Piedmont & Sicily

at Cascina Spinasse

Piedmont & Sicily

at Cascina Spinasse

with Bill Elbring from North Berkeley Imports

Tuesday, April 17th

Noon to 2pm

3-courses with wine

$55 per person (+ tax & gratuity)

 

Spinasse and North Berkeley Imports have put together a great line up of wines from Mt. Etna, the island of Salina, and Piedmonte matched to Spinasse’s incredible food. It is an experience not to be missed.

2014 Murgo Brut Rosé
This is one of the most distinctive and special sparkling wines in the world, a traditional-method bubbly made on the slopes of Sicily’s Mount Etna from Nerello Mascalese, and aged on its lees for 3 years.

Mixed green salad with lemon vinaigrette and radish.

2016 Caravaglio Malvasia, Secca Islola di Salina
From the island of Salina, Part of the Aeolian Island chain off the coast of Sicily where this single-vineyard stretches up the steep slope of an ancient volcano in the Malfa district (the highest quality vine-growing area). The soils are a combination of volcanic sand and rock. The wine has notes of cardamom-spiced pears, white peach, preserved lemon; plush, complex yet balanced.

Veal raviolini with green garlic ragù.

2012 Azienda Agricola Rochi, Barbaresco “Rochi” Cru
Winemaker Giancarlo Rocca and three generations of the Rocca clan live in a house built by the family, surrounded by ‘Ronchi’ cru vines.

Agnello Milanese with roasted chestnut-leek sauce.

2013 Fratelli Alessandria Barolo
Fratelli Alessandria is one of Piedmont’s under-the-radar jewels. The Alessandrias make compelling, classically-built wines from estate vineyards in Verduno and Monforte d’Alba

2013 Caravaglio Malvasia di Lipari Passito DOC
For desert this Passito with clear and defined aromas of dried apricot and yellow flowers of broom, dates, dried figs and slight mineral and salty puffs. In the mouth it expresses a great sapid energy.

Call {206} 251-7673 for a reservation

Cascina Spinasse

1531 14th Ave.

Seattle WA 98122

Brighton Up!

It looks like another grey and wet weekend here in Madrona.  But here at the wine shop we have a few things lined up to brighten our moods if not the sky.

Saturday, we have five Tempranillos from a pair of Spanish wineries —Bodegas Frontauras y Nexus.  Come taste the variety of this great grape.  Loreto Herrero, from the winery will be here to talk about the wines
2015 Nexus One  $15
2014 Domino de Valdelacasa Cosecha $15
2011 Nexus Crianza  $26
2009 Frontaura, Crianza $30
2006 Frontaura, Aponte Reserva $30

Sunday we are pouring a pair of organic wines from France.  Got your taxes done? Come spend the refund, or drown your sorrows with these two French beauties.
2016 Bargemone Coteaux d’Aix Blanc $13
50% Rolle, 40% Sauvignon Blanc, 10% Ugni Blanc
This classic, unoaked white is light, crisp and refreshing, offering delicate citrus, mineral and floral character with a lingering finish. Organic. 13% alcohol by volume
Bulliat Beaujolais Villages $12
Gamay
A nice entry Gamay. Bright cherry color. Aromas of red fruits dominated by strawberries and blackcurrant with very fine tannins. Organic. 12.5% alcohol by volume

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2pm until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5pm.

Bodegas Frontauras y Nexus

All Tempranillo

Saturday April, 14th — 2pm

This Saturday we are featuring a full lineup of Spanish Tempranillos from sister wineries Nexus One (Ribera del Duero) and Fontaura (Toro).  The winery of the Palacio de los Frontaura y Victoria was born out of the effort started a decade ago in the Pago de Valdelacasa vineyards. At present, this winery has the capacity to elaborate 700,000 kilos of grapes, of which 500,000 come from own estate and the rest from old vines from other growers in the area.   Nexus One is located in the heart of Ribera del Duero, 40 hectares of vineyards of Tempranillo Tinta Fina.  Loreto Herrero, the representative of the winery will be here to talk about the wines.

2015 Nexus One  $15
100% Tempranillo Tinta Fina
The Nexus One has aromas of intensity and freshness. At first floral touches appear followed by subtle aromas of red fruit with dairy notes and hints of caramel.

2014 Domino de Valdelacasa Cosecha $15
100% Tempranillo, Tinta de Toro
Very intense on the nose, red fruit aromas, strawberry, raspberry, and blackberry are predominate with dairy and well-integrated wood. Touches of eucalyptus, velvety licorice and mineral notes come out. It is smooth, balsamic and very long. It is a structured and complex wine.

2011 Nexus Crianza  $26
Made from old vine Tinta Fina, the Nexus Crainza ages for 13 months in French Oak casks.  This medium-bodied wine is very intense and fresh on the nose. Floral aromas are followed by slightly ripe fruit and walnuts, and balsamic hints make of it an interesting and distinguished wine.  It has a great balance of taste that on the palate makes an explosion of red fruit. Delicate wood makes it more complex, smooth and velvety.

2009 Frontaura, Crianza $30
Old vine Tinta de Toro, the Frontaura Crianza is full of very ripe dark forest fruit, with well-balanced firm tannins and acidity. It is all combined with a great little cigar box which you open on a cold winters eve. The complexity of the tobacco adds an additional dimension to this wine. The finish is rather fresh with a nice touch of bitterness at the end.

2006 Frontaura, Aponte Reserva $30
The flagship of the Toro winery the Aponte ages for 20 months in new French Allier oak casks.  It is powerful, open and clean with prominent aromas of red fruit and eucalyptus, together with the elegance of the vanilla and the coconut on the nose. Notes of black fruit and licorice stand out at the end. The mouth is delicate, velvety and intense. It is a sweet and long wine with hints of tobacco, coconut, mineral and spice.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2pm until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5pm.

Busy & Wet

It is a soggy Saturday here in Madrona, but we have a full line up of wines tor try.  So breakout the umbrella and swing by the shop.

Saturday we have Spring Discount Wines that we have recently got a good price on. Stock is limited on all these wines so it’s a good time to come and grab some before they are gone.
2015 Le Fay d’Homme Muscadet Sêvre et Maine  $12
2013 La Zorro Teso Blanco Sierra de Francia, $15
2012 Tacchino,  Albarola, Barbera del Monferrato  $15
2008 Marques de Grinon, Summa Varietalis  $22
2014 Chateau Mangot,  St. Emilion Grand Cru   $25

Sunday we head to South America to warm up.  We’ll be pouring the wines from 11 to 5 and from 1 to 4pm we will have someone to provide more details about these wineries.
 
2013 MontGras Sauvignon Blanc Reserva  $14
Pale straw with gold reflections. Delicate aromas of citrus and melon mingled with subtle herbal and grassy notes. Crispy and juicy, well-balanced and mouth filling, with refreshing citrus fruit flavors, a racy acidity, and lingering finish.
2015 MontGras Carmenere Reserva $14
Deep ruby red, this wine shows complex aromas of fresh ripe currant and blackberries with spicy notes surrounded by subtle touches of vanilla and mocha from the oak ageing. Vibrant core of ripe blackberry, plums and spice. Nicely balanced, deep and well structured.
2016 Caro Aruma Malbec  $13
Deep ruby color. To the nose, we find red fruits like ripe plums, cherries and raspberries as well as a soft spicy feeling. On the palate, it is fresh and juicy, a unique balance between acidity, gentle tannins and alcohol. Long and delicate finish.
2015 Caro Amancaya Gran Reserva $22
70% Malbec, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon
Deep ruby color with violet hints. The nose presents aromas of cloves, white pepper, and raspberry. The sleek chocolate and tobacco finish has a pleasant racy edge. On the palate, the tannins are velvety with a long-lasting finish. This well-balanced, well defined wine can be drunk now, but will open up with more time.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2pm until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5pm.

April Showers

Saturday, April 7th, 2pm

When it rains we pour.  This Saturday we’ll be shrugging of the damp Spring weather with sunny discount wines.  Come in and collect a few of these deals while they are still around.
 
2015 Le Fay d’Homme Muscadet Sêvre et Maine  $12
Melon de Bourgogne
The Muscadet is from 35-year-old vines and aged in traditional glass-lined cement tanks, offering a classic expression.  The wine ages “Sur lie” (on its sediment) for several months which adds body and mouthfeel. The La Fay is a fuller Muscadet, dry fruit and a nice minerality and a long finish.  Organic.  Was $14, now $12
 
2013 La Zorro Teso Blanco Sierra de Francia, $15
60% Palomino, 30% Rufete, 10% Moscatel
A unique Portuguese “Orange Wine” — aged under a thin layer of flor for 5 months in 3-year-old French oak barrels — unfined and unfiltered.  Aromas of grapefruit pith, jasmine, chamomile, and iodine, with a zesty mineral topnote. Dry on the palate, offering incisive lime rind and orchard fruit flavors with complicating notes of green almond and bitter quinine.  Wild stuff!  Was $23 now $15
 
2012 Tacchino, Albarola, Barbera del Monferrato  $15
This family winery in Piedmont specializes in Barbera and Dolcetto. The Albarrola is big, rich and deep. It shows powerful plum and dark berries on the smooth, brightly acidic but harmonious palate, with youthfully chewy tannins. A burly Barbera, this one takes at least an hour to open up.  Was $19 Now $15
 
2008 Marques de Grinon, Summa Varietalis  $22
70% Syrah, 14% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Petit Verdot
Marqués de Griñón wines are sourced from the Dominio de Valdepusa vineyard in Castilla-La Mancha. Valdepusa stands apart from the rest of the region, as its 1068-foot elevation is one of the highest in Spain.  Its top layer of soil is almost pure limestone.  The Suma is one of the big guns from the estate.  It has rich notes of dark berries, clove, smoke and pepper. On the palate, layers of mineral and fruit notes are interwoven, accompanied by soft tannins, silky texture and excellent concentration.  Was $33 now $22
 
2014 Chateau Mangot, St. Emilion Grand Cru   $25
85% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon
A solid Right Bank Red with an immediately flattering nose of warm plums and other ripe fruits, spices, and wood; bright, fruit-driven, fleshy palate; long in the mouth with fine tannins.  Organic. Was $30 now $25

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2pm until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5pm.

All French, All Weekend

We have Easter Sunday and April Fool’s Day this weekend in Madrona, but here at the wine shop we aren’t fooling around.  We’re pouring French wines all weekend.  It’s a festive, frolicking welcome to spring. Bring your bunny and hop on in and join us.

Saturday we’ll be tasting:
2016 Brunel  de la Gardine, Cotes du Rhone Blanc  $12
2016 Patient Cottat,  Sancerre Anciennes Vignes  $23
2017 Château de Campuget Rosé  $11
2014 Brulieres de Beychevelle, Haut Medoc  $20
2015 Chateau Pesquie, Quintessence Rouge  $22

Sunday the fun continues:
2014 Château Ducasse Graves Blanc $15
60% Semillon, 40% Sauvignon Blanc
This mineral streaked Grave comes from 40-year-old vines. The Sauvignon Blanc brings aromas of pineapple, citrus and white flowers while the Semillon adds complexity and roundness. It is tangy, with savory notes backed by a core of bitter citrus and followed by a crisp finish.  12.5% alcohol by volume. Was $17 now $15
2014 Saint Roch Lirac  $12
50% Grenache, 30% Mourvedre, 20% Syrah
A smooth and supple Southern Rhone red with Garrigue notes, plumy fruit and smooth tannins.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2pm until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5pm.

French Favorites

Saturday, March 31, 2pm

Join us this Saturday as we frolic around France tasting some of our favorite fermentations.  We’ll be tasting some fine examples from the Rhone, the Loire, Nimes, and Bordeaux.  Swing by.
 
2016 Brunel de la Gardine, Cotes du Rhone Blanc  $12
40% Roussanne, 20% Viognier, 20% Grenache Blanc, 20% Clairette, 10% Bourboulenc
The Brunel family has been in the CDP region since the 17th century, making wine for five generations. The first vineyard was purchased from the Bishop of Avignon line the north. In 1971, André Brunel took over the reins of the Domaine. The Gardine Blanc has very citrusy notes of lemon and grapefruit and a fresh minerally finish.
 
2016 Patient Cottat, Sancerre Anciennes Vignes  $23
Sauvignon Blanc
From 30-to 35-year-old vines on limestone soil, the Anciennes Vignes’s lively gooseberry and jicama notes zip along, while a twinge of salty mineral notes add crunch on the finish. Fresh and very bracing in feel.
 
2017 Château de Campuget Rosé  $11
Campuget in Costieres de Nimes is a beautiful property dating back to 1640. The soil is typical for the region, with many stones that force roots to find water deep in the lower layers of clay, contributing additional character to the wine.  Their always solid Rosé is full of raspberries and strawberries and has a good, refreshing acidity.
 
2014 Brulieres de Beychevelle, Haut Medoc  $20
82% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon
This wine comes from vineyards owned by Château Beychevelle that lie just outside the Saint-Julien appellation.   Leafy cassis aroma. Dry but extremely creamy in texture, like a creamy coffee but with black fruits through the middle, dark texture and layers of attractive fruit and acidity.

2015 Chateau Pesquie, Quintessence Rouge  $22
80% Syrah, 20% Grenache
The Chaudière Family  started this cuvee in 1990 and chose the name “Quintessence” to highlight the exception and the concentration of this wine.  Complex and powerful yet with a great balance and a beautiful freshness, it is the result of a drastic parcel selection. Deep ruby color. Intense nose with spicy notes (especially black pepper) and red berries. This very balanced wine offers very round tannins and fresh berries aromas, with some floral and spicy flavors.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.

Lamb or Lion?

It has been a crazy week for weather here in Madrona with clear sunny skies one day and snow the next.  That’s Spring in Seattle.  This weekend we’ll be pouring three Rosés in hopes of the sun breaking through the clouds.

Saturday we are pouring some fresh local wines from Sleight of Hand Cellars (Walla Walla) and Torii Mor (Willamette Valley).  Go smell the cherry blossoms then come by and taste the taste of spring.
2017 Mr. Pink Rosé  $13
2017 Sleight of Hand Cellars, The Magician’s Assistant Rosé  $15
2016 Torii Mor Pinot Gris  $15
2015 Torii Mor Willamette Valley Pinot Noir $20
2015 Sleight of Hand Cellars, The Spellbinder  $20

Sunday we’ll be sipping on some Southern French wines to celebrate Spring and our new Art Show.
2017 Domaine de Pellehaut, Harmonie de Gascogne Rosé $10
Tannat, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec
The new vintage of this Gascogne rosé has aromas of gooseberry, raspberry, & flowers lead to a balanced palate of aromatic richness.
2015 Domaine Girard, Malepère $12
60% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Franc
An unoaked blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc from a rarely seen Languedoc AOC.  It is a supple, with fine tannins and a smooth mouthfeel, and ripe blue and red fruit flavors that are accented by spicy notes on palate and the finish.

Sunday is also the Artist Reception for Eric Brown’s series of oil paintings: Views of Olympic National Park.  Come meet the artist from 3 to 5pm.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.

Northwest Spring

Saturday, March 24th, 2pm

Spring is here and we are pouring some fresh local wines from Sleight of Hand Cellars (Walla Walla) and Torii Mor (Willamette Valley). Mr. Pink also comes back for his yearly appearance. Go smell the cherry blossoms then come by and taste the taste of spring.

2017 Mr. Pink Rosé $13
Sangiovese & Syrah
From the Underground Wine Project (Mark Ryan and Trey Busch) Mr. Pink is full of fresh picked cherries, crisp watermelon and pomegranates, and lip smacking acidity to balance out the mouthwatering fruit sweetness.

2017 Sleight of Hand Cellars, The Magician’s Assistant Rosé $15
This 100% Cabernet Franc Rosé hails from Blackrock Vineyard in the Yakima Valley. It has a gorgeous, pale salmon-pink color, with aromas and flavors of white flowers, juicy strawberries, red cherries, and wet stones. The minerality and fresh acidity keep this rosé light and bright.

2016 Torii Mor Pinot Gris $15
Torii Mor’s 2016 Pinot Gris displays a light golden color, with a forward aroma of fresh pears and ripe apples with honeysuckle floral notes. The flavors show a refreshing acidity, followed by those same notes of ripe apples and pears beautifully balanced with delicate aromatic spice notes. The finish has a long somewhat austere finish.

2015 Torii Mor Willamette Valley Pinot Noir $20
The 2015 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir has rich aromas of wild flowers and roses, mixed in with complex red and dark berries, including cherries. The flavors are fresh, rich and sweet. The entry is forward, sweet and spicy, the fresh acidity enhances the rich and complex fruity center of sweet darker berries and cherries, the mid palate carries on that velvet-fruity goodness to a long, enjoyable aftertaste of pure Oregon Pinot Noir. The mouthfeel is rich and elegant. The finish is very long, sweet, with the complexity of fruit, juicy tannins and a hint of spices

2015 Sleight of Hand Cellars, The Spellbinder $20
46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc 
Elegant and full-bodied, while still approachable, it boasts fresh fruit aromas and flavors of black cherries, raspberries, and currants, with just a hint of cedar from older French oak barrels in which it was aged. The tannins are completely resolved, providing a plush textured finish.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5.

 

Alcesti —

Sicilian Value

Saturday, March 17th

Alcesti is a family-owned winery located in the Marsala growing region of Sicily.  Gianfranco Palladino, along with his sister, wife, mother and father, proudly share in the operation of this winery.  The rich soils of the vineyards, their hard work and care, along with the Sicilian sun, allow the roots of the vines to grow and produce exquisite grapes. The 30 hectares of land that lie between Marsala, Mazara and Salemi, with altitudes ranging from 100 to 280 meters, express the typical Sicilian character.  This Saturday we’ll be pouring their wines including two from their Carmene label.
 
2016 Camene Bianco Terre di Sicilia $10
Inzolia and Grecanico
Terre Siciliane is the region-wide IGT title for the island of Sicily. Carmene is Alcesti’s everyday line.  Made from two indigenous varietals, the wine is fresh and crisp aromatic, and crisp with lively acidity.
 
2016 Edesia – Grillo $15
Grillo, also known as Riddu and Rossese Bianco, is a white Italian wine grape variety which withstands high temperatures and is widely used in Sicilian wine-making and for making Marsala
The grape expresses great structure and minerals.  The Edesia is a distinctly intense and persistent wine. It has a strong bouquet of yellow fruits with delicate nuances of citrus fruits and herbs with freshness and a tangy palate.
 
2015 Frappato $13
Frappato is one of the oldest grape varieties found in Sicily. Grown in the hilly area around Agrigento, it has a very pleasant and harmonious taste and aroma.  The wine is recognizable for fresh and fruity notes of black cherries, blueberries and raspberries and its soft and balanced finish.
 
2015 Camene Rosso, Terre di Sicilia $10
50% Nero d’Avola, 50%Perricone
The Carmene Rosso is a very friendly Sicilian blend with spicy aromas and bitter chocolate tannins.
 
2015 Nesos – Nero d’Avola $15
Nero d’Avola is the workhorse of Sicilian reds.  It is grown typically of inland hilly areas and expresses all the Sicilian terroir.  The Nesos has an intense ruby red in color, with an embracing aroma of red-berried fruits blended with notes of spices and vanilla. It is rich, ample and persistent on the palate with a distinct but pleasant note of freshness.

Madrona Wine Merchants offers free wine tastings featuring 4-5 selections on a theme every Saturday from 2 until the bottles run out and on Sunday we offer a mini-tasting of two wines all day from 11-5

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