April Cheese Club: Iowa

Cheese ClubGrafton Cheese ClubGrafton Village Cheese
Clothbound Cheddar
Vermont, USA

Grafton’s signature Cheddar is wrapped in cheesecloth and cave-aged for 6-8 months, a traditional method used for centuries allowing the cheese to take on a deeper variety of flavors. Grassy, nutty notes dominate with some lemony accents and a smooth, lactic body. The texture is firm and creamy with a tendency to crumble.

AWARDS:

  • 2019 American Cheese Society – Second Place
  • 2019 International Cheese & Dairy Awards – Gold
  • 2019 Big E Gold Medal Cheese Competition – Silver
  • Many others – click here

FOOD PAIRING: Serve as table cheese, alongside dried fruits, nutty bread, dark berries, or grainy mustards

WINE & CRAFT BEER PAIRING: For wine, pair with our April Wine Club Wine – Pierre Jean Sauvignon Blanc; or other ‘Old-World’ classics such as a Chablis, Pinot Noir or Riesling. For beer, reach for a Wheat Beer, Red Ale or off-dry Cider.

WINESTYLES: Silky
BEERSTYLES: Crisp & Clean or Fruity & Spicy

Grafton Cheese

© Photo by Grafton Village Cheese

ABOUT GRAFTON VILLAGE CHEESE:
The Grafton Cooperative Cheese Company was founded in 1892 by dairy farmers in rural agricultural communities who gathered together to make their surplus raw milk into cheese. This helped the community as they were able to take an abundance of creamy milk and turn it into a food that could be stored for a longer period of time. In 1912, a fire destroyed the original factory; it wasn’t until several decades later, in the mid 1960s, the nonprofit Windham Foundation restored the company, and a new era for the town was born. Today, quality and taste are the hallmarks of their company’s award-winning cheeses. Learn more about their story here.


Quicke’s
Devonshire Red Clothbound Cheese
Devon, UK

Quicke’s is handcrafted using milk from grass-fed cows, clothbound and naturally matured, typically for 6 months. This vibrant, full-flavored cheese has a distinctive taste on a classic Red Leicester, with crumbly texture, fresh, nutty flavors and a lemony creaminess. Best to be eaten within 7 days of opening. Once opened, wrap in greaseproof paper and store in air-tight container in the fridge. 

AWARDS:

  • 2020 Great Taste Award

FOOD PAIRING: Use in a Shepard’s Pie or with savory scones

WINE & CRAFT BEER PAIRING: Pair with April’s Red Wine Club Wines or a fruity Pinot Noir. Also pairs well with sparkling wines, ciders and ales.

WINESTYLES: Mellow or Fruity
BEERSTYLES:
Crisp & Clean; Sour, Tart & Funky; or Fruity & Spicy

Quickes03-06-20MattAustin-120_820x

© Photo by Quicke’s

ABOUT QUICKE’S:
Established in 1540 by Andrew Quicke, when he fell in love with Devon village and built a better farm. Using traditional recipes, time-honored techniques and heritage starters passed down through the generations, Quicke’s continues to create outstanding clothbound cheddar. Made by hand in the old-fashioned way, slowly matured for a deeply satisfying flavor, their cheese celebrates the deep connection that has grown between the Quicke family and the land they have nurtured for almost 500 years. Learn more about their story here.


WineStyles of West Des Moines is excited to announce they have got their hands on a small amount of Hook’s Cheese Company’s special 15 Year Cheddar! While this is not featured in this month’s Cheese Club, we promise you don’t want to miss this. Ask how you can pick up this very special, limited cheese at your local wine store!

Monthly Cheese Club

Don’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 >

Château Roc de Candale

tagliatelles-aux-morilles-et-champignons-de-paris-entete

© Photo by Les Vins de Saint-Emilion

Tagliatelle with Morels and Paris Mushrooms

This mushroom pasta pairs beautifully with the notes from the Merlot and Cabernet Franc blend of Château Roc de Candale. We have found a French recipe from the Saint-Émilion region in France, however, for ingredients more easily accessible in the United States, this Creamy Pasta with Mushrooms from Bon Appétit is a good alternative to try.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1.1 lbs (500 g) fresh Tagliatelle pasta
  • 1/3 cup (25 g) dried morels (or substitute dried porcini or shiitake mushrooms)
  • 1 cup (250 g) fresh Paris mushrooms (substitute white or Crimini mushrooms)
  • 1 leek (white part)
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 16.9 fl. oz. or about 2 cups (50 cl) light cream (about 18% fat content)
  • sunflower oil
  • nut oil
  • salt and pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. The day before, rehydrate the mushrooms in water for half an hour. Rinse to remove sand and then soak them again in 2 cups (50 cl) of fresh cream. Place the preparation in the refrigerator overnight.
  2. The next day, drain the mushrooms and keep the liquid cream. Peel and cut the Paris mushrooms into thin strips. Slice the leek and onion.
  3. Sauté the onion, leek and mushrooms in an oiled pan. Add salt and pepper. Wet it if necessary.
  4. After ten minutes, add the fresh cream, filtered through a fine sieve. Stir regularly and adjust seasoning. Cook for 10 minutes.
  5. When cooked, boil a large pot of salted water. Cook the Tagliatelle.
  6. Once the pasta is cooked and drained, serve immediately, if you like, with a drizzle of walnut oil from Périgord.

© Recipe courtesy of Les Vins de Saint-Emilion.

APRIL WINE CLUB:

Mellow style logoChateau-Roc-de-Candale-bottle-webMagali & Thibaut Decoster Vineyards
Château Roc de Candale

Saint-Émilion Grand Cru, France

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Château Roc de Candale has a bright purple color. The flattering bouquet is charming thanks to fine notes of spices. The wine is immediately pleasing with notes of fresh, ripe and juicy fruits. Château Roc de Candale offers sophisticated and spontaneous enjoyment.

Varietal: 90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc
Analysis:
13.5% alcohol / volume
Harvest: By hand, in small crates
Average Yield: 25 hl/ha
Vinification: Soaking, pigeages (punching down the cap), and malolactic fermentation in barrels
Fermentation: 30 days
Vats: Wooden
Aging: 12 months in barrels
Production: 23,000 Bottles
Oenologist Consultant: Stéphane Derenoncourt

ABOUT THE VINEYARD
Château Roc de Candale was previously called Vieux Château Haut Béard. Its vineyard is close to that of Château de Candale and is planted at the foot of Saint-Emilion’s south-facing slope. The former owner brought together the two estates when he acquired Vieux Château Haut Béard after having purchased Château de Candale. Today, each growth has its own vineyard and cellar. In this way, the identity and style of each of them are preserved. 
Château Roc de Candale is planted on a more clay-silt terroir which gives the wine greater suppleness in its early years. Being less complex than its neighbor, it is a wine for more immediate enjoyment. Learn more here. 

ABOUT DECOSTER VINEYARDS:

Their story began in 2004 when Thibaut and Magali became wine-growers at Clos des Jacobins, though they had little ties to the world of wine-growing. Both came from Limoges, and they studied business and marketing in France and England. Eventually, Thibaut moved to the Bordeaux area and was taken on as a vineyard worker at a wine estate in Léognan. There, for a period of 3 years in the field, he practiced all the vine-growing tasks required to produce high-end reds and whites. In 2003, an opportunity came along for Thibaut and Magali to set up in Saint-Émilion. Clos des Jacobins and Château La Commanderie were up for sale, and one year later Thibaut and Magali were the new owners of the estates. Learn more about their story here. 

Wine club logoJoin our WINE CLUB and enjoy these amazing wines and pairing recipes each month. Plus, you’ll receive 10% off all retail wine purchases!

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Pierre Jean Sauvignon Blanc

maryland-crab-cakes

© Photo by Sally’s Baking Addiction

Maryland Crab Cakes 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 Large egg
  • ¼ cup (60g) mayonnaise
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (or 2 teaspoons dried)
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning (up to 1 and ½ teaspoons for a spicier kick)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, plus more for serving
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound fresh lump crab meat*
  • 2/3 cup Saltine cracker crumbs (about 14 crackers)
  • Optional: 2 Tablespoons (30g) melted salted or unsalted butter

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Whisk the egg, mayonnaise, parsley, dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay, lemon juice, and salt together in a large bowl. Place the crab meat on top, followed by the cracker crumbs. With a rubber spatula or large spoon, very gently and carefully fold together. You don’t want to break up that crab meat.
  2. Cover tightly and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day.
  3. Preheat oven to 450°F (232°C). Generously grease a rimmed baking sheet with butter or nonstick spray or line with a silicone baking mat.
  4. Using a ½ cup measuring cup, portion the crab cake mixture into 6 mounds on the baking sheet (don’t flatten). Use your hands or a spoon to compact each individual mound so there aren’t any lumps sticking out or falling apart. For extra flavor, brush each with melted butter. This is optional but recommended!
  5. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges and on top. Drizzle each with fresh lemon juice and serve warm.
  6. Cover leftover crab cakes tightly and refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

© Recipe courtesy of Sally’s Baking Addiction

APRIL WINE CLUB:

Silky styleJean-Pierre-Sauvignon-Blanc-bottle-webPierre Jean
Sauvignon Blanc
Côtes de Gasgone, France

SILKY WINE STYLE

Classically French with lively aromas of wildflower, lemongrass, apple and pear with a nuance of flint.  Delicious flavors of mandarin orange, peach, apple and pear lead to a crisp, long finish with racy acidity and more of that flinty terroir.  This wine is an ideal aperitif or will complement almost any light summer cuisine.

Varietal: 100% Sauvignon Blanc
Analysis:
11% alcohol / volume

Appellation: Côtes de Gascogne
Closure: Screw cap
Pairing: Serve between 50˚F-53.6˚F with aperitif, fresh fish, haddock, seafood, or salads

Côtes de Gascogne is located just south of Bordeaux, in the Gascony district and specializes in white wines. Most are local grape varieties but better-known varietals such as Sauvignon Blanc are borrowed from Bordeaux (to the north). About 60% of its wines are exported and young sommeliers have recently rediscovered this wine region. In 1979, an association of  Vin de Pays (country wine) was established and today includes 1400 wine farmers. The Pierre Jean brand is named after one of Yvon Mau’s grandsons, who developed the design for the bottle. The Pierre Jean series consists of very accessible wines that are a party every day. The beautifully styled bottle of course also contributes to this. 

Wine club logoJoin our WINE CLUB and enjoy these amazing wines and pairing recipes each month. Plus, you’ll receive 10% off all retail wine purchases!

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April Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Beef Tenderloin with Roasted Shallots

Beef Tenderloin with Shallots

© Photo by All Recipes

INGREDIENTS:

  • ¾ pound shallots, halved lengthwise and peeled
  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • ¾ cup port wine
  • 1 ½ teaspoons tomato paste
  • 2 pounds beef tenderloin roast, trimmed
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 slices bacon, diced
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 4 sprigs watercress, for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). In a 9-inch pie pan, toss shallots with oil to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Roast until shallots are deep brown and very tender, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine beef broth and port. Bring to a boil. Cook over high heat until the volume is reduced by half, about 30 minutes. Whisk in tomato paste. Set aside.
  3. Pat beef dry; sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper. In a large roasting pan, set over medium heat on the stove top, sauté bacon until golden. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels. Add beef to pan; brown on all sides over medium high heat, about 7 minutes.
  4. Transfer pan to oven. Roast beef until meat thermometer inserted into center registers 125°F (50°C) for medium rare, about 25 minutes. Transfer beef to platter. Tent loosely with foil.
  5. Spoon fat off top of pan drippings in roasting pan. Place pan over high heat on stove top. Add broth mixture, and bring to boil; stir to scrape up any browned bits. Transfer to a medium saucepan, and bring to simmer. Mix 1 ½ tablespoon butter and flour in small bowl to form smooth paste; whisk into broth mixture, and simmer until sauce thickens. Whisk in remaining butter. Stir in roasted shallots and reserved bacon. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Cut beef into ½ inch thick slices. Spoon some sauce over, and garnish with watercress.

© Recipe courtesy of Christine L. from All Recipes.

APRIL WINE CLUB:

Mellow style logoChateau-de-Bel-Air-Lalande-de-Pomerol-bottle-webChâteau de Bel-Air
Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon

Lalande de Pomerol, France

MELLOW WINE STYLE

On the nose, Château de Bel-Air presents notes of red fruit and floral aromas; on the palate, a harmonious balance between flesh and tannins means it can be enjoyed after just a few years of cellaring. A delicate wine that is a perfect partner for refined dishes.
 
Varietal: 73% Merlot, 19% Cabernet Franc, 8% Cabernet Sauvignon
Analysis: 13-14% alcohol / volume
Viticulture: Culture Raisonnée, soil tilling or cover cropping
Harvest: Mechanical, with sorting in the cellar
Winemaking: Parcellary, in thermo-regulated concrete vats


Mentioned in the Cocks & Feret guides as one of the best wines of the appellation as early as 1922, Château de Bel-Air is situated on a sunny plateau that gently slopes southward. The historical quality of its wines and its privileged position, which guarantees the vineyard ideal sun exposure year-round, inspired owner Michel de Laet Derache to acquire the property in 2011. The vines, averaging 40 years of age, are planted on a terroir of gravel brought from the volcanic Massif Central by rivers during the quaternary era, with layers of iron rich clay. In order to best express the nuances of the site, the vineyard is managed and vinified plot by plot, with a respect for the different ages of the vines, varietals, and rootstocks. Vinification takes place in thermo-regulated concrete tanks. The wine is then mostly aged in oak barrels (45% new) for 12-18 months. 

Wine club logoJoin our WINE CLUB and enjoy these amazing wines and pairing recipes each month. Plus, you’ll receive 10% off all retail wine purchases!

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April Collector’s Wine Club: Iowa


Bold wine Style logogoldschmidt-alexvalley-plus-yoeman_2015-webGoldschmidt Vineyards
PLUS Yoeman Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley, California

BOLD WINE STYLE

Goldschmidt PLUS Yoemen Cabernet Sauvignon comes from a small mountain vineyard just east of the town of Geyserville, California. It’s a superb vintage for Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Nick Goldschmidt hand bottled it directly from the barrels. It’s very refined with deep, almost opaque, purple-black color and outstanding flavor development. Showcasing bold aromas of dusty plum, black cherry, graphite and flint nuanced with black pepper. There are hints of blueberry and black licorice, which lie in perfect balance to its generous structure and very dense, yet silk tannin profile. This wine is very concentrated but marvelously flavorful.

Analysis: 14.8% alcohol / volume
Appellation: Alexander Valley, CA
Vineyard: Yoeman
Varietal: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
pH: 3.6
TA: 6.9 g/L
Clones: Heritage, 337
Average Vine Age: 35 years
Harvest: Hand-picked
Harvest Date: October 1, 2015
Yield: 2.5 tons per acre
Filtering: Unfined/Unfiltered
Aging: Allier Oak, tight-Grain, 43 months, 100% new
Production: 99 cases
Critical Acclaim:

  • 2011 – 94 Points, Anthony Diaz Blue
  • 2008 – 93 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2007 – 94 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2006 – 93 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2005 – 93 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2004 – 91 Points, Wine Enthusiast

ABOUT THE VINEYARD:
The vineyard slopes to the southeast and is comprised of well-draining glacial loam. Soft morning sun promotes slower grape maturation and longer “hang times” in this secluded micro-climate. Rarely do vineyard conditions afford a winemaker the opportunity to make a wine such as this.

VINTAGE NOTES:
“We were challenged this year by a warm winter, a cool spring, and three summer heat waves, but the gorgeous fruit at harvest released our worries. Yields were down we were blessed with great quality and consistency. Small clusters with some of the smallest berries we’ve ever seen. Very concentrated but marvelously flavorful!” – Nick Goldschmidt and the Goldschmidt winery


Bold wine Style logoGoldschmidt-Forefathers-Cabernet-webGoldschmidt Vineyards
Lone Tree Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
Alexander Valley, California

BOLD WINE STYLE

The magnum bottle is signed by winemaker, Nick Goldschmidt. Forefathers Lone Tree Cabernet Sauvignon comes from a 3 acre parcel just north of Geyersville. Deep ruby-black in color.  It highlights blackberry, cassis, and plum aromas with nuances of malted chocolate and tobacco. On the palate, there are savory tastes of black cherry and black currant with smooth, finely-structured tannins. This wine is beautifully weighted and will continue to develop complexity well into 2025.

Bottle Size: Magnum 1.5 L (equivalent to two standard 750 ml bottles)
Analysis:
14.3% alcohol / volume
Appellation: Alexander Valley, CA
Vineyard: Lone Tree
Varietal: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
pH: 3.6
TA: 6.8 g/L
Yield: 1.8 tons per acre
Aging: Demptos Allier, 70% French, 30% American; 16 months, 18% new
Racked: Gravity racked three times
Production: 660 six-packs
Critical Acclaim:

  • 2017 – Best of Class, LA Wine Competition
  • 2015 – 93 Points, North Coast Wine Comp.
  • 2014 – 95 Points, The Tasting Panel
  • 2012 – 90 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2010 – 90 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2009 – 92 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2008 – 90 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2007 – 93 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2006 – 90 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2004 – 93 Points, Wine Enthusiast
  • 2003 – 90 Points, Wine Enthusiast

ABOUT THE VINEYARD:
This mountain vineyard faces east avoiding hot afternoon temperatures. East-facing slopes are a relatively rare occurrence in the Alexander Valley, as most are either heavily forested or too steep to plant. Up 800 feet in elevation, this vineyard runs cooler than others along the valley floor, allowing grapes to ripen very slowly at first. Starting in September the morning fogs roll in and cover the valley completely. Lone Tree is above the fogline and gets abundant sunshine for the remainder of the season. The overall season is longer than the others though and the longer hang-times translate into more complexity and depth. Learn more about the vineyard and its production here.

VINTAGE NOTES:
“Bud-break occurred three weeks ahead of normal but March and April remained warm with no signs of frost. In May, however, the weather changed considerably. Unusually cool and somewhat damp days lingered for the first two weeks during fertilization of the vines’ flowers. This caused a lot of shatter in the developing clusters, which led to fewer flowers and ultimately less berries. Warm weather returned through the rest of the season with a heat spike in early September. A tiny crop ensued and with it tiny berries. Some of the berries were the smallest we’d ever seen! Definitely a vintage for the record books in terms of yield but equally noteworthy for its depth of flavor and extraordinary concentration.” – Nick Goldschmidt and the Goldschmidt winery

ABOUT THE WINEMAKER:
Nick Goldschmidt was born and educated in New Zealand and trained in Australia.  In 1989, after spending 18 months of winemaking in Australia, New Zealand, California and South America, Nick returned to California with an amazing range of winemaking experience.  In 1990, Nick and his wife Yolyn settled down in Healdsburg, California becoming Simi’s Chief Winemaker and then Vice President in 1996.  In 1998 Nick and Yolyn established their own line of wines with the release of Goldschmidt Vineyards and Forefathers, with the goal of focusing on site specific vineyards from around the world. Having produced so many world-class wines around the globe, Nick knew exactly the vineyard sites he would choose for his wines.  The wines are all single vineyards, 100% varietal, handcraft, small production artisan wines. Learn more about Goldschmidt Winery here.


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April Sweet Club

 

Luca_Bosio_Sweet_Rosso_bottle-webSweet Wine ClubLuca Bosio Vineyards
Rosso
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Gorgeously fresh with tones of ripe berry, this wine is medium-bodied and well balanced.  It has a delicate frizzante.  With lower alcohol and lower calories, it’s an everyday drinkable wine to enjoy no matter the occasion. 

Analysis: 5.0% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Brachetto
Region: Piedmont, Italy


Pairing:
Serve slightly chilled on its own or with antipastos, prosciutto, fish and white meats.


WineStyles Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

WINEMAKER NOTES: 
Basic Brachetto is playfully fizzy with two atmospheres of pressure and is known for having low alcohol at 5.0%, a natural range of sweetness. After fermentation, the residual sugar remains relatively high, making the wines sweeter than dry wines. Because the extra sugar stops fermentation early, non-fortified sweet reds tend to be lower in alcohol than dry wines.


Luca_Bosio_Sweet_Black_bottle-webLuca Bosio Vineyards
Black
Piedmont, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

A luscious, fruit forward red blend with voluptuous mouth-feel and layers of strawberries, juicy raspberry and hints of chocolate. The frizzante finish makes it superb.

Analysis: 5.0% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 95% Brachetto, 5% Raspberry, Strawberry fruit infused
Region: Piedmont, Italy

Pairing:
Serve slightly chilled on its own or with antipastos, prosciutto, fish and white meats.


WineStyles Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

WINEMAKER NOTES:
Basic Brachetto is playfully fizzy with 2 atmospheres of pressure & is known for having low alcohol at 5.0%, a natural range of sweetness. After fermentation, the residual sugar remains relatively high, making the wines sweeter than dry wines. Because the extra sugar stops fermentation early, non-fortified sweet reds tend to be lower in alcohol than dry wines.

WINERY HISTORY:
Now in its 3rd generation, Bosio Family Estates was established in 1967 by farmers Egidio and Angela. After the success of his innovative and progressive ideas, and with the support of the family, the company has taken the name of Luca Bosio Vineyards. The winery is located in the center of the Langhe region of Piedmont, Italy.


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“Wine” not try our Sweet Club! 

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Sweet Club

March Sweet Club

Sweet Wine ClubMarco-Negri-Moscato-D-AstiMarco Negri
Moscato D’Asti
Piemonte, Italy

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Pale yellow color with a fine perlage. A typical bouquet with skin citrus fruits and jasmine. It presents a good structure and sapid.

Analysis: 5.5% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Moscato
pH: 3.28
Residual Sugar: 125 g/l
TA: 5.0 g/l
Sulfit: 120 mg/l
Harvest Date: Beginning of September
Vineyard Location: 11 hectare in Costigliole d’Asti – Piemonte
Oenologist: Mr. Donato Lanati
Fermentation: Stainless steel tanks
Bottling: Preserved at 28.4ºF
Vinification: After the must has been softly pressed, it is left to ferment with selected yeasts into 50 hl. autoclaves for 8-10 days, at controlled temperature. The fermentation is stopped by cooling when the desired alcohol level is reached. When bottling, the wine is filtered through micropore sterile filters to totally eliminate any yeast.

Pairing:
Traditionally enjoyed with dessert, but with its low degree of alcohol, amazing sparkling fragrance, and very light sweetness; it can also be pleasant as an aperitif.

WineStyles Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese, such as a gorgonzola. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

ABOUT THE REGION:
Marco Negri estate, located in the heart of Piedmont, Italy, near the town of Asti, produced its first sparkling wine in 1993. Marco Negri has received their DOCG, Italy’s highest category of production, with their Moscato grapes. 


PAcRim_sweet_riesling-1-365x1024Pacific Rim
Sweet Riesling
Columbia Valley, Washington

NECTAR WINE STYLE

Refreshingly sweet with a lively mouthfeel. Bright Acidity. Fresh and fruity with flavors of pineapple and white peach. This Riesling is wonderfully aromatic with notes of honey, pear and orange blossom.

Analysis: 8% alcohol / volume
Varietal: 100% Riesling 
Residual Sugar: 7%
TA: 0.83%
Food Pairing: Ideal with fiery fare – especially Thai, Szechwan, Mexican, Middle Eastern and Caribbean cuisine.

WineStyles’ Wine and Cheese Pairing: Sweet wines from our ‘Nectar’ section pair well with an herbal cheese, such as a gorgonzola. Learn more about our wine and cheese pairings here.

PRODUCTION:
Pacific Rim’s Sweet Riesling is 100% Columbia Valley, WA grown. The soil is wind-blown loess on basalt bedrock. They use the purest winemaking possible – sustainably produced, all native yeasts, no oak, no malolactic. A perfect exploration of sweetness – covering the classic residual sugar spectrum of Riesling. 


The winery picks their Riesling grapes early (20-21 Brix). Using only native yeasts and fermenting at low temperatures in stainless steel tanks – there is no use of oak barrels or malolactic fermentation. They stop the fermentation at about 7% residual sugar, and clean the wine rapidly to retain as much freshness and fruitiness as possible. They leave a fair amount of natural carbon dioxide in the wine to create a lively mouth feel. 

ABOUT THE WINERY:
First released by Randall Grahm of Bonny Doon Vineyard in 1992, Pacific Rim Dry Riesling quickly gained a loyal following among Riesling lovers. Known for its fresh and bright characteristics, the wine was a welcome alternative to over-oaked, one-dimensional white wines. As the American palate evolved in recent years toward wines with greater complexity and crisper acidity, the popularity of Pacific Rim Dry Riesling grew. Demand and enthusiasm for Pacific Rim Dry Riesling continued to gain momentum — and the excitement around the wine inspired a radical idea… the creation a winery exclusively dedicated to Riesling. In August of 2006, a small band of Bonny Doon expats moved to the Northwest from California with a common desire to craft the best Riesling in America… thus, Pacific Rim became its own winery.
Learn more about the winery here.



March Cheese Club: Iowa

Cheese ClubPour Me A SliceBeehive Cheese Company
Pour Me A Slice
Uintah, Utah, USA

‘Pour Me A Slice’ is sweet and creamy. Beehive Cheese partnered with their good friends at Basil Hayden’s to create a cheese infused with their Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. As you near the rind, the spiciness of the bourbon becomes more pronounced. This beauty will be enjoyed by bourbon and cheese enthusiasts alike.

“We love pioneers and explorers. That’s what makes our partnership with Basil Hayden’s so exciting. Basil Hayden Sr. began distilling his Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey in 1796 using his own mash based on what he had on hand. Unconstrained by the rules of traditional bourbon, he discovered what we now call “high-rye”. At Beehive Cheese, we can relate to breaking rules and going our own direction. Since our founding, we have produced unique and complex cheeses that are leaders in their category of American cheeses.” – Beehive Cheese Company LLC

FOOD PAIRING: Pair with toasted nuts, chocolate, berries, and charcuterie. 

WINE & CRAFT BEER PAIRING: Drink along with any of Basil Hayden’s premium bourbons, medium to full-bodied red wines, ales of all kinds and ciders.

WINESTYLES: Mellow and Bold
BEERSTYLES:
Crisp & Clean; Sour, Tart & Funky; or Malty & Sweet

Pour Me A Slice_Basil Hayden's

© Photo by Beehive Cheese Company


Barely BuzzedBeehive Cheese Company
Barely Buzzed
Uintah, Utah, USA

This Utah Cheddar is rubbed with espresso and lavender, and is a winner of 20 major awards. Barely Buzzed is the perfect party cheese. It’s easy to pair, stunning to look at, and always the center of attention on the cheese board. The espresso and lavender rub imparts notes of butterscotch and caramel, which are prevalent near the rind, but find their way to the center of the cheese. This is a full-bodied cheese with a nutty flavor and smooth texture. Hours after it’s made, the special grind is rubbed on the rind. The 20-pound wheel ages for 6-8 months. As it ages, Beehive’s cheesemakers test each batch to determine the right time to introduce the wheel into the world. Learn more about the story behind Barely Buzzed here. 

FOOD PAIRING: Pair with Toasted Nuts, Chocolate, Berries and Charcuterie

WINE & CRAFT BEER PAIRING: Drink with medium to full-bodied red wines, ports, ales of all kinds, stouts, and ciders

AWARDS:

  • 1st Place, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2015 American Cheese Society
  • 3rd Place 2012, 2014 World Cheese Awards

WINESTYLES: Mellow and Bold
BEERSTYLES:
Crisp & Clean; Sour, Tart & Funky; Malty & Sweet; or Dark & Roasty

Barely Buzzed_Cheese Board

© Photo by Beehive Cheese Company


ABOUT BEEHIVE CHEESE COMPANY:
In 2005, Tim Welsh and his brother-in-law, Pat Ford, had a vision of opening a creamery in the mountains of Northern Utah. With no more than eight days of cheesemaking experience between the two of them when they first began, the two broke tradition without even realizing it. They enjoyed the freedom to experiment and created their own rules about what artisan cheese could be. With their families by their sides, they built a company grounded in independent thinking, connectedness, and authenticity. They partnered with some of the best cheese researchers and creameries the western U.S. had to offer. Today, Beehive Cheese continues to produce award-winning cheeses that bring family and friends together. Learn more about Beehive Cheese Company’s story here.

Founders - Pat and Tim

© Photo by Beehive Cheese Company


ABOUT THE FOUNDERS:
Pat Ford:

Pat Ford

© Photo by Beehive Cheese Company – Pat Ford

Pat Ford has grown Beehive Cheese into an industry leading maker through his relentless positivity and enthusiasm for customer service. His career in sales has spanned over several decades to include real estate development, business to business software sales, and a brief stint in fire truck sales. Service is very important to Pat. He’s been an active member of the American Cheese Society (ACS) for the last 15 years and served on the Board of Directors for six years. During his tenure on the ACS board, he played an important role in Pat Ford 19 the creation of the Certified Cheese Professional (CCP) program. When he isn’t busy traveling the world with his wife, Jeanette, you can usually find him driving a tractor (or mule) on his ranch. He’s a proud father of five and a grandpa to nine spunky, cheese loving grandkids.

Tim Welsh:

Tim Welsh

© Photo by Beehive Cheese Company – Tim Welsh

Before starting Beehive Cheese he worked in the fast-paced world of software and technology. He founded Beehive Cheese with his brother-in-law, Pat Ford. Tim poured every ounce of passion into making exceptional, award-winning cheese. Supporting local arts is very important to Tim. Tim has served on the Advisory Board at Red Butte Garden / University of Utah in Salt Lake City. He also serves on the Board of the California Artisan Cheese Guild. His charitable interests include the Ogden Friends of Acoustic Music Festival and their year-round events. Tim has traveled the world with his wife, Kari, and three sons—all of whom work at Beehive. He enjoys cooking, taking in a concert at Red Butte Garden, and snuggles with his two pups, Noodle and Gypsy


WineStyles of West Des Moines is excited to announce they have got their hands on a small amount of Hook’s Cheese Company’s special 15 Year Cheddar! While this is not featured in this month’s Cheese Club, we promise you don’t want to miss this. Ask how you can pick up this very special, limited cheese at your local wine store!

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Casas del Toqui Barrel Series Pinot Noir

Simple Spaghetti Carbonara

pasta-carbonara_Chelsie Craig

© Photo by Chelsie Craig at Bon Appétit

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 tbsp. kosher salt, plus more
  • 4 oz. guanciale (salt-cured pork jowl), pancetta (Italian bacon), or bacon
  • 2 oz. Parmesan
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 large eggs
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. spaghetti, bucatini, or rigatoni

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat 6 qt. water in a large pot over high. When water starts to steam, add 3 Tbsp. salt and cover pot with a lid (this will bring water to a boil faster).
  2. While you are waiting on the water, do a little prep. Remove 4 oz. guanciale from packaging and cut into about 1 x ¼” strips. Finely grate 2 oz. cheese and set aside one-quarter of cheese for later.
  3. Whisk 4 egg yolks and 2 whole eggs in a medium bowl until no streaks remain, then stir in remaining grated cheese. Add several cranks of pepper and set aside.
  4. Working next to pot, heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium. Add guanciale and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp around the edges, 7–10 minutes.
  5. Remove pot from heat. Using a wooden spoon, fish out guanciale and transfer to a small bowl. Pour fat into a heatproof measuring cup, then add back about 3 Tbsp. to pot. Discard any remaining fat.
  6. Cook 1 lb. pasta in boiling water, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes shy of package instructions. Just before pasta is finished, scoop out 1¾ cups pasta cooking liquid with same heatproof measuring cup.
  7. Add 1 cup reserved pasta cooking liquid to Dutch oven and bring to a boil over medium-high. Drain pasta in a colander, then transfer to Dutch oven.
  8. Cook pasta, stirring constantly and vigorously, until al dente and water is reduced by about half, about 2 minutes. Remove pot from heat.
  9. Whisk ¼ cup pasta cooking liquid into reserved egg mixture, then very slowly stream into Dutch oven, stirring constantly, until cheese is melted and egg is thickened to form a glossy sauce. Season with salt, if needed. Thin sauce with remaining ½ cup pasta cooking liquid, adding a tablespoonful at a time, until it’s the consistency of heavy cream (you most likely won’t use all of it).
  10. Mix in guanciale and divide pasta among bowls. Top with pepper and reserved cheese.

© Recipe courtesy of Claire Saffitz from Bon Appétit

MARCH WINE CLUB:

Mellow style logoCasas-Toqui-Pinot-NoirCasas del Toqui
Barrel Series Pinot Noir

Cachapoal Valley, Chile

MELLOW WINE STYLE

The Barrel Series Pinot Noir is ruby red in color with medium intensity. It has an elegant nose, with aromas of red berries and a hint of vanilla. The palate is soft, with good balance and a long finish.

Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Analysis:
14% alcohol / volume
Viticulture: Vertical espalier
Vinification:
Fermentation at 80.6ºF-84.2ºF, post fermentation maceration and aged in oak barrels for 6 months
Closure: Screw cap
Pairing: Serve between 57.2ºF-60.8ºF with pasta or a variety of cheeses

Vincent Johnson

© Photo of Vincent Johnson

Casas del Toqui Winery was created with the intention to develop and produce high quality fine wines, to be shared both domestically and internationally. They are committed to excellence by continuously managing their quality, labor safety and environmental sustainability; allowing them to be a role model for the Chilean wine industry. Their philosophy is to achieve maximum balance, quality and identity to each of their wines, to ensure they are a direct reflection of their terroirs. The majority of Casas del Toqui’s vineyards are located in Alto Cachapoal, about 100 kilometers south of Santiago. Here, the alluvial soils and the Mediterranean climate provide ideal conditions for grapevines. 

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Casas del Toqui Barrel Series Chardonnay

Pan-Seared-Salmon-and-Gnocchi-with-Sage-Butter-Sauce

© Photo by Inquiring Chef

Pan Seared Salmon and Gnocchi with Sage Butter Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

  • 16 oz gnocchi (look for gluten-free if needed)
  • 4 (4-6 oz) salmon filets
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil (I use grape seed or avocado)
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 4 leaves fresh sage, chopped
  • 2 cloves shallots, diced
  • 2 tsp lemon juice, plus lemon wedges for serving

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Boil gnocchi according to package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, pat salmon filets dry with paper towels. Season it on both sides with some salt and pepper.
  3. Place salmon, skin-side down (or on either side if using skinless salmon), in a room temperature non-stick pan with a thin layer of cooking oil. (This is the key to crisp salmon – the salmon must be placed in a cool pan and then slowly brought up to heat.)
  4. Place the pan over medium heat and cook the salmon, without moving it, until the skin is crisp and easily releases from the pan. (After it has cooked for ~5 minutes, gently nudge it with a spatula, until it easily slides around in the pan.)
  5. Turn salmon with a spatula and increase heat to medium-high. Continue cooking until the side touching the pan is golden brown and crisp and the salmon is cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes more. (It should flake easily with a fork.)
  6. Transfer salmon to a serving platter and return pan to medium-high heat.
  7. Add butter until melted. Add gnocchi, sage, and shallots. Cook, stirring constantly, until shallots are golden brown and sage is crisp.
  8. Pour gnocchi and butter sauce over salmon. Squeeze lemon juice over top.
  9. Serve salmon and gnocchi with extra lemon wedges on the side.

© Recipe courtesy of Jess Smith of Inquiring Chef

MARCH WINE CLUB:

Silky styleBarrel Series Chardonnay 2020Casas del Toqui
Chardonnay
Cachapoal Valley, Chile

SILKY WINE STYLE

This chardonnay has a complex nose, although it still maintains fresh and fruity aromas. There are dominant notes of pineapple and citrus, while the contribution of French Oak offers hints of caramel and vanilla. On the palate it has a great deal of volume, with a pleasant acidity and long finish.

Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Analysis:
13.5% alcohol / volume

Viticulture: Vertical espalier
Vinification:
Fermentation at 80˚F-84˚F, post fermentation maceration and aged in oak barrels for 6 months.
Closure:
Screw cap
Pairing: Serve between 50˚F-53˚F with salmon or white meats

Vincent Johnson

Photo of Vincent Johnson

As a wine region, Chile is truly blessed. It has a Mediterranean climate that is similar to the climate in California and France. The climate and the geographical traits have helped Chile remain one of the only locations in the world that is resistant to phylloxera, the louse that destroyed many of the world’s best vineyards in the 1800’s. Chile is going through a wine revolution and the independents have broken away from Chile’s industrial wine culture to lovingly squeeze out small lots of wines, usually using organic, even spiritually tinged theories of winemaking. This new generation is much more conscious about the environment and committed to healthy, sustainable agriculture and also for the production of wines that have a stronger connection to local traditions.

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