This Saturday we’ll be exploring wine traditions from some of the lesser known reaches of France. We’ll have an Aligoté from Burgundy, a Cabrades Rosé, a Pinot Noir from the Loire, a Minervois Rouge from the Lanquedoc, and a Trousseau from the Jura. They mostly come from Wine Traditions, an importer that we have followed over the years. Come explore.
2016 Marcel Giraudon, Bourgogne Aligoté $15
The Giraudon family has been farming and making wine in Chitry for centuries. Their vineyards are on hillsides of Kimmeridgian chalky marl which is particularly well suited for the Aligoté grape. Marcel Giraudon has six of his 18.5 hectares planted to Aligoté. The wine goes through a malo-lactic fermentation which adds a lovely middle palate to its vibrant fruity and mineral qualities. The wine shows some serious complexity with lime and minerals, a racy edge and a long finish with a bit of toasty cream.
2017 Château de Jouclary, Cabardes Rosé $13
60% Cabernet Franc, 20% Cinsault, 20% Grenache
The Cabardès appellation is located on the most southern outcropping of the Massif Central in the Languedoc. The Jouclary rosé shows an aromatic complexity with white flowers, violet, dried flowers and fruit aromas, currant peach, citrus fruits and exotic fruits.
2013 Domaine Grosbot-Barbara, Saint Pourcain Rouge Les Chambre d’ Edoward $19
Grosbot-Barbara grows both Gamay and Pinot Noir, the two sanctioned varieties in Saint-Pourçain. In 2001 a Pinot Noir-loving friend of vigneron Denis Barbara elected to sleep through the night in Pinot Noir tank number seven, then empty. Now his 100% Pinot Noir cuvee is nicknamed “La Chambre d’Edouard” (Edward’s room.) This Pinot has an abundance of bright red fruits with a strong acidic backbone and soft tannins.
2015 Château d’Oupia, Minervois Rouge $12
60% Carignan, 30% Syrah, 10% Grenache
The 13th century estate where 100-year-old Carignan vines grow was inherited by Andre Inche, who began crafting the kind of wines that got the region of Languedoc-Rousillon noticed for more than just bulk wines. The Minervois Rouge has a nose full of sweet, wild herbs and violets, dark, lusty plums, blackberries, cassis, and black pepper that carry on long into the finish.
2016 Domaine de la Touraize, Arbois Rouge Les Corvees $34
Domaine de la Touraize is a 12-hectare estate, in Arbois, Jura. André-Jean Morin is the eighth generation to farm in Arbois. They began farming organically in 2016. A truly unique Jura red, The Les Corvees has spices, and pepper, mixed with notes of small red fruits. The palate has a beautiful attack with full blended tannins, with an aromatic richness length and balance at the end of the mouth.
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.