Newsletter

April 15, 2017 – May 14, 2017

All Over IT

Every Italian region produces wine and no two regions are alike. This month we stay on the mainland with some springtime favorites and a couple of reds for grilling.

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Gavi
Stefano Massone Masera Gavi 2015 Gavi ‘Masera’ (Stefano Massone)
Sale Price $9.99 -- $101.90 case of twelve
This 2015 Gavi from the farm of Stefano Massone is a wonderfully fresh expression of the Cortese grape variety. Aromas of bay leaf and hay lead to a palate of pear and quince, culminating in a dry, earthy finish. A lovely wine with haddock or sole.

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Soave
2015 Soave Classico (Inama)
Sale Price $12.99 -- $132.49 case of twelve
Inama Soave ClassicoFor a long time Soave has been called simple, but this can be a good description of a wine like the 2015 Inama Soave. While not overly complex, this Soave Classico is simply delicious, and so beautifully balanced that one need not think too much to enjoy it. Yet while you sip and enjoy it with a meal, it will find a way to surprise with its refined quality. Asparagus is a good starter.

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Lambrusco
2015 Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro (Fattoria Moretto)
Sale Price $17.99 -- $183.50 case of twelve
Fattoria Moretto Lambrusco Grasparossa di CastelvetroThe New York Times recently wrote that Lambrusco, the dry red frothy kind, was American wine drinkers’ ‘final frontier.’ To judge by the frequency of requests from many Wine Cask customers, we are already well beyond that frontier. Our latest lucky discovery is the secco from Fattoria Moretto. Grasparossa is a surprisingly tannic Lambrusco that is perfect for pasta and salumi. This fresh and lively red’s frothiness finds every flavor receptor, then ebbs and flows until your next delicious bite and sip. Bring on the Bolognese, mortadella, prosciutto, and chicken livers.

Montepulciano (the grape)
La Botte dell’Abate Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva 2015 Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Riserva (La Botte dell’Abate)
Sale Price $11.99 -- $122.30 case of twelve
For the first time in a long time we skipped a vintage of La Botte dell’Abate, but we are pleased to report that the 2015 has made up for the shortcomings of the previous vintage. This wine is deeply fruity, with peppery tannins, and a rich, round finish. This, once again, is our go-to wine for spicy foods of all cultures.

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Nebbiolo
2015 Langhe Nebbiolo (Cantina del Pino)
Sale Price $19.99 -- $203.90 case of twelve
Cantina del Pino Langhe NebbioloRenato Vacca exudes confidence because he knows that his vineyards in Barbaresco are superb. And all of his vineyards are in Barbaresco. This may be why his Barbera from very old vines in the Ovello cru is outstanding, and why his Langhe Nebbiolo from younger vines near the Tanaro river is such an amazing value. The style, as always, is transparent. Lightly extracted yet richly flavored, with feathery balance, this delightful Nebbiolo awaits an ethereal fresh pasta dish or a simple roast with potatoes.

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A Montalcino Value
2014 Rosso di Montalcino (Siro Pacenti)
Sale Price $24.99 -- $254.90 case of twelve
Siro Pacenti Rosso di Montalcino Is Montalcino ever a value? Our answer is ‘rarely.’ But when Siro Pacenti and crew put 25% more work hours into his Brunello vineyards in 2014 only to put 50% of his total production in his Rosso, you get an equation that equals value. All the more so because this estate is one of the most talented in Brunello. The 2014 Rosso has a terrific balance of dark fruits, spicy tannins, and a smooth, textured finish. Great for a grilled porterhouse with some white beans and escarole.

Listed prices are honored through May 14th, 2017. We will not honor mistyped prices. Vol. 41, No. 5

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Join the Euro Pink Party

Navaja de Vendimia
Armas de Guerra Bierzo Rosado2016 Bierzo Rosado (Armas de Guerra)
Sale Price $9.99 -- $101.90 case of twelve
Made from the Mencia grape, the Armas de Guerra delivers a terrific rosé. Strawberry fruit, stony flavors, and a dry finish make this a summer favorite with bean salads and spicy seafood.

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Quatre Quarts – Syrah, Cabernet, Grenache, Cinsault
Château Mourgues du Grès Costières de Nîmes Rosé ‘Galets Rosés’2016 Var ‘Le Saint André’ (Figuière)
Sale Price $11.99 – $122.30 case of twelve
Le Saint Andre is a deep and dry rosé from the eastern Provence region of Var. Packed with red fruits, it has a ripe, round texture, and a fine, long, dry finish. Great for a spicy grilled chicken.

redline Domaine de Millet Côtes de Gascogne Rosé

Luberon Rising
2016 Luberon ‘Côté Levant’ (Le Novi)
Sale Price $11.99 – $122.30 case of twelve
With the addition of 15% Vermentino, Le Novi is a Rosé that drinks like a big white with a crisp, minerally finish. Great for shellfish.

Organic Veronese Chiaretto
2016 Bardolino Chiaretto ‘Rodon’ (Le Fraghe)
Sale Price $12.99 – $132.49 case of twelve
Patrice Colin Coteaux du Vendômois ‘Gris Bodin’We happily recommend any of Matilde Poggi’s wines, but her Bardolino wines always exceed expectation in both reputation and price. The 2016 Chiaretto is a perfumed and zesty Rosato from the eastern shore of Lake Garda. Wonderful floral aromas give way to spicy plum fruit and a firm, dry finish. A great match with salmon and a ton of fun with a platter of sushi.

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Official Rose of the Knights Templar
2016 Côtes de Provence (Commanderie de Peyrassol)
Sale Price $21.99 – $224.30 case of twelve
The 2016 Peyrassol is, as always, packed with richly textured plum fruit with a long, refined dry finish. Excellent with a rich seafood stew or a simple grilled tuna.


La Roche Vineuse
2015 Mâcon La Roche Vineuse ‘Vieilles Vignes’ (Château de la Greffière)
Sale Price $17.99 – $183.50 case of twelve
Fattoria Moretto Lambrusco Grasparossa di CastelvetroThe village of La Roche Vineuse is one of the Mâcon’s best hillside sites for Chardonnay that delivers concentration and finesse. The 2015 from Château de la Greffière is an exquisitely rendered dry white with a weighted palate and a crisp, minerally finish. With a bit of oak and a bit of fruit this has the overall intensity and balance for either rich seafood or a stuffed rolled pork loin with dried fruit.

Fattoria Moretto Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro

La Capra Loca
2014 Tempranillo ‘La Capra Loca’ (Vinos de Terruños)
Sale Price $11.99 – $122.30 case of twelve
Produced from old Tempranillo vines located somewhere between Rioja and Ribera del Duero, the Crazy Goat delivers a down to earth, spicy, smoky red with intensity in spades. This is the kind of red to have with a strong spicy gumbo or a hearty Indian curry. Subtle, no. Intense and interesting, yes.


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Haut-Médoc
2014 Haut-Médoc Cru Bourgeois (Chateau du Retout) Sale Price $17.99 – $183.50 case of twelve
Parize Champ Nalot Givry Ier CruChateau du Retout is located between Margaux and Saint-Julien in the heart of the Haut-Médoc. Their recent upgrade to Cru Bourgeois status shows a real commitment to quality. The 2014 blend is heavy on the Cabernet Sauvignon (76%) and Petit Verdot (16.5%). This gives it strength and tannins, while the final addition of Merlot adds some softness and fruit. This is a Haut-Médoc property that we will definitely keep an eye on.

Aramon and Oeillade
2015 Vin de France ‘Tire Bouchon’ (D’Ouréa)
Sale Price $11.99 – $122.30 case of twelve
Parize Champ Nalot Givry Ier CruAramon and Oeillade sounds like the name of an opera about ill-fated lovers. In D’Ouréa’s Tire Bouchon, Aramon, once responsible for heroic quantities of Southern French red, meets Oeillade, a charmer with old Provencale roots known for making scented fruity reds. They sing a ‘chant de vendanges’ and make a delicious red blend of spicy, fruity intensity, only to be denied appellation status because of their outlaw origins. They live out their final vintages at D’Ouréa’s farmhouse in the Rhone village of Vacqueyras where they resurrect old Provencale flavors to go with delicious ratatouille and stuffed peppers. A happy ending after all.

Specialty Foods

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Mystic Cheese Sea Change cheeseRoth’s Private Reserve $20.99 per lb.   (Regular price $22.99)
This is the first offering from Roth Cellars’ new line of limited edition cheeses. Inspired by traditional alpine-style cheeses, the Private Reserve is made with seasonal raw cow’s milk from local family farms and aged about 6 months (it’s released on flavor not date). Robust earthy flavors are tempered by a sweet and nutty finish.

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Arethusa Camembert $20.99 per lb. 
(Regular price $22.99)

Eidolon cheeseThis cheese lives up to Arethusa Farm’s motto, ‘Milk like it used to taste’: it’s rich and buttery with a milky sweetness. The historical Arethusa Farm in Litchfield, CT was purchased in 1999 in a state of disrepair. A small herd of about 5 dairy cows has now grown to over 300. Along the way they’ve added a dairy, restaurant, and coffee shop.

Moliterno Al Tartufo $24.99 per lb. 
(Regular price $30.99)

This award-winning cheese comes from Central Formaggi in Sardinia, which has been owned by the Villecco family since the mid-1800s. Semi-hard pasteurized sheep’s milk cheese is aged 6 to 8 months and then injected with black truffles. The cheese is exceptional, and so is the price!.

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Sea Change $18.99 per lb. 
(Regular price $20.99)

Denmark’s Tradition Havarti  cheeseWe’ve seen this aptly named cheese take on many forms: at first single-format bloomy rind, it morphed to a large format. Then it was lightly washed. And now it bears a blue rind. As Mystic Cheese describes it, “a unique, externally blue, ripened Stracchino-style cheese” with a “milky and buttery Taleggio-like paste encased with a rind that adds a hint of blue to the mix.” We haven’t seen another cheese quite like it.


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Wines of the Month — April 15, 2017 through May 14, 2017

Cantina Numa Tolenus Rosso Piceno 2015 Rioja Blanco ‘Royal’ (Bodegas Franco-Españolas)
Sale Price $7.99 – $86.29 case of twelve
The Viura grape always delivers deep color and rich mouth-filling flavor. The 2015 Royal is also fresh and balanced with crisp peach fruit and a dry finish.

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Château Chicane Graves Rouge

2015 Vinos de Madrid ‘Old Vine Garnacha’ (Zestos)
Sale Price $8.99 – $97.09 case of twelve
Spanish Garnacha has a lively balance of big fruit and zesty crispness. The 2015 Zestos is perfect for a burger or a spicy chili.


Di Filippo Colli Martani Grechetto

2015 Malbec (Bodini)
Sale Price $7.99 – $107.89 case of twelve
A little more subtle than most Malbecs, the 2015 Bodini will match well with a roast chicken and a spicy bean salad.

 

 

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Castelo do Sulco Lisboa Reserva

2015 Bordeaux Supérieur (Chateau Bellecroix)
Sale Price $8.99 – $97.09 case of twelve
Chateau Bellecroix shows the breed of the 2015 Bordeaux vintage with its earthy aromas, ripe black fruits, and mellow tannic finish.