Thursday, February 22, 2018

This Week's Tastings
Thurs, Feb 22nd: South African Wines!
Fri, Feb 23rd: Italian Wines!
Sat, Feb 24th: International Spirits! 


This Thursday We Welcome 
Danielle From Invoer
Pouring Wines From South Africa

The Foundry, Roussanne 2016 

We're always on the lookout for quality wines produced from well known grapes from unexpected regions. Roussanne is a grape found primarily in the Northern Rhone where it's most often paired with Marsanne. It is also one of the six white grapes allowed in Chateauneuf du Pape. Plantings can also be found in Italy, Australia and California but in recent years the grape has been finding success in South African. The Foundry is one of the wineries showing the potential the grape has in the region. This bottle has fabulous texture highlighted by rich fruit, a hint of spice and just the right amount of acidity to tie it all together. 

LAM Swartland Pinotage 2015

South Africa's signature grape is Pinotage and this tasting will feature two sides of the grape. Pinotage is a crossing of Pinot Noir and Cinsaut and was first crossed in South Africa in 1925. Despite its long history, the wines have struggled with a bad reputation due to the mostly low quality commercial versions being produced. But over the last 15 years, several producers have helped restore the grapes reputation. Pinotage tends to produce bold and meaty wines but our first bottle skews closer in style to a Pinot Noir. It's light with bright cherry notes, a touch of smoke and a soft tannic touch. Give this one a slight chill to enhance your enjoyment! 

Remhoogte Bushvine Vantage Pinotage 2015 

Our second Pinotage comes from Remhoogte, a winery that takes a minimalist approach in the vineyard and in the cellar. The grapes for this wine come from sustainable vineyards and are sorted in the vineyard then two more times at the sorting table to ensure only top quality grapes find their way to the bottle. This savory wine has ripe fruit, earth, smoke and great depth. 


This Friday We Welcome 
Salvatore from Vias
Pouring Wines From Italy

Pacherhof Kerner 2015 

This one is for Riesling fans looking for a change of pace. The grape Kerner has been around since 1929 and is one of those rare examples when grape breeding just nails it. Kerner, a cross of Riesling and the light red Trollinger (aka Schiava) got its name as a tribute to a famous German poet and physician, Justinus Kerner, who wrote songs and poetry on wine. Although this grape is a German product, the Pacherhof Kerner is a good example of the promise this grape has been showing in Italy. Produced in the northern region of Alto-Adige, just at the foot of the Italian Alps, this is a very interesting wine with layers of flavors, the nose is floral with light woodsy aromas, juicy apple, and ripe peaches. The palate bursts with fruits like grapefruit, lime, and kiwi. There's a hint of green pepper with a nice sharp minerality on the finish that's very refreshing. A great winter white that pairs with a range of either spicy or sweet dishes.

 Terredora Di Paolo Aglianico 2015 

Aglianico is one of the worlds oldest grapes. Brought to Italy by the Greeks, this ancient grape was revered by Kings and poets. If you consider yourself a lover of full bodied rustic reds, you owe it to yourself to give Aglianico a try. Many call this grape the "Nebbiolo of the south". Aglianico is one of Italy's hidden gems. Still mostly unknown but it represents a great value for a historic red. This wine comes from Campania in southern Italy. Even though many indigenous grapes are grown here, Aglianico is probably Campania's most notable. This is a high tannin red with broad structure. On the nose expect aromas of dark chocolate and black fruit. On the palate you get a kaleidoscope or berries, leather and oak. It has a lovely sumptuous mouthfeel, rich in acidity. Would go great with a nice beef brisket or a prime rib.

Statti Batasarro 2013 

Every now and then it's good to get a little out of your comfort zone and try something unique, new, and different. The same goes for your drinking habits. This Italian red is 100% Gaglioppo, and if you've never heard of this grape that's not at all surprising. Galglioppo is a little known grape, very popular in a little known region of Calabri in the southern most part of Italy. The Galglioppo grape tends to produce light colored, almost translucent deep red wines but this wine is anything but light tasting. This is a great introduction to Calabrian wines. The nose of this wine is intense and spicy with hints of tobacco and chocolate. The palate has a velvety roundness to it, a swirl of notes of cinnamon, red fruits, and chocolate.  Pairs perfectly with grilled meats, and ragu pasta dishes.

This Saturday We Welcome 
Scott From Mesh & Bone
Pouring Unique Out Of The Box Spirits

Mesh and Bone is the brainchild of Scott Crist. Having spent about 20 years working and traveling abroad, Crist ate and drank like the locals. Realizing most people were unfamiliar with these wonderful and unique spirits, many which weren't even available outside their native countries, compeled Crist to start Mesh & Bone. We are exited to share these singular spirits with our customers.

Shochu 750 

Shochu is a Japanese vodka-like spirit distilled from barley which in Japan is more popular than sake. It's a neutral spirit that can be enjoyed on the rocks or with some fresh fruit. If you're a fan of vodka, this will be a pleasing alternative. 

Sotol 750

The Sotol plant grows in the high altitude of Chihuahua, Mexico. Sotol is also the name of this spirit and with the exception of Chihuahua, is largely unknown, even in its home country of Mexico. One plant, which produces one bottle, takes 15 years to mature. The palate shows lots of vegetable notes and ends with a smooth finish. In Crist's words, "It's like tasting the desert after it rains".

Arakku 750 

 Have you ever had a spirit from Sri Lanka? We didn't think so. Arakku is distilled from the fermented sap of coconut flower and is aged for 15 years.To understand Arakku, Crist spent time with the local farmers who cut and tap the coconut flowers. Adding to the challenge was the fact that the farmers spoke no English. Mesh & Bone is currently the only Arakku available in America. The spirit can best described as a cross of whiskey and rum, It has a spicy, sweet taste and works as a mixer or served on the rocks. 

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Reading a Sake label can be confusing, but knowing a few common terms may help decipher its meaning. Junmai is pure rice wine with no distilled alcohol added. Ginjo and
Daiginjo are terms related to the amount of rice polished away, at least 40% for the former and at least 50% for the latter. What does polishing of rice do, you ask? The most refined and delicate flavors are found in the starchy center, so the more the rice is polished, the more its texture and complexity is revealed. Alcohol is added to these types of sake, unless Junmai appears in the name. For example, Junmai-Ginjo and  Junmai-Daiginjo indicate pure rice wine with no added alcohol. Finally there's Nigori, the cloudy, unfiltered Sake. Whether you're a novice or a pro, we strive to bring in a range of Sake to satisfy whatever your style or price range may be.

Shirakabe Gura Tokubetsu Junmai 720ml
This easy drinking Junmai is light and dry with an earthy richness. 

Aoki Shuzo, Yuki Otoko Yeti Junmai 
The Yeti is dry and and clean with light tropical fruit notes. Try pairing this with pork or chicken.

Rihaku Dance of Discovery Junmai Sake 
This Junmai is a bit fuller displaying a light smokey quality, salinity and a soft sweetness. 

Dragon God Ryujin Kakushi Ginjo Sake 
This fruit forward Ginjo sake is full-bodied with orange and pepper notes.

Sakata Shuzo Snow Moon Beauty 300ML 
If you're looking for an introductory sake, the Snow Beauty is an excellent sake and great value.  This flavorful Junmai Gingo is bright and clean, slightly creamy with a dry finish. We recommend this one with raw oysters. 

Katsuyama "Ken" Junmai Ginjo 720 
For those looking for a more serious sake, we offer a couple of excellent options. The "Ken" Junmai Ginjo is milled to 50% and is light, smooth and flavorful with melon notes and mild acidity. Pair this one with seafood. 

Hakkaisan Yukimuro 3 Yr Junmai Ginjo 
This Junmai Gingo sake was matured and chilled by a massive amount of snow stored in the same insulated room. The cold of the snow keeps the temperature stable at 3 degrees Celsius. Three years in aging results in a sake thats round, smooth and complex.  A truly special sake! 

Hakkaisan Junmai Ginjo 300 
Soft, smooth and slightly sweet with flavors of melon and apple.

Dassai 39 Junmai Daiginjo Sake 300ML 
Soft and fruity with creamy peach and elderberry.

Dassai 50 Junmai Diaginjo Sake 750 
This delicately sweet  sake is smooth with clean finish.

Sho Chiku Bai Creme De Sake Nigori 300ML 
For those looking for a sweeter sake, Nigori is the way to go. This Creme De Sake has more of an off-dry quality.  

Sho Chiku Bai Nigori Sake 375ml 
For those looking for a sweeter Nigori, we recommend this bottle. Try this with  Nigori is the way to go. Nigori Sake's work beautifully with spicy food. Because of the rice content at the bottom, be sure to give them a shake before serving. 

Choya Umeshu Plum 750 
We also offer a couple of Plum Wines, also known as  Umeshu, which is made by soaking unripe plums in sugar and shochu which is a Japanese clear distilled spirit.  The Choya Uneshu, which includes real plums in the bottle, is a sweet, fruity treat.

Nanbu Bijin Umeshu Plum 720 $30.99
Simply put, this one is like drinking a fresh plum. 

Wine News & Articles

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