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

 

July Bubbly Club: Iowa

Bubbly Wine ClubScheid Vineyards - Isabelle SparklingScheid Vineyards
Isabelle Sparkling Cuvée
Monterey, California

BUBBLY WINE STYLE

If you know about the crafting of champagne, you understand it is a special wine that is a labor of love. And that is why Scheid Vineyards’ sparkling cuvée was named for Isabelle Adolphin Pearce, the beloved mother of Founder, Al Scheid. Like the hands-on, no-shortcuts-allowed méthode champenoise way Scheid produces their sparkler, Isabelle was old school through and through. Something “store bought” wasn’t worth nearly as much as something that was lovingly made by hand, whether it was an intricately crocheted afghan, a faux red fur coat for her granddaughter, or her melt-in-your-mouth pot roast. She firmly believed that busy hands make a happy heart and she lived by those words by working hard and taking care of others her entire life. Scheid Vineyards’ Isabelle Sparkling Wine is an elegant and complex cuvée in a brut style, with aromas of green apple, pear and hints of white flowers, honey and brioche. Here’s to Isabelle, much loved and greatly missed.

Appellation: Monterey
Varietal: Cuvée – 51% Chardonnay, 49% Pinot Noir
Analysis: 12.5% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.13
TA: 8.7 g/L
Aging: 100% Stainless Steel
Tirage: 48 months en tirage (on the lees)

VINEYARDS
Great sparkling wine is made from grapes grown in only the coolest climates, where the delicate aromas and natural acidity are preserved. Monterey County, with morning fogs that often linger until mid-day, possesses just the right conditions to place it on par with the best growing regions of the world for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Scheid Vineyards carefully farms specific estate vineyard rows throughout the year that epitomize intensity, complexity and excellent structure. These grapes are carefully hand-harvested into small bins and transported promptly to the winery.

WINEMAKING
‘Isabelle’ is produced in the traditional méthode champenoise. Primary fermentation was done slowly and at cold temperatures to enhance the varietal aromatics and preserve the natural delicate character.  Next, the cuvée was bottled with sugar and yeast, and a secondary fermentation proceeded in the bottle. While fermenting en tirage, carbon dioxide that would normally be released was trapped, producing the sparkle and bubbles. After aging on the lees for 48 months, the wine was riddled—slowly shaken and turned with the angle gradually increased, causing the lees to dislodge and settle in the neck of the bottle. The settled lees were then frozen to form a “plug” and disgorged. The sparkling wine was quickly corked to maintain the effervescence and voilà, Isabelle was born! 

Scheid Vineyards
Scheid Vineyards
By Scheid Vineyards – Explore Vineyards

Happy Red, Wine and Blue!

July Wine Club with red grapes, white grapes and blue grapes and American Flag

Chicken Paella

Chicken paella dishINGREDIENTS:
• 1 lb ground chorizo
• 1 small onion, fine dice
• 1 small can spicy peppers (chipotle, piquillo, hatch)
• 1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
• 20 chicken drums, seasoned with salt & pepper
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 1 tsp smoked paprika
• 2 tbsp tomato puree
• 1 lb Bomba paella rice
• 6 oz. white wine
• 3 cups chicken broth
• 1 cup frozen peas
• 1 lemon

DIRECTIONS:
• Preheat the oven to 350°F.
• Cover large skillet with olive oil, medium-high heat. Add chicken drums, browning on all sides. Remove chicken and set aside.
• Add chorizo and onions to the pan. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the peppers, tomato puree, and paprika. Stir and cook for 4 minutes.
• Add the rice and stir well for 3 minutes. Add wine and stir for 3 minutes.
• Add the chicken stock and stir into rice until absorbed. • Add frozen peas and parsley and bring back to boil. Arrange chicken drums on bed of rice.
• Transfer skillet to the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
• Remove from oven and cover lightly with foil.
• Garnish the dish with parsley and serve with lemon wedges.

Horten Tempranillo bottle imageEncomienda de Cervera
Horten Tempranillo
Almagro, Spain

Located within the distinguished cultural city of Almagro, between valleys and mountains thick with holm oaks and juniper trees, rosemary and thyme. The mountainous terrain that forms three drainage basins has a peculiar micro-climate, with cool nights providing release from the blistering heat of the day. The Encomienda de Cervera Estate was established in 1758 with a total of 1200 hectares of land, that included vineyards and olive trees. The old vineyards have been renovated and expanded to 50 hectares. The best hills and altitudes have been chosen for each varietal, along with the best soils. From the grapes of their young Tempranillo vineyards, this wine was aged for short time in new French oak.Horten Espinosa winery owner

“Deep and intense red color, with aromas of fresh red berry fruit and spice with toasted vanilla flavors of the oak. Round and spicy with full body, but easy to drink with a long and pleasant after taste.” – Horten Espinosa, owner

Appellation: Campo de Calatrava, Almagro, Spain
IGP (Protected Geographic Indication): Vino de la Tierra de Castilla

Soil: Clay and stony with a smooth layer of volcanic origin
Varietal: 100% Tempranillo
Analysis: 13.7% alcohol / volume

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