Archive for January 31, 2019

Jed Steele,

Saturday, February 2nd, 2pm

Jed Steele started in 1970 in the Lake County AVA (just northeast of Napa). Steele focuses on vineyard-specific wines from his own estate and other vineyards he has worked with since the 1970s. Jed believes that the Steele wines exemplify varietal correctness and characteristics of the vineyards they come from.  Today Jed continues his vision by crushing 22 different varietals and producing 40 different wines from both California and Washington State.  Stop by on Saturday when we’ll try five of them.
 
2015 Shooting Star, Aligote  $10 
Aligote is the second white grape of Burgundy but now grown in Washington.  The wine is crisp and clean, a wine with a nice balance of fruit and acidity. Flinty, mineral elements mix with a light floral hint on the nose, followed with the suggestion of tart/sweet apple on the palette.
 
2015 Shooting Star, Blue Franc $12 
Lemberger
Blau Frankisch is literally “blue grape from France” is better known around here as Lemberger. This Washington grown version is full of berry fruit flavors and great color but with little tannin or harshness.
 
2016 Writer’s Block, Cabernet Franc  $16
Cabernet Franc excels in specific vineyards of Lake County, and Steele has worked with it from Shannon Ridge Vineyards in the High Valley area for almost a decade now. This Franc has aromas of red cherry, raspberry, plum, and licorice. Flavors are of red fruit, raspberry, and plum with smooth acidity, followed by soft tannins. The wine is aged for 15 months in mainly hybrid barrels.
 
2016 Steele Cabernet Sauvignon Red Hills $25
The Red Hills AVA is a new appellation in Lake County.   The iron-rich, red soil of Red Hills is laden with obsidian, a glassy black volcanic rock that glistens in the afternoon sun. Well known Napa Valley grape grower Andy Beckstoffer bought up a piece of the Red Hills AVA, planting it in Cabernet Sauvignon and other Bordeaux varietals with which he is very familiar. Steele has been using the fruit since 2002.  This wine has a rich, fruit-forward elegance. A spicy fruit and berry core backed up by soft tannins makes it a nice glass of wine for casual sipping among friends.
 
2014 Steele Zinfandel Catfish Vineyard  $19
Catfish Vineyard, located on the Bell Hill Bench of Lake County, was planted in 1901.   Steele purchased the vineyard in 2000 and is working to rehabilitate the old head pruned vines.  Catfish Vineyard Zinfandel, is actually a field blend of a number of varieties, including small amounts of Carignan, Alicante Bouschet, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, and Cinsault.  Having more than one variety assured the old-time vintners that they would have some grapes to harvest regardless of the spring frosts or autumn storms.

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.

Organic French

Saturday, January 26th, 2pm

This Saturday we are getting back to basics with organic wines from the diverse regions of France.  We’ll taste wines of the Lore, the Rhone, Provence, and Bordeaux.  We won’t taste any pesticides or chemical fertilizers, just good clean wine.
 
2017 Berthier, Coteaux du Giennois  $18
Sauvignon Blanc
Coteaux du Giennois is a small and recent appellation, even if one can find archeological evidences of winegrowing in this region since the 2nd century.  Coteaux du Giennois white is a fresh and fruity wine with floral aromas, and notes of white fruits such as quince and pear. It is a very crisp and minerally Sauvignon Blanc lovely, very clean citric aromas and flavors including grapefruit notes.  While not certified organic the vineyard is sustainably farmed with little use of chemical additive.

2017 Domaine Grands Bois, Cuvée Les Trois Soeurs  $14
65% Grenache, 30% Syrah, 5% Carignan
The Trois Soeurs is from estate grown fruit from 30- to 60-year-old vines in the Rhone Valley, and is named for the winemakers three daughters.  It is “a delicious mouthful of wine for a song.”  The wine has notes of dark chocolate, crushed berry fruit, earth, licorice and dry tannins.

2015 Chataeu Val Beylie, Plaisir Bordeaux  $13
75% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon
Organically grown grapes from estate vineyards just outside of St. Emillion make up this unoaked Bordeaux.  Deep purple color with clean, fruit forward nose, smooth in the mouth with red berry candied fruit with hints of smoke and good acidity, nice and balanced on the finish.

2017 Marc Plouzeau, Rive Gauche Chinon   $17
Cabernet Franc
This Loire red comes from organically farmed 30-year-old vines in Chinon.  It has attractive aromas of fresh fruit and spices, plenty of fruit and freshness, and a nice minerality.
 
2015 La Bastide Blanche, Bandol  $28
72% Mourvèdre, 20% Grenache, 6% Cinsault, 1% Syrah, 1% Carignan
This Provence big bold red comes for organically farmed 30-year-old vines.  The wine has intense black-fruit aromas and a rich, spicy, herby flavors along with deep earthy 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.

Italy All Weekend

We are tasting our way through a large swath of central and southern Italy this weekend here at Madrona Wine. Come brighten the January gloom with some of these great wines from uncommon varietals.

Saturday
2017 L’Antica Cantina, Zephino Frizzante  $10
Bombino Bianco
2015 Baroni Capoano, Ciro Rosso  $15
Gaglioppo
2017 L’Antica Cantina, Rosone  $11
Sangiovese
2016 L’Antica Cantina, Nobliss  $16
Uva di Troia
2012 Tenuta San Vito, Madiere  $30
60% Sangiovese, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot
Petrizzelli Extra Virgin Olive Oil      $18

Sunday we have two wines from Cincinnato,  a winery in Lazio.
2017 Cincinnato, Castore  $13
Bellone
From Lazio the Castore is 100% Bellone. The nose is full of lemon, lemon drop, fennel and a little hint of camp fire. It is mid-weight with lots of lemony acidity and a little peachy note in the finish. Touch of spice; fleshy, bright and with a rather stubborn finish. No Baloney.
2016 Cincinnato, Polluce  $13
Nero Buono
A unique grape that grows in Volcanic soils in Lazio. The aromas have that tinge of sottobosco–the woody, underbrush scent. There are fresh, lively raspberry and strawberry flavors that emit a hint of soy sauce.

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.

Southern Italians

Saturday, January 19th, 2pm

This Saturday we head to the heel of Italy with three wines from L’Antica Cantina in Puglia (a cooperative that dates back to 1933).  They specialize in local varieties such as Bombino Bianco, and Uva di Troia, as well as more familiar grapes like Sangiovese.  We’ll also be tasting a Gaglioppo from Calabria, a Super Tuscan from Tenuta San Vito and our favorite olive oil.  Fulvio Longo, a southern Italian himself, will be here to show off the wines.
 
2017 L’Antica Cantina, Zephino Frizzante  $10
Bombino Bianco
The Zephino is a sparkling wine made from Bombino grapes, typical of the Daunia Plain. The wine is fresh and creamy with just the right amount of effervescence.  
 
2015 Baroni Capoano, Ciro Rosso  $15
Gaglioppo
From Calabria this Gaglioppo has hints of blueberries and blackberries combined with fresh aromas of pressed rose petals and hints of licorice, mushroom and wet earth.  The flavor is smooth and silky with light tannins, backed up by a surprising richness, good balance and long finish.
 
2017 L’Antica Cantina, Rosone  $11
Sangiovese
The Rosone is a fresh and young Sangiovese with bright cherry fruit and smooth tannins.  A great everyday wine.
 
2016 L’Antica Cantina, Nobliss  $16
Uva di Troia
The Nobliss has a fresh bouquet with a hint of violets, spice and soft fruit aromas.  The wine has notes of red cherry, red currant, black pepper, tobacco, underbrush as well as a dry tannic underpinning. 
 
2012 Tenuta San Vito, Madiere  $30
60% Sangiovese, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot
Tenuta San Vito in picturesque Tuscany is set amongst groves of olive trees and the vineyards which they tend organically.  The Madiere expresses rich, lingering aromas of wild, red berries and spice. Harmoniously-balanced on the palate with flavors of strawberries, cherries and black currants. The wine has a round texture, a full body and velvety 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.

Sunshine in January

The weekend forecast  is sunny outside  here in Madrona.  Here at the wine shop we’ll be tasting a few things to make you sunny inside.  Bundle up, stretch the legs and come see what we have open.

Saturday we tasting some great deals to start they year off right.
2015 Reinhold Haart Estate Riesling  Trocken  $12
Was $16 now $12
2013 Rocche Costamagna Dolcetto d’Alba  $10
Was $15 now $10
2015 Bergamota,  Dao Private Selection  $15
80% Touriga Nacional, 5% Tinta Roriz, 5% Jaen, 5% Alfrocheiro, 5% Other
2013 Wind Gap Old-Vine Grencahe  $20
Was $40 now $20
2013 My Essential California Cabernet  $15
Was $20 Now $15

Sunday, we’ll have a pair of French wines open to try.
2017 La Maroutine Bordeaux Blanc  $11
80% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Semillon
From vines on the slopes above the Garonne river, this herbal, fruity wine is dominated by Sauvignon Blanc. Its acidity is balanced by the yellow fruits as well as citrus.
2013 Domain de la Biscarelle Début d’une Histoire  $15
90% Cinsault, 10% Grenache
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. Organic

Sunday is also the Artist Reception for our new show of drawings by Julian Birchman.  3 to 5 pm   Stop by and meet the artist.
Whenever I sit down to doodle, I always draw a man. I draw a variation of several different dudes that I have in my visual library. I don’t do this consciously; it’s just what comes out. As a result whenever I need to draw a female character or a non-masculine appearing person, I feel stumped. So I took this opportunity to draw 20 women as an exercise to break up a bad habit.  -Julian Birchman

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.

Housecleaning Part 2

January 12th, 2pm

We’re still cleaning out a few things we found at the end of last year.  Swing on by this Saturday and sweep up a few bargains.

2015 Reinhold Haart Estate Riesling  Trocken  $12
A dry Riesling from a solid producer.  Sour apple, citrus, floral notes on the nose. Great minerality and salinity as well. Very nice on the palate and a very nice finish. Was $16 now $12

2013 Rocche Costamagna Dolcetto d’Alba  $10
This is a classic Dolcetto d’Alba for everyday drinking with pleasing aromas reminiscent of Marasca cherries. It is soft on the palate, with delicate and persistent flavors, marked by a light almond finish.  Was $15 now $10

2015 Bergamota, Dao Private Selection  $15
80% Touriga Nacional, 5% Tinta Roriz, 5% Jaen, 5% Alfrocheiro, 5% Other
The Bergamota is dry farmed, sustainable and non-certified organic.  It shows ripe cherry, sweet vanilla, damson and floral aromas. Fresh and bright on the palate with fine-grained tannins, brisk acidity and lots of red fruit flavors. Just starting to come together with lots more to come. — 95 points Decanter 
 
2013 Wind Gap Old-Vine Grencahe  $20
A single-vineyard Grenache from 100 year old vines in Sonoma.  Deeply layered red and black fruits are set off by spicy stem aromas and a bright fresh crystalline fruit quality that elevate all of the components together. On the palate the depth of fruit and old-vine concentration are evident as the wine slowly reveals the spicy tannins that this wine is becoming to be known for. Was $40 now $20

2013 My Essential California Cabernet  $15
Tastes like California Cab.  Plum flesh, grapeseed and black-peppercorn aromas introduce this leaner, less-extracted style of wine. The palate shows deep cherry and plum juice with lots of peppery spice and decent tannic structure.  Was $20 Now $15

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.

Julian Birchman Artist Reception

Sunday, January 13th, 3-5PM


PORTRAITS

Julian Birchman

January 6 – March 3

opening reception – Sunday, January 13 – 3 to 5pm

Whenever I sit down to doodle, I always draw a man. I draw a variation of several different dudes that I have in my visual library. I don’t do this consciously, it’s just what comes out. As a result whenever I need to draw a female character or a non-masculine appearing person, I feel stumped. So I took this opportunity to draw 20 women as an exercise to break up a bad habit.

-Julian Birchman

Tidying Up After New Year’s

The holidays are over and the dust settled on the first week of 2019.  Looking around the shop we have gathered a few odds and ends that didn’t make it out the door in December.  Stop by the shop this weekend and see if you want to take a few of these delicious gems home.  All limited to stock on hand
 

Saturday, January 5th, 2pm
January House Cleaning

2015 Villa Gemma,Bianco Masciarelli  $13
80% Bombino Bianco, 5% Chardonnay, 15% Cococciola
A great deal on a delicious winter white from Abruzzo.   Fairly intense bouquet with hints of yellow fruit, apple, banana, white flowers like jasmine.  Was $25, Now $13

2015 Esporao Monte Velho  $10
40% Argonez, 35% Trincadeira, 20% Torriga Nacional, 5% Syrah
Faithful to its roots, Monte Velho is the Alentejo in a glass.  The wine has aromas of spicy red and dark berry fruits, earthy notes. The palate is fresh and elegant with good fruit depth, nicely structured.

2015 Dieu Donné Cabernet Sauvignon / Shiraz  $11
This South African Red is an aromatic expression of cabernet sauvignon and shiraz that delivers the grapes in a ripe, smooth style.  The wine has a nose of black and red plum, forest floor, raspberry and red cherry. On the palate the dry, medium-plus bodied red blend is smooth with grippy, high tannins. Was $13 now $11

2012 Larose de Gruaud Saint Julian  $35
61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot
The second wine from a 2nd Growth, Bordeaux Château –“Really pure, with a delightful mix of plum, cassis and black cherry. Long on the finish, with sanguine and tar notes mixed together, staying fresh. A very solid second wine.” – 90-93 Points – Wine Spectator.  Was $40 now $35

Quady Deviation  $15
Deviation is Orange Muscat wine infused with Rose Geranium and Damiana. The Rose Geranium leaves gathered from the Quady garden impart an herbal quality and an unusual finish in a sweet wine. Damiana, wild harvested from South America, was first used by the Mayans for its aphrodisiac properties and continues to be popular today for luck in love.  375ml.  Was $26 now $15
 

Sunday, January 6th, 11 to 5
Two Wines from the South of France

2017 Delas Viognier  $12
From Languedoc fruit this Viognier offers aromas of apricots, peaches, exotic fruits and preserved citrus fruit. The palate is both smooth and fresh, finishing with a hint of dried fruits. 13% alcohol by volume
 
2016 Perrin Cotes du Rhone Nature  $13
Grenache, Syrah
Like a bowl of very dense and ripe black and red fruit. Notes of crushed strawberries, raspberry jam, balanced by a beautiful freshness of spices from Provence and its Garrigues. On the palate, this wine is beautifully balanced in richness and freshness, a good structure with fine and elegant tannins. The finish is long and aromatic. Organic

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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