ruining every Bordeaux negociants’ weekend. Our very own resident Bordeaux Scout, Pete Z., has been filling us in with vintage impressions and assessments and entertaining us with stories about the many visits he paid to our Bordeaux friends in early April. No trip to Bordeaux would be complete without making the trek to Chateau Couronneau, which Pete made the day before he returned home to SF.  Pete reports that owner/winemaker Christophe Piat’s dedication to organic farming is as strong as ever as he continues to implement Biodynamic farming practices. Starting with the 2012 vintage, Chateau Couronneau will be certified Demeter. I admire Christophe’s passion for farming and his desire to learn how to work even better in the vineyard than he already does. 

 

 

Chateau Couronneau’s 2010 Cuvée Pierre de Cartier is made from the estate’s oldest Merlot parcels grown on clay-limestone soil. I have never tasted such depth and raw concentration in the Cuvée Pierre de Cartier as I do in the 2010. In the spirit of full disclosure I must note that my tasting experience with the 2010 is limited to a day old sample. Remarkably, a day spent in a small glass vial did nothing to tame the intensity of fruit. I couldn’t believe what I was tasting; were the guys playing a trick on me? The story goes that the Piats nicknamed the 2010 Cuvée Pierre de Cartier, The Monster. Knowing their non-interventionalist approach to winemaking, this Monster was obviously created in the vineyard; severely reduced yields made for some incredibly concentrated juice. The news of The Monster had spread and some wine regulator types came to inspect the winery, thinking they might find some trickery going on, but of course they did not. Given the plushness of the 2010 Couronneau Classique, it seems only natural that this reserve bottling, the Cuvée Pierre de Cartier, would show even greater intensity. I wouldn’t say that the 2010 Cuvée Pierre de Cartier is a departure for Chateau Couronneau but it is without question, a monster. The dark plum fruit approaches jamminess but does not cross over that line. There is spice and cedar box lurking beneath the fruit. It is young and delicious and will certainly evolve nicely in bottle. Another aspect to this wine that makes it so appealing are the soft, round, cocoa-dusted tannins, reminding me of what is so darn attractive about Merlot from Bordeaux. 

 

 

I am uncharacteristically irritable today, and feeling downright annoyed – my daughter woke up this morning with horns in place of her halo, I encountered way too many aggressive drivers on the ride in to work and Pete just devoured a sandwich from the Deli Board, piled high with cured meat, in front of me, oohing and ahhing the entire time (I am in the final stretches of a 7-week meat abstinence). Days like these are eased and soothed by the promise of a quiet moment with a glass of wine at the end of the day. Wine is good! —Anya Balistreri

January 2012 Dirty Dozen

Saturday, January 7, 2012 6:45 PM

Happy New Year! As the whirr of the holi-daze shrinks away in our rear view mirrors, we look forward to many more vinous discoveries coming in 2012! The new year brings hope and optimism, resolutions, and the NFL playoffs! There’s something going on there for us locals, and for you, how about the January 2012 Dirty Dozen? 12 bottles, all chosen for their versatility, packed in a box, for an incredible price. Go SF!

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2009 Cheverny Le Domaine du Moulin, Hervé Villemade – $14.98 net price, $13.49 reorder
Brand new for us is this white blend from Cheverny in the Loire Valley. Cheverny is located just between the cities of Tours and Orleans and boasts one of the Loire’s most famous chateaux. Certified orgainic, Monsieur Villemade blends approximately 70% Chardonnay with 30% Sauvignon Blanc and the result is a delightful balanced wine that shows ample fruit and a crisp finish. A crab salad works fine here.

2009 Mâcon les Tilles, J.M. Chaland – $19.99, $15.99 reorder
Every now and then the Dirty Dozen gets a surprise visit from some highly esteemed appellation; this time it’s Burgundy! Jean-Michel Chaland crafts wonderful terroir driven Chardonnays from his vineyards in and around Mâcon. The vines for les Tilles are approximately 40-50 years old, and the wine is vinified all in steel tank. Rich, round, fleshy white fruit with a hint of the tropics. Drink with that lobster.

2009 Chardonnay, Lalande – $13.49, $10.79 reorder
Grassa. Yves Grassa. He’s the man behind the wines from Domaine Lalande in Gascogne. Seasoned DD veterans are familiar with the name and the wines, which are delectable vintage after vintage. Oscar Wilde once said, “Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.” We imagine Oscar never had a glass of Lalande Chardonnay. We also imagine an open face turkey sandwich with this.

2010 Rosé de Ecuyer de Château Couronneau – $11.99, $9.59 reorder
In Bordeaux, you hear a lot of fuss about the prices of the finest wines, but less often, do you hear about all the production (the famous wines represent around 5% of Bordeaux’s total output). Christophe and Bénédicte Piat are keeping it real for us, proudly sporting the Agricole Biologique banner on their property at Bordeaux’s eastern frontier. This Rosé is fresh and fruity and goes well with bbq.

2010 Scaia Bianco, Tenuta Sant’Antonio – $12.98 net price, $11.68 reorder
Now what do you get when you blend Garganega with Chardonnay? Tom likes to call it a “Super Soave”, and we can’t blame you if you do too as this wine has that soft, fleshy fruit sensation, yet is backed up with a fresh crisp finish. Toss some scampi and serve with pasta.

2010 Montravel Blanc, Château Calabre – $10.99, $8.79 reorder
Next up could very well be the best white wine bargain in the shop! Made just outside Bordeaux in Montravel, Daniel Hecquet blends 50% Sauvignon Blanc with 40% Semillon and 10% Muscadelle resulting in a knock-off White Bordeaux. All steel tank here, the wine is bright and fresh, with plenty of complexity on the palate, and will have you scratching your head as to how it can be done for this price.

2010 Zinfandel, Old Vines, Rail 2 Rail – $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
In Lodi, there is an 82 year old farmer named Andy D’Arrigo. He grows lettuce, prickly pears, and grapes. His Zinfandel vines are more than 45 years old, and he has no intention of selling any of his land because, “I don’t know how to grow buildings.” Surf enthusiast/winemaker Eric Laumann came upon Andy and the result is Rail 2 Rail Zin. Tee this up with a rich pizza with sausage and olives.

2008 Monastrell Hécula, Bodegas Castaño – $9.98 net price, $8.98 reorder
Nestled in Spain’s Yecla DO (appellation of origin) you will find Bodegas Castaño. This 100% Monastrell (Mourvèdre) is grown at altitudes of approximately 750 feet on vines 35 years of age or more. We have nothing but praise for this wine, as it outperforms its price point by a long shot. We’re not the only ones; Steven Tanzer says that it could be a Bandol and Robert Parker heaps praise on wine prospector Eric Solomon, saying, “Solomon’s wines are intense expressions of terroir.” This one could use a big juicy t-bone steak.

2009 Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon, The Royal – $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
Grab the passport, we’re off to South Africa. Though after one sip of this silky smooth Shiraz/Cab blend, you may think you’ve gone to the land down under, but alas, The Royal is from Africa’s southern tip. Adding 40% Cabernet Sauvignon to the blend gives the spicy Shiraz a blackberry backbone with just a hint of mocha spice. What to pair here? Think Africa. How ’bout ostrich fillet? Yum.

2009 Touraine Les Demoiselles – Domaine des Corbillières – $14.99, $11.99 reorder
Not new to us are the wines from Domaine des Corbillières. What IS new to us is Maurice Barbou’s Les Demoiselles cuvée, which is roughly 40% Pinot Noir, 30% Côt (Malbec), and 30% Cabernet Franc. Ding! Ding! Woot! Woot! Winner! Winner! The wine is an aromatic masterpiece of dark red, purple, and black berries, tobacco leaf, and cracked pepper, all singing around a mineral core. Fermented in tank, it’s fresh and juicy. We have a feeling that this one is a keeper. Enjoy with pasta with red sauce.

2007 Chianti Colli Sinese, Montenidoli – $19.99, $15.99 reorder
Oh wait, that pairing suggestion was meant for this wine! Oh well, we can have two pasta with red sauce wines in the same DD. Tuscan wine royalty Elisabetta Fagiuoli brews up some old-school Chianti using Sangiovese and Canaiolo. The wine is dense and rich with an herbal component that screams Old World. It is a Chianti that can be enjoyed now, but will gain in complexity if cellared properly.

2010 Malbec, Alberto Furque – $14.99, $11.99 reorder
Wine without filtration is the motto at Bodega Aconquija, better known to us as Alberto Furque. Winemaker Carolina Furque does not filter any of her wines. She feels that filtration removes important nuances in both aromas and flavors. Sometimes this may result in a little sediment, but the trade-off is worth it. This Malbec is grown at altitudes of around 3000 ft in the Andes Mountains, which is important for acidity levels in the wines. This wine will shine along side a roast pork tenderloin with chimichurri sauce.

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2010 Domaine de Pouy: Summer in a Glass

Monday, August 1, 2011 4:57 PM

The 2010 Domaine de Pouy is the epitome of what a Summer white house pour should be; it is snappy and crisp, LOW in alcohol, and under $10. It’s perfectly satisfying on its own and versatile enough to move through with a meal. The 2010 Domaine de Pouy isbursting with tangy white grapefruit flavors, lime zest aromatics and a thrilling acid finish. The sharp contrast between ripe fruit and acid had TWH staff wondering if this is perhaps a common characteristic of the vintage in France since this contrast has been widely noted of 2010 Bordeaux. Remarkable how a humble white from the Cotes de Gascogne can trigger a conversation about the merits of a particular vintage in Bordeaux! Made from a blend of Ugni Blanc and Colombard, Domaine de Pouy is a staple at our store and though dear to our palates, may not always get the attention it deserves. In fact, the last time I wrote about Domaine de Pouy was four vintages ago. Far too long not to shed a light onwhat is consistently one of the best value whites from France.

The mastermind behind Domaine de Pouy is the swashbuckling Yves Grassa who took grapes that were slated to be distilled into Armagnac, applied modern winemaking techniques that preserved their freshness, then fermented them into a quaffable, zippy white wine. For over 20 years TWH has been singing the praises of this workhorse white that brings the ease and simplicity of French country living into your home and onto your table. This is seriously good juice.

 

My love affair with Domaine de Pouy started the moment I came to work at TWH. Even with my heavy on the California Chardonnay background, Domaine de Pouy immediately appealed to my palate. Domaine de Pouy was the first wine I selected for the first ever Dirty Dozen sampler and was the white wine I served at my wedding, henceforth known as The Wedding White. It didn’t exactly hurt to meet Yves Grassa to fall even deeper in love with Domaine de Pouy as his bigger than life personality is infectious. I remember one visit to France when a lovely, proper Southern Lady who ran a successful restaurant, upon shaking Monsier Grassa’s hand, cooed to him “I just love Pouy!”(emphasis on the oo-eee). It is now impossible for me to say Domaine de Pouy out loud without hearing this line reverberate inside my head. Last weekend our family catered my nephew’s wedding with over 200 guests in attendance. I now know there is a reason why people hire professionals! I am only now recovering from the hard work, fun and heightened emotions. Thankfully everything came off, more or less, as planned. Certainly no one left hungry or thirsty! A good time was had by all; including my daughter who was still going strong at midnight! Looks like I’m in for a lot of trouble. Payback’s a ….!–Anya Balistreri

July 2010 Dirty Dozen

Saturday, July 10, 2010 3:44 PM

Long weekends make for short weeks. And now that we’re through with ours, we can think about celebrating all the great things July and summer have in store for us! Been to a farmers’ market lately? Go. Now. Bastille Day is coming up, and this month’s DD has plenty of French wines for anyone’s palate. Just be sure to wear a smile. A sante.

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2009 Torrontes, Inacayal $13.99, $11.19 reorder
Torrontes has emerged as Argentina’s numero uno white variety. Its blossomy aromatics and melon-like mouthfeel are a hit with wine lovers the world over. The fruit is sourced from vines grown at 3000 feet which keep natural acidity levels where they should be to balance the herbal, fruity, and floral flavors. A sure-fire hit with a spicy Thai salad.

2008 Chardonnay ‘Lalande’, Grassa Family Vineyards $12.59, $10.07 reorder
If you did a Google Image search for ‘Yves Grassa’, one of the first photos you’ll come across is of Monsieur sporting quite the mercenary look; trimmed beard, scarf, hat, and cigarette dangling from his mouth. He is quite the pioneer; planting 60 acres of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc in what is otherwise Armagnac Brandy turf. Shrimp Louie here?

2008 Domaine de Pouy $8.99, $7.19 reorder
Light, crisp, perfect for summer sipping, the Domaine de Pouy has a big following around here! Just ask Anya, and she’ll proudly tell you that this was her wedding white. Also, during the seminal days of this very Dirty Dozen, she felt that this wine was so dang good that it was included in EVERY installment. Pair it with good company and a warm day.

2007 Pinot Auxerrois, Domaine Ehrhart $16.59, $13.27 reorder
Pinot Auxerrois is a clone of Pinot Blanc, and the Val St. Gregoire is an optimal growning region for the variety. Philippe Ehrhart coaxes perfect balance of fruit and acidity out of his wines … and the 2007 vintage in Alsace was stellar.

2008 Domaine de la Petite Cassagne Blanc $11.99, $9.59 reorder
It’s very tough to find good quality White Rhone wine for such a price, but then, that’s what we do around here – we find great wines for great prices! 40% Rolle and 60% Grenache Blanc make up the blend, serve it with roast chicken.

2009 Touraine Rose, Domaine des Corbillieres $14.99, $11.99 reorder
Rose made from 100% Pinot Noir? Mais oui! Of the Roses we bring in every year, this one is usually the first to go. Perfect balance of herbs, spice, a hint of berry fruit, and lively acidity makes this a perfect match for exotic cuisine.

2005 Trassegum, Domaine d’Or et des Gueules $21.99, $17.59 reorder
Wow! Really? Diane’s top cuvee in the DD??!! Yes. You’ve got 50% strict selection Syrah, blended with 25% old vine Carignan and Mourvedre. After bottling, she holds back release, at her own expense, because she feels the wines need to be ready when they hit the market. Ready to drink? Yes. Capable of aging? You bet. This could easily go another 10 years with proper storage. Can’t wait that long? No problem. Be sure to give it some food, like smoked tri-tip!

2005 Palombieres, Domaine Montpezat $13.99, $11.19 reorder
Q. What’s our friendliest red wine, under $15, that one can serve as a ‘cocktail wine’, meaning that it doesn’t necessarily need food accompaniment? A. Why the 2005 Palombieres from Montpezat, of course. A blend of Mourvedre and Grenache, it is loaded with juicy fruit, yet has a briary backbone that will keep it in the game should a pizza show up.

2004 Cabernet/Syrah, Mas Carlot $9.95 sale price, $9.45 reorder
Another showing off briary, raspberry patch fruit, this one benefits from the healthy dose of Cabernet Sauvignon which gives it some extra stuffing to stand up to whichever red meat you may choose to plop on that grill. It has some bottle age which gives it some interesting secondary characteristics. Best with a juicy steak, but interesting on its own also.

2009 Grenache Campo de Borja, Quo $9.98 net price, $8.98 reorder
Okay, we can’t do ALL French this month, in spite of Bastille Day right around the corner, so we’ll toss in one from south of the border; in this case, Spain. This juicy little number will make you do a double take; it’s got mineral and a hint of herbs, all wrapped up in a spicy, fruity profile. If you have a need for a spicy, juicy Tuesday night wine, here it is!

2007 Merlot, St. Antoine $10.99, $8.79 reorder
Not that the southern Rhone hasn’t had its share of great vintages in the past 12 years (one exception), but along came 2007 which blew everyone’s socks off. It was such a good vintage, that the normally easy quaffers from the environs are showing great complexity. This Merlot sings of earth and bright fruit … how can one procure a bbq duck breast?

2008 Syrah/Grenache, Vignobles Boudinaud $11.99, $9.59 reorder
Fresh off the boat, this blend actually includes a dollop of Mourvedre which gives it a little truffle-like backbone. People from the south of France are obviously used to shopping for fresh ingredients from the vegetable stands to the boucheries, and are keen to have a high-quality, inexpensive bottle of vin de table for dinner. So this year, on Bastille Day, make like a southern French denizen; grab a baguette along with your meal, and a bottle of this!

2008 Mas Carlot Rose

Friday, September 4, 2009 4:44 PM

Long Weekend Special Price: $99 case

2008 Mas Carlot Rose Vin de Pays D’Oc

Rose; other red varietal; Other France;
$10.29
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SOLID CASE 2008 MAS CARLOT ROSE
$99.00
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The last time I picked a Rose for a Sunday Email Staff Pick, it was the 2008 Touraine Rosefrom Domaine Corbillieres. Delicate and nuanced, and sadly sold out; I am now on to another rose. The 2008 Rose from Mas Carlot leans away from a more restrained style of Rose and instead embraces a vivacious, exuberant approach. It is composed of Grenache, Syrah and is rumored to have a small dollop of Mourvedre. The Carlot Rose had me at hello– I mean first sniff. I’ve said many times before to customers who visit the store that it smells and tastes of macerated wild strawberries seeped in mineral. It is so cheerful, so full of perky fruit flavors that I perpetually keep a cold one in the fridge. Not a week has gone by this summer without at least one bottle consumed at my household. It has taken me years of drinking Rose to finally admit aloud that I especially like ones that revere the fruit. I understand and appreciate the delicate ones, see above, but it’s the ones that celebrate bright sunny flavors that make me happiest. Bear in mind that the finish on the Mas Carlot Rose is dry, so please do not equate my repeated mention of intense fruit with a sweet finish. This Rose is the ideal poolside, weekend-getting-away, big party, staycation wine. Never turning down a gracious offer of backyard veggies, I am hooked on the combination of Provencal vegetable Tians served with the Carlot Rose. Never competing, always complimenting, it is a textbook example of a Provencal Rose.

 

Mas Carlot began with the 1998 vintage with young Natalie Blanc-Mares at the helm. 10 vintages and 4 children later, Natalie continues to make wines that cherish fruit, have soft edges and are pure. How ever does she do it? I am impressed. My own attempt at modern life juggling career and family just leaves me overwhelmed. My only child started Kindergarten this week. I remembered the long nights walking up and down the hallway comforting my screaming infant, wondering to myself, when will this end? And presto, she’s off to school. I can’t believe it. Another blink of the eye and she’ll be off to college. Time is precious, so remember to treat yourself with good company, healthy food and tasty wine! Anya Balistreri

 

 

 
SOLID CASE 2008 MAS CARLOT ROSE
$99.00
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THAT’S ONLY $8.25 A BOTTLE!
2008 Mas Carlot Rose Vin de Pays D’Oc

Rose; other red varietal; Other France;
$10.29
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June 2009 Dirty Dozen

Monday, June 15, 2009 2:28 PM

Wow! June is here already, and are there things to do! We’ve got graduations and the beginning of summer vacation, Father’s Day, and the summer solstice to name a few. Most certainly, there are some June Brides out there saying, “Hey. What about us?” Of course. Whatever the occasion, the June Dirty Dozen has what you need. 12 wines chosen for their versatility, all for one low price. Cheers!

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2008 Domaine de Pouy – $8.99, $7.19 reorder
Grab a couple of clean glasses and get ready for the latest installment of what could very well be the anchor of our everyday sipping white wines. From Gascogne, this 3 grape blend is crisp and zippy and offers tremendous value year in and year out. The screwcap makes it perfect for picnics! Pair it with an ice chest and a warm summer day.

2005 Chardonnay Central Coast, 4 Bears Winery – $9.98 net price, $8.98 reorder
Due to some savvy shopping on our part, we were able to procure a stash of this Central Coast Chardonnay and be able to offer it to you for a smidge under $10. Notes of spice and tropical fruit combine with hints of peaches and herbs (I didn’t just say that, did I?) that make this the perfect wine for that barbeque chicken!

2008 Rose, Chateau Guiot – $10.29, $8.23 reorder
Take a look around here and it soon becomes obvious that a ship just came in. Actually, a couple of them. One was full of 2008 Rose. Made mostly of Grenache, this fruity Rose is always one of our most popular. So here’s to summer. Salad Nicoise, a baguette, and a bottle of the Guiot Rose, and you can almost hear Charles Trenet crooning “La Mer”.

2007 Sauvignon Blanc, Montpezat – $11.99, $9.59 reorder
The longer, warmer days of June beg for crisp, white wine. This Sauv Blanc from the Languedoc, is crisp, all tank fermented, and displays notes of citrus blossoms. Perfect as an aperitif or along side your fish tacos.

2008 Chardonnay, Lalande – $12.59, $10.07 reorder
They’re baaack! We’re happy to let you know that Lalande’s latest release Chardonnay is in stock. For a French Chardonnay in the ‘nice price’ range, they have a proven track record of making delicious wine. Think scampi here.

2006 Pinot Gris Tradition, Rene Mure – $19.99, $15.99 reorder
Alsatian Pinot Gris has a distinction all its own. Known as a noble grape of Alsace, it yields wines that have richness, depth, and complexity. This one here displays chalky mineral, a hint of mushroom, and flavors of melons and ripe peaches. The next time you get the urge to pair ‘a pinot’ with smoked salmon, chicken, or duck, make it Pinot Gris!

2007 Syrah ‘Only Girls’, Chateau d’Or et de Gueules – $11.29, $9.03 reorder
Named for the winemaker’s five daughters, the ‘Only Girls’ Syrah (from the outstanding 2007 vintage in southern France) could very well be the BIGGEST bargain in our shop. It’s 100% tank fermented Syrah, long on dark fruit, mineral, and fine tannins; and at the price, a steal. Great on its own, or serve it with a grilled tri-tip.

2008 Cotes du Rhone, Cote Jardin – $12.39, $9.91 reorder
You may have tried the wines from Veronique and Thierry Boudinaud before. They produce a couple of VDP wines under the Grange des Rouquette label. They now have 25 hectares in the Cotes du Rhone appellation. This can only be a good thing. Perhaps you artistic types can fill in the white parts of the label and make it a little more interesting.

2005 Palombieres, Montpezat – $13.99, $11.19 reorder
Back by popular demand! This blend of Grenache with Mourvedre has been as popular as ever with those of you who like a bright, fruity attack framed by the briary garrigue. This is one of those no-brainer party wines. Just pop it and watch it disappear before any talk of food. If you can wait, pair this alongside a pizza with olives and feta.

2004 Bergerac Rouge, Chateau Calabre – $7.95 sale price, $7.55 reorder
On the opposite side of the spectrum, this offering from just outside Bordeaux has its own following. Definitely NOT made in the round, jammy style of new world blends, it mingles earth with its herbal profile to keep the fruit in check.

2004 Cabernet/Syrah ‘Alex’, Chateau Guiot – $19.99, $15.99 reorder
Talk about a treat. This blend from the Costieres de Nimes is, in a word, big. It is a special wine that combines deep, dark fruit, a touch of smoke, and an earthy depth that will make it work well with anything hearty you may want to toss on the grill. Fear not if you don’t finish the bottle, as this has been known to last for days after opening.

2005 Carmignano, Enrico Pierazzuoli – $21.99, $17.59 reorder
This Super-Tuscan blend of 80% Sangiovese and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon was a big hit with those of you who tried the 2004 version. In 2005, the fruit was more ripe at harvest, yielding a bigger, more structured wine. Perfect with that juicy bistecca now, or cellar it and be rewarded in 3-10 years.

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Anya’s Great No Brainer: 2006 Domaine du Pouy

Wednesday, May 28, 2008 2:20 PM

2006 Domaine de Pouy Cotes de Gascogne

White Wine; other white varietal; Other France;
$8.99

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$7.65 per bottle with case discount.

 



Before Ben had his wedding white (Brunel’s luscious Cotes du Rhone, Domaine Becasonne), I had mine – Domaine de Pouy. A crisp, fresh, zesty wine composed of ugni blanc and colombard. So refreshing, so versatile, so affordable! Proprietor Yves Grassa, a wine-making visionary, took grapes destined for the distillery, applied modern vinification practices that best capture and retain the vivacity of young white wine, and produced one of the best wine values of the world for the last 20+ years!!! I love this wine served as cold as you can get it. Where others might be inclined to slush around the cooler for a tasteless watery brew, I prefer this classy, thirst-quenching refreshment. There is a lot to love about this wine, and I could go on about how so many of our long-time customers buy it by the case or how Domaine de Pouy is consistently named best under $10 value, etc. Buy it by the case! But don’t just believe me, check out the passion and enthusiasm Robert Parker conjures up describing Domaine de Pouy on his website’s bulletin board:



“If Domaine de Pouy isn’t one of the finest white values in the world…..than I will show up in public with a glass of V-8 juice(Valtellina)…..the 2006 continues a nearly 20 year run of excellence of this Cotes de Gascogne…..light(10.5% alcohol),loaded with crisp grapefruit and lime-like notes….zesty….fresh…and clean as a mountain spring….this is delicious wine that is totally tank fermented and aged….available just about every good wine shop for $10 or less….and finished with a screwcap for you corkophobes…the newly released 2006…an excellent vintage for white varietals in that neck of the world…is going down the gullet as I type…and holding up nicely with some very spicy homemade Maryland crab soup…just think-for the price of one bottle of oxidized white Burgundy you can have 24-36 bottles of something delicious….give me pleasure over prestige anytime…any place….” – Robert Parker

Ten years later, I am still here at The Wine House (time flies when you are having fun!), I am still married (shout out to you, Koshka!) and I am still recommending, enjoying and drinking Domaine de Pouy!!! – Anya Balistreri

2006 Domaine de Pouy Cotes de Gascogne

White Wine; other white varietal; Other France;
$8.99

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$7.65 per bottle with case discount.

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