“Les Perles” Piquepoul 2010 - $15.99
Wine of the Week on sale for $9.96
(Piquepoul; Pays de l'Herault, France)
Picpoul de Pinet (Pik-pul-de-Pinay) wines are made from the ancient, local grape “Piquepoul.” In those days it was noted for its bracing acidity (Piquepoul translates as “lip-stinger”). It’s well suited to the warm coastal Mediterranean climate of the Languedoc because it retains its wonderful acidity despite the heat. Crisp and refreshing, this spectacular bargain shows citrus, yellow plums, white flowers and a nice minerality. Magnums are double bottles containing two full bottles. The regular size sells for $8.99, so this deal essentially offers two for the price of one
Domaine Lafage, Cotes Catalanes Blanc "Cote Est" 2010 - $11.99
Tasting price $10.79
(60% Grenache Blanc, 30% Chardonnay, 10% Marsanne; Roussillon, France)
We just tasted another fabulous white from this winery located in the Catalan part of the South of France. This is Roussillon, France’s sunniest growing region, just a few miles from the Mediterranean & the Pyrenees. Blended from Grenache Blanc, Chardonnay, and Marsanne, this lip-smacking white is full of floral and exotic fruit aromas with a touch of yellow citrus. Its robust flavors echo the aromas, with added lovely honey notes.
Bastide St Dominique, Viognier 2010 - $12.99
Tasting price $11.69
(Viognier; Vin de Pays, France)
La Piuma, Pecorino Terre Di Chieti IGT NV - $11.99
Tasting price $10.79
(100% Pecorino; Abruzzo, Italy)
Not to be confused with the hard Italian cheese made from sheep’s milk, this Pecorino is a white grape which was thought to be extinct until it was re-discovered in Italy’s Le Marche region. Pecorino also seems to do well in Abruzzo as this light and luminous straw colored white from La Piuma illustrates. This native grape of central Italy is coming up in the world of indigenous wines and offers a new experience for those seeking the offbeat.
Domaine Paul Autard, Cotes Du Rhone 2011 - $14.99
Tasting price $13.49
(70% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 15% Counoise; Rhone Valley, France)
Jean-Paul Autard is a classic artisan French vigneron following in his father's and grandfather's footsteps in Chateauneuf du Pape. The vineyards are split between classic Chateauneuf and excellent Cotes du Rhone, which lie just outside the Chateauneuf appellation border in and around the town of Courthezon. (In wine, as in real estate, it is location, location, location.) He is one of the rising stars of the Rhone Valley. Unfortunately, due to the high demand and limited supply, this robust Cotes du Rhone Rouge is only available for a month or so each year. Black and red fruits are shot through with notes of pepper and garrigue (wild Provencal herbs). The palate is full and deep with ripe tannins arranging the plush fruit in a satisfying structure. Try with cassoulet, a Provencal daube (beef stew), grilled lamb, or roasted root vegetables.
Finca del Castillo, Tempranillo Joven La Mancha 2011 - $7.99
Wine of the Week on sale for $5.96
(100% Tempranillo; La Mancha, Spain)
From the La Mancha region of central Spain, land of windmills, Don Quixote, and Manchego cheese gallops this astonishing bargain red. Made from dry-farmed thirty-year-old Tempranillo vines, it shows intense dark color, blackberry and black cherry fruits, with a smooth plump palate full of ripe blackfruits. I nearly swooned on tasting this a month ago, and have waited impatiently for it to arrive ever since. Salud! (literal translation: Estate of the Castle, young red wine made from Tempranillo grapes in La Mancha.
La Bastide Saint Dominique, Grenache Vieilles Vignes 2011 - $10.99
Tasting price $9.89
(Grenache; Vin de Pays, France)
Winemaker Eric Bonnet and his family live and work their vineyards just west of the village of Courthezon in the appellation of Chateauneuf-du-Pape. This bottling of vieille vignes (old vines) Grenache shows lovely, intense red fruits with a bit of the garrigue (the “heather” or herbs that grow wild in the hills: rosemary, sage, thyme, lavender…) underneath. Soft and supple red berry fruits please the palate. Drink by itself or with Mediterranean dishes prepared with onion, garlic, tomato, & olive oil.