Showing posts with label Southwest. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Southwest. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

A White Wine For An Al Fresco Lunch

One of life's great pleasures is having a lunch outdoors when the winter weather starts turning warm for spring.  It works in reverse, too.  We had a wonderful lunch recently when the temperatures in Southern California dropped enough to make it comfortable on a dining patio.  In each case, a good white wine is mandatory - for me, anyway.

The Alexandre Sirech 2019 Les Deux Terroirs is a white wine blend, made from 70% Colombard, 20% Ugni Blanc and 10% Gros Manseng.  These are grapes that most people probably don't get to taste very often, if at all.  Colombard was originally used in France in the making of Cognac.

These grapes were grown in the Gironde region of Bordeaux and the Côtes de Gascogne in Southwest France.  The winery says that one of the vineyards is on a gravelly plateau overlooking the Pyrenees Mountains.  No oak was used in the making of the wine, alcohol tips 11.5% abv and it sells for $22 a bottle where I live.

This lightly tinted, greenish wine brings a nose that is heavy on the minerals, with citrus and a slight floral aspect.  The aroma is dominated by a beautiful savory sense.  The palate is mineral-laden, and has a flinty salinity and a savory finish.  The nice acidity makes it a great wine to pair with seafood.  I had mine with a lovely quiche Lorraine at Monsiour Marcel’s in L.A.’s Farmers Market.  My wife loved it and immediately wanted to make a cocktail with it, using Creme de Cassis.  We may just do that.  

Follow Randy Fuller on Twitter

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Return To Terroir At Port4lio, Los Angeles 2012

 Return To Terroir is a French wine importer focused on, “unique and authentic, hand-crafted wines that are the precise expression of their terroir.”  If you are not familiar with the term, terroir is a French word that conceptualizes the sense of place one finds in wine.  It refers to a vineyard’s location, soil, and climate, and how those factors are incorporated into the taste of the wine.

I got to visit some of France's wine regions at the Return To Terroir table at the recent Port4lio tasting event in Culver City, California.

Bordeaux’s gravel-based soil in the left bank region and the limestone clay of the right bank offer two separate terroirs to explore.

Château Cadillac (AOC Bordeaux Supérieur, older vines) 2009 Bordeaux Supérieur - 70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon;  beautiful smoky nose with cherry and acidity on the palate;  nice tannic structure

Château Fitère (AOC Madiran)  2009 Madiran - 70% Tannat, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon;  stainless steel fermentation; very tannic with plum and smoky spice; great acidity and long finish

Château Flotis (AOC Fronton) 2008 Fronton - organically-farmed Negrette, which is indigenous to Fronton, plus 10% Syrah; nose is funky, floral, meaty all at once; palate loaded with cherries

The Southwest region of France offers a multitude of different terroirs and correspondingly diverse wines, often made from grapes not found elsewhere in the country..

Domaine de Brin  (AOC Gaillac) 2009 Gaillac “Petit Brin” - 40% Duras, 25% Braucol, 20% Syrah, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon; savory, smoky, peppery cherry and plums

The chalky limestone soil in the Loire Valley is particularly well-suited to the white wines for which the region is best known.

Domaine Gaudron (AOC Vouvray) 2009 Vouvray Sec - 100% Chenin Blanc  flinty minerals, peach, apricot;  2009 Vouvray Demi Sec - restrained sweetness, minerals and peaches

Burgundy offers soils of clay and limestone on top of granite, lava and schist - the kind of stuff great Pinot Noir and Chardonnay are made from.

Domaine de la Douaix (AOC Hautes Cotes de Nuits)  2008 Bourgogne Blanc En Mairey - 60% Pinot Blanc 40% Chardonnay;   very steely despite 12 months in oak; green apples and very nice acidity

Domaine Denis Carré (AOC Hautes Cotes de Beaune) 2010 Hautes Cotes de Beaune Blanc - 100% Chardonnay ; smoky fruit shines with nice acidity and a lengthy finish;  Their 2008 Pommard  benefits from a streak of iron oxide under the limestone clay which gives this Pinot Noir a strong minerality and great acidity

Côtes de Provence has a varied terroir, with limestone soil in the northwest to crystalline rock in the southeast part of the region.

Château Saint-Pierre  (AOC Côtes de Provence) 2010 Côtes de Provence Rosé - 40% Grenache, 60% Cinsault; strawberry, cherry,  bit of tartness; dry , nice acidity

Follow Randy Fuller on Twitter