WINE CLUB WINES: JULY 2012

2009 SCHÄEFER – PORTUGIESER DRY RED – RHEINHESSEN, GERMANY
When travelling South along the Rhine river in Germany, a short distance from Nierstein, it would be easy to miss the small, but quaint, old village of Mettenheim, on the edge of the broad Rhine valley. It is here that the Schäfer family have been cultivating vines since 1709. The family still manages the estate today so that the tradition can continue into the future. The primary red for this month comes from this family and is made with 100% Portugieser grapes, which is a grape that is very popular in Germany and Austria. It’s allegedly named Portugieser because the grapes were supposed to have been brought to Austria from Oporto region of Portugal. This tale has never been confirmed. Once established in Austria, it was exported in droves to Germany, where it not only produces fruity, low acid wines but sometimes is used to make rose wines. Upon opening this wine, you will notice the lovely notes of raspberry, strawberry, currant, and even a touch of vanilla. This wine is extremely palatable, pleasing, medium-bodied, and fresh. The Portugieser wine goes well with many dishes, in its native Germany, it is served with Pretzels or with wurst platters, and we suggest you try this with your favorite BBQ, especially chicken. Normal price: $18.99, Wine Club members price in July is $16.14.

2010 MONTE GUIDI DEL CARMINE – PECORINO – CHIETI (ABRUZZO), ITALY
Is Pecorino a wine or a cheese? In Italy cheese made from sheep’s milk is known as Pecorino. What has Pecorino cheese got to do with Pecorino wine? The reason why this wine shares its name with a well-known cheese, though the origin of the clearly odd name is still controversial, is that the grape has always been the favorite snack of the sheep that graze through vineyard lands on their way to lower pastures. It is also worth mentioning that the shape of the Pecorino grape resembles a sheep’s ear; hence probably the name. The hills surrounding Chieti is where this grape comes from and has been cultivated since 200 AD. It is regarded as one of the most ancient Italic grapes still in existence. This wine is made with 100% Pecorino grapes, fermented and aged in stainless steel tanks. This wine will delight you with its straw brilliant yellow tones and its intense aromas of fruits and honey. This wine is medium-bodied with nice acidity and flavors of green apples, white peaches, and even nectarines. The structure is firm with pleasant minerality. This wine will pair perfectly with fish dishes and white meats, not surprisingly Pecorino pairs quite well with all types of sheep’s cheeses, especially soft cheeses. Usually $15.99, Wine Club members price in July is $13.59.

Red Only wine club members receive the SCHAFER – PORTUGIESER AND:
2010 DOMAINE DU PAVILLON DE CHAVANNES –“CUVEE DES AMBASSADES” COTE DE BROUILLY – COTE DE BROULLY (BEAUJOLAIS), FRANCE

If you spend any time talking to us about French wines at Anne’s you know that we have resisted bringing Beaujolais wines into the shop for some time but no more. This entry into the wine club broke through all the doubts we may have had and we think this wine has all the right stuff to make it into the club. This wine has one of the more memorable stories of WWII resistance by the locals against the German army – complete with Nazi bullet holes left in the trees around the vineyard as a reminder during each vintage of how fleeting freedom can be, Pavillon de Chavannes has become not only one of the most difficult wines to source in France but it is unquestionably the single most difficult wine to source in all of Beaujolais. The French government continues to demand this wine be served at each Embassy around the world when the most important dignitaries are entertained - thus the special designation of “Ambassades” (they could choose anything - Château Margaux, Latour, or even something more reasonable like Pontet-Canet but they choose Chavannes) - that is the highest level of praise any wine in France can receive. With a tattered, elegant and old-style label pressed with an ink and wood etching from the 1920s, this wine is a first growth of Burgundy that is basically un-known in the US. This historic wine is made with 100% Gamay grapes, all fermented in stainless steel, then aged in large neutral French oak barrels for 12 months before release. Bright, racy aromas of wild strawberries, raspberries, and even tart cherries. This wine is complex yet silky in texture; this wine shows vibrant red fruit and mineral qualities and packs a punch without carrying any excess weight. Serve this wine slightly chilled 45-50F. This wine is best consumed by 2014. Open half an hour before you serve it and enjoy with lighter meats, cold cuts, roasted pork, and even grilled salmon. Usually $19.99, Wine Club members price in July is $16.99.

White Only wine club members receive the MONTE GUIDI DEL CARMINE – PECORINO and:
2011 SILVANE & ALAINE NORMAND – MACON LA ROCHE VINEUSE , FRANCE

The Normands are growers in the Mâconnais (Burgundy) who took over an abandoned vineyard with a métayage contract, a common agricultural practice in France whereby the landlord is paid in wine. Today, Alain works the vineyards, makes the wine, and sells off the landlord's portion to négociants. His wife Sylvaine handles the office work; theirs is a typical family domaine operation. La Roche-Vineuse, where this wine is named after, is an old village nestled on the steep limestone outcropping that gives name to Vineuse. Alaine plows his vineyards rather than using herbicides, and he doesn’t use pesticides or chemical fertilizers. This is one of the wines that although is produced in an organic manner, it is not labeled so. In every way, his methods are the antithesis of the cooperatives whose wines dominate the Mâcon trade. The Macon area of Burgundy is where the least known and best-value burgundies are currently being produced. This 100% Chardonnay wine comes from roughly 12 acres of vines and is made in a distinctly artisan style. Most Chardonnay from Burgundy is either too expensive to be consumed on a daily basis, or just don’t measure up. There are lots of Mâcon available, but you'll have no difficulty distinguishing this wine from the run-of-the-mill Macon. It shows lovely apple fruit with a little peach undertone, along with nice minerality and subtle notes of spice and yeast lees with a very lengthy finish. Chill this wine and serve with a soft cheese platter, oysters, BBQd pork, or even calamari. Usually $18.99, Wine Club members price in July is $16.14.

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