October Collector’s Wine Club: Iowa

Collectors Wine ClubBandeau Cave

Extrait BlancDomaine Chante Cigale
Extrait Blanc
Châteauneuf du Pape, France

Rich WineStylesRICH WINE STYLE

Vinified, aged in an ovoid concrete vat and selected from an outstanding terroir: this wine is truly “Haute Couture”. This Blanc Extrait has a very pure nose, mineral and saline coated by a fruit white white flesh; powerful, elegant and creamy mouth feel. Pairs well with Provencal and Mediterranean cuisine, foie gras, lobster, scallops, and king prawn.

“Freshly cut pear, fairly full in body. with a pear juice texture and flavor. Acidity is low but balanced, with a little positive bitter twist accentuating the freshness. Fairly long finish, not hugely deep, but very well put together Organically grown on clay soils in lieu-dit Palestor to the north of the village. Fermented then matured for 10 months, half in demi-muid, half in concrete tank.” – 93 pts, Matt Walls – 2018 En primeur tastings, Rhône Valley

“The 2018 Châteauneuf du Pape Blanc Extrait is 80% Roussanne and 20% Grenache Blanc, with roughly half made in demi-muids and the other part in concrete. A bit reticent right now, with just hints of pineapple and tangerine, it’s full-bodied but tightly wound and tense, seemingly in need of time to unwind. It’s by no means unapproachable now, but it should be better in a year or two and will drink well for close to a decade.” – 91+ pts, Joe Czerwinski – The Wine Advocate 2019

Terroir: Clay – Limestone 70% (lieu dit: Palestor), Rolled Pebbles 30% (lieu dit: Cabrières)
Age of Vineyard: 40 years old
Varietal: 70% Roussanne, 30% Grenache Blanc
Aging: 9 months on fine sediments
Aging Potential: 10 years
Serving Temperature: 50-53.6° F
Production: 1,700 Bottles

About Domaine Chante Cigale

Domaine Chante Cigale has been in operation in Southern Rhone Valley for more than 150 years. Founded in 1874, Hyppolite Jourdan named roughly 28 hectares of family property Clos Chante Cigale. In 1936, the same year the Chateauneuf de Pape AOC was created, the estate was renamed to Domaine Chante Cigale.

Today, Domaine Chante Cigale is one of the most important family estates of Châteauneuf du Pape.  Alexandre Favier is now carefully running the winery by keeping up with the winemaker’s tradition of the family.

The Estate now stretches over 40 hectares on the Châteauneuf du Pape appellation, divided into 45 parcels, scattered all over this exceptional terroir.  The diversity of its soils and of the grape varieties allows the elaboration of a unique and exceptional wines.  Alexandre Favier and his team are taking good care of every step of the wine production themselves, respecting the spirit of the Domaine. 

Domaine Chante Cigale VineyardsDomaine Chante Cigale Harvest

 

Bold wine Style logoExtrait RougeDomaine Chante Cigale
Extrait Rouge
Châteauneuf du Pape, France

BOLD WINE STYLE

A genuine and rustic wine that will go through decades. Showcasing a deep, red color, with a complex nose of black fruit and licorice. The Extrait Rouge has a very powerful mouth, that is fleshy and concentrated, with very fine and dense tannins. Pairs well with roasted meat, pigeon, lamb, pecking duck and sheep’s cheese.

A broad, muscular style, with chestnut and tobacco leaf notes and roasted cedar accents framing a large core of lightly dried plum, red currant and blackberry fruit. Cuts a broad swath on the finish, offering a long echo of humus. Will likely age toward a more rustic profile. For fans of the style.” – 92 pts, JM 2017

The smallest production cuvée is the 2015 Châteauneuf du Pape Extrait. An uncommon blend of 70% Mourvèdre and 20% Grenache, aged in demi-muids and older barrels, its deep ruby color is followed by rich, concentrated and ripe aromas and flavors of blackcurrants, toasted spice, licorice and roasted herbs. This big, mouth-filling and structured 2015 will need to be forgotten for 3-4 years and will have two decades of overall longevity.” – 92-94 pts, Jeb Dunnuck – The Wine Advocate 2016

Terroir: Rolled Pebbles (lieu-dit: Le Calada)
Age of Vineyard: 100 years old
Varietal: 80% Mourvèdre, 20% Grenache
Aging: 30 months in demi muid
Aging Potential: 15-20 years
Serving Temperature: 60.8-64.4° F
Production: 800 Bottles

Bandeau DomaineAbout Chateauneuf-du-Pape

In the 14th Century, under the reign of Pope John XXII, the Avignon village became the summer residence of the papacy. As for the precious nectar produced in this area, he granted it the rank of “Vin du Pape”, opening the doors of the great European courts.  More than likely, during Gallo-Roman times the vines covered the territory of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. However, the first written evidence of its existence dates from 1157. In keeping with local tradition and planting himself, Geoffroy, bishop of Avignon, had a vineyard within the territory of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. However, it’s the popes from the fourteenth century that were the real promoters of the wine growing business of the appellation.

By the 19th Century, the wines were very well known, enjoyed by famous people, poets, literary and cultural associates in Paris.  By the 20th Century, winemakers were anxious to defend the growing reputation of the Châteauneuf-du-Pape wines, the beginnings of the current system of AOC.  The 1919 wine appellation law on “designations of origin” was too general and didn’t prevent fraud. The constituent meeting of the “Châteauneuf-du-Pape winegrowers union” took place in October 1923. After several years of legal proceedings, the decree of the appellation is published and Châteauneuf-du-Pape becomes the first wine-making AOC of France on May 15, 1936.  Still in force today, it continues to protect and guarantee the quality of Châteauneuf-du-Pape wines. The vineyards now cover 7900 acres in the towns of Châteauef-du-Pape, Bédarrides, Courthézon, Orange and Sorgue.


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Two Mountain Hidden Horse Red Blend

Pizza Night Three Ways!

Pizzette

Hidden Horse Red Blend by Two Mountain Winery is a great wine for any occasion. This Cabernet Sauvignon based blend is easy enough to watch a movie and unwind after a long day; comforting enough while still finishing paying bills or helping with homework, and complex/rich enough to stand on its own, or pair with any meal…hence pizza three ways!

THE “BASIC WAY”
– Pre-made pizza crust or Flatbread
– Olive oil or Red Sauce
– Pepperoni, Cooked Sausage, Cooked Bacon, Cooked Chicken or some other protein
– Sliced vegetables (onions, mushrooms, peppers, olives, tomatoes, etc.)
– Fresh leafy greens if desired (basil, spinach, kale, etc)
– Cheese of choice, if desired

Directions:
1. Pre-heat oven to 425°F
2. Open crust or flatbread, place on a pizza pan, or baking sheet, then spread oil or sauce (or both) over crust/flatbread
3. Layer your meat of choice in a circular, yet sporadic pattern (if meat is wanted)
4. Sprinkle vegetables of choice, not too many, not too few.
5. Lightly top with cheese of choice (if desired)
6. Place in oven and bake until hot and golden. Once cooked to your liking, remove from the oven, let cool, and top with leafy greens (optional)
7. Slice on a cutting board, and unwind for the day

THE “MORE COMPLICATED, BUT FUN DINNER PARTY WAY”
– Google, “How to make pizza dough.”
– Procure the same ingredients as above + corn Meal
– Use Pizza Stone or Baking Sheet

Directions:
1. Pre-heat oven or BBQ to 425°F+
2. Place pizza stone in oven or BBQ to heat through
3. Make the dough according to directions
4. Heavily dust counter or cookie sheet with cornmeal and place rolled/flattened dough on cornmeal dusted sheet
5. Follow steps 3-6 from the “Basic Way”
6. Gently slide pizza from sheet to pizza stone
7. Cook until crust is golden and bubbly
8. Remove, slice/cut, serve on patio table or dining room table while enjoying your friends and company

THE “I’M EXHAUSTED” WAY
– Credit Card
– Phone Winestyles

Directions:
1. Go to WineStyles store locator
2. Order a couple pizzettes of your choice
3. Pay with credit card…curbside pick-up pizzettes and a bottle of Hidden Horse Red Blend
4. Get home, pour a glass of Hidden Horse Red Blend
5. Search favorite on-demand movie platform
6. Watch movie and enjoy Hidden Horse Red Blend. You deserve it!

© Pizza Night recipes courtesy of Two Mountain Winery.

OCTOBER WINE CLUB:

Hidden Horse Red BlendBold wine Style logoTwo Mountain Winery
Hidden Horse No. 17 Red Blend

Yakima Valley, Washington

BOLD WINE STYLE

Two Mountain Winery is a family affair. Owned and operated by brothers Matthew and Patrick Rawn, their family has been farming the rich soil of the Rattlesnake Hills area of Washington State for more than half a century. In 1951, Phil Schmidt established Schmidt Orchards with 40 acres of peaches, apricots, prunes, and apples. Today, the Rawn brothers continue that legacy through Two Mountain Winery and the estate farming operation. The small family winery produces a modest 10,000 cases annually but is poised for growth under the leadership of the Rawn Brothers who believe great wine is the result of the perfect blend of elegance and fun. After purchasing Two Mountain Winery and Estate Vineyard from their late uncle Ron Schmidt’s estate in 2006, the brothers set out to put their own fingerprint on the family business by launching a new look for their classic, hand-crafted varietal wines.

Aromas of spice, dark fruit, pipe tobacco and hints of oak are followed by flavors of dark berries, overripe cherries and leather. Well balanced acidity and ripe tannins finish off this signature blend.

Vineyards: 100% Estate vineyard sites. A blend of all six of Two Mountains’ estate sites
Varietal: 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 5% Syrah, and 2% Malbec
Analysis:
13.9% alcohol / volume
pH:
3.71
Aging:
15 months in French and American oak, 22% new
Harvested: 
September 6 to October 30, 2017
Cases: 4157
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine

ABOUT THE OWNERS:

Matthew Rawn – Winemaker, Director of Sales and Marketing

Matt Rawn

Photo by Two Mountain Winery: Matthew Rawn

Matthew Rawn has been winemaker for Two Mountain Winery since its inception. He helped plant the estate vineyard with his uncle Ron Schmidt in 2000 and has produced Two Mountain’s wines since the first vintage in 2002. While the vineyard was growing, Matt honed his winemaking skills by working alongside neighboring Yakima Valley wine producers and learning their craft. A passionate advocate for the Washington wine industry, Matt manages sales and marketing for the winery and enjoys talking with wine retailers and restaurateurs about the state’s world-class wines. Matt also shares vineyard duties with his brother, Patrick. Matt holds a bachelor’s degree in agricultural business from Montana State University in Bozeman, Mont. and completed enology and viticulture courses at Walla Walla Community College in Walla Walla, Wash.

Patrick Rawn – General Manager, Vineyard Operations

Patrick Rawn

Photo by Two Mountain Winery: Patrick Rawn

Patrick Rawn manages finances and daily operations for Two Mountain Winery and estate vineyard and shares vineyard management duties with his brother, Matt. After college, Patrick traveled the globe and spent extensive time in Europe. Patrick returned to the U.S. with plans to enter law school, but a six-month stint working for the family wine business took his career path in a new direction. Patrick’s passion for wine blossomed at Two Mountain Winery, and quickly grew into a full-fledged love affair. Patrick lives and works in the Yakima Valley, where he is a Yakima County Planning Commissioner and serves on the Yakima County Wine Tourism Consortium. Patrick holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a minor in economics/international finance from the University of Washington in Seattle.

 

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Two Mountain Winery Riesling

Ginger Carrot Soup

Carrot Ginger Soup

© Alexandra Hedin

Two Mountain Riesling is not sweet, but rather very fruity with nice acidity. The brightness of the wine, floral aromatics, and the crisp mouthfeel compliment the spice of the ginger and onion, while balancing the depth of the carrots and the freshness of the cilantro. The two together make for a perfect combination of end of summer and beginning of fall flavors.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 lb carrots, chopped
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 1 Inch ginger, peeled
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1⁄4 cup pepitas

DIRECTIONS:

  • Cook carrots and onion in olive oil until tender.
  • Add ginger & broth and bring to a boil.
  • Once carrots are fork tender, purée with an immersion blender, or in a blender in batches. Top with cilantro and pepitas.
  • Serve with slightly chilled glass of Two Mountain Riesling!
  • © Photo and recipe courtesy of Alexandra Hedin of Weeknight Society

OCTOBER WINE CLUB:

Two Mountain RieslingCrisp Wine StyleTwo Mountain Winery
Riesling
Rattlesnake Hills, Washington

CRISP WINE STYLE

Nestled in the Rattlesnake Hills within the Yakima Valley wine region of Washington state. Two Mountain Winery and vineyard is a family-owned operation that produces approachable, handcrafted wines that are worth saving for that special occasion, but are accessibly priced for a casual dinner with family and friends. Brothers Matthew and Patrick Rawn own and operate the winery and estate vineyard, overseeing every aspect of the winemaking process from the grapes to the glass.

This wine is an off-dry style Riesling with hints of hay, green pear, wild flowers and dust on the nose. These characteristics combine with incredible flavors of ripe citrus, green apple, and a hint of minerality. This wine lasts forever on your tongue and makes you remember why summer is so great!

Analysis: 13.0% alcohol / volume
pH:
3.18
Aging:
100% Stainless Steel
Cases: 897
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine


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October Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Braised Pork Shoulder FennelBraised Pork Shoulder w/ Fennel & Sage

  • 1 (3 1⁄2 -lb) pork shoulder or butt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 5 tbsp cold butter (divided)
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 2 bulbs fennel, cored & sliced lengthwise into 1⁄2 inch thick pieces
  • 7 sage leaves, plus extra
  • 1 cup Merlot
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 cups beef or chicken stock

DIRECTIONS:

  • Set aside pork until room temperature (1 to 1 1/2 hours), season generously with salt & pepper.
  • Pre-heat oven 325°F.
  • Melt oil and 1Tbsp butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  • Add pork, fat-side down and sear on one side for 3-4 minutes. Repeat on all sides until sizzling, but not scorched. Transfer heat to a platter, then remove fat from the pan drippings and discard the fat.
  • Heat 2 Tbsp butter in the Dutch oven over medium heat. Add shallot & fennel and sauté for 10 minutes, or until tender and caramelized. Add sage and cook for 1 minute.
  • Stirring constantly, pour in Merlot (wine) and cook for 7-10 minutes…until reduced to a quarter of the original amount.
  • Add pork, fat side up, bay leaves, salt & pepper to the Dutch oven containing the wine, shallot, fennel, and sage.
  • Pour in stock and bring to a simmer, then partially cover and cook in the oven for 1 1⁄2 -2 hours, until pork is fork tender.
  • Uncover and cook for 15 minutes (Basting/spooning occasionally).
  • With a slotted spoon, transfer pork, fennel, & shallot to a platter.
  • Strain remaining sauce and bring to simmer, skimming any fat. Set aside. Whisk in 2 Tbsp cold butter and simmer for 30 seconds.
  • Ladle sauce over the pork, then garnish with a few sage leaves, fennel slaw and finishing salt. Serve with Two Mountain Merlot and enjoy!
  • © Recipe courtesy of Josh Henderson, Huxley Wallace Collective.

OCTOBER WINE CLUB:

Two Mountain 2018 MerlotBold wine Style logoTwo Mountain Winery
Merlot
Yakima Valley, Washington

BOLD WINE STYLE

Nestled in the Yakima Valley wine region of Washington State, Two Mountain Winery produces approachable, handcrafted wines that are worth saving for that special occasion, but are accessibly priced for a casual dinner with family and friends. Established in 2002, Two Mountain is a family-owned operation that draws on the experience of three generations who have farmed the rich soil of the Yakima Valley. Brothers Matthew and Patrick Rawn own and operate the winery and estate vineyard, overseeing every aspect of the winemaking process from the grapes to the glass. Inspired by majestic Mt. Rainier and Mt. Adams that form the breathtaking backdrop of the Estate Copeland Vineyard, their award-winning wines are a reflection of the perfect climate in which they were grown.

Aromas of rich toasted barrel, bright vibrant Bing cherry, blackberry, coffee, & a touch of caramel on the nose are followed by inviting flavors of ripe red fruits, baked fig, hints of toffee and vanilla, a touch of clove and soft integrated tannins.

Vineyard: 57% Copeland, 43% Schmidt Vineyard
Varietal:
92% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, 1% Malbec
Analysis: 14.7% alcohol / volume
pH:
3.55
Aging:
20 months in French and American, 40% new
Harvested:
September 23, and October 8, 2018
Cases:
1090
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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September Premium Wine Club

Brew Cru Black Label Pinot NoirBREW CRU
Black Label Pinot Noir, Single Vineyard
Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge, South Africa

Bold wine Style logoBOLD WINE STYLE

Hemel-en-Aarde, a region known for producing world class cool climate wines, is synonymous with outstanding South African Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.   Influenced by a maritime climate it enjoys cool daytime temperatures that are even lower overnight, particularly during the growing season resulting in this medium bodied wine with classic elegance that exhibits both grace and power. 

This elegant wine shows prominent aromas of black cherries and raspberries with undertones of violets. It has a finely textured palate with silky tannins, strawberry and plum making way for slight savory notes by a fresh and vibrant finish.

Winemaker Bertus Fourie“In my 21 years of making wine, this is without a doubt the wine that best expresses typical Pinot Noir and the precision I’m after when it comes to fruity purity, fine tannins, overall balance and grace.  A non-forgiving and challenging grape to work with, but when the stars align it all comes together in the form of our maiden ‘Black Label’ release.” –  Bertus Fourie, Winemaker

Winemaking: Grapes were handpicked and only individually selected bunches were harvest at maximum flavor intensity. After both bunch and berry sorting on arrival at the winery, the grapes underwent a four-day pre-fermentation cold soak allowing for maximum fruit and color extraction. Four micro fermentations using a combination of whole bunch and whole berries fermentations were done to give depth and a full palate of aromas.  Alcoholic fermentation lasted approximately eight days after which it was pressed, settled, and transferred to barrel for malolactic fermentation. The wine was not racked from barrel only once over the 12-month maturation period, as preserving the freshness and fruit was key for the styles the team was looking to produce.

Appellation: Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge, South Africa
Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Analysis: 14.3% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.49
TA: 5.51 g/l
Residual Sugar: 2.7 g/l
Aging: k
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

 

Benguela Cove Vinography Cabernet Franc bottleBenguela Cove Lagoon Wine Estate
Vinography Cabernet Franc
Estate Grown
Walker Bay, South Africa

Bold wine Style logoBOLD WINE STYLE

Vineyards: Walker Bay is making great inroad with Bordeaux varieties.  Nudged by the Bot River lagoon with vistas of the Atlantic Ocean, the vineyards enjoy cool daytime temperatures that drop even more at night.  A beneficial diurnal range aids in even ripening and complexity, ushering the development of delicate fruit notes, fine tannin structure and a bright acidity.  Cabernet Franc enjoys the nuances of the climate, resulting in small, concentrated berries

Character: At the outset, this Cabernet Franc appears to be reserved. Decanting is advised to enjoy the full flavor spectrum. Varietal characteristics like black cherry, salted licorice, cinnamon, dark chocolate and hints of potpourri is framed with cooler notes of Greek Oregano, graphite and cedar.  An earthiness prevails as bold fruit envelopes your whole mouth.  Mad with focus, clarity and the intention to age.

Johann Fourie Winemaker

Winemaker Johann Fourie

Personality: This wine is the quintessential balancing act of fruit, tannin and acidity with absolute persistence. Commanding yet sophisticated, this Cabernet Franc fulfills the aim of producing a cool-climate wine that was picked at the proper ripeness level and still portrays that old world benchmarks finesse and elegance.

In the Cellar: Grapes were handpicked at optimal ripeness, followed by bunch and berry sorting. A four day cold soak allowed for maximum flavor and extraction and another seven days post fermentation maceration added even more depth of color.  The juice was inoculated, followed by gentle punch downs twice a day. After alcoholic fermentation, it was pressed, settled and transferred to barrel for malolactic fermentation where it was kept until prior to bottling.

Pairing: Braised lamb shoulder, beef bourguignon, or Puttanesca pasta.

Appellation: Walker Bay, South Africa
Varietal: Cabernet Franc
Analysis: 14.34% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.49
TA: 5.83 g/l
Residual Sugar: 2.77 g/l
Maturation: 22 months in 40% new French oak barrels
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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Brew Cru Chardonnay

Asparagus and Bok-Choy Frittata

Asparagus and Bok-choy Frittata

© FoodandWine.com

South Africa is one of the so-called New World wine countries, along with Australia, New Zealand, and the Americas, but its wines best reflect the balance of the European tradition. A South African chardonnay will make a marvelous partner for this Italian-inspired dish.  When making an Italian frittata, don’t limit yourself to traditional ingredients. The Asian flavors that fill this version offer a real change of pace. Cook the eggs on top of the stove or in the oven —but be sure to use moderate heat so they don’t turn rubbery.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 3 scallions including green tops, sliced thin
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 small head bok-choy (about 3/4 pound), cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3/4 pound asparagus, tough ends snapped off and discarded, spears cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 9 eggs, beaten to mix
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil

DIRECTIONS:

  • Heat the oven to 325°F. In a medium cast-iron or ovenproof nonstick frying pan, heat the cooking oil over moderate heat. Add the scallions, ginger, and garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the bok-choy and cook, stirring, until the leaves wilt, about 2 minutes. Add the asparagus and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are almost tender, about 3 minutes more.
  • Evenly distribute the vegetables in the pan and then add the eggs, pepper, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Cook the frittata, without stirring, until the edges start to set, about 2 minutes. Put the frittata in the oven and bake until firm, about 25 minutes. Drizzle the sesame oil over the top. Serves 4.
  • © Photo and recipe courtesy of FoodandWine.com 

SEPTEMBER WINE CLUB:

Brew Cru ChardonnaySilky styleBREW CRU
Chardonnay
Hemel-en-aarde Ridge, South Africa

SILKY WINE STYLE

Walker Bay, a region known for producing world-class, cool climate wines, is rapidly becoming synonymous with outstanding South African Chardonnay. Its close proximity to the ocean is ideal for the development of lovely lime notes, austere structure and lively acidity. 

This well-balanced wine displays the true characteristics of a cool-climate Chardonnay.  On the nose there is beautiful orange blossom, peach and mandarin with tones of raw almonds. The palate shows great finesses and has subtle hints nougat and toasty notes with a refreshing, lasting and creamy finish.

Appellation: Hemel-en-aarde Ridge, Walker Bay, South Africa
Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Analysis: 13.9% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.2
TA: 6.6 g/l
Residual Sugar: 2.6 g/l
Aging: 9 months French oak
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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South Africa HPF Posmeester Merlot

Grilled Flat Iron Steak with Blue Cheese

Grilled Flat Iron Steak

© SunnyBryd

Steaks and Merlot are a sure thing, especially with blue cheese, rosemary, garlic and a hot grill. Your Merlot will be mad for this meal.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pound flat iron steak
  • 3 tablespoons softened unsalted butter
  • 1 ounce crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • 1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  • Whisk together vinegar, garlic, 1 tablespoon black pepper, rosemary, oregano, and kosher salt in a bowl along with the olive oil. Place the flat iron steak into a resealable plastic bag, and pour the marinade overtop. Squeeze the excess air from the bag and seal. Marinate in the refrigerator 30 minutes.
  • Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil grate. Remove steak from the marinade, shake off excess, and discard the remaining marinade. Allow the steak to stand at room temperature for 15 minutes as the grill warms.
  • Mash together the butter, blue cheese, chives, and 1/8 teaspoon of black pepper; set aside. Cook the steak on the preheated grill to desired degree of doneness, about 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Allow the steak to rest in a warm place for 10 minutes before slicing thinly across the grain. Serve with a dollop of blue cheese-chive butter.
  • © Recipe courtesy from Kristin at Allrecipes.com

SEPTEMBER WINE CLUB:

HPF Posmeester MerlotBold wine Style logoHermanuspietersfountein (HPF)
Posmeester Merlot

Walker Bay, South Africa

BOLD WINE STYLE

In the early 1800’s farmers imported a teacher named Hermanus Pieters to teach their children Dutch, the forerunner of Afrikaans. He would be paid in sheep which he grazed at a fountain under the Milkwood trees near the sea. The spot soon became known as Hermanus Pieter’s Fountein (HPF).  In 1855, the village was named after him – Hermanuspietersfontein.  Fast forward 100 years later, a wine cellar baring his name is the longest Afrikaans name for a cellar in the world and using Afrikaans-only wine names.  Operationally, their 350-ton urban winery combines European mindset and gravity concept to minimize handling and intervention in the winemaking process. “Good earth makes better wine” is HPF’s winemaking philosophy, the expression and sense of place is the soul of Sondagskloof.   Sondagskloof is sheltered in a mountainous area, 50 kilometers from the southern tip of Africa and was granted “Ward Status” (ie. AVA) in February 2007.  While the ward comprises of two farms, Hermanuspietersfontein is the only wine producer marketing the Wines of Origin Sondagskloof.

Elegant red blend with an aroma of red and purple fruit such as blueberries and currants.  Milk chocolate undertone and fruit freshness. Lush and juicy palate; supple and full with good length.

Appellation: Walker Bay, South Africa
Varietal: 85% Merlot, 14% Shiraz, 1% Mourvedre
Analysis: 13.8% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.5
TA: 5.35 g/l
Residual Sugar: 2.2 g/l
Aging: 10 months French oak
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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September Wine Club Pairing Recipe

Red Kuri Squash Soup

© Con Poulos

Red Kuri Squash Soup

  • 1 1/2 pounds red kuri or butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes (3 cups)
  • 1/2 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium fennel bulb, cored and cut into thin wedges
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Chopped toasted pecans and small marjoram leaves, for garnish

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F.  In a large saucepan, combine the cubed squash with the chopped onion, bay leaf and 3 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover and simmer over low heat until the squash is tender, about 20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, on a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the fennel wedges with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss well. Roast for about 25 minutes, until the fennel is tender and starting to brown.
  • Discard the bay leaf from the soup. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender. Return the soup to the saucepan and warm over low heat. Stir in the butter and season the soup with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with the roasted fennel, pecans, marjoram leaves and a drizzle of olive oil.
  • The soup can be refrigerated overnight, reheat gently.
  • Pairs well with strawberry or cinnamon inflected Pinot Noir
  • © Photo by Con Poulos. © Recipe by Alice Waters of FoodandWine.com

SEPTEMBER WINE CLUB:

Brew Cru Pinot NoirMellow style logoBREW CRU
Pinot Noir
Cape South Coast, South Africa

MELLOW WINE STYLE

Walker Bay, a region known for producing world-class, cool climate wines, is rapidly becoming synonymous with outstanding South African Pinot Noir. With its close proximity to the ocean, it enjoys cool daytime temperatures that are even lower overnight, particularly during the growing season, resulting in this medium-bodied wine with classic elegance that exhibits both grace and power. 

This elegant wine shows prominent aromas of wild cherries and raspberries with earthy undertones.  It has a finely textured palate with silky tannin and strawberry, making way for slight savory notes, followed by a fresh and vibrant finish.

Appellation: Walker Bay, Cape South Coast, South Africa
Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Analysis: 13.4% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.57
TA: 5.63 g/l
Residual Sugar: 2.4 g/l
Aging: 9 months French oak
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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Paco García Junior Tempranillo

Prawn and Bacon Brochettes

Praw Bacon wrap

The Spanish love bacon, this combination of prawns and bacon can be found at most Tapas bars. It’s a delicious treat for guests or backyard BBQ. Makes 12 units.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 5 oz jamón or thinly sliced bacon
  • 24 medium to large uncooked, headless prawns, peeled
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 lemons, quartered
  • cherry tomatoes / bamboo tooth picks (optional serving)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Cut the bacon (or jamón, if using it) into pieces which will wrap generously round the prawns. Place the wrapped prawns down flat on a board and skewer them through the fattest part and the tail, making sure the jamón is firmly fixed.  Season generously and drizzle with the oil.
  • On a high heat griddle, grill or barbecue the prawn and bacon brochettes for 2-3 minutes on each side, so the jamón crisps up.  Alternatively, roast in a hot oven at 425°F on an oiled baking tray for 8-10 minutes. Squeeze over the juice of the lemon wedges and serve immediately. Optional serving on bamboo toothpicks on top of cherry tomatoes.  © Recipe courtesy of Spain Recipes

AUGUST WINE CLUB:

Bold wine Style logoPaco Garcia Junior TempranilloBodegas Paco Garcia
Junior Tempranillo

Rioja, Spain

BOLD WINE STYLE

Consider native to Rioja, Tempranillo is the wine region’s most typical grape occupying 75% of the vineyards.  The name comes from the Spanish word “temprano” (early) because of its short ripening cycle.  Rioja is the origin of the Tempranillo’s identity and one of the great grape varieties in the world.  Dating back to Roman times, numerous archaeological remains of wine presses and wineries were found in Rioja lands two thousand years ago. The centuries-old economic importance of viticulture for the region started when it became a marketable good during the Middle Ages to the French Revolution.

The grapes for this wine were hand-harvested at the “Ventas Blancas” vineyards, 510 meters above sea level. “It’s a relaxing wine, perfect as a first step into the world of wine.  Easy to notice the floral notes and fruity young wine. It’s a palatable wine for your mouth and nose. A wine that will leave an imprint, a wine to remember.” – Juan Bautista García, winemaker

Intense purple color with cherry red rim.  On the nose, wild berries, predominately blackberry and raspberry.  Balanced palate with a strong underlying taste.  Leaves a long and pleasant aftertaste.  Pairs well with potatoes, cheese, salad, pasta, pizza and white meat.

Appellation:  Rioja Alta, Spain
Varietal: 100% Tempranillo
Analysis: 13.58% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.65
TA: 5.29 g/l
Residual Sugar: 1.9 g/l
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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!

 

Paco García Tempranillo Blanc

Croquetas de Bacalao Tapas (Salt Cod Fritters)

salt cod tapasBacalao (salt cod) is a Spanish delight.  Enjoy these bite size fish cakes, dipped into rich, creamy, garlicky allioli. They are irresistible as a tapas dish or appetizer. Serves 6.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb salt cod
  • 1 1/4 floury potatoes
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 6 spring onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 2 egg, beaten
  • plain (all-purpose) flour, for dusting
  • 3 1/2 oz dried white breadcrumbs
  • olive oil, for shallow frying
  • lemon wedges and salad leaves, to serve

ALLIOLI INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 1/4 cups olive oil
  • juice of 1/2 lemon, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

Soak the salt cod in cold water for at least 24 hours, changing the water two or three times. The cod should swell as it rehydrates. Sample a tiny piece. It should not taste unpleasantly salty when fully rehydrated. Drain well and pat dry with kitchen paper.

Cook the potatoes, unpeeled, in a pan of lightly salted boiling water for about 20 minutes, until tender. Drain. As soon as they are cool enough to handle, peel the potatoes, then mash with a fork or use a potato masher.

Pour the milk into a pan, add half the spring onions and bring to a simmer. Add the soaked cod and poach very gently for 10-15 minutes, or until it flakes easily. Remove the cod and flake it with a fork into a bowl, discarding bones and skin.

Add 4 tablespoons of mashed potato to the cod and beat them together with a wooden spoon. Work in the olive oil, then gradually add the remaining mashed potato. Beat in the remaining spring onions and the parsley.

Season with lemon juice and pepper to taste – the mixture may also need a little salt but taste it before adding any. Add one egg to the mixture and beat it until thoroughly combined, then chill until firm.

Shape the chilled fish mixture into 12-18 balls, then gently flatten into small round cakes. Coat each one in flour, then dip in the remaining beaten egg and coat with dried breadcrumbs. Chill until ready to fry.

Meanwhile, make the allioli. Place the garlic and a good pinch of salt in a mortar and pound to a paste with a pestle. Using a small whisk or a wooden spoon, gradually work in the egg yolks.
Beat in about half the olive oil, a drop at a time. When the sauce is as thick as soft butter, beat in 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice. Continue adding oil until the allioli is very thick. Season to taste, adding more lemon juice if you wish.

Heat about 3/4 inch oil in a large, heavy frying pan. Add the fritters and cook over a medium-high heat for about 4 minutes. Turn them over and cook for a further 4 minutes on the other side, until crisp and golden. Drain on kitchen paper, then serve with the allioli, lemon wedges and salad leaves.

© Recipe courtesy of Spain-Recipes.com

AUGUST WINE CLUB:

Paco Garcia Tempranillo BlancoBodegas Paco Garcia
Tempranillo Blanco
Rioja, Spain

Silky styleSILKY WINE STYLE

In 1988, a local grower in Murillo de Rio Leza discovered that one of his red Tempranillo vines produced both red and white grapes at the same time. This spontaneous genetic mutation, very similar to what would be a case of albinism, gave birth to a new cepage, Tempranillo Blanco.  It has been harvested by hand in Paco Garcia’s “La Finca del Yergo” vineyard (2014) on clay laden soils; altitude of 550 meters above the sea level.

Winemaking Process: Once at the winery, after stemming, the berries are placed by gravity in stainless steel tanks to macerate for several hours so as to maximize extraction of structure, aromas, color and acidity from Tempranillo grapes.  They’re then presses (separating the skins from the pips) and the resulting must is taken to tapered and inverted tapered stainless steel tanks of 10,000 liters each, with double cold water sleeves to begin fermentation at low temperature.

Afterwards, the wine is kept on its lees for six months, half in stainless steel tanks and half in French oak barrels. This ensures the wine is rich, smooth and creamy, yet displaying the citric fruit and floral character typical of the Tempranillo Blanco variety.  The resulting wines are then blended together and bottled, expressing their round character and persistent bouquet once released.

Tasting Notes:The wine shows a unique bouquet of citrus notes (lemon and orange blossom) and fruits (pineapple and banana) with hints of mint, honey and cedar wood, displaying a subtle minerality.  And the mouthfeel benefits from the original Tempranillo’s volume, structure and length.  Try is now and later, to see the evolution that its acidity, structure and time spent in the barrel provide.  A couple years of bottle aging will appease its freshness and increase its finesse. It’s up to you to decide when and why you prefer to drink it, but it’ll always be a beautiful drop of loveliness.

 

Appellation: Rioja Alta DOCa, Spain
Varietal: 100% Tempranillo Blanco
Analysis: 12.90% alcohol / volume
pH: 3.23
TA: 6.81 g/l
Residual Sugar: 1.5 g/l
Critical Acclaim: Reviewed & approved by Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

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