Archive for February 25, 2017

Warmer Climes

The weather can’t seem to make up its mind this weekend here in Madrona.  Is it sunny or cloudy?  Will ti rain or is it snow?  While things here atmospherically sort themselves out, Here at Madrona Wine we’re sipping in sunnier places.

Saturday, it is summer in Chile and we’ll be pouring five wines from boutique, artisan wineries from that country. These wines just arrived in Seattle and show off Chile’s diverse viticulture.
2015 Maurizio Garibaldi, Mako $18
Sauvignon Blanc
2015 Andes Plateau, 500 Cordillera de Los Andes $15
95% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Syrah, 2% Cabernet Franc   
2013 Puente Austral, Grand Reserva $14
70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Syrah
2014 Clos de Luz, Massa 1945  $19
Carmenere
2011 Blu  $30
92% Carrignan, 8% Syrah

Sunday we’ll be tasting two wines from the El Coto winery in Rioja. El Coto was founded in 1970 and its first bottling was released in 1975. El Coto’s 1,200 acres of estate vineyards are located in all three subzones of Rioja: Rioja Alta, Rioja Baja and Rioja Alavesa focusing on the specific character of each region.  This Sunday we’ll be sampling their fresh Viura based Bianco and their beautifully developed Reserva from 2005.  Age has its beauty. 

2015 El Coto Rioja Blanco $12
Viura
The El Coto Blanco is intensely aromatic, well balanced, with body and the fruit has a refreshing tart character. Pleasant acidity combines perfectly with an exquisite aftertaste of flowers, fruit and fine herbs.

2005 Coto de Imaz Rioja Reserva $20
Tempranillo, Graciano
Aged for 18 months in American oak, this Reserva has a fragrant nose of cedar, rose petal, cherry, and cassis that jumps from the glass, on the palate it displays an elegant personality, good concentration, savory flavors, and smooth structure. Was $25 now $20

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.

Artisanal Chilean

Saturday, February 25th, 2pm

From every wine region, there are wines that never make it out of the local and into the export world, let alone into Seattle.  But every so often we get lucky.  This Saturday we’ll be pouring wines from five artisan wineries from Chile.  They are brought to us by Francesca Bravo a current Seattleite who wanted to bring these boutique wines from her native Chile to the Northwest. 
 
2015 Maurizio Garibaldi, Mako $18
Sauvignon Blanc
Maurizio Garibaldi is the third generation in his family to devote themselves to wine making. Two years ago, after accumulating experiences in various wineries in Chile, New Zealand, Portugal and France, he started his own project.  His Mako is an explosively expressive Sauvignon Blanc full of citrus, citrus and salt.
 
2015 Andes Plateau,  500 Cordillera de Los Andes $15
95% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Syrah, 2% Cabernet Franc   
Andes Plateau, refers not just about the altitude of the vineyards (500 meters) but also to the mountains themselves.  The Cabernet Sauvignon is fermented in stainless steel tanks, while the Syrah and the Cab Franc are fermented in open tanks to facilitate “Pigeage” (foot crushing).  The result is an elegant wine with red fruits, spices and black pepper notes and a good tannin structure.
 
2013 Puente Austral, Grand Reserva $14
70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Syrah
When Gabriel Edwards, took over his family’s vineyards (planted in 1945 by his grandmother Luz) in the Almahue Valley, he wanted to make his own wine.  The vineyards are ungrafted, non-clonal and organic and are mowed by sheep and plowed by horse.  The vinification is as natural as possible, with native yeasts and aging in used barrels that allow the fruit aromas to persist.
 
2014 Clos de Luz, Massa 1945  $19
Carmenere
Gabriel Edwards’ Massal 1945 Carménère comes from the oldest plots of the Almahue Valley.  The wine was fermented with natural yeasts and aged for 12 months in French oak barrels of different uses.  It has an expressive nose, fresh red fruit aromas, spicy notes such as black pepper and bitter chocolate.  It is balanced and elegant with a velvety texture, a round mid palate and a long finish.
 
2011 Blu  $30
92% Carrignan, 8% Syrah
Bluwines is a small family project born in 2010 to Paola Poblete, a Chilean oenologist, and her husband Ulf Bergman. The idea was to make a good wine, with a lot of dedication and care, but also to enjoy it.  They focus on Carignan which comes from 50-year-old vineyards in Cauquenes, Maule Valley, about 20-25 km from the coast.  The wine has complex aromas of red fruit and spices, full smooth tannins and a lingering 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.

Spring & Italy

We got a little taste of Spring this week here in Madrona.  And while it is only Presidents day weekend, longer days and warmer weather are on its way back soon.  IN the mean time we are tasting a wine variety of wines from Italy guaranteed to warm the insides if not the out.  Stop by the shop and check them out.  And don’t forget to pick up bubbles for the Oscars.

Saturday,we’ll be tasting five Italian varietals of distinct character gathered from the different regions of the countryside. 
2013 Viticoltori Alto Adige, San Pietro Pinot Bianco  
2014 Bisci,  Verdicchio di Matelica
2014 Mantellassi, Maestrale Ciliegiolo  
2009 Maria Caterina Dei, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 
2011 Salvatore Molettieri, Irpinia Aglianico, Cinque Querce

Sunday, we are tasting a pair of wines from Friuli. 

2015 Vigna del Lauro Pinot Grigio $13
From the terraced vineyards of Collio in Northeast Friuli, This PG is fresh and fruity with tones of pear and apple with a rich and smooth body.

2015 Vigna del Lauro Cabernet Franc $13
A Cabernet Franc from Northeast Italy. This CF has aromas of cherry, raspberry, blackberry and blueberry, soft tannins and fresh herbal notes.

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.

Italian Variety

Saturday, February 18th, 2pm

Italy has more grape varietals than any other country which makes it endlessly interesting to try new wines.  This Saturday we’ll be pour just five varietals, but they each have their distinct character.  Come join us as we sip through Pinot Bianco, Verdicchio, Ciliegiolo, Sangiovese and Aglianico.
 
2013 Viticoltori Alto Adige, San Pietro Pinot Bianco $13 
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.
 
2014 Bisci,  Verdicchio di Matelica  $17
Bisci’s vineyards in the Marche region have 30-year-old vines and are organically farmed. The resulting wine shows lovely floral and green apple characters with a nice acidity and minerality that linger to an elegant finish.
 
2014 Mantellassi, Maestrale Ciliegiolo $10 
The Maestrale or Mistral wind comes from France, passing over Corsica and reaches Italy blowing through the pine forests of the coast and bringing light floral scents that flood the Mantellassi vineyards in Tuscany.  The Maestrale Ciliegiolo is a lighter fresh red with aromas of a flowery bouquet and wild berries, cherry and raspberry. The flavor is pleasant, fresh, balanced, fruity and persistent.
 
2009 Maria Caterina Dei, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano  $20
Sangiovese
Maria Caterina Dei’s estate at the foot of Montepulciano extends over 44 hectares and is divided between the hamlets of Bossona, Martiera, La Ciarlana and La Pioggia.  The Vino Nobile has a rich texture. Refined aromas of cherry and plum follow through to a full-bodied palate, with soft, round tannins and a flavorful finish. 
 
2011 Salvatore Molettieri, Irpinia Aglianico, Cinque Querce $18
Molerieri’s “Cinque Querce” vineyard is the Cru of their estate in Campagna with a selection of local Aglianico clones.  Some of the vines are pre-phylloxera and ungrafted.  The wine spends 18 months in barriques and in large oak casks, then 6 months in bottle before release in order to soften up the muscular Aglianico.  It has an intense and deep nose with spicy notes of nutmeg, elegant balsamic nuances that mingle with ripe marasca cherry, cloves and cocoa notes. The palate is warm, full, supple, and long with complex aromatic persistence and tightly knit tannins. There is a long finish of ripe fruit and coffee toasting.

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.

Bordeaux and Valentine’s

It has bee a wet and cold week here in Madrona, but it looks like we get to dry out a bit this weekend.  Maybe if we are lucky we’ll even get a bit of sunshine.  Rain or shine we have some good wines to try this weekend at Madrona Wine so stretch those legs and stop on by the shop.

Saturday, it is all Bordeaux, one place but a lot of variety.
2015 Les Hauts de Bel Air, Bordeaux Blanc  $11
100% Sauvignon Blanc
2015 Château Trébiac, Graves Blanc  $15
100% Sémillon
2014 Les Hauts de Bel Air, Bordeaux Rouge  $11
70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet
2012 Château de la Nauve, St Emilion Rouge  $19
Merlot with a bit of Cabernet Sauvignon.
2012 Château L’Argenteyre, Medoc Rouge  $21
55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 15% Petit Verdot

Sunday, we’re getting ready for Valentine’s Day (it’s Tuesday) with Bubbles for my Baby & Sweets for the Sweetheart with four wines to capture the heart.

Greut Brut   $16
New Mexico bubbles to promote domestic bliss. 12% alcohol by volume

2010 Anselmann Morio Musat  $10
A floral lighter German Muskat with a lot of fruity character without being overly sweet. Great with fruit and cheese.

Intorcia Moscato Vina Liquoroso  $12
A dessert Muscato from Sicily with nutty and toasty notes along with dried apricot fruit notes. 500 ml, Was $22 now $12

2006 Ordoñez Malaga  $12
The 2006 Seleccion Especial is stainless steel fermented and offers an alluring perfume of jasmine, honey, and tropical fruits. Medium-sweet, the wine is balanced by lively acidity. 375ml, Was $22 now $12

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.

Bordeaux!

February 11th, 2pm

Top Bordeaux are some of the most expensive wine in the world.  But besides these kingpins there are many that are great value.  This Saturday we’ll be focusing on the later of these.  We are pouring five great tasting wines that over deliver for the money.  Stop by the shop and taste them with us.
 
2015 Les Hauts de Bel Air, Bordeaux Blanc  $11
100% Sauvignon Blanc
Maison Sichel has their fingers all over Bordeaux.  Their Hauts de Bel Air is intensely aromatic, fresh with a combination of floral notes and tropical fruit (mango, passion fruit). 
 
2015 Château Trébiac, Graves Blanc  $15
100% Sémillon
Château de Trébiac lies on a gravel plateau south of Bordeaux. Its 23 year vines are sustainably farmed (Agriculture raisonnée). The wines aromas reveal white fruits and acacia aromas. In the mouth, there is a beautiful freshness. It is a fat wine with a certain minerality.
 
2014 Les Hauts de Bel Air, Bordeaux Rouge  $11
70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet
Made from 30 year old  vines, les Hauts de Bel Air Rouge is rich, round and supple on the palate.  Strawberry and blackcurrant dominate the spicy nuances and match the velvety tannins. 
 
2012 Château de la Nauve, St Emilion Rouge  $19
Merlot with a bit of Cabernet Sauvignon.
Saint-Emilion dominates the right bank of the Dordogne. Château de la Nauve has 10 heactares with 7 being St Emilion appellation, and 3 being Grand Cru.  The wine has a dense mulberry fruit character blending with notes of violets and cassis.  It is concentrated and ripe with a savory twist to the finish, and a high level of ripe but firm tannins which add structure to the whole.
 
2012 Château L’Argenteyre, Medoc Rouge  $21
55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 15% Petit Verdot
This Cab heavy blend from the Medoc is aged for 14 months in barrel (30% new wood)  The wine announces its strong personality by the youthfulness of its dress with the fiery violet reflections as by its bouquet where the red fruits are accompanied by beautiful woody notes. Very tasty and perfectly balanced, the palate is not in rest: a lot of matter and volume, beautiful tannins dense and powerful, and a long 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.

Warm Wines for Wet Days

It’s a soggy Saturday and Sunday here in Madrona.  Here at the wine shop we are pouring some great wines to warm you up and drive away the dampness and the winter doldrums.

Saturday we have a full house of  Côtes du Rhônes to tempt the Palate and they are all a great value.
2015 Ferraton Père et Fils, Côtes du Rhône Blanc Samorens $14
2014 Domaine de Couron, Marsellan $10
2014 Ferraton Père et Fils, Côtes du Rhône Rouge Samorens  $14
2013 La Cassagnes de la Nerthe, Côtes du Rhône Villages  $22
2014 Ferraton Père et Fils,  Crozes Hermitage La Matiniere $23

Sunday we have two Soggy Super Bowl Sippers, a Washington Chardonnay and a Lodi Zin to quaff along with the big game (beer is so passé).

2015 Disruption Chardonnay $13
There is nothing disrupting about this full, smooth, unoaked Washington Chard.

2012 Scotto Old Vine Zinfandel $12
A easy drinking Lodi Zin with blackberry, cherry and spice flavors with mild oak accents and soft tannins for a smooth finish.

Grab that umbrella and stop on by.

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.

Côtes du Rhônes

Saturday, February 4th, 2pm

What can we say, we love Rhône wines.  The artful blending of Grenache and Syrah with the other local varietals yield endless variations of complexity and spice that match a wide range of foods.  They are also great values.  This weekend we are tasting Five wines from the Rhône.  All are organic, bio-dynamic, or sustainably farmed.  They are also delicious.
 
2015 Ferraton Père et Fils, Côtes du Rhône Blanc Samorens $14 
60% Grenache Blanc, 40% Clairette
Ferraton started after the war in 1946 and started collecting vineyards in the north & southern  Rhône valley.  In 1998, the vineyards were converted to organic viticulture, then certified, before embracing the culture of bio-dynamics. This Blanc has aromas of white flowers and white fruit.  The palate is nicely balanced.  Clairette brings the freshness and white Grenache body and softness.
 
2014 Domaine de Couron, Marsellan $10
This family-run estate lies in the tiny hamlet of Saint Marcel d’Ardeche where they tend their vineyards using sustainable farming techniques.  Marsellan is the result of a hybrid between Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache.  It has aromas of black currants, wild herbs, loamy earth, tobacco leaf and background meatiness to go with a medium-bodied, nicely balanced profile on the palate.
 
2014 Ferraton Père et Fils, Côtes du Rhône Rouge Samorens  $14
80% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 5% Cinsault
The Samorens Rouge comes from vineyards situated on the left bank of the Rhône with alluvial and gravelly soil.  It has aromas of ripe red fruit, spice notes and a nicely structured palate with firm and meaty tannins.
 
2013 La Cassagnes de la Nerthe, Côtes du Rhône Villages  $22
60% Grenache Noir, 20% Syrah, 10% Cinsault, 5% Mourvèdre, 5% Carignan
Located in Serignan-du-Comtat, which is between Orange and Avignon, this 40+ year old vineyard combines all traditional grape varietals for the Southern Rhône Valley: Grenache, Syrah, Mourvédre, Carignan, and Cinsault. The vines are planted in soils deep in calcareous sandstones well sited on gently undulating slopes.  The vineyards are certified “organically grown”. On the nose the wine has intense red fruits with some black cherry notes.  The finish is long with notes of candied red fruit highlighted by sweet spices with a fresh, silky texture.
 
2014 Ferraton Père et Fils, Crozes Hermitage La Matiniere $23
100% Syrah.
The Ferraton vineyards in the districts of Mercurol and Beaumont-Monteux  in Crozes Hermitage have terraces of glacial alluvial deposits with a lot of round pebbles, stones and gravel.  The wine has a very aromatic attack with aromas of cherries, raspberries, blackcurrants.  The palate is round and smooth with long lingering tannins.

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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