Why stay in one place? This Saturday we’ll be hopping around all over “yourup“, taking in the sights of the old world and stopping at some favorite wineries. It’s “Spring Break” Madrona Wine style. Hop along with us as we hit a little bit of Spain, France, Germany and Italy.
Torre Oria, Cava $10 ($15 for 1.5ltr.)
Torre Oria ups the ante on value. Their crisp entry sparkler has a floral bouquet of wild flowers and berries and abundant fine bubbles. On the palate, it has flavors of peaches, tropical fruits and flowers.
2015 Granville-Lacoste, Graves Blanc $18
75% Sémillon, 20% Sauvignon Blanc, 5% Muscadelle
This blend is a little different than the more Sauvignon dominated wines of most Graves. The Semillon offers texture and minerality with a ripe, almost tropical stone fruit quality on the palate, while the grassy, citrusy aromatics are all Sauvignon Blanc. It is a full, clean and fresh Bordeaux Blanc.
2015 Weingut Hexamer, Quarzit Riesling $17
Harald Hexamer’s dedication is seen both his work in the vineyards and in the cellars. The “Quarzit” always comes from a special parcel in Rheingrafenberg that is mostly all quartzite with steep (55°) south-east facing slopes. Usually the wine is harvested at high Spätlese level. When tasting the wines, one sees the purity of the vineyards, the intensity of minerality and remarkable clarity. They’re steely, acid-driven, clean and transparent.
2015 Ca’ del Baio Langhe Nebbiolo $14
Ca’ del Baio is better known for their Barbarescos, owner Giulio Grasso was named “Viticulturist of the Year” by the Gambero Rosso in 2016. But their young-vine Nebbiolo producer shows raspberry, high-toned grapey essence, and hints of earth and stands out as an achievement on its own.
2015 Domaine Durban, Beaumes de Venise Rouge $19
70% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 5% Mourvedre
Located on the hillsides of Beaumes-de-Venise, is best known for its sweet white wine. However, their lighter and elegant Rhone Red has pretty notes of cherry, violets, and spice that will win you over.
2013 Corte alla Flora, Pugnitello Toscana $29
Most of the top wines from the Tuscany region of Italy are made from Sangiovese. However, Pugnitello, another indigenous red Tuscan grape, also deserves attention. Pugnitello means ‘little fist’ and refers to the grape’s tight bunches on the vines. It lost favor in the mid-20th century to Sangiovese partly because of its low yields. The vine produces small grapes with thick skins. They have intense dark color with ample tannins and good acid. The wine has a beautiful deep red color. The nose of ripe fruit has notes of blueberry and sensations of cloves and tobacco. In the mouth, it is velvety with sensations that recall the berries and surprisingly balance between structure and acidity.
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.