Mercat, Dr. Loosen, Vaughn Duffy, Chateau de Beaucastel, Remo Farina
This week’s blog post is all about value. It’s about finding beautiful wines that are representative of their origins at great price points.
Mercat Brut Rose – $17.99
I am always looking for high-quality bubbles at an approachable price. While Cava is starting to gain international attention and therefore traction in the consumers’ minds as a fantastic, high quality alternative to champagne, there are plenty of high value options to be found throughout Spain and in particular, from the region of Penedes. Here, Mercat Brut Rose from the producer Moli Parellada is made in the method champenois with the traditional Cava grapes of Xerel. lo, Macabeu, and Parellada with a splash of Monastrell, for color. The bottling sees extended lees aging and is disgorged to order – rare aspects to find in a value sparkling wine. I find this fizz to be extremely food-friendly and should be considered for pairing with anything from greasy foods to pontoons.
Dr. Loosen, Erdener Treppchen, Riesling Kabinett, Mosel, 2015 – $30.99
This is a sturdy, muscular, terroir-driven Riesling from the internationally renowned Mosel based producer Dr. Loosen. Harvested from the insanely steep, iron-rich slate vineyard of Treppchen just across the river from the town of Erden, this Kabinett offers a focused, racy, punchy, mineral-laden wine with the potential for extremely long-term aging. At three years of age it is starting to showcase some of those secondary aromas which we love so much in German Rieslings.
Vaughn Duffy, Russian River Valley Pinot Noir, 2016 – $32.99
The Russian River Valley seems to be a polarizing region in the minds of some Pinot Noir aficionados but perhaps we can all agree on the deliciousness of the Vaughn Duffy line of wines. The winemaking duo of Matt Duffy and Sara Vaughn create wonderfully balanced wines from this fabled region without pushing too far into the opulent and overdone style which seems to be what the detractors dislike so much about the region. Personally, I think the ripeness and the acid level that the region can imbue in grapes can warrant a higher oak regimen but of course, I am loath to see oak take precedent over terroir. This wine was harvested from two distinct microclimates (one cool and the other cooler) to bring a balanced, nuanced pinot noir that punches well above its the weight of $32.99. It’s also worth mentioning that their Rose of Carignane is also a showstopper – a deal at $19.99.
Chateau de Beaucastel, Coudoulet de Beaucastel, Cotes-du-Rhone, 2015 – $32.99
The Domaine de Beaucastel is one of the most highly revered houses in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Their top Cuvee includes all of the 13 permitted grape varieties in the region and all of there land is farmed biodynamically. About 25% of their landholdings fall just outside of the Chateauneuf AOC and it is from this parcel where they harvest the fruit for this Cuvee. I understand if you are questioning whether or not it has the same soil type and the answer is yes, it does, gallets, big ones. This particular bottling does, however, only feature 5 of the permitted 13 grapes – Cinsault, Mourvedre, Grenache, and Syrah and sees slightly less oak than the CNdP. It drinks as you’d expect, a huge whiff of black tea, black pepper, leather, graphite with assorted red and black fruit – a perfect companion for a grilled steak.
Remo Farina, Valpolicella Ripasso 2015
The house of Remo Farina is highly lauded for producing wines with such depth and precision while marrying both highly technical and ancestral methods of production. This particular wine is a blend of the typical grapes used in Amarones – Corvina, Corvinnone, Molinara, and Rondinella – which were fermented into a dry wine and then refermented on the leftover skins from the grapes used for their Amarone. The wine features aromas of pepper, ginger, craisins, prunes, and licorice and would be the perfect option to pair with roasted or smoked meats and heavy cheeses.
Thank you for reading and we hope to see you around the shop soon,