Saturday October 19
Loire au naturel
On the heels of the Spread’s farm-to-table dinner paired with natural wines from Fountainhead Selections last week, I thought it would be fun to revisit my 2 favorite wines from that event here in the store. Both wines hail from the Loire Valley, one from the region’s western end, near the Atlantic Ocean, the other further east in the middle Loire. France’s Loire Valley, the country’s most northwestern viticultural region, has been a leader in the organic/biodynamic/natural wine movement of late even though the climate here is less conducive to natural wine growing than other, dare I say, less progressive regions. Perhaps the major reason for this is the preponderance of small, family-owned estates that are very concerned for the long-term health of their soil, vines and children who play there.
Vincent Caillé Gamay ‘La part du Colibri’ 2018
Vincent is best known for his white Muscadet wines, but also makes terroir-driven varietal reds from Abouriou, Côt and Gamay. He is so dedicated to natural viticulture that in 2018 he lost nearly his entire crop of Côt to odium rather than spray fungicides, c’est la vie. Gamay is best known as the sole red grape of Beaujolais, but is increasingly important in the Loire. Vincent’s version (a mere 200 cases worth) is more savory than those from Beaujolais, while not a showy wine it is perfectly balanced between its fresh fruit, slightly earthy notes, soft tannins and bright acid structure. This was an incredibly delicious match for glazed duck breast in a port wine and fig reduction sauce. $19
Domaine Richou Anjou Rouge ‘Les 4 Chemins’ 2017
Brothers Didier and Damien Richou are obsessed with their soils, so much so that when Didier travels to promote his wines he brings along a box of rocks to show the various types of soil displayed in the vineyards of their estate. Gamay is planted in this soil, Chenin Blanc in that soil and Cabernet Franc in the schists soil for Les 4 Chemins. This biodynamic producer makes wonderfully pure varietal expressions that truly reflect the vineyard’s terroir. We have often said that these complex, intensely aromatic wines pair well with richer fish dishes due to their lighter tannin structure and lower alcohol and pairing this with caught wild salmon was a brilliant decision. $22
10% off 6 bottles, mix and match
Saturday October 26
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