Thursday, July 9, 2020

Max Ferd. Richter in Mosel Fine Wines

Time flies! It's already time for the reviews for the 2019 vintage out of the Mosel and Mosel Fine Wines provides its usual in-depth insights. Max Ferd. Richter had a great set of press, with some exciting new releases in the forefront, including a Pinot Noir! We've rounded up all the reviews of the vintage and there's much to like. Prost to Dirk & Constantin!


The estate of Max Ferd. Richter has been passed down from father to son for the past 300 years. The current reins are held by Dr. Dirk Richter, the 9th generation, and will eventually be passed down to his son Constantin. The estate produces world-class Rieslings from some of the most esteemed vineyards in the Mosel, and all production comes from estate holdings. Through the entire line of wines, their hallmark balance is evident in every glass. Throughout the estate, only all-natural fertilizers, sustainable farming, and hand-harvesting are employed. Vineyards are treated as needed so in some vintages some vineyards are entirely ecological. They use pomace, compost and stall manure as fertilizers. Application is in late winter and early spring. Overall, they are trying to minimize waste, water and energy consumption.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Herdade do Rocim in Wine Enthusiast

Stalwart Portuguese winery Herdade do Rocim is known for producing a wide range of bottlings, fully expressing the unique terroir of their Alentejo estate (and their Vale de Mata property in Lisboa). Roger Voss, writing for the Wine Enthusiast, has provided reviews for the most recent vintages, and the results are great! With multiple 90+ point scores, Rocim continues to raise their game, producing an in-depth portrait of their land and what it can yield.


Located in the Lower Alentejo region in the southern half of Portugal, between Vidigueira and Cuba, lies the estate of Herdade do Rocim. Catarina Vieira, daughter has been coordinating the development of the estate and she believes that Alentejo has the unique conditions required to produce world-class wines. Since purchasing the estate, Caterina invested greatly in the land by completely regenerating the vineyards and building a new state of the art winery. She believes that Rocim has great potential for producing high quality wines with worldwide recognition, and has hopes of expanding the brand under the umbrella of quality for the region. She has created a project that gives value not only to Alentejo, but to Portugal as a whole.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Wine of the Week - Drew Family Wines' Site-Specific Pinot Noirs

Drew Family Wines, located in the Mendocino Ridge AVA, focuses on small lot coastal Pinot Noir and Syrah from Anderson Valley and the Mendocino Ridge. Their wines are all small-production, hand-crafted examples of this coastal growing area. Two of their Pinot Noirs, "The Fog-Eater" and "Mid-Elevation" show the range and clarity this special region gives to their wines.

The "Fog-Eater" is Drew's appellation Pinot Noir sourced from several Anderson Valley sites, bringing them together to express the unique cool climate characteristics of Anderson Valley. As Antonio Galloni, writing for Vinous, says of the 2018 vintage:
"The 2018 Pinot Noir Fog Eater is soft, pliant and wonderfully inviting. Succulent red/purplish berry fruit, mint, spice and floral notes all meld together, with bright saline notes that add energy as well as tension. One of the more approachable wines in the range today, the Fog Eater is absolutely exquisite."
And the "Mid-Elevation" brings together fruit from the Drew Ranch and the Valenti Ranch, two sites that sit at 1200-1500 feet in elevation. From Galloni:
"The 2018 Pinot Noir Mid Elevation is absolutely gorgeous. Finely cut and nuanced, the 2018 is wonderfully translucent and yet, there is plenty of depth too, a combination that is super-appealing in my book. Freshly cut flowers, bright red/purplish fruit, mint and chalk all run through this wonderfully inviting, nuanced Pinot. This is such a classy wine." 

With over 25 years in the wine business in Central and Northern California, Jason Drew brings a vast depth of knowledge and a holistic perspective to his winemaking. Drew focuses on small lot coastal Pinot Noir and Syrah from Anderson Valley and the Mendocino Ridge. For his sourced fruit, he has long standing partnerships with several local vineyard growers who share his passion for sustainable and meticulous farming practices. Single vineyard sources are chosen for their climate, clonal selection and complexity of soil type. Winemaking practices remain focused on traditional methods that include whole cluster and native yeast fermentations, hand punchdowns and no fining or filtering. 

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Wine of the Week - Cesconi Nosiola

This week's featured wine is a true curiosity, in the best possible way. With less than 500 acres planted worldwide, Nosiola is a specialty of the Trentino region in Northern Italy, and if you're going to try a speciality, you should go for the best available interpretation. Hailed by Ian d'Agata of Vinous as "the master of the Nosiola variety in Trentino," Cesconi provides an impeccable rendition of this rare grape.

With its hallmark notes of hazelnut (Nosiola's name is believed to have been derived from the Italian word for hazelnut: nocciola) supported by apple and citrus, this delicate wine is surprisingly complex and shows lively acidity. It's a great way to take a virtual trip to this gorgeous land north of Lake Garda.



Perched high above Trento on banks of the Adige River is the hill of Pressano. In these rugged Alpine surroundings, the Cesconi family tends their vineyards planted to both red and white grapes. The current proprietors can trace their family roots back to the 17th century, and building on more than two centuries of cultivating and producing wine in Trentino, the four Cesconi brothers - Lorenzo, Roberto, Alexander and Franco - as well as their father Paul, continue the family tradition. The family has a deep appreciation and respect for the achievements of their ancestors, however, they seek to build on this history by perfecting the traditional practices of the Domaine. To that end, the brothers work entirely organically in the vineyards and continue to move towards biodynamic methods.

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Wines of the Week - The Saint Josephs from J.L. Chave

Wine growers in the northern Rhône since 1481, the Chave family (currently helmed by Jean-Louis) represents 16 generations of unbroken lineage committed to the production of some of the finest Syrah, Marsanne, and Roussanne on the planet. One of the hallmarks of Jean-Louis' tenure will surely be his commitment to Saint Joseph. Rightly heralded for their legendary Hermitage wines, the Chaves' hometown is actually located in Mauves, across the Rhône River. This is the locus of the work that Jean-Louis started decades ago. From "The Search for Greatness in Saint-Joseph Syrah" by Jon Bonné in Punch:
"Why would anyone, much less a luminary like Chave, throw such resources into an appellation known, at best, for making minor versions of the Rhône’s epic syrah-based wines? For one thing, because places like Hermitage, Côte-Rôtie and Cornas have grown so prohibitively expensive that in order to remain viable, the northern Rhône needs other potentially great wines. And, in Chave’s case, there’s a moral importance to making good, affordable wine from less anointed places. But it’s also because Chave, and other high-profile vignerons, like Jean Gonon, see Saint-Joseph as a botched experiment they have the opportunity to fix. This is why Chave, in 1995, began to resurrect Bachasson and other nearby parcels like Chalais, in his hometown of Mauves. To access abandoned land, he had to construct nearly two miles worth of roads. He hired five masons to build or reconstruct terrace walls, replicating the abandoned terraces still found in the hills throughout this corner of the Rhône, in order to plant vineyards on slopes as steep as those found to the north, in Côte-Rotie. He even tends a vine nursery of mass-selection cuttings, to preserve local cultivars—all of it meant to prove that this sprawling appellation, or at least its historic core, deserves a better fate."

Just in time for Easter comes this recipe for garlic-rosemary grilled lamb chops from Wine Spectator courtesy of Chef Michael Velardi. We, and they, can't think of any accompaniment better than a classic Saint-Joseph Syrah, and the magazine has heartily recommended the 2016 vintage of Chave's Syrahs very recently. It sounds like a perfect pairing for Easter Sunday.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Wine of the Week - The Single-Vineyard Marsannays of Domaine Jean Fournier

This week, we're taking a deep dive into two unique terroirs in the Cote d'Or appellation of Marsannay. When the villages of Burgundy were classified, Marsannay was long ignored, only gaining AOP status in 1987. At that time, it was known for its production of rosé and little else, but in the intervening years, fastidious producers like Domaine Jean Fournier have worked hard to reveal all this special region has to offer.

There are no premier crus in the Marsannay AOP (a status that should be reconsidered), a fact that actually can work in favor of Burgundy fans. Because that 1er Cru designation isn't on the bottle, Marsannay is an appellation that can provide astounding quality for very reasonable prices, a rarity in Burgundy as a whole.

Domaine Jean Fournier is now run by dynamic young Laurent Fournier, son of Jean, who crafts wines with integrity in a non-interventionist style. Old vines can be found throughout his vineyards, contributing to the immense purity and finesse Fournier’s wines are known for. He creates a range of single-vineyard Pinot Noirs from the diverse terroirs of Marsannay and today we're focusing on two of the most prestigious plots of land he owns.


The Es Chezots Lieux-dit is one of the latest-ripening in the region and is known for its cool Comblanchien limestone soils. Laurent's vines are up to 65 years old, setting the stage for gracefulness and and finesse with an appealing fruit profile and tannins that can support years of aging. The 2016 vintage was heralded by Neal Martin, who writes:
"...it offers black cherry and chalk aromas but this remains pretty tight-lipped. The palate is medium-bodied with succulent ripe red cherry and cranberry fruit, the tannins here a little edgy and angular, leading to a chalky-textured but quite persistent finish. Very fine."
The Clos du Roi on the other hand always brings a lively freshness to its wine. Bold red fruit and a hint of smoke are characteristics of wines from this vineyard, which has limestone-dominant soils and sits on an easterly-facing hill. According to Martin:
"The palate is medium-bodied with succulent ripe tannin, a nice touch of bitter cherry to counter that ripe, lush red berry fruit with a tang of cracked black pepper towards the finish. Great potential."

Friday, March 27, 2020

Wine of the Week - Podere il Castellaccio 'Valente' Toscano Rosso

Podere il Castellaccio was born of passion. Owner Alessandro Scappini grew up in the area of Bolgheri, Italy before it was a land of Super Tuscans. His grandfather made wine and Alessandro’s current project is meant to hearken back to the days when local grapes were used and wine spoke of the land. Instead of the ubiquitous Bordeaux varieties many growers have planted since the 1970s, Alessandro sticks to the indigenous grapes that have always grown here – Sangiovese, Pugnitello, Foglia Tonda, and Ciliegiolo.

As Alessandro explains: “I love wine. The business side isn’t as important. I make wine because it reminds me of my childhood, my grandfather. I decided to work with grapes that are indigenous to the region because it’s all part of the tradition of this terroir.”

The winery will be organically certified soon, but the practices of natural techniques go back far further than the three years required for certification: “Though we are waiting for organic certification, we have always practiced organically. It’s all part of the traditional way we do things. The soil is tilled using horses since there have been horses on this farm since before I was a child. The wines are minimally processed and see little new oak because that’s the way my grandfather did it. I do everything to preserve the integrity of these ancient varieties.”

Alessandro belives his wine is special because of its terroir: “There are many micro-terroirs in Italy. When people come to this area, they always want to find wines that can only be made here, something that represents the history of the area. Podere il Castellaccio represents the local, the terroir. It is the real Bolgheri.”


In local dialect, the name Valénte represents something of of worth that is also a good value. When Alessandro’s Granfather is speaking about something good, he used to say “That’s Valénte.” The wine is a blend of Sangiovese, Pugnitello, Foglia Tonda, and Ciliegiolo and shows Elegant, spicy notes with hints of morello cherry and blackcurrant, balsamic vinegar, vanilla, and Mediterranean pine resins.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Wine of the Week - Herdade do Rocim Clay Aged Branco Alentejo

It seems like many of us may have a little more time on our hands and if you need something to read about other than COVID-19, we're here to give you a break from the news. For over 30 years, the Shiverick portfolio has continued to highlight small family estates that produce wines that are made naturally and have true personality. Shiverick Imports introduces these unique finds to the market, giving them exposure to wine lovers nationwide.

The core of our Portuguese portfolio, Herdade do Rocim is located in Alentejo, an inland region in the south of Portugal. Although the Alentejo has the reputation for being a hot area that produces rich (sometimes over-rich) reds, Rocim is bucking that trend. As the winery explains:
"The Vidigueira fault, a natural landmark which marks the border between the Upper and Lower Alentejo, determines the raison d'être of Vidigueira, the southernmost wine-producing sub-region in the Alentejo. The East-West facing escarpment, of around 50 kilometers in length, defines the climate of Vidigueira, and, despite its deep-lying southern location, makes it one of the most temperate sub-regions in the Alentejo."
Balance is the hallmark of the wines of Herdade do Rocim, though they can certainly be powerful as well. Their wines all have a real sense of place, as Pedro and Catarina have always expressed their love and respect for Alentejo through what they produce. Not only have they made many wines from local varietals, but they are also rejuvenating local ways of wine production. Their amphora projects over the past several vintages have received great acclaim and they are expanding their elevage program with these new "Clay Aged" bottlings.


This is the inaugural vintage of the Clay Aged Branco and we're thrilled to offer this unique blend of Verdelho, Viosinho and Alvarinho. At the winery, the grapes underwent manual selection on a vibrating sorting table. After being fully destemmed and lightly crushed, they were foot trodden in traditional stone open fermenter (lagar) with indigenous yeasts. Then the must was aged in small containers made of local clay for nine months and a further three months in bottle. The wine is golden amber color with aromas of flint, chalk, and stone. The palate shows a dry, fresh minerality and a structured profile.

Located in the Lower Alentejo region in the southern half of Portugal, between Vidigueira and Cuba, lies the estate of Herdade do Rocim. Catarina Vieira has been in charge of the development of the estate and she believes that Alentejo has the unique conditions required to produce world-class wines. Joining her as General Manager of the estate is Pedro Ribiero. He contributes to the winemaking decisions, as well as running the sales and business affairs of the estate. Since purchasing the estate, Caterina and Pedro have invested greatly in the land by completely regenerating the vineyards and building a new state of the art winery. They believe that Rocim has great potential for producing high quality wines with worldwide recognition and have created a project that gives value not only to Alentejo, but to Portugal as a whole.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Flavorful Meatless Pairing

With an herbaceous character, and often notes of bell pepper, Cabernet Franc makes an excellent pairing for vegetarian dishes. This week, we’re pairing up our Wine of the Week, the Perray Jouannet Anjou Rouge, with a zesty meatless supper of Roasted Bell Peppers with Chickpeas, Goat Cheese and Herbs, recipe courtesy of Eats Well With Others.
Photo Credit: Eats Well With Others
This pairing is no lightweight -- the dynamic duo is full of flavor and depth that can rival any hearty meat and red wine combination. The Anjou Rouge, a medium-bodied Cabernet Franc with notes of red fruit and underbrush, makes a blissful companion with the earthy notes of peppers, herbs and goat cheese in the savory stuffed bell peppers.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Wine of the Week - Perray Jouannet Anjou

As weather begins to warm and hints of spring find their way into the air, we're featuring a transitional red wine that lends itself perfectly to this time of year. The Perray Jouannet Anjou Rouge is a Cabernet Franc-based bottling from the Loire Valley of France. Unlike its cousin, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cab Franc is known to make a more medium-bodied red, especially in cooler regions such as Anjou. Notes of red fruit and underbrush make this the perfect choice to welcome in spring weather.


Situated on 20 hectares of schist soils mixed with the more unusual element of quartz, Château Perray Jouannet features pristine southern exposure slopes for its Chenin Blanc, Cabernet Franc, Grolleau and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Transitional Spring Fare

While temperatures are still on the cooler side, there’s a hint of spring in the air, making it the perfect time to pair Mediterranean inspired dishes with an unctuous white wine. Grilled sea bass with garlic butter from Spruce Eats and a white wine with luscious texture and beautiful character, such as the Font du Vent Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc, is the ultimate pairing for this transitional seasonal period.


Photo Credit: The Spruce

The well-rounded palate balanced with tropical fruit aromas and a mineral finish makes the Cotes du Rhone blanc an easy match with the fresh, tender fish and buttery sauce. Spring is around the corner, indeed.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Wine of the Week - Font du Vent Cotes-du-Rhône Blanc

This week's featured wine is a traditional white blend from the Southern Rhône. The Font du Vent Côtes-du-Rhône Blanc is made from Viognier, Clairette, Grenache Blanc, and Roussanne. This wine has floral, citrus and tropical fruit aromas, with a fine, mineral finish, making this a wonderful wine with oysters, scallops, fresh pasta dishes or with parma ham, tapenade and olives. 


Originally founded in 1950, Bertrand and Guillaume Gonnet continue their family’s legacy by producing wine in their style, but are also making their own mark. Their commitment to understanding the terroir in terms of how it affects the ripening process, and introducing improvements to the production process have both enhanced the elegance and style of the wine. An important initiative for the winery was the natural shift to organic agriculture. Font du Vent had been operating organically for years, so it was a logical next step to apply for organic certification. Their vines have been in their family for over four generations, and organic farming signifies their commitment to passing on healthy vineyards to the next generation. The grapes for this wine are co-fermented. Made from both domaine and purchased fruit but all contiguous and organic.

Domaine du Terme in Vinous

The wines of Domaine du Terme have been featured in Vinous, with the Vacqueyras and Gigondas bottlings receiving 90+ point scores. Kudos to Anne-Marie Gaudin!


Thursday, February 27, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Winter Salad

A salad may not seem intuitive in the winter, but if you include hearty ingredients and in-season produce, you can whip up a pleasantly satisfying winter meal in no time. This week we’re cooking up Seared Ahi Tuna with Roasted Winter Vegetable Israeli Couscous, courtesy of Running to the Kitchen. Sushi grade ahi tuna is served on top a bed of caramelized winter vegetables and then drizzled with a soy ginger glaze. 

Photo Credit: Running to the Kitchen

This dish goes exceptionally well with our Wine of the Week, Domaine Jean Fournier's Bourgogne Rouge. Lively and robust, this red burgundy doesn’t shy away from the umami-rich flavors in the dish. The rustic notes in the wine go great with the seared nature of the fresh tuna steak.

Wine of the Week - Jean Fournier Bourgogne Rouge

Located on the Northern end of the Côte d-'Or, Marsannay provides lively, robust Pinot Noirs that celebrate the region's rustic nature. Domaine Jean Fournier's Bourgogne Rouge, though not named Marsannay, comes from younger vines throughout the region, including such well-regarded vineyards such as Champ Forey and Les Longeroies. It's an excellent way to experience Marsannay at Bourgogne prices!


Domaine Jean Fournier dates back to the reign of Louis 13th in the early 17th century, making it one of the oldest properties in Marsannay. Today the Domaine’s 16 hectares are helmed by the dynamic young Laurent Fournier, son of Jean, who crafts wines with integrity in a non-interventionist style. He has converted the vineyards to organic agriculture and has been Ecocert certified since 2008. Old vines can be found throughout the Domaine, contributing to the immense purity and finesse Fournier’s wines are known for.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Samuel Billaud in Vinous

Antonio Galloni has just reviewed the 2018 vintage of Samuel Billaud's Chablis in Vinous. The reviews highlight the importance of seeking out reliable producers in difficult vintages. Even in challenging years, Billaud produces wines of fantastic balance and consistency, as Galloni indicates:
"This was my first tasting with Samuel Billaud in his new winery. Billaud has done a tremendous job in building out his range since he struck out on his own some years ago. What I find most compelling about these wines is how they balance textural richness with energy. That is not so surprising in 2017, as the style of the year leans towards freshness, but it was much harder to achieve in 2018."

Part of an esteemed Chablis family, Samuel Billaud struck out on his own in 2009 to found his eponymous domaine. He had previously been the winemaker at Domaine Billaud-Simon, which had been a shining light in the old school Chablis clubhouse of quality. Since the creation of his own label, Samuel has met with great success and moved into a new winery space in 2015 as well as purchasing four hectares of vines that had previously belonged to Domaine Billaud-Simon. The resulting range, from AC to Grand Cru, are layered wines rife with crunchy oyster shell and silex, and exhibit a range of flavor profiles from licorice to white peach to toasty baguette. This is top quality Chablis from a rising star producer – for white Burgundy lovers, these are not to be missed.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Winter White

Luscious, creamy sauces, savory roast chicken and fish, pungent cheeses, caramelized squash soups -- in the chilliest season where robust reds reign supreme, these winter dishes are better served with white wine. This week we’re pairing up our Wine of the Week, the Samuel Billaud Chablis AC, with Garlic and Parsley Butter Chicken with Gnocchi, recipe courtesy of Jo Cooks.

Photo Credit: Jo Cooks
The high acidity and salinity in the Chablis pair beautifully with this flavorful dish, as the acidity cuts right through the creamy sauce. The fragrant and floral notes on the wine also help to balance out the abundant garlic in the dish.

Jean-Charles in the Wine Advocate

Burgundian producer Jean-Charles has recently had his 2018 vintage reviewed by William Kelley of the Wine Advocate. The wines are a gourmand's dream, as Jean-Charles also owns Auberge de Vieux Vigneron in Corpeau. The restaurant has become a fixture of the area, creating a draw for local and international gastronomes alike, who flock there to enjoy his take on the regional cuisine of Burgundy. His wines go hand-in-hand with the food, as is traditional in Burgundy.


The Fagot family has been located in the small village of Corpeau since 1860. Just outside Chassagne-Montrachet, it is located near some of the most prestigious vineyards in the Cote de Beaune, so it would be fair to say that wine is in the family’s blood. Jean-Charles is part of the 5th generation of Fagots in the area and the third generation to own vineyard acreage in Chassagne-Montrachet. On his estate vineyards, Jean-Charles employs lutte raisonée, a method of growing in which chemical intervention is employed only when necessary. The wines are vinified traditionally and naturally, utilizing oak foudres and 12-14 month long aging periods in the Fagot cellars.

Concert Exceptionnel in Paris

If you're lucky enough to be in Paris February 24, join a talented group of winemakers for a tasting/concert that will be sure to delight all your senses! Vignerons Yves Gangloff and Jean-Charles Fagot will be in attendance!


Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Wine of the Week - Samuel Billaud Chablis

No matter the weather, a good white wine is always in season. Whether as an aperitif or for a lighter meal Chablis is a classic for a reason. The Samuel Billaud Chablis AC provides a picture-perfect snapshot of this unique region. William Kelley, writing for the Wine Advocate, describes the 2017 vintage:
"Aromas of citrus blossom, fresh peach and green apple introduce the 2017 Chablis Les Grandes Terroirs, a medium to full-bodied, satiny and layered wine that's fleshy, fragrant and floral, with a lively but open-knit profile." 

Part of an esteemed Chablis family, Samuel Billaud struck out on his own in 2009 to found his eponymous domaine. He had previously been the winemaker at Domaine Billaud-Simon, which had been a shining light in the old school Chablis clubhouse of quality. Since the creation of his own label, Samuel has met with great success and moved into a new winery space in 2015 as well as purchasing four hectares of vines that had previously belonged to Domaine Billaud-Simon. The resulting range, from AC to Grand Cru, are layered wines rife with crunchy oyster shell and silex, and exhibit a range of flavor profiles from licorice to white peach to toasty baguette. This is top quality Chablis from a rising star producer – for white Burgundy lovers, these are not to be missed.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Quarts de Chaume and Fresh Pear-Ginger Tart

Photo Credit: Food52 / MARGAUXBAKES
“Creamed yellow apple, pear and mango notes, underscored by warm pie-crust and ginger accents.” Sounds like a delicious pie, doesn’t it? It’s actually the tasting notes for a Quarts de Chaume, a highly respected, tauntingly sweet white wine. This week we’re highlighting the Chateau l’Echarderie Quarts de Chaume, which unsurprisingly pairs exceptionally well with a perfectly prepared fruit tart of the same flavor notes described above.

Tarts take some patience to prepare, but it’s well-worth the effort when a Quarts de Chaume pairing awaits it. One of our favorites is Food52’s Fresh Ginger-Pear Tart, complete with homemade crust and warmly spiced baked pears. The sweetness of the Quarts de Chaume does not overwhelm the tart, as the buttery pie crust helps to round things out a bit. A beautiful pairing, indeed.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Wine of the Week - Chateau l’Echarderie Quarts de Chaume

Sweets for the sweet with our featured wine this week. Our Wine of the Week is the Chateau l’Echarderie Quarts de Chaume. Just in time for Valentine's day, this dessert wine is rich, unctuous and perfect for after dinner. A favored enclave within the sweet wine appellation of Coteaux du Layon (more specifically within the commune of Chaume), Quarts de Chaume maintains strict legal regulations for its wines of Pineau de la Loire (Chenin Blanc). Grapes must be passerillé, or affected by noble rot. If the must has a minimum sugar content of 323 g/l and no chaptalization is used, only 11% alcohol is required.


Devoted entirely to the production of sweet wine, Quarts de Chaume sits on approximately 43 hectares of land, 19 of which have been owned by André Laffourcade since 1958. In 1970, his son Pascal succeeded him and assumed the winemaking duties at their Quarts de Chaume estate, Château de l’Echarderie. Château de l’Echarderie sits on 10 hectares of brown schist and sandstone soils. Slopes face south/southeast (toward the morning mist of the Layon) to ensure the best conditions for growth of Botrytis Cinerea.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Sushi and Pinot Noir

Photo Credit: Tasty / Kiano Moju
In lieu of the classic rice wine (sake) with sushi, let’s talk sushi-friendly grape wine, shall we? After you’ve taken a few pointers from Tasty on how to make the perfect homemade maki roll -- complete with sushi rice, nori, fresh ginger and your choice of fillings -- it’s time to think about wine pairings.

For red wine die-hards, look no further than the Domaine Paul Thomas Sancerre Rouge. This wine carries just the right amount of delicacy and acidity as to not overpower the sushi. Most sushi fillings will work, although maki rolls made with cream cheese (I.e., Philadelphia roll) work especially well to balance out the tannins in the wine.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Wine of the Week - Paul Thomas Sancerre Rouge

This week's featured wine is French Pinot Noir, but not from Burgundy. About 120 miles to the west of Beaune lies the Sancerre region. It's best known for its whites, but the red wines from this region also shine. Made from 100% Pinot Noir, the grape shows slightly different characteristics when grown in this Kimmeridgian soil. Domaine Paul Thomas, located in the heart of Chavignol, produces a classical Sancerre Rouge. Notes of red currants and black cherries harmonize with soft tannin and juicy acidity. The ideal red for lighter dishes and charcuterie.


Just east of Sancerre is the village of Chavignol, home of Domaine Paul Thomas. It is a small estate on the slopes of the Les Mont Damnés, from which they produce beautiful wines from the deepest, purest outcropping of Kimmeridgean limestone in Chavignol. Domaine Paul Thomas is run by Raphael Thomas, son of Paul. Raphael originally intended to pursue a career in physics, but after his father tragically passed away at the end of the harvest in 2000, he made the decision to carry out his father’s legacy by returning to Chavignol and taking over management of the winery. From just six hectares of vines, Raphael produces 90,000 bottles. 75% of the total production is Sauvignon Blanc (Sancerre) while the remaining 25% is Pinot Noir (either Sancerre Rouge or Rosé).

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Quintessential Winter Pairing

We’ll drink any quality wine any time of year, regardless of varietal, but why is it that a crisp Sancerre tastes so wonderful in the summer and a full-bodied Barolo begs for our attention in the winter? Well, the food certainly contributes -- freshly shucked oysters, enjoyed poolside, is the perfect companion for Sancerre. Meanwhile, a cold winter evening spent fireside calls for both a heartier dish, such as Epicurious’ Wild Mushroom Risotto, and a more robust wine, such as Virnas Barolo Sarmassa

Photo Credit: Epicurious / Nigel Cox

The high fat content of the butter and cheese in the risotto helps to soften the tannins in the Barolo, while the earthy truffle-like characteristics of the wine marry beautifully with the wild mushrooms in the dish. We have no problem spending chilly evenings with this gorgeous pairing.

James Suckling Reviews Virna

2019 was a year of fantastic reviews for Virna from James Suckling. We've put together a compilation here. Kudos to Virna for some stellar scores and press!



Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Wine of the Week - Virna Barolo Sarmassa

This week's featured wine is one of the single vineyard Barolos crafted by Virna. This small estate has been making great strides in recent vintages, producing excellent wines that have been recognized by the press, like this Barolo from the Sarmassa Vineyard. Monica Larner of the Wine Enthusiast says of the 2014 vintage:
"I am very happy with these new releases from Virna. The 2014 Barolo Sarmassa builds intensity as the wine opens in the glass. It brings on dark fruit, grilled herb and spice—much of which seems to also come from the oak aging. The wine is aged in both tonneaux (both new and used) and botte grande for one year. Sarmassa delivers a contemporary interpretation of Barolo, but there is enough structure and textural richness to pull it all together with seamless integrity and power. Bottle production is very small— only 2,500 units were made."

The Borgogno family has owned vineyards in Barolo since 1720, and have always attached particular importance to the work carried out in the vineyards and the selection of only the best grapes. The Virna label was created in 2001, when Virna Borgogno became proprietor of her family’s estate. Today the estate stretches out over an area of around 12 hectares, producing wines from grapes grown on its own vineyards located in historic crus in the Barolo wine-making area. Though the wines are from different crus, each one represents the heritage and tradition of the Barolo region.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Bernard Rémy in Wine & Spirits Magazine

Champagne Bernard Rémy, a smaller house that is steadily gaining more recognition, has been featured in Wine & Spirits Magazine. Their NV lineup has been reviewed and there's much to like! Of the Brut Rosé, "(t)his is a red-meat rosé, with its fragrant and lusty red-berry fruit and herbal notes. It’s gentle but structured by chalky abrasion and the tannic feel of fruit skin, like the skin of a red pear." The Grand Cru Brut is: "(t)ight at first, seemingly unforgiving in its armor of brisk acidity, this opens into a wine that’s all chalk savor and red-berry gentleness. Firm and trim, it will develop with a year in bottle." And consistent favorite Carte Blanche Brut has: "(s)cents of strawberries and green apples infuse this wine’s limestone acidity with pale fruit. It’s round, smoky and soft, an appealing apéritif."


Founded in 1968 in the southerly village of Allemant in the heart of the Cotes des Blancs, Champagne Bernard Rémy debuted on the domestic market in France in the early 70’s. Bernard’s son Rudy began working under the tutelage of his father in 1996, and completely took the helm at Champagne Bernard Rémy in 2008. Still though Bernard is never too far from sight. This father-son collaboration now offers a fine range of local, Grand Cru, vintage, and rosé Champagnes. The sophistication of the wines and approachable price points highlight Champagne Bernard Rémy’s persistent quest for perfection in each aspect of their product.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Recipe Thursday: 20 Minutes and Eight Ingredients

What’s better on a weeknight than an entire meal made from scratch in less than 20 minutes? This week we’re whipping up a delightful Winter Squash Carbonara with Pancetta and Sage. Just eight ingredients -- the stars being the kabocha squash and pancetta -- is all it takes to construct this flavorful, savory pasta from Bon Appetit. 

Photo Credit: Bon Appetit // Photo by Christina Holmes, Food Styling by Rebecca Jurkevich, Prop Styling by Kaitlyn Du Ross

This meal calls for an equally flavorful wine, so we’re pouring a glass of
Domaine Raphaël Chopin's Beaujolais-Villages "La Savoye". This lively Gamay brings forth exuberant aromatics and soft tannins, which complement, not overpower the pasta. Plus, the hint of spice on the wine pairs nicely with the sage notes in the pasta.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Wine of the Week - Raphaël Chopin Beaujolais-Villages "La Savoye"

This week we're featuring a bright and lively red that will make you want to sing. Get in a musical mood, because Domaine Raphaël Chopin's Beaujolais-Villages "La Savoye" is a symphony of flavor and personality. By respecting nature and practicing a non-interventionist style of winemaking, Chopin coaxes the spirit of Gamay out of his grapes, showing a clear sense of place in his wines. The 2018 vintage in Beaujolais was a warm vintage, so expect exuberant aromatics and soft tannins. Semi-carbonic maceration adds some punch and a hint of spice wraps everything up. Enjoy slightly chilled and celebrate this joyful wine!


Located in Lantignié in Beaujolais is Domaine Raphaël Chopin, a property of about five hectares of vines in Morgon, Régnié and Beaujolais Villages. The Domaine is made up of young vines planted in 1989, which are next to the oldest, gnarled vines planted in 1905. Raphaël’s philosophy is to be respectful of the terroir and the vines in order to offer the best of each vintage. He practices lutte raisonée, and most of the treatments used in the vineyard are of natural origin, such as sulfurs and copper. Vinification is semi-carbonic at a low temperature. Chopin only adds a minimal amount of sulphites, does not filter, and uses only native yeast. In five years, the domaine will be certified organic.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Recipe Thursday: Cozy Soup and Cider

Photo Credit: Taste of Home
Winter is a great time for hunkering down and eating hearty foods, such as thick soups, stews and more. We like to spend a lazy Sunday making a double batch of Taste of Home’s delicious Hearty Butternut Squash Soup, and freeze half for a quick and cozy weeknight dinner down the road.

We can’t think of a better way to indulge in a comforting soup than with a glass of cider, such as The Drew Brut Cider “Sur la Mer”. The fresh mineral notes on this cider cut right through the thick soup, and the apple flavor marries beautifully with the onion and warm spice notes in the soup.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Jean-Charles in Burgundy Report

Jean-Charles has recently been profiled in Bill Nanson's Burgundy Report. Nanson praises the domaine, saying: "A more than competent range of wines here – all very correct and reflecting their origins – despite such a diversity of labels. There is much to enjoy…" We've long championed these wines as excellent examples of their appellations at friendly prices, and it seems that the press agrees!


The Fagot family has been located in the small village of Corpeau since 1860. Just outside Chassagne-Montrachet, it is located near some of the most prestigious vineyards in the Cote de Beaune, so it would be fair to say that wine is in the family’s blood. Jean-Charles is part of the 5th generation of Fagots in the area and the third generation to own vineyard acreage in Chassagne-Montrachet. On his estate vineyards, Jean-Charles employs lutte raisonée, a method of growing in which chemical intervention is employed only when necessary. The wines are vinified traditionally and naturally, utilizing oak foudres and 12-14 month long aging periods in the Fagot cellars.

Herdade do Rocim in the Press

Alentejo producer Herdade do Rocim has been in the press lately, so here's a roundup of all their recent features! Take a virtual tour of the region with this Forbes piece "What Grows Together Grows Together: The Food and Wines of Portugal's Alentejo." Interested in amphora wine? Sarah Ahmed, a.k.a. The Wine Detective, spends the annual Amphora Day at Rocim learning more about talha wines. Wine & Spirits Magazine highlights the 2018 Mariana Branco as one of its "Best Buys." We're always excited to see this dynamic winery in the news!



Located in the Lower Alentejo region in the southern half of Portugal, between Vidigueira and Cuba, lies the estate of Herdade do Rocim. Catarina Vieira, daughter has been coordinating the development of the estate and she believes that Alentejo has the unique conditions required to produce world-class wines. Since purchasing the estate, Caterina invested greatly in the land by completely regenerating the vineyards and building a new state of the art winery. She believes that Rocim has great potential for producing high quality wines with worldwide recognition, and has hopes of expanding the brand under the umbrella of quality for the region. She has created a project that gives value not only to Alentejo, but to Portugal as a whole.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Wine of the Week - Drew Brut Cider “Sur la Mer”

Many people like to lighten things up a little in January - so this week's feature is the perfect fit! The Drew Brut Cider “Sur la Mer” is a nice alternative to wine and is also a little lower in alcohol. This dry cider is made from heirloom apples harvested from 60 year old trees. This estate orchard is certified organic and is located at an elevation of 1,300 feet only three miles from the Pacific Ocean. From the winery: “We have been restoring our 60 year old apple orchard for the last 14 years. When we purchased this ranch, this old orchard had fallen on hard times. It hadn’t been pruned in 15 years and the grass was four feet tall. You can only imagine the work that has gone into bringing this old orchard back. This cider is a celebration of this effort and a means to keep it viable for the future.”


With over 25 years in the wine business in Central and Northern California, Jason Drew brings a vast depth of knowledge and a holistic perspective to his winemaking. Drew focuses on small lot coastal Pinot Noir and Syrah from Anderson Valley and the Mendocino Ridge. For his sourced fruit, he has long standing partnerships with several local vineyard growers who share his passion for sustainable and meticulous farming practices. Single vineyard sources are chosen for their climate, clonal selection and complexity of soil type. Winemaking practices remain focused on traditional methods that include whole cluster and native yeast fermentations, hand punchdowns and no fining or filtering.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Recipe Thursday: A Cozy Winter Meal

Slow Cooker Beef Short Ribs
Photo Credit: The Stay At Home Chef
Happy New Year! With the holidays behind us, it’s time to put away the festive serving pieces and bring out the good ol’ crock pot. There’s nothing like an aromatic slow cooker recipe to provide extra warmth from inside out on the coldest of days. Short ribs can be made a few different ways, but we love a version made in the crock pot, such as The Stay At Home Chef’s Slow Cooker Beef Short Ribs

Six to eight hours later, the house smells amazing, the short ribs are done and we’re about ready for a glass of wine. Thankfully, we have a bottle of the Herdade do Rocim Olho de Mocho Riserva Tinto on hand, the perfect full-bodied Portugeuse red for a hearty meal. The layered black fruit notes in the wine balance out the savory, caramelized notes in the short ribs, while the solid tannins gracefully stand up to the meaty dish.


Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Millésime Bio 2020

It's the start of wine fair season and producers Shiverick Wines represents are going to be presenting at Millésime Bio in Montpellier, France January 27 – January 29. Also in Montpellier on January 26 - 27, BIOTOP will be held, and Château Revelette and Clos Ornasca will both be present at this satellite event. If you'll be in attendance and would like to meet with any of the producers attending, please let us know and we will facilitate a meeting.


Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Wine of the Week - Herdade do Rocim Olho de Mocho Riserva Tinto

Our first featured wine of 2020 is a big, bold red that's just perfect for chilly winter nights. Now that the holiday season and its attendant busyness are behind us, it's time to cozy up at home with a delicious bottle of red (roaring blaze in the fireplace optional). The 2016 Herdade do Rocim Olho de Mocho Riserva Tinto is one such bottle, with Wine Enthusiast awarding the vintage 94 points. Reviewer Roger Voss says: "This is Catarina Vieira's single vineyard wine from the oldest vineyard on the Rocim estate. It has density, layered black fruits and solid tannins. Firm, bold and concentrated, this is a fine wine, richly endowed and generous."


Located in the Lower Alentejo region in the southern half of Portugal, between Vidigueira and Cuba, lies the estate of Herdade do Rocim. Catarina Vieira has been in charge of the development of the estate and she believes that Alentejo has the unique conditions required to produce world-class wines. Joining her as General Manager of the estate is Pedro Ribiero. He contributes to the winemaking decisions, as well as running the sales and business affairs of the estate. Since purchasing the estate, Caterina and Pedro have invested greatly in the land by completely regenerating the vineyards and building a new state of the art winery. They believe that Rocim has great potential for producing high quality wines with worldwide recognition and have created a project that gives value not only to Alentejo, but to Portugal as a whole.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Antonella Corda in the Press

Young winemaker Antonella Corda has been making waves at her eponymous property in Sardinia, Italy. This year alone, she has been awarded the coveted Tre Bicchieri, been named a Star of Southern Italy Wines by Decanter magazine, and received 94 points from James Suckling for her 2017 Cannonau (not bad for a wine that retails for less than $25). We can't wait to see what she brings us in 2020. Brava Antonella!


Antonella grew up among the vineyards in a family of winegrowers that stretches back over generations. Her mother gave her a love for the land and her father instilled in her a passion for the work of vinification. Antonella became an agronomist, graduating in Agricultural Sciences and Technology at the University of Sassari and founded her own winery in 2010. She took the reins in hand, transforming it into an ambitious and innovative project that honors its past. She has created a boutique winery capable of producing excellent Sardinian wines worthy of representing the region worldwide. A 40-hectare farm with 15 hectares of vineyard, 12 of olive trees, and the rest left open for crop rotation. Antonella Corda believes sustainable cultivation to be the best way for people to coexist with nature, so it can be passed down to the next generation intact. All of this means that organic fertilizers, integrated pest control actions, and sustainable irrigation systems are utilized in the vineyards.