Archive for January 31, 2014

Veneto,

Saturday February 1st — 2pm

Veneto, the land of Romeo & Juliet, is the land of lovely wines; and there is nothing star crossed about these lovers.  This Saturday we’ll be pouring a range of wines from that part of Northeast Italy that you’ll fall for.  Come compare the three styles of Valpolicella and see what amorous feelings they can arouse.  Valentine’s Day is just around the corner.

Sassello Prosecco $11
Made from the grape Gerla, Prosecco is probably the friendliest sparkling wine in the world.  The Sassello has delicate bubbles with citrus fruit and flowery aromas and pear and apple fruit.   It might be the perfect wine to toast the Seahawks win on Sunday.

2012 Gambellara, I Basalti Soave  $9
85% Garganega, 15% Trebbiano Veronese 
Cantina di Gambellara started in 1947 by 26 vine growers as the first cooperative winery in the Vicenza Province.  Their Soave has fresh fruit perfumes, especially apple and pear, along with a mineral presence from the volcanic soils.

2010 Campagnola Valpolicella Classico Le Bine  $11
70% Corvinone Veronese, 30% Rondinella
Carlo Campagnola founded the winery in 1886.  Carlo’s wife Caterina was recently widowed and had ten children. She bravely began to run the winery. Giuseppe one of the sons with his sons Luigi and Giancarlo run the winery today. Their young Valpolicella is fresh and has a spicy bouquet with dry, soft flavors of cherry and plum.

2011 Campagnola Valpolicella Classico Ripasso  $15
55% Corvina Veronese and Corvina, 40% Rondinella, 5% Molinara 
In February the fresh pomace from the Amarone is added to the Valpolicella giving the wine richer flavors and complexity. Their Ripasso has aromas of ripe fruit, soft, rich flavors lengthening into a pleasantly bitterish finish. 

2009 Secoli Amarone della Valpolicella $34
A blend of Corvina, Rondinella, Molinara grapes that are dried on mats before fermentation to increase its structure and intensity. The wine is aged for 3 years oak casks and six months in bottle before it is released.  The Secoli has a silky, sexy texture with a mouthful of deep dark fruit and raisiny notes followed by a long, dry finish of chocolate and dried cherries.


Sunny Spain Spanish Sunday Sippers.

The sun is out and we are pouring some sunny reds from Spain today from 11-5pm. Stop on by.

2009 Beronia Rioja Crianza    ($11)
84% Tempranillo, 13% Garnacha, 3% Graciano
Beronia’s Crianza is aged for 12 months in mixed oak barrels and one year in bottle. The wine has aromas of tobacco, vanilla and dark fruit flavors, smooth tannins with a spicy toasted finish. Was $15 now $11

2012 Rio Madre Rioja    ($10)
Graciano
Graciano has long been used in Rioja to add floral bouquet and complexity to their wine. Rarely is it used on its own. This estate grown Graciano make you wonder why. The exuberant aromas and luscious flavors of blackberries and cherries out shines most Tempranillo at this price level.

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. No matter what day you stop by we always have something open to sample.

Iberian Peninsula This Weekend.

The fog is burning off in Madrona.  There is no snow in the mountains for skiing.  There is no football.  So there is no reason not to swing by the wine shop and sample some fine wines from the Iberian Peninsula.

Saturday at 2pm we will be tasting our way through the different regions of Portugal.

Sunday we’ll be sampling a couple of great values from Spain.

It is almost as good as a vacation.

Portugal and a bit of Spain,

Saturday, January 25th, 2pm

Saturday we’ll be touring the rugged landscape of Portugal, traversing its regions glass by glass. Come have a taste of these great wines from the west side of the Iberian peninsula between the mouth of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.  The wines are delicious and are great values.   Laura Stiff from Casa Ventura Imports will be here to tell you all about them.  

2011 Pazo do Mar, Albarino  $15
The Ribeiro region is located in Galicia in northwest Spain noted for its steep, terraced vineyards. Pazo do Mar, family owned & operated for over 70 years, makes their wine from all estate-grown fruit. Inviting aromas of slate & mineral & melon lead to an intense, concentrated, nicely proportioned Albarino with very good volume and length. Enticing notes of spring flowers, honeysuckle & lemon-lime keep this wine bright, crisp & refreshing.

2010 Tellus Tinto, DOC Douro $8
Touriga Nacional, Tinta Roriz, Touriga Franca, Tinta Barroca 
The Douro is one of the wildest, most mountainous & rugged wine regions of Portugal, cut through in deep twists & turns by the river Douro. Defying gravity on the steep slopes along the banks of the river & its tributaries, the vines are planted in poor, schistous soils.  The wine shows ripe dark fruit, underbrush & blackberry bramble along with a vibrant acidity & smooth, balanced tannins.  Normally $15 today $8

2010 Floral D. Henrique, Tinto DOC Dao $8  
Touriga Nacional, Aragonez (Tempranillo), Alfrocheiro Prieto, Jaen (Mencia) 
Surrounded on all sides by mountains, the Dao region is protected both from the direct influence of the continental climate, and from the chill & rains from the ocean. This is ‘high country’ rising from 200 meters at its lowest to 1,000 meters in the highest points. Soils are very poor & granitic. High altitude makes for cool nights, slow ripening & good acidity.  Floral D. Henrique is a cooperative set up by a group of farmers in 1963.  The wine has dark blackberry fruit with hints of leather, cocoa, earth and some peppery spiciness.   Normally $10 today $8

2011 Herdade De Gambia Red from the Setubal Peninsula $13.  
65% Touriga Nacional , 25% Syrah, 10% Aragonez (Tempranillo) 
The Setubal Peninsula takes the title for being the pioneer in viniculture for the region, achieving great prestige for their fortified wines. It has a temperate Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers & mild, rainy winters. The most visible characteristics in the wines of the Setubal Peninsula are soft spice and red berry flavors and supple tannins.

2005 Quinta Seara D’Ordens, Late Bottled Vintage Port  $24
From a little known, family owned single vineyard estate that was started in 1796; this LBV has a unique personality.  It was made from the Quinta’s best grapes, slowly foot treaded in the lagar, as traditional in Douro Valley. The wine was aged in tank for the first 20 months, and then in old wood casks until bottling at the 4th year. It boasts a bouquet of ripe red fruit & forest berries; elegant, fruity & full-bodied on the palate.

 

We Are Open And Pouring…

And in honor of Seahawks #7, Tarvaris Jackson, we have 6 European Gems and 1 lovey South American open in his honor… come check out our lineup.

And for the 12th Man in your life, come pick up a case and receive a 10% discount.

European Gems,

Saturday, January 18th, 2pm

Gems are found by searching and digging and recognizing the beauty of a thing when it is hidden amongst dirt and pebbles.  This Saturday we want to share some choice discoveries with you.  We have a sparkling opal and four spectacular rubies that you don’t want to miss.   Come and have a taste of “minerality.”

2012 Viticoltori Alto Adige San Pietro Pinot Bianco $14
Viticoltori Alto Adige is a co-operative of six wineries in Veneto.  Their Pinot Blanc is aged in stainless steel and delivers crisp and clean flavors of peach and apple, supple complexity and a hint of minerality.

2012 Luigi Pira Dolcetto$16
Pira’s holdings are in the three most prestigious crus in the Serralunga commune: “Margheria,” “Marenca,” and “Rionda.” Their rich Dolcetto features the telltale fine tannins of Serralunga, fresh blueberry and cherry fruit, a rich mouthfeel and great length.

2011 Guimaro, Ribera Sacra $20
Mencia 
Ribeira Sacra’s steep terraced vineyards are some of the most picturesque and treacherous to work in the world of wine.  Some of the vineyard slopes are a 50 degree grade or higher; during harvest, grapes have to be transported out of the vineyard in bins attached to single-rail conveyers.  The Guimaro comes from multiple plots of organically farmed Mencía vines with an average age of 40 years old.  The wine is all about immediate pleasure with pure, lush red fruits, spices, and slate-laden minerality.

2010 Avigonesse Rosso di Montepulciano  $19
Sangiovesse
Avigonesse is a Tuscan bench mark.  Their grapes are organic and sustainably farmed.  Their entry level Rosso ages 6 months in large barrels and 3 months in bottle before release.  It is a versatile medium ruby red wine with enticing aromas of red summer fruits blended with Mediterranean herbs, lively rounded tannins, vibrant acidity and a long finish.

2011 Eric Texier Brezeme  Syrah $24
Brézème is a small, and at one point nearly forgotten, viticulture area located near the town of Livron-sur-Drôme on the eastern bank of the northern Rhône where the steep, southward facing slopes of primarily limestone and clay produce truly great Syrah.  Eric Texier makes this wine with minimal intervention. Wine Spectator calls it “A racy, pure style, showing tangy pepper and tobacco notes backed by iron, damson plum and red currant fruit flavors, with a silky finish.”  Come describe it for yourself.

 

Two MountainWinery,

Saturday, January 11th, 2pm

This Saturday we are staying local and featuring  wines from Two Mountain Winery.  Two Mountain Winery is a family-owned operation nestled in the Rattlesnake Hills within the Yakima Valley wine region of Washington State. Brothers Matthew and Patrick Rawn own and operate the winery and estate vineyard, drawing on the experience of four generations who have farmed the rich soil of the Yakima Valley. .Come try their full bodied Washington wines.   Sure it’s during the Seahawks game, but even an ardent fan can slip out at half time for a sip of wine.  Remember the 12th man likes big reds.

2012 Esatate Chardonnay  $18
A classic Chardonnay with aromas of caramelized banana and vanilla, followed by a palate of toasty butterscotch and overripe pear with a lingering finish. 

Hidden Horse Red #9   $13
39% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 6% Syrah, 4% Lemberger, 1% Malbec.
The nose opens with rich aromas of dark fruits, tobacco and white pepper followed by flavors blackberry, dark cherry and vanilla framed in toasty oak. Wahluke Slope and Yakima Valley fruit.

2012 Estate Lemberger $15
Inviting flavors of pepper, fig and boysenberry mesmerize your nose while your palate is entertained with pepper, white pepper and raspberry with the slightest hints of vanilla framing this delightful wine.

2010 Cabernet Sauvignon $25
Aromas of coffee, dark fruit and cedar combine with flavors of dark berry, currant, charred oak with velvety tannins and a lingering finish.

 

It is an art packed weekend here in Madrona.
Saturday is the monthly Art Walk.
Sunday is our artist reception for Heidi Randall.  3 to 5 pm
And of course there will be Sunday Sipping all day.

Sunday Sippers January 5th, 11-5

Battle of the Grenaches

How do you like your Grenache? French? Spanish? Straight? Blended? Come put a little Grenache in your life this Sunday.


2011 Viladellops Garnatxa    ($13)
Grenacha
A Catalan Grenache that comes off more Rhône-like than Spanish. Medium bodied with nice aromatics and spice.
Organic
13% alcohol by volume


2011 Castelmaure Corbieres    ($10)
40% Grenache, 40% Carignan, 20% Syrah
“A delicate wine oozing garrigue aromas. Open, creamy, ends long. Well balanced.” You got to love some people’s tasting notes.
13.5% alcohol by volume

French Values,

Saturday, January 4th, 2pm

Congratulations, we’ve made it through another Holiday Season and into 2014.  That calls for a little relaxation and recovery. To help with the recovery we’ve lined up some great French wines for Saturday that deliver a lot but are easy on the bankcards.  Saunter on in and have a sip.

2011 Lafond Reuilly, Rose La Grande Piece $14 was $22 100% Pinot Gris  This Pinot Gris is left on its skins during its fermentation and the light pink of the grape transfers to the wine.  Light berry fruit and light apples notes with some herbal underpinnings

2012 Magellan, le Fruit Defendu Blanc $13
60% Grenache Blanc, 40% Muscat Petit Grain 
This Languedoc estate makes exciting fresh wines full of character.  “We always start our harvest with our plots of Muscat Petit Grain. It is a real pleasure, the first rays of sunshine in the vineyard, the gold and ripe grapes, the cellar full of exotic aromas when we press –Pleasures like that should be forbidden! –at the end we blend with some Grenache to keep a good freshness!”

2012 Magellan, le Fruit Defendu Rouge $13
90% Cinsault, 10% Grenache.
From 6 hectares of 40 year old vines of Cinsault located on our sandstone soils parcels. They let the grape stand on its own. “All the “professionals” tell us you can’t do anything with Cinsault! So we decided to think differently, persuaded that with a good terroir, a great care in the vineyard and small yield, we can produce interesting wines with Cinsault”.  

2010 Lauribert, Visan Les Truffieres Rouge $14 was $16 
80% Syrah, 20% Grenache
Domaine des Lauribert, in the Côte du Rhone Village of Visan, has been in the Sourdon family for the last five generations. The wine has a pleasing bouquet of mixed berries and white pepper. Its flavors are balanced between fruit, tannins and fresh acidity. 

2009 Chateau Mayne-Vieil, Cuvee Alienor $23
Château Mayne-Vieil Cuvée Alienor is a selection of old Merlot vines planted on clay and gravel.  The vineyard is grassed without leaves on one side-and green-harvested. While decreasing yields, this method provides better ventilation for the grapes.  Maceration takes place in temperature controlled concrete vats for more than 4 weeks.  Maturing lasts for twelve months in new oak wood barrels one third new.  It is a full Bordeaux from a ripe year.  The wine has berry aromas, leathery mineral notes and solid tannins.


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