Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Wine of the Week - Domaine Le Roc Fronton ‘Le Classique’

This week's featured wine is a unique bottling from the little-known French appellation of Fronton. Natural winemaker Domine Le Roc brings the Southwest of France to the U.S with their 'Cuvée
Classique.' A Negrette-based blend, this rustic wine is fresh and spicy with dark fruit and herb notes.
A touch of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah provide structure and length.

Since the Middle Ages, Fronton, just north of Toulouse, has been the home of the Negrette grape variety, which is nearly exclusive to the area. The region encompasses 2,300 hectares of vines dominated by dry heat and rocky soils and the landscape is marked by hills and valleys, ranging from 300 to 600 ft above sea level. It is here that, since 1974, the Ribes family has been dedicated to producing wines with personality and character at Domaine Le Roc. Their insistence on strictly controlled yields, while being careful not to over-extract the fruit, and high vine density planting produces wines that release a wonderful perfume. They produce wine in a traditional, almost old-fashioned way that raises the bar for Fronton wines and deserves recognition.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Recipe Thursday: Rich and Luscious Autumn Recipes

Photo Credit: Alexandra Rowley / Food & Wine
Autumn brings all things rich and luscious -- jewel-toned leaves falling from the trees, ripe fruits, sumptuous knits and slow-cooked suppers. If you’re in need of the perfect fall dinner for a cozy evening at home, look no further than Food & Wine’s line up of 24 Fall Favorites to Put in Rotation. It’s hard to choose a favorite, but this week we’re feeling the Butternut Squash Casserole with Leeks, Prosciutto and Thyme, a “luscious squash-studded bread pudding” that can stand up on its own as a main dish, or can be served alongside roasted meats.

You’ll of course need an equally rich and luscious wine to pair it with, which is why we’re opening up a bottle of the Pascal Laffourcade Clos des Quartes. This Chenin Blanc has notes of ripe apple and a rich texture, which mirrors the buttery caramelized vegetables in the bread pudding.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Wine of the Week - Pascal Laffourcade Clos des Quarts

Now that the weather has finally turned towards fall, there's no reason to abandon white wine just yet. Our featured wine this week is ready to make the seasonal transition with you - and is a real rarity as well. The Pascal Laffourcade Clos des Quarts is a rare example of Chenin Blanc grown in Quarts de Chaume (traditionally a producer of dessert wine) that is fermented to dryness. This is a white with some serious structure and the ability to age. Roger Voss, writing for Wine Enthusiast, says of the 2015 vintage:
"This single-vineyard wine is impressively ripe and rich. It is maturing although nowhere near its peak. The ripe apple, mango and kiwifruits are matched by the intensity of the mineral texture. (09/2018)"


Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Lamothe Best Buy

Congratulations to Château Lamothe de Haux! Their 2018 Bordeaux Blanc has been named to Wine Enthusiast's "Top 100 Best Buys of 2019." This is the second year in a row that this wine has been included on this list.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Recipe Thursday: Pumpkin is for Fall

Photo Credit: So Delicious
Fall has arrived and pumpkins are everywhere -- on our plates and in our cups -- whether it’s a pumpkin spice latte or a creamy pumpkin pie. Not just for the sweet tooth, pumpkin makes an excellent addition to stews and soups, just as you would use a butternut squash. This weekend we’ll be getting in the fall mood and making So Delicious’ Lamb and Pumpkin Stew, a cozy dish with warm spices and rich flavor.

We’ll be pairing it with Laurent Martray's Côte de Brouilly “Les Feuillées”, a full-bodied Gamay with notes of dark berries and allspice. Essentially fall in a bottle, this wine pairs beautifully with the warm spices in the lamb and pumpkin stew.

Jean-Louis Chave in Vinous and the Wine Spectator

Both Vinous and Wine Spectator have released bottle scores for the 2016 vintage of Domaine Jean-Louis Chave. With scores up to 98 points, this is a vintage to seek out. Also reviewed are Chave's Sélection wines, offering value in an often-pricey category.

The Chave family is based in a small village on the northern right bank of the Rhone. There have been Chaves growing vines on the famous Hermitage hill since 1481. Gerard Chave took over from his father in 1970 and rapidly achieved megastar status due to the extraordinary quality of his wines and has since passed on the winemaking responsibilities to his son Jean-Louis. The Chave’s methods for all their winemaking are traditional farming, super low yields, full ripeness, and minimal manipulation. Their unmatched meticulousness continues through five centuries to render venerable expressions of the purest of Rhône terroir.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Wine of the Week - Laurent Martray Côte de Brouilly “Les Feuillées”

This week's featured wine is a Gamay that's also ageworthy. Laurent Martray's Côte de Brouilly “Les Feuillées” is no lightweight Beaujolais. This cru offering is complex and food friendly. Josh Raynolds, writing for Vinous, says of the 2015 vintage: “Brilliant magenta. Incisive, mineral-accented cherry and blackberry scents, along with suggestions of candied violet and allspice. Sappy and penetrating on the palate, offering bitter cherry and dark berry flavors that spread out slowly and become sweeter as the wine opens up. The mineral note comes back strong on a very long, focused finish shaped by fine-grained tannins.”

Laurent Martray has been a winemaker based in Odenas since 1987. His vines are located on the hillside of Combiaty facing east and south-east, from which come the “Vieilles Vignes” and “Corentin” cuvées. More recently Martray has been using a plot of vines located on the famous Brouilly hill, also in Odenas, which is the “Les Feuillées” wine in the Côte de Brouilly appellation. The “Les Feuillées” cuvée, in the Côte de Brouilly appellation, is made from very old vines planted in 1916 on just over one hectare. The soil consists of porphyritic and diorite rocks with blue volcanic stone.