Fenouillet Rosé

If you subscribe to our newsletter, you may recall a story we ran last year in our newsletter about "The Once a Year Marvel that is Rosenthal's Very Best Value." It was Fenouillet's red wine, an oddball blend of Merlot and Marcellan that's priced like a mass-market grocery store wine but made with love by a small family domaine. Right now we have a slightly different version of this marvel: Fenouillet's rosé. We tend to think of rosé as falling into one of two categories. There are the vins de soif (wines for thirst), light-colored rosés you drink as an aperitif on your rooftop, and vins gastronomiques, slightly darker rosés that pair well with food. The Fenouillet is somewhere ... Read More »

Faury’s St. Joseph at Age 12: The Rewards of the “Reasonable Cellar”

I keep a “Reasonable Cellar.” Sure, I’ve got a treasure or two tucked away. But mostly I lay down under-$50 bottles. These are wines wines for drinking in the short- to medium-term. They don’t take decades to get to full maturity, so you get the payoff sooner. They're also great to cellar because you never really get a chance to buy examples with bottle age; nobody’s auctioning their collection of mature Sancerres (unfortunately). Most of these wines are for drinking 3-5 years out. And mostly they get drunk in that window. But one of the pleasures of keeping a cellar is that occasionally you stumble across an older bottle that you’ve completely forgotten about. Like, for example, ... Read More »

Côte-Rôtie without Compromise: Bernard Levet

"Levet's wines are now among the very best being made in the appellation." — Josh Raynolds Bernard Levet is truly one of the last of the Mohicans. While several domaines are starting to emulate a version of this style, there are vanishingly few great producers of Côte-Rôtie from the old guard that continue to work in Levet's uncompromisingly traditionalist manner. Levet's wines capture the essence of Syrah grown in the "roasted slopes" of the Northern Rhône. This is especially true of the Chavaroche, a wine made from a beautifully-situated single vineyard in the Côte Brune. The vines, at 40 years, are now just reaching old age, and we have noticed a big increase in quality in ... Read More »

Meet the Winemaker: Herve Souhaut

Saturday, April 2 2:00 - 5:00, New York City Our very own Ludivine Souhaut will be headed back to France next week, and we we only saw it fit to send her off right and celebrate her family’s wine. The wines need no introduction: they are some of the most delicious natural wines in the world.  Her father, Herve Souhaut, started Domaine Romaneaux-Destezet in 1993, working with ancient vines of 50 to 100-years-old. He works with whole cluster bunches and carbonic maceration to create wines drinkable in their youth-a rarity in a region known for long macerations and extraction of tannin producing unapproachable wines that demand aging. Join us this Saturday afternoon to send Ludivine off right! We ... Read More »

The Ins and Outs of the Cotes-du-Rhone

Join us to celebrate the wines of the Cotes-du-Rhone, the second largest appellation in France. Spanning over 170,000 acres in both the northern and southern Rhône valleys, wines bearing this classification come in all colors and styles. Terrain ranges from level ground to steep hillsides over a variety of different soils (granite, clay, limestone...) and no less than 12 different grape varieties are cultivated. Although white and rose are produced, red wine constitutes the bulk of production, driven by Syrah in the north and Grenache in the south. The quintessential dry French weeknight red, the Cotes-du-Rhone is as diverse as it is delicious and value-driven...Learn more this Saturday from ... Read More »

Ribeira del Sacra, Ribera Alta, and Ribera del Duero With Chris Barnes

We're making it rain Spain this Friday with the one and only Chris Barnes, of Jose Pastor Selections! First up, it's a Tempranillo-Garnacha blend from the Ribera Alta sub-zone of Navarra, just northeast of Rioja. Fermented and raised in old concrete, it's bottled unfiltered, and retains a rusticity and spice that begs chorizo, lamb or just about anything barbecued. Then it's on to Ribeira del Sacra, to the Galician sub-region of Amandi. Pedro Rodríguez comes from a long line of winemakers in the area and his family was among the first to join the appellation in 1996. In the early 2000s, Pedro began incorporating new techniques, eliminating chemicals in the vineyards, reducing yields and planting ... Read More »

10 Top Vintages to Get Ready For Now

Collectors, how will you allocate your budget in the buying season coming up? Here would be my top picks based on what's available or coming into the marketplace these days. 1.  2014 Loire Valley.  True, there are still 86 years left, so it's too early to declare 2014 to be the "vintage of the century" in the Loire Valley, but it is certainly being widely recognized as the best vintage so far.  Both reds and whites are stunning.  Buy Sancerre from top producers.  Buy Chinons and Saumurs.  Buy lots of Vouvray. Buy Muscadet. 2.  2014 Beaujolais.  2014 was pretty good across France.  Beaujolais, like the Loire, was a special highlight, and the 2014s are just starting to come on to the ... Read More »

Taste New Australia: Cool Climate Wines of Jauma & Domaine Lucci

Talking about Australian wines these days is a bit taboo. As American palates have shifted toward wines with lower alcohols and greater balance, the once ubiquitous fruits-bombs have fallen out of favor. Couple this decline in interest with a weak US dollar and you have a situation where Australian wines have become entirely too expensive for a market that doesn't want them anyway. (Such a sad situation could make a kangaroo cry!) But when's the last time you really tasted a wine from "Down Under"? Here are a few new discoveries that just might reignite your interest. Australia at the crossroads Here's the story: The financial crisis of 2008 was a significant global event. But while the rest ... Read More »

5 Big Trends in the World of Wine

Here in New York City we often see what’s going on in the wine world before the rest of the country. This is where a lot of the celeb-somms are, where a lot of collectors locate, where you find the big trade tastings…and where wine stuff just happens. And here is what I’m seeing right now:   (1) Burgundy, Just Starting To Lose It’s Cool. The big story since the 2005 vintage has been Burgundy’s ascendance. For years now, the general agreement in the wine community was that Burgundy was best. This was a bit like the view of Bordeaux before 2005. But then Bordeaux raised prices to take advantage of demand in emerging markets, especially in the Far East. Americans didn’t like the ... Read More »

Summer Selections from the New York Times 20 Under $20

We are all passionate about good wine.  But drinking good wine all the time can weaken your wallet right?  Wrong!  We covet the wine legends and are always looking for an occasion or excuse to crack open a bottle.  However, day-in-and-day-out we seek and thrive on wines under $20 just like you.  This is why we have come to love (and look forward to) Eric Asimov’s 20 for $20 in the New York Times. For this article, Asimov focused on Summer Wines that are ideal for drinking when the weather is hot and thick.  Most of them are refreshing and bright, with alcohol levels mostly at the lower end of the spectrum.  If there's one problem with these Asimov articles, it's that the wines he ... Read More »