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August Wines

 

Red Wines


Catena High Mountain Wines

Cabernet Sauvignon • Mendoza, Argentina

Why I chose this wine for you:
The Catena wines are a special assemblage of high altitude estate vineyards made by fourth generation vintner, Laura Catena, and chief winemaker, Alejandro Vigil. They are undoubtedly some of the best wines produced in the Southern Hemisphere.

Location:
The Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of four vineyards—The La Pirámide Vineyard in the Agrelo district of Luján de Cuyo, the Domingo Vineyard in the Villa Bastías district of Tupungato, the Nicasia Vineyard located in Altamira in the La Consulta district of San Carlos, and the very high altitude Adrianna Vineyard in the Gualtallary district of Tupungato—that produces grapes with a sense of place, creating layers on the palate and nose.

Winemaking:
The grapes are harvested, briefly cold soaked and then fermented. The wines are sent through an extended maceration of 27 to 32 days to build mouthfeel. A touch of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot are blended in to add aromatic complexity. The wines are aged in French oak for 12 to 14 months.

Tasting:
The Catena Cabernet Sauvignon shows a dark ruby color with violet tones. On the nose, it offers intense aromas of ripe raspberries and cassis with notes of pepper, clove and a touch of cedar. On the palate, it is full-bodied, rich and displays layers of black currant and black raspberry with notes of cedar and oregano.

Food Paring:
This wine is a perfect combination with lamb or steak.

Ghost Pines

Pinot Noir • Yolo, Sonoma, Monterey Counties, CA

Why I chose this wine for you:
Very rarely is there still stock available for one of Wine Spectator’s Top 100 Wines of 2018, but we purchased the rest of the allocation of this wine in California so we could include it in our Wine Club subscription.

Location:
This wine is a blend of three counties. Yolo County is known for rich soil, warm days and mild Delta breezes. The quality fruit from this region imparts rich, concentrated flavors. Sonoma County fruit enhances this Pinot Noir with firm structure and dark cherry, pomegranate and lavender characteristics. Monterey County fruit imparts incredible finesse with bright notes of ripe red cherry and great acidity for lift.

Winemaking:
The wine is fermented in auto vinifiers as they are better at extracting flavor with Pinot Noir than the traditional closed top fermenters. It is then fermented at 75-80 degrees to help retain delicacy of aromas. After fermentation, the wine is transferred to French and American oak barrels. The 10% new oak gives the wine subtle spice and vanilla characters without overpowering the elegant fruit profile.

Tasting:
This wine opens with Pinot Noir’s distinguishing bright plum and cherry notes, leading to a smooth, satin-like texture—but then it takes a turn. The flavors are bold and more intense than the average Pinot Noir, with characteristics of cherry pie, cranberry and ripe plum.

Food Paring:
This wine is a little riper than most Pinots, making it a good combination with BBQ pork.

King Estate, Pinot Envy

Pinot Noir • Willamette Valley, OR

Why I chose this wine for you:
King Estate has been one of the pioneers of Pinot Noir in Oregon and this fun and unpretentious wine is a perfect summer sipper.

Location:
The grapes for this Pinot Noir are sourced throughout the Willamette Valley, but mostly from the Southern side of the valley where King Estate is located.

Winemaking:
These 100% Pinot Noir grapes are meticulously hand-sorted before being de-stemmed. A cold soak for 48 hours before stainless steel fermentation with daily punch downs and pump overs is followed by malolactic fermentation. These distinct vineyard lots are barrel-aged for 18 months in French oak barrels before the final blend is made.

Tasting:
The deep garnet hue of Pinot Envy gives way to aromas of black cherry, plum and licorice. Supple, balanced tannins accompany dark fruit flavors of blackberry and black cherry. Structured acidity imbues this wine with a long finish, highlighted by subtle clove elements.

Food Paring:
The juicy nature of this wine with its hint of earthiness makes it a perfect combination with blue cheeses or earthy triple crèmes.

Kermit Lynch

Côtes du Rhône, France

Why I chose this wine for you:
Sometimes importers have been working in the industry so long, they know better than the winery as to what the customer likes. This wine is a great example of that, as Kermit has put together one of the best value Rhone blends available in the market today.

Location:
This Côtes du Rhône is a blend from the areas permitted within the French Appellation System. Most of the grapes are sourced from the Southern part of the appellation as this wine is meant to be fruit forward and Grenache focused.

Winemaking:
The proprietary blend is made as a partnership between Kermit Lynch and Jean-Francois Pasturel. Traditional vinification is employed with the use of only natural yeasts. The maceration takes approximately 25 days to develop complexity on the palate. The wine is aged in cement 8 to 12 months to integrate flavors.

Tasting:
This is a classic Côtes du Rhône with forward cherry and strawberry from the Grenache, blue fruits and black spice from the Syrah and meat, herbs and cinnamon notes from the blending varietals in the area.

Food Paring:
A classic Southern Rhone pairing with this wine is duck, but it will also go well with a roasted chicken.

 

White Wines


Outlot

Sauvignon Blanc • Sonoma County, CA

Why I chose this wine for you:
It’s the perfect time of year to drink something crisp and bright. Even better, this wine received 90 points from Wine Enthusiast.

Location:
The grapes from this wine are from a selection of appellations in Sonoma County. The Dry Creek Sauvignon Blanc gives the wine its aromatic lift and tropical notes. The cooler Russian River Valley provides some of the acidity and the citrus aromatics to the wine. Finally, just a touch of Alexander Valley helps build out the palate and give the wine some texture.

Winemaking:
The grapes are harvested at night and then whole cluster pressed. The wines are then cold settled off the skins aromas and fermented at somewhat cool temperatures to retain the purity of the estery aromas. After fermentation is finished, malolactic is inhibited to retain acidity in the wine. The wine then ages for 7 months in stainless steel.

Tasting:
Pale straw in color with a green hue, Outlot Sauvignon Blanc has a potent bouquet of bright lemongrass and grapefruit with hints of pepper and capers. Vibrant, crisp acidity with passionfruit, guava and lime sow through on the medium-bodied palate.

Food Paring:
This Sauvignon Blanc is a great combination with seafood or pesto dishes.

Cambria

Chardonnay • Katherine’s Vineyard, Central Coast, CA

Why I chose this wine for you:
Cambria wines are single vineyard expressions, sustainably farmed, and Estate-grown and bottled. Cambria Estate Winery is known for site-specific Chardonnay from Katherine’s Vineyard established in 1986.

Location:
The vineyard site is located in Santa Maria on the bench land. This area is known for creating world-class Pinot Noir and Chardonnay because the fog influence from the ocean moderates the morning temperatures but burns off in the afternoon to create ripeness.

Winemaking:
Harvesting is done all by hand. The fruit is crushed, chilled and pressed immediately. Neutral yeasts are used for the fermentation. After finishing primary fermentation, the wine is then partially sent through malolactic fermentation and aged partially in new French oak.

Tasting:
Ripe fruit, floral and spice aromas dominate the nose. Pink grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, white peach, citrus blossom and apple flavors are balanced by a bit of wet stone oak spice and bright acid.

Food Paring:
This wine is great to enjoy on its own but will also pair well with soft cheeses.

Kenwood Six Ridges

Sauvignon Blanc • Sonoma County, CA

Why I chose this wine for you:
Kenwood has been making tremendous wine in Sonoma County for many years, and this Sauvignon Blanc from their Six Ridges portfolio is a step up from most other wines in this price point.

Location:
Rod Strong was among the first modern wine pioneers with a vision to plant Pinot Noir in the Russian River Valley. In 1968, he planted the heritage River East Vineyard in the alluvial clay-loam soils adjacent to the winery in Healdsburg. A small section of this vineyard that tends to get less ripe is the perfect base for this Rosé.

Winemaking:
Harvesting is done by hand and machine depending on the vine age. The wines are pressed, allowed to settle and then fermented in stainless steel. The wine is then aged 7 to 8 months, bottled, then held for at least 6 months to let the flavors integrate.

Tasting:
This Sauvignon Blanc displays fresh aromas of lime zest, grapefruit and guava complemented by notes of gooseberry and magnolia blossom. Beautifully balanced, this wine has a crisp acidity with rich citrus and a refreshing finish.

Food Paring:
Bright and crisp, this wine would go well with a white fish dish with a lemon butter sauce.

Rodney Strong

Rosé of Pinot Noir • Russian River Valley, CA

Why I chose this wine for you:
Still family owned and operated, Rodney Strong always takes their time in releasing new wines. Before they released this Rosé, they made sure that they had the best sourcing to make a high-quality offering.

Location:
Rod Strong was among the first modern wine pioneers with a vision to plant Pinot Noir in the Russian River Valley. In 1968, he planted the heritage River East Vineyard in the alluvial clay-loam soils adjacent to the winery in Healdsburg. A small section of this vineyard that tends to get less ripe is the perfect base for this Rosé.

Winemaking:
The grapes are picked early in the morning to retain freshness in aromas. The wine is fermented and aged in stainless steel with malolactic fermentation purposely blocked to retain acidity and a lower pH. The wine is then held five months before bottling to help integrate flavors.

Tasting:
The beautifully colored, fresh and vibrant Rosé of Pinot Noir has aromas and flavors of strawberry, white peach, and jasmine. It is brilliant and bright with fresh acidity and a wonderful, lasting and juicy finish.

Food Paring:
Enjoy this wine with goat cheese, fresh seafood dishes and summer salads.