2018 Bianco, Isola Del Satiro $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
This is an appealing blend of Catarratto, a native Sicilian grape, and Grecanico, aka Garganega, the grape most commonly used for making Soave in Italy. Produced by Alcesti, whose vineyards stretch over 30 hectares south of Marsala on Sicily’s west coast. Hand-harvested and fermented in tank, it’s youthful, with vigorous notes of yellow fruit. Pair with Arancini or stuffed squid.
2018 Sauvignon Blanc, MF Wines $11.98 net price, $10.78 reorder
Two wine industry guys, Matthew and Fritz, joined forces to create MF Wines. Using their considerable insiders’ knowledge and contacts, they are able to source high quality fruit to make terrific value priced wines. We love their juicy, melon-laced, energetic Sauvignon Blanc. It’s clean and fresh; no oak to mask the fruit. Suggested pairings include fried chicken, Chile Relleno and oysters.
2018 Getariako Txakolina, Roca Altxerri $15.98 net price, $14.38 reorder
A Txakoli has finally made an appearance in the Dirty Dozen! Those lucky enough to have visited Spain’s Basque Country’s famous food mecca, San Sebastien, are likely to be acquainted with this style of wine. Fruity with high acidity and a bit of sparkle, it’s oh so delightful. Getariako Txakolina refers to a specific appellation and uses the Hondurabbi Zuri grape. You are in for a treat!
2017 Ventoux Blanc, Domaine de Fondrèche $16.99, $13.59 reorder
Pushing the envelope for quality vs. price, winemaker Sébastien Vincenti blends equal parts Roussanne, Grenache Blanc, and Clairette, along with 10% Rolle for this humble Ventoux blanc that will give a white Châteauneuf-du-Pape a run for its money! It’s rich and vibrant, expressive and complex with a snappy finish. Great with lobster rolls or soft shell crab tacos.
2017 Pecorino d’Abruzzo Colle Maggio, Torre Zambra $17.29, $ 13.83 reorder
It’s the name of a cheese, right? It’s also the name of an exciting grape variety hailing from Italy’s Abruzzo. Legend has it that the grapes got their name from the region's cattle, who had a fancy for eating the grapes and who's milk was used in making Pecorino cheese. The aromas are tropical and exotic (apricot, mango, white peach), while the palate is crisp and balanced. Try it with halibut crudo.
2018 Touraine Rosé, Domaine des Corbillières $14.49, $11.59 reorder
One of our most popular Rosés for over two decades, we’re going to keep riding this horse as long as it will run. From France’s Loire Valley, the Barbou family make their Rosé from Pinot Noir and Pineau d’Aunis sourced from vines in excess of 30 years old! It’s dry and clean, with just a hint of red berry, citrus, and mineral. It goes with almost anything; though do try it with a Pizza Margherita.
2018 Tempranillo JA!, Tinedo $9.98 net price, $8.98 reorder
Goodness, what a fabulous value this Tempranillo is from Spain’s Castilla La Mancha region. Owned by the Alvarez-Arenas family whose winemaking lineage dates back to 1742, the grapes are farmed organically, de-stemmed and vinified in a combination of stainless and concrete tanks. The dark, red berry fruit dances sweetly on the palate. Matches up with any cuisine found along the Mediterranean Sea.
2014 Pax-Montis, Frieden-Berg $15.98 net price, $14.38 reorder
A blend of 50/50 Spätbugunder (Pinot Noir) and Dornfelder, this dry red German is a balanced, medium-bodied wine. The winery, a father and son operation, is located in Nittel just 15 miles south of Trier forming the eastern border of Luxembourg. The limestone soils are perfect for growing Burgundian varietals. This wine would make a lovely choice for pork chops with braised cabbage.
2014 Pinot Noir, DRNK $17.95 sale price, $17.05 reorder
Owner/winemaker Ryan Kunde represents his family’s fifth generation of vineyard stewardship dating back to the 1880’s. To say he grew up around wine is an understatement. The Anderson Valley Pinot Noir sources fruit from two vineyards: Conzelman and Helluva. At less than 400 cases produced, this small batch Pinot Noir is a steal at $17.95 (reg. $32). Pair with salmon or poultry.
2017 Barco Reale di Carmignano, Tenuta Pierazzuolo $15.49, $12.39 reorder
Centuries before the era of “Super Tuscan” wine, Cabernet Sauvignon has been allowed to grow in Carmignano. In fact, the original clippings came from Bordeaux in the way of a wedding gift for Catherine di Medici. Barco Reale sees less time in oak barrel, and is released younger than its older sibling, keeping things fresh and lively. As one would imagine, it suits any red-sauced pasta to a tee.
2017 Côtes du Rhône, Tour de l’Isle $16.99, $13.59 reorder
The fruit for the Tour de l’Isle wines all come from a handful of grower-partners of master blender, Robert Rocchi. Rocchi’s decades of experience in the Rhône Valley lends him the wisdom to dial them in exactly how he wants – and he is not afraid to make wines that taste good! This CdR is teeming with bright red fruit with firm structure. It’s the perfect autumn red, try it with a filet mignon.
2016 Vin de Pays du Var à Lisa, Domaine des Aspras $13.49, $10.79 reorder
Not for the faint of heart, this organically grown Merlot blend brings funk that would make Bootsy Collins proud! Deep, dark purple fruit sits at the core, shrouded in gamey, animal, leathery, earthy notes the French would describe as “garrigue.” It pairs well with comfort foods such as meatloaf with mac and cheese, though a pizza with Kalamata olives would also do the trick.
As seasons change, it’s time to bring the festivities indoors. Autumn is a beautiful time of year, with the foliage, cooler weather, and longer nights.
Knowing the most festive time of year is dead ahead, it’s a good idea to stock up on some vino because … you know, just because.
This month’s DD offers versatility, with 5 countries represented. Still one of the best deals in town!