2016 Albariño, La Milla $18.98 net price, $17.08 reorder
Enthusiasts of crisp, mineral-driven whites are flocking to Albariño, especially those from Spain’s Rias Baxias region. La Milla is made from biodynamic and organically farmed vines, 40-80 years old, grown on shallow sandy soil in proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. Sleek peach and apple flavors meet with a note of anisette. Keep it raw, pair with sushi or ceviche.
2016 Rueda, Vevi $13.98 net price, $12.58 reorder
The wine region of Rueda is located in the heart of Spain where the elevation is high and the climate continental. Rueda is the ancestral home of the Verdejo grape. Vevi’s Verdejo highlights its distinctive character, embracing vivid flavors of ripe pear. The wine sits on its lees for 4-6 months giving the wine lush texture. Pair up with the catch of the day.
2017 Fiction White, Field Recordings $16.98 net price, $15.28 reorder
Winemaker Andrew Jones claims to have stood in about every vineyard on CA’s Central Coast. This vast knowledge of the region helps him access the finest grapes. His Fiction White is a multivineyard blend of Chardonnay (80%) with Chenin Blanc and Verdelho. A combo of oak and stainless steel fermentation makes for a fleshy and lively wine.
2017 Côtes du Rhône Blanc, Tour de l’Isle $15.99, $12.79 reorder
Rhône scholar, Robert Rocchi, acts as a négociant to a handful of growers in the southern Rhône, making decisions on final blends. Made from Grenache Blanc, Roussanne, Marsanne, and Clairette, it’s another great value from one of France’s value-centric regions. It shows aromas of pears and peaches and finishes soft and balanced. Happy crab season!
2014 Montagny Les Guignottes, Domaine Les Guignottes $12.95 sale price, $12.30 reorder
White Burgundy in the Dirty Dozen. White Burgundy which is on-sale, no less! Montagny is an appellation in the Côte Chalonnaise, which is just south of Burgundy’s vaunted Côte d’Or. Only white wines are allowed to adorn the AOC on their bottles, and the grape is Chardonnay, of course. This is an expressive, fruit driven white, pair it with scallops.
2017 Rosé À Lisa, Domaine Aspras $13.99, $11.19 reorder
It’s one thing to ask any of us which Rosé is our favorite; answering that question would be subject to the mood we’re in. Take a look at staff invoices and you’ll see that it’s this Rosé. Why not? It’s dry, crisp, and it has wonderful fruity aromas which lay in fine balance throughout the tasting experience. Pair it with a bowl of mussels and you’ll be set.
2016 Cabernet Sauvignon, CaliPaso $17.98 net price, $16.18 reorder
CaliPaso is a small, boutique winery that is attached to private inn. We’ve been fond of their wines for some years as they offer both quality and value. The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon is big, bold and redolent of black plums and red currant fruit. The oak presence matches beautifully to the fruit. Impactful on the palate, serve with premium cuts of roast beast.
2015 Zweigelt 1L, Zum Martin Sepp $14.98 net price, $13.48 reorder
Switching gears here with a light-bodied, soft tannin red made from Zweigelt. Zum Martin Sepp is a small restaurant and inn located in the northern outskirts of Vienna. Winemaker Michi Martin adheres to organic practices, hand picks the grapes and ferments in stainless steel. Simple and delicious, try it with lighter fare like mushroom risotto or gnocchi.
2016 Gene, Gen Del Alma $16.98 net price, $15.28 reorder
Hailing from Argentina’s Gualtarry, a sub-region of Uco Valley, this is some wine. The vines are planted at the foot of the Andes at altitudes of 4600 feet! Gene is a blend of Bordeaux varietals, dominated by Malbec. Dark, crushed red cherries, forest floor and graphite flavors abound. Complex, give a decant if time permits. Grilled meats are a natural pairing.
2015 Bergerac, Château Calabre $10.99, $8.79 reorder
Not far from Bordeaux, you’ll find the Dordogne River Valley and Bergerac. His winery may be in nearby Montravel, but Daniel Hecquet sources fruit from vineyards all around the area including Bergerac. Being so close to Bordeaux, it’s not surprising that this is made from Cab Sauvignon, Franc, and Merlot. It’s a lively number with good fruit. Burgers?
2013 Syrah Agrippa, Grange des Rouquette $17.59, $14.07 reorder
He doesn’t make it every year, but Thierry Boudinaud crafts this 100% southern Rhône Syrah when he feels he gets the proper ripeness, and names it after the Roman Governor who oversaw the building of the famous bridge, the pont du Garde. It’s dark and savory with notes of spice, herbs, and earth. This is a great wine for a rainy night and a pot of stew.
2015 Château de Lagorce $9.98 net price, $8.98 reorder
From vineyards in Bordeaux’s Entre Deux Mers region, the 2015 de Lagorce is an outstanding value! It has floral and herbal notes in the aromas, a medium body, great balance, and a touch of class one doesn’t usually find at this price point. It’s a versatile red Bordeaux, thanks to that medium body, and pairs nicely with chops, meatloaf, pizza, and pasta.
11 down, one to go! It’s December, and there’s no mistaking that chill in the air. The days have grown short, with the winter solstice coming up in a few weeks. We’ve already lit a few candles on the menorah, and we’ll be ready to trim the tree in time for Xmas. That makes this a super important time of year to be well stocked in the wine dept.
The December Dirty Dozen has something for everyone; stop by and get your DD today!