Tempier, Bandol Blanc 2021Regular price $55.00 Save $-55.00
Variety: Clairette, Ugni Blanc, Bourboulenc, Marsanne
According to importer Kermit Lynch, no other winemaker stands more in the defense of terroir than the Peyraud family of Domaine Tempier. When Lulu Tempier married Lucien Peyraud, her father gave them the domaine, an active farm that had been in the family for 100 years. After tasting a pre-phylloxera bottle of Tempier Bandol, Lucien was inspired to research the terroir. Up until then, old vineyards planted with Mourvèdre had been regularly replanted to higher-yielding varieties. More research not only showed its historical roots to the area, but the grape proved to be more resistant to oxidation. Lucien worked with neighboring winemakers and the I.N.A.O. to establish Bandol as its own AOC. Replanting of Mourvèdre began; Bandol now requires a fifty percent minimum in all reds. Lucien has been paraded as the godfather of Bandol, but also as the man who revived Mourvédre to its former glory.
While Tempier is known for its reds and rose wines, this white deserves just as much recognition. This blends classic Mediterranean varieties you’d find on the coast of France. After aging in foudres for 8 to 10 months, this wine emanates the Mediterranean sunshine with plenty of texture and a saline finish.
Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup, Languedoc Cuvee Sainte Agnes Blanc 2020Regular price $30.00 Save $-30.00
Variety: Roussanne, Clairette, Marsanne, and Grenache Blanc
Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup has quite the legend following it. In medieval times, there were three lords of the Languedoc entranced by the beauty of a princess. She vowed to give herself to the most gallant, Christian man. The lords traveled to Jerusalem on a crusade to defend the tomb of Christ; upon returning, they discovered the princess’ death. In their grief, they each retreated to nearby mountains, living their lives as hermits. “Ermitage du Pic Saint Loup” translates to a hermit dwelling; Saint Loup Peak was named for one of the princess’ suitors. The three Ravaille brothers now operate the winery, their family having lived in the Languedoc for over 1000 years. The emblem of three fish not only reiterates the story of the three suitors, but also the fraternal bond of the three brothers.
This cuvee blends together the whites varieties that thrive in this Mediterranean and mountainous area of Pic Saint Loup. Vines range from 15 to 80 years in age. The white is aged in barrels for ten months. Even though the wine is from Pic Saint Loup, white wines have not been granted the Pic Saint Loup AOC designation here, and instead are labeled the regional “Languedoc.”
Donkey & Goat, The Gadabout 2019Regular price $25.00 Save $-25.00
Variety: Grenache Blanc, Roussanne, Marsanne, Vermentino, Chardonnay
In short, Jared and Tracey Brandt of Donkey and Goat Winery are pioneers of the natural winemaking movement in California. After spending time in France back in 2002 with noteworthy winemaker Eric Texier, they returned home to Cali, inspired and ready to apply their inspirations in winemaking and marketing. Using a completely natural process in the cellar and vineyards; the couple does not fine or filter the wines, and just a small amount of sulfur is used at bottling. Their winemaking headquarters are located in Berkeley where they can implement their hands-on approach; they source grapes from Sierra Nevada, Mendocino, and Napa.
The Gadabout is an always delicious and very well priced wine. The vineyards and appellations may be changing and evolving from vintage to vintage, but the wine is consistently a crowd pleaser, and a fantastic warm weather quencher.
Alain Voge, Saint-Peray Fleur de Crussol 2014Regular price $54.00 Save $-54.00
The wines of Domaine Alain Voge have helped to shape the history of the northern Rhone. Alain began working with his father at just seventeen years, deciding to remain in the Cornas with his father’s vines. The wines were first sold in barrels, then later transitioned to bottling. In the 60s, the Voge family then began renovating several higher parcels, which in turn proved as better conditions for vines. In an effort to learn more about other wines, Alain would visit Lyon every two weeks, meeting sommeliers who would introduce him to other regional wines, ultimately forging fruitious links. Alain’s wines soon began appearing in some of the finest restaurants of Lyon and Paris. The domain became certified organic and biodynamic in 2016.
This bottle is sourced from 80 year old vines in Saint Peray. Here Marsanne is just one of two varieties that reigns supreme, (the other is Roussanne). The bottle takes its name from the Chateau de Crussol and the mountain range bearing the same name.
Jean-Louis Chave, L'Hermitage Blanc 2014Regular price $315.00 Save $-315.00
Variety: Marsanne and Roussanne
Let’s just state that the Chave family has passed the vineyards and winemaking traditions down generation to generation since 1481, so, yeah, nothing else needs to be said. Jean-Louis is now the 16th generation winemaker and the family has more holdings on the famed hill of Hermitage than any other producer. But for the last 15 years the family has been rebuilding old terraces on the banks of the Rhone in the nearby region of Saint-Joseph. They are working to bring back a vineyard site that dates to the early 1900’s. This site expresses the soil mixture of granite and clay, and shows the “wildness” of the terroir.