December Bubbly Club

Bubbly Wine ClubChampagne Collet RoseChampagne Collet
Brut Rosé
Aÿ-Champagne, France

BUBBLY WINE STYLE

“This Brut Rosé Champagne seduces with its intense pink color, its tenderness and harmony.”

This Brut Rosé Champagne is intense and luminous peach-pink color. On the nose it first gives off floral fragrances, which give way to fragrances of orange, mandarin, yellow peach and red fruits – mulberries and raspberries. It has a beautiful freshness and a delicate nose with notes of brown sugar. Enjoyment and elegance describe this cuvée Brut Rosé. A richness of fruits – mulberry, blackcurrant, and peach – and a note of cocoa, make a round, supple, velvety wine. This wine has a beautiful, silky texture, sustained by a tender effervescence.

Brut Rosé will delight the palate as an aperitif, but also lends itself perfectly to a buttery lobster or a red fruit dessert.

Analysis: 12.5% alcohol / volume
Varietals: 50% Pinot Noir, 40% Chardonnay, 10% Pinot Meunier
Closure: Natural Cork
Critical Acclaim:  91 pts. Wine Spectator

VINEYARD:
The grapes in this wine have their origin in 20 Crus from the Grand and Premier Crus sites of the Champagne region. The Chardonnay comes predominantly from the Premier Cru of Vertus and gives the wine freshness and lemony notes, while the mineral dimension and flinty aromas, come from the Cru of Villers-Marmery, which has a limestone soil. The Grands Crus and Premiers Crus villages, such as Chouilly, Avize, Oger and Vaudemange, complete the blend with great complexity. The Pinot Noir comes from the Grands Cru and Premiers Cru villages of Ay, Hautvillers, Avenay Val d’Or and Louvois; it produces light, tender and fruity wines, while the Pinot Meunier imparts a roundness and suppleness. This unique blend of terroirs, producing a unique Rosé Champagne.

Brut Rosé

Photo by Eric Vanden at Champagne Collet

ABOUT THE WINERY:

Since 1921, Maison Collet has been creating distinctive champagnes that appeal to a clientele of demanding wine connoisseurs in search of authentic, elegant and refined champagnes. Established in Aÿ, in the heart of the Champagne region, Maison Collet uses primarily Premier and Grand Crus in its wines in order to reflect the diversity of the Champagne terroirs. Champagne Collet is a gastronomic wine and every cuvée has been created to complement various fine dining and fine drinking experiences, whether served as an aperitif or paired with the most sophisticated of dishes.

Raoul Collet became Director of Champagne Collet in 1928. At the time he was a wine producer in Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and had created his eponymous brand in 1921. Over his lifetime (1896-1960), he dedicated 30-years of work to Maison Collet, which he took to the most important French and international exhibitions. He was the instigator of property investments and was behind the brand’s first advertising campaigns. During his tenure as director, he lived in the Villa Collet with his family.

This spirit of the “Roaring Twenties” lives on at Maison Collet today and is reflected in its rich heritage and its elegant, Art Deco-inspired visual identity. The elegant transparency of the Champagne Collet labels gives the brand a contemporary feel and is an expression of the brand’s sincerity and taste for innovation. This design universe has been applied to all the Champagne House’s creations, from the champagnes’ packaging, gift boxes and cases, to the decor of Villa Collet, our “brand home”. Learn more about Champagne Collet here.

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Finca Buenaventura Aureo Chardonnay

Caramelized Onion, Apple and Brie Tartlets

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 3 Medium Onions, thinly sliced (about 7 cups)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Minced Fresh Thyme
  • 1 Sheet Frozen Puff Pastry
  • 1-6 oz. Granny Smith Apples (peeled, quartered, cored, thinly sliced, crosswise)
  • 2-6 oz. Wedges of Chilled Brie Cheese (rind removed, cheese cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices, each slice cut crosswise into thirds)

DIRECTIONS:

  • STEP 1: Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until deep golden brown, about 30 minutes. Mix in thyme. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cool. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate).
  • STEP 2: Roll out pasty on lightly floured work surface to 12-inch square. Cut pastry lengthwise into six 2-inch-wide strips. Cut strips crosswise into 2-inch squares, for a total of 36 squares. Place pastry squares, spacing apart, on 2 large baking sheets. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)
  • STEP 3: Preheat oven to 350°F. Spoon 1 1/2 teaspoons onion mixture atop each pastry square. Top with 2 apple slices. Bake until pastry is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Top each square with 1 piece cheese and bake just until cheese melts, about 3 minutes. Transfer to serving platter.
  • © Recipe from Bon Appétit (December 2000 Catalog)

NOVEMBER WINE CLUB:

Silky styleAureo ChardonnayFinca Buenaventura
Aureo Chardonnay
Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina

SILKY WINE STYLE

Finca Buenaventura was established in the Uco Valley of Mendoza, Argentina, sitting 1174 meters above sea level at the foot of the Andes Mountain Range. With great passion and commitment the Finca Buenaventura team began an innovative project by buying the land and getting to know each sector and soil of their 100-hectare area. Their farm is a fusion of the best terroir in Argentina and people committed to a project of excellence, respect for nature, teamwork, and honesty.

This wine is a greenish yellow Chardonnay with golden reflections. The nose expresses typical fruit aromas of the variety: pear and green apple combines with very attractive mineral notes. The mouth shows all of its fruity profile with freshness and liveliness, while having volume and roundness. Its acidity adds freshness, which is expressed in a long, deep and tasty finish.

Winemaker: Sergio Gimenez

Winemaker: Sergio Gimenez

Analysis: 13.5% alcohol / volume
Acidity: 6.37 g/L
Residual Sugar: 1.80 g/L
Aging:
100% in French oak
Harvested: B
y hand, first week of March
Altitude: 1,200 meters above sea level
Winemaker: Sergio Gimenez

We feel that as we got off the train of family’s tradition passed down from our parents, we went our own path and followed our own dreams and passions. That is why we will be “Descarriados“ for the rest of our lives; and this is what we leave our children: follow your dreams and work hard to achieve your goals.” – Winemaker, Sergio Gimenez


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October Beer Club: Iowa

BeerClubLogoConspicuous BeerAdventurous Brewing
Conspicuous Pilsner
Bettendorf, Iowa

Dry hopped Pilsner with Citra and Mosaic hops. Featuring the crisp bite of a pilsner, with added fruitiness from the hops.


BeerStyles:
Crisp and clean

Style: Pilsner
ABV: 8% alcohol / volume


Maximum DisguiseAdventurous Brewing
Maximum Disguise
Double IPA
Bettendorf, Iowa

A hazy Double IPA with Incognito Citra, Lupomax Citra, Lupomax Mosaic and Citra T-90 hops. This beer was Adventurous’ first foray into incognito and Lupomax, both new hop products. The body on this beer is thick and the flavor intense.

BeerStyles: Hoppy and Bitter
Style: Double IPA
ABV:
9.5% alcohol / volume

ABOUT THE BREWERY:

Starting their operations in 2018, Adventurous Brewing has been a very well received brewery operating on a small scale. Just recently, in June of 2020, they upgraded their 1/2 barrel system to a 7 barrel system, allowing for a greater level in their overall production. As Adventurous continues to scale up, they plan to focus their efforts on creating New England Style IPAs, high ABV Pastry Sours, and Imperial Stouts.  Adventurous Brewing is excited to begin the build of their taproom in Bettendorf, Iowa soon.

Adventurous Brewing LLC

Photo by: Adventurous Brewing LLC

 

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September Beer Club: Iowa

BeerClubLogoUne Annee TripelUne Année
Tripel
Niles, Illinois

The Tripel is often considered the most approachable of Belgian Ales. Having an exuberant flaxen hue, with a medium body, big fruit flavors, moderate spice and hints of American hops poking through.

BeerStyles: Fruity & Spicy
Style: Tripel
ABV: 8.7% alcohol / volume


Le Seul XXVIUne Année
Le Seul XXVI
Niles, Illinois

This is an American Wild Ale with Boysenberries. Violet light pour, with light white lacing around the rim. Very light aroma. Slightly tart with a dry finish. The juicy berries are nicely balanced, but not too sweet. Lightly carbonated mouthfeel with a clean crisp finish.

BeerStyles: Sour
Style: Wild Ale
ABV:
6.5% alcohol / volume


Hubbard's CaveHubbard’s Cave
Chocolate & Blackberry Pot De Crème
Niles, Illinois

This Imperial Stout pours dark brown, almost black in color. The nose and taste are similar – malty, with flavors of sweet blackberries and smooth, dark chocolate. Showcasing a rich and full bodied mouthfeel.

BeerStyles: Dark
Style: American Imperial Stout
ABV: 12% alcohol / volume


ABOUT THE BREWERY:

UNE ANNÉE

An Independent Craft Brewery, born in 2013 near west side of Chicago, with the quest of making fine Belgian inspired ales for all beer lovers.

Founded by architect, former Marine, and Chicago native, Jerry Nelson, the brewery has since become a family operation when Jerry’s brother, Dave joined in. The name was inspired by Jerry’s architecture abroad program in Versailles, France. Une Année, meaning “One Year” in French, began with a seasonal rotation of annual Belgian beers, which have since become weekly and bi-weekly releases. 

Une Année has expanded its offerings over the years with an emphasis on fruited and unfruited American Wild Ales (read: Sour Beers) and Barrel Aged Stouts. In 2017, the brewery moved to neighboring Chicago suburb, Niles, IL, and expanded to include a taproom. The new brewery allows everyone to get home more frequently for quality time with the kids. 

Une Annee and Hubbard's Cave Brewery

Photo by Hubbard’s Cave: Une Année and Hubbard’s Cave Brewery

HUBBARD’S CAVE

In 2015, Hubbard’s Cave was developed as an alternative to Une Année’s Belgian Style Ales. Producing American Style ales, primarily imperial stouts and Hubbard’s Cave signature Fresh IIPAs, Hubbard’s Cave is a refreshing addition to the Une Année Family. Named after the Chicago Hubbard Street traffic tunnel on Interstate 90/94, next to where the brewery was born, Hubbard’s Cave has quickly grown to produce some of their most popular offerings.

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August Cheese Club: Iowa

cheese_club_logo-1240x1240Abondance CheeseAbondance AOP
Rodolphe Le Meunier
Haute-Savoie, France

Abondance, is a semi-hard, traditionally French, mountain cheese produced in the Abondance Valley of Haute Savoie, in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of France. The cheese is made exclusively from unpasteurized cow’s milk sourced from its own breed of cattle, Abondance, as well as Taurine and Montbéliarde. Abondance features a slightly grainy and creamy paste with floral, vegetal, and nutty aromas. On the palate, there’s a beautiful balance of sweetness to acidity; it tastes intensely fruity and buttery with a hazelnut flavor.  Before eating, remove the natural rind its gray layer underneath.

WINE & CRAFT BEER PAIRINGS:
Abondance cheese pairs wonderfully with a dry white wine from the Savoie region; or a light red, such as a Gamay Beaujolais or a light Pinot Noir.  Additionally, this cheese pairs well a crisp, pale lager or a kolsch.

WINESTYLES: Crisp and Fruity
BEERSTYLES: Crisp and Clean

PRODUCTION:
Abondance cheese has had an Appellation d’origine contrôlée (AOC) designation since 1990.  AOC designations were created to ensure products with long histories and strong senses of terroir will guard their identity and uniqueness in the marketplace. With this designation, a cheese producer cannot call a cheese Abondance if it is not made within the confines of a singular region, or according to traditional methods and specifications, similar to wine AOCs like Bordeaux, Bourgogne, and Champagne.

Abondance was originally made by monks at the Abbaye d’Abondance (Abondance Abbey) in the 12th century. In the late 1300s, the monks were the official supplier of cheeses to the Avignon popes. This rich, ivory-yellow cheese is made in the area’s mountain chalets from batches of raw milk that combine morning milk with milk from the previous evening. The milk is heated in a copper cauldron to 90° F to warm the curd that is formed, without cooking it. The curd is then cut, drained, put into a round wooden mold, and pressed for a day with a weight on it. It is then salted either by hand, or soaked in brine, then cave aged on spruce planks for six months at a temperature of 54° F and a humidity level of 95%. The cheese is brushed with brine and turned while aging.

Tomme d’Abondance

Comté Fort Saint-Antoine CheeseComté Fort Saint Antoine
Marcel Petite
Jura, France

Comté Fort Saint Antoine is a semi-firm, unpasteurized, aged, cow’s milk cheese from the Jura and Franche-Comté regions of Eastern France. Century-old techniques are used to make Comté, which is the most produced and consumed cheese in France. Made with unpasteurized cow’s milk, from Montbeliarde Cattle or French Simmental (or crossbreeds of the two), the taste is complex, nutty and caramelized with a lingering, but not sharp, flavor. The combination of sweetness and saltiness give this cheese an intriguing flavor. This mature Comté is firm but supple, with a buttery and oily texture. It is traditionally sold in huge blocks and matures for a year before it is ready for sale. The natural cave atmosphere of the fort allows this longer aged Comté to have a rich, nutty, fruitier and more flowery taste than its younger aged counterparts. Considered one of the finest cheeses in the world, a wedge of Comte reveals a pale yellow interior and a texture that can vary from silky, flabby to crystalline.

WINE & CRAFT BEER PAIRING: Comté Cheese is very versatile and pairs beautifully with a Chablis (Chardonnay), a Champagne, or a Pinot Noir. It also pairs well with a light lager, a blonde ale, or a pilsner.

WINESTYLES: Silky, Bubbly and Mellow
BEERSTYLES: 
Crisp and Clean

PRODUCTION:

In 1966, Marcel Petite discovered a defunct military fort in a forest of Haut Doubs, at 3600 feet altitude. The fort’s structure of cut and vaulted stone, covered with a thick layer of soil, providing ideal conditions for “affinage lent” (slow maturing). Petite realized that his Comté cheeses should be aged in their natural environment, near the mountain cheese dairies where they are made. This hard mountain cheese is matured to perfection in the silence and darkness of special caves where the cheese gets its unique taste, texture and color. There are several maturing cellars in the region where Comté is ripened for a minimum of 4 months to 18 or 24 months. Comté generally will get its name from the cellar where it was ripened, such as Comté Fort Saint-Antoine. Today, over 100,000 wheels are ripened for 10 to 20 months, in the Cathedral of Marcel Petite Comté.

Comté was one of the first few kinds of cheese to receive an AOC status in 1958. It is one of the most popular AOC cheeses in France with around 40,000 tons of annual production.

Comté Cheese Production

© Comté Marcel Petite

Comté Production

© Comté Marcel Petite

 

Monthly Cheese ClubDon’t let your Wine Club go home alone!

Join our Cheese Club and bring home a match made in heaven!

If you enjoy pairing cheese with wine, this is your club!  Each month you’ll discover specialty and artisan cheeses to pair with your Wine Club. Monthly cheese selections are chosen by your local WineStyles participating location. It’s the perfect opportunity to Taste, Learn and Enjoy® amazing artisan cheese every month! Only $19.99/month and your wine won’t be lonely!  Click to learn more >

July Beer Club: Iowa

Manzana LinTrabanco
Manzana Lin Sidra Natural
Gijón, Asturias, Spain

Manzana Lin is a special, limited production release from Trabanco. This single-site cider is made of Lin apples sourced from the San Pedro de Anes orchard. The juice is fermented with indigenous yeasts and in accordance with the guidelines for “Sidra Natural,” producing a low-alcohol cider that is tart and lacks carbonation. Sidra Natural should be served cold in a wide glass and poured from great height to break up the residual carbonic gas. Only a small amount (one sip’s worth) should be poured into the glass at a time.

BeerStyles: Fruity and Spicy
Style: Sidra Natural (Cider)
ABV:
6%
Apples: 70% Lin with a blend of local apples sourced from the San Pedro de Anes orchard.

Vinification: This cider has been fermented with indigenous yeasts and in accordance to the guidelines for “Naturally Fermented Quality Ciders.”

ABOUT THE CIDERY:

Like most families from the Asturian countryside, the Trabanco Family made their own cider from their own apples, but in 1925 Emilio Trabanco decided to turn this household hobby into a family business; creating Trabanco Cider. Using the best apples of selected varieties and following traditional methods, Trabanco Cider quickly became known throughout the region as the premier natural cider from Asturias. Not much has changed since then, the Trabanco family is still using traditional methods, augmented with modern technologies, to produce exceptional Asturian ciders. From a very young age, all of the members of the family are involved in the production process, from the apple picking and weighing, to operating the press. The family business continues to grow, as their inheritance is passed from one generation to the next.

Asturias Map

Asturias Map by Paul Dangel

Trabanco Orchard

Trabanco Orchard. Photo by Steven Alexander

Isastegi CiderIsastegi
Sagardo Naturala
Tolosa (Isastegi), Spain

Sagardo Naturala, or “natural cider” is from the Basque Country in Spain, where basque ciders have been produced for over 2,000 years.  Golden-green hue in the glass, Isastegi’s Sagardo Naturala has ripe notes of apple on the nose, but lead to an acidic, malted apple on the palate. The finish is crisp and fresh. This cider goes through a completely natural fermentation process in large wooden barrels and is bottled fresh without filtration. Sagardo Naturala is more bitter than most ciders, with only mild residual carbonic acid. It should be served cold in a wide glass and poured from great height to break up the residual carbonic gas. Only a small amount (one sip’s worth) should be poured into the glass at a time.

BeerStyles: Fruity and Spicy
Style: Sagardo Naturala (Natural Cider)
ABV:
6%
Apples:
A blend of over a dozen native varietals
Vinification:
After fermentation in kupelas (old, large, oak cider barrels) the cider is bottled fresh and without filtration before each shipment.

ABOUT THE CIDERY:

Isastegi is an old family estate located in the town of Tolosa in the Basque Country of Spain. The estate was originally covered by pastures for cattle, with only a few apple trees for the family to make a small amount of cider for itself. In 1983 they decided to switch from livestock to cider output and started selling their cider to the public. Over the years the demand for Isastegi cider has increased and the family’s country house has adapted to the changes. Pastures were replaced by orchards, while renovations added new state-of-the-art pressing and bottling rooms and a larger spaces for the kupelas (old, large, oak cider barrels). Isastegi prides themselves on their local focus and adhere to the strict guidelines of Basque Ciders by using only local apples with no added carbonation or sugars.

Basque Country

Map by Paul Dangel

Isastegi

Isastegi Cidery