As we begin our 2nd full month here at 829 26th Street (at 3rd St.) in Dogpatch, we have hit the “settling-in” phase. We’re still a couple of weeks away from a formal unveiling (Grand Opening Party) with our sales floor fully populated, but we’re getting there. So it came with some shock when I was checking our Twitter feed yesterday and saw a link to the Sunday Streets event. I showed the map to Chris and it was quickly agreed that we would be opening the shop on a rare Sunday. So, come on by and see us Sunday from 11 to 4. 


Whew! There’s a lot going on these days. Here at the shop, the to-do list is still multiple pages in length. It can be rather frustrating, as one knows what needs to be done, can see what needs to be done, but has so much on their plate that to try to conquer each task, one at a time, seems futile. And so it goes. Let’s just say that Anya hit the nail on the head with last week’s write-up on the 2013 Petite Cassagne Rosé! I stand in full endorsement. With the unusual SF heat wave this past week, having a nice refreshing glass of this crisp Rosé waiting for me was the bees-knees after a balmy commute home. There is a bottle in my fridge right now.


What I miss most about leaving the Potrero Hill neighborhood (we’re still in the area!) are the relationships we had with the immediate community. Case in point, a couple of old pals who were friendly associates of mine back in my pre-wine-biz life. They popped into the shop one afternoon to say hi and to share their excitement, as they were planning a trip to the south of France. We agreed that I would drop by their place on the hill after work … with a couple of bottles, of course. I gave them a bit of advice on their itinerary, we were caught up, and I bade them bon voyage, and that was that. Until they came back. If I thought they were excited before their trip, they were downright giddy upon their return. It’s great to get that from a holiday! They were grateful for the advice, but what they couldn’t stop talking about was the white wine! Since they were spending a couple of days in Avignon, I felt it necessary to bring by a couple of Rhône wines. The white wine that I chose was the 2011 Tour de l’Isle Côtes du Rhône Blanc. What Robert Rocchi can do by blending varietals is pure magic. Or, as Anya says, “He’s not afraid to make wines that taste good.” Well, it seems my old friends were quite taken by this wine. So much so that (let me check this again) they went through 8.5 cases last year. That’s impressive. But it was that good.  Fast forward to this year. During the madness of moving our headquarters, we received our first container here in Dogpatch. What was on it? A whole lot of French wine … including the 2012 Tour de l’Isle Côtes du Rhône Blanc! We popped a bottle recently, and my, is it fantastic! It has a wide amalgam of aromas: apricot, peach, and a floral hint. The palate is soft yet firm, with the stone fruit present in an elegant way. It’s crisp and has a zippy finish as the soft yellow fruit slowly fades away. This is another winner from a winner of a label! For the price, this one’s tough to beat. When I taste a wine like this, I always think back to an article I read a long time ago in the Wine Spectator. Written by James Molesworth about white Rhône wines, he called them, “The best white wines you’re not drinking.”

So yeah, there’s a lot going on around here. We’ve got Sunday Streets happening in our new ‘hood Sunday. Plenty of wine now has a happy home on our sales floor, but there’s still more to go. We’ll be changing out The Dirty Dozen on Monday, and, and, and … you get it. Champions’ league came to an end for me this week as my team lost in the semi-finals. But all isn’t lost, it’s my favorite sports competition by a long-shot, and making it to the semis is quite an honor. The band has a gig on Mothers’ Day, and our new album is one mixing session away from being ready to go. Exciting times. Did I mention that the 2012 Tour de l’Isle Côtes du Rhône Blanc was in stock? You might want to try some before my old pals get a call from me. –Peter Zavialoff

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments about White Rhône wines, Bordeaux, European Football, or Sunday Streets: