Archive for In The Beginning

More Tariffs

For the wine industry the New Year is starting off on a poor note.
 
As you may know if you haven’t been totally overwhelmed by the coverage of the Impeachment hearings, last Fall the government imposed a 25% tariff on wines under 14% abv (alcohol by volume) from France, Spain & Portugal.
 
Now (while our suppliers are still trying to adjust) the Trump administration is threatening to expand the tariff to 100% on all European wines. If enacted this tariff will have devastating effects on the wine industry.
 
Madrona Wine, a small shop in the scheme of things, buys our wine from maybe 20 small importers/distributors, 6 or so mid-sized ones, and 2 of the 3 big ones in Seattle. The tariffs over time will most likely force the small importers out of business, the mid-sized ones will struggle to adjust their business model and the big ones will ride it out, probably benefiting in the long term from the demise and problems of their competitors.
 
So, what does this mean?
First off it is a loss of local jobs. Take 20 small importer/distributors with 6 to 24 employees each just in Seattle, then expand it out to the rest of the country and you get an idea of the immediate impact. These are local domestic jobs.
 
The same will be true for the European wineries effected by this. At Madrona Wine we carry a lot of wines from small family operations that are not wealthy but have managed to make a living between farming, grape growing and winemaking. A number of these wineries will not make it. The mid-sized ones will struggle to adjust, and the large corporate wineries will benefit benefiting in the long term from the demise and problems of their competitors. See a pattern?
 
All of this will result in less choices and higher prices on our shelves. The good value wines that we pride ourselves on finding will disappear. Yes, the $15 Côtes du Rhone or Chianti that you like to have with dinner will cost more like $25 to $30.
 
For those of you who want to act on this, you can:

 
A last note is that none of these tariffs have anything to do with the trade of wine. They are mainly retaliation for subsidies to Airbus on behalf of Boeing and possibly for a threatened software tax on behalf of big tech. Again, small businesses being thrown under the bus for the benefit of large corporations.

Holiday Hours

Just a reminder that we are now open Tuesdays through the end of the year. Until the end of the year, our hours are:

Tuesday to Friday – 12 to 7pm
Saturday – 11-7pm
Sunday – 11-5pm

Additionally, we will be open Monday, December 23rd from 12-7, Tuesday the 24th from 12-7pm, closed Christmas Day. Also, for New Year’s week we will be open Monday, December 30th from 12-7, Tuesday from 12-7pm, closed New Year’s Day.

May the season be merry for one and all.

All Bubbles, All Weekend!

We’re getting ready for the holidays by popping the corks on a whole lot of Sparklers.  Stop by the shop Saturday and Sunday and effervesce with us.

Saturday, December 14th
2pm

 Vilarnau Brut Reserva Cava  $10
50% Macabeo,  35% Parellada,  15% Xarel·lo
Aged 15 months in bottle, delicious crisp apple and ripe pear flavous amongst an abundance of fine bubbles.  Was $15 now $10

Townshend Brut $14
60% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Noir
A finely balanced blend of from the best grapes of Washington State. Crafted in the traditional French Méthode Champenoise style with a minimum of 24 months spent “en Tirage”. Good local fizz.
 
Savian Evento Rosé  $12
100% Merlot
From Veneto, this extra-dry Spumante strikes the eye for its hues of rose petals. Its bouquet is delicate and at the same time complex, with a light hint of walnut husk. Well-balanced in acidity and sugar contents, it reveals a particularly intense, harmonious, markedly lingering flavor.

Prova Cava Brut Méthode Traditionell  $13
40% Macabeo, 30% Xarel-lo, 30% Parellada
The Prova is a translucent pale yellow with foamy head effervescence. Nice composition with a quite dry profile, well-balanced and with a rather long refined taste.
 
Trouillard Champagne Extra Selection Brut  $35
35% Pinot Noir, 35% Pinot Meunier, 30% Chardonnay
Fine bubbles, full-bodied with a full mixture of white fruits. The flavor is dominated by notes of hazelnuts and grilled almonds.  This crisp, delicate, fresh, creamy and elegant champagne, with just a touch of yeastiness, is sure to enhance any special occasion or meal.  A very classic and delicate Brut.

Sunday, December 15th
noon

Rive Della Chiesa Pinot Grigio Frizzante  $10
Light and apple-driven, and clean. The flavors are like lime lollipops and orange juice, which may sound unappealing but that’s not the case.

Peneca Rebula  $13
Ribolla Gialla
This Slovenian sparkling wine is made from 100% Ribolla Gialla in the Charmat method. It has aromas of green apple, brioche, toast and hazelnut. In the mouth, the bubbles are pleasant and prepare your palate for flavors of apple, hazelnut and toasted almond.

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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.

Thanksgiving Day

We’re

OPEN

Thanksgiving Day

11am-3pm


For Those Last-Minute Wine Emergencies
(like Mom got into the Dinner Wine last night)

Holiday Hours

Starting today we’ll be open Tuesdays from Noon until 7pm through New Year’s Eve.

This Thursday, Thanksgiving, we will be open from 11am to 3pm for those last-minute wine panics.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone,

Mark & Jim
Madrona Wine Merchants.

Countdown to T-day

We are counting the days to Thanksgiving here in Madrona this weekend.  Stop on in and get something to go with the holiday meal.  We’ll be tasting some pairing suggestions if you need some inspiration. Starting this Tuesday we will be OPEN on Tuesdays from here through New Year.

Saturday we’ll be tasting:
Son of Man Sagardo Basque style Cider  $15
2018 David Hill Estate Gewurztraminer  $21
2016 Erste + Neue Kaltereresee Leuchternburg  $16
2015 Chateau de Javernand, Chiroubles Vieilles Vignes  $21

2014 Chateau de Caraguilhes Corbiers Rouge $16

Sunday we have two moor wines perfect for Thanksgiving.
2018 Bois d’Arlene La Comtesse  $16
40% Vermentino, 40% Viognier, 20% Piquepoul
This cuvée is lively and very aromatic. Floral and tropical fruit notes can be distinguished on the first nose, then citrus fruit notes appear. We will also find these flavors on the palate. A slight minerality provided by Piquepoul is making this cuvée unique and seductive. 13% alcohol by volume
2107 Pascal Aufranc Chénas  $13
Gamay
Big scoring Gamay for little bucks. “This is so fragrant and has a very fresh array of bright and fruity, wild red fruit that is so full of life on the palate. The strawberries are so pure here. Great depth and energy. Drink or hold.” 94pts James Suckling.

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.

Happy 4th of July!

Madrona Wine Merchants will be OPEN today from Noon to 3:30 for those last-minute holiday wine needs.

Fourth of July Hours

Advanced notice that we WILL be OPEN on the Fourth of July, albeit with reduced hours.

July 4th

12-:3:30pm

 

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.

Corsica, Sardinia & Sicily

Saturday, June 22nd, 2pm

We’re spending the weekend on island time with wines from Terra Nostra from Corsica, Sella & Mosca from Sardinia, and Planeta and Firriato from Sicily.  Come see what the breezes from the Tyrrhenian Sean have blown in.
 
2016 Sella & Mosca, La Cala Vermentino  $16
Sella & Mosca’s 1,600-acre estate, I Piani, in Sardinia constitutes the second largest contiguous vineyard in Italy, covering more than 1,200 acres of vines.  Their Vermentino shows both citrus and floral notes. It is crisp and dry on the palate with youthful vitality and freshness.
 
2018 Terra Nostra, Corsica Rose  $14
Sciaccarello is a dark-skinned native grape variety from the island of Corsica, off the southern coast of France.   This Sciaccarello rosé has a slightly spicy nose (clove type) with hints of red berries (gooseberry). The flavors are frank, lively, and supple.
 
2017 Planeta Vittoria Frappato  $23
In the Mogli vineyard in southwest of Sicily, this native variety grows on ten acres of red sandy soil not far from the sea. Planeta’s Frappato is an aromatic red with notes of rose and candied violet and an elegant smoky tone, followed in the mouth with lots of red fruit with balsamic tones.
 
2016 Firriato, Trepani Chiaramonte Nero d’Avola $14
Nero d’Avola is a native Sicilian vine.  The unique characteristics of the Dàgala Borromeo estate where this varietal is grown, lends itself to shaping the wine’s complex aromatic profile from the sandy loam, alluvial soils.   
 
2015 Sella & Mosca, Canonnau di Sardnga Reserva $20 
Back to Sardinia, Sella & Mosca’s Cannonau is aged in oak barrels for at least six months then cellared for two years.  The wine has a mesmerizing scent, redolent of violets. It has a warm, dry, and harmonious palate with plumy fruit flavors and an aristocratic oak overtone.

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.

Delicious Domestics

June has arrived here in Madrona with grey skies in the mornings and sunny afternoons.  Perfect days for trying a few wines.  This weekend we are practicing for more Trumps tariffs by drinking  domestic wines.  Come get prepared with us.

Saturday we are tasting 5 wines from Dry Creek Vineyard.  The winery is in Dry Creek in Sonoma, but they have a different picture of a boat on each of their labels.  Something to think about as you drink their very tasty wine.
2017 Dry Creek Chenin Blanc – $13
2017 Dry Creek Sauvignon Blanc – $17
2013 Dry Creek Merlot – $19
2016 Dry Creek Cabernet Sauvignon – $24
2017 Dry Creek Heritage Zinfandel – $18

Sunday we have two
Domestic Deals from Napa & Sonoma.
2017 Kivelstadt Cellars The Family Secret  Sauvingon Blanc
$15
From a small Sonoma winemaker with an old world sensiblity, this wine is a composite of two styles of Sauvignon Blanc. The 50% in barrels bring texture and depth, which is balanced by a racy zing from the stainless tank. Was $19 now $15
2016 Meadowcroft Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon $20
Dark, ripe berries with a hint of toasted oak aromas lead into dark chocolate and cassis flavors that shine through the structured, mouthfilling tannins that are silky and plush. This is sure to improve with age; best now through 2025. Was $30 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.

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