This is an intense, dense, and delicious bottle of wine that reminds us of classic Barolo, for a fraction of the price. A classic core of dark cherry fruit ties everything together, along with textbook rose, violet, and white pepper aromas.
From our friends the Bretons comes this delicate sparkling Vouvray, ready and waiting to bring the party. It’s elegant and unfussy, with notes of honey and pear, meaning you can drink it with dinner, lunch, breakfast, or on its own. We’re going to pair a bottle with tonight’s roast chicken and another with tomorrow morning’s pancakes.
Located in Bouzy, Champagne Paul Bara uses only their own estate grown fruit from 100% Grand Cru rated vineyards. This bottle offers great complexity on the nose and palate, it’s both full in the mouth and crisp with a very refined mousse, bright acid and a lengthy finish.
Chanteleuserie Saint Nicolas de Bourgueil Irene 2019
Domaine de Chanteleuserie really set themselves apart stylistically in Bourgueil. They put in extra effort to preserve freshness and acidity in their wine, resulting in clean, spicy, herbal Cabernet Franc with no tannic harshness. For quality, affordable Cab Franc, Chanteleuserie is as good as they come.
François and Jean-Marie Cherrier of Cherrier Frères the third generation to make wine at their family domaine, which bears their father Pierre’s name. Cherrier Frères is their other label. Their Sancerre Blanc, called “Les Renarderies,” incorporates Sauvignon Blanc grown in three different soil types. This Sancerre makes a particularly great companion to goat cheeses, patés, and rillettes.
Silex is a rare soil type only found in the Loire that wine geeks will nerd out about forever. Brunet farms the Chenin Blanc for this cuvee on Silex, imparting incredible minerality, structure, and earthiness to this gorgeous pet nat.
Some neighboring winemakers use a bit of Cabernet Sauvignon to give their wine more body, but this wine is made entirely from Cabernet Franc. Chanteleuserie is trying to show the best example of the terroir and chalky limestone soil of the area. This is a very well-balanced, versatile wine.
Domaine Fessardiere has been making some of the best Muscadet for years now. Since becoming certified organic in 1996 and using a unique approach of aging the wine in large ‘foudres’ (oak barrels) they are making Muscadet that really delivers a unique experience. Pair with oysters.
Champagne Paul Bara is arguably the most renowned grower Champagne producer in the village of Bouzy and has been since the 1860s. Paul's eldest daughter Chantal is keeping the family tradition on track. Everything is done by hand, using only selected grapes from mature, low yielding vines that are grown on the estate. This stunner is loaded with intense fruit expressions, tremendous mineral complexity, 100% memorable and truly worthy of Grand Cru status. There is a reason why this estate is considered legendary.
This light, spunky red is one of the most exciting summer arrivals year in and year out. Made from Grolleau, a rare native grape to the region, it is mineral-driven and snappy like a great Cab Franc with so much more drinkability. Think black pepper, bright cranberry, and agave. Drink cool.
You know the gang by now–Lapierre, Foillard, and Breton. These guys banded up in their twenties to (help) change the world of French wine, natural wine, and Beaujolais forever. But the name Thévenet, the fourth gang of Four member, rarely gets mentioned. That's partially because Jean-Paul makes far less wine than the others. The single wine he makes, perhaps the most elegant and long-lived expression of Morgon I've ever tasted is a true study on that lovely village. It is high-toned, zesty, and lightly funk in its youth, and can age like great Burgundy–if, unlike me, you have the patience to wait. I've gone through chilled bottle after chilled bottle this summer. If you love Beaujolais and haven't yet experienced Thévenet's rendition, now's the time to do it!
Just a stone’s throw from Champagne, Olivier Morin is making delicious, bright, and complex sparkling wine in the Champagne method, from Champagne grapes - Pinot noir and Chardonnay! It’s mineral-driven, refreshing, and just plain beautiful. At this price point, it’s almost too good to be true.
Vadin Plateau Champagne 1er Cru Extra Brut Renaissance NV
After training in Bordeaux, Burgundy, and Australia, Yan Vadin returned to his family’s domaine in 2012 to convert to organic winemaking. ‘Renaissance’ is his first cuvée, made of 100% Pinot Meunier, which is considered the star grape of the Cumières region of Champagne. Fresh and complex, this bottle is perfect for any occasion.
Ditch the Pageant, Join the Party: France Breton Talks Natural Wine and a New Era at the Domaine