Saturday we are thinking small and pouring wines from local importer Petit Monde who specializes in small production organic wine makers—some are certified, some are not but the all have their heads pointed in the right direction. And of course, all of them are delicious.
Les Pentes de Barene, Tursan $15
43% Barougue, 43% Gros Manseng, 10% Petit Manseng, 4% Sauvignon Blanc
The rare Tursan AOC is found in far southwestern France near Madiran and only 45 miles from the Atlantic Ocean. A bold full white, the Pentes de Barene casts aromas of grapefruit, passion fruit, wildflowers and smoky minerals. Crisp and zesty on the palate, with suggestions of grapefruit, guava and chalky minerals.
Jean-Louis Denois, Brut Rosé $18
An outstanding sparkling wine from the Languedoc. One of the rising stars of the Languedoc, Jean Louis Denois makes exciting, world class wines that nonetheless remain amazingly inexpensive, owing to his location more than anything else. His vineyards sit in the very southwestern corner of France, at the foot of the Pyrenees, and he produces red, white and sparkling, all made from perilously low-yielding vines, vinified with as little interference as possible. The Brut Rosé is made entirely from Pinot Noir and is aged 36 months on leas which adds complexity to the bright red berry fruit character.
2017 Bastide des Oliviers, Classique Rosé $16 1.5ltr $33
90% Grenache, 10% Syrah
This organic estate in Provence is surrounded by olive trees. This rosé offers unrestrained aromas: the first rush of jammy fruit follows the freshness of gooseberry, grapefruit and a last spicy accent of ginger and white pepper. It is both powerful and elegant.
2016 Boffalora Umo Rosso di Valtellina $21
Valtellina, an alpine valley in the far north of Lombardy has been producing wine for over 2000 years. Today it is known for its bright, cherry-scented wines made from the Nebbiolo, known here as Chiavennasca. This great summery wine has aromas of fresh plums and red flowers along with earthy and smoky tones.
2015 Domaine de la Biscarelle Début d’une Histoire $15
A Rhone Cinsault from 50-year-old vines just outside of Châteauneuf. Raspberry, plum, boysenberry, bay, thyme, lavender scents. Big, ripe chewy, purple fruit flavors with black pepper and stony 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.